On the 13th of April of this year, Homestuck concluded after 7 long years of being one of the longest and most popular webcomics out there. It's easy enough to look up this monolith of an internet cultural icon, so I won't go into detail about it. Instead, this is about my relationship with it.
I was a fan of MSPaintAdventures and Andrew Hussie's works since quite a long time back. Before even the Problem Sleuth days. However, it's with Homestuck that I actually started getting into the fandom. In fact it could be argued that Homestuck is what brought me into the world of fandoms to begin with (I wouldn't really count my time in the Playstation or Ratchet and Clank forums as such). It started with the old Skaianet Imageboard, then I began roleplaying with Trollmegle. Later I moved over to DeviantArt and the Pesterchum application for art and roleplay respectively. I had a lot of fun with the Homestuck fandom. I learned a great deal about internet culture, the very concept of roleplaying (which in turn helped me with my writing and character design skills), and it pushed me to draw and create various things. It's also what prompted my exploration into the concept of crossovers, which until then I didn't really know to be a thing. And the fact that all of these stemmed from one fundamental source was awe inspiring to me. That something so mundane as a cleverly written comic could fuel such a microcosm was baffling.
Then of course, there were all the friends I made from it. Between friends I made through RPs and art collaborations, I actually amassed a fairly high number of online pals. I still keep in touch with some of them, though most I've since lost contact with. However one person in particular I still keep close with, as our interests shifted over to include video games and other hobbies. But alongside those other hobbies, there was always our collaborative RP project: Or8Weaver.
Now, Or8Weaver has been going on for over four years (since the 16th of December 2011), and is still going strong. In fact I'm literally writing it in another window as I type this. Or8 has served as a testing ground for a lot of concepts for me, both in terms of mechanics and narratives. However, despite how much it's deviated from the original source, the fact that Or8 is a derivative fanwork has always loomed over it. Evidently, there's not a whole lot I can do with it in any practical sense that wouldn't breach copyright. This is something that up until recently I was never particularly bothered by. After all, Or8 itself is more of a personal thing. But then there was FateWeaver, the game I had been converting the setting to be used in. And as I've gotten deeper into my plans for that game, this particular issue has come to the forefront of my thoughts.
Just a few days before the end of Homestuck, I had one of those thoughts one gets as they're laying in bed trying to sleep. It was an idea about how to convert the hemospectrum aspect of troll society into its own unique system using the seven deadly sins as bases (admittedly, I might have an anime I watched recently to thank for seeding that particular thought). Over the following few days, I fiddled a bit more with the concept, and though it's still a good ways from completion, I get the feeling that I can very feasibly proceed with converting the entirety of the Or8 setting to remove any references to Homestuck. Most of the content was already of my own creation, with only some nomenclature and core elements coming from the original material, so in truth it's actually not all that much work for me.
All that to say, though it won't change anything for now, I've begun an alteration to Or8Weaver that will allow me to convert a fan project into something of its own. Really it already was at this point. I just needed that little extra push to change the label. In time, as I continue to make the modifications to the Fate system and the Or8 setting, my hope is that some time in the future, I might soon have a full tabletop setting of my very own. It's a project I'm very much looking forward to developing further. And while I have Homestuck to thank for being the catalyst that brought about its conception, there's a sense of great accomplishment in knowing that with Homestuck's conclusion, Or8 will be reborn and live on.
I've gotten a bit rambly, so I'll leave you with this sketch I doodled recently. It's a rendition of my Pathfinder version of Astrea Maryam (who is an important character in Or8). Not much else to be said there, other than playing a spellcaster has proven much more fun that I thought it would be, and that I've thoroughly enjoyed playing her in all her renditions.