End to the story

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Mink
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Re: End to the story

#16 Post by Mink » Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:07 pm

Let me come back so that I may also state: just because you *can* kill off a character doesn't mean you *should*. I mean, maybe I'm repeating myself here, since I already mentioned Alice is Dead, but when I see someone say, 'I don't like good endings' (I'm not talking about anyone here in particular, mind you) I immediately think of killing off main characters just because you can, and not because it makes sense within the context and is done in a good way. For example:
the ending of Wolf's Rain. Everybody dies. Only not. Or something.
Seriously, WTF was with that?

A better way a protagonist is killed off to me is
Spike in Cowboy Bebop. Although it's meant to be sort of ambiguous as to whether he really died or not.
Anyway, my point is killing off a character in a contrived way is just as bad as letting them live in a contrived way. Also, if the entire story is "OMG DARK ANGST" in addition to the main character dying, I'm probably going to get Darkness Induced Audience Apathy. Or if you don't want to look that up on TvTropes (don't, you won't come back for days): I'll just end up getting bored and not caring.

Crusher: I dunno, you could always go back and undo their marriage with a deal with the devil. /shot

Free virtual cookie to anyone who gets that.
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Re: End to the story

#17 Post by Crusher » Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:28 pm

I think the ultimate ending of Wolf's Rain was one of the stronger sides of the anime. Definitely the best moments after the intro.
Bad doesn't necessarily mean to kill someone. That's what I mean with the diversity you have in bad/neutral endings.
But if I had to choose between the dying of the MC or a good end, I'd always prefer the typical kill. Let's take your Cowboy Bebop for example. The last episode was a masterpiece in my opinion. I can't think of any good ending that I kept in my mind that well. At least we agree on that one :D.
But I guess I'm a bit strange when it comes to that. I always hear people complaining when anything doesn't have a good ending.

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Re: End to the story

#18 Post by Mink » Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:47 pm

I think all of this mainly depends on how it was written. It's not that I'm against bad endings or killing off characters, but nowadays it seems like it's starting to become absurdly common to kill off characters just to be shocking or just for the sake of killing off characters. I'm looking at YOU, comic book industry. And Joss Whedon.

Or, how about this: I'm for 'good' endings, in the sense they're well-written and are a good conclusion to the story.

And I will maintain that the ending of Wolf's Rain was a failed attempt at being symbolic and artsy. Symbolic of what, I have no idea. I'm not putting any more thought into that than I have to. 8| (We may have to agree to disagree here)
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Re: End to the story

#19 Post by Marcelo_Orlando » Tue Oct 11, 2011 1:12 pm

The thing about Wolf's is, it had the "hopeless" theme going from the beginning. Anyone remember the ending theme? So so sad. From what I saw it looked to me like they were just chasing shadows to start so...yea, no the best way to end to that.

Now Cowboy bebop is the kind of dark/ sad ending that I like. It has a purpose and meaning behind it, and although the ending could have been very different, it's easy to understand why it wasn't.

For a VN, I think it might work well to have one ending where the protagonist dies but as one of the good endings. But I'm sure most would play it and think that they got the bad ending, but it could be considered a good ending if they saved someone right?
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Re: End to the story

#20 Post by Der Tor » Tue Oct 11, 2011 1:30 pm

In the Yandere Visual Novel i am working on now, the protagonist dieing is the only real good ending... even though he is the good guy. Of course i can't tell you why him dieing is a good thing as that would be a MAJOR spoiler for my story... in my story the good ending (him dieing) is the first thing you obtain... and of course naturally you will think you have gotten a bad end so you will keep playing... only to discover that things are not what they appear to be (or to be more precise - things are EXACTLY what they appear to be but you won't realize that cause you will think things are like they are in other Visual Novels). So you go through the rest of the game trying hard to get the good end only to discover at the very end and after having put up a lot of effort that the good end you obtained was the worst end and the first bad end was actually the good end.
(i wanted the reader to truly experience what it feels like to loose ones mind :twisted: )
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Re: End to the story

#21 Post by J. Datie » Tue Oct 11, 2011 1:42 pm

Mink wrote:Let me come back so that I may also state: just because you *can* kill off a character doesn't mean you *should*.
Quick! Everyone read this sentence again! To expand on this, the ending, along with the beginning and middle, should be written for the sake of the story, not to surprise the audience. If you're going to kill the protagonist, do it because it's how the story should end, not because it's "unexpected" or "somehow deep" or something. Basically, if you were to suddenly discover that the ending to your story was the typical "safe" Hollywood ending, and your first thought is to rewrite it to be completely different, then you probably didn't have an ending in the first place. It was probably just a cheap novelty.
Not that I hate unexpected things. New and unexplored premises are good. Poorly thought out, last minute twist endings are not.

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Re: End to the story

#22 Post by Mink » Tue Oct 11, 2011 1:48 pm

Marcelo_Orlando wrote:The thing about Wolf's is, it had the "hopeless" theme going from the beginning. Anyone remember the ending theme? So so sad. From what I saw it looked to me like they were just chasing shadows to start so...yea, no the best way to end to that.
My issue is more with the fact
it was like, "And the everyone died." Okay, fine. I could deal with that. But then was like, "No, they're alive and human!"
...WHY?! No, seriously. I haven't watched in a while, so if someone gets it, PM and explain it to me. Otherwise, it was just kind of...stupid to me, honestly. Like trying to have your cake and eat it too.
Now Cowboy bebop is the kind of dark/ sad ending that I like. It has a purpose and meaning behind it, and although the ending could have been very different, it's easy to understand why it wasn't.
Yeah, to me it's a rare example of how to do that sort of ending RIGHT. Is it sad? Yeah. But it wasn't a bad conclusion to the series.
For a VN, I think it might work well to have one ending where the protagonist dies but as one of the good endings. But I'm sure most would play it and think that they got the bad ending, but it could be considered a good ending if they saved someone right?
To me it's fine, so long as they die for an actual (good/logical, mind you) reason.
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Re: End to the story

#23 Post by Marcelo_Orlando » Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:24 am

Thanks for the advice guys, I'll keep it all in mind.
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Re: End to the story

#24 Post by mapletaffy » Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:41 am

For me, it's okay as long as it is well written~ because some bittersweet endings are way "too bitter" to the point that I can't help my self to feel really sad for days. .XD
As long as the main character fulfilled his goals and the all the mysteries of the story is answered, then he can die~~~ (XD)

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Re: End to the story

#25 Post by GeneDNC » Wed Oct 12, 2011 6:05 am

(Some of my thoughts on this thread are mixing with thoughts on the others like it, so just bear with me.)

Like a lot of others have been saying, above all I like a well written, logical end. Happy or sad or bittersweet, it HAS to make sense within the context of the story and the choices being made if it's a VN. I generally like happy ends though, but if it's a VN I don't see any reason to not have both happy and sad ends. I mean, that's the beauty of VNs, exploring all the "what ifs".

To those that think happy ends are boring, I'll see your Cowboy Bebop (which does have a great ending) and raise you Fullmetal Alchemist manga/Brotherhood. I think this is an example of a happy ending done well (although it is a bit bittersweet too); the characters have earned their happy ending and I think there's a sense of continuing adventure and journeys that we just don't get to see.
Yes I realise the main characters in FMA survive so it's a bit off topic.
Anyway, if you want to kill off your MC at the end, make sure their death has some meaning, which also doesn't always have to = a heroic sacrifice. Their death could spur on the rest of their companions to win the battle for example. Or whatever lead to their death could serve as a lesson for others. Heroic sacrifices can also be overdone or done well, just like everything else.

Needless to say though, everyone has different preferences for endings they like and not everyone is going to like what you write, so just go for it and see what happens.

EDIT:
Mink wrote:Crusher: I dunno, you could always go back and undo their marriage with a deal with the devil. /shot
Free cookie for me, Mephisto! Also, that was beyond lame, please no one retcon a character's years of marriage just because you don't like it.
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Re: End to the story

#26 Post by Crusher » Wed Oct 12, 2011 6:20 am

GeneDNC wrote: Anyway, if you want to kill off your MC at the end, make sure their death has some meaning, which also doesn't always have to = a heroic sacrifice. Their death could spur on the rest of their companions to win the battle for example. Or whatever lead to their death could serve as a lesson for others. Heroic sacrifices can also be overdone or done well, just like everything else.
Yeah, that's true. Death Note would be an example for that. Very fitting in my opinion.

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Re: End to the story

#27 Post by Marcelo_Orlando » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:59 pm

Oh very true, Death Note is a great example....
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