Date: 09/02/14 01:17 pm Title: Epilogue
I really like this story, it's definitively one of my favourites. As I said, I wish that something like that would happen to me someday! :)
I guess any more words are useless. Beautiful story. :)
Author's Response: Well, I'm glad you liked it. Maybe, someday, we'll have this technology.
Date: 08/12/14 03:22 am Title: Epilogue
Please continue this..
Good to see they patched things up..
But what ever happened to the pods? And the other Danielle?
Wonder what's next?
Author's Response: Sorry, I've gone as far as I feel I can go with this series. Maybe, some time down the road, the urge will strike once again, but after telling the prequel and then this story, there's just nowhere left to go. Now, as for the pods, Todd probably kept them, seeing as all his hacking left them unusable to anyone else. The second Danielle exists solely on Todd's computer, connected to that one pod. The real Danielle probably knows about her, but chooses not to do anything.
Date: 08/11/14 03:26 am Title: Epilogue
This story was amazing! The characters were all so realistic and.. I believe the term is 'three dimensional'..? I like how the change wasn't instantaneous and the protagonist wasn't immediately okay with the changes occurring. The concept was really nice. It gave me an SAO-type vibe. I like this story a lot. All of the plot twists were AMAZING and I didn't see any of them coming! I had no clue where this story would go. Also, props on that ending. Some writers would make them fall in love and kiss or something, but again, you made it seem really realistic, so good job for that, again. I also thought it was cool how this event wasn't just a one-time occurrence and how several people worldwide had been affected as well. So uh... All in all, I'm a huge fan of this story. Really enjoyed reading it, honestly. One of my favorites on this whole website, I'd say.
Author's Response: I'm happy you enjoyed the story. It was fun to write, and you weren't the only one who didn't see the plot twists coming. All the way through the writing, the twists came and shocked me, so I hoped beyond hope that they'd shock the readers as well. The ending came very naturally. I didn't see it coming, but I knew as I was writing it that it had to be the right one. I couldn't just put a bow on the story and make Amber completely accept Todd's actions, she couldn't just give him what he wanted, but there was no reason she couldn't try and be his friend again. Now, whether or not they do end up friends again, or whether they can actually find a way to love, that's up to the reader.
Date: 08/11/14 02:35 am Title: Epilogue
I really liked this story. Your writing style is one of the best I have seen on this website. However, there is just one problem... You didn't end the story. I know you can infer what happens next, but to me it just doesn't feel right. I like closure when a story is marked as complete. I am NOT saying this is a bad story though. It's great and I would recommend everybody on this website to read it.
Author's Response: I'm happy you liked the story and I'm extremely glad that you want to recommend the story to others. I am, however, a little disappointed that you didn't like the ending. To steal this from "The Wheel of Time" books, "There are no endings... and this is merely an ending." Once I found the ending, I realized that this story wasn't meant to have a definitive ending, it was meant to end exactly the way it did, with nothing but possibilities. Maybe Amber and Todd just stay friends, maybe they end up falling in love, maybe their attempts to rekindle their friendship only last a few more days before they separate again forever. There's not always closure, even if the story ends.
Date: 08/11/14 01:48 am Title: Epilogue
*Sighs.* You didn't let me review on the last chapter! I was got on and there were two chapters waiting for me! Not that that's a bad thing...
Lovely ending. I liked it much better than The Role We Play's end. Things tied up pretty nice. Shame about the first tardy, though.
Author's Response: Nothing stopped you from leaving two reviews! I'm glad you enjoyed the ending, it took a while to figure out just where this story was going to end, much like "The Role We Play", and while that story ended bittersweet (with Danielle truly gaining humanity, but losing the only two people she really cared for), I'm glad this one ended sweetly.
Date: 08/10/14 01:53 am Title: Chapter 5
Loving the new chapter and Danielle makes a appearance yet again..
Wonder what other changes are in store..
How will he/she pass the first sleepover?
Can't wait for the next one
Author's Response: Well, no more changes, Amber's pretty much set. The sleepover is dealt with, but not shown, sorry.
Date: 08/09/14 09:37 pm Title: Chapter 5
Oh, the first pod? Interesting way of tying the stories together. I'm loving this series, by the way. I'm debating whether or not to favorite the series. Guess I'll just have to decide next chapter.
Author's Response: It's why I had to finish "The Role We Play" first. I needed to establish that pod as having a history of modifying people in specific ways.
Date: 08/04/14 04:27 pm Title: Chapter 1
Okay, fair enough. I do like that explanation, and it does set me at ease for what is to come. Just to make clear what was bothering me - it wasn't that girls such Jenna don't exist, I know they do. But to lay their personality at the feet of them being girls is what bothered me - there was Jeremy and then there was the Lady Knight, and none of the personality changes seemed to be coming from either, so that left them as the result of, well, being a girl. That was problematic in my eyes.
And yes, I do like Charlie a lot, and her rich personality is exactly why I decided to give this series a try again :) I know you can write women well, which made it all the more disappointing to me when Matt seemed poised to go in Jenna's direction. Mea culpa on that videogame thing; I read everything while keeping in mind what happened to Jenna, so that colored my perception. Context is everything and all that.
Thanks for addressing my concerns so well, I look forward to reading the rest of the story :)
Oh, and about the socially awkward girls... well, peer pressure will do that! I'm supremely socially awkward myself but when I was in High School (well, the equivalent, since I'm not American), I partied pretty hard. These days I'd rather stay in with a good book. Or an MMO as it were :3
Speaking of... I play The Secret World. It's an amazing Lovecraftian horror game.
While it doesn't charge a monthly fee, the game itself does have a box price. Like Guild Wars 2 (which I also play on occasion though it's not something I can play for any length of time; it gets stale.)
Of course, my favorite MMO of all time was City of Heroes. But it's been closed :( I actually wrote OHAV as a sort of goodbye to my in-game roleplay characters and then it kind of...mutated... into its own thing. But, if you're looking for a free game, have you given Champions Online a try? The costume creator alone is gold, though I don't much care for the game itself. Like GW2, no longevity, but it's great for a dose of superheroes.
As far as free fantasy games... I've heard good things about Rift.
Date: 08/04/14 02:54 pm Title: Chapter 2
This is not going to be a review of this one story per se; it's more of a review of the series as a whole, specifically, the story of Jeremy. Since Jeremy/Jenna appears in this one, and the protagonist of this story seems to be going into a similiar direction, I'm going to go into something that prevented me from enjoying Jenna's transformation in the hopes that it'll give food for thougt as to how to approach this one. Because, as an MMO player, I really do like this premise a lot, and I want to enjoy it.
So you know how in older cartoons you'd have some badass team, and there was usually only one girl? While the guys of the team had distinct personalities and skillsets, the girl and her skills were defined entirely by being a girl. That, to be blunt, was bad and shallow characterization.
Let's look at the changes of the quartet in the first stories:
"There was Mark, the Knight; Aaron, the Mage; Brent, the Archer; and then me, the Maiden Knight/Princess. "
Okay, cool. She's a knight, so her changes should parallel the changes of Mark, who is also a knight, right?
"Mark went from nerd to jock, though not the "Grrr, me strong man" kind of jock, the "I'm brawny and brainy" kind of jock, y'know, the kind that cares for his girlfriend?"
"I dribbled the ball for a minute, then decided to get it over with. I threw the ball, and didn't even make it near the net. Dan and his friends guffawed their eyes to tears. "Look at that pussy!" they shouted. "He shoots like a girl!" That started some tears in me. "
Because Knights are known for being physically incompetent and then crying at the slightest adversity.
Here's my problem: Jeremy didn't turn into a Princess/Maiden Knight. He turned into some ridiculous caricature of a girly girl. While all the other players got additional skills, Jeremy got the amazing skills of owning a vagina and playing with dolls (WTF on that, btw. Girls stop playing with dolls at age 10-12). The changes do not make sense considering the cause, and that's not even getting into how absurd the caricature in question is:
"Then my anime interests changed, and I go from watching stuff like Breach: Relaoded and Nerudo: Ninja Village to the obviously feminine Check Out My Boyfriend or Girl Paradise."
Because knights would not like action stories of good vs. evil! They want to giggle over boyssss.
"and now, I'm at the point where I like the English dubs, when before I couldn't stand them!"
Because knights and girls hate subtitles...? I don't... I seriously don't even know what to say to this.
"You'd never know how many things change about you when you go from male to female. The old me, "Jeremy", who couldn't really talk to anyone, has been replaced by a girl who goes out to parties and talks to people and is just overall a happier kid than the boy she used to be."
Because socially awkward girls do not exist.
You know, this, this is actually the one change I could get behind. A princess would have to have high social competence to be able to one day rule a kingdom. She would know how to navigate a court, to manipulate the nobles around her, wielding her charm like a weapon. People might find themselves drawn to her, compelled to follow her orders.
But of course that's now how it's presented. It's just more girlyness.
So yeah. Could not immerse myself into Jenna's stories at all. Still, I do like BNW, so I figured I'd give this new series with a new protagonist a try, and maybe the changes were just Jenna's unique personality and this time it wouldn't devolve into nonsensical girly stereotyp-
"Back when I actually wanted to play Magecraft more than anything, Todd never seemed to have that much of an interest in it. Now, however, it looked like he wanted to play it more than I did. I wonder what changed."
Girls don't like video games!
"There were dolls on bookshelves that I thought looked cute - cute!"
Girls like dolls!
Author's Response: You're an MMO player? Cool. Any good ones that DON'T cost monthly? Okay, okay, I understand where you're coming from, and I understand each and every criticism. Thanks to the hilarious irony of getting reviews like this WHILE I'M DOING SOMETHING TO EXPLAIN THE CRITICISMS (this happens to me a lot, interestingly, and not just here on TGStorytime, but even on Fanfiction.net), I'm going to explain a few things relating to Jenna. This wasn't all that clear (and that's my fault), but despite what Jenna said about herself, she wasn't all too "knight"-ish. If you read the story, she really doesn't do much inside the world of Magecraft, she just likes to inflate her own ego. A portion of the change (to be revealed in the next chapter of "Roleplaying the World Upside Down", and by Jenna, no less, having learned this in the four years since her story ended) is also related to the user's own beliefs regarding the character that the game is changing them into. Jeremy, who is himself socially awkward, and has only ever kissed his cousin (good work, buddy), has a very cliche opinion of girls. The game is changing him into what he believes a girl is, what a girl likes. If I were a truly creative author, I'd have had him change into the exact opposite of what he thinks a girl is, but, again, that's my fault. Portions of Jenna were also based on a girl I knew in real life, who was almost exactly like what I describe Jenna as being, besides the MMO stuff (although she did like hanging out with nerds, seeing as she dated me for a little while). I know there are girls out there who are tough (look at Charlie in "Brave New World", Ms. Sassy-Mouth herself, right there), but Jeremy didn't, and as such, the game used what he thought was the very idea of femininity and used that to create Jenna. (Also, on a side-note, I do know that socially awkward girls exist, but when I was in high school, I must have been in the f*****-up years, or something, because the ratio of socially awkward to popular party girls was literally 1 socially awkward girl to 55 popular party girls, it was weird.) So, basically, Jenna was the result of a boy being turned into what he assumed girls were, not actually being turned into a representative of the typical female. Now, onto Matt (who's female name still hasn't been decided), there are plenty of things I could say to explain all of that, but, again, spoilers and all (maybe not the next chapter, but soon). I WILL say, however, that you're taking the line "Now, however, it looked like [Todd] wanted to play [Magecraft] more than I did" WAY out of context. Matt's not saying that, now that he's changing into a girl (which he doesn't realize at that time), he wants to play Magecraft less, just that Todd, who had never had even a passing interest in playing the game in the past, wants to play it all the time now. Up until his friend tells him that a video game is turning him into a girl, he wanted to play Magecraft just as much as he always had, but an unusual need to vomit a lot stopped that the night before. I also know plenty of girls who played with dolls well past 18, and finding something cute has little to do with liking dolls. He just said that he thought the dolls were cute. I'm a freakin' guy and even I find dolls cute sometimes.
Date: 08/02/14 12:55 am Title: Chapter 2
nice to see the story become active again I can't wait to see what's going to be happening next
Author's Response: Well, the changes are a little faster this time, so that's coming. The next chapter is underway, but I don't know when it'll be done. Soon, maybe.
Date: 07/30/14 05:17 pm Title: Chapter 2
Oh, look! It's this story! I've missed this story! Glad to see you're updating it again, if only for this one time.
Author's Response: I return to it when the urge strikes. The urge happened to strike. I'll finish it, don't worry.
Date: 06/01/14 07:09 pm Title: Chapter 1
So what year is this? If such "five sensory surround devices" as I call them, or "theater of the minds," existed today, I'd never watch a movie again any other way. Engaging all five senses creates the illusion you're really there. Now I sound like Ralph Fiennes in his narration for the movie trailer "Strange Days." This is VR like it one day MIGHT be possible, but it would have to be able to flood the brain's sensory centers with neurological data identical to what our human sensors do. "Duh, no kidding, fool, where've you been," right? Truth is this is my first foray into your magecraft stuff. Guess, before I continue I need to go back and catch up. It was Douglas Trumball, I think, who first thought the concept up in "Brainstorm." I wish that technology existed today, and at my age I haven't that many decades left before they finally figure out how to make it so. Basically, for now this is just a "we're getting started," thing," can't really say what you intend to do with it. But I like "five sensory surround" stories, so there's a plus for me, right off the bat.
Author's Response: Well, the main character mentions it being twenty years since the "Occulus Drip" came out, which is an obvious parody of the Oculus Rift, which is in development right now with a project release date of late 2014/early 2015. That puts this story sometime around 2035, or thereabouts, and is four years after my previous stories in the Roleplaying series, six years since Mystical Magecraft (obviously the VR equivalent of World of Warcraft, which is about the only real thing I've ever not parodied in this series) was first released to the public. This series' inspiration is an animated webseries called "TOME: Terrain of Magical Expertise", which has VR pods such as these in 2020 (the show implies earlier, however, as two of the more insanely high-powered characters are known to have been playing "since the early days"). Oh, and this story is actually the first one to involve any real specifics into the depth of the world of Magecraft, the earlier three were more character focused. My fourth Magecraft story was originally going to be a pure high fantasy (not very long, though) about the world of Magecraft, that had no references to virtual reality until the ending, when it would have been discovered that the story was set in the Roleplaying series, but I was having trouble with that and thought this one up instead. As for where this story's headed, well... Asia knows that "Only Time Will Tell".
Date: 06/01/14 03:02 am Title: Chapter 1
Ah, this series. I like this series. Can't wait to see what you have planned next! I really like your slower change stories. They're a nice change of pace.
Author's Response: I'm glad your excited. The changes this time will be slightly faster, though. It's a story element that I'm pushing at.