Rin Reviews: Assassins Creed Unity

Assassin’s Creed: Unity. Rin’s thoughts and feelings

I haven’t played Assassins Creed: Unity since 2015. I know that I might be looking back at it through rose coloured glasses, but this review is purely my opinion, and I love my pink glasses.

This review also isn’t going to be a critical gameplay and story review, just more my thoughts on the game after four or five years, what I remember, and how it still lingers in my mind.

Over the last couple of days, I’ve been having thoughts about co-op games that I played in the past, and Assassins Creed Unity was honestly one of my favourite games at that stage of my life. It was also the last Assassin’s Creed game that I finished, I played Syndicate, but never got around to finishing it.

Assassin’s Creed Unity came out while I was in secondary school. about the time Black Flag came out was when my friend, I’ll call him Jacob, introduced me to the Assassin’s creed series. he lent me all the games on Xbox 360 and I played through AC2, Brotherhood, and Revelations before returning them to him. I never really played the first Assassin’s Creed game.

When the trailer for Assassin’s Creed Unity came out, Jacob and I were excited to say the least. The world premier trailer still holds it’s place in my mind and is one of my favourite trailers. Along with 2 more of our friends, we were talking about the game every day on the school playground. We actually started team-building exercises playing other games together like Payday 2 and Left 4 Dead 2.

I pre-ordered AC:U, got the metal case a day early and installed it overnight. Went to school the next day excited to play the game when I got home. If anyone remembers the release of Assassin’s Creed: Unity, it had one of the worse receptions of a worldwide launch. the game was extremly buggy, including an infamous no face bug which was kinda disturbing. But, I didn’t experience any bugs. My game ran just fine.

The story of the game is a little bit lost on me all these years later. I remember trying to seige a castle in the first mission, a romance with Elise, some of the later missions too. the story was good enough to keep my attention for it. But, the story was something I didn’t really focused on. I was there for the Co-op.

The Co-op in the game was open world, with a handful of missions that had randomly generated elements, like where a painting was in a building or the route that guards took. the variation mission to mission made it fun and added a replay value.

We had all decided before hand we would all use different weapons, all look into different skills to be the best team we could. I was the Stealth girl. Jacob was the all-rounder, mostly a fighter. Then the remaining two of our group was the heavy weapons man and the ranged guy. Regardless of how you play the game, you’re still not limited to any specific path, which was helpful for Jacob and I.

The other two members of our group weren’t as active as we thought they were going to be. Our heavy weapons guy only played with us a couple of evenings, and our ranged guy had a curfew before he had to leave for homework each night. Most of the time, it was just Jacob and I. The several months we played bought us a lot closer together.

Jacob and I were driven, the games Social Clubs gave us a goal to aim for. For every assassination, every kill, the game gave points. the more intricate the kill, the more points it would get. We soon got to a point were we would run around a city, see two guards and with a word, we would assassinate our targets simultaneously. Every week, we aimed for the top of the leaderboard and moved up the ranks. after a month or two, we reached some of the top in the UK.

I also fondly remember part of a mission, while the mission was able to completed either in stealth, or as loud as we wanted, we set outselves to complete it stealthly. With the ever shifting guard patterns when we failed, we soon found that the best strategy was not planning, but playing it by ear. Our teamwork and individual skills combined allowed us to clear the mission, gaining a large amount of the points we sought after.

Looking back at the game, while it’s got a fairly contriversial name as being a bad game, I really did enjoy my time playing. I might even go as far as saying it might be my favourite Assassin’s Creed game. Not for the story, or the characters. But for the fun experiences I had with my friends.

In honour of calling myself a reviewer, I have to change the tone of this review. I can’t go on about all the good points of my personal experience, and fail to mention any of the bad ones. From my own view, there were very few bad things about the game.

One thing I wished while I was playing, was that there were more co-op missions. After a while, we had finished all the missions several times over in many different ways. there was only a handful of co-op missions, even after the DLC was released too. Everyone had wanted the whole story to be Co-op too. I really would have enjoyed the story being co-op, but I feel that the game was limited by it’s ties to real life, and it’s way to have set paths through missions.

The story also isn’t memorable. I only remember parts of two or three of the missions, I don’t remember what the goal was apart from something about the Sword of Eden, I don’t even really remember who the main antagonist of the story was either. If you played Assassin’s Creed for the story, I personally felt it had been going downhill ever since Assassin’s Creed 3. The story didn’t seem too important to the overall story that the games were telling.

Now onto some more positive notes. For the first time in an Assassin’s Creed game, I felt like I had my own character, and I wasn’t playing as someone else. And I think that might be a reason why there wasn’t a strong story or characters. not being bound to the Assassin’s code like many of the former assassin’s not out for revenge like Connor, or out being a pirate like Edward. I felt like I was free to make my character my own. I picked up the spear as my main weapon, also using the hidden blades a lot too. I customised my outfit rather than just having the colour changed or a slight difference. While I moved around the city, I wasn’t calling my character Arno, I was referring to myself. I was immersed in being my own character.

The skill trees I wasn’t too sure on at first, but after exploring the game with my friends and carrying out missions, I felt like I had worth in a team. With two players and three enemies, my double assassinations were needed. While I lacked the chance to have openings in main combat, I was able to fill in by throwing a smoke bomb. The way I played my character was different from how Jacob played his. If I went back to play the game again today, with a new save file, I would feel different from how I played before. and that’s the experience I love in a game, that I’m making my own story, not fufilling someone else’s.

Since I played Assassin’s Creed: Unity, a lot of things have happened in my life. Four years is a long time and no time at all. I look back at my time playing Unity and I did thoroughly enjoy it. I think it’s a shame that the game was so badly recieved.

I know ever since Unity, there hasn’t been any Co-op Assassin’s Creed games. Since the games went back to being set in the BC timeline, I haven’t had the urge to pick it up and play the game. I don’t have enough understanding of the games to properly review them, but as a player, I do have my own thoughts on them.

The current Assassin’s Creed games and my own thoughts

Origins and Oddesy never took my interest because they had a setting I’ve personally never been interested in. I’ve never thought about wandering around Ancient Egypt or Ancient Greece. My first thoughts were that the Assassin’s Brotherhood was started in the 12th century, so going back 1200 years just felt illogical to me. However, I do see their issue after Syndicate, not being able to move too far forwards in time due to it catching up with where we are now.

From how I understand the games, they’re much more of an RPG game. you have to collect skins and pelts and other materials to create new armour and weapons. And while a lot of people like RPGs, myself included. I feel that the game stepped away from being about Assassins. The story that was built up from Altair to Ezio, through to the Kenway’s just felt like it had been abandoned. I still don’t know if the “Modern day” story has been developed any more since Assassin’s Creed 4.

While I liked customising my character in Assassin’s Creed Unity, I feel like i’m contradicting myself. But the main reason I haven’t picked up the new Assassin’s Creed games is the same as why I haven’t played Skyrim for several years. I don’t like playing games alone, and I don’t see a point of customising a character that no-one will see.

I had a lot of fun with Ezio’s games, and fun with the Kenway games. but Unity was the most fun game for me.

Due to my own contradicting thoughts and feelings on the games, and a currently unused Level 3 extended diploma in games development. I thought it would be a good idea to tell you all about what kind of Assassin’s Creed game I would play.

The game would be set between the 16th and the 18th century. Probably falling towards the later end. During this time, and as seen in previous games, firearms are just being developed and are in their flintlock stage, and bladed weapons are still about.

I won’t go into the story or character of the game. However, the player would be able to decide their gender, and some characteristics, like hair colour, skin colour, and eye colour. I would also have to do some market research into either keeping the main character un-named, thus breaking story immersion. or having two names, one for a male character and one for a female character.

The player would be given a skill tree, where progression through story or exploring the open world would grant them skill points. the player can then use this to decide what skills they want to unlock. However, the skills would not be essential to progressing any missions, that is upto the skill and smarts of a player.

The player can also decide what weapon they want to use. From hidden blades to battle axes. if a player wanted to be stealthy, they would have to use a smaller weapon. allowing them to quietly enter buildings or even walk into areas where players with noticable weapons would be denied.

A smaller weapon would mean less damage and less openings to attack, but would allow for stealthier kills, a larger weapon would allow for more openings and damage, but throw out all chances of a stealth kill. This would be where the Co-op system of the game would come into effect.

Setting up a mission without co-op, Assassinating a target in a well guarded building. A player who likes to play in a brutish style would either have to find different access points to the building so they can get in with their large weapon. from there, they can brawl their way to the target fighting enemies. A stealthy player would walk into the building, unassuming. after a pat down from the guards they’re gained entry to the building. they scour the room looking for the target, soon finding them alone. after a quick stab with a hidden blade, the player walks out of the building once again as the chaos starts to unfurl inside.

If a player wanted to do this mission in co-op. they could either both fight through waves of enemies. these ones in larger numbers and strength than in single player. or the two assassins could sneak in, dispatching the now guarded target of the assassination quietly. or if a combat heavy player and a stealthy assassin work together, the fighter would cause a ruckass, causing the guards around the target to leave their post to try and stop the fighter, giving the assassin an opening to strike.

Those conclude my thoughts on a game I would like to play. While a story is important to many games, the gameplay is what really counts. The game can be marketed towards a Co-op game, with single player support, rather than a single player game with co-op support.

Closing thoughts

Thank you for reading my ramblings on the Assassin’s Creed games. I had the sudden urge to play the games again and none of them installed on my computer. Let me know what your thoughts on Unity is if you’ve played it, or what you think of my own game idea.

Please feel free to follow my blog! It really lets me know if you’re enjoying these posts! I also have a twitter: https://twitter.com/RinCrowe I tweet whenever I post a new blog. I also have two more posts in the work. One reviewing one of my favourite films; Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse. and another one talking about my favourite Webseries/Anime; RWBY. If you want to hear my thoughts on either of those, it might give me energy to get on with writing them.

Thank you once again for following me on my writing journey!

Character goals; their Wants and Needs

Overview

While I’ve been away, I’ve been planning and world building for a new book. I know that I’ve got a few projects on the go and no progress towards them, but this is a book I’ve wanted to write for as long as I can remember. and I want to make it the best I possibly can. As a result, I’m now diving into the characters and their goals for the stories.

My protagonist for the story, I still haven’t got a good grasp on who they are yet. But, my deuteragonist has got a lot more depth to her. As I was researching what would make a character better, I discovered about a characters Wants and Needs.

To give a character appropriate depth, they need both a Want and Need. In storytelling, a Want refers to the main goal of a character of a story, and a Need is what they need to do to reach their goal.

The Wants of a character

A “Want” is the goal of a character, what they want to do in the story. Their want is their goal. In Ironman, Tony wanted to make sure his technology didn’t get into the wrong hands ever again. In The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, Link wanted to save his sister. Finally, In My Hero Academia, Deku wanted to be the top hero. All of these are the main driving force of the story, the end goal that the characters and the audience want to get to.

A character needs a strong “Want” to drive the plot forwards. Without a strong want, the story has no direction. One of the most famous stories in modern time is “The Lord of the Rings” The protagonist, Frodo, has a strong Want. Frodo is tasked with and Wants to destroy the one Ring. This want drives everything with in the plot. It drives Frodo and Sam towards Mordor, it keeps Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli fighting to protect Middle-Earth, and makes Merry and Pippin want to play their own part in the story and help their friends.

If we take away Frodo’s want to destroy the ring, The plot would be non-existent. Frodo would live out his remaining days in The Shire, his home, and when the Ring Wraiths show up, they would take the Ring for Sauron. All the other events in the story wouldn’t exist. Legolas and Gimli wouldn’t have met Aragorn as the Counsel of Elrond wouldn’t have taken place. Aragorn would have lived out the rest of his days as a ranger, and the remaining Hobbits would have been enslaved or killed.

The Needs of a character.

A “Need” is what a character has to do in order to achieve the Want of their story. The needs of a story are mostly universal themes. Accept yourself, Work together, and with the power of friendship anything is accomplished are among many different themes of needs of a character. Without a Need, the story seems hollow and the characters lack depth. There’s no emotional connection between the audience and the character.

Going back to the example of Frodo in The Lord of the Rings, to destroy the Ring, Frodo needs to accept that he can’t do it alone and that he needs Sam’s help. Throughout the story, Sam is constantly rejected by Frodo. During the breaking of the Fellowship, Frodo tried to leave without Sam, not wanting him to come along with him. In the Return of The King, Frodo completely rejects Sam, thinking that he’s against Frodo. However, after Frodo is betrayed by Gollum, stung by Shelob and abducted by Orcs. Sam comes back to his rescue. After this event, Frodo finally accepts he was wrong about Sam, and realises that he needed Sam the whole time. A payoff to this is shortly after, where Sam carries Frodo further towards Mount Doom. In addition, As the Ring is being destroyed, completing the Want of the story, Sam saves Frodo from falling to his death, Fufilling the Need of the story.

While a quest to destroy a Ring is a unique goal to Frodo, realising that he needs a friend is a Universal theme across all media. Frodo without Sam would be a boring character, there’s no emotional connection if Frodo journeyed alone. We wouldn’t see the affects of the Ring taking a hold of Frodo. And without Sam, the goal wouldn’t have been completed as Frodo would have been killed by Gollum or the Ring would have been retrieved by Orcs when Frodo was abducted.

How to tell the difference between a Want and a Need

If even after the explaining of a Want and Need, it is hard to understand what the difference is between the two. Then there are a couple of things to look out for to clarify which is which. A Want is unique for a character where as a Need is universal. A Want is something that can’t be found in every story. While some stories may have similar wants, they’re all unique to the character and their goal. a Need is universal themes, friendship, teamwork, self realisation. These can be seen in many different books and isn’t exclusive to a character. Many works of fiction rely on the “Through the power of friendship, anything is possible” trope.

Another way to decipher a Want from a Need is asking “Can you see it?” a Want is normally something physical, or something that can be seen or measured. Defeating the villain, destroying the Ring, being able to return to normal life. They’re all things that cna be seen or measured. Even in the case of My Hero Academia, While the number one hero is a title, it can be measured against other heroes. To contrast this, a Need is emotional rather than physical. How a character connects to others or sees themselves shows the need. One of my favourite films, Spider-man: Into the Spiderverse, When Miles believes in himself is when he can fulfil his Want. And the Need of believing in himself connects to the audience in an emotional level.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully now you can know the difference between a Want and a Need and know why they are important to a story and a character. As I’m developing my own characters, I really want to make sure I have their Wants and Needs laid out. my deuteragonist has her’s planned out, but now I just need to put it into more depth. I really can’t wait to get around to writing this project, but I’ve got a lot more planning before I can get there.

Thank you for reading this post! I hope I can get to writing more blog posts soon! Please feel free to follow my blog for when I post more! and follow me on twitter for new updates: https://twitter.com/RinCrowe Thank you for your support!

Rin’s New Zealand Adventure!

Hiya everyone! As I explained briefly in my Mystery Blogger Award post, I’ve been in New Zealand for eighteen days! (2nd of August to 20th of August) It was such a great and unique experience! I’m going to run you through some of the highlights and post a few pictures.

On the 2nd, I left at 11AM for the airport. I live in the UK, and you can’t get much further away than New Zealand. From Heathrow airport, to LA airport, and Finally to Auckland. I’ve never flown before, so chaining two, 12 hour flights was an experience. I was dreading the flights. but all went mostly smoothly. On my second flight, about nine hours in, I had a mssive nose bleed due to all the pressure changes. That was an experience, considering I wasn’t at the isle and trapped between people.

I arrived in Auckland at around 6AM local time on Sunday the 4th. After getting a taxi to my hotel, I had to wait eight hours before I could get into my room. I spent most of the time reading a book and playing on my switch in the hotel lobby. I was way too tired to explore the city.

I don’t really remember the rest of sunday. I remember having dinner with my adoptive family who came with me (my two adoptive sisters and adoptive dad) but other than that, I think I spent the time sleeping.

On monday, during breakfast at the hotel, I met two of the people who were joining our tour group. We were travelling with Red Carpet Tours. A tour that is mostly about exploring the Lord of the Rings locations. there was much more to it than just lord of the rings though. I spent the rest of monday morning exploring Takapuna, Auckland. Off the east coast of Takapuna is Rangitoto island, an active volcano. England is remarkably flat, seeing the peak of Rangitoto was breathtaking for me, it was one of the first mountains I’ve ever seen.

Rangitoto off the coast of Takapuna, Auckland

I spent most of the afternoon in my hotel room. However, in the evening was the first meeting of our Fellowship. We met in the Lobby where I had spent eight hours the day before, before we were taken into a boardroom in the hotel. We all gave a brief introduction of ourselves. We were then greeted by our first special guest, Sarah McLeod. Sarah portrayed Rosie Cotton in The Lord of the Rings, She was a delight to meet and had wonderful stories about the cast. After eating, we departed for the first night. Our fellowship had a total of nineteen people.

Day 1 of the Tour

Tuesday morning was a day all of us were looking forwards to. A two hour coach journey to Matamata to see a very magical place; Hobbiton. We were given a guided tour around the whole of Hobbiton, a lunch fit for halflings included. Hobbiton has two types of Hobbit holes, Human scale and Hobbit scale holes. The Human scale ones make you feel like you’re the size of a halfling. all the famous Hobbit holes are human sized, including Bag end and Bagshot row. The hobbit scale holes have doors that are only 4 feet tall maximum, and makes you feel like a giant and that there can be hobbits running around.

After exploring Hobbiton, we were taken to the Green Dragon Inn. We were treated to a free ale. I was asked for ID, but I left it on the coach. The kind bartenders at Hobbiton took my word for it though. The Green Dragon inn is such a cosy place, warm fires, soft armchairs, and cold drinks. I took over 100 photos of Hobbiton, and we were only there for a couple of hours.

The Iconic Bag end
The Green Dragon inn
A random hobbit hole, it looks the most hobbity

I was really lucky to get a picture of The Green Dragon without any people in the shot. Hobbiton was full of tour groups. We had nineteen people, but we were one of the smallest groups wandering around.

After leaving Hobbiton, we left for the town of Rotorua. Rotorua is known for it’s geothermal activity. Due to all the hot pools and geothermal activity, there is a large amount of Hydrogen Sulphide emmissions, giving the city the nickname of the “Sulphur City” The city did smell heavily of rotten eggs. Rotorua was our second hotel on the tour. I’ve never seen a town like Rotorua. the geothermal activity gives the area such a unique look.

The view from the hotel
The steaming water due to the geothermal activity
More steam in the distance, this picture was taken on the coach, sorry about the lamppost

While we had arrived at our hotel for the night and had our suitcases unloaded from the coach, it wasn’t the end of the day for most of our fellowship. We were invited to a Maori cultural evening. For those who don’t know, the Maori people are the original settlers of New Zealand. creators of the world famous Haka.

We were invited by the Mitai Tribe. I was way too fascinated by their culture to take pictures. We were first taken into the dining hall, where a man named John greeted us. John took time to find out where everyone came from, and greeted them in their native language. He was really impressive knowning Japanese, Chinese, English, Gaelic, and many more. there was about sixty people in the room, all of them spoke english, but he took the time to greet us. They then took us to see a Waka, a Maori War Canoe, and then into a theatre where Maori men and women showed us some of their cultural dances and instruments. The Mitai chief, Mike, was an delightful host, teaching about their culture and meaning behind their dances. With the sun setting, we gathered back in the Dining hall to feast on a buffet of Maori food.

Finishing our feast, we were given a short night walk through the forest. We were taken to the springs that the Mitai keep sacred. the water from the springs are so clear that the bottom is magnified. a rock that looked like it was just below the surface was in fact six feet underwater. As we passed through into the forest, we were shown a recreation of what a Maori village would look like. I wanted to take a few pictures, but it was pretty much pitch black on my camera, we only had flashlights at this point. We left the Mitai tribe happy, full of knowledge, and with full bellies. The Mitai tribe were really inspiring, and I am definitly basing a race of peoples in a future book project on the Maori people.

Maori Mitai Tribe Performers

Day 2 of the Tour

After sleeping in Rotarua, it was time to leave. Hobbiton and Rotorua were the first day of the tour, and it seemed like three days had passed. It was only the second day now, Wednesday the 7th. We travelled from Rotorua down to Waitomo, specifically to see the Waitomo Glowworm Caves. The famous caves have been used for weddings, concerts, and many more things. The Waitomo caves were discovered by a Maori Chief; Tane Tinorau. along with an English Serveyor; Fred Mace. As they explored, the saw the hundreds of lights on the ceiling, like a starry night. Nower days, the tours of the caves are mostly given by descendants of Chief Tane. The tour seemed to pass by quickly, our guide taught us about how the caves were formed, and then took us down into darker tunnels. We climbed aboard a boat and our guide took us along the river. above our heads were thousands of lights, the glowworms. It was a stunning view to see.

Waitomo glowworm caves promotional image from their website. the ceiling looked much like that, however the boat was in complete darkness. the glowworms didn’t give off a lot of light, they looked like stars. In the boat, you could only see the faint silhouettes of people around you.

Travelling a bit further in Waitomo, we arrived at Hairy Feet Tours. The land that they own was used in The Hobbit as the location of Trollshaw Forest. Watching the film and the behind the scenes, I believed that Trollshaw was all a set built for the film. But I was wrong, most of Trollshaw forest was a real location, and now we were looking upon it. Warrick and Suzie Denize, the owners gave us a warm welcome and made sure that our tour was private. Warrick gave us the main bulk of the tour, explaining his involvement in the film and his meeting with Sir Peter Jackson and the team. Warrick was enthusastic about the tour. He first took us up to see where they filled the Farmhouse scene. As the film crew were packing up, Warrick stated he’d take down the fence that needed to be packed up. however, 8 years later, he still hasn’t packed it up. it felt like I had stepped into the film. I took

The fence left behind
The massive clifts, they were over 90 metres tall.

Warrick then took us further into the forest, showing us where all the different scenes were filmed. The forest felt enchanted, straight out of a mobie. I’ve never seen anything like it. Since the path was thin and we had a large group, I didn’t get many high quality photos since I couldn’t stop. My leg was also sore and aching, so I was walking with a stick, so the photos were taken with one hand.

The cave entrance from the film, and half of Warrick’s body

The forest felt so magical, Even more magical than Hobbiton. Since we were the only tour group, we felt a lot more immersed too. I used to live in the woods in England, but seeing this forest was something I’ve never seen before.

With the sun starting to set, it was time to leave Waitomo and head for our hotel for the night, Located in New Plymoth. The rain set in heavily in the evening and for the night. Our hotel in New Plymoth didn’t come with dinner included. So my family had to find a place to eat. After eating full meals every day, there was only once place that seemed suitable to eat; McDonalds. As it turns out, My adoptive family and I weren’t the only one’s with that idea. When we arrived, three of our fellowship were already eating. Over the course of half an hour, a total of fifteen of us had been in the McDonalds. Only four of our fellowship didn’t eat at the McDonalds that evening. I found the fact that so many of us had eaten there hilarious, I had to include that fact.

Mount Taranaki, Next to New Plymouth. I was the only one to get a picture this clear since we were on the coach

Day 3 of the Tour

Thursday the 8th. We spent most of Thursday morning travelling. Leaving New Plymouth, our destination was Wellington, Capital City of New Zealand. Around five hours on the road, and a brief stop to pick up lunch from a cafe, we soon arrived at Wellington. We picked up three new members of our fellowship, increasing our numbers to twenty two. We first started to head to the “Get off the road” location, the area where Frodo, Sam, Merry, and Pippin hid from the Ringwraith. Many of our fellowship were eager to recreate the scene, hiding under the same roots in the movie. Most of my pictures of this location had people in the picture, so I don’t have anything to show really. After the breathtaking Trollshaw forest, this forest on the side of Mount Victoria wasn’t as impressive. Although moreso than my home woods.

The Wellington sign, as capture from a coach

After taking pictures at the Get off the Road location, we drove up to the peak of Mount Victoria. As I mentioned earlier, England is flat and I’ve never been on a mountain. the view from the top was stunning.

Panoramas from the peak of Mount Victoria

Day 4 of the Tour

Friday the 9th. Since we were staying in Wellington for three nights, we didn’t have to repack. We jumped on our coach and headed for our first location of the day; Weta Workshop. I love behind the scenes of movies, and Weta Workshop was a must see for me. Unfortunatly, while Weta makes all the props for films, they don’t have ownership to photography of the props. So we werent’ legally allowed to take photos of any of the props. It is an excuse to go and see it for yourself though. We were taught about the creative process of Weta, the history of Weta Workshop, and shown props from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. After all our tour, we were allowed to do something special; Special effects makeup.

I’m putting this here as a gore warning. It’s all special effects makeup. Silicon, paint, cornstarch and water.

With that out the way, here’s the cut I gave myself.

I wasn’t the best at it. for those who are wondering how you do it, you get a mix of silicon, apply it in a lump over your skin, spread it and smooth it into the skin, use a blunt sculpting tool to cut down the middle. you use dark pain in the middle, lighter paint on the outside, and then you use food die, cornstarch and water to make the “blood” I think it was cornstarch and water… I wasn’t taking notes.

After I peeled off my cut, we went to Wellington Airport. Weta Workshop made large models to be displayed in the Airport, and we were allowed to take photos of them. they have Eagles in one part of the terminal, and Smaug’s head in another.

Sorry for the low quality of pictures, apparently this wasn’t my day. Smaug was hard to get without anyone in the photo, and I took the picture of the Eagle with my phone above my head for better framing.

We then went to the Roxy Cinema in Wellington. It was the middle of the Wellington Film Festival, but we were allowed into the cinema alone to watch a history of movies, which showed clips from many different movies, leading up to the early 2010s. we were also treated to a lunch at the Roxy Cinema.

Our day didn’t end there, we proceeded to the Weta Cave. A shop run by Weta Workshop, selling a variety of products mostly themed around Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. I’m not much of a spender on merchandise, However, I saw there were coins from Smaug’s hoard there… and when I found out there were five different coins, I had to buy them all. I love collecting coins.

Outside Weta cave, they also had the Three Trolls from The Hobbit. The detail on them is stunning and grossly realistic.

We left Weta Cave happy and satisfied. Some of our fellowship left with very light wallets and heavy bags. The five coins were about $45NZD I think one of the members of the fellowship spent $300NZD

Day 5 of the Tour

Saturday the 10th. Waking up in the same location as the night before was a bit of a weird experience after changing towns each day. Today was a special day, two special guests were coming to visit us. At 11AM, we moved into a boardroom and met Actor Jed Brophy. Out of all the Dwarves in The Hobbit, he was my favourite. Jed was wonderfuly kind, he had so many stories from all the different films that he worked on. He is such a comical person and great story teller. He asked what I wanted to do with my life, and when I told him I wanted to be a writer, he joked about writing scripts for him.

Jed Brophy and his character in The Hobbit, Nori

After our meeting with Jed, we then got to meet Daniel Reeve, Artist, Calligrapher, and Cartographer. As an artist, I really appreciated his art. He’s so talented. His different art and writing styles are why he’s in the industry for sure. I bought a map of Middle earth and got him to sign it for me. a few in our fellowship got him to write something… Special… Picture below.

After meeting the two professionals, we had a free afternoon. Myself, and one of my adoptive sisters and adoptive dad went to Te Papa museum to see the Gallipoli exibit. It was an interesting experience. Unfortunatly, I didn’t appreciate it enough, I’ve never been a fan of the history of wars.

Day 6 of the Tour

Spending our last night in Wellington, it was time to depart to the South Island. But before we left, It was the end of the journey for one of our fellowship members. As we left for the south island over an 1.5 hour ferry ride, she stayed in Wellington.

After the Ferry, we travelled down towards Nelson. Our first hotel in the South Island. before we arrived, we stopped at the Pelorus river. I’ve got to say, that the south island is wildly different to the north island. it’s much more mountainous in the south, not to mention colder. The rivers are all a beautiful blue colour. Back on topic, the Pelorus river. The river was used in The Hobbit for the Barrel escape scene. and we were allowed to Kayak down it. My partner for Kayaking, My adoptive Sister, was motion sick from the Ferry. As we walked down to the Kayak, I was counting numbers. Inevitably, there were odd numbers. I was left alone. I was given my own Kayak and double side paddle and took the Kayak alone, while everyone else had partners. I picked it up really quickly and had a lot of fun. I got wet feet and trousers though.

We continued into Nelson, where we made home for the next two nights. Most of the Fellowship decided we would eat together at a Pizza place in the town. The small resturant seemed delight that seventeen people turned up, almost trippling their customers at the time.

Day 7 of the Tour

Staying in Nelson for the day, we had an early start. For today, we were visiting Mount Owen, only accessable by Helicopter. We travelled to the Helicopters and were taken to the mountain. At the time I was in New Zealand, it was the middle of winter. the mountains were all snow capped. As I got out the helicopter, the snow was incredibly deep. In england, the country shuts down for half a foot of snow. The top of Mount Owen was knee deep in snow. and the view was breathtaking.

We couldn’t stay for long since the weather was starting to pick up. but I managed to get a few photos. The landscape was amazing, I’ve never seen anything like it, and I don’t know if I ever will.

Our day didn’t end there. We went to Jens Hansen, a jeweller in Nelson, The creators of The One Ring in the film. We met Halfdan Hansen, the son Jens Hansen who designed the original ring. He gave us a tour of the small shop and showed us the different rings used in the films.

Replica of the One Ring with the engraving
Sauron’s Ring, Scaled up to fit a 13 foot tall Dark Lord
The Stunt Ring. Used for reflective shots. It weighs 3KG. I was struggling to hold it and keep the camera steady

I don’t wear a lot of jewellery. I only wear a necklace that I’ve leant to a friend, so I didn’t end up buying anything at Jens Hansen.

Day 8 of the Tour

Leaving Nelson and heading down towards Christchurch, we were mostly travelling that day, However we made a few stops along the way. the first stop was to watch the Fur Seals that make their homes on the rocks by the road. We stood watching them for about half an hour, watching the cubs play with eachother. We then continued on to Tekapo hot springs, where some of the fellowship took a rest in the springs, and others were tubing down snowy slopes. due to the altitude and the snow, it really was feeling like winter.

Day 9 of the Tour

Day 9 was something different. Today, were were to visit the Location of Lake Town. Lake Pukaki. The land where it was filmed is owned by a farmer named Ian. Ian is an interesting character. We arrived on his farm, and while we were waiting for his arrival, he stepped out a wardrobe, shouting something, then fired a wellington boot cannon. He took us to his house, where he has prop stairs from lake town attached to his house to get in. He then took us into a shed and showed us the part of The Hobbit where his farm was used as a location. he also took the time to point out where his stairs were seen in the film, and now every time I watch The Battle of the Five Armies, I will always think of Ian. if that’s a good or bad thing, I’m not sure.

Ian then took us into his “Man cave” which was a bigger shed. there were a couple of mannequins, a shoe rack that he built that rotated, and a scooter that his neighbour bought him to persuade Ian to sell his farm. Ian told us about his favourite Mannequin, Robert, who he used to play jokes on the crew of The Hobbit. One of these pranks was to leave Robert sitting on a chair on a road and getting someone to go tell him that lunch was at 12. Dressing Robert up as a security guard to keep people away from set.

The journey didn’t stop there, we went back outside to try our hand at archery, to see who could kill ‘Smaug’ a poster of Smaug on a hay bale. I got the most shots into the poster, half of the fellowship missed. I have had some archery experience before.

Ian then pulled up in what could only be one of the most dangerous looking vehicles in New Zealand. A cinema on wheels to give our large group a tour of the farm.

the Cinema Trailer

Ian took us down to the lake, where we took several photos and a few group shots. The lake has minerals in it which turn the water the blue colour. It’s that colour all year around too.

We soon leave Ian and head to Twizel for the night.

Day 10 of the Tour

As we start to reach the end of the tour, the days aren’t as packed as they once were. A short drive away from our hotel in Twizel, we arrive at the location of the Pelennor Fields, Location of the fight outside Minas Tirith in Return of the King. Our coach guide bought along prop weapons for us to recreate scenes from the battle. Luckily for me, and unfortunately for you, I don’t have any pictures or videos from the fields. A member of our fellowship was able to recite King Theoden’s speak from memory. and I was one of the more dexterous shield-maidens in the group.

Continuing our day, we headed towards Cromwell. We did stop at Highlands Motorsport park, where several of our fellowship participated in go-kart racing. Last minute to sign up for the go-karting was our coach driver. Spectating the racing, it was obvious that our driver for the past half a week had a need for speed, coming first place. We all boarded the coach a bit warily that afternoon.

The fellowship also split up temporarily, half of our group proceeded to an optional wine tasting, while the other half were taken to the hotel to unpack for the night. After a short break, we regrouped with the wine tasters and proceeded to a free honey tasting session.

Finally, it was time to end for the day. Cromwell was the last hotel that we were only spending one night in. Before dinner, a large majority of our fellowship met on the patio outside the hotel rooms. I think it was at this time, that I really realised how close our fellowship had grown. We had started with nineteen, and now had twenty one. I’ve always been bad with faces and names unless written down. But now, I could name everyone and knew a fair bit about their personalities too. It was warming to know that we all thought of each other as friends, even the three new members who had only joined for the south island of the tour.

Day 11 of the Tour

Today was a packed day. We started immediately for Queenstown, our final hotel. At the hotel, we picked up two new people. these two have been on the tour several times and bought a house in Queenstown. the Tour guide allows them to join for this day to help with all the different locations we were going to visit. The first of these was Fangorn forest. The location, Snowdon forest, is in the Fiordland National Park. Our tour group has special permission to go onto the land which is normally off limits to the public.

At the forest, we found the site of the Orc funeral pyre. I, along with several others, volunteered as a dead orc for another reenactment. The scene where Aragorn kicks a helmet and lets out a gut wrenching scream.

Fangorn forest in the film has been edited. the trees look different to how they look in real life. I’ve included a picture from The Two Towers to show the difference. but you can also see the similarities. To the right of Aragorn, there is a lone rock with grass around the base. the same rock is in my picture of the forest more to the centre of the shot.

Edge of Fangorn forest in The Two Towers
The location of Fangorn forest, and my best attempt to recreate the shot
The beautiful landscape around the forest

From here, we continued further into the National Park, to the scene where the breaking of the fellowship was filmed. This film location was also the last place that our fellowship would visit as a group. This location is where they filmed the Uruk-hai and the Fellowship battle, Boromir’s death, Merry and Pippin throwing rocks and getting kidnapped. I didn’t take any photos inside the forest that I can show you, All of them have people in the picture which I’m avoiding uploading for privacy sake. However, just outside the forest is the river that Frodo uses the boat to leave the group. this scene is where Sam wades into the water and tries to swim to Frodo. The river is just as beautiful in person as it is in the film.

With a final re-enactment from two members of our fellowship, omitting the part in the water due to the cold temperatures, We got on the coach as a group one last time. From here, we left for Queenstown for the night.

Arriving at Queenstown, we were given numerous vouchers for shops and restaurants in the town by our tour leader. We ate that night at The London restaurant, A pizza restaurant. I loved the irony of eating at The London, since I only live an hour away from the city of London. I highly recommend The London, best pizza I had in New Zealand. After eating, we turned in for the day.

Day 12 of the Tour

For the first time on the Tour, I woke up at 9AM. Since we were travelling far every day before, The coach left between 7:30AM and 9AM. but today, half of our tour was heading to Arrowtown, only about twenty minutes away. We left Queenstown at around midday. A week before we arrived in Queenstown we had a chance to order custom sized jewellery, and in Arrowtown was where we could collect it. As I stated earlier, I don’t wear jewellery, so I didn’t buy anything. But I was tempted to buy an Maori Green stone. My family and I decided to explore Queenstown and the old Chinese Village that had been left behind from the New Zealand gold rush which started in what is now Arrowtown. After a quick drink in a local pub, we headed back to Queenstown.

This evening was an emotion fulled night. The Breaking of our Fellowship and our farewell dinner. There were tears and laughs in the rented boardroom in the restaurant. We reminisced about the adventure we had been on, and greeted everyone as friends. Twelve days ago, we had all been strangers in a boardroom. but now we were all friends.

Day 13 of the Tour

Today was “Optional Activity Day” Since I heavily value sleep, I took the morning off. However, in the afternoon, I joined the Nomad Safari. Half of our Fellowship was also on the tour. Started our Safari for Skipper’s Canyon, along one of New Zealand’s most dangerous roads. The tour guides for this safari were experienced at driving along these roads. The canyon looked beautiful to say the least. New Zealand always finds a way to show off it’s beauty.

After spending a bit of time in Skipper’s Canyon, We headed back to Arrowtown to explore along the river. The famous scene from The Fellowship of the Ring was filmed at the river, where Arwen uses the magic of her people to protect herself and Frodo from the Ringwraiths.

As we drew near to the River, we were expecting to drive along a road. but our tour guides had different plans. They took us into the river to drive up it. The water is shallow, so the jeeps could easily drive up them. It was a bumpy ride and I hit my head once or twice. the river is where they originally looked for gold, we were taught by our guides about how they panned for gold as well as being given the opportunity for ourselves. A couple of our group found tiny flakes of gold. unfortunately, the small size made the gold almost worthless.

After a brief trip up another mountain road, we returned to our hotel. For our final Dinner in New Zealand, we visited Devil Burger, a short walk away from out Hotel. I made a mistake when reading the menu, seeing “onion rings” on the list for my burger, I assumed that it was a side of onion rings. I was very wrong once I received my burger. It was the biggest burger I have ever had on my plate. and rather than a side onion rings, they were included in the burger, Along with bacon, two patties, tomato, lettuce, pickles, and cheese. Through pure willpower, I managed to finish the burger.

Day 14 of the Tour

Today was the last day of our adventure. I have worked the numbering differently to how it is shown on the Red Carpet Tours Website. So my day 1 starts a day later. From here till I got home, I had three flights lined up. Queenstown to Auckland, Auckland to LA, and LA to London. I only had the Window seat for the first flight, I took in the final views of New Zealand before leaving it. I definitely want to go back to New Zealand one day. Maybe when planes get faster so the flight isn’t 24 hours. But the landscapes are so breathtaking that they don’t seem real half the time. it really was like stepping into another world.

38 hours after leaving the hotel in Queenstown, and 18 days after leaving home, I was finally back home. The Tour was spectacular. And I really wish I could do it all again. I feel like the landscapes you can never truly get over. walking around Hobbiton was like being in the film, As well as many of the other locations. there were plenty of times for your own adventure. It really seems like a once in a life time opportunity, and from what others have said, it seems like every time is different too. Since I went in New Zealand Winter, the tour was different to the summer tour. not too different. but that gives me the chance to do it again and experience new things.

And that’s the end of my New Zealand Adventure. it’s taken about seven hours to write this all up, with minor distractions in between. But thank you for reading this far! I hope you enjoyed learning what I’ve been up to, and are inspired to go on your own journey sometime too!

Thank you for reading!

Mystery Blogger Award?!

Hiya Everyone! Different post today! I’ve been tagged by Becca to fill out this Mystery Blogger thing! I want to start off by saying sorry for lack of posts, I got back from New Zealand yesterday after a 2 week tour of both islands. I’m going to be putting something together to show the over 1000 pictures I took! I’ll obviously cut down the pictures, but New Zealand is a stunning place. I can’t wait to get to writing with my new experiences.

After a brief reading about the Mystery Blogger Award, It was stared by Okoto Enigma, A writer with a passion for fashion and writing. Anywho, here are the rules!

The rules for this Mystery Blogger Award are as follows:

  1. Put the award logo/image on your blog
  2. List the rules
  3. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  4. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
  5. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
  6. You have to nominate 10 – 20 people
  7. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
  8. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify)
  9. Share a link to your best post(s)

3 Facts about me:

  1. I am affected by Dissassociative Identity Disorder (DID). DID used to be called Multiple Personality Disorder, but was changed as understanding of the disorder has been developed. I am an alternate personality, one of three, not including the “original”. I am the Primary personality at the moment.
  2. My name, Rin, was inspired by the Music Video Shelter, by Porter Robinson and Madeon. The protagonist of the music video lives her life alone, seperated from the rest of society, but she was happy. Due to my DID, I only speak to people online, and I really felt like I related to Rin in the music video. Before I adopted the name Rin, I was called Katie for about a week.
  3. My mother is one of my role models (along with my best friend eyesofashes) My mum isn’t with us anymore, but I still work hard to make her proud. She lived a rough life, but passed on with a smile on her face. I truly admire her and wish I had been able to get to know her better.

5 questions given to me:

What do you consider your passion and when did you realise it? I don’t really feel like I have a passion. I guess being creative is a passion, ever since I’ve come about, I’ve always been creative. I started off with art, I bought a cheap drawing tablet and started to use that. From there, I was given a better tablet which I still use. As for Writing, my mum started writing a book, but she never got to finish it. I took it under my wing and started to rewrite it for her. it isn’t finished, but it’s my Killing Days book that I’ve been working on.

What is your best piece of advice for fellow bloggers? Can someone answer this for me? I’m brand new to blogging! I guess my advice would just to be write something down. Ideas, Thoughts, Feelings. If you start something, then more comes naturally. I’ve had a few people come to me for consultation on their own books, and I normally make them write down their ideas. Once they start writing it down, they fill in blanks automatically.

If you could tell your younger self anything, what would you say? because of my DID, I’ve only got 21 months worth of memories. My younger self isn’t too long ago. That being said, I’d tell myself “Don’t be what others want you to be, just be yourself and people will like you more.”

What is your favourite book and why? I’ve been afraid of this question. I call myself an Author, but I don’t read a lot. I prefer to be writing and creating for my own, rather than living in someone else’s world. The most I’ve read is the Light Novel Series: Accel World, by Reki Kawahara. Accel world was my first Anime, and I wanted to know more, so I read the books. I’m really invested in the characters, and I love to see how they change over time. for anyone who’s read my blogs, I’m sure you’ll know that I’m much more of a believer in character development as a story, than events happening in a world.

Describe your perfect date? Uhh… I’ve never been on a date, I have no experience in this field! I’d enjoy something more laid back, I’m not a fancy resturant kinda girl. So maybe a chill evening watching some TV or playing games with a girl would be a good time. Pizza, soft drinks, games. Enjoying eachother’s company.

However, if you’re talking about date as in on the calendar, 7th of December, My mum’s birthday.

Who I’m nominating:

Oh gosh, I know no one on this website! The only person I know is Becca who tagged me in this. This is going to be a wild ride. To save myself time, I’m going to look for 5 people. I’m sorry!

  1. Writing with an open heart
  2. The Everyday Life
  3. Zoe’s Library
  4. Paraphernalia
  5. The Little Alchemyst

My 5 Question for my Nominees

  1. Why did you start your blog?
  2. What got you into reading/writing?
  3. What’s your favourite Dinosaur?
  4. What’s your favourite quote?
  5. Where do you want to go on Holiday?

My best post:

I’m only going to list one post, that being my first post. https://rinspect.home.blog/2019/06/07/rins-start-line/

Inception Review

I want to start this review with a small apology, I’ve been away for a couple of weeks to care for my own mental health, and I haven’t had anything to write about. I’m starting to get into a better mental state, so I thought some writing would help me get back on track.

When I mentioned that I hadn’t seen Inception, my adoptive sister exclaimed in shock. So, once she left for her own home, I sat down and watched Inception that evening. It was… fairly confusing. but I think I got my head mostly wrapped around the story.

The world shown in Inception is magical to me. I love the concept, using shared dreams extract information from other people, or as shown later on, plant an idea in someone’s head. I love the concept of the story, I love how it was pulled off. However, I can only name three characters; Mal, Fischer, and Saito.Mal is a short name, and as the malicious antagonist, it was easy to remember, Fischer I saw written down once, and Saito reminds me of my art program, Paint Tool Sai.

The amount of character development in this movie is questionable. Our protagonist for this story is Leonardo DiCaprio’s character, Dominick Cobb. Cobb is an Agent? Freelancer? Whatever his profession, he’s skilled in the art of “Extraction” easily able to go into someone’s dreams and take out desired information for a variety of reasons, but mainly espionage.

We learn fairly early on that he is a dad of two children, that he can’t visit because of “work” But we soon are told that he’s on the run from authorities for apparently killing his wife. Cobb tells us that he’s falsely accused and he didn’t kill her.

One of the most important character for me was Ariadne, portrayed by Ellen Page. She’s the every day character in this film, and while she seems to be pushed to the side for the action scene, is important in two ways. First, She designs the ‘Levels’ of the dream. Crucial to the story. In addition, she’s our door into the story. The story is explained to her so we can learn what’s going on. Ariadne is a relatable character for me, and I would guess many viewers. She’s driven by her curiosity, She enjoys creating the dreams to a certain extent. Who hasn’t wanted to change the world just with their thoughts. If Ariadne’s character hadn’t been introduced. I still wouldn’t know what the plot of the movie was.

Moving on to our Antagonist, Dominick Cobb. While people will say that Mal Cobb is the antagonist, it is the version of her is created by Dominick Cobb’s subconssious. Mal, played by Marion Cotillard, is the personification of the guilt and anger that Cobb went through. We learn later in the story that Cobb was responsible for her death, by planting the idea that her reality isn’t real, and was in heavy denial of this fact. Due to his guilt, Mal became a phantom. Invading any dream that he goes into. She sabotages the plans that they create. I may have missed something, but she never really has any intention than just to cause trouble. She doesn’t try to get Cobb stuck in Limbo with her, she only attacks his friends. Mal’s character seems like a moving hazard. Her real life version has a bit more development.

The story starts way before the film. Mal and Cobb fall in love and have children. At this point, Cobb is already a professional in his field of Extraction. His training is only emplied by him being at a school in france… I could be wrong, this is what I infer from the story. if it was said how he became an Expert Extrator, it was glossed over. Some point in their life, Mal and Cobb enter their dreams, and visit Limbo. Yet again, not stated how they got to Limbo. they build a world that they love. Mal loves the new Limbo world so much, that she becomes obsessed with it, and doesn’t want to leave. She makes herself think that Limbo is reality. This is visualised in the story by her locking away her totem, An object that ties you to reality. After a while, Cobb wants to return to the real world, but Mal thinks that Limbo is her reality. Cobb finds her totem and sets it spinning. This is his symbolism of telling her that this isn’t reality. planting an idea called an “Inception” Mal believes that she’s in a dream world, and the two leave Limbo together.

Mal, still with the idea that “This isn’t reality” still thinks she’s dreaming. The only way to wake up from the dream, is death. Mal, malcontent with life, Kills herself. She thinks she will wake up in the real world. But, she is wrong and is killed for good. Cobb is accused of killing her and he goes into hiding, working as a Extration Thief.

During one of his missions, he meets Saito. Failing to retrieve Saito’s information. Saito recruits Cobb for his own needs. Saito offers Cobb his family back as a reward. How he does this isn’t explained, but by the end of the movie my brain was too frazzled to question it.

Cobb puts together a team and explains what you shouldn’t do in a dream world to Ariadne, which is soon revealed that Cobb does all of these things. During this segment, we learn most of Cobb’s story. He has a simple motivation, he wants to see his kids again. He’s guilty about the death of his wife. And that’s all of his development. I wasn’t too satisfied with his story. Maybe if I had kids of my own, I would feel a bit more motivated. It’s an admirable motivation… but it’s hollow. We hardly know Cobb, We only know the names of his kids, the kids seem to mostly accept that they’re not getting their dad back too. I can’t really put a moral on the story, but I’ll get back to that in a bit.

The next part of the story is the heist. Things go wrong as expected, Cobb breaks more rules. This time was more enjoyable. Watching Cobb convince Fischer that he was in a dream was rather amusing. Pushing forwards, they get close to their goal. Cobb ends up in Limbo again with Mal. And nothing really happens. I think Cobb finally moves on. but I really can’t tell. If I had to put a moral on the story, it would be “Letting go of the past allows you to reach for the future.” but Cobb doesn’t really let go of the past. He gets to live with his kids again, but I don’t think he really got over loosing Mal, not truly.

As the movie comes to the end, We are given an ambiguous ending to the story, Cobb is not shown to be in reality, but not shown to be in a dream. To me, that felt cheap really. Either the hard work paid off, or it was all for nothing. and we aren’t given the satisfaction of knowing either. Personally, I felt that he was in reality by the end of the film. that way the story actually has some kind meaning.

To conclude this mess of thoughts, I feel the characters haven’t got anywhere near as much development that is needed for a good story. I’ve mentioned four of the main characters, I think there were seven people in that heist and I’ve only had to mention half of them. the rest of them are only kinda important to the story, we aren’t told anything about them really. I do want to add, Even though I disliked most of the characters, The actors played their roles flawlessly. Leonardo DiCaprio captured the character of Cobb and played him amazingly. I’m a massive fan of Ellen Page, and Ariadne was one of the better characters. She seemed grounded, and while she had no development at all, we had her motive and was the only relatable character for me. Mal portrayed by Marion Cotillard was excellent in her role of the ambiguous antagonist. I also loved Cillian Murphy’s character of Robert Fischer. As the Target of the heist, the character managed to fill the role of being suspicious about the dream, but also trying to understand what was happening. Ken Watanabe playing Mr Saito was a great cast too, easily being a believable business magnate.

I also loved how dreams were shown. the dream world seemed believable and made sense. While most of the rules of people in the dream are broken, the rules around the dream world are set in stone and easy to follow. I had no trouble following the dreams, only the characters and plots. Great Actors, Great Concept, Character development and the plot are shaky.

That about finishes my look at Inception. While the CG of the film looked revolutionary, the plot only seems significant because it’s confusing. I didn’t have much emotion for the film. However, this is my review. People have different opinions, and what I want to do is use films as a way to learn about story telling. As a learning experience, this film has plenty to teach.

As always, thank you for following my blog. Please follow my Twitter for updates: https://twitter.com/RinCrowe or follow this page for notifications when I post somehting new. The next film I really want to review is Spider-man: Into the Spiderverse. it has to be one of my favourite movies from 2018.

Thank you for following me on my Journey!

Joseph Campbell’s: The Hero’s Journey

An image representing The Hero’s Journey

The Hero’s Journey is one of the most commonly used story structures, even if people don’t realise it. Written about in his book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell outlines how most archetypal heroes use the same story, but with different characters. Popular works of fiction that The Hero’s Journey applies to are; The Lord of the Rings, Spider-man (2002), Harry Potter, Star wars, and many more.

In today’s blog, I’ll be explaining how The Hero’s Journey is shown in “The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” and which each point means. First, I want to outline the two worlds. The ‘Ordinary world’ symbolises the state the character is in when they feel “Normal.” This is when their everyday life isn’t changed radically by the story. The ‘Special world’ is where the bulk of the story takes place. The character is out of their comfort zone, they may not leave where they live, but their day to day activities are changed radically.

Part 1: The Ordinary world. The start of the story is in the ordinary world, this time is used to set up who the character is, what setting they live in, and maybe to start the threads of the story. This is how the character lives their everyday life, nothing new or especially exciting. In The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess. This is where Link, the protagonist of the game, is living on Ordon Village. We see his everyday life, helping townsfolk, Living with friends, and spending time with the love interest of the game Ilia.

From this point, the game becomes more interesting. Part 2: The Call to Adventure. The protagonist of the story is required to take action. This can be through orders, a message, a villain, or their own will that they get this call. For Link, this call is when he is knocked out by Bokoblins, a race of Orc or Goblin like creatures. The Bokoblins kidnap Link’s friends and love interest. He tries to follow his friends. But he encounters a wall of Twilight, a border into the twilight realm.

Link is then pulled through by an evil arm, starting part 3: Refusal of the Call. this is where the Hero first denies the call, they feel they are too weak, they’re not important or special, they think they’re not the hero. Continuing Link’s story, once pulled into the twilight realm, He undergoes a physical transformation, turning into a wolf. He then passes out and wakes up in a prison cell. Unable to go and help his friends.

That is until he meets the mentor, part 4 of the story. The Mentor is normally some kind of teacher, role model, friend, or spirit. They inspire the hero and guides them on their quest. In Link’s case, this is Midna, a small imp-like creature of twilight . Midna shares similar goals with Link. Link, Although reluctant and not getting on well with Midna, accepts her help and escapes the cell.

From this point, the hero can truly cross the threshold, Part 5, from the normal world into the special world. They can’t turn back from here. They have their goal in sight, and now they need to achieve it. Teaming up with Midna and moving past the bars of the jail cell and starting his journey is were Link crosses the threshold.

The next section makes up a majority of the game. Part 6: Tests, Allies, and Enemies. These are the various quests the characters embark on, the friends they make along the way, and the enemies that the hero has to face. For Link, this was saving his friends, Collecting Fused Shadows, Assembling the Mirror of Twilight. he fought many different enemies, made new friends, and overcome many tasks. Although Link had saved his friends, they still weren’t safe. The Antagonist of the game who we had seen so far was only a puppet for a greater threat. One that just took a position of power in the world.

This leads into part 7: Approach to the innermost cave. This is the Hero heading towards their final fight. They get ready with all their tools and skills and prepare, heading into the final fight. For Link, This is the Final dungeon. Heading into Hyrule Castle to face his greatest foe, Gannondorf.

Part 8: The Ordeal. This isn’t always the climax of the story, it’s this point where all routes have led to, and where they will change forever going forwards. For Link, this is his final fight with Gannondorf. Everything has led to this moment of the fated fight.

Part 9: The Reward. The hero has saved the day, and they got what they originally set out to do. They can reap the fruits of their labour. For Link, He has saved his friends from all harm, As well as the rest of the kingdom of Hyrule.

The road back is part 10. Everything is becoming normal again, and the story is wrapping up. The hero doesn’t need to do any more fighting. For Link, this is shown by him visiting the friends he made during the quest. The friends from his village still haven’t returned home just yet though.

Resurrection is part 11. The character is shown to be Reborn in some way, normally spiritually. For Link, this is his final conversation with Midna. the resurrection is shown with Midna, Now the curse on her is gone, She changes from her Imp Form, to her True form as ruler of the Twilight Realm. And during this conversation, Both Link and Midna are sad to be parting. A massive change from when the two first met and reluctantly got along.

Finally, Part 12: Return with the Elixir. The Elixir can be anything the hero set out to get, Medusa’s head, Excalibur, or a love interest. After saying his farewell to Midna, Link returns to Ordon Village with his friends and love interest. Everyone is safe from danger and can go on living their every day life.

And that is the Hero’s Journey. A long twelve part story. The great thing about storytelling, is there’s no right or wrong answer. I wanted to keep this blog post fairly brief, you can go into a lot more detail on each of these points in the story. But really, it’s best for an aspiring author to work out what each one means for themselves. The Hero’s Journey isn’t a solid method you have to follow. but it’s a great way to structure the story. It forces the writer to focus on the character and their development. To me, That is one of the most important parts of the story. In a future post, I’m going over the 2002 Spider-man film and reviewing how it fits with the 12 act structure. However, I may change this for Spider-man: Into The Spider-verse. The best way to learn what all these points truly mean, is to work it out for yourself. I’d recommend looking at Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s stone, or Star Wars: A New Hope. If you also want to check out either 2002 Spider-man or Spider-verse, then you can compare your thoughts to what I write down too.

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Killing Days Side Story: Plot

This is the second part of my Killing Days Side Story: Finn and Zoey planning. The first part is here: https://rinspect.home.blog/2019/06/16/killing-days-side-story-finn-and-zoey/ This post will go over the key plot points.

Launching straight into the plot, I want to break it down into several sections. Normal life, Start of the apocalypse, Refusal, Meeting the mentor, Trials, Return to a changed normal life. Those who have studied any kind of story writing will recognise most of these points as the Hero’s Journey. For those who don’t recognise these points, I’ll get into the Hero’s Journey in another post.

Normal life, Before the start of the apocalypse. The story will be following Finn’s perspective for this part. This is our introduction to Finn, our first impressions of the character. We need to establish who he is by what he is doing.

I did take a break between the last paragraph and this one since I was caught up on what he would be doing. After a lot of thinking, I feel like he could be doing something creative around writing. As a writer, I do a lot of research into my books. and writing a lot of Zombie based books, my internet history looks slightly incriminating. I feel as if Finn, being a smart individual, would like taking on a form of world building. If he was staying up planning, then it would give him more than enough reason to be awake at 3AM when the apocalypse originally broke out.

From here, I want Finn to encounter Zoey on his way to the safe zone. This will be Finn’s introduction to the infected. In this meeting, the two characters will help each other escape from the infected and to the safe zone.

From here, it’s more settling down and learning the environment of the safe zone. I want the plot points to challenge Finn and Zoey to really establish why they are able to survive this apocalypse. I’m not sure what order they’ll be in yet, But getting the ideas down on paper is what is important at this stage. The situations and skills I want to be tested are: Teamwork, Stealth, Raiding, Shooting, First aid, Crafting.

A good idea for Crafting is if the pair get separated from the safe zone. i.e. Lost in a forest, having to get out of a dangerous situation. A true “Survival” aspect that people think of when it comes to the apocalypse. I feel like this would come more towards the end of the story.

First aid is a skill that will be shown throughout the story, not at just one specific event. but I do want the characters to show a progression of this knowledge over the course of the book. In addition, teamwork will be the same. As the story goes on, the teamwork between Finn and Zoey will grow.

Stealth and Raiding I want to go hand in hand too. As supplies start to run out, characters will start to raid other safe zones for supplies. it’s a world of survival of the fittest. During one trial, I want Finn and Zoey to infiltrate an enemy safe zone. This trial will be to help their own safe zone.

Another trial, towards the beginning of the book, is going to be a fight with an “Ape” infected. in Killing Days, Dani and Ruby are the first ones to kill an Ape infected. They achieve this by crushing it under a pile of rubble. While Finn and Zoey won’t be able to achieve it the same way, they will be able to kill it.

To Summarise and put these trials and events into some order. The event of the books will be: Normal life and initial breakout, settling into the safe zone, learning tools and starting to raid. Climax 1: Attack of Ape. which then goes into the dynamics of the safe zone, and an attack on the safe zone as the Second Climax of the story. From here, the story will focus on the survival aspect, to be followed by the raid on the opposing safe zone.

From here, the last thing is the final climax of the story, then a bit of time for the story to settle back down. But honestly, I’m stuck with this final confrontation. So I want to reach out to you, the Reader of this post, to help me. if you could suggest any ideas, feel free to leave them in the comments. Thank you for your support throughout my journey!