Not the End
Not the End

Hey everyone. This is it. This is the big reveal. This is the end-goal I had in mind from when I first created Weregeek.

It isn’t the end, however. Not by a long shot.

See, back when I was first planning out story ideas for this comic, I had a big, sprawling storyline involving the Weregeeks and their geek powers. I was in love with the mystery of the Hunters as shadowy antagonists, and I really wanted to work in all sorts of metaphors. I had big, big plans.

I had also never written anything other than posts for my play-by-post RPGs and a few short stories that, with any luck, will never see the light of day. So, as the years went by and I got better and better at writing jokes and planning out more tightly character-focused storyarcs, I found that I liked writing the ‘metaplot’ storylines less and less. I came to dread them, actually, since they seemed to take away what I’d actually built – a cast of characters that were relateable, that made me laugh and reminded me of all of the fun times I’d had as a newbie LARPer, characters that you, the fans, wrote me to ask for more details about. I found the Hunter/Wergeek plots taking a backseat to plots focused around these characters and their lives, and wishing I could spend even more time writing that.

And so, after a lot of thought, I decided to wrap up the metaplot early. I had originally planned it to be the penultimate storyline (and, given how sprawling, and lets face it, convoluted, the original plot idea was, it would have needed to be late in the game!), but realized that not only did that not have to be the end, it shouldn’t be. There were so many more stories yet to tell – why haven’t we seen much of Ravenia lately? How did Ned wind up running a game shop? Are Joel and Stephanie going to hit it off or wind up at each other’s throats? And, as so many people have been asking, what’s going to happen between Mark and Sarah now?

Anyway, I’m excited for this new chapter in the comic. Or maybe, not a chapter so much as a new chronicle (chronicle being the term we used to denote different games under the same banner – a vampire chronicle could be run by the same Storytelling team and organizers, but be very different thematically between one chronicle and the next. Most even had different continuities, though that’s not the case here!). I’m really excited about delving a little more deeply into the cast’s lives, and I hope that you guys are too.

So, thank you all for sticking with me through Chronicle 1 of Weregeek. I hope you’ll stick with me through into the new Chronicle, because there’s lot of story yet to tell, and I’m really excited to tell it. We’re going to be going back to the ever-punny “+2 Comedy Check Theatre” once this storyline wraps (there’s still a few strips left that will hopefully answer some of the questions you may have!) to give me time to script ahead on the new chronicle and really get a good handle on the writing, but the new storyline should be starting on March 31st. Until then, thanks for reading, and I’ll be checking the comments section over the next while if you have any questions!

-Alina

News: Posted March 11th, 2014 by Alina

^ 289 Comments to “Not the End”

  1. Tolan Says:

    Soooo… what, all the build up, the years of reading and it turns out it was yet another LARP Mark failed to clue into? That’s disappointing, to say the least. I mean, it’s your story, do what you want to do, but I really liked the metaplot and wanted to see where it went. This feels a little St.Elsewhere to me. Guess I’ll just have to wait and see what Part 2 is like, but this was kinda a letdown.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:02 am
  2. Reyvinn Says:

    Well, it was one of the most anti-climactic ending I’ve seen in a loong time. Totally agree with Tolan, not what I expected at all. The last strips were showing that it could be the end, but… well, not my comic, not my choice. I’m happy you’re going to continue though. The rpg sessions were always my favourite parts, as well as the LARPs.

    Greetings from Poland,
    Reyvinn

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:11 am
  3. Glew Says:

    Contrary to Tolan [and I only name him (her?), because (s)he is the 1st commenter and I seem to be 2nd] I like this. I alway wondered if this weregeek thing is just a metaphor or is it “real”? Then when Mark and the others were “let in” on it by Joel, I thought it was strange, didn’t quite fit for me. Was an interesting twist too. Yet I couldn’t imagine how it would work out, it seemed too far fetched. I mean those hunters wanted to kill people.

    But this new storyline gave me funny wibes, I somehow got the idea that “actually, this might just be an other LARP…” and it got more and more suspicious. Turns out it was! :D I myself am happy with the reveal. Not sure how the story will go on, and how the comic will stay true to its name, but I’m looking forward to it. I’m eager to read more about the “real” characters rather than the Hunters’ dubious conspiracy.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:27 am
  4. Stuart Says:

    So no more of the Hunters? Yeeees! *fist-pump*
    Those guys always annoyed me no end.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:28 am
  5. Peter Says:

    I agree with Tolan. In all those strips showing the hunters side of things, not to mention the arc about the geeks training their powers, this end seems just forced. Nothing in those previous stories suggested even remotely that anyone besides Joel knew what was going on, and now it’s everyone besides Mark?! What about the attack on Joel, including bruises and cuts?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:31 am
  6. Anon Says:

    Mark must have a … vivid imagination, to have been taken in by all that, given that he’s a little more experienced (and the difference between the in-LARP characters and out of LARP characters is more dramatic). I look forward to seeing where you go from here, though I’m more than a little confused.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:52 am
  7. Doofus Says:

    I’m rather with Stuart.

    The IRL Geek Powers didn’t match quite match the tone of the overall story and the Hunter situation was a little confusing / weird.

    Nice resolve, things do feel to make more sense this way.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:53 am
  8. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    Sadly, I have to agree with Tolan. There’s a limit to how far we can take our willing suspension of disbelief. I can take geeks having powers that they display with enough training (or geekiness overdosage), that there’s an organization that kidnaps and brainwashes people. It’s been there since the beginning. But the limit is hit when you tell as Mark cannot even distinguish between real powers and masks. The hunters were supposed to be the “serious” (Cerebus!) part of the comic.

    But again, as Tolan says, it’s your comic, yours to use however you see fit. Though certainly I hope you’re just trolling us with the comment and all that there is in today’s strip is just part of keeping the masquerade from leaking.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:56 am
  9. caz Says:

    Im with tolan. this just seems very… anticlimactic. so now all that suspense and stuff is gone. so what, they broke that equipmenet in the jungle gym for the larp? the “nerd ” forms were just masks? it raises a ton of questions, and just leaves me with a bitter taste in my mouth.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:06 am
  10. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    I forgot to say, I do like the regular storylines as well, but I felt that the hunters were the driving, behind the scenes important plot. Anyway, see you around on the 31st.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:07 am
  11. Death Proof Says:

    I have only this to say:

    I’m still shipping Mark and Abbie. Even though I know this will never happen.

    Nice way to wrap up the hunter/geek thing so we can get down to business with some good old fashioned rpg humor.

    Well done, ma’am.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:12 am
  12. Clayton Says:

    While I was axiously awaiting Mark’s inner power to come out and save the day… I can feel somewhat satisfied with this turn of events. You are a wonderful writer and I look forward to what you have in the future.

    With that being said. I do hope this would develop as a side story, another game that they gather around and play at the table.

    While the switcharoo was a bit of a let down, I do wish you the best in your writings and I will continue to follow this webcomic in the future.

    Regards
    Clayton G.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:13 am
  13. GadzooksBonanza Says:

    I actually have to agree with Tolan, I actually enjoyed the supernatural aspect of the comic. That was part of the reason I started reading the comic. I feel like if you just do this, it just kind of gets thrown away all because “it was never real.” But it’s your comic, and I’ll probably still enjoy it either way.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:15 am
  14. Ben Says:

    Loved this, didn’t see it coming. Onwards to chronicle 2!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:16 am
  15. Simon Says:

    That sounds good to me – it might have been your original concept for the strip, but the Hunters metaplot has never quite fitted in with what is otherwise simply a comic about a bunch of gamers. Because it’s the characters themselves that make this comic great – their interactions as people like us, not as supernatural were-geeks…

    For the record, my favourite bits have always been their in-character storylines, particularly the Shadowrun one, though also the D&D party and the old Star Wars game. I’d be delighted to see more of that kind of thing in future… might be interesting to see them dabble in other genres like supers, or perhaps wuxia…

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:38 am
  16. Jollyskulls Says:

    I appreciated storyline and admittedly I aws really pulled in from this weird hunter Plot along with the Vampire plot so it is sad to see it end. It is also sad to see it end in such an odd manner almost like a left field ending that made no sense.

    I hope we continue the Story line of the characters but I also like a new metaplot of a different kind of big bad maybe people competing for space or drawing attentions away. Something similar but different.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:47 am
  17. TheCyberwoman Says:

    Hurm…that’s feeling a bit like a Dallas cop-out. I definitely agree that it kinda makes sense and that geek powers didn’t quite fit into the rest of the world. Except that Mark unknowingly had a geek transformation in the first strip… Mixed feelings…very mixed feelings. That said I’m excited about it focusing on the relationships more, because that has been my favorite part. As Rorschach would say, hurm…

    Still love it though, been following for 2 1/2 years now, even though I’ve never commented before, and won’t stop until you do.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:48 am
  18. Arillius Says:

    I actually saw something like this coming. I’ve been with weregeek since near the beginning and the tone change has been pretty obvious. The downside to this is… I was hoping I was wrong. I’m not going to be sticking around for more later. I loved the ‘meta-plot’ as you called it. Instead we’re getting another gamer life webcomic. No thanks.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:51 am
  19. Calenestel Says:

    Well… my reaction was just like Mark’s. I didn’t see it coming. At all.

    But I’m happy with it. The Weregeek powers were cool, but it (and the Hunters) didn’t fit with the other stuff: the game sessions and the general “hanging out with friends”-bits… Everytime we returned to this metaplot it gave me a feeling of annyoance. So… Yay! :D

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:56 am
  20. Void Schism Says:

    Wow, that was a surprise, and a good one. I have been interested in the hunters plot, but agree that it doesn’t quite fit with what the comic has become. I actually really like the disorientating and sudden wrap for the plot as it makes me feel what Mark is feeling. I think I actually feel more immersed in the story now. Still want to see Sarah and Mark get together!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:03 am
  21. [ waits anxiously for the remaining wrap-up of this Chronicle ]

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:11 am
  22. Jer Says:

    I always thought the hunter / weregeek plot seemed more and more out of place, impossible to resolve, and while I am not exactly convinced by this turn of event, I suppose it is the best way to get rid of it …

    … The biggest problem I have with it is that it paints Mark as the cliché kind of guy who should NOT play RPG or LARP, the unhinged kind who cannot make the difference between reality and fiction and ends up murdering people or committing suicide…

    … I really hope that is not what you have planned for him ;)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:13 am
  23. ekezet Says:

    Well, I’m also kind of disappointed as I feel the hunter vs geek could have had a much bigger story – even the comic name: weregeek alludes to it someway.

    However, that thread indeed got into the background, and the story become more like a “daily geek life” thing, so wrapping it up early before it becomes some kind of problem is probably the best decision.

    In any case, looking forward to the next chronicle, may it be at least as good as the first one is!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:30 am
  24. whims Says:

    Having the hunters turn out to be part of a long-term ongoing game works fine — I always found the hunter organization a bit peculiar if regarded as ‘real’ — but I liked the little touches that left open the possibility that something mysterious, creepy or magical was going on in the framing storyline without the characters realizing it (e.g. Sarah’s ‘weregeek’ shadow making a momentary appearance). I don’t see how having the whole thing being a LARP that Mark somehow completely missed can work, even given his overly-credulous response to the first vampire LARP and the later zombie walk (and his recent muppet-like reaction to zombicide).

    Is the plan just to explicitly retcon away certain parts of the story that weren’t working, and proceed with a revised, completely normal real-world setting in the framing storyline?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:35 am
  25. Tryskel Says:

    Thjat’s an unexpected ending to that… But, when I look back, all pieces fit in it… all but Mark’s reaction, but I think you have a response about that.
    Anyway, even if I like the metaphor of that bad army, I had the same feeling about this plot.
    (Nevertheless : thank you for the entertainment brought by your work.)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:36 am
  26. LoneHowler Says:

    Oooh nooo! Not the “it was only a dream” senario. That’s one if the biggest cop outs no nos. Though it fits in with Mark’s getting wrapped up in a game charicter flaw, it just seems like the whole world if weregeek just collapsed.
    Also Mark has glasses? I liked his normal average joe look.
    I’m going to stick with the comic, I hope it wasn’t a “Jump the shark” point. Perhaps they can roleplay the “weregeek” world in future.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:38 am
  27. Paul S. Enns Says:

    My biggest problem with Weregeek was always the element of ‘real’ supernatural stuff because of the Hunter storyline. It’s the same problem I have with d20monkey. Getting rid of it is a big relief to me. Looking forward to RPG jokes and exploring the characters’ lives.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:43 am
  28. Paul S. Enns Says:

    @LoneHowler: Mark’s not wearing glasses, his eyes are just bugged out from the realization that it was all a game.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:46 am
  29. Urainkhali Says:

    Admittedly I had not encountered a comic that I didnt like since the start, but this has the feeling of a cop-out. Then again, as stated, it is your comic. Unless last panel is a “enchanted masquerade via illusion so normals dont notice what is going on” I guess this means we do get to see an easy way out resolution for the strange guy who gave “the gem of plotia” to Mark also?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:50 am
  30. Amber Says:

    AWESOME. :D (And delightfully sudden and unexpected!)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:57 am
  31. Michael Says:

    I’m not sure what to say, on one side, the Hunter/Weregeek story was more and more out of place. But on the other side, I hoped that Mark would become some kind of a Super Weregeek that would stop the Hunter threat in this final battle. But to solve the story this way, looks fine to me, and surprised me. I’m looking forward to the new chronicle for more RPG fun

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:00 am
  32. Michelle Says:

    I have to admit, the geeks versus hunters plot line is what pulled me into this comic and I was always thrilled when it would show up again, so I’m sad to see it end like this. I’m looking forward to what you do next, though.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:05 am
  33. magdales Says:

    As at the end of every stories, i fell a bit sad about the ending. I was hopping for so much more ^^. Despite this end is as expected and a predictable, it is still in the continuity of the WereGeek story.

    Happy Ending ! and thanks for all thoses nices comics !

    Kéké from France

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:07 am
  34. Tolan Says:

    You know, it just occurred to me that ‘the story restarts march 31′ is really close to april 1st. Gotta wonder. Still, all in all this is probably for the best.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:08 am
  35. catprog Says:

    I guess I will have to see the other pages before commenting

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:38 am
  36. Lukkai Says:

    I’m… actually pretty okay with this. The comic did start to feel like two wholly different storylines that don’t really mix from time to time, due to the everyday life becoming such an important part while the hunters plot slowly escalated. There had to be some kind of ending for it and this doesn’t seem to be the worst possible way out at all.

    Especially since I still say the hunters were just a little too geeky to be actual anti-geeks. ;)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:44 am
  37. Stewart Says:

    Bravo! I agree that the Hunters storyline was getting out of kilter with the rest of the Weregeek world. This wraps it up neatly and leaves us looking forward to new adventures. Great stuff :-)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:51 am
  38. Astartus Says:

    I… I seriously don’t know. I agree that the Hunter storyline felt more and more parallel, not connected to the main plot lines, but I fully agree to whims – I really loved the subtile magicalness of “geeking out”, the power one could get from being passionate about something. If the Hunter storyline has to be dropped, I’d have much preferred to just unceremoniously remove the Hunters from the picture, but still keep the, well, keep the Weregeek in “Weregeek”.
    Still, I’ve been reading this comic for years and I trust that you know what you’re doing, so I reserve my final opinion until the chronicle is over, because right now it feels like there’s a TON of open questions that need to be answered. But seriously, I do hope that this won’t get that awkward “can’t keep reality and game apart” vibe… although I don’t see many ways to resolve this plot that don’t end in either this or all his friends openly lying to Mark for years about something really important.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:27 am
  39. Frank Says:

    I really liked the story line. And yes, it’s quite a little downturning that the “hunter games” seem to be over now, but I already suspected something like that several weeks ago. Angus was too suspicious.

    Well, however – I’m really happy that I had the honor to follow the story so far, and I’m glad that there’s more to come.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:37 am
  40. I was at least expecting the hunters to be a rival gang of geeks totally trolling the main cast and larping. I’m not sad the story has been resolved, I’m sad it’s ended “all in a dream” or in this case; all in Mark’s head.

    We’ll have to see where it goes from here, but how can I trust the next story will be executed with respect for the reader, when it feels like this one was not?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:39 am
  41. VANhasVOICE Says:

    O hell. What a let down…
    *packs up his stuff and walks out*

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:40 am
  42. ZoidTheUndecided Says:

    On one hand – I am glad that the hunters are gone – I too think it was out of place.
    On the other – Kinda disappointed how it all ended.
    On the other one (not being human has its advantages) – Looking forward to more WG (now 100% hunter free)
    On the fourth – No more puns, please!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:53 am
  43. HeavyP Says:

    I’m with most people – happy that the odd hunter/weregeek storylines are over, but still jarred by the reveal. I suppose there wasn’t any *good* way to wrap up those (fairly major) plot threads, so just go for the quick end and move past it. I look forward to seeing the new direction the comic is heading!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:56 am
  44. Thudthwacker Says:

    This is something of a relief, honestly. I enjoy the comic a lot, but as others have said, the Hunter part of the story was becoming more and more dissonant. There would be the “regular,” engaging story around the lives of the characters, and then a Hunter storyline would show up with a frame pack full of WTF.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:57 am
  45. WillyDJ Says:

    I’ld leave it ambiguous. My first reading of today’s strip was that Joel has been acting in the background to make it appear as a LARP so that no-one gets suspicious. And hey, it’s a comic. There’s licence to be weird.
    And I’ld leave it at that. Mark just doesn’t know if it was real or not. And his friends can’t give him a straight answer either way for various reasons. Sarah in particular. She’s such a hopeless romantic that trivial details like ‘real’ have nothing to do with the fact that a guy she fancies charged to her rescue and saved the day. The others can be equally vague.
    The other bonus of keeping it ambiguous is that later on when you do think of that awesome continuation of the metaplot there’s no barrier to it coming back. Although the idea of Mark treating it that time as ‘just another LARP’ when it is true deadly danger is also dangerous.

    tl;dr Thought it was awesome. Keep the options open!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:59 am
  46. WillyDJ Says:

    Did I say dangerous? Only to the character. Not the plot. It would be interesting and cool.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:02 am
  47. Nader Says:

    Called it :P I have to admit, as time wore on, it seemed more and more like these Hunter guys were just playing a long game of LARP. I agree with some of the other commenters that this twist could have been handled a little more tactfully, but I appreciate the desire to get this rather convoluted bit of plot chicanery out of the way and get back to the best part of this comic – GOOD OLD FASHIONED GEEKERY!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:05 am
  48. Sigurther Says:

    A tiny bit dissapointing, but at the same time it *works*. Yeah, I would’ve loved to have seen a long convoluted plot where the hunters were real and the geeks eventually dismantled their organisation or legally had them barred from harassing weregeek-americans (aclu would’ve been involved), but keeping in the theme with larping and deep plots, this works, so it’s all good. Also, a twist I did not see coming, which is not an easy feat! It’s not that things are predictable, as much as when you’ve read and seen as much media in one lifetime as I have, there aren’t many plot twists left you can spring on someone! ;) Loving it, keep up the great work!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:09 am
  49. Nex Terren Says:

    I’m… conflicted. On one hand I couldn’t say this plot was my favorite as it confused me on several minor points, but on the other hand we’ve just established that Mark is completely over-the-top disconnected with relaity if he honestly thought people were morphing into giant shadowy versions of themselves. Even moreso with this geek monster they just faced.

    I mean completely, off-his-rocker disconnected from reality.

    Like, for his own mental health he should be removed from the geek culture if this happens to him. And I can’t picture a reality besides that.

    Further it seems like–as LoneHowler pointed out–the “it was all a dream” storytelling fopaux that leaves readers (myself included) with a nagging sense of being cheated, especially when done over such a long span of time.

    So I’m conflicted. I’m also hoping that you have some secret weapon hidden behind your back to make it all come together nicely, however, and will be waiting until them. =)

    I’m ALSO so, so, so with Death Proof in saying that I ship Mark and Abbie. I hate that it’s given the sense of “Geeks and others are two different and never the two shall meet.” And Abbie had (in my opinion) an entirely legit reason to become upset, which just adds insult to injury.

    Abbie seems like a nice girl, seems like a fit for Mark, except she’s not a “geek.” But she doesn’t have to be a geek; she’s a person, and… and…

    I shall now end my rant.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:12 am
  50. Martin Bonner Says:

    I like the LARP story-lines and the D&D story-lines (and I hope we won’t be losing those). I liked the IRL stories too, and I wasn’t as down on the Hunter stories as others although I wasn’t keen on the way the merged fantasy and RL.

    Having said all that, this ending was very weak … but if you need to drop the hunters (because they were getting in the way), it’s hard to see a really good way to do that.

    Looking forward to the next Chronicle

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:22 am
  51. Alfvaen Says:

    I also felt that I enjoyed the characters more than the plot…if that makes any sense. But then, you already went back and forth between “playing the Shadowrun game” and “chatting about the new Hobbit movie”, and so having the Geek Power stuff could have just been another level…but I’m just as happy for them to have been LARPing in Consensus Reality rather than normal life + gaming + Really Having Superpowers.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:28 am
  52. Djer Says:

    Not gonna lie, I saw the “reveal” coming back when we first saw the hunters’ meeting. It all seemed a bit larp-y. Although given Mark’s track record, I’m not surprised that he got sucked too deep into the roleplay. Looking forward to seeing where the comic goes from here!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:29 am
  53. Hurbster Says:

    Yeah, the barriers you have put down between geeks and ‘norms’ really need to come down now what with the LARP reveal. But what about all the cutaways with the hunters planning stuff – how will those be explained ?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:32 am
  54. HeavyP Says:

    Wait. I just re-read the comic blurb. The end goal of the series was to make the whole Weregeeking thing into a LARP? Then why show us all the behind-the-scenes bits of hunters planning their attacks, of the geeks retraining Murdock, of really ANYTHING that’s not part of what would fall under normal LARP conventions? Further, if all his “friends” could see that Mark was taking this seriously the entire time and couldn’t tell the difference between a person in a mask and a shadowy super-being, why didn’t they tell him?!? Or get him on some damn medication?!?

    It’s just….look, if you chalk the whole Weregeek/Hunter bit up to “Early Installment Weirdness” (look it up on TVTropes), then I can absolutely accept this resolution as a way to wrap up as many of the dangling plot threads as possible and move on. No problem. But if this was the goal from the beginning? Then it raises some pretty unpleasant issues with ALL of the main cast.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:37 am
  55. Melilark Says:

    I’m somewhat conflicted here also – on one hand, I wasn’t a huge fan of the hunter/weregeek subplot as it was much less interesting than the everyday lives of the characters (and felt pretty out of place). On the other hand, I was hoping for a cleaner resolution, and this particular chapter had some potential (especially in driving Mark/Sarah together) that didn’t seem to happen (yet?).

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:38 am
  56. Crystalwind Says:

    WillyDJ: I actually like that idea, too, but there are several things (in particular, that one guy’s face bandages and the torn clothes of the people on the right) that make that not quite add up.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:43 am
  57. Aprion Says:

    So the whole geek superpower thing was just a larp? I feel kinda cheated because I thought that was a very origional idea. Having it turn out like this is… I have no words for it really. I just hope the story doesn’t turn into a mundane slice of life plot from here on. too many of those around already.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:44 am
  58. Trapper Says:

    I’ve been reading for a few years now (holy crap, where did all of that time go?), and I have to say, I’m glad you decided to end it this way. It’s not a completely satisfying ending, but the Weregeek/Hunter arc was definitely starting to feel really out of place, not to mention way over the top. As others have said, it just didn’t mesh well with the atmosphere of the rest of the comic.

    It was, however, enjoyable overall, and I look forward to continuing to read this comic.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:49 am
  59. Kraal Says:

    It appears I’m in the minority here. I, like a couple others, feel cheated by this ending to the Hunter/Geek story. I really enjoyed the plot, watching the geeks slip in and out of their shadow forms, Mark having trouble with his own, the Hunters attempting to rid the world of a culture they think is harmful.
    And with Mark’s reaction to this reveal? Maybe the hunters in that plot were right. I do agree with others here. He thought is was all real but it wasn’t? That is actually a serious issue and he probably needs to seek out professional help.
    Others talked about how the Hunter/Geek plot seemed dissonant from from the rest of the story. It may have been, but I’ve also read other comics that have multiple story arcs that may or may not match quite up. It can still be enjoyable. I respect that it’s your story and you have the right to do with it what you want. But I feel that the way you wrapped up the story arc was not effective. Again, I feel cheated. I /liked/ the real supernatural aspect of that arc, and just dreaming it all away makes me feel…somewhat empty about the comic now.
    I will continue to read, however. I do like the characters. If you take any advice at all, make sure Mark doesn’t actually think it was all real if you decide to go with the ‘it was all a LARP’ thing.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:53 am
  60. CybnerScratch Says:

    Wow, not gonna lie that came totally out of left field for me. Mark’s expression in the end pretty much sums up my reaction as well. But your reasoning is sound you wanted something broader and more expansive to let the characters you put so much time into creating flourish. I’ve always enjoyed this comic and will look forward to continuing to enjoy it in the future

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:56 am
  61. Poireau Says:

    how could Mark NOT notice that the gigantic weremonster he was facing wasn’t real??? there’s a seriously big problem with him here (others have expressed it better than me).
    Either he is completely delusional and no-one cares (which is pretty bad), or only geeks can see weregeeks (which is extremely far-fetched and doesn’t explain the hunter’s reactions in the last frame). Or (hopefully) he’s just an over-involved good actor

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:05 am
  62. Guillaume Says:

    I was always eager to more weregeek stuff, and I am very sad to see it go away, and especially sad to have a rational explanation of it…

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:12 am
  63. Bluegeek Says:

    I guess I understand… other people I know felt the weregeek/hunter thing was a bit of a disconnect.

    Mark got carried away with his fantasies and obsessions, which is not at all out of character for him.

    But I liked the weregeek storyline. And I’m not really sure what happens to the ‘weregeek’ part of Weregeek. I’ll keep reading for now, if for no other reason than to see where the Mark and Sarah thing goes.

    You can make it up to me by doing either a superhero or Star Trek roleplay storyline ;)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:15 am
  64. FSilvermane Says:

    Ok, now I will admit I barely got into the Hunter storyline and preferred the whole daily life of Geeks intermixed with their games,..but ending the Hunter Storyline in this Dallas/St. Elsewhere/Newhart way is a let down. I would have even accepted that it was a LARP and worked like their other games where we see it like their characters do [I have done the “what if we the players ended up in a D&D world” story before],..but this being a LARP and Mark having no idea is a bit off. But I have faith that you, our beloved Writer, will wrap it up a bit smoother in the next few comics.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:24 am
  65. ScardyG Says:

    I’m sorry, this feels too much like a cop out to me. It’s like you got bored with it and decided to just sweep it under the rug.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:33 am
  66. Smallcorners Says:

    HeavyP I would presume that the behind the scenes parts with the Hunters was them acting out their characters. Why couldn’t they have fun as well building up to the big LARP?

    I can see the whole plot as being a long time LARP between the two groups where some members would know more than others. Mark reacting quite that cluelessly? Let us hope it is disappointment that the game is over and not that his connections to reality are so thin.

    Over all, I love the comic!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:35 am
  67. Andy Says:

    Mm, interesting. While it’s not my preferred payoff (it didn’t quite seem to be as strongly setup as it could have been), I think it ultimately does fit with the tone of the strip to have the Weregeeking be a bit, well, metaphorical and fantastical. It also factually fits right into the way the whole comic begins–and the Hunter strips are easily explained as “Mark imagines the other side of things” with a possible side dash of Joel meta-narrating.

    And I approve of the fact that Joel is now the ultimate evil GM.

    Tonally, I really like this. I’ve definitely felt the Hunter subplot to be a bit jarring, and I agree that it’s the less interesting storyline. So, encouragement ahead!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:37 am
  68. Solokov Says:

    The resolution feels rather jarring and out of sync from the rest of the comics to be honest.

    It’s like watching a remake of the wizard of oz, only to get to the reveal of the wizard only for all the actors, including the flying monkeys and wicked witch, except dorothy break character and crack open a case of beers then reveal it all to have been a massive studio stage in the last 5 minutes of the movie.

    At least that’s my take on it.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:52 am
  69. Kumo Says:

    Well… An interesting twist, but it lacks something. It feels a bit like “BOOM – uh oh, the end”. Like Santa Claus losing his fake beard in the middle of kindergarten ;) And it makes Mark looking incredibly stupid. Personally I’d prefer if Mark knew that it all was just LARP.
    But of course, I’m not going to stop reading because of it – other storylines are just too cool.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:52 am
  70. Have to agree – jarring resolution but admittedly it was the stuff the comic was generally about that made it something to keep coming back to.

    Sorta amuses me that I’m having an opposite problem in that I’m tumbling down the “large metaplot” rabbit hole to the point where the here and now that was first thought up a couple years ago is now feeling like a chore on account of “I need to finish wrapping all this stuff up before I can do anything new.”

    (That said though, I’m now kinda curious how the Hunter branch from that other jurisdiction figures in to this – before that, the Hunters were admittedly somewhat benign and more interested in simple re-education, and it was only after that influx that they became THIS militant. Was this the plan from day one or is this linked to the local Hunter leadership being co-opted?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:04 am
  71. Seemed like an out. OK, it was an out. Alright, let’s get on with… wait, what story? Sigh. Oh well, still reading. Still good stuff. A lot better than the hiatus we just endured with Girl Genius. I await your next chronicle, milady.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:06 am
  72. Patrick Evans Says:

    Can’t say I didn’t see this coming, as hunter is another World of Darkness game that ties in with all their others. I was actually hoping it would turn out this way. I feel the revel was a bit anti-climatic however. Anyway love the comic.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:23 am
  73. Nicktwolf Says:

    I love how everyone talks about how Mark is not able to tell fantasy from reality. What I really think is going on here is this, Mark wasn’t expecting them to end it the way they did. He’s like us, we didn’t see this coming. I’m sure he knew it was a larp the whole time, but in the end he was playing the part, he was hoping for some closure. Notice how he said he was the decoy? Yeah, that should indicate he knew something was up. I do think this is the perfect way to end it for the Hunter story line. Think about the interactions between the hunters and the geeks. There is another factor and that is Angus. Remember how he plays the spy even at festival? Think about how easy it would be to play someone who was brain washed? The fact that they are larpting at the fest should prove the point, most of what we saw was a larp. If you look at the timing of attacks it’s a game night? Sorry but there is a lot in the story that points that something was off, but we couldn’t figure what it was.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:24 am
  74. Hendrik Says:

    I like it, though I have to say that I didn’t like the whole Hunter-Weregeek Story-Arc to begin with, so I’m very happy to see it out of the way and more stories about the gang instead. :)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:00 pm
  75. Melilark Says:

    In the end I large agree that this subplot was ended. I read Weregeek because it’s character driven (and the characters are absolutely awesome), and the hunter/Weregeek arc was mostly plot driven and allowed for very little character development, other than Joel’s planning and maybe a little bit of Mark not being able to get into Weregeek form.

    The resolution could’ve been a little smoother though – pulling it was all a LARP seemed to be a very jarring and unrealistic. If it was ended by say, the geeks winning and the hunters never coming back, it would’ve been much more satisfying.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:03 pm
  76. Rorror Says:

    I liked the hunter storyline somwhat. But I liked the other storylines far more and the hunters didn’t really seem to fit the comic. So I should be glad it’s gone, right? But I’m not because I didn’t want it to end like that. (If it really was a LARP, anyway, which most people seem to assume (But do they know waht happens when they assume? I certainly don’t: http://xkcd.com/1339/)) If the LARP is just a masquerade to hide that there was really a fight, I’d like that much more (But still…). Anyway, as I said, I liked the other storylines much more, so I’ll definitively keep enjoying your comic, as this single page will most likely be the worst in a comic in which I enjoyed nearly every single page. Whatever was with the hunters, only (not just!) keep up the good work!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:10 pm
  77. Thomas Says:

    I figured it might be something like this. I like it. Mark being all dense and carried away by his imagination. The hunters always seemed a bit out of place since the cast seemed to live in a rational world except for every time this plot started to surface. I’m glad you finally chose one or the other because rational and irrational worlds don’t really mix that well. Enjoyed the friends hanging out together vibe anyway.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:12 pm
  78. Robert Says:

    I think you did well. The comic has changed a good bit and the hunters did not fit as well after the character focus took hold. Which it has done very well.

    I think as payback for this Mark should demand a return of the Star Wars game. He’ll need some Jedi therapy to recover.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:14 pm
  79. Larkness Says:

    I’m afraid this comes across as a ridiculous cop-out to me. There’s only so far willful suspension of disbelief will take me or anyone else, in real life as well as in the comic. I agree that unless he was in on it and playing along, there’s no way Mark would not have noticed that it was a game without having some serious mental health issues. And that’s a pretty insensitive way to handle those kind of issues, by making them the butt of a multi-year long joke.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:38 pm
  80. ShadowsofThot Says:

    it was an odd thing to do but at the same time, i agree with what you did. the problem with writing something for years is the fact that you realize a lot of your metaplot might not mesh well with the rest of the story you wanted to tell.

    I also could see this being very true because you set it up early for Mark to have an overactive imagination. Then the Hunters did feel like the ‘Bad guy side” of a LARP, and while others might question the cutaways to the Hunters, i have no doubt this was all just a side chronicle to he main. Though i am honestly wondering how you actually did intend to wrap it up.

    I do want to see more, of the Weregeek game, but at the same time this is quiet satisfying to me as me and a friend often felt like the were/hunter plot was taking a backseat to the real action of it. Though I am now wondering what my friend things about it.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:44 pm
  81. Lord Bounty Says:

    I had to give up about halfway though the comments, so I’m not sure how much of this is said but…

    I agree this felt like a ‘rock falls, everyone dies’ end.

    I could see where the Hunter plot was getting hard to maintain, but really it didn’t take more than 3 pages at the end of an arc to keep people up to date, and it wasn’t so far gone it was past saving. As someone suggested giving Joel a “Make it Look like a LARP” Weregeek power could easily revive the story line at this point too.

    I came in because of the Metaplot, but I’m not leaving just because you killed it.

    And yes, I’ve lost all empathy for Mark now, because he’s a delusional freak who shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near game. It’s only a matter of time before he grabs some muggle and slits her neck for a blood point.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:49 pm
  82. Andy4Hire Says:

    First off, I love Weregeek and I’ll happily keep reading it. Maybe even more happily, now that the character- and game-focused storylines you’ve gotten so good at writing won’t be interrupted by hunter-related storylines, which lately have felt so out of place that when they happen I just sort of roll my eyes and slog through them until the strip gets fun again.

    Second, I can’t say I’m a fan of the it-was-all-a-dream/LARP/whatever school of ending storylines. (There is, after all, a reason that the last episode of The Brittas Empire never freaking happened, no matter what anyone says.) But under the circumstances, this probably was the best way you could have wrapped up the hunter storyline. And if you feel like the strip is moving in a different direction from the one you had in mind when you started out, I’m glad you made your escape now instead of leaving it hanging over the strip indefinitely.

    Finally, if it’s any encouragement to you, through Weregeek you’ve accomplished two things I wasn’t expecting in my own little corner of geekery. Weregeek was maybe the second or third webcomic I started reading, years ago, and the column of links to other comics that used to grace the left-hand side of your page introduced me to at least half a dozen others that I still read. My work ethic may not thank you for that, but the rest of my brain does. Also, I’d never really thought much about doing a LARP or a tabletop RPG, but Weregeek has made those things look sufficiently fun that I’ve begun scoping out some games or groups to maybe get involved with. So well done, on both counts.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:50 pm
  83. Layne Says:

    Just a quick clarification guys: we are definitely going to see more of the Geek Hunter game, this is just the reveal, not the end of the plot.

    As many have pointed out, the comic has grown and changed a lot from when we first started it. The Geek Hunters were always intended to be a LARP, but we got very side-tracked with other aspects of the comic, and the whole “what’s going on with these Hunters” plot got delayed and neglected, to the point where we felt it was becoming poorly-paced, and Alina had lost a lot of interest in it (understandable, since it was a plotline conceived as our very first attempt at comics writing).

    There have been some hints about this direction for a while now, and there were originally going to be a lot more of them… but we’ve matured in our writing in the 7+ years since we started, and the decision to speed up the reveal mainly was a compromise to move in a different creative direction without having to end the comic completely.

    Thanks very much for your input and understanding, everyone, and for your continuing support!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:56 pm
  84. Frankie D. Says:

    Sooo, Mark is just batshit mental?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:57 pm
  85. Gingkage Says:

    I have to agree with Tolan and ESPECIALLY RiderOfPhoenix. If this really was all just a lie, well, I can accept that, and I love weregeek too much to stop reading just because this particular strip disappointed me.

    My first thought really was that Joel was just thinking fast and saying it was all a demo to not freak people out TOO much and the others, knowing him so well, were playing along. Why the other hunters would be playing along as well, I don’t know, but that was my initial thought, and what I do hope it ends up being.

    Then again, that could just be because, unlike some of the others, the Weregeek/Hunter plot was my personal favorite. Either way, this is an awesome story, and I’m looking forward to seeing what else you’ve got.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 12:58 pm
  86. Andy4Hire Says:

    I also want to say to all the folks who’ve said that Mark’s reaction to the reveal shows that he’s dangerously unbalanced and needs prompt treatment: There may be other reasons Mark is reacting that way in this strip.

    Perhaps, for example, he knew he was in a LARP all along but didn’t realize it was a demo. (Notice that Joel specifically calls it a demo.) Or maybe he knew it was a demo but wasn’t expecting it to wrap up this quickly. Or perhaps it’s just taking him a little time to shift out of his in-game character.

    Or–and admittedly it doesn’t seem like that type of strip, but the possibility exists–we can’t see Sarah’s right hand in the second panel, so maybe she’s put it some place he wasn’t expecting.

    In any case, we should give Alina some time on this one. She may have a perfectly good explanation that doesn’t make Mark out to be a danger to himself and others, or at least a perfectly good storyline for how he and the others deal with his problem.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:05 pm
  87. Tie-dyed Trickster Says:

    While I am glad to see a resolution to the Hunters, and yesterday’s strip was one of the best in the entire comic, part of this has me terrified that the end of the ‘metaplot’ means the end of the meta in Weregeek entirely. I’ve always adored the shadowy weregeek forms – even designed my own – and while I enjoy the other aspects of the comic, that part has always been one of my favorites, and I actually always looked forward to the Hunter/Weregeek arcs, and Murdock has long been one of my favorite characters. I loved how the lines would blur between game and reality for larps and things. I’m really hoping we’re not going to see an end to all that – no more weregeeks running around would be sad. Plus you’d need to make a new logo. Also, I’m with the people who have been saying that this stretch is just one too many – with all the training, all the build-up, all the back story arcs and scenes, it feels unrealistic that, once again, everyone was in on it except Mark, especially for so long. I hope you’ve got something amazing in store for the last strips of this arc, because I honestly don’t see how this can all be made to fit with everything you’ve shown before. I mean this in a negative way, I’m just so flat-footed I have no idea what’s going to happen next. I don’t want the magic to go away, and it looks like that’s what’s going to happen.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:09 pm
  88. bbloxlssd Says:

    sarah’s missing her glasses in the first pannel.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:13 pm
  89. Yasahiro Says:

    I was hoping Mark will turn out to be some Super Weregeek, that it is why he didn’t transform yet.

    But this? Okay, I am not angry about how you handled this plot. Hell, I even like the fact that it was a LARP too. I absolutely despise the fact that Mark is not capable of seeing the difference between masks and actual powers. This shows that he is incapable of seeing the difference between reality and fantasy. He seems like a person who should not participate in something like this due to taking it too seriously which can lead to someone getting hurt.

    When he starts asking questions about what is going on, it will not only feel awkward but they should think of Mark as being too odd, due to him not noticing that the LARP was not real.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:15 pm
  90. Tie-dyed Trickster Says:

    Crap, I meant ‘I DON’T mean this in a negative way’ in my previous comment. -_-*

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:18 pm
  91. Dru Says:

    Longtime reader here and I have to admit I’m really surprised at the negative comments. While I started out hoping for a full-on conspiracy storyline, I think this works a lot better. The characters aren’t superheroes, they’re regular people who enjoy nerdy things, and to turn them into “fighters” seems dishonest. I also love how swept up Mark gets – to me he represents escapism and imagination, instead of someone dangerously out of touch with reality.

    So, I’m personally looking forward to seeing where you take this and applaud how you’ve grown as a storyteller and artist.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:43 pm
  92. xero Says:

    The ONLY way this ending means even a little sense is that Mark is SEVERLY Schizophrenic

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:47 pm
  93. Bobby Says:

    Back at the beginning, there was this guy making fun of Mark for having believed he was actually surrounded by vampires. And I was like “Dude, someone threw a KNIFE at his HEAD. You’ll have to forgive him being a bit off-balance.”

    Now, many years later, I still find myself saying “Dude, someone threw a KNIFE at his HEAD.”

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 1:54 pm
  94. Jill Says:

    I am A-OK with the Hunters being a part of a big LARP. :) Poor Mark. Will he ever speak to Joel again?

    :)

    Looking forward to Chronicle 2!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:12 pm
  95. Wesley Says:

    And then it turns out that Mark has paranoid schizophrenia and has been hallucinating during these various LARP preps? Because that’s about the only LOGICAL reason I can see to get from where we were to where we are now with Mark still being completely clueless.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:17 pm
  96. Wesley Says:

    Although, in complete fairness I’m with you (Alina) on this storyline seeming more and more out of place in general.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:18 pm
  97. TCS Says:

    I’m a little conflicted. On the one hand, I don’t care much for the geek vs. hunter storyline, so I’m glad it’s over. On the other hand, this ending is a little hard to swallow. Maybe if Mark wasn’t so surprised by it? So it could just be that the audience was overly taken in by the LARP (since we usually see the in-game version of events).

    But I don’t really know what would be a better ending, and I don’t think the plot should have dragged on much longer.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:36 pm
  98. DavidT Says:

    Well, I’m with the disappointed crowd on this one. I’ve been reading this comic for a very long time and what drew me in was that kinda crazy hunter aspect of it. Yes, I enjoy all the different bits that make up the various stories but I’m not interested in a soap opera comic which is all this can become now.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:48 pm
  99. Tom Says:

    I will not make a Mazes & Monsters reference. I will not make a Mazes & Monsters reference. I will not make a Mazes & Monsters reference.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 2:48 pm
  100. NastySasquatch Says:

    Just a bit weak. Personally fine with cutting out the Hunter storyline as a LARP, but you could have given it a cool believable ending and not some lame High School Musical ending.

    Generally enjoy your writing, this just felt a bit weak.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:04 pm
  101. Goken Says:

    I’m really happy and supportive for the same reasons as the other happy and supportive folks. I wish folks would ease up in writing about Mark’s sanity. (1) He represents the audience and his surprise let’s us know this is a SURPRISE. (2) This is a callback to Mark’s first game, so it’s funny. (3) This is a comic wherein we were previously asked to suspend disbelief about magic weregeek powers. Now she asks us to swap that in for just overlooking the fact that our everyman is oblivious in a funny and ridiculous way. I’m cool with that.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:06 pm
  102. HeavyP Says:

    I should probably go ahead and say that I *do* really like the comic! I know I’ve been somewhat harsh in comments over the past week, but I certainly enjoy the comic and look forward to it continuing to come out!

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:21 pm
  103. LoneHowler Says:

    I think I’m going to have To go back and read the archives. I was blindsided by the reveille. So I want to look for the clues I missed.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:25 pm
  104. Erev Says:

    I’m a bit split on this whole reveal. On the bright side, I was vindicated on my beliefs of Ned having a Hunter connection AND that the Hunter thing might have been a LARP. That said, the way that it was wrapped up feels unusually jarring. At this point I really don’t know what parts were Hunter LARP and what parts were just normal hangouts. Especially considering how the Weregeek-styled selves would occasionally slip in and out of more mundane meetings.

    I know I’m probably in the minority, but I actually liked the whole ‘Weregeek’ aspect of the comic and am a bit worried that the new direction might feel a bit more ‘generic geek-life comic’. On the other hand, I am also extremely excited about the prospect of going more in depth with characters like Ned and Steph. I suppose I just wish that the masquerade could have held longer.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:35 pm
  105. ZenDaemon Says:

    I loved this storyline from beginning to end, and as with all writing the character development really took off. I can understand 100%, as a writer and ST why you are eager to proceed with the nuances you have created, and I really look forward to every page that comes. Thank you for a great first chronicle. Perhaps more Shadowrun? Just asking as a fan.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 3:56 pm
  106. French Momo Says:

    Well…

    The Hunters/weregeeks overplot always seemed weird (as in, fantastic stuff IRL???) but I’m disappointed by this non-ending.
    I’ve been reading Weregeeks for a few years now and I liked the alternating RPG-geekery parts and Hunters / Weregeek ones. Now, if only the second ones keep going… Dunno.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:18 pm
  107. FirstTimeCommenter Says:

    Super happy with this turn of events.
    I was never really a fan of the hunter/weregeek plot lines, it just seemed so out of place compared to everything else. I was always far more interested in the main characters and their lives, or their LARPS, or their DnD game. Looking forward to more.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:25 pm
  108. Jericho Penumbra Says:

    And in the next chronicle, Mark gets put into a psychiatric ward/therapy for repeated inability to differ between reality and fantasy.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 4:30 pm
  109. Chris Says:

    THANK YOU!
    I love the comic overall but never really got into the hunter plot, it never really made any sense to me.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:03 pm
  110. Runya Says:

    I was always waiting for weregeek/hunter plot [and was thinking about rpg system with weregeek forms], but now? I don’t know. I have enough normal life myself, I don’t need fiction for that :/

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:38 pm
  111. Maryxus Says:

    o_o So I have to say that I also enjoy the comic as a whole, but not only was the Hunter side-plot what really made this comic stand out from all the others of its type, this was a really lazy way to end things. What makes it exceptionally sad is that it was in so many ways a perfect lead up to a conclusion; if not for the cop-out ending you could probably resolve the Hunter side-plot for real in another segment or two.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:46 pm
  112. Dakkagor Says:

    colour me confused. I mean. . I just. . .was it all in Marks head all along? Get that guy to a freaking shrink! Also if thats the case Joel is a total arse for not cluing his friend in earlier that its just a game. One of the first rules of LARP is that it is just a game, not reality, and this isn’t a very healthy wrap up.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 5:54 pm
  113. Sawrock Says:

    I looooove how the hunters/weregeeks don’t really exist. I like this comic, but I’ve always hated how geeks could become monster… things, and how there were hunters chasing them. It just ruined the comic for me, I guess. But knowing that it was all fake… shocked and suprised me, and also filled me with joy. Thanks! :3

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:05 pm
  114. CanadianinMississippi Says:

    Okay….okay…..I’m okay with this. Like others have said, the Hunter storyline and the Slice of Life storyline were becoming more and more disjointed. While this ending is sudden, I see it as a good way to wrap up loose ends and dive into a new chronicle.
    I will let you know, that my first reaction was that Joel was just orchestrating a cover up. My second reaction was absolute panic when I read the first line of your post and I saw the words “the End”. Because I have fallen way to much in love with Weregeeks characters, and as a closet geek, I keep up with their adventures every day. If this was the end, I would be very put out.
    Forge ahead Alina! I cannot wait to see where you take us next! :)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:09 pm
  115. Rollo Says:

    I applaud that today’s comic has, through the medium of LARP, managed to prove the existence of Weregeeks. Well done, Alina, on uncovering this! The proof? Just look above. Nothing makes a geek go Weregeek more than a storyline they don’t agree with….

    I’ve always enjoyed the geeklife, group interaction, characterization story lines more than I’ve enjoyed the Hunter storyline so for my 2 cents I’m looking forward to the comic being headed more in that direction. I seriously have to applaud you having run the comic for over 7 years too, major achievement, mucho kudos. Makes sense to me that you’re not the same writer(s) that you were 7 years ago and don’t want to be bound by decisions you made then. Trying new things creatively is exciting and I hope you end up with a comic you’re even happier with for making the story decisions that you are.

    One polite suggestion for any future commenter’s though – Mental illness will effect almost half of us in our lifetimes and is the leading cause of disability in America. Please, can we stop adding to the ridiculous stigma which gets attached to mental illness by making statements along the lines of Mark being mentally ill is the only way the story makes sense?

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:45 pm
  116. Anna Says:

    I’m not sure how I feel. On the one hand, kind of let down. On the other hand, I love that it was a giant LARP and I can’t wait to read the explanation on that, and on the third hand (yes, there are three) I love these characters and their stories so I can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve. Also, I hope to see you at ECCC at the end of the month. :)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 6:54 pm
  117. I’m with Peter, maaaaany many comments above me, that what feels off here is that we saw things from the point of view of the military guys, which indicates either Mark also “saw” these events and they were part of the LARP (unlikely) or the idea is that the readers themselves were deceived but that doesn’t work either since the story regularly switches between what we see in the first and second panel of this very comic. I’ll withhold my final opinion on all of this until the next few strips but when you show what one character, or set of characters, were doing by themselves and then say “oh no that wasn’t real after all!” you indicate that they were putting on a show for someone else which either makes this even more complicated than it is or more 4th wall breaking than the story has ever been.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:39 pm
  118. MizukiAyu Says:

    I am actually glad it was a LARP, when I first started reading and got to this weird magical beings part I almost stopped reading because I thought this was gonna be a comic set in the real world. Love to see more about them and more into games and characters

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 7:48 pm
  119. pfogg Says:

    Three comments: First, while it’s best to write about what you yourself find interesting, a broad change in a story’s focus might lead to a “changing of the guard” among the readership, as some people drop it and others (hopefully) pick it up: if the primary continuity is going to be a true-life story about people who happen to be gamers and fans of SF genre stories, that won’t attract exactly the same audience as something that actually *was* (or at least appeared to be) an SF genre story that happened to include gamers and genre fan characters.

    Second, if Mark was supposedly walking around among LARPers wearing simple masks and standard signs and props this whole time, and only now is realizing that what was represented in the previous strips wasn’t literally happening, then yes, he’d have to be suffering from an unambiguously delusional state of mind (the kind demanding immediate medical attention), someone slipped him hallucinogens and he’s been having an amazingly coherent ‘trip’, or he’s been dreaming and he’s actually still asleep. The third is actually the most
    consistent with evidence.

    And finally, “this was all a dream” is commonly given as a canonical example of an unsatisfying ending.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:02 pm
  120. John Says:

    As I saw this, the first thought that jumped to my head was, “This feels like finding Patrick Duffy in the shower.” And as much as I’d like to be upset about it, I’m honestly just ok with the hunter thing ending.

    Now maybe we’ll finally find out if Mark & Sarah hook up. >_>

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:49 pm
  121. Ardent Slacker Says:

    Eh, it works. The hunter plotline always felt like it was taking place in a neighboring world. And, like the in-game stories, it didn’t seem to affect the characters lives.

    That said, between the moot and the mystery gift in the vampire larp… I was ready for this to turn out to be something more.

    Totally on-board with the logic behind squishing the arc sooner rather than later. Good luck juggling all the dangling threads. :D

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 8:58 pm
  122. Phadrus Says:

    This is the First time I have ever commented on a webcomic after reading them for years.

    This is not cool.

    It is a massive let down. Speaking personally, I enjoy stories where a characters greatest weakness is actually a great strength when put to the proper context. I looked forward to the hunter plot every time it came up.

    I further thought that it was rather neat how you interwove all the plots together.

    I have been looking forward to there updates for a while and this is disappointing.

    I hope your story gets better.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:25 pm
  123. BanditoWalrus Says:

    Ha, actually makes sense in retrospective. I mean, who else but a geek would spend the countless time and effort organizing and training a secret underground army to destroy any subgroup in particular??

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:36 pm
  124. Nicktwolf Says:

    For anyone who has noticed she isn’t wearing her glasses, see yesterday’s strip when they are dropped. I really don’t think this is all a cop out and I’ll give a major reason. we never found out who Agent X was. With this being said it could easily have been Joel. The reason being is that I think he has been doing some dming that we haven’t seen. Think about this for a minute. Think about it like this, the hunter first shows up when Joel and Mark first meet. We do see Sarah go into weregeek mode when she finds out Joel kind of tricked Mark into showing up. But there is something else we don’t know, why doesn’t Mark freak out when Joel goes weregeek on him. All though Mark doesn’t know a lot about geek culture, at the time Sarah had only been doing it for a year or two. Through out the comic there have been a lot of things that have made me wonder how much mark knew versus how much he didn’t. I don’t see him as crazy, because well, he made the choice to get involved with Joel and took the book. Not to mention one small thing, the note in the book. It said keep running. Why would that note be in there? Why would it be expected unless something was already planned. Think about the idea of larping your inner self, your true self for all it’s worth. By doing this you go down a path of discovery. So in a way, Mark may have all along knew what he was getting into with larping, but not Vampire.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 9:55 pm
  125. Mura Says:

    At first my reaction was like Mark’s… then I thought about it and its actually quite clever! thinking back all those things that happened, the scope of this LARP is just incredible! Thanks for sharing this story with us! Looking forward for what else you can come up with :)

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:02 pm
  126. poutinefiend Says:

    Alina, I just want to say that I’m really excited for the new chapter you’re opening and I’m really happy that you’ve been able to make a shift in the story that is making you happy. Thank you for drawing Weregeek and pouring so much time into it.

    Reading new pages every weekday morning for the past years is something that I look forward to in my daily routine and I just want you to know that I really appreciate your work.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 10:08 pm
  127. Necrisha Says:

    I’m going to choose to veiw it as Mark knew he was larping, just not that it was a demonstration…. Be careful about how oblivious you make people seem- especially if this is supposed to be a light heart-ed celebratory comic. There be demons in those shadows.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:26 pm
  128. Linda Hartlen Says:

    I will be honest, major disappointment. But I can understand it wasn’t working for you anymore, thats fair. But.. at the same time I have to admit, the whole it was all a dream/LARP is such a bs ending. But best of luck to you, I think I will remove this from my list of comics as it has left such a sour taste in my mouth.

    Posted March 11th, 2014 at 11:43 pm
  129. D Says:

    An excellent direction to take things. I always enjoyed the comics about the groups gaming, larping and relationship. Sarah reminds me of my geek girl, I am pulling for Mark.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:16 am
  130. Kirby Says:

    I was hoping that it would be something like this for the ending of this storyline. I’d never really cared for the hunter and weregeek arcs, honestly, and skipped through a number of them because it just seemed… I dunno. The weregeek part was interesting enough, but the murder the geeks/randomly brainwashing them. I unno, I’m satisfied with this ending, and was kind of something I was hoping for. :3

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:18 am
  131. TB Says:

    I tend to agree with your view on the weregeek story tending to draw away from the interesting real-life stories. That being said, I still like the episodes where the LARPs turn “real” while the game is going on, and we see everything through the players’ imaginations. It keeps the strip’s feet on the ground, but lets you exercise your own imagination drawing the fantasy scenes and creatures.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:50 am
  132. Jc Trix Says:

    abit of a mixed boat for me i have enjoy every storyline you’ve done in weregeek and loved how the art has grown but yeah this ending is not what id expect and does seem forced maybe better to my mind if mark was part of it too or a small part of hunters turn out to be real i dont know but keep up the stories and i’ll keep on reading hope to see more of the games being played like shadowrun again and the star wars and cant forget deadlands one

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 2:13 am
  133. Taylor Says:

    OMG the revial syked the **** out of me! I can not believe the entier thing was a game but it makes sence for Mark to believe it was one based on his reaction to his first vampier game and the zombie walk. I like how the meta plot ended and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for Weregeek.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 2:38 am
  134. Curt Adams Says:

    I much preferred the gaming stories to the Weregeek Powers story, and I’m not sorry to see it wrapped up. Saying it had been a mega-LARP all along actually makes sense. I started reading with what ended up in Book 2, and when I bought and read Book one I did kind of get the feeling that Joel was inventing the Hunter business to pull in Mark. And, that’s more or less what was happening other than Joel was only one of many actors and Mark one of many targets.

    But – with most others here – having Mark believe the powers were real and, most especially, that he was being picked up by a 50-foot monster is just totally unbelievable. If Mark had been smiling and joining with the others in what’s essentially a curtain call I think it would have been a great ending. Then the 50-foot monster would fit perfectly with your style of moving back and forth between games and real life.

    Anyway, I’m looking forward to you working more on the better parts of the strip and less on the Geek Hunter storyline.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:05 am
  135. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    @ Nicktwolf – Except, you know, we DO know who agent X was. Maybe you should reread the strips?

    Also there are far too many moments that we see that simply don’t make sense if it’s all a LARP. But all I had to say about this matter is on my previous comments.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:05 am
  136. ScardyG Says:

    I’m sorry, but it’s too much of a Bobby Ewing reveal. Not to mention it opens a ton of plotholes.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:40 am
  137. Jared Says:

    IRL the only possible explanation for Mark’s belief that this had all been real would be mental illness of life altering severity. In light of Alina’s intention to go in something more of a ‘slice of life’ direction, I’ve got to say that I would be super impressed and interested if she made that a part of his character’s future arc.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:41 am
  138. Montague Summers Says:

    I’ve read this comic since the beginning. I do not usually post comments on webcomics. But this is, possibly, the laziest “summing up” ending I’ve read in a long while.
    In all honesty? It would have been better if the author had just said “I am abandoning this element of the story line. Here are the reasons. Now we can move on with other elements of the story that are more mature.” Instead, we have Mark being either cartoonishly stupid or genuinely psychotic, and the rest of the cast are either sociopaths, unable to see that Mark’s reactions are not those of even the most dedicated LARPer, or sadists.
    I actually hope that this is an elaborate and cruel April Fool’s joke on us, but I suspect that it isn’t.
    As others have said (ad nauseum to you, no doubt) it is your comic. But when I can’t trust the author, it is no longer in any sense mine.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:56 am
  139. Gyran Says:

    Well played, well played indeed.
    It took me completely by suprise but now I’m looking through the archives and saying “well of course it was just a game! look at how vivid his imagination is!”

    It also explains why the hunter let him go all those times in the very early strips.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:01 am
  140. Kildar Says:

    I really like this plot twist – shows pretty well that there are many faces of larping apart from boffers and vampires. This weregeek-hunter scenario reminds me to the pervasive larp / alternate reality game I participated last year (and which I will run this autumn), Izgon (Croatian for “The Exile”). Further info in my website field.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:06 am
  141. NC Says:

    When going on a LARP it is nice to be sucked into the story so much that you can (and even if only for a few seconds) forget that you are actually playing. But we consciously step into this moment and leave it again.

    If the “Weregeeks” are no longer “Weregeeks”. If the whole Metaplot was just Mark, unable to keep reality and game apart – then he is indeed like a Robbie Wheeling from the infamous 1982 movie “Mazes and Monsters”. A movie that gave the gamers of those years a very hard time.

    So… the “weregeek-fantasy-world” approach gave the whole story more freedom. Now that it is meant to be rooted strictly in the real world, I fear for Mark’s mental health.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:17 am
  142. MerchManDan Says:

    Well. Instead of reading 136 other comments, I’ll just say this: Good game, Alina. I look forward to the next one. :)

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:49 am
  143. SpoonMan Abrams X Says:

    I get the feeling here (especially given the strip following this one, and the Author’s assurance that the next few strips will “explain things”) that Mark is more or less acting as a Cipher of sorts, as he always kinda has been in the comic; being the most relate-able character, as we’ve been getting introduced the world of Weregeek at the same time he has more or less… so his reaction is an expy of how some of the readers are reacting (if the comments above are any indication~)

    …then again I could be very wrong and maybe Mark really is just a bit batshit crazy xD

    If nothing else I wait eagerly & patiently for this “chronicle” to wrap up and see what exactly Alina has in store for us!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:49 am
  144. Falconr Says:

    I find this hard to believe. This means we have to believe that for years, NOBODY talked about this Larp out of character, so Mark spent all his time believing this was real?

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:17 am
  145. marty Says:

    Awesome ending to the hunter storyline. I’m one in the “this hunter story is annoying” boat: I thought it cut into other story lines. On the other hand, they were antagonists opposed to the geek side of things, so drove some of the “out of game” events.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 6:28 am
  146. Eboreg Says:

    TBH, this just feels like an Asspull. You can’t just explain away all of that build up as “it was just a game”. I feel like weregeek has jumped the shark now.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 7:09 am
  147. a true fan Says:

    i like the twist. dont let the people who are whining bring you down. it was a good twist, and i understand your reasoning behind making it this way. its better than just suddenly ending the comic. look at bob and george. look at real life comics like calvin and hobbes and foxtrot. look at cartoons like edd ed n eddy. they went all the way to the end, and by the end they pretty much just ended it without any notice and never made a new one. i think you did great. and hopefully mark and sarah will become romance. ^_^

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 8:42 am
  148. CFsoftie Says:

    ‘ “And then she woke up and it was all a dream.” It was just about the worst ending you could have to any story.’ T. Pratchett.

    I’m sorry, but it has to be said, as have so many people said. While I understand the difficulties maintaining the Hunter meta-plot were causing you and I agree maybe it had been a mistake to start it, I feel this way of dealing with it was unsatisfying. You killed off the theme that drew us into the comic in the first place!

    I would have much preferred that you did a comic announcing in the author’s voice that you couldn’t maintain the meta-plot, then carry on with the soap-opera/Friends-style-sitcom comics and allow us to pretend the Weregeek plot was still there, undead, able to come back.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 8:53 am
  149. anna marshall Says:

    Ah. Well. At first I thought this all being just a larp was just a flimsy cover up story for a utter and crushing defeat of the hunters. Mh. I’ve been reading this for years .and this shift rips big bleeding wounds into the narration.

    Whatever. Sometimes one has to change direction. And then there’ll be rublle, ashes and smoke. Yours to decide. I’ll be reading on. The only thing I never really liked were the comedy check thingies. I stayed in spite of them. I will stay in spite off this being a crass break from what moi expected. Have fun, and thanks for the entertainment.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 9:17 am
  150. Celticdragon38 Says:

    Thanks for all of your work, Alina. The hunter storylines were getting to be a drag- not inherently, but because it didn’t seem like you were enjoying writing them anymore. Ending them now rather than leaving them hanging was a bold but, I think, good move.

    Guys, I know there are a lot of loose ends, but the comic evolved away from where she originally intended. How else would you suggest writing it in a comic that went from being fantasy to true life while staying true to the latter (which also seems to be the more popular version)? Would you rather Alina slave away writing something she doesn’t enjoy to reconcile things that may not be possible to reconcile in a satisfactory way given how the comic evolved?

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 9:34 am
  151. Jashin Says:

    On the one hand it’s sad to this long-term conflict gone.
    On the other hand the ending is AWESOME!!!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:20 am
  152. Murrday Says:

    Sprawling meta plots sometimes need to be let go. I’ve seen it happen in various ways, in other webcomics. It’s often not possible to find a solution that satisfies everybody.

    Bear in mind how many times DC and Marvel have revamped _their_ universes and changed what’s canon too. So Alina can do it in Weregeek as well. And since it is a comic, if Alina thinks of a different way to end it later, she can always give us a “Meanwhile, in a parallel universe…” ending.

    I find the characters very likable, and I’m glad they’re continuing. I will keep reading!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:24 am
  153. Frankie D. Says:

    Yup, batshit mental…

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:27 am
  154. Andy Says:

    I can actually think back to some indications that this was going on the whole time. Part of me feels like reading back through the entire comic with this information in hindsight, because I think hints were absolutely dropped in.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:46 am
  155. MacBone Says:

    Like a lot of the folks above, I’m disappointed that the whole Hunter-Weregeek plot ended up being another LARP. I really dig modern fantasy, and I loved the feel of the early strips. But yeah, I picked up that Hunter was one of the White Wolf games, and I did wonder.

    However, although I came for the urban fantasy, I stuck around for the characters, and I’m happy that this isn’t the end. Now that you’ve gotten rid of a plot that you weren’t all that happy about, I’ll be interested to see what you come up with next!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 11:42 am
  156. Girkon Says:

    Kinda saw it coming, not a bad way to go at it if that’s what she wants to do. Now the conspiracy nut in me would be quite amazed that maybe there is some plot twist where mark is indeed a real weregeek.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 11:49 am
  157. Razorvine Says:

    I am back and forth on this, I kind of suspected that something like this might be the case since the beginning. The Hunter plot always felt kind of outside the rest of the comic. This is definitely a way of getting the disjointedness out of what otherwise seemed to be a normal world.

    As a person who has dealt with real life mental issues both with myself and close family. This idea that Mark might not be able to tell between the real world and games is worrisome. I get that the whole point would be to play it off for laughs.

    But besides my own personal experiences with my father who actually had serious issues telling fantasy from reality. So much so that he ended permanently institutionalized. I also feel that this unintentionally touches on the whole idea that the silly Mazes and Monsters movie brought up people being unable to separate game from real life. I really hope that Mark gets a resolution that feels natural and that doesn’t make him look delusional.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love this comic, LIKE HUGELY. The primary reason I kept coming back had nothing to do with the Hunter metaplot. I personally was most interested in the various plotlines in the many games that the geeks were playing. Especially the Vampire Larp which is my personal favorite plot. I will totally keep reading.

    However the way that the Hunter metaplot has ended definitely has left me feeling super super conflicted.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 11:56 am
  158. Eric Says:

    Brilliant!
    This is not only a mad twist, but it completely fits with Mark’s overactive imagination that got him believing the Vampire LARP was all about real vampires in the first place.

    You guys who are disappointed, I understand.
    You just gotta keep in mind that our real superpower, as geeks, is imagination and that Mark, as a geek who recently found out what he was, doesn’t have much control over his previously repressed imagination.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:04 pm
  159. Cheated. Boo. Sad. A bit sick to my stomach with let down and disappointment. I’d rather it have ended on a fantastic high note. Was going to have my sister read this when she caught up with Schlock Mercenary . . . not sure now.
    Hope you have fun with whatever it is you’re going to do now.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:11 pm
  160. gnrrrg Says:

    Or maybe Joel is just claiming it was a LARP to cover up what was really happening. Seriously, this sort of thing never happens in topiary based games.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 12:59 pm
  161. BassJohn Says:

    I’ve followed Weregeek since early on (and read it all in catch up). I like this twist, and have, over time, come to empathise with the characters more and feel that the metaplot was less and less relevant. I don’t mind that things have changed emphasis – that’s what happens with all comics – from the old DC greats to modern web based stuff. When I stop caring I’ll stop clicking – but at the moment you are still second click on my cartoon homepage. (After Doonesbury – but I’ve been reading that a looooong time!) Thanks for your work.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 1:07 pm
  162. Jon Says:

    It being a LARP doesn’t bother me nearly as much as Mark having absolutely no idea.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 1:30 pm
  163. Lunaroki Says:

    This whole “It was all just a big LARP and Mark didn’t know, again” ending feels so out of nowhere. Sure, some elements actually make more sense as an ongoing LARP that Joel once again failed to clue Mark in on, but I was really digging the whole concept that there was this whole parallel reality bleeding over into our own that Weregeeks could tap into to help protect the rest of the world against it. Now it’s all suddenly just Mark not knowing the difference between LARP and reality yet again. What a let-down.

    I hope Mark gets majorly pissed and storms off because, whether they knew it or not, they’ve been stringing him along for months. They really need to work out a way to make sure Mark always knows when they are LARPing. It can’t be fun for him to always keep finding out after the fact that he’s the only one who thought it was all real. One of these days they’re going to wind up in a dangerous real life situation and Mark won’t believe it’s real and wind up getting hurt because of it.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 1:56 pm
  164. Yasahiro Says:

    I have got to say it.

    The fact that Mark believed the Vampire LARP was real at first? I can see that, because nothing actually supernatural happened or anything that would completely break the suspense or show that it is LARP. The reason why this doesn’t work for the hunter Storyline is because, like I said, this is too much and Mark had to have been clearly hallucinating it.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:24 pm
  165. Erik Says:

    AAAAAWWWWWSOMEEEEE!!!!

    Bold move to end all this buildup in yet another game, but for me it fits perfectly not only with the mode and tone of the strip as Alina says, but also with the story and strange hickups we have got.
    – Why do the hunters come across as B movie villains with incomprehensible motivation? – because they are!
    – Why do the hunters come across as a geek fantasy of “the oppressing people who don’t belong to our subculture”? – because they totally are! They are the “evil mundanes” as portrayed by geeks.
    – Why do everyone just hang out and play games as if nothing dangerous was happening in the shadows? – because nothing dangerous was happening.
    – Why don’t geeks use their superpowers to fight crime or save the world or whatever? – because it’s all a game.

    This scales it down to something human and believable and awesome. This again makes it all a story about people hanging out, having fun and finding their place in the world (while doing totally awesome things, like organizing a cool game demo).

    It leaves Mark though. Someone (Joel) REALLY needs to sit down with him and talk through things, what geek culture is and more important what it isn’t. This comic has done a wonderful job of treating its characters with respect and sympathy (best seen in Jess). Now we need to see Mark finally getting the hang on his issues

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 3:30 pm
  166. Falcone Says:

    Erik, Joel doesn’t need to talk to Mark at all, because this is a plothole, plain and simple. With how Mark was introduced to this, Hunter ‘Larp’, he had no reason to believe anything otherwise. But with how it’s concluded, this would mean that for 7 years, nobody has discussed this Larp around Mark, or even said anything that would clue Mark in. Plus, with what we saw in the strip before, with the wreckage and Weregeeks turning into masks and props, and Mark unable to tell, they can really only go the ‘Mark has mental health issues’ route, otherwise we are to believe Mark is a moron who buys into things too easily.

    I hate to make this comparison, but this is Maze’s and Monsters all over again. I’ve been following since 2007, and this is the first time I’ve questioned whether I wish to continue reading.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:10 pm
  167. Erik Says:

    I agree with what many of you have said above: There are way too many instances of psychiatric terminology thrown around in the comments in a derogatory way. Please, be respectful.

    This comment will be a bit pop-psycological. Sorry about that.

    My take on Mark is that
    – He has an overactive imagination and a real talent for game immersion (as seen many, many times, especially with the vampires and the zombies)
    – He got a strange first impression of geek culture (thanks, Joel).
    – He still regards himself as the newbe in the group and is often confused as to what is going on – and he maintains that status because he enjoys being surprised (just look at how happy he was during geek moot)
    – He has HUGE escape issues from what he see as the limiting normality – especially clear in his interaction with his coworkers and Jess (a big reason for why their breakup turned so ugly). He has clearly been painting the geeks as a place of refuge where he can be himself, i.e. been painting the geeks as NOT being as the boring and restricting mundanes.
    – I have no idea if he believed the weregeeks were literary real to begin with (as he (probably) did with the vampires), but he has regardless used them as a symbol of his independence from his boring life with the norms.
    – He may or he may not have some kind of mental health issue that makes it harder for him to see the difference between reality and fiction to whatever degree.
    – There is no way Mark has not seen the behind-the-scene stuff for the hunter larp. The masks and props are right there in the big reveal. It is possible that the other has happened never to break character around him, but highly unlikely (especially now – this was a staged event for the con-going public. He would have been briefed as to when to enter the fight). There is no reason for anyone else to suspect that Mark really believes in the whole thing, rather than being enthusiastic as usual.
    – We don’t know that Mark’s image of weregeeks match what is visually given in the comic. Maybe he does believe weregeeks remain the same but with higher endurance, fighting ability or whatnot.
    – As pointed out above – he is our audience surrogate. He is surprised because we are surprised.

    For me it all boils down to that Mark really, really, REALLY likes being part of a super secret us-against-the-world group. Even if he does see the masks and props and hear the rest treating it as a game he still like the weregeek identity so he embraces it. The reason it comes apart now is that everyone else is blatantly breaking character, even the downed geeks/hunters.

    The superpowers would be cool, but for him the secrecy is much more important. When Joel to suddenly ends the whole thing in front of common people (well, as common as you find them at a con, anyway) it breaks the immersion. It’s like spending a weekend at a REALLY cool larp, and then

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:39 pm
  168. Jenny Islander Says:

    I’ll tell you one thing, Mark has a problem with picking out physical details that would tell him what’s really going on, when his emotions are running high. But we knew that about him from the very beginning. I hope it doesn’t cause him problems outside the relatively accepting and forgiving Big Geek Tent.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 4:43 pm
  169. Erik Says:

    sorry, continuing…

    …It’s like spending a weekend at a REALLY cool larp, and waking up at Monday morning to realize that you can’t talk to the Duchess about backstabbing the Empress any longer regardless of how neat it would fit your character arc or how much sense it would make storywise because those things… don’t… actually… exist any longer. And for Mark the weregeek thing has been an important part of his whole geek experience. He is not just a geek – he is a WEREGEEK, only… he… isn’t’… any longer.

    A weregeek for Mark is not a transformed shadowmonster. It is channeling your inner geekness to become even more of everything that he sees as good and true with the geek culture. Smart, free, loyal (weregeeks hunt in packs). His “not being able to channel superpowers” is not him not being able to bend steel bars, it is him still feeling like a newbe.

    It is not so much that he didn’t understand that the other geeks just had masks and props. He thought (and wanted to believe) that they channeled their inner weregeek to be even more of everything geeky. For him the transformation was real. The conflict with the hunters (representing oppressing mundanes) was real even if it took the form of a staged fight, and the comradeship among the weregeeks was real. He liked all that cloak and dagger stuff, and then Joel went and stopped it.

    For me wish fulfillment is a much better explanation than mental health problems. Compare with otherkin or similar beliefs of being-something-more-than-mere-human.

    It is not uncommon in any subculture to set yourself apart from the norm. We are better than they (otherwise, why would we be part of this group). And Mark had a genuinely good experience of being a geek compared to his earlier life. The problem for Mark is that he tied it all up with Joel’s weregeek nonsense and failed to realize that for the others it was not a super-important part of their identity as geeks – it was just another (rather silly) game. Fun, sure, but not more important than their Vampire or D&D personas. I think THAT is what falls down in this strip. He saw weregeeks and geeks as synonymous (or maybe even weregeeks and REAL geeks, something he was just on the brink of calling himself), and now they don’t exist?

    So what I hope they have a chat about is things that have bugged Mark throughout the entire run of the comic. It is OK to be a geek, it is OK to do mundane things as well, different geeks like different things, they are not better or worse than other things, and of course – there is actually not a super secret geek elite we have to keep hidden from everyone else. We just play games and have fun.

    …or I’m just projecting :-)

    Anyway, the more I think of it, the more I REALLY like this ending to the hunter/weregeek arc. If it felt as an asspull for you, then rejoice because that is exactly how it feels for our audience surrogate Mark as well. And that is why I really look forward to see how Mark comes to terms with (yet again) the geek subculture not being exactly what he expected and projected onto it.

    Well played Alina, well played.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:02 pm
  170. Erik Says:

    TLDR version: Mark has no mental health problems, he just liked being part of a secret group of elite geeks and failed to realize that it’s just a game among many rather than THE game.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:06 pm
  171. Wundenkuss Says:

    I am sad now. The WERE is no longer.
    I always enjoyed the “normal” geek events and such, since it is almost like a diary for me and many people I know. But the WERE was important to let this story be different, to make Geeks special, which in case, made us feel special due to the resemblence.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:07 pm
  172. caz Says:

    *throws headset down* well, there goes my reason of enjoying this comic. time to go head over to the 1000s of other slice of life comics.

    I would recommend next time that if you stop enjoying writing a comic, make a new one, don’t just derail the current one.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:26 pm
  173. KC Says:

    I have to say, this was a bit of a shocker. I had begun to worry about this kind of reveal earlier, but I liked the little bit of magic that came with the Weregeeks and hoped it was real. This…this was a letdown. It really was.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:31 pm
  174. Syhron Says:

    @Caz & most of the less reasonable whiners:

    What the hell is your problem? Seriously don’t you have anything else to do? It’s a story, like or dislike whatever, but keep the negative BS for yourself.

    People, we loved and enjoyed this comic for what it is: Geek everyday life, stuff that actually could and DOES happen to us. I remember the Ikea part and I always laugh so much. It really reminds me of a dungeon.
    And to be honest: the Hunter part always kind of seemed out of place. For those who liked it, well it ended.

    I you think it could have done better, fine, maybe it could. The mention this is ok, but seriously the heavy *&%*” whining here is ridiculous. Get a grip and write your own comic, if you must.

    I totaly agree with Erik and say: Well played.

    Looking forward for more ggek stories

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:38 pm
  175. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    As much as I wanted to just not start discussing and simply respect Alina’s decision, I can’t resist. But now that I’ll take part, I’ll bring the big guns. Blame the comments.

    To begin with, this “ending” brings a ton of plot points. Among them, though we could take any instance of weregeeking happening when Mark is around as “we see it through his eyes” (and that doesn’t make it any better) there are a bunch of weregeeking, probably dangerous moments when he’s not there. If we, as readers, are seeing it through Mark’s eyes there too, then I’ll feel insulted, because we’re treated just lke Mark is: as poor idiot fools who can’t know what’s real and what isn’t.

    There’s that Joel came crashing down from a window (at the start of “Where is JOEL, anyway?”). Were they all “on character”? They must be the greatest actors I’ve ever seen then. Or did Mark imagine that too? Powers, in a big (and I mean really, REALLY big) stretch, I can take, as we saw during the Werewolf LARP. But that? Is the line between reality and fantasy THAT blurry for Mark? If it is then I can’t take him seriously as a character at all. And that’s the reason why I’d feel insulted if all the metaplot has really been shrugged as a LARP. As a reader I don’t like having the audience surrogate being a delusional kid who’s out of his mind.

    Heck, it destroys the plot since it’s very base. Suddenly Mark feeling a compulsion to enjoy geeky things becomes a much serious issue, without the fantasy element. It’s not anymore that he’s a weregeek and so he entered a new world. It’s that he went full nuts and started drooling on a shop pretty much out of the blue (if we consider him a mundane before his first weregeek event). Someone who has a psychotic disorder and decides to ditch his girlfriend for playing D&D with some guys he’s just met, even though he was about to go with her. Not even Gollum pulled it like that.

    I still mantain what I said. I liked the “slice of life” strips. I enjoyed the games as much as the metaplot. And I wouldn’t force Alina to keep writing something she didn’t like. But if this is the best she can bring to wrap it up, then she has just destroyed her all her universe in my eyes, and in the eyes of pretty much half the readers. This will be a base breaker, a jumping the shark point from which the comic won’t recover.

    Unless… my hope that this is all a “mantain the masquerade” thing happens to be true. Please, don’t disappoint us Alina. You can get away with that, end the metaplot and have everyone happy. Specially me, who’ll get the chance to say “I called it”.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 5:42 pm
  176. Hurbster Says:

    So Mark is either a massive idiot or he needs urgent treatment because he cannot tell fantasy from reality ? I know we have had this sort of thing before with the Vampire Larp and the Zombie Walk where he thought it was real, but this ? Are we to assume he was seeing people in their geek forms as he plainly did a strip or two ago ? And no-one told him there was going to be a LARP demo at the ‘con. You don’t think one of his friends might have mentioned it, especially as he took a starring role. And what about all that ‘off-camera’ stuff with the Hunters ? I’m glad the metaplot is done with but it’s all a bit sudden. I have faith it can be explained in the next couple of episodes but it’s pretty shaky right now.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 6:09 pm
  177. Gingkage Says:

    I think I need to clarify my comment earlier where I said I was, essentially, disappointed with this. In hindsight, I realize that I perhaps wasn’t explaining myself very well.

    I have NO problem with this just being a game, though I still hope that Joel was just covering this up (though if not, I’m relieved to hear that the Weregeek/Hunter LARP won’t stop just because of this reveal). The problem I have with it is that, with all the other astounding writing that this comic has so far, the WAY this was handled just feels… weak. It really does feel like a cop-out to me and leaves a bit of a sour taste in my mouth.

    If this was the direction the entire time, I think that there should have been far more hints to it, and that Mark’s shock should have just been the fact that he was surprised at having to shift so quickly from in-character to out-of-character in such a jarring way, instead of him just not knowing.

    I’d have been just as happy with Alina spending maybe another week or two wrapping up the plotline as if it wasn’t a meta-game story, but it still needed more TIME. This rushed ending is disorienting, and really not one I’m a fan of. But again, I don’t actually MIND the direction it went. I just wish that it had taken just a little bit longer to resolve so that it didn’t come off as being rushed.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 7:02 pm
  178. Soleana Says:

    No. NOOOOO! I have read this for so long now, and my favorite part of the concept is just Mark being clueless again? No! What about the Geek Moot, the secret nighttime geek revel? What about the idea that ENTHUSIASM GIVES YOU SUPERPOWERS? I liked reading about their games and stuff, but that was the part of the concept I loved. Truly loved. It’s up there in my esteem along with X-men, and that’s saying something. I wanted to learn more about these geeks with superpowers – GEEKS WITH SUPERPOWERS – and I am heartbroken that it was Mark’s overactive imagination all along. The fast healing? The physical transformations? The mysterious chases and nighttime escapades? I don’t know what I’ll do now that this is no longer being written – well, not as more than a game. I don’t know where to turn. I had such hopes that the “IRL” plot would become as significant as the game plots, and well… thpse hopes are dashed.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 8:05 pm
  179. Travis Says:

    You pulled the worst move a writer can ever you you pulled a Dallas…..

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 9:31 pm
  180. Martin Says:

    I was pretty shocked when I first read this. With some time to digest, I think this was a really cool idea, but I wish you had a few more comics to drop us clues and make the big reveal a bit more “oh!” and a bit less “huh?”. Which really comes down to: I wish you didn’t dread the metaplot comics so much!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 9:35 pm
  181. Martamis Says:

    Well then that was interesting. I actually like the way things turned out. Grant it not the way I would have done it, but I do love unforeseeable ending. Good job!

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 9:41 pm
  182. Jalathas Says:

    I’d just like to join the obvious flurry of comments here and say that I’m actually kind of relieved that this is how it ended. The hunter storylines always seemed really out of place to me, like they belonged in another comic. It was one of the only things I was unhappy with in the comic, really, and I’m glad to see the end of it so we can move on to the gaming and characters, where the story really shines.

    Just reading the comments, I’m imagining you’re going to drop quite a few readers here, and that’s a shame, but I don’t imagine those readers who leave would have been satisfied with any resolution to this storyline that allowed you to move on to the kinds of stories you clearly preferred to tell.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:28 pm
  183. Strikes Says:

    wait… it’s not april 1st… this is for real? Man, what a disappointment.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 10:57 pm
  184. Nicktwolf Says:

    Ok so after reading the latest comic, I take back some of what I said about him knowing what is going on. But I’m confused on something. Given that Mark has larped for Vampire and other games, how is it he didn’t know this was a larp as well?

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 11:15 pm
  185. Artesian Says:

    And in our next chapter, Mark (the audience surrogate) goes to see a psychologist about his issues with telling reality from fiction.

    Posted March 12th, 2014 at 11:35 pm
  186. cresneta Says:

    I, for one, thought that this was hilarious. There were times in the past that I wondered if it was just another game, but wasn’t leaning that way.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 12:18 am
  187. SorrowfulCry Says:

    Count me among the vaguely disappointed. I love the character storylines. I love the slice-of-gamer-life humor.

    But I also love the mystery and magic that gave Weregeek a unique twist. To me, at least, there was room for both.

    I also felt like Mark’s character was sacrificed to make this ending “work”. I say that in quotes because really, continuity wise, it does not work. It’s a patch job. And it’s a patch job that makes me think of Mark as a blithering idiot, and possibly an insane one.

    I won’t stop reading. There is still a lot that I like about Weregeek. It’s just… it’s going to be a while before I can take Mark seriously again, if ever. And there’s going to be a lot less magic and wonder now that the ‘Were’ part of the comic has been summarily deleted.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 12:59 am
  188. CalvinCopyright Says:

    Ok, after reading these comments, I just have to say what I think of this now.

    Look here, Alina – the concept of the Hunters and were-geeks has been around since the very first story arc of your comic. We took it completely for granted from the very start; to slightly-incorrectly-quote a geek from El Goonish Shive, “IT WAS THE FANTASY ELEMENT OF WEREGEEK.” From the point of Mark, it was completely real. You made it seem like he actually SAW people transforming into black-skinned, yellow-innarded monsters; it seemed like he actually saw that one giant get-together of geeks – it was just the way the world WAS.

    You can’t seriously have us believe any protagonist would be mentally myopic enough to not see through the props that something as elaborate as the geek forms and monster Murlock would require – the vampire and zombie costumes are believable, because those suckers can be pretty realistic – but not being able to see through the geek costumes just strains all credulity, given what we’ve seen the ‘geeks’ do.

    There are so many places you could have taken the weregeek concept: there’s got to be some sort of actual ‘geek’ society out there; you never got into what the ‘alpha geeks’ were (you could have had them need to enlist the help of geek factions from other countries or something to defeat Murlock)… I’m no writer, but I would have loved to have brainstormed some fan-on for this comic.

    And now literally everything fantastical about the comic suddenly wasn’t actual canon after all; it was just the demo of some mega-larp.

    If this doesn’t get explained away as being hallucinations brought on by some radio show, like C-span or whatever putting Murlock and the Hunters to sleep, or if Mark actually turns out to have geek powers in a world full of actual normals, or something else cool like that, then this comic has just gone way down in my rankings.

    Jumping the Shark indeed.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 1:19 am
  189. Kryss LaBryn Says:

    Have to say that while I really enjoyed the early days of the comic with the hunters back then, I have not at all in any way been disappointed with the shift to our RP-ers being the main focus of the story, and I’m really happy with the reveal and the news that our good guys and their lives and gaming sessions are going to be the focus from here on in. The Hunter concept was a really neat one, but as the comic has naturally shifted focus over the course of the story-telling, the Hunters have become a poorer-and poorer fit, and (to my mind) a distraction from what the comic has evolved into.

    So two big thumbs up here for wrapping up the Hunter storyline in a way that, yeah, may not be a perfect fit for what the story originally started out as; but in a way that fits well with what it has become. I am really happy to know that we’ll be seeing the version of the comic I am enjoying so much now as the main course.

    Thanks for the entertainment! :D

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 1:29 am
  190. MacBone Says:

    I really should read all of these comments. =)

    I’m sure this has already been stated, but I always took the “were” in weregeek to mean that hidden side of us that loves geeky things, the things our acquaintances and co-workers might be surprised we like. For me, it’s comics, D&D, and science fiction. For somebody else, it might be writing flowery poetry that they post online (or maybe keep locked up in a drawer somewhere). That’s the were, and I think Mark’s still totally that guy. Some of us wear it on our sleeves, and some of us keep it hidden deep down, but all of us are weregeeks. =)

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 1:43 am
  191. iamnotreallyhere Says:

    I have to say I am disappointed.

    The whole idea of Weregeeks kind of separated this webcomics from all the other “geek” slice of life webcomics. The idea that it was all some kind of LARP is in my opinion the biggest wallbanger of a change in direction that I have read since CtrlAltDelete killed off Ethan, and much like that wallbanger this one seems contrived and shoehorned.

    I won’t stop reading, but I don’t think I could be nearly as invested in the story, or the characters for that matter, now that you’ve basically scrubbed the one element that drew me to the comic to begin with.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 2:23 am
  192. Wanderer Says:

    I can’t say I am not very disappointed in this. I greatly enjoyed the meta-arc because there was always that thread, that niggling feeling of something underneath the surface of the canon world. Some supernatural elements that enhanced the world rather than detracted from it.

    And to do this. To pull the carpet out from under the feet of the readers, even when you’ve made a habit of it, is rather tiring. I greatly enjoy your work…

    I’m just sort of sad that this is how it is.

    And it was all just a dream sticks in my craw something awful.

    But muse willing, good luck and good favor on the next chronicle.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 2:24 am
  193. Morangias Says:

    Not buying this reveal, creates too many discrepancies with the established story. Very rushed, not very enjoyable.

    Still, very glad that the comic will continue! You’ve really built a great cast of memorable, enjoyable characters, so if you want to focus on their interpersonal things, that’s great, and I’ll still love to see how things unfold.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 3:47 am
  194. LoneHowler Says:

    After much consideration I am now hoping for an “Or was it?” To balance out the “it was only a dream.” A weregeek in the shadows or Joel doing the Thriller ending by turning to the audience with glowing eyes and a knowing smile.
    It wouldn’t have to be brought up again, but an “or was it” is the one thing that can save the bad trope of “it was only a dream”
    Even if it doesn’t happen it’s going to be my fannon, that way I can happily continue on past the faux pas, and go back to loving the comic as it is

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 3:54 am
  195. Erik Says:

    And of course there is a much simpler solution – Mark knew perfectly well about the whole its-only-a-game thing and was just caught up in the moment – as seen before with the zombies. No wonder Joel’s reaction to his surprise is “…yeah, Duh?”

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 4:56 am
  196. Reyneke Says:

    All this big buildup, all the big reveal and then _this_? Seriously? I’m sorry, but I’m with the faction here, that this big reveal feels just … odd, odd and wrong.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 5:05 am
  197. Asheram Says:

    Sort of disappointed… But yes, now we don’t have to worry about the hunters. Would be nice to let something else take that place, for example, what happened to that Orb from the VTM LARP?

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 5:24 am
  198. Falcone Says:

    Erik, did you even read the last two strips? It’s becoming more and more apparent Mark NEVER knew.

    And as someone said earlier, Mark is meant to represent us in these strips, he’s shocked because we’re shocked at this Tweest. Which means, we’re being directly spoken to here by the characters saying “Wait, you actually thought that was really happening? Are you serious?”

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 5:45 am
  199. Hurbster Says:

    “Oh did you let your imagination run away with you again ?”

    Wot ?

    While I agree with stopping the hunter segments, this whitewashing of the plot so far has…..not been done in a good way. Are you seriously expecting us to believe that no one told Mark about this.

    No. Way too many massive plot holes to just be hand-waved like this. As people have stated it’s Bobby Ewing coming out of the shower and jumping the shark simultaneously.

    I agree with what you have done but the way it was done was so…lazy.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 5:49 am
  200. Razor Says:

    On one hand…I’m glad no more of the Hunters metaplot. The RPG and LARP sessions were always my favorite parts of the comic, and the interpersonal drama was more interesting than the Hunters plot…but as has likely been stated countless times, this seems remarkably forced, and leaves a LOT of plot holes. The closest I can see to being a good excuse for this all being a “LARP” is if it were an ongoing Humans vs Zombies style game with a TON of overacting and a very hardcore player base…but for Mark’s reactions…

    He’s clearly got problems. Like ‘this guy needs to be checked into a mental institution’ problems.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 8:10 am
  201. NC Says:

    If I may I would like to bring up a few new questions:

    ##########################################

    So the “Hunters” were actually (experienced?) LARPers themselves.

    This bears the questions:
    Why did we never see them in the Dragon’s Lair?
    Why did they never show up at some other roleplay?

    I mean… if you are such a dedicated roleplayer one sure could expect them to show up somewhere.

    I see two possible solutions:

    (1) They are from out of town
    I really liked doing that as a gamemaster – inviting friends from other towns my players wouldn’t know so they had an element of surprise.

    (2) They are in another peer group
    The hunters are generally presented as elderly persons. So one might say, they are maybe an older generation of players and hang out more rarely with “the kids”. Indeed in reality you can often see the generation separation that seems to happen naturally.

    ##########################################

    What is the history behind the hunters?

    In the beginning Joel talks just about “the Hunter” as in singular. So we can assume that by then it was maybe just a new LARP concept going on between Joel and the hunter, something fun that was still in development. And maybe it grew bigger.

    It would be fun to re-visit the old story points and reveal how the development of the whole hunter-weregeek-plotline happened between Joel and the hunter. In sort of a flashback.

    ##########################################

    Yeah… after the first disappointment I try to work with it. I mean… as a gamemaster I should be used to people wrecking my expectations and hunt floating targets :-) How could I ever expect reading a comic about roleplay to be any different.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 8:12 am
  202. Chrysa_fiaco Says:

    I kinda like this. Didn’t expect it but I like it… it also makes a lot of sense. I mean Mark has an insanely over-active imagination and he’s done this before like with the vampires, the zombies and even the sci-fi one.

    My guess is that book he was given at the veeeeery start explained the Hunters/Weregeeks game which was why no one explained it. I mean did he ever read that thing?

    Then there were things like how people reacted to the hunters and even how the hunters acted. Looking back it all ties in nicely and yes it was unexpected but I still like the story.

    Anyway I loved the story Alina, keep it up!

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 10:02 am
  203. Doofus Says:

    @Lonehowler: Headcanon…accepted! ;-)

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 11:09 am
  204. matt Says:

    I have no problems with this…now on to the Mark/Sarah Great Geeky Romance…how will he woo her?

    Love your webcomic Alina and can’t wait for more!

    When does book 6 come out?

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 11:27 am
  205. Pete Says:

    So when will Mark get treatment for his mental illness? I reread the beginning in the context of this reveal, and I’m sorry the only way to make the rest of the comic fit with the “everything is an LARP” is declaring him to have a serious mental illness and suffering from delusions. It also puts the others in a bad light for a) never noticing his condition and b) never explaining the LARP even after getting angry at Joel after Mark thought the Vampires were real.

    But it is your decision to end the subplot like this, I just don’t find it plausible that the LARP thing was intended from the start.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 12:06 pm
  206. NastySasquatch Says:

    Well not that you’ve made mark a full on lunatic. It really ruins all that awesome story writing you did over the BREAKUP.

    I mean seriously it just makes Mark look like a complete psycho now.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 1:38 pm
  207. Peacocklady Says:

    There is something to be said for enjoying your characters and wanting to see how their interconnections play out; I write a lot and can understand that aspect. However, I will not come back to this comic. When I found this I was so interested I kept coming back for more … even slogging through the terrible DnD puns and the many, many, many side trips away from the main plot.
    To find out … it’s a LARP. All along. Really.
    Really?
    Not interested any more.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 1:51 pm
  208. Raphire Says:

    Not the biggest fan of this ending to the Hunter storyline. I enjoyed the supernatural feel from it. However, I have always read this comic for the RPGs anyway, especially the shadowrun one and the halloween ones. On that topic by the way, are you ever going to finish the Halloween one about the crows?

    Also as long as you keep that story true to the characters and keep the RPGs coming you will always have a reader from me.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 2:16 pm
  209. Redbreard Says:

    The Hunter story line was what brought me into the comic, I was a big fan of the supernatural and mystery feeling it added to the comic. Not a big fan of how the arc ended so abruptly and seemed to fly in the face of the earlier narrative either but I do love the characters and other stories so I’m sticking with you and I’m happy the comic shall continue.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 2:31 pm
  210. Stephen Says:

    *blink*

    I was right?

    I kept my mouth shut the entire time. Don’t think that I ever made a single comment about how it would be funny if it was all a LARP. I never pointed out that one blonde hunter girl from way back reminded me of Jess because of her hair at the time which was probably not intentional.

    And it turns out I was right.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 4:11 pm
  211. Tariq Says:

    Seriously… NOT EXPECTED LOL. But I hope he gets with Sarah…. :3

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 4:14 pm
  212. Laughing Matter Says:

    Well, I can’t say I saw it coming, so Mark’s reaction is the same as mine. Personally, I’m a bit torn about this turn of events. On the one hand, it fits the LARP theme established in the first chapter and the overall narrative of Mark being the eternal rookie who’s really gullible, but on the flipside, has an unparalleled ability to get caught up in the games and stories. On the other hand, making a reveal like this when the story is not done kinda leaves the left of the tale hanging.

    Don’t get me wrong, I want to keep reading Weregeek in the future as well, and I don’t wish to see it end. The problem I have with this turn of events is purely narrative preference. As the definite ending of a story, the final M. Night Shyamalan style twist, the moment before the closing credits, this plot twist makes perfect sense (although I would have preferred a bit more foreshadowing). It brings the beginning and the end together and wraps up all loose ends. But kinda like with the decision to kill off Harry Osborn in the Spider-Man comics of the 90’s, what worked really well in the context of a storyline with a definite beginning, middle part and ending may have done real damage to the ongoing series as a whole. Suddenly, there was a huge hole left behind by the departure of a major, long-standing supporting character. What will fill the hole left behind by the mystery of the Hunters and the Weregeeks? I’m going to be really curious as to whether or not there will ever again be an equally strong, slowly unfolding storyline in the background.

    That being said, I definitely will keep on reading this comic. Weregeek has been one of my favorite webcomics for years now, and I want to continue seeing the gang act out all their charmingly geeky shenanigans.

    The Hunters may be finished, but I’m hoping that instead of the depressing “Mark has been having a psychotic breakdown” turn of events suggested above, we could indeed see that the Weregeek part is, in some form, real. Not in the “superpowered, supernatural beings” sense, but in the “possessing the nearly superhuman ability to geek out and suspend disbelief even when your logic and senses tell you otherwise” sense. That way, the Weregeek theme is retained even without the Hunters, we could still see the namesakes in the comic, and in the end, Mark would have turned out to be the most powerful Weregeek of them all.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 4:51 pm
  213. Three Says:

    Well, that’s a kick in the pants, huh? you just removed the best part of this whole thing.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 4:56 pm
  214. Kecal Says:

    Firstly I love the comic and I’m looking forward to Chronicle 2. I also appreciate that this is your comic and ultimately your decision.

    However I really liked the hidden supernatural part of the comic, it was something that really appealed to me and I am really sorry that this the end of it as we know it. (If it really is, I still like to think that Joel is quick on his feet at cover up- but considering 2 strips since it’s becoming more and more unlikely.) What especially doesn’t sit with me is as HeavyP said if this was a long-time coming it feels like it should have more deserving reveal. I get that it was becoming an increasing burden but would like it to be a bit bigger final push.

    As for Mark I think Erik has a point it’s more likely that he chose to see things this way, however I still feel that even though he is our point of view character, the reveal feels poor because of that. And while his Vampire and Zombie incidents are similar those were both believable because they involved pure RP and costumes, no extra effects.

    Also the last 2 strips seem to move more and more towards the- he was clueless that it was a LARP, which is rather worrying for the character.

    Those are my thoughts, as I said I am looking forward to Chronicle 2 and will continue to try to get my friends to try to read it (I loved the first arc and the first Shadowrun arc for the mystery they had).

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 5:18 pm
  215. TannimFodder Says:

    I’m pretty much the same mind as Kecal above me. Loved the supernatural part; it was got me interested and reading your comic in the first place! I’d like to think it could have gotten wrapped up in a way that wasn’t as cop-out-ish as “it was all a dream all along! Oh, silly Mark!” I mean, you even mentioned in the strip you pulled that earlier with the vampire storyline. Re-using it here doesn’t have the same impact as before.

    I’m saddened we don’t get to see a genuine conclusion to the Hunters. It’d be cool if this was a double fake-out, and the geeks were pulling something here to trip them up or something, but that doesn’t look like the case.

    At any rate, good luck with future endeavors.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 7:36 pm
  216. FT Says:

    .. Yeah, no, sorry. This ending pretty much has Mark badly sick in the head, and more in need of therapy. I liked the whole supernatural powers fight against evil thing it was kind of neat and tapped into a psychobable thing I liked.

    Poor Mark, I hope he gets help soon.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 8:05 pm
  217. Death Proof Says:

    Does Alina hate the Mark character? In reading these last couple of strips, it seems like she’s almost punishing him by making him look like a complete a-hole.

    I had always thought Mark was supposed to represent people who were just getting introduced to the geekier things in life… RPG’s, LARPS, CCG’s, etc. But now it seems like Mark is just being made out to be a big idiot who’s completely out of touch with reality – pretty much the polar opposite of most gamer geeks.

    This will sound dumb, but I feel bad for the character if this is the way he’s being treated. If Alina hates him so much she should write him out.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 8:53 pm
  218. Stephen Says:

    The end of this story arc has me worried about Mark’s mental health… I mean, he didn’t notice people wearing costumes? Look at them. Really look at those masks. Readers believing it was all real is one thing. We saw the same things that Mark apparently saw but now? Mark needs to have his network of friends keep him from playing rpg’s and games in general for a while and constantly remind him of reality before he goes MAZES & MONSTERS. Is he actually broken up with his girlfriend or is that also him taking this game too seriously?

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 8:57 pm
  219. pfogg Says:

    Still not quite sure where it’s going to end up. It doesn’t sound like a jaw-dropping last minute reversal is the plan, or even a good choice (that might undercut any upcoming character-based storylines), but even so…

    It’s like watching a suspenseful hand in a game of Texas hold ‘em:

    “She has a shot at a straight, maybe a flush, but with the cards she has showing it still looks like a jarring retroactive continuity change is the best she’s likely to pull off. A Scooby-Doo wrap-up exposition, no help. Wait, she’s going all-in with a back-reference on the Mark issue, really hanging a lantern on it — did she make the straight? Does she have something better? Is she just bluffing? We’ll have to wait and see what the hole cards are…”

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 9:03 pm
  220. TB Says:

    Dudes, it’s a comic strip. Not only that, but one we get entertained by out of the sheer generosity of the artist.

    Getting bent out of shape on things like continuity, plot holes, and stuff like that is what we called (back in my ancient convention days) “getting a bit too ‘sercon.”

    If we can handle wibbley-wobbley timey-wimey, we can handle a few plot holes and arc jumps.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 10:05 pm
  221. Reynardine Says:

    Good riddance! The whole hunter plot was a pain when I thought it was actually happening. I’m much happier with it being a larp (whether or not this is a retcon is irrelevant to me).

    That was always the part of the comic that stuck in my craw, and this solves the whole stupid “geeks are a magical creature that are better than everyone else” thing.

    I’ve spent too much time around my fellow geeks to ever think that’s a reasonable suspension of disbelief.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 10:28 pm
  222. Kat in a hat Says:

    I’ll be honest i am not sure how to take this i loved the idea of the weregeeks and i was actually starting to look at mark as an extension of myself.

    I found this comic after my first foray into the world of darkness LARPing comunity, it took a while but following the story i actually started accepting who i am as a geek after so long of trying to hide it and put it off. Finding out that the person i was starting to moddle myself and my new identity off is actually just that deluded that gulible.

    Well i’m not going to say it didn’t hurt. Honnestly i wish there had been a bit of warning, masks and props left here or there, little comments between the other characters that didn’t really make sense, maybe there was and i just missed it all a bit like mark did, it just all seemed to come out of the blue and at least for me it really broke the story line.

    I’m sticking around becouse i still like this comic, ad the characters but for a comic that was named weregeek i just feel that a little bit of the story has gone out the window.*sigh* it is your story and you do have the right to do whatever you like with it i am just sad that i may never see the werebeasts again.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 10:39 pm
  223. whims Says:

    TB: A “what’s the big deal, it’s just a comic” argument achieves a certain irony when posted in this context.

    Posted March 13th, 2014 at 10:48 pm
  224. Travis Says:

    It’s a bussiness TB.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 1:18 am
  225. Ted Says:

    Writing-wise this is as bad as “and then so-and-so woke up and it was all just a dream.” Actually, this is worse as it implies constant denial of visual proof that it was a LARP, making Mark, as many people have said, delusional. I would have actually preferred Mark waking up from passing out having exhausted himself at the Con, raising his head from a table, while all around him is a Magic game, and having him comment that he had the strangest dream, or that he had “that Hunter dream again” and telling someone that he was going to draw a webcomic about it. I would have been fine with that.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 3:16 am
  226. Kasey Says:

    I agree with the folks who say it was anti-climactic. It is also inconsistent with some of the things that were said before, like the training and the stuff we saw in the hunter’s base. If you didn’t like the hunters, it might have been more in line with what had gone before to take what some would call the “Chuck Cunningham route” i.e. let them disappear. Of course, I’ve seen enough plot twists in various works to not be 100% sure you aren’t pulling our legs now. (does anyone need a map through all those negatives? I feel a little lost, and I wrote the sentence) How do we know “It’s a LARP” isn’t just a cover to hide the truth from the folks who can’t take it? “Mark got knocked out and dreamed the end of the fight” is a option too. I’m too suspicious to take anything at face value. I hope there is more too the hunters than this.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 4:30 am
  227. Stormfric Ulcloak Says:

    I’m sad that the Hunter vs Geek storyline turned out to be abortive. I always enjoyed it.

    That being said, part of the mystery surrounding it, for me, was that I couldn’t see how it fit in with the rest of the comic. Why would these hunters take it so seriously? Where do the geeks get this mysterious super power from? When all was revealed, I presumed that one of the things that would be revealed is the origin of this secret war. The fact that it turns out to be nothing but an overcomplicated LRP group (and wow, what lengths they went to) I see as a necessary way to avoid the need to explain something almost otherworldly on top of the interpersonal subplot.

    I love this comic, I’m enjoying the real life plots, and the storylines of the various games; keep up the good work. I’ve GMed enough chronicles of my own to know that sometimes a plotline has to fizzle, just to let everything else get better.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 5:47 am
  228. Lord V Says:

    You haven’t been the only one to dread the metaplot strips! ;) But why not just let it fade away and never mention it again? Anyway, yay for the real life storylines! :D

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 3:02 pm
  229. Alina Says:

    Hey everyone. WOW! There’s been *WAY* too many comments for me to address everyone individually. I will say a few things here, though.

    A) I saw someone asking if they could talk about this strip on twitter/blogs/etc. Please do!

    b) As for why I decided to ‘cop out’ and end this storyline the way I did instead of just letting it fade away. I’ll admit that I’m not entirely happy with the ending either, but I am happy that it *has* ended.

    One of my pet peeves as a player is the ‘mystery plot that never gets resolved’. You’ve all been there before, I;m sure – “who was that mysterious NPC, and why did he have my brother’s sword?” or, in LARPS, “who was messing with my allies, and why couldn’t I find out who they were, even with all my piles of influence?”. It’s the sort of thing you find yourself wondering about months or even years after the chronicle has ended, and in my case, the lack of closure drives me a little crazy. I’ll often beg my gamemaster for all those answers if the chronicle has ended prematurely, and most DMs are pretty good about giving me answers to at least a few of my questions. (No DM wants to give up *ALL* of their secret plots!)

    Anyway, so knowing my own preference in this matter, I figured it was better to give you all a conclusion, ANY conclusion, to this particular plot. Even if it was an inelegant ending. Even if it was a bit rushed, because honestly, writing this storyline has made me increasingly uncomfortable over the years and more often than not I found myself staring at a blank word document whenever it came time to script this plotline.

    And, despite my best efforts to wrap everything up, I still didn’t manage to answer all your questions (ie – what was up with that book? or the magic orb the Nosferatu gave Mark?) because, as I previously mentioned, this plot was supposed to be sprawling and I just didn’t want to get into those things. Suffice it to say, those plot items were just part of the game, though in one case, I might have an interesting way to work one of them into a more regular plotline.

    Anyway. I’m sorry that many of you were upset by this, but I figured I owed it to my readers to NOT simply have the storyline get swept under a rug and never mentioned again. If I were in your shoes, the not knowing would be far worse than having a conclusion I disagreed with.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 3:59 pm
  230. SorrowfulCry Says:

    In a vacuum, the conclusion itself is not an issue.

    The context of the conclusion, however, forces any reader who values character consistency and continuity in a storyline to see Mark in a very different and very negative light. He has been made into a delusional idiot – there is no other reasonable explanation for his capacity to honestly think that regular people in cheap masks had super powers for months of real time.

    There is a painful irony to the unintended results of your chosen conclusion. You did it so you could focus on the character-based story lines, because you care most about the characters. Meanwhile, those of us most aghast at the hunter resolution feel that way because…. we care most about the characters.

    And now the one many of us cared about most – the PoV character, the guy we were supposed to identify with – has been reduced to a dithering incompetent, an unwitting slave to the plot you were trying to exorcise.

    Alas.

    Posted March 14th, 2014 at 5:17 pm
  231. Travis Says:

    My Feeling is that “It’s Just a dream” is Far more insulting than quietly sweeping it under the rug. I have played in chronicles that have not got finished and at some point i would have loved to know what was going on but with an open ending we are free to come up with one on our own.

    As Far as Not Knowing Alina I would like to quote something ;)

    “Inigo :Who are you?
    Man in Black: No one of consequence.
    Inigo: I must know.
    Man in Balck: Get used to disappointment.”

    Posted March 15th, 2014 at 12:35 am
  232. Lord V Says:

    “No DM wants to give up *ALL* of their secret plots!”

    Really? I do and all my favorite GMs, too! ;) Anyway, surely many people will feel that way about closure, so yay for closure. :)

    Posted March 15th, 2014 at 4:38 am
  233. DavidT Says:

    The problem some of us head is that we came to this comic for that very plot. I just am not that interested in who hooks up with who. Best of luck in the future but I’ve only been hanging around this week with the hope it wasn’t true. Since it is, this isn’t the comic I started with nor any longer interested.

    Posted March 15th, 2014 at 7:32 am
  234. Mark Antony Says:

    I am personally really glad you excised that metaplot. It was never very fun for me, especially compared to everything else.

    That said…Mark thought a dude in a mask was a twenty-foot-tall tentacle monster. That’s REALLY serious. Are we supposed to infer that he has a significant psychiatric disorder that needs addressing?

    Posted March 15th, 2014 at 4:53 pm
  235. Mitra Says:

    Hi Alina,
    I just wanted to say how much we all love your comic and how much we enjoyed seeing you again at GottaCon. I’m pretty sure some of the comments above would be hard to read. I bet you have had to develop a thick skin at times! Please know that while I too have enjoyed the weregeek meta storyline, I can see how it became cumbersome and less meaningful as time went on. Unlike other writers, who have the opportunity to change early chapters and story lines prior to releasing a book or comic, you get to make such changes and admit what doesn’t work in such a public way. I’m sure that is really tough, and I admire the courage and honesty you demonstrated in your post way up at the top.

    Such an admission should serve as an example to other artists and writers – things don’t always go perfectly, and early ideas evolve into something else. I’m sorry that some of your readers are disappointed, and I’m sad for them that they feel it is acceptable to express their opinions so rudely. I admire those readers who have been frank, but also polite – I think honest feedback is so valuable.

    And that said, I’m wondering how you plan to right things for Mark! He does seem to have got the short end of the stick, and I’m wondering if that was part of the plan, or collateral damage :) I’m hoping he comes though unscathed and I too am curious about where the Mark-Sarah storyline goes (somewhere good, I hope!). And as for the other questions…yes, I cannot wait to read more! A big hug from Victoria.

    Posted March 16th, 2014 at 3:26 pm
  236. Gonqueasel Says:

    The ending of the hunters arc is a bit awkward, but I am just as happy to see the end of it – these smaller stories feel far more interesting to me..

    Posted March 16th, 2014 at 10:28 pm
  237. Tolan Says:

    Every additional explanatory comic is not helping me feel confident in Mark’s sanity at all.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 3:54 am
  238. Glew Says:

    Wow, okay; just as many before me, I too am starting to be a bit concerned about Mark’s mental health… I’m eaggerly awaiting resolution. :o

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 4:15 am
  239. Stormfric Ulcloak Says:

    My only concern is that now Mark comes off as disturbingly delusional…

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 5:21 am
  240. Blackjoker Says:

    I’ll admit that I am…uneasy about the ending of this. First off, it actually does paint Mark as being at the very least delusional at the very worst…obsessive. It makes his girlfriends behavior to him actually seem very reasonable and justified, not to mention that there is another issue too in the plot. I get why you chose to resolve it, some resolution can be better than none at all…but there’s a different issue. (please bear with me a moment in the next paragraph)

    I’m a bit of a comic geek and I got into Atop the Fourth Wall, Linkara has his quirks but I like watching his stuff. He did a big arc on Judas Traveller, a character that was in the Spider Man clone saga arc, said character was really mysterious and had some strange agenda and really powerful. Problem being, none of the writers actually had a plan for his goals, when they wrapped him up it just came out as strange and annoying. Time invested in the plot linked to him felt wasted and it annoyed readers.

    I feel annoyed about the ending not just because of what it did to Mark in terms of rather heavy negative character development but also…well it makes it feel like the time and energy invested in the comic on these plots was wasted. It makes me feel frustrated because it also makes a lot of things in the comics suddenly feel really out of place. And it also creates a kind of Truman Show-esque situation when we deal with the brainwashed geeks and stuff like that. It also feels jarring because of how we were grounded in the series reality.

    I am still interested in seeing where this goes but I feel a bit burned, I also, again, feel really worried about what this means for Mark in terms of what it means for his character.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 5:34 am
  241. Blackjoker Says:

    I just had a really weird idea….are we going to suddenly find out that this is actually Mark being hit by something by the hunters that makes him so disgusted with his hobby/afraid of it that he decides to give it up and that’s how the hunter thing works….nah, highly unlikely but the idea came so I figured I’d mention it here on the off chance it turns out right.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 5:39 am
  242. Jer Says:

    Well… today strip confirms it : Mark is going to spend some time away with nice men in white coats… or at the very least away from the games.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 5:55 am
  243. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    And to end the storyline, a massive retcon. But the main plothole, the one in which Mark hadn’t even met them by then so there was no frikking way he could have joined a LARP with them (the first strips) is still there.

    But of course that’ll be solved via more retcons and more Mark being totally insane.

    I’m gonna try taking this easy. It’s disappointing to say the least, but I shouldn’t be getting flustered over all this. Just sorry for poor Mark the scapegoat.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 6:27 am
  244. Aires Penlaw Says:

    I’ll add my voice to the chorus of dissenters. I’d have had the police show up at the convention, take the Hunters away to be put into a maximum security mental hospital, and have them never seen again. Plot solved.

    Now we’ve established Mark as completely insane (unless this turns out to be a what-if scenario – what if the previous paragraph wasn’t the case?), he should get help, and/or be committed. While he’s gone, we can focus on the remaining characters, pick a new PoV character.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 7:30 am
  245. NC Says:

    …unless… today’s comic is meant to be an ironic comment on how in hindsight LARP-stories tend to get bigger and bigger as they are told and more and more the players loose their distance and forget that it was just a game…

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 7:53 am
  246. Will Says:

    The funny thing is, everyone talking about retcons?

    It makes COMPLETE sense.

    Mark was new to larping, so joined what is popularly called a meta-larp. A larp within a larp, so to speak. We once had a larp about some oWoD vampires who went to a convention where…. they subsequently joined a larp.

    The Hunter Larp seemed to be just that. A real world larp that overlapped with other larps. They larped characters who were larping (who, in the real world, the players were larping too!) The great thing about meta larps is that they can overlap with say… a ren faire you go to. Just bring your sheets, have people agreed to be part of it, and you can bring the real world in to your larp.

    It’s -really- intense and fun. I do it a lot for the Reckoning larp we run. If a human is there in the real world, they’re there in the larp, so watch what you say!

    So Mark couldn’t have been part of the larp because he had never met them before?

    Incorrecto. Not everyone meets/gets to know everyone else at a larp when they’re brand new. I know this cause I -run- one and even -I- forget new faces. And until I actually hang out with my players, I have no idea who they are. Especially since this larp group seems to be pretty big!

    The only ‘hole’ so to speak is that Mark either has a super overactive imagination or some pretty serious mental issues. And that’s not so much a hole but something that was talked about in the beginning of the comic.

    So ya, I believe it cause I’ve run a meta-larp before. They’re fun!

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 8:55 am
  247. b0 Says:

    I can understand and agree with some of the frustrations of the other readers, but I am GLAD this is over. The anti-geek metaplot was really conflicting with the rest of the more human plots. I am looking forward to see where this goes.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 8:57 am
  248. Bluegeek Says:

    Maybe it would be best if the plot stayed away from LARPing for awhile. Except maybe the Vampire LARP, since that involves some unresolved character issues (Mark/Sarah, Dustin/Ravenna).

    Friends don’t let friends become delusional, so I’d have a difficult time accepting any storyline where Mark LARPs and the panels show his imagination running away with him again. Normal RP sessions are okay.

    Still watching to see how ‘the end’ turns out…

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 9:28 am
  249. Oneironaut Says:

    Aww, I was kind of enjoying the whole “Hunter vs. Weregeek” storyline.

    But yeah, I like this too, it’s a nice little comedy twist that kind of fits with the whole theme of the comic. Being a regular forum-based RPer myself, it’s easy to get caught up in the story and spend all day thinking of how you’re going to dig your character out of their latest predicament, usually when you should be working on something else!

    I’d definitely love to know more about how the whole Hunter plot was eventually going to play out though. It sounds interesting :)

    Looking forward to the new chronicle… :)

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 9:30 am
  250. Belisar Says:

    the question is another…. How do we know now if an event is in Mark mind or not? I mean…. Are the guys real? The break up with his girlfriend? the whole story?

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 9:57 am
  251. DragonStryk72 Says:

    Um…What? They somehow got Mark into the LARP before he even realized he was a gamer? Or what a LARP was?

    So basically, our main character is actively schizophrenic, to the point that he van vividly see *fifty-foot* tall weregeeks that are capable of easily lifting him in one hand, even going so far into his delusion that he can physically feel them grasping him?

    Uh, no, no he needs to stay away from gaming, or he is going to very definitely get people hurt and killed. I’m sorry, but Mark is anything but a regular gamer, and the first time this happened, I would ban him from any group I’m in. People clearly need to be protected from him.

    This isn’t like a story where a gamer just takes the game too seriously. For YEARS, he didn’t even realize there was a game, that this was all absolutely, irrevocably real, to the point of believing lives were on the line. Nope, sorry, he needs to put down the dice, and walk away.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 10:47 am
  252. Travis Says:

    it’s not even a fun train wreck anymore.

    Having done Camarilla for a few years this isn’t even remotely fun or funny as people like this do show up. People who can’t seperate reality from Drama, People you think it’s real, or people who have other social disorders that are deemed not safe for others. We had a few blood Drinkers who were key people in the organization who had to be kicked when they lured some new players who didn’t know anything about larping or the game and drank real human blood with them.

    Unless she pulls a “just Kidding” by mark or the whole cast and makes this a PSA . ‘Mark then looks to the Audience at the Con and says and don’t let fantasy control your reality….and now you know …….*! *ding DING Ding*’

    the down part is it’s just kind of Hard to trust the Narrative right now and in Hindsight it might make sense but there has been a breach of trust between the author and some of the audience.

    Ironically I now keep hoping this is all Dream as that would be better and less disturbing than the current extremely uncomfortable plot. Were-Geek putting the UN in Fun :(

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:11 pm
  253. Jer Says:

    … and then Mark hangs himself because his characters did not exist and Alina removes her mask and reveal that she has been Jack Chick all along ! ;)

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:13 pm
  254. Travis Says:

    Also EVERYTHING mark has done now out of game is suspect. It has gone from Jess being the irrational girlfriend for being judgemental about Marks Game and letters. to Jess was Probably right for Dumping Mark as Mark probably couldn’t seperate his in Game Blood bond from Sarah from Reality and thinks he is compulsed to like Sarah.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:14 pm
  255. Purple Library Guy Says:

    I liked the plotline but don’t depend on it for my enjoyment of the comic, so from that perspective I don’t care much whether it’s real or Mark’s delusion. But this is analogous to the copout they used to do with kids’ stories and early fantasy: “It was allll a dreeaammm”. Which to me is the classic stupid thing to do to a story.

    I also think that for a roleplaying comic, the idea I’ve been seeing here that the paranormal, “extraordinary” and physically dangerous elements detract from the characterization fundamentally misunderstands the whole nature of roleplaying. Surely we see much about a person’s character when we throw them into unusual, dangerous, stressful situations. My wife, who doesn’t do RPGs, frequently thinks about people she knows in terms of “In WW II France, would this person have been in the Resistance, just kept their head down, or would they have collaborated with the Nazis?” A roleplaying game is precisely about doing characterization in situations of the unusual, the wondrous and the dangerous. Stupid movies like “300” may give us the impression that action is the opposite of characterization, but it should not and need not be so, and can be just the opposite. Look at “The English Patient”; could that story have been told without the violence, death, and loss?

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:17 pm
  256. SorrowfulCry Says:

    What is the opposite of vomiting rainbows? Whatever it is, that’s how I feel right now.

    I miss Old Mark, our bumbling, naive, brilliantly imaginative window into a world just a little more wonderful than our own.

    New Mark just makes me sad forever and ever.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 12:19 pm
  257. DresdenDM Says:

    I dont normally check comments on here but i was told that this plot twist got a lot of bad comments so i wanted to try to add my 2 cents. Bravo Alina. A buildup this big and bam its all a game. I think the plot works much better this way. Youre writting well. I enjoy all the different game archs and now this is just another tame arch. Was a boldmove thst blindsidded many of us but in the end its the fore of the story.that its a bunch of geeks enjoying geeking out. And mark is the noobie that gete too lost in it. Perfect. Dont letnegstive comments get you down at all. Its all going goodnd this just made me like the comic more.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 2:13 pm
  258. Big Lemon Says:

    I hope Mark’s overactive imagination—and possibly deteriorating mental state—is something that will continue to come up and maybe be a source of drama in the future, not just humor.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 3:50 pm
  259. DragonStryk72 Says:

    Sigh… this has been bugging me all day now. Sadly, this likely means I’m pretty much done with the comic. I’ll stick around to finish out the last bits of storyline for this “chronicle”, but that’s only because I’m one of those people that has to get to the end of the story.

    Weregeek is no longer about weregeeks, but just normal geeks doing normal geek things. Anything really awesome I’ve seen was apparently the main character’s schizophrenic break with reality kicking in again and again, and really, his girlfriend dumping him probably saved her life, because he is a danger to himself and others. This ending has actually had the effect of staining all the rest of the comic going back to the very first page, becuase it’s all just been Mark burgeoning insanity.

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 8:08 pm
  260. Darkwolf_childe Says:

    I just…wow. I love your work, your storylines, your art, but I have to say I’ll miss the ‘weregeek’ side of things.
    It was one of those nifty little plot devices that really drew me in. I adore all the other side stories, the romantic entanglement between Mark and Sarah, the narration of the various games and all. But the ‘weregeek’ aspect really felt like that special flare that only this comic had and I am seriously going to miss it.
    I’d hoped this was some sort of double-blind fake out and Mark had been captured by the Hunters and was being brainwashed into thinking it was all in his head and he was insane as some way to break him from geekery, but it’s looking like that’s not the case.
    I’m disappointed in this particular reveal, but remain a devoted fan and Weregeek!

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 8:32 pm
  261. pfogg Says:

    DresdenDM: More or less independent of the quality of the art and writing, for those who prefer true-life stories to genre fiction, this is undoubtedly a huge relief, as it abstracts all of the fantasy and adventure elements into a play-within-a-play. For the audience members who equally enjoy either true-life drama and SF genre, this ending might be like finding a prize at the bottom of the box: a big surprise, a change of pace, a source of renewed interest. For those who prefer SF, thriller, or mystery genre stories, the true-life elements up to now might still have worked well for suspension of disbelief and selling the more imaginative elements, but this ending necessarily yanks the rug out from under anyone enjoying the story on that basis: the genre elements are not just deemphasized or removed, they were never there to begin with.

    The third group is probably more motivated to post than the first two, so one shouldn’t draw depressing conclusions based on a simple count of the responses here. But still, if the story is dropping the elements that appeal to the third group, they’re SOL and they know it.

    Blackjoker: I thought of that too — and a final strip zooming out from Mark wearing a catatonic stare, weregeeks around him shaking their heads as he’s wheeled off, permanently lost in his LARP halucination. Sort of a Brazil ending. Clearly not going to happen…

    Travis: “Also EVERYTHING mark has done now out of game is suspect.” And since group scenes were written from Mark’s (delusional) perspective, we can’t even be sure apparently shared experiences happened at all. Was Jess a girlfriend who broke up with him? Does she even exist?

    At this point the happiest resolution I can think of is a strip establishing
    that the brain tumor is benign and operable, and Mark can expect to make a full recovery (with Sarah helping him through it, and Jess forgiving his behavior based on his obvious medical problems, but no longer interested in a relationship).

    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 9:46 pm
  262. Travis Says:

    Felt Forced.

    What a let down ending over all to the end of the chronicle.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:10 am
  263. whims Says:

    Was Mark fooled by the original vampire LARP or not? The flashback had him following S.T. narration on the way in, so he couldn’t have been really fooled, but if he’s “finally getting payback” now, then what’s it for?

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:17 am
  264. Tirithek Says:

    Oh thank Zork. Well played Alina, I’m impressed with how the strips after the game ended so closely resembled the varying reactions of the commenters. Joel’s ‘you need a psychiatrist’ echoed a lot of the comments but I will admit a great deal of relief that Mark and the others were just trolling Joel (and by extension, you your audience)

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:26 am
  265. Mark Antony Says:

    …*slow clap*

    Well, you really got us good xD Well done.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:29 am
  266. RiderOfPhoenix Says:

    Quoting myself: “But the main plothole, the one in which Mark hadn’t even met them by then so there was no frikking way he could have joined a LARP with them (the first strips) is still there.”

    And I still feel like this is cheating the readers from the true narrative rather than coming to a satisfying conclussion. Not to say, mocking us again for pointing out that this end of the story doesn’t work.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:32 am
  267. Krause Says:

    I myself am dissapointed in people’s general dissapointment in this, to be honest! I felt that the hunter plot became more and more detached from what was really going on with the characters, which had become what the comic was all about – or, rather, had always been about. I’m really happy with the mundane ending to this.

    I’ll definitely be following the comic still, as it’s presently one of the most humane and down-to-earth webcomics around, with such a big heart instilled to it it’s a joy to read.

    It might be this’ll devide readers, but hey, it shouldn’t be taken that seriously! :) It’s a light hearted show, and should be read light heartedly.

    Best of luck, Alina! \o/

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 4:57 am
  268. LoneHowler Says:

    Well that’s cracks the “it was all a dream.” With just enough of a nod to “or was was it” to have me satisfied. I’m looking forward to seeing geeks vrs hunters as RP sessions in the future. Will it be something that can occur as it had in the past at geek moots, Ren fairs, and conventions? I can’t wait to see how it get used now that it’s been outed. Perhaps a rule book that can be purchased at some time in the future *puppy eyes*

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 5:40 am
  269. MacBone Says:

    Good ending! At least we know Mark’s not delusional now. =)

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 5:42 am
  270. Glew Says:

    Hah! Okay Alina, you must have had fun reading all the “OMG Mark is insane!” comments. My gosh how we all fell for this! :D

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 5:47 am
  271. Glew Says:

    Also on a side-note: for a long time I thought this, but now it’s even more apparent (now that we are writing comments about a the comic of 18th in the comment section of 11th) that a there would be appreciation for a regular comment section under the daily comics.
    Please consider this. I don’t know why this hasn’t been implemented yet, maybe you don’t like reading comments, maybe it’s technical difficulties… But please reconsider. Thanks!

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 5:51 am
  272. LoneHowler Says:

    I’m guessing that the geeks vs hunters is one of those games akin to the zombies vs humans that are run at colleges and universities that takes place over a few weeks, and can interact at anytime with real life, so long as it doesn’t interfere with work/classes. While the zombies always win, I can see this being far more long running, now with people being able to switch to ether side, there can’t be an eventual uneven tipping point as with the zombie games. I’d love to see this run for a con weekend

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:15 am
  273. LoneHowler Says:

    My original comment got eaten, so I’m guessing double posting is a no-no. I’m going to reconstruct my original and paste my second together as one post

    Well that cracks the “It was only a dream” with a nod to “or was it” with the geek shadows. I look forward to eventual geeks vs hunters RP sessions. Will it be sit down sessions, or will it be long running RP that interacts with real life?

    I’m guessing that the geeks vs hunters is one of those games akin to the zombies vs humans that are run at colleges and universities that takes place over a few weeks, and can interact at anytime with real life. so long as it doesn’t interfere with work/classes. While the zombies always win, I can see this being far more long running, now with people being able to switch to ether side, there can’t be an eventual uneven tipping point as with the zombie games. I’d love to see this run for a con weekend, perhaps a rule book in the future? *puppy eyes*

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:24 am
  274. LoneHowler Says:

    And then I realize I’m a moron and didn’t notice that other people posted comments after my original. I’m not used to it being so lively a debate

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:28 am
  275. Jer Says:

    Well done !

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 6:30 am
  276. Erev Says:

    Glew – There was, as I recall, a forum once upon a time. Due to issues with the forum it was removed with a plan to eventually replace it with something else. In the end it just never got replaced.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 7:07 am
  277. Goken Says:

    Beautiful ending on the 18th! I second the notion that it would be nice to have a more regular comment section. But anyway, perfect ending: we got to hash out the details of the LARP For a supposedly confused Mark but then he was just kidding. Maximum exposition with minimum insanity! Can’t wait for more!

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 7:16 am
  278. Belisar Says:

    fiuuuuu

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 10:03 am
  279. Erik Says:

    …*slow clap* seconded.

    Wow, that neatly sinks my three-hours-of-getting into Mark’s head, doesn’t it. However, this alternative fits much better than anything I cooked up
    d) he just trolls Joel – and it’s glorious.

    It is unavoidable that a turnover of the comic’s premise this big causes some friction, but the one thing I asked for was that the characters are treated with respect – and they were! The turning of Mark into a delusional weirdo we feared in the last 100+ comments was just a (well deserved) prank. He is still the Mark we love and identify with. Joel’s reaction was also handled respectfully. “OK, so my friend seems to have for real mental issues which casts our entire friendship in a disturbing new light and are really freaking me out, so I better talk to him, try to steer him away from the dangerous situations and get him professional help.”

    Glew: We all swallowed it hook, line and sinker, didn’t we? Alina must have had so much fun with our comments.

    LoneHowler: I really look forward to revisit the hunter storyline – KNOWING it is a game next time.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 10:48 am
  280. Travis Says:

    @Tirithek That was my Problem right there that it almost exactly mirrored the comment section. It felt like she was Into full Damage control and used the comment section to CYA. What came first the chicken or the egg.
    I Spent more time wondering had this Format not been Interactive would we have had the same ending. It Pulled the cardinal sin of writing that my English 101 teacher warned our class about many many years ago. Does what you are writing pull the reader/Viewer out of the fantasy. His example came from when he saw a Play in the Mid 60’s. The Line called foe the use of a swear word in got him so off guard that he spent so much time thinking about it he missed the End of Act 1. The comic on the 18th completely broke me out of the story and had me thinking of other stuff.

    Not sure exactly how I’m feeling still haven’t processed the comic still thinking about how she got there not the content :(

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 10:48 am
  281. SorrowfulCry Says:

    First off, it would be unfair of me to criticize the handling of Mark without showing some gratitude for the rescue of his character. So thank you for that, Alina.

    I still can’t say that this storyline inversion leaves me feeling anything but hollow about the comic, however. A sacrifice had to be made for the story to change so drastically, and while I am grateful that Mark was spared, systematic destruction of the trustworthy narrator still has a profound effect on how I view the narrative.

    One commentator said it well a few days ago – there has been a breach of trust between the author and the audience. That breach can be repaired, and in time, I’m sure that it will be for most people. I’m equally sure that the character-driven, slice-of-life stories that Alina wants to make her exclusive purview will be quite good and enjoyable.

    Still, for me, the comic will be forever diminished from deploying the nuclear version of Just A Dream(TM) on the metaplot – and because the very vehicle by which all future stories are told, the narrator’s perspective, has been made into a liar.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:15 am
  282. Andy4Hire Says:

    Well played, Alina, well played. Today’s strip provided a thoroughly satisfying answer to the “What’s up with Mark?” questions people have been asking.

    And, frankly, “Mark and the others were trolling Joel” is much more consistent with the overall tone and mood you’ve established for the strip than “Mark is seriously delusional” would be. Even in its more dramatic moments, I’ve always found Weregeek to be a lighthearted, fun-for-all-ages kind of strip, and a storyline about serious mental illness, however well you handled it (and I fully expect you’d handle it very well), would feel much too heavy in this comic.

    I do want to second Glew’s suggestion about implementing a daily comment thread, though. Because a daily comment thread appears right below the strip rather than on a separate page like a separate forum would, it’s more convenient for the readers, which means we’re more likely to use the daily thread, which in turn means you get more feedback from us more quickly. The kinds of thriving fan communities that I’ve seen spring up in some comics’ daily threads can also enrich everybody’s experience of the strip.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:40 am
  283. Mark Antony Says:

    @Travis I don’t know how big Alina’s buffer is, but given the quality of the strip and its consistency, I find it unlikely she wouldn’t have already inked and written this strip by the time those comments were written. Insofar as this mirrors the comment thread, I think it speaks more to how well Alina predicted people would react than anything else.

    @SorrowfulCry I confess I am extremely confounded by your apparent position that a narrator is under some kind of duty not to “lie” to you. The author owes us no duty to let us always know exactly what’s going on. Quite the opposite, in fact: an author who doesn’t keep us off-balance and in the dark is emphatically NOT doing her job and spoiling her own story.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:47 am
  284. TheCyberwoman Says:

    I had felt that the Hunter arc had gotten a little lost and muddied and just didn’t quite fit anymore. That said, I never wanted to lose the “were” in weregeek. It is what drew me in, and I’m sad to see it go. That wasnt enough of an ‘or was it?’ to give me any kind of hope. It seemed like more of way to say that while they’re not real (real within their world) the characters carry that spirit in them still. I didn’t read too much into the whole Mark’s gone crazy bit cause it didn’t seem to matter much when I was trying to piece together the actual continuity. Basically crazy or sane, joke or not, I’m glad that people are satisfied with Mark’s mental health now but this wrap up creates as many plot inconsistencies as it solves. As people have already pointed out, how did Mark not realize the Vampire LARP was a LARP when he was already in one, and if not realizing was part of the initial LARP why is he pranking Joel? I now wonder about a lot of their interactions, and now don’t know what was scripted and what was not, and maybe if this meta LARP was a bigger part in his breakup than the vampire, if only because even though he’s sane it did allow the LARP to bleed I to real life a lot. And while Mark’s sanity wasn’t much of an issue for me in particular, it was for a lot of people, and being thrown from feeling Mark’s confusion to having the same joke pulled on the audience as Joel, our POV has been beyond confusing and this seemed more like a joke at the audiences expense than with them. I don’t think now is a good time to make that joke. If everything was concluded flawlessly and all the pieces came together into a masterpiece, you would have earned a joke at the audiences expense. As it stands, you’ve been asking the audience to roll with you on a lot of things that still don’t add up, and on top of that they’re the butt of this final gag. I’ll admit that you solved the problem of treating your characters with respect, you did, they’re all sane and in character, but it came at the expense of respect for the audience the audience. Respect for the fantasy, respect for reasonable suspension of disbelief, respect for continuity… I’m still with you on this, I’ll keep following because I really enjoy the characters, but it will probably not be wih the same implicit trust in your story.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:55 am
  285. Bluegeek Says:

    Who would’ve thought that Mark would put one over on Joel? Apparently he’s a better actor and less clueless than we’ve given him credit for.

    THAT was a great ending.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 12:30 pm
  286. Purple Library Guy Says:

    I liked the little twist where Mark is trolling Joel rather than crazy. But it doesn’t have any impact on my general dislike of the “It was all a dream” approach to the plotline which basically formed the premise of the strip. I guess I wasn’t taking the “crazy” thing as seriously as some, for one thing. Perhaps it didn’t seem to me likely that we were now going to have a plot dedicated to Mark spending all his time with psychiatrists, taking medication, dealing with stigma etc. So yeah, nice twist, doesn’t address the basic problem that the main twist is
    1) An example of a schtick that has long been in the running for World’s Worst Plot Device, and
    2) Kind of directly counter to the spirit of fantasy roleplaying, in that it’s saying “Well, really, we prefer our fiction without fantastical elements or tension derived from life-and-death problems” when it’s both for and about people who precisely prefer their fiction with those things.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 12:45 pm
  287. DragonStryk72 Says:

    …And I’m done. So basically, all of the plotholes are still completely plotholes, and nothing was actually real. Everything we were shown was a direct lie to us for quite some time, all built to draw us in so we could find out that none of it mattered to anything, and that our only point of view for the entire comic was just a front for slapping us all down for caring about the plot.

    Yeah, that’s it for me, thanks. A special thanks for insulting me for months, and making certain I can’t even just go over the old comics, cause they’re just a giant troll on the audience, by the way.

    Posted March 18th, 2014 at 1:27 pm
  288. SorrowfulCry Says:

    @Mark Antony

    You should not be confounded. This is not a difficult concept to understand. We are talking here about several years worth of storylines, and several dozen individual comic strips, that are suddenly revealed to be retro-actively false.

    Note that there were no clues hidden in the original context for us to pick up on – because when originally written, the narrator was supposed to be trustworthy. The adventure was supposed to be real. Things changed when Alina decided she didn’t want to tell that story anymore.

    A good author can surprise their readers without tipping their hand. A great author can weave twists that leave you smacking your forehead after the fact, because wow, it was all there if you’d just noticed. Neither of those were the case here. This was a paper-mache explanation for a retcon.

    If that’s your cup of tea, power to you. I’m glad you enjoyed it. But good golly, don’t be confounded that not everyone thinks shouting WHAT A TWEEST is inherently amazing literature.

    Posted March 19th, 2014 at 12:58 am
  289. Curt Adams Says:

    There have been lots of clues – starting, as one commentator observed on the other thread, with the narration boxes, which are reserved for in-game narration – and the Hunters thread. And people appearing both in “real life” and as Hunters. And the de-broken window. And, heck, the name “Hunter” (a roleplaying game from White Wolf). Agatha Christie didn’t leave this many clues.

    Posted March 24th, 2014 at 12:20 am

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