So you have read all of my basic tips and want to advance to an intermediate level yes?
Well by now if you are an intermediate Lore Writer than you have perfected your early development answering all of those questions in the previous section with great ease. At this point you are pretty much ready to write the lore, but you do not know where to start story wise or you are suffering from minor creativity blocks.
Key Tip: Don't Panic!
Like Douglas Adams says throughout HHGTTG: Don't Panic. Creative blocks happen to everyone, including even me.
So what can you do? Well if you follow my advice here you should be well on your way to having an entire story at your hands, but you just need that one way of telling it. In this section I will talk about the Tone of your lore and how you can effectively tell a story. Also you will find tips and advice for how to effectively brainstorm and organize your thoughts in a story fashion.
Section 3. Expert Tips
If you are considering yourself an expert than you probably do not need tips from me, and you should probably apply to Riot for a job. But have no fear this section is for those people who understand all the key aspects of writing but they just have trouble with getting started.
Maybe you are an Expert Lorecrafter. Even so all lore comes with mistakes because we are all human and we all make them. My lore is not always perfect. In fact I am fairly sure I could fix some comma usage here and there on some of my stories. Some times I scrap entire stories just because I didn't think they fit the original theme that I wanted. And that is fine, I even document my mistakes as posts. This serves two purposes, the first one and most important one is that each one of those posts shows the exact time and date that I made the fix so I don't have to clutter my main concept with an update log, and the second is it simultaneously bumps my thread. I know its horrible but I would rather post the changes I have made as bumps rather than actually bumping my thread because the latter seems needy. In spite of that I do love having my thread in the top ten posts, but hey thats just because I am so excited to hear what people think of my stuff. Frankly who isn't? Now enough ranting on to the tip giving.
For a quick few additions:
Ask yeurself whot yeur champion's motivation is for joining the league. Does it make actual sense why the league would be a better choice than somewhere else such as Piltover or Zaun, both of which are good at hooking people up with knowledge? Is it something they bought into as a deal for more power or something only the institute of war could provide? Regardless, yeu want to ensure that there's a valid reason for why they're at the league.
A good in game example of this is Riven; she was betrayed, and she can't take over Noxus by herself, but she can lead by example on a world stage.
A bad example in game is Hecarim, who honestly has no real reason to be at the league at all.
Additionally, just because yeu WANT to be in the league, doesn't mean they have much reason to let yeu in. Just being powerful isn't enough; there has to be reason for them to specifically want yeu present as a member. Cho'gath is on a leash to study how void creatures work. Shaco's kept because it's about the only time he's not off killing someone and they can't keep him out of trouble otherwise. Nidalee's there because she's literally the only one representing many of the areas south of the great barrier. Hecarim's there because it was in the script. Yes, his lore sucks, and yes, I'm going to keep ragging on them for it endlessly.
The point is, there should be a reason that the league actually wants someone to be present. Someone like Jarvan IV, or General Darius, are major political figureheads which give additional credit to the league in general; if they're beating the **** out of each other in person on the fields of justice, they're not screwing up the countryside with large scale wars. This is exactly the purpose of the league, so they're great to have around!
Random champions like Orianna, however, didn't have any particular reason to be present. In fact, her living counterpart tried so hard, yet was so inept that she DIED trying to get in. To this, the only reason they let in her mechanical reproduction, was honestly out of political pressure since it'd make them look bad to have someone die during a trial, only to have their reincarnation turned down as well.
Political reasoning is a great way to do things, but sometimes there are other reasons as well. A creature like Fiddlesticks... well, they can't really DO anything with him otherwise. He's too dangerous to be let out to run free, and it's unlikely anyone could truly kill him in any sort of permanent manner. As such, keeping him around as a champion is about the only thing he's good for, and it helps to pay the bills to keep him locked up otherwise.
Additionally, one of the biggest problems in lore in general, is the standard mistake almost every burgeoning writer makes; having characters follow a script.
The problem here, is when a character does something that's out of character, or without any real reason to actually do so. Maybe it's technically in character, but there's no explanation as for why it's in character. The point is, yeu want to make it feel like an actual individual making a decision to join the league, rather than a cardboard cut out following a script without reason for anything they do, other than because it was in the script.
To this end, anything yeu mention in yeur lore, go back and think about whether there's actually enough information provided for any decisions made to make sense. To borrow a recent example from Shia, made by BlackKat101, the lore was very well written, but some issues still existed, one of which being that the character left a comfortable home with only minimal reason to do so, and really desired human contact and friends&family, without much explanation behind why a void creature would think that's something they would want.
In Shia's case, these situations are easily fixed, in that all that would be needed is to provide a brief situation where the champion would be given direct contact with a friend, before they knew whot a friend was, only to have it taken away from her. This gives her reason to want to find another.
The other issue being why she left home; in the original lore, all that's said is she felt guilty, without any real depth or reasoning given. Honestly, it wasn't even her fault, and to stress that, having someone else discover her dark secret and call her out on it, running her out of town, away from her home, would easily fix the problem there, as well. She now has reason to leave.
How BlackKat101 will actually deal with the issues is yet to be seen, and these are only suggestions, but the point is that it's not too hard to tidy up little loose ends such as these.
No matter whot yeu do, make sure there's a reason for why they happen. It can be only briefly hinted at, or maybe even dangled as a mystery in front of the reader, but make sure that yeu specifically note that there is a reason for why they act the way they do, and that it's not just "because it was in the script".
It's one of the hardest things to do in writing, but it will ensure yeur lore is really that much better because of it!
The final major thing to cover, is condensing concepts. The lore in game is fairly limited in length, and yeu have an awful lot of information to cram into that small space! The main way to deal with this, is to be absolutely sure that everything that happens is important. If yeu write something, make sure it furthers the lore somehow. Talking about the history of the champion's sword is kind of pointless, unless that particular history directly affects their choices. Edit out anything that is irrelevant to describing the following:
- The champion's personality
- The champion's abilities
- Why they want to join the league
- Why the league will actually want them in the first place
- The "feel" of the champion's lore (scary, cryptic, epic, heroic, sinister, etc)
If yeu have stuff in yeur lore which doesn't cover something along these lines, then it's probably dead weight and should be removed.
In any case, hopefully these things help yeu out as well!
Thanks Moby for making a post to nudge people in the right direction, as well. Lore can really be whot makes a player get attached to the champion, and want to play them in the first place, even before seeing their abilities. Even if a champion's nerfed into oblivion, people who like the lore will still play them and still buy skins. Don't skimp on the lore!
I don't mind at all =^.^=
I am currently working on revisions to my lore for Shia as we speak. Though it may be a bit before I'm willing to update it.
To everyone else, listen and listen well to the wise Katsuni and Moby the White. They know what they're talking about.
Some additional input to tack on to the ever-sagacious Katsuni's amaranthine sagaciousness;
Your character should make the reader feel something. Your reader should be able to relate to the character in some way.
One of my favorite examples of this is Skarner; I seriously feel sorry for him. Why? One line did it for me; "I miss my kind." True, some credit is owed to the very talented voice actor, but it is that emotive, personable line of dialogue that forges a link between character and player. Lulu is a great example of the other end of the spectrum; she has cute by the truckload. And notice how the vernacular within the lore is playful; not just what the words are describing, but the words and phrases themselves. The tone of the piece is upbeat to suit the character.
It doesn't have to be a "good" emotion though. While some characters reach us through empathy or likeability or respect, there are other methods available to instill emotion in your reader. Take for example Renekton or Cassiopeia or Singed; they're dark, their nefarious, sick and twisted. We don't "like" or "admire" them, but they fascinate us nontheless. There is something enticing about the macabre if you do it right.
Something to avoid are cases such as Taric or, -- to belabor Katsuni's point, -- Hecarim, where the character fills a trope or archtype but doesn't offer any emotional influence. Both Taric and Hecarim are just "there." We don't know why. They just are. So.... who cares?
Bottom line; your character should leave an impression. Make them memorable. =)
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