Depending on which corners of the internet you hung out on between the spring of 2009 and fall of 2016, your association with the word Homestuck will be pretty wildly different. For some, it’s a nonsense portmanteau, for others, it may as well be an eldritch curse that evokes traumatic memories of fandom implosions and inscrutable memes–but for the many who took the plunge during that formative near-decade run, it’s an old friend.
Homestuck, in the simplest terms, was a webcomic. Done in the style of an old school, text-based choose-your-own-adventure game at first, the story ostensibly revolved around a group of kids who played a game that very rapidly went off the rails into something else entirely. Eventually, the slapstick comedy gave way to a massively complex, impenetrably self-referential lore complete with new alien races, dueling timelines, and alternate universes populated by gods and monsters. Eventually, it clocked in at around 800,000 total words across over 8,000 pages before it finally concluded “officially” on October 25, 2016.
At least, until now. Exactly three years after it’s final epilogue, Homestuck is back with Homestuck 2: Beyond Canon, a direct continuation of the original webcomic. It is “real Homestuck,” according to the site’s FAQ page, meaning that it is, functionally, “canon” to the events of the original series. The sequel is complete with an outline that was written in full by the series’ original creator, Andrew Hussie. But it won’t be as simple as a run-of-the-mill follow up to the original,” the FAQ page reads. “Homestuck 2 will be “a legitimate continuation of the series, and simultaneously a departure from conventional ideas when it comes to what we think of as canon, or any authoritative expansion on a work of fiction. It will continue with themes established in the epilogues involving the blurring of lines between what is considered authoritative about media, and the elaboration on said media by groups of empowered fans.”
It will also be powered and funded via a Patreon page, which promises benchmarks for increased update frequency and bonus material for people willing to pony up a monthly contribution. Tiers start at $2, then jump to $5 for access to bonus material, $20 for behind the scenes access, and finally $100 for credit in the series creation.
If you’re having trouble remembering what, exactly, happened in Homestuck proper–don’t panic. Or, at least don’t panic too hard. The main plot of Homestuck, which wrapped up in April of 2016, is something you’ll need to catch yourself up to on your own–but if you’re one of the many readers who fell off after the last official page and didn’t bother to catch up on the epilogues, don’t panic. There’s a “sparknotes” section of the site designed specifically to bring you up to speed.
That, or you could just throw yourself directly into the deep end with Homestuck 2’s very first update, which centers around Dirk Strider and the robot incarnation of Rose Lalonde as they pilot a spaceship through the crushed ruins of a black hole in the aftermath of the original story. You know, just totally run-of-the-mill stuff.
Homestuck 2’s very first update has gone live and is ready to be read today.