Book 2 – Text Updates 037

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Calemyr » Fri Dec 24, 2010 6:42 pm

I can't help but think we might have grabbed the wrong end of the stick here. All our theories are built on the assumption that Wanda and Marie betrayed their king with no mechanically sound reason for it. What if that assumption is faulty? What if Banhammer himself was in on the plan.

When you think about it, it makes sense. Banhammer was a philosopher king who didn't like to fight, but allowed his daughter to as long as she didn't bring any of her work home with her. If Marie came to him with a prediction on how to end war, but to do so would require him sacrificing himself and his kingdom, would he do it? Given that he managed to have all of his high-value units positioned where they could survive, it seems quite likely to me.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Vreejack » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:21 pm

"From above, the calls of unseen birds rang out danger, rang out a warning."

Uh-oh. No love between my brothers and my sisters?

If I had a hammer...
So...Watashi wa mizugorō ga sukina koto o kiita, neh?
A Prediction is what would have happened had there been no Prediction. What is scary is that they are also what will happen in spite of the Prediction.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Zeku » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:33 pm

Pretty cool that we're seeing the realization of things long conjectured. I wasn't in on the Predictamancy discussions, but we thought quite some time ago that the TPWL spell was just too 'neat' to really make sense, and that Janis might be a mastermind. I'm surprised Parson himself hasn't investigated this personally. Maybe it's just outside his interests to look for the overarching purpose in the conflict.

The blurriness between prediction and creation is already heavily explored by works like Dune, (and the Bible) but I am very interested to know what these predictamancers are really up to, and if they're being faithful to the desires of Janis. Time will tell!

One thing we do know for sure, Charlie sure isn't going to make any money off of peace. I'm pretty sure he's going to get more involved in the conflict once he realizes his ordinary manipulations aren't working, but I'm very curious to see if he becomes 'dark' or 'aloof' or 'vicious' or something else.

One thing I was thinking about the other day, since Charlie's organization is called 'Charlescomm,' is he running a magical telecom company? Does this imply anything about his powers or goals? It seems to indicate that his strength is communication itself, though this is merely a clarification of what is already well known.

It reminds me of Lucifer actually, who is called the Prince of the Air. Air is an element associated with intelligence, communication, and catalyzation. Charlie certainly fits this profile well, in addition to being mysterious, hidden, manipulative, a 'deal maker,' helpful without being good, unwilling to reveal the limits of his strength, etc. In fact, the only aspect of the air element that Charlie does not embody is the oration of a politician.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Dr Pepper » Fri Dec 24, 2010 9:43 pm

Raza wrote:Well, that ties a lot of stuff up, and begs a whole bunch of new questions.


That's the genuine Rob Balder touch!
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Atomic » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:21 pm

Wow, great update!! I feel like a lot of stuff was answered, yet even more left unknown. Of course, the biggest "unknown" for me is the linkup...

I've thought about it a handful of times, and I'm thinking there isn't any type of contradiction. The numbers/types of casters involved in the creation of the SPW-scroll are starting to make sense... The Summon Perfect Warlord spell isn't in need of retconjuration; it's a Thinkamancy/Lookamancy/Predictamancy-based scroll, but the scroll is meant to be used by a Findamancer. That's what the support plan would've paid for; the Findamancer(s) and any Thinkamancer(s)/Lookamancer(s) involved in order to help him (or her) out.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Oberon » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:24 pm

MarbitChow wrote:Although it has not been completely confirmed, I believe you can add Charlie to the list of males, which would tip the 'play a role' scale very heavily back in favor of the men. :)
I think that it has been confirmed enough to be accepted without argument that Charlie is male. His name and his voice are male, and although it would be not entirely out of character for Charlie to pose as the opposite gender, there has been no hint that he is doing so, and there is no known reason why he would do so.

But as to being a caster... That's a bit of a fringe case. He is the overlord of the Charlescomm Side, and all known overlords or kings/queens have been, well, overlords or kings/queens. We haven't seen a caster overlord/king/queen. We have been told that the 'Dish gives Charlie "a command of Thinkamancy [Maggie] cannot match." Maggie is not a mastercraft level caster, but we've seen that Charlie has Thinkamancy abilities which are unique. Ranged links, hacking eyebooks, eavesdropping on thinkagrams, etc. These are capabilities that appear to go beyond the ability of even the most powerful thinkamancers, if only for a lack of having seen any thinkamancers demonstrate similar capabilities.
oslecamo2 wrote:Well, I had suspicions the Hippiemancer was pulling strings here and there, but I never imagined she would actualy be the mastermind! :shock:
Interesting that you'd say that. I thought that this update made it clear that Janis wasn't "the mastermind", and that Marie has a decent amount of agenda of her own.
Raza wrote:At least now we can cut the "Why doesn't everybody buy ten perfect warlord spells and sell the bracers?" crap. Only one was made and guided to the right hands, probably empowered by fate itself in supplying things like the bracer.
No, we can't. And it's not "crap", unless you just want to blindly accept things without doing a little prodding at the logic behind them. Yes, only one was made, and it was made with a specific customer in mind. A customer who still had to pay for it, remember. This isn't the One Ring we're talking about, it's a scroll made by a tri-mancer link. And for 500k shmuckers, or even 350k, there isn't a whole lot of compelling reasons why more wouldn't be made for any other interested customers, or even in advance with a similar sale in mind. This is only logically speaking, of course. If we drag plot into it then it just becomes an author fiat that no more will be made, no matter how logical it might be that splitting 350k or 500k shmuckers between three casters might be seen as something that those three casters might want to do a few more times.

I think Sieggy has some good insight. There is a lot that needs to be looked at more closely. The "lucky" slew of dwagons to be tamed by Stanley on his way to FAQ, and the "clouding" of the predictamancers vision, both point at outside forces. But which outside forces?
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Dr Pepper » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:36 pm

Snowtitan wrote:In this I see parallels with Asimov's foundation series, where R Daneel, and R Giskard (is that right?, been a while), formulated the 0th law of robotics where a robot must work towards the betterment of mankind, even overriding the famous 1st, 2nd and 3rd laws.


Wasn't in Foundation. It was in an anthology called "The Rest of the Robots".
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Aquillion » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:39 pm

EthericSentinel wrote:Just a thought -- normally Loyalty and Duty would prevent any caster from herself arranging the death of her Ruler. Wanda is a known, puzzling exception, having directly engineered the fall of Faq.
Wanda didn't arrange the death of her Ruler; she expected Stanley to fail and die. The only reason he didn't was because of a bizarre coincidence involving large numbers of Dragons spawning along the way. (We still don't have any idea why that happened, but given that it was highlighted it seems likely someone influenced it.)
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby twhitt » Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:42 pm

Can anyone point me to where the SPW Scroll was said, definitively, to be a tri-mancer link? Hippiemancers, Predictamancers, Lookamancers, Findamancers, and Thinkamancers are all supposed to be involved, in ways that haven't been delineated. That's five kinds of -mancy, so who is to say that the link was not of four or even five casters? If a hippiemancer must be linked to the others to create the scroll, for example, it's highly likely they would only consent to making one of them.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Decorus » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:00 am

And people still hold onto the Charlie can overhear thinkamancy links. The reality is 90% of all such magic is Charlie casting it he doesn't need to overhear as he is the middleman in the transaction and hears everything irregardless. Charlies major money maker is not war its telecommunications.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby idahoud » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:13 am

I totally love the salvific character this update took on, especially considering the timing - Christmas Eve. Parson Gotti, a Christ-like hero?
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby fjolnir » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:14 am

there was a foundation book, it may have been the one which was written by greg bear that had a young hari seldon pitching psychohistory and getting spurned by the empire until R. Daneel interferes, explining the 0th law to him, he was secretly guiding parts of human history since earth was lost.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby EthericSentinel » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:18 am

zilfallon wrote:
EthericSentinel wrote:Just a thought -- normally Loyalty and Duty would prevent any caster from herself arranging the death of her Ruler. Wanda is a known, puzzling exception, having directly engineered the fall of Faq.


Wanda didn't do that. She believed that Stanley would fall and she'd attune to the hammer. But fate demanded otherwise.


Aquillion wrote:
EthericSentinel wrote:Just a thought -- normally Loyalty and Duty would prevent any caster from herself arranging the death of her Ruler. Wanda is a known, puzzling exception, having directly engineered the fall of Faq.
Wanda didn't arrange the death of her Ruler; she expected Stanley to fail and die. The only reason he didn't was because of a bizarre coincidence involving large numbers of Dragons spawning along the way. (We still don't have any idea why that happened, but given that it was highlighted it seems likely someone influenced it.)


Since two others have independently pointed this out, I'll assume that there is textual support for it. I don't know of this support, so any direct citations would be appreciated.

However, I'll point out that it is contradicted by Stanley's account of the battle. Wanda didn't wait for Stanley to threaten her side; she actively turned as soon as he arrived, and used her own Uncroaked to kill her King. Maybe Stanley is an unreliable narrator, or just filling in details he misremembers... but it seems like too specific a detail to be an after-the-fact embellishment. When this was kept secret for so long, there wouldn't be much time for the story to grow in the telling.

On the other hand...

Calemyr wrote:I can't help but think we might have grabbed the wrong end of the stick here. All our theories are built on the assumption that Wanda and Marie betrayed their king with no mechanically sound reason for it. What if that assumption is faulty? What if Banhammer himself was in on the plan.

When you think about it, it makes sense. Banhammer was a philosopher king who didn't like to fight, but allowed his daughter to as long as she didn't bring any of her work home with her. If Marie came to him with a prediction on how to end war, but to do so would require him sacrificing himself and his kingdom, would he do it? Given that he managed to have all of his high-value units positioned where they could survive, it seems quite likely to me.


This would nicely avoid the Loyalty issue, and Duty can vary over time. (Parson seems to need the kick of the added Duty as Chief Warlord to really get brutal with his exploits.) So I could believe this. If Wanda had been ordered to turn, then presumably, as soon as she got the chance, her Duty would transfer to Stanley. All of a sudden killing and uncroaking the King becomes required to eliminate a threat to her Overlord.

Decorus wrote:And people still hold onto the Charlie can overhear thinkamancy links. The reality is 90% of all such magic is Charlie casting it he doesn't need to overhear as he is the middleman in the transaction and hears everything irregardless. Charlies major money maker is not war its telecommunications.


It's rather strongly implied here. Maybe open to interpretation, but dramatically speaking, I have a hard time believing this could mean anything else.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby multilis » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:38 am

What if Charlie is a caster we already have seen in the magic kingdom?

Shades of Star Wars or similar, where the Sith Lord plays both sides of the fence and wins no matter which side wins... the important thing to him is that they fight. An end of war would be Charlie winning the world.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby joosy » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:44 am

Decorus wrote:And people still hold onto the Charlie can overhear thinkamancy links. The reality is 90% of all such magic is Charlie casting it he doesn't need to overhear as he is the middleman in the transaction and hears everything irregardless. Charlies major money maker is not war its telecommunications.


I believe he can listen in on Thinkagrams - and he doesn't want anyone to know he can do that. The fact that he can hack the eyebooks is evidence of this.

I believe the limitations may be that he can only do that with minds that he has touched and that he cannot make or take any other thinkagrams when in progress.

Hopefully all will be made clear soon
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby joosy » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:53 am

Those wondering about Wanda's loyalty...

I believe this may have to do with the very nature and goals of the kingdom of Faq itself. This was a supposedly impossible bubble kingdom. It existed in complete contradiction of the rest of the world that they knew.

I imagine that during the discussions of the royal court at Faq, there was some wondering on how they could change the rest of the world so that they would no longer have to live in secret and in constant fear of being detected.

This may have been a plan of Banhammer's but i don't think he intended for himself to croak or he understood that this was bigger than he was and entrusted Marie to carry out the plan after his passing.

That being said, Banhammer and his kingdom may have pledged themselves loyal to Fate, each to their own degree. Thus, Wanda may believe she is loyal to Fate but may also be loyal to the betterment of her side in a long roundabout way.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby Glenn » Sat Dec 25, 2010 12:54 am

Etheric Sentinel, Stanley's account of the battle show how Wanda did try to kill him and take the Hammer. She deliberately mislead Stanley about the strength of Faq's defenses, and persuaded him to attack Faq with a grossly inadequate force. This is consistent with the story about how Faq fell that she told Parson at the end of Book One. Let me quote from the update you linked to:

"Now, I was Chief Warlord back then, so I could do whatever I wanted. I told the King I was going off to tame dwagons in the high mountains out west, he didn't care. I headed out with like fifteen of 'em in a couple of stacks. Wanda said Faq was pretty weak, so I figured that'd be enough.

"Wow, was she wrong! Faq had a whole lot of casters, and they had defense spells up the wazoo. I could never have taken that city with fifteen dwagons. Never! I lost more than ten on approach, shot down from the tower."

He looked at Zidane, who seemed interested now that it was about a battle. Stanley grinned, "Ha! And you're wondering, 'so how did he get out of that one?' Right?"

"Yes, Lud," Zoidberg said, deferentially.

"Well, you forget! I am the Titans' favorite son," said Stanley. He put the knife down in a pile of cheese shrapnel and picked up the Arkenhammer, which he waved with authority. "The Titans provided! I told King Saline I was going out to tame dwagons, right? Well holy Monsters of Rock, did I! Never seen so many feral dwagons. All the way to Faq I kept finding them in ones and twos, and there were three in this one hex! Only time I ever saw that.

"So, when I showed up at Faq, I had thirty-six! And a lot of them were reds and purples so we just tore into the place. Now, I know what you're thinking!""


Up until the moment when Stanley arrived at Faq with that overwhelming force of Dwagons, Wanda had been acting in a way that was entirely consistent with her Duty to Faq. If Stanley hadn't acquired all those Dwagons on the way to Faq, her plan would have worked perfectly. It's quite possible that Banhammer knew what she was doing, because, after all, the capture of the Hammer by Faq would have been a major victory for Faq. It was only when Stanley did arrive with an overwhelmingly powerful force that Wanda Turned and killed Banhammer. And while Wanda's Turn may have been a desperate attempt to save her own life, it's possible, though by no means certain, that her Turn was motivated by loyalty to Jillian. Suppose Stanley had managed to take Banhammer alive? If Stanley had been allowed to question Banhammer, he would probably have learned about Jillian. And giving Stanley a motive to see Jillian dead would have certainly increased the likelihood that she'd be killed.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby holy_dwead » Sat Dec 25, 2010 2:11 am

Dr Pepper wrote:And Marie? Her accent could be caribbean, could be deep south. Cajun? Voodoo? But that would be more appropriate for a croakamancer. Rastafarian? That would better fit a foolamancer.


What little I know of accents makes me think Marie hails from the caribbean. I kept hearing a Jamaican accent in my head while I was reading. I love that she has green and yellow silks - same as the flag of Jamaica.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Flag_of_Jamaica.svg
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby zilfallon » Sat Dec 25, 2010 2:21 am

Oberon wrote:No, we can't. And it's not "crap", unless you just want to blindly accept things without doing a little prodding at the logic behind them. Yes, only one was made, and it was made with a specific customer in mind.


Agreed with you. Also, I think the spell will be used again. Remember, Rob said that one of Parson's friend is going to be a part of the story :) But are they really as good as Parson is? I mean, Parson only gamed, they seemed to have normal lifes :D
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 037

Postby fractal » Sat Dec 25, 2010 3:05 am

Oberon wrote:
Raza wrote:At least now we can cut the "Why doesn't everybody buy ten perfect warlord spells and sell the bracers?" crap. Only one was made and guided to the right hands, probably empowered by fate itself in supplying things like the bracer.
No, we can't. And it's not "crap", unless you just want to blindly accept things without doing a little prodding at the logic behind them. Yes, only one was made, and it was made with a specific customer in mind. A customer who still had to pay for it, remember. This isn't the One Ring we're talking about, it's a scroll made by a tri-mancer link. And for 500k shmuckers, or even 350k, there isn't a whole lot of compelling reasons why more wouldn't be made for any other interested customers, or even in advance with a similar sale in mind. This is only logically speaking, of course. If we drag plot into it then it just becomes an author fiat that no more will be made, no matter how logical it might be that splitting 350k or 500k shmuckers between three casters might be seen as something that those three casters might want to do a few more times.
But perhaps the true price to buy such a spell would actually be far higher - after all, this spell required many casters and a dangerous link. No side might actually have enough schmuckers to pay for it. They only sold it to Stanley for a price that a side could afford because of their ulterior motives.
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