eishiya wrote:We need to just do challenges every month, hurr~
If we actually did that it'd be food to have a cycle of different things, like:
1) Research and character/world design
3) Panel layouts and sketching pages
4) Inking finished pages
Though I fear that a lot of people on the site mightn't really consider the first month necessary, or else could fail to put real effort into it.
Most people would be working on stories they've already started, so presumably the bulk of the research is done (if not, I doubt we could convince them to do it since it'd probably break everything they've made so far). That, combined with people being lazy... I think a two-month planning/production cycle would work best. People who want to create new stories should be encouraged to skip the next production month to focus on more research and planning for their story, so they can jump in super-prepared on their first production month.Odd months: Research, writing, thumbnails, reference-gathering.
This would be unregulated, but people would be encouraged to share their progress and interesting bits of research in the challenge thread (not the news thread, but a General Discussion thread made for every cycle).Even months: Pencilling, finishing (inking/toning/painting/whatever).
This allows greater flexibility than separate pencilling/finishing months since these steps can take very different amounts of time depending on the artist's specific style and skill set. Artists would be encouraged to only count pages done during that month. Honour system, just like the current challenges.
News features would go out at the start of every odd month with the previous cycle's winners and with instructions for the new cycle. This means trimming a few days off the planning month for participants who didn't know/remember to start on their own, but I don't think this'll hurt quite as much as cutting it off the production month since the planning activities are more time-flexible.
We would need to stress that participation in every cycle is optional, and may not even be a great idea for some, since it can be stressful. A guide to batching, it's pros and cons, etc would also be good to link from the thread.
We should also feature people based on a point system, so that people whose pages take more work are not punished for doing fewer pages. For example, in June NaNoMangO, an inked page is "worth" twice as much as a pencilled page, while a finished page is worth three times as much. We could expand this into a basic point system and rank people by points rather than demanding minimum page counts. Maybe we could only feature the top 10~20 participants to encourage people to actually get more work done than they normally would and to keep the feature list smaller and not filled with people who do one page. Or, alternatively, we could have a minimum point
amount to encourage people to get work done, while still not being hung up on page counts.
Edit: February means 28 production days... should we account for that somehow? Make even months the planning months? ...though if we go by points rather than page counts, it just means everybody will get a few less points since they'll all have less time. Maybe February's not so bad.
Also, about the planning... I wrote that out with 30-page batches in mind, roughly a chapter for many comics and the standard unit for these challenges. I think we should encourage people to work by the chapter rather than by the page, but people with short chapters could be encouraged to plan several at a time, while people with long chapters could be encouraged to plan their entire chapter ahead of time, then use the production cycles to do the work (maybe using some of the later planning cycles for some pages that won't count for their point total). The goal of the challenge is to encourage people to work more efficiently, so being pimped should not be the goal.