1280: Courier’s Effect: A Short Story Of My Beginnings – Chapters One, Two, Three, and Four

Title: Courier’s Effect: A Short Story Of My Beginnings
Author: CourierMaximum42
Media: Video Games
Topic: Mass Effect / Fallout
Genre: Humor / Adventure
URL: Chapter One
Critiqued by SuperFeatherYoshi

Ladies and gentlemen, this is SuperFeatherYoshi, and I have finally returned from my year long hiatus! And I did not return empty handed.

Today we are going to take a look at Courier’s Effect, a Fallout/Mass Effect crossover. And boy oh boy is it awful. The sheer amount of research failures puts Hammer Effect to shame. It also features arguably one of the biggest Mass Effect self-insert Stu the library has ever seen, whose Stuness, in my humble opinion, is second only to good ol’ 23.

So, let’s begin, shall we?

*Chapter 1*: Courier’s Effect: A Short Story Of My Beginnings

The story starts with the standard “I own nothing” disclaimer, there’s nothing interesting except the part at the end:

All references to any games, tv shows, and books do not belong to me, and once again, belong to their respective owners. Thanks.

I have a really, really bad feeling about this…

The Courier’s Effect Chapter 1: Introductions My name is Jack ******

Wow, that is one profane family name… Unless that’s supposed to be the author’s real name, and he’s replacing it with asterisks to avoid giving away his full name …Which is just dumb. Couldn’t you just use a different name for your self-insert? Hell, why can’t you just use your real name? It’s not like you’re the only person with that name on the whole planet.

Still, considering the quality of this fic, not posting his full name online may be the smartest decision this author makes in this whole story.

I was on a hell of an adventure. One massive one, that spanned around, well, a lot of years, before it all ended. Everything that I did, had a consequence.

… That has gotta be one of the dumbest attempts at sounding dramatic I’ve ever heard. Everything you did had a consequence? Well, duh! Every decision by everyone, no matter how small, has consequences!

“Should I save the hostages or catch the terrorist that kidnapped them?” Consequences!

“Should I spend my credits on upgrading my shield or my omni-tool?” Consequences!

“Should I order soup or salad?” Consequences!

You need to be a lot more specific than “everything that I did”.

I fell in love, I was betrayed,
I made good friends, bad enemies. But most of all, a hell of a time.

You “made a hell of a time”? What?

This, this is my story in the Mass Effect universe.

“That, that is my story in the Battlefield Earth universe.”

It all started on a regular Tuesday night, finishing off Fallout NV Dead Money DLC.

“WHAT?! I HAD A STEALTH BOY ON AND HE STILL SAW ME!? Goddamit, I freaking hate this DLC. Well, more Elijah. Damned OP jerk.” I said to myself frustated, it was a regular game night. I was finishing off my t-bone steak when I decided no more Fallout NV. Dead Money was a freaking awesome story filled DLC but flipping annoying in combat,

Yeah, Dead Money is guilty of that. For those of you who don’t know, Dead Money is the first DLC for Fallout: New Vegas. Without spoiling too much, its finale involves sneaking away from a casino vault without being detected by Elijah, the DLC’s main antagonist.

However, the player has to take the long way to reach the casino elevator (the way you came in, full of all kinds of death traps), if you try to take the short way (the way Elijah came in), he activates the vault’s security system and you’ll have to fight him. Since this is scripted, even if you have the highest sneak skill possible, plus a Stealth Boy (a wearable device that turns you invisible), Elijah still activates the security. Yep, the game can be a cheating bastard sometimes.

Of course, the writer doesn’t bother explaining any of that. Also, the DLC is awesome, but you freaking hate it? Make up your mind!

Plus, you really shouldn’t be eating a steak of all things while playing Dead Money. It gets you killed.

it was nearly impossible. If your health was reduced to lower than 25 percent, it was so hard to find healing supplies. I should’ve followed my mate’s suggestions and got the Couriers Stash when I was in Sierra Madre. But nooooooo, I just had to download it before Dead Money.

Ehhh… Did you play the same DLC that I did? Sure, one of the main reason Dead Money was so infamously hard was because it forces you to work with extremely limited equipment and supplies, but it really isn’t that hard to get healing supplies by the late games, especially if you’ve already reached the casino vault. There are casino chips and vending machines all over the world space (there’s even one in the vault), and you can use those vending machines to buy all kinds of medical supplies.

Anyways I feel like playing something else…I feel like killing some Geth jerks. I get up, and pressed the open tray button on my Xbox 360, and clean off my Mass Effect disc. That’s when I noticed that something was up. My fingers were, well blue. Like an Asari. Damn, I’m such a geek.

“My fingers are blue -> I’m such a geek”

What do those two statements have to do with each other?!

Probably just tired. I had done a blood donation today, so I’m proably feeling a bit eurgh.

Feeling a bit “eurgh”? What the hell is that supposed to mean? Also, if you’ve done a blood donation, you really shouldn’t be staying up late playing video games.

I put in the disc in my Xbox 360 and closed the tray when i realised that now it wasn’t just my hands that were blue, it was now my arms.

What? You’re still planning on playing the game? Stop it, you idiot! Lie down! Drink some water! Call a doctor! Mass Effect is a good game, but it’s not worth it if your body stops working!

I blinked, but the blueness was still there. I pinched my cheek to see if I was just simply falling asleep but nope, I was wide awake. I sat back down on my leather couch when I felt like I was falling.
“AHHHHHHHH, THE HELL?!”
Everything went black.

Well, that was a short one. Well, see you guys next time! SuperFeatherYoshi, signing off!

You guys aren’t leaving are you?

Oh, who am I kidding, of course this crap isn’t over!

*Bangs head against wall*

Chapter 2: Rude Awakenings.

“Eurgh. Goddamit, my head feels like a ripe melon, ready to explode.”
I open my eyes to see a very unfamiliar surroundings, a room of steel and grey dullness. I look around and see a quite familiar thing, my reflection of what seems a one-way window. It looks like a…police holding cell?

Eh… Do police holding cells usually have one-way windows? According to pictures from the web, they generally look like this:

02

Or this:

01

I don’t see any one-way windows.

Also:

“I look around and see a quite familiar thing, my reflection of what seems a one-way window.”

What is that sentence even supposed to mean? To quote Ert’s Hammer Effect review, it feels like an alien trying to imitate English for the first time.

Huh, maybe I got drunk last night and the cops arrested me for somethin. Damn, my mom would kick my ass into the moon if she knew…oh God, please tell me she doesn’t know…I hear a click, like a door opening, then a hiss. I look at where I think the door is,

“…and it turned out that the door’s on the other side. I’m kind of stupid like that.”

and I nearly freak the hell out. I could not believe it…It was a TURIAN. My mind raced, a million things rushing around. I was geeking out, and freaking out. A TURIAN?! Here? If one was here then…that means I’ve gone into the ME verse.

I love how he doesn’t describe what the turian looks like, and just automatically assumes that we know. For all we know a turian could look like this:

03

Also, how do you know that you’re not just hallucinating things? Like your body turning blue last night?

Holy crapamoly. Okay, think. Remember the fanfictions you read. Imagine this like them.

“Yeah! I gotta remember Subject 23, Mass Effected, The Man From The Past, United Under Two Skies and, most importantly, Trapped!”

Also, he accepted the fact that he is now in a video game unrealistically fast.

Looks like I got a couple of stuff to think about. Lucky,
back home my Dad taught me to shoot and self-training and all that jazz. He was a cop, but was KIA. A drug bust gone wrong. My mother…she had leukemia, but before she was diagnosed she was a lawyer. I was trained in morals,

Ah, yes, I see you are a disciple in the esoteric art of “morals”. Seriously, how hard is it to say “taught me about moralities” or “taught me moral values”?

Also, spoiler alert, this turns out to be complete bullshit later in the story.

and how to be a total badass when it came to fighting, whether it was through blood or word.

“Through blood or word”? What? Did they teach you bloodbending and dragon shouts?

Oh wait, it’s supposed to be a reference to this, even though it makes no fucking sense in the context.

“Human, mind explaining why you’re in here?” I heard a flanging voice. Oh yeah, the turian.

Eh… Because you brought him there?

“I dunno Officer. I can’t remember much from last night” That much was true.
“We found you passed out on a park bench, with all your belongings. I must say, where did you steal all those antics from huh?” Said the turian with a almost venomous tone.

He was stealing “antics”? I didn’t realize you can steal “a playful trick or prank”. Unless he meant “antiques”… The translator must be malfunctioning.

Also, gotta love how he automatically assumes that he stole them. Is he going to be another straw racist? As if we haven’t had enough of those in the past snarkings.

“Woah, woah. Antiques? I was on a flight here from Earth when I got jumped by a couple of batarians. They said something about a framejob for all the crap I caused back home.
I was a detective from the NYPD and I brought a couple of merc companies down.” It wasn’t all a lie. I was a detective but i brought crime gangs down.

Oh great. This guy gave his self-insert a quote-unquote badass backstory even before he crossovered into ME-verse. Gotta love how Detective Jack Shithead here brought down crime gangs, yet still acts and talks like a teenager.

“Oh well then Detective, that explains it. Batarians can be quite…grudgeful about humans. Especially since Mindoir.”

What? He instantly believes him? He… He didn’t even bother verifying if there has been a group of batarians stealing antiques? One sentence is all it takes to convince him that Jack Shithead is innocent?

How the hell did this guy get into C-Sec?! He shouldn’t even qualify as a janitor!
“Oh? I didn’t hear about Mindoir, Officer”
” On Mindoir was a batarian colony and the Alliance was tasked to bring them in. A few Batarians there was heads of merc companies. Anyways, orders got mixed up, and there was a slaughter. Every Batarian child, woman, man, father etc. was killed.”

You got it completely backwards! Mindoir was a human colony attacked by batarians! And you should have heard of Mindoir if you’ve played Mass Effect, considering it was where Commander Shepard lived if he/she had the Colonist background!

Seriously, has this guy even played Mass Effect?

I was shocked. This was like with the Great Khans and NCR.

Oh, so that’s why he added that bit. It was supposed to be a reference to the Bitter Springs Massacre from Fallout: New Vegas… Except it makes no fucking sense! The Bitter Springs Massacre happened because the NCR had faulty intelligence, believing that Bitter Springs is full of raiders when it is actually full of civilians. The Systems Alliance, being a space-faring civilization, is literally centuries ahead of the NCR in terms of technology, and they would not make a mistake as stupid as this!

“Well Officer, my name is Jack ****** and i recently became the Courier.”

“I’m sorry, what’s your name again? I think my translator just glitched. Wait, that’s really your name? Okaaay… Nice to meet you, Detective Fuckface.”

Also, he became the courier? What? The fuck is that supposed to mean?

Chapter 3: Influences Couple hours after my little talk with the turain officer who was called Skaldak. Yes, the same name as the Martian from Doctor Who. So many references.

Ugh. If you’re gonna make references, fine. But why the hell are you pointing out the fact that you’re making references? Also, why is your character saying “So many references”? Is he acknowledging the fact that this story has too many references? Stop breaking the fourth wall!

Anyways, Skaldak apoligized to me for the hostility. I didn’t mind, turain-human hostilities was common (Especially so soon after the Contact War). The year was 2280. 3 years before Shepard came around.

What?! 2280? That’s almost a hundred years after Mass Effect 3 ended! Mass Effect took place in 2183, so three years before Mass Effect is supposed to be 2180, the author missed by a hundred years! That is some research failure, even by Library standard!

Seriously, how hard is it to look up the freaking timeline on the Mass Effect wiki?

That’s it, I’m setting up a counter, every time the author shows horrible disregard for canon, take a shot.

*Hits buzzer twice*

(Research? What research?: 2)

One for the timeline, and one for Mindoir.

I got 3 years to train up, become known, and have some fun on the way. So yes, I said I was the Courier, I couldn’t help but use the same title as the PC from Fallout NV. I mean c’mon, what a BADASS title.

Ehh… What? How exactly is “Courier” a badass title? Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t argue that The Courier from New Vegas is a badass, but the title “courier” by itself just means “mailman”. The reason the name carries significance in the Fallout universe is because couriers are of vital importance to the post-apocalyptic society. They can keep entire communities alive, like how the Divide prospered thanks to couriers despite the extremely harsh environment. This is the ME universe, the title “courier” means little more than “delivery boy”.

Still, I want to meet Garrus Calibatarian (A little nickname from Mass

Vexations 2). That way, if he’s recruited, I can come along with him.

Ugh. More pointless references. I’d talk about how dumb this is myself, but I actually managed to reach the author of Mass Vexations 2, one Herr Wozzeck, for comment.

04

So there we go.

So thats why, at this very moment, i’m signing up to be the first human detective in C-sec.

Eh, pal? You’re a bit too late for that. In Mass Effect, you meet a corrupt human C-Sec detective called Harkin. According to Anderson, he was one of the first human officers of C-Sec, and he’s being one for about twenty years by the time Mass Effect happened. You’re not even close to being the first.

*Hits buzzer*

(Research? What research?: 3)

Also, why do I get the feeling that Harkin, the guy who takes bribes, does drug, and beats up suspects, would make a better C-Sec officer than Jack Dumbass here?

But as a secondary job, when I got no cases, i’m going to be a merc. But I won’t turn out to be like Zaeed. He’s gonna be awesome when it comes around to Mass Effect 2.

First of all, I’m pretty sure working as a mercenary in your spare time will get you fired from C-Sec faster than you can say, “I have no idea how law enforcement works.” Second of all, I’ve played Mass Effect 2, and I still have no idea how Zaeed is like since I don’t have his DLC. Tell us how he is like! I know I keep going on and on about “Show Don’t Tell”, but you aren’t even telling us anything! Also, quit it with the narrative asides, they’re fucking annoying.

Anyways, I won’t be a normal merc. I’m gonna be a bounty hunter, known as the Courier. It’s funny if you think about it. I’m a ‘Courier’ who delivers death to targets.

Untitled

But before I get into that buisness, I need to get training with my weapons here.

I bet a hundred caps that this author is going to use the same “half a day of training = expert marksman” bullshit from Vegas Isn’t Magic.

Wait a sec…I just realized that I don’t have any money or a place to stay. Damn, I hope I get an advance on my detective pay. Hmmm…I could check my old bank account, see if my old money was transfered into creds.

Why exactly do you think they would be transferred? There’s literally no reason for you to believe that! The only thing that warped universe with you are your personal belongings!

Well, he probably knows it for the same reason the soldiers from USA vs Batarian magically know that the batarians have shields despite having never fought them. The author knows, therefore the character knows, even though the character has no way of knowing. Plus, does your bank even exist hundreds of years in the future in an alternate universe?

It would make much more sense if you consider selling your “antique” belongings (Sounds awfully familiar…), but you probably can’t do that anymore since they are all confiscated because of that dumbass “batarian framejob” excuse you pulled out of your ass. Great job.

Once I finish signing up all my contract papers, I meet my new partner. And guess who it is! It’s Garrus. “Hey Courier. The name’s Garrus. Garrus Vakarian. I guess you are my new partner” He said to me with a turian equivalent of smile.

WHAT?!

05

He’s already a C-Sec detective?!

Did… Did I accidentally flip ahead five chapters? What did I miss?! He signed some papers and immediately gets a partner? Isn’t there any kind of assessment? Background checks? Hell, they didn’t even phone the NYPD and ask them, “This guy says he works at your place, is that true?” Plus, C-Sec applicants need to be sponsored by a Citadel Councilor or the ambassador of their race. Who sponsored him?!

*Hits buzzer*

(Research? What research?: 4)

This guy’s Stu aura must be bending the reality around him so everyone is too busy lining up to suck his cock to do their job.

I reply with a slight grin “Courier? Hah, just a nickname at home. You can call me Jack ****** or just Jack. Anyways, it’s good to meet ya.”
He gave a small chuckle. “Well then, Jack, I better see your firing skills.”

Wait a minute, where are they? They’ve been stuck in the Formless Void ever since Jack Ass (gonna stick with this one from now on) got out of that holding cell… Wait, did he even get out of that cell?

“Yeah, but I just need to check my account. I think i’m getting low on creds.”
“Sure Jack, you got a Omni-tool?”
“Nah, I never really saw a use for one.”
“What? But all detectives I’ve met have Omni-tools. It’s part of the detective trade.” He said with what seemed a pretty surprised look

The guy doesn’t have an omni-tool in this time and age? Even though he’s supposed to be working for the NYPD? That should have set off all kinds of bullshit alarms! You’d think the NYPD would equip their detectives with basic equipment like an omni-tool. While it is true that some less fortunate regions of Earth are basically still stuck with 20th century tech, it was established that America (now part of the United North American States) is one of the super powers!

“Call me old school. Hey, if it’s a problem just say, and I can get one.”
“Its not a problem, Courier. Anyways, I can give you a free one. A bit old, but reliable.” He then gave me a small glove-like object. I equipped it, and I was so gleefull. It was like a freaking Pip-boy 3000!

…What does an omni-tool look like again?

06

And what does a Pip-Boy 3000 look like?

07

Yep, totally alike.

I pressed a few buttons, and the Omni-tool display came up.

*Sigh* As I said back in Mass Effected, omni-tools aren’t hard light holograms, you can’t use them without either specialized gloves or feedback implants in your finger tips. Not as bad as the previous research fails, but still…

*Hits buzzer*

(Research? What research?: 5)

I clicked on the bank application and checked my old account. I had around a MILLION creds.

*Headdesk*

Of course the Stu is going to be super rich without having to work for it. Also, good to see that the omni-tool’s bank application is apparently trans-dimensional. There are things money can’t buy, for everything else there’s PCC Banking.

“Yup, i’m not even nowhere low. Say, how can I download a application?”

“Not even nowhere low”… The fuck is that supposed to mean?

Oh, who cares! End of chapter!

Chapter 4: An Interesting Conversation.

Thats when all of time came to a very slow halt. I saw a very familiar figure walk up to me. It was…Ulysses from Fallout NV.

Oh, hi Ulysses.

08

Meet Ulysses, the final boss of Lonesome Road, the last DLC for New Vegas, and sole survivor of the Divide disaster. While he only appears in Lonesome Road, he was foreshadowed in all three previous DLCs, as well as the base game. His backstory is very complicated, and we’re not going into that right now. All you need to know is that he has a history with the Courier, and is very obsessed about the Old World (more specifically, Old America).

Okay… So where exactly is Jack Ass now? The Citadel? The Divide?

Oh, the Formless Void of course, how stupid of me to ask.

“Hello, Courier. You recognize me, and I you. What you think is a game, is truly life.

Fallout: New Vegas is alive! It’s alive! HAHAHAHAHA!!!

*Lightning strikes in the background*

When I travelled to the Big Empty, I discovered a technology, that was so powerful. It was a universal travelling machine.

Time 4 Backstory!

The Big Mountain Research Facility, known as the Big Empty by wastelanders, was a pre-war research facility and defense contractor. It was where some of the most talented pre-war scientists worked to develop technological marvels… By any means necessary. Like performing assassinations on non-military targets for funding, digging graves for research subjects, and ripping out the brains of Chinese POWs and putting them in robots. Typical mad scientist stuff.

Anyway, the facility survived the Great War and serves as the setting for the Old World Blues DLC. In the DLC, you get teleported into Big Mountain and eventually learn that you were not the first to visit, and that there have been other visitors before you. One of them is Ulysses, who came looking for answers about the Old World.

While there is no mention of a “universal traveling machine” in Big Mountain’s (many) research centers, they do have some form of teleportation technology… So, this kinda makes sense, I guess?

But once again, the author did not bother to explain anything at all, forcing me to do the work for him. Great.

But it was a prototype, and requires an extreme amount of energy. I was able to use it twice. To take you here, and one other time.

“…to stop by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and grab some pizza.”

You may wonder why you may be here. Well, Courier, I cannot explain just yet. It may come to a time when i can but i cannot now.

“I cannot because the plot demands so!”

You may know one thing…you are not the first one here, and if you fail, I will find another to complete the task. Do not fail me, Courier.”
“Wait, Ulysses, answer me this…why me?”
“Because Courier, it is not always the exceptional that can be extraordinary. The unexceptional can be capapble of so many things. They can do so much good…or not.”

“Also, because you’re a self-insert Stu. Mostly the latter.”

Plus, how is he “unexceptional”? He has a million credits equivalent of saving in his universe, and he’s also a detective that brought down crime gangs! Make up your mind, author! You can’t have it both ways!

“Wait…another question…Why are you here?”
“I am curious at how this universe can function. I want to know why this universe should not burn like the Old America.

Ehhh… Because this universe isn’t ruled by crazy nutjobs like the Fallout Universe American leaders? Seriously, they developed molecular assemblers and perfected nuclear fusion, yet still decided to go to war over fossil fuel. And look at how well that turned out for them.

So prove to me Courier, prove that this, you, should not burn. This conversation is over. Goodbye, I will see you…When the Shepard comes to take care of the Flock in 3 years. Good Luck.”

Instant depth? Just add random Bible reference!

Anyway, that… simply wasn’t how Ulysses talked. This is how he normally talks:

I know copying his style isn’t exactly easy, but you can at least try. Even Vegas Isn’t Magic did better in this department!

Then he walked away, his tattered jacket with the old world’s flag. This was the last time I saw him, for 2 years.

Then this wasn’t the last time you saw him, you dumbass! Seriously, how hard is it to say “I did not see him again for two years”? Also, quit replacing “three” and “two” with “3” and “2”.

So concludes this installment of riffing, and let us recap.

Ulysses finds a dimensional traveling machine in the Big MT. And instead of using it to visit other versions of America that didn’t suffer a nuclear war to find out what exactly is the problem with the Old World, he tries to do it by randomly sending people from our world, who happens to play Fallout: New Vegas, into the Mass Effect universe, a universe where America isn’t even one of the key players. Also, he somehow sends their belongings with them, and transfers their savings, too, and makes it so they are all in credits.

That was definitely one of the most convoluted, nonsensical explanations for a Stu crossing over I have ever seen. Sure, Vegas Isn’t Magic’s magical portal was dumb. Mass Effected and Man From the Past’s “being killed sends you to ME verse” was dumb. But this? This is a whole new level of suckitude! I can think of half a dozen things Ulysses would do with a dimensional traveling machine at his disposal, and NONE of them involves… all these! The premise is just completely nonsensical!

And what about the rest of the story? Well, the protagonist is annoying and unlikable. The other characters are boring and idiotic. The research makes me question if this author has even played Mass Effect. Almost the entirety of the first four chapters take place in the Formless Void. And they are all way too short! Seriously, I can fit three chapters into my browser screen!

Well, I’m glad to inform you, dear patrons, that it gets worse. Much, much worse…

Thank you for reading, and see you guys next time. This is SuperFeatherYoshi, signing off!

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50 Comments on “1280: Courier’s Effect: A Short Story Of My Beginnings – Chapters One, Two, Three, and Four”

  1. AdmiralSakai says:

    The Courier’s Effect Chapter 1: Introductions My name is Jack ******

    Wow, that is one profane family name… Unless that’s supposed to be the author’s real name, and he’s replacing it with asterisks to avoid giving away his full name …Which is just dumb.

    That, or it’s profanity dots.

    Let’s call him Jack Assbar in the future, just to be safe.

  2. AdmiralSakai says:

    “Eurgh. Goddamit, my head feels like a ripe melon, ready to explode.”

    Hate to break it to you, Assbar, but even very ripe melons aren’t particularly explosive.

  3. AdmiralSakai says:

    I was a detective from the NYPD and I brought a couple of merc companies down.” It wasn’t all a lie. I was a detective but i brought crime gangs down.

    “Oh well then Detective, that explains it

    “Yep. You have no modern ID and claim to represent a jurisdiction that hasn’t existed for 120 years.

    Don’t worry, we’ll make sure you get professional help…”

    • SFY says:

      That, or give him one of the most prestigious jobs on the Citadel.

    • SFY says:

      Also, to be fair, NYPD just might still exist in ME verse.Considering that cities like London, Vancouver, and Adelaide are still around. (Until the Reapers hit, that is)

      Then again, he didn’t produce ANY kind of identification to prove that at all, because Stu.

  4. "Lyle" says:

    “We found you passed out on a park bench, with all your belongings. I must say, where did you steal all those antics from huh?” Said the turian with a almost venomous tone.

    All his belongings? I’m picturing him on this park bench surrounded by ever single thing that was ever in his house, including his toilet, every pair of underwear, and toe nail clippings collection. How in the world could the turian know that all the items they took from his unconscious body constituted “all” his belongings? I own a lot of stuff. It would be very crowded to be transported with all of it.

  5. DasCheesenBorgir says:

    “I am curious at how this universe can function. I want to know why this universe should not burn like the Old America.”

    Frankly, with the societ(ies) they present in the games I ask myself that same question a lot…

    heh heh heh

    • DasCheesenBorgir says:

      for reference, I actually kiiiinda liked the highly formal, stick-up-the-ass and ruthless/militant Admiralty side of the Quarians, and…

      …I’m pretty sure I made a comment about ‘fireworks’ somewhere around here a long time ago ;)

    • AdmiralSakai says:

      I dunno, I feel like the societies shown in the game demonstrate a lot of the strengths and failings of real societies- well, except for the Systems Alliance which, if it operates as a confederacy like the Codex says it does, could not possibly field colonies on the scale it does.

      Palaven’s Dogs addresses this a fair bit, with the Homeguard calling out the Citadel Council for not only being a sanctimonious corporate plutocracy, but trying to make everyone else one as well.

      I for one blame the asari, but mostly just because their culture seems most similar to Council culture in general, they have a lot of diplomatic and economic influence, and they founded the damn thing in the first place.

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        The whole being partially reflective of real societies is frankly part of my problem with it all, at least in the sense that they expect us to take it seriously? …nah, that’s more just a side effect of my personal misgivings with the sillier sides of the fandom

        it’d be tough to try and explain, aside from just to say there’s something about the vibe in the galactic community I really dislike- and that the only *fitting* end I see to them being threatened by an enormous cosmic horror-level threat so far beyond their comprehension is just total annihilation, whether we’re speaking mutually or otherwise.

        Seeing them scrape through and still maintain a semblance of their previous norms, (ending slides emphasizing rebuilding rather than showing how things are perhaps completely warped and twisted beyond repair now) actually kinda pisses me off.

        With the overarching community’s seeming aversion towards another large-scale war to the point of themselves being basically bogged down in red tape and never *doing* anything officially, they really shouldn’t have been allowed to survive a full-scale galactic war against the Reapers without experiencing such violent destruction they can’t just ‘rise from the ashes’ of through willpower/teamwork/overwhelmingBlueParagonAura alone.

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        Well, from an in-universe perspective, I don’t think it’s at all right to wish down fire and brimstone on billions of sapient beings just because of the bad policies of their governments… but I’ll also confess to having done almost exactly the same thing in Palaven’s Dogs.

        There, however, the Council’s undoing comes in the form of a civil war heavily inspired by the Haloverse Great Schism, and the Reapers’ impact was heavily downplayed. I thought it was a better expression of their various chickens coming home to roost, and a better way to separate the instigators from the victims.

        Really, in the canonical ‘verse the Council’s tepid response to the Reapers is one of their few policies that I can actually forgive: the Systems Alliance -one of the worst of the lot in terms of governance, really- was far from forthcoming with proof, and was asking the Council to make a lot of big commitments they did not seem willing to contribute to directly.

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        Frankly, it’s not so much a gripe with the actual in-universe established political systems/peace regulation and whatnot, I’m largely taking issue with the thematic idea of a galactic community living by those standards and being able to turn the tide against a supernatural force they’ve never seen after festering in a mire of unresolved tensions between larger factions and the general filth of cockroach degenerates dwelling in shadowy debauchery-slathered dens like Omega for… a couple years, at least? (if I’m not mistaken).

        Simply put I guess, they haven’t really seen a large-scale war for a long time, the cultural norms of what you’re generally shown seeming to reflect that for the most part- I’d wager, about… 60-70% of the areas you go to gave off that vibe to me, with how the civilian/regular NPCs acted. And seeing a galaxy that’s basically been so slothlike in its warmaking suddenly ‘band together’ and triumph against a wondrously stoic and truly *alien* threat doesn’t leave me with a very satisfying conclusion.

        *Obviously* there’s more than a few pretty major factions that outright subvert that, Turians, Krogans, hell I’d even argue Quarians- but in every single case it seems like the writers are biased against them and present their highly formal or militarized or highly aggressive traditions as a liability- and most importantly something that goes against what appears to be an author-favored overarching ‘policy’ of sorts for the galaxy as a whole. The Council-culture, as you put it I guess.

        I totally understand why, and I kind of like the backdrop of them being seemingly so paranoid of conflict that they’re unwilling to so much as trespass into… I think it was the Terminus systems(? a little fuzzy on the political details but I’m pretty sure they mentioned the Alliance was avoiding on stepping on the toes of the organized mercs/criminals/outside of formal jurisdiction groups) in the wake of a lot of strife; but frankly, with places like the Citadel, or Illium, or Omega, I never really felt that overarching ‘fear’ of conflict, and it seemed more like the community there was too busy drowning in petty debauchery to get away from it all rather than respect the destruction sown before them and live miserably and grimly because of it. How fucking dare they believe they ought to hold a right to live their own lives and be individuals, the fucking cunts >:(

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        *Obviously* there’s more than a few pretty major factions that outright subvert that, Turians, Krogans, hell I’d even argue Quarians-

        Funny how you picked two out of the three races that end up allied in PD’s civil war. And the outlier is the one who managed to actually be competent and make gains within their own faction.

        And I’m inclined to agree with you on those civilizations getting an unfair shake, although for some odd reason the Krogan (far and away the most backwards and just plain nasty) get more of a pass. That, really, is what Palaven’s Dogs is about- giving the turians their place in the sun.

        I’m largely taking issue with the thematic idea of a galactic community living by those standards and being able to turn the tide against a supernatural force they’ve never seen after festering in a mire of unresolved tensions between larger factions and the general filth of cockroach degenerates dwelling in shadowy debauchery-slathered dens like Omega for… a couple years, at least? (if I’m not mistaken).

        Well, I think the big underlying problem there is that the way the Reapers were originally set up, they are absolutely impossible to defeat. On every metric they exceed the forces against them- there are more of them, they have way better technology, they’re computationally orders of magnitude smarter, they’ve been setting up their invasion for millennia, and they can get to the rest of the galaxy but the rest of the galaxy can’t get to dark space.

        I’m really not a big fan of that sort of enemy, which Lovecraft also used to his detriment- either they turn out to be a big disappointment, or the story just becomes “rocks fall, everyone dies”. PD’s fast-and-loose approach to canon allowed me to drastically cut down the Reapers’ numbers and make them much more like simple automata than tactical thinkers, but obviously ME’s writers did not have that luxury.

        but frankly, with places like the Citadel, or Illium, or Omega, I never really felt that overarching ‘fear’ of conflict, and it seemed more like the community there was too busy drowning in petty debauchery to get away from it all rather than respect the destruction sown before them and live miserably and grimly because of it. How fucking dare they believe they ought to hold a right to live their own lives and be individuals, the fucking cunts >:(

        Makes sense, but I always thought it was pretty clear that that sort of lifestyle was reserved for Some People while the great mass of the galactic citizenry had to scrape by on much less. And when the Reapers show up, of course it’s going to be the people who couldn’t afford a private evac transport who are going to end up dying in huge numbers. I dunno, maybe I’m naturally more attuned to a Marxist understanding of the situation, but it worked well in PD where the galaxy’s elite got to watch the Reaper Crisis fix itself on the Extranet news while the everyday factory workers in the Turian Midreach and Attican Traverse were getting glassed.

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        I’ve been making a note to go read Palaven’s Dogs ever since you introduced a *Commissar* in some riffs, I’ll definitely have to push that up in my list of priorities.

        Been taking a more marginal interest in Mass Effect a bit recently, sounds like it’d be a more tolerable place to start in terms of fan works.

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        As a matter of fact, I happen to be looking for a beta for it right now- the google doc containing the ‘fic is linked through my username here in the comments, and covers up to Chapter 4. I’m planning to bring the ‘fic out of hiatus “soonish”, provided a few other projects I am working on finish on time, and having what’s written so far be in shipshape would really help with doing that.

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        Is… that your way of asking me to beta-read some of it?

        Probably better to find someone else tbh, from what little I could see you were dealing really heavily in logical extrapolations/manipulations of scientific and political details within the setting; two things that I don’t very much like looking at in fiction to begin with and in this particular setting it’s two things I would know jack shit about in general lol

        I didn’t have terribly much time to read too much anyways, but if for some reason there was ever anything you were concerned about at all, I’d be happy to give some very unprofessional thoughts on it?

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        You should read this though, it’s a very insightful and well thought out written analysis of Mass Effect as a whole and really explores the different facets of each character under very strange circumstances of duress, and should help *any* aspiring fanfiction writer.

        https://www.fanfiction.net/s/7646563/19/

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        It certainly can’t hurt. If you don’t have time I perfectly understand, but even if you don’t have anything specific to say on technical matters I’d be interested in hearing just in general what you think of the direction the story is taking.

        It’s set in a preexisting AU, but one of the things I’ve been thinking about doing is basically a Cliff’s Notes version that explains the very basics of why there are humans on the batarian homeworld, why the quarians have a proxy representative on the Council, etc. Please let me know if you think such a thing would be helpful.

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        Also, this is going to take a while for me to parse.

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        Yeah, I could see myself finding some time to give thoughts on it when I get around to reading it; I don’t think I have any matters that are *too* pressing but I do wanna familiarize myself with some coding languages/concepts so I don’t go into my first co-op job totally blind in a week or so.

        More importantly, where should I direct any messages pertaining to feedback? Is there an email or something you have set up for that particular purpose, or just something like a pleb ffnet/Deviantart account I could reach you on?

      • DasCheesenBorgir says:

        on a totally unrelated note, for the longest time I thought your avatar/user thumbnail was a mustached Cacodemon sporting a really wide and toothless smile

      • AdmiralSakai says:

        I have a fanfiction.net account, but rarely check it. You should be able to talk to me on the Google Doc itself, as I believe I have made it editable for anyone with the link.

        And no, that avatar is Mother Brain from the Metroid series, with my hat and glasses. I’ve had it for quite some time, and should probably update it to reflect my new personal equipment set.

  6. I love how he doesn’t describe what the turian looks like, and just automatically assumes that we know. For all we know a turian could look like this:

    I don’t really think a description of a well know race in a fanfic is necessary, as most people reading would know what it looks like, and if they didn’t could research it in around ten seconds. Plus Jack Ass is a fan of Mass Effect, and knows what they look like, so would immediately recognize that it’s a Turian and not bother with a description in the internal monologue.

    • SuperFeatherYoshi says:

      That would be the case if this is a Mass Effect fanfic. But this is a Fallout/Mass Effect crossover. A well-written crossover should be accessible to either of the fandoms that spawned it instead of assuming that the reader is an expert in both.

      • Turians are a very basic thing, and I don’t think it required much expertise. Granted, he’ll probably mention a little known sidequest or something and expect everyone to know what he means immediately later on, so meh.

      • SuperFeatherYoshi says:

        … Which is NOT what this fic is trying to accomplish, as it does not try to explain anything from either universes. If I only played Mass Effect, I would be confused as hell by Ulysses’ sudden appearance and all the random references to New Vegas. And if I only played New Vegas, I would have no idea who the hell are these characters he keeps name-dropping.

        By doing this, the author is limiting his target audience to only the people who played both Mass Effect and New Vegas, not a smart move.

      • Yeah, the only thing I have no problem with here is the Turian bit. Everything else has no excuse.

    • AdmiralSakai says:

      My problem was more that we get no description of what this specific turian actually looked like. What sort of facial markings does he have? What color is he? Is he wearing C_SEC body armor or the cloth uniform? This is a fanfic- you can’t just let the game engine randomly generate your models for you.

  7. Is it fine if I link the riff to the author?

    • SuperFeatherYoshi says:

      You can try. I’ve already commented on both of his stories. (I’m his only commenter, actually) There’s been no response.

  8. Delta XIII says:

    The sheer amount of research failures puts Hammer Effect to shame. It also features arguably one of the biggest Mass Effect self-insert Stu the library has ever seen, whose Stuness, in my humble opinion, is second only to good ol’ 23.

    Ah, the sinking feeling of impending shittiness. How I’ve missed you!

  9. The Crowbar says:

    *Blasts through the front doors of The Library and sinks to his knees while panting heavily*

    Holy Fuck, I’m back. I’m back!

    You may or may not remember when a few months ago I came with the message that I might be gone soon, but still sticked around a little bit.

    Well, the apocalypse I feared happened, and it came in the form of my father getting dead.

    DED.

    Since me and my mom lost any sort of financial support, we had to switch apartments, so on and so on, and now our grandparents agreed to help us stay on our feet until my lazy ass gets into University and by extension, gets a job.

    So now that we know that we can keep living and so on and so on, I am back without any fear of dissapearing from here for the next…

    Year or so.

    Wohoo!

    Also, sorry for cluttering up your comment section SFY, but I felt that if anyone here wanted to know what happened, well… Now they know.

    And I know this maybe didn’t warrant my complete dissapearance and that melo-dramatic message a few months ago, but I’ve lived an honestly quite comfortable life so far, and all this happening to suddenly was kind of a brick-to-the-face to me.

    So, uh’… Merry Christmas?

  10. TacoMagic says:

    The Courier’s Effect Chapter 1: Introductions My name is Jack ******

    Jack Shit? Interesting choice for a main character.

  11. TacoMagic says:

    Anyways I feel like playing something else…I feel like killing some Geth jerks. I get up, and pressed the open tray button on my Xbox 360, and clean off my Mass Effect disc.

    I see this guy took his pacing lessons from Eighth Spirit.

  12. TacoMagic says:

    Chapter 4: An Interesting Conversation.

    *SKEPTICISM*


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