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It's a Long Way Down · Original Short Story ·
Organised by RogerDodger
Word limit 2000–8000
Pushing Down
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#1 ·
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I'm not sure if it's a screenshot or if it has actually been rendered with a software, but in both case, that's not a problem.
The problem is I can't read all these gauges. I guess they come from a plane but since I don't know what they are saying, I therefore can't say what this is supposed to mean.

Some of the writtings seems to be Russian or at least are from the Cyrillic alphabet (even if it says "Korean alphabet"). Still don't know what to do with that, if it's coincidence or done on purpose but I'll stick with the latter.

So I'll assume that this is going to end in a plane crash and congratulate you for the unexpected POV.
#2 ·
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A render, by the looks of things! Seems itting to the prompt. As a layperson, I don't know what some of the gauge readings mean, though, sadly.
#3 ·
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I'm calling this for being a flight-simulator game screenshot rather than a render, for one specific reason: I don't think someone who hand-assembled it for a render would make the mistake of calling the Cyrillic lettering "Korean script". (Also, for as detailed as the dashboard is, the shadows are super bitmapped.)

I don't say that to slam this; what's important is the final product. And while I'm not terribly familiar with aviation I can definitely see the narrative here. The top center dial is aircraft pitch and angle; while the plane is basically side-to-side level it's in a severely steep descent (the center numbers are degrees from level; 0 means flying parallel to the ground, and 90 means straight down). I also see what looks like an altimeter in the lower left, telling us that the plane is 4100 ... meters? ... high, a long way down indeed.

As for the rest, I'm afraid my lack of knowledge is causing me to struggle. I think the upper left dial is a speedometer?, but if that's the case the plane seems to be flying well below stall speed, at 20 mph/kph/knots/whatever. That also makes the dive perplexing, because if you're headed at a 70-degree angle downward you ... aren't exactly gonna be dawdling. The far right "100%" thing might be fuel gauges?, but other than that I have no idea what the rest of the dials represent. That kiiiinda works in the sense of illustrating the chaos of a tense flight situation, but it also throws in a lot of red herrings preventing the viewer from understanding the meaning of the piece, adds compositional clutter, and (at least for me) dilutes the core narrative presented by the "important" dials I interpreted, making me feel like there's more to the story I don't understand.

Could that have been fixed by using dials with English instead of foreign lettering? Partially, but then that adds even further to the information overload, so all of those dials had better be relevant if you switch, or you're going to need to find some way of drawing the eye to the important ones.

(It's a shame that the pitch indicator doesn't have the negative angles on a red background or some such; a splash of color would have really made it focally central. Instead, it's half obscured by the shadow of the control stick, which reduces its importance.)

The tight focus on the dials is, on the whole, good composition, just hampered by the above issues. The stark blue and black and white I think adds an abstract coldness to the piece that serves it well, but, again, a splash of color on the most relevant dials would have been welcome. On the whole, I kind of want to like this more than I actually do; middle tier, but thank you for sharing.