Winners of the Under the Sea Challenge
Crashed Sky Citadel by Rain
A deep dive that slowly reveals its mystery. I thought it was clever to write about something that wasn't supposed to be in the water, a crashed citadel, and I was intrigued to see how it was handled. This was my early favourite!
- by Chris L
Tambanokano is one of the Seven Celestial Gluttons. The star-eating crab sits at the bottom of the deepest trench in the ocean, eating anything that comes within reach of its greedy claws.
I really enjoyed the mythological kaiju aspect, and the prose around the "celestial gluttons" and star-eating is evocative. The idea of a giant, hungering crab sitting in the depths of the ocean and craving the stars is great.
Qimiori - Water Forests by Blue Fairy 74
Qimori takes us through a unique, strange biome. Like above-ground subnautica, we get to learn about this alien biome and its cornerstone plant: the Knot Trees. I love how the map feature is used to showcase the trees and the life around them.
Tsuthar'Chor by JudasBrennan
Most articles about these kind of creatures are scant on the detail of their inner workings, so it was a fresh take on getting one that provided insight into their actual society and how it functions. Colossal, psychic minds locked in an internal cold war is some wonderful imagery, as is the miles of neural tendrils and fleshy blobby city architecture. Lovely!
Thalatta by hughpierre
An hostile globe of ancient sea-water locked in by perpetual motion, Thalatta was just such an inventive concept!
Descent of Íde by SapphireSong
Worldbuilding and storytelling work together in this lovely character-driven piece. What a great way to introduce us to StarSea!
The Merpeople by Amélie I. S. Debruyne
You have to read this for the art, if nothing else! Amélie weaves stories around her worldbuilding, and with it introduces us to all kinds of aspects of her new Mer people. It's very smart in how it gets across a lot of information fast.
Chok Swam by The Big G
This late entry was worth waiting for! Strange interlocked beings are cool enough on their own, but what really pulls this article into excellence is the strong perspective, that of vastlander Haftera Djuur, who once was allowed to travel with the strange aquatic species. I really loved the art too!
The Joining by Rin Garnett
There was no doubt who the winner was for this challenge. Not only did Qurilion and I both give this our top scores for creativity and versimilitude, but it was the highest scoring for both of us. I love travelling cities, but what Rin does with the joining blew me away. A masterful blend of biology and festivals comes together to make some really, really, good worldbuilding.