Date: 06/20/18 08:01 pm Title: Intro & Track Listing
This is the first Mixed Tape collection I've read, though I've often seen them posted and just never made the dive. I really enjoyed the whole collection. The framing story is fun, and "Someone's In the Library" is an intriguing look into a series I should check out. "My Sister, The Prophet" is one of the most original TG stories I can remember reading, and I love the worldbuilding it does and the slow burn toward figuring out what's going on. "Exploit" and "Loot Box" play with similar themes, but in very different ways and tones, and I liked what they each brought to the table. "Awakening Venus" had an interesting twist with its protagonist; often the stars of these stories are either entirely reluctant or knowingly a girl all along, and I liked that the character was kind of unaware of their own identity. The world of the "Forgotten" stories is interesting to me as a fan of superheroes, and I'm interested to see what happens in future installments. Great job, everyone!
Date: 04/05/18 10:49 pm Title: Intro & Track Listing
The Mixed Tapes are always a lot of fun. Short short stories with a TG element, little scenes that amuse and tease the reader with possibilities. Even when the indvidual stories are merely "all right," it's no big deal because they don't require a great investment of time to read. And, of course, there's usually a couple of really good ones in there that more than make up for any disappointments.
But this time there's three stories that really stand out to me. First is Trismagistus Shandy's own "My Sister, the Prophet." I love a good time travel story, and although this is a bit bare bones - there's little speculation about methods, or what happened to the original Saka - it works well. It helps that I also love a good story that actually shows our culture and technology in a positive light, which this does. "Saka" teaches them much. I liked it a lot.
The next standout is "Loot Box," by M. A. Thermidor. The idea of taking Loot Boxes out of video games and putting them into real life was intriguing, and was executed perfectly. And along the way it shows just how irritating they can be in those games, along with a subtle lesson on the dangers of gambling. Not very realistic, no, but a lot of fun.
And last, there's "Exploit," by Tessarion.
Tessarion... I hate you.
Years ago I thought up a magic system that is almost exactly the same as this. Humanity realizes the universe is, indeed, a computer simulation... and computers can be hacked. Thus, real magic comes to be. Years ago. I'm not kidding.
The problem is that I couldn't think of a good plot to go along with it. I admit I didn't concentrate on the matter. It was idle thinking, a bit at a time. But nothing I thought of really appealed. Nothing said to me, "You have *got* to write this one!"
And then you come out with "Exploit." It differs in a few minor details, but it is essentially my idea. But you had a story to go along with the setting. A nice, sentimental little tale of wish fulfillment, which frankly doesn't really float my boat, but it's a *story.* It's more than I managed with the concept, and for that I salute you.
And hate you, of course. :)
Author's Response: Tessarion: Hey, I'm not honestly planning on doing anything else with the hacking-as-magic concept in the forseeable future- feel free to play with it as you like :-P