Book 2 – Page 50

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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby drachefly » Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:02 am

Duped Wanda sez: Casters, shoot at your target, now shoot at me, now shoot at your target, now shoot at me. Sadly, your target isn't me, but if Jack stopped using Old Juice, I wouldn't look like I was. Look up, back down, where am I? I'm in an atrium with a warlord my caster looks like. What's in my hand, back at me. I have it, it's an skull staff with a defense bonus you hate. Look again, the staff is now an arkentool. Anything is possible when Jack is using Old Juice. I'm on a dwagon.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Oberon » Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:02 am

Raza wrote:Yeah, agreed. Dwagons have been suffering from the worf effect somewhat, and neither their flying forms nor the stretchy gummy-dwagon depictions in Gobwin Knob's new war room have marked them as overly imposing. I've even wondered somewhat how well Stanley could've really recognised them in Parson's description early in book one.
One item: Jillian and TV fully intended to ambush and defeat Stanley and his dwagons. I do not recall if they realized in advance that Jack was with the stack, but they should have been aware of the KISS knights (again with the redundancy...). And, they lost. Sort of. Stanley and a few dwagons and KISS knights got away, but Caesar was blasted back and many bats were killed. Sure, Stanley lost many KISS and dwagons, but TV lost at least one warlord on top of piles of bats, and they lost their intent to slay Stanley.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby teratorn » Sat Jan 08, 2011 2:10 am

Dwagons in stacks without riders won't go for the warlord instead of the bats,
so they should get hit a lot before they finish the bats and are able to face the warlord.
Given enough bats this kind of fight against unlead stacks ought to be (and was) devastating.
Once Stanley left it was only a question of TV having enough bats to finish as many
dwagons as they could. I don't understand how so many of them managed to
escape (not many bats remaining?). Things would have been quite
different if Stanley had a few more knights with him.

I count only 8 surviving TV units, from the 12 that were surrounding GK forces.
For every knight that fell TV could have lost two warlords. I'm particularly impressed to see
that Vurp managed to leave the hex without Stanley's bonus.

I feel a bit the opposite from other posters. If a knight on a dwagon is equivalent to
a TV warlord (and they don't have many) then TV doesn't stand a chance against GK. Rob
doesn't say exactly how many warlords they lost (can only be sure about Mario), four
is a bit too much since the warlords not facing knights weren't really risking much.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Smoker » Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:21 am

Kyrt wrote:
Smoker wrote:If Tramennis is so convinced that Parson has given up all hope of a meaningful conversation - why is he waiting for one?


It is likely Parson will take a call from one of his sides warlords. In essence, Tram has changed the situation from needing to persuade Parson to take a call to persuading whatever Warlord GK sends over to initiate one. If Parson still refuses the call, then Tram still has the option of pursuing talks with that warlord or simply shooting the entire force down.


That's a good argument, but it relies on the fact that there is considerable chance of Parson refusing the call. Unfortunately, without any evidence whatsoever that Parson is reluctant to parley (and in fact, some compelling evidence that says he is) you cant use risk mitigation as an excuse for not following standard procedure.

Kyrt wrote:
That is to say, why hasn't he disbanded all the troops in the airspace. If Parson believes so surely that nothing can be said or done to save his units, then surely disbanding them is better than letting the Jetstone units level off killing them all, and much better than letting certain units be captured.


And will, for example, deprive him of the opportunity to cause damage back to JS when they are indeed able to attack. He can still likely cause a lot of damage after all.


If this is why Tramennis thinks GK's forces are still there, then he should probably get to the point as quickly as possible to avoid said damage, no?

But really, I think the most obvious point against this reasoning: Then why hasn't he done so? If dealing damage before dying/disbanding was the goal, then he could have taken a pot-shot at Tramennis when he returned from attacking the column, or laid waste to any part of Space Rock under the Airspace while Tramennis and Slately were discussing their options indoors. Instead they waited patiently for the offer of Parley, and responded to it.

For you see, if Parson really thought that parley was a waste of time, why even bother sending an Archon to review the terms? I mean, by your reasoning, Tramennis shouldn't have even done that, because he would lose his bargaining power if Parson refused. So since Tramennis was taking that "risk" anyway, he might just as well have done it properly.

So the evidence that supports Parson's willingness to parley:
a) He hasn't pooped yet.
b) He hasn't disbanded yet.
c) He sends an archon to review the dictate for parley terms.

The evidence that supports Parson's unwillingness to parley:
A theory that he would be more likely to resign himself to his loss, and allow Jetstone to farm xp from and/or capture his most valued units.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby drachefly » Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:55 am

Oberon wrote:This I can support entirely. I only feel the need to add the link for those who may have missed the awesome.


Good point. Link added.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Kyrt » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:02 am

Smoker wrote:That's a good argument, but it relies on the fact that there is considerable chance of Parson refusing the call. Unfortunately, without any evidence whatsoever that Parson is reluctant to parley (and in fact, some compelling evidence that says he is) you cant use risk mitigation as an excuse for not following standard procedure.


Standard procedure for parleys being to involve the in hex commanders.

For you see, if Parson really thought that parley was a waste of time, why even bother sending an Archon to review the terms?


As opposed to Ossomer sending one?

So the evidence that supports Parson's willingness to parley:
a) He hasn't pooped yet.
b) He hasn't disbanded yet.
c) He sends an archon to review the dictate for parley terms.


GK can't attack so they need to get this parley over with. Those same excuses could just as easily fil the" Lets do as much damage as we can" routine.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby drachefly » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:18 am

People, I'm lost. I don't understand where these arguments are going anymore. Earlier in this thread there was some confusion over what positions people actually held. Yes, in an ideal world, we'd all remember what each person's position is. This isn't that world.

I think there is no idiot ball. There are things Tramennis could have done which would have produced a better effect, but these would have involved tradeoffs. Given that he had every reason to expect his audience to be captive (they had been completely passive for hours), he was taking the methodical route.

Shooting at illusory Wanda was an error, but a reasonable one given the time scales involved here.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Smoker » Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:33 am

Kyrt wrote:Standard procedure for parleys being to involve the in hex commanders.

Not so. (IIRC) All of the alliances that we have seen discussed (Unaroyal/GK, Jetstone/GK, Jetstone/Charlescomm, TV/Faq) the talks were conducted between either CWL's and Rulers.

Most of the time, the CWLs are the hex commanders, but not always:

In the instance of Jetstone/Charlescom, this was done over a thinkagram (the EULA), and Ansom actually addresses Charlie by name in that brief discussion - he did not negotiate with the Archon in charge. We also know the thinkagram data is from Charlie, becaue the updated terms are a product of a conversation he had with Parson, about which the Archons are presumably unaware.

In the instance of TV/Faq, Jillian is taken cross-country to meet with Don King. She wasn't expected to talk to Vinny, or even Caesar, who is the CWL - her Rank demanded better, it seems. (I accept the fact that this discussion was something of a special case though)

You can interpret this as "Standard procedure for parleys being to involve the in hex commanders. With at least one exception. (which makes 25%)"

Or "Standard procedure for parleys being to involve only CLWs and/or Rulers. With no exceptions."

Kyrt wrote:
For you see, if Parson really thought that parley was a waste of time, why even bother sending an Archon to review the terms?


As opposed to Ossomer sending one?

I dont understand what you mean. What Im saying is that if Tramennis felt that Parson would not enter a parley, and would ignore a thinkagram, then Tram must also have felt that his dictate which was presented prior to said parley would have been ignored. So any negative impact from Parson's unwillingness would have come into effect then. Since he is prepared to try a parley, it might as well be the correct one.

Kyrt wrote:
So the evidence that supports Parson's willingness to parley:
a) He hasn't pooped yet.
b) He hasn't disbanded yet.
c) He sends an archon to review the dictate for parley terms.


GK can't attack so they need to get this parley over with. Those same excuses could just as easily fil the" Lets do as much damage as we can" routine.


No they dont - if he wanted to do as much damage as he could, then he wouldn't wait. He'd just do it. The only reason he'd wait is to a) Parley or b) Work out an exploit. Since most people agree that Tramennis cant imagine an exploit being possible, that leaves Tram with only one reason why GK forces have not been disbanded, or ordered to poop.... Starts with a P.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Oberon » Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:07 pm

drachefly wrote:
Oberon wrote:This I can support entirely. I only feel the need to add the link for those who may have missed the awesome.

Good point. Link added.
My link might have been stealthed. Hover over any of my quotation of you and it'll be obvious.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Oberon » Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:21 pm

drachefly wrote:I think there is no idiot ball. There are things Tramennis could have done which would have produced a better effect, but these would have involved tradeoffs. Given that he had every reason to expect his audience to be captive (they had been completely passive for hours), he was taking the methodical route.
The point is, if Tram's actions never managed to get him into diplomatic contact, then exactly what are his diplomatic skills? Why give him a pass for taking "the methodical route" if that route results in a total failure to accomplish his own stated goals?

I agree with you that there are things Tram might have done which might have produced better results for him. And if this had happened it would have demonstrated Tram's competence. Instead, we have a character who was built up to be a smart diplomat, but all of that is informed ability. When we see him in action he either draws erroneous conclusions or simply fails to deliver anything which can be called diplomacy. And using success as a measure of competence, he is at a 100% failure rate. Thus, his much vaunted smart and diplomatic capabilities are placed at question every time we see him act. There is an idiot ball, and Tram is holding it.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby drachefly » Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:44 pm

A piano fell out of the sky. If it hadn't, he would have been in diplomatic contact.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby atalex » Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:31 pm

Kyrt wrote:When the reputation of such talks is simply a chance for the Royals to jutify their slaughter? Or to emphasise their victory? In other words, that the aprley was effectively a sham and that the GK force was doomed no matter what he said or did?

Why should he take part? He isn't aware Tram wants to bargain in earnest, JS will move to wipe out his forces anyway.

SNIP

No...Parson needs to talk to Tram to save his troops only if he thinks there is a chance that such talks would have chance to save them. The Royals rep is such that that isn't the case...the Royals rep here is such that GKs strike force is dead no matter what he says or does.


I would like to just point out that people are without evidence that all royals have a "reputation" for sham parleys and that, accordingly, Tram had an affirmative duty to somehow assure Parson of his sincerity because otherwise he would be an idiot and a failure as a diplomat. We have not seen that royals have a reputation for sham parleys. We have seen that parleys between GK and JS frequently disintegrate into opportunities for sneak attacks (the assassinations of Prince Ansom at GK and later Princess Cruz at Uniroyal, Jillian's Turnamancy stunt, and what GK is doing during parley right now).

Parsons faulty intelligence that any parley would be a sham was based on Ossomer's predictions about how his father would react, filtered through Jack's distinctly anti-royalist perspective and the belief of Ossomer and Jack that there was no conceivable way out for GK. In particular, Ossomer's views were likely based on how he himself would react if he were still on Jetstone's side. Neither Parson nor Jack had any reason to think that Tram might be any different because Ossomer himself never considered the possibility that Tram might see a diplomatic option that was superior to simply blasting GK out of the sky.

In any event, I think this whole "parley directly with Parson" thing is moot. Even if there had been an actual negotiation between Tram and Parson, what sort of terms could they have come up with? Nothing short of getting back the pliers and ending Decryption would satisfy JS. Nothing short of Wanda and Jack staying alive would satisfy Parson. And I firmly believe that if Parson had told Wanda to surrender the pliers, she'd have broken alliance and formed her own side on the spot.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Smoker » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:00 am

atalex wrote:I would like to just point out that people are without evidence that all royals have a "reputation" for sham parleys...

Parsons faulty intelligence that any parley would be a sham was based on Ossomer's predictions about how his father would react, filtered through Jack's distinctly anti-royalist perspective and the belief of Ossomer and Jack that there was no conceivable way out for GK...

These are excellent points. Especially the second one, which I had not considered before.

atalex wrote:In any event, I think this whole "parley directly with Parson" thing is moot. Even if there had been an actual negotiation between Tram and Parson, what sort of terms could they have come up with?

I totally agree that the chances of both sides walking away happy was slim, but (although everyone's angle in this discussion is slightly different) I think those that are.. unsatisfied.. with Tramennis' performance would be happy enough to withdraw such opinions (or I suppose, never have formed them) if he had progressed closer to this goal, albeit not all the way to a happy conclusion.

But more importantly, dispite the fact that the discussed hypotheticals probably wouldn't have had an impact on the actual story, it has still been very interesting. Through this discussion I've come from a position of looking at the comic and saying "Heh. Cute." to understanding that although Tramennis is a skilled diplomat (I'm willing to believe this because the story tells us so) his major character flaw is his insatiable need to be a smart ass. When Parson (unknowingly) presented him with a chance to flex his smartass muscles, Tramennis and all his diplomatic skill were effectively removed from the equation. That's my interpretation - it may or may not be what Rob had intended, but it works for me.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Kyrt » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:11 pm

Oberon wrote:The point is, if Tram's actions never managed to get him into diplomatic contact, then exactly what are his diplomatic skills? Why give him a pass for taking "the methodical route" if that route results in a total failure to accomplish his own stated goals?


His skills did get him to the point of diplomatic contact". Would Ossomer have put in a call? Unknown...but Trams options at that point hadn't been narrowed at all. Trams mistake, as far as you are concerned, is that he didn't concern himself too much with the idea of attack by the yellows - which is AFAICS inconsequential given how easily they were dealt with and the limited damage they could do - and the fact he didn't plan for Parson doing something supposedly impossible, rather than unlikely.

And using success as a measure of competence, he is at a 100% failure rate.


I step onto a football field at 90 minutes. The ref blows the whistle, game ends and we lose. Am I a poor player because I didn't score a goal? The measure of competence is this....take away Parsons exploit, but keep everything else the same. That means they hold a parley, Ossomer and Tram have words, the yellows attack, Tram shoots them down and then asks to speak with Parson.

Do you think Ossomer would have connected the two?

I don't know if he would or not. But saying his approach was a failure because Parson pulled off the impossible before he could see it through isn't a great argument. Would his approach have worked if Parson had no exploit to fall back on?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby Raza » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:45 pm

Oberon wrote:
Raza wrote:Yeah, agreed. Dwagons have been suffering from the worf effect somewhat, and neither their flying forms nor the stretchy gummy-dwagon depictions in Gobwin Knob's new war room have marked them as overly imposing. I've even wondered somewhat how well Stanley could've really recognised them in Parson's description early in book one.
One item: Jillian and TV fully intended to ambush and defeat Stanley and his dwagons. I do not recall if they realized in advance that Jack was with the stack, but they should have been aware of the KISS knights (again with the redundancy...). And, they lost. Sort of. Stanley and a few dwagons and KISS knights got away, but Caesar was blasted back and many bats were killed. Sure, Stanley lost many KISS and dwagons, but TV lost at least one warlord on top of piles of bats, and they lost their intent to slay Stanley.

My impression of that battle was that GK was losing big time force-wise, and got away primarily because of jack. Vurp appears to have wacked Dark Mario, Stanley swatted Ceasar out of the sky... Stanley's red roasted a pair of marshmallow peeps, but that was pretty much the extend of visible dwaconic contribution, and the text updates indicate they survived it. TV lost only insofar as their objectives differed from delivering a straightforward military defeat, and not thanks to the dwagons in any way but their continued capacity for flight.

So, Iunno - I actually think that battle was an excellent example of dwagons being Worfed. They were repeatedly pointed out as a tough obstacle beforehand, then got pwned to demonstrate the unexpected potentency of Transylvito Style. Rob has been using them as a unit type that the audience would acknowledge as tough without much previous evidence, to demonstrate the tactical relevance of hitting wounded units and boosting/sapping multipliers early in his story, while continuously having erfworlders declare them powerful and relevant to counteract badass decay.

Which is not to say that they necessarily underperformed - after that and every other battle we've seen, I still find it entirely believable that Dwagons are units with very good stats and useful specials. They've just haven't had their crowning moment of awesome yet (although 'pwning the column' came close).
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby GaryThunder » Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:11 pm

The dwagon donut trick should have demonstrated how strong dwagons were, and did in at least the beginning part. An entire force of elves and Gumps, with Ansom's hex-wide CW bonus (+5 if it's the same as his Decrypted one) were repeatedly being annihilated by three dwagons. Three. Of weaker types. Ansom had to go in directly to punch through them. As far as the dwagons over the lake, they specifically only had a very few hits left, as they would want to maximize their damage output by making sure every dwagon was down to its last breath before rotating it out. High level warlord (Jillian) giving "massive" leadership bonus to three (presumably) high-level Archons against units with just a few hits left? Then supported by Ansom's even larger direct bonus plus his artifact bonus? Of course it was a turkey shoot. Dwagons were set to fail there.

As for the Transylvito battle...they had hundreds of bats, and most of the dwagons didn't have Stanley riding on them to Arkenhammer away their obstacles. Dwagons without riders are tough, but when they're each being swarmed by dozens of small, fast, strong (as tough as advanced infantry, most of them) units, how could they survive?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby drachefly » Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:00 pm

Yeah. The TV vs Dwagon fight was structurally in favor of TV, the exception being where a single AOE attack could take out all of the bats.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby teratorn » Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:34 pm

drachefly wrote:Yeah. The TV vs Dwagon fight was structurally in favor of TV, the exception being where a single AOE attack could take out all of the bats.


We knew that from the donut of doom thing. Vinny planned to escape by feeding bats to dwagons. Dwagons are strong but with no riders they have no strategical sense, hence someone capable of feeding them a lot of low level units will get enough time to do a lot of damage. Same thing happened with Jillian and the orlies when facing a group of dwagons. If Jillian had a few more of those she could have killed the entire dwagon group. A TV warlord with enough bats should always beat a dwagon without a warlord in its stack, the dwagon is killing weak units while it gets hit by the high-level one. To beat a warlord in this kind of fight you need a dwagon with a rider.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 50

Postby youngstormlord » Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:39 am

You are all forgetting one thing: it doesn't matter what Tram had to offer. It was not enough, and there was no way for him to know it.

Tram's best offer included Wanda croaking and pliers going to Jetstone's hands. It was not going to be accepted by Parson. Tram might be smart, he might be the best diplomat there is or he might be wearing idiot hat. It doesn't matter.

He: 1) didn't have enough informations 2)didn't have enough cards in his hands 3) didn't count on Parson being a "cheater"

That war wasn't winnable for Jetstone.
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