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> Will This Ever End?, Megatokyo
IvanGrasilich
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:21 PM
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I've been reading this comic for years. On and on goes the story... but never is anything put to a real conclusion. The Largo and Erika incident is illustrative of this... It seemed for 2-3 strips as though each character was evolving. Then, Piro puts them right back into the status quo. Why bother having a linear story if nothing is ever going to end? Does Piro ever even intend to conclude the series? Or will it be just a series of nonsensical anti-climaxes that serve only to artifically prolongue the story?

I like the characters in Megatokyo, but there has been little to no evolution in any of them from the moment they were introduced. Geez, Largo could at least be adapted to represent what is 'cool' on the internet at the current time. Calling someone a 'leet d00d' nowadays is more an insult than a compliment. It implies being an incoherent and immature twat. Words like 'gosu' and the like are in much more common use... So why doesn't Largo adapt? Right now he's exactly the same as he was when the strip started. Piro is just as bad. With the exception of the revelation between him and Seraphim regarding how Miho wasn't worth it, there's no real difference in his character from when he landed in Japan. He's still the exact same shy guy with low self-esteem... no change.

The other characters are just as stagnant. I thought it would be an interesting discourse to have the cynical Erika take comfort in the bizarre fantasy world of Largo, but instead, she's just reverted back to the same relationship she had with him before. What's the point?

When relationships and plots do not evolve, they grow tired. A linear story which does not end loses its flavor, and becomes a soap opera. I'll continue to read Megatokyo, it's a habit after all, but I must say that I do not enjoy it nearly as much as I used to. If, however, there is some subtly to character development of which I have not taken notice of, please inform me of such.
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TheGreatHibiki
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:41 PM
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I don't know what's up your butt but come on.... It was bound to happen unless we do an overwelming reponse on changing the story nothing is going to change.
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IvanGrasilich
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:44 PM
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Not the kind of productive response I was hoping for. What exactly is 'it' which you are referring to? The stagnation of the story?

I'll be back in a few hours to see responses. Thanks to all who reply.
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TheBigN
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:44 PM
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What do you want in character development? If Fred focused on, say one character's emotional and social development throughout the story, MT would have to be here for years to come. I doubt that many people would have that willpower to keep watching. And even it sometimes gets annoying that we see a mini-drama for a couple of strips that immediately switches to something else, that's just Fred's style. It's really, really hard to write about one character consistently, and I don't know about you, but not many people would have the wherewithal to do it.

I appreciate your viewpoint, and each opinion is his own, but I think there has been some examples of character development, just probably not the way you're used to it, such as in Largo's becoming (somewhat) more subdued, or Kimiko becoming more independant. But Megatokyo means something different to each person, and Fred, cannot and will not cater to any one person's whims, because after all, it's his comic, and he can stop whenever he wants too, which could be in years, or (god forbid) in months, weeks or days. I hope this provides a decent answer. If not, PM me, and we'll talk...

This post has been edited by TheBigN2007 on Apr 7 2004, 04:51 PM
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Hignaki
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:47 PM
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For Largo, calling someone "l33t d00d" IS a compliment. We all know that it's evil to do that on the internet ('cept for here), but this is Megatokyo. Live with it. I've come to the conclusion that MT is some sort of "alternate universe" that is Tenchi is famous for. Yes, they're in Japan, but they can have fun being stranded ("stranded" probably isn't the case anymore). There HAS been change in the characters, a bit of change. Largo acually started off kinda cool (a DIFFERENT cool). Remember the coffeepot incident?
"Not as cool as poisoning, but strangely satisfying"
The Largo now wouldn't say that. He'd probably say something like:
"No! Piro! The 3vil is after you!"
As an added addition, Piro is no longer as laid back and afraid of girls anymore. He's still scared out-0-his-wits, but not as much.
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progrocker
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 04:56 PM
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it is a long project, things don't have to move quickly. People don't change all at once. I think the slow character developement with little evident change is more realistic. I mean, they havn't been there very long....
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b33r>411
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 05:35 PM
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I get what you are saying, and I kind of agree- the plot advances, but relationships are very static. That's a pretty legitimate criticism. There are subtle changes, however- the characters continue to learn more about each other, and ithis DOES change things subtly. I think actual changes in relationships inside megatokyo are going to be HUGE events when/if they ever happen.
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1n50mn14c
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 05:37 PM
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Only seven weeks has gone by in the comic and only a week since the story really started. Not a lot is going to change in that amount of time.
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madn3ss_ensues
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 05:52 PM
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The story is progressing rather slowly, but I'm not annoyed by it. I would like Megatokyo to last as long as possible, since it's the only thing that keeps me sane during Computer Science. happy.gif I always enjoy admiring Fred's great drawing skillz, and the characters as they are now are good. Largo does seem to be a bit sillier, but it helps with comic reliefy-ness. I'm just wondering when Yuki will finally get her art lesson...
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ikaraČ
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 06:00 PM
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QUOTE (madn3ss_ensues @ Apr 7 2004, 05:52 PM)
I'm just wondering when Yuki will finally get her art lesson...

when hell freezes over. happy.gif
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K4w411 N3k0
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 06:04 PM
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The no character develoment arguement should have no evidence to it's claim besides the comic in real life spans so much time compared to the time that has passed in the comic itself. I enjoy megatokyo myself, and can't see how you can judge what has been about 2 months of 'comic time' as having no character development. There has been change, but not huge changes as not that much time has passed in 'comic time'. Yeah, I'm sure I sound like someone else that has already posted, but I felt like writing a response to the original post since he won't be back on to start any actual debate over the issue unless I missed someone else that had the same opinion as that in question.
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PhoenixLord
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 06:13 PM
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id like to point out that, over the course of the comic, no substantial ocurrences


have ocurred except for i think 4 days now? why would the characters undergo

sweeping changes in such a short period of time. Also, you lose some credibility

when after a long rant bash the character developement and then you cant even

keep the characters straight. Seraphim and Piro didnt really decide anything,

though I do know the strip. And it wasnt Miho, it was Kimiko. Id think you could

keep such important and different characters seperate in your mind.
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Jakar Nilson
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 06:57 PM
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Well, this isn't Blondie. This is Megatokyo, and there's been more devellopment since it began than there's been in Blondie since I was born. Fred's getting somewhere, and it does show.

If you think this is long waiting between breaks, then read Avalon... Or Bytaw High (wait, wasn't that my comic from my High School days...)
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-Black Mage-
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 07:01 PM
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I can't believe I'm currently restraining myself from telling you to shuddap and go outside like I have everyone else. I amaze myself sometimes. dry.gif happy.gif
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killmoms
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 07:08 PM
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I think everything that needs to be said has already been said; you bash character development while simultaneously not understanding the comic's time-span or being able to keep the characters straight. Chapter 0 took about seven weeks in comic-time (we think, as previously mentioned), and since then each chapter has been a single day. We're only on the fifth day of real "story;" I dunno about you, but shifting relationships and intense character development in TWO WEEKS of story time stretches reality for me. So assuming Piro can pull that off and keep me convinced, MT should be around for the next 8 - 10 years. Hope you can stick around that long.

--Cless
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mangartistwannbe
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 07:28 PM
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ten years long , I be 23 year old, wahhh. Ahh yes MT fans will be growing ups and there be more 30ers and 40ers and 20ers. MT is still growing and there be a massive poplations of fans at the end of a really long journey. I think somewhere around 10millions fans for Prio to deal with!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! When considering fans told their friend and the Anine/Manga is well growing strong..
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X3R0 Negative
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 07:30 PM
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huh.gif i like it this way... gives me something to read over and over again ^^
bc if it ended all id have left is HSR.... and.... .... ...yeah... blink.gif
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t1ph4Ni3
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 07:37 PM
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Everyone is going to mention the time issue too you. And they all have a valid point. The way the time flows in this comic is slow...but look at how much detail Fred puts in EACH day! Other comics/mangas won't do that for you. They will jump around and force the characters to develop fast so they can reach the end of the series.
At least you stay intersted in Megatokyo! Alot of times when comic/mangas go on forever, people complain...they say that the characters have no where else to go. With this slowed down perspective, Fred can keep this up for years! And unless death takes me from this world, I will continue reading it and showering praises upon Mr. Gallagher.

You don't seem to be taking the characters for who they are. We can already see who Piro and Largo are...when something happens in the comic you can say that that circumstance was handled by the character exactly how that character should. All the girls, Junpei and everyone else are slowly showing their personalities and characters too us. They will develop at the right time. If it happened tomorrow, all of a sudden, it wouldn't make any sense. You don't find out about real people that way, do you?

Also, in respect to the "l33t" subject...
If Fred changed this comic everytime a new phrase came out it, Megatokyo would never make any sense! Everyone using different words to mean "cool, l33t". Visit 5 different highschools in one town alone and you will hear 5 different ways! "L33t" fits in with Largo's personality. He doesn't care if you use it or not! That's what he was using when the comic started, and I'll place a bet that's what he's using when Fred ends it.

This post has been edited by t1ph4Ni3 on Apr 7 2004, 07:39 PM
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Piro
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 09:48 PM
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well, i could go on for quite a while why i do things the way i do, but it'd be a waste of time for any of you to read it. smile.gif

Ever since i started MT, i've had a lot of people (including 'professionals') tell me that i was doing this or that wrong, and that it was time for me to 'stop doing things wrong and start doing them right' or i'd start loosing readers. Story Pacing is one thing i do horribly wrong. Right?

peh. whatever.

The simple fact is - i pace things the way i do for a reason. These are real people, in my mind, and every time something happens, i try to weigh the reactions and the results of things against what keeps the characters who they are. Not all characters grow, not all change. Most do, of course, but some dont. Making a character like Largo grow is very difficult. Try it sometime.

People change slowly. Wasn't anyone paying attention to one of the chapters? 'things change little by little' The characters in MT HAVE changed. If you aren't seeing it, then maybe MT is too sublte for you. Sorry, that's just the kind of story i like.

There are a lot of stories and things out there that happen at a quick pace. They move quickly to the best parts, keeping things interesting, evolving moving changing and getting things done so the reader can move onto the next bit of sugar coated pre processed entertainment that is fed our way. Personally, i think that people WANT something that they can latch onto and develop an attachment to that isn't going to go away in a few months. Maybe people want something that just meanders along and does its thing.

Megatokyo is about the inbetween days, the moments between things, the little stuff. The big stuff is just there to have something to connect to. You might think our lives are defined by the big events in it, but personally i think we're defined by the little stuff. Just my take on things.

Sure, the MT characters all will (or wont) grow or change. Just because the last comic shows things that are reminicent of the early MT comics between Erika and Largo, that doesnt mean that there aren't a lot of subtle differences. I get emails all the time like "piro needs to get laid and stop being such a wuss" - yeah, sure, lots of people like him would LOVE to just go ahead and do that and the world would be fixed, but things don't happen like that.

To date i've not taken anyone's advice on how i should change MT, and according to most of them the result would be MT going down the tubes and losing readers. Funny how every month the traffic to the website goes up, and has for almost 4 years. March was a record month for MT.

Guess there's something to be said for just doing it wrong. Maybe doing it wrong is ok. smile.gif


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alienfirst
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 10:15 PM
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Piro/Fred, is you were right in front of me in person, I'd hug you. Everything you just said makes me feel a whole lot better about what I'm doing with my comic. That is not meant as a plug or anything, just that, what you stated boosts my confidence in how I want my own story to progress, and, it explains a little bit about Megatokyo as well.

QUOTE
Ever since i started MT, i've had a lot of people (including 'professionals') tell me that i was doing this or that wrong, and that it was time for me to 'stop doing things wrong and start doing them right' or i'd start loosing readers. Story Pacing is one thing i do horribly wrong. Right?

peh. whatever.

The simple fact is - i pace things the way i do for a reason. These are real people, in my mind, and every time something happens, i try to weigh the reactions and the results of things against what keeps the characters who they are. Not all characters grow, not all change. Most do, of course, but some dont. Making a character like Largo grow is very difficult. Try it sometime.


I'll admit that I was one of the people thinking "gawd, this is so boring" for a little while there. I did get over it though happy.gif It's great to see someone go with their own flow and not the generalized opinion. Megatokyo has grown on me a lot since it first started out, and really, it wasn't because of the art or the storyline. The two reasons were, well, Largo, because his character can go from crazy to rather serious at a moments notice, and the fact that you are a graphite artist (and that is so rare in this age of CG). On Largo's part, I think you are doing a great job with his character development. I'm really not one for giving a good explanation for my opinion on that, so I'll just leave it as it is.

QUOTE
Megatokyo is about the inbetween days, the moments between things, the little stuff. The big stuff is just there to have something to connect to. You might think our lives are defined by the big events in it, but personally i think we're defined by the little stuff. Just my take on things.


YES. Sometimes the little events can have the most impact. That's another little paragraph that I'm going to have to file away and inspire myself with when I'm feeling down in the dumps over my own plot lines.

QUOTE
To date i've not taken anyone's advice on how i should change MT, and according to most of them the result would be MT going down the tubes and losing readers. Funny how every month the traffic to the website goes up, and has for almost 4 years. March was a record month for MT.


And to end with, I say, good for you. I'm a firm believer in doing something YOUR way and ignoring everyone else (which is why I SO hate critiques over specific observations -excluding broad topics like anatomy- in my art most of the time). So long as you're happy with what you're doing, who the hell else cares? Keep doing what you're doing. I may again turn in to one of the people who goes "gawd this is boring", but I know I'll get over it and keep enjoying Megatokyo. And keep using pencil. Black and white art is highly underrated happy.gif

This post has been edited by alienfirst on Apr 7 2004, 10:17 PM
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Aree
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 10:22 PM
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Fred, I may only be 14, but I know by experiance to go with your own flow. When I right m research paper I had so many critiques durring peer editting. I changed every thing the said to, but in the end, I absolutely hated my paper and started over again.

I have to say, Fred-sensei, you really are one of my greatest inspirations. Thank you.
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EBJ
Posted: Apr 7 2004, 11:27 PM
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(Gives a virtual handshake)

Piro,
No matter how "wrong" you do things, the MT fans and I will support you.
Go show those "professionals" how it's really done.


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wolfsnap
Posted: Apr 8 2004, 12:00 AM
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Just because everyone likes what Fred is doing right now doesn't mean he's doing the right thing. sleep.gif

That said, it's still his toybox, and the toys are still cool. I'm still watching, although whether I personally am watching the strip or the idea of the strip is currently up for debate in my mind. My enjoyment of the strip has seemed a little hollow of late - but perhaps that's me.

Perhaps I have moved away by standing still, so to speak.

Fred is enjoying much-deserved success at the moment, and the comic is thriving. He's gotten it this far, I trust that he'll get Megatokyo where he wants it to go. How many of us get there with him is probably immaterial.

Hmmm.
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moravia
Posted: Apr 8 2004, 12:20 AM
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Doesn't anyone else think that Fred sounds a lot like the young John Nash? (minus the imaginary roomates biggrin.gif )
In that he refused to go to class because that would contaminate his originality, or at least his quest for a trully original idea. The way he was criticized for it and told he wouldn't get a placement at all but he stubbornly kept at it. This route spells disaster for most but, every now and then, it leads someone to a large pen collection.

QUOTE
My enjoyment of the strip has seemed a little hollow of late - but perhaps that's me.
For me it's been the opposite. For me this current chapter has been (so far) the best of them all by about ten parsecs. It's impossible to please everyone. If you do something that some will like, it's certain that others will dislike it so it's inevitable that someone will find it more hollow no matter what he does.

This post has been edited by moravia on Apr 8 2004, 03:06 AM
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IvanGrasilich
Posted: Apr 8 2004, 03:53 AM
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'Seraphim and Piro didnt really decide anything though I do know the strip. And it wasnt Miho, it was Kimiko.'

Look at strips 512-514. I'm not confusing anything, Miho is the one being discussed. Where does Kimiko come from? To all of you bashing me, I specifically phrased my post to not be offensive. I understand that most inhabitants of this forum spend a lot more time with the strip than I do, what with the post counts in the hundreds or thousands for many of you, and are thereby more sensitive to criticism of the strip. That's fine, but I'm not here to fight with any of you. Let that be clear.

Piro:

At no point did I say something with the strip was 'wrong'. Critcism is freely given and freely ignored, that is your perogative as the master of the strip.

That being said, I don't think your response satisfies me entirely. I will accept that the pacing of the story is something I did not take fully into account with my initial post. Individual scenes do, I suppose, often last months in this strip, especially when combined with DPDs and SGDs. That I will accept.

You claim, however, that I cannot fanthom the subtle changes within characters that you have painstakingly employed. Alright then, let's take two strips,this and this. I suppose you could say that in the first strip, Erika considers Piro's supposed teenage-girl fetish in a much more mild way than she does in the latter, where she seems to begin to believe that he is actually doing such things (Other fans may refute this as they will. I don't quite remember the strip which first introduced that plot element, so my interpretation may be somewhat off)... But is that what you consider character evolution? A slight change in the intensity of a certain perception? And all this acheived over a period of two years (real time)?

It seems to me then that, by your personal preference Megatokyo is going to last basically forever? This, I believe, is a real pity. A good story goes from a beginning to a middle to an end. Endings tie things together, and prove that the author has had mastery over the story throughout its course. I challenge you to think of your favorite story, and then further imagine it with an ending that is the opposite of what actually occurred. Ruins it doesn't it? Perhaps now you, and the others in this forum, can see what I am getting at with more clarity...

And I am certainly glad to hear that Megatokyo is doing as well as you say it is. Again, I've been reading it for years. I want it, and you Piro, to do well. And, as I said originally, I will continue to read regardless of what you do.
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