auronlu: (Bad Balthier)
As some but not all of you know, I got my hands on a flawless Mac OSX/ Nintendo DS emulator, DESmuME (why are they all alphabet soup?), and decided to play Revenant Wings on a whim.

And I am loving its retro-gamer, lightweight-and-fluff, pixellated tinyscreen ass, especially since I can scale up the graphics to a size I can actually see. It's just cute.




I'm having fun snarking away and offering commentary and screencaps, so for what it's worth:


XENA SMASH

Mar. 7th, 2016 02:14 pm
auronlu: (Fang)
Mintywolf is a saint.

For four years, she's been posting Guardian comic every week. She's up to 111 pages. 

The story focuses on relationships between female characters. On every page. From Lady Ginnem's mentorship of Lulu to Ginnem's kickass sister Imogen to Yuna's friendship with Valefor to NoPantsCrusader/LadyYocun'sBiggestFan  the nuanced portrayal of Lulu's friendship with Yuna, which evolves and grows over time. 

It's a well-written, convincing love story in which the protagonists are not het and not in a sexual relationship. It shows, not tells that female friendships can be every bit as powerful as the standard "boy meets girl" romance.

Just as with the game of FFX, the bulk of the story is actually flashback, recalled at the end of the journey. The "present" is the scene in which Lulu volunteers to be Yuna's fayth. That scene is reprised at the beginning of each chapter, only now it's ticked forward to show that Lulu IS going to become Yuna's fayth, in this AU.

Yet reader comments often seem oblivious to all of the above.
  • Readers are excited when Tidus shows up, because now, at last, the story can be about Tidus/Yuna. (It hasn't been.) Some post a burst of Tidus/Yuna art right after she posts an emotionally powerful Lulu & Yuna scene.
  • There are comments like "whoa whoa, Lulu, that almost sounds gay" when her headspace-narrative describes her feelings for Yuna. 
  • Commenters jokingly scold Lulu for being sharp-tongued at Wakka, because she shouldn't be talking that way to her future husband. Did they play FFX?

Today someone wants to know if/when Minty's going to get to FFX-2, because this fan can't wait to see Lulu spawning the Wakkababy.

Even though Mintywolf's already showed that Lulu's going to become the Final Aeon, diverging from the X-2 storyline.
Even though Mintywolf's been focusing on female friendship and cuddles.
Even though Mintywolf's been avoiding sexual content all along.

Said fan kept poking, and Mintywolf deflected with tact. As she always does.

It is difficult for me not to snark at readers so desperately trying to find the het in her story, so determined not to see what the story is about, and has been about, for one hundred pages. 

When we were talking about this, Minty pointed out that "where is the straight?" comments on stories about female relationships are hardly unique to Guardian: Sister Claire's had such comments just this week.

I'm not surprised that these comments happen, of course. I'm just very frustrated on her behalf that people can't see, appreciate and engage in what she's trying to do, and has been doing very effectively, for years.

All I can do is support it. 
auronlu: (Bobblehead Night)

Wonder City Stories


Recently several of us were lamenting the fact that one can post a fanart on Tumblr and get 5 notes from close friends, and then you post a silly ostrich video or a photo of Carrie Fisher and Warwick Davis, and it goes viral. I grumbled about the sordid world of marketing, and [personal profile] heavenscalyx  asked me for tips about marketing Wonder City Stories, her superhero-genre book with an ensemble cast of LBGTQ+ characters, PoCs, and other types of people whom the comics genre tends to underrepresent.

And I didn't have a good answer. Other than plugging it on my blogs (as I am doing here), I don't know. My marketing game is not that strong. I understand enough to know why some things go viral, but I don't know how to make other things go viral. So I've been wracking my brains ever since.

Some ideas... )
auronlu: (Blah)
Okay, so. Rina has just finished Final Fantasy X-2 and posted thoughts about it.

And she quoth:

...Granted, this might be because the thing I want most out of this fandom right now is the Crimson Squad and YRP having fabulous adventures on an airship with side helpings of Rikku/Gippal, Paine/Nooj and Yuna/Baralai (also accepting Paine/Rikku), so if that exists in a way that is good, hook a girl up, mmk?

And I know that stuff is out there. I remember it. I've read it in dribs and drabs over the years. Yet when I review my Final Fantasy X/X-2 recs, I'm not seeing much of that.

Still, I have some pointers, and I hope people who know the fandom better will share more recs in comments.


Owlmoose is the Queen of Final Fantasy X-2 and Nooj/Paine in particular, with a little Baralai/Gippal and Yuna/Baralai on the side, and some Rikku/Gippal in there somewhere.  And since this is my own personal blog I don't feel bad about shilling friends. A lot.

The trouble is, I read most of her amazeballs stuff years ago. There's tons. But these stick in my fuzzy memory.
  • Darkness, Dawn, Gen, Paine POV, 1230 words. Paine's first night aboard the Celsius.
  • Where They Left Off, M, Paine/Nooj, 1500words. Much needed gap-filling convo in which Paine and Nooj have a brief confrontation/convo/angersmooch right before B/N/G deliver their speech at the end.
  • The Cat, M, Paine/Nooj. 4300words. I can't remember exactly why this stuck in my memory except that it was a vivid portrayal of their dynamic and...cat?
  • Separated, T, Baralai/Yuna one-sided. The final battle from Baralai's perspective.
  • Under the Moon, T, Paine/Rikku, 1400 words. Paine aboard the Celsius (not) dealing with past memories of Nooj. (Nooj/Paine is canon. NOOJ/PAINE IS CANON. Er. Well, it is for us.) 
  • Boundaries, E, Baralai/Yuna with Shuyin/Lenne coloring things, 1400 words.
And then she's done some recent 500-word prompt thingies with a few years' more experience in writing. 

SO. What else. WHERE IS IT. It's odd but I don't recall many well-written Celsius or Crimson Squad things.

So, for example, this isn't Gullwings, but it's good: 
  • Jebus Creiss' The Seeker Files, Barthello/Dona (estranged), T, 22K words, A surprisingly good story from Barthello's POV?! with a lot of the other X-2 cast, set 6 months after FFX-2. Extremely convincing and chewy worldbuilding. 
And in a similar worldbuilding vein, KJ created an excellent bridge story from X to X-2:
  • Aftermath, Beclem-POV, 42000 words, picking up the pieces at the end of X, explaining how Beclem met Nooj and the Youth League began, meta on spheres and sphere hunters.
Oh here's one I'd assume would be good because of the author, but I haven't read it, just spotted it while hunting?
  • The Lost Village, T, by astrangerenters. "When Gippal leads a Machine Faction team to excavate a previously hidden town near Lake Macalania, the Gullwings come along for a little fun and treasure hunting."

Hrm. I could go on but it's useless for me to rec stuff I haven't read; you can hunt, too. So I'm instead going to ask people to post recs in comments to this post. 

I will append some addendums. I haven't specifically covered the Gullwings, but I've written in the X-2 timeframe (or an AU version), pulling out things I like and ignoring the rest. 
  • Firstly a large pile of Lucil/Elma drabbles because prior to FFXIII they were the closest I could find to a canon lesbian couple. Headcanons occur. Also smut. Also crack.
  • An Auron/Lulu badfic, Til Death Do Us Part, T, 13K words, in which I indulged in all! the! clichés!  Swashbuckling and Twue Wuv occurs. It's not my best writing, but I bring it up because I started by trying to imagine what would follow the Gullwings once Paine went off with Nooj, and I wound up with Yuna in charge, Rikku and Tidus as her seconds, in a way that lets Yuna and Rikku be awesome and Tidus not be an ass. 
  • Love Her and Despair - among many other threads, there's Captain Gippal, smuggler distributor of merchandise, and a Paine/Nooj, Baralai/Paine sideplot. 
auronlu: Icon says, "Does it COUNT as a WRITING SESSION if I only touched the delete key?" (deletekey)
I'm afraid I tagged on the heels of [personal profile] vieralynn and discovered Get Your Words Out at the last possible second.

I normally shun NaNo because I don't have self-discipline (or ideas for longer fics) and do have chronic health issues. I avoid gift-work exchanges, because I'm always afraid that I'll fail and let someone down.

However, this year, I have two long-form fics I want to work on, and I have definite plans for them. So perhaps this will help me with motivation, although LHAD has foundered for so many years I don't know if I can ever revive it. But I wish I could.

Dreamwidth or OpenID: Auronlu (although my first project is on my Who fandom blog.) I'm still a little uneasy about linking up my different fandom handles, so I'm not sure how I'm going to handle that project. I'll worry bout that when I have something to post.
Livejournal: auronlu but largely moribund
Tumblr: Auronlu
Pledge: 75K Light
Statement of writing goals: 1. Write High Hierophant from start to finish, post. (Right now it's in the planning stages with about 3200 words of draft.) 2. Write and post 100 reviews on VHSWhovian. (This is one fandom project that's going along tickety-boo.) 3. Work on LHAD, using the plot structuring/organization tools I'm learning via Story Engineering.
auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)

There are rumblings that Yahoo may have to sell its internet businesses, including Tumblr. This may be a bunch of empty hoopla. But it's yet another reminder that fandom sites come and go.

Listen. On a still night, you can hear the ghosts of geocities wailing faintly on the wind.

Meeedeee has a tut on how to backup Tumblr on Wordpress.com from a blog you own to a private Wordpress blog. I'm giving the tool a test run on my own website, because I've got oodles of space.

That means importing 4500 posts. I'll let you know how it goes. (Note: setting entries private by default is a must, to avoid posting other people's content without permiss. I'm just trying to archive my own meta and liveblog posts.)

(X-posted to Tumblr)

auronlu: (Default)
I've been meaning to set this up for a while, but never got around to it. Now and then I was manually copying Dreamwidth posts over to Tumblr and adding cross-links, but that doesn't show a comment count. IFTTT adds that minor but helpful bit of functionality.

So here's what I did.

Read on... )
auronlu: (Default)
Underwear outside of pants: fashion forward, or fashion disaster?
auronlu: (Default)

[click to enlarge]

Yuna’s pilgrimage is a linear journey across a landscape, but the landscape isn’t static. Unknown to Yuna and friends (apart from perhaps Auron), they’re crossing a gameboard, and the boundaries are being redrawn around them.

[[SPOILERS from here on]] Above, I’ve shown the biggest shift in spheres of influence. Before and after Operation Mi’ihen, the Crusaders are nearly annihilated and lose all authority in the regions where they had been the major power.

As we can tell from piecing together various NPC comments, their downfall was engineered by Maester Kinoc. I believe Maester Seymour was not originally a party to Kinoc’s stratagem, but barged in at the last minute and partially usurped it, as I’ll explain below.

Read More )
auronlu: (Default)

Welcome back, viewers! Before the break, your intrepid news team braved fiends and Al Bhed to bring you a first exclusive look at the devastation wrought by Operation Mi’ihen! 

image

Now let’s check out the buzz around Luca, the second greatest city in Spira! What lies in store for our marvelous metropolis now that its Crusader defenders have deserted their posts?

Read more... )
auronlu: (Bobblehead Night)

That’s right, viewers, it’s time to step back from the big story, Lady Yuna’s pilgrimage, and find out what’s going in the rest of Spira! Your intrepid reporter won’t be talking to everybody, of course, just some key eyewitnesses who can give us some insight into current events. —Shaami

image

This broadcast is sponsored by YEVON!

Here’s today’s chief topics of gossip around the Djose Continent:

  • Operation Mi’ihen aftermath
  • With the Crusaders out of commission, who will protect us?
  • Al Bhed: more trouble than they’re worth?
  • What happened to Isaaru?
  • And now, sport...

[Unless otherwise noted, screencaps from my camera, so apologies for quality.]

Watch the broadcast... )

Cross-posted on Tumblr

auronlu: (Plot Device)

Last time year on my FFX Liveblog, Tidus and friends slogged along the Djose Angst Road commiserating with survivors of Operation Mi’ihen. Condescending yet well-intentioned priests mingled with the walking wounded, dispensing healing and absolution, oblivious to their own Maesters’ subtle stage management of the entire fiasco. 

image

Sorry, no room in FFX for a Floating Continent... will some floating rocks do? [X]

image

[Ixion mandala & glyph]

Before we flee into the Temple of SPARKY (as my father named Ixion) to escape rampaging hopper monkeys, let me backtrack and add some thinky thoughts about the Luzzu & Gatta arc...

Read More... )


Cross-posted on Tumblr here.

auronlu: (Default)
Okay, so I’m all caught up to where I left off on my old Let’s Play Final Fantasy X liveblog.

It’s been so long since I posted those that I’d almost forgotten some of the themes I was trying to highlight during my playthrough.

Lemme recap some of these themes. [SPOILERS!]
Read more... )
auronlu: (SephiroWTF)
I meant to start posting meaningful game discussion here after the new year and have failed miserably.

This is one of those times that I may be dead wrong, and regardless, Tumblr discussion is liable to explode in STUPID WAYS even if by some miracle I'm making sense. So. Let me put this on my own blog where people I trust can set me straight or ignore me because it's not your job to educate me.

MAIN THING: When I first saw the all-male cast of Final Fantasy XV, I didn't just roll my eyes at the dudes. I saw white, white, white. And then I questioned myself, remembering that important discussion about how westerners see anime characters as white, when Japanese see them as Japanese. So I rephrased my initial reaction as, "all-same-ethnic-group" (Japanese?) Am I imposing western liberal values on a different culture? Am I failing to pick up visual cues for a more diverse cast? I am not sure, but I'm wary.

In which I probably make asinine racist comments while struggling with representation of race in FF )
auronlu: Maria, Guy and Minwu fleeing at end of battle, apparently after looting Firion's corpse. "You obtained 36 gil!" (ffii)
I have unfinished FFVII and FFX Let's Plays, I haven't gotten to Lightning Returns, I was wasting time playing Kingdom Hearts for the first time, and I've fallen hopelessly behind in Final Fantasy fan discussions and game commentary on [community profile] moogle_university . My FFX novella is languishing with the last five chapters in a messy and forgotten state.

What a PERFECT time to start a new game playthrough! 



Zencribnotes on Tumblr inspired me to try Final Fantasy Dimensions again. It's an iPad/Android native Final Fantasy game that came out in 2010.  When I last tackled it, I couldn't fully appreciate how much it was a homage to the early FFs. Now, by golly, I'm going to play Final Fantasy Nostalgia Bingo, because that's the main virtue of this game. 

Posted on my Let's Play Final Fantasy Blog -->

(but feel free to comment here)



auronlu: (Default)
Moogle_university (aka Rina) has been doing an awesome commentary and playthrough of a few games, including just-finished FFX, and I need to catch up on all your awesome commentary huzzah.

Just a FYI for Minty and others who may still be eyeing this blog from time to time. 
auronlu: (Writer's Block)
 So, over the past two days, I've watched the classic Who world of text graffiti wall explode into an incredible outpouring of the entire collective mind of a fandom, often with many different people writing simultaneously, and it was hilarious and awesome and eye-rolling and amazing. Every in-joke is there (often in triplicate.) Every meme. Every point of canon contention and discontinuity. Subfandoms. Amazing ascii art. Drabbles. Shipping discussions. Meta discussions. Discussions of the production team and trivia and mistakes. Vile puns. Jokes. Pranks. Touchy-feely comments about fellow fans. People posting their fandom blog URLs and ages and networking and chitchatting about this and that. Polls. More in-jokes. It's just...
  • HERE IS YOUR BRAIN
  • HERE IS YOUR BRAIN ON OUR FANDOM
  • ANY QUESTIONS?
Now, Final Fantasy fandom is a good deal smaller than classic Who fandom — they've got a good 30 years headstart on us, after all. We're all scattered to the winds and busy with real life and work and other things. So I don't expect anything on that scale. But I'd love to see what happens if we put our minds to it. Sort of like capslock_ff in the old days but with meta discussions and everything else thrown in, too.

Are you with me? 

Then enough expository banter; GO TO THE FINALFANTASY WORLD OF TEXT and start posting. Stream of consciousness. Anything Final Fantasy. ANYTHING.

auronlu: (Lucretia)
This is a Final Fantasy blog. But it's also a fandom blog. So, here's something that's been distracting me, in a good way, for the past several months. The entire rough draft is finished (around 30K words), but later parts need more spit and polish before posting.

Doctor Who (Big Finish) Fanfiction, Team Five
—> Read it on AO3

Title: “Master’s Thesis” (Chapter 1 of Fiveish)
Characters: 
Fifth Doctor, older!Nyssa, Tegan, Turlough, Lasarti, and *cough* Matt Herse
Word Count: 2600
Summary: When Nyssa all but hijacks the TARDIS to return home, she discovers an old enemy taking a sinister interest in her family. Tiptoeing around temporal paradoxes means she can’t let the Doctor find out. It’s a good thing she has a friend like Tegan to rely on.
Continuity: Between Heroes of Sontar and Kiss of Death, but you don’t have to have listened to any Big Finish audio episodes to follow what’s going on here.


(photomanip mimicking the CD cover art used for Doctor Who audio episodes)

This was one of my favorite TARDIS teams back in 1980, except that the writers back then were clueless about how to write stubborn and/or smart women. Poor scriptwriting and sexism are usually NOT a problem in Big Finish studio's Doctor Who radio plays of the past several years, reuniting classic Who actors and giving their characters more development and respect than the TV series did. 
auronlu: (Fangsmirk)
Me and my bizarre shoulder kink. *hides face* I can't remember what possessed me to let slip this personal foible, but I can't really regret the indiscretion, since Flynn-the-Cat keeps catering to it.

Putting this here for ease of future ogling; thank you!






Back: Nyssa and Romana from classic Doctor Who
Front: Lulu and Fang
auronlu: (Yuna + Lulu)

Braids
by DippyWerewolf on deviantART

...so I can find it later. (Of course, I can look back on her dA as well).

Thank you so much!

...Rikku, Yuna and Lulu playing with each other's hair. And braids, because braiding hair (or having someone else braid one's hair) is fun and soothing.

July 2017

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