A literary analysis of the staff of ages


#1

My writing class instructor gave us an special assignment.
To write a paper analyzing an “in progress literary work” explaining the good points, how it works and what not.

Basically do the job of an editor, but there was a catch; it must be far off our comfort zone as you can. Since I do books and comics well… lets say it hard to pick something which isn’t relate to them (also all the movie scripts that i could find suck)

So I decided to do it about staff of ages and just for the heck of it(and to practice my english) wrote the draft outline in english.

Please note this a draft of an outline, so there will topics I will left vague like character and tropes analysis, the real analysis would require to much time and there no way in hell I gonna write the complete detailed analysis in english which I will have to rewrite in spanish.

I will instead just focus on the elements that stand out the most.

Will this have spoiler?
Yes, Obviously…

Will this be fun? Maybe, but probably not.
I could make jokes but I shouldn’t do that in analysis. At best this can be a learning experience about good witting and common mistakes.

Will I attempt to suggest changes?
Yes and no, I’m not sure how to explain this, but the editor job is to point out what works, what don’t and how or don’t works (also find typos and grammar errors but more of a polishing near release thing, also my english isn’t that good for that).

I’m not supposed to propose changes or contributions in the history itself, just how it is presented.

Now to answer why I’m posting it on FEU?
Well I’m not really sure, maybe I wanna show my skills in order to get attention or something. (those pesky human needs for attention)

EDIT

Is this a personal attack against SOA writters team?
Of course it is! What other reason i could ever have? evil laugh plays on background

Now on all seriousness if that even a word, i loved SOA challeging and interesting gameplay, but part of the insentive to play , at least for me but i pretty sure that everyone is influenced by it in some degree, is the history; which is engaging but it really take me out of the inmersion on how often it break my suspension of disbelief with arkward dialog and lack of consistency.
Hopefully this could help SOA team and other aspiring fire emblem writters.

Now let get started shall we.

The Introduction

Good points.
The initial exposition, is well structured, is clear, short and concise. A good thing in introductory exposition.
It shows how it was made to be accompanied by the graphics (portraits and the map) when they are added.

Needs revision.

The nation of Fortuita was built. It would serve as the heart and bulwark of mankind.
In Fortuita’s wake grew other nations:
Riviere, Ezpatha, Arynden, and Toska.
Each nation had their own
motives, dreams, and ambitions. <— I found a grammatic error yay! :smiley:

The introduction of the kingdoms is too flat and unmemorable, introductions must be short in order not to bore the reader however the kingdoms are one of the main reasons why this introduction exists in the first place.

Giving a description of a short sentence for each kingdom seems essential.

The tribal Gahum was created not long afterwards by those who shunned this new way of life, preferring ancient traditions.

The introduction of tribal groups, is disconnected from the narrative. Easily fixed with a rephrasing that links the narrative at the end of the introduction of the kingdoms and the begin of the introduction of the tribes.

Peace lasted for innumerable generations. Eventually, Arynden’s king,Oberon, struck at Fortuita.It was the first act of violence
since the age of the Mists.

The use of “eventually” in this context make it seems as if the striking fortuita was something predestined, something that everyone knew it will happen. It should come as a surprise since “Peace lasted for innumerable generations.”
And in consequence the “It was the first act of violence since the age of the Mists.” should be more shocking.

Chapter 1

Good points.
The introduction of the character show both their personalities and the current situation is presented in a well enough manner.
The character are flesh correctly although Elijah was left a little underdeveloped in this instance there plenty of time flesh him out later.

Needs revision.
However there is a unnecessary over use of pronouns and names, this makes the conversations to fell unnatural and prevents it from flowing smoothly.
Real people can tell when someone his referring to them with previous conversation or mentions, one doesn’t need to tell the name of the intended receiver in conversation in every dialog exchange.

I get that this is the introduction of new characters and all but that not an excuse for clunky dialog.

Some example, in just the introduction, will be:
———————————————————————————-

My lord Sawyer, Fort Cyrcel draws near. It could be dangerous.Allow me to ride in front of you.
Relax, Eagle.

Eagle is sawyer only retainer, why would sawyer call his name when eagle clearly is already addressing sawyer? There no need for that. Although here isn’t so bad the constant repetition on the conversations is the root of the problem not this instance on himself, if there were less of this redundant name calling it wouldn’t be a problem here.

‘We’, Sawyer?

Although sawyer name is the least mentioned name in the conversation that still doesn’t justify it

You must admit, Lord Owen,that he was quite justified in sleeping

Elijah doesnt seems like is speaking only to Owen , rather to the entire group, but might as well be just nick picking in this one.

Of course you may, Eagle.Let me just write this down: ‘On this day, the 13th of June, near Fort Cyrcel, Eagle was–’

This is a very obvious one, the name is repeated 2 times and while eagle name is needed to be on “On this day, the 13th of June, near Fort Cyrcel, Eagle was—” there no reason for mention it the first time.

——————————————————————————————-

This problem in most of the conversations and should be addressed in all future dialog.

Using pronouns and names is not bad, there are situation where overusing can help convey certain things.
For example in formal conversations or people that aren’t familiar with one another or just aren’t in good terms.

This however wouldn’t be the case here. Yes they are nobles and servants, but they are friends and even though their is a certain level of respect from retainer to lords, refereeing by their names o every last conversation exchange it is not natural.

The arrive to the fort.

Good points.
Here in the conversation with the guard well… I cant really say something good about the guard conversation, however the dialog with the commander although unemotional is has a well constructed believable sequence.

Need revision.
There just no consistency with what one would logically assume a guard would ask and expect from them or even what follows after the guard when they speak with the commander.

I am Owen,and this is Sawyer.We’re here to see the commander.It’s about this letter he sent to the queen.

First, when they ask for their identities Owen just gave their names…? No official title ?

Of course, sirs! Apologies for the wait. You can’t be too careful these days, what with Arynden knocking on our door.
Please, proceed inside.

Next he is apologizing… What for? For being paranoid? But he didn’t , logically it will be because

“Halt! Identify yourselves!” .

But its not enough if he gonna apologize in that degree there should be an equal reason for it.
There a lack of paranoia or fear on “Halt! Identify yourselves!” this isn’t conveyed correctly. It has to be more aggressive.

The previous problem is carried on to the talk with the fort commander

“And the men, well, they’re mostly in good shape,but the recent situation has them a bit on edge.”

The guard weak reaction don’t justify it. They are seeing the start of the first war in centuries there need to be more emotion on it.

Very well, private.Lead us to them. My lords?
I expect we’ll discover whether you’ll be enough very shortly.

An imminent attack is coming to his understaffed fort and he not only completely calm but unemotional? There no regret, no panic or surprise. This happens to the commander in some more instances during the chapter.

The after match.

Good points.
Good constructed sequence with logical follow ups and also; better use of pronouns and names.

Need revision.

I understand. However, given the state of the troops and the state of the fort, defeating the next wave of Aryndese is nigh impossible. We may be able to slow them down, but this fort will likely be lost.

The commander is now switching between thankful and unemotional. His hope is about to leave and he just… “understands”.

It seems to me that the writers just don’t pay enough attention to side characters on the basis that there are just side character.

That just wont do. if the entire cast isn’t properly developed it will end up harming not only the main cast but the over all history as well.

And that was my literary analysis of the intro and first chapter.
Hopefully I will have the time to make another draft on english before having to submit them to my teacher.


A literary analysis of the staff of ages part 2
#2

The line “Each nation had their own motives, dreams and ambitions” really bugs me as it doesn’t actually tell me anything specific. It’s kind of implied that each nation is has their own agenda - that’s why they’re separate nations! It’s just a bit of a redundant sentence. As they say: show, don’t tell.


#3

Alright who knows if this analysis it will ever be well received or effort to publish it is worth it, but I wont think about it to much.
Having had a conversation with one of the member of the SOA writing team and now with a new perspective. I come to understand their decisions, my errors and misunderstandings.

And while I cannot agree with every point of their decisions. I will keep them closely in mind the current and future analysis.

This time i will try to express a little more and elaborate more on my arguments and maybe use examples.

Please note this a draft of an outline, so there will topics I will left vague like character and tropes analysis, the real analysis would require to much time and there no way in hell I gonna write the complete detailed analysis in english which I will have to rewrite in spanish.

I will instead just focus on the elements that stand out the most.

FAQ

Will this have spoiler?
Yes, Obviously…

Will this be fun?
Maybe, but probably not.I could make jokes (in fact i will) but I shouldn’t do that in analysis. At best this can be a learning experience about good witting and common mistakes.

Will I attempt to suggest changes?
Yes and no, I’m not sure how to explain this, but the editor job is to point out what works, what don’t and how or don’t works (also find typos and grammar errors but more of a polishing near release thing, also my english isn’t that good for that).

I’m not supposed to propose changes or contributions in the history itself, just how it is presented.

Now to answer why I’m posting it on FEU?
Well I’m not really sure, maybe I wanna show my skills in order to get attention or something. (those pesky human needs for attention)

Is this a personal attack against SOA writters team?
Yes! In fact after im done with them i will go after the new TLP writter team and make them change the title.
"The last promise. Broken promise" the heck with that?! might as well we should start calling all FE
"Fire emblem. The emblem of fire"

Now on all seriousness if that even a word, i loved SOA challeging and interesting gameplay, but part of the insentive to play , at least for me but i pretty sure that everyone is influenced by it in some degree, is the history; which is engaging but it really take me out of the inmersion on how often it break my suspension of disbelief with arkward dialog and lack of consistency.
Hopefully this could help SOA team, other aspiring fire emblem writters and me to growth as a writter.

Now let get started shall w—

( nero?! what are you doing here? dont pop out of nowhere like u scared me to death! )

Chapter 2

Map sequence

Fort Cyrcel summoned a messenger to carry Lord Owen and Lord Sawyer’s message to the capital city of Idethra. After a week of travel, the message arrived in Queen Kalvesta’s Royal Court. Seneca, Kalvesta’s head advisor,
now bears the message as he begins to present it to his queen.

The capital city of Idethra, for a good 8 seconds i was wondering about which country capital city it was talking about.
During my conversation with one of the writers they explained about how they will bring more about each country as needed and how they want to make stronger associations with repetitions of names.
Here was one of the places were redundancy was welcome but alas there none.

For a little while i forgot that kalvesta is the name of the queen of fortuita and by relational logic idethra is fortuita capital and that is taking in mind i pay decent attention to the intro.
That the reason why I talking about a more elaborated kingdom introduction back on the intro.

The queen and his adviser

Good points

The discussion between the queen and Seneca is very well executed, it does not show that neither of the two is right and that great.

Need revision

I’m relieved that they are in good health and that the attack managed to be routed. That fort has been within our borders long before I was even alive. Send an envoy with some supplies and a squadron of soldiers to aid the commander and his men.

They were after the land not the fort. It doesn’t make sense. Also trying to use counter argument like “long before I was even alive” against something like “The land it is built on is ancestral Aryndese territory!” is senseless, it could changed for something with more precedence like “centuries before I was even alive”


(For some reason I fell like she is referring to me, weird…)

Exposition time!

I am doing everything I can to protect the people! You have to remember, dear, that this is the first war humanity has known since the Black Mist wars of old. Velhari didn’t leave many treatises on strategy in her wake, unfortunately. Her greatest gift to us was the Staff. We could certainly attempt to make use of it. Our royal blood is the key to its guarding door, after all. But its power is so raw… So… ancient. I feel unsafe utilizing it for anything other than ceremonial accolades. Regardless, I just don’t believe violence in response to violence is the correct choice here.

.

Velhari didn’t leave many treatises on strategy in her wake, unfortunately.

Why velhari would have anything to do with not having strategy books?
Was she a master strategist, librarian in charge of preserving books and also the only strategist in the world which wrote books back then?
Even if all of that is true, it shouldn’t be mentioned there.

The point in this sentence seem to be making clear the fact that there not much information on strategy and risky to take a reckless path, talking about velhari in this sentence robs importance to it
Mention her in the staff dialog would be a better fit.

Our royal blood is the key to its guarding door, after all.

One thing is giving enough information to let attentive player make guesses, which they can get wrong, and another is give plot revealing facts.
This sentence hurts the narrative pretty badly, it destroy the intrigue of why senneca pursuit belle.
Letting the reader know where the plot is going from so far away in such obvious way is a something that shouldnt be done.

It turns the narrative boring as he will know were the plot is going. This can be keep in the narrative, but not like this it need to be way more subtle.

Although it will be preferred to write it off since it will be mentioned in way better form later on the game and it will build intrigue better.

This is a example of what i mean.
Now i shouldnt be doing this, doing repharsing myself i mean, but im struggling with not having a print sheet of paper with the dialog where i could point out and write notes with a pencil the problems and good points.

Just dont take my repharsing too serious, heck it could even have grammatic errors for all i know.

With books, staff and sublte hit of the guarding door

I am doing everything I can to protect the people! You have to remember, dear, that this is the first war humanity has known since the Black Mist wars of old. Without many treatises on strategy, a careless action could turn this in a disaster. Even with the Staff, Velhari greatest gift to us behind the sealed door.
Attempting to make use of a power So… raw So… ancient. I…I feel unsafe utilizing it for anything other than ceremonial accolades.

Regardless, I just don’t believe violence in response to violence is the correct choice here.


With books, staff and no hint of the guarding door

I am doing everything I can to protect the people! You have to remember, dear, that this is the first war humanity has known since the Black Mist wars of old. Without many treatises on strategy, a careless action could turn this in a disaster. Even with the Staff, Velhari greatest gift to us on our side.
Attempting to make use of a power So… raw So… ancient. I…I feel unsafe utilizing it for anything other than ceremonial accolades.

Regardless, I just don’t believe violence in response to violence is the correct choice here.

Sabastian and senneca

I suppose we wouldn’t, Sebastian.
Come, let’s walk.
I’m certainly in need of some fresh
air in light of the circumstances.

I’m still not gonna let redundant use of name escape my wrath!

Let me finish, Sebastian.

Or here

Don’t I always, Seneca? However, it would be best if we took this discussion outside.
We wouldn’t want any stray ears listening in on us, now would we?

Now this is some really awkward foreshadowing, the problem is not the dialog it self the problem is that nero just happens magically to pop up on the right moment when they are talking of their “evil plan”.


(I see u havent learned your lesson nero, dont go teleporting on people, it is rude)

Nero need to be introduced on to the narrative, but I don’t meant it formally, him appearing on the castle corridor saying something like
have a good night on your way out, sir’s” (he his a castle guard he have a excuse to be there) right before the start of the Sebastian and Seneca conversation and then over hearing their fishy conversation would give him a reason to follow them and hear the rest.

Belle and Oona

Good points
A nice introduction of Oona and Charles with no redundant use of names, what else could I ever ask :,)

Need revisions


(She wasnt joking about the immediately part)

There not a illusion of passage of time between the travel from the castle to the village. They just teleport to the village, making some kind of short scene with no dialog of them leaving the castle could be solution.

(This guy have some serious sharp sight.)

Well,well,would you look at this? The princess herself is on her way here!
Looks like royal blood will be spilling sooner than we thought!

The bandit boss spouting bell from so far and so rapidly doesn’t give a good sense of pacing or adecuate distance.
Delaying his dialog a 1 or 2 turns would give a better pace to the narrative and distance.

Is the princess on a pegasus? Bring out the wyvern, boys!
Kill her and capture her beast! We’ll be living like kings if we can sell a pegasus!

Even with that sight, he couldn’t see a belle jet black pegasus, ¿What?

And that will be all for the chapter 2,barely had time to make the draft this time, even used more time that i should had by the time a realized it was already 3 am, i been super busy with art school and programming courses, and yes i gotta have both cuz i need a real career acording to my parents. Now i must sleep. See u on the next analysis.