Book 2 – Page 73

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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby MarbitChow » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:44 pm

Kreistor wrote:Is it a "chance"? If it were random, we'd see random people converting when suggested they Turn. It hasn't been so.

We've only seen a few cases in which people were encouraged to turn. It's not like we've seen them trying it on masses of pikers. It's also likely that the "chance to turn" requires the opportunity to turn. Wanda and Jillian talking amongst themselves and Ossomer alone with Slately both show an environment where turning is possible. Wanda made her role, as did Jillian. Ossomer failed. The stat could get modifiers: Jillian gets a +10 bonus against turning to Stanley's side, Wanda gets a +10 bonus against turning away from Tool-controlled sides... Ossomer a -10 Penalty check against turning back to his home side. You can't actually prove that it isn't random (since proving a negative is impossible), but you don't make a very strong case here that it isn't, other than your opinion.

Kreistor wrote:it's Free Will wearing down his Loyalty, just like it would in our world... no Rule or Stat required.

Why can't the stat work against Free Will? If the stat is a form of mind control, Free Will can still overcome it. I don't think the 'hidden' stats are the only aspect to an Erfworlder's mind, but they can certainly have a strong influence. In much the same way that hunger signals make you want to eat, but your free will can prevent it, loyalty checks may send signals to the brain, but still allow the unit to be the final decider. But it's much harder to choose not to eat when you're hungry...
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby fjolnir » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:22 pm

Honestly the next scenes should have Ossomer leading the charge against the Archons, he will likely die like a chump protecting one of the more squishy members of the radish retinue but they will be able to continue as a side due to his heroic dusting.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:29 pm

MarbitChow wrote:Why can't the stat work against Free Will? If the stat is a form of mind control, Free Will can still overcome it. I don't think the 'hidden' stats are the only aspect to an Erfworlder's mind, but they can certainly have a strong influence. In much the same way that hunger signals make you want to eat, but your free will can prevent it, loyalty checks may send signals to the brain, but still allow the unit to be the final decider. But it's much harder to choose not to eat when you're hungry...


Because you either have Free Will or you don't. If the environment can force you to action, you cannot be held responsible for the environment's choice for you.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby drachefly » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:46 pm

I really doubt that anyone in Erf has a will that could be seriously considered high-grade Free Will. There are forces out there that interfere. There are BLATANT MIND CONTROL POWERS.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Balerion » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:55 pm

Kreistor wrote:
Because you either have Free Will or you don't. If the environment can force you to action, you cannot be held responsible for the environment's choice for you.


Not quite true; you either have it or you don't at a particular point in time. When the thinkamancer uses suggestion, freewill is likely gone. But when it wears off, its back. So there is no reason a loyalty stat couldn't overwhelm freewill at certain levels, but fade to a point where it no longer is compelling.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Wed Oct 05, 2011 12:19 am

Balerion wrote:
Kreistor wrote:
Because you either have Free Will or you don't. If the environment can force you to action, you cannot be held responsible for the environment's choice for you.


Not quite true; you either have it or you don't at a particular point in time. When the thinkamancer uses suggestion, freewill is likely gone. But when it wears off, its back. So there is no reason a loyalty stat couldn't overwhelm freewill at certain levels, but fade to a point where it no longer is compelling.


If the Loyalty stat can force someone to remain loyal when they would otherwise find new leadership, then there is no free will. If it takes a Die roll to decide if you're allowed to quit when you want to, there is no free will.

It doesn't matter if you have free will when you aren't making decisions, because you aren't exercising your free will at that time. Free Will matters only at decision making time.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby multilis » Wed Oct 05, 2011 1:19 am

Kreistor wrote:
Balerion wrote:
Kreistor wrote:
Because you either have Free Will or you don't. If the environment can force you to action, you cannot be held responsible for the environment's choice for you.


Not quite true; you either have it or you don't at a particular point in time. When the thinkamancer uses suggestion, freewill is likely gone. But when it wears off, its back. So there is no reason a loyalty stat couldn't overwhelm freewill at certain levels, but fade to a point where it no longer is compelling.


If the Loyalty stat can force someone to remain loyal when they would otherwise find new leadership, then there is no free will. If it takes a Die roll to decide if you're allowed to quit when you want to, there is no free will.

It doesn't matter if you have free will when you aren't making decisions, because you aren't exercising your free will at that time. Free Will matters only at decision making time.


Someone with strong physical and mental addiction to alcohol, cigarettes or heroin sees his desired drug in front of him. He wants to quit. Will he take the drug? (In some cases an addiction could be forced on you, eg you could be captive who is given heroin till strongly addicted)

There can be a combination of free will and "force" being applied. Just as it takes much more willpower to overcome a strong heroin addiction than a weak one, it may take much more willpower for decrypted to "turn" if wanda is in same hex compared to not in same hex. (Very few people have willpower to overcome a strong heroin addiction by themselves)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Wed Oct 05, 2011 5:53 am

multilis wrote:Someone with strong physical and mental addiction to alcohol, cigarettes or heroin sees his desired drug in front of him. He wants to quit. Will he take the drug? (In some cases an addiction could be forced on you, eg you could be captive who is given heroin till strongly addicted)

There can be a combination of free will and "force" being applied. Just as it takes much more willpower to overcome a strong heroin addiction than a weak one, it may take much more willpower for decrypted to "turn" if wanda is in same hex compared to not in same hex. (Very few people have willpower to overcome a strong heroin addiction by themselves)


You see nothing artificial in putting heroin in front of an addict? Every decision we make equates to this example?

That is nowhere near what I am talking about.

Free will is about making decisions. Sometimes our past (in your case an addicts history of making the same decision) influences our future. Habits form and push us towards one decision or another. Addiction is an extreme example. There are far subtler examples.

But that is nothing like what I am talking about.

Changing allegiances is not a habit forming activity. You usually only get one before one side or another decides you're not trustworthy enough. Consequently, it is done only with significant consideration.

Not a random die roll.

And that's what we're talking about here. If Loyalty is a number, and a random chance decides if you switch sides, then how can anyone fault another for Turning? The game rolled that they should switch. How can that be a Unit's fault?

And that's the inconsistency in how Loyalty is discussed and how it is treated in Erfworld. If it is a random die roll, then the Unit has no control over the choice. But it is treated as if the Unit chose, in which case it's not random.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby raphfrk » Wed Oct 05, 2011 8:35 am

ThatOneMoogle wrote:I can't even begin to figure out the connotations to that. It means that Decrypt AREN'T just slaves to Wanda's will. It means that the Arkenpliers aren't the massively powerful game-breakers that I'd always thought they were, because their effect can be negated.


Seems the plier's bonus blocks or at least greatly reduces the probability of turning.

I wonder if Ossomer can turn other units with a "throw off your chains" speech. If he could turn 20-30% of the Jetstone units back, then that would cause major problems for GK and greatly enhance the odds of the the King getting away.

If he can turn an Archon, then Slately would presumably get much more than just 5k. This would give Charlie info on GK, even if she was ordered to stay alive as long as possible and tell him what she knows. Also, if enough turned, they might be able to kill all GK's flying units in the city (since the surviving dwagons can't fly) and then fly above archer range. This would allow them to survive until morning and leave the city on Charlie's turn.

Also, Jetstone has an Heir again (possibly). If Slately does die, Ossomer's interactions with Wanda would be interesting. He would need to be very careful about letting her into the same hex as him.

0beron wrote:And lastly...
CUBBBBINNNNNNNS! NOOOOOOOOO! :'( he's too cute to croak!
...unless, he's part of a plan we don't know about :D


In theory, Wanda could return to Spacerock and uncroak him. The king isn't dead, so the portal remains. However, she has to do it before GK kills all the enemy units and the MK may refuse to let her back. This would get GK a way to communicate without Charlie being able to hear.

Also, Ace could catch him, so it really comes down to how much he matters for the plot.

EDIT: My mistake, since he is now defending, he can still move anywhere around the city, although his move is still 0 so he shouldn't be able to get out of the city on his own or in the carpet until his next turn.

[/quote]

Good point, the only ways for Ossomer to survive is if Jetstone holds Spacerock, or the mount idea. It is possible that units must have at least 1 move in order to use a mount to change zone. However, since prisoners can be moved between zones, that is less likely.

Again, if all air units are killed, he may be able to survive by flying above archer range.

Tyrilean wrote:I wonder if the Arkenpliers are only able to control so many, and each additional unit under control stretches that power further, until it is a fine thread which can be easily snapped.


That would also have the effect of making it less uber powered. It doesn't grant a potentially infinite zero-upkeep army.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby MarbitChow » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:57 am

Kreistor wrote:And that's what we're talking about here. If Loyalty is a number, and a random chance decides if you switch sides, then how can anyone fault another for Turning? The game rolled that they should switch. How can that be a Unit's fault?
And that's the inconsistency in how Loyalty is discussed and how it is treated in Erfworld. If it is a random die roll, then the Unit has no control over the choice. But it is treated as if the Unit chose, in which case it's not random.

You argue that the stat is in complete control. You're not accounting for influence. Free will and strong influence are not mutually exclusive.
When you're full, you can easily choose not to eat. When you're hungry, you can still choose not to eat. It's just harder to do so. The choice is still yours.
An imposed stat doesn't have to be a random die roll. It can be a strong influence. Perhaps strong Loyalty is implemented as a strong fear of change, while a weak loyalty is implemented as strong desire for something the other side can provide.

Suggestions can be broken: Jillian's free will broke Wanda's suggestion spell. The actions of a treacherous overlord can drive even a strongly-loyal unit to overcome the loyalty influence and turn.

I'm not arguing that Loyalty is a simple die roll. But a strong influence ('natural thinkamancy'), applied during a moment where the opportunity presents itself, is not inconsistent with the known 'physics' of Erfworld, and still allows for free will. Strong wills can still overcome it; units with strong reason to remain loyal (or disloyal) can supersede a loyalty 'influence'. But most units would follow their loyalty influence's 'suggestion' in the absence of any other strong motivation.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Lee H » Wed Oct 05, 2011 10:19 am

Ummmm.....did anyone notice that the foul language filter fell off??? :o
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby drachefly » Wed Oct 05, 2011 10:46 am

Parson has been using Boop only when he feels like it since the end of book 1.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby kagato23 » Wed Oct 05, 2011 1:42 pm

Kreistor wrote:
Remember who told parson that -- peopel that believe in Stats. Is Obedience a "stat"? It's not a number, since it's not variable. You do what you're told, unless certain conditions are met. That's Natural thinkamancy, certainly, but no number represents variability.

Loyalty is an "unknowable" stat. If you can't know the number, and you don't know the mechanic, then it's not a stat. It's a theory.

And Duty? "Has higher affect [sic] on Warloards, highest on Chief Warlord." That's not a stat, it's a function of the job. Again, it's a Rule, but not necessarily a Stat.

Experience was confirmed as a theoretical stat by Word of the Titans.


See, I think it's both. I think a mathamancer/thinkamancer/date-a-mancer link might have more insight into it, but consider this... if we are wounded enough times, we die, yes? In this world, your hits are depleted. But both worlds would understand that an arrow into the head would, after making you taste key lime pie, kill you. It's a common point of understanding, but there are actual numbers that represent it. Good leadership does benefit an army in tangible ways, but in erfworld that takes on an actual quantifiable benefit. Now, if the stats are a cause or effect or a little of both is up to debate, but we know the numbers are there.

Because I think the mathamancers are right about the stats: They can't see them, but they are there.


Is it a "chance"? If it were random, we'd see random people converting when suggested they Turn. It hasn't been so. We see peopel Turning for good reasons, not randomly rationalized reasons. If it's not random, then the number is irrelevant. We can rate people's Loyalty in this world (mine is very low, according to some people), but real Loyalty is far more complex than a number. Some people will nto turn traitor for any amount of money, but the right girl can twist them around her finger and get them to do anything. And vice versa. Brainwashing can turn anyone, given time, but the same person that takes years to wear down may switch for very little cash. Loyalty is complex, and while the Erfworlders may convince themselves that there must be a stat or rule, it carries into the Free Will discussion.

Ossomer is a great example. Ossomer's hang-up is Honor, but he joined an Honorless side when he decrypted. If he really has Turned, did he Turn partially because he disagreed with his Side's tactics? In that case, tehre is no Stat... it's Free Will wearing down his Loyalty, just like it would in our world... no Rule or Stat required.

Love to talk more, but gotta go.


When I say Chance, I don't mean "80% chance to resist turning when offered, roll for bonus." But rather for the person asking, a realistic assessment of "Do I have a chance of turning this unit?"

No unit is going to turn just because they are asked, unless they really, really hate their boss . Lets pretend we know loyalty stats (I'm not suggesting this as fanon or anything, just trying to explain my hypothesis) And say, 20 is about as high as anybody ever gets. A 20 is no chance naturally. This unit will die happily before doing anything to hurt their cause, and there's nothing you can offer, or argument you could have that would sway this unit. By contrast, a unit with a loyalty of one might jump sides if he likes your livery. And then a unit with loyalty of, say, six might turn if she feels like she's being sent on a suicide mission that serves no purpose to the side, thus questioning if the side's worth serving. So by "Chance", I mean that say, a warlord with a hypothetical artifict that let them see this stat could look at an enemy caster and say "Loytalty stat 17? Boop, we just gotta kill this guy. No point wasting time.", but then looks at another stack and say "huh. That one's only an 8? Maybe I should make them an offer." Turnamancy spells, of course, alter this stat to various degrees for a time.

The thing is, I don't think the loyalty stat is static. Don Bruce mentioned the obvious way it could change. So using Transylvito, disbanding a popular and successful chief warlord is perhaps like an immediate -4 loyalty penalty to anybody who knows about it, -5-7 if they have a more personal relationship with the guy. In the real world, this works via psychology. "Why did he get rid of the best leader we've had in years? Maybe the King's lost it completely!" And that could be said in either world. But on Erf, this also results in the number changing. Did the number change put the thought in the units head or did the units thoughts decrease the number? Parson would likely argue the latter, Sizemore the former, and Wanda would say it's irrelevant because it was supposed to happen that way. Jack would probably be more interested making a riddle about it.

So, going off my lousy system, Lets say all Decrypted start at 20 loyalty when re-popped. But, then Ossamer's advice and counsel regarding an army he's an expert on is barely acknowledged, his new sides tactical sense is baffling, he's now pitted against people he'd been willing to die for hours ago, he's all but forgotten and abandoned in the new plan, and worse, he was party to an action he considered completely dishonorable, from a side that he'd thought just before was extremely dishonorable. He then witnesses the enemy he once called his side acting as honorably and admirably as he remembers them, while his sides actions are anything but, his and after his own father lays into him over this, he sees him finally becoming the sort of man he was raised to respect in this way, and just after an offer to turn or at least prove he still has the honor he's always held as important. All of these actions were shaving down his loyalty score, and then his perfect mistress abandons them all, not only lowering bonuses but seemingly pulling back during a battle the titans should be backing them on. And it was all too much, and his new loyalty score couldn't hold up to all of the incidents, and boom! Hello Radish, I'm back.

was it his choice to turn? Of course! As you said at the start of this, it's subtle enough that the riddle itself is irrelevant, he turned regardless of why. But much like a computer game, I do think the stats, though never shown, are there.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Wed Oct 05, 2011 2:09 pm

kagato23 wrote:When I say Chance, I don't mean "80% chance to resist turning when offered, roll for bonus." But rather for the person asking, a realistic assessment of "Do I have a chance of turning this unit?"

No unit is going to turn just because they are asked, unless they really, really hate their boss . Lets pretend we know loyalty stats (I'm not suggesting this as fanon or anything, just trying to explain my hypothesis) And say, 20 is about as high as anybody ever gets. A 20 is no chance naturally.


You aren't talking about a "Stat". You're talking about a numerical rating based on some arbitrary metric. That is *NOT* a Stat.

A Stat is a game value which is used as the input to an equation, usually involving a random number generator, to determine a result in place of a personality or player-based decision.

We could invent some method to rate everyone's "loyalty" on Earth. That wouldn't be a Stat. We could use it to generate statistics, which some people short to Stat, but that's not the type of stat we're talking about here. Stats are game lingo for a number that represents a unit's capacity or ability, and at some level, it must be part of the game mechanics.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Wed Oct 05, 2011 3:17 pm

Kreistor wrote:
kagato23 wrote:When I say Chance, I don't mean "80% chance to resist turning when offered, roll for bonus." But rather for the person asking, a realistic assessment of "Do I have a chance of turning this unit?" {snip}


You aren't talking about a "Stat". You're talking about a numerical rating based on some arbitrary metric. That is *NOT* a Stat.

A Stat is a game value which is used as the input to an equation, usually involving a random number generator, to determine a result in place of a personality or player-based decision.


To "translate" what Kreistor said (rather, make sure I understand correctly) a "(game) stat" exists at the atomic (as in, fundamental, indivisible) level mechanism, whereas the equivalent thing on Earth would be the result of a multitude of interactions at some "lower" level, and as such, more awkward to put in numbers when only one individual is present.

MarbitChow wrote:You argue that the stat is in complete control. You're not accounting for influence. Free will and strong influence are not mutually exclusive.


Quite so. As I'd say, you could put me in the cockpit of a jet fighter as a pilot, and I'll surely have an influence on what that plane does. Control, not so much ;)

Control requires more than just being able to affect the outcome of a phenomenon. It presupposes the existence of a desired (by someone*) outcome, and achieving it reliably. When, due to various causes, the desired outcome fails to materialize, control has failed.

Failure to achieve control is something for which the controller may be held responsible. The desired outcomes of the controller are also something for which it may be held responsible.

*: usually someone.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby MarbitChow » Wed Oct 05, 2011 3:47 pm

Kreistor wrote:A Stat is a game value which is used as the input to an equation, usually involving a random number generator, to determine a result in place of a personality or player-based decision.


I disagree with your definition, particularly the "in place of a personality or player-based decision". There are numerous examples of games where players have stats, and make a decision, and the success or failure of the decision is influenced by a stat.
Even in most computer games controlling NPC actions, the stat isn't the only (or necessarily even the most important) input. In most cases, the stat only acts as a modifier.
This would be consistent with the "Loyalty as influence" stat hypothesis: the ultimate decision is still the unit's, but an influence (fear, anger, pride, etc.) may be amplified in an attempt to sway the decision.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:15 pm

BLANDCorporatio wrote:To "translate" what Kreistor said (rather, make sure I understand correctly) a "(game) stat" exists at the atomic (as in, fundamental, indivisible) level mechanism, whereas the equivalent thing on Earth would be the result of a multitude of interactions at some "lower" level, and as such, more awkward to put in numbers when only one individual is present.


Noooo... in the Real World, we make decisions based on whatever decision making process we use. Some people really do flip a coin to make a decision that they can't figure out which option they prefer. But that is the choice to put randomness in charge. The decision making process isn't environmental, it is mental. Some people do it on gut feel, but just as many do it on a careful analysis of the costs and benefits of each choice.

It is more appropriate to describe a stat is "An arbitrary value that is used to represent a unit's physical ability, thoughts, or psychological characteristics in order to allow the game system to use mathematical equations to replace the processes of Earth."

An example would be "Morale" in Squad Leader. If a bad thing happens to a squad (like coming under machine gun fire), it makes a 2D6 roll against a number from 6-10, depending on unit nationality or other details (one American Sgt had a 6, Russian special units were sometimes a 10). If it rolled above, it lost morale, broke, and ran from combat. Instead of the player making the decision (role playing) the choice, the dice choose for you.

But when a choice is made in this way, the result is random. Even with a 6, That US Sgt still held firm in the worst situations 15/36 times. That's how you can recognize, in game, if the Loyalty Stat is a mechanic, or if it's just a rating. Since they can't see it, if Loyalty was a rating, it's not used and is irrelevant.

BLANDCorporatio wrote:
MarbitChow wrote:You argue that the stat is in complete control. You're not accounting for influence. Free will and strong influence are not mutually exclusive.


Quite so. As I'd say, you could put me in the cockpit of a jet fighter as a pilot, and I'll surely have an influence on what that plane does. Control, not so much ;)


That too is wrong. The plane will do exactly what you tell it to do.. you *are* in absolute control. You just don't know which controls make it do what you want, but the plane is all the while doing exactly what it has been designed to in response to your inputs, as faulty as they are. (And I would be surprised if you couldn't at least keep the plane level and descend towards the runway. Jamie and Adam on Mythbutsers did that much on Mythbusters.)

But when it comes to something like the environment (in this case a game rule random selection based on an arbitrary Loyalty Stat) even influencing your decision, then you are not doing what you want to do: the environment is making certain you skew in its chosen direction. If you would have chosen some other course without the environment's influence, then you did not have Free Will. Any control over your actions, no matter how subtle, by the environment that deviates your actions denies Free Will. It really is an all-or-nothing situation, by definition. Even if that control is inconstant, like a poor pilot, it is still forcing the person away from their own uninfluenced decision. You don't measure Free Will from the controller's side... you measure it from the person being controlled, so Free Will exists only when there is no second pilot at all.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:23 pm

Kreistor wrote:That too is wrong. The plane will do exactly what you tell it to do.. you *are* in absolute control. You just don't know which controls make it do what you want, but the plane is all the while doing exactly what it has been designed to in response to your inputs, as faulty as they are.


It's too easy to append "wrong", but that IS wrong, from either a rigurous control theory perspective or common usage.

In control engineering, unless the system* behaves as wanted, it is not controlled. And a driver, or pilot, may still "lose control" of their vehicle. That expression is in the vernacular.

(EDIT: *: the complete system, as in plane and pilot in my example; controller and controlled)

I guess you could say that popular expressions are no standard of right, and that a definition of control a-la control theory is irelevant. Your call, but the notion of control you suggest is merely "influence". Gravity influences what you do. Under such a definition of what control, or being controlled means, then the debate is useless.

So to make the issue meaningful at all, a stronger standard for "under control" must be imposed.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby MarbitChow » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:43 pm

Kreistor wrote:If you would have chosen some other course without the environment's influence, then you did not have Free Will. Any control over your actions, no matter how subtle, by the environment that deviates your actions denies Free Will. It really is an all-or-nothing situation, by definition.

Free will is not negated just because there exists some environmental influence.

Your blood sugar level your decision-making abilities.
The color of the wall influences your mood.
The perfume/cologne your significant other wears influences your reaction to them.

But the final decision to act is an exercise of free will.
The environment ALWAYS influences the course of action, first by limiting what possible courses of action are available, and second by making some of the decisions appear more or less desirable.

The interesting question is whether the Erfworld environment is actively influencing (or enforcing) behavior, and if so, whether there is a conscious will behind the influence.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 73

Postby Kreistor » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:53 pm

MarbitChow wrote:Free will is not negated just because there exists some environmental influence.


How pedantic.

Every time I talk about the environment, I specifically state that we're talking about an environment in which mathematical equations are replacing conscious choice. If that's happening in Erfworld, that *IS* the environment making changes to your decisions.
http://www.erfworld.com/wiki/index.php/TBFGK_1 Here you can find all comic pages written as text for convenient quoting.

http://www.erfworld.com/wiki/index.php/Erfworld_Mechanics The starting page for accessing all known Erfworld "rules".
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Kreistor
 
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