Over two years ago, some friends and I were playing Diablo 3. As was our custom, we were making jokes and cracking wise about the things happening in the game. One day someone made a quip that “These jokes are funny. We should make a cartoon or something.”
We kept joking about it. The thought wouldn’t go away. I had dabbled in Star Wars fan film production and hobby-grade 3D animation, but I’d never done anything like making a real cartoon. I started to make enquiries. I practiced a bit with cutout-style 2D animation, which I’d never done before. Then, one day I said to the guys “Let’s do it. Let’s make a show.”
Over the course of the next two years we wrote, designed, launched a podcast and website, voice acted, learned to animate, and basically faked our way through making a show.
It took a long time to figure out how to make a cartoon quickly.
It’s been a long, strange path to get here. At times I wanted to give up. It put stress on my life and my wallet. Almost all of my free time for the past 2 years has been dedicated, in one way or another, to Operation: P.U.G.. Most cartoons have a team of animators working full time, but we have me working alone on evenings and weekends. But these kind of things only get done by being determined, so I pushed through.
I want to sincerely thank Mat, Jamie, Andrew, Juli, and most of all my wonderful wife Margaret for their invaluable contributions. I literally couldn’t have done any of this without you.
I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished. While it still has rough edges and is by no means a masterpiece, I hope enough of the heart that we worked hard to put into the show comes through.
What’s next? More. After this pilot we are moving into production on regular episodes, aiming for the 10 minute mark per show so we can get them out quicker. It’s a bit of a risk to launch a show like this in the age of binge watching, but I hope we build a small audience who will enjoy this journey with us. Operation PUG is a process. Everything we learned making the pilot will go to making the subsequent shows better, faster, funnier.
Please enjoy the pilot. It is, in every way, a labour of love.