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Not only do Wikia's collaborative writing projects inspire entertaining stories rife with suspense and dramatic tension, they illustrate the collaborative spirit of Wikia's impassioned user base and the platform's unique ability to engage fans in creative ways.
Now, Wikia is trying something new to further bridge the divide between fans and creators. The Masters of Animanga project has anime and manga's most renowned figureheads providing original art, characters, and story outlines to set the stage for a trio of new collaborative writing projects. With the Masters of Animanga CWP, users aren't only collaborating with one another -- they're collaborating with the masters themselves. It's a one of a kind opportunity for fans of anime and manga to play a principal role in the creative process, transcending fan fiction to help build something striking, entertaining and -- above all -- completely original.
[TAO: Rize of the Ying-yang http://animanga.wikia.com/wiki/Collaborative_Writing_Project:_TAO:_Rize_of_the_Ying-yang], the second story in Wikia's Masters of Animanga series comes courtesy of acclaimed manga artist and character designer Shin-ichi Hiromoto (Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Pokémon Colosseum, Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness)!
TAO: Rize of the Ying-yang has been live since Friday, September 13th, and there has already been a flurry of activity. Keep reading for a summary of what's happened so far.
Just like last time, the Master got things started by providing a few drawings (which you can check out above), as well as description of the story's characters and world. Here is the backstory, as provided by Hiromoto and his team:
This is a struggle between white and black, light and shadows, exterior and interior, justice and evil. This is the tale of a transcendental battle between a Buddhist maiden (good) and a witch (evil).
Due to certain circumstances, our young hero is dragged into the “Battle of White and Black.” Plunged into the depths, he becomes a prisoner as he is entranced by both the Buddhist maiden and witch, with whom he also falls in love.
In the course of the battle, what is the youth’s relationship with the Buddhist maiden? What sort of woman is the witch? Will the grey-colored youth be dyed in white or black, or something else entirely?
Wikia's Brian Linder started the story with a pair of narrative threads. The first was an altercation between The Buddhist Maiden (with two of her various forms represented) and The Witch, which ended very explosively. The second plot thread involved a regular young man bumping into, and being kissed by, a mysterious woman. The young man is named Miru by Zeromaro.
Anonymius suggested that the mysterious woman was in fact the Witch. ScorpionTail introduced an ominous character overlooking the scene, named Khopesh. The Buddhist maiden's seven personalities are revealed as sisters, all with different color hair. It is revealed that the Miru is in fact a wizard because of a dream he had. The main witch's name is Erika, as written by TheReturnOfTheKing
The next day, OmegaHideki got things started by proposing Erika and the Maiden team up to tackle a new external threat -- The Legion of Swords. The group teleports to a new world to search for the elemental champions, who will help them defeat the evil group. ScorpionTail has Erika negotiating with The God of Darkness, named Asura, who was trapped by The Legion of Swords long ago, and agrees to help.
Forest Dragon Slayer introduces a pair of katana wielding warriors to fight alongside the main group -- Eugene and Recon.
Karena561 continues the group's quest to find the elemental champions, by having everyone travel to Skylarian City, where they believe the Champion of Fire resides.
Fighting in the streets on Skylarian City begin between our heroes and the Legion of Swords, the details of which are explained in great detail by ChaosWyvern-i, Ezvil,  Karena561, ScorpionTail, and Zombomb, who has Recon and Eugene demonstrating their combat skill.
Erika's deal with Asura is revealed by DuskNeo and elaborated on by OmegaHideki, and Mizuki is not pleased. The TAO cards are becoming a substantial plot device (which makes sense, given the title of the project).
Mizuki gives Mibu some of her powers, and Mibu is taken aback by his new set of ears and tail. The group is surprised by the fleeting appearance of a number of spirits. Splitting up the characters even more, with yet another personality, is Stefan, who reveals that Erika used to be an evil witch by the name of Wrath before undergoing a transformation that made her benevolent. ScorpionTail reveals, however, that Wrath is still alive in well, and will fight for control of Erika's mind as "Queen Urumi." ScorpionTail writes: "'I will take over the Legion of Swords as Queen Urumi,' said Wrath, 'and when I am in control, no one will stop me!'" Erika narrowly avoids fusing (once again) with her darkside -- but Urumi, clever as always, seeks allegience with Asura, and in doing so becomes the master of the Legion of Swords. Waking from a dream, cuddling up with Erika, Mibu senses the change, and the group is fraught with worry.