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Old 02-22-2021, 07:29 PM   #1
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Celebi Fizzy Bubbles Updater Guide Discussion and Feedback

Hello everyone! The ZAs have been working on this guide for a few months now, and have recently gone through to the pool of updaters to have them look over it. With that done, we are now going to the community to review the guide and make any suggestions and feedback. There is one section we think could be condensed and would like feedback on condensing it. Besides that, we want to know if the guide is basic, informative, and intuitive for those who are looking to get into updating! The guide will be spoilered below, as to not completely clog the opening post. We would also like people to suggest their adventures that could be used as examples for this guide.

Spoiler: show

Title TBC: FB Updater Guide

What is updating?

Put simply, updating is the process of writing an adventure for someone in Fizzy Bubbles. When someone enters a zone it’s the updater’s job to plot out their adventure, put together the places and scenes for the player character to interact with, and dictate the outcome of their decisions and actions.

You react to what they post and create a story for them based on their reactions to you. This allows you to move the adventure forwards, and in doing so allowing your updatee to RP. Throughout the adventure, you’ll give your updatee puzzles, battles, and rewards for their efforts all to create a story for them to enjoy.

That’s great. So how do I become one?
The process is simple! To become an updater you need two things. First, you need to find someone who is looking for an updater. Second, you’ll need to approach that zone’s Zone Administrator, or ZA for short. Just tell them you’d like to update that person, and if you get their approval, bam! You’re a fully-fledged bonafide updater. Now that you are, let’s go into further detail on all of the lovely little things you’ll need to know.

I’m ready to take on an adventure. So now what?

When taking on a new adventure, it’s always helpful to start with an idea of what your updatee is looking to get out of it. While it can be pretty easy to infer what someone wants based on their opening post alone, it helps to familiarize yourself with their character and their Pokemon if you’re able to. Luckily, in their opening post, there will be a link to their member’s profile.

Looking at their profile, you should look out for any character descriptors and their Pokemon. While this isn’t always necessary, it is helpful to build your adventure. The character’s personality and biography will show their motivations and what they exactly want to achieve. If their trainer is a Pokemon Breeder looking for rare species for breeding, don’t throw them into an adventure that’s a full-on battle gauntlet. The adventure should make sense for the character and should be flexible for their wants and interests.

As for their Pokemon, it’s overall simpler in terms of the adventure. Knowing the character’s squad will allow you to build challenges based on what Pokemon they have brought and what they potentially can bring. For example, a trainer who specializes in a specific type; if the character is a water type specialist, you could plan the adventure around water types. What sort of challenges would a water trainer run into during their adventure, and what puzzles would they be able to solve. Be aware of what sort of story they’d want to go through, like if they’d want to diversify their team or just focus on the Pokemon they have.

While this will be touched on later, you should also look into their Memakyu, if they have one. This will give you an idea of what Pokemon or Items that trainer maybe after. Of course, don’t solely rely on their Memakyu, it's a wishlist, not a gift list.

One of the best things about updating is exploring settings and stories that interest you. Since you can update any character in any zone, there should be no shortage of opportunities to explore the areas that you are passionate about. That being said it’s important to have a firm grasp over what your updatee is looking to get out of the adventure, finding that ‘sweet spot’ where your interests align.

Scenarios / Challenges

The purpose of an update is to drive the plot forward by covering the consequences of an updatee’s action, up until a new action is required - sort of like a ‘choose your own adventure’ book.

To keep an adventure engaging you’ll want to put your updatees’ wits and resourcefulness to the test. We want to ensure players put in work for their reward so challenges appropriate to their experience level need to be set. The most common obstacles you’re going to be throwing into adventures are battles, this is a Pokemon RPG after all! The opponent could be anything from a wild encounter to a trainer challenge, whatever the story calls for.

Battles tend to take place over several updates (or rounds) with each Pokemon able to carry out up to three attacks per round, depending on the size of the battle. For singles, it's generally fine, but when there are more than that two is about the optimal number. The outcome of each round and difficulty of the battle is entirely up to the discretion of the updater, although it’s good to make your updatee work to clinch a victory.

But battles aren’t the only obstacles your updatees can face: perhaps an old lady’s Skitty got stuck in a tree and needs help rescuing? Or there’s a bomb about to go off that only an ice-type can defuse? Or perhaps a moral dilemma around saving a poacher from a stampeding Copperjah? And if you’re feeling inventive, you might even throw a riddle, anagram, or brain teaser at your updatee for them to progress. Unlike the games there’s no shortage of scenarios, obstacles, and decisions you can pose toward the player – imagination is the only limit!

Adventure length and pacing

Adventures are typically broken up into three categories of length: short, medium, and long. While the amount of updates is subjective, length more refers to how long the plot of the adventure is. Determining how long, or short, an adventure should be done depends on how you, as an updater, feel on how the plot should go. Of course, you should keep the updatee’s wants in mind, and if they indicate they want a specific adventure length, it's best to try and mold your story to fit that.

Short adventures tend to be short and simple. Little Billy got his Pokemon stolen! Your updatee has to solve a puzzle and then do a battle to save Billy’s Pokemon. That’s a short and sweet adventure. It allows for the updatee to be able to make decisions and interact with the world around them, but overall they get one specific task done with and everything is neatly wrapped up.

Medium-length adventures tend to be in the middle of the road. They have more challenges and battles thrown in, but they aren’t this long quest that the trainer needs to fulfill. Using the previous example, let’s say that while they’re on the way to save Billy’s Pokemon, the thief leads them through a series of traps and puzzles that the trainer needs to figure out. And once they finally reach where the Pokemon is, it's a diversion and they once again have to track down the Pokemon. Throw in an additional battle along the way, and you’re at a medium adventure. There’s a lot more the trainer does, and there are more plot points along the way even if the overall plot is the same.

Long adventures are long, to say it simply. They feature multiple, different plot points and are filled with battles and puzzles. Keeping the same example, once the trainer tracks down Billy’s Pokemon, they find out that this incident was just part of a larger scheme. There’s a Pokemon smuggling ring running in the area, and the trainer is tasked by an NPC to bring them down. They have to infiltrate the ring, do a few tasks for key members while taking others down before having a big finale with the boss. With that squared away, the trainer has brought down a criminal organization while saving Billy’s Pokemon. This greatly draws out the plot while still building the world around the trainer. Also, even though the adventure is long, it is still an isolated incident. There should always be a clear beginning and ending in any adventure, not just a long string of small incidents that drags on.

Adventure structure

With the adventure lengths elaborated on, let’s talk about breaking up your adventure into acts. A short adventure is usually a singular act, so don’t worry about this for those. Medium adventures can be anywhere between two to four acts, and long adventures easily are five plus. So you may be asking, what is an “act”? Well, it's a specific part of the story that works on or elaborates on a specific goal. Each act should add a new element or detail into the adventure while still supporting the overarching narrative.

Using Billy as an example again, Act 1 would be introducing the problem and exposition, as well as the initial push in finding the Pokemon. Act 2 could be infiltrating the thief’s hideout and figuring out how to make it through. Act 3 would be saving the Pokemon, returning it to Billy, and finding out the smuggling ring in the process. Act 4 would be infiltrating the ring and figuring out how to take them out. Act 5 is finishing up, as in taking down the ring and having the adventure come to a close. While things are a lot more fluid in an actual adventure, you can still have these little “sections” that are obvious enough to the updatee.

The next part is the most important in updating, and that’s knowing what you should plan for, and what should be improvised. Fizzy Bubbles is all about player choice, and someone shouldn’t be railroaded or forced, into going into a specific adventure path. Let’s say that the trainer joins the ring but intending to assist them, and saving Billy’s Pokemon was a farce. That throws a wrench in the planned adventure. At this point you improvise. You figure out the best way for the story to proceed and go forwards. If you’re stumped, go to the ZA for help. You can always introduce new characters or plot points, so be flexible with how people want to adventure!

Now, let's talk about the structure of an adventure in more detail. All stories are broken down into five basic components: exposition, inciting incident, rising action, climax, resolution. Exposition is the beginning of the story, laying the groundwork for what’s to come and how the updatee can get involved. The inciting incident is the initial push on moving the plot forwards. It is what happens that sets the plot forwards. The rising action is what happens throughout the story to lead up to the climax. The climax is the key point of the story and signifies that the story is coming to an end. The resolution is how the story is resolved, or ends. Each adventure should be able to fall into these five things and flow easily so it makes sense for the updatee as they make their way through it.

For example, the Exposition is the character stumbling on a specific location and feeling like it's calling to them. This is usually established by the updatee. The inciting incident is the trainer running into Billy, and learning his Pokemon is stolen. The rising action is the steps the trainer takes to get Billy’s Pokemon back. The climax is that final battle to save Billy’s Pokemon. And the resolution is Billy getting his Pokemon back. While simple, it is key to making sure the story is coherent.


Rewards are given to players as they progress through an adventure, and it’s up to you to decide what those rewards will be! What you give out could be anything from levels through winning a battle, to items relevant to the story you have set out or even a capturable Pokemon.

This is where the Memakyu comes back in. It is generally recommended for newer players that you go off of their Memakyu, to help them build out the squad they want or to give them any items they want. The important thing to make sure of is that the rewards make sense in the context of the adventure and that they are earned through an appropriate amount of effort on the player’s part - for new updaters, it’s important to consult your Zone Administrator on this.

Let’s go into more detail on what rewards you can give. Pokemon captures are the most obvious ones. While people will generally get one capture per adventure, you can give another one if the adventure is long enough, and the updatee has earned it. Of course, you shouldn’t be giving out just any Pokemon, and Shiny Pokemon need ZA approval before given out. Eggs can also be given as well instead of a second capture, which can be dropped off at the hatchery unless the plot requires the egg to be hatched in-zone.

Levels are possibly the most common reward, most of the time given after a battle but can also be given after performing a certain task. Generally, a battle that runs for a couple of updates would net 1-2 levels for the Pokemon involved, a battle that runs for longer than that could result in 3-4 levels but you wouldn’t usually give more than that. Battle difficulty can also influence the number of levels you award at the end of a battle. As stated above, battling isn’t the only reason to award levels. Your updatee sending a Pokemon ahead to scout wouldn’t warrant a level, but using a Pokemon to Rock Climb or to complete a task or challenge over a couple of updates likely would.

Items can be any type of item. TMs/TRs, Pokeballs, Rare Candies, Berries, Medicine, Held Items, etc. Everything is pretty much fair game as long as it makes sense within the context of the adventure. For example, if the adventure is set in a berry orchard, the player could receive berries throughout the adventure. Cash rewards also fall within this and should be given out based on what the updatee achieves.

When you’re starting you’ll want to work with your ZA on any rewards you have planned so they can ensure they are appropriate and advise on any changes if necessary. If you decide on a new reward due to a change in plans, make sure you run it by the ZA first.

Now for implementation. While a goodie basket at the end is almost a given, you shouldn’t wait until the very end for the updatee to get something. If a capture makes sense at a certain point of the adventure, the updatee should be allowed to capture that Pokemon. If a trainer fulfills a specific task for an item, they should receive that item after doing the task. Rewarding trainers throughout the adventure also allows them to feel that their hard work is paying off, and flows more smoothly.

Of course, certain rewards should only be end adventure rewards as well. Z-Crystals and Mega Stones should have the adventure based around them, due to the lore, and once rewarded should be the end of the adventure. Don’t randomly give a Rockium-Z for saving Billy; they should only get it after overcoming the degree of difficult obstacles in their adventure that reflects the impact of the reward. All rewards have a certain weight behind it, and speaking with your ZA can help you determine what rewards an update should get, and when they should receive them.

Writing Tips

The most important rule for a writer is to know - and believe - that there are no rules. The same goes for how you write an update, for the most part. While we follow the same sort of structure, each updater has their own writing style, so how you frame an update is completely up to you. You don’t have to be the strongest writer either, so long as you feel you can put together an engaging adventure and have fun while doing it.

The minimum word count for an update is 250 words, but you’re free to go above and beyond this if the adventure calls for it. Some updaters prefer quick and punchy updates while others opt for more long-form, you should ultimately find a style that works for you.

Past Examples

A couple of examples of short, medium, and long adventures that envelop things discussed

And there may come a day
Where you forget the faces, and voices
Of those you've met along the way

Hawke | Leo

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