[personal profile] marsdragon
oh right I have one of these now

Greetings, Yuletide writer. This is the standard letter. All sections are labeled, and I hope everything's nice and clear. My apologies if it's not.

1. General

I'm pretty easy. I don't really mind gen, shipfic, or porn. No real squicks. I have a couple canons that if you want to write porn, you should probably know that I totally dig tentacles and xeno I'm just saying. And incest. I don't mind violence that much either, as long as you're not super gratuitous about it. I like it dark or fluffy, but generally I prefer to stick to canon tone. But all my canons can support both, so hey. If all else fails, I really seriously would love just a normal, canon-ish gen fic.

I dig, um...I like exploring game mechanics inside the story. Melodrama, both straight and self-aware. Huge, powerful civilizations that fell to ruin and then get discovered in the modern day. History, and how events get passed down and twisted. The intersection of magic and technology. Apocalypses. Post-apocalypses. The occult. Cosmic horror. Explosions and giant robots. Worldbuilding. All the worldbuilding.

This letter is a catch-all from year to year; I'll cross out the requests that aren't relevant. I generally love bunches of characters from each canon and some of my requests might involve them, feel free to ignore those if you only want to write the nominated characters. If you do feel like writing the others, though, great! And if you don't want to include all characters I picked, also great! I try to get as broad a range as I can because I love everyone, so feel free to drag in other people or focus on just one of the requested characters. It's all good.

2. Canon Specifics

Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow/Dawn of Sorrow

What I love: Demons, magic, the occult, the lore. Castlevania has a huge, weird base of mythology, and I love it all. It's the same sort of reason I love Shin Megami Tensei. I also like all the weird world implications for a bunch of vampire hunters that work for the church. But mostly lots of demons and magic.

Prompts: Anything exploring the world and magic would be great. There's a lot of interesting stuff with Soma and this, what it's like to have so many monster souls hanging around in his head, how he feels about killing the monsters - especially the more human ones, and how he deals with literally being Dracula's reincarnation. Can he remember anything? What exactly happens when he turns dark, since Somacula doesn't seem to be quite the same old Drac we know and love. Soma learning about magic and the history of Dracula with or without the others would also be interesting. And there's a lot of interesting stuff you can do with him and Arikado. A lot of his role in the Sorrow games is getting to boss around his dad for once, and the interplay between him, Soma, and Dracula is always fascinating. And Death! If you want to bring in Death and show what he's up to lately, that would be great. I love the weird friendship Dracula and Death are said to have, but Death doesn't say anything to Soma when he's fighting. Why not? Does Death even want a new dark lord, or does he want to make sure his pick is on the throne? Did he meet Arikado in either of games? And I'm always down for weird psuedo-incesty Arikado/Soma.

For Yoko and Julius, I'm interested in how they actually work. Yoko's a part of the church hierarchy, but how is all that organized? Is there a lot of work for monster hunters? Is work drying up now that Dracula's gone for good, or do they need more people than ever now that the one unifying force of the demon world is gone? Is there a lot of paperwork involved? What's the day to day life like, in other words? What did Julius do before regaining his memories? Did he have a life to give up to go back to being the Belmont? Is he an official part of this thing Yoko's doing, or what? Any sort of demon-fighting adventure with any or all of these characters would be great.

Final Fantasy Tactics

What I love: Political intrigue. Class issues. All the gritty war and politics stuff is great. The demons are cool as they relate to that, but I'm not really into the mystical stuff for it's own sake. I also like how the entire game is framed by a historian and what it says about true/told history.

Prompts: For Ramza, I'm always down with more comparisons of him and Delita and how they switch their positions over the course of the game. Something involving how Ramza goes from "Surrender or die in obscurity!" and seeking glory to happily fading into obscurity himself while Delita does the opposite. I'd also like to see how he relates to his brothers. Were they around each other at all growing up? How did their terrible fates affect him? I'd love something creepy/sad with Ramza and zombie Zalbag. I actually really like Zalbag on his own. Even though Algus takes a lot of the blame for Teta's death, Zalbag was still the one that gave the order. Did he even notice? Dycedrag obviously never cared, but Zalbag is generally the honourable Beoulve brother, so I'm interested in taking a closer look at that. Or look at religion and how it affects all the Beoulve brothers. As for Dycedrag, I'd love to see him scheming with or without Prince Larg. Or what happened to him getting possessed by the Lucavi? What really happens to people that lose their souls to the Stones?

Like I said, I dig discovering ancient, lost civilizations. Ramza and his generics going on a Job and finding one of the ruins would be fun. Maybe a tie-in to FFXII? What kinds of things are they digging up in Doug? How does the team react to Worker 8? Do they find out anything about Ivalice's history? Speaking of history, Ajora! I'd love any sort of deeper look at him/her. Were the Germonik Scriptures telling the complete truth, or were they just another biased account of history? Was Ajora ever a real person? How did he/she find the Zodiac Stones? (as you can probably guess, male or female Ajora is okay) Or I know Alazam wasn't nominated, but I'd like to see competing historical accounts of the Lion Wars. After all, Alazam's last name is Durai. Did he just make up the entire thing to clear his ancestor's name?

Note: I'm more familiar with the PSX names, and you can probably tell. 10 years of habit is hard to break, you know? If you're familiar with them too, I'd like it if you'd use those. If you're not, don't worry about it. ...but don't feel like you have to imitate the PSX version's dialogue too. :)

Metal Gear

What I love: So Metal Gear is a serious story about war and its effects on people and how the mistakes of the past keep haunting the present. I like that. But what I really like is the WACKY BULLSHIT. I love the goofy jokes, the weird unexplained crap that everyone just kind of takes in stride, everything. So yeah, I'd be perfectly happy with a serious character study, I'd also really love some goofy comedy. Or both! It's all good.

Prompts: Something with Big Boss and Solid Snake around MG1 would be really cool. I'd like to see something now that BB has a ton of character development past "useless asshole on the radio" and "I'M COMMANDER OF OUTER HEAVEN. DIE FOXHOUNDER!" What was it like seeing his clone join FOXHOUND? Did he ever consider trying to get Solid on his side, before or during the mission to Outer Heaven? HOW DID IT FEEL TO HAVE TO DISS THE CARDBOARD BOX? Or work with Solid Snake on his first mission. What was he like before Outer Heaven? What was it like coming home, and what was the fallout?

A story about the Boss and Naked Snake and how this relates to Big Boss and Solid/Liquid Snake would also be cool. (this would be good if you can't stand silly stuff, because I'd love to see it and it doesn't work with wacky) The whole gene/meme/legacy theme is huge in MGS, and I'd love to see something with that.

Pretty much any form of wacky hijinks for any game is great. Naked Snake's wacky Russian jungle hijinks! The Cobra's wacky WWII hijinks! FOXHOUND hijinks! MSF hijinks! Solid Snake being totally sick of this shit after three games! Fluffy AU where Big Boss grabs his kids out of the Les Enfantes Terribles project and has to raise them with the inexplicably-living The Boss and The Sorrow helping out with the babysitting? VERY YES. (If you can't buy Boss and Sorrow living, that's all right. I just love the idea) Cardboard box adventures! Anything silly or fun would be great.

Note: I don't have a PS3, so I haven't played MGS4. I know more or less the big plot developments, but not much more. I haven't played Portable Ops either. I know pretty much all the rest of the games in the series, though. So...just stick to MG1/2 and MGS1-3/Peacewalker and it's cool.

Persona 2

What I love: This is where I love all the occult/mystical stuff. I basically love how crazy the game gets, all because of the power of human belief. How the characters relate to each other and grow across the course of the games is also really fun.

Prompts: Well, I'm one of the...two Nyarlathotep/Philemon shippers in existence, so I'd dig something with them. Doesn't have to be romantic or anything, since they don't do that well, but even stuff looking into the deeper workings of the Persona world would be wonderful. Maybe tie all the Persona games together? 3 and 4 are pretty different from 1 and 2, what happened? (besides 'there was a decade break and then they reinvented the series') When did they arise from the collective unconsciousness? Did Nyx have anything to do with it? Were there other bets on the future of humanity? If not, what else do they do? I dig Lovecraft stuff too, so working in some Mythos references will never make me unhappy. 2014: Ohilemon wasn't nominated, but I'm still into Nyarlathotep

Or I'd dig something with Lisa and Eikichi. Explore their relationship as friends that fight but really care about each other deep down. Or I always felt they had a ton of chemistry with each other, so you can work with that. Can they meet after the end of EP? How would that work? Or how are they or anyone else surviving in the post-apocalyptic world of IS? (though to be totally honest here, for anything post-IS in that world, I'd be disappointed if it wasn't at least very bleak) What did Tatsuya do after returning to there?

For Maya, continuing adventures in journalism would be great. Does she know about the events in P3 or 4 at all? Any other mysterious events? The ending is her getting over Tatsuya, but can she still see Katsuya? How are she and Ulala getting along post-EP?

Psychic Force

What I love: How incredibly 90s anime it is. There's just something charming about it and how basic it is. I like the characters and their stories, and I like how brightly coloured everything is while being horribly depressing. (this doesn't mean I only want depressing fic) I like the melodrama and insanity.

Prompts: I hate to say this, but...anything? It's a fairly shallow series, so anything that adds some depth is great. I'd love something going into how normal people and psychics relate, as it's something incredibly important to the story, but not used at all. Are there psychic sympathizers? More peaceful liberation groups? Previous attempts at revolution? One of Burn's biggest weaknesses is that his entire plan is "let's forget about all this nonsense and go home" without really addressing why NOA exists or is so extreme. I don't think he's bad, just kind of naive. Is there any way for him to break out of that and for Keith to break out of terrorism? (read: is it at all possible to get my OTP together without suffering?) Pretty much anything with Burn and Keith and their tumultuous relationship is good.

I also really like Carlo and his relationship with Keith and NOA. I think he and Keith kind of play off and contrast each other in different ways, and I'd love to see that explored in fic. (for instance: Keith loves his dream more than his most important person. Carlo very blatantly does not.) From 2012, it seems that Keith isn't as focused on leading NOA as he was back in 2010 and Carlo's had to hold the group together. I'd like to see something relating to that, or what happened in those missing two years. Or his and Regina's relationship. How do they work when they're apart? What's their background? Have they always been together, or were they reunited after a period apart?

I just like Patty in general. What was her childhood like? How long has she been on her own? How did she meet up with Might, and how did they become friends instead of fighting? What happens to her after the game? Can the time loop break? I know she and Wendy never interact in game, but I'd kind of like to see them meet in fic. I think they'd have a much less chance of killing each other on sight than most of the rest of the cast, and both of them deserve to hang out with a friend for a little bit :)

Shin Megami Tensei IV

What I love: I still love the mystical/occult stuff. I love demons running around the world and humanity having to deal with that. I love the post-apocalyptic setting, both the 1500 years after setting of the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado and the much more recent apocalypses of the various Tokyos. I love the worldbuilding, basically.

Prompts: Worldbuilding!Demons! Demons and worldbuilding! I'd love to hear more about demons and how they relate to humans. Does the hero make friends with demons? (does he get...more involved?) Do his opinions change as he goes from stumbling around in Naruku to fighting top angels/demons? Do certain demons not get along in the party? Are they useful outside of battle? Cross-pantheon interaction would be great. Some of my personal favourite demons are Anubis, Black Maria, and Fafnir, but feel free to use whoever you like.

For specific characters, I requested Akira. I'd love to find out more about him and leading fractions across the various Tokyos. What happened in the founding of the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado? How did the Akira of Blasted Tokyo keep everything together during those 25 years? Did the Akira of Infernal Tokyo manage to make some gains for equality after the heroes left?

I also requested Nozomi. I'd love to find out more about her daily life as a hunter and living in Tokyo. Is she old enough to remember before the ceiling? How did she get into hunting and photography? Does she ever use demons outside of battle? What happened after she became leader of the Tuatha Dé Danann? How did Brigid react to finding out Lady Danu wasn't coming back and there was a human in her place?

For Walter, I'd just like to know more about becoming the Chaos Hero. SMTIV actually gives Law and Chaos heroes some development before sending them off to jerkass ideologue town, and I'd like to find out more about how Walter got from "man class systems suck" to "let's unleash a flood of demons on Tokyo! Yeah!" If you can find a way to justify getting on Tayama's shit about Reds and somehow being okay with Neurishers, extra cookies. Feel free to bring Jonathan in and do similar questions with him, I just didn't have the nomination space to put him in.

Super Robot Wars

What I love: The characters and their relationships. Comedy downtime with the various squads. The weaving together of various SRW canons to make something new. GIANT FIGHTING ROBOTS. BURNING SPIRIT. JAM PROJECT. SAVING THE EARTH WITH LOVE AND COURAGE.

Prompts: So I love the SRX Team, and I'd love just about anything with them. Slowly learning to get along, just hanging out, or training in their robots. How did they develop R-Formation? Even after they all become friends, are there any conflicts they have? I like Rai/Ryusei a lot, so something with them would be nice. Something with Rai's issues with opening up to people, or Ryusei's need to protect people coming in conflict with Rai's self-sacrificial streak. Or just dealing with Ryusei's nerdery. Actually for that, it's not really made a point of in OG1, but Bian Zoldark's also a giant robot nerd. I'd kind of like a fic where he and Ryusei unknowingly meet online and get into an argument about giant robots before/during the DC War. Or SRX threesomes. I'm always down for those.

I like the Bransteins in general, so something about them would also be good. A story focusing on Rai and Leona's childhood would be cool. It seems they grew up together, what was that like? I get the impression Maier wasn't around very much, and Elzam had to be a dad to them. Or maybe not, whichever you want. How did Rai and Leona feel about the expectations placed on them? They've clearly accepted them by the time of the game, but did they ever want to do something else? Or how did the people at home react to the Vanishing (Berserk) Trooper incident? I'd also like to see more of the Treue (Troye) Unit, so a story about Leona's time there would be great. I like the Octo Squad too, and something about Leona trying to adjust to her new teammates and their very...nonmilitary way of doing things would be super fun. Or how did she and Tasuku become an item?

For Sanger, what did he do before he started piloting giant robots? How did he get into sword fighting? Stories about the old Aggressor squad would be great too. What was it like trying to program mechs when no one had ever piloted one before? (...besides Gilliam) What was it like being under Adler (and why did he not just cleave the guy in the first place)? I also really like Lily, so something with her and Sanger in that time period would be great. Or adventures with Elzam once they meet up. Are Sanger's sword skills any use in the kitchen? :)

For Gilliam, well, I won't ask for knowing his entire backstory, because I've never played Hero Senki all the way through and I can't expect anyone else to have actually done so. (If you do know about Hero Senki and SRW 4, then feel free to bring all that in, I'd get a huge kick out of it. But that's even more of a longshot than SRW in the first place) OG2 establishes that he's a dimension hopper, at least. So some stuff about that effects him, and what it's like to stop and stay in one dimension (possibly permanently) would be interesting to me. What made him go from teaming up with Vindel of all people to choosing to stay in the OGverse forever? Or time in the Aggressors, like with Sanger. He's the only one that actually knows how to pilot them, does anyone else notice? Or something focusing on his work in intelligence.

Note: Sticking to OG1 and 2 is fine. I know what happens in OGG, but I haven't gotten to 2ndOG myself, and I'm not going to demand perfect familiarity with multiple untranslated RPGs. Though if you want to go into the future and bring in stuff from J/Alpha 3, I have played those. I've played all the Alpha games, so switching over to that continuity is fine too, even if I was mostly thinking of OG when I made the prompts.

3. Canon Review

All of these games should be buyable. The trickiest is probably SRW, as those games were only released in English for the GBA and are pretty rare now. There are ways *coughcoughVisual Boy Advancecoughcough*. Aria of Sorrow is on the WiiU virtual console, if you have that. You'll have to buy Dawn of Sorrow. MG1 and 2 come with the Subsistence release of MGS3, which means they're in the MG HD collection along with MGS2 and Peacewalker. MGS1, Persona 2: Eternal Punishment, and Final Fantasy Tactics are all on PSN. You'll have to either buy P2: Innocent Sin for the PSP or download the fan translation. Buuuuuuuuut you probably don't want to play multiple 30+ hour games to review canon, do you?

So here's some Let's Plays/scripts:


Let's Play Aria of Sorrow

Let's Play Dawnof Sorrow - I haven't watched either of these, but they're probably okay.

Aria of Sorrow Game Script

Dawn of Sorrow Game Script - And a couple scripts, for quick reference.

Final Fantasy Tactics:

Let's Play - PSX version, goes through the entire game.

Script - PSX version

Script - War of the Lions version.

Persona 2:

Let's Play - EP only, sadly. I honestly don't know of any good, screenshot IS Let's Plays. And let's face it, no one wants to watch a video LP for an RPG canon review.

Script - Script for IS. Good old Oracle of Maiya. This isn't official. At all. But it's handy for quick review.

Script - Script for EP.

Summary -Information on the new Tatsuya scenario for the PSP EP rerelease. Feel free not to worry about this.

Metal Gear

Let's Play - Chip and Ironicus have LPed like all the Metal Gear games.

Let's Play - A screenshot LP of MG1 and 2. More complete on MG1 than the Chip and Ironicus videos.

Script - Metal Gear 1 NES script. Look none of the LPs have the part where Big Boss disses the cardboard box, okay? That's important! (yes it's in the MSX version too) They also don't have the part where he asks if the enemy uniforms are sailor suits.

Psychic Force

Complete overview post with links to all story videos

Neither Super Robot Wars: Original Generation (2) or Shin Megami Tensei IV have any LPs or scripts that I know of. Sorry. The Akurasu wiki has some information about SRW, but it's mostly for playing the games. Update 2014: If you have an SA forums account, there is right now an Original Generations Let's Play going on, but there's no way they'll be done by the time the fics are due. Still, it could be interesting to see the differences (SRX team characterization especially is smoothed out). Hopefully by 2015 OG1 at least will be in the archive...

If you're desperate and realised you hate my other requests and need a canon quick, the shortest is easily Psychic Force. You can catch up in an afternoon and I'll take nearly anything. Next easiest are Final Fantasy Tactics and Persona 2. If you just go for the LPs, they should take a couple days or so. Metal Gear takes a lot of background, so it would probably be hard to catch up on in a hurry, but if you just get a certain game you can probably catch up in a weekend. SRW and SMTIV are 30-40 hour RPGs with no LPs and you'd absolutely have to buy SMTIV. I really don't recommenced trying to write those unless you already know the canon.

If you want to stalk me for...some reason, I'm MarsDragon absolutely everywhere. Please don't get too creepy about it.

Well, have fun. Don't stress too much.



October 2017


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