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  1. - Top - End - #1381
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    John Cribati's Avatar

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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    Let's look at MM's party. The Maze was built in such a way that it could only be successfully concluded.
    And the problem is... What exactly? That just means that the narrative isn't about answering the question of "Will Minmax survive?" Instead it's about "How will Minmax survive?" and "What will Minmax face?"

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  2. - Top - End - #1382
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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    Quote Originally Posted by John Cribati View Post
    And the problem is... What exactly? That just means that the narrative isn't about answering the question of "Will Minmax survive?" Instead it's about "How will Minmax survive?" and "What will Minmax face?"
    You see, the problem is that the Maze is built in such a way that the first question is already answered. He will survive through the rules stated by Kin at the beginning, which impose that he respawns. Indeed, he has failed one million times (probably more, I didn't check). One million times that were so irrelevant, they don't even get shown, not even in flashbacks. As he observes, "nothing I do here has any meaning", and the he kisses Forgath (probably for the 500,000th time). In normal Maze conditions, he doesn't need to survive. There is no tension even in that direction.

    What will he face also suffers the same problem. When you say, "What will he face", you already are anxious about the protagonist. You wouldn't care if a red car passed you by. Now, if some idiot in a red car tried to shoot you last week, then you would care a lot, because you already have a reason to be anxious. You are already feeling tension. But the Maze requires no tension.

    You exclusively quoted the part of my post that referred to the Maze in and of itself, without psion. However, I think that your questions could also be asked about the psion. And those would be legitimate questions; actually, I think that the psion got "there" or very close to it (the how question instead of the yes/no question). His problem was that there were too many moving parts (MM's party, Ruby's party, the Maze, the Psion, everyone else, even a zombie plague), and there wasn't a feeling of general progression to the story, or of direction to the dungeon. He also had that "true love" part, which was a bit silly, and was a victim of the 38(?) ways, also silly. He also wasn't really defeated: instead, he was turned into "someone else's problem", since he was sent back to his original plane with a higher level and an indestructible body.

    In the end, the Maze was the love story between MM and Kin, from growth to falling out. Everything else just was supporting actors. Maybe that's the real problem with the psion, he was never meant to be the biggest deal in the room, although he was uniquely dangerous. And love stories are really hard to write.
    Quote Originally Posted by J.R.R. Tolkien, 1955
    I thought Tom Bombadil dreadful but worse still was the announcer's preliminary remarks that Goldberry was his daughter (!), and that Willowman was an ally of Mordor (!!).

  3. - Top - End - #1383
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    John Cribati's Avatar

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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    I didn't quote the part about the psion because he fell under "What will Minmax face?"

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  4. - Top - End - #1384
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    MinMax is a huge character in the story, not defined by the group he is in similar to chief, so I am surprised if there was ever any serious consideration if he'd survive the maze.

    The maze itself is special in that it is guaranteed that you will either succeed or you won't. Which in principle is identical to any quest, except that it is done differently in the maze. Say a comrade has fallen in battle, but you are just about to exist the dungeon, now you get the choice of a do-over (without remembering what to do the next time) or losing your friend.

    If the events that takes place in the maze are under such conditions that you can never get through it, then you will never exit. This could e.g. be if your character simply cannot overcome anything, like say leave the first room. (Imagine someone threw a plant into the portal to the maze of many, would it ever exit? Would any plant from alternative dimensions ever complete the maze?)
    Fortunately for MinMax he is a very special case whose powers can vary so widely that at any point another MinMax party can enter the maze and through their choices give our MinMax the win, which is what I believe the psion basically did.

    Then there is the psychological aspect, once the clock reaches millions, billions, etc. you might wonder if you will ever escape, but once you reach your destination you may be faced with the choice between saving a friend who might have fallen during the maze by not claiming the win and thereby resetting afraid you'll never leave, or finally break free of this prison.

  5. - Top - End - #1385
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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    In regards to pacing - I just wanted to say that I don't mind the fact that literal years pass between arcs that require resolution so much as I do the fact that whenever some little thing happens the number of panels (and often pages) dedicated to it is downright tiring. If someone does a flip in a fight then 3 panels are going to be dedicated to it. If someone wants to say something they're going to build up to it over the course of 2 pages. Every little thing is drawn out.

    "Nobody touch the clocks. We do not know what they do." - Roughly 4 panels spread across 2 pages (with some unrelated jokes mixed in)

    "We will avoid them. You are right." - 2 Panels

    "I am a side conversation that is interesting but not part of the dialogue about the clocks. Please care later." - 16 panels across 2 pages

    "Oh no, someone touched the clocks. What are we going to do?" - 4 panels across 2 pages

    "Oh, the person who touched the clocks is back. I guess everything is OK." - 6 panels

    "Everything is not OK. Touching a clock changes a man." - 2 panels

    "How?" - 2 panels

    "In a wide variety of ways that I won't explain." - 2 panels

    "Oh no, someone else touched a clock? Will he be OK?" - 3 panels

    "That........... depends!" - 1 panel

    "Oh, that person is back now. And they look different. Hey man, you look different." - 3 panels across 2 pages

    "Indeed you do look different - did you experience something only I, as a fellow clock toucher, understand?" - 6 panels

    "Yes I did, and I underwent character development.... that I will explain later!" - 1 panel... so far

    They entered this room 6 pages ago. And nothing has happened that has any meaning to the reader. Aside from learning a bit about the new side character - but even that is almost explicitly labelled as "This will matter later." So in the middle of a room where 'interesting' things are happening the only thing we've actually learned is backstory about a character that's going to be relevant soon. Maybe very soon - maybe part of this very room. None of what is happening has weight - it's discussed in vague ways that resolve nothing while simultaneously undoing everything that looks like it has weight (since character return almost instantly).

    It's not bad but it's weird. Every page is sort of dancing around the fact that 'something' is happening without actually saying anything. I often wind up feeling like Goblins pacing is 90% setup for a joke (or other resolution) whose entire premise is "This is the payoff of several pages of buildup."

  6. - Top - End - #1386
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    Default Re: Goblins XVII: The shocking end of the story arc

    Honestly. Hasn't the biggest actual criticism of pacing been the two walls of text Elli put up. The first one when Dies got his metal arm, and the second when Ears claimed the axe? Talking about not updating for months at a time is a completely different issue, that is not currently relevant, since Elli has been posting them at a reasonable rate for the first time in over a decade.

    I don't especially like the convenient power up, but we don't really need to see all 4 of them go through, essentially, the same process. As long as we see one goblin go through the test, that should be adequate. If none of them are viewed, however, then I would certainly complain.
    Last edited by tomaO2; Yesterday at 11:14 AM.

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