With a plan like that you'd better hope that Fate is a force that corrects to ensure Predictions come true, because if that force doesn't actually exist than there's no reason to think that the attack you engineer yourself will help you in any way. Just look at what's happened to Homekey; they engineered an attack and all it did was deplete their air defenses and make them even more vulnerable to the real attack. If the correcting force exists then a staged attack would have the benefit of relieving the pressure of that force and thereby giving you the freedom to shape your own future, but if the force doesn't exist then the staged attack could just as easily make things worse as make things better.Sir_Dr_D wrote:He could find ways to hold it off, but that is fighting 'fate', and fate will keep having numbers turned against him until it does occur. So the best you can do is have the attack happen on your terms in such as way to satisfy the words of the prediction. You still have to deal with what ever the original attack would have been, but at least now you can use some clever plan to prevent it.
What exactly are you talking about here? Where does it sound like that?Sir_Dr_D wrote:The wording of the comic does not give any clues as to why or how predictions are made, but once they are made, it does sound like 'Fate' forces them to occur by swapping number roles around.
Where do we get that from? The closest we've come to a Carnymancer talking about that seems to be Digdoug 9 where Dove says: "I’m not sure. Cheating Fate is a very tricky business. Predictions are pretty robust, you know? It might not take actual Carnymancy to undo it, but more just ‘thinking like a Carnymancer.’ But yeah, I’ve got a few ideas." She's being very slippery on the whole issue.Sir_Dr_D wrote:Using Carnymancy you can cheat the prediction to more favorable conditions, but you still have to deal with the threat that sprung the prediction to begin with.
That would mean that skillful use of Predictamancy is not in knowing what to Predict, but rather in knowing what not to Predict, so that avoiding bad Predictions is the key to effective Predictamancy. Unfortunately that doesn't make sense because if that were true then why would Predictamancers ever Predict bad things? Especially, why did Marie Predict Banhammer's death? Surely Marie would have known that she was effectively killing him by making that Prediction. It's certainly not that Marie was forced to make that Prediction against her wishes because Banhammer asked a question that he shouldn't have asked. In that case Marie would have been warning people of the danger of asking the wrong sorts of questions, but instead Marie was full of praise for Banhammer's willingness to face hard truths, which is the exact opposite. (B0E33)Sir_Dr_D wrote:The only times it does seem to have been used effectively, was for the hiding of FAQ. For that they seemed to have been predicting when they were in danger of being spotted, not when they would be spotted. perhaps Jillian should have asked if she would be ambushed in the current route she was planning to take, and not just if she would be ambushed that day.
I can see how a correcting force that keeps Predictions on track wouldn't necessarily need to be conscious, but in the system you describe there also needs to be something that chooses what Predictions can be made. If the Predictions are merely probable and not guaranteed, then how are Predictions selected from the countless probable futures?Sir_Dr_D wrote:Fate does not need to be a conscious force, just a prediction integrity security system.
I fully agree that Predictions always come true. Predictamancers seem to have total confidence in the truth of their Predictions, and I don't know what Delphie ever did to suggest otherwise. On the contrary, I would say that the only sign that Predictions don't always come true was the stuff that Marie said in B0E75, but ironically even while she was admitting to being wrong her Prediction was actually ultimately correct, so I'm not sure how we should fit Marie statements there with the rest of what we've seen about Predictamancy's infallibility.Godzfirefly wrote:Second, you asked the question about where in the comic it sounds like fate ensures predictions occur; the answer would be "all over the comic." Indeed, many people on these forums seem to take it for granted that Predictions always come true and even I must admit that the only sign in the comic that Predictions don't always come true is Delphi being an awful person with her Predictamancy to the point that it's not really clear if she really Predicted the things she says she Predicts.
If making a Prediction will unleash a magical force that will manipulate events as necessary to force the Prediction to come true, then Predictamancers absolutely should avoid questions that might result in a bad Prediction. A Prediction like that spawns an evil spirit that haunts you until you reach your bad outcome.Godzfirefly wrote:Third, you somehow took Sir_Dr_D's assertion that Predictamancers should be more careful what they "ask for" in their predictions to instead mean that Predictamancers should try forming their questions to avoid possibly predicting bad news because otherwise all Predictions will cause bad news. It is obviously not the same thing.
If the force is real then that's exactly what it means. Before the Prediction was made Banhammer might have lived forever or he might have died, but there was no invisible spirit manipulating events to arrange for Banhammer's death. If asking that question spawned such a spirit or released a magical force to guide Banhammer to his death, then asking that question is exactly like killing Banhammer by a slow-acting poison.Godzfirefly wrote:Asking "will Banhammer live forever" and getting the answer "No" doesn't mean that the Predictamancer killed Banhammer.
I agree. If that were true then Marie would never have Predicted Banhammer's death because she would never have tried to Predict on a question where "Banhammer dies" is a possible answer. She would stick to answering questions like "Which of our cities will be within sight of an enemy next?" She would never praise people for facing truths when the entire art of Predictamancy is centered around avoiding questions for which you might not like the answers.Godzfirefly wrote:Your suggestion that somehow the idea that Fate makes its decisions at the time of Predictions means that responsible Predictamancers shouldn't ask for Predictions that could have bad news is ridiculous on the face of it.
Only if you are careful about how you define the future. It does you no good to define a disastrous future which is beyond your power to improve. That's the whole point of the idea that people should be careful about what they ask Predictamancers, though I seriously doubt that Predictamancers actually control the future.Godzfirefly wrote:It ignores all the realities that bad things can happen even if Fate doesn't require it and that defining the future (even in a negative way) can allow you to make the future a better place.
If that were true then Marie would never have Predicted Banhammer's death because she would never have tried to Predict on a question where "Banhammer dies" is a possible answer.
It does you no good to define a disastrous future which is beyond your power to improve.
I never equated those particular things, but I think I know what you mean. I equate "Predictamancy cements an otherwise mercurial future" with "Predictamancy creates spirits that control events to force Predicted outcomes to occur." That's quite different, but close enough that I'm pretty sure it's what you mean. But in that case, what is the alternative? How can Predictamancy cement an otherwise mercurial future without controlling events?Godzfirefly wrote:And, equating the idea of "Predictamancy cements an otherwise mercurial future" to "evil spirits creating bad things every time it's possible to do so" is ridiculous and only you ever do it.
There used to be a lot of people who would say that right around the time when a beam fell on Parson near the end of Book 2. It seemed like everyone was convinced that Fate had to be some sort of entity that goes around dropping beams on people. I think the "evil" part goes without saying if Fate is controlling people's lives and the endless war of Erfworld is what it chooses to give people.Godzfirefly wrote:No one is saying that Fate is some kind of evil genie.
I wouldn't say that lying is the same as being wrong, but that's really just a question of the meaning of words. Whether we agree about the meaning of words or not, it's certainly clear that Delphie saying that Wanda would be a warlord doesn't represent a weakness in the power of Predictamancy. It's just a weakness in Delphie's honesty, which is irrelevant.Godzfirefly wrote:Her assertion that she lied doesn't change her being wrong about a Prediction, no matter how you (or she) try spinning it.
The fact that Marie said that Predictamancy gets things wrong is far more than enough to support reasonable doubt, but it still stands in opposition to a large amount of evidence in the other direction. There's no reason to ignore the doubt, but we should doubt its fallibility far more than we doubt its infallibility.Godzfirefly wrote:In my opinion, there is plenty of evidence to support reasonable doubt in Predictamancy's infallibility, though I understand why people are willing to overlook that doubt.
As long as Predictamancy can't actually cause Banhammer's death, then there's no reason why Marie should avoid Predicting it, but if Predictamancy can unleash forces that would ultimately kill Banhammer then Marie naturally should not unleash those forces. If she cemented Banhammer's death into what would otherwise be a mercurial future, than that must be a bad thing. Of all people in Erfworld, Banhammer more than anyone had the potential to live forever. There's no clear reason why Banhammer should ever have had to die.Godzfirefly wrote:And, the reality is that EVERYONE dies. So, why should Marie dance around that reality?
If questions really are dangerous, then surely Marie should have found a way to protect Faq without asking questions that would put Faq in danger. For example, she could ask, "Who is the next person that will try to kill Banhammer?" or "How many turns will there be before an enemy comes near to one of Faq's cities?" Cementing these kinds of things into a mercurial future protects Faq from harm, while less careful questions could actually cause Faq's destruction.Godzfirefly wrote:Indeed, it would be supremely responsible of Marie and Banhammer to research the circumstances of that inevitable reality to know what preparations they should take to ensure Banhammer doesn't take all of FAQ down with him when that happens. Frankly, it seems like it would be irresponsible of Marie to avoid Predictions that might give her and her ruler useful information.
That's true; even if it is a total disaster you can at least mentally prepare yourself, but when it's a real disaster like the destruction of Faq, it's better to have a chance of avoiding the disaster. It is especially better to have a chance of avoiding the disaster if the cost of knowing that the disaster is coming is bearing personal responsibility for causing the disaster.Godzfirefly wrote:Frankly, no Prediction is truly beyond a Side's power to improve with proper information.
Lilwik wrote:Here's an analogy. During the Cold War Stupidworld was on the edge of destroying itself with nuclear weapons. People were nervous because they didn't know if the world would end. Imagine a button hooked up to all the nuclear missiles on both sides. You know that pressing that button will either destroy all the missiles and end the war forever, or it will trigger an unstoppable countdown to launch all the missiles and give everyone in the world a last few days or years to live. You don't have a good idea of the odds of either outcome, but you know it's something close to the odds of those two outcomes happening if you didn't press the button. On the plus side, if you press the button you don't need to live with uncertainty and you can prepare for your fate. On the minus side, you might be personally responsible for the end of everything by denying the politicians their chance to find a peaceful solution. Would you press the button?
Lilwik wrote:But in that case, what is the alternative? How can Predictamancy cement an otherwise mercurial future without controlling events?
Lilwik wrote: I think the "evil" part goes without saying if Fate is controlling people's lives and the endless war of Erfworld is what it chooses to give people.
If there's an outcome that isn't inevitable and you want to make it inevitable, then I see no alternative but to have some person or force take some sort of action. People have to play their roles in your plan, and since the outcome isn't naturally inevitable that means that sometimes interventions must be necessary to keep events headed toward the target. Some sort of force or spirit or genie would need to be acting because otherwise nothing is being made to happen; in no sense would the Prediction make the outcome inevitable. Without the genie, either the outcome was already inevitable without the Prediction, or it is never inevitable.Godzfirefly wrote:Simply having the future be what the Prediction says seems like enough for me. I don't know why you need a genie of any sort to change details...simply making them inevitable is enough.
Agreed. Even if the force that corrects people from going off the script exists, it doesn't need to be conscious, but that's only half the process. There also needs to be a way of selecting the answers to the questions. Since the answers aren't initially inevitable and are only made inevitable by force, the theory is incomplete unless it provides some explanation for how the choice is made to apply the force in favor of one possible answer and against another. Surely the Predictamancers aren't choosing the answers to their own questions. Doesn't that suggest that there is some magical consciousness making decisions, such as if the genie has a mind of its own?Godzfirefly wrote:While an active, conscious force is possible I suppose, I would consider it more likely that the cementing of the mercurial future is more...mindlessly automagical. (And, earlier in this thread, you did acknowledge that Fate can be both mindless and controlling in the theory we discuss, so I assume I don't need to defend that concept.)
The Titans could be better people, but they don't actually make anyone fight as far as we know. It is ethically troublesome that they created a world that encourages fighting, but on the other hand it's also got a lot of improvements over Stupidworld. Assuming they aren't controlling the genie, the Titans are ethically superior by far.Godzfirefly wrote:By this same logic, it suggests you believe the Titans (who created a world full of warring factions with rules that seem to prevent sides being sustainable without combat) are also evil. Would that be accurate?
Lilwik wrote:The Titans don't make people fight; the genie does make people fight. Arranging the death of Banhammer is just one crime on a list that must be unimaginably long, but that crime alone is surely enough to prove that the genie is not benevolent.
The Titans never did that. Erfworlders only need to fight for their upkeep if there are too many units to support any other way. If you have a small enough army your cities produce enough shmuckers to pay everyone's upkeep. I'm pretty sure that's what Lord Crush's union was designed to do.Godzfirefly wrote:Wait...creating a rule system that offers sides the choice of war or disbandment from lack of upkeep, and you say they don't make people fight?
I agree, but the theory is that Predictions cement fates, and if that were true then whatever force re-aligned nature to cement Banhammer's fate is exactly responsible for arranging his death.Godzfirefly wrote:Also, Fate didn't "arrange the death of Banhammer".
That's all true, but the key point is that it is chosen by some mechanism that is controlling people's lives. If the mechanism isn't conscious itself then it was designed by the Titans who are certainly conscious, so either way it leads back to Fate being based on the decisions of some conscious entity.Godzfirefly wrote:As for choosing the answers, again that doesn't require a thinking force. It could just as easily be randomly decided from numerous options, set by probability, or even naturally assigned by whichever thread of destiny best leads toward some end goal.
Lilwik wrote:I agree, but the theory is that Predictions cement fates, and if that were true then whatever force re-aligned nature to cement Banhammer's fate is exactly responsible for arranging his death.Godzfirefly wrote:Also, Fate didn't "arrange the death of Banhammer".
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