World Building the Odyssey Series
When I was in college, I wanted to make games but in the early 2000’s you couldn’t say that without being written off as lazy or ‘not wanting to grow up’. Sadly, I believed this at the time but I did know I wanted to do something creative. I got into Writing and Film and Television. Around 2010, the game design calling was stronger than ever. I told myself it was gone, but that was a lie. I knew what I needed to do. It was time to make a game.
When I was a kid, I was hanging out with a friend at a fast food place playing Yu-Gi-Oh! One of our cards got removed from play and something possessed us to concoct an insane story about where this character on the card went. It must have gone to a distant world and lived an entire life of course. It discovered loved, protected, died, and truly experienced. Suddenly that card returned to play and in the ‘timeline’ of the game we were playing, that must have only been an instant. We laughed but that concept stuck with me. Later in life when I decided I wanted to make a game, it would be the first seed in the Odyssey series world-building.
The Temporal Odyssey blog series is about a girl named Zowie doing everything she can to protect those she loves, but it’s never that simple.
Here is the opening story of the Temporal Odyssey.
– Chris Solis
Jin and Zowie: A Timeless Family Bond
If instances of reality are numbered, Jin’s would be the first. Jin was a brilliant engineer and machinist who grew, innovated, and seemed to carry limitless potential on his homeworld of Terreria. On the day that Jin was unveiling his proudest invention, a malfunction caused a wild burst of energy to be released, causing an unforeseen catastrophe that completely obliterated Jin’s home village.
Jin’s heart and mind were lost that day as he failed to cope with the loss of his entire family, including his beloved sister Zowie. Dealing with it the only way he knew how, Jin allowed his ambition and dogged obsession with progress to overtake him and eventually spiraled down a path that brought a mechanical tyranny upon the world of Terreria.
A New Discovery
Years later, Jin invents a machine beyond anyone’s understanding–a machine with the power to travel between Worlds and Times. This machine, the “Scout,” knows that continuing further down this path would bring doom not just to Jin’s world of Terreria, but eventually to every instance of reality. So instead of the time and destination indicated in Jin’s tests, Scout travels back in time to the critical moment in Terreria’s history.
A Past Altered
Having returned to the past, Scout encounters a young optimistic girl with a familiar charm. Curious, she brings Scout to her brother, who happens to be a talented machinist. Despite the clearly wondrous capabilities of the machine, this young genius’s first reaction is not to dissect the machine for the secrets of its design, but to extend a hand of hospitality. Scout has arrived just moments before the catastrophe that caused Jin to relinquish his former self, but realizing this too late the malfunctioning invention is set into motion anyway.
Unable to prevent the catastrophe outright and still charging for another jump through time, Scout evacuates Zowie to a safe place and relates the story of the future to her. Despite the Scout’s rescue of Zowie, Jin is left to assume she has been killed with the rest of the village.
A Deal with a God
As Zowie rushes home after the catastrophe, she is displaced the moment she steps foot into the ruins of the village. The movement of time around her comes to a standstill and an imposing shadow approaches. Loxov, God of Time, reveals himself to Zowie.
“A time paradox has been created. I’m here to rectify it.”
“You mean me?” Zowie asks, clutching the metal charm around her neck, a memento of Jin.
“Yes. But I’m due for some amusement. Let’s make a deal.”
Zowie has heard stories of this being, a bored, mischievous, underminer, whose purpose is to erase and write time to prevent paradoxes. From time to time, he will cheat things into existence. Zowie, cautiously asks “What?”
“This Necklace as a marker for this point in time. I can’t take it from you with force, but if you give it to me, we can make a deal”.
An Encounter of Fate
“What must I do to save my brother?” Zowie cries out.
“What amusing audacity. How about this, kill Jin and I’ll rewrite the timeline as you see fit.”
He has no face but one can hear Lovox’s malicious amusement dripping from his words..
In a flash, Zowie sees an instance of the future. She looks forward and there he is, her brother – or at least, the future incarnation of him. With a knowing smile, Jin finishes the machine he is working on, activates it and is transported into another time. Zowie is faced with an impossible decision, can she and should she kill her brother to save herself and her world?
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