How do you determine story success or failure if the overall story is never quite resolved?
In this story, two alien forces are locked in an endless combat in which humans are willing pawns. The aliens supply the weapons and resources while the humans do all the fighting and dying.
The MC works with one of several rival human factions fighting for the good aliens while jockeying for power over the other factions. A human working with the bad aliens creates a technology which kills the MC's wife and son, leaves his daughter on the edge of death and him dying.
To save his daughter and himself, he goes rogue, abandons his faction to search for the man who created this technology and extract a cure. He ends up forming a loose alliance with agents from rival factions who each seek the technology to win the war and gain an advantage over their rivals.
His IC, a past acquaintance working for a mysterious faction of uncertain loyalties, tries to convince him to abandon the war and find the power within himself to defeat the force that is killing him.
As his allies die off one-by-one he becomes convinced there is little difference between the "bad" and the "good" aliens and that the war itself is the problem. He takes the IC's advice, finds the power to rid himself both of the bad alien force killing him and his daughter and frees himself from the "good" alien force. In doing so, he demonstrates to those allies that remain how to escape the war.
I don't know if they find the technology they seek, or find it and abandon it and frankly I don't think it is important to the story. My problem is that, while I think the story judgment is good, I don't know if the outcome is success or failure--much less the rest of the story form.
The OS would seem to be in OBTAINING since most of the story is about them trying to track down the guy who created the new technology and obtain it for themselves. (And, because of the rivalry, I could see how the OS issue could be SELF INTEREST vs MORALITY.) But if I look at the issue in terms of Purpose, Motivation, Evaluation and Methodology, I'd say the central problem is that the MC and OS characters have all failed to evaluate the true nature of the war, which would put the OS somewhere in DOING and I don't see how those issues apply.
The MC is focused on saving himself and his daughter which I guess would be somewhere in SITUATION (Threat? Interdiction? Repel?) and the issue between the MC and IC would probably be about him coming to understand the true nature of the war and his ability to escape it, which would put the RS in the PSYCHOLOGY domain. Yet, I would also say that the IC is largely motivated by OBLIGATION since she is responsible for the MC getting dragged into the war in the first place, except that the IC and RS can't be in the same domain.
So, though I have a pretty good idea of what happens in this story, the issues and concerns (to say nothing of the elements themselves) are all over the place.
Every time I think I'm beginning to understand Dramatica, I run into these sorts of issues trying to apply it. Anyone have any advice? Opinions?