Breath of Fire III: Of Gods and Dragons
So, here we are, at the end of the novelisation. How was it? Fun? Epic? Disappointing? While I've been writing stories for years (unless you don't count that horrible, emotionless drivel in 2000 that I called a story…), this is actually my first novelisation.
What? The first novelisation? Whaaaaaaat?
Yep, it's my first! I used to write original fantasy / adventure stories before my two-year-long hiatus before the start of this novelisation, but I had to warm up my writing skills again, so I decided to write novelisations for a while since the storyline is already, uh, all portrayed out for me to use.
But you know what? I loved writing this Breath of Fire III novelisation so much in fact I don't think I want to go back to original fiction for a while!
So much for being an original novel writer. xP
The main BoF3 soundtrack used while writing this novelisation is Epitaph of Alan and Cerl (OC Remix). :D
Why choose Breath of Fire III for a novelisation? Why not other games?
The first reason; I love Dragons. I've always loved Dragons being the really powerful legendary avian creatures, with power that could shake the world; this trait really showed in my completed original novel. While I'm normally tolerant of them, I dislike stories that describe Dragons as evil beings, like how they're normally described in western lore (the whole prince-rescues-princess-from-evil-Dragon thing). BoF3 is different because even though they're first portrayed as an evil race, they're actually misunderstood.
I also love azure-haired, good-looking male protagonists, being the silly female I am. Ryu fits the requirements!
Of course, I didn't pick BoF3 just because it has Dragons and a good-looking azure-haired hero… in that case, why wouldn't I choose BoF, BoF2, BoF4 or even BoF5? Well, it's pretty simple… I love BoF3 the most among the BoF series, one reason is because it's the first of the series I played. Nostalgia played an important role in my choice. I'm sure you feel nostalgic if you've played the game before you read this story, right? xP
Will there be other novelisations in future?
Of course. Maybe not another BoF game novelisation so soon, since I've just finished BoF3, but there will be another game novelisation in near future.
The title I've chosen for my next novelisation is Alundra, which is an action RPG also on the PS1. It has a storyline involving the rise of a demon god, who seems to be able to create chaos by making the villagers of Inoa go to sleep, get lost in days-long nightmare and never wake up… it's pretty scary. Alundra (the good-looking-but-sadly-not-azure-haired protagonist) has the ability to enter dreams, and he has to figure out how the god manages to get into these people's souls before they all die.
It does seem I like gods / goddesses stories, doesn't it? o_o
So far, I've only finished prologue… I hope to finish it by end year so I can start posting it here for you guys to read, but don't count on it. I'm starting work soon, and I may not be able to finish it in time. Still, one can hope, right? xP
Special thanks to all readers and reviewers out there!
In no particular order:
Thanks to Nina Windia, Airess Byrd, Lord Kain, RedemptionWarrior, Jonathan Priest, Ferane, Ryu-Rei-Zero, drake202, zRISC, Winged Golden Tiger, Hubert, Adanedhel (DT), Ageant, Vergil 69, eddy, mikefoxcerano, Zero, Windscreen Wipers, BaneHaven, Mega Edgar, VictimofVirtue, Gabrielle3, Cap'n Pirate Monkey, Ksuden, aisty, Angelalex242, darkgryffon, Nitramy, Galdr, The Supreme Dragon Knight, Manic Dogma, Myrmidon, Elly3981, Taliatoennien, Dragoon Cecilia and richarano for your reviews! It's really heart-warming to see feedback on this novelisation, to know that people are actually reading it!
Thanks to other readers even if you didn't review! I'm just glad you're reading my novelisation. :D
Thanks for your support, everyone!
Review Replies for Epilogue and Afterword:
To Lord Kain:
Thanks! Very much a Ryu-Nina supporter, aren't you? Don't worry, me too. xP
I didn't put a Ryu-Nina ending because… well, I wanted each one of them to go through their unfinished challenges, such as Nina doing her princess duties (which she tried to run from), or reflect on changes that our travellers' journey created, such as Beyd and Shadis' happy ending, the Machine Guildsmen being able to smack the Angler on their own, etc, so that it eventually leads on to the last phrase, "Life begins again."
If I were to put those single scenes, and then a Ryu-Nina scene, it might feel repetitive, since they have already confessed in Chapter 27. Besides, leaving out the Ryu-Nina scene might actually lead on to a (possible) sequel. :D
Thanks for your reviews all this while!
Great to see you loved reading my novelisation! There were parts that went a bit fast, as mentioned by other reviewers in the later chapters too, so I tried to fix them as I go along. But I'm glad it still went at a good pace for you, at least. :D
The Nue scene was really sad. When I wrote the scene, I wanted to listen to the soundtrack they played when our trio found the dead cubs, but couldn't find one to download. And it didn't occur to me then to search for videos on YouTube. Silly me. x_x
I'm going to write a novelisation for Alundra next (you could read a brief, non-spoiler description of it in the Afterword), but I'm not sure when it'll be done, since I try to finish everything before I start posting, like this BoF3 novelisation. I plan to finish by end of this year, but no promises. T_T
Thanks for reviewing!
Thanks! It's great to know someone shares my views on great Dragons rather than evil ones. xP
Though to tell you the truth, I've never played BoF2… I've only finished BoF3, 4 and 5, and played maybe a third of BoF1, so my knowledge of BoF2 is quite limited. That's why you don't see many BoF2 references in this novelisation. x_x
Haha, my PS1 doesn't work anymore, so now if I want to play PS1 games, I have to use a PS1 emulator… which, I guess, it's not wrong as long as we have the original copies. It makes writing easier too, since I can have the game on half a screen and Microsoft Word on the other half. :D
Thanks for the review, and hopefully I'll get Alundra done soon!
Yeah, it's really sad to see it come to an end… but as you've said, it has to happen one day. At least it's been a fun time writing it (and reading the reviews I've gotten!), and I'm glad you like the ending. :D
It's been great to have you here reading my story, hopefully I'll see you around reviewing again!
Thanks for all your reviews thus far!
To Airess Byrd:
Pure Again is a really nice song, it gives the feel of a happy ending! I felt some of the people were getting forgotten, like the Dauna miners and the McNeil villagers, so I decided to do that. :D
Haha, it's great that you caught up in the end, but you weren't really that far behind either. xP
Thanks for reading this all the way to the last chapter, and for all your reviews, I really appreciate them!
Ack, one whole month since you reviewed, and only now I'm replying… bad internet provider. Hopefully you'll see this message. T_T
But it's great that you've finished reading, thanks for checking in again and reading all the way to the end!
I like to do novelisations, since they already have a set storyline so I don't have to think of what's happening next (lazy me… haha), but original fiction is fun on its own too. I don't intend to go and sell books though, I don't think I'm quite at that level yet… but it's nice to know someone would buy if I do. xP
Thanks for the compliments and for reviewing!
To Capin Pirate Monkey:
Thanks, I'm glad you like my take on the game enough to read all the way to the end! And also my Rei-Momo scenes. xP
Thanks for the review!
Thanks for the compliments! I find the term "modded" a bit humourous though, it's like I made a modded Warcraft 3 map instead of a novelisation. xP
I'm not ashamed of putting more fluff for Ryu and Nina–! This novelisation is sadly not focused on romance (I tried to cut down some, uh, mush to cater for male readers out there), but hopefully it's still enough to tickle romance-lover's mushy side. :D
And unfortunately I ended up rushing a few parts, as you pointed out. I always feel that, hey, it's freaking 20 pages! How much longer are you gonna go?! feeling over my head, even though I told myself to just write and not limit myself after other people advised me not to… it's something I gotta improve on. x_x
Too bad I don't really know the meaning of "traditional" fanfiction, mind explaining it a bit to a noob? xP
Thanks for reviewing!
Oh, uh, I think I owe a little explanation here. What Ryu does is going back towards the portal, where it's connected to many other portals around the world, which implies he's travelling around the world for… some reason. Nina stays back at the castle as her duty as the princess should be calling pretty strongly for her after she took off to join the others against Myria, which shows that despite their love for each other, sometimes they can't always be together. It's not that Ryu's leaving without ever seeing Nina again; sorry for the misunderstanding.
Still, I made a little change to Ryu's epilogue scene to make it a bit clearer, as follows:
With that, he turned back towards the portal.
I promise I'll come and see you soon, Nina…
And the white bird soared overhead.
Is it much better now? Hopefully so. :D
Thanks for pointing it out for me, and thanks for the review!
Oh, wow, thanks for the instant favourite! This just made my day. :D
Sure, I don't mind reading some of your stuff, but I noticed that a lot of them are about Naruto; I haven't been reading or watching Naruto much, so I may not know what's going on. If you don't mind that, just let me know the title of the story and I'll go and have a look!
Really glad you liked my novelisation, and thanks for reviewing!
Whoa, a reader from back in 2008? Cool! I'm happy that you finished reading everything and that it even got you hooked. :D
Oops, I just realised that the golden-haired Ryu only appeared once in the story… which is during the first half of the story. The other golden-haired "Ryu" was Ladon, so I suppose that doesn't count! But hopefully I can still justify that by saying the actual Kaiser form is more devastating. xP
As for Rei, my idea is that he "learned his lesson" and didn't try to take on his Weretiger form since he loses control over it, at least until he finds out why he has that power by asking the Goddess about it. I might not have portrayed it well, and it's probably because I never use his Weretiger form in battle. Oops. _
I will write BoF4 one day, though BoF4 at the moment still feels like BoF3, so I'll need to get BoF3 out of my system first before working on BoF4, and that's by working on other novelisations. xP
Anyways, I'm glad you enjoyed the story and that it even inspired you to write that one-shot of Momo and Rei! Thanks for your review and compliments! :D
To The Supreme Dragon Knight:
Glad that it made you feel like playing the game again! I do hope you'll read the story again. :D
No worries about the rambling, it's fun to know what other people think of the game too!
Thanks for reviewing and the compliments!
To Manic Dogma:
I'm happy that you find the story mostly well-written! I do think your points are valid, so I'm going to touch them one by one. :D
I think I do have problems with awkward dialogues even without the game script, I usually see them when I re-read a chapter some weeks after they're written… especially this novelisation. Definitely something I'll change when / if I do some reconstruction on it!
Sadly, I too think the romance part of the story was badly done. The fact that romance wasn't my forte was one thing, but I was trying to balance a good amount of romance and toning it down so that not-so-romantic-loving guys won't get put off by the mushiness, but guess it made me forget the actual romance itself. x_x Thanks for bringing it up, I'll keep it in mind when I write another romance subplot or fix this novelisation. :D
Nina's return to Wyndia:
Though I agree that Nina wouldn't be welcome back to Wyndia so easily after her latest escapade, the whole part about her returning to Wyndia could be long enough to be a chapter by itself, and since the epilogue is to revisit everyone after the story, I didn't want to make the focus too much on Nina. I'd also love to put Ryu and Nina together on a journey, but I didn't want her to seem like she's abandoning her responsibilities as a princess. This is the best 'balance' I could get so far. o_o
Thanks for the review! Now major reconstruction work for this novelisation is on my to-do list, but whether or not I get around to it is another story. xP
Hey, Elly, sorry for the late reply! I only login once in a while, and before I knew it, many weeks. xD
It's really great to know people are still reading my story 6 years after I completed it! I try to write it with the idea that this was what the game writer planned to write but had to cut down to the bare minimum. :)
I started with BoF 3 and 4, then I played 5. I did touch BoF 1 and 2 on emulators after that, but sadly I didn't finish. But I did read other fan's novelisations for BoF 1 and 2, so I didn't really miss out on the storyline. :D I watched the trailer for BoF 6, but it didn't make me feel too enthusiastic about it; because it's an online web-based game. o_o
I believe the BoF series has Ryu as a silent protagonist (except for BoF 5) because it was a common trend in RPGs at the time; think Chrono Trigger / Cross, Wild Arms / Wild Arms Alter Code: F, Suikoden series, to name a few. If you haven't already, I suggest looking up Heroic Mime at TV Tropes site (just google it up) as it explains it quite well, but beware, TV Trope is a time sucking sinkhole. xD
Looking at my current list of in-progress novelisation projects, I don't think I'll be writing another BoF story so soon, but I'll be sure to let you know when I do write one. :D
Thanks for reviewing!
I'm glad you finished reading the whole story and enjoyed it; no worries about taking a while to finish reading it, I kinda took a while to get to this review too, seeing how I didn't get a notification for it. _
Anyway, thanks very much for listing your favourite highlights! It's really incredible to see someone enjoying all the bits that I added into the novelisation. I find a lot of games (not just BoF3) have a good overal story but not executed well, hence why I decided to write a novelisation for it and, as my best buddy put it, fill the plot holes the best as I could. I try not to change any of the game events too much, so that my novelisation is like a "this is what actually happened..." kind of thing. :D
And here are my responses to your list of highlights!
* Ryu-Nina romance: Well, to tell the truth, this is my first time writing anything remotely resembling romance. I had worried about it when I first wrote it, wondering if I made it too sappy or not sappy enough, but it makes me happy that this is on your list of highlights. :D
* Teepo's flashbacks: That's one of my favourite parts too! It's so sad to see him go, though, it would have been great to have him as a party member. :(
* The Desert of Death: Yep, I still don't like that part of the game, even a few years later, and I'm happy to hear I did the tent dialogue well! I like the sweet Ryu-Nina scenes. :)
* Garr: To tell the truth, I struggled quite a bit with Garr's manner of speech! I got the inspiration after playing Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions (it was a wow, and I still can't replicate that kind of speeches now), and in the end Garr's speeches are kind of a cross between olden and modern English. Good thing you still think it was a very good choice. :P I like writing Garr's part of the story too!
* Momo, Momo-Rei and Momo-Honey scenes: I love these too! Usually my favourite parts of a story are the character interactions, so I put in a few of these to make their friendships more relatable. :D
* Sara scenes: My favourite parts were all of those that deal with the whole reincarnation cycle thing, especially with Ladon! (I'm probably biased because those are self-inserted scenes.) I love stories with a huge overall plot that ties many different plot branches together, hence the BoF3 trilogy ended like this in my mind. xD
* Momo and desert plants: You can probably tell I like endings that have a hope for the future. :D
* Deis and Myria expansion: I also like bittersweet endings to a story, rather than "we defeated the bad guy!" :)
Thanks for your kind words on my writing style and responsiveness! Sadly in the end I didn't quite continue the story after this novelisation; one reason was because I'm not exactly a fan of sequels with new conflicts and stuff (I prefer sequels that still deal with the same main conflict / bad guy as the beginning, like the Harry Potter series!). I did try writing a sequel for a bit, just to play a bit with the idea, but it turned into a pretty dark story because of all the political issues, and in the end Ryu and Nina didn't get to be together. I didn't like how the story was going, so I kinda lost motivation there. _
Thanks again for the wonderful reviews, and hope to hear from you soon!
Wow, thanks very much for this wonderful review! It made my heart warm and fuzzy, especially reading it a good 8 years after it was completed, and I wish there's a way to let you know how you made my day (too bad we can't reply to guest reviews). :D
It's incredible to hear how you read my story part by part while playing the game! It does make a unique experience for me too, when I replay the game after finishing this novelisation. I'm really glad and proud to hear you love basically everything!
And good save on the marriage part. xD
Thanks again for the awesome review!
P.S. Great to meet a fellow Dragon fan!