Book 2 – Page 45

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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby danhaas » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:35 am

You seem to assume Parson is the good guy.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby oslecamo2 » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:59 am

Oberon wrote:Other SIdes, after they figure things out and think about the ramifications for a while may indeed decide that risking their casters on an offensive strike might be worthwhile. But I highly doubt it.

That's assuming that someone can discover Hamster's plan. Let's skip to the aftermath with Jetstone wiped out and Hamster standing over a massive pile of corpses. What do the other sides know?

-TMK at best saw Sizemore training his digging skillz.
-The croacked or GK's unit surely won't tell anything.
-Charlie has no archons inside the city to report.
-Transylvito will have just seen the courtyard with their bat, so they can't spot Hamster coming out from the portal room.

Most logical conlusion:
-GK has a foolmancer, thinkmancer and a dirtmancer. This allowed them to make an elaborate ruse in wich a warlord sneaked inside the city while everybody was looking at the dwagons and tool-wielding Wanda.

Absurd conclusion:
-GK has a warlord that can travel trough the magic kingdom. Lulwhot?

See? There's really no reason anyone will figure out how Hamster pulled it out unless someone on GK spills the beans. For all they know, he was there all along, hiding behind foolmancy and dirtmancy, waiting for the right time to strike!

Oberon wrote:Meh, you are granting the MK a level of FBI-like organization that it has not displayed. We have no evidence that the MK has ever "force[ed] their way into any situation and claim[ed] that it's "TMK business"" So why attribute that kind of behavior to them now? It seems completely out of character for what we have seen.


They may not go after his head, BUT they may deny him further acess to the MK. Wich means no more magic market. No extra scrolls, no hiring other kinds of mancers, no more extra training, wich would be kinda crippling.

That's however assuming the majority of the TMK ever finds out, like I pointed out above.

I can even see the Great Abbey covering Hamster's back again.

"I have no idea what you're talking about Sizemore breaking our neutrality, he was having tea with me all turn long, so clearly that Warlord reached Jetstone by other means."
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby joosy » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:50 am

Charlie has already revealed to Jetstone that Parson can enter the Magic Kingdom and that he is a warlord.
Many casters saw Parson, a warlord, in the Magic Kingdom. Duty to their own side may force them to reveal that fact. (assuming they are not a barbarian - but I am sure it was and continues to be a topic of furtive whispers amongst the caster community)
There is a guard on the GK portal because of his recent incursion.
Parson's plan surely allows for him to be seen initially but to then flee into the tunnels thus escaping any immediate reprisals from the guards.
I am sure the rest of the RCCII allies will be very interested in what happened and may be able to meet Charlie's price if he doesn't give it away outright.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby effataigus » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:55 am

danhaas wrote:To kill Parson, well, it would be as dramatic as killing Sauron before Frodo gets anywhere near Mount Doom.


To be fair, Sauron was killed in the first couple of minutes of the movie. He then took on a GM-like role. Now imagine if Parson is "killed" and ends up back at his gaming table with the units arranged just-so on the table... and each of his friends controlling a different side. Not that this seems likely as a story direction either :D

name lips wrote:Things will seem to go awesomely -- until they start going badly. That's how battles work in this comic, remember?


Definitely. With this much buildup, something has gotta break... and I don't think it's just going to be Jetstone.

Oberon wrote:
Kizmet wrote:
trotsky wrote:I don't see why everybody thinks that traveling through the portal would be particularly useful outside of a narrow set of situations.
Respectfully, I disagree. Traveling through portals is incredibly powerful. They allow instant movement, across any distance, off turn, of an unlimited amount of troops.
Er, you had me until the last point. Please name me another unit other than a caster or Parson who we have proof can enter the MK and live. There are none. Thus, your "unlimited amount of troops" becomes rapidly reduced to "Parson and casters."


Indeed, the portals are pretty limited in use as they are currently designed. My question is where the portals came from. If they were there from the start of Erfworld "time" then OK... at the very least this would seem to imply that "capital" sites are defined by the presence of portals. If portals were built, however, and if they could be built without the caster limitation... then I'm also curious why we don't see more of them in use... yeah yeah... prohibitively expensive, just as much of a liability as a blessing, emit harmful radiation...
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby joosy » Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:15 am

effataigus wrote:Indeed, the portals are pretty limited in use as they are currently designed. My question is where the portals came from. If they were there from the start of Erfworld "time" then OK... at the very least this would seem to imply that "capital" sites are defined by the presence of portals. If portals were built, however, and if they could be built without the caster limitation... then I'm also curious why we don't see more of them in use... yeah yeah... prohibitively expensive, just as much of a liability as a blessing, emit harmful radiation...


My theory is that there are a set number of capitol sites in Erfworld. Only capitol cities can be built on those sites and only capitol sites can have Portals. Only active capitol sites (not razed) have active portals. Ergo, there would be portals or the capability for a portal for each capitol site already configured in Portal Park. This does leave debate open on how many portals a side can have (just one or one per capitol site under their control). If a capitol site is razed then the portal goes blank. It comes back online once the capitol site is restored.

It does beg the question of why no caster has (as far as we know) ever tried to map the portals but given the inherent battle mechanics of Erfworld it probably doesn't seem practical (e.g. how is this information useful? how will this information be used?) nor does it probably interest any caster other than studying the magic of creating portals. I am sure the Magic Kingdom was popped just like everything else in Erfworld and its denizens accept it as just that and nothing more.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby kineticdragon » Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:20 pm

I wonder how much information a hired caster will disclose? Did FAQ have a portal? It seems like a caster somewhere along the line would have noticed the portal to the a hidden kingdom and possibly mentioned it along the line.

Or not.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby ftl » Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:40 pm

kineticdragon wrote:I wonder how much information a hired caster will disclose? Did FAQ have a portal? It seems like a caster somewhere along the line would have noticed the portal to the a hidden kingdom and possibly mentioned it along the line.

Or not.


Well, Erfworld is big. A caster would see a portal and perhaps even know the casters which come from there call their kingdom "FAQ", but unless there was a concerted effort by a lot of casters to figure out where it was, there'd be no indication to any particular caster that it wasn't just a kingdom that happened to be far away from them.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby multilis » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:04 pm

effataigus wrote:
danhaas wrote:Now imagine if Parson is "killed"...

Killed then decryped is also possible for Parson.

Also even possible for Wanda to be killed, then Parson to rush out, grab the pliers and decrypt her.

The more obvious storyline would be Wanda barely losing, then suddenly being saved by Parson killing the retreating King, and Tram hiding in a zone of city they don't have move to reach and escaping on Charlie's turn, or slipping out of city with Charlies help.

Another twist possible where Parson kills Tram's dad and Tram negotiates a peace deal with Parson (several ways this could happen, including Parson using loophole in the contract to take over Jetstone, yet comply with contract)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby Ansan Gotti » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:09 pm

danhaas wrote:You seem to assume Parson is the good guy.


Well, given that his name is an anagram of Protagonist and he seems to be the central character of the story who readers are probably most likely to empathize with, I'd say yeah, most of us are probably assuming that. ;)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby multilis » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:12 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:
danhaas wrote:You seem to assume Parson is the good guy.


Well, given that his name is an anagram of Protagonist and he seems to be the central character of the story who readers are probably most likely to empathize with, I'd say yeah, most of us are probably assuming that. ;)


Protagonist is not always a good guy, eg wikipedia "Although the protagonist is often referred to as the 'good guy', it is entirely possible for a story's protagonist to be the clear villain, or antihero, of the piece."
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby Ansan Gotti » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:15 pm

multilis wrote:Protagonist is not always a good guy.


Not always. But most of the time. And given the setup and the moral struggles Parson has been facing, it seems like a pretty reasonable bet to me.

If you or anyone wants to take the contrary view, they are of course welcome, but it would seem to be a tougher row to hoe.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby multilis » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:29 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:
multilis wrote:Protagonist is not always a good guy.


Not always. But most of the time. And given the setup and the moral struggles Parson has been facing, it seems like a pretty reasonable bet to me.

If you or anyone wants to take the contrary view, they are of course welcome, but it would seem to be a tougher row to hoe.

Beginning of book 1, Parson sees his side as "evil", he has the uncroaking, gobwins, dwagons and torture normally associated with evil sides. Rommel leading Hitler's forces to victory does not always make Rommel a "good guy". Neither does the allies firebombing entire city of civilians in Dresden make Rommel a good guy because the other side can also play nasty.

Another example is Ender's game book... in a way in end the enemy "buggers" end up being more then good guys than the humans, they made a mistake, they are sorry, they try to make up for it, while Ender is forced to be a sort of anti-hero for sake of what he thinks is to save the humans. (In reality, if the humans had lost war and realised their mistake they probably could have gotten along with the bugs in peace afterwards, the bugs weren't trying to attack humans anymore)

We don't know how story will end, he "more likely" will be "good guy", but he could easily become an anti-hero of sorts, as part of a plot twist. (Eg he could become decrypted Darth Vader, only saved back to good side in his death.)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby quindraco » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:35 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:Not always. But most of the time. And given the setup and the moral struggles Parson has been facing, it seems like a pretty reasonable bet to me.


Does it?

Parson is directly and indirectly responsible for an extremely large number of deaths now, and odds are excellent he's about to increase that number drastically. He has been doing this on behalf of an aggressor hellbent on world domination with a nicely religious theme. He's even taking it clearly beyond the real of self-defence at this point.

History is not typically kind to people like that.

I personally heavily sympathise with Parson. I am firmly of the opinion that he is a good person trying to make the best of a bad situation. However, I think Balder has done an excellent job of setting it up such that a significant number of people might disagree.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby oslecamo2 » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:36 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:
multilis wrote:Protagonist is not always a good guy.


Not always. But most of the time. And given the setup and the moral struggles Parson has been facing, it seems like a pretty reasonable bet to me.

If you or anyone wants to take the contrary view, they are of course welcome, but it would seem to be a tougher row to hoe.


It would be tough, if not for the fact that Parson gets an army of goblins, hobgoblins, undeads, necromancer B****, monstruous spiders, angry dragons, and an overlord bent on collecting super-artifacts at ALL costs.

In the other side we have the pretty honorable royals defending the status quo at all costs (remember Ossomer), rebel action girls, angels, and charming vampires.

Hamster proceeds to blow up a city slaughtering thousands on the process (both his and oponent troops), refusing a chance of peacefull surrender, lying, betraying and sacrificing his most loyal forces all the way with a single moment of hesitation at the end.

Hamster is definetely not your average protagonist. And he has pretty much all the traits of an evil general.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby Ansan Gotti » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:48 pm

oslecamo2 wrote:It would be tough, if not for the fact that Parson gets an army of goblins, hobgoblins, undeads, necromancer B****, monstruous spiders, angry dragons, and an overlord bent on collecting super-artifacts at ALL costs.

In the other side we have the pretty honorable royals defending the status quo at all costs (remember Ossomer), rebel action girls, angels, and charming vampires.

Hamster proceeds to blow up a city slaughtering thousands on the process (both his and oponent troops), refusing a chance of peacefull surrender, lying, betraying and sacrificing his most loyal forces all the way with a single moment of hesitation at the end.

Hamster is definetely not your average protagonist. And he has pretty much all the traits of an evil general.


Not sure where you're getting the refusal of a chance of peaceful surrender, would you care to elaborate?

Ultimately, I think the difference of perspective lies in the fact that Erfworld is all about war, it is pretty much the raison d'etre of the entire place. Pretty much everyone (except for FAQ, which makes even more interesting their presence as a major player when it comes to main characters) is trying to conquer, to expand, to take over. When you have a situation like that, as Stanley himself indicated early in Book One, notions of good and evil when applied to unit types do seem to be slightly antiquated.

Janis (and perhaps Parson as well, implicitly) appears to be of the view that Parson is here to perhaps change all of that. Which makes him not only an interesting Protagonist who we are designed to empathize with, but also this place's great hope.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby justamessenger » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:04 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:Ultimately, I think the difference of perspective lies in the fact that Erfworld is all about war, it is pretty much the raison d'etre of the entire place. Pretty much everyone (except for FAQ, which makes even more interesting their presence as a major player when it comes to main characters) is trying to conquer, to expand, to take over. When you have a situation like that, as Stanley himself indicated early in Book One, notions of good and evil when applied to unit types do seem to be slightly antiquated.


This is my take on it. There is no concept of good vs. evil, but rather victor vs. vanquished with a mix of class warfare thrown in for good measure. It seems that FAQ is a possible exception to this rule, though we would need more information to make any substantive determination.

Morality does not seem to play a part in Erf; might makes right is the overarching theme.

Regarding unit types: If a city or hex naturally pops certain units, and that territory is conquered by another side, does that hex not continue to pop the original unit types? It would make more sense that the units are indicative of the location rather than whichever faction is holding that terrain. If this is, in fact, the case, then any given side can have units that 'we' would consider good or evil.

Edit: Complete sentences help, don't they?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby joosy » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:17 pm

kineticdragon wrote:I wonder how much information a hired caster will disclose? Did FAQ have a portal? It seems like a caster somewhere along the line would have noticed the portal to the a hidden kingdom and possibly mentioned it along the line.

Or not.


Or they may not have cared. Remember this is a world where you are supposedly in constant battle or constant vigilance with your neighbors and the affairs of far flung sides that you may never come into conflict with are hardly ever of your concern. So in the Magic Kingdom there are probably LOTS of portals to sides that no one has ever heard of and they just assume they are too distant to bother with. It may be considered rude to ask questions about another's sides location, strength, etc and Duty/Loyalty may preclude any answers.

Edit: scooped by FTL earlier.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby oslecamo2 » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:54 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:Not sure where you're getting the refusal of a chance of peaceful surrender, would you care to elaborate?

Book 1:
-Ansom assaults walls full of mooks and loses his mount.
-Asks Charlie for help.
-Charlie presents a new "improved" contract.
-Ansom acepts it, then when he re-joins his troops he announces that Hamster is to be captured alive at all costs here.
-Charlie tells Hamster that he'll soon be working for him again.
-Hamster goes "Screw diplomacy and ethics, I have a foolmancy scroll!", and proceeds to sacrifice the unit that more admired him to fool Ansom who was giving him a chance to end that battle whitout more carnage.
-But it still isn't enough, so Hamster decides that if he can't win, he'll take as many lifes down with him as possible (proceeds to blow up volcano).

Ansan Gotti wrote:Ultimately, I think the difference of perspective lies in the fact that Erfworld is all about war, it is pretty much the raison d'etre of the entire place. Pretty much everyone (except for FAQ, which makes even more interesting their presence as a major player when it comes to main characters) is trying to conquer, to expand, to take over. When you have a situation like that, as Stanley himself indicated early in Book One, notions of good and evil when applied to unit types do seem to be slightly antiquated.

-Tramenis will rather have a new ally than a vanquished enemy.
-Ossomer's speech when they meet at the bridge.
-Saline IV semeed to be a pretty pacifist guy as far as Sizemore hints.
-Ansom was a warlord, but he prefered to get his own hands dirty than sacrificing troops, and also spared Wanda's life when they fought.

Ansan Gotti wrote:Janis (and perhaps Parson as well, implicitly) appears to be of the view that Parson is here to perhaps change all of that. Which makes him not only an interesting Protagonist who we are designed to empathize with, but also this place's great hope.


More like it's final doom. The great Abbey intends for there to be peace trough Hamster killing everybody and Wanda decrypting them as brainwashed dolls. "Of course I would rather rule over the dead than the living! The dead never complain!"

I would even say she's the ultimate villain in the middle of all this. She's snapped and reached the conclusion that the only way to "save" Erfworld is by killing everybody". A la barren glory from MTG.

Image
See that? It's the endgame she wants. GK still standing and everything else nuked to smithereens. Nobody left to fight. Peace at last.

Sometimes, the best intentions can lead to the worst results.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby gazes_also » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:06 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:
multilis wrote:Protagonist is not always a good guy.


Not always. But most of the time. And given the setup and the moral struggles Parson has been facing, it seems like a pretty reasonable bet to me.

If you or anyone wants to take the contrary view, they are of course welcome, but it would seem to be a tougher row to hoe.


Not at all.
You've seen "The Godfather" haven't you?

Sometimes protagonists lose their moral struggles and become the Bad Guy. And those are often more interesting stories.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 45

Postby Nihila » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:10 pm

oslecamo2 wrote:-Ansom acepts it, then when he re-joins his troops he announces that Hamster is to be captured alive at all costs here.
-Charlie tells Hamster that he'll soon be working for him again.
-Hamster goes "Screw diplomacy and ethics, I have a foolmancy scroll!", and proceeds to sacrifice the unit that more admired him to fool Ansom who was giving him a chance to end that battle whitout more carnage.
-But it still isn't enough, so Hamster decides that if he can't win, he'll take as many lifes down with him as possible (proceeds to blow up volcano).
Well, the assassination of Ansom was to eliminate the massive bonus Ansom offered by being in the hex. Then, Parson still didn't have enough to win conventionally, so he won by another means. He won, at a massive cost. And, the so-called "peaceful surrender" would have led to Parson being led by control-freak Charlie, so Parson should have wanted to stay with easily-manipulatable Stanley.
oslecamo2 wrote:-Tramenis will rather have a new ally than a vanquished enemy.
-Ossomer's speech when they meet at the bridge.
-Saline IV semeed to be a pretty pacifist guy as far as Sizemore hints.
-Ansom was a warlord, but he prefered to get his own hands dirty than sacrificing troops, and also spared Wanda's life when they fought.
Well, Trammenis is the exception, not the rule. Slately expected him to croak or conquer, remember. Ossomer's speech which went "beat us and we'll accept your mandate"? Wow, that sounds like pacifism. [/sarcasm] We really don't know that Saline was a pacifist, we have too little information. And Ansom hesitated because he was afraid of Wanda and got his hands dirty because he was the only flier present, so the only one who could attack the uncroaked. That doesn't show a dedication to pacifism, more a dedication to winning.
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