This is just a post on my process. If you want to read the actual fan-fiction, please go to: https://oss.adm.ntu.edu.sg/a160106/fan-fic-adventurers/
I decided to use Jerome’s world for my story. I made a list of what this world is about to expand on it in my story. But in summary, it is a world where:
- Knowledge is literally power
- If one works hard and gets into University, one can study and learn ‘powers’ like telekinesis and the ability to control elements (eg control fire)
- Powers have different ‘tiers’, such as telekinesis being an upper class ability
- There are still people who do not have powers, known as “Norms”
I thought it would be interesting to make this world a little bit more fantasy and expand on the fantasy aspect of this world. I also wanted to create more depth in the world – the concept of having monsters and an ongoing war. The separation of abilities into “lower class” and “upper class” gave me the idea of having different tier abilities, which reminded me of games, mostly MMORPGs and RPGs which often use a similar kind of tier system for skills and classes. So I decided to look at them and they are where I drew inspiration for this fan-fiction and have classes be the university’s “majors”. It helps that I played such games too and want to become a game developer myself.
So I added a few things into this world:
- Half of the world is infested with monsters
- Those with powers are the only ones that can fight monsters
- There are 3 tiers of abilities and the university will only train those who are powerful enough to learn higher tier abilities
Having sat in Ruyi’s 4D lessons for the first two weeks, I learned a bit about developing characters so I decided to try and apply what I had learned.
- Zack (Main Character)
- Dan (Main Character’s best friend)
My goal was to portray Dan as a character who grows in power, but begins to lose his morals along the way:
- Grows distant from people
- Prefers to study alone
I did some research on two things. The first was that I wanted to look at what kind of abilities the people in this world can learn. What kind of cool powers should I give them? Aside from looking at superhero films like X-men, I also looked at games for this since it is something close to my heart.
I had not played Ragnarok before, but I had heard praises about it. At the same time I wanted to know what made it good for its time. I did a bit of reading and it seems that people mention that the game has very unique skills for each of the classes, which I felt could give me ideas on what kind of ‘powers’ the characters in this world will have.
I also took a look at this list, which lists down the members of X-men and what powers they have to draw some inspiration for my story: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_X-Men_members
As for realism, I learned in class that it helps to do some research about the topic to help make your story more believable. I wasn’t sure how realistic superpowers could get, but here is an article that I had read, titled “7 Awesome super powers ruined by science”.
I actually read it for fun initially because I thought the title was interesting, but aside from its comedic content, it may help me slightly in crafting my story. As the article’s title implies, it is about whether super powers could be a reality. Is it something real and scientifically possible, or would the laws of physics simply disallow it? For example, super speed may not be possible in our world due to inertia squishing your internal organs from the G-forces that act on your body. But of course, for the sake of the story, it would not have to dive into such scientific details.
Processes / Developments
WARNING: This part below contains SPOILERS and may ruin the experience of reading the fan-fic if you have not read it yet. It is advised to read the fan-fiction first if you have not before proceeding!!!
I think I spent a lot of time on the introduction chapter compared to the rest. At first I wrote that the parents of the main character were both normal farmers who both supported the main character to become an adventure. But I later went back to tweak it after having an idea that the father should be a very powerful adventurer, and have conflicted thoughts about whether his son should be one and therefore create a bit of conflict between the characters. To add on to that tension, I wrote it such that the father never saw his son often, which creates a new dynamic in the relationship between the two characters. I think it was a good change because otherwise it honestly would have been quite boring without any kind of dramatic tension between the characters and become rather flat.
I personally liked the idea of there existing a “godly tier” of powers (the fourth tier), which are much more secret and mysterious than the default three tiers of powers explained in the first chapter of the story. I think it also ties in well with the world revolving powers and there being lower class and upper class abilities, which is why I decided to incorporate this as part of story.
I also changed the order of a point in the story in the last minute. Rather than having Dan learn about the fourth tier abilities AFTER being confronted by the main character, Zack, I changed it that Dan would learn teleportation and telepathy earlier, and have him use teleportation on Zack to introduce the existence of fourth tier abilities to the story to let the audience believe it is not just a ‘legend’, as well as showcase its power. I think it also had the cool effect where if you re-read the part where Zack was thinking about his father, and Dan immediately talks about this, it slightly changes how the story is read when you now realise that Dan was able to read Zack’s mind all along, and that part make more sense when you realise it.
Despite all that, there are still plenty of improvements I can still make. Some improvements I think I could have made was to develop the friendship between the two main characters (Zack and Dan) more, and develop their relationship more like showing how they spend the three years together, so at least there is a reason to believe in their friendship and see how strong it actually built up because I wanted to portray them as best friends. I also wanted to show Dan as someone who would gradually ‘trail’ toward the dark side by doing some things immoral along the way, but did not manage to convey this in the story effectively. I wanted to write another chapter for this fan-fiction, but I want to go for quality, plus I ran out of time. Even if I DID have the time, I would rather use the time to refine what I have, rather than add on a new chapter.