Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Chadim » Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:14 am

Ouch, battling over semantics are we?

Great update!

Did anyone notice that Jillian used "master croakamancer" to refer to Wanda?
Does that mean Wanda has achieved Master class, or does Jillian just refer
to an obviously talented Mancer? If the former the story not only skipped
over Wanda meeting Olive, it also skipped about her achieving Master class. I realy hope
we will see some flashbacks ...
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby oslecamo2_temp » Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:32 am

MarbitChow wrote:
oslecamo2_temp wrote:That's because, altough a barbarian, she was still a side with her own wallet, upkeeps and the ability to decide where to go and to command her remaining forces.
Hint: Jillian never stoped being a queen. She just choose to kept her royal status hidden.

No, Jillian never stopped being a ROYAL.
A 'queen' is a female royal leader of a side.
A side is a set of units that possesses a capital city.
When Jillian became a barbarian, she stopped having a side.

The concept is lifted straight from Civilization, in which barbarians are randomly spawned, but are not a side in the game sense.


Then go play some Total War, where there's barbarians, but a side that loses all cities can still endure as a marauding horde, that still counts as its own side.

Contrast with Civilization, where if you lose all your cities, you're toast, plain and simple. So actualy the perfect oposite of Erfworld (after all, we've never seen randomly spawned barbarians in all the story).

In Erfworld a side can exist whitout cities, and Jillian is a living example of that.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby elecampane » Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:45 am

Well, I guess Christian Sidehug is actually rather agressive, isn't he?
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby badninja » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:33 pm

Intersting update we get how a side can be so big and the ramifications of such a big side. FAQ has been hidden for over a thousand turns and anyone who knew about then is either gone or forgotten about them so do side not last that long or has a warpath been here all along? Since I do not have the time who did King Country, Don King's father fall to with TV'smention I get a feeling that we may soon find out?
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby MarbitChow » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:58 pm

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Then go play some Total War, where there's barbarians, but a side that loses all cities can still endure as a marauding horde, that still counts as its own side.

Erfworld barbarians can't maintain a horde. Sides have treasuries, barbarians have purses - max 1000 gold/ level.

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Contrast with Civilization, where if you lose all your cities, you're toast, plain and simple. So actualy the perfect oposite of Erfworld (after all, we've never seen randomly spawned barbarians in all the story).

Rob has already stated that there are randomly-spawned barbarians, but he didn't include them in the story to avoid "deus ex machina" accusations.

oslecamo2_temp wrote:In Erfworld a side can exist whitout cities, and Jillian is a living example of that.

All I'm trying to say is that a "side" in Erfworld has a specific meaning: it has a capital, a ruler, a treasury, a link to the Magic Kingdom. Jillian, as a barbarian, is not a side. She has the potential to start a new side, in the same way that a royal that already belonging to a side can split into a new side. But neither one is a side until they claim a capital.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby kevistrophic » Wed Mar 14, 2012 3:49 pm

All this talk of Jillian as a barbarian is based on the portion of the timeline we addressed well before these most recent updates, yes? In IP(TSF) 028 Jillian is the ruler, the "queen", of FAQ. I'm just trying to keep the present tense statements in this discussion straight.
Goshen wrote:That may be true. But Rob has said before that Erfworld is not a game. It is a game-like world.

Oh, I missed that bit. Where'd Rob say a thing like that? Heck, I may be missing lots of info.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Biostar » Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:15 pm

This update just makes Haffaton even more creepy. Their lackadaisical nature doesn't come from just being generally good-willed people, but from believing that theres nothing the other side can do.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Lamech » Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:31 pm

I'm guessing Haffaton provides for its units the same way that unaligned natural tribes do. And I bet flower power is great for making productive farms, or making better foraging. So it appears someone has already broken Erfworld. Huzzah!
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Keighvin1 » Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:49 pm

kevistrophic, Jillian is not queen in the current story, she's Chief Warlord, as she mentions in this update I believe. After FAQ falls, she becomes a barbarian and only after book one does she become queen.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby name lips » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:37 pm

Well, of course Wanda is working for Haffaton. She can't be a "poison pill" and destroy them from within without pretending to be loyal, now can she?

She's just waiting for an opportunity.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Kreistor » Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:05 pm

Lamech wrote:I'm guessing Haffaton provides for its units the same way that unaligned natural tribes do. And I bet flower power is great for making productive farms, or making better foraging. So it appears someone has already broken Erfworld. Huzzah!


You cannot reduce Upkeep to 0. You can use Provisions to reduce Upkeep, but it can never reach 0.

You'll notice there are Uncroaked in this scout force. By relying heavily on Uncroaked, they keep Upkeep down by using 0 Upkeep units, and preventing costs from rising by non-0 upkeep units not leveling up.

The other trick is only available to extremely large Sides. Sides that are excessively large do not need more than minimal defenses to stop Barbarian attacks on Cities deep inside the borders. You basically only need to keep strong defenses in the outer band of cities, and scout it very well.

It can be a problem because you're basically an eggshell, so if you lose in one place, you need to rapidly respond to the breakthrough to prevent losing too much of the soft center, but the enemy can capture too many cities and wind up underpowered trying to defend all their holdings. You don't care if the enemy just razes the cities, since all that means is rebuilding. Keep a large treasury to handle the temporary Upkeep problem, and have fast response forces to respond to the incursion, and you can be fine.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby cheeseaholic » Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:17 pm

I just hope we get to see Hafaton fight Spacerock the Side.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Balerion » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:14 pm

Another tactic that might work to keep a side that big:

Have an army about the size of most side's total army (not the massive sides like Jetstone or GK are) close to the center of your empire. They are almost all scattered so that they can forage and keep upkeep as low as possible. Towards the outer walls, you have what amount to light defenses and raiding parties to go out and get income. Generally, very little is produced at any given city; the status quo is that you have full army power (there is a more risky variation to this without pretty much any units in the center) due to the massive production 50 cities provides

The goal of the relatively light outward presence is twofold. First, by presenting what appears to be a weak front to the local sides, they do not feel immediately threatened. Sure, you raid them occasionally, perhaps snag a level 1 city and raze it. But compared with their local threats, you are not all that important. This will prevent alliances from being formed against you; coalitions can only happen where there is such a clear threat that every side in a region has to respond or risk annihilation (not every side, but enough that you get critical mass for them to drop their usual conflicts).

The second is in response to the inevitable attack. Eventually, a side is going to decide that the reason you seem so weak on this side is that your forces are all tied up elsewhere. They see a bunch of lightly held cities, and come crashing in. Like Goodminton did, they take 3-4 cities, marching further into enemy territory.

When this happens, the cities nearby immediately begin churning out units that will be useful to counter the army coming at you. They join up with the army marching from your center to smash the enemy incursion, reanimate the fallen, and wreck bloody havoc against the side. Note that Haffaton doesn't have to strike the finishing blow; by weakening the side as much as they do by removing that army and sending it back against them, the hungry neighbors of that side will close in. Haffaton gains another 2-3 cities, and the status quo resumes. If the neighbors even know what weakened the fallen side so much, eventually those with that knowledge will die and the mistake will be repeated.

The amount of army that can be produced on demand by a side that large is rather staggering; probably on the order of 300-500 units. You only have to support them for a few turns, and then you drop back to low upkeep by disbanding them. Figuring out where that balance is probably takes some doing, but once you have it figured out it might even let you forego raiding parties.

Of course, this should be mixed with as many golems as possible as well, and any other non-upkeep units that can be acquired. I think it would work, and allow the slow rate of growth that Haffaton seems to enjoy. Another idea to throw out there, in addition to the eggshell
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Lamech » Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:27 pm

Kreistor wrote:
Lamech wrote:I'm guessing Haffaton provides for its units the same way that unaligned natural tribes do. And I bet flower power is great for making productive farms, or making better foraging. So it appears someone has already broken Erfworld. Huzzah!


You cannot reduce Upkeep to 0. You can use Provisions to reduce Upkeep, but it can never reach 0.
We've had a few examples, I think, of sideless natural allies surviving with NO cities or at least being viewed as plausible. More WoT calls farming and hunting money making activities, and natural allies can survive alone on it. So a side with only a bit of income from cities? Could do the same. Also they could presumably supplement there income by harvesting mounts they pop. Use some flavor of magic to enhance those things even further and you could do an even better job surviving.

Hey I have a question, if Haffaton avoids fighting so much where do the uncroaked come from? I think the answer might be a bit nasty...
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Kreistor » Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:55 pm

Lamech wrote:natural allies can survive alone on it.


Yes, they can.

Barbarians and Sides cannot. Natural Allies can't become Sides, and so get special rules.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby multilis » Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:01 pm

Elves naturally dislike uncroaked (they look away at mention), not surprised there, especially since some elves have natural healing. Just like a side with natural allies of goblins or witches can't also have elves.

Wanda was apparently needed by Haffaton, to make side have chance to conquer world. Normally uncroaked decay, which limits army size.

Possible that the elves and/or flower power can heal uncroaked to stop the decay, allowing a big army of uncroaked to build up through conquest.

At same time using hippie power, enemy armies that are too strong are stalled from attacking. In this case the Haffaton diplomat may have some way/item to stall enemy from fighting if needed if he is attacked.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby name lips » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:13 am

I wonder how bad the penalty for too many cities really is.

50 cities is apparently "unthinkable" under normal circumstances.

There was a version of Civilization -- I don't remember which one -- which had a similar penalty. If your empire grew too large, your new, pathetic, size 1 cities could be costing ten times more than they were producing. I think there was another version that had a "corruption" mechanic, where the further away from your capital a city was, the more of its income would be lost to "corruption."

Both, in theory, existed to limit the size of your civilization, or at least to slow its growth. The game designers realized that a single, world-encompassing civilization was unrealistic in the real world for a number of reasons. But there's no simple way to simulate that in a game world, so they just made up a mechanic to inhibit growth and called it good.

But enough players loved the "conquer the world" victory condition that they didn't make the penalty TOO crippling.

It looks like in Erfworld, without "players" to have to please, the developers/Titans simply slapped a huge penalty down. Big enough to prevent any side from getting anywhere close to conquering the world.

If the penalty applies to food and production as well as Schmuckers, but the upkeep cost of units remains constant, it would get even worse. No matter how well you built up your farms and economy, eventually you're better off NOT conquering new cities. Some people have suggested that perhaps Hippymancy can help here, increasing farm yields. This would go a long way toward explaining Haffaton's size.

This also is a piece explaining the viability of smaller sides. We've heard before that new sides always seem to end up with a Caster among their first few warlords. And casters are stupidly powerful by themselves, when used properly. Add to that the fact that having just a few cities prevents the economic penalties of larger empires -- your few cities are producing at a higher rate than their many cities. So an alliance of small Sides is always going to be more powerful than a single large Side. This provides a huge incentive for diplomacy -- making an Alliance with another Side, even if it seems small and vulnerable, might really and truly be a better option than conquering it. For small sides like Faq and Charlescomm, simply using the efficient, small economies combined with the "tax"-free income from mercenary work allows them to become quite powerful in their own right, even with very little territory.

If your Side gets too big, you end up crippled financially. Your borders get too big, and with a crippled economy you can't defend them properly. Combined with a sizable Alliance united with the intention of destroying you, and you really don't have a chance. Sides that get too big always fall, or split. It's built into the very mechanics of Erfworld.


...

...unless...

...unless you own Arkentools. They seem to be game-breakers. Decrypted have no upkeep, and last forever. In theory, you could pop units, decrypt them, and build up an army of virtually limitless size. I'm assuming the Arkenhammer works the same way, with zero-upkeep dwagons (flying, mountable heavies with special attacks!) except getting Dwagons seems a bit more involved. You actually have to go out and Tame them to get any sizable number. But Parson figured out how to do that efficiently -- Stanley is getting multiple Dwagons every turn.

The Arkendish solves the problem of communicating and coordinating a huge empire, allowing communication without Hats or Thinkamancers. Its exact powers are unclear of course...

But I'm starting to really think that there's some truth to the mystical view of the Toolists that any size which obtains and attunes to ALL the Arkentools will unite and rule all of Erfworld. They allow sides to break the rules, to escape the limiting factors that normally prevent such a thing.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Chit Rule Railroad » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:52 am

I haven't noticed anyone posting an explanation of Chip Tunage's name yet.

Wikipedia's chiptune article wrote:A chiptune, also known as chip music, is synthesized electronic music often produced with the sound chips of vintage computers and video game consoles, as well as with other methods such as emulation. In the early 1980s, personal computers became less expensive and more accessible than they had previously been. This led to a proliferation of outdated personal computers and game consoles that had been abandoned by consumers as they upgraded to newer machines. They were in low demand by consumers as a whole, and not difficult to find, making them a highly accessible and affordable method of creating sound or art.


In practice, the term is also applied to synth-heavy music that is influenced by the sound of authentic chip music.

400 albums tagged with "chiptune" for your full-length previewing pleasure: http://bandcamp.com/tag/chiptune. Enjoy.

I'm guessing that Chip's messy black hair is intended to make him look like a Japanese video game character.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby Rizban » Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:13 am

Kreistor wrote:
Lamech wrote:I'm guessing Haffaton provides for its units the same way that unaligned natural tribes do. And I bet flower power is great for making productive farms, or making better foraging. So it appears someone has already broken Erfworld. Huzzah!


You cannot reduce Upkeep to 0. You can use Provisions to reduce Upkeep, but it can never reach 0.

You'll notice there are Uncroaked in this scout force. By relying heavily on Uncroaked, they keep Upkeep down by using 0 Upkeep units, and preventing costs from rising by non-0 upkeep units not leveling up.

The other trick is only available to extremely large Sides. Sides that are excessively large do not need more than minimal defenses to stop Barbarian attacks on Cities deep inside the borders. You basically only need to keep strong defenses in the outer band of cities, and scout it very well.

It can be a problem because you're basically an eggshell, so if you lose in one place, you need to rapidly respond to the breakthrough to prevent losing too much of the soft center, but the enemy can capture too many cities and wind up underpowered trying to defend all their holdings. You don't care if the enemy just razes the cities, since all that means is rebuilding. Keep a large treasury to handle the temporary Upkeep problem, and have fast response forces to respond to the incursion, and you can be fine.
In Stupid World the "shell" defense only works to slow down smuggling and is totally useless against an invasion. I doubt that it works much better in Erfworld. Yes, you'll want stronger garrisons on your outermost cities, but that doesn't mean you neglect your inner defenses. That's just asking for someone to come in and tear apart your supply lines between cities and destroy your whole side.
Balerion wrote:Another tactic that might work to keep a side that big:

Have an army about the size of most side's total army (not the massive sides like Jetstone or GK are) close to the center of your empire. They are almost all scattered so that they can forage and keep upkeep as low as possible. Towards the outer walls, you have what amount to light defenses and raiding parties to go out and get income. Generally, very little is produced at any given city; the status quo is that you have full army power (there is a more risky variation to this without pretty much any units in the center) due to the massive production 50 cities provides

The goal of the relatively light outward presence is twofold. First, by presenting what appears to be a weak front to the local sides, they do not feel immediately threatened. Sure, you raid them occasionally, perhaps snag a level 1 city and raze it. But compared with their local threats, you are not all that important. This will prevent alliances from being formed against you; coalitions can only happen where there is such a clear threat that every side in a region has to respond or risk annihilation (not every side, but enough that you get critical mass for them to drop their usual conflicts).

The second is in response to the inevitable attack. Eventually, a side is going to decide that the reason you seem so weak on this side is that your forces are all tied up elsewhere. They see a bunch of lightly held cities, and come crashing in. Like Goodminton did, they take 3-4 cities, marching further into enemy territory.

When this happens, the cities nearby immediately begin churning out units that will be useful to counter the army coming at you. They join up with the army marching from your center to smash the enemy incursion, reanimate the fallen, and wreck bloody havoc against the side. Note that Haffaton doesn't have to strike the finishing blow; by weakening the side as much as they do by removing that army and sending it back against them, the hungry neighbors of that side will close in. Haffaton gains another 2-3 cities, and the status quo resumes. If the neighbors even know what weakened the fallen side so much, eventually those with that knowledge will die and the mistake will be repeated.

The amount of army that can be produced on demand by a side that large is rather staggering; probably on the order of 300-500 units. You only have to support them for a few turns, and then you drop back to low upkeep by disbanding them. Figuring out where that balance is probably takes some doing, but once you have it figured out it might even let you forego raiding parties.

Of course, this should be mixed with as many golems as possible as well, and any other non-upkeep units that can be acquired. I think it would work, and allow the slow rate of growth that Haffaton seems to enjoy. Another idea to throw out there, in addition to the eggshell
This is not a bad strategy and is similar to the winning strategy I use in most games. Use lighter, weaker units to make the enemy burn resources and commit to an attack, then sweep in with your main force and wipe out the weakened enemy units.
name lips wrote:I wonder how bad the penalty for too many cities really is.

50 cities is apparently "unthinkable" under normal circumstances.

There was a version of Civilization -- I don't remember which one -- which had a similar penalty. If your empire grew too large, your new, pathetic, size 1 cities could be costing ten times more than they were producing. I think there was another version that had a "corruption" mechanic, where the further away from your capital a city was, the more of its income would be lost to "corruption."
Corruption was Civ3.
name lips wrote:...unless you own Arkentools. They seem to be game-breakers. Decrypted have no upkeep, and last forever. In theory, you could pop units, decrypt them, and build up an army of virtually limitless size. I'm assuming the Arkenhammer works the same way, with zero-upkeep dwagons (flying, mountable heavies with special attacks!) except getting Dwagons seems a bit more involved. You actually have to go out and Tame them to get any sizable number. But Parson figured out how to do that efficiently -- Stanley is getting multiple Dwagons every turn.

The Arkendish solves the problem of communicating and coordinating a huge empire, allowing communication without Hats or Thinkamancers. Its exact powers are unclear of course...

But I'm starting to really think that there's some truth to the mystical view of the Toolists that any size which obtains and attunes to ALL the Arkentools will unite and rule all of Erfworld. They allow sides to break the rules, to escape the limiting factors that normally prevent such a thing.
There is no indication that the dwagons don't require upkeep. That seems to be unique to the Arkenpliers. The Archons created by Charlie's Arkendish are stated in the story to have outrageously high upkeep, which is why Charlie is always trying to make money through mercenary work.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 028

Postby mortissimus » Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:11 am

kevistrophic wrote:All this talk of Jillian as a barbarian is based on the portion of the timeline we addressed well before these most recent updates, yes? In IP(TSF) 028 Jillian is the ruler, the "queen", of FAQ. I'm just trying to keep the present tense statements in this discussion straight.


Princess, Heir and Chief Warlord in IP(TSF) 28. (King Banhammer rules Faq until Stanley kills him, then Jillian becomes barbarian (and ruler of, eh, lets call it a proto-side) until she retakes Faq and becomes Queen.)

Goshen wrote:That may be true. But Rob has said before that Erfworld is not a game. It is a game-like world.

Oh, I missed that bit. Where'd Rob say a thing like that? Heck, I may be missing lots of info.


Rob says things here and there. They usually get quoted here in the forum eventually.
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