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Old Reliable

UPDATE: All right guys, I stayed up all night pushing out the latest 2 Patreon comics and I'm still in the weeds on the next comic's linework. I'm just going to attach it to Tuesday's so it'll be about 3 tiers. I need a fresh start for next week. Everyone in the house has been sick. I've been running to doctors and dealing with taxes and misc other crap that can't wait. On top of all that I rolled over my tablet pen with my chair like an absolute idiot and broke it. I got another one. Sincerely, sincerely apologize. A garbage few weeks for me. blergh.

98 thoughts on “Old Reliable

        1. The only question now is should we use the standard fanfare, the battle victory theme from Final Fantasy VII, or what they used at the end of Star Wars Return of the Jedi?

        2. Neither, announces a board member of the committee on firsts. In order to be a true and fit first, the statement must be of ten words and that the first must also be in relation to information presented in the comic. Not as a stand alone statement about having the first comment on the thread. I’m sorry, since the one statement that would qualify was given by a member of the security council all firsts are hereby disqualified for this particular installment of the SHUFFLEVERSE from Planet Erf due to protocols in place to ensure that the meta commentators will still be allowed to pent rate the forth wall.

        3. Before I answer Redguard about the music I would just Luke to say that Shotgun Shuffle is what we consider to be one outstanding achievement for Chris. He may have started out on a slice of life webcomic. To quote Ellie the webcomic is “Delightfully absurd” in not only it’s visually beauty, the characters are captivating and humanly whole. I’ve likened the SHUFFLEVERSE to the equivalent of a Hughes movie along the lines of “The Breakfast Club.

          In as much as Shotgun Shuffle is unique in that aspect and seeing how other webcomics had fans compete for getting the first post with just a single post with a single word. Because Shotgun Shuffle is such a unique webcomic, there should be a different standard. An extremely absurd standard that up ends convention as easily as our author flipping over a table. A standard that would let the first happen anywhere in the thread without being the first post.

        4. I’m still not entirely sure where I went wrong there, but I will accept my fate as a non-first.

          And for future reference, could someone provide a slightly more understandable explanation of the rules regarding first posts, so that I can avoid my previous mistakes should this rare opportunity present itself to me again?

          Not that it will, I’m just still confused about how this works…

        5. My personal rule is that I feel confident in my knowledge in how chronological ordering works and feel no need to point it out.

          I gladly advocate any and all complicating rules for people who feel the need to point out chronological ordering, though.

        6. I’m with the Redguard here. That theme was ludicrous. Just what “rights” were the Ewoks standing up for, anyway? Did they have a founding document somewhere written on bark or animal skin?

      1. Oooo, a political joke. Nicely done. I’m just one to complain about his twitter etiquette, but it seems to have been pointed out that he’s a street brawler.

  1. Given what he’s describing as his goal a dating seems like literally one of the worst ways to achieve it. This is why mobsters own restaurants, they’re easy to cook the books to show barely any profit and mediocre ones are a dime a dozen in any semi large city.

    1. I thought the point was to cook the books to show more, not less, profit, as they mixed the ill-gotten gains in with the legitimate income of a business that tended toward being an unsteady revenue stream.

        1. Well, a subscription service would probably be a bad choice for laundering money, in any case.
          As I understand it, you’d want “good days” and “bad days” to confuse any attempts at auditing the revenue stream.

    2. There’s also the initial set-up cost, though. A restaurant requires a location, workers, supplies, utility hookups, etc. Any single person can make a free website and effectively run it alone for quite a while, drawing money from subscriptions the whole time.

      1. True but that’s if profit is your goal. Like I said, with his stated goal this seems like one of the worst possible options.

        1. What exactly do you think his goal was? For me it seems to be to make a small amount of money (sustenance level) while attracting as little attention (and generating as little a papertrail) as possible.

        2. Sure, and web based has far more unavoidable paper trails. When is the last time you had a cash transaction online?

        3. The transactions are smaller, for the most part- no large retail accounts. I feel like it would be a lot easier to fake things with people you never have to meet in person and/or show them a physical location, etc.

        4. He has absolutely no reason to be deceptive with the website’s suitors/suitees. Any complaints about transactions would bring down all alphabet soup agencies that would lead to black bag helicopter rides to gitmo.

        1. Mmm…plutonium cake. With mint frosting. (Bonus virtual cookie for anyone who gets the reference, which will probably be everyone.)

        2. I think SeanR is refering to Yellowcake (a stage in the refining of uranium), except he got the atomic weight of a tiny portion of the yellowcake mixed up with the density.

        3. Yes.
          Also, it’d at most be warm to the touch..unless, perhaps, if it was wet.
          But then, since I had to google the atomic weight, and then google again to make sure I remembered how atomic mass worked, I have no idea at what concentration Uranium, enriched or otherwise, would be enough warmer than its surroundings for someone to notice.

  2. Considering what I believe to be the most likely thing to happen to him after he fires Ellie.
    A “free government helicopter ride” is going to be the one thing he’s going to want.
    Also..dear god just lose the damn toupee..

    1. We don’t know why all these people follow Tired Guy and obey his orders. Yet.
      Nena appears to be his Number 2, offering suggestions and trying to influence him but at the end of the day his decisions for their group are all that matters. He’s the leader. Durkin, Mandalay, Nena, etc all do what Tired Guy tells them to do. The question is… why? There must be a reason… and it clearly isn’t because he pays them well.

      1. Sounds like the reason is he kept them alive and their true identities undiscovered by the law (or maybe their previous alias identities undiscovered by the law as he has a nephew who contacts him).

  3. “I found you all with it”?

    Did…did this guy just straight up admit he’s recruited a terrorist organization via a dating site? Or am I loopy?

    1. This is one of those backstories that raises more questions than answers- who, exactly, he was looking for, and why, is still up in the air. At this point almost anything could be on the table- mutants, aliens, former government agents, escapees from the secret Atlantean society at the Earth’s core, etc.

    2. That’s some pretty sophisticated datamining of their filling out their ‘Esymmetry’ profiles.

      Protip: On ‘Have you killed anyone, professionally or for personal reasons’, most people check the NO box.

      1. Could use a Rorschach test. “What does this picture mean to you?” might draw different answers, depending on the audience.
        Two or three, or a bit of a Shibboleth worked into the design, could allow those in the know to connect.

        To do off on that epileptic tree above, maybe the “weird symbols” in the border say “put your one of your hobbies down as ’emuback riding’, if you can read this” in Atlantean script.

    3. I read it that they were in hiding and he found them. I think the terrorist recruiting was much earlier than that and may have been done by David (as he’s #1 of the old org).

    1. That jumped out at me this comic, but isn’t something I noticed in the past.

      Going back to comic Guy vs Guy (current post date September 25, 2013) his ears are a little ovalish and angled diagonally back in that one. So I’m not sure if this is an evolution in art, a change in decision about the character, or an indicator of something (like the way Tarra’s birthmarks crackle with electricity when she charged up for Tarraforming (see comic Less Is More, current post date March 15, 2014).

    1. No, Sister X is the Vampire with the time travel and the sibling murder and everything.

      These guys are more like the Pillar Guardians. Just wait, it’ll eventually be revealed that everything they’ve done has been at the behest of the mighty Elder Squid.

  4. yeah…why not follow the Devil with his ‘words that have back-door meaning’.
    once again even more with all the killers that are just BEHIND physical doors.

  5. All right, Shufflers; tomorrow’s March 1. Don’t forget to get out the vote on TWC; we’ll likely be down a bit with the update lag, but we’ll need everyone we can get.

  6. At this time Shotgun Shuffle is 133rd in rank with 28 votes. Number one slot is currently occupied by Grrl Power with 481 votes. SSSS or Stand Still. Stay Silent is ranked 5th with 278 votes.

    We need to get into the top 20 by this time next week. That’s 161 votes at this time or a projected 11.5 votes per hour for 276 votes per day minimum. Top 10 are a projected 15.5 votes per hour or a minimum 371 votes per day.

      1. Gooby plz.

        I’ve READ Grrl Power. The only way Grrl Power could match Shotgun Shuffle is if it updated three times a day. The art here is an order of magnitude better, easily, and the storylines make way more sense.

        That and a geeky girl heroine is supposed to be someone identifiable, not someone I’d like to see fall into a burning crack in the Earth. Sydney is that heroine.

        1. True that. And there is some of the (?)Penguin Press style from some art pulp style anime gold digger comic book. Or was it Antarctic Press?

      2. Actually how well Grrl Power does is encouraging to me for the possibility of Rusche getting up there ranking-wise sometime.

        Grrl Power does pages with an eye to print pages, so it’s single or double, and that keeps those paced a bit more evenly, however while there are vote incentives over there, they’ve been changing 2-4 times per year and that hasn’t made a big dent in his rankings. I also have been reading over there for years and I haven’t seen any kind of big get-out-the-TWC-vote efforts, so the rankings really seem like number of readers and tendency to click through & vote.

        So while I think Ruche has a few tendencies that will end up translating to fewer dedicated voters, it seems possible that he could at some point get a following to get a stable high ranking.

    1. Current stats.

      SHOTGUN SHUFFLE is 72nd with 310 votes.
      SSSS is currently 8th with 2,214 votes.
      Grrl Power is 1st with an obscene 6,283 votes.

      At this time of posting:
      40th slot needs better than 444 acumulated votes (AV).
      20th slot needs to beat 1,392 AV.
      Top ten needs to best 1,781 AV.

      1. Current stats at the time of this posting:

        SHOTGUN SHUFFLE is 67th with 392 votes. 65.3 v/d; 2.72 v/hr; 0.04 v/min.
        SSSS is currently 7th with 2,705 votes. 450.8 v/d; 18.78 v/hr; 0.313 v/min.
        Grrl Power is still 1st with 8,957 votes. 1,492.83 v/d; 62.201 v/hr; 1.036 v/min.

        At this time of posting:
        40th slot needs better than 545 acumulated votes (AV).
        20th slot needs to beat 1,630 AV.
        Top ten needs to best 2,161 AV.
        Top five needs to beat 2,994 AV.

  7. I feel a beat down happening very soon, and I don’t remember Tara actually being present for the agreement with David.

  8. Taxes. Oy. Yeah, I work freelance myself. Getting all that nonsense together is a process that takes weeks of effort for the privilege of writing another check. Good to hear everything’s at least kind of well, though.

  9. Everyone’s entitled to a bad day or 2 or 7.
    And the amount & quality of the production for February has been noted and appreciated by all!!!

    Maybe toss a few Patreon comics to the archive? It’s bee over 2 years.

    1. I haven’t logged into Patreon in quite a while, but as of the last time I’d logged in, it’s starting to get into a bit of a cliff-hanger that it’d be bastardly to post part of it to the main site rather than waiting until Patreon gets a little father and then giving time and posting Patreon images that wouldn’t be a cliff hanger (and not even a cliff hanger that Patreons have the answer to).

      So my suspicion is that is the reason for that.

  10. And just what is Nena’s power? She wears a trench coat to cover her belly button, but it wasn’t made clear in their battle with Mr. Blue Sky just what she could actually do. And how about the little squirt with the funky eyes? Will we get a power update on her? I don’t like to think what Tired Guy must do — soul sucking or something?

  11. I’m not allowed to contribute to Patreon because I’m on SSI/SSDI, so…. OK, I’ll be happy with whatever I can see, for the price of my internet connection.

    1. I suspect Rusche is avoiding adding too many additional Patreon comics just now because Patreon comics are on a cliff hanger bit and he’s waiting until a while after the cliff hanger is over there to move them to the main site.

  12. Well… hang in there, dude. Despite my snark, I’d rather not have an artist break themselves over their content. Hope things are (relatively) stable on your end.

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