The story behind the story of Batey series

Looking back at what I have accomplished, what the Batey series has become, I can’t help but wonder at how the inspiration for this project came from relationships and experiences in my everyday life.

Today, I am sharing some very curious anecdotes that I know you will enjoy as much as I do about all the ingredients used in Batey Ascending, the comic book, and which you will soon be able to taste in Batey Descending, scheduled to be released on September 30.

Did you know that the Batey really exists?

I can’t think of a better place to start than here. And yes, Batey is a real sport created by the Tainos. As I have pointed out in previous publications, this ancestral game was part of the culture of this native indigenous group that occupied the lands known today as the Dominican Republic. And for me, it is an honor to recover part of my legacy – even though they wanted to erase it from history – and to spread it around the world through my narrative.

300 to 400 years ago, its creators used a ball made of a material with a distinctive bounciness, similar to rubber. The rules were simple: two teams of five members would hit the ball with any part of the body except the hands, preferably using knees, chest, and elbows. And the idea was to score in the rival court, defined by a hoop on the floor.

In my story, given that the advances of the future are huge, the game is presented in a different way. The playing field is a sphere and the hoops are supported by poles at opposite ends of the sphere. And that is where most of this adventure takes place.

The ball is a lightweight metallic piece with anti-gravity technology, which allows it to hover in place if left untouched. Opponents struggle to set up plays and score a point, to block the enemy and make opportune passes. Its popularity in the narrative framework resembles that of basketball in the United States.

The influence of cinema on this story

Given that the Batey series unfolds in a futuristic world where cutting-edge technology rules, flying jetpacks would not have been the coolest or most appropriate thing to do. That’s an idea from the 80s of what the future would be like. For me, everything had to be simpler, more comfortable, able to provide a clean flying experience, and without excessively interfering with the gear.

That’s when the idea of the jet boots clicked. With impeccable and perfect maneuverability for gaming that could be compared to how a controller is best suited for a video game system and a mouse for PC gaming.

Another inspiration came from watching the film Alita Battle Angel in the middle of this pandemic, it opened my mind to the infinite possibilities within my reach if my mind, my imagination, does not stop at all.

The Harry Potter game of Quidditch was also a great example for me of how a fictional sport can be created in a story and then become a real practice. And although the Batey in my story, with players flying around, is not something I think we will see very soon, I am excited to know that it can raise awareness about the forgotten Taino community and its legacy.

Characters are based on people close to me

Each of the characters that received a name in the story, carries the same name as someone very important to me in real life. In addition, he or she conferred certain attributes to that character.

Starting with Chilly, who is inspired by my real-life sister and also brings to life many events that actually happened between us in the upcoming book. So, if you want to know what this is all about, keep an eye on my social media and my website for its upcoming launch.

What I can tell is that such events are based on times that – luckily for me – lie behind me, when I was younger and weaker, and she could easily beat me up. Times from which I also remember with a big smile that she was my partner in martial arts, Naruto marathons, and video game afternoons at Club Penguin in Candystand.

And precisely that club was an important part of the influences that built the Nico Pengin you know today, and who stars this series. I took the name to honor the man who taught me to harness all my energy and focus it on productive things like sports. A great inspiration to me.

And contrary to the narrative, Fred RTG is not the antagonist in my life, nor my enemy. In fact, he’s been my best friend since we met in high school, which means that I’ve been sharing my life with this brother from another mother for more than half of my life. And since then, he has been my buddy for video games, for endless conversations. So much so that today, along JestFreeman, we are the Argue Bros, discussing and contrasting opinions on today’s topics in a very fresh and fun podcast.

I will give more information about other aspects that inspire the characters in future blog posts, as long as I am asked about a specific character by special request. So leave your comments below. I read you.

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