Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Back From The Depths Presents : SHOCKING CHILLERS 2012

Now available for free download, SHOCKING CHILLERS, the new 32 page yuletide horror comic from the creators of Hallowscream!

Contents are as follows...

Cover & Intro page by Malcolm Kirk (that's me).
Page 3 : Jolasveinar Story by Paul Bristow, Art by Andy Lee
Page 10 : Deadly Flue Story & Art by Gordon Innes
Page 13 : Reunion Story by Sam Larkin, Art by James Newell
Page 16 : Terrorvision Guide by Malcolm Kirk
Page 17 : Yuletide Fear Story by Oscar Maltby, Art by Matthew Herbert
Page 18 : Yeti Story & Art by Gordon Innes
Page 21 : The First Page Story & Art by Carol Kewley
Page 22 : The Fright Before Christmas Story by Tim West, Art by Christopher Geary
Page 28 : Graveyard Ghoul Pin-up by "The Gurch"
Page 29 : Good Will Story by Derek Hamill, Art by Jon Taylor
Page 32 : Red-nosed Skull by Malcolm Kirk

You can download this issue from DROPBOX or MEDIAFIRE.

File size is 16.4 mb.

It will also probably also be available from Back From The Depths later on (where you can download issues of Hallowscream), and viewable online at MYEBOOK if it stops being awkward and lets me upload the bloomin'* thing.

* © Raymond Briggs.

Edit : You can now see it on MYEBOOK.

Have a Horribly Merry Christmas, everybody.


Tuesday, 11 December 2012


Moomintroll, Hobgoblin's hat and some hattifatteners. Drew this for The Weekly Themed Art Blog, for which I chose this week's theme.
My introduction to The Moomins was via this '80s Polish animated series...

Monday, 3 December 2012

The Collected Adventures of Stick-Man Volume One

 Bit of an experiment here. I've put together a pdf collection of some of my Stick-Man comic strips and made it available for download on Comicsy, but unlike most of the other downloadable stuff I link to on here, this one'll cost you actual money. (GASP!)
20 British pence of money, to be precise. For that, you'll get over 20 pages of comic strip. That's dead cheap, that is. Yes, it is.
Go HERE if you fancy buying the thing. It's done via paypal, and you'll get the download link sent to you in an email.
File size is 32mb.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Dead By Dawn : New Game for the ZX Spectrum!

30 years ago, a man unleashed something into this world, the likes of which had never before been seen by mortal eyes. A thing which changed forever all who came into contact with it. That man was Clive Sinclair, and that thing was the ZX Spectrum.

One year previously, the first Evil Dead film had also been unleashed upon an unsuspecting public.

Now these two pop culture phenomenomenomena have been forever fused together into a disturbing game what I did. (Actually there was another spectrum game years ago, that kind of already did that, but forget about that for now).

Dead By Dawn is actually based on the second film in the series, Evil Dead 2 : Dead By Dawn, a film which mixed the original's horror with a large dollop of dark cartoony comedy.  Both films have  constantly been homaged, referenced, parodied and ripped off over the years, in everything from cartoons to music videos to other films like Cabin In The Woods. There was a final sequel in 1992, Army of Darkness, (not really a horror film at all), and next year sees a suitably nasty-looking remake of the first movie being released.

Anyway, back to the game...

I first had the idea for Dead By Dawn, around the same time I was using 3D Construction Kit to create Loups Garoux, (more info about that HERE).  Evil Dead 2 was, (and still is), one of my favourite films and I found myself figuring out how different scenarios from the film could be implemented within the confines of the Freescape game engine. Of course, this was at the time the Spectrum's commercial life was ending, and I had little motivation to get the thing made. It was only a number of years later, when I became aware of just how big the retro gaming scene had become, that I decided to sit down and make a start on it.


You are Bruce Charcoal, you've accidentally awoken an ancient evil and now you must find 12 pages of a magical spellbook in order to banish that evil forever. There are a few beasties you'll have to defeat on the way, but luckily, you're armed with a shotgun and you also get access to a chainsaw, which you'll need for one big beasty in particular, but you'll have to find it first.


O : Forward
K : Back
Z : Left
X : Right
Q : Turn left
W : Turn right
P : Look up
L : Look down
R : Stand up
F : Crouch
A : Activate object
SPACE : Toggle gun-sight
B : Fire
U : U-turn
I : Centre view
symbol shift : run (different emulators may use different keys for this one, but it's most likely to be CTRL on your keyboard)

There's a work in progress video of the game HERE, (I've altered the border around the main play area since I recorded that).

The zip file contains the game as tzx, z80 and sna files, and there's also a jpeg of a mock cassette inlay for the game. You'll need a spectrum emulator in order to play the thing, but you should be able to find something suitable HERE. 


Addendum 24/11/12 : Now also includes a tap file, that I noticed had been posted on the World of Spectrum forums, courtesy of Frank Triggs. Ta, Frank.

I'll leave you with an iconic scene from the film which inspired it...


Friday, 9 November 2012

Print edition of Hallowscream! 2012 now available via Lulu!

Just a quick note to tell you that you can now purchase a physical copy of the fourth issue of Hallowscream HERE for just £2.99. (The lowest you can pay on postage is also £2.99 in the UK, so that's a 60 page paperback for a total of just under £6.)
All three previous issues are also available.

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Back From The Depths Presents : HALLOWSCREAM! 2012

It's ALIVE (again) !

The Back From The Depths 2012 HALLOWSCREAM! Hallowe'en Special has returned from the depths once more and is available to download as a totally free pdf file!

60 pages of horror for your delectation, a bevvy of beasties and brutality behind a monstrous cover by Malcolm Kirk!

SEE the stomach-churning sideshow freak!

HEAR the bellowing countryside beast which feasts upon unwary wanderers into its domain!

SMELL the bodily emissions of the not exactly undead! They sing! They dance!

You can download this issue from BACK FROM THE DEPTHS, MEDIAFIRE or DROPBOX, or view it online at MYEBOOK, (login required for myebook due to gory content).

File size is 26.5mb.

Full contents are as follows...

Page 3 : Beaten Path Story by John J Owens, Art by Neil Roberts
Page 9 : The Gravedigger Story by Matt Garvey, Art by Erick Marquez
Page 14 : Sucked Story by Dirk Van Dom, Art by El Chivo, Letters by Jim Campbell
Page 17 : Farmin' Story by Paul Eldridge, Art by Chow Martin
Page 19 : Cash 4 Souls Story & Art by Gordon Innes
Page 20 : Youkai Chronicles : Mokumokuren Story by Dirk Van Dom, Art by Antony Rothwell
Page 25 : Terrorvision Guide by Malcolm Kirk
Page 26 : Gaki Story by Paul Bristow, Design by Malcolm Kirk
Page 29 : Charles Wynford Lodge Movie Posters by Julian Jones
Page 30 : Buck Tucker : Enemy of Love Story by Dirk Van Dom, Art by Bhuna
Page 33 : Terribly Bad Monsters : To Be Frank Story & Art by Christopher Geary

Page 34 : The Pond Story by Chris Sides, Art by Chris Travell
Page 41 : Terribly Bad Monsters : A Curse Unwound Story & Art by Christopher Geary
Page 42 : A Grim Tale : Freakshow Story & Art by Malcolm Kirk
Page 43 : Dead Wood Story by Dave Roberts, Art & Letters by Michael Kennedy
Page 47 : The Nuisance Story & Art by Antony Rothwell
Page 49 : Rayne : Demon Hunter Story & Art by Rattan Bhagwandin
Page 54 : AAIIEEE! Advertisement
Page 55 : The Wanbies Story by Tim West, Art by Neil McClements
Page 59 : Deadvertisements by Malcolm Kirk
Page 60 : Back Cover Skull by Malcolm Kirk

Monday, 22 October 2012

Temple APA Issue Twelve

Have you forgotten how good it tastes? The 66 page Temple APA Issue Twelve is now available to download as part of a complete breakfast a totally free pdf file, containing contributions from the likes of Dave Hailwood, Paul Eldridge, Simon Mackie, Tony Suleri, Adam Grose and Malcolm Kirk, (that's me), who also provides 100% of the recommended allowance of front cover, which you can see above these words, (unless you're standing on your head or something, in which case - what on Earth are you doing that for? Get the proper way up this instant! How can you even work a mouse like that?).

You can download from Dropbox, MediaFire or view online at MyEbook.
PDF file size is 17.6 MB.

The Temple APA is a showcase for amateur and professional creators who are active in the UK comics scene. If you'd like to contribute or just want more information, check out the Temple blog or like us on Facebook...

Temple APA blog
Temple APA Facebook page


Monday, 9 July 2012

Friday, 1 June 2012

Temple APA Issue Eleven

Undeath's a beach! The 44 page Temple APA Issue Eleven is now available to download as a totally free pdf file, containing contributions from the likes of Dave Hailwood, Jim Stewart, Paul Eldridge, Simon Mackie, Malcolm Kirk and Tony Suleri.

You can download from Dropbox, MediaFire, FileDropper, or view online at MyEbook (login required due to mature content).

PDF file size is 13.83 MB.

Temple APA blog

Monday, 23 April 2012

Malcolm Kirk's Crap Games Corner

Something a bit different this time. Today is the 30th birthday of the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, a classic British 8-bit computer. To celebrate this, I've decided to upload a few programs I 'created' way back when, (I actually nicked two of them from books and fiddled about with them a bit). They're .Z80 files and the most of them are crap, (but that just adds to the nostalgia). You'll need a spectrum emulator to have a proper look at them, though you should be able to find something suitable online.

Click HERE to download the tiny zip file containing all the programmy stuff.


This was a Breakout clone printed in the Spectrum +2 manual in the BASIC programming language. I modified it slightly, adding graphical flourishes and snazzy effects, making it far slower and quite a bit worse. Hurrah!


I'll let the video speak for itself...

Controls for AOTKLFH1 : Shift & M     Controls for AOTKLFH2 : M


An unplayable demo programmed in BASIC, using user-defined graphics.


Another UDG BASIC demo thingy.


You can 'play' this one. Enter your initials, press enter,  and press SPACE to fire and see if you can hit the target. Basic in every sense of the word.


This was another type-in program printed in a book, (not sure which one). Again, I added a few extra graphicy bits, namely, an explosion, a splash and some contrails.

Controls are 8 : Down, 9 : Up  and 0 : Fire.

...and last but not least, a proper, less crap game...


This is a game created using Domark's 3-D Construction Kit, a nifty program that allowed you to create 'Freescape' games in the style of classic spectrum games, such as Driller, Total Eclipse and Castle Master. I'd originally intended to send the game for inclusion on Your Sinclair magazine's cover-tape, but this was 1993, the Spectrum was no longer in production. Its commercial life was over, and so games and software were disappearing from shops, and inevitably, all the magazines disappeared too, with Your Sinclair being the last to go in September of that year, (although it would return for one more issue, eleven years later, as a free giveaway with Retro Gamer magazine).


In Loups Garoux you play the part of Antoine Gandillon, a man cursed to become a wolf each full moon. Seeking a cure for your affliction, you must find a witch and collect potions for her. You'll also need crucifixes. Not only do these restore energy, you'll need them to defeat a creature which holds one of the potions.


O : Forward
K : Back
Z : Left
X : Right
Q : Turn left
W : Turn right
P : Look up
L : Look down
R : Stand up
F : Crouch
A : Activate object
SPACE : Toggle gun-sight
B : Fire
U : U-turn
I : Centre view


I've got a few more crappy bits and pieces that I'll probably upload at a later date. So, keep an eye out for those, and there's also another one of those Freescape things that I've been meaning to finish for ages which will definitely be online in some form or other by the end of this year. Yes, it will. I've said it now. Watch this space!

In the meantime, check out World of Spectrum for "loads" (ho, ho), of speccy goodness.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Hallowscream Print Editions Now Available & The New Issue(s) Guidelines

Physical print editions of all three issues of Hallowscream! are now available to buy from Lulu. If you fancy owning one of these glossy covered, A4 black and white volumes, then click here to view them on Lulu. If you're a skinflinty scrooge you'll still be catered for, because they'll remain available as free pdf downloads from Back From The Depths.

Talking of Scrooges, there are new guidelines online for those who'd like to contribute stories and artwork to the comic. However, we're now looking for submissions for two issues, one of which will be Hallowscream 4, the other, a Christmas Special. Click here for more details.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

15 Seconds to Zarjaz (Part 2) & Down The Tubes 2000ad Interview

Here's eight new drawings of 2000ad characters, each done in 15 seconds. For the first lot, click here. Some of these characters are a bit more recent than the last lot, but you should know at least a couple of them if you've ever been a squax...

Also, it being 2000ad's 35th birthday this month, Down The Tubes have been running a series of interviews on the subject with a variety of comic creators and fans. My one seems to have been the last to go up, (always better to be fashionably late to a party). You can read it by clicking HERE and the whole lot of 'em by clicking HERE.

Splundig Vur Thrigg!

Saturday, 25 February 2012

15 Seconds to Zarjaz

It's 2000ad's 35th birthday this week. In honour of this, I thought I'd post some pictures I drew a couple of years ago depicting some of the characters from this long running, alien-edited, science fiction comic. However, they're slightly odd because I decided to do an experiment to see if I could capture a recognizable likeness in 15 second scribbles. I kinda' could.

Might do some more of these. For the moment, if you're familiar with the comic, see if you can work out who these are supposed to be...

Edit : You can now see eight more HERE .

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Back From The Depths Presents : BLACKFRIARS

The year is 793 AD. Savage, heathen armies from the north invade Northumberland, for today is the day of the viking, but the night... The night belongs to something else.

Now available as a free pdf download, Blackfriars is a tale of vampires versus vikings by Michael Crouch.

The first episode appeared in the 2010 edition of Hallowscream, with further episodes appearing on Michael's blog in weekly instalments. The story is drawn in the style of a serial from the classic British "Scream!" comic.

The cover is by John Caliber and there's a short image gallery at the back of the collection with artwork by Andrew Milne, David Blankley, and Grant Perkins (with Mike Bunt inking and Owen Watts colouring).

Download now from CLICKWHEEL, MEDIAFIRE or view online at MYEBOOK.

A download link will probably also appear on the homepage of BACK FROM THE DEPTHS in the near future.

File size = 30MB.


Michael Crouch's website

Michael Crouch's blog

Friday, 17 February 2012

Temple APA Issue X

FROM THE DEPTHS OF SPACE... The tenth issue of the Temple APA digital comics showcase is now available for free download.

This issue contains 60 pages of artwork and strips by a host of creators, including Tony Suleri, Dave Hailwood, Simon Mackie, Paul Eldridge, Greg Meldrum, Tim West and Malcolm Kirk, (who also compiled the issue and created the cover artwork).

To download, right click HERE and "save target/link as".

PDF file size is 17.2MB.

You can also download from CLICKWHEEL, MEDIAFIRE or view online at MYEBOOK.

The Temple APA is a showcase for amateur and professional creators active in the UK comics scene. If you'd like to contribute or just want more information, check out the Temple website.


Tuesday, 17 January 2012


The comic strip below was done back in 2008, and was originally intended for a Mistycomic.co.uk special. They didn't use it, (probably mainly due to lack of space), and there's been no news of any further specials, so I thought I'd share it here.

The original Misty first appeared back in 1978. It was a supernatural/horror comic aimed squarely at girls, (actually not the first time this had been done). Aside from the supposed ghostly girly editor of the comic, (also named Misty), Miss T was the only regularly appearing character.

I became familiar with Misty via annuals belonging to my older sisters, and while I thought most of the other stuff they read was rubbish and/or boring, Misty was something altogether different. The annuals were filled with stories of werewolves, vampires, undead pirates, murderous arsonist rag-dolls and at least one skeletal knight with worms wriggling about in its eye-sockets. Misty was cool.

Miss T, on the other hand, wasn't particularly cool, but when the opportunity to pay tribute to the original comic arose, she's the first thing that popped into my head.

So here she is...

More about Misty and Miss 'T' HERE!

..and this is her cat...

Miss 'T' is © 2012 Egmont UK Ltd.