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Miles Luna: On writing RvB 13 and becoming a space pirate mercenary

Two years ago, the Red and Blue teams of the long running Red vs Blue machinima series found themselves stranded on the planet of Chorus. Soon, they would find themselves in the middle of a civil war that hid a more sinister plot and after two years, the dust has settled on yet another chapter of the tale of the simulation troopers from Blood Gulch. Along the way, they met friends that turned out to be foes and foes that turned out to be friends. One of these individuals is Felix, played by the writer of the Chorus trilogy himself, Miles Luna. I had the privilege of asking Miles a few questions about RvB Season 13, so feel free to take a look.

So many characters, so little time
So many characters, so little time

Between the original Blood Gulch characters, the citizens of Chorus, Santa, and the Space Pirates, Season 13 has one of the largest cast of characters in the RvB series. What was it like having to write all these different perspectives, and were there any problems associated with it? For example, did you ever have to scrap an episode in progress because the interactions between these different factions wouldn’t “feel right”? Or perhaps did it ever seem like there was a competition for screen time?

Miles Luna– It was incredibly difficult trying to find a balance between characters. Obviously we had a story that needed to be told and characters we needed to focus on, but I also did my best to make sure that our entire cast had moments where they each got to shine. In my head, the season could only go one of two ways: It would either feel like The Avengers or Spiderman 3. Fortunately, I think we managed to strike a pretty good balance.

Felix, Felix, Felix, one of the most interesting new characters in the series
Felix, Felix, Felix, one of the most interesting new characters in the series

Speaking of characters, you play Felix, one of the relatively new villains to the series. Throughout the trilogy, he goes from being a charming mercenary to a ruthless individual out for blood. Did you ever have to remind yourself to adopt a more serious attitude or was there any kind of preparation you did to adopt a more cold demeanor when you were recording your dialogue? 

Miles Luna– It’s funny, I never had to remind myself to go dark, I actually had to keep myself from going too dark too soon. I always knew Felix was a deeply troubled individual, but he needed to do his best to cover it for the first two seasons. The end of Season 12 was the darkest we’d seen him at the time and I actually had to go back re-record my lines. I went too crazy. He needed to be toned down so we could go full crazy during his demise in Season 13! It was some of the most fun I ever had in the booth.

Its not a shark with lazers, but its close enough
Its not a shark with lazers, but its close enough

What was the rationale behind bringing back Sharkface and elevating his status from being a minor character to a moderately important character, other than perhaps being a way to show a more human side of Carolina?

Miles Luna-First and foremost, I just thought he was cool. I loved his fight in Season 9 and was sad we never got to see more of him after that. The main reason, though, was to show what Carolina could have become. They were both characters that went through very similar experiences, but where Carolina was able to let go and move on, Sharkface became obsessed… and that obsession was his downfall.

"What the hell is the UNSC?"
“What the hell is the UNSC?”

The RvB series as a whole has slowly integrated more and more parts of the Halo lore into the story. From the Insurrection to the concept of having the teams finding stashes of powerful alien technology that only unlock in the presence of certain individuals, the Halo universe went from a mere reference to a potential gold mine for future plots. What was the inspiration behind this decision? Was it simply a natural step forward for the series?

Miles Luna-I think the fact that Season 11 was the first time we ever stated a geographical location had a hand in cementing us deeper into the Halo universe. Prior to 11, we always kept our characters’ location somewhat ambiguous. In order for the Chorus storyline to make sense, however, we needed to establish where it was and how it related to the rest of the galaxy. I guess it was just a natural progression (and the fact that just about every piece of armor in Halo 4 says UNSC, haha).

What's next for the Blood Gulch crew? Who knwos
What’s next for the Blood Gulch crew? Who knows

And of course, the ending. The ending of season 13 ends on a cliffhanger, which is a departure of sorts from previous seasons where the good guys win and the bad guys lose. Of course, Church still does his ending monologue, but what was the decision behind switching things up a little? Was there ever a debate against a cliffhanger in favor of a crazy, over the top shootout as is tradition in RvB?

Miles Luna-Burnie had the idea back during Season 11 and I fell completely in love with it. To me, it was the perfect ending. It fell in line with several themes of the trilogy, it was bittersweet, but most of all it was interesting. I did my best to lead up to that moment and do it justice. Some people loved it, some people hated it, and some people still can’t believe that we did it. Whatever your opinion is, all I can say is thank you for watching.

If you would like to read a review of the latest season of RvB, click here.

About Anson Chan

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