Category Archives: Previews

HM3: Capes

With thanks to Imp and others for pointing out the lack, I've added in 15 new cape backs to the "Backplane-Standard" set, for the most part designed explicitly to go with the items in "ShoulderRight-Capes":

Hope you like 'em. If you see something out of whack, or have a cape back you were really hoping for but which I didn't draw, let me know.

HM3: Gargoyle front

I was working on something else when I noticed this possibly useful bit of scenery from a contest winner a few months back. It's now live in BackgroundFloors, hope someone finds it helpful.

HM3: Pants!

I've just uploaded the "Legwear-Male-Pants" set to HeroMachine 3. It's broken out like the Spandex I put up the other day, with the complete item, just the hips, the right thigh, and the right lower leg. Here's a sample:

Let me know what you think. I've got room for probably another 4-5 complete items (to be then broken down) if there's something egregious missing.

HM3: Male spandex update

With Mark Shute's advice, I have refined the way Legwear is apportioned and, accordingly, have updated the Legwear-MaleSpandex set of items for HeroMachine 3. I've added roughly double the number from before, and you can see how I'm breaking them out here:

When I first did Spandex, I was on my high horse about the "right" way to use HeroMachine 3, using layers and masking and patterns with just a handful of the basic items to make pretty much whatever you want. Since then, I've moderated my thinking and understand that not everyone wants to work that hard, even the hard-core users who know how to do it the more advanced way. Also, the true vertical and horizontal patterns don't always look right when laid over the angled legs. So I ported over the most popular legwear patterns from HeroMachine 2, including the fishnet, the stars, and the hand-drawn chain mail.

Mark helped me set on a template for how to divide the leg up per the online discussion we all had, so hopefully it will be easier and more visually persuasive to manually position these pieces for alternate poses.

Due to the tapering of the bottom of the thigh, it's harder to make different length "shorts" with these spandex items than it will be when I give Pants the same treatment, but the idea is the same.

Anyway, hope you like this update. I'm now going to return to Pants to try and get those in line.

HM3: Rifles and Heavy Weapons

All-around All-Star Mark Shute has completed the ItemRight-Rifles set of items for HeroMachine 3, and it is now available for your shooting pleasure! He wanted me to pass along the following notes on the set:

  1. There are four empty slots at the end of the rifles set in case a contest winner wants a special rifle.
  2. A few items were moved from Rifles to Heavy Weapons to make extra space. That's why I wanted to hold on to the final rifles set until the HW set was ready to debut. I didn't want any items to disappear completely.
  3. There are LOTS of empty slots in the heavy weapons set. I have like items grouped together (seriously, I must have some sort of OCD). Hopefully there will be enough requests to fill in the gaps.

But that's not all! The careful reader will have seen item 2 and thought "But there IS no Heavy Weapons set!", and thereby be led into confusion. Never one to foster confusion (except for tonight during my fantasy football draft, when I will encourage our new members to draft all kickers and defensive backs in the first four rounds), I am very happy to announce that Mark has ALSO started on the ItemRight-HeavyWeapons set, AND the first batch of items is already posted and ready. How's THAT for coming back strong from a holiday weekend!?

OK, granted, all I did was delay Mark's hard work by a week, but still.

Here's a preview of those Heavy Weapons items Mark has produced to date:

This is your chance to request specific items to go in this new set for Mark. He prefers links to images showing exactly what you mean, and ideally they should be in the correct side-on orientation -- he can't produce these from photos with, for example, the barrel pointing mostly at the viewer, they need to be seen from the side.

Be sure to thank him for all his hard work, these are great items that I would have been much (much) slower at producing and which probably wouldn't have turned out half so nice. Great job, Mark!

Possible new HM3 layout

Out of the blue, I got a fantastic set of potential layouts for the HeroMachine 3 interface from all around awesome UI Guy Jim Marcus. You can see some of his other stuff at Here's what he had to say about this redesign:

What I was trying to do was to keep the interface professional and recessive, so that the characters would pop. I wanted to try and make it feel very much like an application that might run on the desktop. I also think that the comic loving community is savvy and might enjoy a nice dark interface.

Here's the basic page (click to embiggen all of the screen shots):

I think it has a very clean look to it, and everything seems to be organized rationally. The space is used well, and everything seems to fit. I especially love the various "View" options below the character canvas, that's awesome. The space for the ad in the upper right corner is perfect and I don't feel like it's intrusive any more than it has to be.

If you can't tell, I like this proposed treatment a lot. I definitely want to hear what you all think, though, and after the jump I'll post the remainder of the screen shots. I'm going to put them in as a gallery, so just click on any one to see it at the larger size. And please, let me know in the comments what you think, what you like, what you'd change, and so on.

Continue reading

HM3: Legwear update

I've just added the "LegwearMaleOuterwear" set to the HeroMachine 3 Alpha, which includes the following items and more:

The idea is that this set contains leg-worn items that do are not fitted around the waist and groin, or which don't have individual fitted leggings. Things like loin cloths, kilts, armor skirting, pouches, etc.

Let me know in the comments if there are additional items that fit the set you would like to see. Note that I am not done with Legwear yet, this is only those Legwear items that hang loose from the waist, or which are tied around individual bits of the leg. I'll be doing full pants and such next, but these were easier and I wanted to knock them out.

I tried to make sure that most of the items in Tops-MaleFantasyArmor had something to go with them, hopefully this will help while I work on the complete sets.

Remember, if there's only a "right" option, just choose "multiples", add the item again, and use the "Flip" button to put it on the left. You'll have to drag it over there but it ought to work.

HM3: Headgear-Modern

I've just published the latest set of items for HeroMachine 3, "Headgear-Modern". It includes some of the appropriate items from Headgear-Standard and a more or less complete port of updated HeroMachine 2.5 pieces from the same set. Here's a sample:

Let me know any problems you encounter, or missing items you'd like to see as part of the set, in the comments below.

HM3: More rifles!

Mark has continued his great work on ItemRight-Rifles for HeroMachine 3, and I've posted the updated set! Here are a few words from the man himself.

Hi all! Hope you enjoy the new Rifles Set. I tried to include all of the most iconic rifles and sub-machine guns from history and fiction. You'll find the weapons that stormed the Bastille, the beaches of Normandy, the deserts of Kuwait and the terraforming colony on LV-426. Some weapons, like the ubiquitous MP-5, come in a million different configurations; where reasonable, I've tried to give you enough scopes, bi-pods, bayonets, retractable stocks and other accessories to customize each weapon just the way you want.

Now I'm not so arrogant as to think that I've included every long arm and accessory an HM3er could want, so I'm ready to take requests for the weapons I've missed. There are 92 items currently, and Jeff tells me that Flash starts to bog down if you get much past 100, so there's room for about a dozen more items. Make your requests here in the comments of this post.

But here's the thing--You know how Jeff wants reference pictures for items you request? I NEED reference pictures. And not just any picture, I need good resolution pics of the item flat-on the way it will appear in HM. I'm no artist like Jeff. At best, I'm a "graphics technician." For example, this image I can replicate. The rifle in this image I can not.

So if you can find me a good reference pic for a rifle, sub-machine gun or related accessory that you'd like me to add, post it here. I'll do my best to add the most popular requests.

Here's the set of 12 sci-fi rifles, which look GREAT, as a teaser:

Thanks to Mark for his as-always wonderful work on this.

HM3: Runic fonts

I've just added a "Fonts-Runic" set to HeroMachine 3 for your use in creating various magicky-looking bits. Most of these are just symbols, and only uppercase at that, so you might have to play around a bit to see all the permutations.

You can use these as a nameplate for the image; individual letters as insignia; sized and rotated for runic branding on weapons; individual letters rotated around for spell effects; masked onto skin as tattoos; or any one of a dozen other ways I am sure the creative community can devise.

Have fun!