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Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

Turtles vs cats, the race to be the champion of the Thunderdome. Who will win, who will lose? Wizzy, one of the secret duelists and master of secrecy, or Ace, another formerly crazed teenager and master of persistency. Each of them took hold of their light saber, readying their stance.

Prompt: star wars fanfic

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

 Story A

“Remember to stay low and head through the south canyon. That should bring you right into the blind zone of the ion cannons,” the transmitted voice of Commander Kai patched through.


    The pilot, CT-5439, responded, “Only caught the back end of that, Commander.”


    “You know the drill anyway, right?”


    Every clone on the dropship responded, “Aye.”


    CT-0178, the oldest ARC trooper in the unit, was on his twentieth curl-up from a bar he had riveted into this dropship. His heels came within millimeters of nicking Red, who manned the cannon. It was a late-war model gun, retrofitted to a mount on the troop bay’s floor; it had been scrapped for extensive, irreparable damage to the right ball turret and its hardpoint. This ship was listed in a junkyard, and every detail of it had been legitimately documented—except for its secret removal after several years.


    The ship made a turn in the canyon. Red caught a glimpse of the mountain from the side: one enormous plateau had been cleaved into two chunks. One chunk was barren wilderness. The other housed a droideka manufacturing plant. Red didn’t even have to use his helmet HUD, he could see the ion cannons anyway.


    The spectacle vanished in a second, with another turn. The maneuvering had begun. The pilot went fast and low; the landscape underneath was uninhabited wilderness. It took dozens of turns, but when CT-5439 eased off the throttle and into the hover, Red’s feet were about 10 meters off the ground—just enough to account for the thick canopy of Phanxian Trunks rising from the ground. These were present across the whole planet, and their properties had been memorized twice by every trooper present. Red had even learned The Phanx for peaceful access to the corresponding files.


    “Go, go, and good luck team!” was Commander Kai’s final message. He just had to sit back and watch the fireworks.


    The ropes had already descended to the ground, secured with mechanisms as durable as they were makeshift.


Red was halfway to the floor when CT-4772, colloquially recognized as Sarge, gave his first order, “Maintain spacing, and haul ass.”


    “Yes sir!” the troopers eagerly replied.


    They dashed through the forest of branchless, leafless organisms, boots barely making a sound on the rough rock of Phanx. This was thanks to the extensive training of the clones, not the clumsy composite. The squad moved deftly, brains governed equally by simulated knowledge and hard-fought experience. Red deactivated the safety on his DC-15—his was the best piece in the squad, a prototype with a faster rate of fire. Red carried spare power packs instead of the droid poppers the rest of the platoon had opted for.


    Suddenly, heavy blast bolts whizzed through the trees in front of Red. He instinctively sidestepped to the safety of the nearest trunk; instantly, streaks of oppressive red dominated the space he vacated.


    “Rockets!” Came Sarge’s yell. It was followed by a scream, transmitted through a helmet at the final moment. Red peeked out and fired off a couple blasts, ducking back when the fire slowly redirected at his exposed head. Droidekas had a lot of firepower, but their tactics were lacking. Yet they seemed to have sensed us coming, how?

  Red’s thoughts were broken up by a duo of high powered rockets launched from the clones’ half of the forest. The missiles flew past charred trunks, some nearly falling from the destruction. The unit of four droidekas didn’t even react as the ground between them erupted in a fireball. Trunks were dislodged, and the droids were utterly demolished. The twin craters were strewn with seared pieces of what had once been the second most formidable type of droid, by the ARC troopers’ collective agreement.


    “By the books,” a trooper cheered.


    “It’s all sims now, 178!” someone reacted.


    Red scoffed—the old clone, almost two years aged, was still cracking jokes.


    “By the books, huh?” A raspy voice spoke on the channel.


    “Commander, is that you? Our reception is shoddy, sir,” Sarge relayed. “In any case, all I have to say is that we’ve cleared out the first batch of droids. Definitely by the books; we just used the classic rocket strategy.”


    The raspy voice cleared its throat, and suddenly became crystal clear. “DIE!” As it roared, the troopers turned to their designated angles. The droideka ambush only killed two, so the confidence of the ARC troopers was unwavering—until they saw him.


    Yellow skin, marked by extensive black tattoos. The head was topped by a group of horn-like protrusions, a pair of which were broken off near the base. The two eyes beamed with yellow irises. The piercing glare paled in comparison to the sight of a double-sided red lightsaber. The warrior threw it with a simple motion of his hand. It cut the torso of one trooper in half, nearly decapitated the ducking CT-0178, and left a grisly cut in the arm of Red. The wound cauterized on impact, and Red gritted his teeth: there had been worse.


    That’s when he felt a strange force around his head. The pressure increased tenfold, as if someone was tightening a chokehold on him. He saw dark spots in his vision, and heard volley, upon volley, of blaster fire. His vision suddenly cleared up. He choked and gasped for air, throwing off his helmet. His ginger hair, a supremely rare defect, touched the purple grass. He picked up his rifle reflexively, and aimed it at—he searched for targets.


Then he felt something in his gut, and watched a lightsaber beam emerge, a sickening crimson. It slashed upward.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

I vote A because I saw other people doing it too

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

Story B

“Hey, wake up. It’s almost ten. Captain wants us for a briefing”

Knives groans, prying open his eyes to see a silhouette in the hallway. Even in his dazed state he can recognize that burly, grinning idiot from anywhere.

“Fine, tell Brains I’ll be there in five.”

“You better be, else I’ll drag you out there myself!” He grins, before disappearing into the hallway again.

He gets ready and heads out into the common area that connects his squad's rooms. Everyone else is there, waiting for him.

“Ah, here he is, ready as usual,” the burly man jabs.

“Shut it Boar,” Knives says, rubbing his eyes.

A smaller, more limber man laughs, “Careful there Boar, seems someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed.”

“What can I say Hawk, I need my beauty sleep if I’m going to cover for all your asses.”

Hawk raises an eyebrow, “You? Cover me? Please, we both know who watches this squad’s back.”

“Ladies,” a man on the other side of the room interjects, “Calm down. I don’t want to be patching up your boo boo’s yet.”

“I couldn’t agree more, Stim,” the squad leader says, “Save your fighting for the droids. Or at least until after we see the captain.”

Knives rolls his eyes, “Fine, lead the way Brains. Let’s get this over with.”

As they walk into the captain's office they see he’s waiting for them.

“Ah, Star squad. Just in time, come in.”

They walk inside and stand at attention. The captain looked the same as the normal clone trooper, just slightly older.

“At ease men, here’s the deal. We shot down their armada ships a few days ago. As you know, that means that soon the droids will be emerging from the ocean to assault Kashyyyk’s beaches. Based on past attacks the droids should be emerging in about ten hours. The earliest attack of theirs would put them emerging in eight hours. So I want you there six hours from now, understood?.”

“Yes sir,” Brains says.

“Good. Now I’ve been assigned a segment of the beach to cover and you’re the only specialist squad under my command. Your genetic defects make you much more valuable than the average clone. So the only objective I’m assigning you is to defeat the droids and minimize casualties. I trust your judgment on how to do that and give you the leeway to do whatever you deem necessary in the moment.”

“Thank you captain, we appreciate your faith.” Brains says.

“Well live up to it then. Now go, get ready.”

“Yes sir!” The squad all reply.

An hour later Hawk finds Knives in the practice range throwing his vibro-knives at the target.

“Why do you practice so much? You never miss anyway.”

Knives looks over at him, “Well you practice don’t you? And you’re a sniper, you never miss either.”

“Yeah but that’s different. My gun is designed to be accurate. You just throw those things around like they’re more accurate than a blaster.”

“That’s because they are, to me. And I still miss more than you do.”

“Yeah but never when it matters.”

Knives doesn't reply at first, instead throwing some more knives at the target. Finally he replies, “And I don’t plan to.”

Hawk turns to walk away, “Brains told me to let you know we’re rolling out in three hours.”

“What? I thought we had five.”

“We do, but he wants to get there early to set up explosives.”

“Did anyone tell him we already need to get there two hours earlier than they’ve ever attacked before? Fine, thanks for the notice.”

“No problem,” as Hawk leaves, Knives goes right back to throwing knives.

The sun is blinding on the beach. Of course Knives had seen the sun before, but being stuck beneath the trees of Kashyyyk he wasn’t seeing much of it these days.

They set up explosives around the area to be remotely detonated. After they finish they set up their position. Hawk, being the sniper, sets up high in the trees behind the beach, looking over them from the air. The rest sit in trenches on the beach, facing the ocean where the droids are supposed to come from. Boar has a Z-6 rotary blaster cannon, with Stim only carrying a normal rifle and Brains carrying two pistols. Knives has the most interesting weapon setup out of all of them, given his unorthodox fighting style. On his back is a vibro-sword and he has a pistol holstered at his waist. But true to his name, he has a dozen knives on his utility belt ready for throwing, with more in a bag next to him in the trenches.


Other squads start forming up in the area near them. Not too long after droids start emerging from the water.

The clones start firing on the droids. The droids fire back. It’s chaos, it always is. But in the middle of it all Star squad keeps their cool. Because if they can't, who can?

As they come out of the water wave by wave more and more screams fill the battlefield. Stim goes to help other squads, as the best medic out there he has better things to do than sit with the most competent squad on the battlefield. His place is with the inexperienced, but he’d be there if the squad needed him. He always was.

Soon a wave of droids emerges from the water with a shield surrounding them. Groaning, Brains picks up his communicator.

“Hawk, can you see the shield battery on top?”

“No can do, it’s higher elevation than me.”

“Knives, can…” Brains starts.

“Yes,” he says.

Knives takes a knife from his belt, carefully judging the distance between him and the center of the top of the massive shield bubble. Then, he throws his knife.

Suddenly the shield comes down, the droids, unprepared, scramble to draw their guns. But before they can, most of them are blasted away by the other clone squads.

“Hell yeah!” Boar high fives Knives in celebration.

“Not too bad now eh?” Knives says.

“Heh, still not as good as me.” Boar grins.

The battle rages on. Eventually you spot a group of eight tanks emerging. Spotting his chance, Brains pulls out his tablet, ready.

Hawk, high in the trees, aims his sniper at one. He fires right into the engine, blowing it up. While he reloads, back in the trenches Boar’s heavy rifle blasts right through the tanks armor, blowing it up as well.

By the time Hawk has his scope trained on the second one Boar has already blown up his second one. Pulling the trigger, only four are left.

They get closer to the trenches, but as they do they reach right where Brains wanted them.

“Cover!” He yells, as massive explosions erupt in front of the trench.

As they look up they see two tanks emerge from the smoke, barreling toward them. Boar is blasting away at one while Knives grabs his communicator..

“Hawk, leave the last one to me. I have an idea.”

Boar blows up the one he was firing on leaving only one charging toward them at top speed. He draws three throwing knives and hurls them at the tank, seemingly randomly. But they aren’t random.

They sink in right where he aimed and suddenly the tank comes to a halt. Without missing a beat Brains jumps into it, using his equipment to hack it. While the others defend it, he manages to get control over it and jumps out of it, getting back into the trench.

He uses his tablet to remotely control the tank. It can’t move anymore, but the guns still work. The battle continues, only now they have a droid tank at their disposal.

Before long the battle seems to be close to its end. Suddenly a squad of droids spring past the clone lines into the forest. They take some losses, but as they aren’t firing, not many pay much attention to them.

“We’re pursuing them!” Brains says. He grabs his communicator and Stim and Hawk make their way into the forest, rendezvousing with the rest of the squad.

They eventually catch up to the droids and kill them all. It’s suspiciously easy in fact. Just then, Brains hears his communicator sound with the voice of the captain, saying that the battle is over.
“Finally,” Boar says, “lugging this thing around is exhausting.”

“We shouldn’t relax yet, we’re not back at…” Brains starts, before he’s cut off by yelling from Stim.

“Knives, behind you!”

Suddenly out of the shadows of the forest, a B2 super battle droid emerges. Knives starts to turn around, but far too slow to stop it.

But before it can do anything, suddenly the droid is cut in half. Standing behind it is a tall young man, wielding a blade of light.

“That was a close one, better to stay on your guard yeah?” He says.

Knives lets out a huge sigh of relief, “Thanks Jedi, I’m in your debt.”

“Don’t worry about it, we have to look out for each other. I’m Salvor Versio. Tell me, do you know where Jedi Master Yoda is? I’ve been sent to fetch him, strange happenings at the temple.”

“No, we didn’t even know the general was at this battle,” Brains answers, “But we can ask around for you now that the battles’ over. Least we can do.”

“Thanks, that’d be helpful. One more thing,” he walks up to Knives and takes his hand.

“Huh, what do you need?” Knives says. As he does Brains communicator beeps

“It’s as I thought. Strange they’d overlook it. I need you to come with me.”

Salvor goes to answer, but before he can Brains points his rifle at the Jedi and yells,

“Execute order 66!”

Without warning everyone starts firing at the jedi. Knives feels this strange feeling come over him and falls to his knees. He feels inside him an urging, that all the Jedi are traitors and must be killed. But another part of him knows it’s wrong.

Brains shoots Salvor’s lightsaber hand and he drops it to the ground. Salvor yelling in pain uses his other hand to push both Stim and Brains against a tree, knocking out Stim and knocking the wind out of Brains.

Hawk charges him but gets deflected and pushed as well. But as he does Boar manages to charge him and uses his heavy blaster to pin the jedi to the tree. The Jedi struggles to get free and Boar struggles to keep him there.

Brains roars out, “Knives, kill him! While he’s pinned!”

Knives has a choice. Obey his commanding officer, save his friends, all he has to do is kill a random Jedi. A Jedi that had betrayed the republic. But deep inside himself he knows that that is a lie. And this Jedi saved his life.

So he picks up his knife and throws it.

Boar cries out his hand is sliced through, losing grip on the gun and allowing Salvor to get free. Salvor pushes him against a tree as well and knocks him out.

Brains struggles to his feet, “Traitor!” he cries, attempting a final stand. But he doesn’t get far before being forced against a tree and knocked out.

Knives is on his knees, face in his hands. How could he do this to his friends?

“Thank you. Don’t worry, your friends will be alright. I didn’t kill any of them.”

“So, what now? I’m a traitor.”

“There’s no time to think about that now. What I wanted to tell you is I sense the force from you. Come with me, we need to get off this planet. I’ll take you, train you as a Jedi. These are dark times ahead, and I need your help. Will you come with me?”


Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:42:13 PM

Interesting that you both went with Clone stories.  Maybe there is something to that thought that all teenage girls think the same.  Both pieces are nicely action packed, with enough references to feel like Star Wars.

Story A:

Short and punchy, you do a good job of quickly personalizing the clones and establishing their connections as a unit.  The dialogue flows well and feels military in aspect and tone.  The ending feels a little abrupt.  I am also not familiar enough with saberstaff weilders during the Clone wars to identify who the murderer was at the end.  Some kind of clarifying reference beyond the physical description would have been nice.


Story B:

You do an excellent job of building up the camaraderie among the unit, and carrying this feeling of closeness and familiarity through the whole piece.  This helps give the twist at the end some extra punch.  There is some weirdness in the over all setup, such as throwing vibroknives and a clone having force sensitivity, but it's nothing too strange just something that jumped out at me.  There seemed to be a few dropped commas and one instance in scene description of a reference to you as the reader, instead of someone actually in the scene.  The ending of this one was cleaner and just felt better over all that the other story.


My vote would go to Story B.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:42:22 PM

My thoughts:

Both stories in my mind nailed the Clone dynamics with each other. Though they're the same person they all have certain things that set them apart from one another and make them really unique. This was the strongest aspect of both entries. The action was well executed. Story A had more vivid descriptions but Story B had stronger dialogue.  Story A's ending left more to be desired. If you haven't watched the Clone Wars tv show you aren't going to know who Savage Opress is and it doesn't add much to the story shoehorning him in at the end. Had there been some foreshadowing of a Sith assassin near the beginning of the story I think it would have strengthened your ending significantly. My only problem with Story B's ending was how the Jedi knew about Knives's inhibitor chip and that it had malfunctioned. All I got to say is that the Jedi was really lucky the clone decided to turn on his squad despite the chip malfunction during Order 66.

Both Stories were great but I think Story B squeezes out the win for this particular duel.    

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:42:30 PM
Keeping my feedback brief here because of my limited Star Wars knowledge.

Story A feels like a nice setup, good establishment of the setting and situation, and good descriptions. But there's just not really enough here to do it justice, and it comes off as incomplete. The ending is particularly unsatisfying and abrupt. The story is less than half of the duel's maximum word count, so it sort of puts itself at a disadvantage, but it's not bad.

Story B sure has a lot of dialogue. It flows well and establishes the characters nicely for a story of this length. The primary issue I found with this one was the noticeable handful of slip-ups in punctuation, but it's nothing jarring enough to ruin the story I suppose. Overall, this one felt much more satisfying, especially the ending.

I vote for Story B.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:42:38 PM

Both stories were enjoyable and written fairly well, but here are my thoughts on them individually:

Story A:

I liked the way the beginning started with dialogue and placed the reader in the story without a lot of ramp up.  But this story seemed unfinished to me, and ended just when I was starting to get into it.  Perhaps that was intentional, but in the end it did not give me enough story to really get enjoyment out of it.  Also, the overall objective of this attack/battle is unclear which caused me to not really get invested enough into whether it was successful or not.  Based upon word count there was availability to further develop either Red's character or the mission objectives so I had something to care about in this story, but ultimately it left me fairly indifferent.

Story B:

I liked that much of the story was shown through dialogue, and I really enjoyed the bickering among the team members to help demonstrate their personalities.  The part where Knives and the sniper were going back and forth about how they never miss seemed a bit clunky and contrived, but I thought the characters were well developed for this length of story.  The action was done well, and did not bog down the story with too many details.  Overall, nice job.

My Vote is for STORY B

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Story B. I like that the clone turned out to be force sensitive. Sucks that Knives had to find that out right before Order 66 though.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Ehhhhhh this type of story doesn't really grab me, but I do like abrupt endings.
Story A.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:42:51 PM
Story A: Limited, small scoped story about Savage Opress slaughtering ARC troopers. Some of the details were weird, like the pull-up bar in the LAAT, but over all it’s decently written. The main issue is that I don’t have any emotional attachment to the clones.

Story B: You can’t clone force-sensitives. Not only that, but it would be impossible for a clone of Jango Fett to suddenly become force-sensitive for no reason. There was an instance of second person slipping through, and lots of the phrasing made me cringe.

100% voting for Story A

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
I vote for story A precisely because its limited scope. While story B attempted more, I didn't feel like it succeeded in its ambition.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
I vote for Story A

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago


Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:43:04 PM

Disclaimer: Take everything with a grain of salt as always; nothing is guaranteed except textwalls and spoilers. You have been warned.

I'm also going to try something a little different with the formatting. Hopefully it'll help me reduce the word count. Edit: It worked! My review is finally too short to qualify as a duel entry.

Story A

This story begins in the midst of action, where a Commander leads his pilots on a mission. I like how information is conveyed through dialogue to give us a sense of what's happening without telling us every detail of the plan. This ensures the pacing never slows to a halt.

As with the entries I've read yesterday, there are terms I'm unfamiliar with, although they don't prevent me from following along with the story. For example: I don't know what an ARC is, but I can guess it's some sort of ship. Now, I'm not sure if this is a plot hole/ inconsistency or if I'm just missing something here, but if the cannon is described as having been "scrapped for extensive, irreparable damage to the right ball turret and its hardpoint", then how is it functional for Red to man it? A note about points-of-view: The first few lines of the story makes it appear to follow a third person omnipotent pov, although it's later revealed that the narrative follows Red quite closely. It's always best to start a story with the pov character established early on, so the reader knows whose perspective to follow, and the significance of plot points will always be measured against its importance to the protagonist (more on that later). There are some nice descriptions and just enough Star Wars/ sci-fi terms to add a futuristic flavor to the story. But a nitpick is that the use of numbers in lieu of names made me confused and after a while, it felt like I had to memorize stuff for a math test. But maybe that's just my own personal biases getting in the way.

Not really feedback, but “maintain spacing, and haul ass" is a good motto for future Thunderdome combatants. Back to the story, it's interesting how the protagonist is distinguished from the rest of the squad given he has the best weapon and different carry-ons. Not to mention his name stands out amongst all the numbers. I noticed the protagonist's thoughts were not italicized or formatted differently from the prose, which broke immersion for a bit. Another thing: the action scenes are good at conveying urgency and danger. In part, this is due to a good balance between action, description, and internal monologues to decipher why it matters to the protagonist (and by extension, the reader). Yet, I suggest you practice writing them without over-relying on adverbs as a clutch: e.g. paragraph 13 uses 'suddenly’, ‘instinctively’, and ‘instantly'. This isn't an uncommon issue, as I was guilty of the same weakness in my first few storygames. Oh, I found another suddenly later on in the text too. 

Alright, let's talk about the ending. First, I'd say the description of Red's slow death was well-written, and I like how the pacing slowed to emphasize the scene. It also describes the retaliation of his squad through the blaster fire and his final action of shooting his rifle despite the futility of this. It is consistent with the little we know about his character. But there are a few other things to consider: the ending leaves some questions unanswered, and though we get why Red is named as such (his hair color), the part about it being a defect seemed more of a throwaway line without much context behind it. Unless this is a Star Wars reference I'm missing? Though a general tip when writing fanfic is to always assume readers know nothing about the original. Also, I'd have liked more foreshadowing for the final moment, because as it stands, it doesn't feel like the climax this story has been leading up to. Abrupt death endings such as these usually work well when there's a theme of death and destruction, a corruption arc, or even a foe who was characterized as being overpowered at the start (to establish a doomed quest kind of tone). But I suppose it makes some sequential sense from the character's pov, and maybe it was meant to create the effect that these defeats are often unpredictable. 

Story B

Starting off the first paragraph with a missing full stop. Way to make a first impression! Moving on, this story begins with a completely different tone from the previous entry - it opens with a lighthearted scene that characterizes Knives and the other character who isn't given a name (edit: later it's revealed he's Boar). And Brains is an interesting name too. 

Now the squad is bantering, which gives them a sense of closeness and familiarity where the previous entry had more formality within their dynamics. I personally prefer this type of chemistry because it gives the characters more personality, and the whole ‘military, detached character dynamics’ requires the reader to already care about either the protagonist or a few characters within the ranks. Another comparison: The writing here seems more direct and concise, as opposed to descriptive like the former. I'm honestly not sure which style I prefer as both have its merits. Yet, this one could benefit from a few more descriptions. And both entries involve a plan to take down enemy droids. Only in this one, the focus is on the characters instead of the fight - this is reflected in the conversation between Hawk and Knives. On one hand, it makes the reader more emotionally invested in the characters (something which the previous story didn't really do), but it also reduces the sense of danger in the story's tone. Still, this is remedied by the brief conversation which shows the protagonist on edge (and their leader is also taking extra precautions by heading there early, furthering the implied difficulty of their upcoming mission).

It might just be me, but the line-up of weapons felt like an infodump, and I don't think it's necessary to let the reader know exactly what gun some of them have either. It could be possible to free up some words there and use it where it matters more. Continuing to the fight scene, descriptions are rather minimal, and it's more telling than showing (e.g. The clones start firing on the droids. The droids fire back.) Personally, I would prefer more descriptive language and use of senses to immerse the reader in the scene rather than telling them what's happening as if it's a history textbook. There are a few missing commas which make some sentences flow a little awkwardly, but I'm too tired to point out each individual instance and I'm sure a quick proofread will fix most anyway. Also, the line "He always was" shifts to past tense randomly, which gives the impression the guy died (this wasn't the case). One thing I enjoyed was that in the midst of battle, the characters exchange witty dialogue with one another. It makes for a fun dynamic while making the reader root for them even more.

Incorrect capitalisation, extra full stop... I would suggest proofreading in the future. Now let's discuss the fight scenes a little. I'm no expert when it comes to writing them, but personally, I feel there wasn't really much threat to the main characters. They defeated the druids far too easily. And aside from the mention of the tanks, the story didn't really dwell on the druid's retaliation, so it came across as though they merely stood there getting killed. Their attacks didn't even come close to hurting any of the main cast. But then again, I guess it makes sense if that wasn't really a battle but more of a way to prove the main group's abilities before the second half, where a new conflict arises. The super battle droid being defeated instantaneously would feel like a deux ex machina if it wasn't setting the stage for what comes after - this fight wasn't just about the druids, it was something more. 

Lastly, we'll discuss the outcome and the ending. Knives had been characterized earlier and he now faces an impossible choice: morals or blind loyalty? I have a nitpick: I believe the way that choice is framed (friendship vs man who saved his life) goes against prior characterization. Knives and Boar seemed to be close. The way their friendship was constantly stressed shows this. And rather than save them, he betrays them all. Of course, it's heavily implied they've been brainwashed and are not acting of their own accord, but it'd have made more sense if he did or said something along the lines of asking the Jedi to spare his friends/ make sure they were safe. Although I suppose his disbelief at his choice does this to an extent. And we have the final call to action at the end. Not exactly how I imagined Knives' character arc to go given the characterisation, but again, it is structurally sound and wraps the story up better than the previous entry.


I'm honestly not sure what to think. Story A has better writing and action scenes (sense of urgency, more immersion, suspense) whereas Story B has better characters (characterisation, character dynamics, transformative arc) and a more cohesive ending. Also, it’s currently locked at a tie so I don’t want to be the person to blame if someone loses by a point. 

You know what, I trust… @Gower. My vote goes to whichever story he thinks is best.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

Story A. 

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:43:12 PM
Overall, story “A” gets my vote as it edges out its competitor but not by much. Both have their flaws, but the clear lack of any proofreading in story “B” puts it at a disadvantage, plus the fact that the action sequence was much better written in story “A”. Action is usually one of the hardest things to write at least in my experience and I think the first story does it better, precisely because it’s shorter in my opinion. The action sequence in “B” goes on for over a dozen paragraphs plus the dialogues, and it ends up having to use awkward ways of connecting the actions like starting a paragraph with “The battle rages on” or with “ Before long the battle seems to be close to its end”.

On the other hand, Story A has a much shorter and concise action sequence which basically consists of a short skirmish between the clones and droidekas and then Savage Opress slaughtering the troopers. The last one in particular is especially SW-like in that we have a Force user just fucking up a bunch of common soldiers. In that same train of thought, story “B” did a good job of somewhat capturing the animated TV series (clone wars, bad batch) feelgood camaraderie dialogues, complete with the leaning towards cringe and all. That said, I don’t think people in general or clones in the aforementioned series tend to say the other person’s name in conversation. I understand this was an introduction to the characters but it could have been done better.

As for the climax of both stories, story “B” has a plot twist moment with the clone Knives being told he is Force sensitive by the Jedi right in the middle of Order 66 being carried out. That entire sentence I just wrote even sounds implausible. I don’t particularly agree with Petros, the Force can pretty much do whatever it wants and it could theoretically choose to manifest in a clone. It’s probably not very likely, but we’ll go with it. What is extremely unlikely is that Knives is only finding this out *right in the middle of Order 66*. Knives has probably fought alongside Jedi before during the war, why didn’t any of them feel his Force sensitivity before? It’s only until this one random Jedi feels it exactly seconds before Order 66 begins that someone has noticed? I understand wanting to go for dramatic effect with both of these revelations at the same time but it just feels unlikely and poorly executed.
Meanwhile the other story has a cool big bad scene that is very common to SW media and it’s written in a quick and non-convoluted manner that actually makes me imagine Savage Opress twisting around the ARC troopers and cutting them down.

TL;DR i vote for story “A” and if I voted for Serpent’s story I will kill myself

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago

Turtle vs a cat, teenager vs fully grown adult, who has won? Well, it was actually a very close call 7:5 for story A. If mystic had the balls to actually vote or if Gower was early enough to hack the knot, then it would have been a tie. Very exciting, very exciting.

Well, I shouldn't delay announcing the winner anymore, any other procrastinators, shame on you, very much big shame, super duper shame, shame on your future offspring too. 

The winner is none other than Wizzy. Hurrah! Huzzah! Great story. You have retained your honor and prestige, no, you have earned even more honor points! And ace, damn you got so good that you almost have beaten a grown ass man. Good for you too! Be proud of yourself.

@wizzycat @MrAce321

Collect your boon as you have both satiated the bloodthirsty of the CYStian gods. 

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/16/2023 3:43:35 PM
Thank you, I'm really proud to have gotten so close because, despite my jests, Wizzy is a really good writer. I thought I had him as the first 5 voters, and the only voters for most the week, voted my way, but in the last two days 7 people showed up to vote A. Anyway, it was really exciting to take part. For a little insight into my process, I started Thursday brainstorming what I wanted it to be about. I asked my Star Wars nerd friend for ideas, and he suggested the battle on Kashyyyk that happened right before order 66, and the battle that Yoda took part in. So I chose to write about a clone that resisted order 66 and chose to save a jedi. Then I brainstormed everything in my head going through the whole story until Sunday when I started. The battle was the thing I was most scared to write and the final scene was the thing I was most excited to write. Personally I feel like the final scene is written awfully and the battle is better than I was expecting, but the comments suggest the reverse, which I perfer. There were a couple of questionable decisions I made on the part of star wars lore that I had to defend to my friend, so here are my explanations. Force Senestive Clone: Some randos on reddit said that maybe the force could be seperate from DNA, so I decided that even though the evidence might lean the other way it was enough of a mystery that I could get away with it. The Jedi not knowing about Knives: This was a very good point from Dark, and one my friend also pointed out. I rationalized it with the reasoning that the Jedi did know and for Jedi reasons deicded not to take him in. They have been known to be a little pick, case and point Anakin, so clone discrimination could be a thing. I didn't put this in the story do to it not making sense in the scope, and since I don't believe in an author giving their word outside the text mattering it's still a plot hole. Knives throwing knives: Yeah it's unrealistic. I thought it was really cool. Jedi knowing about Knives inhibator chip malfunctioning: He didn't, I don't recall implying it. The Jedi didn't lose to the clones on purpose, he was surpised. Also to clearify the chip didn't actually malfunction. It still took affect, and Knives recieves it's effects, he is just able to overpower them due to his connection to the force. Just some responses to critiques of my writing: Grammer: AHHHH. My weakness as usual. In my defense I speedwrote this in like two hours on Sunday, but that's not a valid excuse. Past tense slipping through: Kind of part of grammer, but I did struggle with that a lot, rewriting stuff. I also know someone pointed out I randomly used second person and I guess that's just me being corrupted by this site lol. Brief with the converstation at the start: I was worried it'd be too long for 2000 words, so I tried to limit what I said. Also I didn't want to info dump their names and roles, I hoped to make it more organic. Lineup of weapons being an infodump: I think I agree with you. I felt my story wasn't star wars'y enough so I wanted to add specific's. But it might've been better to not. Battle being written blandly: Yeah, I suck at writing fight scenes. Which is bad because I always envision badass fights in my head. I feel like fight scenes in general don't translate well onto page, and the ones that do are really well written. Battle being too easy: I should've put more focus on it. Really the crux of this story for me was the last scene. And for that to matter I needed to set up the main dynamics with the main cast. Leading to me giving them all abilities and using the battle to showcase each of them. When planning I just thought about the battle in how it served to showoff the characters and build that dynamic, while I should've thought more about it in context. Knives characterization: It's hard for me to imagine how he's framed in the story as in my mind this was the situation he was built around. I don't think I did enough to sell that it was a hard choice for him. Actually I don't like the whole scene. I built the story in service of the final scene but the scene itself feels badly written, which isn't something anyone commented on. In particular, I don't like the Jedi's final piece of dialouge when he just dumps a ton of stuff, feels unatural.\ Reply to Dark's comment that my clones were similar to the clones in the animated show: I'm proud of that because I've never seen either lol. So anyway, thanks to everyone who gave me feedback. I tried my best on this story, besides the fact that a thousand grammer mistakes went unnoticed. I do feel like it's not written in my usual "style" seeing as I tried to make it briefer due to the short word limit and the large scope. I don't really know my "style" anyway as I haven't actually written too much lately, so maybe this'll have an impact. Congrats to Wizzy on his well derserved win.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

one year ago
Commended by mizal on 5/17/2023 8:05:40 PM

I can't lie, seeing the first few votes scared me off the site for most of the week. Didn't even notice this go up. Anyways, Ace put up a valiant attempt, and he's definitely improving.

As for my writing process, I started about 90 minutes before the deadline, severely intoxicated, and submitted it at the last minute. Thanks for everyone's feedback though, I'm glad y'all enjoyed the stories, and I'm glad we could make this battle happen. Looking forward to more Thunderdome antics. GG Ace.

Thunderdome 4: Wizzy vs Ace

11 months ago