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Iron and Glass by MikeDoscher Iron and Glass by MikeDoscher

The USS Charleston, a Shreveport-class cruiser, witnesses a mysterious disturbance on the surface of Titan. Later investigation revealed neither Martians nor Germans, but a mysterious and deserted city made of glass.

Current hypotheses lean towards the explosion being some sort of self-destruct mechanism triggered by the emanations of the American ships gravity nullification engine. This may have been either to prevent capture of the city (and the secrets therein) or to serve as a sort of warning beacon for whoever was monitoring the site.

The mystery continues, and was the source of much speculation before more urgent matters pushed this aside.

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:iconbulletproofcheetah:
BULLETPROOFCHEETAH Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2017
Sleek and predatory!
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:iconblacklion68:
blacklion68 Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2016
Wow! Nice! Glad that you are posting again. This makes me wonder, how far in terms of story based timeline are you planning to go. Maybe 50 to 200 years span, by any chance?Clap :) (Smile) 
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thanks, it's nice to be remembered. :)

The core events and coverage take place over about twenty to thirty years, but it was necessary to figure out a lot more of the timeline to get good answers for things.
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:icontfsakon:
TFSakon Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2016
Oh wow, I love the clean imperial aesthetic blended into the warm earthy colours.Gorgeous. The construction, or rather modification for the setting has a great internal consistency. It implies a logical function as I think all good ~punk aesthetics do. It makes it attractive by implying an inferable logic. It teases that it could be understood. Very nice scene as well. Cast so regally against the backdrop of  planet (moon). I love the story as well. I'll have to look out for more your work.
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thank you. That's very kind of you to say. :)
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:iconorionthemuse:
OrionTheMuse Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2016  Professional General Artist
cool ships and catastrophic human suffering!
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
Two great tastes in one!
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:iconlancelotprice:
LancelotPrice Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2016
Suweeeeet! I love it.
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:iconkeight:
keight Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016
Very well done; both painting and storyline.
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:iconstugmeister:
StugMeister Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've missed seeing your spacecraft of the first world war sir!

Again I'm loving your colours and painterly-feel. :)
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
I've missed doing them. I'm glad you enjoy them. Please, call me Mike unless it makes you uncomfortable to do so. :)
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:iconstugmeister:
StugMeister Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Mike it is then. I do apologise, I do over-use the term. Plus I drink port and have large sideburns. You could say I'm almost Victorian.

I'd best watch out for Gout.
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2016  Professional General Artist
Well in that case, do as best pleases you! Far be it from me to keep a gentleman from acting upon his nature. :)
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:iconstugmeister:
StugMeister Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
lol! :lol:
Reply
:iconc05m0naut:
C05M0NAUT Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Glad to see another upload from you man; been a little while, hasn't it? As always, I just love all the mysterious ideas you come up with for your descriptions; this 'city of glass' one seems especially interesting. And while I do love that cruiser design, I can't help but think those twin frontal engines are just a liiiittle too exposed if it were to head into combat?
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thanks.

Survivability is really weird with these things. They're quite fragile compared to surface vessels of the same period fighting normal battles, but fire control sucks. The Martians used energy weapons in a nearly airless environment, so they had no cool tech to plunder on that front. The engines themselves are more durable than a boiler, and less prone to explode when they fail.

The upshot is that they're like aircraft in that speed, rather than armor, is the primary characteristic needed for survival.
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:iconterranabassador:
TerranAbassador Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016  Student Digital Artist
Obviously aliens. :iconaliensguyplz:
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016  Professional General Artist
I'm not saying it was a-
.
.
.
Okay.
Yes.
Yes I am.
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:iconbioazard:
bioazard Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016
amazing ...
and so great colors !
very impressive work :)
Reply
:iconhgfggg:
hgfggg Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016
So, I gotta wonder about this setting: How steampunky is it? Not "steam engines for everything" steampunk, but "brutal imperialism and apartheid" steampunk- that is, what'd probably happen? Are there any nations other than European (or European-descended) ones and East Asian ones in the "space game"?
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016  Professional General Artist
It's written in an in-universe style from a viewpoint that's far from omniscient, and has its own priorities. That being said, the introduction of the Martian ore-refining and construction tech has some interesting implications. I go into it in the description a little here: Daggers in the Night by MikeDoscher

There's a lot of stories I'm trying to suggest indirectly, both on Earth and across a few other worlds.
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:iconzgerken:
Zgerken Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016
Awesome piece, glad to see this one it only makes me more hyped when your book finally comes out, thanks for all the little hints of info that will be included in your book!
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thank you, I look forward to showing more soon. Things should get back on track this year.
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:iconzgerken:
Zgerken Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2016
Nice to know!
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:iconmetalsnail:
MetalSnail Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Great stuff, so epic in scale!!!
Do you read the Expanse books?
I think you'd like them!
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thanks! I'll need to check that series out, too.
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:iconpachumaster:
Pachumaster Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
glad to see more spacecraft of the first world war :)
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thank you! Me too. :)
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:iconironclad00:
Ironclad00 Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
"Well, have fun flying through space without a care in the world.  I have to go to the all-glass city and pick up 20 square miles of broken glass.  By myself."
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
Recycling is really important to some people, I guess. XD
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:icongromgorefiend:
Gromgorefiend Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016
very kool .
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:iconatholthedestroyer:
AtholTheDestroyer Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016
Seems a bit under gunned. Especially for an American cruiser of that era (if one was to parallel her with real-world vessels).
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Edited Sep 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
She is, but there's a strange sort of backstory to it:

In terms of armament she's scarcely better than a gunboat. Her crew is quite small for her size, both due to life support limitations and the large interior volume her engines take up. As automated gun laying is just a twinkle in an engineer's eye at this point, this limits her armament as well.

So why is she rated as a cruiser then?

It's because if she were rated as a smaller vessel, her master would be a lieutenant. The cruiser rating was done artificially to ensure that only the most senior commanders got them as commands. This was done early to preserve the hegemony of the surface navy over the new forces, but later as a way of offering rapid advancement to offset extreme danger.
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:iconatholthedestroyer:
AtholTheDestroyer Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016
*Slow claps*
This...this is why we love your work. The little bits of background 'fluff text' that, while not essential to already fantastic pictures, make them just that touch more interesting. Bravo sir, bravo.
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
Aw, shucks.

Thank you, and thanks for still being interested! :)
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:iconkeight:
keight Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2016
You have built an excellent "world/system "Bible", Mike. All those snippets, scribbles, and notes are IMPORTANT.
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:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thank you- I tend to agree these days, like these are notes I've leaving for myself.
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