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The V1 Read-A-Thon
Topic Started: Sep 28 2017, 07:14 PM (7,231 Views)
Blastinus
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You know what, whatever. Let's do this thing.
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V1 certainly was a different time when it came to profile lengths. The amount of time spent describing Venka would fill about a year of a V5 character's life. Combing through it, I found the following information about her:

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Other: She's loud.


But you know what's louder? A pitched gunfight! And that's exactly what she wakes up in the middle of, at which point she proclaims:

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"Oh my gosh! You guys! Stop right now!"


Surprisingly, this doesn't work, and by her second post, she takes a stray bullet and dies. I didn't really get to know much about her in the short time she was here, but her handler did a good job of making her weakness her undoing.

One more!
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Since RedAstaire's asleep and all:

CrossbowPig: Marcus Roddy
Un-Persona: Marie Zaid
Pippin: Jon Tognetti
Edited by Blastinus, Sep 28 2017, 08:40 PM.
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MurderWeasel: Nanami Nishida
Brackie: Thom Chuck
Edited by Blastinus, Sep 28 2017, 08:57 PM.
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Kermit: James Kelecks (Content Warning. Apparently)
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Pippin: Drew Lynn
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Brackie: Kichiro Taka
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Right, so, shifting Kichiro back into the pile...

Brackie: Terry Woodard
Aura: Cole Quentin Hudson
Kermit: Adib Harabbi
SansaSaver: Mallory DeLuca
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Brackie: Madison Satomi
NotAFlyingToy: Ryan Torres
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D/N: River Garraty
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Brackie: Kiyoko Asakawa
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Glenn Hughes is a pleasant surprise when it comes to V1 characters. Just based on his introductory thread, you could make the case that this was a character waking up in V3 or V4. He's scared, but compassionate, helping out Chi Masumi and sharing some conversation about the island and what's been going on. Glenn and his older brother are from Southampton in the UK, which riserugu demonstrates primarily through throwing in "bloody" every now and then. Naturally, what with him and his older brother Fred being stuck on the same island, priority one is for the two bros to unite, and that's when something odd happens: he whips out his phone and calls him. At first, I wasn't sure what was happening. I've been so used to characters either having their phones confiscated or getting no signal, it seemed weird that they would actually work.

But anyway, we get our swift reminder that we are in V1 when a couple of peculiar characters show up: one holding a teddy bear and drawing people out using crocodile tears, the other commenting to herself about "vile fools". Naturally, Glenn and Chi aren't having any of that nonsense, so they vamoose while their sanity's intact and wait on a hillside for Fred, running into Marie Zaid in the process. Marie's gimmick is that she's got headphones on, so her posts are full of random song lyrics interspersed with the occasional dialogue. The group interacts a bit, and we get this interesting bit of philosophy from Glenn:
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"The one permanent emotion of people is fear - fear of the unknown, the complex, the inexplicable. What everyone wants above everything else is safety. So yes, I feel fear for myself -- What's going to happen, when is my time going to be up. I also fear for my brother..."

Which, you know, is kinda flat, but by V1 standards, he might as well be scrawling these thoughts on gold-leaf papyrus.

Of course, if Glenn seems normal in comparison to Marie, that's nothing compared to the strange caricature booming his direction next. Eddie Serjeanston, Sarge for short, talks and acts like he's a grizzled 40-year old. New ally in tow, Glenn continues his Bro Quest at the Gazebo, where he meets a guy by the name of Jacob Starr, who flips a handgun into a holster and doesn't kill anyone doing it, thereby proving that V5 kids are just dumb. Then he meets Sven Kekule, who's escaped from Alcatraz, or so he says. All this weirdness proves too much for Glenn, and he exits stage left.

Hope's on the horizon though, as Glenn discovers a brief Adam Dodd cameo who tells him that his brother's looking for him. And wouldn't you know it, but there he is! Having accomplished his Bro Quest and attracted a sizable entourage, the obvious question now becomes what Glenn will do with his remaining game. Why, interact with more weird people. That's what! Our next nut of note is Daphne, who delivers a completely appropriate story about killing a girl with a rock.
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"Playing this game?" she asked casually, looking back towards her stick-like legs, decorated with scars, poking out of her shorts. "Haven't decided yet...But I don't mind killing. It's kind of...normal to me, after all."

And just to prove her point, she randomly kills Marie right in front of everyone else, and they react by...giving her a warning and then walking away. Alright. Sure. Although Glenn is so shaken by Marie's death that he basically becomes a paperweight stuck in the corner of a massive 17-page thread while everyone else tries to sort things out. Under the circumstances, it's easy to see why he preferred to stay out of that tangled mess. The other problem though is that his brother Fred is being controlled by the same handler, so Fred's taking the lead for now while Glenn just trails behind. It's to the point where in the next thread, everyone acknowledges Fred's existence but they have to be constantly reminded that Glenn is there too.

The disadvantages of these large threads are no more evident than when Daphne becomes the murderbush, just standing off to the side and stabbing whoever comes within her general vicinity. Everyone's so preoccupied with the other goings-on that it almost seems like they're bored with the spectacle. "Oh look, Daphne's gone on a stabbing spree again. What a bother." Everyone except Glenn that is. After a long period of not doing much of anything, suddenly he and Daphne have a big fight, and it's actually kind of fun. They bounce philosophy off one another and engage in a duel with a 2x4 versus a knife. Of everything that I've read about Glenn, this is easiest his best moment by far...

Which is only diminished a little by the fact that a totally unrelated guy decides to spray the group with an uzi. Lame, dude. The uzi man, who I'm not even going to dignify with a name, just fires bullets and bullets, and the scene goes on for far too long. Long enough for the place to suddenly become a danger zone mid-fight. I will say that V1 handlers seemed a lot less concerned about avoiding injuries at all times, since this firefight has a lot of people get clipped and nicked. Not the sort of injuries that would be debilitating, but still more realistic than everything missing. I appreciate that, and wish that handlers in the more modern versions would allow injuries like these.

Next thread, uzi man is gone, so they have time to regroup. There's this one girl called Mallory whose handler seems to be trying way too hard to pair her up with Glenn, and the handler says as much in OOC chat, but it seems like Glenn is just being friendly like usual, so it's really one-sided and a bit obnoxious. Then another big fight breaks out and there's confusion and people not posting in a while so the whole thing is muddled and really not a fantastic read. Long story short, the group flees yet again to Glenn's final thread, where he and Mallory get ambushed by a Bond villain named Peri Barclay who's like: "Choose who will die, hiss hiss!" I'm only partially paraphrasing there. The handler keeps mentioning how he snarls and hisses when he talks. It's a weird mental picture.

And boy, wouldn't you know it, but the oh so unique twist is that he's going to shoot the opposite one instead of the one who's chosen, so Glenn ends up taking the bullet. This death makes me legit mad, because of all the crazies and weirdos and lame gimmicks, Glenn struck me as a character written in earnest to be as realistic as possible. Having him be another victim of this clownshow that's V1 just really burns me. He deserved better.

Could I do another one?
Edited by Blastinus, Oct 4 2017, 03:17 AM.
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You know, I might be wrong, but it says that James Coombs' handler was TheLonesome. So why is he, in his one thread, being handled by MooCow? I mean, besides the part where he gets jumped from behind by Clemence and killed before he gets more than two lines. Ironic, since his primary character trait in his profile is that he's talkative. He's also narcoleptic, I guess, which Danya remarks on three separate times in his evaluation, but it never comes up, so who cares?

Again!
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I had a brief look at Chi when I was going through Glenn, and she seemed quite passable. Not as weird as some of the other folks running around, and with a bit more potential. So imagine my surprise when I look at her profile and see this:
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Chi developed a drug habit and ended up moving in with her 32 year old drug dealer, who's only name was X. He whored her out in order to pay for her drugs

Naturally, in her very first thread, she's pined for by some guy named Jim, who can't stop reflecting on how stunning she is in his internal monologue. But Chi's mind is all like:
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*I should just kill him now.* She thought.

Yessir, Chi's decided to be a player. But then!
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"You're not going anywhere." Andrew Klock (Boy #12) said as he stepped out from the trees ahead of the two. He had taken a long time to get here from the gazebo, and he wasn't going to let his new catches escape. "For me to survive, you must die." he said, pointing his machete at them.

I feel like I should stop doing quotes, but there's so much stupid to go around. You know what, here's another:
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The slingshot would be useless, but her inner thighs had great strength from all the...practice. She ran up behind Andrew and wrapped her legs around his neck, squeezing as tight as possible, and covered his eyes with her hands.

Anyway, this fight goes on for a while, until Andrew finally forces them to flee with their thighs intact. Coming across a relatively safe place, they have a brief moment to rest and for Jimmy to ogle Chi some more, when Chi suddenly proclaims that they should kill themselves. She muses:
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*Yeah, like I'd have a problem with killing all these kids. I've already done it enough times.*

For the record, her profile only mentions a history of prostitution, not murder, but I guess it's just assumed with this crowd. As it turns out, she's serious about the suicide thing, but when she goes to a cliff to throw herself off, she realizes that there are people there and she gets self-conscious. Maybe it's also because a kid in a wheelchair just fell off, so it wouldn't seem that original any more.

Then Chi suddenly decides she needs to find Wednesday Garci, apropos of nothing, but not before angering the folks at the cliff enough for them to hit her in the head. Now that I know WHY she has the head injury upon meeting Glenn, suddenly the thread where they're together comes into a bright new perspective. Her mission at this point is suddenly to run into Wednesday, when she was going to be a killer OR she was going to commit suicide. The girl doesn't seem to have mood swings so much as a mood switchboard. In the blink of an eye, as if this had been her goal all along, Wednesday's all she can talk about, and every time she runs into someone, she asks if they've seen Wednesday. It makes me ponder if the character of Wednesday was invented right then or shortly before as a sort of Retroactive Lover, and beforehand, Chi's handler was intending her to become a standard player.

Alrighty, already covered the Glenn and Chi business, so let's skip ahead to when they split up. Chi gets a tip from Marie that she saw Wednesday at the warehouse, so off she goes. She observes a different femme fatale doing her own act on a poor unsuspecting dude, and decides to shoot at her with a slingshot, killing her instantly. It's a kill so BS that even Chi doesn't quite believe it, but at least she's got a meathook now...with one thread to go.

Turns out that her final thread is her uniting with Wednesday, and they have a tender moment that feels like they're trying to jam several threads' worth of characterization into a single conversation. But oh no! It's Clemence again! You'd expect some dramatic battle where Wednesday and Chi finally get overwhelmed by Clemence's superior ballerina skills, but actually Chi just gets killed by a random shooter from offscreen. Kind of a wet fart of an ending really.

Final thoughts on Chi...it depends on which version of Chi you're talking about. When she's committed to playing, it seems like something interesting is going to happen, but out of nowhere, she suddenly becomes about Wednesday, and it's jarring as heck. If she'd started off with the Wednesday business instead of it cropping up without warning, I think I'd be happier about her character progression, but her character doesn't progress. It just reboots over and over, and that's really, really bad.

Can I do another please?
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Carrie Webber is an odd one, since she actually seems like someone who would really exist, rather than some bizarre caricature. When she meets with Ryan Ashmore and they debate whether they should play the game or just defend themselves, I could imagine this as something I could see in V5 or V6. Cassie is well-meaning, scared, and wants more than anything just to survive. Rather than being selflessly opposed to killing, she's determined that she will fight if it's in self-defense. A very balanced viewpoint, and as a result, it's hard to find anything to criticize about her first few threads. Instead of ignoring when someone is being killed in front of her, her handler actually acknowledges it, even if she's too afraid to do something about it.

The most notable things about Cassie's early game are the flashbacks to life before the island. V1 started with the students being placed directly on the island, so it's difficult to get a feel of what life was like for most of them before coming to the island. The idea of flashbacking in order to fill in the gaps was probably the best solution, given the circumstances. It helps that in her case, they're fairly well-written and they provide more context for why she's the way she is upon reaching the island. One of her major struggles is that her dad abandoned her mother and her while she was in a coma, and so a little voice keeps insisting that the folks following her will do the exact same, resulting in some trust issues.

I should note a brief interruption in the narrative when a dead guy suddenly enters the scene. Cassie's handler Swoosh has to remind the dead guy's handler that the dead guy is indeed dead and shouldn't be talking to them, which is more of a reflection on the chaotic and somewhat unpolished nature of V1 as a whole. In fact, the OOC commentary takes so long that the place suddenly becomes a danger zone, forcing Cassie to run off yet again.

Strangely, at this point the new group she's with is asking her to call the shots. Put in this situation, Cassie decides that she's going to get the biggest weapon among them, because she doesn't trust anyone there. Naturally, when her team isn't inclined to pass a gun her way, she suddenly gets more hostile and threatening. This seems like a sudden shift, but we've heard her inner monologue all this time saying that she can't trust anyone and that she has to kill them before they kill her, so the temptation has always been there. When she finds that she can't rely on the group any more, she says that she's leaving to thin the herd, and in response, one of her old team members shoots her in the back, ending her game before it even starts.

Gotta say, while Cassie didn't actually do anything really, her interactions with people and the conflicts in her own head gave her an interesting vibe. Compared to a lot of V1, her writing was worlds above, and her conclusion didn't feel sudden or unsatisfying. Overall, a pretty nice read.

Can I go again?
Edited by Blastinus, Oct 5 2017, 07:20 PM.
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