Friday, November 4, 2016

An Interview with Rachel & Heinze of Semi Co-op

Even if you don't know it by name, by now i'm fairly positive you have seen at least one comic from the site semi co-op. Rachel & Heinze were nice enough to give me a few minutes to talk about their comics and this hobby we love so much.

How long were you a couple before you got into the hobby?
 We met each other in 2006 and we and a group of our friends started playing Dungeons and Dragons. We never played it really seriously, it was more an excuse to hang around and goof around a little with our characters and see how well our DM could handle illogical situations. He coped really well. I guess we were together for just a few weeks before we started playing DnD.

Was there a defining game moment, like a board game origin story?

It might have been Netrunner. When we moved in together we already started buying more board games, but Netrunner really sparked our fascination for tabletop games. We started reading more about games and got more curious about all the different games available. The fact that we’ve met a lot of new people and friends at our Friendly Local Gaming Store (FLGS) and we like to hang out there, surely adds to our the current exponential growth of our collection. ;-)

On the website is says that you had no prior comic making experience?

Rachel: Heinze has always owned an impressive collection of comic books and thus has loads of experience in reading comics. ;) I am experienced in making graphics and illustrations, but I’ve never made any comics before Semi Co-op. It actually started out as a personal project in which I wanted to get more practice in cartoon drawing. Having to publish something every week to a public was a great motivation to actually work on those skills. Now I’ve drawn more than 80 comics, totally upped my comic drawing skills and have gathered amazing cool followers and haven’t thought about quitting yet.

Was the plan for semi co-op to always be mostly about board games?

Yes, Semi co-op was always going to be about board games. Comics about couples can be a lot of fun, but that seemed too broad as a starting point. We both enjoy a lot of geeky things like video games, movies but that wouldn’t make us stand out enough from a lot of other webcomics. The board game angle seemed pretty unique plus focusing on board games gave us a nice excuse to spend more time on playing games.

How many of the stories in the comic are drawn (no pun intended) from personal experience?

Some of are direct results of things that happened, like Rachel winning a Netrunner tournament. Sometimes just parts of them, like the Sherlock high tea panel. Most of them are created while goofing of talking about games or things we spot on the board game Reddit.

My favorite is the one you did about Star Realms because it has happened to me. Do you have a personal favorite?

Henize: I think my favorite is the one about the Fantasy Flight tokens, I really love the fact that it’s now official FFG *canon* as well ;).

OH, I have my Tannhauser ones, there not getting that game from me!!
Rachel: This is such a hard question! I like the one about the emotional stages of Agricola, since I really experience this every time we play it.

Another one thing that I really like is that our New Year resolution all worked out, except for the last one to finish Sherlock Holmes which we only played twice this year XD.

Oh, right, Sherlock. Me and my friends are terrible at that game. I call us the Dyson Detective Agency (Que hokey music from The Price Is Right). Last question, what is a game that you love that we may have not heard of?

Right now we’re really impressed with Friese’s Friday, it’s the first time a solo game has grabbed us as much as this game did. Another game that we like to play with 3-4 players is Biblios. It’s a very interesting game of running a monastery library.

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