POSTED: 05 Jul 2016 03:14
BUMPED: 20 Aug 2018 14:20
FEATURED: Yes ( HullBreach )
I'm gonna review Homestuck. This blog has a fair amount of pictures in it, fyi. Large bunches of them are in spoilers. Best viewed on 3DSPaint.com I guess. Pictures are weird.
Homestuck is a webcomic made back in 2009. It was finished a few months ago. It's widely known for it's extremely intricate and complicated plot, as well as it's long, LONG length. According to the MS Paint Adventures wiki, Homestuck has about 8,150 pages. It has over 3 hours worth of flash animations, and thousands of words comprised of dialogue and narration. It's one of the longest pieces of literature in the English language, although sometimes I doubt the legitimacy of that statement.
Homestuck is also widely known for having an embarrassing and annoying fanbase, among the likes of Undertale, Steven Universe, and the like. For the sake of the review, please ignore the existence of people like this, as the fans of a work of fiction do not speak for the work itself.
A young man stands in his bedroom. It just so happens that today, the 13th of April, 2009, is this young man's birthday. Though it was thirteen years ago he was given life, it is only today he will be given a name!
What will the name of this young man be?
Homestuck follows four 13 year old friends as they play Sburb, a game that lets you shape and change the environment of the person playing with you. However, this game brings about the end of the world, and these friends must work together to escape Earth before it's untimely demise and win the game.
Over time, many more characters are introduced. 12 trolls who played Sburb before the kids are eluded to in Act 3, and appear in Act 5. 4 more children, the new players of Sburb, are introduced in Act 6. Other characters include 4 wandering exiles in the future, the 8 guardians of the children, the many forms of Jack Noir, Lord English, the many, MANY ghosts of alternate timeline versions of the characters, and even the creator, Andrew Hussie, himself.
Did I mention Betty Crocker is a major antagonist? Guy Fieri and Insane Clown Posse are also pretty villainous.
The format changes many times. Multiple flash animations are strewn throughout the story, allowing for cutscenes, playable sequences, and music. Playable sequences are mostly simplistic in the beginning, usually just little "click this button, than this, that's it" games. However, as the story progresses, the music, art style, and games get more complicated and dramatic.
For example, the picture above is the first page in Homestuck.
Compare it to these images, later in the story:
Playable sequences go from little minigames to full-on walkarounds complete with dialogue and environments. Sometimes it's walking around a meteor with an artstyle reminiscent of EarthBound, or it's fighting your loving father with cakes and love. Even the non-playable animations look very well. In particular, [S] Cascade, [S] Collide, and [S] ACT 7 are some of the best animations I've seen, and it's hard to see they're all from the same source material.
The characters interact mostly through Pesterchum, an in-universe chat client. As such, the story truly progresses through logs of texting messages. Every character has a distinct typing style and color, ranging from Typing with a very extensive vocabulary and perfect grammar, sometimes to the point of being needlessly redundant,typing with no grammar and cutting to the chase like a cool guyor being really optimistic and lively!! : ) And more.
It's easy to determine who's speaking/typing and who's not in on the action right now. Characters' typing styles reflect on their personalities. The trolls in particular type very strangely, such as BEING REALLY RUDE AND LOUD, PREFERABLY WITH VAST EXPLETIVES,US1NG 4W3SOME L3TT3RS 1NST34D OF L4M3 VOW3LS,Or Capitalizing The First Letter Of Every Word For Emphasis and other weird typing quirks.
The characters are very diverse in personality. Dave Strider, a personal favorite of mine, is very laid back and is a master of ironic jokes, which contrasts to Rose Lalonde's serious, intellectual and informative personality. Karkat Vantas is almost always angry and yelling, and usually has an F-bomb laid somewhere in what he says. Other characters like the Wayward Vagabond, Jack Noir, and Dave's Bro, show their personalities without dialogue, and solely throughout action, such as building cute innocent can towns, murdering innocent people, and kicking Dave's ass, respectively.
The story, as said before, is very complicated. There's a reason for it having over 8000 pages. Characters from the past and future create entire universes that other characters are created in; characters interact with eachother from the past and future, changing the plot and influencing their future and past environments, creating stable time loops; alternate versions of characters rise and fall, such as Dave Strider and his many alternate selves reaching many different fates. Hell, almost all of the major characters have died at least twice and are still major, ALIVE protagonists throughout the story. Aradia Megido, a troll, literally dies thousands of times in one act, and is still a semi-major character by the end. Mundane, boring details often come into the formula hundreds of pages after they're introduced, and it will finally click in your head with an "oh YEAAAAAH, that's why that happened!"
If you have trouble paying attention to many details, characters, and plot points at once, I do not recommend Homestuck for you. I personally needed a Notepad file regularly updated with characters and locations to keep track!
The Wayward Vagabond is very cute!
The actual story spans a lot further than the synopsis I gave at the beginning. The four player cast eventually expands to 16 people, then 20, with around 4 major antagonists throughout the story. This is not mentioning the countless side characters, of which there are like 25. The main objective of the protagonists change like every 2 acts, from attempting to win the game, to creating a new universe, to escaping Jack Noir, to overthrowing Betty Crocker/Her Imperial Condescension, to killing the biggest bad himself, Lord English.
In short, Homestuck is a vast epic webcomic that you can simultaneously read, watch, and play. It's a videogame, but not really. It's a book, but not really. A comic? Not really.
I myself absolutely enjoyed it. After finishing the whole thing in about a month, it's become my favorite... well, piece of fiction in general that I have read. Easily like, 15/10. I've tried my best with this review without spoiling it too much.
It's certainly not for everyone though. If you aren't a fan extremely complicated plots, or nontraditional forms of storytelling, Homestuck is not for you. Do you like Betty Crocker, Flavortown, or ICP? Homestuck's not for you.
However, if you are a fan of long stories, intricate, funny characters, expansive music, and a lot of heart, I recommend you try it out! The link is here. I recommend a computer, but you can also use a phone or a tablet for most of it. No, you cannot use a DSi or a 3DS system to read Homestuck.