One of my favorite video games in recent years is Fire Emblem: Three Houses. Developed by Intelligent Systems Koei Tecmo and published by Nintendo, the game strongly appeals to me for it assemble cast of interesting characters, the fun bigger-than-life story of fantasy style war, the complex storytelling, and the depth in which they explore each of these characters interacting with the world around them. It is, more or less, exactly what I look for when I pick up a game to engage in. Three Houses, in my opinion, is the best game of the Fire Emblem series as well. It is the game that is able to blend the story aspect with amazing RPG elements and has a fun and engaging combat system that can be quite challenging even playing on normal levels. It certainly isn’t a perfect game but, in my opinion, it is one of the best of the franchise and one of the best RPG/battle simulators.
That being said, one of my favorite pastimes is to log onto Pintrest and collect memes of some of my favorite video games. It is always fun to view, laugh, and engage in the fandom of the games without actually having to interact with anyone. Each time I go in I enjoy seeing other fans making the same connections I do with characters as well as laugh at some genuinely funny moments with characters interacting with each other. However, each time I log on and deep dive onto the boards to go through the various images, I am often fascinated by a ranking system in which fans put characters into a lettered category from best to worst. Usually, the rankings starts at S rank and then go down A, B, C, D, and then in lieu of F, or in addition to F, is some hyperbolic inflammatory statement like “piece of shit” or “the worst motherfucker” or something like that. I often find these particularly fascinating for Fire Emblem because, while some fluctuation occurs between personal preference, for the most part you a pretty standard cast that is at the top of the list and a collective of those that are on the bottom. That makes me curious… Why is that? Why is it that the character Sylvain Gautier is almost universally loved while Lorenz Hellman Gloucester is almost universally hated? Why is Shamir Nevrand liked instead of Gilbert Pronislav? These lists can tap into something very interesting about the writing and story telling of Three Houses which is what I would like to explore a little further. The reason being is because Fire Emblem: Three Houses is a unique sort of story that has elements of some of the best writing I have seen in a video game as well as some writing that just woefully falls short of the game that it finds itself in. Luckily this balances out into what is by all account a great story with some poorly fleshed out elements but it is worth exploring for the sake of understanding what is good story telling, what is bad storytelling, and how it can affect a viewer/player’s views of the character based on that premise.
As such, this article is meant to be a deep dive into the art of storytelling. The focus is to showcase how a burgeoning writer can insure their characters are engaging to the consumers of the media that you are attempting to write whether it be book, movie, video game, or Dungeons & Dragons. I intend to split this article into four further sections. The first two will look at aspects of story telling in Fire Emblem: Three Houses at the character level by exploring the characters of the game and their stories. The next will be more macro that explores the overall impact of the world on these characters and what entities like The Church of Seiros and Those that Slither in the Dark represent. Then I will have two sections discussing the games strengths and flaws from both a marco and micro perception. This will showcase how storytelling can enhance a character or woefully ruin a character’s perception in the eyes of the consumer. As a disclaimer, it is suggested that those who engage with this article have a general understanding of the game and understand that spoilers will be part of the dissection.
Well I finally finished it! After months of playing and delaying I finally completed Firewatch. It has been a long time coming, but I am quite happy to have finished the game and boy am I certainly happy with my experience. While this year has not been a stellar year of video gaming, it is still quite an honor to be counted as one of the best games of 2016 which is exactly where Firewatch finds themselves today.
Firewatch is the story of a man named Henry. After his wife, Julia, is unfortunately diagnosed with early onset dementia, Henry takes up a job in a firewatch tower in Wyoming. While there, he meets Delilah, his boss, over a radio chat. The two begin to hit it off, isolated in the woods. However, it is soon discovered that they are not alone. It turns out that there is someone following Henry as he goes out on his excursions and is listening to their radio conversations. The two then have to discover who it is that is stalking them and why. Continue reading “Tanner Reviews Firewatch”→
So… I’m going to be trying something a little different with this podcasts this week. I had an idea for a few radio style shows and decided that I wanted to spring them on the world! I have two 6 episode radio shows in the works right now, a Vampire one about to be released AND this one! Z99.9 is a radio show about a man named Jonathan Amos trying to broadcast the state of the world while a deadly disease known as the Fire Virus rages through the world. This is the first episode and the other 5 will be coming out once a week. Please give it a listen, it is well worth the time, and a step in a new direction for my site and the Nerdiest Talk Show on Earth.
Have you ever watch one of those shows where you are not quite sure why you like it or how it even pulled you in in the first place, but for whatever reason you just can’t help but enjoy the hell out of it? Well that is how I am with the anime television show Fairy Tail. I was turned on to this gem by my roommate who was far into the show by the time that I came around. Nothing she said about the show was particularly interesting when she started talking about it and left my mind just as quickly. But one day, sitting on the couch and sifting through the Netflix, I found the show sitting there in the recently watched category and I gave it a watch… Yeah I’m still not sure what it is that makes me like it so much, so I figured I would write a review on it for all of you as well for my own mental well-being. Continue reading “Tanner Reviews Fairy Tail”→
With Humans vs. Zombies only a few days away here in Athens, I thought it would be a good idea to upload an old video of mine telling a story of a mishap that happened in one of the games in the past. Also if you are in the Athens Ohio area, come join us for HvZ: Athens Fall Game 10/15 – 10/22! Continue reading “Tanner Tells of Humans vs. Zombies”→
You know there are two things that I love in this world. The first of which is gaming of any sort and the other is writing. I’ve been playing games since playing Super Mario Brothers as a damn near toddler on my Grandfathers NES and Super Nintendo and have been writing stories and attempting to get a novel published since my freshman year of high school.
Gaming and writing are pretty much my bread and butter and are intricate parts of my life and my personality as a whole. So needless to say anytime that I play an RPG like Dungeons and Dragons, Shadowrun, World of Darkness, Dark Heresy, Call of Cthulhu and so forth I can actually see a written story unfolding before me only I do not have complete control over how the story is going to go. I absolutely love it and can even form the fiction in my head as we are playing. This probably being the reason why I tend to gravitate more towards the GM/DM role then the player role.
But for a while I have been wanting to create some new series that involved both of these subjects and now that new series is here. Gaming Tales will be my fictionalization of actual RPGs that I played in the past whether it be GM or player. I will emphasize that these are fictionalizations of these games, not stories of the games themselves and I hope you enjoy them.
That being said I was thinking of a story that would be a good starting point to this new series. While I would love to create some stories about D&D I feel those need to be saved for now as they are large epic lasting tales of yesterday. Instead I want to delve into the a story from the World of Darkness.
I absolutely love the series as a whole and is only second to D&D in my book. I absolutely love the story and the universe it sets and look for a chance to delve into every chance that I get. This particular story I’m about to tell comes from the Hunter: The Reckoning set of the series.
So in a nutshell, the protagonists of the story take on the role as humans who have been given powers by an unknown force called the Messengers in order to combat the vampires, zombies, werewolves, and so forth of the world that is dragging it into the depths of hell.
This particular one is one of my favorite stories and one of the most recent that I played with a few associates of mine here in Roanoke. So without further ado I hope you enjoy.