"Universe ICS-1": Tне Catcher souls (Sergey Zaytsev)

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  1. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Good day! I am the author (Sergey Zaytsev) of the series UIKS (“Universe IKS”, LitRPG, 4 books at the moment), quite popular among Russian readers. I decided to translate my series into English, I had been thinking about it for a long time. At the moment there are 5 samples of translation from different people who offered their paid services. I really need an objective opinion from readers for whom English is their native language. It is suspected that half of the samples were translated incorrectly. You need to choose the most readable option.I will be very grateful for the evaluation of the text.

    Variant №1.

    X-UNIVERSE-1: The Soul Snarer

    Synopsis: What to do when all of a sudden you find yourself in the realm of novel opportunities, where technologies of civilization are never told from magic in all its charm? Where each game zone is a converted physical world of one of the planets tied with portals into an ethereal network, and a player's «avatar» is a real physical agent with incredible survivability? Right you are, when a dream comes true, it's silly to give up the idea to seize the moment! But dear me… You lapse into a complete amnesia, and the «sandbox» of the intercivilizational game «X-UNIVERSE» is a dangerous place for newbies. Also, there is a limit exceeding the bounds of which, means real death.

    Chapter 1. Awakening
    «Avatar construction completed».

    These verdant letters which shone against the background of an absolute gloom were annoyingly blinking before eyes. Several minutes I lay in the total silence, in unsteady borderline of dream and reality in narrow closed space. Trying to understand what all this meant and where I, actually, was. And then, self-understanding process was rudely interrupted. The cover of my coffin swung open, and light rushed inside, forcing to blink to tears. Damn it, but why does it hurt so much! Mechanically I threw up a hand, shielding myself. At once noting something is wrong with the hand: muscles reacted in a slowed-up way, and the light hurt eyes for one more long second before I managed to cover them with a palm.

    – Get out, – someone invisible commanded crossly. – Come on, get on with it!

    Someone stuck strong fingers into my shoulder, by jerk forcing me to sit. The body obeyed nasty as if after a debilitating disease: hands and legs shivered from weakness, I was dizzy. I wouldn't manage to open the eyes – just as I was trying to raise eyelids a bit, light was dazzling. Having considered that the stranger, despite notable discontent, doesn't wish me ill, I decided not to twitch and allowed to drag myself outside. As soon as feet touched a cold floor, I understood I was barefoot. And a second later, I realized I was also naked. In spite of the fact that I couldn't see a blasted thing, I did feel there was no scrap of clothes on the body. How lousy my state is if I haven't understood it at once. After warm and cozy «coffin lodge», I immediately felt chilly, I had gooseflesh on my frozen skin. «Hopefully, it's not a morgue, – the thought flashed in a kind of prostration, – but that chest I've just been dragged out from, does suspiciously resemble a funerary box».

    With me under his arms, the invisible one inconsiderately dragged me on several steps aside, save perhaps that I was not thrown on quite a rigid and cold seat.

    – Wait a bit, I'll give you a shot of good vitamin, that'll stabilize you. Stop fidgeting.

    Something gave a hiss, I had a shooting pain in my shoulder. Of course I jerked. No matter that he warned me of pain – it's not me but my reflexes that say «pah!»

    – Don't get up before you aren't dizzy anymore.

    «Don't get up». He's kidding. Even if I were eager to, I wouldn’t be able to. And then, when you hardly understand what is around, I’d rather behave in a good child way, bumps are unnecessary in my opinion. Dizziness soon passed indeed and health also began to stabilize. Probably, eyes can already be opened as well…

    Yep. I carefully unstuck the eyelids densely screwed up… Perfect, light won't stick them together any more. I looked around with curiosity. Once the world gained a visual shape I immediately felt myself more confident. And my muscles flared up with cheerfulness and desire of active actions. Vitamin is indeed good here. It raises slovenliness tone to inaccessible heights. However, skin itches after it rather badly too. I scratched the itching shoulder with my nails, continuing to look around.

    So what do we have here. A vast oval hall; but what are these rectangular things placed in several rows… ur… how would I call them… well – sarcophagi. Exactly. Their frame is black and opaque, with blinking light symbols on side. One of them contained me a minute ago. They are very similar to total immersion capsules, but even if they are really them, the model is unfamiliar. Between the sarcophagi lines there are aisles of half-meter width. Tens of square cells on the left and on the right, the full wall length. Probably, for luggage storage. Along the wall, opposite to each «box», there is a seat from grayish porous material. It's one of these I was recovering in. The ceiling, by the way, represented the continuous light panel, and light which it gave off, wasn't harsh at all, but soft, yellowish, quiet. So much the more striking, after awakening till the «good vitamin» shot, I had a feeling as if I was looking with my eyes for the very first time, no adaptation at all.

    The stranger who pulled me out from a sarcophagus was seen by me at a short distance – now, he was busy with some maiden. Wow, she was nude. The «birth» rules appear to be the same to all, irrespective of sex. Probably, the guy is a local technician. Young, tow-haired, looking like a twenty- or twenty-five-year-old, with bored-impatient expression of a lean face. Having murmured something illegibly, the technician seated the female patient in an armchair, squirted with an air pistol into her shoulder, and his aim now was the next «coffin lodge».
     
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  2. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Variant №2.

    Sergey Zaytsev

    UX-1: Soul catcher

    Story: What about when you find yourself unexpectedly in the reality of unexplored possibilities, where the technology of civilization is indistinguishable from magic in its full splendor? Each play area is a transformed physical world of one of the planets, connected into the interstellar network with portals, and "avatar" of the player is a real physical body with incredible survival? Right, once you are in a dream, one need to savor the moment! But here's a problem... You don't remember anything about yourself, and the "sandbox" of inter-civilizational game "Universe X" is a dangerous place for beginners. And there's a limit where resurrection is impossible.


    Chapter 1. Awakening

    "Avatar creation is completed".

    A sign of luminous herbal green flashed persistently in absolute darkness. Few minutes I laid in silence, in tenuous line of a dream and reality in a narrow confined space. And tried to understand what it all means and where, in fact, I am. Then the process of self-realization was interrupted shortly. The cover of my coffin was opened and light flooded inside, forcing blinking to tears. Damn, why it is hurt so much! I threw up my hand automatically, covering. And noticed at once that there was something wrong with the hand: the muscles responded slowly and the eyes were intolerably burned for a long second before I could hide behind the palm.

    – Get out, someone invisible ordered irritably. – Come on, come on, move it!

    Someone sticked strong fingers into my shoulder, made me to sit forcefully. My body obeyed badly, like after a long illness: hands and legs were trembling from weakness, my head was turning. I could not opened my eyes – once I tried to lift the eyelids, light blinded me. Hoping that the stranger, despite the significant discontent, doesn't want to hurt me, I decided to hold steady and allowed to drag my self out. As soon as feet touched the cold floor, I realized that I was barefooted. A second later I realized that was naked. Although I still did not see a damn thing, I could not feel a piece of clothing on the body. So, my state sucked if I didn't understand that before. After a warm and cozy "coffin" it became chilly immediately, I had goose bumps on my skin. "I hope it's not a morgue, there was a lost thought, and the box I was pulled out was really too similar to a ritual burial object".

    Gripping my arm, the invisible man unceremoniously dragged me a few steps to the side and almost threw on a rather hard and cold seat.

    – I will inject vitamins, it will stabilize you. Hold still.

    Something puffed, there was an acute shot in the shoulder. Naturally, I flinched. Warn or not – reflexes still say its "fie".

    – Don't get up until the dizziness.

    "Don't get up". Joker. I could not, even if I want to. In addition, when you do not understand what happens, it is better be good, I do not need extra knocks. Dizziness passed soon indeed, and general state began to improve. Probably, I can open eyes...

    Aha. I unstuck gently eyelids ... Fine, light no longer blinds. Looked around curiously. Once the world has visuals, I immediately felt more confident. And muscles filled with vigor and desire for action. Vitamin, however, is good here. Raises the tone of apathy to an unattainable level. However, it itches bad too after it. I scratched my itchy shoulder, still looking back.

    So, what we have here. A big oval room, several rows of spaced rectangular... uh... how to put it... that's, sarcophagi. Quite suitably. Matte black housing, flashing light symbols on the side. I was laying a minute ago in one of them. Very similar to capsules of virtual immersion, but if they are, then the model is unknown. Between the rows of sarcophagi there were half-meter-wide passages. On either side along the wall there were dozens of square cells. Storage rooms, probably. Along the wall opposite each of the box there was an armchair of a grayish porous material. I came round on one of these. The ceiling, by the way, was a solid light bar and the light from it was not glaring, but soft, yellowish, quiet. It is even more amazing that after waking up to the injection of "vitamins" there was a feeling that I see for the first time, no adaptation.
     
  3. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Variant №3.

    Sergey Zaytsev

    UNIVEX-1: Soul catcher

    Synopsis What to do, if you suddenly get into the reality of unexplored opportunities, where the technologies of civilization are indistinguishable from magic in its entire splendor? Where each play zone is the transformed physical world of one of the planets interconnected in an interstellar network with portals, and the player's "avatar" is a real physical body with an incredible capacity of survival? That's right, having fallen into a dream, it's silly not to enjoy the moment! But here's the problem... You remember nothing about yourself, and the "sandbox" of the intercivilizational game "Universe X" is a dangerous place for newbies. And there is a limit beyond which the rebirth is impossible.


    Chapter 1. Awakening
    The avatar creation is completed.

    An inscription glowing with herbaceous greens against the background of absolute darkness was persistently flashing before my eyes. For several minutes I was laying in utter silence, on the unsteady edge of sleep and reality in a narrow confined space. And I was trying to understand what it all does mean and where I am in fact. And then the process of self-awareness was rudely interrupted. The cover of the coffin burst open and the light rushed inside making me screw up my eyes to tears. Holy shit, why it does hurt so much?! I automatically threw up my hand, trying to shield myself. And at the same time I noticed that's something wrong with my arm: my muscles responded slowly and my eyes burned unbearably for a long second more, before I managed to shield them with my palm.

    "Get out," somebody invisible has ordered angrily, "Come on, go, go, go!"

    Someone's strong fingers dug into my shoulder, and forced me to sit down with a jerk. My body obeyed badly to me, as if after a long illness: my arms and legs were trembling with weakness, I felt dizzy. I could not open my eyes - as soon as I tried to lift my eyelids, the light was blinding me. Hoping that the stranger, despite his evident anger, wishes me no harm, I decided to obey and to let him drag me out. As soon as my feet touched the cold floor, I realized that I was barefooted. And an instance later I realized that I was also naked. Although I could not yet see anything, but felt that there wasn't a single patch of dress on my body. I'm in a horrible state, if I haven't got it at once. After the warm and cozy "coffin" I immediately got cold, the skin covering with chills. "I hope it's not a morgue," I thought in a kind of prostration, "and the box from which I was dragged out was indeed suspiciously similar to a ritual instrument of burial."

    Picking up my arm, the invisible person unceremoniously dragged me a few steps to the side and almost threw me into a rather hard and cold seat.

    "I gonna inject you some vitamin, it will stabilize you. Sit still.

    Something puffed, and I felt a shot of pain in my shoulder. I naturally twitched. Notwithstanding any warnings, the reflexes will trigger anyway.

    "Do not get up until the dizziness is gone."

    "Do not get up." Joker. I could not do this even if I wanted to. Moreover, when you do not quite understand what is happening, it's better to behave yourself as a good child, I do not need any excessive bumps. Indeed, the dizziness was gone soon, and my state of health began to equalize. Perhaps, it was time to my open my eyes already...

    Yes. I carefully opened my tightly stuck eyelids... Great, the light does not dazzle anymore. I looked around curiously. Once the ambiance got visualized, I immediately began to feel more confident. And my muscles got filled with vivacity and desire for action. This vitamin is really good. It raises the tone of indifference up to an unparalleled level. Although the itching afterwards was good enough too. I scratched the itching shoulder with my nails, continuing looking back.

    Well, what do we have here? A vast oval hall, several rows of rectangular... uh... how to call this... well, coffins. Good enough. A black matte enclosure, flashing light symbols on the side. I was laid up in one of those a minute ago. They were very similar to virtual reality capsules, but if so, the model was unfamiliar to me. Between the rows of coffins there were passages a half-meter wide. On the left and on the right there were dozens of square cells covering completely the walls. Probably a storage room. Along the wall opposite each "box" there was an armchair made of grayish porous material. On one of those, I was coming to my senses. By the way, the ceiling was a solid lighting panel, and its light was not at all wholly sharp, but soft, yellowish, and calm. The more surprising was that after waking up and till the "vitamin" injection I had such a feeling as if I was looking through my eyes for the first time in my life, with no adaptation.
     
  4. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Variant №4.

    Sergey Zaitsev

    XU-1: The Fisher of Souls

    Annotation: How to be, when you suddenly get into the reality of uncharted opportunities, where technologies of civilization are indistinguishable from magic in its full splendor? Where each game area is a transformed physical world of one of the planets connected to the interstellar network through portals, and the player's "avatar" is a real physical body with incredible survival? Yeah, right! Having fallen into a dream, it's silly not to enjoy the moment! But here's a problem ... You do not remember anything about yourself, and the "sandbox" of the intercivilizational game "X-Universe" is a dangerous place for nooblets. And there is a border beyond which the revival is impossible.


    Chapter 1. Awakening

    "The avatar creation is complete."

    An inscription, glowing with herbaceous greens against the background of absolute darkness, flashed before my eyes horn-blowing. For several minutes I lay in deadly silence, on the tenuous edge of sleep and true in a narrow, closed space. And tried to understand what all it means and where I am in fact. And then the process of self-comprehension was rudely interrupted. The casket door of my coffin flung open and a light flooded inside, causing my eyes to close tight to tears. Damn, why does it hurt like hell! I automatically threw up my arm, shielding myself. And immediately noted that something was wrong with my arm: the muscles reacted slowly and my eyes burned excruciating for a long second before I could cover myself with the palm.

    "Scrape out," someone invisible ordered irritably. - Come on, come on! Look snappy!

    Someone with strong fingers clawed at my shoulder, forced me to sink with a jerk. The body obeyed badly, as if after a long illness: arms and legs trembled with weakness, head spinning. I could not open my eyes - as soon as I tried to lift my eyelids, the light blinded.
     
  5. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Variant №5.

    Annotation: What happens when you suddenly find yourself in the reality of unknown possibilities, where the technology of civilization is indistinguishable from magic in all its splendor? Where every game location is the transformed physical world of one of the planets connected to the interstellar network by portals. Where every "avatar" of the players is a real physical body with incredible survival. Surely, once in the dream, it's stupid not to enjoy the moment! But here's some problems... The first: you remember nothing about yourself. The second one: the "sandbox" of this inter-civilization game "Universe ICS" is the most dangerous place for the beginners. And the last: there is a limit beyond wherein restore is impossible.

    The Soul catcher
    Chapter 1. Awakening.
    "Creating avatar. Сomplete."

    The blazing green-grassy inscription blinked persistently before my eyes against the background of absolute darkness. For some minutes I was lying in utter silence, on the shaky verge of sleep and waking, in a narrow confined space, and trying to understand what these words meant, and where I was. But then the process of self-awareness was rudely interrupted. My coffin lid opened and the light poured inside, causing to squint tightly to tears. “Hell! So hurt!” I held up my hand unwittingly to protect myself. And almost at once I noticed there was something wrong with my hand - the muscles responded slowly as if frozen, and my eyes still burned unbearably for a long moment until I managed to cover them by my palm.

    “Get out! - Someone invisible ordered angrily. - Come on, move your bottom!”

    Strong fingers dug into my shoulder, rough jerk forced me to sit up. My body obeyed badly, as if after a long illness - weakness made my arms and legs tremble, I felt dizzy. Light blinded and burned corneas every time I tried to lift the eyelids, so I couldn’t open my eyes wide. I decided to make no resistance and let the invisible person twitch me out. I hoped he meant no real malice towards me in spite of his evident irritation.

    As soon as my feet touched the cold floor, I realized they were bare. A moment later I got known I was naked, as I could feel no scrap of clothes on my body. What a rotten state I had, if I couldn’t understand it at once! After a warm and cozy "coffin" the air outside seemed to be too cool, and it immediately gave me the creeps.

    "I hope I’m not in morgue - was the only flicker of thought in my prostrated mind – as the coffin I have been pulled out, really looks suspiciously like a burial ritual object."

    Having grasped my hand the invisible man pulled me unceremoniously some steps aside and almost pushed my body onto the seat – rather hard and cold as I felt.

    “I’ll give you the vitamin injection; it will stabilize your state. Don’t fidget about.”

    Something gave a hissing sound and sharp shot hurt my shoulder. Of course, I twitched. No warning helped, as my own reflexes said “Fie!” to all warnings.

    "Don’t get up."

    “Is he kidding?” Surely, I would like to, but couldn’t. Besides that, as the situation was not clear enough and I couldn’t understand what was going on, it would be better to be a good boy. I didn’t have any intention to take the risk of getting all kicks and bumps.

    In some seconds the dizziness passed indeed, and the state of my health began leveling off. Probably it was time to open my eyes…

    I gingerly opened my eyes… Excellent! The light didn’t blind me anymore. I looked around with great interest. As soon as the world around got the visual features, I felt more confident. And my muscles got filled with vigor and desire to take action. The vitamins I was injected were really effective! They raised the level of don’t care attitude to the unreal height. But the spot of injection itched. I was scratching my itching shoulder while looking around

    “So, what do we have here?” A large oval room was full of... uh ...how could I name them? – sarcophagi, the proper word! The rows of right-angled, opaque coffins with light signs on the sides were distributed all over the hall. A minute ago I was in one of them, asleep. They were very similar to the capsules of virtual immersion, but if so, I had never seen such models before. Half-meter wide passages departed the rows of coffins. The dozens of square cells outlined the hall, - “the storage chambers”. - I guessed. Along the wall in front of each "box" there was a chair made of gray porous material. One of that seats served me for coming round. By the way, the ceiling turned out to be a solid light bar with the light being not sharp at all, but soft yellowish and calm. It was a real wonder, considering that after the awakening and up to the injection of vitamins, my eyes seemed absolutely unadapted, as though I had never looked by them.

    The stranger, who recently pulled me out of the sarcophagus… well... I noticed him in five steps away being busy with some girl, naked. I guess the rules of the "awakening" were obviously the same for everyone, regardless of gender. Apparently, the strange guy was a local technician. Young, rather blond he looked about twenty or twenty-five, with a bored, impatient look on his skinny face. Having muttered something indistinctly, he made his patient to sit down on the chair and injected her regular vitamin portion, then left her and went to the next “coffin”.
     
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  6. Brian Foster

    Brian Foster Level 10 (Filcher) LitRPG Author Citizen

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    I definitely think Variant 5 is the best, followed Variant 3. To be honest, though, I think that, with any of these translations, you probably should have a copy editor do their thing before you publish it. Even for the best of these, there were enough issues that it would be difficult for me to read an entire book.

    Also, if the first section of all those variants was supposed to be the book description that you'll put on the book's main page on Amazon, none of them worked for me. Maybe, when you're ready, create a thread here or on kboards asking for help with it.

    Best of luck to you!

    Brian
     
  7. Conor Kostick

    Conor Kostick Level 12 (Rogue) LitRPG Author Beta Reader Citizen

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    Three and five (in that order for me) would be contenders. But like Brian says, you'd then need a copy-edit. Neither is good enough to publish directly.
     
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  8. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Thank you for your time, you spent for reading and answering. It is very valuable for me. Of course, I can't do without an editor, I understand that.
    There's a sixth variant, that's the last one.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
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  9. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Variant №6

    Annotation: What happens when you suddenly find yourself in a reality of unknown possibilities, where the technology of civilization is indistinguishable from magic in all its splendor? Where every game location is a transformed physical world of one of the planets connected to the interstellar network by portals. Where every players’ "avatar" is a real physical body with incredible survival potential. Surely, once in a dream, it's stupid not to enjoy the moment! But here are some problems, too... First: you remember nothing about yourself. Second: the "sandbox" of this inter-civilization game "Universe ICS" is the most dangerous place for beginners. And the last: there is a limit beyond which restoration is impossible.

    Chapter 1. Awakening

    “Avatar creation complete”

    In complete darkness, a glowing green inscription started flashing persistently in front of my eyes.

    For some minutes, I lie in complete silence, on the brink between dream and reality, feeling myself in a tight, closed space. I lie trying to understand: what is the meaning of all this? Where am I?

    But suddenly the the top of my “location” opened, and self-awareness process was abruptly interrupted. A blinding light poured inside, making me screw my eyes in tears. Ouch, that hurts a lot! Automatically, I rose my hand to shield my sight – and noticed, that something was wrong with it: my muscles were reacting quite slowly. It was a moment too long before I could cover my eyes from this searing light with my palm.

    - Get out, - ordered someone invisible with annoyance, - Come on, move it!

    Strong fingers caught me by my shoulder and jerked me to sit down. My body was hardly obeying, as if after a long disease. My arms and legs were shaking in weakness, I felt dizzy and could open my eyes. Whenever I tried to raise my eaves, the light blinded me. I could only hope, that the stranger, as annoyed as he was, meant me no harm. I decided not to resist and allow to get me outside. When my feet touched the cold floor, I realized that there was not a single piece of clothing on me. Damn bad is my condition if I hadn’t understood it earlier. After the warm and snug container it was quite chilly, and my skin was all goosebumps. “I hope it’s not a morgue, - I thought somewhat distantly, - The box they took me out from was quite alike to a ritual burial stuff”.

    The invisible man caught my arm and offhandedly dragged me some steps aside, almost throwing me on a hard cold seat.

    - I’m going to inject vitamins to stabilize you. Don’t twitch!

    I heard the injector hissing, and then – a sting in my shoulder. Of course I twitched. Warning or no warning, it’s just reflective.

    * Don’t try to stand up until vertigo’s still there.

    “Don’t stand up”. A joke, was it? As if I could. Ok, no sense to rush. When you don’t get what’s happening it’s always better to come to your senses first. I don’t need extra bruises. The dizziness passed soon indeed, and I started to feel way better. My muscles felt vigor and a desire to act. Nice vitamins here, it seems. Though it feels itchy now. I scratched my shoulder somewhat. It’s ok to open my eyes now, isn’t it?

    I managed to raise my tightly-closed eaves with care. Right, the light was no longer blinding, so I started to look around with interest.

    What do we have here? A huge oval hall, with several rows of rectangular… how to name it?.. Ok – sarcophagi. I lay in one of those a minute ago. All those sarcophagi are matted black, with unknown glowing symbols on its’ ends. Looks very much like virtual immersion capsules, but of unknown model. There were 2-feet wide passages between the rows of sarcophagi. To the left and to the right, walls were wholly covered by dozens on square slots, looking like storage chambers. Also, there was seat made of a grayish spongy material in from of each sarcophagus. Sitting in one such is where I’m coming to my senses. The ceiling, by the way, was all a light panel, and the light wasn’t sharp, but soft, yellow and calm. The more surprising. Right after my awakening it seemed that I was looking with my eyes for the first time in my life – no adaptation at all.

    The stranger that had just pulled me out of my sarcophagus, was five steps away from me. By his looks, he seemed 20-25 years old, tow-haired, with a mix of boredom and impatience on his lean face. Right now he was attending to some girl. A naked girl. “Birth rules” seemed the same for everyone, no matter one’s gender. And the guy seemed to be the local technician.

    Meanwhile, the tech growled something inaudible and helped the girl to get out of the sarcophagus, put her in the chair and used the injector on her shoulder. Then he went to the next sarcophagus.

    This time I could oversee the retrieval procedure from the beginning, inventing “an instruction” in the process: drag your fingers over the buttons on the side of the sarcophagus, wait, till the cover rises vertically, throw in a couple of encouraging words like “speed it up, dimwit!”

    Then harshly drag the patient outwards

    The patient was a man around fifties, looking younger though, athletic, with a bit of grey on the temples in his short black hair. He tried to act immediately after his bare feet touched the floor, but was too weak to stand all by himself, so the tech had to guide him towards the chair, as with all others – and then disappeared from sight.

    Looking at the new patient’s mane, I reflexively touched my own skull. All as I thought: bald like a knee, without a single hair. That’s why my top feels chilly. Although, there’s some scarce growth on my face – from cheekbones till chin. I hope it looks stylish.

    I looked back at the girl. Leaning freely on the back of her chair, with eyes closed, she was coming to her senses, exposing her naked body to the light flowing from the ceiling. My curious gaze naturally slid over her body’s exhilarating curves – was way more pleasant then staring at a naked man’s muscled torso. That tipped me off that I’m straight, with no sexual “extras”. The girl had no idea on any strangers around. Quite a charming babe. Redhead, like a fox. Well, might be a bit plumpy waist and hips, but her breasts were just a miracle!

    Swearing in my mind, I looked away. It wasn’t all that appropriate to stare like that. And it would be nice to cover myself with something too. Try to call the tech? No way, it would attract attention, and not only his – would be awkward. What to wear, what to wear…

    Trying to make less noise with my bare heels, I looked into the sarcophagus. The insight didn’t fail me: there was a small baggage slot near the foothold, where I found a singlet, some shorts and gumshoes. Minimalism embodied, but will do well for now. I dressed up fast and decided to be courteous with the girl. I took a similar set of clothes out of her sarcophagus and put it on her cute knees.
     
  10. Conor Kostick

    Conor Kostick Level 12 (Rogue) LitRPG Author Beta Reader Citizen

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    Close but not up to 3 and 5.

    Does the shift in tense below occur in the original? Because they all have it and it feels like a mistake.

    In complete darkness, a glowing green inscription started flashing persistently in front of my eyes.

    For some minutes, I lie in complete silence, on the brink between dream and reality, feeling myself in a tight, closed space. I lie trying to understand: what is the meaning of all this? Where am I?
     
  11. Brian Foster

    Brian Foster Level 10 (Filcher) LitRPG Author Citizen

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    Agree with Conor, though I still think 5 is better than 3 :p
     
  12. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Yes, you are absolutely right, the shift in tense occur in the original, as Russian language is free from the sequence of tenses, so sometimes it is very hard to translate some tenses and phrases. In fifth variant: "The blazing green-grassy inscription blinked persistently before my eyes against the background of absolute darkness. For some minutes I was lying in utter silence, on the shaky verge of sleep and waking, in a narrow confined space, and trying to understand what these words meant, and where I was".
    Thank you for your opinion. I will look for a more professional translator.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
  13. CheshirePhoenix

    CheshirePhoenix Crazy Hermit on the Hill LitRPG Author Beta Reader Citizen Editor Aspiring Writer

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    As long as you can find someone to do the raw translation, I can handle localizing it.

    My game ended early tonight, so try this on for size:

    Variant 7 (the CheshirePhoenix edit, based on Variant 1 because, eh, I rolled a d6)

    X-UNIVERSE-1: The Soul Snarer

    Synopsis: [Ed. note: cut because it needs to get feedback. Stick it in the blurb critique thread]

    Chapter 1. Awakening
    «Avatar construction completed»

    Verdant letters blinked before my eyes, shining against a background of absolute gloom. I lay in total silence in a narrow, enclosed space for several minutes, lost in the border between dreams and reality and trying to understand what all this meant, and where I was. Then my ruminations were rudely interrupted by the cover of my coffin [Ed. note: how does he know he's in a coffin?] swinging open. Light rushed inside, forcing me to blink away tears. Damn it, but why does it hurt so much! Mechanically I threw up a hand, shielding myself from the bright light. I noticed at once that something was wrong with my hand; my muscles were reacting slower than normal, and the light hurt my eyes for another long moment before I managed to cover them with my palm.

    *Get out,* someone invisible commanded crossly. *Come on, get on with it!*

    Someone stuck strong fingers into my shoulder and jerked me to a seated position. My body complained as if I were recovering from a debilitating disease. My hands and legs shivered from weakness and I felt dizzy. I couldn't manage to open my eyes—every time I tried, they would get dazzled by the brilliant light. Having considered that the stranger, despite notable discontent, probably didn't wish me ill, I decided not to fight and allowed them to drag me out of my coffin. As soon as my feet touched a cold floor, I understood I was barefoot. A second later, I realized I was also naked. In spite of the fact that I couldn't see a blasted thing, I couldn't feel a scrap of clothing anywhere on my body. After the warm and cozy stay in my coffin lodge, I immediately felt chilly, goosepimples raising on my frozen skin. Hopefully, it's not a morgue, I thought with a hint of trepidation, but that chest I've just been dragged out from does suspiciously resemble a funerary box.

    Hoisting me under their arms, the invisible person dragged me aside and I was not-quite-gently sat down upon a quite rigid, and cold, seat.

    *Wait a bit and I'll give you a shot of vitamins to stabilize you. Stop fidgeting, this is going to sting a little.*

    Something hissed and I felt a shooting pain in my shoulder. I jerked, of course. No matter that he had warned me ahead of time that there would be pain, my reflexes still took over against my will.

    *Don't get up until you aren't dizzy anymore.*

    Don't get up? He must be joking. Even if I were eager to, I wouldn’t be able to. And I could hardly understand what was happening, so I’d rather behave, like a good child. Also, bumps are unnecessary, in my opinion. My dizziness soon passed, though, and my health began to stabilize. I could probably open my eyes, too.

    I carefully unstuck my densely screwed shut eyelids and tested the light. I looked around with curiosity, becoming more confident as the world gained a visual shape. My muscles flared up with cheer at the thought of activity. They have some really good vitamins here, I thought, even though my skin felt two sizes too small and itched rather badly. I scratched my itching shoulder and continued looking around.

    I was in a vast, oval hall, seated amongst several rows of what looked to be sarcophagi. Their frames were black and opaque, with strange symbols blinking on the sides. I was in one of these just a minute ago, I realized. They were very similar to total immersion capsules, but of an unfamiliar model. Between the rows of sarcophagi there were half-meter-wide aisles, and dozens of square cells lined the full length of the walls on the left and right. Probably luggage storage, I wagered with myself. Along the wall, opposite each box, was a seat made from a grayish porous material. I was sitting in one of them, recovering. The ceiling, by the way, was one continuous light panel, and light which it gave off wasn't harsh at all, but rather soft, yellowish, and quiet. So much the more striking, as after awakening and before receiving the vitamin shot, I had a feeling as though I were seeing things with my eyes for the very first time, with no adaptation at all.

    I finally saw the stranger who pulled me out from a sarcophagus. He was a short distance away, busy with some maiden. Wow, she was nude. The birth rules appeared to be the same for all, irrespective of sex. The guy was probably some kind of local technician. He looked like a young, tow-haired lad of twenty- or twenty-five-years-old, with a bored, impatient expression on his lean face. Having murmured something I couldn't hear, the technician seated the female patient in an armchair, squirted an air pistol into her shoulder, and began moving toward the next sarcophagus.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
  14. Brian Foster

    Brian Foster Level 10 (Filcher) LitRPG Author Citizen

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    Cheshire,

    Nice. Much more readable. A quick question though (because it's one of my pet peeves):

    Why use italics for thought and the thought tag? One or the other works to indicate thought. I don't get the purpose of using both.
     
  15. CheshirePhoenix

    CheshirePhoenix Crazy Hermit on the Hill LitRPG Author Beta Reader Citizen Editor Aspiring Writer

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    Dialogue tags for thoughts are just as necessary as they are for speech. Think of it this way - speech is external dialogue, and thoughts are internal dialogue. It’s also a readability thing. Imagine you’re the POV character and you’re telling this story to a friend. Would you leave off dialogue tags in your storytelling?

    If it’s a pet peeve of yours, there’s a way to indicate thoughts without setting them off with dialogue tags and italics to denote it’s internal monologue rather than exposition. You can reword them to be more in line with the narration, like so:

    “I came to the realization that I’d been in one of those sarcophagi just a minute ago.”
    Vs.
    ”I was in one of these just a minute ago, I realized.”

    Or you can use quotation marks instead of italics to write thoughts. That’s a matter of personal preference, and I personally prefer italics to quotes, since it’s what I grew up with and is what I’m used to.

    The italics set off with asterisks is because the dialogue was set off with an en dash instead of quotes in the original sample I was working with. It made it seem like it was communication via mindspeech or implant communicator rather than spoken dialogue.
     
  16. Zuboskal

    Zuboskal Level 5 (Veteran) Citizen

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    Good afternoon. At the moment, I have contacts with the translator of the version number 6. Where can we discuss the conditions of work on editing the text from this translator?
     




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