Hello people. These are the various character outlines of my graphic novel, Leader. I'm posting this because I want critique on them before I write the first draft. It is organized with a character outline, each which contains the backstory, values, arcs, and plot lines of each major character. Like I said earlier, critique wanted. Thank you.
In a world devastated by a mysterious nuclear war called "The Fog War," 2 cities built from the ashes of civilization are at war over an injury the leader of one city did to the other.
*Born into a low class farming family.
*Passed school by the skin of his teeth.
*Made a massive fortune on the stock market.
*Took until 37 to get married because his obsession with work made him unable to hold any relationship for more than a year.
*Had his only son, Greg, at 38.
*Lost his wife in the Fog War.
*He and his son Greg went into a bunker after Byron’s wife died.
*When he came out, he started a farm, and paid people in food to help him expand it, until he gradually turned it into a city called “Green Farm.”
*1 year later, a previously hidden rival called “Midnight Light” attacked his city and almost killed his son. Afterward, Byron grew overly protective of his son, and built a tower designed specifically for “keep Greg safe” and hired many to be Greg’s body guards.
Interests, Dislikes, and Skills:
*He frequently plays chess.
*He constantly makes sure his head is completely bald as it has become a large part of his image.
*Very protective of his son, Greg. Before his wife was killed in the Fog War, he let his son do almost anything.
*The slogan of his town is “Built from just one.”
*His son, Greg
*The memory of his wife
*Starts as a leader who doesn’t have enough concern for his people, too distracted by his son’s safety. As a result, they have a struggling economy.
*Spies disguise as body guards and kidnap his son. They take him to Elijah, who demands that he must either bring the fight directly to him and or else Greg will die. Byron decides to fight. He plans a route that will be likely do damage to Elijah, but will also cost a lot and damage the military.
*His plan initially works, with Stan’s army section performing their part flawlessly. However, when it is Aaron’s turn, it turns out that someone has hacked their guns, and Stan’s army section’s guns too. Byron commands some of Stan’s soldiers to launch an investigation.
*Aaron is convicted, and after he escapes murder by his former soldiers, chaos erupts over who will replace him. Byron decides to bring the army back, but Elijah sends a message over a computer saying that if he withdrawals, Greg will be killed. Byron, as a result, chooses to press on, with him as sole control of what used to be Aaron’s troops, erupting anger from both his troops and people, as the war is costing a lot of money, including that he spends to upgrade the cyber-security of the guns.
*During the attack, while Aaron’s troops narrowly get their part done, when it is Stan’s turn to attack, he is forced by Aaron to reveal that he and a good portion of his troops are actually the spies who kidnapped Greg, rigged the guns, and have also spent years smuggling information to Elijah. This causes Stan’s army section to dissolve as half of it works for Elijah and the other half works for Byron. This puts more strain on Aaron’s troops, and they narrowly are able to breach the wall and invade Elijah’s city with Aaron now as the leader of both army sections. In the meantime, Stan and his troops, except for the half loyal to Byron, plan to use the computers in their guns to hack all of Byron’s computer networks.
*At this time, Greg escapes and uses his computer skills to establish communication with Byron. He tells him that he figured out that Stan is a traitor, surprised to learn that Byron already learned that. With Byron’s help, Greg stops the invasion of all of Byron’s computers. Greg then warns that Elijah is about to launch a secret weapon called the “Teddy Bear.” This is activated, causing devastation to Aaron’s troops and Byron’s half of Stan’s troops. Byron considers surrendering, but when Aaron charges in and gets killed, before he dies, he tells Byron that he had good strategy, and that he can use it here and now as well as back then.
*Byron, motivated again, uses the little of Aaron and Stan’s troops to charge at the tank. After this doesn’t work. Greg says that if Byron gives him a “bit of software,” Greg can use it to hack the Teddy Bear and cause it to self-destruct. This would, while killing the tank, would almost certainly kill every person in Elijah’s town, Greg included. Greg also notes that the tank ammunition will destroy what is left of the ozone layer, devastating humanity. Byron, after some hesitation, give Greg the software, which he uses, blowing up the tank, saving Byron, his town, humanity, but killing him in the process.
*Byron, now learning that as a leader, his people are more important than personal matters, tears down the tower designed to protect his son to use the money no longer invested into the tower’s maintenance on the people’s matters.
*He was born as an only child into a poor family, with a dad who made clothes and a mother who was a farmer.
*He did well in high school and college.
*After finishing school, he opened an oil company and made millions.
*He got falsely accused of sexually harassment by 26 separate “internet trolls” and always had the worst believed in him even after his trial ended with him declared “not guilty.” Afterward, Elijah became afraid of being killed and moved from his giant mansion in San Francisco a small cottage in the remote countryside and tried to start a farm to get his mind off the accusations.
*During the aftermath of the Fog War, he tried to welcome people into his cottage to house them, but when they began to turn away because of the sexual harassment accusations that was the last straw. He lost all sympathy for anyone who wasn’t him.
*Elijah hand-made a mask to hide himself using memories of watching his dad do his job to hide himself and made up the name “Stanley Pat.” Afterward, he paid people in food from his farm to expand it and gradually, his number of “employees” increased until he had a full-on city.
*When he learned of Byron’s rival city, he vowed to turn it into a scape goat for his people in hopes that it would be destroyed and never be remembered so it wouldn’t create a bad opinion on “Stanley.”
Interests, Dislikes, and Skills:
*He makes sarcastic jokes.
*He never goes outside in public.
*Wears a purple mask all the time.
*Created his city under a new name so that he would have an identity with a positive reception.
*Putting the past behind him
*Being the best
*Elijah kidnaps Greg and forces his father, Byron, to fight or else he’ll kill him.
*During Stan’s attack, Elijah commands someone unknown to release the cyber-attack on Aaron’s guns, noting the stolen data confirms that Aaron’s guns have weaker cyber security.
*When his guards inform him that Greg is considering escaping, Elijah uses fear to manipulate Greg into not trying. In the meantime, Elijah accidentally reveals bits of his backstory-specifically that he was a rich man who ran an oil business before the Fog War and that he lived in a very isolated, cheap house for unknown reasons.
*When Elijah learns that defeat is likely, he launches the “Teddy Bear” and comes close to destroying Byron’s city and the world with it. When Byron demands over a video chat program why he does this, Elijah reveals that he doesn’t want there to be a legacy of any other town in USA after the Fog War and launching the Teddy Bear is the only way to destroy Byron’s town now. Elijah also reveals about the scandal before the Fog War that caused him to do what he’s doing.
*He was born into a wealthy family, which got its money from a clothing business.
*His family were forced into poverty when the clothing business closed down due to a giant scandal involving Aaron.
*After the scandal shut down the business, Aaron’s mom overdosed, due to losing something she spent her whole life on and being unable to get a new job due to the scandal.
*Aaron’s dad gradually became abusive afterward, feeling Aaron was responsible for the mother’s death.
*After being beaten many times, Aaron began to formulate elaborate escape plans, all of which failed.
*After an exceptionally complicated one failed, Aaron snapped and escaped from his dad simply by beating him and breaking down a window to exit the house. Even since then, he has valued physical strength over strategy.
*He got found shortly after escaping, and his condition caused his dad to be arrested, and he was put in the hands of another family.
*Narrowly passed high school and then went to work as a soldier for 2 years, and afterward, until the Fog War, worked as a slaughterer and meat packer.
*Came to Byron’s shelter, and in return, decided to fight to protect the shelter, like he did in the army.
Interests, Dislikes, and Skills:
*His mom ran a large clothing business.
*His dad did a lot of odd jobs for the sake of having a job.
*He has an intense love of guns and even named his tank “Misty.”
*He wildly enjoys boxing, and once dreamed of being that, but the war broke out before he could pursue that passion.
*Being at the top of a hierarchy
*Forgetting the past
*Aaron is sent in order to fight through the sewers to get to Elijah’s place.
*After Aaron’s military guns are hacked so they stop working, he practically forces his military to charge forward and use their hands. This ends in a blood bath for a good deal of the troops. He receives a good deal of critism for not retreating when the guns failed, which Aaron justifies by saying that the guns failed, requiring an alternative plan. The remaining troops, along with Aaron, hide in an isolated dead end in the sewer.
*Aaron is accused of being the one who hacked the guns, shown the overwhelming evidence, such as text messages Aaron sent with the computer in his gun, and the fact that his was the only one that wasn’t hacked, then chased deeper into the sewer. In there, he gets the idea that someone set him up and decides to go back to his troops to see if any of them did this.
*Aaron finds out that one soldier is working for Stan, who is a spy for Elijah, along with half of Stan’s troops. After interrogating him, the soldier shows that Stan made him hack the guns except for Aaron and planted fake text messages to make it look like Aaron did it, as Elijah didn’t yet finish creating the hacking technology to hack guns from far distances. The man also notes that soon, Elijah will send them more advanced technology that will allow to hack tougher systems from farther distances to gain sole control of all of Byron’s computer systems, including all the weapons. Aaron decides to escape to where Stan was attacking to force him to confess.
*Aaron finds Stan, holds him hostage, and gets him and his fake troops to confess. As a result, Stan’s army section dissolves as half is working for Byron and half for Elijah. As the halves break up, Byron not only puts Aaron back in charge of his own army, but also in charge of Byron’s half of Stan’s army section. However, when Stan is on the brink of taking control of all of Byron’s technology and very few firewalls remain, Byron strongly considers surrendering by sending Elijah a surrender message.
*Aaron, not listening to Byron’s call to surrender, commands his troops to attack at full force at the walls of Elijah’s town. When that backfires, Aaron justifies by saying that Byron didn’t have any plan for them. Afterward, Aaron decides to attack on his own. He wounds up breaching the wall and killing a good deal of the men, but gets cornered without any ammo and it becomes clear that he is going to die. He reveals why he valued strength over strategy, and tells Byron that, contrary to what he said about Byron earlier, Byron’s good at strategy, he can still win, right before Aaron gets fatally shot.
*After Aaron gets shot, Byron receives a video chat alert. It turns out to be his kidnapped son, Greg, who can help him if Byron helps him.
Age: 15 Backstory:
*He was born to Byron Boswell, a successful stock trader.
*Developed computer skills at just 11, and until he got glossophobia, he often played pranks through hacking.
*Developed glossophobia when he tried to console his dad on his marriage, but ended up angering him further.
*He and his family fled into a bunker to escape the Fog War when Greg was 14.
*While in the bunker, his mother helped Byron teach Greg how to farm.
*A few months before the story begins, When Byron had managed to build a sprawling city, a person working for Elijah sneaked in and killed Byron’s wife and almost killed Greg. Greg hated Elijah as a result, but also didn’t agree with Byron putting too much emphasis on protecting him to the determent of his economy as a result, but was too afraid to speak of either.
Interests, Dislikes, and Skills:
*He has exceptional hacking skills.
*He is not attached to his dad.
*He has a fear of speaking, and refuses to have friends or conversations as a result.
*His own safety
*Getting revenge on Elijah for killing his mom (secretly has this value)
*Greg is kidnapped by a man working for Elijah.
*Greg gets the idea to use his skills to hack Elijah’s computer systems, and starts secretly creating an escape plan. However, Elijah uses intimidation tactics to keep Greg under control.
*Gradually overcoming this fear, Greg manages to execute temporary escape plans to involve getting further and further from his confined space, until eventually, he gets to the computer and starts hacking.
- Greg gets caught and is about to have both of his legs broken so he can’t try more escape plans, but when he sees on a nearby TV of the news that Byron’s army is losing the war with Elijah, he gets the courage to break free and lock himself in a computer room to help Byron. After a bit of struggling, he manages to get a lot of sensitive information on Elijah, including his secret weapon, “The Teddy Bear,” and the fact that Stan is a spy for Elijah who is soon going to hack all of Byron’s computer systems.
- Greg establishes communication with Byron and, with his help, stops Stan’s hack and disables their guns. This causes Stan and his half of the army to initially attack Aaron’s section directly at full force, but most of them are taken down, causing the rest of Stan’s army section half to flee, presumably to never be found again.
- Afterward, Greg warns Byron of the secret “Teddy Bear,” a weapon designed as a last resort. Elijah, in anger, launches it and it devastates Byron’s entire army. Greg reveals he could hack it and save humanity if Byron sent him the right software, but it would cause the TB to explode, killing Elijah’s entire city, including Greg. Byron, realizing that his son isn’t what is most important as a leader, gives in, saving humanity.
*Born into a middle class family with a younger brother, Alexander.
*During the Fog War, the parents were killed and Alexander tried to create a settlement to rebuild civilization.
*The settlement was attacked by bandits, and during it, Alexander covered for him and forced him to flee. The brother died.
*Came across Elijah’s settlement when it was just getting off the ground and wanted to help it in return for him letting him in. (Elijah was much more friendly in his early days.)
*When Elijah opened his army, Stan rose to the top quickly, being one of the first to join.
*Conducted a mission to spy on Byron to see what would be the best tools to potentially anger and blackmail him to his own destruction.
*Killed Byron’s wife for Elijah.
*Eventually, Stan became part multi-person plan where each person would pretend to be citizens of Byron and gradually develop a plan to get into high members of the army so they would have the access to hack the major computer systems that are vital to Byron’s operations.
Interests, Dislikes, and Skills:
*Stan values loyalty to the people who help him because his brother was loyal to him and Stan wants to return the favor.
*Elijah’s town’s well-being
Stan seems to help Byron heavily, but in secret, starts hacking Byron’s technology. Eventually, Aaron exposes him and his plan is foiled, and he, along with the fake soldiers who were part of the plan, run away to never be seen again.