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  1. So I've noticed a couple of lore threads pop up recently, and although I'm more accustomed to talking about game play, I thought I'd go out of my comfort zone to see what I could find. Needless to say, I descended into lunacy trying to connect the dots in order to answer a bunch of lingering questions about the game's lore and meaning, but I think I've found enough information to at least point people in the right direction. To help readers who don't want a whole science-class lecture, I'll divide up this post into 3 sections: real-world info dumps, in-game info dumps, and analysis. Feel free to skip whatever sections/subsections that don't interest you. Section 1: Real-World Information The Moon as a Celestial Object For anyone who isn't familiar with the lunar cycle, the reason why you see different phases of the moon is because of the moon's position relative to the sun and the earth that allows the moon to reflect sunlight back to Earth; the different positions you see below are the reason why you only see varying parts of this reflected sunlight, hence the appearance of different moon shapes. This may seem simple, but when we're talking about eclipses (i.e. lunar and solar eclipses), it gets a bit complicated because the plane of the earth's revolution around the sun is NOT the same as the plane of the moon's revolution around the earth; it's actually tilted by a few degrees. From the earth's perspective, this is what the revolution of the sun and moon actually looks like. Only when the moon and the sun are on the same plane (at the nodes) will we get an eclipse. If the moon is between the earth and sun on the same plane, we get a solar eclipse. If the earth is between the moon and sun on the same plane, we get a lunar eclipse (i.e. a full moon that looks red). Fun fact: even though the moon is in the earth's shadow in a lunar eclipse, the reason why the moon is not only bright but red is because of refraction (i.e. when the space that light travels through changes like from vacuum to air, the light's direction is affected) and a phenomenon called Rayleigh scattering (basically, the oscillating electric field of light [that's why we call them EM waves] causes gas molecules on earth to oscillate at the same frequency and therefore "scatter" photons of the same frequency everywhere; the kicker here though is that high-frequency light like blue light gets scattered more than low-frequency light like red light). The sky (AKA gas molecules in the atmosphere) is blue because blue light gets scattered more than red light, but the lunar eclipse is red because red light gets scattered less and reaches the moon more than blue light. Another thing to note is that the same half of the moon will always face the earth. This is caused by tidal locking; basically, the gravitational gradient (a not-uniform gravitation field) generated by the earth pulls on the bulges of an oval moon which slows down the moon's rotation to the point where the moon's revolution is synchronized with the moon's rotation, resulting in the same moon hemisphere pointing towards Earth 24/7. As a result, the opposite hemisphere will never point towards Earth and never be visible unless you actually fly to the moon yourself. This is where Mulan's "mysterious as the dark side of the moon" line comes from. Since I brought up the term, I might as well elaborate. Umbra is a Latin word that means "shadow"; in English, it specifically refers to the darkest region of the shadow. Umbra is commonly used in an astronomy context, referring to the deepest region of a shadow created by celestial objects (i.e. the same region that causes eclipses). Lycanthropy Lycanthropy is basically a "disease" that causes someone to transform into another animal, most commonly a werewolf. Lycanthropy has a rich and complicated history over in Europe full of variations, but more contemporary works of fiction (i.e. mid 1900s) portray lycanthropy as a hereditary condition that's instigated specifically by a full moon; on top of that, modern werewolves are weak to silver. Another thing worth mentioning is that lycanthropy is a common motif in Canadian folklore. Unlike contemporary portrayals of lycanthropy, lycanthropy in Canadian folklore involves people who transform every night - full moon or not - in which "most transformed into wolves, but others were doomed to a fate a little less cool: turning into dogs, cats, owls, cows, oxen… there were even some werepigs." Last thing to note is that even though werewolves have been historically portrayed as violent and demonic creatures, contemporary fiction sometimes portrays them sympathetically, whether as a symbol of spirituality and nature or a metaphor for discriminated minorities. Gestalt Gestalt is a "collection of physical, biological, psychological or symbolic elements that creates a whole, unified concept or pattern which is other than the sum of its parts, due to the relationships between the parts". This term is often used to reference Gestalt psychology, which is a branch of psychology focusing on people's perception of "the whole" over "the sum of its parts". Artistic Inspirations Don't Starve has multiple sources of influence, from Minecraft to Tim Burton. From a literary standpoint, however, Don't Starve was mainly influenced by Edward Gorey and H.P. Lovecraft. Gorey is a surrealistic artist with a morbid Victorian-era style who writes gothic "literary nonsense", a genre of literature that tries to break conventional logic and language with a blend of common sense and things that don't make sense. Alice in Wonderland is an example of nonsense literature. Lovecraft writes horror fiction; he's the guy responsible for "Lovecraftian horror". This is the type of psychological horror that puts gore and shock value on the back burner in favor of inherited sins, human existential crises with respect to a much larger universe, and the insanity that comes with pursuing forbidden knowledge that can't be understood. If some of these themes sound familiar to you, you've probably watched a few sci-fi cartoons, and - to be fair - you probably have a high IQ. Section 2: In-Game Information The Aporkalypse Hamlet is a gold mine of information, especially when it comes to figuring out what the moon is capable of. For starters, look no further than the Aporkalypse and the Aporkalypse Calendar, which spells out what the ancient pig civilization believes to be how the celestial objects move. While I don't have Hamlet myself, I was able to find a few pictures of what the calendar looks like during the Aporkalypse. In both cases, the entire calendar - tellurion and rings included - stop moving; the symbols and celestial bodies glow red; and the celestial bodies themselves are always arranged in the order you see above. Another thing to note regarding the aporkalypse is the appearance of a red moon and the presence of a shadow creature called the Ancient Herald. Not only is the arrival of a shadow creature noteworthy in itself, but the Ancient Herald has an unusual crescent-shaped crown of sorts that resembles the bottom 2 crescent symbols found on the aporkalypse calendar and the ancient gateway in the murals. The Aporkalypse Calendar also contains a gate-shaped symbol at the top and a triangle right underneath. Looking in-game for appearances of triangles, I could only find 3 other instances: Finally, within the same section of the ruins containing the Aporkalypse Calendar, there's a corrupt version of the Wishing Well called the Ends Well that spits out either purple gems or nightmare creatures. The Cursed There are quite a few characters in Don't Starve that have the lycanthropy curse. Let's start with Wilba. Wilba is the daughter of Queen Malfalfa and an unnamed father who has the werepig curse. She has a silver necklace given to her by her father that prevents her from transforming into a werepig when worn, and like everyone who has the curse, she will transform when eating monster meat or being exposed to the full moon. The pig king is the ruler of a more tribal population of pigs than their Hamlet counterparts. Some noteworthy facts include the pig king and his pig followers originating from a "distant land" and the fact that the pig king is adorned with some accessories on his hat. Unlike his followers, the pig king never transforms during a full moon. Additionally, one of the topiaries in the pig city resembles the pig king. Woodie is a Canadian lumberjack who also has the curse, but unlike Wilba or the pigs, he has 3 forms, each of which he can instigate at will using idols made of monster meat. That being said, the animated short portrays a Woodie that has complete control of his curse, being able to transform into all 3 at will without idols and even maintaining his human form during a full moon. The RoG pigs are followers of the pig king; every single one of them have the curse. These pigs do not transform unless they eat 4 monster meat or they're exposed specifically to the light of the full moon. The Moon in DST Ever since the Return of Them update, the moon has displayed a crack for 1/2, 3/4, and full moons, which is obviously a reference to the piece of the moon that fell from the sky and makes up the lunar island in DST. A thing to note here is that the crack is located in a different spot in every lunar phase, including the waxing vs waning phases. Needless to say, the lunar island - which originated from the moon at the location of the crack - has some interesting information. Every organic material on the lunar island is a mutated version of its respective plant/animal, from pengulls to carrots. The Steeped Lunar Essence from the Hallowed Nights event actually spells out exactly what each mutated thing on the lunar island originally was. Another major thing to note here is the celestial fissures. Celestial fissures are only found on the moon-turf portions of the island, and they emit light and an enlightenment aura at a magnitude depending on how close the moon is to being full; a new moon will result in nothing from the fissures while a full moon will result in maximum enlightenment and light. Wickerbottom's quotes for these fissures are likewise worth pointing out. The Ancients I feel like the lore revolving around the Ancients has been covered to death by Youtuber Zeklo, with a video summary of some of his content recently released by another Youtuber James Bucket. Instead of rehashing their points, I'll link their videos on the topic in the sources section (right under the nightmare throne link). Some things I want to add to these videos are: 1) Metheus (i.e. not Prometheus or Epimetheus) is the name of the character the Fuelweaver mentions, and she is female according to a Klei live stream 2) The Fuelweaver himself is confirmed male in both a live stream and the description for A New Reign 3) Maxwell is the first ever person to sit on the nightmare throne according to another live stream, meaning that the Ancient who is now the Fuelweaver has never sat on the throne The civilization aside, there are some interesting details about the gateway worth observing. Section 3: Analysis and Discussion The Pigs It's very likely that the pig king is Wilba's father as evident in the pig king's vignette backstory, the pig king's topiary image in Hamlet, the fact that Wilba has the curse when no other Hamlet pig does, and the fact that all of the pig king's followers do have the curse. This explains a couple of things like why the pig king followers have electricity in their houses and why werepig imagery shows up in the Hamlet cities. An argument I've seen against this claim is the fact that the pig king doesn't transform during the full moon, so he can't be Wilba's father. However, it's established through Wilba that a silver accessory will prevent transformations from happening at the cost of sanity during moments when the transformation would have happened. Wouldn't you know it; the pig king happens to have ring accessories on the horns of his hat that appear to be a mixture of gold and silver, and it's also established that "Wilba's father" knows this because Wilba's silver necklace came from him in the first place. This also explains why there are obelisks next to him in every world; sanity affects the appearance of Mr. Skitts who raises/lowers the obelisks based on that sanity level. Basically, it makes sense for the pig king to essentially have a sanity test lying around. This whole theory on the pig king's origins cements the connection between werepigism and the ancient pig civilization, suggesting that the curse that plagues today's RoG pigs came from a subpopulation of the ancient pigs over in Hamlet. Additionally, the presence of a device that can physically prevent a lunar eclipse on top of the nightmare-fueled wishing well indicates that some of the ancient pigs tampered with magic. Unlike the Ancients, the ancient pig civilization did not completely fall as evident in the existence of modern pigs, which suggests the possibility that the werepig curse came about from meddling in said magic without being fully consumed by the forbidden knowledge. This explains why the ancient pigs have convoluted traps and pathways preventing explorers from finding these magical relics in the first place, and it also explains why some pigs have the curse while others don't. Woodie Honestly, this guy is an anomaly. It's extremely hard for me to make sense of Woodie's situation given the information we currently have. We know from the Winona short that Woodie's from Earth like most of the other survivors, and it's very likely that Woodie's curse is the same one affecting the pigs given the fact that both curses are triggered by monster meat and a full moon. However, I couldn't find anything within the game at all that connects Woodie to the pig civilization, and on top of this, Woodie's animated short completely contradicts the Woodie we know in DST. The only thing I could find was an extremely loose folklore connection in which some Canadian lycanthropes were werepigs. What I find interesting though is that the animated short seems like it's purposefully going out of its way to contradict DST Woodie. On top of the fact that he clearly isn't transforming with monster meat or monster-meat idols, Klei made the artistic choice of emphasizing the fact that Woodie isn't transformed on a full moon at the end of the video instead of literally any other time of the day or any other lunar phase, even though Woodie's full-moon transformation has been a noticeable part of the character since the beginning. Maybe this short is supposed to be a light-hearted, non-canon showcase where Klei's animators get to let loose and have some Canadian fun; who knows? The Ancients It's pretty obvious at this point that the tragic tale of the Ancients is supposed to mirror Maxwell and Charlie's tragic backstory. In both cases, you have a male character who's obsessed with dark magic and a female associate who is skeptical of that dark magic. Both male characters create their own downfall through dark-magic overuse, and both female characters end up corrupted in some way by the consequences of the male characters' actions. Thematics aside though, it's worth noting that the Ancient Herald very likely is one of the Ancients; if the Herald's name and appearance doesn't convince you, Wagstaff's quote hopefully should. The symbol on the herald's head that appears on the Ancient Gateway in the murals also cements this connection. Here's the kicker though; the same symbol that links the Herald with the Ancient Gateway is also present on the Aporkalypse Calendar (i.e. a device that is clearly attuned to the moon), and for some reason, there's 2 of them. So to simplify what I'm trying to get at, we have a shadow creature resembling an Ancient who's directly connected to the moon and symbolically connected to the Ancient Gateway and calendar. Transitively, this means that the gateway and moon are also connected. If this network of connections isn't enough to convince you that the gateway and moon are connected, the symbols on the calendar almost explicitly spell this out. The calendar's top symbol is an obvious reference to the gateway itself; the triangle in the middle is a linking symbol (i.e. the same linking symbol that mentally links you to dark-magic knowledge and physically links you to a different point in space); and the two crescent symbols at the bottom clearly represent the moon. The Nature of the Moon So first off, it's pretty clear that the thing that instigates the Aporkalypse is a lunar eclipse. The blood moon is a dead giveaway, but if you're not convinced, when the calendar symbols align to signify the beginning of the Aporkalypse, the 3 celestial bodies (the ones rotating around the calendar's tellurion) line up in the order of sun, planet, and moon; this alignment is exactly how lunar eclipses occur in real life. With regard to the moon phases, I don't think that Wickerbottom's assessment is completely accurate. Her quote clearly implies that the light from the moon comes from these fissures. Here's the thing; EVERY single fissure on the lunar island illuminates the same amount of light relative to each other no matter the moon phase. If moonlight were exclusively coming from these fissures, we would NOT be seeing these moon phases; instead, we would be seeing different intensities of full moons every night. I'd argue that Wickerbottom's assessment isn't completely inaccurate though because the intensity of the fissures - particularly the enlightenment aura - is at its maximum during a full moon, which explains why it's specifically the light of a full moon that causes strange things like wereform transformations and glowing pig/merm heads. What I'm trying to say here is that it seems like "moonlight" is a mixture of reflected sunlight and lunar essence, and both seem to affect the properties of that moonlight. This theory also explains why lunar eclipses behave differently from normal full moons even though lunar eclipses are full moons, and it also explains why flowers turn into evil flowers on a full moon (in single player) even though they turn into lune trees on the lunar island. Some have suggested that the moon and shadows are fighting each other, with lunar magic being the opposite of dark magic (i.e. light vs dark). The evidence I've presented seems to paint a much different picture; if anything, it seems like the two forces are either in league with each other or are two sides of the same coin (i.e. two sides of the same moon). I'm strongly leaning towards the latter. The fact that the moon is capable of spawning a powerful shadow creature and has the ability to instigate an apocalyptic event is a red flag (no pun intended) that not only shows that lunar magic has some alignment with dark magic, but indicates that the moon (or whatever being controls lunar magic) is an antagonistic force. This alignment is further supported by the fact that full moons affect pig/merm heads by making them glow, and when you hammer these structures down, you get nightmare fuel (i.e. the moon is capable of creating the very thing that fuels dark magic). This "duality" interpretation of the moon also explains a couple of other things like the ancient gateway and Charlie's scene at the end of the Forge trailer. First of all, notice how the mural portrays both a white and black aura emanating from the same gateway, which matches up with the mixture of white and black we see from the gateway in the Forge trailer. Secondly, notice the scene at the end of the same trailer where Charlie specifically absorbs this white essence from the portal. Knowing that "Charlie's machinations have come to a head as she turns her attention towards the skies - and the mysterious entity that awaits there" (official Return of Them description), it seems safe to assume that this white essence is lunar magic. On top of all this, the real-life "dark side of the moon" looks significantly different from the side that always points towards Earth. To put it as simply as I can, this moon duality theory explains Charlie's motives in the Forge trailer, the activated gateway's physical appearance in the mural, the connection between the gateway and the moon, the two crescent symbols on the Aporkalypse calendar, and the moon's ability to create shadow creatures while paralleling the duality of our real-life moon's light and dark hemispheres. I'm not going to go as far as to say that the moon is "villainous" though because there is a pattern to lunar magic's effects on organic life. Simply put: plants with little to no sentience like saplings, carrots, dragonfruits, and butterflies (these butterflies don't seem to be animals as evident in the fact that you can plant them to literally make a flower, the fact that they can drop butter when you kill them, and the fact that Wurt is able to eat them as a vegetarian) either become sentient altogether (e.g. saladmanders and carrats) or take on an "improved" lunar form. Sentient animals, on the other hand, become completely corrupt and disfigured, whether it's hounds, pengulls, or spiders. This lunar magic pattern is notably consistent with the lunar gem that created Wormwood in the Lunar Roots trailer. Lunar magic doesn't seem to be "evil" as much as a metaphor for forbidden knowledge that corrupts those who try to understand it. With that being said, we know nothing about the dark side of the Don't Starve moon. Keep in mind that the lunar island came from one specific side of the moon; we can't assume the lunar island represents the entire moon. The Theme of Don't Starve Assuming I haven't butchered anything, if you take a step back to look at all of this from a literary standpoint, it actually paints a cohesively poetic picture of what this whole franchise is all about. People tend to think of starvation in terms of malnutrition, but there's more than one way to starve; you can be "starving for knowledge" for example. Looking at all of the events in the lore that have unfolded, this Lovecraftian interpretation of starvation seems to be what Klei is going for. Maxwell started off literally starving, but after finding the codex umbra and achieving the fame and fortune he always wanted, his hubris and curiosity never went away; his downfall came from satiating his obsession by escalating his dark magic to the point of no return. The ancients' extinction via overuse of nightmare fuel almost exactly mirrors Maxwell's fall. Wilson, Winona, and Wagstaff were likewise lured into the Constant in their pursuit of knowledge. Even the ending to the original Don't Starve game is Lovecraftian in the sense that the two knowledge-hungry characters both meet a terrible demise. The reason why I bring this up is because it seems like Klei is setting up another forbidden-knowledge conflict; this time, instead of Maxwell or the Codex coercing our heroes into a trap, it's the moon's promise of enlightenment. For evidence, look no further than the Gestalts and the Celestial Altar whose character quotes imply that the moon is tempting them with knowledge (i.e. forbidden knowledge). Lingering Questions for the Future Aside from the fact that I haven't fully answered my own questions, there are a lot of lingering questions about the world and story. Who's the "gatekeeper" mentioned in the Forge and Gorge? Why are the Forge inhabitants hostile to the gatekeeper while the Gorge inhabitants aren't? What is the Gnaw? How did Maxwell's niece of all people find her way into the Constant, and why is her twin dead? Who exactly is Jack Carter, and how is he relevant to the story other than being one of Maxwell's closest family members? Who is the night monster that coexists with Charlie? Are the "dangerous trained monkeys" from the circus accident connected to the monkeys we see in the Constant? And finally, will any of these questions ever be answered, or will they remain unanswered with a couple clues sprinkled in over time to keep with Don't Starve's nonsense-fiction mystery and Lovecraftian themes? Sources: https://www.reddit.com/r/dontstarve/comments/arcof2/question_about_aporkalypse_calendar/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZjQYJvvFHk https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_phase https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Far_side_of_the_Moon https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werewolf http://thisiscanadiana.com/blogposts/2017/11/1/the-werewolf-of-quebec-city https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werewolf_fiction https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/gestalt https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Ancient_Civilization https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Ancient_Herald https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Ancient_Mural https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Pig_King https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Silver_Necklace https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Vignettes https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Intricate_Topiary https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0r0WfV2y5s https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don't_Starve#Conception_and_design https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Celestial_Fissure https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Lunar_Experiment https://study.com/academy/lesson/literary-nonsense-genre-definition-examples.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lovecraftian_horror https://lithub.com/on-the-darker-side-of-the-perpetually-dark-edward-gorey/ https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Shadow_Manipulator https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Electric_Isosceles https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Telelocator_Focus https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/William_Carter_Puzzles https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Metheus_Puzzles https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Reanimated_Skeleton https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Nightmare_Throne https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OcY8WV9CGLM&list=PL85quN8BGMDh_Jjoa42qMnzE0bMyIk3LI&index=2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paVmu60JfG0&t=179s https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_vygRnYnPL0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4hugrMLgDsQ https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Return_of_Them https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Gestalt https://dontstarve.fandom.com/wiki/Celestial_Altar Anyways, that's all I got. Let me know if there's anything I'm missing or if you have a different interpretation of the lore and message. That being said though, I'd appreciate it if we could keep this thread in the realm of evidence-based reasoning and not speculation. From what I've seen, lore discussions that involve interesting interpretations but lack any evidence tend to go nowhere and occasionally lead to unnecessary destructive arguments. EDIT: Just realized that some of the pictures somehow didn't appear. I'll try to fix this later. EDIT 2: Fixed. EDIT 3: Trivial grammar mistakes, and added picture of celestial fissure
  2. After surviving a rather terrifying experience, Wilson P. Higgsbury finds himself once more in the wilderness of the Shadow World trying to cope with the conditions being thrown at him. Though what he didn't count on was the arrival of a new ruler... and someone he isn't sure he can call an ally. --------- Been putting this for awhile now since I was trying to get Survive the Shadows done and now that the main arc is finished, I can finally begin this alternate timeline to it, the Don't Starve Together Journals. A series of shorts and mini comics following more adventures in the Shadow World. While still following some of the lore from Survive the Shadows, the Journals will also be following some of the game lore as well. It's basically a hybrid of the two. So yeah, I hope you enjoy what I have to offer in this thread of mine. To note, the comics will not be done digitally. They will be done traditionally in ink and pencil so... just keep that in mind. (It's kind of an experimental thing.)
  3. Summary: Welcome to the Umbra Region a melting pot for people and Pokemon alike… Where life continues just as it has for as long as it’s existed… But this isn’t about legendary fights, or evil teams… Join me Professor Wilson Higgsbury into a fantastical world… The world of Pokemon. (Banner: @Aileen-Rose ) The Professor “Hello! My name is Professor Wilson Higgsbury! But those in these parts call me The Pokemon Professor! I’m here to help new trainers start their journey as a special hub through the Umbra region a melting pot of different Pokemon and people too! Please don’t hesitate to stop by my laboratory and choose the Pokemon who will become your partner!” Wilson Higgsbury sighed as he listened to his old recording. He was much younger back then and things had seemed to much brighter. Fresh out of college, finally able to start his own lab and provide starters for new trainers like his grandfather had before him. It was ten years since that day and now at thirty three.. It seemed no one wanted to even walk in the door. He admitted the place was intimidating upon first glance but he had to build it that way! They’d all get out if he didn’t! And he thought it looked nice… “Let’s face it… No one wants a Pokemon from crazy Ol’ Wilson…” He looked out the window half hoping to see some new faces scurrying up the steps. But no. That wasn’t happening. He sighed giving a stretch before getting up and grabbing a feed bucket. “Well that’s what happens when people choose to willfully be ignorant…” For you see… In those ten years, there had been plenty of new baby starter Pokemon for Wilson to give out from the various regions… But since no one would ever claim them, he instead wound up with Pokemon who evolved at their own pace and bred. So there was more than enough to fill up his property. He had to duck as two charizards flew by him, roaring at one another. “REMEMBER YOUR MANNERS!” He yelled, shaking his fist at them as he went on his way to deposit the feed for the fire types. He smiled as a group of tiny fire starters huddled around one bowl, happy to eat. He knelt down rubbing the head of a small charmander as it squealed a little. A chimchar climbed up his back, holding onto his head, chittering as it played with his hair. “Chimchar!” Wilson laughed. “Don’t be naughty now!” The others looked at them, back at their food and back to Wilson… Wilson knew the look as he scrambled to get up. “CHAR!/FENNEKIN!/TOR!/CHIM!/TEP!/CYNDAQUIL!” He was tackled to the ground under a pile of very warm, very cuddly pokemon. He sighed before grinning, hugging them all close to him as best as he could. While it got lonely up there… he would admit, he loved nothing more than playing with the Pokemon and tending to them. Giving attention to the little ones, organizing training battles to help them run off some energy. Grooming some, or giving baths to others. “Tepig, do not eat those pokeblock out of my pocket-Chimchar my hair is not a chew toy! Charmander, I told you not to eat those granola bars-Torchic that tickles and-CYNDAQUIL!” The small Johto starter seemed to snicker to itself as it ran off with his shoe in its mouth. Wilson pointed to it. “Get them!” The tiny herd scurried off as they more so play wrestled. He eventually was able to swoop in and take his prize back. “Whew…” He went about his routine, getting everyone fed, checking up on those who had managed to scrape themselves up. It took a long time but worth it. Be it swimming with the water types, or having the grass types lift him up to get to other areas faster… He loved it. Wilson looked down from a rock he was seated upon on a cliff that overlooked his whole property. All the different pokemon from every region… and all of them under his care. While ideally he hoped one day some trainers would come and ease him of a few of the little ones… He just wasn’t sure anymore if he could separate them. It was rare for professors in charge of starters to be able to naturally see on their own property how the individual types interacted with one another. And while they were all different types there was one thing he was positive of… They were family. His family. oooooo At least… most of them were. Occasionally, during the spring, when most young trainers from their childhood to late teens were leaving home, he would still get boxes of new starter pokeballs. During these events he would give them time until late spring at the longest to let them be separate from the herds out back… But most of the time he still wound up introducing them since in his ten years of being their caretaker no starter liked staying in their pokeball forever. I swear one of these days I’m going to send them all back! Maybe take a few spare evolution stones and send ‘em back loyal to me. See how those other guys think sending more to me is a great idea! He thought bitterly one morning as he unloaded three new pokeballs from Kalos. He could only say his thanks that the Umbra Region’s ties with the mysterious Alola Region wasn’t tight enough that he was getting a box of starters from there too. “I do not need fire kittens or grass owls in addition to everyone else.” He sighed, letting the new arrivals out for their morning feed. He looked out the window after making sure everyone was playing nice. And couldn’t believe his eyes. Someone was coming up the walkway. He felt giddy. Maybe someone finally didn’t believe the rumors about his sanity! “Okay, be cool, be cool.” Wilson took a deep breath steadying himself. He looked out the window raising an eyebrow as the person was coming into view. They were too old to be a new trainer… He would admit, he knew some people didn’t get pokemon at the usual ages but that was unusual. It was a young woman with long dark hair tied into two long ponytails. She was wearing a pair of copper red pants with a pink shirt and a scarf that looked almost like it was made out of fire. There was soon a knock at the door. Wilson hurried to open it. “U-Um hello.” He greeted mentally cursing himself. “Where are they?” The woman asked trying to brush past him. “H-Hey excuse me!” Wilson threw an arm out in front of her. “It’s common courtesy to say “hello” back you know!” “E-Erm sorry!” The woman apologized giving a sheepish look. “I heard you had a whole ton of different fire types… I… Wanted to see them.” Wilson blinked. “See them? … You’re not here to take a starter?” “W-What? Oh no I grew up in Kalos, so I got mine from the professor there about… Ten years ago I believe?” “What’s your name?” He asked. “And I apologize for my manners, I’m Wilson Higgsbury, the man in charge.” “Willow Ashworth sir.” She smirked, crossing her arms. “But I’m better known as The Firestarter.” The Firestarter… Where have I heard that name before? “I see? But why are you here if you just want to see fire types? There’s plenty of places in the world.. The Charicific Valley in Johto, the volcano on Cinnabar Island-” “I wanna see just fire starters. I think they're adorable… And I don’t wanna go to those places. Been there and done that.” She smirked holding up a pokeball that was attached to a necklace she wore. “Me and my delphox have seen most of it. As have my team.” “So your delphox wouldn’t be interested in a kit?” He asked pointing to the latest Fennekin who was eating. Willow looked at it and squealed, darting over picking up, the little fox. “Oh my goodness I haven’t seen one of you since I was ten!” “Fen?” The little Pokemon tilted it, head, wondering why this strange lady was holding it. “Aww! Delphi used to do that too!” Willow squealed, hugging it close to her, nuzzling the top of its head, enjoying the warmth. “And oh torchic and charmander…” She knelt down looking at the baby Pokemon with nostalgia in her eyes. “I had those too!” “Did you now?” Wilson asked curious. “Yep. Fully evolved into blaziken and charizard… I wish I could have baby pokemon again but I don’t have the room… I stopped traveling awhile ago and my place is only big enough for the seven of us.” She explained, getting her chance to hug the other fire type starters, quietly squealing as they kept close. “I just love them!” “Heh… You should see out back.” She looked to him curious. “What’s out back?” Wilson grinned. It had been a long time since he was able to show off his pokemon. “Come and see.” oooooo Willow gasped as Wilson lead her to his cliffside. “This… is what I get to do every day.” He said, making a wide gesture as a pair of charizards flew by. Groups of sceptile and serperior sunning themselves atop the backs of torterras. Venusaurs and their herds of bulbasaur and ivysaur. A large blastoise stretched over the edge of the lake before a few squirtles jumped onto its back as it jumped into the water causing a wave that swept back an empoleon and its piplup. Infernape's and blazikens trained against one another. A group of delphox practiced with their mysterious fire, showing younger braixen how it was done. A typhlosion gave a roar before scooping up a cyndaquil, heading off. “You get to raise them all?” “Oh, their parents do that for them!” Wilson laughed. “I just help… But most of the pokemon on this property I’ve helped hatch or deliver in the last ten years. Some are starters from last year’s batch but they fit in with the rest. The others just take them in as their own.” “But doesn’t it hurt them more then when trainers come?” Willow asked, not taking her eyes off the property. Wilson smirked, a saddened look in his eyes. “Who says trainers ever come for them? You could take those little ones in the main part of the lab away and no trainers would ever come. This isn’t just where I raise starters…” He looked back over the property. “This is where I raise the unwanted.” Willow looked to him, frowning a little. “No one’s ever come for starters from you… Have they?” “Not in the ten years I’ve been here and likely not in the ten years to come. But that’s alright.” He smiled a little. “After all this time… I can’t bear to part with the ones I’ve helped take care of since they were small. It’s easier when they’re freshly out of their regions… But as much as I love having new additions… I feel bad they’re never able to do what other starters get to. And it’s hard doing it all alone. By the time I’m done feeding everyone breakfast, it’s lunch time and by the time that’s done, I do a bit of my research… But then the dinner bell rings and-Yeah…” “You look exhausted too.” Willow said, taking note of the dark circles around his eyes. He shrugged. “It honestly doesn’t bother me. When you have new little ones as often as I do you’re used to getting up in the middle of the night to tend to them.” “But it has to get lonely..” “It does sometimes. I won’t lie.” He motioned for her to follow him as he started walking back down. “But I have my family. And that’s all that matters.” “You seriously are alone here, huh?” “Indeed I am my dear.” Willow looked around biting her lip. Her own travels hadn’t exactly been full of friendships and joy. Most people were afraid of her and she got thrown out of gyms for setting the places on fire occasionally by accident. Usually grass gyms. Ugh I’m on a lifetime ban from the Celadon City gym… She sighed. “Hey, Professor.” “Hm? And please, just Wilson will do.” “I’m coming by again tomorrow.” He stopped short, looking at her perplexed. He hadn’t had anyone saying they’d visit since… Since before his grandfather had retired and closed his own labs’ doors! “What?” “Is there a problem?” “N-No.” He shook his head. “No problem at all… But… Why do you want to come back?” “I wanna help.” She told him with a small smirk. “I have nowhere important to be.” “Are you sure? It’s going to be messy.” He warned her. “I never back down from a challenge. The Firestarter never backs down.” “... Very well. In fact, if you want to help, I could use it right now.” Willow perked up grinning. “Alrighty! What do I do first?” Wilson gave a perfectly innocent smile before offering her a shovel. “... What’s this for?” “I’m digging a new mud pit for the tepig evolutionary line. You can help me with it!” “U-Um I was thinking like… Training some of the other pokemon with mine. O-Or playing with the babies.” “Well the little tepigs love playing in the dirt.” Wilson smirked. “Now chop chop. Time is food around here.” He pointed to where it was as she shrugged, heading off to do her task grumbling a bit. Heh…We’ll see if she actually wants to come back. Grandfather had me mucking out stalls for ponyta and rapidash when I was a lad! Willow waited until Wilson had his back turned before an idea came to her. She grinned to herself as she grabbed one of her pokeballs. “Let’s go arcanine!” She called throwing an ultra ball high into the air as the firey wolf formed from the light. “Use dig! Make a nice deep hole!” Arcanine gave a gleeful look. Finally something to dig up besides the neighbor’s rose bush! Wilson jumped seeing a large amount of dirt flying as Willow laughed to herself. “YES! HAHA! KEEP AT IT BOY!” “What in the name of Arceus?” He wondered aloud. The meganium who was laying near him shook her head before four little chikorita jumped on her back. “True I should’ve stayed close by. I’ll be back.” He hurried over dodging dirt… Seeing a deep enough pool to house a fully grown venusaur and torterra comfortably. “WILLOW WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?” “Hey Wil!” She called up waving. “I’m digging!” “T-That’s deep enough!” He called down making an X shape with his arms. “Stop!” “Arcanine that’s enough!” She called her pokemon back mid-digging spree. “Well?” Wilson rubbed his forehead looking at it. It was large… But it was… oddly perfect. “... Okay… You win. It’s fine. Thank you.” “And I can dig more-” “NO!” She might be a valuable asset… If my lab survives her Arcanine!
  4. So all the cool kids on the block are making their fanart threads. @Arlesienne is neither cool nor a kid, but apparently has just tried. People browsing this, well... to quote Różewicz, they came to see a poet and that's rather boring for the great populace, but Minespatch asked and just how do you refuse MINESPATCH so I oblige and... Well, introductions aren't my strength. So just take a look at this if you want, starring OCs by @minespatch, @ScienceMachine and @DragonMage156 as well as @GiddyGuy (as himself based on this) and my own kiddie. It's quite inspired by the excellent players: @Fortie as Webber Slapy as Wigfrid (on hiatus) Sugarcombo as Ruri FuzzyIggyPoyo as Demo Daniel as Soldier In a nutshell: a dark little story about a girl and her toys. Consider it tagged mature for one instance of strong language (dependent on your side of the pond), the dark setting, mental issues, shtuff... Oh, and for elfeminate puns! * * * Whoever needs a bit more of an introduction, here you go. This is also the blurb of our roleplaying campaign Project Rosebud. Otherwise just skip to this fat post.
  5. "Ardiente"

    I swear it's all @minespatch's, @DragonMage156's and @PandoMish's fault, I hold no liability to this writ! Also, starring @Chris1488 and @Mr.P. Apparently. Plus quite a host of the Klei overlords. Again, their fault for immortalising themselves as pigmen.
  6. You were completely numb from whatever drug that was in your system. Grogginess shrouded your ability to move for the last ten minutes now, ever since you awoke to a bang, a puff of smoke, and a book. You couldn't even feel the blades of grass ticking your cheeks, or the odd breeze ruffling your hair. The silence had stretched on for an infinite moment, punctuated only with the sound of birdsong, as you examined the only notable landmark since your sudden arrival in...wherever you were. You do not remember getting here, so logically you assumed that someone had slipped something in your food or drink and tossed you, rather unceremoniously, into this dilapidated grassy plain and left an instruction book with your initial sliced into the leather bound cover. It was incredibly battered, and you were certain there was a bloodstain on the top right corner. After a while, though, you eventually regained enough movement to drag the book towards you with a new desperation, flicking open to the very first page, where a thin sheet of what appeared to be some sort of odd, pale leather was picked up by the breeze and landed before you. It was baked rock solid and brittle under the sun, and there was some sort of introductory note written using ink and a quill over the bumpy surface. ~~~ If you have found this book, then words do not describe how sorry I am for your current situation. Inside these pages is a record, a compilation of my Field Notes, on how to survive in this new plane of Hell itself. I have trudged through the coldest winters, sought shelter from unrelenting storms, crouched pathetically in the everlasting darkness to bring to you, heir to my burden, a recount of the day my new life started to the point where it ended. In between these two covers is the story of a life, all of the mistakes, the successes, and the plans. Fears, thoughts, feelings, and fleeting memories compressed into a single tome to which I pass on to the next player in this demented game. If you have found this book, then I am either dead, or worse. All will be made clear should you manage to survive long enough to reach the end, as I have. This may not be the best of introductions but I have very little time to speak and think for myself, as the pointless seconds which I still have are going solely into writing down this very note, on this very piece of leather, to give you a proper greeting - something that I never received myself - and some lessons to live on. If you have found this book, then my name is Wilson Percival Higgsbury, and I do not know where I have ended up. ~~~ Haha okay wow. Hello there, DS arists and writers and music-makers alike! My name is FieldNotes and this thread is devoted to partially DS-related drawings, partially talking to the community instead of lurking, but mainly to putting out a lovely gem that I have been thinking on for a good, hm...6 months now? The premise for Wilson's Journal is fairly simple - I'm going to put the story behind Don't Starve into the perspective of our plucky Gentleman Scientist, and adhere to the canon story as much as possible, but you'll notice how it starts to deviate and I'm going to tie together a bunch of loose ends along the way into one gloriously tangled mess of metaphorical strings. I'm also going to have fun writing, and try to update as much as possible, but I hope people understand that I do get quite busy sometimes. This prevented me from starting this 6 months before, but I noticed that some of the brilliant artists here are also hindered by their own time schedules so I deemed it appropriate to, at the very least, make a start on this little project of mine. Day 1 will be posted shortly, I presume.
  7. Alright, guys, in a wave of inspiration I have finished my back story for Abigail and Wendy! I hope you all enjoy and please tell me what you think! A WORD OF CAUTION: the following text deals with mature content such as bereavement, violence and racial discrimination. if you feel you are uncomfortable with these concepts, please do not read this tale. I mean to cause no offense. ~~~~~~~~~~ Occultway House had been deserted for six years now; its owner had perished in the Great War, his bereaved family downsizing to a smaller, financially manageable home, two towns away. But the great wooden I-house had two visitors this cold autumn night; two familiar visitors at that: young Wendy and four minutes younger Abigail. Tender footsteps unsettled the dust on the rickety floorboards leading to the girls’ old shared bedroom; in time with each step, Wendy’s hair bunches gently beat the length of her back. “C’mon, Abigail, we have to get this done! The moon is almost out!” An impatient whisper from Wendy, who gestured a hurrying hand to the straggling Abigail. “But... it’s... heavyyy!” She strained for each word, as she exerted her strength to forcing a crate, larger than herself, up the grand staircase. “Gosh, would you stop your complaining?! Just hurry up!” Wendy rushed back down the hallway to the staircase, lending herself to pull the crate from the other side. Together, the two girls managed to eke the crate over the top step, and then Wendy was off down the hall again, leaving Abigail to push the remaining distance alone. Wendy pushed ajar the door to the bedroom; she was careful not to grasp any of the peeling paint. The centrepiece of the room was a great queen-sized bed, which the twins had shared, with ornate bed posts and canopy. The reddish colour scheme – the twins’ favourite – could seldom be seen beneath the grime and now stirring dust. Wendy shot another silent gesture for Abigail to hurry; the legs of the work laden twin began to tremor from the heavy load, which pierced the eerie silence as it scraped along the floorboards of the hallway. A few moments passed, the crate was in and the door was locked – the twins always conscious of anyone entering behind them – and then they were ready. Wendy knelt, fidgeting, waiting edgily for Abigail to lift her nose from a ghoulish hardback book that lay open on the floor. Abigail held in one hand the only candle yet lit. The flame danced teasingly on its wick; without it there would be only darkness, and darkness brings only... They were sat on the circular woolen rug at the foot of the bad, with the crate lying to the left of the bed, closest to the door. There was also a bag of oddities; Wendy had emptied this onto the floor to her right, nearest to the window, which was covered by extravagant drapes – these, in turn, were coated in muck. Silence was the clearest adornment in this old place. Abigail continued to inexhaustibly analyse the text that lay before her. “Abigail, what is taking you so long?!” Wendy finally snapped. The dust beginning to skirt her clothes seemed to jolt away, as though in fright. “Please, Wendy, take thy beak out of my heart.” Abigail retorted calmly and eloquently, daintily turning to the next page of her book. “Argh! What have I told you about quoting your silly little books when you’re talking to me? All you ever do is gorge your greedy little mind on meaningless words! It never gets you anywhere, or you wouldn’t be sat up here in our ramshackle old house with me, doing... this!” Silence. Abigail stared blankly at the pages of her book. She tried to remain stoic, but she found it too hard to respond in another quotation. Her lips visibly trembled as her eyes, hidden by the angle of her now drooping head, welled uncontrollably with tears. “Abigail...?” Wendy queried, her stern tone softening on the final syllable. “It’s these ‘meaningless words’ that are going to bring our daddy back!” Abigail cried, as she tore from the book the closest page she could grab; she crumpled the paper and slammed it to the floor, too docile to throw it at her sister. “When I tried to just get on with things when all the boys and girls at school were picking on us, you had to rise to their petty little challenges, acting out and dragging me into things! You think you’re so perfect but you just... just...” Abigail screwed up her face, throwing her arms over her head in an internal conflict over whether or not she could feasibly insult her sister. “You’re trying to blame me for what happened to us?! It’s not my fault momma made friends with that... that... *****! This was all his faul-” “No it wasn’t! Jonah is just a man, just like any other one! If you actually picked up a book for five minutes instead of hissing every time I looked at one, you might actually learn a thing or two! He was in the war also, just like daddy, and there is nothing wrong with him just because he looks different!” Wendy was taken aback. Her sister had stood up to her. They often talked about how everything had gone wrong since their mother had found another man; the pupils and teachers alike bullied the twins, so they had run away – two towns away, back to their old home, where they lived with their parents before the war. Silence had once again ensued as the two stared down at the floor. Leaning forward and shuffling the short distance across the mat on her knees, Wendy took Abigail into her harms, kissing her gently atop the head. There they stayed for some time; two children, expected to cope with mature concepts in life - death, discrimination, homelessness. They just wanted back their father. A dazed, rumbling groan. It came from inside the crate, immediately drawing the attention of the girls, snapping them away from their tearful embrace. “Oh no!” Wendy reacted worriedly, staring at the closest face of the wooden crate. “Wh-what do we do?!” She frantically queried Abigail, but her eyes remained fixed on the crate. “D-don’t worry Wendy, we can do the ritual quickly, before it fully comes round! Uh, quick, get the candl...” Their hearts dropped; both realised the single candle that had lit the room for their entire stay in the house was about to go out. Wendy scrambled to find the other candles, but when she had emptied her bag, its contents had spread across the floor in dribs and drabs. “W-wendy? Wh-what about those candles?” Abigail squeaked quietly and fearfully, as the stirring beast began to grumble. “I... I think... I think they went under the bed... I, I can’t reach!” The candle went out before she could find anymore. They were left in darkness. “Squeee!” The beast was awake. A boar. “Wendy, it’s awake! It’s awake, Wendy!” The pig immediately began to slam itself against the side of the woodworm-ridden crate; the twins had found it in a backstreet littered discarded old items. It wouldn’t hold for long, and the boar was angry. “L-look, I found the knife, Abigail! C-can you remember the sacrament without the book?” “Wendy, I want to leave, Wendy!” “Come on Abigail, the door was locked and I can’t remember where I put the key, j-just try and recite the sacrament, okay?” Through streams of tears, Abigail began to recite the sacrificial sacrament, stuttering on every word and having to breathe jarred breaths through her staggered inhalations. The wood of the crate splintered and snapped; the brutish, frustrated boar bolted forward. “Don’t worry Abigail, just carry on!” Wendy shook uncontrollably, lifting the knife ready to protect her innocent twin sister. “I feel a strange kinship with- hnkf!” The sacrament was curtailed with a sick take on a hiccup. A stab in the dark. Wendy had missed her target. Abigail lay bleeding. “A-abigail? Abigail?! Abig-” Wendy was cut short by the blow of the brutish boar, which thrashed against Wendy, tossing her limp, unconscious frame to its side as it attempted to find its bearings. Wendy awoke next morning to find an awful truth: the stab wound had proven fatal; who knows for how long Abigail lay, as her punctured lung unwillingly accepted increments of fluid. Wendy herself had received nasty blows to the head and ribs, but nothing major; not that it mattered to her, of course. Wendy’s injuries were immaterial by this point. The doorway stood stripped of its corresponding door, indicating where the boar had made its exit. But Wendy did not exit. She sat with the body of her sister. She continued to sit for some time. She never left, at least not by her own accord... An unfortunate tale, I must admit, but my dealings are not with the fortunate. A part of my job description. How have I told you this story? Well, Abigail came to me herself; told me about her life with Wendy, their trials, their lacking tribulations... she wanted me to help. Well, at least they are both together now. What more could I afford to give to the child? What could she give me in return? . ... My name is Maxwell. I don’t give away happiness for free. ~~~~~~~~~~ EDITS: Lots of edits as I go along; I have a habit of posting first, proof-reading later.