AP2 Update: March 2024 ( Also: Unicorn Overlord and Superman)

Chapter 25, Draft 4: DONE.

Now let us bow our heads in silence as a tribute for Akira Toriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball. He died on March 1st. I loved his works, and some of my own writing is inspired by him.

So this chapter is for you, man! It will be a thrilling battle for survival between enemies, friends, and rivals! And yes, this intro counts as being silent because I’m writing instead of speaking aloud. Here is the vague spoiler-free poem that describes the chapter:

Adversaries clash, as well as good buddies;

Peers will rumble and ward off monstrosities.

It’s an epic brawl worthy of Dragon Ball Z;

Akira Toriyama: this chapter’s for thee.

The poems will probably get even more vague from here on out, since the finale is in full swing now.

There’s something else I changed in this draft: I split up the characters into groups. I didn’t want to do it at first. That’s how the first book ended, remember? You’ve got Tecker with Mean’s Dad on Jesice; Darrow with Vornis and Trisk on the ground; and Mean and Parlay are flying around near the Ventricle. So I didn’t want to do the same thing again. I wanted EVERYONE present for the finale.

But Kim read the third draft and told me it didn’t work. How can I put this? It was like the BAD parts of Dragon Ball Z. The parts where you have characters standing around watching two guys fight. When Bulma is thinking ‘Wow! I wish I could do something to help! But I can’t because I’m just a normal human!”

Or when Yamcha jumps in to help and immediately gets impaled or blown up. ๐Ÿ˜…

So I split up the characters into groups. It’s not a ‘let’s pair off into teams’ kind of thing, though. Events will occur that make the characters react and go where they’re needed. It will be a natural and believable process that will make the story amazing. Y’know. Like I did the first time! ๐Ÿ˜†

What I’ve Been Playing: Let’s see, what else have I been up to? Ah, of course! I bet you’re aching to hear about the JRPG that everyone’s talking about! Yes, that’s right! It’s time for UNICORN OVERLORD!

Ha! And I bet you thought my book title was nonsense!

Unicorn Overlord is one of the best strategy games I’ve ever played. You unlock characters and set them into squads. Then your squads auto-battle other squads on a map where you move them all around in real time.

“Auto-battle? That’s braindead boring nonsense!” Yeah, that was me a few months ago, before I played the Unicorn Overlord demo. How foolish I was.

See, EVERY skill your units have can be set in a certain order of operations and programmed with conditions:

My unit here has five members. The one I have selected here is my witch Yahna. When battle against an enemy unit begins, she will use those red-colored skills in order from one to three until she runs out of action points: Trinity Rain, Magick Missle, and Icebolt. (You can change the order of skills.)

Now you can get along just fine without setting the conditions on the right. At first. But Trinity Rain is a HUGE area-of-effect attack that takes a full turn of charging up. So I set the condition of ‘4 or more enemies’ so it will ONLY activate when there’s a near-full board of suckers to blast into oblivion.

But if there are three or less enemies, Yahna skips Trinity Rain and moves on to the next skill, Magick Missle. This spell hits two enemies at once with no charge time, so I put in the condition to only use it when there are two or three targets. And armored enemies are weak to magick so I toss in the condition to prioritize armored enemies.

Lastly, if there’s only one enemy left then the final skill, Icebolt, gets used. It hits one enemy with magick damage and freezes them. I don’t know why I told it to prioritize armored, since there should only be one target left anyway. Oh well. ๐Ÿ˜…

There are blue passive skills that react to other character’s skills, but you can just go watch a YouTube video about that. But see how much effort you can put into your characters? Add in weapons and armor that change your moves and stats, then factor in the OTHER four members of your squad and you can make a unit that blows up the enemies with meticulous, clockwork precision!

Now, I normally hate the idea of ‘coding,’ but when the result is a beautiful slaughter-fest of baddies I’ll get quite motivated. ๐Ÿ˜€

What I’ve Been Reading:

What’s that you’re thinking? You’re tired of hearing about video games!? “How unseemly it is for a writer to plug in simplistic phrases so that their pixelated ruffians might tussle efficiently!”

Well okay, then! How about some fine literature:

Ha,ha… it was Superman comics! I bet you thought I was talking about Animal Farm! What a great gag. Although I must admit: Putting William Shatner on a DC cover for NO REASON is a way better gag.

World’s Finest #25: Seriously. Shatner isn’t seen or mentioned at all in the issue. No idea what’s up with that. Instead we see a younger Lex Luthor and Joker team up to find a mystic artifact. Now why would Lex team up with the Clown Prince of Crime? Because the map to the artifact is CURSED, and causes the reader to go mad if they read it. But since Joker is already insane, he’s immune! It’s funny stuff. Even if the ending is a bit similar to Emperor Joker. (Re-released in hardcover last month! Zounds!)

There is a second story in this issue, but it’s more of a prologue to the next big arc. Seems as if Mxyzptlk and Bat-Mite need help stopping a cosmic threat that’s tearing through dimensions. Man, finally. I feel like I haven’t seen a Mxy story in a while.

Superman #12: On this cover you see Lex Luthor slugging it out with his own mother while they both wear power armor. This is the end of the Dr. Pharm and Mr. Graft storyline that’s been going on for like two years. It all started when Lex Luthor went to jail and gifted Superman his LexCorp company. Now called ‘SuperCorp,’ the once-rivals work together against Lex’s old enemies while finding new friends and old foes in a battle for…. WAIT, WHAT’S THIS!?

About time!

Fetal’s gizz! LOBO just erupted out of the ground! Right in the middle of the comic’s ending exposition, too! Frag you, Lex and your secret backstory; Lobo doesn’t care! THE MAIN MAN IS BACK!!! Now THIS is a worthy tribute to Akira Toriyama!

I’ll see you back here next month! You get Lobo, Mxy, AND I’ll complete another Abandonment Party 2 chapter! INCREDIBLE!! ๐Ÿค‘

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