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Offline Lumi Kløvstad

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Nick Fury delights at the sound of rustled jimmies

Quote
"A narrator should not supply interpretations of his work; otherwise he would not have written a novel, which is a machine for generating interpretations."
— Umberto Eco, postscript to The Name of the Rose

This was going to be a response to my very awesome and passionate debate with D9 in the Barlowe thread, but I judged that topic has been derailed enough already and so I shall move the debate (which has also shifted in focus significantly) here to a new home and invite people of all literary persuasions to weigh in.

But, before we get started here, let's get a disclaimer out of the way.

THIS IS NOT A DISCUSSION OF WHAT IS CANON OR WHAT IS NOT, THIS IS A DISCUSSION ON NARRATIVE THEORY, ART, AND ART APPRECIATION

Given the argument I'm about to make, I fully expect jokes to be aimed at me once people have read this. Go ahead, I've pretty clearly got it coming but I felt this was important enough to risk some barbed humor.

I'm a big believer in Death of the Author.

Here's the deal: Iga, while knowledgeable and passionate about the subject matter of Castlevania, is not god. He can offer very enlightening details on his intent, and fascinating tidbits and interpretations, but in the end, a story is owned by the reader, not its author.

Iga just happened to collect royalties on the damn thing.

So he can "clarify" as much as he wants, but his views are no more authoritative than mine. A canon only holds for those who agree to it, and I, for one, have not agreed to the entirety of what Castlevania's canon brings to the table. This doesn't break the franchise for me. I disagree with a lot of stories. That's okay though. That's good. It keeps debates interesting. The spirit of Iga's canon is in the right place, surely, but in light of finding better explanations, I will lean on the side of what I have found explains things best. Sometimes that's whatever the current "official" explanation is, other times it's what I have come to see as true.

Alternative facts are not a nice thing to have in one's White House, Kremlin, or Downing Street, but in fandom, they're the lifeblood of a debate. It's part of why Castlevania persists.

Once the story hits public eyes, an author's intentions and biographical facts (the author's politics, religion, etc) should hold no weight in regards to an interpretation of their writing. In other words, a writer's interpretation of his own work is no more or less valid than the interpretations of any given reader.

I'm gonna quote TVTropes here because, as usual, it's phrased brilliantly there.

"Although popular amongst postmodern critics, this has some concrete modernist thinking behind it as well, on the basis that the work is all that outlives the author (hence the concept's name) and we can only judge the work by the work itself. The author's later opinions about their work are themselves a form of criticism and analysis, and therefore are not necessarily consistent with what's written unless the author or publisher actively goes back and changes it—and it can still be argued that, since the original work still exists, the author has merely created a different version of it."

So, Iga's notes and interviews are fascinating. They lend a lot of helpful information about his intent and the development process. But they are by no means authoritative just because Iga said them/wrote them. That being said, if Iga is the creator of the particular game in question, I do tend to weigh his input more heavily than I would if he were talking about, say, Simon's Quest for example. I generally like to believe an author at least has a more concise view of works they personally handled, but this is no guarantee that one should accept it just because the author said it.

We also have our own fanons regarding Castlevania, and sometimes it keeps with official continuity, other times we lambast or outright ignore elements we don't like.

I tend to do this to people who insist Torchwood: Miracle Day was in any way good.

Quote
Comic Book Guy: That was an imaginary story dreamed up by Jimmy Olsen after Supergirl's horse Comet kicked him in the head. It never really happened.
Bart Simpson: Hey, none of this stuff ever really happened.
Comic Book Guy: ...Get out of my store.
— The Simpsons, "Husbands and Knives"

Now, fanon discontinuity can make debate very difficult (again, guilty as freaking charged here), but it still ties into the above principle: that the author, and said author's intent, is not the only valid viewpoint or interpretation. Or, in simpler language, "the beholder has rights too."

Foooor instance... I personally don't even really acknowledge Dawn as canon at all. In my opinion it's a badly and sloppily written installment that raises more questions than it answers. Fun game though. So I regard Dawn like Iga regards Legends: fun game, but it just doesn't properly fit.

This is obviously a minority view, and I'm okay with that. But I have found that when one removes Dawn from a list of "things which have happened in the Castlevania universe", a host of things make much more sense. Ignoring it isn't something I did lightly though, as I used to be quite a canon purist. After playing through it a dozen times and trying six dozen different ways of understanding it and how it changes things simply because the developers needed some sort of plot justification for why things happened, I finally realized that it was just never going to make logical or narrative sense to me. In my eyes, it's the problem child of Castlevania's plot. Fortunately, it's at the extreme end of the timeline, doesn't really deal with any major events (mostly just serving as a rehash of the previous game), and is relatively easily and harmlessly chopped off without affecting anything else in the series. Sort of barely like a tumor, but I don't go back and revisit those because they were a fun romp through Dracula's Castle That Isn't Actually Dracula's Castle.

Okay the tumor comparison was mean. Dawn isn't quite that bad. Like I said, it is a fun game. I just skip the cutscenes.
Because, as Sterling Archer once said (on a show that is a work of fiction) "the mind, can, in fact, vomit."

Canonically, it does happen. It explains things. Or at least it tries to. And there are definitely guys in the fandom who swear by the Dawn of Sorrow New Testament. Doubtless, I'm sure that Iga meant for these events to be canon (or Konami just forced him to rush a story so they could get another game out, which would explain a lot). That's cool. I try to be chill about these sorts of disagreements when they come up because I'm clearly one guy who has personalized my headcanon and most people would rather go with the official explanation. You keep doing that, guys.

But I'm in danger of rambling forever on this topic, so I will finish this as concisely as possible.

  • Iga is not the be-all-end-all word of Castlevania
  • If you find some alternate explanation that makes better sense to you, go with it as long as it doesn't entirely contradict what's been told in the work itself
  • This isn't history class and there is no test at the end. None of this stuff ever actually happened, so feel free to ignore stuff you dislike
  • If you ignore stuff as mentioned above, be prepared to defend your reasoning (it doesn't have to be a thesis statement though)
  • "I just plain (don't) like it" is a perfectly valid rationale for invoking number 3.
  • Video games are meant to be enjoyed. Enforce your own fanon with yourself in whatever way heightens your enjoyment of the game, because if you're not enjoying the game, you're doing it wrong.
  • A canon is not a contractual obligation to you as a fan. It's a stern suggestion and set of guidelines, but a suggestion and set of guidelines it remains. You don't have to agree with it
  • Even if you don't agree with canon, you still have to live with everybody who does, so always be excellent to your fellow fans no matter how heated the arguments.
  • Nothing in fiction is ever fully permanent (except maybe Uncle Ben's death) and so things are ALWAYS open to debate.

And that's really all I have to say for now on this topic.

Have fun debating, my little nerdlings!
« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 01:12:38 AM by The Bloody Aperture »
How not to be a dark lord: the answer to that is a terribly interesting answer that involves an almost Jedi-like adherence to keeping oneself under control and finding ways to be true to yourself in a way that doesn't encourage the worst parts of you to become dangerously exaggerated and instead feeds your better nature. Also, protip: don't fuck with Alchemy or strike up any deals with ancient Japanese Shinigami gods no matter how tempting the deal or how suavely dressed the Shinigami is.

Offline Dracula9

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2017, 01:07:45 AM »
0
IGA might not be the be-all-end-all but frankly some of you fans need to let the hatred go. Y'all are just as bad as the fanatic IGA fanboys. Extremes are almost never beneficial, to say nothing of practical or effective.

I don't like/get/agree with it = "IGA is the worst person ever and he ruined muh favorite vidyagaem because he's involved with the stuff I don't like/get/agree with" is bullshit logic and anyone endorsing it should be fucking ashamed of themselves for the display of intellectual dishonesty.

Not saying you're enforcing it with this, but I've gotten some heavy-handed hints you've got at least part of one foot in that pond, and I also wanted to put it out there that those in that pond are self-righteous asshats. World ain't black-and-white, ya cranks, so quit treating shit like it is.

Now for a breakdown:

1: If it's a game he led, yes, he is. No fan's opinion plays into it, nor does any artistic or literary theory one can cite. If he officially led an official entry that has not been officially retconned, then everything therein is officially sanctioned and is part of the canon. Whether any of us like it or not. I, for example, am no more exempt from this fact than anyone else. There may not be any real penalties for breaking it, but the canon is still the law.

2: By all means! Just don't treat what you come up with as superior to the canon, or that the official writers are somehow inferior to you, a fan, whose opinions and writings are not accompanying an official salary from the IP holder(s). If it were indeed so superior to the canon, then it wouldn't be fanon.

3: "It's just fiction so there don't HAVE to be rules or anything sensible when you discuss it!" is basically what I take from this. Really wanna believe you don't mean this.

4: Ignore and defend at your leisure! I take no inherent issue (barring general "okay yeah I don't like/get/agree with what this person's written" thoughts) with fanon or ignoring disliked canon...until #2 shows up.

5: No, it isn't. "I just don't like it" is self-validating and requires no further explanation if the person invoking disliking it doesn't want to. Bringing #3 into the mix turns it into an under-the-rug sweep to avoid debate because no rules means one can dismiss or accept literally anything's validity as an opinion or argument based solely on how much they like it, and more serious debates run successfully on more fact than opinion. It's much like a child hides something they've broken to avoid getting in trouble. Dislike is free. Bullshitting additional validations where they aren't inherently necessary has a price tag. And sales tax.

6: Agreed! If drawing your own conclusions heightens enjoyment, then more power to ya! Just...please don't bring #2 and #3 to the party. I might not like a given politician or whatever, for instance, and think my ideas are better, but thinking my ideas are better doesn't make me on-par with or actually better than that politician in power, political skill and official status, does it? Same principle applies. Do whatcha gotta do to have fun with the game, but don't expect everything to just be hunkydory if #2 and #3 crash the party--unless crashing the party with them is something one enjoys, in which case the warning about opposition need not be reminded as one's likely well familiar with it already.

7: You need not agree with or enjoy it, but canon is indeed a contractual obligation--not necessarily one relating expressly to fans, but definitely one relating to what's official and true and what isn't. It remains a guideline only insofar as "here's what's true and not budging no matter what you say about it, so keep that in mind." Make up whatever you fancy...just remember that it's not automatically better than or able to seriously replace the canon just because you think it's better. You do you, but remember that at the end of the day it's only you that you be doin'.

8: No argument, and all should strive to ensure the inverse also remains true as much as possible.

Stay Woody, my friends.

« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 01:16:30 AM by Dracula9 »


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Offline Lumi Kløvstad

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2017, 01:46:36 AM »
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Here's the problem with all of that D9.

Bucky was dead as a doornail for 70 years of Marvel comics. Then suddenly he wasn't. Jason Todd was deader than a zombie for 25 years of DC comics. Then suddenly he wasn't. Whole plotlines were written and carried out. Their partners and teams mourned them, and the comics world moved on. Their corpses were retrieved and examined, and the canon pronouncement was solid.

Fiction is never permanent. It's fluid, subjective to the whims of both writer and fan. It's imagination land.

In both instances, it happened because fans vehemently disagreed with canon. Fans have input. A LOT OF IT, in point of fact, second only to the actual writers.

It's also worth noting that Hideo Goddamn Kojima is a major proponent of Death of the Author AND Broad Strokes (wherein only the basic gist of events, or certain elements of it, remain canon) and has freely applied both to all his own games, and has encouraged fans to do the same. I find this very sensible in a game developer. But enough about that.

Iga's a great guy. I never want to sound like I'm Iga-bashing because I strive to avoid such behavior, especially considering that he nearly single-handedly saved Castlevania from destruction more than once with his intense passion for the series. But, honorifics aside, implementing an official canon was easily the worst decision he's ever made in his career.

Prior to this, Castlevania was essentially a collection of folktales in video game form. Some of it might have been true, or all of it. Or none of it. As a story, Castlevania has always worked best with this arrangement. Shoehorning in a canon (with remarkable success, it must be said, given what that effort was up against) was a Herculean task on the level of deciding what should be present in the Bible. But like the Bible, what ended up surviving as the "official canon" in the end is only one version, however "official" that version is claimed to be.

To paraphrase one of my favorite characters: "It is difficult to express. Their conclusion is valid for them. Our conclusion is valid for us. Neither result is an error. An analogy. They say one is less than two. We say two is less than three."

Now, there are Christians who follow the Bible with the Gnostic Gospels that had been cast out by "official" councils fitted back in. This is, by definition, nowhere CLOSE to the "official" Bible, but these are still Christians. They just have a different version of the Biblical canon that is true for them without affecting the rest of the Christian population. Mormons, with their additional Holy Text, are much the same way. But here we are dealing with something that isn't world-bendingly important. We are dealing with something where we knew it was all made up before we even got involved in it, and only things which have happened truly deserve to be called history.

Now, given the fact that Castlevania has AT LEAST 3 different timelines (probably more if the gaiden games don't all take place in a cohesive timeline on their own), it shoots the idea of a "Single Universe Canon" down in flames. Castlevania has already proven that it's own canon is highly malleable, and many such as myself agree that it never truly needed one in the first place.

But my biggest point is this: the canon ultimately does not matter more than a quark's neutrino-sized dung unless you personally decide it does. Why? Because it IS fiction. It IS made up. It IS art. Art is MEANT to be interpreted and reinterpreted. In the realm of art, there is no true Objective Reality, only what you make of it.

So go on and quote Iga's version of the tale. It's a wonderful tale and I enjoy the vast majority of it. But objectively, here in the real world, his explanation of the painting he's made (and it is a pretty pretty painting) has no more weight than mine. If Shakespeare were to take a modern high school exam based on his own work, he'd flunk it. Hell, Asimov DID flunk tests based on his own work during his own lifetime, because interpretation is king, and no two are alike.

Konami can tie me to a chair and beat me with a truncheon to try and get me to accept their every word, but they shouldn't be surprised when I spit blood in their faces and whisper "No."

Because it's not a contract. Nobody signed anything. Contracts have to be agreed upon by both parties.

Unless you DID sign something, but that's between you and your lawyer.

[Edit] and here I am laughing at my own lawyer joke far more than I probably should be. C'est la vie.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 01:55:25 AM by The Bloody Aperture »
How not to be a dark lord: the answer to that is a terribly interesting answer that involves an almost Jedi-like adherence to keeping oneself under control and finding ways to be true to yourself in a way that doesn't encourage the worst parts of you to become dangerously exaggerated and instead feeds your better nature. Also, protip: don't fuck with Alchemy or strike up any deals with ancient Japanese Shinigami gods no matter how tempting the deal or how suavely dressed the Shinigami is.

Offline Dracula9

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2017, 02:02:47 AM »
0
You don't have to accept, condone, agree with, or even like the canon.

Your opinion doesn't retcon it. It's all true and official regardless of what you like and dislike.

That's what you're not getting, because you'd rather soapbox artistic philosophy than accept the reality of the word "canon."

I hate just about everything in Dawn. Its narrative is cliched as shit and its characters are fucking boring. Guess what? Dawn still happened and Dawn's still part of the timeline. Don't see me bitching like I'm better than Dawn's writers because I might be able to write something that's better from a storytelling perspective.

I stick to the canon because I like filling in gaps that improve the shitty parts of it while also fitting in nicely. That's how I seek to improve the canon--beating it at its own game. Accepting all of it openly has nothing to do with it. So quit assuming that shit.

Fiction's not permanent? Hate to break it to you, but until Rowling rewrites them all, the Harry Potter books remain the only "officially true" Harry Potter story, in addition to whatever little tidbits Rowling's declared on Twitter and spinoff titles (Dambledrooz being gay, for instance). The best HP fanfic in the world doesn't become anything greater than fanon because it's of better quality than the source. Fiction is written by real people using real writing styles and real literary methods. That means rules exist. Pretending the rules don't matter doesn't make your argument more correct. You mention comics bringing back dead characters? Guess what? Until those resurrections were published, those deaths were true and official and canon no matter what fans thought. Their input didn't alter the canon until publication. And now Jason Todd getting Lazarus'd is the canon truth until something new is published on the matter.

Fiction is fluid, but it's more dough than water.


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Offline zangetsu468

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2017, 03:50:26 AM »
0
You don't have to accept, condone, agree with, or even like the canon.

Your opinion doesn't retcon it. It's all true and official regardless of what you like and dislike.

That's what you're not getting, because you'd rather soapbox artistic philosophy than accept the reality of the word "canon."


^This^

All I'm basically hearing is that BA doesn't like the Castlevania canon. This is exactly the same situation as when people didn't want to accept that Chronicles essentially took the place of anything that was the canon version of Simon fighting Dracula before Castlevania II. Why? Because they couldn't bare the thought of SCVIV not being 'canon'.

Look, games, stories etc are retold all the time and things don't always add up. There are certain "assumptions" which at times, in more complex stories (Star Wars, FFVII, and so forth) where things are told and re-told differently, that's biound to happen sometimes. (Even in Superman Returns, Kal-El came back to an Earth ripe with cellular phones and LCD monitors.) Some things are for the sake of convenience, some are done in jest etc. However, there's still one main definitive set of events which 99% of the time, can not be debunked.

I have no issues with poetic licence to fill the gaps, to a certain degree. I have no problems with elaborate fan theories which make historically accurate and proven sense in order to explain away anomalies or abnormal plot elements. Hell, as a theorist I put that into my own timelines all the time, mainly Castlevania and Zelda. (I could and have thrown out a timeline explaining how the Sleeping Zelda from Zelda II is actually the first Zelda, but I have to accept that it's not canon #fanondorf) But here's the thing, these theories and timelines don't debunk the existing canon, which would otherwise comprise the creators' intention.

Trust me BA, I loved your theory about Samus in Other M being a clone of the original, it explains away the game's flaws "for the most part" and I think it would be worthy of the Pokemon-'Ash is actually still in a coma'-tier of worshipped and renowned fan theory. Second only to theories such as "Link is dead in Majora's Mask", which although disproven, in an extremely fucking cool theory which deserves props till the cows come home and then some, because it's sheer intelligence to whoever thought of that.

In terms of Castlevania, I would say that it's difficult to quantify the weight of the difference between the Japanese and English versions, particularly with games which involve a lot of elements to the main story's arc (of crucial importance) i.e. games such as LOI and AOS. There are some things which simply get washed out or neglected in translation. There will always be some elements explained differently where languages are involved and although this can be helped, it probably won't, because of the target audiences involved. I digress...

CV is a different series, because although it started as loosely connected games, Iga bound them together more indefinitely by introducing elements that we hadn't previously seen. Iga's canon doesn't include all of the games, and I've yet to see a linear CV timeline which does. However, Iga's timeline does give a clear intention to the games which it includes, and there were obvious ideas re-used from the games which were not included (COTM's dynamic between main character and support character are similar to HoD's, Legends was retconned but then OOE featured a female protagonist, etc.)

But, honorifics aside, implementing an official canon was easily the worst decision he's ever made in his career.

Prior to this, Castlevania was essentially a collection of folktales in video game form. Some of it might have been true, or all of it. Or none of it. As a story, Castlevania has always worked best with this arrangement.

How is it the worst choice he's ever made? That's just ridiculous and has to be coming from a place of pent up emotion.. Sorry you feel that way, but I don't agree with this. CV's story has never been the reason people play it, the gameplay and atmosphere (ost, eeriness and how the game feels) has always been the reason myself and people that I know have loved CV, have played it. The story is a bonus if you're into it and if not, it's there anyway, it give the game context, it gives characters life and development, it puts chronologically dated events into their current day's perspective and makes them relevant again. I will also say Iga did those things with a constrained budget pretty much every time and did a way better job than MS ever did.

I also don't exactly appreciate those personals toward Iga, the man is doing a lot for CV's memory by making BS and giving hardcore fans what they've been longing for. You know of his career, but you never stood in his shoes or did what he did, so just think that you may have done the same thing if it was your career. 

Konami can tie me to a chair and beat me with a truncheon to try and get me to accept their every word, but they shouldn't be surprised when I spit blood in their faces and whisper "No."

Dude, you sound like you're a teenager who is being told off and can't get their way here. I know Bloody is part of your name, but this "no canon" thing is as much if not more of a theatrical production of your own mind-scape than it is of you being 100% serious.

Konami don't give a shit whether you like the canon of a no-longer existing franchise, if they cared they'd be taking your money right now along with everyone else's in this forum.

The bottom line is that there's always been an intended canon at x,y, or z given point in time. Iga's canon was the most relevant canon and it was almost wrapped up. If the existing canon was that malleable, MS would have never made LOS a separate entity altogether, so not as to alter the existing fabric of the CV universe. Granted the story clashed with the old CV, but they could have retconned LOI and made LOS an origins story, yet they didn't. Hence, Iga's canon does stand. 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 04:09:00 AM by zangetsu468 »
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<[Judgement]>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

                              
                **<<<<<SuperCVIV>COTM<<<<<<<<+
                                 ^      l   v  ^    v                 ^
                                 ^      l   v  ^    +<<<<<<<BE
                                 ^      l   v  ^    v                 ^  
                                 ^      l   v  ^    v     BE>>> VK<**   
                                 ^      l   v  ^    v     ^          ^   
            +<<<<<Legends>HC>OOS>LOD>64        ^
            v                           l              ^                ^
            v                           l     BE>> * <<<BE     RE
            v                           l      ^               ^       ^
LOI>CVIII>COD>AR>BR>CVC>CVII>HOD>ROB>SOTN>OOE>BL>POR>AOS>DOS
                                                                          v
                                                                          BE>*
BE=Bad Ending
RE=Richter Ending

Offline aensland

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2017, 05:50:48 AM »
0
Prior to this, Castlevania was essentially a collection of folktales
No?
Castlevania, regardless of canon or not, was always the story of the good vs the evil, featuring a certain family , just because you saw the USA CV1 booklet it doesn't means Castlevania is what you think it is

Konami can tie me to a chair and beat me with a truncheon to try and get me to accept their every word, but they shouldn't be surprised when I spit blood in their faces and whisper "No."
Man, you're really dramatic, you should lay down the comic reading for a bit.
Regardless of if you accept the canon or not, the games will be always there, my second favourite game is Legends and it's not like it vanished in thin air just because Igarashi said that Sonia never existed.


Castlevania is the usual case of a consistent canon butchered by early localizations because "people won't get the wacky nips writing" and I think that discussing it it's probably the most healthy thing to do right now because what else can be done? cry about pachislots, call Lord of Shadows garbage? or worse yet, ask "what is your favourite castlevania" for the 1000th time?

Offline SecretWeapon

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2017, 07:41:02 AM »
0
You don't have to accept, condone, agree with, or even like the canon.

Your opinion doesn't retcon it. It's all true and official regardless of what you like and dislike.

That's what you're not getting, because you'd rather soapbox artistic philosophy than accept the reality of the word "canon."

This. No offense to the OP but what a stupid opinion. You can have your alternative facts if you want but they're yours only and unless you become head of the series or the current head sees them and decides to incorporate them, they will remain that way.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 09:43:12 AM by SecretWeapon »

Offline X

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2017, 10:44:49 AM »
0
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IGA might not be the be-all-end-all but frankly some of you fans need to let the hatred go. Y'all are just as bad as the fanatic IGA fanboys. Extremes are almost never beneficial, to say nothing of practical or effective.

I don't like/get/agree with it = "IGA is the worst person ever and he ruined muh favorite vidyagaem because he's involved with the stuff I don't like/get/agree with" is bullshit logic and anyone endorsing it should be fucking ashamed of themselves for the display of intellectual dishonesty.

Not saying you're enforcing it with this, but I've gotten some heavy-handed hints you've got at least part of one foot in that pond, and I also wanted to put it out there that those in that pond are self-righteous asshats. World ain't black-and-white, ya cranks, so quit treating shit like it is.

^
Speaking of 'letting the hatred go'.

IGA has made some good CV games. I enjoyed playing them, and still do. But his canon take of CV is something I personally don't recognize. There's just too much that falls through the floor by the end of the day. IGA did state in an interview that he glossed over some elements in order to tie in all the existing games' stories (not counting the ones he retconned). But by leaving out some elements without dealing with them instead, created just as much problems as it did fix. I personally don't recognize the LoI Dracula origin (Dracula didn't need one and that's how it should have stayed. The more mysterious the villain, the better), I'm not all for the concept of alchemy in creating the Vampirekiller (the mystical/holy whip of a divine power is more accurate to me), and games like DoS, Judgement, and CoD are irrelevant to me in terms of their story. Bloodstained on the other hand is something that IGA is creating from scratch without stepping on the continuity of another series' toes. He'll have far more success with Bloodstained's story then he ever did with CV's story. And I eagerly await to see bloodstained in action for myself. On another note; While IGA wasn't all that good in terms of telling many a CV story, he did what Mercurysteam could not--retain the Castlevania feel in all his games.
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Offline theplottwist

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2017, 01:18:18 PM »
+1

Here is the thing: You're valuing your opinion equal (if not higher) than a person who was paid to do research and to produce the plot of the game product that you consume -- not develop. This person has not only done extensive research, but has had contact with the previous people involved with the same product to know what their intentions were and where their stories were heading. This person lost nights of sleep and the company of his family just so you could come here and say "Nah, my headcanon is better. Fuck the canon, I'll play by my own rules."

You don't get to say "it's just fiction, chill" because it's not "just fiction". It's years of hard work, sweat, blood and tears. Castlevania has an impact on the world and on the people involved with developing it.

While you can play by your own rules, you'll be ostracized for it. Because the majority of us respect the writer enough to not think we are above the rules he set for the story he has created. This will lead to you discussing apples while all of us are discussing oranges, and all in the name of a sincerely bullshit statement that is as subjective as you claim IGA's "opinion on his work" to be:

"but in the end, a story is owned by the reader, not its author."

What use, then, do we have for authors? If we can just up and shit something we think is superior, then no use in even buying books at all, right? But that's not the reason we buy stories. We buy them to be surprised with every next chapter, not to "compete with the author".

Look, if I write that John could fly because his head could inflate when he blew his own thumb, you better believe that's exactly what I meant. Doesn't matter what you think, doesn't matter if you like it. It's a "like it or leave it" kinda deal -- either you suck it up that John could fly due to his inflatable head, or you'll have to write your own story with your own John that flew by some other means. It's not a competition. The moment you buy my story, you ARE signing a contract to let ME tell it to you -- you don't get to rewrite what I did and act as if it has as much intellectual value.

This thread reminds me of that episode from My Wife and Kids where Jay is so up her own ass that she believes to know better what the author thinks without doing any research- better yet, after doing "her own" research. When Michael contacts the author to know their intent and brings this info back to Jay's book club, she refuses to even acknowledge the correct spelling of the author's name, all because she values her own opinion WAY too high.

Episode, for reference:



This is called "respect". You respect the writer and his work enough to not try and pretend you're better than them at their own creation based on their own thoughts. On their own creation, yes, they are god. The entire plot of a story revolves around WHAT THE AUTHOR THINKS AND WANTS TO TRANSMIT. This is the whole reason why you can't bend it to your whim -- the story breaks.

Sure, you have works that are meant to be interpreted and open ended. Castlevania is not such a work, and I don't think I should quote manuals to tell you that. Castlevania is not a philosophical essay nor commentary in subjectivity. You may argue here that it is commentary on subjectivity because Dracula thinks the powerful define justice, but you'd be missing the story is telling you that this is WRONG and Dracula is incorrect on his assumption.

I wonder what would happen if IGA sat down one day and thought exactly like you do -- screw the previous work, now Belmonts will be ducks disguised as humans. And Dracula's "kill all humans" schtick will just be slang for "I really love tomato juice". Not only that, but decided that this should be canon ALONG WITH the previously established work.

Ask yourself what would happen if he thought that his opinion was just as high -- if not higher -- than the statements of the previous developers on Castlevania, instead of respecting and BUILDING UPON their work, and subsequently earning the right to have his opinion be as high than the other authors'.

LoS may have been mostly shit. But I have infinite respect for Alvarez in that he chose to do his own story -- going as far as to claim it doesn't belong on any canon but his -- instead of crapping up something on the canon just because "he didn't like it" or because "it didn't make sense to him".

TL;DR: I think your "the story is owned by the reader" act misinterprets the meaning of the line and is incredibly disrespectful to the writer. I am a writer myself, and if some fan of mine one day comes spouting this kinda nonsense to me after reading something I DID NOT meant to be "open ended", spent sleepless nights crafting it, years pondering specific plot points and innumerable hours away from my loved ones to build it, I'll sucker punch their neck so hard that their esophagus will turn into a snorkel.

You tried this stunt before. It didn't work. Now you have framed it with long words, funny references and quote mining, and it still doesn't work. It doesn't work because it wants to divide a fractured fanbase even more.

Also, some things I should mention:

"Despite the theory's title, Barthes never says that the author's own interpretation is completely unimportant—just that it is only one of many possible interpretations. This also does not necessarily mean that every interpretation is equally valid; an interpretation that is based on a flawed, incomplete, and confused reading of the text will always be flawed, incomplete, and confused regardless of how much Barthes' essay is raised in protest."

"How, for example, could a general criticize an underling for getting something absurd out of a set of instructions he or she may have given them? "Sir/ma'am, what makes you think you know what the orders meant just because you wrote them?"

The vibe I get from your post is "I did no research but I also want to be right, here is some essay proving it!!!!!"
« Last Edit: February 13, 2017, 02:51:55 PM by theplottwist »
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Offline AlexCalvo

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2017, 01:58:40 PM »
0
Castlevania has been a game that focused on it's own continuing history since the beginning. And very early on a continuing timeline became one of its more attractive story elements.  It has always been about the continuation of a timeline, and what Iga did was 100% the natural progression of this.  He simply took what was already the idea of how the games related to each other and solidified it into something a little more concrete and consistant.  It seems like you just really like the idea of very roughly connected folk tales, I recommend the Zelda series.
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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2017, 02:34:07 PM »
0
I find it disappointing that fans feel the need to constantly castrate what IGA did with the series, here is a guy who obviously has A LOT of passion for CV as a whole which is far more than I can say about any other game director/producer I have seen in the industry, most are mostly Business>>>>>>>>passion when it comes to making video games, IGA on the other hand was someone who not only loved the series but also made it a point to try to actually resonate with the fans as a whole. IGA only tried to do the best with what was given to him by Konami, he tried his best to make the continuity and storyline of Castlevania as coherent and believable as possible which is already not a easy task as is but he still managed to pull it off the best he could and I personally liked it.

In short I feel IGA gets far to much flake from certain fans, someone as passionate as him that cares about the fandom should not have his OFFICIAL CANON work be ignored simply because some fan feels its not up to snuff within their own personal headcanon because after all who are we as consumers to think we know more than the official source of Castlevania in Konami/Igarashi?


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Offline Lumi Kløvstad

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2017, 03:03:59 PM »
0
Things here are a little more heated than was my goal, but I suppose I invited that with how sternly I wrote things.

But here's my deal. I'm a storyteller myself. A writer. I write stories to tell them. What is official is less interesting to me in the face of "what tells the best story"? This is admittedly a very abstract way of looking at things. I compare what I have been given to everything I have come to understand, and use what I know to better explain the things I don't. Now fortunately, this is mostly in little matters unconnected to plotlines.

My issues with Castlevania's canon have pretty much always been boiled down to "they could be telling this in a much more impactful/meaningful fashion". Iga is, and I say it for the umpteenth time, a fantastic storyteller when he's left to do his own thing and let his artistic side take over and work in concert with the his team's. Fortunately, the vast majority of his games fall under this category. Even under all the schlock anime cliches, Nanobreaker had excellent running themes and a story that's worth telling. This is why Dawn (and to a lesser extent, Portrait) infuriates me so much as a guy who writes this sort of stuff himself. There's not a line of Dawn where I feel it is anything other than a forced contractual obligation that Iga honestly had no desire to actually do. The whole thing reeks of "there were a million other Castlevania games I could have been making but Konami made me do this one instead". This is also why the game's explanations seem to fly in the face of all established series logic. It is hands down the worst writing of Iga's tenure, but I don't blame him. I blame Konami's lawyers. But as a guy who is always looking for what tells the best story, Dawn singularly stands out as a story that shouldn't have been told in the first place.

Portrait might have been this, but the second half of the game saves it from the scrappy heap and tells a great story about legacy and family ties. I do think the World War II setting was wasted, but that's my only lasting complaint. What this says to me is that unlike with Dawn, Iga saw that obligation coming in advance, and took measures to prepare for it, and by Order of Ecclesia, he was back in the saddle and at his best again. True, it wound up being effectively his narrative finale for the series chronology, but damn it was a fine note to end on.

It's clear that y'all think I'm wrong on this. Maybe I should put more stock in canon (there's that word again). But as long as there's a story to be told better, I can't. I've tried and I just can't. To me, the argument is essentially this: holding yourself as beholden to whatever is (currently) canon is like arguing numbers, which presents a finite amount of everything present. It is inherently limited. Arguing the merits of the actual storytelling itself, rather than what the story fits into, is like discussing the beauty of an art gallery. There is no end of perspectives and new understandings. A whole lot more "well shoot, I never thought of it that way" instead of "well actually the director's sister's cousin's boyfriend said THIS so it clearly means that". I'd rather encourage the community to seek "I never thought of it that way" instead of "WELL ACTUALLY...!" because it promotes better longevity and, despite passionate negative feelings in the short term, better health of the fan community as a whole. Otherwise we trap ourselves into a grey world of "what's your favorite" threads and "let's bash Lords of Shadow for the millionth time".

And Dawn's story will forever be a black stain on the series.

But that's okay. I don't blame Koji Igarashi-sensei.

And hey.

At least it's not EROTIC VIOLENCE.

Assume nothing, question everything.
The answers you get when you do can surprise you.

The end.... or is it?
How not to be a dark lord: the answer to that is a terribly interesting answer that involves an almost Jedi-like adherence to keeping oneself under control and finding ways to be true to yourself in a way that doesn't encourage the worst parts of you to become dangerously exaggerated and instead feeds your better nature. Also, protip: don't fuck with Alchemy or strike up any deals with ancient Japanese Shinigami gods no matter how tempting the deal or how suavely dressed the Shinigami is.

Offline theplottwist

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2017, 03:23:43 PM »
0
This is also why the game's explanations seem to fly in the face of all established series logic.

Help me here: What do you think, on Dawn of Sorrow, that flies in the face of all established series logic?

Help me understand the issue.

I dislike DoS' style of narrative and animu themes, but I don't see where are the contradictions. Let's work them over and discover what the issue is, objectivelly speaking.
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Offline SecretWeapon

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2017, 03:26:49 PM »
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My issues with Castlevania's canon have pretty much always been boiled down to "they could be telling this in a much more impactful/meaningful fashion"

Tough luck CV isnt your series, it's Konami's. Go find something else or write something yourself author. And probably theplottwist headcanon version of events is better than yours anyway.

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Re: The Death of Iga (he's not actually dead, guys), and Fanon Discontinuity
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2017, 03:27:02 PM »
0
Honestly, I think it's fine if you want to ignore certain parts of canon... as long as you clearly acknowledge and mark it as your personal fanon. Personally, what's important for me is the clear distinction between canon and fanon so that the lines don't get blurred and fanon gets mistaken for canon (looking at you, Touhou fans).
It is precisely because it never cared, that people do care.  It's something which it's lacking, because that which it has, it has lackluster of.
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