|Reviews for Making a Good First Impression|
| The Exile 12/19/10 . chapter 1
I liked the characterisation in this fic. Melody and Forte's attempts to appear more competent than they are, their confusion at Arthur's attitude and Arthur's worrying about becoming romantically involved with Melody made me laugh. The personality you give Arthur works well for the game.
| Demonic Weasel 8/5/10 . chapter 1
This is a really pleasantly low-key story which fills a real void. Most of the completed works in this section tend to aim for the status of being a grand epic, while this is a a portrait, in effect. And I must say, that it's also nice to see such a skillfuly written StHA story when we barely have any of them. Of all the games in the series, StHA has a very unique ethos, and you capture some of that atmosphere here.
The characterazation is strong all around. Melody, I think is particularly well done, largley because she doesn't seem to be especially well written. What I mean by this is, while it's clear that you're doing a capable, faithful and strong rendition of her, there's nothing about the character at any point that really overwhelms me. But in many ways, that makes the overall tightness and sturdiness of the characterazation that is there that much more compelling. Forte, though he's largely the third wheel in this piece, is also nicely done. You have a good handle on that arrogance of his.
Arthur of course is in some ways the easiest and hardest character to write about given that there's so little information about him in the game, but players will definitely have their own impressions. I do get the sense here, though, that you have a strong sense of his character and values, and I recognize the person he is here both from the game and the person he's been in your other two fics. The quality of the prose all around is also just very pleasant to read; there's a moderate bouyancy to it.
In terms of plot, of course, I can't say much since the plot is essentially driven by the characters and this just answers a couple of minor questions about the events leading up to the game. I do think that you've crafted a reasonable and plausible explanation for how the three of them came together, though. Particularly worthy of note is the light this shines on Melody in the game; you've captured exactly how she goes from being rather arrogant outside of the mine to the fact that she's clearly out of her depth after the battle with Rodi. It's subtle enough as well, that I can appreciate for sheer quality.
There are only two problems I noted. First, when Melody uses the phrase , "...plenty good..." I found it a bit jarring. I'm not sure there's a rational explanation for that, but it seemed like a shift to me from the way she'd been talking, but on examination, it doesn't really seem to be. Figured I'd mention it anyway.
The second issue I have is with Arthur's interest in taking jobs from Desire. It's well executed, and I believe that you're hinting that the man he lived with as a boy was a resident of Desire (though that could be entirely wrong, it's only a hint) if he's supposed to be familiar with such an isolated spot already then why in the game would none of the villagers recognize him? They're all collectively called mercenaries plenty, but nobody calls him 'that' mercenary. So, if you were aiming to give the impression that he's familiar with the place, I think that you may have a considerable problem on your hands.
I did really like the story though.
| Maximus Aureillus 8/3/10 . chapter 1
A good write up Martin. As always the quality is top notch. The plot was interesting and the transition between dialogs are well orchestrated. And I got into a fit of laughter at Melody's attempts to sound professional. You know this story made me want to play Shining in the Holy Arc again.