Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Three Gods of Machinery

Merry Christmas, and I wish all of you probably imaginary but doubtless interesting people a wonderful pagan holiday.

Anyway, this is the thing I wanted to post last week but was too tired to finish. Let me know what you think!

There are three gods of machinery, and each has a different domain; the Assistive one’s domain is Tools, the Neutral one’s domain is Forces, and the Opposing one‘s domain is Puzzles. They can be worshiped individually or together, and each has a specific type of shrine.

The god of Tools can be worshipped by any form of tool crafting or use, and its shrines take the form of freely available tools. Anything meant to teach, such as signs, markings, statues, or most books all count, barring deliberate inaccessibility, as do fountains, lights, fire pits, stairways, and some types of wall. as such would fall under the domain of Puzzles. It is a common practice among those who worship it to leave tools they no longer have use for near a place where they will have use, such as weapons near hunting grounds, deadwood near campsites, and so forth. It is near universally worshipped, and it is traditional to ask it’s blessing on one’s equipment if one is about to do something dangerous, such as enter battle. The most popular of the three, although it is slowly losing prominence as engineers and philosophers begin to outnumber craftsmen.

The god of Forces can be worshipped singularly, but this is much less common than with either of the other two, as the only way is to represent a force or parameter without tools or puzzles. Hence, mathematics is the only way anyone’s come up with, and there is some debate whether or not it can be spoken without also falling under the domain of Tools. Often represented by a small object, such as a rock, atop another object, usually a cracked rock or a geode, with the planet itself as the final piece, representing gravity. There are many types of shrine to it, and this is merely one of the simplest and most common. While it is acknowledged by almost everyone, as it’s domain is rules both natural and artificial, and of the three it has the fewest who devote themselves primarily to it’s service. Doing so is seen as formal, traditionalist, and primarily the domain of the old and the very traditional families, although it has a small following that choose it because it is the least popular. As with all the Neutral gods, it is arguably the most powerful of it’s set, and the one which the other two rely on.

The domain of the god of Puzzles is any device, theoretical construct, or arrangement designed to obstruct, impede, or challenge, to which a solution is always available that does not rely on luck. Certain types of combat, almost all forms of contest, unlockable barriers, mazes, riddles, and fair tests all fall under this. It is worshipped in tandem with the other two, and thanked by those who use locks or games of skill or strategy, but it’s devotees live for a certain kind of challenge. It has an even greater role in combat than the god of Tools, as weapons, armor, and even communications are useless without adaptability, merely representing a greater challenge.
It is the most popular of the three among youths, engineers, and men of learning, as well as the majority of actual old people, and the second most popular of the three in general. It is somewhat more grudgingly accepted by farmers and craftsmen, but many who worship the gods of Fortune worship the god of Puzzles in some manner, although this is theoretically prohibited. The opposite is not, however, and has become something of a fad, as it allows the fusion of games of strategy and chance.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Shounen Physical Description

The author was working on something else to post today, but ended up being too tired. He apologizes for the resulting delay. 

A humanoid robot with steel spikes for hair, gunmetal grey skin with a pinkish white coating that is only somewhat resistant to burning off, and many, many, small valves on the surface of his limbs and torso. He is mainly designed for combat, unlike Shoujo, and his design is mostly based around the combination rockets and flamethrowers present throughout almost every part of his body, the main exceptions being the head and an area between his waistband and three quarters of the way down his thigh. When all jets are activated at a low burn, the effect is of a youth with burning skin and thick but mostly skintight shorts. He usually wears a shirt and pants, but his hair makes him significantly less capable of blending in with humans than Shoujo, as does his lack of shapeshifting. His joints are hydraulic, rather than motorized, giving him strength comparable with a reasonably healthy human adult despite the extensive tubing that dominates his frame. Nevertheless, his frame is designed for taking advantage of his rockets, rather than deadlifting, and reflects this.

The rockets are fueled by a ridiculously explosive solid fuel, which takes up most of his torso space. It mostly takes the form of an extremely compact, but relatively inert powder, and must be mixed with a liquid primer before it becomes the barely controlled fuel air explosive he is known for. Small, high pressure cannisters of the primer are present in each limb, and the structure is designed to avoid any chance of the primer backwashing into the main fuel tank. Therefore, Shounen must use the rockets on both sides fairly equally to avoid unbalancing himself, as there are very few fuel lines between the tanks. His upper torso, or rather the upper three quarters of his ribcage area, is dedicated to housing power cells. His entire frame is actually larger than it looks, standing about five feet six inches, long but sturdy limbs, and a solid torso. This accommodates at least half an inch of armor between every major system and over the surface. Unlike Shoujo, there isn’t really room in the torso for his main computing core, nor is there retractable hair to get in the way of installing it in his head. As a benefit, his visual input reaction time is slightly shorter, but he finds it much harder to operate with severe damage to his head, as his options are limited to accepting remote control and projecting distress signals.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Character Bios, Part Six (Excelion Universe)

Name: Edit
Aliases: “The guy from that anime”, “No, from the television drama”, “No, the other anime. Maybe it was a videogame?”, Mr. Coat and Shotguns, Crazy American
Age: Unknown (25?)
Affiliations: Individual Thirteen(?)
Clearances: Cyan
Equipment: Twin Heavy Combat Shotguns (with grenade launcher attachments), Personal Forcefield Enhancer (Aura Class), Forcefield Anchored Teleportation Unit
Super Mode: Percussive
Appearance: Grayish blond prettyboy with a black spot under each eye. Said spots resemble small moles but, like the rest of his ensemble, are perfectly symmetrical. He also seems to be ambidextrous, suggesting something either unusual about his background or unusually pronounced personal preference.
Character Notes: Longstanding friendship and rivalry with Dominion. Appears to be a member of the Individual Thirteen, but may actually be completely unaffiliated. Loves his job, whatever it is, as he’s allowed to shoot things. Carries concussion type shotguns, and has a somewhat rare personal forcefield generation ability that they channel. Has a fascination with trenchcoats.

His Moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: Edit holds his shotguns diagonally forwards, and begins charging his signature amber forcefields in and around them. His particular type of forcefields absorb kinetic energy and actually come back stronger with every hit, but can’t be as easily shaped without a physical anchor. He blocks what he can with his shotguns, but outside of close combat that’s not much. Nevertheless, it is one of the few parries that allow mostly unrestricted movement, if only before it reaches it’s final stage. Charging gets exponentially faster with power level.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: Edit fires one of his shotguns. Decent knockback, can use both at once, fairly good damage per hit, reloading takes three seconds, five shots per clip, loads individual shells so he automatically reloads even if he hasn’t used a full clip.
    • Partial charge: Edit fires a charged shot from each shotgun, unless you change the setting to individual fire. The charge shot is significantly larger than the actual round, and explodes on contact with any solid object. Notably, the firing causes a large circular forcefield to briefly appear around the end of the barrel, which can be used to block projectiles rather more effectively than the actual parry. Doing so will increase charge level again, but not affect the current shot.
    • Full charge: Dominion has a forcefield too dense to safely contain with his shotguns, and wraps it around himself instead. As it is solid but malleable when he’s containing it, movement more strenuous than breathing is restricted to a fraction of the speed. Once it gets this dense, he can no longer safely charge it as it has reached his maximum range, and release will provide a tremendous omnidirectional blast that gets stronger the more things it hits, often creating a rebounding propagatory effect. Decent damage, if on the low end for a charge shot, can cause fires, very difficult to avoid, will automatically fade if not used within a few seconds, during which it cannot be recharged..
      • Super Mode Activation: Something hits Dominion hard enough that his forcefield reaches a level he can’t easily achieve on his own. This lets it get to the point that it’s self sustaining, and he can separate it into anchor points between which it is actually safe for him to teleport between. As it is somewhat exhausting, and requires some time to set up on his own, he rarely uses it.
  • Main Attack: Dominion whacks with one of  his shotguns. Can easily be alternated to provide continuous bludgeoning, and if the charge ability is used first the relatively low damage and weak knockdown become quite a bit stronger. If said charging is used first, it becomes rather more of a lethal joke move, as if it hits anything it increases the charge level equal to blocking the same attack, in addition to being a fairly high end melee move in it’s own right. Can’t be used to reach Super Mode directly.
  • Psychotrope Move: Dominion launches a psychic disruption grenade from one of his shotgun mounted grenade launchers. Causes disorientation, most primarily in artificial psychic circuitry, and can be used to interrupt more parries than most. Slow reload, but automatic, with only one shot per launcher.

Final Analysis: Dominion is an incredibly difficult opponent on autopilot, but rather more difficult to use manually to the same degree, at least in super mode. In normal form, he’s a mid tier character, with good offense but low speed and a limited parry. Good assault character, difficult to master.

Name: Dominion
Aliases: Mr. Suit, Tie, and Where-Did-He-Hide-That-Cannon, “The polite one”
Age: Unknown (24?)
Affiliations: Individual Thirteen(?)
Clearances: Cyan
Equipment: Heavy Assault Railgun, Psychic Disruption Pistol, Snappy Battlesuit, Subspatial Field Generator
Super Mode: Cloaked Dominion
Appearance: Dominion looks like a blue eyed man in a business suit, with gunmetal grey hair in a neat center part, and who can somehow produce an enormous boxy rifle longer than his torso by pulling it sideways from his suitcoat.
Character Notes: The quieter and (slightly) saner of the two, but arguably packs several times the firepower. Usually wears a business suit over his battle armor, and is significantly less prone to tossing it away at the beginning of a fight than he was when he had a mullet.
His Moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: Dominion opens a portal, which slowly swells in size. By default, it is centered above him, and will move with him if it isn’t blocked by a wall. The portal tries to draw in anything that doesn’t produce a forcefield of the type associated with sentient creatures or the stuff they’re holding, with the suction growing more pronounced the larger the portal grows. When the portal is released, a number of small bombs, along with anything it’s absorbed, are expelled at high speed. The bombs and debris will not drop where they can harm Dominion, and if the portal is too small for safe release it will not do so.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: Dominion reaches into his coat pocket and withdraws a grenade, which he then tosses. Decent damage, good knockback, can harm himself if he’s careless.
    • Partial charge: Dominion releases his portal, blowing all collected wind and debris outward. Small bombs may be included on release, depending on the size of the portal, with one appearing roughly every half meter on a triangular grid.
    • Full charge: Dominion has a truly massive portal, at least twelve meters wide if unobstructed, and releases it. The air and debris come out in stages, mainly so the overpressure won’t injure him, and every stage unleashes another volley of bombs. Damage scale is ridiculous, especially as any cover has most likely been collected by the portal, and depending on the amount of collected projectiles it can theoretically oneshot full health Super Modes.
      • Super Mode Activation: Despite the intense suction, something manages to hit Dominion for moderate damage. He decides he needs further defensive ability more than ridiculous offense, and gathers the portal into a cloak shape while anchoring it relative to himself. He can use the portal cloak to fly, attract stuff, and cool his railgun manually to drastically improve it’s effective firerate. As he’s no longer at risk of absorption, he can safely turn off the “don’t absorb people” function although portal storage doesn’t hurt them directly.
  • Main Attack: Dominion aims his rifle and fires a short burst at his target. Can be held for a longer burst nearly with three times the duration at the cost of doubled cooldown time. Knockback is significant, a short burst includes at least six shots, and each hit does significant damage. Overall, it plays like a more accurate, nastier version of Albert’s Klingel Seven, with more difficulty to use in close quarters as the only real drawback.
  • Psychotrope Move: Dominion uses his holdout stunner pistol, which doesn’t do much to heavy shields but can easily be used as a non lethal finisher move, as against unshielded or really close targets it causes severe drowsiness and mild disorientation. If the target is already exhausted sleep is almost inevitable, but otherwise it’s mostly only useful as a distraction. Very nearly useless against most Super Modes.

Final Analysis: Dominion is a very powerful ranged combat character, whose only deficiency is low health and the tendency to destroy his own cover with his charge ability. As a sniper he’s nearly unbeatable, against a sturdy opponent who can actually hit him, he’s out of good options. High tier, somewhat terrain reliant, good for dueling.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Intro Scene Draft One (Binding Universe)

Very early draft of the Intro for the Binding Universe! Can you tell?
The author would also like to apologize for the late update, and make the excuse that he's sick.
He hopes you still enjoy it, and is still begging for any form of constructive criticism, as he knows he's done something wrong but isn't sure how best to fix it.

Pan in on a city. The buildings, while not exactly shining, are in reasonable repair and kept moderately clean, as are all the streets we can see. Pan in on one particular side street, slightly larger than an alleyway, and stop as a large circular section of air starts to turn purple. The effect intensifies until the center can only barely be seen through, and then a small and vaguely vulpine figure abruptly exits at some speed. It manages to catch itself despite the two foot drop, and hits the street running. On closer inspection, it appears to be made of glass or some similar material, as it appears to be translucent but large sections refract the light. It reaches the end of the street and turns into an even smaller alleyway. Here, it continues to run before eventually slowing and stopping. Looking around, confused but no longer sure it’s in immediate danger, it seems to come to a conclusion. It walks more cautiously to the end of the alley and encounters a car, parked less than five feet away. It looks around warily, and then bolts for the windshield, shattering it and landing on the passenger seat. It then attempts to gather the pieces, (destroying the front seats in the process,) and collects them on the back bench where it attempts to build a nest. Amazingly, the car alarm has not gone off yet, but finally does so when the Glassfox smashes the side windows for more material. Said alarm startles it, and it runs away from the now vandalized vehicle. It is encountering people, now, who are alternatively cautious and trying to be friendly. Keyword trying. It remains remarkably far from skittish around them, but employs it’s usual strategy around creatures that probably won’t be able to smash it; which is to say barrel through and flex it’s coat to injure anything that gets too close. This leaves several people badly injured on the ground, and it ends up popping a tire on the truck that tries to ram it in response to this. It keeps going and tries twice more to build a nest before it realizes that smashing windshields causes car alarms, and stops. It’s been fifteen minutes since the portal opened, and it’s reached a residential district. It decides to try breaking a sliding glass door instead, succeeds, and retreats to the safety of the adjoining garage to try building nest for the fourth time. Several hours pass, it has gathered significantly more glass with which to build its nest, and assembled a fairly large one when the owners of the house get home. The meeting goes roughly as well as could be expected, and the Glassfox, territorial but having learned to fear cars, snarls at the surprised family but eventually turns and runs. The girl in the back seat opens her door and jumps out to chase it, causing it to consider her posture briefly, snarl, and run away, but it’s not as good at hiding without back alleys or vents to run through, and she displays very little compunction about intruding on other people’s homes through the same entrances it uses, so she eventually corners it when it reaches the local school. It tries to fight, then, but she summons an explosion that dashes it against the wall, cracking it and does so twice more before everything goes dark.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

First Timeline History Monologue (Binding Universe)

The author is conflicted about including this in his canon. Nevertheless, he wishes his readers a happy Thanksgiving.

The Great Library of Alexandria burned for seven days and seven nights, and in so doing unleashed ten thousand curses, with many more destroyed. It had been said to hold a copy of all the evils of the world, and many of it’s blessings, though few of those were recovered. It’s passing marked the fall of the Great Age of Egypt, and the Philosophers faded into memory soon after. The Archivists did not all perish, far from it, but of all the lesser repositories of which they had charge none could match a fraction of the completeness of the original, try though they might, and many said that the most terrible curse released in the fire was not war nor plague, but forgetfulness. Certainly, the Republic of Greece did not benefit, and the Roman Empire fell soon after, raided by the lightning-men of the North, repulsed by the Celts who slung enchanted stones, then finally turning their swords against themselves. India, for it’s part, mostly adapted to the curses, and drew great strength to fight them when necessary. Few curses made it through to China, and in time become natural, adapting to the flow of things. Such was the great strength of that land, and also the great weakness. Fewer still reached Russia, and such may explain their great resilience, having few things to contend with besides their environment and themselves. In the other direction, Africa was mostly untouched. Few things could corrupt that holy land, and fewer still could tame it. Some places became worse, for sure, but any man who could survive there knew how to entreat spirits, and few of those would stand the intrusion. In the wake of these great upheavals, wars were fought, techniques developed, and technology advanced. A new empire was formed by the Teuton tribes, who gathered the remnants of many cultures and conquered the western reaches, forming the area known as Europe...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Character Bios, Part Five (Excelion Universe)

Name: Excelion 04 NRV
Aliases: Ultraheavy Combat Unit 04 Model C (Production), (real name unknown)
Age: 14-26 (specific pilot unknown)
Affiliations: Excelion Project (Schwarzland Division)
Clearances: B (roughly equivalent to Indigo), Azure (temporary, issued for her visit to the NAC)
Equipment: Production Model Excelion 01 (Heavy Forcefield Projector, Psychic Interference System, Rapid Fire Beam Array, Grief Core, Subspatial Storage Compartment), Heavy Assault Carbine
Super Mode: Crimson Titan
Appearance: A vaguely feminine figure in bright red armor. The armor is highly segmented, and none of the bands are more than a quarter foot wide, although some of the plates are slightly larger. The only exceptions to the red color scheme are the sets of four yellow glowing spots in cross patterns on the outside of each shoulder, the lower throat to upper ribcage area, and two overlapping on the upper back. These spots are particle beam projectors, and will autotarget based on several criteria, such as distance, presumed threat level, or the likelihood of an accurate hit. They will also attempt to intercept incoming projectiles. All these options can be toggled, but not particularly rapidly, generally making this unfeasible in combat. She also carries a large, somewhat boxy gun, the barrel of which is about half the width of her forearm, and the same length, with the handle positioned almost squarely in the middle.
Character Notes: Well trained. Visiting the NAC to demonstrate the Excelion Model C, a very versatile support model, and probably years ahead of the others in reaching a production worthy design, due to the removal of the arm cannons. As the pilot has not removed the suit since reaching the country, her identity is uncertain, but the blueprints for her model suggest that she’s wearing the female variant of the exoskeleton and the list of potential candidates is fairly short. She brought the full complement of weapons designed for her Excelion, but only has the assault cannon out at the moment, as her onboard method of accessing her storage requires enormous amounts of power in exchange for being easy to mass produce.

Her Moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: Unit NRV lifts up its arms, palms outstretched, and produces a semispherical set of interlocking amber forcefields (six octagons, eight squares, eight hexagons). The forcefield panes grow thicker and more solid as she reinforces them, and block from all directions although they are weakest where they are touching surfaces. The automatic beam projectors cannot fire while the forcefie. If directed, the forcefields will focus and reinforce one direction, although hits to the forcefield will automatically redirect effective focus away.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: NRV strikes out with both her gun and open palm. Designed to push opponents away, as she’s really a long range combat character.
    • Partial charge: The forcefield panels separate and push outwards. Fairly low damage, but highly concussive. Range and damage depend on charge.  Jump over an opponent or corner them against a wall just before release to slam them into, and possibly through, said surface, as well as much better damage.
    • Full Charge: The forcefield panels expand rapidly outwards, although the panels remain the same width, and only separate after reaching a thickness equal to a quarter of NRV’s height. Damage is on the low end for a charge shot, but it can launch both opponents and debris slightly further and significantly faster than Makoto’s whirlwind.
      • Super Mode Activation: NRV’s forcefields reach maximum power, and are then hit hard enough to overcharge some of the panes. The combination of damage and excess energy fully awakens the Grief Core, as it is designed to, and NRV activates Crimson Titan mode. Crimson Titan creates bright red forcefields over its entire surface, at the cost of no longer being able to project the larger amber ones. It also has the ability to access it’s stored arsenal, at combat useful speeds, without a focus chamber, and general supercharged strength and firepower, including that of compatible weapons attached to it.
  • Main Attack: NRV aims her weapon, the Assault Cannon by default, and uses it. Other weapons can be unlocked by various means, and all available weapons can be accessed from Super Mode. The following weapons can be accessed from her Super Mode from the outset:
    • Arc Spear: A long, red spear, with a plasma cutter on the end instead of a spearhead. The tines are curled slightly around each other, allowing a remarkably compact head. Excellent damage, best range for a melee attack short of lunges, as it extends slightly further than the other spears, but lacks good knockback capability. This deficiency is partially fixed in Super Mode, where the arc does several times the damage and forces opponents slightly backwards.
    • Heavy Particle Cannon: A large white cylinder with a small blue lens on the end that fits over NRV’s arm. More a sniping weapon than anything else, it does slightly more damage per hit than the Assault Cannon but has half the firerate. Absolutely no knockback, beam is nearly invisible under most circumstances, requiring careful observation as it hits to trace. Super Mode more than triples the damage, leaves the firerate alone, and makes the beam attempt to propagate through cylindrical forcefields, doing slightly less localized damage to them and creating a “piercing” effect if successful. Less useful in most circumstances than the Assault Cannon, as this is a more a somewhat gun heavy fighting game rather than a third person shooter. May or may not be based on CHS’s arm cannons.
    • Guided Missile Launcher: Essentially a handheld version of standard Excelion rocket launchers, it has a slightly lower fire rate and projectile speed and significantly better homing capabilities. Super Mode increases damage, fire rate, projectile speed, and roughly triples durability as a side benefit, at the cost of making the projectiles glow bright red and become therefore easier to track.
Unlockable weapons include a copy of Hannah’s knives, a sword, a version of Nemesis’s mines, and a pair of knuckledusters.
  • Psychotrope Move: NRV devotes power to her Psychic Interference System. Originally called the Electronic Warfare Array, this move scrambles bomb triggers, partially hijacks any kind of automatic homing attack (such as Hannah’s rockets, Makoto’s dolls, or Grace’s charge attack), and interferes with most characters’ senses. Degree of effect ranges from projecting simple decoys to outright rewriting command parameters, based on time spent, type of target, and proximity.
Final Analysis: NRV is highly versatile, and remarkably simple to use effectively. Unlocking all her weapons, especially the mines, takes her from mid tier crutch character straight to top tier battlefield control, and prove to be most of the challenge in mastering her abilities. Her real strength is easily generally understated because of this.

Name: EX23B02CHS
Aliases: The Stolen Excelion, Markail’s Triumph, The Lost One, Project Aikane
Age: 16 (four since her integration with Excelion Unit 02 Version 0.23 Model B)
Affiliations: Project Camlann, Friedrich Markail (creator, deceased), United Sanctan Empire
Clearances: (None, detain on sight if possible), #4%6}7^92[0?; (Ultraviolet), Medium (Sanctan equivalent to Indigo, actually)
Equipment: Prototype Excelion Model B (Twin Rapid Fire Particle Cannons, Heavy Repulsive Forcefield Generator, Psychic Interference System, Omnikinetic Flight Rack, Grief Core, Heavy Abrasive Force Bomb Launcher)
Super Mode: CHS Excelion
Appearance: A gunmetal grey robotic figure. The armored lenses over the eyes give off a golden glow from within. Besides the relatively simple, rounded armor the hands glow a yellowish amber gold, and the standard Excelion “cuffs” have six large semitriangular fins evenly spaced around them, at least partially for cooling when extended in armcannon mode. Close inspection reveals breaks spaced between the fins so that the barrel can expand when in use.
Character Notes: Aikane is an artificial energy being who was placed in the stolen prototype Excelion Model B (CHS). Due to her new body, she can move, and is stronger than a normal human, albeit without the cumulative strength from an enhanced body on the inside. The main feature missing from the prototype was the ability to handle the fully activated Grief Core, as the original plan was to summon a larger, more durable suit significantly larger arsenal should it activate. Instead, most of the suit disappears, but the second suit was never completed due to storage constraints, and does not show up. A massive power supply suddenly becomes available, however, which Aikane uses to stay in the same shape as “she” was inside the suit. As her body is essentially one contiguous forcefield, and very few pieces of the original suit remain, she is very, very durable, extraordinarily light, and the fly at ridiculous speeds as a result. Aikane in her default form is a semispherical, massless forcefield that requires far more energy to maintain structure and solidity than to contain in a shell, hence why she was used as the pilot despite the lack of impact bracing. She does have access to some parts of the unfinished second suit, including the addition of a Sanctan HAFB Launcher, although they are incompatible with the main suit.

Her Moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: CHS creates a glowing yellow sphere around her body. It is thin, hollow, and slowly grows more opaque as she charges. It is also quite fragile, and only particularly effective at repelling things when released, another side effect of incomplete technology. It’s primary purpose is energy containment, and it was designed to let an Excelion awaken pretty much at will, which seems to have only failed due to the Grief Core requiring stress to activate. It still becomes one of the most rapid and reliable methods of awakening, as she can feel the through the sphere, and almost any hit will produce enough stress to awaken it. CHS will also heal while it is up, at a rate depending on the charge.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: CHS punches. Can be used with both hands in rapid succession, doing significant damage over time, and can be used to keep opponents from retaliating easily.
    • Partial charge: CHS releases her containment sphere, doing moderate damage and redirecting away anything it comes in contact with. Quite useful as an active defense, and often turns opponents around, allowing sometimes ridiculous combination attacks.
    • Full charge: CHS releases her containment sphere, launching herself away from any solid objects and potentially turning herself into an explosively rebounding projectile. Lasts about three seconds, minor control of trajectory is possible.
      • Super Mode Activation: CHS is curled up inside the fully opaque sphere, which connected enough for her to feel and see through. The sphere is then hit, cracking, and the pain is severe enough to trigger her Grief Core. The inner body reinforces massively, most of the outer armor is banished, unable to effectively handle the new energy flow and now extraneous, and the omnikinetic trajectory manipulation pylons extend and allow flight. Which is good, because her body is almost massless, and therefore can’t really walk. Due to the massive energy source, she can also afford to prepare high energy projectiles in a storage timeline rather than make them on site, reducing containment problems.
  • Main Attack: CHS aims one of her armcannons and fires, dispelling her forcefield hand to do so. Large yellow beam, one second delay between shots, alternates arms to double firerate if possible but they are programmed not to fire simultaneously, both because the beams interfere with each other if they get too close and because the partially active Grief Core isn’t quite sufficient to power both at once. Runs on similar principles to the Heavy Particle Cannon, and sacrifices stealth for firepower and a degenerative conical propagation effect.
  • Psychotrope Move: CHS had a prototype Psychic Interference System, which was mostly replaced with an updated Sanctan version. Due to the more effective, if less space and material efficient design they used, they were able to offload most of the processing components to her storage timeline. This increased her range drastically, as well as gave her significantly greater control, at the cost of greater individual crack time. Sufficient exposure can even let it affect humans directly, although the sensory distortions it produces in that case are quite limited and easily interrupted.
Final Analysis: CHS is an unholy terror, if she’s allowed to get going. While her parry is difficult to master, it is one of the strongest in the game, and once she’s destroyed all the cover in the area there isn’t much than counter her, as her main attack at least partially bypasses most parries. Her charging also heals her, and while she isn’t exactly fragile to begin with. Plus, her Psychotrope Move is almost perfectly designed to counter field control characters, and does allow some measure of stealth. As an attrition character, she’s nearly unmatched, and her Super Mode is among the most mobile and devastating, but constant pressure from early on, while difficult, is generally enough to finish her.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Lady Psyanide and Strike Nine Introductions

Angelica Fletcher was a very bored young woman. Well, not exactly. More that she was constantly infuriated, to some degree, by the strange and stupid people around her. It expressed, usually, as dissatisfied, only slightly abrasive, and not even terribly obvious arrogance. Sometimes, however, it got to the point that she would do something that most would call regrettable at best, such as paralyzing a foster parent, or flooding her orphanage with homemade mustard gas, and this was why she was currently fleeing some annoying people with handguns and far too many questions. She had made her way across the city, stopping frequently, and taken to wearing a gasmask and hat to delay recognition. This exceedingly clever ruse was probably starting to become counterproductive by the time Robin’s bomb went off, but at that point the authorities had other things to worry about. By the time they recovered, she could have been several cities away, and as she did not show up again this was generally assumed to have happened. Very few people seriously considered the idea that she would hide in the fallout area, and of these, none of those with much inclination to chase her realized that she knew how to survive inside…

Strike Nine was more of a side project, really. She’d decided to make an android, and so she had gathered some large pipes and some sheet metal for housing, some small motors, and the engine block from a small car, and had welded half of it together before realizing that the laptop she had been intending to use for a control system would overheat too quickly, even stripped down. Deciding that a custom frame would actually be easier to keep effective, she made her way across the neighborhood to the abandoned factory that had formerly produced custom vehicles...

Friday, November 7, 2014

Prologue: Something Every Schoolboy Knows

The author is deeply apologetic. He found out on Thursday that he had to attend a funeral, and did not get to this in time. Real pity, too, as he's had this ready for several days. Please forgive the very, very early draft, he doesn't have time to edit right now. Enjoy the first known major divergence point in between our universe and the Awesome Normal one.

Once, there was a school. And in that school, there were often many people. Each gathered into their little cliques, and most were satisfied, although few were happy. But one day, one group went too far, and pushed someone they should not have. This was not so uncommon, but the reaction was. And that reaction changed history, to a greater degree than one might have predicted. She nuked her high school, with herself, and her tormentors, inside.
Of the footage that she broadcast of the event, very little made it out. She had acquired a full ton of chemical explosives, and although she had mined sufficient uranium from near the foundations of her house, her setup did not have the precision required to make it go critical. She merely detonated the building and a nearby gas line, spreading radioactive waste across several neighborhoods, and probably causing the chemical leak in a local factory with the shockwave. The factory had been shut down for remodeling, and half of the earthquake measures were down as a result. One of the smoke drums, mandatory thanks to the factory’s proximity to the suburbs, was nearly full when it came loose from its moorings. Further safety measures failed due to its tap being open for draining at the time, and the resulting toxic gas cloud incited a rapid evacuation and contributed to the entire district being condemned and walled off. What little video was transmitted to the police department is transcribed as follows:
(Several seconds of blackness. The words Chem Lab B Cam 4 are faintly visible in white in the upper right corner. A cloth is pulled away from the lense, revealing a girl, tentatively identified as eighth grader Robin Underwood, already turning away. She is wearing a labcoat, and in her right hand is a small gray box with a large red button and a long black cord which leads under the table behind her. Faintly visible on the button is the word STOP in white block capitals, presumably taken from an emergency shutoff. There are large black bags against all visible edges of the room, although they don’t look terribly out of place on first viewing. There is unusually clear audio, seemingly because she is using a microphone plugged into the local sound system, although she does not appear to be holding one. The doors open, and four girls walk in, then stop.)
Centermost Girl (believed to be Brianna Callen, a popular girl and apparent leader of the group): Why are you here? I thought you’d learned your lesson.
Robin: You made it clear that you wanted me gone. “If it were me, I’d have killed myself,” was it? I decided to do it with a bit more… Heh. Flare. (She holds up the repurposed emergency shutoff, and gestures to the bags.)
Leftmost Girl, closest to the camera (probably Claire Vermont, a known compatriot of Brianna’s): Hey, hold on, don’t do anything hasty!
Robin (ignoring her): You hear about all those school shootings, and it all seems so stupid, you know? Small scale. Only work because people are idiots. I always told myself I could do better. That if things got to that point, I would make it impressive. Always wanted to see if I could make a nuke. Probably can’t, but there’s enough explosives here to wipe the school off the map, at least. A small victory. And I got to see your face. Any last words?
Brianna: Stop it. This was a pretty good prank, I’ll admit. But it’s time to stop. Go home.
(Robin grins and shakes her head.)
Robin: Bye.
(Brianna lunges at her. Robin presses the Big Red Button. One of the bags starts to explode, and the screen shudders and goes static, then dark.)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Character Bios, Part Four (Excelion Universe)

Ehh... The author is not quite sure about this one, but doesn't have anything else lined up at the moment. Hopefully, he'll get around to editing it eventually.

Name: Maximum Dalton
Aliases: Red Prince, Demon Core Thief
Age: 29 (Probably) Somewhere around three thousand (Possibly)
Occupation: Mysterious Aerospace Executive
Affiliations: Alhazren Investigation Group (Terminated), Jacinta Aerospace Company, Brave Crown (Terribly mysterious)
Clearances: Azure (Official), Ultraviolet (Suspected access)
Equipment: Prehensile Scarf (living, or possibly mechanical), Custom Bracers, Demon Core
Super Mode: Duke of Braves
Appearance: A cleanshaven man in a somewhat armored business suit, combat boots, and a pair of thick black metal bracers that cover the lower half of each forearm. He wears a very nice silver scarf, and his eyes are an amber brown that looks red from some angles.
Character Notes: Superhumanly strong, but mostly in his upper body. Can affect psychic fields, and give directives of similar insistance to extreme hunger by eye contact. Both usually wear off rather quickly, but can be nasty in a fight. Wears a silver scarf that he can move at will, block most attacks with by spinning it, and used to belong to a friend of his. He may be keeping it as a memento, or possibly to return it at a later date, but either way he is very angry if it is damaged, and this is the only known way to consistently get him to activate the Demon Core.

His moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: Scarf wraps around his neck. Blocks or deflects almost anything at torso or head level from any side. Anyone who gets too close feels a shorter range version of his charge shot at roughly a quarter power.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: Scarf strikes out with a punch about half as strong as his others, but with better range and can be used in combination with other attacks.
    • Partial charge: Scarf unwraps rapidly, deals slightly stronger hits than normal and hits several times in quick succession. The more charge time beforehand, the less initial range, and the more time to build up inertia.
    • Full charge: Same as partial charge, just at maximum power.
      • Super Mode Activation: The scarf is too tightly wrapped to deflect an incoming attack, and is damaged. Max goes at least briefly berserk, his eyes turn red, and he activates as the Duke of Braves. A red mist also begins to rise from his body, signifying the change.
  • Main Attack: Max punches out. Decent damage, can alternate arms to increase speed. Pretty good if it gets going, but difficult to turn after building up inertia.
  • Psychotrope Move: Max extends an arm, and if any opponents are facing him, he can give them a simple command. In practice, this means his player can press a button on his controller and either autopress or disable that button for his victims, depending on the action (stuff like hitting or cutting things autopress, stuff like guns disable).

Name: Grace
Aliases: Subject Tiamat, Dark Light Patient Seven, Jennifer Green
Age: 12-14 (birth date unknown, at least nine)
Occupation: Dark Light Test Subject (stable), (ward of state)
Affiliations: Dark Light Project (status unknown)
Clearances: Vermillion, Azure (by proxy of her legal guardians)
Equipment: High Durability Hospital Robe, Dark Light Symbiote
Super Mode: Dark Light Stage Six; “Saving Grace”
Appearance: A young girl, probably no older than fifteen, with straight black hair in several layers, with the outer layers several inches shorter than the inner ones, creating the impression of a waterfall or plate armor. Her skin is a dark greyish cream that looks almost natural, and can be mistaken for such from a distance. There is a hexagonal grid of thin, dark grey lines over her entire body, and the ones on her forearms and hands are nearly black, although on closer inspection they are actually the breaks where the flesh has separated and started to crystallize. Her irises are also a faintly glowing violet, but her expression is vacant. Combined with the lack of shoes and the sheer, thin, knee length gown she wears constantly, the whole effect is of a long term hospital patient with a very unusual condition.
Character Notes: Was present, and partially responsible for, the Dark Light Incident. Hasn’t deliberately killed anyone, probably hasn’t directly caused anyone’s death either, although it was probably a close thing. May or may not want to return to the Dark Light Analysis and Engineering Institute, which has been her home for the last eight and a half years.
Design Notes: Dark Light shares several similarities with the Jormungandr Microbe, and both are derived from the same source. Nevertheless, they behave quite differently in many respects, most notably in how they progress. While Jormungandr Microbes are passive most of the time, relying on their Cores for all production and commands, and collecting until they can complete their task in one stage, Dark Light is much more active, and probably as a result almost constantly emits a particle that triggers a phenomenon latent in humans, which arrests both the progress of Dark Light and the human’s higher mental processes while inducing a great desire to extinguish the source of the particle. As Dark Light is the only major source of the particle, and it had not yet been synthesized when the phenomenon was discovered, it is classified as a substage of Dark Light itself, although the proper term for uninfected humans reacting to it is Extinguishers. Most personal forcefields can block the particle, although this is useless if the person it is trying to shield is emitting it. Dark Light progresses in stages, and more advanced stages increase strength to compensate segmenting the body into ever more crystalline shards. In the few advanced cases on record, it also increases mental capabilities enough to partially compensate for Extinguisher Syndrome, although there is a notable personality change to the point of disconnect, probably because the lower brain functions are being used to emulate higher functions. Grace is actually a name that Jennifer Green, also a placeholder name, chose for her Dark Light persona.
See Also: Dark Light Stages

Development Notes: Grace may be based (very loosely) on elements from Prototype, an old, violent, videogame from 2009, of which the author has read excellent fanfic, and he may have intended to include the variant of telekinesis from Elfen Lied, which he thought was really cool and wishes was in a series he would actually watch. It has been quite some time since the author came up with her, and he has sadly forgotten what other elements went into her design, besides parts of his own vampire mechanics, but on reflection, he also vaguely remembers being somewhat proud of this one for being completely his work besides the naming theme.

Her Moveset:
  • Charge/Parry: Grace holds up her arms and the segments begin to spread out, blacken, and grow into large crystalline spikes. Guard area fairly quickly spreads from middle torso area to full chest and upper leg coverage, and anything that hits the shields cause the segments to break apart and spread faster.
  • Charge Attack:
    • No charge: Grace turns her fingertips into claws and grabs with them, dealing damage while she’s holding on to her target. Her grip is fairly easy to break due to her small frame, but can be used on walls to scale them.
    • Partial charge: Grace launches some of the shards from her arm. She can later absorb scattered shards to regain health. Reasonably accurate, low damage individually but can be combined with constant charge for significantly longer rapid fire at the cost of reduced guard coverage. Shards embedded in solid surfaces are sharp enough to do damage on contact with anyone besides Grace, and can unbalance anyone who walks over them.
    • Full charge: Grace holds up both arms, now massive sections of crystal spikes, and detonates them. Spikes fly everywhere, and each has several times the velocity, and therefore damage, of the partial charge. Enough get launched, over a long enough period, to ricochet off the first set rather than embedding themselves.
      • If something hits Grace while her shields are fully formed but before her feet have properly latched into the floor, she will fall over, hit her head, and slip into unconciousness due to how thin her body is spread, deactivating the Extinguisher effect. She will then promptly progress to Dark Light Stage Six, with her entire body turning to white crystal shards, healing any wounds she has, and allowing Grace to take over without waking Jennifer, although when Jennifer does wake up, and therefore reactivates the Extinguisher effect, she regresses to Stage Five.
  • Main Attack: Grace kicks out with a leg sweep, revealing the flowing shorts under the gown. Mostly good for tripping people, for which, due to her enhanced strength, it is quite effective, and requires bracing to stay upright against.
  • Psychotrope Move: Grace turns one of her arms into a crystal spike, then extends it rapidly. At close range, it moves fast enough to do extensive damage to heavy armor and even get a short way past personal forcefields, exposing the target to unfiltered Dark Light particles and briefly inducing Extinguisher Syndrome in the process, although the exposure is not long enough for actual infection. (Ingame, ES causes an autopilot to take over for six to ten seconds, depending on the dose, with different autopilots for each character, and different levels to which they can be overridden. Both Francis and Max are completely immune to it.)