Wednesday, July 16, 2008

What the hell is this?

A worthy question, my anonymous friend. Hopefully this About page will explain all that you've ever wanted to know about Stick Figure Dungeon. Perhaps more than you've wanted to know; ignorance is bliss, you know. If this is too much to take in, you can just jump into the story, as confused and bewildered as a fish out of water, and flounder about until you figure out the gist of things. But I wrote this page for you (yes, you!) to read, so if you're not afraid of your cerebral cortex exploding unexpectedly, then read further.

What is Stick Figure Dungeon?

Stick Figure Dungeon, or SFD, is a user driven story, akin to the "Choose Your Own Adventure" books that were all the rage when I was younger. Are they still popular? They might be, I don't know. At any rate, I've been trying unsuccessfully for a year or so at making my own webcomic, and during that time I discovered MS Paint Adventures. I wouldn't say I copied Andrew Hussie's brilliant creation as much as I drew inspiration from it, and by that I mean it was the impetus for me to create Stick Figure Dungeon. I liked the format of taking user's suggestions and progressing the story with them, since it meant that I didn't have to come up with my own ideas. And making the art simple meant that I never had to worry about spending hours drawing a detailed comic, fitting speech bubbles in and all that.

I started SFD in December 2008, as something to help practice my drawing skills during winter break. I never intended for SFD to become a huge hit, and in many ways it hasn't, so that's good! Yay for low expectations!

How do I contribute my suggestions?

I'm very glad you asked that! Every blog post has a comments section. All you have to do is leave a comment on the most current scene with a suggestion for what the main character should do next in the story. It's just that simple!

I look at many things when selecting a suggestion for each scene. First, is this the "expected" follow-up to the previous scene, as in is this what I expected the next scene to be? I try to avoid doing my own suggestions as I feel it ruins the point of taking suggestions in the first place. Next I look at humorous appeal, then the impact on the story line, and finally I look to see if there are any doubles or similar suggestions. If you like someone else's suggestion, repeat it, as that's a sign to me to use it over another suggestion.

Sometimes I can merge multiple suggestions into one post, and sometimes I use two or more suggestions and branch the storyline off (all branches will weave back together, eventually, or one will be a GAME OVER) but usually there is just one suggestion taken for each scene.

What is the update schedule for the site?

Since April 2009 I've been updating consistently three times a week, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I try to update at 12:00 am EST on the day the scene should be uploaded, but sometimes I get lazy and decide to go to bed, and do the scene during the day. On very rare occasions I've updated minutes before the following day's midnight, but if I do update during the day I try to do so between 12:00 and 3:00 pm.

Before I implemented this schedule in April, I updated whenever I felt like it, which didn't really work out so well, since I ended up missing the entire month of May due to lack of interest. So let this be a lesson to others, to make and maintain schedules to avoid procrastination.

I'm lost! How do I navigate through the site?

I suppose blogger is not the best host for a site of this nature since, you know, I'm not actually blogging. Unless you count the news updates, but that's rather insignificant in my opinion. But after a few attempts to use blogger to my advantage, I've come up with an easy solution: hyperlinks!

Each blog post has a unique URL. Actually, two, and possibly more, depending on whether you're searching the archives or going through the posts sequencially. Anyway, I picked what I consider to be the "main" URL of each post and make a hyperlink to it, and post this link in the previous post. This way, starting from the beginning of SFD, you merely click on the hyperlink at the end of each scene to progress to the next scene. Each hyperlink has text that is the suggestion used for the following scene, and is also the title of the following scene. In some rare cases you'll find two or more links, because I use more than one suggestion. Unfortunately, much like time, there is no way to go backwards through the scenes.

I try to keep all the scenes in order, so that you could technically use the "newer post" and "older post" to go through the archives. This works for the most part, but there are some issues with this method. For example, this very page is a blog post and will be found in the archives, and hence you can find it through blogger navigation. If you follow my custom hyperlinks, however, you'll only run into this page if you click a hyperlink bringing you here, so there is little confusion.

The Homepage is the main page of the site. Here is where I post news updates about myself, SFD, or other random stuff, and provide a link to the latest scene of SFD. This is a convenience for those of you who are already up to date with the story, and also conveniently tells when the next scene is up before you even click the link. Two conveniences in one! At the bottom of the Homepage are a set of links to jump to special pages, such as this About page, which is presumably how you found this page.

I hope that explains every issue with navigation through the site.

Who are you?

I'm just this guy, you know? I draw silly pictures and post them on the internet. I wear glasses, and I enjoy science fiction, video games, math, physics, and comics, so I guess that would label me a nerd, geek, dork, or any other term of equal pejorative meaning or derivement. I'm a student at Brandeis University and I'm studying math, physics, and music, as well as a slew of other courses that interest me.

I'm pretty boring in real life, but on the internet nobody needs to know that! So all you need to know is that I'm awesome.

Oh wait.... shit.


About Stick Figure Dungeon

Chapter 0 (Beginning)
Chapter 1
*Story still on Chapter 1*


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About Me

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Hello, stranger. I am PieNinja. My interests include comics (I am a cartoonist), music (I am a composer), mathematics and physics (I am majoring in both), and video games (well duh). Feel free to contact me if you share any of my interests, or need help with a pre-college-level math/physics problem. That is all.