User talk:Dabe/Backstory

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Suggested changes PT1

Okay the story is under review in the forums. I just wanted to add my comments on the current one in case it is used as a starting point. Booty 01:47, 11 June 2008 (CEST)

Many ages ago, the world was entangled by war.

Okay ages suggests periods of transition, which is fine but these ages might need to be explained and described to better understand the depth of time and the current status of the world. Also, world being this world or some other it seems a bit ambiguous.

From the smallest tribe to the grandest of kingdoms, virtually every discernible group of mankind...

While I like the world virtually most of the time it seems to take away from the storytelling narrative, nearly or almost I feel are better choices. Discernible can be dropped, if they are a group, they are discernible. Also of mankind can be dropped, tribes and kingdoms already suggest some type of people unless there is a reason to specify humans, but there does not seem to be a reason implied from the current story or the in-game elements.

...was somehow involved.

The sentence really could be worded better I think. actually I'm stopping here and just rewriting it.

Through the darkness of war however, a light of truth somehow shone through. Amidst the previously unstoppable fighting, it was revealed that four manipulative gods were behind the chaos and confusion; that all of the misunderstandings leading to the generations of bloodshed, had been initiated by them.
People immediately stopped fighting one another, redirecting their aggression toward the Gods. Though they had destroyed much of their own civilization, ancient people were still quite powerful and in the end of the conflict, overpowered the Gods, banishing them in an explosion of magical energy. The resulting wave of destruction resonated across the globe, fragmenting the once solitary continent and killing millions.
Generations have passed since that great disaster and people are slowly but surely, picking up the pieces of society. Though the world-wide hostilities seem to have stopped, such peace is often fleeting..
..for an old and forgotten threat is looming in the background, plotting to make history repeat itself.

Booty 01:49, 11 June 2008 (CEST)


Dabe:To be quite honest, I only ever intended this as a sort of intro / teaser line for the game. Like something that you might read on the back of the box, were it a commercial game. Another use would be for text during an opening sequence or demo. At any rate, the story is undergoing some changes that will require a new intro-line be written. Maybe we should revisit this matter after we decide on some things about the story.




Suggested changes PT2

Many ages ago, the world became embroiled in blood. All of mankind, from the most modest tribesmen to the grandest of kings, became entangled in warfare. In the darkest hour of mankind's self slaughter when all lost hope for peace a shimmering truth was revealed. The four manipulative gods were responsible for the undoing of mankind.
Amidst the previously unstoppable fighting, it was revealed that four manipulative gods were behind the chaos and confusion; that all of the misunderstandings leading to the generations of bloodshed, had been initiated by them.
Mankind became unified and directed their immense war fed aggression towards the gods. While the great works and civilizations of man long since vanished as a result of endless destruction, eons of battle and violence made men well versed in methods of combats, including those arcane and battle-wrought. The war-hardened people overpowered the terrible gods and banished them from the world with an explosion of magical energy of immeasurable magnitude. The destructive energy of the blast ripped across the world's solitary continent and tore it asunder. Millions were killed and the surviving peoples were separated by seemingly unsurmountable waters and treacherous war-torn wasteland.
Since that time mankind has endured and have slowly began rebuilding the grandeur that was lost. While mankind has found peace since the time of great destruction, an old enemy looms in the shadows, threatening to repeat a terrible past.

Okay, I rewrote it in a manner more suitable to me. Tell me what you think, don't worry I am highly critical of others and expect them to be so with me. No sparing feeling. Just keep in mind that I went through this once and I'm too lazy to proof it. It is better if others do that anyway.

Some things should be added to this story: More information about the gods Background about the "world" like the name and the laws of physics applicable, an old looking map of world before the breakup would be great A better sense of time

Booty 02:47, 11 June 2008 (CEST)

Silly me I just looked at the timeline and found it had a lot more information than the background. I'll update my post above to reflect the information in there. Booty 02:53, 11 June 2008 (CEST)

Okay me again. I decided to step back from this. Looking over the other pages there seems to be a large amount of content and many problems. In itself that wouldn't be a problem except I don't see a clear, consistent and organized method of editing, contributing and improving the material. Booty 03:03, 11 June 2008 (CEST)


Dabe:This is true. Because this is the only online, collaborative writing project I've ever worked on, I'm at a loss for an experienced answer to the problem of submitting story ideas. Hopefully, by getting the discussion tab moving again, you've nudged that problem a bit so that it might be addressed soon. Someone mentioned a writing section on the forum and it's something that I've wondered about for a while. Story items would be quickly buried in the content forum.

The other obvious option is the usually quiet #tmwart channel. Writing could be considered a form of art, I guess. So long as we can get there at the same time, we should be able to talk it up pretty well about story issues / suggestions / etc.. I will finally be getting back on IRC tomorrow, so starting in the morning, you should be able to find me there.

I first came across the storyline through the forum mention. I really thought that this was all there was to the story line. Shortly after posting the above I realized I only found the tail of the monster. I realized that this page was only a quick summation based on whatever material the of the story already had. My efforts above were pretty pointless as this page is something you would work on after the rest of the story was filled out.
The only online collaborative editing/creation I've done online has been wikipedia. So when I was looking at the rest of the monst...er story line I was expecting some sort of format based on that. Collaborative writing really does work out well as long as everyone understands what is going on in terms of proposing changes and making them. Currently on the other pages there are a variety of styles of editing in play, some pages have on going discussions about the story on the story page rather than the discussion. Other pages have that and the discussion in the discussion area.
What I was expecting was a story page that represents the (un)finished product with each section of story separated into editable sections (to avoid edit conflicts). Any discussion I expected in the discussion tab so that the reasoning and thought behind parts of the story would be preserved and organized.
I think that the development of the story should be discussed in the discussion sections rather than a forum. It is easier to track changes and implement ideas and gets people familiar with the wiki editing style.
Regarding the writing you posted under "A beginning of a rewrite " I'm sorry to say that I really can't comment on most of it as I am not familiar with the storyline. Also I hinted at this earlier but I think that at least some of the storyline has some real issues in that it seems amateurish. I'm not specifying which parts as I want to spare peoples feelings, but it is to be expected as I suppose most of the contributors have limited fiction writing experience (like me). I would make changes or suggestions on those pages directly however the current organization is very off-putting. Booty 07:52, 15 June 2008 (CEST)

The main reason it seems amateurish, is just as you said; I'm not any sort of a professional writer. However, if you're referring to the general tackiness of the entire storyline, you should know that it's intended.. because we want TMW to feel like a spiritual successor to a past generation of games, I thought it was appropriate to set it up with a similarly lame, often-predictable storyline. The way I see it, most video games have laughably lame stories. ;) Overall, the rewrite has some typos and some present/past-tense inconsistencies, but it's a draft which was transcribed from a notebook, at like 3 in the morning; it's bound to have some issues.

Typos and grammar usage wasn't what I was referring to, those are expected only heavy editing can get those and sometimes not all. As far as predictable, there are elements of the story that are not very predictable whatsoever. I tried looking for example I found a week ago but I think I'm searching in the wrong place. When I find it I'll point it out. Booty 00:37, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

Bottom line; there are issues of intended tackiness that you should keep in mind while critiquing the story itself. If it's something beyond these apparent shortcomings.. like some glaring proof that I didn't pay attention in college, or that I haven't read a book in over a year, feel free to explain, so that I can fix it. Something else to remember is that the story should not be so convoluted, that non-native English speakers have a hard time following it. This was part of my beef with my currently posted version; too convoluted. There needs to be a solid foundation for future story development, but enough left to the imagination, to offer some flexibility.

The sections I read that put me off weren't really tacky (I'm rather fond of tackiness) but rather were convoluted to the point where I was struggling to understand what they were trying to say. Again I am having a hard time finding the example I am referring to (maybe someone already fixed it?). Booty 00:37, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

The.. "monster" as you call it. Is a mess, but that's part of the reason I want to start yet another rewriting initiative, with more emphasis on group discussion along the way. One reason the Modern Era sucks, is because we have had hangups in system development. I couldn't proceed too far without understanding how our magic system was going to work, since this is a pivotal aspect of the storyline. This is one reason for the comments slipping on to the foot of the article, in this case, though I can assure you it's happened in quite a few other, non-story-related articles. (having a "comments" section on the bottom of the article, for example)
I have never claimed to hold a degree in wiki-etiquette. While I agree that the story is essentially my mess, I refuse to accept that it's the only part of the wiki that is offending in this fashion, though it may currently be the most flamboyantly off-standard. If it bothers you this much, perhaps you should consider helping out with wiki cleanup/management, to keep things laid out, according to an exacting standard. There are general management / communication issues affecting the organization of the wiki, that must be addressed for the cleanup to ever actually happen. Rest assured we will continue to plug away at it until it feels right, but sorry if the mess scared you off. :(
Please email me with any scathing feedback, if you're concerned about the chance of publicly humiliating me; dave(at)themanaworld.org -16:41, 15 June 2008 (CEST)

I can understand the problem with the modern era, it does seem odd that a storyline focused on magic and a game called Mana World doesn't have any magic.Booty 16:36, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

Who says that TMW isn't going to have magic? See Magic system for details of the magic system which will be implemented on TMWServ and Simple eathena magic system for a less serious magic system which might even see the light of the day on the current server. --Crush 02:44, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

I was referring to the current state of the game. I didn't make the suggestion that there won't be magic just the statement that there currently isn't any. When people are first coming to play this game they are not going to scour the wiki and the forums beforehand. I wasn't making any assumptions just a statement on the current (player) condition. Booty 16:36, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

I'm also sure that the storyline isn't the section of the wiki affected like this. It is off putting because it is out of place to the reader and confusing. I can start working on the cleanup in a general way until specifications of the editing process are made (although these shouldn't get too complex because that is even more off putting). Most of my scathing feedback is regarding the style of the editing rather than the story itself, except for one part which I can't find at the moment. The story on the backstory and the prehistory seems fine if not better than fine to me. It is a lot easier editing a story than creating one. Hopefully more editors will get involved as I think they would enrich the writing with every edit. I hope it is not a problem but I'm moving the discussion of the prehistory and the modern age to those pages. Booty 00:37, 16 June 2008 (CEST)

Possible solution for organizing collaboration

A while back I created a system (in this wiki) for organizing proposals. It is old, and I cannot watch after it any longer, but it works good for what I meant it for. Perhaps everyone would find it useful for organizing the idea development process. A link is here --Blash 00:28, 17 June 2008 (CEST)


Proposal by Yanom

This story implies that religion is evil. this one is much better:


Many ages ago, the world was entangled by war. From the smallest tribe to the grandest of kingdoms, virtually every discernible group of mankind was somehow involved. Through the darkness of war however, a light of truth somehow shone through. Amidst the previously unstoppable fighting, it was revealed that two forces were behind the chaos and confusion; the force of good and the force of evil. Four Gods: Wind, Water, Fire, and Earth, where at constant war with a mysterious force of evil.

People saw that they had been manipulated by the forces of evil into destroying themselves. They then banded together under the banners of the Four Gods and banished the forces of evil from the land. Generations have passed since that great war and people are slowly but surely, picking up the pieces of society. Though the world-wide hostilities seem to have stopped, such peace is often fleeting..

..for an old and forgotten threat is looming in the background, plotting to make history repeat itself.


Timeline

User:Dabe/Prehistory

User:Dabe/The Modern Age

User:Dabe/The Future

if this story is incompatible with other articles on wiki.themanaworld.org, just point them out. I am willing to fix every one BY MYSELF just to get my story accepted.

What's wrong with portraying deities as villains? It is not like we are offending any real religion and it is better than a cliché good vs. evil storyline. --Crush 15:12, 13 July 2008 (CEST)
Nothing is wrong with portraying SOME deities as villains, as long as their not ALL villains.