Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Inevitable Super Smash Brothers 4 Character Predictions/Desires


As two new Super Smash Brothers (hereafter SSB) games are in development for Wii U and 3DS, I have been thinking about which characters will be in the game. SSB is my favorite game series. There’s just no other fighter that quite does what SSB does with such class and style. Today I’m going to build my own roster, made up from both my personal desires to characters that I think have a good shot at making it. I’ll discuss characters that I believe will be removed and those that will be replaced. So, let’s get to it!
My roster, drawn by me!
First, I want to start with Ganondorf. Always considered one of the worst characters, Ganondorf has been a clone-character (meaning uses the same moves as another character) of Captain Falcon. While his moveset has never made sense being that he doesn’t have any of his in-game powers, it’s always disappointing to have a character that plays the same way as another character (only Ganondorf is ridiculously slower!). I would love to see Ganondorf replaced with traditional Ganon. Yeah, the pig-like monster with giant tusks. He can be a Bowser-weight and size character, using giant swords and his traditional magical energy balls and magic. I know that Ganon is used as a Final Smash in Brawl, but I think that should be changed to a powerful dark energy attack.

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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Thoughts About Using Skin Color in my Novel

One of the characters in my novel is black, and, after controversies with Rue from The Hunger Games movie (where a bunch of racist white folk were pissed that a black actress played a dear character they assumed was white from the novel), I want to be very clear within the text of my book that she's black.  
 

To be colorful or colorless?
Most writer's I've talked to say to just not mention what color of skin that any characters have at all, to leave it up to the reader's imagination. However, I feel like this is a little timid on the part of these writers. Why hide the skin color of everyone just to appease certain groups?

I want to shove it in the hater's faces that one of my main characters has dark skin and nobody sees her any differently than any other character. It's merely a descriptive value; not a judgement or statement.


For context, my book doesn't have anything to do with racial issues. In fact, the characters in my book don't really think about skin color much at all. There are black people, white people, Asians, everything, all mixed. It's perceived more like hair color than race in the fantasy world I've created.

These are just a few thought I've been having. I'm trying to figure out a good word to describe her skin color, but most suggestions I get on the Internet say things like, "caramel" or "mocha," but I feel like using food words for skin color is getting a little cliche and seems like just another way for writers to skip over using terms like "brown." If anyone has any thoughts on good words to describe skin color in fiction, please share them. 


All of this won't really have much affect on the storyline, but I think it's important to acknowledge that there exists more than just white people in the world, and if you don't specifically say so, it seems like most readers will just assume that all characters match the skin color of the author.


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UNRAVELSPACE UNRAVELTIME

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Chx



This is Ostapex, who uses an old monster truck tire as his shell.
He rolls around in it to move, pushing with his claws.
He owns an old open-air parking lot, which is called the
Shellot Hotel. This hotel is a place where Chx can sleep at
night while staying in the big city.

My world is filled with alternative races. Rather than elves and dwarves, I use gats and kudanites. I wanted to make something new and unique. To explore new themes in fantasy and society.

Today I’m going to talk about another race I’ve created. It’s not a prominent race in my novel, but one that is only talked about a few times in passing. The Chx.

The Chx are crustaceans, as if a lobster somehow evolved into the overruling sentient race of a planet. They are most similar to hermit crabs, made giant, with massive shells, their outer layer is an exoskeleton, and they can breathe both water and air.

They are very much intelligent, however, and their needs are sharply less sophisticated than that of the humans. You see, they eat sea gunk from the ground, and they have almost an endless supply of it. Without hunger, they tend to only desire things like a nice shell on their backs. They’ve come to desire shiny things, which they enjoy attaching to their shells as decorations. So, they enjoy speaking with humans and bartering with them, because humans dig up shiny jewels and metals. This is one reason why they have interactions.

Because of their water-lives, they do not share our sort of vocal cords. They hiss, click, snap, and gargle words. Because of this, I had to create an “alphabet” of sorts, which can be used to create words for their language. They are more limited than humans in tongue, because they have more of a focus on vague concepts than specifics.

For example, they would not distinguish between frogs and toads, but call them all frogkind. Zebra fish and sharks are all fishkind, however they might distinguish sharks are fishkind that are dangerous.

I don’t want to reveal the entire language I’ve created, but I will give an example of several letters of my Chx “alphabet” to talk more about creating an alien language.
.
br = spawner/parent, what comes out
tr = food, something edible, what goes in
trx = eater of chx
x = dangerous, hurtful
.
To create some sort of “flow” and “logic” to my lobster language, I tried to make individual sounds used for repeating meanings. So, “r” is a movement sound, used for when something is changing positions. I can use it for a spawner word, because a baby being born is coming out of the parent. The “t” sound has to do with something consumable, and “x” meaning something that can be harmful. I can combine sounds to therefore create other meanings such as “tr,” which means the movement of consumption, and then reflect it with “x” to make “trx,” to make it mean a predatory creature that can hurt a Chx.

Altogether, I have about 47 sounds (edit: more now!) within the Chx alphabet that I can use to create words in the language. I’ll probably talk more about their number system in a different post.


Thanks for reading! If you’re interested in getting updated about my book (like if it ever gets published, lol) join our facebook page! If you just want to help and support me, a new writer in a bigBIG world, then +1 this post, share it on your wall, tweet it, and give me feedback in the comments! I appreciate you more than you know.


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UNRAVELSPACE UNRAVELTIME

Game Idea: Pokémon Tennis

Mario Tennis is awesome. The tight controls, awesome gameplay, and Mario-themed courts and playable characters make for solid fun.

Now, take the tight controls and gameplay, and add monster battling.

Pick your Pokémon Trainer and two starter pokémon to begin. Trainers have the basic stats of your standard tennis player. Speed, power, technique, or tricky playstyles.

 Pokémon either are attack, defense, speed, or special.

Now, the game begins like this: Trainer and the two starter pokémon appear together on either side of the court. One Trainer serves the tennis ball, which is really a pokéball (of course).

Tennis ensues. While you as the trainer are going after the ball with your tennis racket, your starter pokémon are launching attacks on the other team (Pokémon cannot attack until the ball is served). Fire pokémon shoot fireballs. Water pokémon shoot water. Grass pokémon throw leaves, etc. The pokémon can also help deflect the ball back to the other court. If a pokémon hits a Trainer with an attack, the trainer is stunned for a moment or moves more slowly.