- Traumatising content
Eight Thousand Years after the Glassing of Earth, Terran Descent Humanity has largely become a post-scarcity society based on consent and enjoying life. With the discovery of another ancient race beyond the "Great Gulf", events and history collide to draw the Terran Confederacy into war against a hundred million year old empire that has always won and believes it always will. With allies and enemies of multiple species, the Orion Galactic Arm Spur will be wracked by warfare the likes of which have not been seen. Cracked, harried, wounded, and damaged, Terran Descent Humanity willfully throws itself against the universe itself.
"The universe hates you and will take away everything you love, laughing while it does so." - Terran belief.
A wiki is available (although under construction) at: https://fcgestalt.fandom.com/wiki/First_Contact_Gestalt_Archive_Wiki
Told largely from the viewpoint of other species, the story is currently ongoing. It involves graphic depictions of violence, war, adult language and situations, drug use, and other mature topics.
The story will be updated on weekdays, so keep an eye on this page for more chapters.
The story is 700+ chapters, and repeating characters do not start appearing until the Vuxten chapters. If you're in a hurry for repeating characters then this story will not be enjoyable to you. The interwoven plot is not based on a single person but the entire war, with its effects upon multiple people.
[participant in the Royal Road Writathon challenge for April 2022]
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This story is amazing! It conveys so much emotion and I can really feel like I'm there in the trenches with the troops. It has great humor and wit, fantastic characters, and the potential of this story is seemingly endless.
Having said that, there are a couple drawbacks. In regards to grammar, this author is simply amazing for the vast majority of the time. I can't remember a single their, there, they're or two, to, too mistake. However, most chapters have at least one word that is simply the wrong one. Several chapters have multiple. Considering the authors grasp of the English language, it's incredibly jarring and immediately breaks the immersion.
The style of how this story is written is definetly something I can see as being a negative to some people. It often jumps around and there will be multiple POV switches within a chapter without any line break to let you know. You'll go from fighting dangerous flora on foot to suddenly being inside a tank in the next sentence.
Additionally, the author frequently writes as if we are already supposed to know his thoughts. This is extremely frustrating as there is no possible way we can read his mind and know what he intended, but didn't write. Most times, the various alien species are barely described beyond having fur, muzzles, brief descriptions of claws, and having tails/wings. The broodmothers, for example, have only been described as having very fluffy tails that podlings can hide in, they have fur, are very meek, and they sing. That's it. How tall are they? How many arms/legs do they have? Body shape? Weight? Color scheme? Number of eyes/ears?
In addition to that, the author wrote multiple chapters about a horror space station, had literally 2 sentences about a face in a star, and then claimed that we should have known it was a Dweller Spawn. This is despite the fact that up to that point, we have had zero descriptions of what a Dweller Spawn is, does, or looks like. Dweller Spawn had only been mentioned in passing in a bare handful of senteces in the previous ~150 chapters and then it was in the tone of: "We don't want to have the dweller spawn attack again." OK, but how does that equate to a face in a sun? Plus, the word Dweller Spawn never once came up in those specific chapters, so how someone could connect those dots is beyond me.
In spite of my gripes about the story, this is an amazing one. Despite them, this story is fantasticly done and is well worth your time. I hope you enjoy it as much as I am.
This is GREAT. For a while.
Then it starts going into the metaphisycal and loses its way completely. Overcomplicating a story that starts making less and less sense. I don't know if it is done to lengthen the story, or if the author wants to try new themes but instead of starting something new places the setting on the operation table.
What I do know is that it is painful to watch.
It's like watching a great sculpture going dirty and moldy while losing its features to time.
Had to drop it.
So your 'TLDR' is that this is REALLY good. If you have even the slightest inkling that you want to read epic science fiction, give this a try.
The story has a massive scope, entire stellar empires getting wiped out massive. There are a lot of POVs which at times can be good, but at times is a distraction. I know that some of the story arcs feel like throw aways that I scim past because I just don't care. That said, when it works (most of hte time) it WORKS. The chapters skim past quickly and it's hard to put down.
Overall good, but I noticed the occasional missing word that threw me off. Not enough to really disrupt my enjoyment, but I noticed it.
Yeah, the story is amazing. Post scarcity humanity in all its unfocused and manic glory replicating the science fiction from old while fighting ancient enemies. There are plenty of pop culture references, but it's literally references to a half forgotten and legendary pop-culture so it works.
The good characters are REALLY good. I found myself enthralled in and getting emotional over the struggles, failures and triumphs of aliens. Moreover, the aliens were ALIEN. Not just a person in a bog monsters skin.
The story can only be explained as a brain dump. Chucks in every potentially cool thing one could think of; neko-girl space marines fighting ork waaaghs, fantasy world simulators, op space marines, wacky space traders, space megacorporations; you name it. The way they are described is pretty good, and the author does a great job immersing you in the story and the sci-fi setting of each character (this is a series of short stories set in the same sci-fi universe). From that alone, it's pretty good until a few of the cons become more prevalent and can't be ignored anymore. I read up till chapter 50 btw.
Regarding the cons, the author is wayy too overzealous in using sci-fi jargon to build the world. Half the time the reader has no idea what's going on and you eventually start just skimming or skipping over most of the writing; like one of those stories in which there's a bunch of maths about stats so you skip the maths entirely (looking at you delver).
Also, the worldbuilding is incredibly simplistic. Basically, the humans are put forward as a chaotic species with no rules that can do no wrong. Literally that meme in which the kid is like "Why do I fix everything I touch". You never really get an insider perspective on the sci-fi human culture, so you never see anything outside of how powerful, chaotic, and libertarian they are. Other alien cultures are built pretty well, which is a good thing, but they are sometimes oversimplified or put up as goofy characters next to the 'alpha' human race. For example, the author does a great job creating an alien federation driven by corporate interest, a widespread culture of indentured servitude and exploitation of the lower "neo-sapient" classes and a culture of ruling class xenos. However, the ruling class is put forward as a comically incompetent body; unable to agree on any measures to take diplomatically against the humans. The technology of that civilisation is stone age technology compared to what the humans have, and the justification for this is how backwards thinking their ruling class is. In most interactions between the humans and the alien civ, there is no interaction; the aliens just run away from a third-party threat and the humans implement their perfect political system to give the suppressed neo-sapients self-determination. This whole premise becomes boring after while, constantly reading about how humans are so "alpha" and "predatory" and "all-powerful". Even if it is the premise of the stories, you'd imagine most people would get it by the 10th time, by the 100th time it just becomes painful to read.
The characters are pretty good and the reader gets invested in them during their story for quite a bit. The grammar is subpar, and the story would enormously benefit from an editor.
For a good while this story was amazing. But at some point it just became new chapters of random things bouncing betweens 90 characters where a small tiny piece of the universe stories is told in 10 words out of three chapters. I just finished quickly skimming through five chapters and realized nothing really happen as 10 different charactes and places had to be referenced and talked about.
I can see how some folks like the tiny short stories woven together approach. I don't. I think the overall story would be better without 90% characters. The universe the writer created is amazing. The way the story is told doesn't work for me.
A quick note, I've been reading this series since the very first short was posted on the r/hfy subreddit, Every evening I feel the whispers give me a heads up just before the story gets updated (it's a thing, see the reddit posts for details).
Now, this story has a special place in my heart and such I am completely biased. I normally try to be objective in my reviews but I love this one too damn much. Disclaimer out of the way, lets begin.
Ralts writes in a way that invokes humor and powerful emotion in nearly equal parts. Nothing is shown or told without relevance to the universe, the history, and characters. Every moment is either amusing or suspenseful, his mastery of properly timed comic relief, and powerful emotional writing shines throughout the series, with the Second Telkan War being a fantastic example of this.
Imagine human history became a jumbled mess of ideas, history, fiction, memes, and records all lumped together in a shattered amalgam of information. In the world of First Contact, humanity has been traveling the stars for thousands of years, dark secrets and forgotten history a hallmark of their mad civilization. We have friends in the form of other races, and our descendants such as the Clone Worlds, the Digital Sentience Systems, and more. At first glance the universe seems to be a random bunch of pop culture references and slapdash humor, but as you read on you discover more and more of the terrible history, you learn WHY things are the way they are, and begin to understand it on a level that is hard to describe without a massive dissertation. Suffice it to say, its epic.
The story itself follows a collection of people, one person per arc typically, and shows you the universe from their perspective. This allows the tone of the story to drastically alter itself based on the subject matter and viewpoint, allowing for fascinating, complex stories to be told in a (relatively) short format.
Ralts has impeccable grammar, and in the event of a mistake being pointed out it is quickly fixed, as rare as they are.
There is not a single character in First Contact without a deep backstory that you only get hints of through their conversations and actions. Every character introduced has a purpose, every character feels rich and developed, the Show Don't Tell method used with exacting detail. There a quite a few characters, as this is more of an anthology than a traditional adventure story, but it flows together to create a single over-arching narrative that will keep you hooked from the moment a strange little bug takes a lick of ice cream.
Ralts Bloodthorne is an awesome writer and is telling one Awesome Tale. It is a must read, funny, terrifying and thought provoking. The characters in this story are well thought out and great. The style is very good with very good pacing. Grammar and some mispelling needs a little work but done mostly well.
This story hits you like a TON of bricks!!!
:D CHEERS (c)
I've followed this story on Reddit from almost the beginning and can't recommend it enough to anyone who enjoys a WIDE range of deep characters, as well as an array of well done plots. There are so many nods to over forty years worth of assorted media that FC needs it's own chiropractor, and virtually all of them have been well done. Even the "slower" parts have their own payoffs.
There are plenty of typos and grammatical errors, plus the occasional duplicate word here and there, but our Mad Angel makes the keyboard go BRRRTT and the errors worthwhile. Enjoy the ride and HERE. WE. GO!
Alright, I worry for the mental health of the author. To write this story, you need to have a vision spanning races and galaxies, a drive to spew thousands of pages and being downright insane. Because every-fucking-one here belongs to a madhouse.
This story can be incomprehensible, repetitive, confusing but also innovative, an hilarious parody and a sacred verse of the Holy Chainsword Gospel. It has clear themes and never slows down for a minute.
I read it while I had a fever AND BOI WHAT A RIDE !
You made me dream again , one of the most beautiful, fresh, Emotive sci-fi works that I read last decade.
There are 2 kinds to sci-fi writers in my opinion , those who predict the future, an those who shows how we must be in the future, and that gestalt of yours, that allows to channel our agresión, and rage falls in the second.
I'd like tothing that future is brought to life a future where your dreams as deviant as they are came true,. There are a lot of themes not finished as the ethics of cloning but this is the thing about serials you can go to there in future releases and I hope yo give it a good thought.
I am enjoying a lot I'll donate, or even buy your book if you ever publish it in Amazon, or even you will be my first payreonf thingy.
One of the things that I loved more it's the writing , in part- inconexed , Wich step by step ends telling a grand story of multiple races, planets and wars.
The characters are great, if anything a bit shallow, but I suppose that those is by design, only showing the parts of the charcter relevant to that chapter of history.
This is the way.