903: Life with Raptors – Chapter Two

Title: Life with Raptors
Author:   AwesomeHunter77
Media: Movie
Topic: Jurassic Park
Genre:  Humor/Drama
URL: Life with Raptors
Critiqued by TacoMagic and Eliza

Welcome back to the second-author remake of Raptor and I published under the working title: Life with Raptors.  It’s essentially the same story, but with 20% more vague!  With me again is Eliza.

*Cranberry Trout Pied*

I see we’re beginning to experiment with the ingredients.

“I was told that I needed to branch out.”

By Bifocals?

“Yup!”

I see.  Anyway, last time on Life with Raptors, we met our author-insert, May.  She’s the pretty standard Mary Sue insertion.  Good at everything within the confines of a deeply, deeply flawed universe.  In this case she is able to cure broken bones without setting them or administering anesthetic of any kind.  Nope, all she needs is a splint.

We also met Seth Raptor, the informed bestiality love interest, and his friend Max Raptor, the… doof.  They have the opportunity to enjoy flavorful brown balls, and the scene ends.  If that sounds like a lot of not much, you would be right.

We pick up this week with another of the author’s strange “I’m not naming stuff after Pokémon characters” notes.  No, seriously, she does it again:

(Max is also not from Pokémon, he is named after my real life friend.

Honestly, I think I’d rather see you stealing all your names from Pokémon than adding your friends into the fic.

And will have the same personality.

“Trouble brewing.”

Be prepared for hyperactive raptor times.)

Great, that’s all we freaking need.  A raptor designed after a hyperactive teen.  What next?  A neurotic Allosaurus who needs to stop and wash his hands every twenty minutes?

Chapter 2: Denise, idiot computer expert extraordinaire

Poor Nedry, he’s the Miranda of the Raptor and I clone-fics.  I mean, a certain amount of dislike is earned, he’s the mostly pointless catalyst character who’s only in the book and movie to kick off the crisis on the island.  He was largely superfluous because the hurricane which was already hitting the island should have been the cause of the crisis.  Nedry’s character was really only there for the token corporate espionage subplot.  A subplot that gets derailed by Nedry’s death.  Anyway, yeah he’s a greedy dude, but his actual part in the book and movie are so token that he doesn’t really deserve all the bashing he gets in these fics.  Certainly he doesn’t deserve all the comments about his weight and being ugly.  There are a lot of incredibly shallow pot-shots taken at Nedry in these fics, and I can’t help but feel that it’s due in no small part because he was played by Wayne Knight.  And while Wayne is carrying a few extra pounds and is typically cast as character everyone loves to hate, he certainly doesn’t deserve all the shallow jeers.  In fact, Wayne Knight actually lost nearly 120 pounds during his career as Newman in Seinfeld; so fat comments based on his performance in Jurassic Park are in particularly bad taste.

“Frankly, I think we would all be satisfied if the authors could be bothered to spell his name right.”

Yeah, if nothing else, spell the damned name right!  It’s not even a hard name!

May’s POV

“More good news.”

I had to go back into the raptor pen AGAIN that day because another raptor had also gotten hurt, it wasn’t the same one at least.

If I were scientists working on this project, I’d be questioning whether there wasn’t some genetic damage to these raptors during the cloning process.

“At least they aren’t trying to eat rocks, yet.”

Well, that’s a monkey trick.

“We’ve both been hanging out with Crunchy too much.”

When I swiped my card in the scanner, it didn’t accept it and the door stayed shut tight. I tried again, the same result.

Dude!  Did May just get fired for incompetence!?

“First smart thing anyone at InGen has done.”

“What the-?” I said before I realized what was happening. I grabbed my radio.

“Denise, unjam the card scanner so I can get in.” I growled.

*Facepalm*

“I’ll preemptively add ‘technology’ to the list of things the author does not do very well.”

An RF card reader just ‘jammed,’ I don’t think it counts as preemptive anymore.

“What do you mean? I didn’t do anything.” He said in a fake innocent tone.

“Right, right. A magical fairy did it.” I said sarcastically.

*Rubs forehead*

Child, adults don’t act or talk like this.  Well, adults at work anyway.

“Nedry was many things.  Greedy, unctuous, greedy, an ass to people who interrupted him, um… greedy.  But he was never an ass just to be an ass.”

It’s a pretty bad sign when you can’t even get the personality of a one-dimensional bit character right.

“I mean, what would I have to gain by locking you out of the enclosure with the same sick raptor that took my hot dog when I dropped it to check out the security grid when I went there?” The fat computer technician said.

You’re right, Nedry, you have nothing to gain.  So why is the author writing this in the first place?

“Because fat jokes.”

Delightful.

“Oh. So it’s all because of a hotdog. Ok, excuse me while I get John, Gerry, and the lawyer.” I said as I pulled open my phone.

“OK! I’ll open it!” He said.

“Thank you.” I said sarcastically again as I swiped my card and entered.

We’re not supposed to like May, right?  I mean, she’s a snotty, shallow, ignorant teen whose interpersonal interactions are based heavily on favoritism rather than professionalism.

“Seems like the pretty standard Hollywood variety of teen.  Do they make teen parts in any other flavor?”

Well… uh… there’s the annoying perky one and the class clown.

“That would be Max on both accounts.”

Dammit.  That only leaves the angst-ridden brooding teen.  And I think we’re all hoping the author leaves that one in the box.

“You’re forgetting the token sexy bookworm.”

I’m hoping that one also stays in the box.

I looked around, no sign of any raptors towards the front.

THAT WAS IT!?  What the hell point was that scene with Nedry?  Was it to establish Nedry as impishly playful yet cowardly, or May Sue being prone to snide overreaction?  What the hell, author?  You need to stop from time to time during the writing process and ask yourself, “Why am I including this scene?  What does it accomplish?”  If you can’t come up with a good answer, then you don’t need the scene.

But I still kept my gun handy, I just didn’t use it at first sight of any dinosaurs, unlike a few who would be eager to blow ones head off, but they would be sued.

“Wow, everyone on this island has issues.  Not only are they letting people into live enclosures without proper safety precautions, but they’re hiring gun-happy idiots who are going to shoot up millions of dollars in product just because EXPERMINT!”

Welp, we’re obviously running on an idiot plot of some order or another.  Only time will tell to what power the idiocy is raised to.

I went towards the back of the enclosure and found the pack huddled around a dark brown one. It must’ve been a female.

*GONG*

THEY ARE ALL SUPPOSED TO BE FEMALE!  THAT WAS A MAJOR, MAJOR POINT OF CANON!

“Down, boy.  I will use another one of Herr’s habenero pies.”

I whistled and held a few treats out of the ferns.

Sweet crap, author!  How effective do you think treat-based zoology is!?

You want to see what treating a predator is ACTUALLY like?  Here, here’s a video of a routine Tiger DNA test:

You notice how many people are involved, and how cautious everyone is being?  Did you notice that the first thing they did was anesthetize the Tiger with a dart?  Do you have any concept of why that was the first step!?

It’s because PREDATORS ARE FUCKING DANGEROUS!

*Habenero Pied*

AIEEEEEEEE!

*Taco runs out of the room flailing*

“He’ll be fine.”

The pack looked at my hand full of the treats, and I tossed them away from the female.

“Protip: If you’re standing amidst a full pack of my kin holding food, you’ve already announced yourself as lunch.”

Causing the alpha and beta to go first before being followed by the other two.

I had a small window of opportunity to figure out what was wrong with the female.

“I imagine it’s depression from being in this fic.  I can relate.”

Seth’s POV

“Oh good!  Another scene tag just for Ghostie!”

I looked down at the female who was not feeling well.

“Ellie, what’s the matter?” My third in command, Austin, asked the suffering velociraptor.

“It’s the fic, sir.  It hurts.  You four go on without me.”

She shook her head and hacked.

“I think she ate something and it got lodged in her throat.” The other female, Lily said.

“I am deeply embarrassed that one of my kin has been brought neigh unto death by choking on a piece of hotdog.”

Ellie nodded frantically. “Well, how are we supposed to help her?” I asked.

“This is a job for Raptor MD!”

Everyone thought about this before we heard a whistle. We all turned to see some of the delicious treats being held out to us.

“Not to mention all-you-can-eat mammal being catered for lunch.”

When they were thrown off to the side, me and Max hurried after them, followed by a confused Austin and Lily.

“Oddly, this probably the only part of this whole setup that is reasonable.  Raptors are way more interested in filling their own bellies than they are with the health of one of their pack.  People say we’re jerks because of it, but I like to think of it as being practical.  Your injured pack mates look a lot less appetizing when you’ve already got a full stomach.”

May’s POV

“I am very enthusiastic about getting to see each scene twice.  Even more so because the telling is nearly identical the second time.  Word padding gives plenty of opportunity for naps.”

I was both petting and examining the raptor to keep her calm.

“So, you keep her calm by doing the very thing that would cause her the most stress?  Are there any trained professionals on the island?  Or maybe somebody who watched a few episodes of Emergency Vets on Animal Planet?”

It was then that her head jerked and I reached for my gun just in case. But all she did was hack a few times.

“Working on anesthetized animals creates fewer situations where you have to kill them in self defense while attempting treatment.  Just saying.”

“Aha!” I said before feeling her throat. A non seeable lump was in her throat, she must’ve eaten something that got stuck in her throat, or she couldn’t eat.

“So very embarrassed that my kin are able to tear hunks of flesh off their prey and swallow it whole, but somehow can’t seem to get a chunk of hotdog down the gullet.”

*Taco walks back into the room, wiping tears from his bloodshot eyes.*

“Better?”

Not really.  The searing pain was a pretty good distraction from the fic, but now it’s starting to go away.

I quickly used a sedation needle and she lashed out a little, but before long she was knocked out.

Well look at that, she finally sedated something.  Should have used a dart gun on the raptor after separating her out of the pack into an enclosure, but at least she used a sedative.  I’ll take what I can get with this fic.

I opened her mouth and reached my hand in.

That really isn’t sm-

 It wasn’t smart to do to with a carnivore, but I had no tools for prying stuff out of animals, plus it WAS sedated.

Right, what she said.  You know, you’re supposed to have facilities to do this kind of work.  You know, facilities that have those tools you didn’t bring with you.

“You know, if it’s been long enough for the anesthesia to kick in, the other raptors have probably finished their treats by now and would be ready to move on to lunch.”

I finally felt something, it was metallic. I grabbed it and slowly pulled it out.

“Oh, maybe it wasn’t a hot-dog.”

I think it’s too early to hope for that.

What sat in my slimy hand was a Diet Coke can, and I could link that to one person. Who could drink all the calorie drink free sodas he wants and never get thinner.

*GONG*

STOP IT WITH THE SHALLOW INSULTS!  We get it, author, your insert is a horrible and shallow human being who can’t get past another person’s weight.  Can we move on to something else.  Also, diet soda is not that uncommon of a thing.

“Somehow I find the fact that this raptor ate a soda can to be more depressing than if it had been the hot dog.”

Yeah, most species have better food recognition than that.  Especially predators who tend to be a lot more choosy about what they eat.

“I think the scientists need to go back to the drawing board and try something other than wood pulp for their DNA reconstruction.”

I was about to leave when a bandaged leg appeared from the ferns.

“Ahh!  A disembodied leg!  Run!”

Shit just got real, people.

I was then face to face with the alpha.

Quick, grab the alpha and run.  The leg is right there!  *Points*

He sniffed me, looked at my arm, then at his slowly reviving subordinate.

“Why aren’t you running!?  The leg is going to get you both!”

The rest of the pack followed. Looking at me with curiosity. “Uh…hi…” I said nervously.

Okay, maybe it’s because they have the leg heavily outnumbered.

“That means nothing to the leg!  ALL IS LOST!”

One of the raptors, the subordinate male was about to attack when the alpha blocked his way.

“Don’t Bogart the kill, bro.”

“Get away from her you bags of scales.” I heard from above. I looked up to see Robert Muldoon aiming at the raptors.

Hi, Muldoon!

“At least this author got his name right.”

Even spelled it right, which is nothing short of amazing given the track record of these fics.

The raptors growled, but just stood there. “May. Get out of the pen, now.” He ordered.

LISTEN TO THE MAN!

I looked back at them once, then hurried out the door.

“Hey, she did listen; that would be a first.  Still, it’s not a good sign when the crazy alcoholic is the voice of reason in the fic.”

Seth’s POV

Dammit.  I guess that means we get to see the same scene all over again.

Austin and Lily had tried the treats and liked them, but I hid one away for Ellie just so she didn’t miss out.

How banal.

“Well, at least Seth seems less of a douchebag than Sorin was.”

You know, that’s true.  Sure, he isn’t acting like a raptor, but he’s been far less of a manipulative jerk so far.  A bit of a drama-llama, but not nearly as bad as Sorin.

It was then that I heard a hiss coming from Ellie’s direction. I hobbled over and saw “her” taking care of Ellie.

Well, I’ll be damned, she used quotes correctly.

“I’m as surprised as you are.”

I stepped out to make sure everything was okay, and she seemed to freeze. I backed up a little, and the rest of my pack finally showed up.

Why did Ellie freeze when Seth showed up.

“Why isn’t Ellie unconscious?”

Hey, yeah!  She’s supposed to be knocked out cold at this point.

Austin growled and was about to charge but I blocked his way. It was then that I heard a male human’s voice come from the top of our territory.

I looked up to see an older man calling us “bags of scales”, to step away from the female human.

I guess their understanding of English comes and goes.

“Nan desu ka?”

*Taco sighs*

I had to learn her name, but first, I had to take care of my pack.

If only the author could have figured out a way to do it earlier, then all the pronoun shenanigans could have been safely avoided.

I growled at the human, but made no move, and then, my human hurried back to the place humans could only exit and enter from. I sighed.

“Speaking of pronoun shenanigans.”

Esh, that was confusing.

“Soon Seth. The time will come in five days, during the electric rain.” Max said. (Raptors have a few “primitive” sounding words)

*Double Facepalm*

So much wrong, I can’t even.

“I’ll get it!  First, there is no way that the Raptors could sense a storm five days in advance.  We’re good, but not that good.  Well, aside from Crunchy; he cheats and uses the force.  And, if he’s wrong, he just makes his own storm. Second, NO AUTHOR’S NOTES MID-FIC!  Third, ‘electric rain’ isn’t primitive sounding at all.  Finally, we have to take back what we said about the correct quotation usage.  There was no need for them in the author’s note.”

The whole “electric rain” thing really highlights a constantly present flaw in most of the Raptor and I clone-fics.  Almost all of them try to have the raptors talk in a way that shows that they shouldn’t have certain words.  Now that COULD be a good thing if handled correctly.  Indeed there are lots of things that raptors shouldn’t necessarily have any understanding of.  However, there are several problems with attempting to write that.

First, doing it requires a LOT of work and a LOT of skill to pull off.  Since most fic authors are too lazy to put in the work and haven’t put in the work to become skilled, you end up with a mess.  To do it right you have to constantly scrutinize and re-scrutinize everything that the raptors are doing and saying.  For instance, why would they use the term “electric rain” instead of “storm”?  “Electric rain” implies that they know what electricity is, and using “electric rain” in place of “storm” seems to indicate that not only do they understand electricity, but they understand it better than weather.  That’s completely back-asswards.  Whenever fic authors attempt to do this kind of thing either the terms are completely illogical (like here) or the application is woefully inconsistent (like in Raptor and I).

Second, trying to make the raptors seem primitive and uniformed typically results in the authors having the raptors use lots of descriptive language for things.  This typically results in very clunky narration that is both confusing and tedious to read.  Even in the best hands, dialogue and narrative based around having to describe every unknown object is going to get old fast.

Third, the Stargate SG-1 Principal.  One complaint I hear all the time about Stargate SG-1 is that everyone in the universe seems to speak English.  My counter-argument is that if every show started with 20 minutes of linguistic derivation just to get to the main plot, nobody would have watched the show because, while realistic, it’s not interesting to have to do that every damn episode.  That’s why a lot of Sci-fi (or speculative fiction for those so inclined) relies heavily on the existence of universal translators.  This let’s them skip past the problems of language and get on to more important things.  And indeed, more often than not it’s far better to just skip over the minutia of linguistics in favor of keeping the plot well-paced and interesting.  There is a reason why reality doesn’t usually overlap with what makes a good story.  In this case, the raptors speaking immaculate English would probably be a trivial concession for keeping the plot moving along.  Instead we get an asinine term for storm and then an author’s note that derails any kind of flow the fic might have managed to produce.

“Want to place bets on how long until the author botches the primitive language thing with inconsistent voice?”

You mean botches it again?

“Touché.”

“I know, then, I shall have my dominant female.” I said.

Just like in Raptor and I, the author has no idea how a pack works.

“Huh…? W-what happened?” Ellie asked as she woke up.

“Huh, situationally activated anesthesia.  That’s a handy thing to have.”

“My human saved your life.” I said as I dropped the treat in front of Ellie. She sniffed it, ate it, and soon she was part of the bliss club. Members: 5

So, what was that, four lines before it became inconsistent?

“Three if you don’t count the first inconsistency.”

It’s like fic author’s don’t read their own stories or something.

“It’s like?”

Okay, fic authors don’t read their own stories, and it shows.

“What’s a bag?” Lily asked.

They know what electricity is, but not what bags are.   I don’t even know how to make fun of that.

May’s POV

“Yay!  Another one for Ghostie!”

“It’s a good thing I showed up or those raptors would’ve been eating you to the bone.” Robert said as he walked along side me.

Man, Muldoon is on a roll!

“Well, not if you consider that he probably knows that May Sue keeps going into live enclosures.”

Right, if Muldoon really was smart, he’d have just let things take their course.

“Not quite what I meant, but close enough.”

“I was protected. I had my gun, plus, the alpha male keeps the rest of the pack from attacking me.” I retaliated.

You’re a special kind of stupid, aincha, May?

“Stupid prey kinda robs the fun of the hunt, but it keeps the belly full just the same.”

“Male? May, all the dinosaurs on the island are female from what Wu told me.” Robert said.

Hey look, the author acknowledges the fact that her fic is violating canon.  Sorta.

“Well, he’s wrong.” I thought silently as we continued on.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, WHOA!  Back the fuck up.  You KNOW that there aren’t supposed to be any males, and yet you haven’t told anyone that there are at least two in the raptor enclosure!?  What the fuck are you thinking!?  Wow, just…. wow.  That’s pretty stupid and short-sighted even for a Mary Sue.

“So, basically, everything that happens with the Raptors in the first book is May’s fault because she couldn’t be bothered to tell anyone that she found some male raptors.  I shall have to send her a gift basket.  She was absolutely instrumental in our takeover of the island and eventually the planet.”

Should I be worried about that last part?

“Only if you’re delicious.”

Next time: We. Have. Guests.

“The guest might be William Shatner.”

And that’s it for this week.  Hate to tell you all, but it only gets stupider from here.  Until next week, patrons!

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113 Comments on “903: Life with Raptors – Chapter Two”

  1. SC says:

    *Cranberry Trout Pied*

    I see we’re beginning to experiment with the ingredients.

    “I was told that I needed to branch out.”

    By Bifocals?

    “Yup!”

    Oh, so THAT’S where the rest of Herr’s miniskirt from Monday went.

  2. SC says:

    In this case she is able to cure broken bones without setting them or administering anesthetic of any kind. Nope, all she needs is a splint.

    *muffled sobbing from the crying closet*

    I see Jim made it to the closet in time this week.

  3. SC says:

    Max is also not from Pokémon, he is named after my real life friend.

    Ignoring the obvious complaint of “Max” being a super common name, I now need to rename my ex-commando turned SWAT cop turned cyborg by horrible beatdown.

    Fucking great. This author is going to make me lose all my good character names.

  4. SC says:

    What next? A neurotic Allosaurus who needs to stop and wash his hands every twenty minutes?

    *Somewhere in a pocket dimension*

    Bifocals: Get in here!

    Allosaurus: B-bu-but it’s so unclean in there! And I just got done in the bathroom! I don’t see a single sanitation station anywhere in there! I don’t wanna go!

    Bifocals: It is a laboratory! It’s just cluttered! Now get in here!

  5. SC says:

    “Denise, unjam the card scanner so I can get in.” I growled.

    I like to some that jamming a card scanner goes something like this:

  6. SC says:

    “Right, right. A magical fairy did it.”

    *Booky adjusts his glasses informatively*

    Specs: He said it was probably more like a bitch fairy, which are far less magical than their regular fairy counterparts.

    Makes sense.

  7. “I mean, what would I have to gain by locking you out of the enclosure with the same sick raptor that took my hot dog when I dropped it to check out the security grid when I went there?” The fat computer technician said.

    He should be grateful that’s all the raptor took. What the hell was he doing taking meat into a carnivore’s enclosure?

  8. “Oh. So it’s all because of a hotdog. Ok, excuse me while I get John, Gerry, and the lawyer.” I said as I pulled open my phone.

    Ummm, she’s talking to him on a radio. He can’t see her get out her phone so he shouldn’t react to this threat. And why would a low-level teenaged park employee have the phone numbers of the owner and the owner’s attorney?

  9. SC says:

    I guess their understanding of English comes and goes.

    “Nan desu ka?”

    *Taco sighs*

    Should I risk getting one of the ninjas, or Ghostie, to translate? Or do you think she’ll somehow learn German before then?

  10. Seth’s POV

    “Oh good! Another scene tag just for Ghostie!”

    :eye-twitch:

    Gee, I didn’t get you anything.

  11. A non seeable lump was in her throat, she must’ve eaten something that got stuck in her throat, or she couldn’t eat.

    :headdesk:

    “Non seeable”? Frickin’ hell. And I’m pretty sure if something big enough to make a lump is caught in her throat, she would have choked to death long before May-Sue could wander down to the enclosure.

  12. She sniffed it, ate it, and soon she was part of the bliss club.

    Are we sure these are treats and not some kind of dino-narcotic? May-Sue could be a dealer.

  13. AdmiralSakai says:

    Third, the Stargate SG-1 Principal. One complaint I hear all the time about Stargate SG-1 is that everyone in the universe seems to speak English. My counter-argument is that if every show started with 20 minutes of linguistic derivation just to get to the main plot, nobody would have watched the show because, while realistic, it’s not interesting to have to do that every damn episode. That’s why a lot of Sci-fi (or speculative fiction for those so inclined) relies heavily on the existence of universal translators. This let’s them skip past the problems of language and get on to more important things. And indeed, more often than not it’s far better to just skip over the minutia of linguistics in favor of keeping the plot well-paced and interesting. There is a reason why reality doesn’t usually overlap with what makes a good story. In this case, the raptors speaking immaculate English would probably be a trivial concession for keeping the plot moving along. Instead we get an asinine term for storm and then an author’s note that derails any kind of flow the fic might have managed to produce.

    I personally always thought of “universal translators” as being a bit cheap, but in the settings I’ve worked with there’s only like five or six races to deal with, so everybody just learns some other languages and it all gets translation-conventionned to proper English.

    • TacoMagic says:

      I’d say that they are entirely cheap, but they allow for skipping of material that would otherwise be painfully uninteresting to rehash in every episode where there’s a first contact; which happens quite a bit in Star Trek. A bit different in fiction, but if you’re not good enough to handle linguistics without having your plot get derailed, well I think there are worse sins in writing.

      The thing that bugs me about universal translators, especially in the Star Trek franchise, is that they only seem to work when the plot needs them to. For instance, when a Klingon starts talking in Klingon, why the hell isn’t the universal translator doing it’s thing?

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        It’s a thing I’m actually playing with in my current fic. I mean, I figure the translator would only work with languages from a given database, right?

    • SC says:

      I’ve always been skeptical of universal translators, myself. How would you possibly design something to be able to take an outlandish language that’s never been documented before, and translate it to perfect English? And on the other side of that, how would it translate English back to that same outlandish language?

      Star Ocean: The Last Hope is especially guilty of this, given that humanity is only starting their voyage into the stars by that point in the series, and yet UNIVERSAL TRANSLATORS, WHOO!

      • TacoMagic says:

        So far as Star Ocean goes, I think I’d probably have stopped playing it if the alien language was just thrown at me and I’d been expected to learn to speak it as I played the game.

        It’s always the trade-off. Do we want real or do we want interesting?

        That’s why I called it the Stargate Principal: They never explain why almost everyone in the galaxy speaks English and the show was criticized for not even addressing it. Meanwhile, Star Trek comes up with a hokey explanation and are told it would have been better not to even bring it up since the explanation is rather contrived. So, I guess it comes down to whether it’s preferable to have a contrived explanation or no explanation at all. Or, alternately, we can just not have fiction that deals with a large number of first-contact situations.

      • SC says:

        So far as Star Ocean goes, I think I’d probably have stopped playing it if the alien language was just thrown at me and I’d been expected to learn to speak it as I played the game.

        Which is something that FFX does to you in a sidequest.

        Want to know what the Al-Bhed people are saying? Well, are you willing to track down all the translation stones for their language?

        Forget that, I’ll just let Rikku sum it up for me and keep things simple.

        • TacoMagic says:

          Now Imagine if you didn’t get the translation stones or Rikku and were just expected to figure it out yourself using immersion. And it was the entire game.

      • We can’t even design translators to cope with translating one human language flawlessly into another.

        It kind of reminds me of Mars Attacks!, where there is a translator designed to translate the aliens’ language; everything comes out as these innocuous phrases even when the aliens are running around killing people.

      • SC says:

        “So hey, humans, we’re gonna be invading you now if that’s not too much of a bother, okay?”

      • “Do not panic, we come in peace.” :massive explosion:

      • SC says:

        If you come in peace, then WHY DID YOU BLOW UP THE BOOKSTORE?!

      • SC says:

        Oh God, I remember seeing that part. I was so freaked out when I was younger.

    • TacoMagic says:

      Actually, started thinking about this. How long does it take a reasonably smart human to learn a new language? Seems to me that if a smart human could pick up the basics of a language enough to do it passably well in 5 years, less if immersed, so a reasonably well constructed AI should be able to manage a decent translation algorithm in a few hours. Provided, of course, that the AI was provided some supplemental material to put together the basics.

      Might be a new vector to approach the idea of universal translation with. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen it handled as a dedicated AI designed as a linguistic genius that can learn languages rapidly (C3PO Notwithstanding). Granted, it would pretty much have to be a fully-realized AI in order to adapt to all the nuances, special cases, and cultural differences you run into when translating.

      Other cool consideration: what happens if that AI malfunctions or turns malevolent?

      • What I want to know is why all the universal translators in a world have to all have the same level of fluency. There’s never different levels; like a budget model that only has a thousand words or so, or a travelers’ model that has the barebones of several different languages – if there’s a universal translator, they are all the same.

      • Ooh, what if one group had the budget model and the other had the fancier one? You could start a war with a single mistaken word.

      • “Your spouse is quite charming. We should have a meal together.”

        *translation*

        “Your wife is a witch. I want to eat her.”

        ———–

        “I could kiss you!”

        *translation*

        “May I embrace your face with my mouth?”

  14. Herr Wozzeck says:

    Great, that’s all we freaking need. A raptor designed after a hyperactive teen.

    Hey, at least she admits it this time. That’s more than you can say for all of Raptor and I.

  15. Herr Wozzeck says:

    You’re right, Nedry, you have nothing to gain. So why is the author writing this in the first place?

    “Because fat jokes.”

    Delightful.

    You think we should ask any plus-size models to speak to this author about why fat-shaming is a really, really scumbaggy thing to do?

  16. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “Down, boy. I will use another one of Herr’s habenero pies.”

    Say, Eliza, I’ve got another one of those habañero pies, but I peppered it with some ghost pepper as well. I’ll lob it at Taco, just say the word!

  17. Herr Wozzeck says:

    I had a small window of opportunity to figure out what was wrong with the female.

    And why are you giving a check-up in the middle of them being distracted? ‘Cause distractions don’t last forever, y’know.

  18. Herr Wozzeck says:

    Are there any trained professionals on the island?

    Eliza, they’re hiring high school students to do veterinary work. You know, something that requires you to go to school for it.

    What do you think the answer to that question is?

  19. Herr Wozzeck says:

    Who could drink all the calorie drink free sodas he wants and never get thinner.

    Says the shallow character who forgets that the sweetener used in those calorie-free drinks is actually worse for you than the regular stuff. That might have something to do with it, author.

  20. Herr Wozzeck says:

    First, doing it requires a LOT of work and a LOT of skill to pull off. Since most fic authors are too lazy to put in the work and haven’t put in the work to become skilled, you end up with a mess. To do it right you have to constantly scrutinize and re-scrutinize everything that the raptors are doing and saying. For instance, why would they use the term “electric rain” instead of “storm”? “Electric rain” implies that they know what electricity is, and using “electric rain” in place of “storm” seems to indicate that not only do they understand electricity, but they understand it better than weather. That’s completely back-asswards. Whenever fic authors attempt to do this kind of thing either the terms are completely illogical (like here) or the application is woefully inconsistent (like in Raptor and I).

    Fun fact: the first fic I wrote that I ever felt confident with was a retelling of Peter Jackson’s King Kong through the eyes of the character. Looking back now, I realize I could’ve been better about the terminology, but even as Herr Dumbass I at least tried.

  21. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “Well, he’s wrong.” I thought silently as we continued on.

    And nobody briefed you on why you now need to run to Hammond and warn him about this shit? Hello! Everyone was afraid of it happening!

    *BAM*

    Our Sue is an idiot. Plain and simple.


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