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 Completely Confused 
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Hatchling

Joined: Apr 16 2008, 6:34 pm
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Post Completely Confused
Requiem is, in my opinion, one of the most well-written webcomics out there, but I can't follow it anymore. A few months ago, I was interested enough to read the entire archives in a single sitting, and I checked everyday for updates (and was absolutely thrilled at the artist's reliability in updating). However, there are so many characters now, I can't keep track of who's who anymore. Even when I first started reading, I had to regularly check the cast page to refresh my memory. I don't check as often anymore because it's become difficult to follow, which only makes things worse when I do come back and find half a dozen new characters added or more characters brought back after having been gone for ages. I want to really like these characters and engage with them, but just as I'm warming up to one (which is easy to do considering the artist's writing ability), the scene changes, and suddenly I'm not sure if I'll ever see them again. Some of my favorite secondary characters like Leah and Price were killed off-panel, and when it happened, I could barely remember who they were anymore.

This post is rather long and condemnatory, and I wish it wasn't. It's not my intent to be hostile, but rather to express frustration at not being able to enjoy something anymore that I would really like to.


Apr 16 2008, 6:43 pm
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Wolf Spider

Joined: May 15 2007, 9:36 pm
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I have a suggestion: read it once a week, say on Friday or Saturday. You'll get the weeks story and you'll be able to check with the cast page as necessary.

Ken


Apr 16 2008, 6:53 pm
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Joined: Aug 15 2005, 3:12 pm
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Post Some thoughts (and a bit of rambling)....
I've been thinking a lot about this over the last few weeks....partly as a way to keep my mind off of other things that have been going on....but I have definitely been thinking about this.

One of the biggest problems that Requiem has is the fact that it is dealing with so many people in so many locations, and the fact that storylines in one out of the way section have effects on other distant sections of the story. In all honesty, I have to keep notes to keep track.

I hate it....it drives me absolutely batshit. Leaving some people behind, and picking up with some others is a mess. I know it is...and I have been trying to come up with some kind of solution.

One of the things that I have been thinking about is reorganizing the layout/archives of the story. I have been giving some serious consideration into breaking down the archives into individual storylines. Some people getting killed off camera, and people vanishing for a while and returning works in a full scale, text based book....but I still have trouble making it work within a webcomic format. And that's my fault as a writer, I'm just not good enough to make it work as often as it needs to.

If I could do anything I wanted within the format, with whatever resources I needed, there would be multiple comics in a day. Each one would cover the storyline of each active characters.

What also needs to be done is a revamp of the timeline as well. I just haven't figured out how to do it yet.

But an archive/cast page revamp is definitely going to happen...with each persons storyline link with cast picture and background, will be happening soon. I mentioned taking a week long break here soon, and I believe that that is going to be my project for then.

If anybody can think of any suggestions on how to take care of things, and how we can make things better....I would definitely be glad to hear it.

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Apr 16 2008, 9:18 pm
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Hatchling

Joined: Apr 16 2008, 6:34 pm
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kenm wrote:
I have a suggestion: read it once a week, say on Friday or Saturday. You'll get the weeks story and you'll be able to check with the cast page as necessary.


I don't think this would help much at all. As I mentioned, I already don't check as often as I used to (in fact, I'd estimate I check around once a week as you suggest), and it has actually made it much harder to follow since, when I come back, there are usually new characters, and my memory from the time I last checked is now hazier.

Maxim Kovalenko wrote:
If anybody can think of any suggestions on how to take care of things, and how we can make things better....I would definitely be glad to hear it.


Thanks very much for replying, Kovalenko; I appreciate it. Several suggestions spring to mind.

First of all, I think a few concurrent systems of organization would help a lot. One example I see used on the Goblins comic by Thunt is a link to the previous comic in the storyline whenever a new comic switches scenes. That could be extremely helpful for Requiem.

Organizing the archives and future comics into storylines would be a great idea. I endorse that.

Another I can think of that I believe would be somewhat time-consuming to set up but very rewarding would be to have each comic tagged with which characters are in it. Then clicking that tag would bring up a list of all the comics that character has appeared in. That way, a reader can quickly brush up on both the current storyline and the backgrounds of characters involved. This would be much more helpful than any cast page.

The last is simple and straightforward, but probably the least attractive. Put bluntly: use less characters. Honestly, I'm not the type of person to tell people how to write. I respect your abilities as a writer and wouldn't dare to presume I know how best to describe the very intriguing and dynamic world you've created. That being said, I strongly, strongly -believe- that culling the recurring cast list to a smaller number would both help the comic's pace and readability.

I'm sure it's difficult. Many of your secondary characters have more depth to them than the protagonists of most other comics. You really have a knack for creating engaging characters quickly and seemingly effortlessly. In fact, you're almost too good at it. It makes dropping or disposing of any character a sacrifice. I do believe, however, that doing so would greatly improve the comic overall.

I know all this is a lot of work, so I don't make any of these suggestions lightly. Thanks again for replying and keep up the good work.


Apr 16 2008, 11:10 pm
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If anybody can think of any suggestions on how to take care of things, and how we can make things better....I would definitely be glad to hear it.

Hinotori wrote:
Thanks very much for replying, Kovalenko; I appreciate it. Several suggestions spring to mind.
First of all, I think a few concurrent systems of organization would help a lot. One example I see used on the Goblins comic by Thunt is a link to the previous comic in the storyline whenever a new comic switches scenes. That could be extremely helpful for Requiem.


I heard about that recently...i discovered that somebody had managed to set up their entire comics archive that way...and I'm trying to figure out how to implement it into the current system.

Hinotori wrote:
Organizing the archives and future comics into storylines would be a great idea. I endorse that.

It'll all be organized from a master archive page for that, just for sake of convenience on my part...I'll then post a note as to what storyline it is a part of. The other thig I am going to figure out how to do is something the webcomic "Jack" has which is a master stroyline viewer which will show all the comics in a popup window that correspond to a particular storyline/thread.

Hinotori wrote:
Another I can think of that I believe would be somewhat time-consuming to set up but very rewarding would be to have each comic tagged with which characters are in it. Then clicking that tag would bring up a list of all the comics that character has appeared in. That way, a reader can quickly brush up on both the current storyline and the backgrounds of characters involved. This would be much more helpful than any cast page.


Working on that one right now...I'm putting together a comic search engine for the archives with some reader help. When we get a bunch of them in, it'll be a lot easier to segregate and tag things by character and storyline.


Hinotori wrote:
The last is simple and straightforward, but probably the least attractive. Put bluntly: use less characters. Honestly, I'm not the type of person to tell people how to write. I respect your abilities as a writer and wouldn't dare to presume I know how best to describe the very intriguing and dynamic world you've created. That being said, I strongly, strongly -believe- that culling the recurring cast list to a smaller number would both help the comic's pace and readability.

I'm sure it's difficult. Many of your secondary characters have more depth to them than the protagonists of most other comics. You really have a knack for creating engaging characters quickly and seemingly effortlessly. In fact, you're almost too good at it. It makes dropping or disposing of any character a sacrifice. I do believe, however, that doing so would greatly improve the comic overall.

I know all this is a lot of work, so I don't make any of these suggestions lightly. Thanks again for replying and keep up the good work.


Trust me that one hurts...;) but in my own defense I would like to say that we are going to be killing off some of the roster here very soon. Three at least ;)

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Apr 17 2008, 12:33 am
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