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Old 01-16-2009, 12:14 PM   #1
machievelli
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Staff Picks: Best of 2008!

Best of 2008

Long fics are;

Vremya ("Time")
Tysyacha

After TSL: The Exile contemplates a bleak future

The word is tends not intends.

The piece is an excellent bit of introspection, laced with flashbacks. Very well done


Destiny: Part I
Aderyn

During TSL Just before Ebon Hawk heads to Malachor: Revan returns, but the war lingers…

Considering what I know about men coming back from combat, this story is poignant. Revan spends her time constantly on guard, afraid that she might be attacked, typical not of the average soldier, but the hard core veteran who spends months in combat. It takes time to get the sound of incoming out of your ears, something we have forgotten since Korea. The process we see begun here will take time. Very well done

Alternate Parallels; Chapter 1
Valar

Alternate Universe TSL: Sometimes when you need a life someone will offer one…

Usually I get all irritated about using Earth because it violates canon. However this was a fun bit of fluff. The ending line caused me to chuckle.

Shrouded in Darkness: Yuthura Ban's Tale
Darth Yuthura

KOTOR on Korriban: Yuthura’s return to the light begins its rocky start.

The writing is excellent, the story compelling. My primary problem with it is I don’t have time to read all of it.

DY had asked two weeks ago for me to read and critique this… But everyone commenting stopped me from getting to it earlier. It was worth the wait, but at the same time frustrating, because it is that good.

Short fiction runs the gamut from wildy amusing to tearjerkers. In chronological order (As I read them) We have:

Loyalty
Noneko

On the Unnamed Planet: With Mission dead, where does Zaalbar’s loyalties lie?

The piece struck at my heart because I can understand the life-debt’s bounds. Zaalbar must do what he does, but at the same time, he had to rationalize around that stricture.

Some said it didn’t make sense, but honorable situations, such as standing at Thermoplae even after cut off only makes sense when you use honor instead of common sense as a meter.

Lost Causes
Uilleand

TSL before Korriban: The torment of Vash.

What can I say about it Uilleand? How about first Pick of 2008?

Actually I have to say more. Most when they have someone getting tortured either rush past, or dwell a little too lovingly on it. You split the difference very well. Especially the waste of the entire endeavor.

Damaged
Spud Head

Pre KOTOR: The battle of Malachor V claims it’s last victim.

I didn’t know what to say. SH fought the battle of Malachor V the same way I did but in a long drawn out tearing motion rather than an axe falling. It was like my ex would say, watching a train wreck. You can do nothing to stop it, you know the people will die, yet part of you can’t tear your eyes away from it.

A pick of the week, and I’ll tell you now, best of this week as well.

Your Man Until the End
Uilleand

Before the last mission in TSL: Mandalore ponders on regret.

By weaving portions of both of the games Uilleand has given us an excellent glimpse into the heart of this warrior.

Insanity
Revan Sama

The battle between Revan and Bastila: What was going through Bastila’s mind?

I read this and like another a few weeks ago, didn’t know what to say. You look into the depth of madness here, and like the old saying, the madness is looking back at you.

Rise of the Sith'ari: Chapter 1
Master Widrin Soro

Two months before the beginning of the Jedi Civil War: Revan and Malak discover that the Sith'ari might be more than a myth.

The style is abrupt, the story merely an intro. But from that I believe I can safely say this one bears watching.

Circles
Benna Kioba

Post KOTOR, but no definite dating: Carth says goodbye, and hello.

What can I say? The piece was like a portrait by a master. The scene well defined, the situation perfect, every word and phrase making the scene more exact and poignant.

No Girls Allowed
Hairless Wookie

Climactic battle aboard Star Forge: The sign said what???

I was a bit upset at the first with Nurik being made an admiral. But from the moment Malak spoke, I lost it. Malak on drugs, Nurik unable to figure a way out of the mess, Revan unwilling to open a door because she’s worried about LS points. The way she got her light sabers was just icing on the cake.

Wildly silly, irreverent and worth every second!

Safeword
Uilleand

On Nar Shaddaa during TSL: A look into Atton’s darkness

The way it was written, this reminded me of a lot of things. Excellently done, the denouement perfect.

A stroll on Dxun . . .
Yggdrasil

On Dxun: An interesting walk leads to an equally interesting conversation

The piece started out a bit strange, but immediately became a riot. Put it this way, just picturing Visas begging for a spanking, then Visas in bondage gear cracked me up, and it didn’t stop there. Excellent!

Tough Love
Glass (Also known as Glass Mermaid)

During TSL: The title says it all.

The rare evil Atton story so far have been some of the best work I have seen here. Not that the man can’t be the good guy, but because when he goes bad he really goes bad. You can’t think of anything beyond him

Fire with Fire
Salzella

Mandalorian Wars January contest set on Eres III: Revan considers what are acceptable losses.

Kid, you surprised me. This is is an interesting thought provoking piece. If I had voted, you would have gotten one.

Obsession
Kattalez

During TSL after Nar Shaddaa: A silent watcher yearns for more.

Excellent work! The depth of the character is explored, the yearning deep enough that you can feel it with him.

Who You Were, Who You Are
Master JuriJuice

TSL after Korriban and before Onderon: The thoughts in Atton’s mind about what he once was.

The piece was excellent right up to the last paragraph. As to that paragraph, it surpassed itself by becoming a sudden twist the rest had never given you.

Redemption? My ass.
Written by Fongeil, artwork by Fizzingwhizbee

this one surprised me. Very well done.

The Fate of the Galaxy Hacker
Writer

Imperial Era: From the March ‘The things we do for love’ Challenge, A hacker gets sentenced.

Now this was interesting Writer. You set the scene well, had the interrogator work with casual efficiency, and the only sticking point is like others have already mentioned, it’s only a prologue.

I never vote on the contests as I have said several times, but I would have voted for this one.

The Twenty-Third Sub-Basement, Part I
JediDWH

After TSL: A character comments on her version of reality, if you can call it that…

The story started out a bit weird but once it started rolling I almost fell over laughing. Having all of these sub-plots running through my own head at times, I not only understood where the author was going, but could almost see where it might be going. Hey, JediDWH, how about you send me the complete work? That way I can get a chance to read it.

Afraid
Uilleand

KOTOR on the Star Forge: Told mainly in flashbacks, Revan explores fear.

The style is up to you usual standards, and well worth the read.

You explored (in a manner similar to the one I used in my KOTOR) the one thing that has consistently bugged me about the Jedi attitude. How can you deal with emotions without understanding and accepting them?

Little Dreamer
Bee Hoon

Non Star Wars: The past and future collide in more ways than one…

An interesting piece, BH. If this is the one you wanted reviewed, good work.

It's Just a Little Thing
Jae Onasi

No specific time given, though after KOTOR: Friendship means doing things for others…

The piece is up to Jae’s usual great standards, and even if it is short, it was worth reading.

I Remember
The Disciple

TSL at the Traya Core: As she fades from life, The Exile remembers one last moment of pleasure.

This piece required a second reading. Not that it was bad, rather it was so well done I was moved by it. The sorrow was poignant and the end was just icing on the cake.


Popsicle Bliss
Bee Hoon

PreKOTOR: A Padawan finds that some pleasures are still there.

It was well written BH, and seeing Revan and he Exile I assume as children was amusing. A light hearted romp, well worth looking at.


Rescue Me
Amber Penglass

TSL Aboard Ravager during attack on Telos then in the Traya Academy: An Atton/Female Exile Snippet,

The basics are good, the story well written. Having a game of one-gunmanship in saving each other was a bit of fun on it’s own.

Grounded
SkyePrism

Post KOTOR On Nar Shaddaa: The Mercenary baby-sitter?

There are times when I want cute-sey and fun.

Must be one of those times.

This was cute irreverent and irresistibly funny. I read it from end to end and wished I could laugh out loud. Worth every second!

Definition of Love
Darth Jedi Master

PreKOTOR: How they feel needs explanation, and Revan has the answer.

The biggest problems were the author’s notes, which distracted the reader. Try to cut back a bit, k?

The story itself was excellent because you can see the two sides of love in Malak and Mical’s reactions under the same circumstances. Like a lot of people I don’t like the Disciple and even went so far as to get the Handmaiden Mod to avoid adding him to the group. But here I actually felt sorry for him.


KotOR III: Chapter 1 Of Exiles, Droids & Ghosts

Ravan

Five year after TSL: The Exile continues her search for Revan

The scene is well done, the weariness of the main character well portrayed. You can picture the Exile on the ragged edge, barely holding herself together. Worth reading more than once to get the flavor just right.


Darkness of the Heart
MasterJoe

TSL on Korriban: What lies in the Disciple’s heart?

For the first time I liked the Disciple. It isn’t that I like the dark side it’s the
Idea that somewhere inside that smarmy attitude there’s a human being.

The others have given you advice. Mine is to remember to edit.

I Never…
SailorV

TSL Enroute to Onderon the second time: Do you really want to win?

The story concept is beautiful, and the game well played. The irritation as each ends up revealing more than they might like, the playful ‘I’m only drinking because I’m thirsty’ comments excellent foils in a game that becomes increasingly more vicious.

At the End
Spud Head

Post TSL on Malachor V: After a life of pain, sometimes there is only one thing left to do.

I had to wait before writing this review because I wasn’t sure what to say. There are words improperly used, cumbersome sentences, editing problems.

That being said it was a perfect piece with all of the pain there for you to see, the balance between being the bad guy and at the same time regretting it inside an underlay that makes you wish it would never end. Well worth the read.

Lnicol1990 gets best of the best with the disturbing
Broken

TSL on Korriban: Anything made can be broken. It’s just a matter of knowing how.

The scene struck me because any dungeon of any game can have that one being trapped within unable to escape. Giving him a name we’d recognize was a good touch. Everything flowed from his madness to his death to her regret. So well done I wish I could praise it enough.

Strong Bonds
Breena Quee

PostTSL: On Dantooine in the ruins of the Jedi Academy, The future for the order begins.

You had the wrong words sometimes. Continence (Self Restraint) instead of countenance (Facial expression) for example. The things wrong with it are easily corrected by editing and polishing.

That said, the story is a jewel well worth reading. The jump from reminiscence to present were smoothly done, the story compelling. As Evil Monkey said, when is part two coming out?

The Darkness Within
Jenivus De Clan

During the Jedi Civil War: A young girl goes on a mission that will lead to another’s redemption.

The piece was compelling, giving you a very good look at what Atton was like, and the life of that girl unnamed in the story that died to redeem him. While I can see Czerka being condemned for illegal practices, claiming they ‘fund’ the Sith was a stretch, but a minor complaint.

I can think of only one thing to say to show exactly how good I thought this was;

Pick of the week, and best of the best for this week.

Girls night out.
Chevron 7 Locke

TSL at Citadel Station: A girl’s night out leads to…

I thought it was interesting from the start. Two people who are sudden death on two feet getting into a drunken bar fight, then escaping it.

The ending made me want to laugh, because I’m picturing two people finding a bunch of kid’s rings (Usually made from plastic mind) waking up with a kid’s ring on, thinking they did get married…

My question is this, did they actually get married or do they only think they got married?

Arkana's Story
Vinasu

Post TSL: The search for lost Jedi finds something unexpected

Except for the one comment already addressed by someone else I have only one thing to say; remember to edit and polish. There are points where the story could use that.

That being said, the work is outstanding. The back story both of the woman they were looking for and Atton’s past is so well done I can visualize it as if it is happening. Worth reading more than once. I wish I had time to read everything that follows.

Not Her
Lady Tragic

No specific section of TSL given: Atton in an aside tells Mical that he is wrong in who he loves.

I sat for almost a minute after reading this because Atton’s argument is perfect. Mical is (according to the author) in love with the ideal of who the Exile is. Like falling in love with a picture rather than the person.

Atton on the other hand sees her soul, sees her way of dealing with life, and it resonates within him. He is in love with her, Mical with the image of her. With that difference, we know who will win her heart.

It Always Rains on Dxun
JediDWH

PreTSL not long after the Exile’s sentencing: On Dxun The Exile considers the bleak years ahead.

The author covered a period we usually don’t see, the direct aftermath of the exiling. I was stunned by the way this story went; I waited until almost a year later when I wrote ‘Return From Exile’ my own novel length piece.

Excellent!

Relentless Intolerance
Lord Zeuss

Pre TSL during the Exile’s trial before the Council: The anger of the Exile burns all, including her.

The piece does not follow the trial before the council and that is too the good. The defense, that she and the Jedi that had gone to war to uphold rather than deny the Jedi beliefs was perfectly portrayed. The primary addition, throwing her primary weapon away and using a secondary weapon for her point was an interesting twist.

Rain
Firedancer

TSL on Nar Shaddaa: As a storm prepares to break, the Exile reminisces about the choices she made that brought her there.

The story is well done, with just the right amount of angst and introspection. The scene in front of the council while not the basic story was even better done. In my own work her decision was based on doing what she had been taught, not as she was being told, and your work portrays the same idea very well.

Triptych Chapter 1, Out Of Nothing
Lord Zeuss

Post TSL: The galaxy prepares for the final confrontation.

The piece flows at a breakneck pace, making you keep track of several balls like a juggler. This is one of those I wish I had time to read to the end.

Over at Lucasforums I’ve been having trouble keeping track of what I’ve been doing, so for the last two months I have been going back to the beginning as it were and tagging everything as having been read. So here I am three pages from the start and find our first offerinq, which meant I had to give the author a resprise Pick, because if I had seen it before, I would have picked it.

So without further ado;

A Captain, A Cathar, and a Former Sith Lord Revisited
Crystal001

KOTOR enroute to Korriban: Revan is split between her two loves, the one in her heart, and the one in her bed…

The piece is perfect, Crystal, that’s all I can say. The angst of wanting and having at the same time was so well done I had no problem with disbelief.

It is rare that I review following segments of someone’s work here at Kotorfanmedia. Primarily it is because the site is so prolific that if I did I would not have completed even one of the sections yet. I am now on my third and soon to be fourth, so my reasoning is sound.

But Crystal001, by titling in a manner (And posting over a time as well) has allowed me to review three pieces back to back, and all I can say is Wow!

I just wish I had chance to read the entire thing. Of course, if Crystal001 keeps titling as they have been, maybe I will have that chance.


'To argue with those who have renounced the use and authority of reason is as futile as to administer medicine to the dead.' Now who said that?

From the one who brought you;
What we die for...
Acceptance
KOTOR excerpts
Star Wars: The Beginning
Star Wars: Republic Dawn
Return From Exile

Last edited by Bee Hoon; 01-19-2009 at 01:20 AM.
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Old 01-19-2009, 06:40 AM   #2
The_Catto
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Congrat's people. Well deserved!

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Old 01-19-2009, 11:35 PM   #3
Rev7
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Congrats to all!

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Old 01-20-2009, 01:37 AM   #4
Bee Hoon
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Thanks mach, and congrats everyone!



The sun goes down and the sky reddens, pain grows sharp.
light dwindles. Then is evening
when jasmine flowers open, the deluded say.
But evening is the great brightening dawn
when crested cocks crow all through the tall city
and evening is the whole day
for those without their lovers

-Kuruntokai 234, translated by A.K. Ramanujan

[Fic] Shreds of a Dying Belief
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Old 01-20-2009, 11:24 AM   #5
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Good job, everyone!

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Old 01-20-2009, 11:25 AM   #6
CommanderQ
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Congrats everyone!! Excellent work!


you very much
If a tree would fall in the woods.....would the other trees laugh at it?
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Old 01-20-2009, 12:12 PM   #7
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What they all said.


Chapter 12 of A Soul Adrift is out.

Short stories:
T'katlu: On the planet Felucia, a young apprentice of the Dark Side thinks back to the beginning of her training as she lies in wait for her prey...

All the Time: After four years in the Unknown Regions, the Exile returns to the known galaxy to visit an old enemy.

Broken: A master of the Dark Side finds himself about to lose the one thing he cares about--and he will do anything to stop her from endangering herself.
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Old 01-20-2009, 06:58 PM   #8
Tysyacha
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Warm congratulations to all, and thank you, mach!
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Old 01-20-2009, 11:26 PM   #9
machievelli
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tysyacha View Post
Warm congratulations to all, and thank you, mach!
All right everybody remember, this is only my best of the best of the best, not the definitive be all and end all for the voting. Remember, if you didn't vote, you can't whine when some other idjit did!


'To argue with those who have renounced the use and authority of reason is as futile as to administer medicine to the dead.' Now who said that?

From the one who brought you;
What we die for...
Acceptance
KOTOR excerpts
Star Wars: The Beginning
Star Wars: Republic Dawn
Return From Exile
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:51 PM   #10
Jae Onasi
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Thank you for the kind words and one of the 'best of '08' for my fic! I am very honored. Congrats to all the other writers for their great stories, too!


From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

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Old 01-30-2009, 10:22 PM   #11
machievelli
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi View Post
Thank you for the kind words and one of the 'best of '08' for my fic! I am very honored. Congrats to all the other writers for their great stories, too!
Jae as far as I know, they have yet to have the vote for the best. These are just my pcks for the year.

Besides, I wouldn't be able to vote for myself, right?


'To argue with those who have renounced the use and authority of reason is as futile as to administer medicine to the dead.' Now who said that?

From the one who brought you;
What we die for...
Acceptance
KOTOR excerpts
Star Wars: The Beginning
Star Wars: Republic Dawn
Return From Exile
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:11 PM   #12
Jae Onasi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by machievelli View Post
Jae as far as I know, they have yet to have the vote for the best. These are just my pcks for the year.

Besides, I wouldn't be able to vote for myself, right?
Ah--I meant the staff pick here.


From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

Read The Adventures of Jolee Bindo and see the amazing Peep Surgery
Story WIP: The Dragonfighters
My blog: Confessions of a Geeky Mom--Latest post: Security Alerts!
Love Star Trek AND gaming? Check out Lotus Fleet.

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