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sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







im judge.

hellrules will be dispensed on request.

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ADBOT LOVES YOU

Obliterati
Nov 13, 2012

Pain is inevitable.
Suffering is optional.
Thunderdome is forever.


In

Mr. Steak
May 8, 2013

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS


ok sebmojo give me a hellrule

(regrets decision before even posting)

crimea
Nov 16, 2012






anatomi posted:

I'm the opposite of out!

Edit: curse me

Edit: also :toxx:









sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







onsetOutsider posted:

ok sebmojo give me a hellrule

(regrets decision before even posting)

use this image somehow



also: every character in your story meets with a terrible fate

The Saddest Rhino
Apr 29, 2009

I could hear the roots of loneliness creeping through me when the world was hushed at four o'clock in the morning




One sebmojo rule pls

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


ignore

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







The Saddest Rhino posted:

One sebmojo rule pls

no character in your story may touch a flat surface

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


sebmojo posted:

Hello my name is Sebmojo I promise hellrules but really they are weak baby rules because I am a weak baby kiwi plant.

apophenium
Apr 13, 2009


In

selaphiel
Jan 31, 2019

small goblin child

In.

crimea
Nov 16, 2012







flerp
Feb 25, 2014

I DON'T ALWAYS
HERDY DUR MUR FLERP FLERPITY
FLOOPIN
BUT WHEN I DO
I YER DER FLERPITY
THURN DER DERMIN
BORK! BORK! BORK!




yeah in

Thranguy
Apr 21, 2010

Yes, the good words are gone.

Why are the good words gone?!




in

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


flerp posted:

yeah in





QuoProQuid
Jan 12, 2012

Tr*ckin' and F*ckin' all the way to tha
T O P


put me in chief

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


QuoProQuid posted:

put me in chief

Captain_Person
Apr 7, 2013

WHAT CAN THE HARVEST HOPE FOR, IF NOT FOR THE CARE OF THE REAPER MAN?

I'm in

crimea
Nov 16, 2012



sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk








Each of your sentences must have exactly five words.

SlipUp
Sep 30, 2006


in

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017


Horse Facts

True and Interesting Facts about Horse




sebmojo posted:


"hellrules" will be dispensed on request, but they will be soft because I am a soft and fluffy baby.

In. Do your worst.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







sebmojo posted:

:siren:Surreptitious Blowout Fungal Butt Brawl:siren:



Fungi are very weird aren't they, yes they are don't answer me it was a rhetorical question.

Write me up to 10,000 words on three characters in a world where the fungi have won. It can be neither bleak, nor grim, nor depressing.

Sitting here will help judge bc she is more mushroom than woman, these days

28 Feb 2359 PST, toxx up

The combatants have agreed to move the deadline for this to 14 March, same time

Solitair
Feb 18, 2014

This statement is a lie!


I also wish to judge.

Anomalous Blowout
Feb 13, 2006

rock
ice
storm
abyss



It makes no attempt to sound human. It is atoms and stars.

*


I am so busy but this prompt is too good to not be in.

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017


Horse Facts

True and Interesting Facts about Horse




Because Sham Bam Bamina is a BAD, WRONG and LAZY brawl judge, here are crits for Curlingiron and Sebmojo.

Neko Kawaigari

I’m walking behind Jiro, watching him weave slightly through the street lights. He’s just finished drinking with coworkers, and is walking home. There are only a few people around, but I’m waiting until he’s alone - it’s much easier to fool one person at a time.

Eventually, the streets are empty, except for him and me. I pull my coat closer around me, and allow my footsteps to be heard.

“Ozaki-san!” I call to him, and run a few paces as he turns around, striving to keep my balance in my high heels. “It is you! What a coincidence!”

I know he doesn’t recognize me - I’ve made sure of it - but he’s too polite to say otherwise, and I’ve got his name right, after all. I put a flush on my cheeks to match his own, and smile a little wider, adding a tinge of real hurt into my expression. “Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten me? Igarashi Chiyoko? We had classes together in University!”

“Of course I remember!” he says, smiling back at me reassuringly, and I allow a little relief to show in my face. “How have you been?”

I lean towards him confidingly and say “Actually I’m glad I ran into you - I’ve been feeling like someone’s been following for a little while and it’s giving me the creeps. Do you mind if I walk with you?” My blouse is open a little at the top, and although he’s too polite to look directly, I know he’s noticed. I’ve gotten a pretty good sense of human men over the years, and I’ve known Jiro longer than anyone else.

I like this opening section. It sets the scene clearly and cleanly. I like the ambiguous creepiness - I can't tell which way this is going to go yet.

“Not at all,” he says. “What way do you live?”

“Not too far,” I say. “My place is in Ebisunocho. I promise that I won’t inconvenience you too much.”

We walk together for a while and make small talk. I can’t help but admire his profile; it’s changed so much over the years, and every time I come back to see him it seems like he’s become more himself.

I blow on my hands a bit as if to warm them, and then pull my jacket a little closer around me. “I can’t believe it’s gotten so cold already!” I say.

Jiro glances down at me in surprise. “I’m surprised you can even feel the cold in that coat,” he says. It’s sweet that he doesn’t make any further comment on the coat, since it’s not exactly inconspicuous - a cloud of white fur with calico patches around the collar, and very obviously quite old, both fashion-wise and in wear-and-tear.

I have watched enough yokai anime that the reference to a calico coat immediately makes me picture a mischievous cat / fox spirit.

I lift the hood and pull it up a little. “Oh, this? It’s been in my family forever, you know? I always remember my grandmother wearing it when I was a kid, and I couldn’t bear to part with it when she passed away.” I let that settle between us for a moment, and then continue. “Do you think I’m strange, to want to keep something so old around? I know it’s not the fashion these days, but wearing it makes me feel closer to her.”

“Not at all,” he says, and I see the serious boy that I used to know. “I think it’s important to honor the objects that remind us of the past. History is more than records, after all; sometimes it’s also the things that our ancestors chose to keep.”

I feel a real flush in my face, and it’s all I can do to stare at Jiro for a few seconds. He seems to misinterpret my silence, and begins an apology, but I cut him off.

“Sorry, I just… I felt for a moment like you were reading my mind.” I look down at my hands again and smile. It’s nice to hear Jiro really speak his mind, even if I did have to pave the way for him a bit. He was such a timid child, and had such a hard time talking to others, it makes my heart leap to hear him be so honest with a stranger.

I give myself a moment to recover and start again. “Did you ever have something like that? Something old that no one else saw value in but you?”

Jiro looks up at the sky for a moment, as if considering what he wants to say next. “I did, but you might think that I’m childish if I tell you what it is,” he says after a little while.

“Oh, come on!” I say, playfully slapping him on the arm. “What, are you worried that I’ll judge you?” I lean in towards him, letting my shoulder bump against his. “Just tell me! Please?”

This dialogue is sweet and engaging. You have transitioned from these to being strangers (one of them with possibly sinister intentions) to shoulder-bumping in a way that feels very natural. Well done.

“Well…” he says, adjusting his glasses, the way he used to as a child. “I had a toy… A carved figurine of a cat that had been in my family for a long time. I used to keep it on my windowsill, and tell it about my day. I even brought it to school one time to show the kids at school, but they made fun of me - I think when I said that I was going to bring my favorite thing to school they thought it would be something cool like a Gundam or a stag beetle, but instead it was this little wooden cat with the paint rubbed off its nose. It’s just as well, though, since if it had been something cool like that they probably would have just taken it from me.”

“Ah, little kids can be so mean,” I say, struggling to keep my voice even against the memories his words have brought up in me. “Do you still have it, then? The cat?”

“No,” he says, and I hear the regret in his voice. “It was gone when I came home one day from school. I asked my Mom, but she swore she didn’t take it. I always figured she or my Dad must have hidden it, maybe to try to get me to make more friends. And it worked, eventually, so I guess I can’t blame them too much. I just wish that they would admit it.”

“Hmm,” I say, and I can feel my pulse pick up a little in my chest. “Well, maybe they didn’t actually take it, did you ever consider that?”

“Then who did?” he says with a laugh. “Did it just get up and walk off on its own?”

“Well, didn’t you say it was pretty old? Maybe it became a tsukumogami.”

Jiro laughs. “What, it actually came to life? Like a yokai? Come on, I’m not a little kid. Anyway, there’s no way that it was that old.”

“Well, I bet that’s what happened,” I say with an air of confidence. I loop my arm through his as we walk down the street. “I bet that the cat loved you so much that it left so you could learn to make real friends, like you said. Maybe she even comes back every so often to check on you.” I lean my head against his arm and sigh. “Yep, that’s probably it.”

Nyaaaaawwww

I can feel Jiro stiffening in discomfort next to me, and I take a deep breath of his scent before I look back up at his face.

“Who-” he says, but I reach up and kiss his cheek before he can say anything else. His memories of the last twenty minutes come away with me, a tiny jewel under my tongue, and I slip away into the shadows of the cross streets.

After a few moments, Jiro shakes himself, and then looks around and keeps walking. I watch him go, rolling the jeweled memories of our time together between my fingers. I put it in my pocket, with all the others.

Someday I’ll come back to him and tell him who I am, or maybe I’ll show up again as a little wooden cat to sit on his child’s windowsill. Tonight, though, I have my memories - and his, too, come to think of it. That’s enough. After all, no one loves quite like a cat.

This is cute and smoothly executed. It's a sweet little interaction and it made me smile. The final line is a little bit smug - I'm debating whether you would have been better to just end with "that's enough."

It is also EXTREMELY anime. I believe the prompt called for a serious exploration of Japanese culture and no anime, and if I were judging I might have dinged you for prompt adherence both because the story doesn't explore any serious cultural themes and because I have seen this scene in every yokai anime ever.

Overall I'm going to say 7/10. Well written, cute and enjoyable.



The Power Stone of Awamani

The night his parents died, Isamu Shushin saw the Americans come to Tokashiki WHICH IS AN ISLAND IN OKINAWA WHICH IS PART OF JAPAN THIS STORY IS SET IN WWII NOT THE INDEPENDENT RYUKYU KINGDOM SHAM BAM BAMINA YOU PEDANTIC gently caress. They came on a single huge ship, a great grey whale of a ship, bristling with guns and slick-wet with ocean foam. The ship’s weapons tracked back and forth as it bellied through the waves towards the beach. The sea clawed at it as if to hold it back with impotent fingers of foam, but still it groaned forward.

When it came in close to the shore the first of its vast legs rose out of the ocean, water streaming from its pale human skin. Another leg followed, jutting from the wet gray steel of the ship and slamming its gnarled foot down on the smashed coral. Isamu couldn’t scream because there was something in his throat but he saw the American soldiers staring at him, shoulder to shoulder on the rocking deck of the ship, each face contorted in a bestial leer.

The third leg came out of the sea, streaming foamy water, and towered high, high above him -- so high it blotted out the sun -- then it crashed down on, and into, and through him, in a impact like a tsunami breaking and he woke up to his father’s hard hand on his shoulder.

I don't like the repetition of "ship" and "foam" in the first para because it sounds lazy but otherwise this is a good opening. It sets up our protag and his fears nicely.

“Isamu. The soldiers are here. We have to go.”

Isamu blinked up at his father in the dim candlelight, still enmeshed in the foam-wet fishnets of the dream. “The Americans, papa?”

His father’s hand tightened painfully upon his shoulder and Isamu gasped. Then he shook his head. “Get up now,” he said.

There was a crowd of people outside their little house standing bemused in the ghostlight of electric torches. The mayor was standing by a wall in the khaki jacket he had worn ever since he became one of the soldiers, with a khaki satchel over his shoulder. As Isamu, his mother and his father came out of their house he called out to the group. “We must march together.”

Isamu’s mother gripped his hand and she whispered in his ear, “Come now.” His father was ahead of them, shoulders square, as the group moved down the narrow divide between the houses. Isamu realised they wouldn’t walk past the power stone and he felt a surge of diappointment SPELLING in spite of himself. To lift it was to become a man, and he had tried so many times, cradling the heavy rock in his arms at different angles and with different grips, that he felt he could describe each of its edges and hollows from memory. The last time he’d tried was two days back; he was sure it had moved a fraction more than ever before and was eager to have another attempt.

This bit is weak. "Eager to have another attempt" is too light-hearted and boyish for the seriousness of the situation and for the metaphor that you use the stone for later. I think you should have given the first reference to the stone its own paragraph and put a bit more effort into foreshadowing the story's conclusion. Maybe have them actually walk past it, rather than not walking past it. Perhaps Isamu tries to run over and give lifting the stone another go, but his father stops him and puts him back into line, or something.

But now they were trotting single file down the path with the ditches on each side and the tempting grass that the braver boys sometimes caught poisonous snakes in, and were scrambling down the steep path to the beach. It seemed to be more than the whole village, hundreds of people, and Isamu wondered if there were farmers coming too.

In this para too I think the reference to boys catching snakes is too light-hearted. It sounds a bit like Isamu hasn't twigged that something bad is happening, but then his dream and his interactions with his parents imply that he should know that this is a bad night. The added detail about the poisonous snakes is good but I think you should have used it to up the tension - maybe Isamu could be worried about getting jostled off the path, or something.

Then they were on the beach. The sound of the surf breaking on the jagged coral out by the heads was familiar music in his ears and he smiled at the sound and looked up at his mother to see if she was smiling too. She was not, instead she was staring down at him intensely, as though forcing herself to memorise every single part of him, every hair on his head and curve of his face.

Soldiers were passing through the crowd now, passing out fist-sized lumps of metal to the men. Isamu saw the mayor give one to his father, pressing it into his hand. “Pull the pin,” he said, “and cry ‘ten thousand years’.” The mayor glanced at Isamu and his mother, then moved on with his heavy satchel.

A yell and a muffled explosion came from further down the beach, followed by another, and Isamu saw something the size of a forearm arcing through the air above them in the cold moonlight. He looked up at his mother and saw, for the first time, the black space behind her eyes and the tears she was holding back there. His father held the metal device down between them and called, in a voice sharper and harder than any Isamu had heard from him before, ‘ten thousand years!”. His finger was taut on the ring, and then the ring was out and the device dropped to the sand at their feet.

Isamu looked at it and the weight of it, lying in its hollow in the sand at their feet, seemed unbearable. He imagined reaching out and picking it up, how heavy it must be if not even his strong-handed father could hold onto it for long. He imagined crying 'praise to the Emperor!' and hurling himself down and taking it into himself, like a man. He heard a sound like an axe into a tree stump and turned to see his friend Hiroshi’s father stab Hiroshi in the throat with a scaling knife, blood black in the moonlight.

His mother pushed him hard in the chest and he fell backwards. She was yelling his name as he hit the sand hard enough to knock the air out of him and set his head spinning. The beach was loud with screams and explosions. Isamu looked up with blurry eyes and saw his mother and father crouching down just as the explosion took them apart. His ears were consumed by the sound, leaving only a ringing noise. He scrabbled back on his elbows, eyes fixed on where his parents had been. His mouth was open and heaving puffs of air were coming out of it, like he was trying to expel all the air he’d been breathing his entire life.

There were more explosions, and he saw a boy he didn’t recognise jab at a little girl with a spear. Beside the boy one of the fishermen was hitting his wife in the head with a stone, she shrieked with each blow. Isamu looked right and left. There were soldiers from the mainland standing around the group with rifles.

This is an incredibly harrowing scene - more so for knowing this story is based on a real event - and I think you've done a good job of describing how hosed up it is without going over the top.

Isamu had a sudden impulse to go back into the crowd, to do what was right, and stood on shaky legs. A few steps, and it would be done, and he could be with mama and papa. Then he looked again at the nearest soldier. He was standing, rifle in hands, and his face was twisted, bestial like the sailors on the ship of Isamu’s dream.

Nice payoff for the dream opening.

In a fractional instant the decision had been made, and Isamu was running away from the beach, feet scrabbling and slipping on the powdered coral sand, bleeding hands pulling at bushes heedless of snakes. The soldier behind him yelled, and fired, Isamu heard the bullet whine past him like an angry hornet and he was scrambling up the path back to the village. He was still gasping as he ran, tears and snot trickling down his face, but he kept running between the houses of the empty village, bloody bare feet pounding on the narrow road.

A part of his mind considered whether the mainland soldier would chase him, and decided no; not until the killing was done. Not killing: group self-determination another part of his mind corrected him in his father’s voice and he stumbled to his knees and vomited up the remnants of the rice ball he’d had that morning then collapsed, weeping.

The explosions had stopped when he sat up. He remembered walking on the clifftops on a blank and grey cloudy day, holding his mother’s hand, and he took the grey blanket of clouds from his memory and laid them on the memory of what he had just seen like a tatami mat, folding down the edges around it. He stood up, swaying. His mind was a flat pool of water, reflecting nothing at all. A direction presented itself to him and he took it, turning left at the next house. The occasional shot rang out from the beach, attenuated and strange over the distant roar of surf. He walked, stumbling every now and then, turning where necessary. Then he reached his destination, a patch of grass by a wall with a stone sticking out of it.

Isamu knelt down beside the stone, the strength stone, the power stone. It was the size of a man’s head and heavy. He ran his hand over its surface, then put his arms around it and squeezed. He was crying again, but that didn’t matter. He felt the hollows and edges of the stone under his fingertips, and pulled, with shaking arms. It didn’t budge. He moved his grip, pulled again.

His muscles were aching, burning, but he felt it move. As much as last time? He grunted, and shifted his legs, strained at its horrid, immovable bulk. It was quivering in his arms, or was that his weakness? He hated the stone, its solidity, its rigidity. He wanted it smashed, gone, destroyed, every blow knocking off a piece of what was until there was nothing left.

This is good but I wish you'd set up the stone better at the start instead of making it sound like a boy's game.

He strained again and a howl clawed its way out of his throat like a baby being born all covered in its mother's blood. The stone tilted, and lifted up about of the earth it was buried in and in a spasm of effort he rose, shaking to his feet with the horrible, impossible stone in his arms. He held it for a few seconds then let it drop and stood, panting.

In falling, the stone had ripped aside the cloak of grey and Isamu thought of the cave in the hills, and the hidden food his mother had been putting aside, thinking he didn't notice. The Americans would come, but who knew? Maybe they were no worse than the mainlanders. Maybe they were better.

He stood for another moment, and breathed in, and out. Then he shrugged and, with trembling legs and muscles afire, walked away from the deserted garden of Awanami.

This is a good, serious exploration of some pretty heavy themes. We've got the relationship between the residents of this tiny island and the Japanese army (still a fraught aspect of Japanese history), the question of whether the invading Americans are going to be any worse than what the people are already doing to themselves, a boy's struggle against tradition and a mother's desperate sacrifice to save her son.

Sham Bam Bamina, I am very glad you changed your judgement because the idea that you would give this the loss on the basis of a historically inaccurate and frankly ridiculous interpretation of the prompt is pathetic. Newbies take note: this kind of "gotcha" judging is bullshit.

Sebmojo, this is a good story but it smells like a last minute effort. There are bits of sloppiness that with a second pass I think you could have tightened up to make this a really compelling read.

Overall I'm giving you 7.5/10 and if I'd been judging I would have handed this the win on the grounds that I'll be thinking about this one for a long time, whereas Curlingiron's was just fun while it lasted.

crimea
Nov 16, 2012






Yoruichi posted:

In. Do your worst.



Anomalous Blowout posted:

I am so busy but this prompt is too good to not be in.



Solitair posted:

I also wish to judge.

The current prompt has 3 judges, unfortunately. Unless you meant judging a brawl which i'm not paying attention to.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







Yoruichi posted:

In. Do your worst.

Your characters are all buildings, from 3-9 stories high, each with a different disorder from DSM IV

kurona_bright
Mar 21, 2013


In for this one.

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


kurona_bright posted:

In for this one.

ThirdEmperor
Aug 7, 2013

BEHOLD MY GLORY

AND THEN

BRAWL ME


Yoruichi posted:

SHAM BAM BAMINA YOU PEDANTIC gently caress

:radcat:

NotGordian
Sep 19, 2018


In, sounds fun.

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


NotGordian posted:

In, sounds fun.

Salgal80
Jan 28, 2019


Hit me.

ThirdEmperor
Aug 7, 2013

BEHOLD MY GLORY

AND THEN

BRAWL ME


In. Do your worst.

crimea
Nov 16, 2012






ThirdEmperor posted:

In. Do your worst.

SlipUp
Sep 30, 2006


Crits part 1

Fear eat self

The descriptors here are vivid and dark, which gives the piece a fantastic tone but the sheer volume oversaturated the story, ruining the pacing and muddying the plot. Don't remove all of them, but definitely pare them down so the best ones have some breathing room.

As for plot, the world building is good. An interesting take on an aspect of vampire fiction often overlooked. There is a distinct lack of conflict, almost seems like a food blog post if it were formatted differently.

Love and sausages

Takes a little while to get going. I don’t think it’s a writing problem, I think it’s a plot construction problem. Start with a hook, then fall back into establishing the setting as a way to answer the questions raised. More than one way to skin a cat though, of course.

Characters are sympathetic and likeable. Some are underdeveloped. Eg Martha is okay dating john, the butcher's son, despite him doing that. He decides to try going vegetarian. Then she breaks up with him on his first slip? No words break up? Huh. I don’t doubt it could happen, I just need to know more.

The ending ties everything together nicely.


The Butcher is your Friend

Reads like slam poetry. Very cool descriptors. Good tension and pacing as well. The vagueness adds a nice air of mystery.

The tone shift near the end threw me off a little.

Here's a sample couple of lines I want to crit: “Your stomach was rumbling. The chamber you were huddled in quietly rattles as you thought and planned so desperately."

You mess up your tense. Some redundant words. (Thought and planned.) Minor proofing stuff.

A well deserved win. Mostly nitpicking.

Chicken

Funny story. Kels is a great character.

Some minor proofing errors.

“I ran the sink, hoisting myself up so I could catch my upper arm under the flow of cold water.”

Should be ‘and hoisted’ to maintain tense.

"I looked at despair at the packets of rice and the single tomato, still on the counter, the half-submerged chicken carcass, the pool of water on the floor, and the still-relevant lack of a table. And although the stream of cool water was helping, my skin was still burning.”

Should be ‘looked in despair'. Overuse of ‘still' to establish urgency.

Overall, not much to nitpick at. Plot and pace are on point. Hammer out the technical bits. Well deserved HM.

Norwegian Hot Sauce

I like this one, maybe not in spite of its weirdness, but because of it.

“Published on scandinavianchef.com”

This is great.

"Christ Rippers"

That name. It's totally jarring with the tone. Maybe something less colourful.

"Varmtfjellpeppers"

This is also great.

The orgy and the ejaculate definitely mess with the tone. I agree you needed a crazy secret ingredient but the mushrooms would do with more words, but they are quickly passed over.

The narrator doesn't really reveal too much about themselves until the end. More characterization might help sell the food blog and get the reader attached. What blogger doesn't like talking about themselves?

Saucy, you should get on discord.

I'll finish out crits for the rest of the week at a later date.

Applewhite
Aug 16, 2014

IN THE GRIM BARKNESS
OF THE FUTURE
THERE ARE ONLY DOGS



Nap Ghost

A cursed week to be in

crimea
Nov 16, 2012


Applewhite posted:

A cursed week to be in

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Fleta Mcgurn
Oct 5, 2003

Porpoise noise continues.


Hi :downs: in!

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