View Full Version : An Exquisite Corpse: Discussion Thread

JX Valentine
April 4th, 2006, 12:06 PM
Note: If you've played this on Pokémon Fan Universe, the PC version should be similar. There's a few minor differences, however, so please read on.

Otherwise, yes, I ripped most of the following from the other version. Sue me.

Also note that the actual entry thread has yet to be established because the game has yet to actually begin. When we have enough players for at least three teams, the first randomization will occur, and soon after, I'll establish the game thread. (Sign up, dearies!)


Welcome to An Exquisite Corpse, a strange game that tests not only your individual writing abilities but your capability to work with others to create a random but entertaining finished product.

What is An Exquisite Corpse? It's a party game. A surrealist one, at that, in which a player would write or draw a piece of a composition and reveal only a part of it to another player, who would then continue the cycle by writing their own continuation to the last player's part before passing it onto another. The end result is an erratic and disjointed piece that may or may not make any sense whatsoever, but it's definitely a fun little swing, isn't it?

To participate in the game, the first thing you need to do is sign up. This, dear friends, is the discussion thread. You use it to sign up. (The other thread, which is in one of the main forums, is used to actually post your stories.) When you want to sign up, post in this thread to do it, and I'll put you on a list. That's all you have to do. That's it. Nothing more. Nada. Zip. Zilch. It's that simple.

Once you've got the hang of that part, then comes the harder part.

I'll take the list and randomize the people on it so you all wind up paired with two other players: one being the head, the next being the torso, and the last being the legs. Once I post the signal for the first round (and you'll know when I will), the people designated as the heads will begin by writing part of a story (see rules for details). When they reach their goal (again, see rules), they'll only pass the last line of it to the people who are the torsos of their team. The torsos also write their piece before passing the last line to the people designated as the legs. The legs, then, will finish up the story.

After that, the legs will pass their piece of the story and part of the title to the torsos, who will then pass their piece of the story and part of the title to the heads. The head of each team, then, is responsible for making sure all parts are in order and all together and for submitting them in the actual submission thread.

To be clear, let's say I was on a team with Negrek and Act. The signal would arrive in a new post to this thread, and it'll look something like this:

Team A
Act: Head
Kazeto Tamashii: Torso
Negrek: Legs

Act will start off the round for Team A with her part. When she's finished, she'll take the very last line of her part and send it via PM or IM to me. I'll write up my own part and send the last line of that to Negrek. When Negrek is done with her part, she'll send a message to me (containing a part of a sentence for the title) that she's done, and I'll in turn send a message to Act containing my piece of the title, Negrek's title piece, and our parts put one after the other (in other words, my part, followed by Negrek's). When Act gets the message and both title pieces, she'll make a new post in the submission thread containing the complete story with the complete title in the title bar or somewhere on the post itself.

Sounds simple, right? Oh, it gets more complicated than that.


1. All parts must be at least a page long. No ifs, ands, or buts. However, try not to exceed three pages either. If you're in mid-sentence by the time you hit three pages of text, then that's even better. Stop right there and send the last line on the third page to the next person in line.
1a. The exception to this rule are the people who are the legs of their team. They MUST wrap up their story within their part, no matter how long it ends up being, just as long as that ending is at least a page long.

2. A player CANNOT discuss what they're writing with anyone, including and especially their own teammates. They also can't change their piece in any way once they've finished.

3. To keep the game going, each part must be finished in two weeks. Two weeks really is a sufficient amount of time to write at least a page worth of storyline, so there's really little excuse. However, if you're unable to work in under two weeks, please simply pass the word along to your other two team members, who will have to figure out which one of them will take over your part. You'll then have to be extracted from the game until two other players are free to form a team with you.


Q. I don't get it. What's the point?
A. There is no point. It's an entertaining fling in which you mix your creativity with that of others to drag them through several rounds of brutal and pointless torment.

Q. Are the corpses really considered stories?
A. There's a beginning, a middle, an end, and some semblance of a plot. That's actually more than some badfics out there, so I personally say yes.

Q. What do I get for joining?
A. Eternal glory.

Q. Are there any requirements to join?
A. Well, you have to write. A lot. And you have to be comfortable with working with other people when you don't even know what you're supposed to be writing about.

Q. Can I write about Pokémon or something other than Pokémon?
A. There's no actual limitation to what you can write for your entry, but keep in mind that this game is being held in the Pokémon Fanfiction forum (so it's recommended that you stick to Pokémon).

Q. It's not fair! I got a bad writer on my team, so I'm going down because of it?!
A. Yep. That's the breaks. Remember, the point of this isn't so much to write the best story but to have fun playing the game.

Q. How do we choose titles?
A. Each writer will get to title their own piece. It's recommended that you give yours a one or two-word title, but a phrase is okay too, just as long as you're aware that others need to title theirs too. Either way, if you're the head, you should start off with a subject (as in, like a subject of a sentence), while the torso comes up with an addition to the same sentence (without knowing what you're writing about). The legs comes up with the final part of the sentence. All three parts need to relate to their part of the story while still forming some sort of surrealist sentence. Example of actual titles of exquisite corpse art pieces:

roaming/brings peaceful divinity/organic opportunities/great googally boogally!!
sidereal/king in yellow/painfully sneezes/when doves fly!

Either way, remember that you should be coming up with your title without discussing it with your other teammates. This includes retrograde naming, in which the legs' title influences the titles of the portions the torso and then the head create. It's funnier if you come up with something on your own.

Anyway, when the legs of the team is finished with his piece, he'll send a message containing his piece and title piece (i.e. title of his piece) to the torso of his team. The torso will then send a message to the head containing her title piece as well as the title piece of the legs. The head will then combine the title (following the "head + torso + legs" scheme) and use it as the title of the post.

Q. Can I join after the game starts?
A. Though it's not recommended, yes, you can. However, if there's less than four free players (as just three free players would make the randomization incredibly boring), you'll have to wait until everyone is done with their work before being able to join a team.

Q. Why was I put on more than one team?
A. It's probably because the number of players isn't actually a multiple of three, so another team had to be created using players from other teams just to get everyone onboard. You will never be charged with being the same part in both teams, however. (In other words, you will never be the head of two different teams.)

Q. Where can we review fresh corpses?
A. Right here, in the discussion thread.

Q. I have more questions!
A. Feel free to respond to this thread to ask. That's why I've made this a discussion thread.

The Player List Thus Far

Kazeto Tamashii

April 4th, 2006, 12:55 PM
I'll gladly sign up for this. ^__^

*goes off to advertise*

April 4th, 2006, 5:04 PM
Eh, I'll give it another go.

*wants to get torso this time instead of head*

oni flygon
April 4th, 2006, 5:45 PM
This sounds interesting and I guess exercising my writing skills won't be too bad since I haven't really written anything after I got promoted from Fanfiction mod...>>

I'll join... =D

April 5th, 2006, 9:17 AM
Me too, me too. Er... did the other one die?

April 5th, 2006, 9:46 AM
An Exquisite Corpse sounds like a good idea. I'm in.

April 5th, 2006, 11:16 AM
Me too, me too. Er... did the other one die?
I sent in my part. I assume the rest of my team is still plugging away... somewhere...

JX Valentine
April 5th, 2006, 11:20 AM
Er... did the other one die?

Not that I know of, no. Last time I heard about it, Negrek's team was still going strong (unless Larissa randomly decided to quit). The deadline for the first batch of teams is the end of this month since PFU has a two-week deadline instead of just a one-week one, so by the end of this month, we'll see if it actually lives.

April 5th, 2006, 4:14 PM
I sent in my part.

Well, aren't you special :P

Er... I should probably start mine... o.o;;

JX Valentine
April 22nd, 2006, 11:04 AM
After getting a little impatient, I've decided now would be a nice time to randomize the players and come up with teams. They are as follows:

Team A
Head: Act
Torso: sceptile2G
Legs: Kazeto Tamashii

Team B
Head: Negrek
Torso: Akinari
Legs: Lily

PMs to the heads will be sent out shortly. The game thread will be set up at the end of this week.

April 23rd, 2006, 8:33 PM
Noooo, I'm a head again! Noooo!

...suppose I ought to start thinking of an idea, then.

JX Valentine
April 24th, 2006, 1:04 PM
Noooo, I'm a head again! Noooo!

Sorry, but the randomizer apparently loves you. XD

JX Valentine
May 14th, 2006, 9:16 AM
Sorry for the double-post, but I'd like to say great job at making the deadline, everyone. XD

So, out of sheer curiosity, I've got two questions:

1. Is there something about the game that needs to be changed?
2. Shall I randomize the next set of chains, or do you all want to wait?

JX Valentine
May 14th, 2006, 12:47 PM
Sorry for the double-post, but I'd like to congratulate everyone on a job well done at making the deadline, which was yesterday. XD

Seriously, though, judging by the lack of entries, I'd like to ask two questions:

1. Is there something about the game that needs to be changed?
2. Shall I randomize new chains, or would you like me to wait first?

June 4th, 2006, 5:30 PM
Doh! Missed this round. Ah well, I'll join in the next. :)

To your first question, no, don't change anything. :) It is perfectly fun as it is.

The second, if you want, I really don't mind. :)