For the Rubyverse, I was working on the vampiric martial art some more.
I'm not sure if I had a name in mind for the vampiric martial art before, but now I do. I was thinking the English name for it would be "Moving Tree". I decided on that name for a variety of reasons. The idea behind it is that the user has their roots firmly planted in the ground--the martial art is not one which really involves jumping. It is furthermore one which involves being solidly positioned on the ground, such that nothing fazes the user.
In fact, the implication is also meant to be that the user is as tough as wood, with a hardened body.
And yet, there is also a fluidity in movement inherent in the martial art, the softer, flowing elements as if a tree is being blown by a gentle breeze. These sharp, crisp movements direct things, and can lash out with incredible precision and power.
Plus, there is the fact that branches can be, when sharpened enough, used as if spears--with the implication of impaling enemies upon the 'branches'. (Which in this case would be hands.)
There's more to it than that, but another one of the main reasons I chose that as the name is because it had the aesthetic of a name which sounded like it was plausibly a martial arts name to use. Yes, I haven't done the requisite research on Chinese martial arts that I wanted to, to get a better idea, but I DO know that quite a number of martial arts take HUGE cues from nature in their naming schemes.
And the idea of a tree which moves seems like it is something that could, quite plausibly, come from that culture. (Especially given that one of the traditional Chinese elements is Wood.)
Will I remember to call the vampiric martial art the Moving Tree martial art? Probably not! After all, it's possible this isn't the first name I've given the martial art, it's just the name I came up for it today.
Still, I feel that if nothing else this is a promising name. I'll need to find out what the best non-English name would be, because the non-English name would be the OFFICIAL name for the vampiric martial art, with "Moving Tree" just being the translated-into-English name for said martial art.
Beyond that, I also developed another new technique.
So the knife-guard's signature technique is the impale, from which the impaler stance derives its name; it is also the signature move of the martial art as a whole. While all four of the founding masters of the style were involved in every step of the process, the knife-guard was primarily co-developed by (who else?) both Tepes Lords.
The tri-guard's signature technique is the typhoon strike; while all founding four masters were involved, it was most heavily developed by Victor Wu.
And today, I developed the Claw-guard's signature technique:
What it is, is basically an existing martial art move in more flowing styles/forms, a circular motion.
The back hand rotates either above or below the front hand, and the front hand rotates either below or above the front hand.
When the front hand goes below the back hand/the back hand goes above the front hand, it is called Kneading; when the front hand goes above the back hand/the back hand goes below the front hand, it is called Purring.
These names originate from how, if you slow the motion down and slightly exaggerate it, what the fingers resemble.
The motion of the hands in Kneading looks a lot like a cat kneading, when slowed down. (At full speed, it's more like a scratch.) The potion of the hands in Purring bends the wrist in such a way that one hand comes back almost to the jaw, in a position which is stereotypically associated with the position you'd see paws placed in on a cat which is purring.
Now, Kneading/Purring can be done in a continuous cycle, where you make a full circle. Backhand to front to back, rotating clockwise or counterclockwise continuously, which is considered continuous kneading/purring. However, far more common is to switch between the two: instantly do a knead/purr, and then snap back with a purr/knead.
So I'm not quite sure I'm explaining this motion as well as I should.
Basically, know how claw guard is essentially just knife guard except with a curled hand with the fingers apart? Well, it starts with the forward-hand in front, as per the norm for the martial art, and the back-hand in the back, obviously. But the motion snaps the back hand into the front and the front hand into the back.
This can be done in a static position, but is designed to synergize well with moving between the back/defensive stance and the forward/attack stance of the impaler stance. This is also one of the best defensive moves in the arsenal of the martial art, meant to give a continuously rotating guard--in theory, making it much harder to exploit vulnerabilities in defenses.
In all other aspects of the vampiric martial art, unless the hands are involved actively in either a strike, block, or grab or some sort, they remain static. They are locked more or less in a single position, where they rest. Now! Said position happens to be a smart position, one where they can easily in a split second snap a block/strike/etc. out. But the fact remains that an opponent can, if given the chance, see potential weaknesses in the defense because the defense never changes its base position.
This isn't just a vampiric martial art thing. I know from experience in sparring for my tae kwon do that the arms in the guard? Unless they are punching or blocking, they don't tend to move. The legs? They move a plenty. But the arms have more or less a single fixed position, a single 'optimized guard position', where with minimal movement a block/strike can be made.
And I don't think it's just my school.
I think this exists in almost all martial arts. I know they're not the best example, but like. In basically any movie featuring martial arts where the fighting is choreographed in such a way that you can see the fighters have a guard in the first place. The guard doesn't move when not striking/blocking/grappling. It just sits in one position.
It also is there in game animations, too, for the most part. Sprites are animated where the knees bend, the hips bend, there is forward and backward movement where the spine more or less is moving forward and backward. You know the like, it's something you see all the time. Yet when not performing either a block or a strike or a grapple, how often are the sprites' arms actually fluidly moving?
I mean, sure, it happens, but it doesn't happen often. Maybe it's wasted effort, or maybe there's the fear that the movement creates a vulnerability, maybe there's a reason for it. But I also believe that there's a reason why not every martial art does this, why some do have the arm movement I'm more or less talking about--
After all. There are existing forms where the arms move in more or less the way I am talking about. (In fact, I know at least one form from tae kwon do which uses the basic movement I am dubbing in my martial art kneading/purring.)
So I think that, mechanically, it can work as a way to more or less serve to theoretically make it much harder to exploit gaps in defense. And, yes. The movement behind kneading/purring is such that both arms are fully capable of blocking and striking at any moment.
In fact, half the reason to use this is to launch an unexpected attack, most likely a palm strike. Because the rotation is done continuously, and because it only takes ever so slightest the modification of movement to turn the simple rotation into a strike, a blow can be delivered with no warning by using this method.
At least. In theory. I have tested the body mechanics and the idea is at least theoretically sound. It acts pretty much as the counterpart to an existing thing from fighting.
In sparring, already. Your feet aren't meant to be static. They are springy. Bouncy. They have ever so slightest the continuous movement between one another. To allow for the ability to move forward, backward, sideways, in an instant, to react to being hit, and to surprise an opponent by 'invisible movement'. A move with the feet to close distance without revealing you're closing distance, or a kick without revealing you're throwing a kick.
It's a very tae kwon do type thing, but I imagine quite common even outside of it. You move the feet continuously so that your opponent never knows what you are planning to do next, and so that you can always be ready for what your opponent does next.
Kneading/purring, as I envision it, is basically doing the same thing the legs do, except with the hands. Especially since it can rotate two different directions, attacks can come from any number of different locations/times, without warning that there is any deviation from the pattern.
And yes. If you couldn't tell. It was indeed developed primarily by Lord Darkblood, and thus, is the style Ruby adapts for use in Red Hood Rider.
That's the main thing I'll be blogging about today, but I also thought it worth mentioning a dream I had last night.
The dream was almost nested, as a dream within a dream. Almost. It was a situation where I was involved in an event and thought I was more or less on break from a different event (a different dream). In the event I was involved in, I was watching television.
On that television, there was a kids cartoon show playing. Now, I don't remember if this was a real cartoon show, a fictional cartoon show, multiple real cartoon shows meshed up, or some combination of these, but what I do remember quite clearly was, within that cartoon show, there was dialog within that I listened to and memorized. (Unfortunately, I promptly forgot what said dialog was upon awakening.)
I was immensely reassured, and told my companion in the dream: "That's exactly the type of dialog that I use in Phyrra and Cyrus!" So basically. At least inside my dream. The dialog of Phyrra and Cyrus comes across as being natural, as being standard for a kids cartoon show, being just as good if not better than the material of other shows circulating in the contemporary market.
Of course, this is a dream we are talking about.
In spite of that.
Upon waking up.
The reassurance remains. Because I do tend to trust my dreams a lot. Phyrra and Cyrus was born from a dream, and this dream was indirectly telling me I feel, "You are on the right track. Don't second-guess your choices in terms of the dialog and what you want the characters to be. You are making something which is of quality."
And I want to believe in that.