Officaly 2012 Story Arc Discussion.

So here is our new Story Arc. Now, now we will go into more detail and plan out what will happen step by step from begging to end.
Who will be the main character, dies, wins, looses, etc.

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At Redwall there is to be a great big feast, beasts come from all around for the feast. Skipper and his otters from Mossflower, Guosim come and Hare's from Salamandastron, lots of them including the badger lord. And even some otters from Green Isle. So they're all at Redwall having a party! News of this feast gets to a certain horde leader (as usual  ) He hears of all the beasts going to redwall so he decides not to besiedge it. Instead he takes Salamandastron, capture's it from the few hare's guarding it and has a fortress that as we all know is invincible. So then the hare's come back from feasting to find a mountain full of stinking varmits and seeing as it's invincible they can't just walk up and take it back. So then we have to assemble an elite force to go in and get the doors open to let us all in. And maybe they could take another place like, Castle Floret or Green Isle or something like that!

I'm not sure who will be the nominal 'main character', it seems to depend on the reader's perspective, as well as each of us writing. For instance, each of our posts will be from our character's point of view, which means the vermin characters would consider themselves the protagonists of their own life story.

As for who dies, I would suggest any deaths occur very late in the game, for those of us only writing one character. Personally, I think it would be more interesting to have characters survive the ordeal, rather than the losing side facing total obliteration. That way it's possible to develop characters further and show their emotional and mental reactions to victory or defeat.

This brings me to which side 'wins' and which side 'loses'. As far as I can see, the objectives are thus;

Woodlanders/Long Patrol: To retake Salamandastron and rout vermin forces from Mossflower.

Horde: Hold Salamandastron until Woodlander forces retreat.

The Woodlanders certainly have the harder task, and a prolonged siege can be very costly in lives and can be emotionally, mentally and physically draining.

Perhaps it would make the most narrative sense for the Woodlanders to eventually succeed, but at great cost. Perhaps the experience would bind the woodlander characters together very closely, but at the same time make them feel disconnected from ordinary life afterwards. I do not know what would become of Ulath, Viper or Arra, it seems we could die, or flee, and never be found again or be captured.

Personally, if the woodlanders were to win I would want Arra to be captured, as it would allow me to role-play with the woodlander characters, which may lead to some interesting scenes.

I am interested to know the thoughts of my vermin comrades as well as everyone else on this.  😉

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Some further thoughts I've had are; how will our characters act around each other and how might that develop?

For instance, on the vermin side, will Viper and Arra get along? Will Ulath start to like either of us? Or will we be rivals, or suspicious of each other? The same questions can be applied to the different Woodlander leaders, all who have beasts under their command that they need to organise and keep alive.

Will different command styles conflict? Will the Long Patrol characters assume seniority in the ranks by being a more organised military unit? Will they look down on Redwallers for being 'soft'? And what about the rank and file woodlanders? Do they all want to go to war? Are some just there because of pressure or fear of being accused of cowardice? Are some just there for hereditary reasons, (eg; Guosim shrews and otter crews tend to also be extended families. The Long Patrol is presumably also comprised of large hare families.) and are only fighting because they fear for their loved ones?

Similarly, is there dissention in the vermin ranks? Do the majority of vermin want to sit on Salamandastron and enjoy the spoils, or do they want to take a more aggressive stance? Did some of them join up just for food and safety in numbers? Were some of them forced? Did some of them join for the thrill of conquest, or the desire to wreak havoc on woodlanders?

Will there be deserters on both sides? If so, will they be caught? How would the horde treat their deserters compared to the woodlanders? Would both exact a death penalty?

Just some questions to think about. I personally plan to have a lot of the inner workings of the horde described in my posts, as Arra is something of a spy,  and likes to hear gossip, and what the general mood and morale of the horde is.

Now Foweller, that is a lot of questions! Now, while in role-play each character is much more balanced in importance, there will most likely be one "good" character who stands out as the protagonist. They would be the one who does the most to stop the baddies when all is said and done. They keep a certain focus in the story, so that stuff isn't just all over the place. Also, I believe that it is kosher to have the good side win, and that is usually the ending point of most story arcs.

However, some of the points you bring up are very interesting, and I believe it would be more interesting to have a less than traditional story. I don't really believe a main character is necessary, as I think all characters deserve to be developed equally. If we do have a main character, I think we should at least have a counterpart anti-hero on the evil side who get's equal recognition.

Personalty, I wouldn't like to have Viper's fate decided ahead of time. I would like to have her interactions with whichever good character/characters determine her outcome. I would like to give them the choice either of redeeming her, or killing her. She would of course, try to escape or take them down with her if the latter was chosen, but with her poor combat skill's the result would be inevitable. I think it would be interesting to have Viper captured/reclaimed (even if she were to become “good” again, the woodlanders would no doubt have trouble trusting her) as it would lead to interesting role play.

I think Viper would see both Ulath and Arra as means to a greater end. She would respect and serve Ulath faithfully, if only because he is stronger than her. I think Viper would recognize Arra as a fellow intellectual and respect him for that. She would probably treat him politely as to keep his favor. But, she would see him as a possible threat or obstacle, and would be devising plans against him in the case she needs to remove him. But, that is only my thoughts. We will of course have to discus this further, Dusk and Foweller.

Viper sees herself as far superior to any common horde-beast, and would never accept anything less than a leadership position, possible second in command. She prefers paws on leadership, but she is not above sending other “bosses” to do her dirty work. I think it would be interesting to perhaps have the goodbeasts see Viper from the distance, dark cloaked and unidentifiable. It would only be in the final battle that the “shadow beast” is found to be mousemaid. I also think it would be kind of interesting to have her spy on the good party as Iris, but I’m not sure at the moment. I see Viper as more of the weak, but intelligent advisor and companion of the main villain. She would be a genius in ways of war and other things, but would not be much a threat when it comes down to it. Viper wouldn’t pay as much attention to the hordebeasts as Arra, though she would keep her ears open. She would see her job as more of long term planning. She would not be content just to sit in Salamandastron, but would want to use their advantage to destroy everything the woodlanders hold dear.

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