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Castle

 
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hboff
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:44 pm    Post subject: Castle Reply with quote

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Castle
Posted by UNSC Trooper (unsctrooper@hotmail.com)
3 February 2009, 8:19 am

http://halosn.bungie.org/fanfic/?story=UNSC_Trooper0203090819161.html
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kr1
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 3:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good to see you writing again, Trooper. This was a solid piece overall, but there were a bunch of continuity and nitpicky things that bugged me about it.

First, Jai. I'm fairly certain that the members of Gray Team, at least by this point, were training separate from the other Spartans. They're a very closed group, and not too fond of outsiders. I don't have my copy of TCP with me, though, so I can't check for you.

Next, Kurt. I think you kind of missed with his characterization, here. At least before being pulled out for the SIII program, he was described as probably the most friendly of the Spartans, and as relying a lot on intuition. Those two alone would point to a less rule-bound, more teamwork-driven character. This looks like a series, though, so I'm not leaving out the possibility you want to show a transformation into that. It looks like you might. Wink

Next, the live rounds. I can't see Mendez condoning that, nor Halsey accepting it. The Spartans are just too damn expensive to risk serious injury, let alone death. And while there's been brutality from the marine trainers, we've never seen Mendez outwardly cruel. The worst he's done is deny food for a day.

One last thing, about Kurt setting off the ammo dump. A soldier like him would know that'd be deadly. In addition to normal explosive force, the heat'll be setting of rounds in all directions. He'd be lucky to survive that himself.

Just a few criticisms. I liked this, overall, but there were just a few glaring things here. You've set up an interesting conflict, though, and I'm looking forward to seeing what game Mendez is playing. Assuming this is a series, that is. Hard to tell with the title. Razz
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UNSC Trooper
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the comment, Kr.

Well, I have actually been writing for a long time, I just haven't submitted anything in a while.

On the issue of Jai; TCP takes place around 2535-2536, which creates a 12-13 year window when Gray Team could have gone more or less rogue. It seemed alright for the purpose of this story, unless TCP states otherwise.

I've headed away from canon on the issue of characterization. I just go with the plot and build the characters accordingly. It might seem a little unreasonable to do so, since the characters normally dictate the content of the plot, but I'm trying to experiment with things.

And let's not forget that people grow up. So, while Kurt may be more friendly starting 2531-2552, this was one of the events that helped him change his personality. Gotta' read between the lines. Wink

The point of using live rounds was to create a more dangerous type of training exercise and put them to the test, since (in my mind) their first live-fire mission would have commenced a short while afterwards. It might not have been a good idea, but I took some liberty with this gap in canon.

Kurt set off the ammo because he didn't know what to do given the circumstances... he was in too much shit; so he blew up a pile of canisters hoping it'd distract the Marines while he headed for the bunker. He didn't know the fire would spread that far, mostly because the Spartans never dealt with explosives too extensively.

I don't think I'll make this into a series, though. I intended this to be a stand-alone while I continued working on a much larger series. This is what I do when I'm working on bigger series; write a short story to keep my writing juices flowing when I'm facing writer's block, and then proceed further with the bigger series.

Depending on how things evolve, however, I might continue this story. Wink

Thanks for the feedback!
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kr1
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gah! This is a stand-alone! It's a cliffhanger ending, for Chrissakes! Razz

As for TCP, there's flashbacks and the like, and about a chapter dealing with Gray Team backstory. It's a little finicky, but it's not a biggie. There kinda Sueish to begin with.

Kurt, I pretty much hold the same opinion you do. There's room to grow. If this were a series, the events seem well-placed to foster that kind of teamwork. I'm still a stickler for characterization continuity, though. You're departing from canon anyways, though, so no biggie.

I call foul on Spartans not dealing with explosives, though. There's only two more years of training before they're active according to your timeline, and explosives I'm sure they would've dealt with. But I can understand Kurt panicking, I guess.

But just nitpicking, again. And I'm kinda mad this won't be a series. Razz
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Col. Knadan
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As kr stated there is no way in heck they would have used live ammo. I can see rubber ammunition because they have that I'm pretty sure but definetly no live ammo.
Also as kr said, this thing is a stinking cliffhanger! If you don't make a full series at least have another short story explaining what happens after ward.

Col. Knadan
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Azrael
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 1:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You do toy with us with that cliffhanger, Trooper.

I enjoyed your action, really direct and didn't have any problems understanding what they were up to. As Spartan kids, I was ok with it. Not knowing the exact years, I figured if John and co were still in training, so maybe future gray team was as well.

I saw what you were trying to do with Kurt's emotion after setting off the barrels, and I suspended my disbelief accordingly. Maybe you could have gotten into Kurt running like hell from the scene, NOT knowing what was about to happen and scared of it. That said, maybe scared and Spartan don't go together.

I'd kindly ask for you to resolve the battle in a follow-up, but that's just me (and the fire team of ODSTs I keep with me for times just like this).
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Arthur Wellesley
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This was a good one-off, Trooper, even if it didn't really feel like it ought to be a one-off. This was a very action-oriented piece, which I often find doesn't work very well in a literary capacity, but you pulled it off very well. Mostly this was achieved through effect; that is, you were able to create a very engaging feel to the story that delivered its desired impact. It was very... relentless, at least after the introduction. It moved along very briskly, and was fun to read.

One gripe:

Quote:
It surprised Kurt that he hadnít been kicked out of training. But the Navy needed every one of them.


This is a little hard to believe given that, in this exercise, they're using live ammunition and setting up Marines to be killed or horribly injured. If they needed every man...

As I said, this was good. In the end, though, it was a pretty light offering. As a demonstration of your talents with writing action pieces, it was effective. But I look forward to seeing a more meaty entry from you, Trooper.

- Arthur
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UNSC Trooper
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Arthur and Az. Yeah, I'll continue this thing, even though the prospect of having to work on three series at once distracts me a bit. But I like how this piece left room for more storytelling, so I'll definitely try to expand on Mendez's plans.

I really appreciate the feedback! Smile
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