Rant no cheats no plot armor

Discussion in 'Novel General' started by ADABANA, Mar 4, 2021.

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  1. ADABANA

    ADABANA Well-Known Member

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    why do people always complain about this stuff. saying it cheapens the story and that its not good writing if
    the mc has too easy a time on his adventures . the mc can be op when mc earns it but the minute the story
    shows mc being too op people start to complain. I really wanna see how entertaining a story is without this stuff better yet if any of these complainers can write this mythical perfect story. I don't usually like to rant on stuff like this but I really needed to vent this out cause I saw this one review that tick off
     
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  2. ImperialNero

    ImperialNero Well-Known Member

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    You seriously needs to work up on your writing, its a huge mess.
     
  3. Fishy_MC_FishMan

    Fishy_MC_FishMan The Fishiest of Fishes

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    Cheats, and plot armor, can be a good thing, but it's possible for there to be too much of a good thing. Sometimes stories take it too far. Anyways, everyone has their own tastes, and what is good for someone might be too much for another. You can never please everyone about anything.
     
  4. aattss

    aattss Well-Known Member

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    If the protagonist is an ordinary person, then the only way to not have to give the MC plot armor is to either give the MC a cheat or have all the conflicts be common ones that are reasonably solvable by an ordinary person.

    There are bad stories with OP protagonists, and I'd even say that how the OPness is handled is often related to why the story sucks, but there isn't something inherently wrong with handing the MC a "cheat".
     
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  5. Neiri

    Neiri Well-Known Member

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    There is always plot armor . It is just a matter who has it. Even the game of thrones there some characters that will certain has plot armor. It just took time for it to be known. The moment I heard who the author's wife favorite I know she will survive the end.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  6. grish99

    grish99 [Pelican Hater] [Hater of Face-Slapping]

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    I quess everything comes down to "is the author talented enought to make, cheats, plot armor, op mc a good thing in the story"
    and different strokes for different folks
     
  7. eray.gns

    eray.gns Well-Known Member

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    OP MC =/= Plot Armor
    Hence your complaint is invalid.

    People get annoyed by plot armors when author asspulls them as if it is the aftermath of an indian spicy curry night.
     
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  8. ru5ty

    ru5ty Citizen of MILF Kingdom

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    if you want no cheats or plot armor, then enjoy real life
     
  9. DustySpiral

    DustySpiral New Member

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    Eh, people can get lucky in real life too~

    ------

    To start with, everyone's preferred level of OPness is not the same.

    For example, to take a quick look at the other extreme, I've seen comments (usually on Isekai manga) raging at how an otherwise extremely OP MC is currently experiencing any kind of setback whatsoever. Even if it's just them having difficulties in a fight they ultimately win! I particularly remember this one story where the MC's been training a side character for nearly the entire run of the series (noting to themselves the future situations they'll likely need a team for) and that character finally gets a chance to legitimately help the MC in a fight (in a situation like what was noted) - yeah, some of the comments were enraged. They didn't want an MC that needs help ever, even if the MC went out of their way to proactively set up that help ahead of time, and they were unhappy the OP MC wasn't able to steamroller the next level of threat like they had some of the previous ones.

    People are free to like what they want, and series with extremely OP MCs that never struggle do have a fanbase. Series with MCs that start with virtually nothing and have to slowly drag their way to the top also have a fanbase. MCs that are fairly OP but still have to put in effort for the important stuff have a fanbase too.

    -------

    Let's go back to my earlier example: The MC that trained that other character. The main issue there is, despite the heavy foreshadowing, it is true that the MC had steamrollered most of their earlier fights. They planned things out ahead of time, sure, and had some trickier opponents, but it had been mostly smooth sailing overall. That means the narrative effect of the OPness *changed*. A group of readers that like MCs that always win with ease had gotten attached to the story and were angry that the MC didn't win with ease like usual.

    I'll bet the reverse is true in at least some of the series the opening post is talking about. It was some series where the MC had to struggle at first but then suddenly everything is easy mode. The narrative effect of the OPness *changed* - even if the MC earned it the kind of story they're reading isn't the same anymore. If this isn't near the end of the story, well, then they may feel the story has been ruined for them.

    Managing these expectations is difficult for a writer to do. In some cases the readers might feel like they've been bait-and-switched, and such a feeling can result in especially angry reviews. Sometimes they're being unreasonable about it, sometimes it really was a bait-and-switch, and many times its something in-between.

    ----

    One last note: There are also cases where a reader wouldn't mind the new level of OP, except they feel the rest of the series doesn't support it. For example, IMO the more OP an MC gets the more slice-of-life-y the series inevitably becomes and what could have been a good action/adventure series with a little SoL might not work as well when it becomes mostly SoL with a little action/adventure.
     
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  10. Hamski

    Hamski Well-Known Member

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    I don’t see too much point in complaining about cheats, it’s just a method for kickstarting the story and keeping it interesting. Some cheats are a little too OP and make the story boring though, such as systems that literally take over your body and do the fighting for you or have access to all information in existence and inject it straight into the character’s brain.

    Things become too OP when the main character no longer has to put in any effort to achieve anything. This is because it inevitably becomes boring. In a fighting story it turns into someone stomping on a bunch of insects and in a development story it turns into everyone heralding the MC as a God and MC just snapping fingers to make a product. I don’t know about you but neither sounds very exciting. It basically becomes a Slice of Life story because there is no external pressure driving the plot or characters’ actions.

    Plot armor is acceptable especially in web novels since there is almost always one main character and web novels don’t go for bad endings. I think people are complaining because sometimes it’s so obvious that the author made an oopsie and forgot to give the MC a way out of a situation so they create some ridiculously unbelievable coincidence or situation that allows the MC to make it through. This is justifiably annoying, so as long as authors are writing reasonable ways out for the main character I don’t think anyone will complain about plot armor.
     
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  11. gws

    gws New Member

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    Yea I would agree with that and add that having too much plot armor or the mc being to op or both, removes or drastically decreases any tension present in the story. Which isn't a bad thing in a slice of life novel or a light hearted novel or even a novel that intentionally has a op protagonist. However in a book that isn't either of those things and tries to have a series plot, it is a terrible thing because it removes a major thing that keeps people interested in it is what's going to happen the the mc. If there is too much plot amour and its done poorly. Readers can pick up on that and now that the Mc is not going to suffer any major challenges that he won't be able to solve.

    So while it doesn't necessarily cheapen the story it is just something that can easily ruin any stakes or tension in a plot in a story which in stories that try to have a serious plot is a major problem.
     
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  12. Nimroth

    Nimroth Someone

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    All stories have plot armour since all it means is that no character can die before the author decides it is time for them to.
    What people are actually complaining about is when authors either fail or don't even bother to hide the plot armour, since if it is written well it is meant to we woven into the plot in a way that you don't even think of questioning it.
    It is usually pretty bad if you start thinking that the story is just the author playing god while you are reading, rather than the story actually flowing naturally on it's own.
    But well, everyone is different in how far they can suspend their disbelief for any given story.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2021
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  13. novaes

    novaes Well-Known Member

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    It gets boring and predictable. Too strong and there is no tension or drama. Too convenient and it's boring.

    The most exciting part for many of us is the journey to power, not exclusively the power itself. An example might be just like playing minecraft and making something yourself versus just importing it straight into the map. You might enjoy your cool castle for a while, but eventually it loses its charm and compared to the time spent on the crappy build-your-own mess, your cobblestone dump made you happier for much longer.

    Plus people are getting older and what was fun when you were 16 now feels silly.
     
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  14. teno

    teno New Member

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    The key distinction is how the plot armour/cheat drive the story. If the advantages given to the main character are so overwhelming that there is no scenario that they will lose or suffer any setback, then what is the purpose of reading? The audience will know exactly how the story plays out.

    In novels with these type of overpowered main characters, it begs the question - is the MC even important at all? If the author were to give the cheats to any other random character, they would be able to achieve exactly the same things. So then why should we even care about the main character?

    I believe this is why people (myself included) prefer to see the cheats/plot amour toned down. It gives room for the characters to showcase their own merits. They could be very witty, creative, strong willed or find other help through their charisma/likeable personalities.
     
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  15. Fluffums

    Fluffums 【R-18 Researcher】【Seeker of Moe】

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    Anyway, stories suffer when the mc has a cheat that's too strong, making the conflicts too easy to resolve, making the story too flat, making the reader too bored.

    How strong is too strong? How easy is too easy? Depends on the reader.

    From my personal experience playing RPGs, though, especially with new game+... combat gets a lot more boring once you get an attack that automatically wins 99% of fights. And the story gets skewed too, because you'll win with a single attack and then there'll be a cut-scene with your character saying "Wow, that enemy is strong... I can't beat him!" I can decide not to use the attack to stretch out fights, but just having the attack available takes the actual challenge out of the game, which makes reaching the end feel a lot less rewarding.

    People read for different reasons though, and a good plot isn't the only one. It's relaxing to read stories with no difficulty, and if the characters are fun to read about, the story can still be fun. And it can still be funny or exciting in ways other than tension over whether or not the main character will succeed. People who care about the plot, about having characters struggle and grow through difficulties, have every right to complain about a MC being too strong.
     
  16. linmeili

    linmeili Active Member

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    There's cheats and OP people in real life though. I mean, have you heard of Usain Bolt? Even his name is chunni but he can beat you in any race, any time, any place. *shrugs*
     
  17. yhuzued

    yhuzued Active Member

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    It's simple, really. Everything circles back to the boring story. When the cheat is too OP, the story boring, without the cheat to propel the story, also boring. Not that I think a story without cheat is boring. A story about a mortal that slowly crawls to the top could be very interesting, but it needs a competent writer to work. OP story, in general, is easier to create and more importantly, easier to attract the readers. So there's that.
     
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  18. ToastedRossi

    ToastedRossi Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure where the mystery is. If a book is about combat and conflict then it has to have some sort of dramatic tension for it to be worth reading. If the protagonist is so strong as to trivialize all the conflict then the book is just not going to have much tension going for it. Any victories will feel hollow and meaningless, and there isn't going to be much sense of accomplishment. Sure some readers may be fine with just naked power fantasy, but I imagine that most need something more out of their books.

    And the thing is I read this kind of story all the time because it still does hold some appeal to me. The problem though is that this appeal is limited and it inevitably runs out fairly quickly. Another way such books can work with OP protagonists is to make them about something other than combat and winning fights. It's too bad more writers don't know how to do this so they end up sabotaging their own books instead.