"Empty my heart, of Thee -
Its single Artery -
Begin, and leave Thee out -
Simply Extinction's Date -"
- Emily Dickinson
"Millenia of human progress. Development. Our bodies forming from dust. I'm not talking Genesis here. I'm talking old stars pulsing one last time and ages turning their bones to our marrow. Something like that, at least. Art, too. We've gone from fingerpaintings on the walls of our caves to writing our names in the stars. Discovering and changing. And god damn, I still remember Mars. Still remember when all this started. And now the time's come for it to end. Slow, though. And till that last day, people will remember 2186 as the year things started to fall apart. Earth fell. And to dust we return."
London fell first. Old, old buildings crumbling and stone that had long lain strong and silent became ash. All burning in the night while the air was all screams. A storm, broken by thunder: that one terrible note, tearing from the fleshless throats of a myth. The Reapers came. Khar'Shan had gone silent, but hadn't the Batarians always been isolationist? Separatist? Now the shriek - that note - is so close to home, so close to the bone, that it's impossible not to hear it. Vancouver. New York. Cairo. Tokyo. Paris. Melbourne. Moscow. Istanbul. Brasília. And more. All just names now. All hit by the sound and that cold fury and turning from reality to memory in weeks. All while millions turned into photographs and prayers each day. But it was better that way. Worse was when they came back.
The ashes of cities and of homes lie cold, passed over by the shadows of things that shouldn't be, but fires still burn, hidden and smokeless. There's nothing like hopelessness to put fight pounding in your heart. Men and women fight tooth and claw for their half-dead homeworld, and there are whispers at night that the very same war is being fought amongst the stars. That they are not alone. A name hangs over this Resistance, on Earth and its skies and out in the blackness. 'Shepard.' It's a name that has shaken the ashen cities and the broken roads - the dry lakes and the empty homes - with three words, loud as the Reaper's note:
"Take Earth Back."
So yes, the release of Mass Effect 3 has put a craving in me. A craving for the sort of awesome that only Bioware's wonderful universe can offer. However, aside from that my idea is vague. I know that I'd like to place a roleplay within the Reaper War, but I don't want to play as or opposite a canon character. Sure, 'Shepard', 'Anderson', 'Alenko', might be names that crop up but they'd be distant presences and symbols of hope more than anything else. I'd quite like to write something based on the peripheries of the Resistance on Earth - something with the same post-apocalyptic element of survival at all costs that would no doubt encourage; maybe even elements of survival horror. That isn't set in stone, though. What I really want is someone I can construct a fantastic story with. Whether it's fighting Cerberus on Omega or hiding from husks on Earth, I'm open to suggestions.
There's something else that bears saying, though. Just because there's a war going on and it's set within Shepard's operatic space epic, that doesn't mean I want this to be high-powered. While the stakes are pretty unequivocally high, our characters will not be saving the world in parallel with Shepard's storyline. This will be personal, gritty, and immediate. Characters will be fighting for survival, both their own, and that of their species, but neither one will be enough to turn the tide. I want a sense of fighting a losing battle; of desperation, and of resolve. In as far as characters go, I am not looking to be playing as or opposite, say, 'The best damn sniper the Resistance has got'. Neither of us will be playing heroes. Think more civillians with attitude, small-time mercs fighting in the name of a higher cause, scientists forced to take up arms, Alliance infantry, escaped criminals, gang-bangers, desk-job officers. That sort of thing. Fish out of water. I want grit and I want shadow. But with darkness so deep, even the smallest acts of heroism, selfish or selfless, profit-driven or purposeful, can shine like the sun.
And that doesn't go to say that, even in the fires of a burning world, love can't grow, right? In short, I'm looking for someone to play a female character to my male...and, ideally, whether they're working together to survive or to do what they can for the war effort or both, I'd like a turbulent sort of relationship to form. I'd like slow-burning sexual tension, perhaps even alongside outright dislike, rivalry, distrust. Conflicting desires: wishing not to get too close to anyone in case they're turned or go traitor, grinding against that smouldering realisation in the back of your head...if these really are your last days, what will you most regret not doing? So yes. Romance. But my rather loose definition of it: rough and and hot.
That's what I'm looking for out of the game. Here's what I'm looking for in a co-writer:
Above all, and I cannot stress this enough, good, literary writing. I don't care about what tense you use or whether you prefer to write in the first or third person. What I do care about is the quality of the writing itself. I classify quality as a combination of three things: a style suitable for the roleplay (note: experimental styles get me a little over-excited; interpret that as you will); an expressive level of detail and description, studded with goodies like imagery and the like; and good characterisation. You may be able to belch out great long posts on a good day, but if the quality is not there I simply will not bite. That said, I would prefer multi-paragraph posts where detail is paramount but when the action just needs to keep on rolling on then shorter ones will, obviously, be fine. Because that's another thing I'd like in my ideal roleplaying partner: initiative, confidence - things that will inspire my trust in you and your ideas.
Someone capable of playing female characters. I do not care much about your real life gender, although there is an undeniable novelty to writing alongside someone whose gender matches their character's. I just want someone capable of playing interesting, balanced characters every bit as psychologically complex and realistic as any real person worth their salt. For more details on what I like to see in other people's characters, please do check out my O/Os, as they are linked in my signature. It's a little old and outdated but it should do the trick.
Someone with some prior knowledge of the Mass Effect games and their setting. This isn't absolutely essential if you feel you're a quick learner and are willing to do some research, all the while feeling like this'd be the sort of thing you'd like anyway...But it'll be easier on you if you know what you're up to.
While I am not as insistent on this as I am on the previous three aspects of my ideal writing partner, it would certainly be very nice if you were something of a prompt poster as well. Don't panic. I'm not talking tennis serve speed of back-and-forth posting here. What I would like to see, though, is a good, solid post every day or three...perhaps more often if we're in a scene of the roleplay where things are a little more fast-paced. Again, use your initiative.
A little creativity and a dash of imagination also certainly would not go amiss, alongside a touch of originality. I want to collaborate on a plot, characters, etc. with you. I'd like us to be able to inspire one another.
Thank you for reading this list. I am aware that I may come across as a total bastard as a result of this. However, the kind of writer I am looking for will not balk. Rather, they will agree that they are looking for the same thing. These are all things that I try to bring out in myself as well. I'm no hypocrite (I hope) and, as such, I also hope to be able to offer you all of the above and as much more as I can give, if you choose to write with me.
I also wouldn't complain if you could play a total clone of Jack/Subject Zero...
If you're still reading, and feel that the above might just apply to you, then you might be who I'm looking for! Come at me!
:: Any Questions? ::
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:: Thanks for Listening ::
"Erase the Root - no Tree -
Thee - then - no me -
The Heavens stripped -
Eternity's vast pocket, picked -"
- Emily Dickinson