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Fick Pick of the Week (March 27)

 
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baneofdeath
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:28 am    Post subject: Fick Pick of the Week (March 27) Reply with quote

Sorry for the delay Iíve had a lot of homework this past week, and Iíve had a late night nearly every weeknight and havenít gotten much sleep. But, at long last, I have finished.

Alrighty, lots of stories to read through, which is good, maybe this site will start to see some more new faces, and some new talented blood.

Normally I would rank all of the stories from worst to best, but I could not find a way to judge all of the stories with complete fairness.

Here are the entries,

Arrival:
This submission was marred by foul language, immature soldiers, and a general lack of an engaging plot. It may have started of with a rather overused boyhood fantasy regarding the lure of sleek aircraft flying at breakneck speeds across the sky. But, I can handle reused plot formats, the cussing and immature soldiers cracking wise at every opportunity, I cannot. Soldiers do not act like the marines in Halo, video games like Halo are meant to entertain, not reflect how soldiers behave in combat. Do not take the actions and remarks of an AI and assume they are accurate.

Soldiers at play (Chapter one)
Iíll admit, I had high hopes for this piece, the description was good to start off, the raging storm provided a rather interesting scenario. Then, the story took a nose dive, the soldiers were quite literally at play, Iím not sure if you truly imagine soldiers as that, or if you were making an attempt at parody. But, I really did not agree with that turn in the story. There are ways to pull off humor, but this was too childish. Writing humorous pieces is a very hard thing to do, if you want to see how itís done, then Kabu is probably the best author to use as a model, his stories are just amazing, and funny, and other things.

Halo Clone Wars: Chapter 8
Iím happy to see that your writing is getting better, but I am not a fan of crossovers and I have not done a good job of keeping up with this series. Your descriptions are improving, and your submissions are becoming more detailed. But I feel that there are still some instances of dryish sounding dialogue, without much emotional backup, but thatís just me.

Relic 1
The overuse of ďyouĒ in the start of the story may not have not been a very good way to start off the story. I can see why you would want us to empathize with Falk, but there are other ways to do it. The elite part of the story was rather well done in my opinion, the dialogue felt a bit awkward, and they felt a bit too human at the start of their introduction. It is a bad idea for Elites to talk like humans, they speak very eloquently. But I did like how you worked the flood into the story, telling it from their point of view was pretty creative on your part.




Mongoose Ė From Tulane

This was rather good, I liked the humor woven into the plot, the humor was not overpowering, but still present enough to get a few laughs, I liked the way this was done.

This week honorable mention goes to: Spartans Never Die
This is an interesting take on how the Spartans are treated after the war, and on second thought, makes quite a bit of sense the way it was explained. I would have like this to be a bit longer, this way of depressing storytelling is much like zephyrs (sp?) futility, I would have liked to see a bit of digression from that method. But, I still liked this very much.

Second place goes to: So, We Lost
This is another depressing story, featuring a man who locked himself in an underground bunker, and is trying to survive the covenant invasion. I havenít read a depressing story in a while, but I liked this. It was deep, and dark, and it shows just how bad things could really have turned out if the covenant had taken over our planet.

First place goes to: The Day Before TomorrowWell, this was amazing; I still have yet to find an author who makes their characters feel as real and as human as yours. They are very easy to care about, and the dialogue just feels right, I wont go into very much detail, but this is a must read.
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Phśdrus
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought last week's lineup was good, but this week was astounding. I hope this trend continues.

Anywho, thanks for the HM and congrats to Az! Smile
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kabu
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did I just get a shout-out?

Submissions just seem to be getting better and better as the weeks go by. I'm very optimistic.

I think the top three were almost too close to call - the pieces were different enough that it's hard to judge them against each other.

Personally, I thought Arrival was well written from at least a technical standpoint, and even though I don't like that sort of character and plot, the piece does have merit on its own.
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xxForceReconxx
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:52 am    Post subject: Re: Fick Pick of the Week (March 27) Reply with quote

baneofdeath wrote:
Soldiers do not act like the marines in Halo, video games like Halo are meant to entertain, not reflect how soldiers behave in combat. Do not take the actions and remarks of an AI and assume they are accurate.



Right, I understand where you are coming from with it. As I said to Kabu, I have shown these soldiers while not green, they haven't seen bloody conflict and the pilots really just act like modern-day cowboys.

Regarding what you said above however, It may be obvious to most, but this isn't a video game. I don't sit in front of my Xbox playing Halo thinking that's what real soldiers and marines do, I just wanted to include a bunch of cocky soldiers in my fanfic right before it hits the fan.

Congrats to the top three, by the way.
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kabu
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it's entertaining and well written (it is so far), I can tolerate cursing and stereotypes. Bane makes good points, though - more character developement couldn't hurt.

I love how two of the three top picks are wonderfully depressing Smile . I really like the mongoose piece, too.
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kr1
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bane, you're being really unfair to Force here when it comes to how soldiers behave. Nearly every account of modern soldiers I've read has portrayed them as more than a little raucous, extremely foul-mouthed, and immature in many cases. His portrayal matches that of books like Black Hawk Down, Generation Kill, Bravo Two Zero, and more books, I'm sure. Granted the soldiers that act that way in those books are the greener, younger ones, but that's the kind of soldier he wants to portray. Especially since he's drawing heavily from Black Hawk Down to begin with.

Overall this week was good. I haven't read everything yet, but the number of submissions alone is a good sign. I'm having a bit of trouble deciding on a favorite. Good job to everyone, though.
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SeverianofUrth
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Once again, my prophetic powers fail me in interesting ways.
Quote:
Before it's Friday, I think I'll predict tomorrow's crop of stories & the winners:

7 stories
two will be crap
two will be decent
one will be from a new writer who's actually Cormac McCarthy in disguise
one will be a poem
the last will be Azrael's Day Before Tomorrow

the ficpick will be Azrael's story
honorable mention will be the poem


Said this last week, foolsbefore the fics were updated! (Admittedly, it's like betting on the 2007 Patriots (and I was wrong on everything else, unless one of you new people happens to be Cormac McCarthy))

Congratulations to Azrael, and to everyone else. Awesome week.
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Enth Darkness Triumphant
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:00 am    Post subject: Re: Fick Pick of the Week (March 27) Reply with quote

baneofdeath wrote:

Halo Clone Wars: Chapter 8
Iím happy to see that your writing is getting better, but I am not a fan of crossovers and I have not done a good job of keeping up with this series. Your descriptions are improving, and your submissions are becoming more detailed. But I feel that there are still some instances of dryish sounding dialogue, without much emotional backup, but thatís just me.


Funny thing about the dialogue, I sometimes talk bland and without emotion with people I do not know. well yes I do lack the emotion in characters, too bad they can't be Vulcan, hopefully the new chapter will break the ice.
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CaptainRaspberry
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wait, so these aren't ordered worst to best? Curses, I was all happy about almost winning. Confused

Alas. Perhaps next (this?) week. Good job to everyone!
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baneofdeath
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, just to clarlify, this was not ranked in any paticular order, as i did not believe i would be able to be fair to eight different stories and give them a rank that they deserved.

Quote:
bane, you're being really unfair to Force here when it comes to how soldiers behave. Nearly every account of modern soldiers I've read has portrayed them as more than a little raucous, extremely foul-mouthed, and immature in many cases. His portrayal matches that of books like Black Hawk Down, Generation Kill, Bravo Two Zero, and more books, I'm sure. Granted the soldiers that act that way in those books are the greener, younger ones, but that's the kind of soldier he wants to portray. Especially since he's drawing heavily from Black Hawk Down to begin with.


I understand, i did not intend to bash his story, i just felt that the soldiers were a bit TOO rowdy. Force, I'm sorry for fixating on your use of foul language. It is a pet peeve of mine, i did not think the story was bad, and i hope you dont take away from this that i dont like your writing. My review was overly critical now that i look back on it, there were numerous posotives that i failed to mention, i'm sorry.

Enth Darkness, i really like how your stories are coming along, and my comment was a posotive, im merely pointing out that you may want to continue working on your dialouge.

In general the submissions this week were really good, if i seemed to point out all of the bad points in your story, then it was not my intent.
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Phśdrus
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No need to grovel, Bane.

This place is about constructive criticism. We're not here to flame your story, but neither are we going to praise it unconditionally. Bane is relatively new to reviewing, so sometimes he's overly critical, or not critical enough. But when someone says, "Hey, you might want to work on this aspect of your story," you should listen, and have a damn good reason if you don't.

That is all.
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