• Member Since 21st Oct, 2014
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Snakeskin Ducttape


Ooooh! Butunz!

More Blog Posts44

  • 1 week
    A personal social museum

    Hey, everyone. Sorry for being so quiet lately. I've been a little tired in general, and I've wanted to take a break from fanfiction for a while, not a big break, mind you, just for a few weeks, and I've sort of been doing that, but I've also checked in most days to check comments, and nagging myself that I should write, so... it's like the worst of both worlds, not doing anything, but also not

    Read More

    7 comments · 152 views
  • 15 weeks
    So very tired

    One of the reasons I don't write more news like this than I do is that the latest blog post is going to be on my profile's front page and the latest news about my writing for quite a while, but I still felt like I should write something. Because... well, there seems to be some people who genuinely want to read what I write, weird as that feels to say out loud. I mean, there are a few

    Read More

    17 comments · 493 views
  • 53 weeks
    Sunset Shimmer at Hogwarts story mission statement

    I am not feeling very eloquent today, or least not this moment, but I've decided to nonetheless try and give an update on what's going on, and why I'm writing an crossover where Sunset Shimmer ends up at Hogwarts and not something else.

    So why this story and not other stuff? What gives?

    Read More

    19 comments · 1,517 views
  • 59 weeks
    physical recovery period

    okay, so, i have not been in an accident or something like, it was relatively minor operation, and it has been in the works for a while, but i got a summons on a very short notice.

    so right now i am typing and using the mouse with my left hand, and i am not super enthusiastic about stuff since my right wrist hurts quite a bit, so i will be brief.

    Read More

    10 comments · 388 views
  • 59 weeks
    Just a general update

    You know how there's this sentiment that a lot of people don't go to the hospital even when they should?

    I'm not entirely convinced about that's a valid feedback to give in general. I mean, the medical community have enough on their plate, even without pandemics, without everyone going to see a medical professional every time they have the flu, or a stomach bug, or something.

    Read More

    14 comments · 267 views
Jan
11th
2017

Ever had a story disarm you of your cynicism? · 3:38pm Jan 11th, 2017

First, some quick MLAABQ-news: 9200 words written as of the time of writing this. Subject matter for the chapter is so far is prostheses and inventions. Some new side-character, character-interactions, the usual. Emotional gut-punches? None so far. Humor? I’d say so, yes. A few thousand words left to write at least. I gotta end the trend of writing short chapters with measly 10k words :derpytongue2:

I have a really interesting, and kind of ambitious, idea for a chapter after that though. Perhaps a bit too ambitious. We’ll see what happens.

End of MLAABQ-news.

So I finally decided to check out some of the stuff in my Steam library, you know, that stuff that you buy on sale just so that you won’t forget to play it someday and then your forget it anyway? I did that, and it started off well. The latest game I played was Dust: An Elysian Tail.

That game has a story... with an ending... which was actually emotional. It even coaxed out a tiny bit of moisture from my eyes, something that doesn’t happen often, I’m kinda sad to say.

… But how did it do that?

I first played it when it was pretty new, I think (then I upgraded my PC and I forgot to continue, then it sat in my Steam library, gathering… Dust :ajsmug: ). Now, let me tell you about the story and characters and things like that: While I, for some reason, liked it, It’s the kind of stuff that gets laughed at on this site, and probably most places. You see:

The protagonist in an amnesiac ass-kicker. He has a sword with an absolutely outlandish design, that talks to him, and which he wields backhanded. He’s stoic and modest, except when he broods... and when he gets unnerving flashbacks; then he grunts and moans and clearly suffers without whimpering or whining or something that would decrease the badass-factor. He also wears a hat that covers his eyes, and he has a cloak that billows when he fights and jumps and moves awesomely. His past is obviously shrouded in mystery, and it gets clear pretty early that it’s of the dark and troubled kind.

He’s also an anthro… wolf, I think. Every character is an anthro-animal.

The protagonist’s sidekick is a wisecracking, flying, magic-slinging, tiny fox-bat-thing with a cutesy-wutesy little voice who’s adorability-factor is a bit too strong for me.

Protagonist travels the wilderness, and comes across a village that’s under attack. He selflessly saves the village, and lets out some modest words to the effect of ‘you’re welcome’ when the inhabitants thank him, that’s the early part of the story. Then there’s stuff about chosen ones and some legendary Mithrandir… sorry, ‘Mithrarin’ (their net fuzziness-factor is about the same so I was confused for a moment there).

Yeah, the names aren’t the most interesting or believable either. The world is called ‘Falana’, which I’m guessing don’t mean anything, and the characters’ names comes from all over the place, Gaius, Jin, Haley, Fidget, Fuse, and so on.

These are things I mostly see in amateur stories. Pony-fics about self-inserts being cool and saving the world and showing the ponies how it’s done, with little to no panache. Or by some youngster with a how-to-draw-manga book who have started writing a webcomic about their anthro-badass-bishie-character, who doesn’t seem to have much of a plan about what they want their story to be about, they just love their character (not that I’m not cool with things like that. I admire people with the drive to start out young– I mostly played video games… I still do :twilightsheepish:).

Was I impressed by this story of Dust: An Elysian Tail? Ehehe… no.

Did I like it? Well… somehow, yes.

Strange, isn’t it? This is the type of story that you sometimes see with a upvote/downvote-ratio of 1-20 or something here on fimfiction. The badass hero, the troubled past, the not-very-witty banter with the hero and his sidekick. It’s not a deconstruction or anything clever like that. It’s not self-aware, it’s not a parody, it’s not going in some original direction, or is a synthesis or other types of stories. It’s just a straight-up tale with these elements, taken at face-value.

But I liked it. Why? Was it the enthusiasm from the creator’s part that won me over? The quaintness? The sincerity? Like a budding garage-band with a couple of decent original songs, with little experience or skill compared to the professional veterans, their stuff is basic, but easy to enjoy, and made with plenty of spirit, and I can like things because of that. Perhaps it seems a bit daring to liken the developers to a bunch of budding amateurs, but I hope you get my point.

I’m not entirely sure about this, but think that’s what’s happened here. The creators, through their medium, simply went, ‘We have a story here, want to see?’, and somehow they got me interested from their tone and delivery, even though I’ve never seen a single person from the team. Perhaps it was earnestness, perhaps confidence, perhaps a sense of just not giving a fuck about people not willing to at least try and like the story. Something about the game's story charmed me.

So I should ask myself the question again: Was I impressed by the story of Dust: An Elysian Tail? Actually, yes. Strange perhaps, but I was.

Do you have any examples of stories like that? Stories that would be scoffed at any other day, but which you still enjoyed.

And another question I just got in my head: Have you ever found something emotionally gripping when it has a soundtrack that you didn’t like? (the game had a pretty great score in places, and hip as I am I recognised the names when the credits rolled :moustache:).

Comments ( 36 )

someone said a game is like a Porn, it is good if the game has it but it is not completely necessary. I believe it is why you liked the game.

4378710 Yeah, wasn't that John Carmac? Respect to the dude, not everyone can claim to have been a driving force behind a whole entertainment industry, but I don't agree (If it was Carmac, now I seem to remember it as being Romero :unsuresweetie:)

A game with little focus on story... doesn't have much need of a good story, like a city sim. Games with focus on story do need a good one. Then there are games with strong make-your-own-story elements, like Sid Meier's Pirates. Sweeping generalizations are risky to make at the best of times, and when it comes to a medium with largely unexplored dimensions, can easily come across as arrogant or narrow-minded.

Not sure what you surmised as the reason for me liking the game, though :twilightsheepish:

I remember that game. The story is kind of forgettable for the most part, yet the game itself isn't. The dialogues are good and the voice-acting just makes everything better. The gameplay is easy, intuitive and simply fun, with lots of enemies that go from cannon fodder to challenging on a believable slope. It's just a game that's fun to play without trying to meet some standards other than being fun and simple.

Also, it's not "the Creators"; the whole game was made by one guy, aside from the voice acting and the soundtrack that he hired someone else for. It might be one reason why the game just works so well. Instead of a group of developers doing their best to work together it was just one guy doing all the work and always having in mind exactly how all the parts should fit together.

Spacecowboy
Moderator

You ever play Ori? If not, you should. Another good game with similar impact.

4378720 you claimed that you did not like the story too much but it still managed to impress you, in computer games it is done by atmosphere and animations. Porn example works well for platformers and fps, I'd you are looking for similiar games look at slain back from hell and axiom verge.

I know what you're talking about. There's a story here on Fimfiction, Shattered Skies, that ticks every one of my usual 'do not want' boxes. Overly powerful main character, all the characters like him, holds the keys to a new Equestria, gets to smack down characters the author seemingly doesn't like, has half the cast fall in love with him, becomes or is a mentor to the other half, turns out to be related to favourite characters, is the centre to everything important that is or has happened in Equestria, it has it all.

Yet, somehow, even though it has all these things... I still find myself reading each chapter. I can objectively say the story is a mess of all the clichés that damn a good story... but I'm still curious what each new chapters brings, and how it ends.

By all standards that I have, I should hate it. Yet I don't.

4378783 Yeah, the core gameplay was good too, but it's not unusual that I find something like that enjoyable, unlike the story :raritywink:

Also, it's not "the Creators"; the whole game was made by one guy, aside from the voice acting and the soundtrack that he hired someone else for.

Well, they're creators as well, I'd say. Writing, on the other hand, might've been from one guy. Which is what I'm talking about here, so it was then I guess you're right.

4378830 Ah, thank you. I'll make a note of that :twilightsmile:

4378855 Hmm. Well it certainly had the animation-thing down. Gorgeous stuff. Atmosphere... well maybe a bit. But no, I didn't say I didn't like the story, I said that I normally wouldn't like that type of story, and yet I did, which is what the blogpost was all about.

And I'll make a note of them games as well :twilightsmile:

4378861 Yeah. It goes to show that it might be less about what tools you use when writing the story than people might think, and more about how you wield them. It's always interesting when you find a story like that though.

Shattered Skies, as in the first result in when you search according to relevance? It's in my toread-list it seems. I think I'm gonna bump it a little bit :eeyup:

Can't say much about steam games these day, ever since I learned how to play Europa Universalis 4 I've barely touched another game in years. But, I know the game SOMA had a very thought-provoking and melancholic story.

I am kinda a sucker for what could be described as 'flawed' stories, so long as the author is responsive and fun to talk with. It makes the story more interactive and fun if you can discuss things between chapters, and I have found most authors like that as well. But, I have learned to stay away from "Superhero" stories, because those authors and commenters can be pretty stubborn.

4378972

Shattered Skies, as in the first result in when you search according to relevance?

That's the one.

4378976 Heh. The story in Dust was everything but thought-provoking. Spec Ops: The Line was thought-provoking, and I liked the story there as well, although for vastly different reasons :rainbowlaugh:

I've never been in dialogue with a game-writer. The last time I had tried being active in game community was when Dragon Age Origins was in early development and I joined Bioware's forum, and holy shit what a bunch of fucking assholes :ajbemused:

I kind of rarely become active here either, now that I think about it, 'cept for my own story. I guess I'm like an internet-vampire or something, I don't like entering places where I haven't been clearly welcomed.

I'll take your word for it on Superhero-stories. I haven't read many, and never looked into their engagement with the readers. Could be fun to check some day though.

Stubbornness is an unhealthy extreme in storytelling though. I guess the other is the stories that try and placate everyone with bland results. I think that someday I should try and write a blog concerning some of the misguided opinion people have on writing. People often say "never do X", which often sounds like it would just lead to another uninteresting extreme.

4378987 Noted :twilightsmile:

4378972
Well yes, the writing too. What I really meant though is that the guy apparently did all the programming and coding and art from start to end over the course of... eight years, I think? It's definitely an impressive effort and dedication that should be noted when reviewing the game. :coolphoto:

4379032 Hm. I knew from before that it had been one guy coding the whole thing, but I didn't know he had put that much time into. No wonder it felt refined.

It's definitely an impressive effort and dedication that should be noted when reviewing the game. :coolphoto:

It certainly is, but this isn't a review. It's just me talking about how I liked a story I wouldn't expect to like :ajsmug:

4378998
I do remember when you commented on Consequences. That was a pretty fun time, so I hope Hiver decides to write again. His story almost became a weekly hang out place where you discussed writing stuff.

4379076 I've commented on other stories, like yours. I've even memorized some of the ones where my post got lots of upvotes. Never let it be said that I don't crave recognition :eeyup:

4379086
Don't we all. Sure, we write for fun, but it's the recognition that keeps us writing!

Strange - a YouTube LPer I watch is doing that game as a project. I watched the first episode and haven't gone back. The game play might be gorgeous but just watching it was a cringe-fest. And evidently, the game play IS really, really good. It's just everything around it that I couldn't stand.

Just a weird co-inki-dink that this is the second time I've had that name crop up this month.

You forgot to mention the how it quotes the resident evil 4 merchant meme early on, I ended up enjoying the game similarly but that was so cringy and out of nowhere when your still being introduced to everything.

4379401 Yeah, which is sort of my point. It's the type of story I'd be all over when I was, like, nine or something. At least I think so. These days I feel I should roll my eyes at it and scoff, but something about it made it work for me, and I'm not entirely sure what.

It's like when I booted up the old PSX-era Final Fantasy games a few years ago (I still need to play though IX). The stories doesn't make any sense when you give them anything other than a very cursory glance, and are very choppily narrated, even if you cut out the hours-long pauses between the story-sections, with really long segments seemingly not having anything to do with anything else. The characters jumps between different archetypes depending on the situation, and they're very strangely characterized, and so on in that vein. Yet it still works for me for some reason. In the cases of FF it might be nostalgia, but every once in a while, I stumble upon a story I'd be all over in my pre-to-early-teens, and which I somehow still enjoy in my older, cynical twenty-somethings, even though I feel like I shouldn't.

You ever had a story do that to you?

4379532 I cringed as well, but it was far from the only time when Fidget talked :twilightsheepish:

4379961
No, can't say I have though I might just be forgetting something.

Le shrug.

4380085 No? Too bad. It's nice. Never hurts to have more stories to enjoy :twilightsmile:

Dust is actually one of the few non-sandbox games that I'm gearing up to play again but I think it has the same problem as another couple of games I loved:

Dust:AET [1] [2], Aquaria, and FEZ all start strong, but manage their pacing badly, which makes it feel like they end when they should be around the mid-point of the story arc. (I perceive it as "The developers managed their time badly and had to make a horrendously rushed final act to wind things down.")

(Dust and Aquaria also have great music, though I'd say that Aquaria has a more double-or-nothing relationship with continuity. Aquaria does a better job of using a theme to unify the various "overworld" BGMs (it's a metroidvania) while still giving a sense of progression and environment but, like FEZ, Aquaria gives a first impression that doesn't hold out. Aquaria gains a fairly central combat mechanic that it could have lived without and FEZ's narrative and character interactions are nonexistent after the very RPG-like introduction... not to mention that, if your primary mechanic is so distinctive, you shouldn't make your puzzles for 200% completion completely unrelated cryptanalysis even if they were quite engaging.)

I also found it annoying that Dust actually replicated Simon's Quest's most infamous design flaw (kneel for tornado) in the name of homage. ("Mysterious Wall Chicken" was more than enough.)

In case anyone hasn't played Aquaria, doesn't mind some very minor spoilers to the exploration aspect of the gameplay, and wants to see what I mean about thematic continuity, here are some soundtrack links for various "overworld/hub" regions in the game (though I recommend getting the full experience of encountering it all together if you're willing to be convinced without listening):

1. Light
(Before you set off on your adventure)

2. The Traveller
(hub region around your home, but now you're setting out on your adventure)

3. Undiscovered Waters
(First hub region region outside the comfortable patch of ocean you've know all your life.)

4. Remains
(Hub in the ruins of a fallen civilization with an almost mausoleum-like feel to them at times)

5. Heart of the Forest
(Hub in a rainforest-esque kelp forest that's not only booming with life everywhere you look, but has a very different visual aesthetic from any hub region that came before.)

6. Bright Waters
(Hub region as you approach the brightly sunlit surface waters)

7. Above
(The surface, which the character is seeing for the first time in her life)

8. Sun Temple
(The surface "temple", which is heavily mechanical)

9. Lost Waters
(Now starting to go into the areas of the central hub that are deeper and somehow more ancient-feeling than when you first set out)

10. Dark Places
(The hub of the sunless depths)

11. Icy Waters
(An area which is only semi-overworld-esque in theme, and icy.)

I just wish I could use a hyperlinked image map to really drive home how adjacent regions have similar music.

There's also a beautiful soundtrack-only song (Fear the Dark) which comes across as an ordinary love song at first but has a second interpretation hidden in it which you can only recognize if you've beaten the game.

P.S. In case anyone's wondering, I linked Dust to Humble Store as well as GOG because, for whatever crazy reason, there's no place you can buy both the Windows and Linux versions DRM-free.)

I bought the game in a Humble Bundle several years ago. I was surprised when they updated it to the newest version last year — a big chunk was unaccessible in Linux because of a bug. I loved the game.

I think Dust, Cassius, Jin and Ginger are all foxes. Hard to say, when aquamarine fur is the norm :)

Falana is not the world, but the country where the story takes place.

The game is largely the work of a single artist-programmer. He was part of the team that made Jazz the Jackrabit (some famous and influential platformer from 1990s, or so I've heard).

The story is said to have been inspired to a degree by Japanese-Korean conflict.

There are several crossovers with DustAET on this site. Most stopped after the first chapter. I haven't published mine yet :)

The length of game dialogues is around 24 thousand words or 131 thousand letters.

As for your question about soundtrack, I dislike the majority of game soundtracks. I just switch the music off and enjoy the game. I don't play many new games, but I really liked only the music of VVVVVV.

4380717
I've read that the author cut the game short to meet a publisher's deadline. The final boss was going to be the king himself. For the same reason the romantic subplot with Hailey was not implemented.

4380717 If i have any energy left after this evening's planed tortilla-extravaganza, I might check that soundtrack out while I'm writing.

What do you mean by "kneel for tornado"?

Heheh, speaking of rushed endings, I remember getting to the finale in Valkyria Chronicles. It ended about a quarter into what would be a normal length JRPG-story (technically it wasn't a JRPG but it had the story of one). Ironically enough, it felt more like the logical conclusion point for me, and I kinda dreaded the exhaustingly long story I thought I saw unfolding before me when I played the first three quarters :derpytongue2:

4381077 Ah yeah, foxes, that makes sense. They seem to be a favorite as protagonists among fans of anthro-characters. Anthro-foxes and wolves are kinda similar beside coloration though.

I don't remember a 'the' in Jazz Jackrabbit, but then again I haven't played that for decades now. Like Earthworm Jim :twilightsheepish:

There's a lot of crossovers on this site that the author clearly dreamed of being long epics, but which are less than 10k words :derpytongue2:
I'm kinda playing with the thought of making a crossover in my head, to see if I can do any better, but I've got MLAABQ to write first.
What's your's gonna be about? If you feel like sharing, that is.

You mean Dust's dialogue was 24k words? Didn't feel like it.

I was specifically talking about games when I asked about soundtracks, but the amount of game-soundtracks that are really good fits for their scenes are obviously not as common as for movies or such.
I remember the final battles of Mass Effect 2 having a kickass soundtrack, and RTSs pull it off fairly regularly... Perhaps Metal Gear Solid as well, but it's not all that often, and a lot of the time there's not really a soundtrack at all, as the combat-parts aren't set-pieces, just random encounters in the overworld.

Not that movies always pull it off either. That movie-length pilot for Battlestar Galactica had a big dog-fight where the music was just obnoxious.

4381493

In Simon's Quest, there's a spot where you have to hold crouch for a while while holding a red crystal to summon a whirlwind which takes you to the next area.

In Dust, there's a cryptic mark in one spot that, in hindsight, is probably supposed to be an hourglass and, to get to one of the side areas, you have to kneel by it. I'm generally pretty good at these sorts of things (I solved almost every anti-cube puzzle in FEZ without any help whatsoever) but I was completely lost as to what to do there until I looked it up.

4381658 Oh, that part in Simon's Quest. Maybe I was a bit absent, but I first registered it as Simon The Sorcerer. Which is weird because I've played Simon's Quest, but not Simon The Sorcerer.

4381493

I don't remember a 'the' in Jazz Jackrabbit

My mistake.

What's your's gonna be about? If you feel like sharing, that is.

In fact, I did ask for ideas, got some good suggestions and open for more.
https://www.fimfiction.net/group/207400/dust-an-elysian-tail/thread/293080/anybody-here-wanna-help
http://www.fimfiction.net/group/208149/dust-an-elysian-tail-bronies/thread/293082/is-this-forum-alive-can-you-help-with-a-dust-story
http://www.fimfiction.net/group/41/crossovers/thread/293570/dust-in-the-crystal-empire-suggestions
In short: after the game ends, the spell that forms Sen-Mithrarin pulls him toward another soul, who died fighting for something important — to Crystal Empire several years after season 6. Ahrah and Fidget follow. The new soul is a pony killed shortly before Crystal Empire was thrown to the future. Dust will have to dig for secrets of King Sombra and solve the weather problem. As well as deal with moody Flurry Heart, soundly angry Crackle, Spike looking unnervingly similar to imps, and hooves instead of hands :pinkiegasp:

You mean Dust's dialogue was 24k words? Didn't feel like it.

I meant all in-game dialogues. Dust's, Fidget's, Ahrah's and NPCs' lines. The story is pretty long.

I was specifically talking about games when I asked about soundtracks

What I wrote earlier, sounded a bit harsher, than I meant. I don't as much "dislike" as "don't enjoy enough to notice what's playing". And my definition of "like" is "enjoy enough to rip the music out of the game and listen to it frequently".

4382374

I don't remember a 'the' in Jazz Jackrabbit

My mistake.

That was just me waving my game-cred :twilightsmile:

I was specifically talking about games when I asked about soundtracks

What I wrote earlier, sounded a bit harsher, than I meant. I don't as much "dislike" as "don't enjoy enough to notice what's playing". And my definition of "like" is "enjoy enough to rip the music out of the game and listen to it frequently".

I was supposed to say that I wans't specifically etc etc.
But yeah, I get what you mean on that. Long gone are the days of Mario and Megaman when catchy tunes were as important as a good control-scheme.

I meant all in-game dialogues. Dust's, Fidget's, Ahrah's and NPCs' lines.

Ah yeah, I meant that too.

So your crossover wouldn't feature Dust the character? From how the whole things with souls work in that game, it sounds like another individual's gonna take up that title. Unless there's gonna be three of them now.

4382558

So your crossover wouldn't feature Dust the character? From how the whole things with souls work in that game, it sounds like another individual's gonna take up that title. Unless there's gonna be three of them now.

On the contrary. I assume Dust is a single person, who remembers two lives. Occasionally his experiences as Jin and Cassius may suggest him different courses of action, but usually they agree. He becomes an earth pony, who occasionally recalls things, that happened a thousand years ago. Neither Dust, nor his friends will notice any difference in his personality. Until he starts showing signs of an insufferable genius much later.

At the start he wants to get to the last surviving city of Crystal Empire, the only one modern ponies know. There he expects to find some way to travel back to Falana. Once there, he recalls the problems Sombra failed to solve, and decides to help ponies first. He wants to go home to make sure the war is really over and won't start again, but won't get the chance until the very end.

P.S.

Long gone are the days of Mario and Megaman when catchy tunes were as important as a good control-scheme.

I don't care much for Mario music. What I really liked were themes from Final Fantasy 6 and Chrono Trigger. And intros from OperaSoft 8-bit games (Last Mission, Goody).

4382624

He becomes an earth pony, who occasionally recalls things, that happened a thousand years ago. Neither Dust, nor his friends will notice any difference in his personality

So if he's Dust, with Cassius' and Jin's memories, where does his memories from a thousand years ago come from?

Until he starts showing signs of an insufferable genius much later

In... combat? Like in the game?

So would this story feature a lot of violence and murder? The game does, but it's against nameless and faceless "monsters"– just imps and troggs. The game has a setting where killing these creatures in large numbers is of little consequence, and is not morally questionable. A lot of games have that (most even), but combat in literature tends to become old sooner than combat in video games, and murder and violence in pony-fics is a huge turnoff for many, including me. I've seen it done well, and even made funny a few times, just tread carefully. That's my advice on this,

I don't care much for Mario music. What I really liked were themes from Final Fantasy 6 and Chrono Trigger.

That too, but Koji Kondo is some sort of genius in my mind :eeyup:

4382765

So if he's Dust, with Cassius' and Jin's memories, where does his memories from a thousand years ago come from?

As I said, from some pony, who lived in Crystal Empire before it jumped to the future. Some kind of artificer. Could be a magician, but he was an earth pony. He was privy to some of Sombra's secrets. Could be Sombra's advisor, who turned against him. Or maybe he was killed by an enemy of Sombra. That's something the heroes will have to figure out.

Until he starts showing signs of an insufferable genius much later

In... combat? Like in the game?

Where was it in the game? I can't remember what you mean. To answer your question — no, I'm thinking about non-combat scenes, but with great pressure on Dust.

Dust's combat abilities come from Ahrah. There was a suggestion that those abilities are only meant to kill, and don't include practice sparring or non-lethal duelling, which may prove problematic.

So would this story feature a lot of violence and murder?

Less than in the game and without murders. Jumping and waving a sword — definitely. Chopping evil plants — definitely. Hurting ponies or other beings who can talk — infrequently. I have in mind a scene or two where Dust stops and asks himself "What the hell did I almost do?"

In another thread a chase with an invulnerable ghost was suggested. Not sure if I can write it.

Another suggestion made me think about a one-sided fight against the dragon Crackle. Dust's sword cannot hurt Crackle (with a long explanation), Crackle isn't interested in Dust, but chases Fidget, Crackle's fire (or other breath weapon) doesn't hurt Fidget, and Fidget cannot use magic, because of how it affects the surrounding plants. When they get tired, they'll have to talk it out.

If I write about Dust walking into Sombra's trap that materializes fears, there may be a scene with Flurry Heart freezing to death.

4383475

As I said, from some pony, who lived in Crystal Empire before it jumped to the future. Some kind of artificer. Could be a magician, but he was an earth pony. He was privy to some of Sombra's secrets. Could be Sombra's advisor, who turned against him. Or maybe he was killed by an enemy of Sombra. That's something the heroes will have to figure out.

In the game, Dust was an amalgamation of Jin and Cassius who became a new 'person', at least that's how I understand it. Would this earth pony be added to that equation, so that the Dust in your stories would effectively be three people, or would the pony be separated from Dust? Or is the pony dead and gone, and it's just his memories that Dust has floating around in his head, separate from Dust's personality and identity? I understand it as one of these options.

Where was it in the game? I can't remember what you mean. To answer your question

Dust's combat abilities come from Ahrah.

Well in the scene in the ruined village where we get the whole revelation thing, that old dude whose name I can't remember says pretty much outright that Dust's combat-capabilities comes from Cassius. Only, at that point I'm guessing they're even greater, since he's got even more experience, and a magic sword. I'm pretty sure they state it at least one more time, but I can't remember where.

Less than in the game and without murders. Jumping and waving a sword — definitely. Chopping evil plants — definitely. Hurting ponies or other beings who can talk — infrequently.

I feel that this would be the best approach, yes. Good plan.

If I write about Dust walking into Sombra's trap that materializes fears, there may be a scene with Flurry Heart freezing to death.

Which reveals that Dust has gotten to know Flurry Heart at that point. I already know things about your story :ajsmug:

4383543

In the game, Dust was an amalgamation of Jin and Cassius who became a new 'person', at least that's how I understand it. Would this earth pony be added to that equation, so that the Dust in your stories would effectively be three people,

Dust starts as the old Dust and then the traits of the third character start to manifest slowly.

Which reveals that Dust has gotten to know Flurry Heart at that point. I already know things about your story :ajsmug:

I already told that he ends up in Crystal Empire several years after season 6 and spends some time there. Of course, he can recognize the rulers' daughter. And the links I've given earlier give the outline how they met. :rainbowlaugh:

4383594 Alrighty then. I'm still getting used to life as a professional with long commuting-time, but I'd give your story a read when I have time.

4383627 Not much to read beside those outlines yet. And I'm a slow writer.

4383636 What I meant is that you have me as a reader when you have something to show :raritywink:

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