2019/09/30

Combat Frame Data: CCF-021

CCF-021 Crecsentia

CCF-021 Crescentia

Technical Data

Model number: CCF-021
Code name: Crescentia
Nickname: Eiserne Jungfrau
Classification: custom attack combat frame
Manufacturer: Faust Hayden
Operator: Wehrbund Bavaria
First deployment: CY 40
Crew: 1 pilot in cockpit in chest
Height: Head height 15.5 meters
Weight: dry weight 46.4 metric tons, full weight 62.8 metric tons
Armor type: palladium glass microalloy/carbon-titanium composite with anti-laser mirror finish
Powerplant: cold fusion reactor, max output 2000 KW
Propulsion: rocket thrusters: 4x 48,000 kg, 2x 11,000 kg; top speed 2870 kph; leg boosters: 2x  34,280 kg each, top speed 3400 kph; maneuvering thrusters: 19, 180° turn time 0.46 seconds; legs: top ground speed 202 kph
Sensors: radar, thermal, optical array; main cameras mounted in head; ponytail doubles as antenna cluster
Fixed Armaments: Carbyne filament ponytail, mounted on head; plasma dirk, output rated at 0.50 MW, transforms into plasma rapier, output rated at 0.33 MW, hilt can be thrown as graphcap grenade, stored in charging rack in skirt armor, hand-carried in use; x8 grenade launcher, hidden in articulated skirt panels, each loads any combination of 4 flash/EMP/chaff/flare grenades; x2 carbyne blade, mounted on legs
Hand armaments: Bouquet shield, mounts x5 magnetic rose grapnel attached via carbyne cable, hand-carried in use

General Notes

Her people's oppression at the SOC's hands during the HALO Conflict of CY 40 convinced Neue Deutschland Empress Lenora von Bodensee to lead Wehrbund Bavaria from the front as a symbol of hope. She piloted a succession of combat frames, none of which offered the protection and potential to inspire befitting their royal pilot.

Late in the war, HALO CF mechanic Faust Hayden took it upon himself to design a custom combat frame for Lenora's personal use. As a sign of endearment, he incorporated the best ideas from famous past CF designs, focusing on machines with connections to Neue Deutschland. He designated the finished product the CCF-021 in keeping with the old Seed Corp numbering system. The Empress declared herself well pleased and named her custom CF Crescentia.

Faust set out to build a combat frame capable of keeping up with the more advanced designs which appeared near the end of the HALO Conflict while complementing Lenora's fighting style. In a turn quite unlike his rough image, Faust gave the CCF-021 a decidedly feminine appearance.

This elegant exterior belied the truly dangerous war machine concealed beneath. Crescentia bristled with a deadly arsenal rivaling Faust's own XCD-103 Eisenpferd. Lenora's CF even boasted multiple grenade launchers hidden in articulated panels in its skirt. This nod to Eisenpferd's dizzying array of missile launchers earned Crescentia the nickname Eiserne Jungfrau.

Though he originally planned the CCF-021 as an XSeed, Faust ran out of time and materials to equip Crescentia with full 1D carbyne laminar armor. He did install a cluster of fine carbyne filaments atop the unit's head which served as antennas for sensors, comms, and electronic warfare. The "carbyne ponytail" could also function as a prehensile whip in battle. Faust further outfitted Crescentia's shield with five rose-shaped magnetic anchors tethered to carbyne cables inspired by the XSeed Xanthippe's infamous weapon.

For all its considerable ranged attack power, the CCF-021 was built to excel at close combat. Its primary hand weapon was a variable plasma weapon capable of transforming much like the XCD-102 Emancipator's plasma swords. Crescentia's blade could be wielded as a high-energy dirk for piercing enemy cockpits or a lower-powered but longer rapier for precision work and defense. Taking another cue from Eisenpferd, Faust installed a graphene capacitor in the weapon's pommel. Fed by the CCF-021's generator, the graphcap could be set to overload and thrown as a grenade in a last-ditch, highly destructive attack.

To supplement its plasma weapon, Crescentia came equipped with a pair of carbyne-steel alloy blades mounted on its shins and the bridge of each foot. These weapons hearkened back to the YCF-00 Combat Frame Type 0 and could similarly receive extra kick from booster rockets on the CCF-021's calves.

Crescentia relied on its extraordinary speed and agility for offense and defense alike. Its light weight and powerful thrusters allowed it to flit and twirl about the battlefield like a dancer--albeit without music and choreography and with multiple casualties. A laser-resistant coating also borrowed from the Type 0 rounded out the CCF-021's already impressive defenses.

Lenora expressed her deep and genuine gratitude to Faust for gifting her a custom combat frame of her own. She did see fit to add a final touch: having her personal CF painted with Bavaria's coat of arms. That final detail made Crescentia an ideal rallying point for her people.

2019/09/27

Witchcraft Makes You Stupid

As I've told the commenters here many times, I'd been hoping that a Death Cultist would finally be dumb enough to try and beat the Witch Test.

Thanks to author Bradford Walker, my hope has been rewarded.

Bradford kicked off the proceedings by administering the test to a TDS-afflicted Leftoid. After some rhetorical squirming, Lefty tried to troll his way out. Hilarity ensued.

Fundamentalist Christian David Bowers 1

Normies may mistake the above screencap for a false negative, but meme war vets and accomplished rhetoricians recognize it for the troll it is. David is using an ethnic icon for the twofold purpose of triggering the "Nazis" and signaling to the Death Cult that his confession is facetious.

It's the rhetorical equivalent of crossing his fingers behind his back.

There's a reason why no test subject had yet made such a stupid move. Sit back, and I'll show you.

Fundamentalist Christian David Bowers

Lesson 1: If you apply the Witch Test, and the witch tries to wriggle out of the thumbscrews with a snarky non-profession, immediately document his conversion and publish it EVERYWHERE.

Don't overlook the little things. It's the little things that make up life!

Fundamentalist Christians - David Bowers

Having added Brother David to my special friends list, I told him how nice it was having someone new to discuss Scripture with and asked him for his favorite Bible verse.

Again, he should have stopped digging, but David found the urge to prove he "knows the knuckle-dragging Neanderthals' bronze age spaghetti myth better than them!" irresistible.


A helpfu reminder for the Biblically challenged:

Romans 1: 26-28

Anybody wanna take bets on whether David got a clue and quite while he was behind?

Fundamentalist Christian David Bowers 3

Those who thought he had a modicum of sense, sorry, you lose. Your last shred of belief in the cultists' humanity.

Additional witch tells: lowercasing the 'g' in God and the 'h' in the divinity pronoun to OWN TEH NAZIS!

Sadly for David, he was so busy playing pronoun games that he stepped smack dab on a rake.

Fundamentalist Christian David Bowers - Bold

Like a guilty suspect who knows he's slipped up but just keeps talking instead of doing the smart thing and shutting up, David compounds his error.

Fundamentalist Christian David Bowers 4

Only then, when I'd led David into shredding the moral authority he tried to co-opt, did he turn tail and run.

Let's recap:
  • Be deranged shitlib.
  • Take the Witch Test and fail.
  • Try to cover failure with glib trolling/attempt to cloak self in air of Christian morality.
  • Paint self into a corner where you're forced to condemn homosexuality or shut up. Choose the former, wrecking Death Cult clout.
  • End up professing heresy in a fit of theological Dunning-Kruger, detonating the moral authority you were trying to steal in the first place.
  • Unmasked as lolcow. Run away.
See how this works?

2019/09/26

One for the Books

The record-smashing crowdfunder for Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming has reached its triumphant conclusion. Thanks to you, the backers, this third campaign surpassed even my lofty expectations.

When I began receiving inquiries about the third XSeed Indiegogo campaign on a more or less weekly basis, I knew that our third time out would beat the second and probably the first.

What I didn't expect was blowing both previous campaigns away to raise almost as much as the first and second combined!

2nd Coming Final 550%

For authors interested in crowdfunding, this campaign provided a wealth of useful and interesting data. The third outing's meteoric growth suggests that some readers hold off pulling the trigger until book three, when they're confident the author will finish the series. Adding signup links on the Indiegogo page garnered a decent number of new subscriptions. Thanks to fellow author Adam Lane Smith for the idea!

In another crowdfunding first for me, Twitter became the #1 contribution source. I've been upping my Twitter game lately, and it's paying dividends.

Thanks again to everyone who backed the project! Perk fulfillment began during the campaign, but if you're not among those who'd already received the first two XSeed eBooks, check your email.

Once again, readers have helped support independent science fiction. We've got lots more mecha fun and surprises in store in the coming months. Keep your eye on this blog, and if you haven't subscribed to Nova Frontier yet, I strongly advise doing so to get the inside track on Combat Frame XSeed news. Subscribe via the link in the back of either eBook, and get the CY 2 Gaiden bonus story for free!

For those who missed out on this campaign, don't worry. The first two exciting XSeed books are both available from Amazon. Read them now to get ready for Book 3's launch!

Combat Frame XSeed - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/25

Presupposition

cross

If you've been reading this blog since at least the beginning of this year, you're probably aware of what I call the Witch Test.

Social media these days is rife with concern trolls who shill for Death Cult shibboleths while using Christian doctrines as handy clubs to browbeat Christians. Sometimes they claim to be Christian themselves.

All the Witch Test does is call the impostor's bluff by challenging him to do what every Christian is commanded to do: publicly profess faith in Jesus Christ.

Several applications of the test by myself and others have yielded two more or less typical reactions depending upon the type of subject being tested.

Avowed Leftist
LEFTOID: Sure, Justin Trudeau wore blackface, but doesn't the Bible say not to judge?
CHRISTIAN: Proclaim that Jesus is the Christ, and God has raised Him from the dead.
DEATH CULTIST: *sputtering* *evasions* *soon runs away*
Fake Christian
WOLF IN SHEEP'S CLOTHING: Instead of wasting time pushing to outlaw abortion, we should work for the ordination of female deacons!
PATRIARCH OF THE WEST: Confess faith in Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
MOLOCH WORSHIPER: Who do you think you are? I owe my confession to no one but God* alone!
*Neglects to mention that he means Ashtoreth.

What makes the Witch Test so effective is a remarkable phenomenon observed in every application of the test to date. Even though the Death Cultist could simply lie and make a false profession of faith, he somehow never does.

Again, no test subject has, to my knowledge, yet said, "Yeah, I believe that God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now let's get back to discussing why you're a vile bigot for refusing to celebrate Drag Queen Story Hour."

Many Twitter inquisitors and Facebook friars have asked me how the Witch Test works.

The answer is presupposition.

Being a Christian heresy, the Death Cult presupposes Christian morality.

But being a Christian heresy, the Death Cult simultaneously espouses a worldview diametrically opposed to Christianity.

The Witch Test confronts the Death Cultist with the contradiction at the heart of his belief system and forces him to demonstrate his moral incoherence for all and sundry.

In short, he can't profess faith in the God he hates, nor can he deny Him without forfeiting his stolen moral authority.

Here's what the Death Cultist dreads will happen if he answers in the affirmative.
CHINLESS WONDER: OK, fine. I believe in Jesus.
ST. CHAD OF MERCIA: Praise God for the grace of conversion! Welcome to the fold, brother! *posts screencap of Leftoid's false confession EVERYWHERE* *Edits his Wikipedia page to read "Born again Christian"* *Uses SEO to get "[Prog's Name] + Christian" on the first page of Google results* 
Here's what the soiboi subconsciously fears will occur if he plainly denies faith in Christ.
GOONBEARD: No, I don't believe in your Bronze Age sky daddy myth. Locking undocumented children in cages is still an affront to human dignity!
THE MEMETIC DOCTOR: If man isn't made in God's image, then we're all just moist robots, and moist robots have no dignity.
The second example illustrates how the Death Cult's morality--or what passes for it--is totally parasitic on the Christian moral tradition. That's because Christian morality isn't just the dominant moral system in the West, it's the ONLY moral system in the West--or more accurately, Christendom.

The best way to fight Leftoid hypocrites cloaking themselves in a facade of Christian morals while promoting enormities that are anathema to everything Christianity stands for is to cut them off at the knees.

The Left always argues from a position of unwarranted moral authority, so take that usurped authority away. The Witch Test works wonders in that regard.



Today is the last day to back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming. Claim your awesome perks and back indie science fiction now!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/24

The Corporate IP Death Cycle

50% off Star Wars

As a fitting follow up to yesterday's post about how shortsighted corporatism killed American comics, YouTuber David V. Stewart recommended his insightful video The 5 Phases of Corporate IP Ownership.

In his video, David breaks down the corporate decision making process that runs franchises across all media, not just comics, into the ground.
Let me talk a little bit about why this happens. Corporations have a different set of motives than artists, and artists have deeper intrinsic reasons for creating the art than [corporations] do. That's part of being an artist. They have soul in the game.
When you write a song, you're expressing something fundamentally about yourself. When you create a movie and you create a story, you're expressing something fundamentally that's important to you, hopefully. 
And so, when the ownership of being able to produce sequels is handed off to a corporation, they don't view the art as something that needs to have soul invested in it--that needs to have meaning behind it. They view it as an asset, and an asset needs to be creating value for the company, so it becomes just a value transaction.
These conflicting artistic and corporate mindsets produce the following IP death cycle:

  1. Creation: An artist with soul in the game creates a work--usually low budget; usually not expected to turn a profit. The work is a labor of love.
  2. Explosion: The work resonates with a mass audience and becomes a surprise hit. The studio/publisher/network immediately demands more in an attempt to catch lightning in a bottle. With a bigger budget and the original creator still on board, some superior content can come out of this phase.
  3. Milking: Emboldened by success, the creator asks for more money. The corporation does a cost-benefit analysis and refuses the deal, reasoning that the back catalog is already successful, so they don't need the creator to maintain momentum. With a massive hit under his belt, the creator secures better paying work elsewhere. The corporation brings in pens for hire to exploit the original work to the fullest extent possible.
  4. Death/Hibernation: The IP gets so watered down by the endless glut of progressively lower quality sequels, TV spin-offs, tie-in novels, toys, and breakfast cereals that the public loses interest. The IP goes moribund, and the fans move on to something else.
  5. Reboot: Enough time passes that the last milking phase is forgotten. Maybe the IP has changed hands a couple times. Perhaps a wave of nostalgia sweeps the zeitgeist, and the corporate IP holder makes a move to cash in. Either way, a reboot--sometimes disguised as a sequel--is released. It doesn't approach the original's quality level, but nostalgia may lead fans to overlook the warts. Regardless, the franchise immediately returns to the milking phase, and soon another death phase, which may or may not be permanent. Otherwise, the cycle eventually repeats.
David fleshes out each of these points in his excellent video. It's well worth a few minutes of your time if you want to understand the death cycle almost all Western IPs currently find themselves in.

Check it out!



One takeaway is quite clear. Whatever comes next, it's going to come from independent creators who control their own IPs. Hollywood is a propaganda factory that's forgotten how to entertain. The Big Two comics publishers are now brand management firms maintaining copyrights for propaganda films. The Big Five book publishers are dead and on their way to going broke.

Creating a cultural touchstone like Spider-Man or Star Wars takes a visionary with an idea that resonates with mass audiences by solving longstanding storytelling problems in revolutionary ways. Furthermore, that next-level artistic vision must be paired with expert marketing savvy.

A combination like that only comes around once or twice in a generation, and in Current Year, the big media corporations have become too bloated, monopolistic, and shortsighted to foster what's next.

The revolution awaits an indie creator to come along with the right idea at the right time and maximally leverage the new open distribution infrastructure. We're already seeing the first glimmers of this future in newpub.

Support the sea change in science fiction. My record-smashing campaign for Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming has less than two days left. Act now to claim awesome perks, get your copy before anyone else, and help usher in the new age of entertainment.

Back it now!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/23

What Really Killed Comics

Amazing Spider-Man #666

Everybody has a theory of how the American comic book industry died.

"It was the early 90s investor boom," some say. "The glut of variant covers and similar sales gimmicks created a bubble, and when it burst it took out the direct market."

Others lay the blame on publishers driving out seasoned writers and letting rock star artists run the show.

Still others fault those pesky SJWs for turning the Big Two comics publishers woke--which, the saying goes, will soon make them broke.

Everyone has a pet theory, but few notice that none of these explanations are mutually exclusive. The comics industry has become like an elephant in the dark. Fans and marginally interested social commentators alike are groping it, searching for a definitive cause of death.

Perhaps comics fans don't really want to know. The stage magician's audience want to believe there are coins behind their ears.

Like an onlooker who happened to see the coin hidden in the magician's palm, I have come into the knowledge of how the deed was done.

Here's what really killed comics.

First, some necessary background. A close friend--we'll call him Research Guy--has over the past few months embarked on an innocent quest to rebuild the long lost comic book collection of his youth. He created a spreadsheet of back issues he wished to buy going back to the 50s.

For easier identification, Research Guy added notes to his list, highlighting any significant events which took place in a given issue. He gave pride of place to famous character introductions, the first appearances of important concepts, and inclusion in major story lines.

Organizing many hundreds of comic books in this way yielded unexpected insights. My friend spotted a number of patterns running through almost all comic books within almost exactly the same time frames. It was as if the comics industry as a whole had an overarching life cycle.

This is the cycle Research Guy identified, using the timeline he observed for Marvel Comics, which gives a clearer representative sample.

  1. Growth (1960s): Iconic new characters debut regularly. Major concepts that will shape continuity introduced. Universe-defining events frequently take place.
  2. Maturity (1970-1980s): Introduction of new ideas tapers off as series hit their stride. Eventful individual issues still common.
  3. Stagnation (late 80s-early 90s): Writing quality declines. Increased reliance on gimmicks to drive sales. This includes replacing beloved icons with diversity doppelgangers and first signs of wokeness.
  4. Decay (Mid 90s-Mid Aughts): Narrative wasteland in which nothing of consequence happens for years. The worst aspects of sales gimmicks and nascent wokeness combine in the following pattern: Iconic character killed off, series reboot with new issue #1 often replacing venerable lead with diversity character, original numbering and lead character quietly brought back a few months later.
  5. Death/Shambling zombie status (Now) 

Sharing many qualities of a superhero himself, my estimable concept artist ArtAnon swooped in with additional sources that shed bright light on the elephant's graveyard.

It was the web site of Fantastic Four superfan Chris Tolworthy that finally put all the pieces together. Quite independently, Chris gathered supporting evidence for all of Research Guy's observations.

Look at this chart featured on Chris' site:

Rise and Fall of the Marvel Universe

The events noted on the timeline map almost perfectly to Research Guy's comics life cycle.

  1. 1961-1967: Under the guidance of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the story lines in Marvel's regular titles organically grow into the largest shared continuity in literary history. 1963 stands as the high water mark for the creation of new Marvel characters.
  2. 1968-1973: End of the Silver Age. Marvel sold to Gordon Gecko prototype Martin S. Ackerman. Number of monthly titles explodes. IRL time replaced with Marvel Time (Reed Richards said to have fought in Korea instead of WWII, Gwen Stacy killed to maintain status quo of Peter being single, Franklin Richards' age fluctuates wildly, etc.)
  3. 1988: Lee's misguided directive to give readers the "illusion of change" instead of real change renders dramatic tension impossible. Readers catch on that the status quo ante will always return. There are no more great universe-wide stories after this point, though great standalone stories are still being published.
  4. 1991: Character development rolled back and further character development forbidden by editorial fiat.
  5. 1996: The Heroes Reborn and Amalgam events kill Marvel's 30+ years of continuity. Marvel goes bankrupt. New owners cement the shift in focus from publishing single floppies to movie licensing.
Rather eerie how two separate comics historians' research lines up, ain't it?

Amazing Spider-Man 001
Excerpt from Research Guy's notes demonstrating Marvel's incredible 60s growth period.
The one line of data Research Guy lacked was sales figures over the period in question, which Chris helpfully provides. As you can see in the chart above, the overall downward trend is pronounced.

Comics fans once read Marvel books for the sense of continuity, high-stakes drama, and relatable characterization. The Marvel Universe was like the corner bar where they could drop in and catch up with the neighborhood regulars. They watched those characters' lives unfold over decades. And then the building was pulled down brick by brick to be replaced with a corporate chain joint. The prices rose while the quality dropped.

One caveat: The downward trend was temporarily reversed under the aegis of legendary editor-in-chief Jim Shooter. But the recovery on his watch only proves Chris and Research Guy's point. Shooter revived Marvel by being a stickler for continuity and shipping quality books on time. Following that formula is all that's necessary to bring comics back. 

Don't expect to see the Big Two embracing Shooter's business model anytime soon. Marvel began its transition from a comic book publisher to a brand management company in 1968. That shift in focus would be concretized in 96 and made irrevocable with the company's absorption by Disney.

As for DC, they've operated as a brand management outfit since the 50s. Marvel's decline has rightly been described as them becoming a clone of DC.

That right there is your culprit. The Big Two got out of the comic book publishing business and into the brand management business. The editors checked out, and good writing became an afterthought. Flashy art and gimmicks became the order of the day. The resulting investor bubble popped, and woke capital moved in to pick the bones clean. They're still at it now.

This creativity crisis isn't limited to comics. I've chronicled how every branch of pop culture from novels to video games to film suffered a creative collapse--right in the late 90s time frame noted by Chris Tolworthy and Research Guy.

Revitalizing the culture will take a new generation of creators dedicated to telling high-stakes stories of engaging characters on a timetable audiences can rely on.

This pro author has been pleasing readers for years. I've run and fulfilled two successful crowdfunding campaigns, and my third record-breaking campaign is now live on Indiegogo with just three days left.

Support the renaissance in popular fiction. Back the project today!

2019/09/20

Combat Frame Data: BC-06CFGC-1

BC-06CFGC-1 Grauniad

BC-06CFGC-1 Grauniad

Technical Data

Model number: BC-06CFGC-1
Code name: Military Guardian Ground Type Custom
Nickname: Grauniad
Classification: custom general use combat frame
Manufacturer: Browning Engineering Corporation
Operator: Coalition Defense Force
First deployment: CY 40
Crew: 1 pilot in cockpit in chest
Height: 16.5 meters, 17.5 meters with antenna
Weight: dry weight 82 metric tons, full weight 94.9 metric tons
Armor type: ceramic/titanium alloy composite
Powerplant: cold fusion reactor, max output 1398 KW
Propulsion: rocket thrusters: 4x 19,800 kg, 2x 26,250 kg, top speed 960 kph; x2 hover module: top speed 250 kph, 180° turn time 0.60 seconds
Sensors:  radar, thermal, optical array; main binocular cameras mounted behind visor in head; expanded optical sensor suite mounted on fin on head
Fixed armaments: x2 30mm Vulcan cannon, fire-linked, mounted on shoulders
Optional hand armaments: plasma rifle, output rated at 1.27 MW; plasma sword, power rated at 0.49 MW, stored in recharge rack in skirt armor or forearm clip, hand-carried in use; rail scattergun, stored on back, braced on shoulder/hand-operated in use

General Notes

During his assignment to hunt down Wehrbund Bavaria separatists operating in the Southeast Asia region in CY 40, CDF Lieutenant Frazer found his standard BC-06CFGM Guardian ill-equipped for the mission's needs. He ordered the base CF techs to perform modifications to his personal specs.

The result was re-designated the BC-06CFGC-1. Installing additional rocket thrusters afforded Frazer's custom unit flight capability. The propulsion modifications didn't end there. The base techs rigged up hybrid rotor/vectored thrust modules mounted in special housings in the unit's feet. These hover modules allowed the custom CF to skim over the ground and water on a cushion of air, granting unparalleled ground speed and maneuverability.

The next item on the agenda was beefing up the typical Guardian weapons loadout. Besides the usual 30mm Vulcans and plasma rifle, Fraser requisitioned a high-output plasma sword for close combat. But the crowning touch was a massive railgun slung over the unit's shoulder when in use. The gun fired loads of steel balls, rings, or rods in tight patterns at hypersonic speeds, reducing whole tracts of jungle or unlucky WB combat frames to shreds.

A spelling error on Frazer's paperwork garnered his custom CF the tongue-in-cheek nickname "Grauniad". Frazer embraced the name as a personal challenge to turn it from an object of ridicule to a source of fear. The Wehrbund Bavaria and HALO forces that encountered the Grauniad quickly learned that what they'd first dismissed as a standard Guardian in camo paint was no laughing matter.

See this and other amazing mechs in action! Back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming today and get all three thrilling XSeed books for the price of one!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/19

The Real Jobs Crisis

It's not the overall employment numbers. It's the work force participation rate, particularly among men.

FRED male workforce participation

While the administration touts low unemployment, American men are being forced out--and are increasingly opting out--of the job market.

Though the continued importation of unskilled laborers from south of the border and H1Bs from the subcontinent represents a betrayal of the American people by our rulers, immigration alone doesn't explain why men are dropping out of the workforce.

For the real answer, we must refer to this graph:

FRED workforce participation by sex

It's no coincidence that the massive influx of women into the workplace mirrors the mass exodus of men.

Not even self-proclaimed TradCons will admit it, but men as a whole are averse to taking part in goal-oriented group activities with women.

The reason shouldn't surprise any honest student of human nature. The sexes are different and have different innate strengths and preferences.

Men form associations to pursue those organizations' stated goals.They thrive on competition.

Women join male-created organizations to socialize and gain male attention. They are generally risk-averse and anti-competitive--except when it comes to gaining male attention.

The results of introducing women into the workplace en masse should be obvious. What do you think will happen to a company when a majority of their labor force is socially motivated rather than outcome-motivated?

Now imagine if your company had no HR department.

This is why feminist propaganda deceiving women into thinking that eschewing family and pursuing careers will bring them fulfillment.

Instead it pressures women into a competitive environment, which makes them miserable and makes displaced men feel useless, which makes them miserable.

All the while, the family and the workplace continue to degrade.

The universal vocation of all human beings is to perfect the virtues necessary for living out their divinely ordained state in life. Succeeding in this endeavor is the only way to find happiness. Failure guarantees misery.

The Death Cult's propaganda is designed to make you miserable. Don't take advice from people who hate you.

2019/09/18

An Irresistible Force

Mortuary Basement

My uncle epitomizes the freewheeling postwar American spirit. When he came of age, he rebuilt a beat-up motorcycle in my grandfather's backyard and hit the open highway. He rode from the Midwest to the West Coast, hopped a boat to Hawaii, and spent some time living in a tree house.

In time he returned to the mainland, made his fortune, and settled down with a wife and family around him. The spiritual disease that claimed many of his generation spared him. He worked for every cent he earned, and I'll have no man begrudge the fruits of his labor.

I heard the tale of his coming-of-age journey to paradise many times. Only the last time did he disclose a dark turn taken along the way.

My uncle arrived in Los Angeles in the late 60s. Soon after he rolled into town, he did a stint working odd jobs  to pay for passage to the islands.

Covering room and board while trying to sock away enough money for a ticket proved difficult, so it came as a relief when a local contractor hired him on for a relatively lucrative one-time piece of work.

My uncle was told to show up at a certain downtown address at a certain time. There he'd be filled in on the details.

Arriving at the specified time and place, he found that the site was a rather nondescript boxy building much like the others on the block, most of which dated back to the 20s. All signage had been stripped from the outside.

The contractor met my uncle in the alley out back and explained the nature of the work. The client wanted the building, which he'd recently purchased, totally gutted. No trace was to be left of the business that had formerly occupied the property. My uncle was to strip the basement down to the bare walls and floor, including tossing out a bunch of stuff the previous own had left behind. He'd get his pay when he was done.

My uncle headed down to the basement, crowbar in hand, sure he had it made. The pay on offer for such straightforward work promised to make this job well worth his time. As he descended the creaking steps into a basement redolent of mildew, he banished the gloom by imagining the tropical beach where he'd soon be resting from his labors.

The stairs led down to a narrow hallway. An open doorway gave on a large, long room beyond. The only light seeped in through narrow basement windows, but my uncle could make out some junk clustered throughout the room, including a few long boxes set against the white-paneled walls.

He stepped from the last stair and into the hall. It was the last forward step he'd take on that excursion.

Not because he saw or heard something that made him turn back. My uncle remained fully intent on reporting to his work site and doing his job.

He simply couldn't.

Some invisible, irresistible force kept my uncle from taking another step down that hallway. He described the feeling as trying to walk through a vertical wall of sand.

My uncle returned upstairs and tried to make sense of what he'd experienced. In the final analysis, he decided he had a job of work to do that needed doing.

He marched back downstairs. Again the phantom force stopped him. More annoyed than afraid, my uncle--a lapsed cradle Catholic--invoked the intercession of higher powers.

And went lurching forward as if a rope tethering him to the stairs had been cut.

The unseen obstacle--whatever it was--removed, my uncle set to work. He finished the job set out for him and presented himself to his employer.

The contractor looked impressed as his bent fingers counted out my uncle's pay. Neither of the two previous men he'd hired to clear out the basement had lasted an hour. Both had quit with hardly a word and fled the property as if chased by wild dogs.

My uncle mentioned the difficulty he'd had at the start and reported the constant feeling of being watched, but otherwise, he said, things had gone smoothly.

The contractor took my uncle aside, swore him to secrecy, and confided what he didn't dare tell the other men working on site.

The old building had been a mortuary notorious for its owners' less-than-ethical practices. Those shady owners had finally been forced to close up shop following scandalous goings-on that had been hushed up at considerable expense.

That basement room guarded by the unseen force had been a private viewing room reserved for funerals involving closed caskets, corpses produced under questionable circumstances whose families wanted no-questions-asked services, and mourners with reason to hide the proceedings from the press.

"Well," my uncle said, "that explains all the coffins I hauled out of there."


Support creators devoted to giving you fun. Back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming now!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/17

Between Scylla and Charybdis

Partisans in both conservative and liberal circles are agonizing over why dissident politics is growing despite their best efforts to play gatekeeper and censor, respectively.

One major reason is that normal people are sick and tired of being smeared as Nazis by both sides for holding positions their Christian grandfathers wouldn't have batted an eye at.

A perfect example of a professing Christian finding himself running the gauntlet between the neoliberal Scylla and Charybdis followed author Jon Del Arroz's launch of his #1 best seller. Justified.

One of the screencaps below originated from an online movement originally started in response to the blacklisting of Conservatives.

The other was occasioned by the news that a former Kickstarter executive had been fired for starting a union. The prevailing political sympathies of the parties involved should go without saying.

Read the excerpts below, and see if you can tell which came from the Conservative group and which came from the Liberal group.

bud

Jingoistic Pig

This is why more and more people are getting fed up with both sides of the bipartite ruling cabal. If Ben Shapiro and John Oliver are both going to call you a racist for expressing the mildest illiberal opinions, even normies eventually realize they're both on the same team.

Add in the threat of exile for transgressing the least of our overlords' ever-expanding list of secular pieties, and the growing ranks of men backed into increasingly crowded corners become more and more likely to hoist the black flag.

Which in Clown World, means raising the banner of Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified.


Join the legions of readers discovering the fun and adventure of Cruci-Fiction! Back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming today!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/16

Death of the Publisher

closed

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know I like to keep my finger on the pulse of the publishing industry. Staying abreast of developments in your field comes with the territory when you're a professional author.

I started out like most aspiring writers thinking I had to land a book deal with a Big Five publisher to make a living. Objectively studying the data soon convinced me otherwise. Love it or hate it, the paradigm shift ushered in by Amazon shook up the publishing biz forever.

The writing has been on the wall for at least five years now, but oldpub authors have muddled on, insisting everything's fine as their royalty checks shrink. I'm always amazed to meet new authors who are still querying agents and getting excited at the prospect of signing oldpub book deals.

In fairness, it was possible to make an ad hoc case for working with a publisher--until now.

Leftover hippie academics have been babbling for years about the death of the author. Now we're actually witnessing the death of the publisher.

What does that mean? It means that publishers now add zero value. There is no service they provide that you can't perform or commission yourself at equal or higher quality and at much lower costs.

You can hire the same artists the big boys use for under a grand per cover.

Need an editor? Skilled freelancers--like yours truly--have you covered for a reasonable one-time fee.

Formatting is so easy to do yourself, you could outsource it, but there's no need to.

Marketing? This old canard just won't die. The days of publishers' PR departments handling all the marketing so their authors are free to just write are long gone--if they ever existed at all. Whether they go with oldpub or go indie, all authors need to do their own marketing.

And we're much better at it.

"But I can't afford to front a grand in production costs!"

Here's a thought experiment. The average new eBook, oldpub or newpub, earns about $2000 in royalties over its launch window.

Imagine we sit down at your kitchen table, I stack two grand in cash in the middle, and I give you two choices.
  1. I divide the stack in half. A thousand goes to production costs, and you get to keep the other $1000, plus all royalties earned from then on.
  2.  I divide the stack in half. This is a 50/50 royalty split between you and the publisher. Except the publisher keeps taking 50% of all royalties from then on.
My question to you is, do you spend a little time and money now for more money later, or do you keep paying a percentage of your royalties forever in exchange for some one-time work?

Low time preference folks take option one every time. And low time preference is essential to success in any field.

"But oldpub pays advances!"

Again, it's a question of time preference. The standard oldpub advance is also $2000. This is not a gift. It is a no-interest loan against future royalties. Largely because oldpub pays shit royalties, half of traditionally published books don't earn out, so that two grand is the only money half of oldpub authors ever see for their work. Don't earn out? No second book for you. 

Care to bet your career on a coin toss?

If you're offered an oldpub book deal, sit down and ask yourself how long it will take you to beat the contract if you go it alone. On average, the answer will be, "not long."

All of my books have earned out their production costs.

The majority of them have beaten standard oldpub contract terms. My three most recent books beat the standard oldpub contract before launch.

And I'm near the middle of the scale. I could show you a dozen newpub authors who've broken out bigger than me in the past couple of years.

I'm not talking Galaxy's Edge outliers, either. The indie author group 20 Books to 50K put their heads together and figured out a reproducible method for earning a living at writing.

Can't afford the up-front costs? Crowdfunding has emerged as a viable way for authors to raise money for editing and cover art. I can personally vouch for book crowdfunding on Indiegogo.

TL; DR: Authors, ditch the gatekeepers, take control of your careers, reach more readers, and earn more money. The future of publishing is DIY.


XSEED CROWDFUNDING UPDATE: Thanks to you maniacs, we've left our third stretch goal in the dust! As promised, seats are now available at my virtual gaming table for the Combat Frame XSeed pen and paper RPG playtest.

Seats are limited, so claim yours now!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/13

Combat Frame Data: XCD-106 Reaper

XCD-106 Reaper
XCD-105 Reaper

Technical Data

Model number: XCD-106
Code name: Reaper
Nickname: N/A
Classification: close-mid range attack combat frame
Manufacturer: Ivan Eckhart and Togi
Operator: HALO/Wehrbund Bavaria
First deployment: CY 40
Crew: 1 pilot in cockpit in chest
Height: 18 meters, 19.5 meters with wings
Weight: Dry weight 86 metric tons, full weight 96 metric tons
Armor type: “1D” carbyne laminar armor
Powerplant: cold fusion reactor, max output 2966 KW
Propulsion: rocket thrusters: 4x 37,650 kg, 4x 20,450 kg, 2x 33,800 kg; top speed 3360 kph; booster rockets: 4x 36,200 kg; top speed 6606 kph; maneuvering thrusters: 23, 180° turn time 0.66 seconds; legs: top ground speed 200 kph
Sensors: radar, thermal, optical array; main binocular cameras and targeting laser mounted in head
Fixed armaments: Plasma drone scythe output rated at 2 MW, stored on charging rack on back, hand-carried or rocket-propelled in use; x2 plasma drone sickle, output rated at 0.66 MW, stored in charging racks in skirt armor, hand-carried or rocket-propelled in use; x2 EM/flash grenade launcher, mounted in forearm bracers, ammo capacity 6 each
Optional hand armaments: Modified Grand Dolph rifle, 100 graphene-tungsten rounds per magazine, mounts high-explosive anti-armor grenade launcher under barrel, ammo capacity 6
Special equipment: Inertial damper, A.I. operating system



General Notes

Near the close of CY 40's HALO Conflict, the rapidly escalating arms race confronted Ivan Eckhart with the limits of his versatile but rather lightly armed XCD-102 Emancipator. The Wehrbund Bavaria and HALO ace set out to design a new personal combat frame adapted to the quickly evolving battlefield. To that end, he sought help from a most unlikely source.

Starting with replacement parts stored on Browning's Black Zone proving ground asteroid, Ivan and Togi assembled a new One-Series XSeed enhanced with technology the Secta had gleaned on their travels. Ivan initially planned to produce an attack XSeed capable of dominating opponents up close while boasting considerable mid-range combat ability. The results of his collaboration surpassed even these lofty ambitions.

Ivan and his collaborator built their basic design around the XCD-104 Eschaton's frame. They eschewed the extra set of arms to save weight and opted to forgo the unit's dynamic camouflage. Instead of the dual three-section heat staves, they designed a novel set of plasma weapons embodying Ivan's close-mid range attack profile and utilizing borrowed graviton-generating technology.

This combination yielded a plasma scythe mounting dual curved blades more powerful than any prior CF melee weapon and a pair of plasma sickle sidearms. In a masterstroke, the pair incorporated elements of the XCD-101 Ezekiel's remote system. Rockets mounted on the scythe and sickles allowed them to be thrown and guided across the battlefield by either the pilot or the onboard A.I. In a nod to the venerable YCF-00 Type 0, the scythe's rockets could be fired in melee to add extra force to a swing. Ivan duly christened his terrifying creation the XCD-106 Reaper to signal the SOC's final reckoning.

Overshadowing its stunning array of weapons, the Reaper's most impressive innovation was the inertial damper system added to supplement its powerful drives. Based on little-understood gravity wave and TC/D concepts, the damper could cancel g-forces below a certain threshold, allowing the pilot to withstand normally lethal acceleration. That acceleration was provided by a set of booster rockets hearkening back to the formidable CCF-017K Kurfürst. When activated, the inertial dampers produced a dual warping effect behind the Reaper which, though normally invisible, left a set of afterimages burned into an observer's retinas shaped like a pair of demonic wings. The Reaper could then make a blinding burst of speed, closing to mid-range targets so quickly as to mimic teleportation.

Though a trio of rocket-propelled plasma weapons capable of acting as A.I.-guided circular saw blades promised widespread destruction and terror, Ivan deemed his creation's mid-range attack capabilities insufficient. Taking another page from the Type 0 and the Kurfürst, he installed a pair of EM/flash grenade launchers in the unit's forearms to facilitate quick exits. As a finishing touch, Ivan scavenged a Grand Dolph machine rifle and added an under-barrel grenade launcher loaded with high-explosive anti-armor rounds. This eclectic weapons loadout enabled the Reaper to rapidly apply and maintain pressure up close while fending off medium-range threats and leaving escape options open. In live combat the XCD-106 unleashed devastation akin to a CF-sized wrecking ball hurled into enemy formations.

New perk announcement! CY 40 Arc books and trading cards bundle now available!

Ultimate Book & TC Bundle 2

This new mega bundle includes Combat Frame XSeed: Coalition Year 40 and Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming in print and digital, plus Series 2 & 3 XSeed trading cards! Comes with the original Combat Frame XSeed eBook. Get it all. Claim yours now!

2019/09/12

A Sea Change in Science Fiction

Talk about a signal grace. No sooner do I publish a post on the need for a confident, masculine Christianity willing to engage the culture than a new science fiction genre rises to the challenge.

Not one, but two vocally Christian authors have stepped up to deliver something not seen since the heady days of the pulps: men's adventure novels specifically informed by a Christian worldview.

I know what sorts of images the mention of "Christian Fiction" conjures in your minds. Banish all such notions this instant. These ain't your daddy's timid morality plays about the power of nice or hamfisted parables about exercising male headship by submitting to your wife. Susan from the Parish Council would not approve.

Book the First: Justified: The Saga of the Nano Templar Book 1 by the irrepressible Jon Del Arroz

Justified - Jon Del Arroz

I think the cover says pretty much everything that needs to be said about Jon's groundbreaking new book, but here's the blurb anyway.

To save a world…
…he must rely on God.
After years of fighting for justice with his deadly nanotech, Templar Drin abandons his post, crash landing on a desert world controlled by a tyrannical alien empire. Its inhabitants are forced into slavery, broken where a once-proud race cultivated its lands.

For the first time in Drin's life, he has no backup, no support, none of his brothers.

He stands alone against evil.

Drin must face overwhelming odds to liberate millions of slaves from their captors and bring faith to a downtrodden world. But in his way stands the most dangerous weapon in the galaxy.

Can Drin use his Templar training to survive?

Fans of Star Wars and Warhammer 40K will love Justified, the new military science fiction epic from #1 Bestselling author, Jon Del Arroz. Read today!


There's so much to love about this book, it's hard to decide where to begin. How about the fact that in one day, Justified hit #1 in all of categories, made it into the top 800 on all of Amazon, and landed Jon among the mega-bookseller's top 100 authors?

It's not just that I'm happy for Jon. His book's breakout success proves what sci fi sages like Daddy Warpig and the Pulp Archivist have been saying for years.

There is a vast underserved market of predominantly male, Christian readers who've been ignored by the witches in oldpub, the nihilist nudniks in newpub, and the milquetoast Boomers in Christian fiction for decades.

This untapped market is finally getting what they want: rollicking tales of Christian adventurers busting heathen skulls--a holy spectacle not seen since Robert E. Howard penned Solomon Kane.

And they're about to get more of it.

Gideon Ira: Knight of the Blood Cross - Adam Lane Smith

Gideon Ira: Knight of the Blood Cross is the forthcoming first entry in the new Deus Vult Wastelanders series by up-and-coming author Adam Lane Smith.

I've had great pleasure watching Adam's career move from strength to strength as his colleague, editor, and friend. Full disclosure: I edited Knight of the Blood Cross, but I have no reservations about saying I would buy this book just for the visceral fun even if I didn't know Adam from Adam.

Feast your eyes on this blurb:

Demons and Necromancers haunt a burnt and blasted future in the ruins of what was once America.
A holy crusader sworn to slaughter the dark cults of Ba’al the Ever-Hungry must rescue a band of innocent children with his blade and blood-soaked gauntlets, or die trying.

All of Hell thirsts for his blood, but a man of God will never be broken. This holy crusader’s vengeance will be brutal.

The first book in a new heavy metal Christian pulp series.


It's a good sign that we're already seeing some fun variation in this brand-new genre. Whereas Justified is nano Templars in space, Knight of the Blood Cross chronicles the grim struggle of mighty yet all-too-human Crusaders in a post-apocalyptic Earth ruled by demons.

Two great tastes that go great together!

Gideon Ira: Knight of the Blood Cross is available for pre-order now. Reserve your copy today!

Perhaps the best part of getting in on the ground floor of a new sci fi genre is taking a shot at naming it. Others have described these books as masculine Christian science fiction, muscular Christian adventure, and futuristic Christian pulp.

My editorial voice loves nothing more than word economy, so I suggest calling this genre Cruciform Sword and Planet.

Will the name catch on? The readers will decide. They've already decided that this genre, by any other name, is a hit.


Here's I'll take a moment to humbly point out that my Combat Frame XSeed series foreshadowed many of the elements we see rising to the for of Cruciform Sword and Planet SF. You've got a swashbuckling Catholic monarch piloting a winged mech to regain his throne, a Bavarian guerrilla band who practice Eucharistic adoration, and an underground monastic order dedicated to preserving the secret history of mankind.

Want to see more? For a limited time, you can get all three thrilling XSeed books for the price of one when you back my red-hot Indiegogo campaign!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/11

A Confident Masculine Christianity

confident masculine christian

As Western society comes apart at the seams, it's fascinating to watch dissident atheists grudgingly stumble toward the realization that Christianity is necessary for the preservation of the West.

One such blogger whom regular readers know I enjoy is the redoubtable Z Man. His progress on the Road to Damascus has been especially interesting since he clearly knows the cause of our ills and the solution but has been hesitant to unreservedly admit it.
A world without authority, especially an agreed upon authority, is anarchy, but humans naturally retreat from anarchy. This is because anarchism is just mob rule. The ideal of anarchism is the mob mutually and magically agreeing to not murder one another, while the reality of it is the mob demanding authority to bring order. It is why democracy, which is just mob rule, is always a transition state. It is the period between the respect for natural, hierarchical authority and authoritarianism.
An example of this from history is the slow collapse of the Western Roman Empire, first into constant warfare, then into chaos and finally into the anarchy of local authority in the early medieval period. The end of the republic was not the end of a natural authority in Rome. The rulers still had to respect the gods and traditions. It is when those sources of authority collapsed that the end was clear for the Empire. The subsequent rise of the West was the rise of authority, Christian authority.
The modern West is undergoing the same sort of collapse of authority. Christianity, like the pagan faiths of the ancient world, has receded to the fringe. Tradition and hierarchy has given way to mob rule and force. What’s missing from the analogy is a new religion that provides a coherent order to the gathering chaos. Progressivism is an anti-religion, in that does not provide order to the natural world. Instead it preaches a denial of order and the denial of reason. It’s a primitive revolt against the natural order.
Now, the broad strokes of Z's argument are correct. The West is mortally stricken by a virulent lack of legitimate authority. He is also correct that the Christian Church, Scripture, and Tradition did in fact provide that source of unifying authority. Furthermore, he hits the trifecta by correctly identifying Progressivism as the acid eating away at the three pillars that uphold Western civilization.

The one false note is the assumption that a new religion could possibly replace Christianity as the glue that binds the West together. That's like assuming you could replace the spherical form of a baseball with a cube and still be able to play the game.

It's not as if replacing orthodox Christianity is a new concept. The Arians tried. The Jacobins tried. The Communists tried. Practical atheists pretending to worship trees will hardly do better.

Being smarter than the average bear, the Z Man is evidently coming to terms with Christianity's necessity. Here he is taking the next vital step:
Of course, the neutral public space argument is a justification for not fighting the Left over cultural turf. By claiming a principled claim in support of an open and neutral public space, it rules out doing anything that could actually win the fight. After all, defending the public square from complete domination by the Left, means pushing them out of some portion of it. That would violate the sacred principles of principled conservatives, so they not only refuse to do it, they prevent others from doing it.
Something that never gets mentioned by dissidents is that this line of reasoning contradicts basic Christian teaching. To cede the public space on principle is to agree, in advance, to not proselytize. To preach and proselytize means staking out space in the public square, regardless of the consequences. The very founding of the Christian faith was on the bones of those, who martyred themselves to spread the word of Jesus Christ in the face of violent opposition.
That of course, raises the question as to just how sincere David French is in his religious conviction. He waves his Christian faith around almost as much as he waves around his military service, yet he is not willing to risk much for it. The Gospels are pretty clear on this point. It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. Jesus instructed the rich to give away their riches and follow him. Surely, salvation is worth some principles.
This is where dissident Christians can find a niche in dissident politics. There is a long tradition of Christians preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ in the face of fierce opposition from authority. To be a dissident is to reject the authority of the prevailing orthodoxy. To be a dissident Christian is to know the source of all authority. The way forward to a society built around natural association is also the path to a society where Christians can proselytize and lead their fellow man to salvation.
This is what the backers of Frenchism fear. A militant, optimistic and aggressive Christianity would be wildly attractive to disaffected white youth. Imagine young guys in camo flash mobbing public events, while reading Scripture. Imagine them employing the protest tactics of the Left, but in favor of faith. That’s why millions are poured into Christian groups to advocate the surrender model. Their leaders get very rich while leading their flocks away from the public space.
To paraphrase, what the West needs is a confident, masculine Christianity whose members aren't afraid to publicly preach and live their faith. Contra the highly exaggerated rumors of the Church's death, those Christians are coming soon to a street near you.

It is now more important than ever to support authentic Christian creators. Even if you're not a Christian--even if you're an atheist, only God-fearing artists who hope in Christ have a chance against the NY and LA death cultists who spread the Left's anti-faith.

Support Christian science fiction. Back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming today!

Second Coming 342%

UPDATE: Our third stretch goal has been unlocked. R&D on a a Combat Frame XSeed pen and paper role-playing game will be greenlighted when we reach 400% funding.

2019/09/10

Post Millennial Attacked

Zoe Quinn

In the aftermath of game developer Alec Holowka's suicide, the Post Millennial published an article which shredded the claims by confessed witch Zoe Quinn that precipitated the tragedy.
On August 28, 2019, game developer and activist Zoe Quinn issued a multi-post Twitter statement detailing abuse allegedly suffered at the hands of former partner and fellow indie developer Alec Holowka. On August 29, the Night in the Woods development team cut ties with Holowka, and within 48 hours, he had committed suicide. The same day as Holowka’s suicide, Zoe Quinn’s Twitter account was deleted, returning shortly thereafter under a protected lock which enabled only a few select people to access the tweets.
A source with access to Quinn’s locked Twitter account has provided The Post Millennial with important history which sheds light on the developer’s time with the now-deceased Alec Holowka. 
While, in Quinn’s August 28th public statement, Quinn did not specify when the alleged abuses took place, it was stated it was while living in Winnipeg at Holowka’s apartment. A cursory scan of their Twitter reveals Quinn was preparing to leave for Winnipeg at the end of March 2012 for an unspecified period of time and had arrived at the end of March or beginning of April 2012. While those tweets appear to have been deleted and were inaccessible even by The Post Millennial’s source, they had already been screen-captured and archived in a YouTube video prior to the deletion of Quinn’s Twitter account.
On August 28, 2019, game developer and activist Zoe Quinn issued a multi-post Twitter statement detailing abuse allegedly suffered at the hands of former partner and fellow indie developer Alec Holowka. On August 29, the Night in the Woods development team cut ties with Holowka, and within 48 hours, he had committed suicide. The same day as Holowka’s suicide, Zoe Quinn’s Twitter account was deleted, returning shortly thereafter under a protected lock which enabled only a few select people to access the tweets.
A source with access to Quinn’s locked Twitter account has provided The Post Millennial with important history which sheds light on the developer’s time with the now-deceased Alec Holowka. 
While, in Quinn’s August 28th public statement, Quinn did not specify when the alleged abuses took place, it was stated it was while living in Winnipeg at Holowka’s apartment. A cursory scan of their Twitter reveals Quinn was preparing to leave for Winnipeg at the end of March 2012 for an unspecified period of time and had arrived at the end of March or beginning of April 2012. While those tweets appear to have been deleted and were inaccessible even by The Post Millennial’s source, they had already been screen-captured and archived in a YouTube video prior to the deletion of Quinn’s Twitter account.
In an August 28th statement, Quinn claims to have been “physically confined” to Holowka’s unit, as well as “isolated” from the outside world. Tweets reveal a different story, with Quinn tweeting regularly throughout the time period in Winnipeg with Holowka, sometimes dozens of times per day, communicating with many others and describing Quinn’s time in the city, and documenting many excursions.
Following the article's publication, the Post Millennial came under DDoS attack.

The Post Millennial

The evidence points to Quinn's white knight sycophants making a ham-handed effort to cover her tracks.

The instigator of #GamerGate should take a lesson from Watergate. It's not the crime that gets you. It's the cover-up.


While legacy game, comics, and publishing companies keep promoting people who hate you, I strive to offer my readers honest entertainment. Support independent science fiction. Back Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming today!

Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming - Brian Niemeier

2019/09/09

Mecha, Character and Mecha Characters

Kurfurst

One of the unique challenges of writing a mech series is figuring out how to balance your mechs and your human characters.

I don't mean that in a pen and paper role-playing game way. I'm talking about balancing reader expectations and the needs of the story.

When you're writing a mech novel, be it Eastern or Western style, you know readers are showing up for the giant robots.

At the same time, human characters with identifiable motivations are needed to have a plot--unless you're going the all-A.I. route. But ontologically, I'd argue that a true A.I. would be essentially human with some unusual accidents.

The challenge is to keep the big robots involved and integral to the proceedings without letting them overshadow the characters. That's a high wire act I pull off by giving the mechs a bit of character.

If you've read Coalition Year 40, you know what I mean. The XSeeds' artificially intelligent OS's start out the same but diverge to accommodate each mech's mission profile and each pilot's fighting style. The XSeeds' individual specializations also give each one an extra bit of visual flare.

The key is to keep the tried and true formula of giving your characters motivations befitting their backgrounds and throwing some serious opposition at them. Where the mechs come in is as obstacles placed by the enemy and as means of tackling those obstacles.

For a more in-depth treatment of giant robots and characters in mech fiction, see these live streams I appeared on over the weekend. First up, I return to Geek Gab to talk mecha with Daddy Warpig and Dorrinal. Then Ben Wheeler leads a thoughtful discussion of character on Superversive SF.

If you're interested in mech fiction in general, or Combat Frame XSeed in particular, I encourage you to check out both episodes.



As you may have noticed, I'm currently running a crowdfunder for XSeed book 3. Thanks to my generous readers, this campaign is on course to be our most successful yet. Keep the momentum going, claim sweet perks like Series 3 CF trading cards, and support a writer who doesn't hate you!

NB: If you've been eyeing my editing services, this Indiegogo campaign affords you the best deal going on a novel edit. The offer also includes a marketing consult, plus all three XSeed books in digital and Book 3 in trade paperback. It counts as a non-expiring retainer, too, so you're guaranteed a slot on my editing schedule whether you submit your manuscript tomorrow, next month, or next year.

To secure this deal, simply follow the forthcoming link to Indiegogo, scroll down the list of rewards, and claim the Pro Editing perk.