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A Fast and Frenetic Meta-Sci-Fi

By Sharkerbob, author of Graven

Jun 26, 2019: Rainbow Destructor is an interesting blend of action, comedy, high-concept meta, and sci-fi, almost a sort of zany version of a Twilight Zone episode, or like one of those crazier 90’s OVA space adventure anime.

The story is short, really only a novella in length, with bite-sized chapters you can blur through in one sitting. This is both a strength and a drawback, as the story gets right down to the point and doesn’t stop for nothin’. On the one hand, the story doesn’t waste your time, and trusts the reader to be able to keep up, which is something I always appreciate. On the other hand, the story is so short and fast, its over before the characters can really make an impression on you. As such, this really does feel like an episode out of a weird-sci-fi anthology show, where you only have 45 minutes to grapple with an ensemble cast of characters and the overarching plot.

But if you can click into it quick, there’s a very clever and creative sci-fi storyline here that morphs into a nearly-fourth-wall-breaking meta-narrative about the nature of storytelling, and a writer’s relationship with their characters. To say anything more specific would spoil it so I’ll just leave it at that.

I recommend this for people who are looking for something high-concept, but not too serious. If nothing else, it’s a short enough read that even if it throws you off at first, you’ll be able to get through it quick enough to reach the pay off without it being a slog.

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Rainbow Destructor Quick Review

By GuardlyGuard, author of I'm Not A Monster, It's Only A Mask

Jun 9, 2019: Rainbow Destructor is a quick yet very confusing story. It’s starts off as your average sci-fi story, but it quickly takes an uncanny turn after the first few chapters.The two things that really weighed down this story was it’s pacing and the lake of consistentcy in it’s tone.

Granted, each chapter was written in a day so I assume there wasn’t a lot of time to do heavy edits. The story felt all over the place after Chapter 3, at which point the whole story twisted and turned in each chapter for all the wrong reasons. We had only been introduced to our main protag and the setting and then we have to quickly jump to another character and then back again. Because of how short it was and how fast things were going, I could barely make a connection with the main character or figure out the tone of the story. I really couldn’t tell if the story was being comedic or serious at times. Perhaps this was because the narrator felt too informal? (This does make a bit more sense later down the line, but the point still stands.)

Descriptors were very lacking besides some of the visuals and the narrator mostly just told you things that were happening. Some of them were fine, while other times they felt too brief to get a good picture of. With anything relating the characters, I felt like they were just floating heads talking to eachother. There were also some strange additions around the middle chapters that felt like the author was trying to squeeze in some extra conflict or even drama, but ultimatly I felt that it did not turn out well.

The ending was interesting and pleasantly surprised me. But the payoff was not worth going through a majority of the story and still had me question some other things. Also I will gurantee you that you will be sick of hearing the word "gnack" by the end of it all too.

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Some Solid Sci-Fi Shenanigans

By Megajoule, author of The Warlock Ruthless

Dec 3, 2018: A small disclaimer: I have a work hosted by the same site as this serial, but I always try to be honest.

Overall: Seraph’s Gambit is a fun and interesting read, enjoyable if you’re a fan of Firefly’s mashup of rusty western and Star Trek sci-fi. I’ve given Seraph 4/5 stars, which according to Web Fiction Guide is a "solid" serial, and that’s what I find Seraph’s Gambit to be. It’s a solid sci-fi story with some enjoyable characters.

Synopsis: Seraph’s Gambit follows Captain Ariana and her crew as they do a job delivering an alien passenger. She just wants to cash the check, but there may be more than she bargained for as she tries to navigate a harsh and sometimes violent galaxy with a ragtag crew ranging from veterans to inexperienced adventurers.

If I have gripes, they are minor. Sometimes the dialogue tags are a little sparse so it’s occasionally hard to tell which character may be speaking, especially if conversations get a little longer or feature more than one character (and with an ensemble cast that happens often) but this is not an egregious issue, just a nitpick.

The characters themselves are interesting even if a few of them can seem somewhat like stock characters or tropes. Even with that in mind each one still has a lot of screen time and thought put into them, and the author doesn’t simply rely on the tropes that inform the characters but allows them to grow and stretch. Particularly I liked Noah, Olivia, and Squee.

As I said, overall, it’s a solid, enjoyable read, especially for fans of stuff like Firefly. I recommend it if you want an ensemble sci-fi read about a ragtag group of adventurers trying to survive in a harsh ‘verse.

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