Honest & Detailed Story Reviews Here! 👈🏼 (OPEN)

Of course, I’d be happy to do both. Love’s A Game will be posted at the bottom of the waiting list, though, since you just posted it. I hope you’re okay with that. Hotel Moreno will still be my next review, though :heart:

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Thank you so much!

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Thanks so much I’ll do that after my new episodes are out :sweat_smile:

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This is a WIP and still hasn’t been published
Title: The Murder of Elizabeth Thomas
Author: maya8447
Genre: Thriller, Horror, Mystery
Description: A 16 yr old named Elizabeth Thomas has been murdered. Can you solve her case before you’re the one laying on a cold metal table? CC
Link: http://episodeinteractive.com/s/6271504505962496
Cover:


Cover by: sanityyy

Hi, this is our contest entry: MC: Between Worlds. Thank you once again for making this thread and I hope you enjoy reading our story and scoring us! (It really means the world to us :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:)

Title: MC: Between Worlds

cover
cover.png2667×3683 1.35 MB

Author: TheBaddestBois
Instagram: @thebaddestbois (We post Art!)
Synopsis: You’ve been playing the popular, pretty, good-doer while hiding your obsession with the afterlife. He’s not quite from the living realm; a lost person falling deeper into despair. Will you catch him? Or will you fall with him?
Features: Special Art Scenes, Full MC customization, LL , custom overlays and backgrounds
Link: http://episodeinteractive.com/s/5976966935674880

We’re just starting out and would love to gain as much feedback as possible so we can continue to improve our craft and hopefully bring better work!

@B.Carlton I just finished your story :smile: Here’s my review.

PLOT :pencil2:

My first impression of this story was “Wow! This looks really intriguing.” From the incredible cover to the appealing description-- I was really looking forward to reviewing this story. I’ll admit, the “family rivalry” trope in stories can easily be turned into cliches, but if the trope is written well, the story can be a magnificent read.

The concept of this story was super interesting. I liked how we got to see the perspective from both the detectives and the rival families. However, the lack of connection between the readers and the characters (which I will elaborate more on in the character category), the fast pacing, and the sloppy exposition really deterred from the story.

The pacing of every episode went way too fast and felt very anticlimactic. I liked how you managed to write a good amount of significant scenes in every episode. Despite this, the chapters still somehow felt very minimal. This is because of the fact that you reveal important chunks of the plot and characters through basic dialogue and narration. I’ve seen this happen in an infinite amount of Episode stories, so I will continue to emphasize this-- the whole point of writing, especially on Episode where visual storytelling is crucial, is to show more and not tell as much. For example, you had such interesting backstories for the Morenos and the Gallos and their feud; you should’ve used more creative directing and dialogue to take advantage of that. I didn’t like how the cops in episode one were dumping all this information about the families on Marco. And aaaghhh the three-way standoff in chapter three! That moment could’ve been so epic, because seeing everyone-- the police, the Morenos, and the Gallos all there at the same time-- that could’ve made for such an action-packed confrontation, but instead you decided to opt for “Many gunshots were heard in the building” or something like that. I was so mad lol! You could’ve milked that scene so much because if you did that would’ve made for one brutal, kick-ass climax! Crucial plotlines and scenes that should’ve been intricately explored were entirely explained dully in less than five lines of dialogue. To fix the rushed pacing, make sure to take advantage of the interesting concepts that you have in your story. This will not only fix the pace, but it will make the readers far more engaged with the story as well.

Also, the ending of every episode had basically no cliffhanger. Especially in this genre, readers expect cutting-edge cliffhangers with a lot of foreshadowing and buildup beforehand to keep them on the edge of their seats. Cliffhangers are crucial to any story because they are what motivate people to continue a story. Make sure to add a much larger shock element to your story to increase the quality as well as reader retention.

Overall, your plot had a super interesting concept and could’ve easily flowed fantastically, but it was written very sloppily with lazy exposition and storytelling.

PLOT: 3/10

CHARACTERS :family_man_girl:

I was so excited for character introductions, especially with three huge factors in this story-- the undercover police, the Morenos, and the Gallos. I was so excited to see how the relationship between all three of them would play out. However, I was disappointed, because the story barely touched on that at all. Like I mentioned early, character backstories and relationships were explained within seconds instead of being creatively explored both visually and interactively. One character that I would’ve loved to explore more was Lucrezia, unfortunately, her background was revealed so bluntly.

Nothing about Marco was revealed either, except that he was an undercover detective. I knew barely anything about anyone, so the connection between myself and the characters was nonexistent. Of course, the chemistry between Marco and Lucrezia didn’t really work in my opinion, because of the problem stated above, and also because of their dialogue. The dialogue problem roots from the pacing problem as well. The interactions felt forced and unrealistic-- in a real, casual conversation, the odds of any person speaking in such a stiff manner to another is really low. When you write dialogue, read it to yourself aloud and ask yourself, “Does this sound like something an actual person would say?” If it does, then ask, “Does the dialogue flow well? Does anything feel out of place and/or OOC?

CHARACTERS: 0/10

DIRECTING :movie_camera:

The directing in this story wasn’t the worst I’ve ever seen, but it felt very sloppy and didn’t transition well in the scenes. There would often be awkward pauses during conversations, presumably because of the lack of “does it while” commands and/or ampersands in your coding. Try using simultaneous directing a lot more often to avoid these errors. They may seem small, but they really take away from the story.

Another problem is characters randomly popping up in scenes. Make sure you simultaneously place all your characters immediately after coding in the background. For offscreen characters, make sure you place them out of sight as well. I saw an offscreen character’s arm sticking out from the side, and it was really awkward to watch. Also, characters sometimes float when they’re meant to walk. Make sure the timing is correct, so they have enough time to perform the animation before they start saying dialogue or start performing another action.

The spot directing placement was also very strange for certain characters. For example, the outdoor nightclub scene in chapter two had odd placement for the characters positioned in the layer behind the people in the front. They would look too far away from each other or performing an animation that looked strange in context. Make sure that after you finish spot directing a scene, you look at the whole result and fix anything that looks unnatural/out of place.

Also, the random transitions in the middle of scenes don’t fit. I get that you might be trying to put effects in to make the story to have a certain feel, but black/white transitions are usually best suited for the end of scenes. Having transitions in the middle of Marco and Lucrezia hugging, for example, felt awkward and choppy. Just let the entire moment play out, and when you’re ready to go on to the next scene, then use the transition.

DIRECTING: 3/10

GRAMMAR :books:

The grammar was decent, however, there were still a lot of consistent errors. Especially in episode one, there were many errors involving commas (and other forms of punctuation) and apostrophes. The grammar did get better as the story progressed, which is great. The apostrophe errors still stuck, though. Also, make sure to put end marks at the end of every single sentence. I noticed some were missing them entirely, which peeves a lot of people (including me hehe :laughing:).

GRAMMAR: 6/10

CHOICES :question:

I really liked the choices in this story! I loved that the choices in the end actually mattered. The building impact on the fate of Marco and Lucrezia’s relationship at the end was really great.

CHOICES: 10/10

FINAL SCORE: 22/50

I’m excited to review Love’s a Game soon, so make sure to be on the lookout for that :wink:

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Thank you so much! I definitely wrote this one in a rush, so a complete rewrite, more chapters and taking more time might help!!!

Hey i just saw ur thread and i was excited to share my story with u and get an honest review about it :grin::heart:.it’s called MC: Accidentally expected. I hope u would give it a chance :two_hearts::two_hearts::two_hearts:

Thanks for posting it here! :smile: I’ll add you to the waiting list

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Title: Dangerous Temptation
Author: Gloria.V
Style: Limelight
Genre: Romance
Number of Episodes : 3
About the story: It’s about a girl who realize that her summer fling is her new stepbrother
Cover:


Link

@ttelizabeth.epi I finished reading the first chapter of your story. Since your first chapter was very brief, and the second chapter is still a WIP, this review will be a lot shorter compared to my other ones. I hope that’s understandable :slight_smile:

PLOT :pencil2:

First impressions… hmmm… stories like these tend to be pretty cliche, so whenever I see summaries similar to this, I tend to avoid those stories hehe :laughing: But for reviews, I always try to keep as much of an open mind as possible.

The execution actually wasn’t that bad. I liked that comedic plot twist at the very beginning with Kelsey not being part of the couple. It transitioned very smoothly into the story, so that guaranteed a really good intro. I was very impressed when I first started reading.

One of the problems I had with the plot was that you basically dumped the overarching storyline into the dialogue within seconds. I get that the events of the first chapter take place after Kelsey found out she was the event planner for her ex, but I would’ve really liked to see flashbacks, or any sort of explanation before you had Jenna reveal the whole plot lol. Some brief insight into Kelsey’s relationship with Drew would’ve seriously made the first chapter more intriguing.

The first chapter was also very brief and anticlimactic. There was no buildup to any of the events, and the ending felt rushed and out of place. Since this chapter is unpublished, I don’t know whether you’ve completed chapter one, or if you’re still trying to add scenes. If chapter one is already completed, I’d strongly suggest ending it on a much more dramatic tone, rather than the MC choosing whether or not to go out with Jenna. I find it super awkward when chapters end on random, run-of-the-mill events with no cliffhanger to entice readers.

PLOT: 4/10

CHARACTERS :family_man_girl:

Although I felt no connection to any characters except a small one to Kelsey, I appreciate you didn’t introduce characters by dumping every single piece of info about the characters on the readers, especially through narration. I liked how we got to see the personality of the characters through actual dialogue and interaction. However, I’d strongly suggest adding flashbacks or something to form a broader connection to the characters.

CHARACTERS: 6/10

DIRECTING :movie_camera:

The directing was good. I really liked the spot directing in the ballroom at the beginning and your intro. You incorporated the use of zooms well. One issue I did notice, though, was when Kelsey stood up in her chair to talk to Jenna. She was standing too high, so I’d recommend using spot directing to place her lower simultaneously when you make her stand up.

DIRECTING: 9/10

GRAMMAR :books:

The grammar was also pretty good. The only mistakes I noticed were consistent comma errors throughout the entire first chapter.

GRAMMAR: 8/10

CHOICES :question:

From memory, I’m pretty sure there were only one or two choices in chapter one. It definitely wasn’t interactive enough.

CHOICES: 2/10

FINAL SCORE: 29/50

THANK YOU!! The entire thing is still in progress. I just added the last choice scene in episode one today. I know I’m no where near finished, but you helped point me in the right direction!

Thank you so much!

:smile: No problem! Thanks for reading my review

@Senada I just finished reading the first three chapters of your story. Here’s my review :slight_smile:

PLOT :pencil2:

My first impressions of this story? Hmm… I’m not a huge fan of “falling for the millionaire/bad boy/gang leader” type stories, but for reviews, I always have to keep an open mind.

The plot is pretty self-explanatory, and the title and the summary pretty much covered everything except for the baby. However, I found the pregnancy aspect to be way too predictable. I understand that this is what is required to keep the story moving, however. I hope that as you go forward in writing this story, that you will not treat the baby as an accessory but as an actual human being that isn’t just used as a plot device (so best of luck on that :wink:). Even putting my dislike of these type of stories aside, the plot felt too generic to make me shocked at any of the scenes. I understand it’s impossible to write a story that’s 100% original these days, but at least try to put a spin on your story (whether it be good directing, a strong comedic aspect, etc. There are many ways you can make this story stand out from other generic romance stories! :smile:).

The pacing of this story was very odd. Some scenes I thought were dragged out way too much, with not enough interesting content to keep the story moving at a reasonable pace. Other scenes that should’ve been explored more carefully were glossed over. This story jumps around too much from different perspectives without smooth transitions to help, so it makes the reading experience a lot more awkward.

The chapters were also very anticlimactic. I’m talking about chapters one and three in particular. This problem mostly roots itself from the pacing problems. Because the pacing was very choppy and inconsistent, there was not a smooth transition from the significant plot events that occurred in that chapter leading up to the end. There are also just not good cliffhangers in chapters one and three. Either they ended a rushed note, or something that the readers already knew was revealed again, making it uninteresting to read. Cliffhangers are super important because they are what motivate the readers to keep going. Chapter two had a good cliffhanger, though. I was able to predict it, but that was probably because I’ve read a million (exaggeration) Episode stories with the same formula. But, you executed it very well because you used foreshadowing. Using certain literary devices can make it a lot easier to transition smoothly to the ending of a chapter, so great job on that particular scene. :slight_smile:

There were some plot holes that bothered me. When the MC went on the date with Alek, why did she keep drinking the alcoholic beverage if she knew she felt sick? I get that she didn’t know it was alcoholic, but she should’ve been able to figure out that something in that drink was causing her to feel unwell and stopped drinking. Also, why would that waiter listen to the random stalker dude that told him to put alcohol in the MC’s drink? Is the waiter really that gullible?

PLOT: 2/10

CHARACTERS :family_man_girl:

First of all, I liked how you didn’t dump every detail about any of the characters onto the readers. It’s a sloppy way of introducing characters, and it makes it a lot harder for there to be an emotional bond between the readers and characters. Good job on refraining from that, and actually using interactions to gradually show the readers certain character traits, their past lives, or any other qualities that they might have.

Despite this, I didn’t really like the MC, the love interest… or any of the characters that I’m assuming were meant to be likable. Alek is a jerk, in my opinion, and he’s a very flat character. If this story is going to go down the “stone-cold rich dude with a secret heart of gold” path, you may want to add more dimension to him. The most convenient ways to do this are through intricately writing his interactions with other characters, maybe writing inner monologues for him, showing flashbacks of his past life… Anything that will make it more apparent to the readers that he does have redeemable qualities, and that he’s more than a poorly-written trope.

Do this for the MC as well. I disliked her too because I felt she was weak and could barely stand up for herself around Alek.

Due to the reasons I stated above, I felt no chemistry between the MC and the love interest. Their interactions felt very dull-- there was no spark there. The only dialogue I felt flowed well were the ones between the MC and her family. They behaved as an actual family should, and reading their scenes was definitely the most enjoyable parts of the story.

CHARACTERS: 2/10

DIRECTING :movie_camera:

The directing wasn’t bad. I like your intro and your use of zooms in conversations. The custom backgrounds and overlays were nice touches as well. However, I noticed that your backgrounds were basically devoid of any background characters as well. Be sure to take advantage of using background characters and spot directing to add a lot more life into your story. Your story will look a lot more visually appealing, and it will make your skill as a director a lot more apparent to the readers.

I also felt bothered by the fact that when the characters exit, they exit in a super downward direction, and they also become really small. I also noticed a couple of problems with that when they were entering. Unless you want your character to travel in a far off distance or intentionally shrink, make sure they remain the same size during spot directing.

I also noticed a few layering issues; you should probably fix those as well.

DIRECTING: 7/10

GRAMMAR :books:

There were grammar errors in almost every sentence. There were many commas missing when they shouldn’t have been, and commas used when there should’ve been end marks in its place. I noticed you also didn’t put apostrophes in contractions that you used. There were also quite a few spelling errors that could be fixed.

Even though this isn’t grammatically incorrect, I noticed that many dialogues felt very stiff and awkward. They didn’t sound like something an actual person would say in a conversation. One tip I have for you to easily make your dialogue sound realistic is to add a lot more contractions. This problem did contribute a lot to the dialogue not flowing well between characters. The unrealistic conversations made the interactions feel forced and stiff. As you’re writing dialogue, ask yourself “Does this sound realistic? Is this something an actual person would say? Does this line of dialogue make sense coming after this line?”

GRAMMAR: 3/10

CHOICES :question:

Besides clothing choices, I didn’t remember there being any choices at all, or choices that actually mattered. You should add more choices to make the story feel more interactive and aid the readers in not feeling as bored during lines and lines of dialogue.

CHOICES: 1/10

FINAL SCORE: 15/50

Hi there! I was just wondering if you have started my review? If not, could you possible move me underneath the person under me? (One person down?) I revamped it a bit so that you could review this version, and am just waiting for my background to be reviewed. If you already began my review that’s totally fine! Just wondering!:grin::sparkling_heart:

I’m one chapter into rereading your story. I haven’t started the review yet, though.

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Oh, okay never mind then! :joy::grin:

If you really want me to review your revamped version, I can wait a bit until your background is approved :slight_smile: I think it’s more beneficial anyway, because I don’t see the point of re-reviewing the same material I did last time (it’ll do little to help you improve your writing). I can definitely work on the next review while I wait for you! Just tell me an approximate time you think you’ll be ready.

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Honestly, I’d love for you to review the revamped version! I believe that my background should be approved within 2 days at the latest, because I uploaded them a few days ago. Thank you so much for doing this! :grin::sparkling_heart:

@B.Carlton I just finished reading the first three chapters of Love’s a Game. Here’s my review. Sorry that it took quite a while to reach you! I didn’t expect to be writing this review so late, and on my birthday, haha! :heart: I guess things can take an unexpected turn.

PLOT :pencil2:

First impressions? Hmm… to be completely honest, I’m not a huge fan of the “romantic reality show” stories, but for the sake of these reviews, I have to put all biases aside and be open-minded. After all, there will always be potential for there to be a shining gem hidden somewhere in these type of stories…

I actually found the concept of the gameshow to be pretty interesting, at least more than other shows. With the whole “love or money?” concept, this story has certain mysterious and suspenseful elements to it, with who could betray you, fall in love with you, etc. There is so much potential here for edge-of-your-seat cliffhangers, yet you didn’t take advantage of that (in the first three chapters, at least). The chapters ended on an unsatisfying note and felt out of place. Try to make the chapters have more riveting or satisfying endings to motivate readers to keep going.

Elaborating more on this pacing problem your story has, one of the main causes is the rushed scenes. The interactions between characters feel choppy (which I will elaborate more on in the character category). You jump too quickly around scenes, without letting the readers take in the characters, the setting, and the mood/tone of a particular scene without being rushed to the next part of the story. Make sure you slow down scenes and explore them more intricately.

Since this is a Spotlight story, narration is essential to letting readers know what’s going on in a story. I thought you narrated the scenes very well by using a more creative well to tell the story.

Also, reusing the INT. BLACK - NIGHT intro (I think it started with “How did I end up here?” or something like that…) at the start of every chapter felt very out of place. The intro sets a feeling of confusion and unfamiliarity. I could understand chapter one because the MC was actually confused, and this was the start of the story, so the intro actually fit. However, after having a basic understanding of who the characters are and what the plot is, the story is already familiar enough so that the beginning feels out of place.

Overall, though, for this type of story, it definitely felt like it had potential to be more than a generic Episode romance template. The pacing is just very sloppy, and the scenes are choppy.

PLOT: 4/10

CHARACTERS :family_man_girl:

First of all, I appreciated how you didn’t tell every single bit of info about the MC or any of the game show contestants. This form of introduction reveals way too much about the characters and makes it much harder to craft dimensional characters or a decent arc around their development throughout the story. What I liked was you showed why the MC went on the game show and didn’t just tell everything through narration like “Oh, the MC’s ex cheated on her. Now the MC is rising back up again on her feet by being on this popular game show!” Same thing for the contestants. You only gave minimal info about them, but not a list about their entire personality lol. Hopefully, you will gradually unravel more details about these characters in the future to the readers to make it easier for readers to form an emotional connection to certain characters. On gameshow stories like this, characters are especially essential and are the spotlight of every single aspect of the plot. Good job on that aspect!

That being said, I still don’t feel a connection to any of the characters, not even the MC. I appreciate that there was a lot of character interaction in chapter 3, but continuing the point I made in the “plot” category, the interactions felt really choppy. The dialogue was very OOC as well and was all over the place. Make sure to slow down the pacing of your story to ensure that you have a chance to fully flesh out these characters of yours.

CHARACTERS: 3/10

DIRECTING :movie_camera:

I was so excited when I found out this is a Spotlight story! Spotlight is such an underrated visual form of storytelling here on Episode, and I would really love to see it being used more in other stories.

The animations fit the characters well and flowed nicely. It never felt like anything was misplaced. I liked the text effects as well, and how it was minimal and added emphasis on the dialogue without being distracting/flashy.

There wasn’t really anything special in terms of directing, but there weren’t really any mistakes either.

DIRECTING: 9/10

GRAMMAR :books:

There were grammar errors in almost every other sentence, including missing commas, apostrophes and end marks, and misuse of semicolons. If you struggle with grammar, my advice would be to download Grammarly if you haven’t already, but even that doesn’t fix all errors. Get someone who is experienced in grammar to proofread your story, if you can (Even I could help you! If you need help, feel free to PM me :slight_smile:). If you have a good understanding of grammar and its rules, make sure to carefully review your story as you’re testing it. Trust me, you will catch so many errors!

While this isn’t technically grammatically incorrect, another piece of advice I’d give to you would be to stop putting multiple end marks at the end of every sentence. I get that people do this to express strong emotions, but doing this frequently makes your writing look immature and sloppy. Also, it’s recommended that you don’t split sentences into fragments and have it run for multiple lines of dialogue. Many authors do this and separate the fragments with commas at the end of every line of dialogue, and then continue the sentence on the next line. This also makes your writing look sloppy. I understand that certain sentences can be very long, and it can be a lot for readers to take in all at once. However, try to find a way to shorten your sentences or split it up into multiple sentences (not fragments, of course!) without taking away from the quality of the dialogue.

GRAMMAR: 2/10

CHOICES :question:

Choices are another essential aspect of these “game show” stories, so I was so happy that you included so many! There wasn’t a lot in chapter 1, but that problem was gradually fixed in the next two consecutive chapters. You actually had me pondering over what to pick, and regardless of whether or not you’re using a points system/gains, you definitely made it feel like the choices impacted the direction of the story. Great job!

CHOICES: 10/10

FINAL SCORE: 28/50