Summer Update - 036

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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby EvokeAnObject » Thu Sep 24, 2009 4:15 pm

Simons Mith wrote:Now he's compos again, but he's plainly still cast in the same mould as Feste from Twelfth Night. Who is one of my favorite characters, and has a lot to him.


Not only Feste, but also Touchstone in As You Like It and the Fool in King Lear. Shakespeare's fools tend to talk in riddles, but also tend to be the wisest of all his characters. Hence Jack's insight that Parson will not absolve himself of moral consequences by aiding Stanley in building an army. It's usually the comic characters that break the fourth wall, like Puck at the end of Midsummer Night's Dream, although this comic is probably referential enough without Jack turning to the imaginary camera and saying: "And so our hero ends his turn with cold dismays/ our next update won't be for a few more days."

MarbitChow wrote:I think it's unlikely that Wanda would get that ability, since we haven't seen Stanley get such an ability with Dwagons.
However, I'm sure Wanda's Archons are filming and sending her any items that they might think she'd be interested.


Or Charlie dressed up one of his archons via a dollamancer with black and skulls and sent her in to spy. If he hasn't done it already he probably will at some point.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby The Shadow » Thu Sep 24, 2009 4:23 pm

Well! Looks like I got my wish!

This one was VERY interesting. Not only was Jack as interesting as I suspected, but the business about the unused buildings.

Unused slaughterhouses? Sure, that I can see. From the player's perspective, you build the building and you get the benefit. Makes sense. Ditto for the amphitheater - it's perhaps a morale booster, nobody has to actually go there.

But the icehouse? That's just weird. Food doesn't spoil on Erfworld, that we can see. I'm starting to wonder if maybe Erfworld is an RTS with an underlying SimCity engine or something. A lot of the options are currently turned off; everything's optimized for war. But perhaps, in the vein of "breaking the world", Parson will find a way to reactivate those options, allowing Erfworlders some space to do things besides live for fighting.

They're already trying, or at least the Royals are. If they totally lived for war, you wouldn't have things like tea, I think. But the world's rules are constantly fighting against them.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby DevilDan » Thu Sep 24, 2009 5:00 pm

The Shadow wrote:But the icehouse? That's just weird. Food doesn't spoil on Erfworld, that we can see. I'm starting to wonder if maybe Erfworld is an RTS with an underlying SimCity engine or something. A lot of the options are currently turned off; everything's optimized for war. But perhaps, in the vein of "breaking the world", Parson will find a way to reactivate those options, allowing Erfworlders some space to do things besides live for fighting.


One of my theories is precisely that, that the rules change or get updated on occasion. Maybe the "civilian" unit is not enabled at the moment. Maybe there used to be a merchant unit? It's entirely possible that all these "useless" buildings give some sort of bonus to X or Y activity or "allow" certain things to happen. Think of all the buildings in RTS games that serve only to enable you to research technologies or produce special units. Others allow greater stockpiling capacity.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby cloudbreaker » Thu Sep 24, 2009 5:37 pm

Betcha Stanley Rocks Out in the amphitheater at some point.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Infidel » Thu Sep 24, 2009 8:21 pm

EvokeAnObject wrote:Or Charlie dressed up one of his archons via a dollamancer with black and skulls and sent her in to spy. If he hasn't done it already he probably will at some point.



Archons can see through veils. So that probably wouldn't work.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Lord Kasavin » Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:23 pm

Infidel wrote:
EvokeAnObject wrote:Or Charlie dressed up one of his archons via a dollamancer with black and skulls and sent her in to spy. If he hasn't done it already he probably will at some point.



Archons can see through veils. So that probably wouldn't work.


Technically, dollmancy isn't foolmancy, which is what veils fall under. Also, the rules seem to indicate that units naturally know whose on their side. Stanley "knew" the decrypted were his troops when he saw them, despte obviously being RCC types and with Wanda's livery.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby moose o death » Fri Sep 25, 2009 12:21 am

he could see their stats, if he looked at the archons and didn't see their stats they would be roasting on an open fire not to mention units within move of each other would be sharing battlespace and turn order would apply.

no matter how you swing it. someone would know something was fishy
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby warriortribble » Fri Sep 25, 2009 12:32 am

Interesting or not, I think Jack should get a session with Maggie sometime in the near future.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby carisbourg » Fri Sep 25, 2009 3:37 am

EvokeAnObject wrote:It's usually the comic characters that break the fourth wall, like Puck at the end of Midsummer Night's Dream, although this comic is probably referential enough without Jack turning to the imaginary camera and saying: "And so our hero ends his turn with cold dismays/ our next update won't be for a few more days."


Wouldn't that be "Our hero ends his turn with cold dismays/ our next update will come in three more days."
I mean iambic pentameter and all that.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby KiltedNinja » Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:01 am

warriortribble wrote:Interesting or not, I think Jack should get a session with Maggie sometime in the near future.


...I wonder what lil mister Sizemore will think about that... >.>

The Shadow wrote:I'm starting to wonder if maybe Erfworld is an RTS with an underlying SimCity engine or something. A lot of the options are currently turned off; everything's optimized for war. But perhaps, in the vein of "breaking the world", Parson will find a way to reactivate those options, allowing Erfworlders some space to do things besides live for fighting.


Yeah I wondered about something like this.. (although I'm usually ineloquent and think about things in a haphazzard and obscure manner) Perhaps Erfworld will change from Turn-Based to RTS if/when Parson breaks (or fixes) Erfworld.. All the options will be on.. people can choose which type of unit they are..

..and perhaps (just as an obscure thought) - the end of Book 2 will have Wanda or Jillian.. PREGNANT! (dun dun duuun)...
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby moose o death » Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:10 am

to each other. double dun dun derr
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Sokrotes » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:21 am

Life what is it but a dream. Did Erfworld dream Parson or did Parson dream Erfworld. Is one or the other creating certain buildings only to appease the other? Are you good at something because you do it, or do you do something because your good at it? :mrgreen:
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby moose o death » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:27 am

no.neither, it was the dolphin. sizemore and maggie made the buildings. neither you do whats necesaryto achieve your goal, if you have no goals your just dodging your coffin
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Sokrotes » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:45 am

oh i disagree, Sizemore and maggie created the design and feel of the city, but i dont think they had a hand in the creation of every building. Besides im sure every major city has a similar set up meaning most if not every city is filled with buildings that do nothing. Why creat a building that does nothing? it does something, it gives Parson a feeling that its real and not just a game. Seeing an amphitheater makes him feel that the city is real, if just not working properly, and he can relate to it. If all there was were buildings of war it would feel more like a game to Parson, which in turn would make him take the fate of the world less seriously. Erfworld is trying to make him believe its real so that he interacts with it in a human way, instead of just playing a game. ... at least.. thats what i think.
And as for goals, what is Parson goal? to win? to survive? to go home? ... or to make the world change?
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby moose o death » Fri Sep 25, 2009 6:17 am

the city was designed by a thinkamancer link with a dirtamancer. the full design is all by those two. so much is said. why would they include those fixtures? maybe the magik kingdom needs those fixtures to function and they are simply emulating what they know of other succesful designs.

parson would have a stronger feeling it was all real if they weren't there, at the moment he's seeing a major flaw in their purpose. a city without an ampitheatre doesn't need an ampitheatre to function. he isn't wandering around asking why there isn't kindergarten's is he. erfworlders pop. so does food. why no childcare centre without children in it?

the world made itself real enough when he bounced off of it. it made things pretty real when he realised he had sent bogroll to his death. parson knows the game is over. he has admitted to dodging playing the game to jack.

as for his goal. he has none. his life right now is meaningless. he's cruising the useless buildings of gobwin knob checking whether they are still useless. if the whole of book 2 focussed on that the readership will dry up. this is the purpose of summer updates. more detailled updates that explain all of the happenings in between major campaigns. the conflict that the next book centre's around must commence before the end of october when book 2 starts. we have 8-12 updates to go. and alot of ground to cover.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby DevilDan » Fri Sep 25, 2009 11:39 am

moose o death wrote:as for his goal. he has none. his life right now is meaningless. he's cruising the useless buildings of gobwin knob checking whether they are still useless.

Once you're not in immediate danger of being croaked by a marbit that same day, your life seems a little less focused.
Last edited by DevilDan on Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Beelzebuddy » Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:10 pm

Oh, I quite disagree. I'm loving the Schrödingerian facade, and I hope it sticks around.

None of those buildings are in any way useless. Consider the bank. What is a bank in the real world, as defined by our interaction with it? It's a building with a slot in the side, that we can put money in and take money from. Now, I'm sure that there're people who take the money we put in and credit our accounts with it, and other people making sure no money's walking out, and other people doing productive little things in cubicles. But none of that says "bank." Building, ATM, money: bank.

If Erfworld, that would be enough. I'd suspect that the GK bank, with its empty safe lying open, actually does function as a bank. Maybe it generates interest, or increases the amount of shmuckers Stanley can hoard. It doesn't matter that there's nothing and no one in the bank, it's still a bank and properly functions as one.

Erfworld buildings are stage props, empty shells of the real thing, but that doesn't mean they don't work. Props are enough. Parson's job is to manage the city, despite not having anyone or anything to manage. He accomplishes this by looking like he's doing the job. So long as he goes through the motions, the job gets done.

Now, it's possible that additional bonuses can be stacked by wasting the time of other units. An Erfworld accounting firm could be staffed by people who literally do nothing but shuffle papers from desk to desk; and yet they'd produce more valuable output than the building alone. Farms might pop piglets faster if someone acts as a farmer by standing in the sty and watching it. But you might as well use those units to take or found another city and pop more buildings for their auto-bonuses.

Neat Pratchett references:
Reaper Man - the empty (yet malevolent) Mall
Interesting Times - the peasants who hold the water buffalo strings
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Truism » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:13 pm

I was thinking on the same track as Belzebuddy. This reminds me of the Turn Based Strategy game Colonization. You build buildings which provide effects. Then you put units in them for even more pronounced effects. Specialist units might be even more effective. For instance, Stanley is placing twolls in smithies and stables to make things. Twolls in the butcher shop and ice house might do some good. The coliseum could boost morale, assigning troops to watch could increase them even more, and putting Jack there, more still. I wonder how other cities do it. Specifically, I wonder how FAQ, dedicated as it was to ruling, approached it. Jack knows. But his answer is evasive. "Why have something like a treasure house if there's nothing inside it?" was the question. The larger, unanswered question, might be "how can we use it?"

As for the Archons, how much connection do they still have to Charlie. He popped them and has a special connection with them via the Arkendish. When Ansom described his new priorities, he did not talk about rejecting the old. Would Ansom try to steer Gobwin Knob strategy in a way that benefits both it and his old side, Jetstone? And could the Archons still be in touch with their old sisters and former master?
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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby LordDarksea » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:19 pm

I'm with you entirely there Belzebuddy (and Truism - I've been pondering that about the Archon's in contact too, kind of think they may have been filming to C or the 'dish).

Its not that the buildings don't function, they are essential to the production working. Parson proves that by making them work better by actually looking at them. You have to have the slaughter house to turn the fattened pigs into bacon; no slaughter house then no bacon. However, what seems to be getting to Parson is the whole thing that nobody is in there actually stringing up the pig, killing it, gutting it, dressing it, smoking or salting (or bothing) it and so forth.

(Does make me wonder how Bogroll made the pigeon pie, way back. ok so Fabrication (perhaps?), but did he actively croak the walnut-pigeons, or did they pop out of being and re-pop in pie-form (then some of them de-pop back from dead pigeons to dead walnuts)?)

In all though it seems to me that its not that the buildings aren't functional, but that they don't function in the Earthworld way.

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Re: Summer Update - 036

Postby Ashalaa » Fri Sep 25, 2009 5:19 pm

First, "Or possibly the act looking at it " you missed an of in there :)

I like Jack. He seems more aware of implications of what's going around him than most Erfworlders. It's dangerous to understand in his world, more than in ours. Janice sees Parson as hope, Sizemore saw him as doom and despair for a time. What does Jack see? What motivates Jack? He seems to trust Parson enough to give him a gentle rebuke and lesson about power. Is his lesson to control one's power, or to consider the ramifications of its use? I have to say I'm enjoying the text a lot now that we aren't focusing on action, but characters and the world. Yet it's still painfully slow in the reveal.

The world seems a poor mimicry of our world, as wargames are. But we've seen that even lowly characters can eat when they don't "have" to, and engage in activities that aren't strictly necessary for war. Can Parson teach them to use these buildings as they are in our world? He doesn't seem to be interested in doing anything constructive though. He's stuck in gamer mode, really, trying to figure out the rules, not make a life. As I say that though, I think of the picnic. It was only mostly practical, part of it was enjoyment. Perhaps this world will provide the impetus to transform Parson into a builder from a watcher.
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