The History of Clan Rikier

(NOTE: This page is currently under construction, more info WILL be coming to it soon!)

Clan Rikier is a spin-off of the underground comic Sam and Molly (written and illustrated by Nick Crotser) which originally ran from 2004 to 2007. It originally began as a series of sketches and character redesigns centered around the now named John Rikier, an incidental character in Sam and Molly. The original concept behind Clan Rikier was a gag-a-day/serial hybrid just as Sam and Molly was, this was reworked into following John in his life as a high school freshman, which eventually became the slice-of-life we know today, beginning the winter after his high-school graduation.

An early character design sketch of John (circa. early 2007)
We call this “Classic Style”


In 2010 work began on Clan Rikier as a digital only comic, it was intended it to be a webcomic from the beginning, unfortunately life and technology issues prevented more than a handful of pages from being completed and Clan Rikier was put on an indefinite hiatus and all the published pages were pulled down from ComicFury, the host at the time. To the best of our knowledge none of the original run survived several hard drive failures that were experienced over the years. Then, in early 2015, we decided to revive the series, this time as an analogue comic to be completed then scanned and uploaded, just like Sam and Molly had been.

Character design sketch digitized & colored. Note the digitigrade legs,
at this point all canine characters possessed these.
(circa early 2010)

At this point in development, John went from being a nondescript brown dog to a black/brown and orange doberman, lots of character development was being made. John’s home life and family were very different, he was the middle child in a poorer family, he still worked at MuZiks in Crossroads Mall (Which as a fictional location in itself predates even Sam and Molly by many years), he still had far to go to become the John we know and love today.

Clan Rikier 01×01 – “A Day in the Life I”
Elements from this page would go on to be used in
#08 – “Another Green Rose” and #09 – “A Day in the Life I”

At this stage, plans were to have the story progress via story arcs, these arcs would be completed and released once the last page was finished. This proved very difficult to follow through on as all of Nick’s comic writing experience thus far was in gag-a-day and one-off type strips, production work once again was put on hiatus. Development however kept going strong and in late December 2016 it was decided, once again to try to revive Clan Rikier, this time it would end up sticking. We would abandon the highly structured story arc style delivery method and adapted a writing style similar to Sam and Molly, have an outline of how we’d like the next few pages/strips to go and let the story happen organically, in a sense we don’t know what happens until it happens for the characters.

Not having worked like this together graphically on this level before, we experimented and slowly refined the drawing style over the course of the first 10 strips, letting character design change and refine itself over repetition, the style eventually settled on something mostly mine with little hints here and there of hers, very interesting if you’re familiar with any of our solo works. We quickly moved from strips to pages to aid storytelling as strips limit what emotions can be felt and events revealed at any one time. The Clan Rikier release schedule is now similar to the long running webcomic JACK, pages are released as they’re finished, with no set release date.