Random Story Trivia



  • Includes Random Story Commentary

    Just how long are those stories that seem to go on forever? Well, here are some approximate word counts for most of the completed team stories:

    The "old" regime:*
    Once Again (2000) - 16,830
    The Undine Stronghold (2000) - 8,474
    The Tale of the Treasure (2000) - 54,974
    LKH For Story (2000) - 17,893
    The Evil Clone (2000) - 12,200
    A New Story (2000) - 13,541
    The Coming of the Dragon (2001) - 8,684
    The Search for the Thieves' Cavern (2001) - 19,283
    The Quest for the Unknown Power (2001) - 28,244
    Requiem (2001) - 36,635 (first major story with cache?)
    The Air Castle (2001) - 38,203
    Omen's Return (2001) - 34,596

    KL 1 (2001) - 16,161
    KL 2 (2002) - 53,359 (abandoned)

    The newer story era:
    Blazing Trails (2009)* - 31,985

    The Sorcery Tower (2002) - 35,974
    Echoes from the Past (2004) - 65,218
    Shadow Games (2005) - 47,284
    Witch Hunt (2005)** - 49,890
    The Ruffian Encampment (2006)** - 28,490
    Yesterday's Dawn (2006)** - 35,499
    The Missing Sorceress (2007)** - 46,655
    For Whom The Bell Tolls (2007) - 52,873
    The Tree of Life (2007)* - 43,048
    Terminated (2008)* - 29,726
    Dark Mirror (2009) - 164,366
    Out of Reflection, Into Reality (2011)* - 19,667 (and counting)

    For comparison: (Source)
    The Fellowship of the Ring - 187k
    The Two Towers - 155k
    The Return of the King - 131k

    A Game of Thrones: 284k
    Harry Potter Philosopher’s Stone - 77,325

    • Includes some OoC content and meta content (poster names, times, etc.)
      ** Includes the prelude posts from the tavern.

    Some random trivia:
    - Back in the day, people complained that Tale of the Treasure was too long and took forever. Guess they were right, it was much longer than all of the other stories.

    - The older TSes were usually done within a couple of months. The word count might explain why. I think R0k's posts in DM typically were 3000-5000 words. Two of them would be more reading than an entire original TS!

    - Our longest chronicle was a 10,000 word two-part story from Katerei and cache. Part 1 and Part 2.

    - The plotline in the LKH for-story where Moonshadow got kidnapped and was forced to marry the villain was inspired by the Sailor Moon R episode where Sailor Moon gets kidnapped by Prince Diamond for the same purpose.

    - A "long time between posts" used to mean an hour.

    - The original tavern was closed at 20 posts because people felt that was too long for a topic.

    - The second version of the tavern was the second-largest topic on the boards at the time (second only to the Ares Officer's Club Bar, I think). Under the original ASW forum scheme, all threads were a giant text file, so any editing or new posts required rewriting the entire file, which really slowed down the server. The tavern and bar both led to the 200 post limit per topic that persisted until the forum software got upgraded.

    - Remember karma? If you submitted a Cythera chronicle that wasn't total junk, you used to gain a karma point for community participation. Cythera members ended up being known for having the highest-karma.

    - Avatara's backstory has been retconned no less than nine times. These days it's just left publicly ambiguous. (Ssh, let's not talk about it!)

    - You probably don't remember the Kul'Shar Legacy. But if you do for some reason, the third installment was going to take place on Moonshadow's homeworld. The sixth (and final) installment was going to take place on Avatara's homeworld. (Remember, he disappeared during the Quest for the Unknown Power.)

    - The original Moonshadow was married to Flynn.

    - The Sorcery Tower is the last story that Slayer participated in (and he dropped out halfway).

    - Once Again was not the first TS. Talos was in a story that pre-dated it, but it was deleted before even my time.

    - There was a Once Again sequel that had about 16 posts and even drew in participation from some Ares moderators (Laguna, Sargatanus), but it wasn't very Cythera-like and probably sucked. At any rate, it has long since been deleted.

    - I was originally going to unleash a super-powerful evil creature when I split off from the group in the Sorcery Tower, but didn't get around to posting in time (or decided against it?). The idea survived and was retconned to be the dragon back in Echoes. I still considered my original idea, but then the Death King was introduced and I changed my mind completely. If not for Selax, you all might have been groaning at my villain over the next couple stories. (Or maybe you did anyway.)

    - I have no idea why we thought it was a good idea to bring the LKH for story villain back in Witch Hunt. He didn't really do much and it introduced a giant plot hole (since he was supposed to have been trapped for 500 years).

    - Echoes from the Past contained my first attempt at keeping a running cast list, to track all those people that posted early on and then dropped out, leaving their characters with us.

    - The PG-13 "rating" on Shadow Games came from the partial nudity in this post.

    - The abandoned storyline with DF, Saria, and Avatara from Witch Hunt and alluded to during For Whom the Bell Tolls is not completely abandoned. You may even see more about this later this year. The storyline with Icel is up to DF though.

    - The whole Beorn thing in DM was an attempt to get Selax to develop his character and sidestep previously established superpowers.

    - Yes, we really did have a mock chessboard set up on Google Wave for the Chessboard Castle post in DM. It was actually more of a giant spreadsheet with rooms and terrain drawn, and we moved around markers of the various participants to see who would be in line-of-sight and notice what. Katerei adopted the wave name for her class art project.

    - Before Google Docs, there was Google Wave. Before Google Wave, we used SubEthaEdit for the occasional post that needed input from multiple authors. It wasn't commonly used, but we were jointly writing posts over ten years ago!

    - And if you were expecting a literal interpretation of the title (Pallas), don't forget that Bryce had his computer generate a chronicle.



  • Some personal opinions, but not really general story trivia:

    I think Letsiya was the coolest off-world character concept of them all. Too bad we got to see very little of her. Scry is my favorite "villain". Both characters have a unique trait that makes them stand apart.

    The most memorable TS moment was the night after Kat and I posted the chain where Avatara got stabbed in For Whom the Bell Tolls, and Wizard logged onto IRC in a panic because he thought Avatara had just been killed off. I hadn't really experienced someone that into my writing before. Especially since a lot of my posts actually aren't that good. But I was happy with that sequence.



  • You don't have Rasmus and Co. Inquiries. Part I on there.

    I'd kind of like to see a "time elapsed between first and last post" statistic.

    Everything is better with spreadsheets. Here.



  • Wowev, those word counts are really interesting! Thanks for sharing that ^ ****_^ (And DM is as long as a LotR book! And just as confusing! No wonder it takes me weeks every time I re-read it)

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    - Back in the day, people complained that Tale of the Treasure was too long and took forever. Guess they were right, it was much longer than all of the other stories.

    The character stuff was interesting, but there was way too much boring monster fights.

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    - The original tavern was closed at 20 posts because people felt that was too long for a topic.

    I think it was just Slayer, and later he admitted his mistake : ****D

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    - Remember karma? If you submitted a Cythera chronicle that wasn't total junk, you used to gain a karma point for community participation. Cythera members ended up being known for having the highest-karma.

    So where'd you get all your karma?

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    - Avatara's backstory has been retconned no less than nine times. These days it's just left publicly ambiguous. (Ssh, let's not talk about it!)

    IT'S SO CONFUSING! My conclusion is that behind the scenes, some wacky science experiment separated Tyrael/Avatara into two separate people. Maybe kind of like the Jackie Chan Adventures episode where Jackie was split into sissy-Jackie & jerk-Jackie?

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    - You probably don't remember the Kul'Shar Legacy. But if you do for some reason, the third installment was going to take place on Moonshadow's homeworld. The sixth (and final) installment was going to take place on Avatara's homeworld. (Remember, he disappeared during the Quest for the Unknown Power.)

    There was going to be six parts?! : ****o

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    - The original Moonshadow was married to Flynn.

    What, she's not anymore? Or do you mean original as opposed to the alternate (dead) Moonshadow?

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    - Once Again was not the first TS. Talos was in a story that pre-dated it, but it was deleted before even my time.

    If he hadn't deleted it, it probably still wouldn't be counted as a proper TS. I imagine it was something like "The Crystal of Light" or "Death Upon Cythera" etc.

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    - There was a Once Again sequel that had about 16 posts and even drew in participation from some Ares moderators (Laguna, Sargatanus), but it wasn't very Cythera-like and probably sucked. At any rate, it has long since been deleted.

    I still say you can't delete something just because it sucks.

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    - The PG-13 "rating" on Shadow Games came from the partial nudity in this post.

    Are you saying it's not really more violent than the other TSes?

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    - Yes, we really did have a mock chessboard set up on Google Wave for the Chessboard Castle post in DM. It was actually more of a giant spreadsheet with rooms and terrain drawn, and we moved around markers of the various participants to see who would be in line-of-sight and notice what. Katerei adopted the wave name for her class art project.

    Awesome! : ****D I did not know that.

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    I'd kind of like to see a "time elapsed between first and last post" statistic.

    I don't know if this is exactly what you wanted, but here's the durations of the listed stories:
    Once Again - 1 month, 14 days (44 days)
    Undine Stronghold - I don't know, that's one of the reposted ones.
    The Tale of the Treasure - I don't know the end-date. At least 8 months, 27 days (270 days) and not more than 1 year, 2 months, 11 days (437 days).
    LKH (for story) - I don't know. The other reposted one.
    The Evil Clone - 3 months, 20 days (112 days)
    A New Story - 11 months, 22 days (357 days). IIRC, cache revived this one after it had been dead for a while.
    The Coming of the Dragon - 2 months, 22 days (81 days)
    The Search for the Thieves' Cavern - 2 months, 5 days (66 days)
    The Quest for the Unknown Power - 1 month, 12 days (42 days)
    Requiem - 16 days
    The Air Castle - One month (30 days)
    Omen's Return - 1 month, 14 days (45 days)
    The Kul'Shar Legacy, Part 1 - 29 days
    The Kul'Shar Legacy, Part 2 - 7 months, 4 days (216 days)
    Blazing Trails - 1 year, 6 months, 15 days (563 days)
    The Sorcery Tower - 2 months, 12 days (71 days)
    Echoes from the Past - 4 months, 13 days (136 days)
    Shadow Games - 7 months, 15 days (227 days)
    Witch Hunt - 8 months, 24 days (266 days)
    Ruffian Encampment - 1 month, 28 days (58 days)
    Yesterday's Dawn - 17 days
    The Missing Sorceress - 1 month, 6 days (37 days)
    For Whom the Bell Tolls - 4 months, 6 days (128 days)
    The Tree of Life - 3 months, 4 days (96 days)
    Terminated - 7 months, 17 days (231 days)
    Dark Mirror - 2 years, 2 months, 2 days (793 days)
    Out of Reflection, Into Reality - (from first to latest post) 1 year, 10 months, 14 days (684 days)



  • @pallas-athene_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 09:36 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    You don't have Rasmus and Co. Inquiries. Part I on there.

    I'd kind of like to see a "time elapsed between first and last post" statistic.

    Everything is better with spreadsheets. Here.

    I originally left Rasmus out because it was still in progress. Then I added OoR to compare it to DM.

    Rasmus & Co is at 13,978 right now. Like all the other *ed stories, that's an overestimate because it includes poster names, times, and embedded OoC comments.



  • @breadworldmercy453_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 11:10 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    The character stuff was interesting, but there was way too much boring monster fights.

    I was skimming the Ruffian Encampment and it seems like every post is a random fight with a large group of ruffians. I agree, too much combat is boring.

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    So where'd you get all your karma?

    Mods didn't have karma. There was also a little bit of karma handed out for the more involved TS participants at the end of a story. But as you can see above, that typically required more effort than writing a short chronicle.

    Quote

    IT'S SO CONFUSING! My conclusion is that behind the scenes, some wacky science experiment separated Tyrael/Avatara into two separate people. Maybe kind of like the Jackie Chan Adventures episode where Jackie was split into sissy-Jackie & jerk-Jackie?

    Let's not talk about it!

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    What, she's not anymore? Or do you mean original as opposed to the alternate (dead) Moonshadow?

    The original. It happened over ten years ago!

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    If he hadn't deleted it, it probably still wouldn't be counted as a proper TS. I imagine it was something like "The Crystal of Light" or "Death Upon Cythera" etc.

    It was never finished, if I recall. I remember people remarking that everyone lost interest.

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    Are you saying it's not really more violent than the other TSes?

    No, I think that "award" goes to one of the other stories you've already read.

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    Dark Mirror - 2 years, 2 months, 2 days (793 days)
    Out of Reflection, Into Reality - (from first to latest post) 1 year, 10 months, 14 days (684 days)

    Somehow I expected DM to be longer and OoC to be shorter. I don't know why I thought DM took four years. Maybe I'm mixing it up with my chronicle.

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    The Tale of the Treasure - I don't know the end-date. At least 8 months, 27 days (270 days) and not more than

    I'm almost positive it was over a year. I actually think the cleanup time was close to the end of the story.



  • Quote

    I was skimming the Ruffian Encampment and it seems like every post is a random fight with a large group of ruffians. I agree, too much combat is boring.

    Ruffian Encampment was probably just as bad (in the same way that you don't like re-reading LKH, I don't like re-reading Ruffian Encampment), TotT was almost twice as long. Therefore, more boring : ****P Not that the whole thing was boring, I liked reading about Avatara's past as a monk(?).

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    Mods didn't have karma.

    Ah. That explains why you never bothered to write a chronicle (and why Slayer didn't write many).

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    No, I think that "award" goes to one of the other stories you've already read.

    Probably one of the stories Valy was in. I remember reading a really violent chronicle he wrote, that I don't think he ever even posted.

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    Somehow I expected DM to be longer and OoC to be shorter. I don't know why I thought DM took four years. Maybe I'm mixing it up with my chronicle.

    Probably because OoR and DM aren't really separate stories. Combined it's been four and a half years. Long story. What makes me sad is that I thought DM was a slow-moving story, but it was speedy-quick compared to OoR.



  • @breadworldmercy453_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 03:18 PM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    ...I liked reading about Avatara's past as a monk.

    :blink:



  • @avatara_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 12:51 PM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    I originally left Rasmus out because it was still in progress. Then I added OoR to compare it to DM.

    Rasmus & Co is at 13,978 right now. Like all the other *ed stories, that's an overestimate because it includes poster names, times, and embedded OoC comments.

    I thought it was finished. I guess no one ever really said so, but there's nothing left to the story that seemed to need clearing up. I wasn't going to post to it again.

    Anyway, I added it to the spreadsheet, along with a "Days Elapsed" graph thanks to 453.



  • Er, I thought it was almost finished, but we never left the mine shaft, right? Also I wasn't sure if we were going to continue future stories in the same thread?

    Tyry- Okay, so I didn't understand TotT at all. You know, there's nothing wrong with making things clear about your character!



  • Yesterday's Dawn has been updated to 35,499 with most of the OoC comments stripped out and the two prologue posts from the tavern added in. (That's pretty close to the original estimate, but only because of the prologue posts.)

    On the graphs, I think words vs days would be more interesting than words vs year.

    And those of you that remember the story, did Alice die at the end? It seems so, but I'm not really clear on that.



  • Counting the prologue in the Tavern, I have The Missing Sorceress as 46,655 words and 38 days (up from 37). There were a number of posts in the tavern that the first few TS posts directly continued from, so it made sense to lump them in with the story. (I started with Tavern IX, post #27 as that also includes Anon's entrance.)

    I think that hole in the tavern ended up being one of the longest running references across the stories and taverns.



  • Er, I don't remember Alice dying. I didn't re-read the posts or anything but it looks like YD ended on January 12th and he re-appeared in the Tavern on January 14th. As far as I know, he's just another abandoned character now.

    Edit: Actually I just skimmed the Tavern post that I linked & I think it serves to explain Alice's survival.

    This post has been edited by BreadWorldMercy453 : 08 November 2013 - 11:21 AM



  • @avatara_bot, on 08 November 2013 - 01:21 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    On the graphs, I think words vs days would be more interesting than words vs year.

    https://docs.google....p=sharing#gid=5



  • Hard to see, everything's all clustered in the corner because silly DM is stretching out the graph.



  • @breadworldmercy453_bot, on 08 November 2013 - 11:20 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    Actually I just skimmed the Tavern post that I linked & I think it serves to explain Alice's survival.

    You are exactly correct. I had fun writing with Alice, and wanted to use him again in the future.



  • I now have Bell Tolls at 52,873. Despite the slower pace than previous stories, it ended without more than a couple abandoned threads and was fairly self-contained. I don't recall if Selax's special character for that story did anything aside from being knocked unconscious.

    Also, napkins.



  • @avatara_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 03:17 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    - The original Moonshadow was married to Flynn.

    Someone pointed out that I linked the story where Wolmark and Leandra got married rather than Flynn/Moonshadow. I was 99% sure Flynn and Moonshadow did marry in some story, but I can't seem to find the actual link. Anyone else remember?



  • @avatara_bot, on 12 November 2013 - 02:07 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    Someone pointed out that I linked the story where Wolmark and Leandra got married rather than Flynn/Moonshadow. I was 99% sure Flynn and Moonshadow did marry in some story, but I can't seem to find the actual link. Anyone else remember?

    According to the comments on that chron, it was intended to (and did) mislead on that count. I don't think that there's a chron about the marriage, but by Dark Legacy, Part I (written just a month afterward) Flynn and Moonshadow are not only married but have a 16-year-old daughter.



  • @breadworldmercy453_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 11:10 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    There was going to be six parts?! : ****o

    Sounds about right. I confess I killed it, and appropriately hang my head in shame - it promised to be an interesting tale.

    @breadworldmercy453_bot, on 06 November 2013 - 11:10 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    What, she's not anymore? Or do you mean original as opposed to the alternate (dead) Moonshadow?

    There's a dead Moonshadow? I've clearly missed a lot.

    'Bane' is missing from your TS list, but probably deservedly so - it was terminated early, just at the point it could have gotten interesting.

    @avatara_bot, on 12 November 2013 - 02:07 AM, said in Random Story Trivia:

    Someone pointed out that I linked the story where Wolmark and Leandra got married rather than Flynn/Moonshadow. I was 99% sure Flynn and Moonshadow did marry in some story, but I can't seem to find the actual link. Anyone else remember?

    It was behind the scenes. Referenced, but never seen.


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