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Some kind of backstory or something...

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I''ve decided to throw caution to the winds and simultaneously throw the beginnings of my story into a small crowd of strangers to see how many scraps of paper remain afterwards. Seriously, though, tell me what you think, while keeping in mind that this is almost totally unedited and was written at 12:30 A.M. Is this stoy too cliched? Too wierd? Should I just start over from scratch? Does my writing style, the vegetable reference, or both offend you? PLEASE let me know! Prologue From the very beginning there were five worlds. Five worlds; each spinning alone in darkness, with only the sun, moon, and stars as companions. Each dwelled in its own universe, apart from the others, but made of similar matter and with strangely similar animals. Each also possessed sentient beings, who, suspecting that their existence was incomplete, attempted to bridge the gaps between worlds and complete it. Each still bears the scars that were left when those diverse races met, traded, and eventually fought. From the moment of creation, resources rarely found on some worlds were abundant on others. Since that which cannot easily be obtained is often considered the most precious thing of all, they were all willing to pay the exorbitant prices that their otherworldly kin demanded for their wares. On one desert-covered world, metals that were precious to the inhabitants of other worlds were given in abundance to those foreigners in return for mere gallons of water. Although one-sided dealings such as this took place without incident for many years, culture strained against culture, until finally, one unrecorded day, the seams came loose. Aided by the very magics that had carried them across the dimensional barriers in a manner befitting none but the Gods, the mortals began a massive series of wars that lasted for thousands of years, devastating all of the worlds and making life for the average sentient creature nasty, brutish, and short. Magics and weapons were unleashed that made the air poisonous to breathe, made water-dwelling creatures die, destroyed human flesh, and melted the very earth. Magically enhanced diseases that killed indiscriminately were released. And armies of sentients and their tools of war clashed everywhere, killing soldiers and innocents alike. Before those races met, the worlds were strong beyond imagination. Massive glittering cities covered all five worlds, on land, in the sky, and even beneath the ocean''s waves. Chariots of steel moved through the skies faster than the fastest ship could move through water. Magic and science had both reached subsequently unmatched levels of intricacy and power. Once the wars were over, only ignorance and ruin were left behind, and most could not even remember from which world their ancestors had fled. But advanced magic requires no physical resources, as advanced technology does. A small portion of civilization remained in the form of a Wizards'' Council, which ruled over the five worlds in grim imitation of their forebears from before the wars. Those in power had made peace only because they could war no longer, but eventually they came to an agreement: such a war must not happen again. Using all of their magical energy, the members of the High Council of Five each retreated to the world under his charge and combined their powers to create a great enchantment that would permanently seal the free-standing gates connecting the Five Worlds, but use all their powers in the process. Every last ounce of power was thought to be needed for the spell to work properly, but the weakest of the five withheld his power in order to preserve it, thus becoming the strongest remaining magic user in any of the five worlds. The rogue wizard had, however, miscalculated, along with everyone else, and there was more than enough energy residing in the other four wizards to close the gates, trapping him on his home world. Now the most powerful wizard in existence, with an entire world at his disposal, he began to experiment with life itself. Locating ancient tomes of magic from before and during the war, he began to put together a solid concept of how to achieve immortality. One he achieved it, immune to the ravages of old age, he began to use necromantic means to increase his powers. Thousands of wizards nearly as powerful as he were hunted down and slain, their essences captured and bound to his own. Although ignorant bliss triumphed in the other worlds, it seemed as though his global dictatorship would continue forever. After about 800 years of existence, that ancient dictator, evil beyond compare, discovered a method of travel to the other worlds. Although they were shut tight, the residual energy powering the Gates was not entirely gone, having been left untouched by the weakened powers of the High Council. The result of his experiments was a spell, requiring very little energy on the part of the caster and so simple that almost anyone but an apprentice wizard could cast it. The spell would reopen a Gate for a brief period of time, restoring it in every way, but letting it collapse after a few minutes. He crossed over to another world and proceeded to conquer it. Armies were sent against him and were crushed. Wizards cast destructive spells on him and his army from miles away, but to no effect. It seemed as though a new era would begin, one that could last forever, in which the lives and minds of all the worlds would serve as mere sacrifices to a harsh despot''s arcane experiments. And then a miracle occurred. A disguised wizard of average ability infiltrated His chambers while He was away, and by sheer luck she managed to read some of His closely guarded writings without being annihilated by one of the laboratory''s many traps. That wizard discovered the spell of Gating, and used it to escape to the other worlds and warn them. By the time the Tyrant (for so He was now called) reached that world, all the wizards of three worlds were waiting outside the Gate to meet him. Not able to stand up to such a powerful force of tens of thousands, the Tyrant fled back to his home world, only to be followed and defeated by that sorcerous army. Unable to kill him, they imprisoned his soul in a massive crystal, split it into five pieces, and sent each of the five pieces into one of the worlds'' suns. Only by melting all of the pieces could his soul ever again be released, and only then by heat far greater than that of a star. Everyone returned to their respective worlds, the Tyrant''s books of magic were destroyed or stolen, and a great vow was made by those few who knew the secret of Gating never to disclose it to anyone. Many, many, MANY years later… The tales of the Five Worlds are regarded as mere fairy tales. No one now living has ever been outside of his or her world, technology is fairly undeveloped overall, and the word Tyrant is a name used to evoke terror in small children who put forth all their efforts in a heroic attempt to avoid eating their vegetables. On one world, a charismatic leader begins to marshal his troops in an attempt to conquer the world, while the defenders, having fought off their enemy''s initial attacks, send a small army to strike back; a brilliant young officer named Solan is among them. He and a few others are about to discover that Creation is a much bigger place than they think it is…

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Great job!!! I was actually hooked through the entire thing. Some minor punctuation problems but other than that, I believe its ready for print. =D
Best of luck upon creation of such a game.

------------------------------
If you whispered, who would hear you? If you cried, who would comfort you? If you begged, who would have mercy? If you program, who will play?
------------------------------

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where are u goinng with this?

It seems to me that u only have a basic idea of what ur looking for.

I take it as nature that u didnt reviel that much of the game itself however u havent told anything of the y and how as in there motives with the exception that there trying to survive in a hostial world.

Also i like makeing realistic games and i dont get how "Five worlds; each spinning alone in darkness, with only the sun, moon, and stars as companions." makes much sence i mean uve got the sun and five worlds. We can see our moon from earth and mars if ur in the right place if all these worlds are in the same axsis that means that ued be able to see the other worlds from the serface of each one.

But hay its ur game.

Theos who can not see but see everything can see a the truth.

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Actually it does kind of make sense to me. Five worlds alone in the darkness each with its own sun and moon sounds like five dimensions. There would be no physical distance to traverse, Gating could refer to a traveling between each dimension. I liked it all quite a bit.

I take it that Solan and a few others are the characters that the player will play through. Sounds like the background story of an RPG. I see this eventually leading to the powerful wizard Tyrant being released eventually and threatening to wreak havok upon the Five worlds again. Very well written for 12:30 A.M. inspiration.

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Yes, precisely. The worlds are supposed to be existing in five parallel dimensions, each physically millions of light years away from any other planet, but all of them occupying the same space in separate "uni"-verses. I didn''t want to mention the word dimension in the story, as this prologue is meant to read like it was written in the post-apocalyptic days on one of these worlds. Being very technologically and socially unadvanced, none of these people would know what the word "dimension" means.

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i must say that that was excellent. (its almost as good as mine !!!!! JK).

anyway. is that goona be at the beginning of a game. cause all that info should be fed to the player slower and through a longer length of time. it would make it more gripping

i must say excellent again



"For us it''s a natural disaster....For him/she it''s a damn memory leak..."
Al
**MY HQ**

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I always appreciate somebody who has done their thinking about a story. It can be the critical element in success, in almost every case. I think this story, as you call it, displays great expositionary skill, but it lacks plot. You''ve got some serious plotting to do with this, if you are going to give it the matrix of causal information it needs to compel and retain a reader or player for the entire length of the game.

Hey, writing is tough, that is why so many fail at it. You, however, seem to have demonstrated the expressive agility to capture some essence, now you need to use distillation.

Otherwise, compelling and it has a chance.

Adventuredesign

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Why do people insist on posting their storylines in here, and always add some caveat like ''keep in mind I wrote this while riding naked on a rabid horse eating a sandwich''.

Just go and edit your stuff before you post it here, damn it. Do you send in job applications and say "Oh, keep in mind I left all my best jobs off my resume...". Why should we take the time to analyze your writing if you haven''t even bothered to?

And yes, the horse was eating the sandwich.

_________________________
The Idea Foundry

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I figured that my story should be circulated before it falls victim to self-censorship, a process by which authors hack, yank, rewrite, and otherwise mangle their own work in hopes of making it more "readable".

I''ll do all that later, AFTER I''ve gotten some input. The paper has already been edited since the copy I posted, partially based on response from forums. That disclaimer is just to stress the fact that this is not a final copy, so as to avoid posts about it "not being suitable for publishing", etc., etc., etc.

Thank you; you''ve been a very patient audience.

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What you call self-censorship is called the editing process. It is much needed, and should be done before any work is presented for public feedback. That doesn''t mean you can''t continue to change it based on the constructive feedback you may get...

_________________________
The Idea Foundry

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Tacit:
In some ways I agree with you, but some revisions are mistakes. Sometimes undiluted inspiration is a better source of good writing than all the rewriting in the world. I merely thought that I should put out the original so that the story *AS ORIGINALLY CONCEIVED* would remain in the minds of someone, somewhere. Basically, the decision to post this story unedited was an artistic one, undiluted by common sense, rationality, etc. By the way, the image of a rabid horse eating a sandwich brought a smile to my face, even without the naked rider.

TechnoHydra:
I wish. What with one thing and another, I may not have a complete story for a few months or even a year. The way I'm designing this game is by...

A. Creating a general sort of history for my world(s) (The thing I posted here.)
B. Designing a large and diverse set of characters with personalities and personal histories based on what the world is like.
C. Writing a tightly intertwined story based on the characters.

Obviously, I have a few ideas about what the final story is going to be like, but details will differ based on the sort of heroes I end up with.

Right now, I'm working on step B, but overall, I'm only about 12% of the way through character design. Since so many of you seem to like my story, I'll post some brief character histories once I'm done creating them!

Alfmga:
I'd like to think that players could handle reading this displayed screen by screen at the beginning of the game (similar to Xenogears' opening), but I think that I'm capable of revealing little bits of the story at a time to Solan and company. Even if I do so, I'd like to put a final draft of this story somewhere in the game documentation. Or maybe this will be shown in the game as part of a recap of the story as known so far, once the characters piece together the entire plot. How do you (plural you) think I should go about it?

[edited by - DuranStrife on September 7, 2002 1:44:42 PM]

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