Dramatization Station is going to be my outlet for video game related short stories. (It's not fan-fiction, I swear!) I want to take games that invoke the strongest emotions from me and try to realize them in written form. I won't be doing anything like Grand Theft Auto or Call of Duty; instead, I want to focus on games that don't explicitly tell you how to feel: games like Monster Hunter or Dark Souls.
So, with out further ado, here is my premiere short for Dramatization Station.
This weapon is so heavy, so cumbersome. Why did I let that guy talk me into a gunlance. I said I wanted something different. Not this. This is just excessive. He dangled this flashy thing in front of me, hooked me like a damn Sushifish, that swindleous son of a Jaggi, that dirty huckster. And, of course, you need a better shield. This thing is huge, I can barely hold it up. I am a human tank, turret and all.
I can't even dive roll with this thing out. I'd end up jamming the barrel-blade into the terra, erecting myself like a juicy human flag. A hunter-on-a-stick ripe for the taking.
Okay, let's try this thing out on a Aptonoth. I can get the drop on one right here, just outside camp. That way, if I get myself ruined, I won't have to crawl too far.
I must look ridiculous, leaping through the air, gunlance and shield out, plummeting like a pointy rock. But I connect with a full bodied swing that slams the creature and the ground after. The Aptonoth reels and falls over into a heap of flailing limbs. I brace myself in a kind of runners lunge; one hand on the trigger, the other pushing the weapon hard against the dirt. I move my finger to the lower trigger and pull, firing off all three rounds at once. The blast kicks like a Hypnocatrice as it roars out, flinging me back as the lance flies upwards; the sound still echoes after the beast stops moving.
Standing there, weapon to ground, hand to weapon, body still braced for impact, smoke billowing from barrel, breath held in disbelieve, I laugh. Then, in a moment of confidence, I decide to try reloading my weapon the way the shopkeeper told me. I push backwards, sliding back a few feet, using the momentum to swing the barrel down. The spent rounds get ejected by the opening mechanism. Slapping in a fresh cartridge, I rock my body back, swinging the barrel up, locking it in place with a satisfying "clack".
Dog, my Palico companion, lets out a resounding hoot. "That was clawsome, boss!"
I smile at the terrible pun, in spite of myself. I swing the lance around, unlocking the barrel, letting it fold onto itself, as I snap it into place on the back of my armor. I sigh loudly and collapse onto the ground, covered in sweat. I squint against the sunlight and breath heavily against the heat pressing onto me from every direction. I jam my shield into the ground to block the sunlight from my eyes.
Dog's face enters my view with its gnarled grin, "I think we can take 'em on." Referring to the Great Jaggie I took the contract on. I breath deeply and nod, but think maybe.
Great Jaggies were small game when I was outfitted with a sword and shield; it was a much more lithe combination. I could dance around their attacks like a vicious mosquito. Now I will have to be much more defensive, slower, more methodical. I'm not sure I can do it; my instincts aren't tuned for it yet.
Dog must see the hesitation on my face. He paws the armor on my shoulder, "You got this, boss."
What am I doing. Why am I doing this. This is dumb. I'm going to get ruined. All the things that go through my head as the Great Jaggie charges at me, teeth bared, frill bristling. I hold up my shield and he rams into it. The shield vibrates, sending tremors through my body. Not too bad. Doing that with a smaller shield would have felt like punching a wall.
As the monster reels back I get greedy and go for a big swing. Halfway through it he spins around and whacks me with his tail, knocking me off balance. I fall over and scramble to rise to me feet; it's much harder now with all this extra weight. I look over at the Great Jaggie and see Dog distracting him: now's my chance.
I swing my gunlance on to my back so I can run more freely. In a full sprint, I run screaming like an idiot. I bring the lance around off my back, it unfurls as I swing it around in a wide swooping motion and it connects with the monster's flank. While the lance is jammed out I fire a single shot, jab again, shoot, the monster blanches, I jam again, another shot. I bring the lance back and over my head for a huge downward swing, knocking him off balance. I sneer, knowing now's the time. I lower my finger to the second trigger and pull. Click. I panic and pull it two more times: click, click.
Reload, stupid. Three in the chamber. You shot all three.
The monster finds its footing and rams me with his side. I fall flat on my ass and he shouts a victory bark at the sky. My face turns red. This thing is mocking me. I just made a fool of myself and it knows it.
"Get your tail in gear, boss," yells Dog, snapping me from my petulant rage.
I lurch to standing, raise my shield. The Great Jaggie charges at me. I let the shield absorb the initial slam. Dodging backwards I swing the barrel down for a quick reload, raising my shield just in time for the second blow. I do two quick exploratory stabs then slide to the right to dodge his swinging tail. My next stab catches the beast's head, causing him to stagger. I follow through with a shot and another stab before swinging my lance down with a heavy strike.
He falls to his side so I reload and slam my lance onto him and release all three bullets. I get a few more swings in before he staggers to his feet and limps away. I take a chance to sharpen my weapon; those shells do a number on the edge. I reload then lock the lance in place on my back. I run in pursuit of the beast.
I find him sleeping in a nest of bones and dirt surrounded by smaller jaggies. The nest is sunk into the ground by a few feet so I get a running start. As I leap through the air, bringing my lance around, I hear Dog taunting the fodder jaggies. I slam the lance down again, brace for the blast, and pull the second trigger. The boom is almost too load as it echoes off the nearby rock walls. I stab a few more times before retreating back to reload.
I get a good twenty yards between me and it's angry flailing before doing so. As I reload I watch the Great Jaggie stand and bark some more. He's breathing heavy, limping, and drooling. This thing is in the bag. He starts to charge, there's enough space, I slam in the mechanism on the side of the barrel to charge my wyvern's fire. I pull both triggers and feel the lance begin to vibrate.
I have time, I got this. He's charging, getting closer. Still buzzing, barrel tip glowing. I have time, I know it. I can probably count his teeth now.
I slide back at least five feet as the Great Jaggie falls to the ground and rumbles out its death rattle. I breath a sigh of relief and get to carving.