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Why'd it have to be snakes?(10)

1 .

So yeah. This is a thread dedicated to the greatness (or not so greatness) that is me, my stories, and the lovable bunch that reads them! Seeing as I could use the publicity (as my stories seem to suffer from a lack of votes most of the time), feel free to ask about any of the stuff I put together. I will answer, and not always cryptically.

2 .

How differently would things have turned out if we chose not to spend some time in hell?

3 .

Very differently, most likely. I wrote the first Gunman without much forethought, and considering the nature of the story, it was probably better that I didn't think it through too much (though had I thought it through a little better, it wouldn't have ended on such a poor note).

For the most part, I had little idea where the story was going to wind up next. I had a basic premise and some characterization, and that was about it. I'd also kinda thrown things in there without thinking too much. Like piloting giant robots. I was playing Armored Core and Zone of the Enders at that time (and vaguely remember watching a few pieces of mecha anime), and I thought it'd be cool, etc. In retrospect, it didn't quite work well. Same thing with certain abilities the player character found himself possessing. It started getting to the point where I was going to far into Mary Sue territory, and I had to cut a lot out when I started the current run of the story. The story as a whole just seemed to fragment more and more as it grew longer and longer, and that couldn't be good for business.

The first hell/underground scenes in particular came about after I'd played through the SA demo a few times. I liked the characters, and seeing as the characters were stuck inside an underground version of Mugenkan at the time, it seemed to flow fairly well. I've since gotten better at writing (I hope) so I may be wrong on that last part. The Kanako/Suwako being in hell thing was honestly a fluke, though it played out very well once the full game was released. My only regret is that Parsee played such a small role in the story. She must have been jealous. So I gave her a larger and more important role in the current story as the (jealously) genre-savvy comic relief character.

I thought the "escape from hell" scene went by awfully quickly, and the story probably would've changed more had the player spent more time underground. Characters would be met, many antics with nuclear crows would be had, and not to mention the piles upon piles of corpses. Ever wonder where Rin puts all those dead bodies? I had a pretty good idea, but it never really got beyond a piles of bones I vaguely remember mentioning.

So while I was writing the scene with Yuugi (though reading it again, the dialogue could have used a lot of work), I thought to myself that it might be interesting to keep the Subterranean Animism plot line active and ongoing throughout this entire scene. Enter Okuu and Orin, half-characterized and full of Moe~.

So I figure that, about this point through the story, I'm just pulling things out of my ass and trying to organize them in a way that they all make sense. It seemed to work, sure, but I've since gotten a little better about not throwing things into a story's plot when it's already fairly cohesive.

So, Okuu and Orin act as guides to get the player character out of the whole mess, though they manage to run afoul of a (probably) very angry Reimu. The amount of time Reimu takes to complete the whole ordeal could only make sense by including numerous failures. If she'd play anything like me, Satori would be an impassible brick wall in the quest to completion. And that would make anybody angry. Especially Reimu, who seems to have a hair-trigger temper most of the time. Sticking around longer would have allowed the player to have a little more interaction with the characters, and maybe meet a few more. I didn't have an exact formula for what would've happened. Satori, of course, was conveniently excluded from the scene.

I'm a little surprised that I'd managed to keep Satori out of the story right up until the end. By that point I'd worked through the plot, though. Granted, it would've played through exactly like the short summary given in the sequel, but I'd started planning things out better by that point. Most of the plot points in the latter portion of the story were made from a combination of Touhou, Seihou, and a few other games. This hasn't changed much between the original and the sequel, but I'll leave it up to the readers to draw their own conclusions.

But when I have time to type something like this out, I should maybe try working on my stories. Back to work~

4 .

Interesting. So is it safe to say that you know exactly where you want to take the story next? Or are you playing it by ear as far as votes go? Also, can you give us a time table on how much farther the story will go? Are we close to the end? In between? Or really far off?

5 .

For the stories I'm writing now (save BBA in /underground/) I have a pretty clear picture of where I'm going with things. SOW is nearing the end of it's first play-through, but there's still much left to be done story-wise. The first of a few endings I devised are coming up shortly for it, but others are a little farther off. The lack of Yumemi/Chiyuri interaction lately is a little bothersome to me, but I can't seem to find ways to squeeze too much of it in. Can't have them kissing and making out in public, now can I? It'd be a little out of character too, considering. I like the relationship I've created between the two of them. It isn't necessarily unrealistic, nor is it sick and perverted (unless, you know, the whole girl-on-girl bit doesn't do it for you).

I'll probably give it a better name on the second run. "Strange Oriental World" was a title pulled from the literal translation of Mystic Square's game title (with the last word changed to fit the story view a bit more), but I think it sounds kind of lame by comparison to what I've thought up while writing. The change won't be so drastic that the story won't be recognizable, but enough to make it a little more eye-catching. No final decision there yet.

As I've said on IRC before (several times, I think), the player character in each SOW play-through is different based upon the first option chosen after waking up. It's vague on purpose so as to confuse the readers, though I have it all marked out on my computer (Ha ha ha ha). Starting off with Yumemi was a hell of a surprise for me, considering I (and some of the first readers) were aiming for a certain other character (who makes an appearance in this first play-though, mind you). Characterization for her and Chiyuri were made pretty much on the fly, though it developed pretty quickly after the shower scene after the opener. I wanted to make Yumemi just a little more childish and naive, but it was played heavily in the opposite direction. Some of what I'd intended for at first can be seen on occasion later in the story--maybe through Yumemi's somewhat odd unfamiliarity with the mechanics of the ship and technology in general. I guess some folks out there just aren't good with computers (laugh). It's been a bit difficult to write at times, but I'm glad it's maintained a following. Sometimes, I'd wonder if I'd make it to the Shinki sequence at all. I really wanted to write Shinki, so I somehow pulled through. Shinki turned out incredibly well, and so far so good with the following scene after her introduction. From here, though, it's all geared towards the ending.

GiG, on the other hand, is still quite open. I've set a few things in stone to progress the storyline, but beyond that there's really a lot the readers can do. Lots of possibilities exploring this new world. (which is not entirely unrelated to Touhou canon, mind you. It wasn't something I necessarily pulled out of my ass, as might be seen at a later date.) Of course, few seem to remember that write-ins are preferable to the choices I give them, and there will likely be times when all of the set options I give lead to death. Don't worry, I'll make it obvious enough. ..Maybe. Refraining from pointless bad ends might be difficult in such a scenario, but it'll force readers to think outside the box. GiG is not all about being in boxes after all. Or maybe.. Well, enough about boxes.

Seeing as the story's just beginning, I can't say how far along it is. Utsuho's recent appearance marks the dawn of the nuclear age only a few threads in, so it could be fast-paced, or it could be otherwise. Considering that the party scene served only as exposition, well.. Probably in for a long haul, this time.

I'm still thinking of ways to introduce the remainder of the characters, though the group I've chosen to work with is relatively small by comparison to the last go-round. Aya, of course, is important to the story and had to be the first to return. Aya is justice. There is no Gunman without Aya. I wonder if dumping Aya leads to a bad end, I wonder~? The answer is of course a big, bold no, but she certainly won't take kindly to it. There are no route locks in GiG, and the only loyalty to a specific character in the story is provided by Anon himself. So far so good, I must say. I'll try not to jinx it.

Bird-Brained Adventure is utter nonsense and should be ignored completely. The characters are terrible people and resent any sort of intervention beyond what they come up with themselves. Steer clear or you might wind up with the worst kind of all-over cancer. In the ass. Yeeaahh..

6 .

dumping Aya
I can't see this happening and I don't want it to.

7 .

I've been reading GiG for a while and I must say that dumping Aya isn't even an option I want to consider. It's good to hear that you have a solid plan for GiG. My only complaint is that more people aren't reading/voting it. SOW sounds interesting, I might pick it up this weekend when I have some downtime.

8 .

See, I look at "Bird-Brained Adventure is utter nonsense and should be ignored completely. The characters are terrible people and resent any sort of intervention beyond what they come up with themselves. Steer clear or you might wind up with the worst kind of all-over cancer. In the ass. Yeeaahh.."

Yet I SEE "Bird-Brained Adventure is TOTALLY AWESOME and should be given your undivided attention. The characters are TOTALLY AWESOME people and resent any sort of intervention beyond what is TOTALLY AWESOME. Steer clear will wind up with the worst kind of all-over cancer. In the ass. Which is SO TOTALLY NOT AWESOME."

9 .

The lack of votes aren't a huge concern, so long as there are people voting. I tend to supplement this lack of votes with lack of timely updates, or in the current case, computer issues. Which of course has led to a number of undesirable delays in progress as I move all my files from a Mac to a PC. Not as hard as it sounds, really, though tedious is one thing it certainly is. Though now that the computer's up and running there will be updates in the near future. Of course, by the time the majority of people have read this, I'll have updated already~

10 .

Isn't there the risk of that backfiring? Since slower updates don't exactly encourage voting. Then again you are something of an established name so you might be able to get away with it.

11 .

Well, I've made it somewhat clear that I will keep on writing--though most comments I make about my activity are made more jokingly than not. I try to keep it at least once or twice a week, though more often than not once per week due to all sorts of real-life issues that get in the way. Considering the popularity of some writefags that update on a more monthly basis, once a week for three separate stories isn't all bad. Acceptable, by my reckoning, though I really could stand to kick it up a notch. Of course, I do prefer to wait and let every reader get a shot in before moving on, but sometimes that just isn't possible without letting the time between updates draw out. Honestly, I should try to keep things on a more set schedule, but the recent inactivity has given me plenty of planning time.

On a semi-related note, I seem to keep running into snags left and right getting this computer working. Particularly, the compatibility between the HFS+ and NTFS file systems is fairly terrible, and the 3rd-party programs that build support into one for the other cost money or otherwise suck at doing much other than taking up disk space. Long story short, one worked and I've finally moved all my files over to my new Windows machine (hooray!), and hopefully I'll be able to update tomorrow (Tuesday).

That is, of course, I don't get too far into playing Arkham Asylum of some other video game I've been playing ever since. Really, having a decent video card is the greatest~
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