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  1. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    Creature Feature

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Tales, Mar 13, 2009.

    Hi I am planning a creature-based story for an animation project.

    But I do not know how to start or fill the gaps.
     
  2. Speedy
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    Speedy Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah well, we can't really give you much advice/help/direction with what you have just given us.


    More details would be slightly more helpful.
     
  3. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    Setting:
    Ww2 Singapore ---> a mysterious half sunken island.

    Characters confirmed so far:

    Protagonist: A young man who is orphaned when Japanese soldiers ransack his home
    Love interest: A girl who is a jinx
    Mentor: Captain of the ship, The Black Dragon
    An American Cook who develops an uneasy relationship with protagonist.
    A spoiled brat: son of a rich man and childhood arch rival to protagonist.

    A strange powerful lion/otter like beast- the Main creature.
    Other strange denizens of the mysterious island

    Platoon leader, Yamato and several Japanese soldiers
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Do you want us to come up with the story for you?
     
  5. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    I will use my brains as much as I can too! You guys can help too!

    But the thing I am very vexed about is that there are some plotholes I need some help on.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    But there is no plot at all (actor/goal/motivation/opposition) to expand upon. That is what you need to establish. The creature could be the opposition (obstacle or source of conflict), or it could bve instrumental in the goal (a search for a fabled creature, to prove it really exists). That is what you need to start with, some conceptualization of the central plot.

    Absent that, you have no story yet.
     
  7. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    can give an example?
     
  8. g1ng3rsnap9ed
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    What he's saying is that you have to come up with your own plot and nobody else can do it for you. Read a book or two, watch some creature-features, research mythologies and legends, whatever. But you need to find inspiration on your own. Its your story, not ours'.
     
  9. Tales
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    Ok I am trying not to watch anything except documentaries as I do not want to copy too much from others.

    Give me some time to come up with one.
     
  10. g1ng3rsnap9ed
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    g1ng3rsnap9ed Contributing Member

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    No rush. (Unless you're working on a deadline, that is.) Just post a synopsis when you are ready, and then maybe we can help.
     
  11. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    Ok Here we go..

    In WW2, Singapore was under the rule of the Japanese. Ah Yong, a young Chinese man, was forced to leave Singapore after his family was executed by the Japanese for harboring a "criminal". Joined up with an old neighbor, Choy Tau, and the help of a secret rebellion group, they prepared to escape the island country.

    However just when they were stopped by Japanese patrolmen, a bombing sabotage at Keppel Harbour covered their escape onto a fishing ship. They meet up with the boat's inhabitants including Captain Claw and a handful of refugees which he intended to smuggle out of Singapore.

    A storm sends the characters onto a strange mangrove habitat. Here they meet a strange powerful creature that would ignite the courage in their hearts once again.
     
  12. g1ng3rsnap9ed
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    g1ng3rsnap9ed Contributing Member

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    That's definitelly a start. The next thing that I would say is to start designing the characters and the monster. I'd help, but you seem a lot more knowledgable at this than me. :)
     
  13. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    I think nailing the story should be first before designing the characters..... I am a CG artist in training and I can draw and paint well.

    But I think the story has to fly before I start painting with the wacom.

    Anyone can advice how to go on from here?
    I have a clearer idea now but then... what's next?
     
  14. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    You can't get far without establishing your characters. Also, what you have is the bare bones of a storyline, but you still don't have a plot. Please see the threaqd What is Plot Creation and Development? to understand what I mean.
     
  15. Tales
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    Ok according to the link you gave me, my story would be comprised of Man VS Man and Man VS God.

    For an outline I will post later.
     
  16. g1ng3rsnap9ed
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    And the Man Vs Man Conflict is one of the many reasons of which you must start thinking up appropriate characters. If you mean MVM as in the characters bicker amongst one-another, then you must give them traits that will peeve another off. Remember to make them human and that not every decision they make has to be the right one.

    Its your story though, every madness has its own method. :)
     
  17. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Categorizing the conflict is far less important than seeing the componenbts of it: actor, goal, motivation, and opposition.

    You can think of it as an exercise in physics/dynamics. The goal defines a frame of reference, the actor is an object, and the motivation and opposition are forces that accelerate the object toward (hopefully!) the goal.
     
  18. Tales
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    Tales Member

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    Now I am confused.
     
  19. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    The reason for identifying the elements that make up the plot is to clarify what the dynamics are. the motivation is what moves the character toward the goal, the opposition is what pushes back. That tension is what converts a set of events into a story.
     
  20. Tales
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    Logline
    In WW2, Singapore was under the rule of the Japanese. After his family was kill by the secret police, Ah Yong was forced to escape. Joined with his old neighbour, Choy Tau, Ah Yong escapes from Keppel Harbour along with some other refugees. Later a storm leaves the characters on a mysterious island and they would come face to face with a creature that would reignite their courage and determination once again.

    Synopsis
    Singapore was under the rule of the Japanese. Ah Yong, a young Chinese man, was forced to leave Singapore after his family was executed by the Japanese. Together with his old neighbor, Choy Tau, they prepared to escape their island country.

    However just when they were stopped by Japanese patrolmen, a bombing sabotage at Keppel Harbour covered their escape onto a fishing ship. They meet up with the boat's inhabitants including Captain Wang Tian Long and a handful of refugees whom he intended to smuggle out of Singapore.

    Later a storm sends the characters onto a strange mangrove habitat. The characters get harassed by the unusual but fierce native predators that call this island home. Just when Ah Yong almost gets killed by one of the predators, he was saved by an huge big cat-like beast with a fluke for a tail.

    Eventually, a platoon of Japanese soldiers find the mangrove habitat. While the cat-like beast goes to stall the movements of the soldiers. Ah Yong tells his brethern that they have to believe in themselves in order to defeat their enemies. Using whatever weapons left and also the aggression of the native predators, they managed to kill off most of their enemies. But finally as the remaining Japanese close in, the cat like beast eventually loses the fight to the Japanese platoon leader leaving Ah Yong to finish the job once and for all.

    In the end, the creature was given a name and they all set sail with renewed courage to take the fate of their own country in their own hands.
     
  21. g1ng3rsnap9ed
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    Now there is definitelly a startm, you are on the right path now.
     
  22. Tales
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    so what's the next step?

    But before that, I have a problem is that the characters do not refer the aquatic big cat with a name since it's an entire new kind of of animal they had not seen before. So what do I call it in my story without using its name which is the title of the story. The only thing that the characters can see is that the creature looks like a lion and behaves like one except that it can swim like an otter.

    example:

    The ??? attacks the predators with a beast like fury.....
     
  23. Tales
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    Ok guys I have a problem

    Basically in my story the animals especially the predators that live on this strange island will be portrayed in a way that it's more correct like the animal documentaries that I grew up on and not in the sci fiction film way where they are portrayed as bloodlusting monsters and their prime goal is to eat humans.

    Now I see if I portray them as behaving correctly, it will not be as dramatic. Anyone can help?
     
  24. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Introduce a food shortage, or mothers protecting their young.
     
  25. Tales
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    Hmmm.... sounds logical, most predators in reality only attack anything they find only when they are either agitated or very hungry. Most of the case it's human actions indirectly or directly causing their aggression. Great!

    Anyone got phobia of rats is not going to like what I am putting in this story. He he he...
     
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