[WiP] Not Your Mother's Shire (Ch. 4: Fellowship of the Bling)

Praise for Not Your Mother’s Shire:

“Had Tolkien been a member of Monty Python, he might have written a story like this–only it would have been good.” -JK ROFL-ing

“Please don’t call me [before writing another hilarious installment I can heartily endorse].” - N. Gayman

“Words fail me.” -Jorge RR. Martinez (the double “r” is one letter in Spanish)
*Jorge went on to specify which words failed him, citing the ones in this book

Progress: 56,344/500k words–11.2%.

To play up to Chapter 4: Fellowship of the Bling, click here.


Meet Brr-Brr-A, the ruling dragon of the Blizzard Duchy native to the snow elves.

Concept Art


Meet Bunkisi, the frog-dragon who rules the humans of the jungle duchy. He has power over a person’s fears.

Meet Hazmek, the scorpion-dragon (not crocodile) who rules the dwarves of the desert duchy. Like a mirage, he plays upon a person’s desires.

Meet Tzob, the spider-dragon who rules the half-orcs of the swamp duchy. She has power over a person’s regrets.

Elevator Pitch

Not Your Mother’s Shire is a medieval comedy in the vein of “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” or Terry Pratchett’s “Discworld” series. Wander the whacky world of Asmar with six eccentric compatriots to decide in each of five duchies whether to support or overthrow the rule of strange and unusual dragons. Make lasting memories with friends, enemies, and lovers as you master the powers of Equilibrium (chaos, order, or not caring) and Timeliness (postcognition, scrying, or precognition).

Character Generation

In Chapter 1, you will decide between gender, race, and orientation options.
Gender: male, female, or non-binary
Race: human, elf, halfling, dwarf, or half-orc
Orientation: someone attracted to men, women, both, or neither

In Chapter 3, you will decide your clothing and appearance.
Clothing: upper and lower body, shoes, and a single accessory. Options range from chainmail bikinis and tartan kilts to plumed hats and sandals. These will effect how other characters behave toward you.
Appearance: eye, skin, and hair colors; hair length and type; body type. These will also effect how other characters behave toward you. Later, you will have the opportunity to change your decisions at a Cosmetic Sorcery Clinic.

Opposed Stat System

Based on player decisions, the opposed stat systems measures:
Muscleness vs. Skillfulness
These are your primary offensive physical stats. They determine whether your approach favors power or precision.
Unbreakable vs. Untouchable
These are your primary defensive physical stats. They determine whether your approach favors resistance or evasion.
Magnetism vs. Omniscience
These stats determines your approach to non-physical problem solving, whether you favor mental or social tactics.
Taskmaster vs. Shiny!
These stats determine your orientation toward either organized and deliberate planning or spontaneous and carefree action.

Powers System

In Chapter 2, you will acquire the power to manipulate your perception of time.
Timeliness: Determined by whether you gravitate toward the past, present, or future, you will develop powers of postcognition, scrying, or precognition. These are non-combat investigative powers.

In Chapter 4, you will acquire the power to manipulate balance.
Equilibrium: Determined by whether you gravitate toward chaos, order, or not caring, you will develop powers of Yin (destruction), Yang (restoration), or Yolo (dumb luck in the face of dire hazard). These are combat powers.

Romantic Options

There are six fixed-race, fixed-gender, player-sexual romanceable NPCs, each with up to ten one-on-one “date” events ascending in intimacy.
Zale Asmar: a female human sorceress in the Dragonfall.
Vera Haupin: a female dwarf monk in the Dragonfall.
Octo Dhensen: a male human warrior in the Dragonsworn.
Saz Lejamb: a male half-orc ranger in the Dragonsworn.
Trudy Fernasa: a female halfling treasure hunter, independent of faction.
Llorick al Ghantra: a male elf scholar, independent of faction.

Changelog

24FEB21: Edits. Uploaded Chapter 4: Fellowship of the Bling.
23FEB21: Edits.
20FEB21: Edits.
12FEB21: Edits. Uploaded Chapter 3: Something, Something Chainmail Bikini.
07FEB21: Edits. Save feature. Uploaded Chapter 2: Bunnies and Truth Bombs.
02FEB21: Started thread. Uploaded Chapter 1: My Home is Green

Thanks so much for your time and interest. Cheers!

125 Likes

Look man… I’m only three pages in and I’m already laughing and grinning.

I’ll update in a bit after a complete playthrough of your wip, but suffice to say…

I think this is gonna be a fantastic ride!

9 Likes

this is just hilarious. i love this game so far, the not-so-serious serious comedy, its just great. But you better keep writing or I’ll call the Knights Who Say Ni…

2 Likes

I genuinely laughed out loud and didn’t merely smile to myself. Not even a full page in. So I’d call this a stunning victory, and I second @Jackpot1776.

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naming one of your stats after a disorder feels trivializing - ADHD isn’t a personality trait, it’s a psychological condition. If the opposed stat measures thoughtfulness/deliberation vs action/impulsivity, maybe something like “Take Charge” instead?

12 Likes

doesn’t have to be that exactly, of course - i just wanna recommend something that’s not a play on a disorder, as i felt uncomfortable seeing ADHD referenced so lightly.

11 Likes

Liking the story so far. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

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?!? appearance or disappearance?

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Count me in!

2 Likes

Noticed a spelling mistake. Should be “bites”

Looking great besides that! I think you really nailed the Terry Pratchett vibes! :smiley:

2 Likes

As you may be able to tell from my profile, I’m a big fan of historically-themed comedy. As such, I was delighted to see this. Just played through and got several smiles and laughs - a rare thing! Keep up the great work, you’re very talented and I cannot wait to see where this will go.

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Sounds interesting

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Wow. I’m stunned by the overwhelmingly positive response. Thank you so much. I’d been afraid to post, never having coded anything before. Comedy is tricky because it’s so subjective, tends to derail, and sustains poorly. Now, I’m really motivated to continue.

@Shyranno That’s really meaningful to me, knowing how well read you are. Thanks! Can’t wait to hear what you think.

@Jackpot1776 and @my.quothy.raven If you do, I’ll hide behind a shrubbery. So glad you like it!

@biextroverts I know what you mean and am taking it to heart. Actually. I absolutely don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I’ve never quite known what to do with comedy. In the past, I’ve referenced so many things lightly: politics, religion, current and historical events . . . More than once, two people with similar experiences have had opposite responses, e.g. one thinks if you can laugh at something serious it’s comforting and makes the issue feel more manageable, while another thinks it’s inappropriate, feels targeted, and has a negative emotional response. From the reader’s perspective, I think it has something to do with their belief about the role and purpose of comedy. From the writer’s perspective, I think it has much to do with the spirit of your approach and how well you can walk a tightrope, plus being open and judging things on a case-by-case basis.

Sorry this is a long response to a short comment. I just wanted to show you I took it seriously and am really thinking about it. Thank you for your suggestion and, if you think of anything else, I’d really like to hear it as I’m sure other content will effect other readers similarly. Cheers.

@Empress_Nightmare and @YHGS Nice catches! Thanks. If only spellcheck knew what I wanted to say . . .

@Pilate I’m flattered and hope I live up to your high standards. Monty Python has helped me through some hard times in my life–as has comedy in general–so I relish the thought of being able to do that for someone, really anyone, else. Cheers!

@Harley_Robin_Evans , @whitebear , @Dpwjeremy Welcome aboard!

7 Likes

??

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@Lowern Sorry! Had been tinkering. Think I fixed it. Need to figure out a better system for version control when making edits. Sorry if I ruined your playthrough. :frowning:

2 Likes

Haha, I’ve played many wips and it’s normal to found this code errors
It’s okay, don’t apologise, you didn’t ruin my playthrough :rofl::rofl:

Looks good, I will keep an eye :wink:

eeb1d7cbc4b3d34495ddf5aeebb4358a

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Hello! I’ve added Chapter 2: Bunnies and Truth Bombs!

For this chapter, I coded my first gender-swappable NPC (Yester Morrow, the time elemental), so I could use extra eyes to make sure gender pronouns match up.

I’ve added a save feature which should prevent having to replay earlier chapters each time I add one. Sorry I didn’t do this last week for those of you kind enough to playtest Chapter 1.

I’ve updated my progress at the top of the thread and attached concept art for Bunkisi, the frog-dragon whom you will hopefully meet very soon. Hope you enjoy!

6 Likes

I agree with the others about the “ADH-Whee!” stat.

Additionally, as an asexual (pan)romantic, I dislike the “I find myself uninterested in sexual romance altogether choice”. To be fair, it was an offer for sex, not anything else, but it is setting the MC’s orientation so I feel that the line in the following description you get after picking that option “she has never met anyone who was interested in neither men nor women before” is very off putting as someone who is interested in men and women but is also uninterested in “sexual romance”.

I think if you don’t want to code a romantic asexual route, you should change the wording of that choice to be “I find myself uninterested in sex or romance”.

Otherwise, I do like the humor and the dragons.

2 Likes

Thanks for taking the time to explain that. I’m going to make that change to “I find myself uninterested in sex or romance” in my next upload. I’ve also decided to change ADH-Whee! and will be posting a poll with options following this message.

For the asexual romantic path, I’d plan to code it so that if you can still go on all the dates with my romanceable NPCs, but not have intercourse. As an asexual romantic, does that feel like lazy writing to you? Is the path not different enough? I’d thought of it as equality as I don’t treat it any differently but don’t want to assume I know anything. @QuixquillianParadise Thanks for any insight or suggestions you want to share.

Some readers pointed out I’d been careless with the name of one of my stats, so I’m changing it. I’m going for something which is both clear and lightly amusing to convey the opposite of “Taskmaster” (concentration, organization, planning). This new label would thus signify a less serious, inattentive, action-oriented, and carefree approach to the world. I have some options in the poll below, but feel free to come up with other suggestions.

ADH-Whee! Replacement
  • Shiny!
  • Distract Ability
  • Tangential
  • Mmm-bored
  • Other (in reply)

0 voters

Thanks @biextroverts

UPDATE: Thanks so much for voting in. Based on the results, I’ve changed the ADH-Whee! stat to Shiny! in the current version. Cheers, all!