Fate of Io
Commentary Summary
2003/02/06 13:14:02 PST by Dev [manager]
[Dev's avatar]

Section 1

  • An already anticipated change to the plot is that Ko will be Kory's younger brother, not the older, as he is in this version of the outline. Naturally, this will require reworking much of the decisions and interplay between (mainly) Ko, Kory, and Brooke in Chapter Eight.

  • Some thought the morning chores (section 1a-1c) would be boring and get monotonous, but thought it would be cool to integrate some sort of mini-games into them. I also noted that the idea of monotony is important here, because it informs us of Ko and Kory's lifestyle, and also gives a great contrast for later, when Ko has to perform the chores without Kory.

Section 2

  • There was a bit of confusion as to what caused the destruction of Tarikun. Most of these comments are answered with our new account of the Battle of Tarikun (Kydran using his army to cast magic).

Section 3

  • A few comments addressed how Ko will get his bolas. Some thought from Kory, others mentioned treasure-hunting as a likely activity among Tarikun kids.

Section 4

  • Comments regarding the new little-brother status, and why the player, as Ko, would be calling the shots at all of these story branches. One theory is that Kory and Brooke are so argumentative that they use Ko as a tie-breaker. We'll probably only be able to use this once, though... more ideas for this will be needed.

  • Yes, in its prime, Protea was (and its main chamber is) a very, very pretty place.

  • And by "kicks her out of his home," I mean "doesn't go with her." -_-;

  • Again, many new ideas will be needed to make this section work with Ko as the younger brother.

  • Explanation: The dragon wants to kill Brooke because she is a Protean, and the Proteans' presence was partially to blame for the downfall of Tarikun. Therefore, the Ivory Dragon sees her as a threat.

Section 5

  • There were some comments that assumed the Ivory Dragon was an Antarean. Antareans are not dragons. Dragons are not Antareans. Can't stress that enough... ;D

Section 6

  • Lots of comments on how, exactly, the scene should be presented, but no gripes, so this will likely not need to be changed (except that Ko is losing an older brother).

Section 8

  • Explanation: The Antareans are attacking Tarikun because Brooke is there. They know Brooke is there because that's how Tyrus instructed her to reach the Grove. It is crucial to remember the underside of the plot of Part II: Tyrus is out to topple Protea, and he can't do that if Brooke remains to assume leadership. He has been disguising himself as an Antarean (using Dell's physical image) and acting as the leader of the Antarean horde; this is how the Antareans know exactly where Brooke is, and why Brooke is so off track in getting to the Grove.

2003/02/07 18:09:02 PST by Siemova [0/24]
Awards: 3 from Dev
[Siemova's avatar]

Hurrah for plot revision! :-p That said:

Firstly, I think we can give the impression that Ko has a fairly boring life without actually boring the player. This could be done through dialogue. Perhaps he'd be moderately content during the chores before Brooke's arrival, but the next morning he'd be rather distracted and unmotivated, sparking a discussion with Kory about the excitement she's brought into their lives.

Secondly, the dragon wanting to kill Brooke struck me as all wrong from the beginning. Remember, his primary focus is protecting Tarikun. Brooke's presence risks drawing the ire of Antareans in the area, should they find out about it. On the other hand, killing the daughter of a Protean king would most certainly endanger Tarikun from that direction. So his only relatively "safe" option is to remove her from the public eye and then send her away in secret.

As it stands, the dragon is represented as a cruel dictator - certainly not wise and benevolent as he ought to be. I don't think the people of Tarikun should live in fear of him; after all, his purpose for being there is to protect them so they can live in peace without fearing attack from the outside world. This, of course, necessitates some changes in the plot.

So here's my idea:

  • Kory and Ko encounter Brooke as she enters Tarikun.

    • She appears weary and helpless, so they decide to let her stay with them for the night. They figure they can bend the rules just this once for someone in need. Their mother is dubious, but she allows it, half out of kindness and half to accommodate the children she loves.

      • The next morning, Kory and Ko do their chores, all the while discussing Brooke and the excitement she's brought into their generally monotonous lives. Returning home, they find her preparing to leave.

      • Their mother asks Kory to run an errand for her, so Ko is left to see Brooke on her way. (NOTE: I don't see much reason to choose whether or not Ko sees her off, since it adds nothing to the story or character development, so I'm leaving that out.) He accompanies her to the edge of town. Just before they part, a monster attacks, and the two are outmatched.

      • Fortunately, the dragon is patrolling around Tarikun (perfectly in character) and arrives in time to save them both. He sternly but not unkindly reminds Ko that the rules are in place for his protection, then brings him home and returns with Brooke to the great hall. Until he can safely send her off, she becomes the dragon's honored but hidden guest, not allowed to leave the hall for the safety of all concerned. In the meantime, he questions her thoroughly.

    • Kory and Ko lead Brooke to the dragon, judging that he should decide what to do with her.

      • On the way, her presence stirs up the populace - some are curious, some afraid, some belligerent. By the time they reach the great hall, most of the townfolk are tagging along. The dragon, recognizing a Protean and the trouble she could bring, hustles her into the hall and disperses the crowd.

      • Until he can safely send her off, she becomes the dragon's honored but hidden guest, not allowed to leave the hall for the safety of all concerned. In the meantime, he questions her thoroughly.

      • The next morning, Kory and Ko do their chores, all the while discussing Brooke and the excitement she's brought into their generally monotonous lives.

  • Enthralled by the princess and the link she provides to the outside world, Ko becomes determined to see her again. During the dragon's next patrol, he sneaks into the great hall. Tired of being the dragon's "guest" and impatient to be on her way, Brooke tries to cajole the boy into sneaking her out of town. Either:

    • Ko agrees, but the dragon returns and catches them just as they are leaving, or:

    • Ko refuses. Incensed, Brooke goads him with insults and accusations of cowardice. He may relent and try to help her (see 2a), but if he persists in refusing:

      • Brooke's unkind words sting Ko into action. He decides to leave Tarikun and prove her wrong. But just as he turns to leave, the dragon comes back and catches them together.

  • Intending to release Brooke, the dragon's been patrolling to make sure the coast is clear. Finding Ko with her, again directly violating an order, the dragon decides to send the boy along. ("Since you refuse to abide by the laws I enforce for your own good, you are no longer under my protection.") He escorts the two out of town, stopping only for a moment at Ko's house so he can gather his belongings (incuding bolas?). Kory, their mother, and a few other curious folk accompany them to the outer wall. After an emotional farewell, Ko follows Brooke out of town.

  • Before they've taken a dozen steps, Ko turns back to share one last look with his family. Suddenly, Antareans swoop in. Most of them attack the dragon or the other townfolk, but one with a red stripe on its snout breaks off toward Brooke. Ko tries to defend her, but he is knocked down. His mother and brother dart out to stand over Ko and are slaughtered by the Antarean. Before it can kill either Ko or Brooke, though, the dragon attacks and routs it. Brooke takes the opportunity to flee into the waste, dragging Ko along. (Now we return to your regularly scheduled plotline.)

So yeah, that's it. Of course, it's only a rough outline, and thus very open for revision (or even outight rejection). Now you get to tell me if it was worth the time I spent typing it up! :-p

2003/02/15 15:43:55 PST by Dev [manager]
[Dev's avatar]

Well, apparently, no one else has any comments, so I'll see how I can help.

Firstly, I applaud your work Siemova! This kinda thing is just what I'm looking for when we're discussing plot revisions. I'm not sure it's necessary to rewrite the entire chapter, as you did, since it's probably more helpful to bring up and discuss the finer points than try to chew on one big change. And, as you said, it would suck if you spent all that time working and then got show down...

::cough::... like I'm about to do... ::cough::

Actually, I think I see how you're trying to change it, and that would work, but I have a few specific gripes about exactly how you went about achieving it. And basically, they deal with how this chapter impacts the rest of the story; mainly, how it impacts Ko.

Though your revision doesn't have any built-in branches, I don't think it would be that difficult to work some in. In places where there will be very little fighting and few puzzle opportunities, a lot of interactive story development can help keep the player's attention. So that's something to keep in mind.

Now, to get down to it...

The big, big, BIG problem with this revision is that Ko is no longer responsible for his big brother's death. Or at least, he no longer feels responsible, and neither will the player. "Why should he be?" you ask? Well, as morbid as I may sound, death occurs in our lives, perhaps more than we'd like to think, and as human beings, we can deal with it. If your entire family was killed, it would be tragic, you'd feel really sad, need psychotherapy perhaps, but it probably wouldn't change any particular views you have about yourself. And this is crucial for Ko: by seeing the death of his family as a direct result of his actions (or, the player's actions), he consciously attributes it to his fundamental self.

Throughout the rest of Part II and most of Part III, Ko must be constantly asking himself "What good am I?" He must be, because he would not otherwise blindly follow Tyrus, who provides him with a very tempting answer to his question ("You are chosen to ascend to the new world order" or something).

I also want to see more interaction between Ko and Kory and his mom, to make more of an impact when they are lost. In the revision it seems like they were just random NPCs that we could do without, and the fact that they perished in the attack while Ko didn't is just plain luck.

Also, we'll have to have a nice big thread about FoI's dragons sometime. I see them as extremely wise, but not all that intelligent (or should that be extremely intelligent and not entirely wise?); in any case, the ivory dragon wouldn't be all that analytical about Brooke's presence apart from the fact that she's Protean, and Proteans were partially responsible for the downfall of Tarikun. So he'd probably think she's a war criminal or something. In any case, just because he's a Protector doesn't mean he's kind and benevolent.

Anyway, there are some comments for you. Any other thoughts on this? Anyone?

2003/02/16 13:01:47 PST by Siemova [0/24]
Awards: 2 from Dev
[Siemova's avatar]

Bwahaha. Thank you for your input, Dev. ^_^ Some notes to consider:

  • I know it's not perfect, but then again, I left out a lot of details to save time and space. For instance, as you say, Ko would actually interact a lot more with his family, especially through dialogue and the chores. So it's a very rough outline, relative to what it could be. I was just trying to get the basic point across, showing how a minor change or two might affect the entire sequence of events.

  • It seems I left a little too much out, though, because I had things worked out so that Ko would still feel guilty for his family's death. :-p See, before Brooke comes along, I'm picturing Ko as a pretty normal kid. Only after this chapter would he become the depressed, introverted child we all know and love. So when Brooke shows up, he as the younger brother would be more excited, more intrigued, and more willing to bend the rules. Kory might be more inclined to obey the dragon and deny her entry altogether, but Ko would sway him either to shelter her or to bring her to the dragon. Thus her presence in Tarikun would be in large measure his fault. Then, it would be his choice to visit Brooke in the great hall against the dragon's orders (and maybe even against his own brother's advice?). It would also be his choice to help her sneak out, if he does. Thus it would be his fault that his family is in harm's way during the Antarean attack, not to mention that it's at least partly his fault that they attack in the first place. And finally, his family would specifically be killed as a result of him putting himself in danger and then being too weak to stand up against it. I'm pretty sure I'd be depressed and self-loathing if my family were killed in those circumstances! But yeah, ultimately I guess it all depends on how we present things.

  • I think I also presented the dragon as a little more kindly than I needed to. He should probably be a bit more strict and harsh; however, I still don't think he should be cruel and unjust. If the dragon really wanted to make an example to the populace, he'd probably execute Ko for breaking the rules, not slaughter an innocent just to teach Ko a lesson. Maybe, if you'd rather keep it that way, he'd intend to execute Ko, but Kory would jump in the way. In that case, seeing Ko stricken with grief and subdued, the dragon might consider justice served. Ko would naturally have thoughts along the lines of, "I should have died, not Kory... I wish I had! This is all my fault!" Though, of course, not in those exact words. :-p

  • A thread on dragons - and, for that matter, one for all the other species in this world - could be an extremely useful reference. I'm all for it!

But anyway, thanks again for your constructive criticism. I understand very well that not all ideas will be incorporated. But even if none of this is implemented, at least it helps us think about what's going on and, more importantly, why. Characters' natures and motivations are extremely integral to the story, and we need to delve into them as much as possible, or players simply won't care.

Any other feedback or alternate suggestions, y'all? :)

2003/02/16 14:41:15 PST by mystik3eb [0/43]
[mystik3eb's avatar]

I like the idea of Ko being semi-normal as a regular child before Kory's death, and I like the idea of Ko wishing he could've done something to protect his brother, but I'm not too sure about Kory jumping in front of him to save his life. I'd think the dragon would make Kory responsible for his younger brother's actions because the dragon seems to be like that (didn't the dragon havea a name?). Good job with the details Siemova!

2003/02/16 15:41:42 PST by Dev [manager]
[Dev's avatar]

No, mystik, the Ivory Dragon has always just been called that, but we could give him a name if we want. (As a sidenote, "Aequus" is latin for "just/fair", so a latin name might be how we want to name dragons. Not that we'll see more than those two.)

Siemova, your comments make me realize that we're just looking at what decisions, precisely, Ko will have to make. I'm sure we'll get a lot of ideas here that will have to be sifted through, but that's exactly what the revision needs, so ... good! ^_^

Also, I think it's absolutely necessary that we catch a glimpse of Ko as completely normal, perhaps even outgoing kid at first. This makes his change more drastic, and also makes his little revelation later in Part IV at the Firebridge Festival more poignant.

Sorry I can't expand on too much right now; tomorrow is Monday and I have a lot of classes hence a lot of work to get done tonight. But I'm not done here! ;D

2005/05/18 17:18:12 PDT by BioKupo [0/0]

patronus, praesul presul, altor

All those mean "Protector" apparently.
Wouldn't be such a bad name ;)

Altor I suppose since patronus was in a certain famous book :p

2005/10/16 16:42:59 PDT by Davy boy2000b [0/13]
[Davy boy2000b's avatar]

Nothing to add at this time, I just have noticed that the Ivory Dragon is a Protector. I noticed the capitalisation of the word Protector so I ask the question - is this the same Protector as The Protectors that Rush is part of?

2005/10/16 18:14:23 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]


2005/10/16 22:54:04 PDT by mystik3eb [0/43]
[mystik3eb's avatar]


I had posted this a few days ago after much frustration, but they disappeared to who knows where. And I decided I didn't wanna have to go through all the reformatting for it to look right as a post, so I uploaded it as an html for your viewing pleasure (and my posting simplicity).

I added names for the bog creatures and Ivory Dragon. They're in the revision.

2005/10/17 22:31:12 PDT by Temporal [manager]
[Temporal's avatar]

Guh. Apparently my server rebooted (presumably due to a power outage) shortly after your post, and it lost your post in the process. This is pretty rare (no more than once a month -- and I just sent an e-mail to complain to my host, because power outages once a month are not acceptable to me)... I guess you were unlucky.

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