Thursday, February 01, 2007

Godzilla Neo FAQ

What is "Godzilla Neo"?

G Neo, as I like to call it, is an unofficial, unlicensed, unapproved fan-project created by myself, Matt Frank, for the sheer, awesome hell of it. In a nutshell, the idea was born out of a desire to take the entirety of the Toho Godzilla universe and create a cohesive continuity out of it, not to mention redesign and re-imagine the characters of the universe. As stated, this project is in no way connected to or sanctioned by Toho Co. Ltd, and it is likely far beneath their notice.

Okay, so what exactly IS Neo?
Each Neo redesign takes a classic Toho character, breaks it down into what made him or her special or unique in the first place, then builds from there, while still clinging to the roots of the word "kaiju." Beyond the series of art, each piece comes with a short biography on the monsters, also lending to the overarching Godzilla Neo timeline (see below), which serves to unify and "clean up" the Tohoverse. While I'm not tackling every single one of the Toho characters, I have mixed in some of the "unmade" monsters as well as a handful from other Godzilla and Toho universes (like Zone Fighter and the Hanna Barbera series).
Originally, my mission statement included "ousting all that is cheesy or unappealing," and it took over a year to realize that such a mindset is a weak pretense. What made kaiju of the classic era so endearing and appealing was, in fact, their "cheesiness," so to deny that is to deny their handmade charm. So I should say, instead, that I'm going for "what they could do without a rubber suit," but not necessarily CGI or anything. A re-imagining with the original's spirit (more or less) may be the way to think on it.

How are the various Godzillas portrayed?
Godzilla Neo moves with "a lumbering grace, proudly holding his head high and gracefully swinging his tail (not slapping it around unless necessary)." Think of a combination of the JP T-Rex or Spinosaurus crossed with the GMK Godzilla.

As for the differences between the Godzillas, the first is VERY violent and aggressive. He's clearly confused and in pain, but still moves in a sinister fashion like GMK Goji. The Showa Goji fights pretty animalistically/borderline anthromorphically on through the Heisei series, and when Junior becomes the third Godzilla, he fights like his father. The GMK-style G Neo is much like the original...since he IS the original. G Unleashed Neo Goji will be Junior once more. It's a little complicated...I may make an FAQ soon. Final Wars Goji Neo will be, again, like the original/GMK version. There's another Godzilla, but I'll reveal that later :D

Where can I find the Neo monsters?

Are human characters as important as the kaiju?

Yes. The kaiju and humans should have equal levels of character development.

Where are my favorite monsters?

I'm going in a semi-chronological order when it comes to my updates, so, for example, Zone Fighter gets updated before Mecha King Ghidorah.

How often is Neo updated?

I try to update once every Friday, Saturday or Sunday, and it'll either be a monster, a race or a locale.

What is the timeline?

KING GHIDORAH invades Earth, begins changing the climate and destroying all life. The Earth creates GIGAMOTH to counter Ghidorah. Ghidorah is driven from Earth but not before separating Gigamoth into MOTHRA and BATTRA.

The GOJIRASAURUS MAXIMUS clan survives the great extinction.

The Millenians arrive on Earth. They create the MEGANURA swarm. The resulting war against the Rodans forces the aliens into mass genetic memory hibernation.

78,000 YEARS AGO -
The Elias, a race of tiny humanoids, arrive on Earth. Creating "GIGAMASS," they intended to alter Earth's environment to suite their needs. BATTRA seeks to destroy them, but is stopped by MOTHRA. The Elias are all but destroyed, and Gigamass locked away deep beneath the Earth. Mothra takes Moll and Lora under her wing as her priestesses.

11,000 YEARS AGO -
OROCHI first appears, fights IKUSAGAMI and is defeated. From the 8 heads are born VARAN, MANDA, BARAGON, SHIIGAN, BARUKARUDON, VAGNOSAURUS, JYARUMU and BALKZARDAN. The battle gives rise to the legend of Susano-Oh's defeat of Yamato no Orochi.

10,500 YEARS AGO -
The Spawn of Orochi return, each one defeated or subdued in a particular way before they can kill/absorb each other to the point of regenerating Orochi himself.

10,000 YEARS AGO -
The great battle between AXOR and the mind-controlled BALKZARDAN and JYARUMU against MOTHRA, MANDA and the birth of KING CAESAR.
The Sinking of Mu; survivors flee to Asia, South America, Egypt and eventually Seatopia.

3,000 YEARS AGO -
Theorized date of the society that worshipped the kaiju KING KONG, ANGUIRUS, KUMONGA and GOROSAURUS, each created by the radiation of the Slab.

The legend of GOJIRA begins on Odo Island.

JULY 14TH, 1945 -
The first atomic bomb test.

GODZILLA I appears on Odo Island. After JSDF attacks it with depth charges, Godzilla retaliates and destroys most of Tokyo. Later, the creature is killed by the Oxygen Destroyer compound. The creature's skeleton is gradually salvaged and taken to a base in Tokyo (over the next several decades).

GODZILLA II appears, fights ANGUIRUS in Osaka. Godzilla wins, Anguirus comatose in Osaka River. Later, Godzilla is buried in an ice berg by fighter pilots, but is later dug out by Anguirus.

RODAN I and II appear along with first wave of MEGANURON swarm. Both Rodans are killed in the eruption of Mt. Aso. Meganuron swarm scattered. RODAN III (offspring) survived.

First expedition to Infant Island, first encounter with the Shobijin. Both girls are kidnapped by Clark Nelson, but later rescued by Prof. Shinichi Chujo. MOTHRA appears, marches across Japan, cocooning itself at Tokyo Tower, where she emerges as an imago. Flies to Rolisica, where she retrieves the Shobijin.

FRANKENSTEIN officially found and cared for, until his escape and eventual fight against the DEUTALIOS.

GAIRA and SANDA are born from Frankenstein's scattered cells, and eventually fight.

Godzilla freed from the ice by ANGUIRUS and fights a recently discovered KING KONG (after the latter fights GOROSAURUS). Kong beats Godzilla, seemingly at the cost of his own life.

The GOTENGO is developed.

Mothra's egg washes ashore in Southern Japan, and Happy Enterprises buys and puts the egg on display.
GODZILLA II finally re-appears, combats Mothra and the Larvae twins. Godzilla is defeated and driven into the sea, and the larvae return to Infant Island.

The first contact with the Xillians. Astronauts Glen and Fuji make trip to Planet X, where the natives suggest a compromise to remove Godzilla and Rodan from Earth to protect from future raids by a mysterious monster. In return, the "Miracle Drug" was given to Earth...though it all turned out to be a hoax, even though no one listened to Princess Salno when she appeared in Japan, claiming to be of the planet Venus. Using mind-control waves, GODZILLA and RODAN are turned loose on Earth. Thanks to the Lady Guard tech and the aid of Miss Namikawa they are freed, but begin to fight one another, until the intervention of the larvae twins.
KING GHIDORAH appears, the Xillians only barely influencing the space monster.
The Earth kaiju band together to KILL the space monster, and the Xillians are defeated by the Gotengo.

What they were all unaware of was Ghidorah's contingency plan...

The EARTH DEFENSE FORCE is established.
Godzilla reportedly destroys a Red Bamboo base on Letchi Island. First appearance of EBIRAH.

First reports of the YOG phenomenon and GEZORA, as well as GODZUKI.

HEDORAH appears, battles Godzilla to a standstill, until the creature is dehydrated by the JSDF and killed by Godzilla.

Nebulan invasion, alliance formed with Seatopia to conquer the surface. GIGAN and MEGALON appear, battled with GODZILLA and ANGUIRUS at World Children's Land. JET JAGUAR defeats Nebulan forces at the Godzilla Tower, and gives Godzilla the time he needed to send Gigan packing.

Simeon invasion, first wave. MECHA-GODZILLA and GODZILLA do battle, Godzilla is defeated. Later, KING CAESAR awakens and aids Godzilla against MECHA-GODZILLA. MG defeated.

MECHA-GODZILLA re-appears with Simeon second wave. TITANOSAURUS and MG fight GODZILLA and KING CAESAR. Simeon forces largely defeated.

1976: Godzilla disappears from the map. Multiple sightings in the south seas, however, attest to the creature's presence.

1984 -
GODZILLA II rises from hibernation due to an erupting volcano. After attacking a nuclear sub and feeding off its power, Godzilla is attacked by a group of Soviet and US subs. He attacks Japan, and fights the GOTENGO, later dropped into Mt. Mihara.

1991 -
Godzilla reemerges, BIOLLANTE is born. Godzilla fights Biollante and the Gotengo and is infected by the ANEB.

1992 -
BATTRA's egg is discovered, hatches en-route to Japan. Battra and MOTHRA do battle, then fight Godzilla. Battra is killed.

1993 -
GODZILLA JUNIOR is born on Solgell Island. The Gimantids, KAMACURAS and KUMONGA are discovered.

1994 -
An alien crystal anomaly appears on Birth Island, captures and takes Junior to Fukuoka. Uses Junior's DNA to become SPACE GODZILLA. SG fights Godzilla and MOGUERA. M is destroyed, Godzilla defeats Space G.

1995 -
Godzilla becomes BURNING GODZILLA. DESTOROYAH is born. They fight, and the JSDF helps defeat Destoroyah.
Godzilla goes into Meltdown.
Junior mutates into GODZILLA III.

1996 -
PROJECT DT, PROJECT MG and PROJECT Y and put into effect.

MOTHRA fights GARUGARU (aka "Death Ghidorah") in Hokkaido, and is defeated. Mothra Larvae pupates, drawing energy from the Tree of Life, and metamorphosizes, defeating GARUGARU.
"Gigamass" is first discovered.

1997 -
DAGAHRA appears and attacks several island towns in southern Japan. MOTHRA intervenes, but is badly beaten, until a small piece of sentient Gigamass, called "GHOGO" uses its power to revive her and Dagahra is beaten by both Mothra and BATTRA.

1998 -
ZILLA appears in New York City, and subsequently killed by the Air Force. Later, "Zilla Jr." is found by Nick Tatopolous, and without G-Force's knowledge, raises the creature.

1999 -
Mothra and Battra battle the final piece of Gigamass, RAZIN.

Monster Island is officially unveiled to the world.

The Millenian UFO is discovered and is energized by solar power. Seeking out GODZILLA III, they fight.
Later they rematch in Shinjuku and ORGA is born, then beaten by Godzilla.

Zilla disappears from Tatopolous's HQ for several months, supposedly killed by the Army.

2000 -
ZILLA is discovered and nearly killed.
HEAT heads for Jamaica, and discover C-REX. Zilla reappears and destroys C-Rex. The team then heads for deep Central America, where they find EL GUSANO. Gusano is defeated by Zilla and captured by G-Force.
Finally, HEAT heads for Alaska and finds KOMODITHRAX. The two stay in isolation under HEAT's protection. KAMOEBAS appears and fights the two. Komodithrax, the eggs, and Kamoebas presumed destroyed. zilla fight GODZILLA, is defeated.

Zilla is taken to Monster Island.

2001 -
Project DT is finalized. The first experiment brings back the MEGANURA swarm.
Shibuya is flooded, and the Meganura steal Godzilla's energy to feed to MEGAGUIRUS. Megaguirus appears, fights Godzilla and Rodan in Tokyo.

2002 -
Godzilla is infected by the Project Yoshiwara serum.
The Dianii aliens appeared, chasing BAGORAH to Earth. Godzilla, Bagorah and the Dianii fight. Godzilla wins.

The SCALE attack on Monster Island takes place - MEGAGUIRUS revealed to be held on the island, kills EBIRAH during the battle. ZILLA destroys Megaguirus.

2003 -
KIRYU officially unveiled. Goes berserk after meeting Godzilla.
The Shobijin implore that Godzilla I's bones be returned to the sea. Godzilla appears, looking for Kiryu, but is intercepted by Mothra. Kiryu, Mothra and Godzilla battle.
Godzilla is defeated, but taken back to the sea by a "re-awakened" Kiryu.

2004 -
A new Godzilla (nicknamed "Ghost Godzilla") appears and rampages across Japan (somehow linked to Kiryu and Godzilla III).
The Yamato Guardians, BARAGON, MANDA and VARAN, are awoken and fight Godzilla. Admiral Tachibana destroys him from within, rendering only the heart of Godzilla. The heart is taken to "Area G" in the South Pole for isolation.

2007 -
The Crystal Incursion, and GODZILLA III reappears, and frees Monster Island from the effects of the crystals.
He then fights OBSIDIUS in Seattle, moving on to NYC, where KRYSTALAK appears and fights the monster king. Krystalak's exploding core opens a wormhole, nearly bringing SPACE GODZILLA through, but is beaten back by Godzilla and the Gotengo.

2054 -
A young EDF operative, Ozaki Shinichi, is chosen for an experiment to combine human DNA with G-Cells. Meanwhile, all of the monsters on Monster Island disappear and are turned loose on various cities across the planet.

Rodan attacks New York!
Anguirus demolishes Shanghai!
Gorosaurus raids Los Angeles!
Kumonga mangles Moscow!
Kamacuras pulverizes Paris!
Titanosaurus topples London!

It is discovered that the Kilaaks, a race from between Mars and Jupiter, are responsible for the attack. It is later discovered that a strange Xillian, "The Regulator" is pulling the strings.
Godzilla is reborn from the heart frozen under the ice at Area G. The Gotengo leads the monster to Tokyo, where he fights Gigan.
The Gotengo heads for Mt. Fuji, where the monster army is trying to destroy Mothra's cocoon, but King Caesar and Battra arrive to fight them. Megalon appears in Tokyo and stalls Gigan so that Godzilla can go help fight. Megalon knows that Gigan is being controlled by the Regulator, so he self-destructs and takes Gigan with him.
Ozaki fights the Regulator and defeats him, but then the Regulator becomes MONSTER X!
The Monster Army is freed, and Godzilla fights Monster X, defeats him. Monster X is absorbed by the returning King Ghidorah and becomes KAISER GHIDORAH. Monster Army plus Mothra fight Ghidorah, Godzilla defeats him with Ozaki's added G-Cell power.

2056 -
MKG destroys most of Earth's monsters, then goes AWOL.

2057 -
The Garoga appear on Earth and created BAGAN. SUPER GODZILLA is created in retaliation.
Bagan kills Mothra and Battra, but the two then form GIGAMOTH.
Super Godzilla and Gigamoth fight Bagan in Tokyo. With MKG's help, Bagan is destroyed.
Gigamoth "dies," creates a new egg. Super Godzilla goes out to sea with the egg.

What are the main human characters?

Humans will be treated similarly to the kaiju in Godzilla Neo, in other words, they are just as important, so many characters that appeared in one film will appear in numerous events, like Chujo. Others will have their characters combined with others, such as Junko, who is no longer a bungling stereotype but rather much more capable but somewhat under-appreciated. She is not only a major character in Mothra vs. Godzilla Neo but also in the first half of the Monster Zero War (as Princess Salno's confident, if you recall).


Showa era (post-Gojira Neo) -

Astronauts Glenn and Fuji, Miss Namikawa, Ichiro Sakai (reporter), Junko (reporter, not as stoopid), Gyozen (Gotengo captain), (Cast of GvsH, worked on by imposterzilla), MORE TO BE ADDED, there's a damn lot :P

There's also the Calico Crew to consider, which consists of Captain Majors, Dr. Quinn, Brock, Pete, and a few new characters for that storyline.

Heisei Era -

Miki Saegusa, the Shobijin, Lt. Kuroki, the Yamane family, Yuki (that crazy SOB), Dr. Shiragami, Kazuma Aoki (hot-shot pilot of MOGUERA, replaces Koji, goes to Solgell Island etc.), (Cast of SoG), KUROKI and the other badass GONDO.

Let's not forget HEAT as well, which includes Nick Tatopolous, Elsie, Randy, Monique, Dr. Craven and NIGEL.

Millenium Era -

Yuji Shinoda, Yuri Tachibana, Yoshito Chujo, his eventual love interest, Akane Yashiro

Will Gamera or King Kong or Ultraman appear in Godzilla Neo?

No. For the sake of a more compact universe, only Toho/Godzilla-related properties and characters will be utilized. Gamera has his own plethora of monsters to contend with and Ultraman has an entire multiverse to manage. I always admired the purity of King Kong in and of its own story, whereas pulling it into Godzilla's domain outside of a light homage would prove a headache.

UPDATE! Obviously I've revoked my "No Kong" policy in favor of something that both gives fans what they want and respects the original. Still no Clover, though.

Who is BALKZARDAN and those other monsters I've never heard of?

Balkzardan, Shiigan, Barugaron, Jyarumu and Vagnosaurus are kaiju from the Godzilla Trading Battle Playstation game. These were original kaiju that were apparently intended for the film series, but have never appeared outside of said game since. Shiigan, Barugaron, Balkzardan, Jyarumu and Vagnosaurus, in Godzilla Neo, are four of the eight Spawn of Orochi, along with Varan, Manda, Baragon.
Razin is now the Final Piece of Gigamass in the Mothra saga.

What is "Gigamass"?

Indicative of the fact that I need a terminology section to this FAQ ;) Seriously, "Gigamass" was a concept invented by imposterzilla, and he has given me permission to use it in the G Neo universe. Gigamass was an organic tech created by the Shobijin's ancestors (the "weather-changing" tech mentioned in Godzilla and Mothra: Battle for Earth). More to be revealed on Gigamass in the fanfics, but it created four beasties: Ghogo, Garugaru, Dagahra and Razin.

What's up with Garugaru?

Garugaru is being combined with Death Ghidorah to make what is essentially a giant fire-breathing Gigamass-dragon. He starts out all cute and small though ^^

Will there ever be a Godzilla Neo comic?

Unlikely. Godzilla Neo works much better as fanfiction/fanart.

What is the new "Kaiju Threat Level"?

It has actually been altered into "Kaiju Classification" that will be universal for the Godzilla Neo story and effective after 1966.

TYPE 1 - "Beast Class"

These guys are survivors. Little more than giant animals, they aren't as strong as the other classes, but no less fierce and dangerous. They focus on survival and generally stay away from humans, unless their appetites or instincts get the better of them.

EXAMPLES: Anguirus, Rodan, Baragon, Varan, Manda, Kumonga, Kamacuras, Zilla...

TYPE 2 - "Warrior Class"

Now we're talkin'! These kaiju are bred to fight. Strong enough to level a whole city, these are the more intelligent, more powerful beasties around (and generally anthrophomorphic at that).

EXAMPLES: Godzilla, Mothra, Battra, Megaguirus, Gigan, Megalon, Krystalak, Monster X, Titanosaurus, Obsidius...

TYPE 3 - "Uber Class"

The Big Guns of the kaiju world. Conquerors and potential Planet Killers. These usually require multiple kaiju to take down. Also known as "God Class."

EXAMPLES: Destoroyah, Space Godzilla, King Ghidorah, Hedorah...

What are the races of Godzilla Neo?

Well, here's a basic rundown:

Humans, Xillian, Elias (the Shobijin), Seatopian, Nebulan, Simeon, Kilaak, Dianii, Watchuka, Millenians and the Garoga.

What's the deal with the Defense Force?

This regards all UN-supported Earthling organizations made to research and counter the rising threats of kaiju and alien forces. Established in 1965, in includes several smaller factions -

The Markalite Squadron - officially put into action around the 1970's, this group pretty much pushed the JSDF out of the picture when dealing with kaiju. Since conventional weaponry has little to no effect on daikaiju, and throwing wave after wave of soldiers at a force of nature is a waste of lives, the Markalite squad is the first wave of defense. Consisting entirely of unmanned maser cannons, tanks, jets and other weaponry, it's all controlled through automated systems and remote-control command stations.

G-Force - The real meat of the JSDF, this is where all kaiju research and countermeasures are focused, particularly emphasized on Godzilla himself. Consisting of several thousand members, G-Force's core is divided into three Sections: Search, Study and Statistics. Search represents finding and locating new monsters, Study (the largest section) researches kaiju as organisms, and Statistics calculates the impact the monsters have on society and the evacuation measures necessary to cope with a kaiju attack. There is also the Defense Force sector, which, through the aid of the JSDF and EDF, develops new and more powerful weaponry to counter Godzilla and his ilk. The first weapon was MOGUERA, and later Kiryu and the Garuda System. After Godzilla II's meltdown in 1995, G-Force was all but liquidated, but with Godzilla III's return in 1999, G-Force was quickly revived.

Earth Defense Force - As mentioned, this is the parent organization to G-Force and the Markalite squad. Created by the United Nations to counter extreme threats to world peace, the EDF has battled all sorts of xenomorphic threats to life on Earth. The literal flagship of the EDF is the Gotengo, the Earth's first true super-weapon. There are three generations of the Gotengo, starting with its first commander, Captain Jinguji, who also claimed to be its creator (for some rather unsavory reasons), but spearheaded the resistance against the Xillians and helped found the EDF. The second was Admiral Gyozen, himself a bitter man, not unlike Jinguji, who harbored a deep-sown hatred for Godzilla, eventually sacrificing himself during the Crystal Incursion. Finally, Captain Gordon took command, a former professional fighter-turned G-Force soldier who, while still an abrasive personality, enjoyed the finer things in life and found Godzilla to be a worthy adversary. To this day the EDF continues to find new and daring ways to defend the planet.

What about Monster Island?

Indeed. Monster Island was intended to be a top-secret research facility to house kaiju and mutations, but that didn't fly. The public quickly learned of Monster Island's existence through the unrelated reports of Sylvester Lyson and Audrey Timmonds. A branch of G-Force was placed in charge of the Island, which intends to house many of the world's monsters in one place for both safety and study. As of 1999, 6 monsters were publicly known to live on the island; Anguirus, Rodan, Titanosaurus, Kumonga, Kamacuras and Zilla. Ogasawara Island provided an ideal habitat, and more info is to follow.

What are the "families" or "factions"?
The monsters in Godzilla Neo are almost all in different groups or sub-groups.

SPAWN OF OROCHI - Varan, Manda, Baragon, Barugaron, Shiigan, Vagnosaurus, Balkzardan, Jyarumu
G-CELL MUTANTS - Godzuki, Biollante, Space Godzilla, Zilla, C-Rex, El Gusano, Komodithrax, Kamoebas
RYUSEI NINGEN ZONE - Zone Fighter, Jirass, Ganimes
DISASTER MONSTERS - King Kong, Gorosaurus, Anguirus, Kumonga
MILLENIAN CREATIONS - Rodan, Megaguirus (and family), Orga
FRANKENSTEIN'S MONSTERS - Frankenstein, Sanda, Gaira, Deutalios
MAJIN - King Caesar, Axor
CRYSTALLINES - Space Godzilla, Krystalak, Obsidius
G-FORCE - SMG, MOGUERA, Kiryu, Mecha King Ghidorah
YOG - Gezora, Matango
NEBULAN CYBORGS - Gigan, Megalon
GUARDIANS OF EARTH - Mothra, Battra, Gigamoth, Fairy Mothra, Black Kroiga
GIGAMASS BEASTS - Garugaru, Ghogo, Barem, Dagarla, Razin

As you can see, the only monsters not specifically grouped are Ghidorah, Godzilla, Monster X, Ikusagami, Destoroyah, Kamacuras and Ookondoru.

Is there more to come?

You betcha!