Off-site WIP: Paladins; Salvation


#1

Warning: This is VERY LONG.

Wasn’t sure where exactly to put this but, as @MaraJade suggested I put a preview, I thought I’d give a small preview of the story; Paladins: Salvation and invite feedback from any who would like to read.

Background information: I actually started this a month ago, it is not a choicescript game but was being made with something similar so I could in theory convert it over. I made a topic asking about the frequency of choices in a game, the answers persuaded me that there probably isn’t a target audience for this just yet, maybe one day who knows.

So I present my first ‘three pages’ that lead to the first choice; of gender, I have continued it by presenting the ‘male’ version of that choice. - I have written a lot more than this but it’s difficult to copy an entire story/game into text format for the forums, so again, I do invite everyone to read and give me your thoughts. =)


Title: Paladins: Salvation
Genre: Fantasy

“Summary”:

A paladin is one chosen directly by the gods to be their avatar in the mortal world. Salvation is a story of some of these paladins as they journey through the world on an adventure to save not just their world but the very existence of creation itself.

Will you be able to guide your heroes and the mortals of this realm to salvation? Or will you only delay the inevitable?


1.1 S - The End of the World

The harsh wind lashes out at your face, mud and water splash upwards from the rain soaked ground splattering across your legs and lower body. Branches bend with the howling wind, they grasp at you relentlessly, an extra layer of pain to endure from nature’s harsh embrace this day.

You are running, as fast as your legs will allow you to. From what, you do not know. You know not where you’re destined to go, but wherever it is; the weather and the lay of the land cares not to allow you an easy path. This forest has known your prescence for several hours now and though you seek to leave its hostile terrain, it is an unending prison pushing you in circles and directing you to the full force of the rain, wind and its natural flora.
You leap over a small fallen tree, but its remains catches your ankle and you stumble into the churning mud around it. Reaching out to steady your fall, your hand sinks deep into the ground. Wrenching it out with a disgusting squick, you stand and move forward slowly to a large tree in front of you. Taking a moment, you stand and look up to the sky through the canopy of branches.

Ravens circle above. They are unaffected by the howling wind, they appear to have no fear of the thunder and lightning that rapidly approaches your position. There is little daylight, for there is little in the sky but the blackest of clouds. It is a strange scene, for you are certain it is no later than midday. The sun should be shining… Especially in this spring season, yet the weather is the harshest of all winters. The creatures are all in hiding, no flowers bloom and no leaves stand proudly to signal the first foray of life. Just mud, bare bark and torrential rain, these are all that accompany you.
Taking a deep breath, you remember how you reached this point. Four months ago, war reached the footholds of your homeland of Tazzar’nael. On the continent, nations big and small had begun waging war amongst each other. Eventually one nation began to gain the upper hand and soon, despite the cries of politicians and military advisers across the continent, that nation cut down all that lay within its reach. All those that remained failed to co-operate. They fell swiftly until there was only your homeland left to cull.

Your uncle, smuggled you away in a small boat headed to these island nations. Here, he said, you would at least have the time to prepare to survive, if not live a normal peaceful life. Yet even that was a shot lived respite. For war has come to these islands and now, you find yourself on the run again.

The army has approached the small village you were residing in. You were lucky enough to get away, but you weren’t unseen. They are chasing you and it appears that nature herself would damn you to their company.
Lightning strikes the nearby fallen tree. A small fire burns fiercely and falters in a whimper as the rain and wind combine to extinguish it. The shouts and roars of the enemy reach your ears over the wind. It is time, time for you to run.
Turning around, you flee. A hundred small cuts along your face, the branches of the trees propelled further by the wind, rip into your flesh and clothes. But you endure, for it is now a matter of survival. Fitting weather, you think, fitting weather for the end of the world.

Something catches your ankle again. You fall; but there is no ground in your sight. In your rapid haste, you’ve run right through the top of a hill. You tumble down the hill, rolling harshly and out of the corner of your eye, you spy the largest of rocks just standing staunchly in your path. You close your eyes, for the sickening crack of your skull upon rock is only to be expected.

Upon impact, the pain is almost unbearable, your eyes bulge from their sockets. Letting out a whimper, you look to the skies but your vision is blurry and eventually the cold embraces you to a temporary sleep.

*Click to continue*


#2

1.1 - The Knight of the Temple

Your eyelids are heavy and it is difficult to force them open. Your arms and hand lie akwardly beneath your body and there is a splitting pain coming from the back of your skull. As you force your eyes to open, your eyelids flutter weakly. The rainwater is carrying your own blood down your neck and across the muddied stone flats you’ve landed at. You ponder to yourself, how could you survive such a blow?

Pushing yourself up, you stagger to your knees. It is eerily quiet, the wind has completely died and though the rain continues, it is a gentler type of rain, a cleansing rain. Still, it is cold and miserable. There remains no daylight breaking through the clouds above you. Straight ahead atop a hill, is the great forest that ejected. Beside you is the huge rock that stood within your path as you fell. It is surprisingly clean, the rainwater must have washed away the blood from your impact.

As you stumble to your feet, you notice that the rock was obscuring your view of a river. It is a gentle river, its waters flow softly despite the ardous weather you have just experienced. It is an oddity, but one you cannot afford to think about. Looking up, you can see the forest encircles this place, you are at the bottom of the hill, the river casually entwines its way around the area in a circular motion. Directly across the river is a sight that is surprising.
It is a church, a run down and derelict church. But there is no mistaking its former glory. Although the stone path leading to the church is jagged and in need of serious maintenance, the elegance of the arching stone pillars that twist in a circular motion towards the skies and form the basis for an awning to shelter the path to the church itself. The actual church, is extremely tall. The stonework is clean and white, and the layers stagger in a criss-cross pattern that is almost mesmerising to lay eyes upon. Stone gargoyles and statutes of angels stand watch from the small sculped out holdings within the outer walls. A few stand peacefully atop the spire of the roof. All seem to be looking directly towards you.
A cold chill runs down your spine, whether it is because of the weather or the statutes unnatural despairing eyes you are unsure. The large wooden entrance to the church hangs weakly from its hinges. A flash of lightning illuminates the courtyard across the church and for a moment, you find yourself blinking. For what you saw was blood and depravity, gentle ladies of the world skewered through their back passages with the roughly hewn spike of wood emerging from their mouths. Screams of pain emanate from the walls, and men are hung upside down from all the openings of the church. Their heads stuck on spikes, their eyes gazing lifelessly into yours as the stoneworks and rivers overflow with blood.
Another flash of lightning occurs. The scenes of depravity vanish and the angel statutes and smooth white-stone walls return. For a moment you contemplate. Perhaps the blow to your head was more severe than you thought? Regardless, this church is in the middle of no where. You have most likely led the advancing army this way by accident. It may only be a moment’s respite, but within lays your salvation. Even if nothing is there, it is a moment’s shelter from the rain and it will give you a moment to consider your further plans.

Wobbling on your feet as you step towards a low bridge that takes you across the river, you look ahead and wonder how long you were out for. All thoughts are put to one side however, when you notice the figure of a man in front of the church doors. As you step across the bridge and your feet touch the courtyard stoneworks, he begins to walk towards you. As he does, the river behind you roars with an overflow of water.

Spinning around, you can see the bridge vanishing into the depths of the riverwater that rushes forth smashing against its banks with a furious force. Yet the wind and rain remain genteel. Quickly you turn back to face the advancing man and just as quickly you stumble backwards startled as you turn right into a wall of chainmail.

You land heavily onto your back and look up to the man in front of you. He stands at around 6’6 tall and is almost as wide as he is tall. His body is shielded with chainmail armour and a flat top helmet obscures his face. A long flowing red cloak, embroiled in gold wraps around his shoulders. To the left, hanging from his hip is a sword that travels within its sheath almost to the very ground. His hand is wrapped firmly along the handle and he looks directly at you.
"You are late…

*CHOICE: My Lord / My Lady"*


#3

1.2m - The prophecy

“You are late my Lord” says the man, his gaze is unflinching. “We should hurry.”
He turns on his heels and begins walking back towards the church doors. Behind you the river continues to roar and you can hear it is beginning to overflow. Standing up, you quickly chase and follow the stranger. He leads you to the doors of the church and then stops. Gazing directly at you, his brow is furrowed, or perhaps that is the impression of the helmet?
“It is never good to keep the Gods waiting.” he utters under the rising wind extending his hand towards the sanctuary of the church.
“Who are you?” you blurt out a question but he shakes his head and places his hand on the open door.
He says nothing, but it is clear he has been expecting you. For a moment you contemplate whether to do as he wishes or not.

“My lord, please come through this way”

It is a small voice, a peaceful voice. You turn to the doorway where a man bespeckled and dressed in a the brownest of unassuming robes clasps his hands together and bows towards you.

“Do not mind the good Knight, he cannot afford to waste time with pleasantries. I, Father Mahler will provide you safe passage to our chambers” Mahler extends his arms to welcome you and the knight positions himself behind you. You realize you have been maneuvered into the church, but as soon as you turn to the doors, the knight has locked you in with Mahler.

“Is he staying out there?” you ask, more to yourself than to Mahler, but he is quick to answer as he raises a damp cloth to the back of your skull.

“Yes, for it is his duty.” Mahler whispers in the sanctuary of the church and lets out a small welcoming smile. He continues “Do not be afraid child, this is simply a painkiller concoction for your wound.” noticing your unwillingness to allow your a stranger who has practically captured you to place anything near an open wound!
It could be poison, you wonder, but then quickly dismiss the thought. He is a man of the church, he wouldn’t do such a thing surely?

“You are right to be on your guard my lord, but you are within the church of the timeless now.” Mahler attempts to re-assure you.

“Why is he staying out? And why are are you both calling me a lord?” you query.

“It was foretold, that the end of the world would begin when the destined forsook his position in the world.” Mahler turns on his heels and storms towards the centre of the desolate church.

You take the time to soak in your surroundings as Mahler speaks. The inside of the church is, sparse to say the least. It is ruined, as if it had been abandoned for several years. Thick layers of dust coat the two bookshelves that stand directly alongside the wall. Between the bookshelves is a simple platform with a magnificently carved wooden stand upon which, rests a holy text of some sort.

“When the very existence of the world was threatened, he who is to be the salvation of the world shall fall and meet earth at the last temple of the creator of the world.” Mahler picks up the book lying on the stand and flicks through the pages. “That knight, he stays out there, for you bring an army of destruction at your heels. His duty is your survival, at least long enough until we can get you to your final destination.” He snaps the book open upon the page he was searching for. Swiftly he storms towards you.

“You’re saying he’s going to fight an army by himself for my own protection?” you exclaim, stepping backwards away from Mahler’s steely advance.

Shoving the book blatantly in your face, Mahler stops and gazes at you. His eyes betray no hint of a lie. “Yes. He will fight and he will die, for he is the ultimate incarnation of loyalty and devotion. His is a life destined to suffering, his is the life of tragedy, his is the life of weak masters and his is the life of envy, for he can have all in the world, yet he will reject it to serve one such as yourself, to save one…”

“To save me…”

“All because you did not do what you were supposed to do.” Mahler smiles as he interrupts you. It is not a patronizing smile, but a warm one. It is strange, a smile that shouldn’t exist, that shouldn’t feel comfortable, yet it does. Perhaps it is your head wound that is playing tricks on your senses, or perhaps it is the very text that is being shoved in front of your eyes containing the prophecies that is pulling at them instead.

Where henceforth the child of the Timeless shall fail, the creator’s will be undone, her child shall flee the spawn of the lady and shall be spat from the thorns of limbo to the embrace of the unmovable earth, there the rivers shall overflow and the knight of passion shall stand guard at the last temple of the creator god. Here thus he shall reunite with the lady of all blessings, and thus he shall be cast out eternally in the tides of time till such a time that creation may exist again.

“I don’t understand…” you whisper…

*Click to continue*


#4

And there we have it that’s as far as my ‘preview’ of a sorts goes. Hope you enjoy, again I invite feedback.

Specifically, my older topic a month ago was about how long I could present a story before a viable ‘choice’ was presented. Opinion seemed to be split but I did notice some comments felt that a lack of choices would make the story-game pointless, I stress that in the actual game itself there ARE more choices than presented above. The above is lacking choice precisely because it serves as an intro for the setting. In fact I dare say it would be very much story > game in the early stages, but I’ll shut up now. :slight_smile:


#5

I love you writing, the presentation are almost perfect you describe a ultraviolent setting in a really elegant way.
it’s a long intro yes but I don’t mind you always can put some minor choices to not seem a wall of test but I love play or read your story.


#6

I concur with @MaraJade, your writing is superb, and I don’t mind the lack of choices just starting off, as long as you break it up so that there’s not too much text per page.


#7

yes i agree with @marajade it’s great


#8

Great, descriptive writing. Though the intro is long, I think people are willing to read more of a story if the writing is compelling.


#9

I like it! Will this be a story, though?


#10

Thanks all. =)

@Happy - how do you mean?


#11

Well, in the title, it said “Story Preview” and I thought It would have been a actual story.


#12

I’m not sure I get you, but it is a story, what I posted is just three pages of it. :slight_smile:


#13

Will it be a game or a story? Will you only have an option to click next or will you get choices that affect the course of the game?


#14

@Wyrmspawn

As I said; //The above is lacking choice precisely because it serves as an intro for the setting. In fact I dare say it would be very much story > game in the early stages.//

But to clarify;

It’s a story first and a game second, there would be choices and they will have an impact on the story but they won’t be as common as some of the offerings on this site for example and they won’t be tied into any game mechanism like stats or whatnot.

That way, each choice offered to a player will have an affect on the course of the game. The reason for that is I don’t want to offer too many false choices and I don’t want to restrict the story’s setting because this would be an ‘epic’ scale game - the setting for example is meant to track the player’s actions over the course of one full year or longer. As you can imagine I have to be restrictive in a sense otherwise it will be, very very difficult for me to write it to a satisfying conclusion.

Furthermore, I was aiming to have a strong plot and story to entice the reader that they may influence. If you’ve played visual novels before, then that’s basically what I’m kind of aiming for. It would be like Soul Link or Fate/Stay Night.


#15

@RVallant I love visual novels so I wana read your work but why couldn’t use a lore button? In the place of a stats a little encyclopedia that fuels all the info places character starts to visit even info change with players decisions if player kill the queen in the info she appears dead the metod uses to kill her and consecuences


#16

@MaraJade - Yes, I was going to do a sort of encyclopedia/lore page to break things up a bit so the reader could choose whether to read more or not. And I was considering it being an evolving encyclopedia where it ‘updates’ with each major decision/new story revelation.

There was also going to be some ‘intermission’ pages which, would be like optional side stories that a could be read that would show what was going on in another part of the world, or explaining a side-character’s history in full giving more information but not being vital so they could be skipped if no one was interested.

And there was going to be scope for romance sub-plots as well, including some very ‘dead’ romances where even if a player pursued it they would get turned down flat (and quite harshly).

So yeah, those were the kind of things I had considered by then. :slight_smile:


#17

I hope you don’t mind, but I spotted a few typos/glitches:

Your uncle, smuggled you away in a small boat headed to these island nations.
I’m not sure you need the comma in the above sentence.

Yet even that was a shot lived respite.
Should be:
Yet even that was a short lived respite.

Early on you state that you don’t know what you’re running from, however, a few paragraphs down you state that you are running away from the army.

In your rapid haste, you’ve run right through the top of a hill.
Possibly this should be:
In your rapid haste, you’ve run right over the top of a hill.

Straight ahead atop a hill, is the great forest that ejected.
Not sure about this? But possibly you meant:
Straight ahead atop a hill, is the great forest that ejected you.

The actual church, is extremely tall.
Not sure you need the comma in the above sentence?

Stone gargoyles and statutes of angels stand watch from the small sculped out holdings within the outer walls.
Should be:
Stone gargoyles and statues of angels stand watch from the small sculpted out holdings within the outer walls.

You’ve misspelled statues a few more times as well.

It may only be a moment’s respite, but within lays your salvation. Even if nothing is there, it is a moment’s shelter from the rain and it will give you a moment to consider your further plans.

You use ‘moment’ three times in two sentences. If it were me, I’d probably use a different phrase at least once or possibly lose ‘moment’s shelter’ and just go with shelter.

A long flowing red cloak, embroiled in gold wraps around his shoulders.

I guess the above sentence does work, but I can’t help but think you meant:
A long flowing red cloak, embroidered in gold, wraps around his shoulders.

You turn to the doorway where a man bespeckled and dressed in a the brownest of unassuming robes clasps his hands together and bows towards you.
Possibly should be:
You turn to the doorway where a bespectacled man dressed in the brownest of unassuming robes clasps his hands together and bows towards you.

“Yes, for it is his duty.” Mahler whispers in the sanctuary of the church and lets out a small welcoming smile. He continues “Do not be afraid child, this is simply a painkiller concoction for your wound.” noticing your unwillingness to allow your a stranger who has practically captured you to place anything near an open wound!
Few fixes here:
“Yes, for it is his duty,” Mahler whispers in the sanctuary of the church and lets out a small, welcoming smile. “Do not be afraid child, this is simply a painkiller concoction for your wound.” He continues, noticing your unwillingness to allow a stranger, who has practically captured you, to place anything near an open wound.

Inside the church, the priest storms away from you, then storms back towards you. Again, there’s nothing wrong with it but you could use a different word.

I’ve also noticed when you’re writing dialogue in general, you seem to put full stops in places where a comma would be more common. So for example:
“It was foretold, that the end of the world would begin when the destined forsook his position in the world.” Mahler turns on his heels and storms towards the centre of the desolate church.
should be:
“It was foretold, that the end of the world would begin when the destined forsook his position in the world,” Mahler turns on his heels and storms towards the centre of the desolate church.

Right, now that bit is out of the way…I really enjoyed this. I think you do very well to create a very desperate, disconcerting introduction, so the reader feels as uncomfortable as the protagonist (though probably not as wet or muddy!). I think it’d be a real shame if you decided not to make this as a game though - I’d certainly be interested in playing it if you did. Fewer, meaningful choices isn’t a bad thing.


#18

@Bawpie - Thanks, I admit I haven’t proof-read the whole thing yet. Grammar is always going to be a problem with me, English isn’t technically my first language.

I’m glad you enjoyed it though :smiley:


#19

@RVallant lawyers have similar ideas and thoughs in all the world I see :stuck_out_tongue: if you do the encyclopedia thing you must teach me to do it I want do something similar in my game but catch the tabs is becoming a nightmare to think in lore for now X( die tabs!


#20

@RVallant - hah, well you wouldn’t know it wasn’t your first language! I didn’t want to come across as nit picking, but I always appreciate when people help me out with that type of thing (I’m a pretty lazy writer). I hope to see it continued soon!