Friday, February 26, 2010

Ravy Comics hates me and probably you as well.

Ahh, Ravy Comics. Joe Pullin seems like a pretty cool guy. I mean, he links to us (and RKS on DLsite!) and likes RKS, so he's always welcome around here to talk about things and post and read and whatever! I'm pretty sure he's even posted in our comments section, though I don't recall seeing his name. Probably under some anonymous tag, which is fine, I think.

That said, he's calling me out. Nah, he didn't mention lil' ol' Letty Whiterock by name, but you can click that link up there and see for yourself. It doesn't take an Iris with a Death-Note-God-Complex to see why kids love Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Anyways, I figure I'll publicly address the points from his latest episode of Ranty Comics/Ravy-kreuzstilette/SaSA Sucks and Letty Sucks and Here's Why.


First of all, Mr. Pullin, TDOMMX and I have to hand it to you for figuring out how to get past the .dat file requirement. It makes perfect sense, but it's something neither of us really thought about it, for obvious reasons. Let me go ahead and address two things from your entry, though.

"I've been wondering why the .dat files are even there. Why aren't they compiled into the .exe? Are the .dat files generated by the program that erka:es used to make RKS? Are they a security device to keep people like me from being able to easily rip the graphics and turn them into comic strips?"

Do you wonder this about everything that has .dat files? In many cases, .dat files are nothing more than containers the game reads from; in this case, they contain graphic files, music files, etc. Rather than kept in accessible folders, they're compiled into files that require some sort of decompiler to extract. There are a number of reasons for this, and I can think of at least one: the readme.txt files included in both RKS and RKSF contain links to the websites of the musicians whose works are included in the games, artists such as AM3, Vampire Revolution, and you-fulca (Wingless Seraph). Have you noticed that some of the tracks are not included on their websites and that they actually have albums? If the songs were not in some way attained through monetary compensation, they were probably licensed, and to respect the artists' wishes, they are protected from being given out freely. Of course, the creation and release of the RKSDAD breaks these conventions, but not much can be done about that at this point, right? In fact, that's one of the reasons why TDOMMX was initially opposed to releasing it.

"However when playing RKS the whole song doesn't play. Only about five to five-and-a-half seconds is played. The rest is cut off. I have been having a bear of a time trying to find a song to fit in there. I can't even get Megaman X4 stage start edited correctly."

Maybe you're just doing it wrong.

Of course, that's not why we're here. After all, if you were just talking about that, you'd get a mention, maybe, but you certainly wouldn't get a long-winded article! I like you, but I don't think I like you that much! I kid, I kid. Anyways, scrolling down on your professionally-formatted entry, I discovered a section entitled "Hatred by RKS." Initially, I believed this to be an incredible new Zorne-based fragrance in the long line of Rosenkreuzstilette high-class perfumes, but it seems I was mistaken. Oh no, this was the beginning of an epic tale of treachery and tragedy, not unlike the great Greek and Roman classics of yore. Let us jump deep into this rabbit hole and play the Alice Game, the Most Dangerous Game, the one you just lost. I will leave the lot of you to read the entry itself and gather what you will from it.

Letty Whiterock, the creator of this fine establishment, is an MFer. That's right. I'm a Magnificent Fan. At least, that's what Joe Pullin, creator of the magnificent Ravy Comics, thinks. The Magnificent Fans are those who take solace in the misfortune of others by scouring the internet for terrible Rosenkreuzstilette pictures and fanfiction, bringing them to the light, holding them high above for the world to gaze upon, and then dropping them from said height to watch them shatter like a beautiful, priceless vase stolen from deep within one of the most illustrious art museums this world has to offer. I don't know which one that is, but it exists, and I'm sure the priceless vases within are astounding. We then dance around the broken remains of the work, letting forth our tribal cries, before offering them to Iris Sepperin herself, the all-powerful successor of the mighty sun god.

Letty Whiterock is also a critic, a reviewer of works. Whether I am a constructive critic is left to your opinions, but I am a critic nonetheless. As such, one of the things that I do is rate and review things; in your supplied instance, I reviewed a number of images found on both pixiv and DeviantArt. This is apparently me going to sites and trashing art that doesn't follow RKS styling. Shall we revisit the DeviantArt entry, the one that people seem to have the most issues with? Let's do just that! New commentary time!


In the pixiv showcase, I actually gave praise to a SuperJustin work, in case anyone missed it. That said, this picture sucks. Sorry, it's just crappy. The proportions are awkward, the lines are jagged and squiggly, making the entire picture look like it's about to cry, and the shading is nonsensical. Now, why would I say such terrible things about this piece? Because NO ONE ELSE WILL. Go look at the comments. Go look at MOST DeviantArt comments. Nothing but praise, very little negative criticism. No one improves on praise alone. That's the way of the world.


This picture suffers from the same problems as the Justin picture above. While the styling is fine, the proportions are off, it's terribly colored, and that face is just atrocious. Again, Trumi apologized for the flaws after the fact and changed the initial description, taking out the "Grolla's an inquisitor!" part. Take a look at Trumi's main page, and look at his latest picture of Fran from Final Fantasy XII. That's pretty good, actually! You know what that is? That's a sign of improvement. Did my criticism have anything to do with that? Probably not. However, if it did, beautiful. That's why I do this, and I would expect people to do the same of anything I do. I just happen to take a tough love approach.


PROPORTIONS. PRO. POR. TIONS. If you want to turn someone into a Jigglypuff or a Pikachu or a Kirby, go for it. If you do, though, at least pay attention to your own work, and don't give Zorne a left arm that looks like a rake. Also, that bomb is going to fall out of her hand. Just saying. I do not hate this artist, and I do not hate this concept. That does not change the fact that this picture is bad.


I liked this one. Most of her work has a level of amateur charm and cuteness to it, especially things like this Schwer, which, as Justin pointed out and YukoHana admitted, has a messed-up looking hood. This is trash-talking?


This is a screenshot. Fuck you.


This, like YukoHanna's, has a level of amateur charm that comes off as cute in a way, and it's a comic with a joke that I actually found funny, probably because I read "bloody" in a British way, and it tickled me. It's up there with this, from which I used Grolla's face as an avatar for a while. The art is not grand, but it works, because it's a comic. They are not supposed to be Michaelangelo's works. Comics are made to entertain, and this succeeded for me!


This picture is flat-out gone, and I didn't really hate on it outside of saying it was fairly mediocre. It was average at best, but my biggest issue was the fact that the characters were not listed as "girls from RKS" but as "Richard Refraktia's sisters." That's not who they are. That's never who they were. There was a huge problem with canon/fanon crossover, something I will be addressing later!


Most of the people he draws have a specialness about them, and sometimes, that specialness is that the look like they've stretched and/or squished between a car and a bookshelf. I liked Grolla's sword but disliked her portrayed frailty. Grolla's a badass, and I feel she should always be portrayed as one.


I don't know who this is. This isn't Trauare. This is not RKS art. This shouldn't even be here. Don't label it Trauare. It's not Trauare.


Proportions are good (though her head is a big; whatever, she's an anime character)! Detail and shading are excellent! Grolla is both hot and badass! I praised this. A lot. No trash-talking here.


There is nothing wrong with fan art. I happen to draw terrible fan art sometimes myself! However, if you put a picture into the ether and want absolutely no criticism and have no desire to improve as an artist, then don't bother putting your work up for the world to see. One of the aspects of being an artist is perfecting your form, and criticism must be accepted and applied if you hope to achieve some level of experience and progress. A lot of artists on pixiv and DeviantArt didn't just pick up a pen and start animating Touhou flash videos. They practiced, they improved, and they made something happen. Many took criticism from teachers and peers and applied it to better their works. And it shows. Yeah, there will be haters who simply bash your work for no reason, regardless of what it is or your desire to improve. One of the things that both Kiora and myself got on Justin about was that his work lacked heart and it seemed as though he had no desire to improve. Well, looking at his more recent pieces, it appears that he has taken this to heart and is actually improving in a lot of ways. Good for him! That's what being an artist is about. Prepare to get shot down a lot. Use those as stepping stones to move forwards.

But we are not finished yet! There is so much more to your entry, Mr. Joe Pullin, creator of the award-winning, published Ravy Comics! Let me copy-paste this little portion of your thesis paper on why RKS fans are causing global warming, ruining the global economy, and persecuting a religious people for slaying our Lord and Savior.

"The Mfers hate fanfics they don't write themselves. Some of the stuff that is said goes beyond the pale. Rosie O'Donnell would tell these people to chill out. If you decide to give say Luste an older brother, you're a retard. (Their word.) You'd be lucky to get called just that."

Allow me to express my own opinions on fanfiction. These opinions do not necessarily reflect those of the Magnificent Fans Guild of the Great Church of the Holy Empire L.L.C. and should be considered merely as the inane ramblings of a winter mastermind.

"Fanfiction should be plausible. Situations and relationships should have some basis in truth, and original characters should be introduced in a way that is entirely feasible and does not interfere with canon.

Ex. Do not write a fanfic about Edward Elric's sister. Edward Elric does not and never had a sister. The creation of a sister character completely destroys the entire concept that Fullmetal Alchemist revolves around: brotherhood. You can, however, write a fanfic about Edward Elric's limited interaction with a new female state alchemist who looks up to him in a brotherly way but otherwise has absolutely no effect on his life and journey or the original story."

That said, we go back to Bubbleplash's artwork of Lecht and Rink, referred to as "Richard Refraktia's sisters." Misinformation spread by the Super Justin creation led to the inference that Justin created the characters made by their respective authors, which led to an issue of fanon leaking into canon. One of our own writers is only slightly guilty of this as well; in his case, however, he clearly marked his work as "fanon," and it was still considered truth. Believe it or not, Justin has been the leader of the entire casual RKS fandom through his contributions on DeviantArt, and he has pulled a number of people in. These are the people who are not going to spend their time on Google researching RKS; we didn't even have a wiki at the time this truly started, so there was no central point for accurate RKS information (and as far as I can tell, there still isn't). I don't care if someone, be it you or Justin or some random 2ch user, wants to give Sichte and Grolla a daughter with a robot arm for a leg. Just make it clear that it has nothing to do with the original story. This is not a difficult concept to grasp.

This is the huge problem I have with the world of Touhou. Fanon becomes canon, and as a result, nothing makes sense. Alice Margatroid is often portrayed as weak or crazy, when in truth, she's neither. Game dialogue shows she's just a cocky jerk. However, fan interpretations have put actual characterization in the backseat, and as a result, everything you know is wrong. Right is up, short is hard, ef is not a tale of memories.

"Funny things is, go to the haters sites and Rosenkreuz Stilette rarely appears. So now you know another reason why I call them Magnificent Fans."

On Google, Schwer and Schwer Alike is the fourth main result for "rosenkreuzstilette". The first is the Hongfire thread providing the torrent. Second is the RKS Wiki. Third is some random fanfiction. The Schwer blog managed to beat out the Hardcore Gaming 101 and TVTropes articles! In addition, my Let's Play of RKS, the very first LP of the game, a blind playthrough done within days of the game's release, in among the first page of results and one of the first two video results! So don't you tell me that Letty Whiterock the Magnificent Hater Fan is ruining RKS. In fact, you might be saying "Letty, this wasn't about you! This was about some other people!" Let me know of the other people who consider themselves RKS fans and "trash-talked" both fanmade artwork and stories.

You know who's ruining RKS? Michael Sepperin. That said, you gave me a good laugh today, Mr. Joe Pullin, awe-inspiring creator of the greatest, man-made icon in human history, Ravy Comics. Hell, you gave me a reason to update too.

ps - For the 1.06a TL patch, we're looking for some feedback and constructive criticism of our own for a final script. Report here for details.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

More Wiki Madness

Some things have come to my attention, and perhaps it is my fault for not really making any notice of it, but the RKS Wiki is under fire once again. This time, I won't be fussing at anyone in particular!

This is from the interview in the back of the RKS doujin that zaku6 made:


Zakuro: Oh, by the way, there's a wiki that the foreigners made, too. Can't help but worry that they'll post content the creators don't want up or just write down crazy things. Like, they wrote something about Iris and Light from Death Note having the same aim (becoming the god of a new world).

Hissatsu: Whaaaaat. Is it really alright to put up stuff like that on a wiki?

Zakuro: They might be using their wiki as more of a place to put up personal thoughts on the game. I'd at least like them to draw a line between official and unofficial information... Really, if you're going to do something, do it right. That's what I think.


I don't remember when I gave the okay to post things like entire sprite rips or zaku6's doujin, but I certainly do remember telling everyone who contributes to it to only put up verifiable, factual information. Well, you didn't, and this is what a portion of the Japanese RKS fanbase thinks of us. Great job, guys!

Please remedy this for future reference. I still don't know how exactly the wiki works, but most of the images and information need to be taken down. Period. The way things are now reflects very poorly on us, and with certain people going around putting up terrible information and other people posting entire graphic rips, we now have to run damage control.

zaku6 is absolutely right: If you're going to do something, do it right.