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Alanna is a MSPAFA by Baphomet. Downloadable archive here.
Its eponymous protagonist, Alanna, is almost immediately thrust into a series of magical and celestial trials and tribulations in the aftermath of an unexplained attack on her house on her 18th birthday.
Considered by some a first for the MSPAFA genre, the readers are Alanna’s “spectral advisors,” and are acknowledged by the main character right off the bat. Effectively, they are characters in the story… albeit, in her head. All suggestions are “heard,” and Alanna chooses whose advice or directions to heed.
It has since been completed, starting May 11th and ending June 19th, spanning 73 pages.
The story begins with Alanna startling awake on the morning of her eighteenth birthday in her home. The first command of a reader is what causes her to wake up. She acknowledges the readers’ presence and explains that her mother is a mage, and that they were summoned to assist her in an upcoming outing to “Puzzland.” Also, Franklin, her lightning-sprite-familiar is introduced. During the progression of the morning, it is shown that Alanna’s mother is a mage, and implied that Alanna possesses some magical power. Alanna is interrupted during breakfast when a masked-man appears on their lawn, later revealed to be Tristan, and the story’s antagonist. Several hand-themed creatures surround him.
Not being able to defend herself with her lacking magical abilities, she (and Franklin) takes refuge in the bathroom of the house under the direction of her mother, while she, clearly a much more adept mage, confronts the assailant.
After a close call in the bathroom, Alanna’s mother informs her that the house is no longer safe, and they must escape to one of her hideouts. Unfortunately, they are pursued and captured shortly after leaving.
Alanna comes to in the attacker’s lair atop a table, and some sort of ritual takes place. It fails, and seemingly as a result the masked-man kills the spell-caster, and appears to kill Alanna. However, she enters a dreamlike state, where the day seems to have begun anew. After devouring her birthday cake, she wakes again in the room she was before… now covered in blood. The restraints that had held her to the table are now broken.
While exploring the compound under the direction and aid of her spectral advisors, she discovers that she has power that she did not possess before. Previously, she was of the fire element. Now she casts ice (only one of the three elemental magical energies may be possessed and controlled at one time). Second, bodily harm heals almost instantaneously, and is replaced with ravenous hunger. Third, black exoskeleton-like masses appear over sites of injury, or at will on her extremities, and she can control their appearance and shape to a limited extent.
Areas of the compound are locked by means of incomplete electrical circuits on entryways. These can be completed by directing the flow of electricity while placing colored crystals into the given prongs. Also, three large doors located in one hallway are activated by its corresponding element (depicted with colored symbols on their front). These doors lead to planes of existence created by god-like beings responsible for the magical energy of that particular element.
Alanna slowly uncovers the plans of the man in the metal mask and learns her place in them. She quickly grows into the more mature role that is called of her, dealing with the problems that assail her constantly, and coping with the reality she is faced with. Everything ends up explained in due time, including the reason for the ritual's failure.
- Alanna - Alanna is the protagonist. She begins the adventure easily frightened and overly cautious, but grows as the story progresses. It is the day of her eighteenth birthday when the adventure sets out, but one can assume that a few days pass during her venture. Initially a fire mage, events early on in the story cause her affinity to shift to ice.
- Franklin - Franklin is Alanna’s pet-familiar and dashing sidekick through the adventure, and at least some of the credit for Alanna maintaining her sanity goes to him. He can “upgrade” an undetermined amount of times into successively more powerful forms by absorbing electricity, for a limited time. In his default state he is approximately knee-height to Alanna and can understand and follow verbal directions, although he is unable to communicate verbally himself.
- Alanna's Mother - Alanna’s mother is an accomplished mage who has a background in adventuring in her youth. Her and Alanna share a close relationship (perhaps aided by the lack of a father figure), and threats to Alanna’s well-being are met by immediate hostility. She is a fire mage.
- Tristan - The Masked Man, Tristan is the primary antagonist in this adventure. He is an unusually powerful lightning mage and far surpasses Alanna’s mother’s abilities. Unstable in personality, he is a ruthless man. It is later revealed that he’s slightly insecure with himself, keeping a journal in code when he was younger, dying his hair, and does not appear to have any friends or acquaintances other than the amalgamated monstrosities he creates and controls. He is easily identifiable by his unique style of clothing, bandages, and iconic mask. He bears the symbol of the gods.
Crossovers and Cameos Edit
- CHECKMATE: Dark Version - Alanna and Franklin are one of the many Heroes summoned to the Arena.
- Alanna won several awards during the Autumn 2009 MSPAFA Awards:
- Best story
- Best playable female
- Best completed adventure