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133919 No. 133919 ID: 3994a2

I figured it's time to make a catch-all disthread for my quests.

Old disthreads:
Dead Dust >>123379
Arzfayz >>127736
Expand all images
No. 133920 ID: 3994a2

So I've kinda not been around for a while, and the major reason for that is that I've been very busy with school. That's starting to taper off a bit now, so I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things soon.

However it was honestly nice to have a break from questing. The most difficult thing about running quests, for me, is the emotional aspect of it -- I end up getting very invested in working on quests, which gets emotionally exhausting after a while. Going a couple months without updating has left me feeling pretty refreshed, so I think I might start taking breaks whenever I feel that exhaustion begin to set in. Hopefully it won't always be for months at a time, though.

To clear up any confusion (since there was some in the DD disthread), here's the current status of each of my quests:

>Dead Dust
Still ongoing

Dead, possibly rebooted someday -- I've envisioned Arzfayz as being part of a greater universe that multiple quests would take place in, but the worldbuilding I've done has diverged too much from what's established in the quest, so I'd like to give it a do-over at some point. I might do a short wrap-up comic to tie up loose ends at some point, but no promises there.

On hiatus until after Chapter -1 of DD is complete.

Dead -- It was a bit of an experimental quest, and I quickly realized that the whole operant conditioning mechanic was going to become a real pain to manage.

>Null and Void
Still ongoing

Also, I'll be starting a new quest soon. (Apologies to anybody who might groan at this announcement, but I really want to do it.)
No. 133923 ID: cdabe3

No. 133924 ID: e7c7d3

Aw dang, I knew you were busy, but didn't know you were feeling burnt out. Thankfully questing isn't really a professional past-time, so taking some month-long breaks is A-OK!

But new quest, you say? Curious what pops up.
No. 133927 ID: 864e49

Rip Fayz (for now) never even got the D.
But seriously I really do hope you'll do more quests in this setting. I can't begin to tell you how much I fucking love the settings for DD, Arzfays and N&V.
No. 133928 ID: 8fab7a

Happy to hear from you Teegee, and if a break is the solution to you starting to feel weary by all means take one whenever.
No. 133929 ID: 4854ef

Glad to see you are alright.
No. 133934 ID: 3994a2

>But seriously I really do hope you'll do more quests in this setting.
I’d like to, I have something like 5 quest concepts that take place in that universe. I’m very flattered you like those settings so much!
No. 133944 ID: 8fab7a

You do have a certain gift for generating them.
No. 133955 ID: 15a025

All I wanna say is that's a great titlecard for the disthread.
No. 133971 ID: 3994a2


On a semi-related note, I've been steadily (if a bit slowly) working on the next DD update, so that should be up within the next several days, unless things become suddenly busy again with my schoolwork.
No. 134015 ID: eb1fcc

sad to hear you scrapped arzfayz, I liked where the setting was going
No. 134020 ID: 3994a2

As far as the setting goes, it'll return for sure. And like I said, Arzfayz will probably get a reboot eventually.
No. 134021 ID: 3994a2

This is a disclaimer for my new quest, Folly of the Temptress. I'm posting this because, considering the planned content of the quest, I'd like to get out ahead of any friction that could result from it.

This quest is going to become very lewd and at least somewhat weird. Fetishy content is likely.

Content warning (spoiled for those who would prefer a surprise): bdsm, noncon/dubcon, esoteric fetishism, clothing damage/embarrassed nudity, and what I think is best described as "erotic, cartoonish villainry".

Please keep in mind that this quest is purely a work of fantasy, and as such some topics may receive a more light-hearted approach than they would deserve in reality. The appearance of a particular situation or event in the quest is not an endorsement of it in real life; and similarly, suggestions for a given action should not be taken as endorsements of that action in real life.

I apologize to anyone who finds this sort of disclaimer tedious, but given the controversy that occurred over some events in Dead Dust, I felt it was best to state all of this at the outset.

If you have any questions about anything stated above, feel free to ask.
No. 134022 ID: d909cb

Well, I guess I'm spamming this thread with my thoughts on DD updates now.

>He gave me a weird look.
I dunno. It looked pretty normal to me. A normal look when you notice someone having sex.

A whirring sound would usually be from something spinning or just a fast repetitive sound. The last time we heard a whirr was from a scanner, so that's alarming haha. Hmm. Or maybe the llama guy was just drilling a hole in Siobhan's bathroom.

Sibohan doesn't give us any clues about what it could be. So what we can assume is that, considering Siobhan doesn't know what the sound was, it's likely that she never heard such a sound coming from that apartment before. So if it happened just now for the first time, right after the neighbor saw Siobhan, there's a chance that it wasn't a coincidence. That is, something happened because Siobhan was seen.

The question that I have is, was this sound produced intentionally or not. Would it had been intentional knowing that Siobhan is still there? Probably not. So I think that whoever produced the sound hopes that Siobhan either won't hear it, or she would ignore it. It's possible they know that Siobhan sleeps late in the mornings and would be relying on her to continue doing that.

But yeah, because there's a good possibility that it wasn't a coincidence, it would be a good idea to check it out.
No. 134054 ID: d909cb

>"I'll have it tonight", "I'll get it tonight"
If Preston was after the samples, he would be using "them" instead of "it", so it can't be that he's after the samples. What could he be after then? Siobhan's body? That also seems unlikely for multiple reasons.

>it sounds like it's coming from the ceiling
Strange. How could a sound move from a wall in his apartment to a place above yours? It would require that the construction of the place left empty space between walls and floors (which btw isn't very common outside the US :p ), and whatever was producing that sound utilized that space. Still, for such a thing to occur without warning... would that even be legal? Wouldn't any sort of work in that place require the approval of the building / shelf management? But if he got such an approval, then Siobhan would likely have gotten a notice that such work would take place.

>stay put, I'll come getcha
Despite the seemingly alarming situation, we know for a fact that Siobhan isn't in any danger here. That's because when Penny meets Preston again later (>>/questarch/906670), the guy is mostly uninterested in her. He was interested in Moira, however, so perhaps it's something related to that, maybe even Mike. However, to be trying to do anything funny right here, right now, it doesn't make much sense. Surely he knows that Siobhan is there, and if she's there, that she would tell Mike about the noise. No one would be that stupid, would they? Unless they thought that Siobhan would not be here (which seems impossible because Siobhan said that she would normally still be sleeping), or they thought that she wouldn't hear the sound (which also doesn't make sense, because she said the sound was loud). But yeah, if he was after Mike, there would've been better opportunities for this. Preston was here for a few weeks, so he was spying, he would know when both Siobhan and Mike aren't at home.

Anyway, no matter what we do here, it won't result in anything noteworthy happening between Siobhan and Preston, because then it wouldn't tie well with how Preston acts later - where he hardly recognizes Siobhan at all.

>There's something he isn't telling me.
He doesn't want to tell Siobhan about the new security system that he's installing today. Lots of guys working on all sides of the apartment and all. It was going to be a surprise so that she could sleep better at night~
Or maybe he decided it was a good time to take her on a honeymoon. Who knows!
No. 134061 ID: bded1a

It's great seeing you make a return, teegs. And as previously said, that title card is excellent!

I hope this isn't 'too putting on the spot', but I'm curious what projected lengths you have in mind for your current quests. While Quests are akin to Webcomics in that they run for very extended periods of time, you've got a lot on your plate - and I find it difficult to imagine that all of them are as in-depth and lengthy as Dead Dust, (or the Arzfayz-verse, once that eventually gets the reboot). Would it be fine if you gave us your thoughts on what the relative ratios of story length you imagined for your quests are? I'd ask for time estimates but life is busy, and there's no real guarantees on things getting done when you want them to.
No. 134087 ID: 3994a2

>I hope this isn't 'too putting on the spot', but I'm curious what projected lengths you have in mind for your current quests.
Hmm, let's see:

>Dead Dust
Hard to say anything more definite than "long"
3 threads, maybe 4 tops
>Null and Void
It's a bit open ended so I'm not completely sure, but most likely shorter than Dead Dust
>Folly of the Temptress
Probably about the same as Null and Void
>eventual Arzfayz reboot
This could change, but right now I think I'd probably shoot for about 5 threads.
No. 134092 ID: ffdc3c

Good to see you back! Really enjoying the updates lately!
No. 134093 ID: 3994a2

Thanks, glad to hear it!
No. 134097 ID: bded1a

Thanks for the detailed answer - I'm actually a bit surprised by some of these. I was expecting Flora to be longer, but 3 threads is quite interesting. Still, either way, it's good that you've got this all planned out. Best of luck to you - I'll certainly be watching and seeing things play out.
No. 134383 ID: 92e667

wtf, Siobhan is wearing clothes? teegee pulls a fast one on us again -_-

>It usually doesn't kill
Hmm, could these types of weapons be what Vespers were using as well? I'm not sure, since the one Siobhan uses looks more sophisticated with a holo cross sight and all. The canisters do look similar tho.

>I don't think I could forget it
Alas, even if told Penny about it, she already knows Mike's h-mail from all the ads that she's seen.

>more like a zipper, or a cord running through something? Could be anything, though.
It would seem that it was a door hacking job.

>I'm sure the only reason he was cagey last night was because of that client he doesn't wanna talk about.
I mean, Mike did say it was because of a client.

>I'm gonna trust Mike on this one.
So whenever Mike tells Siobhan that she should "stay put", he wants her to find the nearest closet and hide there. Hmm. I too like to keep my toys in the closets but this is ridiculous :p

>I sit there in the dark
Hello darkness my old friend...

>whoever it is, they're trying to be quiet.
Well, that changes things. If someone did enter here, then it can't be Preston. And if it's not Preston, it means Siobhan is in danger~

>Yeah, if he booked it over here and left the hop by the walkway.
He would be even faster if he took the window shortcut.

>so he'd have a pretense to get me into a horndog body
If Mike was so desperate, was there any need to put someone in that body in the first place?

>I'm more invested.
Stonks. Sadly, the market for MIKE is going to come crashing soon.

>but they're too quick for me to make anything out

>contemplating my next move
Shouldn't she be using the command station room that's hidden in the closet behind her then?

>but I hesitate for too long
My plans and expectations, subverted yet again hehe.

>they must have walked into the kitchen
Does this mean they only checked the kitchen? Checking the kitchen and not the bedroom, it doesn't make much sense.

>pair of long, slender tails
But they're not vertical!

>an odd holo-tat
First the foxes, then the owl, followed by Mint and ch1 ending. And now here. What do these vertical eyes represent? Is this person an agent of sorts? Or a talent holder?

>2 vertical eyes? goddamnit
Oh good, Mike knows about these eyes. Wait, Mike knows about these eyes... *squint*

>fucking assholes went too far this time
Why does Mike know these people. Does this also mean that he knows Preston? I mean, maybe he didn't lie about only passing him in the hall once, but it's possible that Mike knows a lot more about Preston than he lets on.

Anyway, if Mike knows about these people, it makes me wonder if Mike himself is special in any way. Could he be one of the hands that pull? Or even a talent holder himself...

>they wont hurt u
That's... what was the point of this whole ordeal then lol
Wait, I know. They just really wanted to use the coffee machine in the kitchen! Makes sense.

The way he writes these messages is consistent, so I don't think his communication could be tampered with. Besides, Siobhan would probably notice if his writing was off.
No. 134384 ID: e51896

>wtf, Siobhan is wearing clothes? teegee pulls a fast one on us again -_-

I wonder how she ends up in a Delaney outfit with no undergarments later... is she wearing undergarments right now?
No. 134479 ID: f8fa51

Some people are talking about the glyphs having weird effects on people. It has been explicitly stated that they exploit a vulnerability that only exists in people who've suffered taffa syndrome, and no such glyphs can be produced to affect most people.
No. 134527 ID: 1a4760

>The figure doesn't give any visible reaction
Perhaps this is because they already expected as much. If they were expecting Penny, it implies they knew... that she was hiding there, in the closet with her gun. So it's likely that those eyes were some sort of a detection tool. If true, it would be quite surprising. And useful.

It also makes me wonder how these eyes, which are some sort of a hologram and/or a dust mod, are related to the natural vertical eyes of the animals that we've seen.

This info may come in handy in the future if Penny's in a situation where she wouldn't want her voice to be recognized. Which is funny because she already revealed her voice in the global chat room. Well, it's highly questionable whether she'd be able to use such a mod in that virtual place anyway, besides, the main problem was in revealing her location, not the sound of her voice.

>a client's representative
While Mike may have plenty of different clients, due to the current circumstances, I think it's highly likely that the client in question is the one that provided Penny's current body. Sending a representative like this over, it also seems this client is quite a big shot.

Still, this is good. It confirms that Siobhan's not in any danger. I mean, if the client wanted to get rid of Siobhan, they could've easily done it already. So clearly there's some other agenda that they have.

Such a lean body... and those clothes! Based on the amount of exposed skin, the set must have a pretty good defense rating.

>And one of yours.
A client of Mike's and of Siobhan's? We know that Mike hired Siobhan to do that one job for this client, but that should, in theory, only make them Mike's client. There's plenty of ways this could be explained tho. Here's a few that I see:
- The client believes that, because Siobhan did that mission, they are Siobhan's client now. Perhaps, for a while, Mike was trying to hide the fact that he hired Siobhan for the job.
- The client believes that, because Siobhan is in this body, that it makes them her client. A pretty special body heh.
- The client contacted Siobhan for other jobs in the past, but Siobhan no longer remembers those. Maybe Siobhan was a big shot as well, before she forgot stuff.

In either case, they seem to think of Mike as an unnecessary middleman.

>"I came to deliver something."
Well, that explains why they went to the kitchen and not to the bedroom. To drop off whatever they brought.
What's important to note here is that, we can now extrapolate a lot more from Mike's previous reaction, where he said that they went too far. Mike already implied that he knows who this person is, but if this person brought something, it implies that Mike also knew this could happen. And that this is something he strongly disagrees with. Why would Mike disagree with the client bringing something here? It's pretty obvious that it's because of Siobhan. The only reason the client would want to bring something here specifically is because Siobhan is here. Which also means that this item is probably something meant for Siobhan.
Anyway, in the past, Siobhan said that Mike took client confidentiality very seriously. But this goes beyond client confidentiality. By not wanting them to come here, it means Mike's been trying to prevent any contact between them and Siobhan whatsoever. Why would he wish to do that? Probably to protect Siobhan. So the confidentiality thing is just an excuse to keep her from danger. Which isn't all that strange, but if Mike said that Siobhan isn't gonna get hurt, why would he consider this contact so dangerous? It's not like Siobhan's gonna end up in some taffa den without her memories the next day or something :smirk:

What sort of thing could this gift be? A certain candy? Raw taffa? A vial with faded label? Something tells me that it's related to Penny's supernatural powers.

>Mr. Delaney left us with little choice
I think this relates to the previous night, where Mike said that the client was (>>/quest/964751) "Askin' for too much". So it's likely that the client wanted Mike to deliver this thing to Siobhan, and Mike turned them down. So here they are.
Clearly they disagreed about what's best for Siobhan hehe.

>Actually, I was just leaving
It's a bit strange that they would bring a thing for Siobhan but not say what it is. Considering the disagreement they had with Mike, what makes them think that Mike isn't simply going to take it and throw it into the trash? How can they be certain that Mike would explain everything to Siobhan instead of keeping her in the dark?
No. 134668 ID: 5ec3f5

>I wasn't fucking bluffing.
To shoot a person just to prove that you're not bluffing, how cruel! I mean, Siobhan was told to try and keep this person there but, to shoot them for it... it takes quite a trigger-happy person haha.

I was expecting Siobhan to be a lot more indecisive on the choice considering there was no suggester consensus.

>the intruder throws a handful of powder into the air
Pocket sand! Hmm, the distortion wave doesn't seem to travel very fast if a person is able to react to it to this degree.

>they must have jumped!
It doesn't matter what they did. What matters is that shooting was a wrong decision since it didn't accomplish anything.

>ready to fire some chasing shots at them...
Trigger-happy indeed. Remember, the point of shooting them was to disable them so they couldn't leave, not to fend them off. So what would be the point of such chasing shots after they left?

>but I don't see them anywhere
Nothing to see here except some inconspicuous owls.

>Just what did they "deliver" to the apartment, against Mike's wishes?
One way to find out!
No. 134790 ID: e7c7d3

Maybe this has already been discussed and I'm just a bit slow. I just noticed something... No one in the current chapter of dead dust have the wiggles. I mean, maybe TG is just lightening his workload, but I'm wondering if it's related to it being a memory? Or maybe Siobhan can't see the wiggles cause she's not yet the blade?
No. 134791 ID: e51896

I think it was part of Penny's ability of being a blade user, I think she is seeing people's rhythm or something, kind of like how Mint felt fuzziness around her.
No. 134794 ID: dcf013

> >>134790 >Maybe this has already been discusse
There was some discussion of it here: >>132650
No. 134890 ID: 3994a2

>maybe TG is just lightening his workload
While the lightened workload has been welcome, I think it's safe for me to confirm that it isn't just for the sake of making things easier for myself.

Also, I'm going to try to get back into the swing of things and start updating again. I had life happen to me for a bit there (namely moving and looking for work), but now things are settling down a bit and I don't feel so averse to using my free time for productive things. (We'll see what happens once I land a job, though.)
No. 134935 ID: 9a2966

Best of luck with the jobhuntening, teegee.

I forget, do you have a Patreon or Ko-Fi account or something? Might want to toss a dollar or ten your way.
No. 135228 ID: 3994a2

Thanks! (Sorry for being literally a month late to reply to this, things got busy again lol whoops, turns out interviews are a lot of work)

Now that that's all done with and I've got a job, my schedule is a lot more regular and predictable, so with any luck that'll translate to posting updates more regularly again.

>Patreon or Ko-fi
I don't at the moment, but I might open something like that up eventually. Even if I don't do it, I really appreciate the thought regardless, so thank you.
No. 135230 ID: 9a2966

Gladdening news on both the successful jobhunt and the (hopefully) more regular updates.

>No plans for Patreon or Ko-Fi atm
Keep us informed! I'd be happy to toss you some tokens of appreciation for all your fine work thus far.

(And, as an aside, nothing you set up has to offer commissions, special party favors or anything like that. The main benefit of supporting you is already you having put your interactive stories up here for us to play with.)
No. 135261 ID: 7bd48e

>"Those Orchid fuckers wanted us to zap the samples into our dust. To hide 'em inside us until they give the all-clear signal. So fine, they fuckin' win. I'm ready for this shit to be over."

So maybe Mint was probably the one who gave the all clear symbol then. But then there would still be the question on why her reaction was apologizing and crying as Penny was falling unconscious. Maybe she was tricked in some way?
No. 135263 ID: 9a2966

The Orchids definitely delivered a signal through Mint - triggering some sort of command or killswitch. I'm not sure that was an 'all-clear' signal, though, since the situation doesn't seem very 'clear' by anyone's definition.

It could be a failsafe thing, something intended to make Penny go buh-bye as if she'd ingested raw taffa and / or restoring her old sense of self as Ciobhan (hence the flashback chapter) or just a handy way to extract the dust samples Ciobhan's body got loaded up with (at least judging by the way things are going).
No. 135416 ID: 3994a2

It should be pretty clear by now that I haven't had much success reconciling my work schedule with my quests. I've decided that something's got to give if I'm ever going to get back to questing regularly, because my work schedule isn't likely to change at all, so I'm going to be taking steps to try to reduce the art burden per update.

This means a number of things: less detail in panels overall, fewer full-color panels, and possibly fewer panels in general too. (That last point is maybe a little iffy, because of how closely tied it is to my quests' writing.)

My first thought was to ask for opinions on this first and base my decision on how people respond to it, but I realized that making this decision is probably the only way I'm going to manage to get back to a reasonable pace, and I'd imagine that virtually everybody reading my quests would gladly trade art quality for update frequency.

So, that's where I plan on taking things, starting with the next Dead Dust update, which I'll be posting shortly. Just wanted to give everyone the heads up, since the difference in the art is probably going to be pretty noticeable.
No. 135417 ID: 3994a2

Also, there may be a bit less consistency in art quality over the coming updates, as I adjust and settle on a quicker workflow.
No. 135418 ID: 30b9f6

>would gladly trade art quality for update frequency
Aye, indeed.

Good art quality is super appreciated, but a decent update frequency is 'needed' - at least if a Quest is to progress at a good clip, i.e. the 'I can finish this in my lifetime / next decade / year without killing myself with overwork or sacrificing all of my free time' rate. (scale pending ambition of quest)

Honestly glad you're stepping up to decide on this change yourself. As much as I love the care that goes into your quests, the quest format - and audience - is incredibly forgiving of draw-easing stylistic choices, art errors, scale weirdness and other things that normally makes artists die on the inside to actually throw out in front of an audience without polish.

Basically: it's a feature, not a bug. Just as long as the POINT of the image comes across, sets the scene, mood, gives the clues needed, whatever, you're typically golden. More of a quality of presentation and pacing, than a quality of artistry, I guess.
No. 135419 ID: b1b4f3

Faster is almost always better no matter how much sacrifice must be made on quality.
No. 135421 ID: bb78f2

i love flat monochrome as a style, personally
No. 135439 ID: 4e124a

I personally prefer a good schedule rather than a perfect art. Is not only to not lose the thread of what is going on, it makes sour to know an artist has overextended and burned itself to make something better. It's a lot funnier when the artist is having fun too. But I understand that is hard to simplify the quality.

One thing I have seen a lot is having two styles, the filler and the highlight. The filler is used for most of the drawings. The highlight for those scenes you feel the detail is important (there is a plot related secret, you are presenting a character, you like a lot the scene and want to make it more detailed, ...).

Also the monochrome is nice.
No. 135440 ID: ae4405

> But I understand that is hard to simplify the quality.
In my case the difficulty I’ve had mostly has to do with my own tendency towards perfectionism. It’s very easy for me to project that onto the audience, too, so if I’m not careful I can end up feeling undue pressure to produce high-quality art that takes me a lot of time to make. To that end it’s been very helpful to see people agree that they’d rather get more frequent updates, so I really appreciate all the feedback.

>two styles, etc.
Yeah, I think something like that is what I should shoot for. It’d probably have the side benefit of making the set piece stuff stand out more, too.
No. 135461 ID: 26235b

>Don't be silly. It's a fucking bird.
Birds sure are common on these shelves, aren't they?
...TF implications aside, if everyone knows they're human, then I suppose it's possible that everyone has a belief that animals are just harmless animals, no matter how unnatural they look. So if transforming into animals was possible, it would perhaps be a perfect camouflage.

>Kinda reminds me of the shit zombies cough up after drinking taffa... except this stuff's grey. Dunno what the hell it is.
I know what it is. It's real dust. Yeah!
Or hyperdimensional particle binder.

>Wait. Is... is this..?
Could it be?
The evidence of Mike flirting with Moira?
The proof that Sieve is flat?
The validation that the window licker is into electronic music?

>Mother. Fucker.
Yep, this case and these vials definitely look like the ones Penny finds at the Laughing Dolphin. Except these are full. Siobhan's anger is justified considering that this case is what got her in trouble in the first place and if it's in front of her again, it means that the past year she spent laying low was for naught. It also raises a lot of questions.

>"Don't wanna make ya late. We can talk about last night on the way," he shouts.
It's interesting that he shouts. As if he knows that he was being watched.

Black lipstick huh? Siobhan didn't strike me as an emo goth the night before.

>Where should I start?
I wrote most of the pressing questions in my suggestion, but I gotta mention that I like Mike's expression here because it portrays really well how he's aware of the fact he fucked up. It even makes me feel sorry for him since it wasn't his fault.

>That holotat is like... their calling card. They all got one.
He says the holotat is their calling card, but I wonder if that's all it really is.

>"So those really are the samples I took."
>"Sure as hell looks like it."
In the end, Siobhan rickrolled herself.

>...they're part of Orchid
The Orchid...
We have seen one of their ads at >>/questarch/900075, which gives us some clues as to who they are. Assuming that anyone can join them, they probably aren't a part of the Chaser Fleet, but considering how rich they are, they're probably connected. The fact that they were in possession of Siobhan's current body, which seems to be quite rare, also adds to this theory. Who knows, maybe Orchid's cult is just a front for an illegal body trading business.

>That was yer fifty-fifty split.
So, what did Siobhan do with her 25k? :smirk:

>"Gonna need you to use it on me."
>"...What the hell, Mike."
That's what she said!

>Those Orchid fuckers wanted us to zap the samples into our dust. To hide 'em inside us until they give the all-clear signal.
Waiting until they give the all-clear signal. Pff, yeah, Siobhan heard that one before. A year before. It's most likely a lie and the real reason for this directive is probably something else.

>That's fucking insane, the samples haven't been sequenced.
I was under the impression that dust in this universe was a 3D non-linear structure. To be able to sequence that is a very interesting concept.

Anyway, the suggesters here are presented with a pretty difficult choice - to follow Mike's command or not. But there's not enough information on the possible alternatives, so it was definitely a good idea to clear up any questions the suggesters could come up with before deciding the action.

>exposing his neck to me
Why does it have to be on the neck tho? Why not up his butt?

>listening for any signs that someone else might be here... but there's nothing.
Except some birds.

>as I load the samples inside
Oh... all the samples at once? Just mix all the dust up? That sounds kinda dangerous.

>Unlike Mike, I'm the one with an aug that lets you pre-program your limbs.
Imagine being able to use that to wash the dishes while watching TV.

>So now it's extortion
If they were able to force Mike to do this, then why did they have to deliver the samples to his apartment? Wouldn't it have been safer to simply hand the samples to Mike while he was at work? I suppose Mike rejected them at work and so bringing them to his apartment was just another method of intimidation, but still.

>pulls the trigger

This is us abusing the fact that Siobhan has plot armor while Mike doesn't ;)

I wondered who the white figures in the background here were and I had a few different theories, but it turns out it's visions of memories. How quaint.

>free quarks
"Impossible! No one has been able to summon a free quark before!"
"My grandpa's standard model has no pathetic particles."

>Mike hands pulling... pull harder, think I should pull back
Can Siobhan's autopilot hands do kung fu?
No. 135462 ID: 26235b
File 162026355211.png - (892.14KB , 1024x1024 , shopped.png )

Now that I'm done shopping, if only I could read what the text says...
No. 135468 ID: 26235b

No hot takes? Then I'll see if I can make anything of it.


...so what I think the text says is this:
- In the bottom left it says CORE
- In the upper center it says EXTRA DIMENSIONAL TUNNEL
- In the top right it says UNKNOWN REGION
- In the bottom right it says... no idea. It looks like 3 letters so maybe an abbreviation. Or maybe the word is covered by the character's figure.

If the above is correct, then it would mean that the three figures are looking at a core of something, and at the core lies a dimensional passage to an unknown place.

>... What ... find?
>... a closed ... There's room ... large moon ...
>... do we have? ... free quarks.
>... the threshold, ... go back. ... trapped ... energy ... the space entirely ...
>... anyone's guess ... other side.
Now we can try using the above info to help us fill the gaps in the text. For instance:
>"What did you find?"
>"A closed extradimensional space. There's room in there that could hold a large moon."
>"How much energy do we have? We need/have X free quarks"
>"Enough to pass the threshold, not enough to go back. We'd be trapped in there until we gather enough energy again, while any instability could close off the space entirely."
>"It's risky and it's anyone's guess what's on the other side."
I should note that the 4th line is somewhat ambiguous. They could be saying that they have enough energy, or that they don't have enough energy to go there and back. And whether there's a risk of getting trapped in there, or being trapped temporarily, or permanently.

What does this all mean?
First of all, I think there are two distinct possibilities here.
The first one is that the world the three figures are looking at is Sieve (Penny's world) and the CORE in the picture is Sieve's Core.
The second one is that the world is some planet or a dead star, and what lies on the other side of the tunnel, the UNKNOWN REGION is where our Sieve is.

I think the second possibility is more likely.
This is because Sieve's Core is hot and glowing. That heat has to come from somewhere, so it would make sense if Sieve's Core was the exit of the dimensional tunnel, and the heat leaking through was coming from the core of the source planet or a star.

So yeah, the implications are mind-blowing.
It could be that these are the records of the crew that was the first to enter Sieve. How it all began.
The glowing core at the center of Sieve could be the exit of the dimensional tunnel.
The name of the current world, Sieve, could come from the word "Search", because the original crew was a research team.
The Plasmodians could be the pre-existing inhabitants of this world. Or they could be this original crew.
The Old City, the Beacon could be the means they used to communicate with the outside dimension, and to transfer people over...
Really, with this info in hand, I'd have to revisit all the concepts introduced in this world thus far haha, I'd be making the same priceless facial expression that Siobhan is making here if I could.

Anyway, as a result of how important this info is, Siobhan is put in quite the danger~
No. 135505 ID: 902b09

i just want to say that this story is very good and i am enjoying it a lot
No. 135510 ID: 9a2966

hear hear
No. 135699 ID: 2f43c1
File 162315106272.png - (599.37KB , 1024x1024 , de.png )

JPEG? That's going a bit too far :p

So in the memories here we see two figures. One seems to be extending the hand to the one that's, what looks like, operating some computers. And from the text, it looks like the guy sitting is named Hoefler. It might be an important name to remember... wait, that name...
> >>/questarch/890224 >Hoefler-Kurosawa corpuscles
Ah, the discoverer of "dust". And Kurosawa must be one of the other people that we've seen in these memories.

And now a word from today's sponsor, Raid: Shadow Legends! You too can be a legend in-*click*
Video games are a bad influence on some people, huh?

>You took everything ...! .... everybody! ... little fucking utopia?!
This seems to have happened a tiny bit later. The guy shouting at Hoefler seems to be upset about something he did. A research project turning into someone's personal utopia?

>... getting old, ... just stand by ... die off ... tin can?
The way I'd fill in those blanks would be like this:
>We're getting old. Do you expect us to just stand idly and die off one by one in this tin can?
The "tin can" may be referring to the cylindrical object portrayed on the panel. But is that the vessel they're in, or is the object actually small? If it's a vessel, then maybe it's the vessel they used to travel to the dimensional passage.

RIP dustbender. There were still samples loaded in there so, I guess we need to get that dustbender back.

> The manifold ... our home ... conventional ... failed us ... paracarbon ... actually survive ... term.
The excerpts here are also pretty ambiguous, but I'll try to fill in the blanks so they at least sorta make sense.
> The manifold has been our new home for a while now. Our conventional bodies have failed us but using the paracarbon makes it possible to actually survive here long term.
Something like that. Of course, nothing is for certain and a lot of details are missing, but in general, it does seem that Sieve was supposed to be a utopia for these people.
No. 136935 ID: 6ef04c

Just wanted to check in, is DD on hiatus? I tried posting in the current thread but it's locked.
No. 136936 ID: e51896

Pretty much, Teegee got a job months ago and is also doing commissions currently.
No. 137602 ID: 3286d2

For anyone who isn't on the Discord or missed the discussion a day ago, I've made the decision to come back to questing. I suppose I needed an extended break, partially due to needing to adjust to having significantly less free time than I did in the past, and because I had some issues with letting self-criticism run rampant in ways that had kinda sucked the fun out of questing. In the interim I've worked on those issues and I think I'm ready to give it all another shot.

Dead Dust is still a priority for me, but since continuing it will be a bit of an undertaking, I've decided to ease my way back in by running another quest that is much more limited in scope, and then once it's complete I'll most likely continue Dead Dust from where I left off.
No. 137604 ID: 47f139

Still waiting on that Null and Void update, man.
That quest was a load of fun!
No. 137605 ID: 9a2966

Heck yeah. Welcome back!
No. 137606 ID: c36aa6

Null and Void is still very much on my radar, don’t worry. I’m not sure when exactly I’ll get back to it, but I want to someday.
No. 137620 ID: b90535

Welcome back! Hope you are still interested in continuing Flora.
No. 137725 ID: f2320a

why are kobolds so cute?
No. 141074 ID: 3286d2

I'm toying around with the idea of, after Scan Quest concludes, revisiting Dead Dust. I'm not certain at this point whether that will mean a continuation where it left off, some sort of retcon of things where it went off the rails, a reboot, etc. I need to do some concepting/worldbuilding/etc. work to figure that one out.

To help with this, I'd like to get some info on what elements of the quest worked best. So, to anyone who enjoyed Dead Dust and would like to see it return, what did you like/dislike about it? Feel free to be as brief or as detailed as you want.

I can't make any promises as to how much I will conform to the answers I receive about this, but at the very least I plan on using them to help guide the conceptual work I'm going to do.

To anyone who takes the time to answer, thank you!
No. 141075 ID: 2a5a1a

I liked the amnesiac trying to unravel what happened to her in a confusing world with implications of something bigger she’s tied up in. This is just a glib quick opinion, but I could lose the prologue chapters, they were introduced way too soon just as things in the present were getting to some major reveals.
If you wanted to work with what you’ve got, some ideas I’d suggest: some details are wrong somehow, this is a dream or simulation, or she’s reading a criminal report and filling in the details in her mind. Either way, I would jump back to penny, roz and the sword mystery at the soonest available opportunity.
No. 141079 ID: e51896

the things I liked in the quest is the post apocalyptic world setting we were thrusted in, the character designs, the idea of how people live through their lives with their dust, finding out how this world works, and how there are separate huge problems and plots going on in the world that we can choose to try to not get involved in as we try to do our own thing and fulfill our own goals (Seeing crazy stuff going on in Vesper like a whole other plot is going on as we try to get back to Mint for example) All the characters having their own goals and strong personality was also pretty engaging, even the very minor ones.

>I liked the amnesiac trying to unravel what happened to her in a confusing world with implications of something bigger she’s tied up in.

this too.

Also, I know lewds and the question of keeping them in or not was a big talking point for this quest in the past, and I'd have to agree that the sex scene could get a little distracting, especially if they don't add much to the story or drag on.

but I don't want all the lewd moments to all go away. the softcore lewds I personally looked forward to in Dead Dust, especially the ENF/exhibitionism moments and if they make sense to the plot. I'd love to keep things like that in when possible, like Penny streaking around naked and invisible to not be seen was fun and added to the challenge, or Roz being a nudist and trying to get Penny into that lifestyle was funny, and having Siobhan strip her clothes to escape Mike and the RESK-U while attempting to get the falling dustbender was also pretty thrilling. that aspect was another thing I liked about the quest personally and something I looked forward to in Dead Dust

However, this is all a matter of my own perverted opinion, if you and a lot of others don't want those in the quest going forward, that's perfectly understandable, and there are plenty of other things that I and a lot of others enjoy in quest that kept us hooked to the story besides lewds.

But overall, I think as far as the hardcore sex scenes go, I think they can probably be kept in, but only if they are earned and the majority of suggestions chooses to do it, and lasts for just an update or two maximum to not distract too much from the story. Other popular quest that isn't focused on primarily on NSFW like Tension or catalyst had sex scenes, but I think they worked because they only lasted for an update or two, and was a pretty rare event.
No. 141085 ID: c7592f

One other thing i wanted to add that i liked about the quest is that while there is a main plot for us to follow, the world felt pretty open for us to explore anywhere we wanted in and investigate, especially in chapter 0. I wouldnt mind if the quest is mostly about us exploring the world and doing and trying many different things (both productive or unproductive) and researching stuff.
No. 141086 ID: f14228

My five Penny-cents: continue where you left off. Pretty sure you'll keep a following wherever Dead Dust's story goes though, whether picked up or rebooted. Kinda thought you'd already concluded you'd see chapter -1 through. I guess that's no longer certain so what I'll say is this: at least don't discard easily the fun worldbuilding/storytelling that went down already. Not unless you're really sure you want a reboot of all that established effort and story.

Feel free to have listened to the critiques that made sense, but not every argued 'hey I didn't like this' (or 'hey, I REALLY liked this', for that matter) needs to be 'answered' with your limited resources, nor is it all stuff you should necessarily internalize and pay heed to and redo. It's all hella subjective and I'd personally just be happy to see you create art and story with us that you can enjoy as well, warts 'n all. Why else do it, right?

If the prequel chapter is where you feel the thread got lost / you got pushback you'd like to respond to, I'd say... cut it short(er), maybe? If reworking, make it so our main gal Penny herself can find those necessary story revelations you spoke of. Penny with an alternative way to get at that might be possible, whether through the chatloggers, our suddenly (and lethally?) communicative stalker, the cult (friends, enemies, frenemies) or through upcoming city exploration where one might get in touch with key folks (old and new). Or maybe not. You know your planned story best.

So do whatevs with -1, hit Chapter 2 running, revelations and context had. Get our gal up and moving towards the next big thing, with a slightly better idea of why and what the fuck. Turns out our previous self got themselves partially engrammed with Some Serious Shit, got special powers outta the deal and enemies to boot. Probably did taffa to escape the consequences (or so other people could escape the consequences)... as a best guess so far. Sure makes getting in touch with Delaney more vital - and potentially emotionally fraught - so that's something to look forward to. Assuming we find him (alive)!

That said:
I loved the amnesiac figure-stuff-out-including-yourself-and-what-you-wanna-be-and-do aspect. Loved there being interconnected story elements and mentions of things that enabled one to piece information together into 'oh, so that's what this is / probably is' realizations. Loved the little slice-of-life, world-building, get-to-know-'em conversations between Penny and others - plot-driving or not, they were fun. I liked having a number of little by-goals for us to reach for.

Re: sex scenes if still relevant: mhm, it's spice of life, follows some of the definitely mature themes of the quest, neither essential, nor undesired. Just keep in mind QD will easy go for most sexybones thrown, and some not.

And re: that demon, pacing. I am ever of the opinion that you do you here. It'll take the time it'll take, and I'm just happy to see you back at it and considering how to move forward. I've followed creative sorts and their works on the internet for well over twenty plus years now, so let me tell you you're doing fine, hiatuses and all and when investing your creative time and dime into free entertainment, remember you're the gold standard. Anyone opining about it on pacing's account is... maybe bronze standard. Silver at best.
No. 141088 ID: 342886

Agreed on all this. Personally, im more for continuing where we left off in chapter -1 if i were to vote between reboot or continuing where we left off, as a lot of things has been established in story, and i was getting hooked with what was going on. but i wouldnt oppose a reboot if you feel it needs one as you can go in with the experience you had running dead dust previously pre-reboot.

If the concern is that a lot of stuff was revealed too soon, i say there are still plenty of interesting mysteries that we have left to uncover, plus maybe more mysteries to discover and try to solve in the future. I think the impression to me of revealing who Penny used to be early on shows that discovering her past is not the main mystery to focus on in quest, but something else.

I think above all else, do what you feel is fun to you for the quest despite what others say. There are no perfect quests, and many of them have flaws. I know mine does and have gotten complaints before, but i still keep true to what i think is fun for me personally and connect better with fans that like my work enough to look past its imperfections. You're a good quest author, and even inspired me to start making my own silly quests.
No. 141089 ID: 273c18

Yeah, basically this.

IMO, keep any sex short and sweet, don't let it affect the pacing but let the suggesters be lewd when we/you want to.

Continuing chapter -1 is fine, but... maybe speed it up a bit? Have the memories start to get less detailed or something so we just get the gist of things.
No. 141092 ID: f2cf5a

Okay, so I'm going to spill a bunch of thoughts I've had for a while now.

I really enjoyed Dead Dust, but primarily the reason that I enjoyed it was the mystery of who we were, as well as coming up with plans to escape the Vesper Society. Now, I'll admit, part of me thought they were actually malicious, but I also felt like it would've been an interesting relief if they really were largely what they were on the surface and we were just paranoid/not wanting to deal with their crap. I had really hoped we weren't some big fancy Chosen One, and we'd be free to escape and then move into the next arc of exploring a city and trying to find ourselves, whether it's our new self or old self. I had seen Chapter 2 as the start of a bit of a lengthy tutorial after the opening cutscene.

And then Nickle or whatever her name was showed up, and things started going off the rails. Suddenly we had a super-imposed presence telling us we were super special, and then we had the all too typical cult betrayal. It was frustrating, but as I said, I'd kinda expected it, so I just more or less sighed and went along with it, hoping maybe it would be one of those situations where it'd be an interspersed matter that wouldn't take front row. Maybe an excuse to get out of the Vesper Society and get into the overarching world properly quicker? I'd be down for that. Something that would particularly allow us to refocus on the bigger mystery of Who We Were and Where We're Going, which would be amazing- while also giving us an overarching task to focus on instead of meandering through a quest with no planned, defined end, which is a common pitfall of quests.

And then Chapter -1 happened and ruined everything. I mean no offense and not to hurt you, but IMO -1 was just a completely bad call, as it just utterly ruined the mystery and PRIMARY MOTIVATION OF THE QUEST THAT YOU SET UP. I want to reiterate this:

YOU, by nature of how you opened the quest, set up that 'your memories are missing, find them' was a big issue, something that would take time, effort, and energy on our part. A task that, sure, might not take the whole quest, but would be a cornerstone and lynchpin for our choices and moves in the quest overall, whether in pursuit of it, escape of it, or something else. But it was read as something that would be IMPORTANT, and something wherein the discovery of which would be satisfying due to our own investigative efforts.

And you just...GAVE it to us. No fanfare, no real input on our part, just 'yup, here's the solution to all that mystery that I very strongly implied was important in a narrative sense, now ignore all your efforts and choices to that purpose in favor of this soup-stock plot involving weird spirits that I want you to write'. And okay, that sounds rude, I'll grant that, but I've been holding onto this for a while, so I honestly beg your pardon in my brief venting. Point is, I feel like Chapter -1 ruined the quest, and wasn't necessary in the LEAST. The fact that even you're considering the consequences of -1 tells me that it's worth retconning and there should be NO SHAME in doing that. A lot of QMs considered retcons and rewrites to be anathema, or a mark of a 'bad writer'. I say 'there's a reason professional editors exist, so don't be so conceited about the quality of your work'. Sometimes, what you cook up tastes bad. That doesn't necessarily mean you're a bad cook, it just means you made a bad dish the once. Chuck it and try again!

Ultimately, despite all of that, I STILL want more Dead Dust. I really do. However, I honestly would strongly recommend a reset to before the weird alterverse shenanigans in Chapter 2, and VERY MUCH would suggest retconning Chapter -1 out entirely. The story was simple, but very much hinted at intriguing depth already, and you didn't need to force it at all. (If you didn't, then perhaps it was just an issue with pacing.) You had the most interest and curiosity, IMO, right before that part, and I'd love to get back to that. I know a lot of people will be like 'this is your story, do as you like, it's only right for you to write what you want', and I feel like though that's honest and true, it's also not what you asked for and a bit dismissive. You asked for honest feedback, right? Feedback will be opinionated, and this is my honest opinion, warts and all, but 200% from a place of sincerity, hope, experience, and observation . You're a great writer, but you needed to keep what brought you to the dance, not shift as hard as you did and through out all the maneuvering and effort we'd made up until that point. I'll say it again just to sum up: great story up until about Chapter 2's midpoint. Don't be afraid to junk all the stuff from beyond that point, cut the fat, keep the mysteries alive and keep going. It's no condemnation to do so, and I'd happily delve back into Penny's strange life if that happened.
No. 141093 ID: f2cf5a

Oh, and regarding the sex scenes, they're mostly whatever. The only particular incident I paid any attention to was with our alter-self/messenger/Nickle or whatever we named her, I forget. I had no particular concern about it before her, it felt fine. But in that scene it felt forced and a bit egregious.
No. 141109 ID: 0b594e

chapter -1 is an enjoyable read, but I agree that it took all the mystery out. I would say the series was at its best when Penny was interacting with characters like Quincy, Roz, and Mint. The city setting offered such a breadth of directions the story could go in, and despite fantastical elements it seemed grounded. But once the demon showed up the story did become a bit less interesting, I find prophecy type stuff kinda silly. Still, the series is overall fun, intriguing, and a great read.

As for the sex, Roz teasing Penny is great fun, chapter -1's scene was good but did drag a little. In my opinion, keep the lewdness but don't let it dominate the story.
No. 141112 ID: f14228

I'll note that reliving memories in a sci-fi setting where memory manipulation/loss features was not unexpected nor something that lead to a loss of mystery feel for me - it's just another method of exposition, imo. I was wondering whether Penny would ever get exposed to that and whether she'd have to fight for control of her body with some old perspective, or have to meld with her past in some way. Chapter -1 is fine.

It's definitely struck me with the context we've gotten that it's probably not lights out for Penny. The Orchid cult may be attempting to reclaim the dust samples hidden in Siobhan using that lights before dawn code phrase or some special rhythm superpower, now that it's clear Siobhan/Penny well and truly got affected by them. They were the ones to demand the dust samples be hid inside bodies, after all, and have been surveilling Penny pretty intently since Siobhan overdosed on Taffa.

Going down the memory hole might be a side effect of the extraction. Or maybe it was all planned and Siobhan had expectations of coming back after overdosing on Taffa. If Penny is getting exposed to parts of her memories despite the Taffa overdose, in a way she is or was still there, after all.

But hey, that's just me speculating on parts of chapter -1 (and 2) we have yet to see. I also doubt the Penny-perspective will get replaced by a Siobhan-perspective.
No. 141122 ID: b1805a


Now I'm super glad I reread it recently!

The Good Bits
Ok, for me, the mystery at the beginning, with Penny having no idea who she is or why (and the incongruity of "we're all humans") was excellent. Heck, the shelves, the Vespers, the weird stuff with dust -- all of it was this amazing thing to tease apart and try to make sense of it.

Our first introduction to Cider and Penny's reluctance to stay even works out rather well, despite seeming to be self-destructive, because when you think about it, she HAS no other template save her independence, and suddenly that's been taken away from her (even if it's "Help help, they gave me friendship and free clothes," from Penny's end).

That, and Roz is hilarious and I love her banter with the rest of the cast.

The Iffy Parts
Even the sexual aspects weren't too bad, though I'm still trying to figure out how the whole inner-mindscape thing with Dollar our alter-ego and the other "Blades" or whatever was supposed to work, and why, since it never quite gets explained.

Once we get to Chapter -1, it really does take away almost all of the mystery of the situation, despite raising the other one: who is this shadowy organization, why do they care about Siobhan's body, and, for that matter why does she have it?

(I was actually really unhappy with the whole situation with Mike originally (I was going through a very bad place mentally, at the time, but that's still on me), but after rereading it, it's actually pretty fun and well-played between the characters, so please take this as my official statement that: yeah, it works, and I rather like their dynamic together!).

As for what the heck's up with Mint at the end of chapter 1 (or all those critters we found, for that matter), it makes way more sense thanks to chapter -1, but I feel the way it ends kind of spoils the situation, since we don't know where things lead from there (if at all), and it feels like a really big build-up to just be left hanging like that.

The Leftovers
While I'd really love to know what led up to Siobhan's situation and her being in the Old City, I feel that the entire exchange between her and Mike, and all the stuff in the old shuttle bay thing is just ... a bit out of place.

Or rather, they feel like they escalate too quickly. We didn't really get enough background on this shadowy organization beyond their having really pushed Mike to lead to Siobhan's rather extreme reaction, there, beyond the implication that he's at risk so long as he stays with her (though this seems mitigated by, well ... having stayed with her).

I'll admit it's entirely possible I'm missing something here, but I can see why you've considered a possible reboot/retcon.

However, it all seems to lead up to and explain the rest of the story, so getting that glimpse into things (and why we seemed to have such an affinity for Delaney despite things), feels important enough to keep.

(Hopefully we get to meet Moira. She's so interesting for just a face on a card. Also Quincy. Because oh no, it's Q.)
No. 141143 ID: 8f9bc4

I find it kind of amusing people think Chapter -1 was a prequel.
No. 141145 ID: dd3fe0

So I think maybe I should move the hard sci fi vs soft sci fi discussion stuff for Dawn Before Dark here, cause I seem to be getting kind of into it, to the point some people are making fun of the... discussion happening in character ish.
No. 141148 ID: 8f9bc4


I half expected chapter -1 to end with the protagonist running into the protagonist from chapter 0/1 and they aren't even the same person. OR ARE THEY

alas it never finished, so who knows
No. 141149 ID: ff051a

What originally got my attention, and consequently made me decide to participate in the quest were two things.
- Cute character
- Nsfw hologram ...hehe
Yeah, it was the art. That was the biggest first impression. The art quality in the later updates has been an overkill.

What kept my interest were three things:
- Interactivity, which has always been great; each update was able to include many suggestions in meaningful ways, but not too many to hurt the pacing/immersion
- The rich world, with almost endless amount of unique concepts, locations, details, and again, without delving into them too far, perhaps luckily, since there's an entity limit before the whole thing becomes confusing / hard to follow for an average forgetful reader
- Frequent updates, keeping the interest high and memory fresh... well, until you burned out.

On the topic of writing, I should say that sometimes there's too much text per panel. And it feels too refined, like you spent way too much time perfecting it. We can deal with a few typos, you know.

I can't say there's anything that I straight up disliked. What I generally dislike is unrealistic things. Unlikely events happening too often. Characters knowing things they shouldn't know. Having inconsistent personality. But I haven't noticed anything of that sort in the quest. Nothing unrealistic happened. The NSFW parts were very realistic in fact, for a world where there's no fear of disease or pregnancy. Everything has a well-defined purpose. I see no need for a retcon, because I don't see any problem that it would fix.
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