Book 2 – Text Updates 054

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby thaco4 » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:02 am

I believe that some of you are looking at this situation like a chess game. Sacrifice a bishop vs sacrificing a pawn when your king is in check? Not a smart move.

However, crazy?!? Crazy? This is ERFWORLD!!!! *Punt* But seriously, we see this kind of sacrifice from GK all the time as ^ just said. I'm betting a Troll attack that Jestone lives to see a many more turns.
Indeed
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Balerion » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:06 am

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Ok, now get out of Bland's imaginary world and go read the comic.

You see that side called Gobwin Knob?

The one where Hamster, chief warlord of Gobwin Knob didn't even blink when they lost half their airforce, and actualy wanted to press the attack?
The one where Stanley sacrificed a lookmancer to get a foolmancer to cover his retreat?
The one where Hamster throws everything he has at the RC meatgrinder whitout hesitation and then blows up their only city?
The one where Hamster then orders his troops to start butchering each other to perform an air assault, including risking two more mancers, when they could've tried diplomacy?

Well, that side, Gobwin Knob in case you forgot the name, the one who's being making sacrifices like crazy at every oportunity, it's the most sucessful one so far.

Enemies can't get you in future turns if they've been killed by your sacrificed units.


There is a reason I tried to emphasize the situational dependent part by capitalizing heavy :P. GW was in a very different situation those times from where Jetstone is now. Lets go through them then.

First, for all the book one examples: when confronted by an overwhelming force like that, with only one city, the %chance of protecting your side is never very high. Parson managed to (according to the bracer) raise the odds to something above 50% on holding the city for a turn (forget the exact number and time sequence), and this was considered a miracle. So bear in mind, we are not talking about sacrifices that gained 1-2% of protection; each one probably was a 20-30% extra. But by each:
1) Losing the airforce: Parson had set it up so he would have two options on his turn. Either the enemy had found the wounded dragons, and he should be able to kill their leadership, or they had not found the dragons and he might both get the leadership and get the enemy siege. As waiting for the enemy to get to the city before striking was almost certainly a loss, the sacrifice increased long term survivability of the side. 40% of the enemy siege and their leadership for your air force is by no means a bad trade.

2)If Jack had been functioning, as Stanely expected, then having him along dramatically increases his survivability. He also probably planned on veiling his newly established capital when the time came. Misty, on the other hand, had no immediate use; but i do want to point out: the reason they had to capture Ossomer at the beginning of book two was that they lacked their table, and needed to rely on the old-fashioned scouting. They nearly fell into a trap because of it. So this is a good example of how a short term good sacrifice can make life harder long term. In this case, I would say it was worth it because you didn't know misty would die for sure.

3)Stanely's fate was unconnected to their own. Also, what happened to those units if Parson did nothing? they died. Burning through units that are doomed no matter your actions is not sacrificing them; its the inevitable occurring. At every step, he tried to minimize losses, so as to make it more likely he could live through the next engagement, but there are going to be losses. When fighting an overwhelming force, there are going to be overwhelming losses.

4)Wanda represents thousands of units. There was no diplomatic option that led to her being back in Jetstone hands; also, Parson had no idea that the negotiation offer would be in good faith. Remember we knew the diplomat son was in charge, but Parson did not. But Parson used a plan that assumed those units were dead already. Since they were doomed unless he took action, you take an action that is incredibly risky (there was a near 50% chance of losing Wanda to the fall). YOu increase the expected value, but only because the value of those troops if you did nothing was pretty much 0.

Trying to interpret this as an argument against making sacrifices is completely missing the point. What it is is pointing out that there is a balance between the long-term value of a unit and the short term value. The short term value can overwhelm that long term value, making the sacrifice worth it. Losing Misty is likely an example of this. But if Cubbins just gained 1-2% survival odds for the king this way, its almost certainly a bad move. Its about the math, not an imaginary world :P. And GK is winning because they are doing that math, and making the good calls.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby zuche » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:44 am

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Just pointing out diversionary tactics where Bland tries to hide behind.


Not at all. Attacking the poster, on the other hand, is diversionary.

Erfworld achieved the impossible the day Stanley drafted Parson. Note that this wasn't the first time Wanda offered Stanley a Faustian bargain either. That's enough justification for the thought experiment.

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Well, that side, Gobwin Knob in case you forgot the name, the one who's being making sacrifices like crazy at every oportunity, it's the most sucessful one so far.


When Parson wiped out both armies at Gobwin Knob, was there any reason for him to believe that his actions would a) uncover unimaginable wealth or b) gain him one of the largest and most cost effective armies available? At most, he was hoping that ending the scenario in a double forfeit would let him go home again.

Also note that Parson would have resigned the game if that option was permitted to him. When it was not, his response was a metaphorical flipping of the table. This may be the only time that's won a game, and it wasn't performed with winning in mind.

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Enemies can't get you in future turns if they've been killed by your sacrificed units.


Quoting from Roots, "It is impossible to kill an enemy. You may end a man's life, but his son becomes your new enemy."

Even with all the Coalition lost at Gobwin Knob, those forces they still had at home would have been more than enough to end Stanley and his monsters in every scenario anyone at the scene could have predicted. At best, Wanda had her faith it would work out for her in the long run in accordance with prophecy, but her faith was pretty gutted up until she finally got her hands on those pliers.

She's recently taken another hit to certainty, one that might spell an end to her decryption based recruiting days for the foreseeable future. How much has decryption compromised the security of Gobwin Knob? Is her willingness to sacrifice for the kill going to backfire in the long run? If so, then I'd argue that the pliers played her a deal Mephistopheles would have been proud to claim as his own.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:34 pm

Roll your eyes all you want oslecamo2_temp, it just makes you unwilling to see what tactics and strategy are.

Because it appears as if you are suggesting sacrifice itself, outside any tactical context, is what made GK successful. Ok, fine, believe that, I think I laid a case why that idea is not sustainable however.

sleepymancer wrote:A lovely anecdote from a friend of mine regarding a conversation she had with an eminent professor in our field when she was just a few weeks into her PhD: Her: 'so, how do you identify the "best text" to use as the basis for an edition?' Him (obviously bewildered by the question), 'Well, its the best one, isn't it'. I wish I was joking...


Hah, indeed. Sometimes the only definition available is "you'll know it when you'll see it".
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby B.Cubbins » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:46 am

Wait, what?

I was faced with a choice between death and death with a side of Slately's incompetence and Ace's inane prattle, and you think I chose just-death to be noble? Those two archers were just a**holes that I wanted to see get disintegrated by archon blasts...
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby drachefly » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:51 am

Ah. That is a perfectly rational reason. Thank you for clearing that up. Sorry we're not in a position to give you a hand.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Kreistor » Thu Oct 13, 2011 11:51 am

You know what Cubbins would have to do to survive this fall?

Pull a rabbit out of a hat.
http://www.erfworld.com/wiki/index.php/TBFGK_1 Here you can find all comic pages written as text for convenient quoting.

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby zuche » Thu Oct 13, 2011 1:19 pm

Kreistor wrote:You know what Cubbins would have to do to survive this fall?

Pull a rabbit out of a hat.


I think a flying squirrel might be more useful in this situation. Here's hoping he won't get the rhinoceros instead.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby oslecamo2_temp » Thu Oct 13, 2011 3:48 pm

Balerion wrote:Trying to interpret this as an argument against making sacrifices is completely missing the point. What it is is pointing out that there is a balance between the long-term value of a unit and the short term value. The short term value can overwhelm that long term value, making the sacrifice worth it. Losing Misty is likely an example of this. But if Cubbins just gained 1-2% survival odds for the king this way, its almost certainly a bad move. Its about the math, not an imaginary world :P. And GK is winning because they are doing that math, and making the good calls.


And who exactly says Cubbins just gained 1-2% survival odds? My point is, in Erfworld big sacrifices result in big chance increases. Cubbins didn't just add two archers, he's nuking the archons, and has a chance of surviving the fall with something out of his hat.

Since Cubbins would auto-disband if he did something clearly prejudicial for his side, then clearly he's greatly increasing the odds of the kings survival with that maneuver. By the very Erfworld rules, Cubbins cannot willingly sacrifice himself, a valuable Jetstone asset, for a minor gain.

Thus Bland's scenario being completely imaginary. Erfworld units don't have a "perform big sacrifice for minimal gain" button that they randomly push. They actualy have a failsafe that prevents them from performing big sacrifices for small gain, that very same auto-disband!

That's why Don's moneymancer refused to bankrupt their own side just to slow down the death of another. That's why Maggie throws suggestions at Stanley and Wanda gets naked to cover for Hamster starting audicious plans. That's why Cubbins and Ace combined their juice to buff up the king as much as possible. Neither of them can just stand seeing their leaders doing major sacrifices for 1-2% gain.

The closest thing to an exception would be Bea's mass suicide, but even then denied GK of a new army of decrypted troops, so it did greatly increased the other royal's chances of survival.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Cnor » Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:58 pm

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Since Cubbins would auto-disband if he did something clearly prejudicial for his side, then clearly he's greatly increasing the odds of the kings survival with that maneuver. By the very Erfworld rules, Cubbins cannot willingly sacrifice himself, a valuable Jetstone asset, for a minor gain.

Thus Bland's scenario being completely imaginary. Erfworld units don't have a "perform big sacrifice for minimal gain" button that they randomly push. They actualy have a failsafe that prevents them from performing big sacrifices for small gain, that very same auto-disband!



No. Cubbins would automatically disband if he did something that he knew would only bring a minor gain for a large loss. By your logic, which is that they would auto-disband any time they tried something like that, what if, in a hypothetical other battle, Wanda were to order most of the decrypted Archons she had to leave the city and scout, believing that the enemy had no units left in airspace, but ended up running into an ambush by archer while doing so, losing most of the ones out there, and stranding them until next turn due to low move, letting the king of the other group fire off the air defenses and bring in archers he'd held in reserve? With what you're saying, since it would be a heavy sacrifice for Gobwin Knob, with no benefit whatsoever coming to them from it, she would have auto-disbanded before she could actually give the orders.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:05 pm

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Since Cubbins would auto-disband if he did something clearly prejudicial for his side, then clearly he's greatly increasing the odds of the kings survival with that maneuver. By the very Erfworld rules, Cubbins cannot willingly sacrifice himself, a valuable Jetstone asset, for a minor gain.


Way ahead of ya. One of my previous posts (last on the prev page or so) covered this. If we assume units make the BEST choices, we won't go very far before we strike implausibility. It's more likely that units will select the best course of action that they know about.

oslecamo2_temp wrote:Thus Bland's scenario being completely imaginary. Erfworld units don't have a "perform big sacrifice for minimal gain" button that they randomly push. They actualy have a failsafe that prevents them from performing big sacrifices for small gain, that very same auto-disband!


Nope, that failsafe would be pure old fashioned common sense. Which we may have spent several posts arguing about, but it doesn't change its common-sense-ness. And I see you've warmed up to the idea that sacrifices must be balanced by gains resulting from such. That's ok. It's exactly what my imaginary scenario was supposed to higlight.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Balerion » Thu Oct 13, 2011 6:28 pm

I see no reason that Cubbins should have stayed on that tower; the disadvantage of firing the defenses early enough for him to get mounted almost certainly was worth taking for Cubbins' long term value. Without access to the odds, I can't prove it, and arguing it further is a bit silly when we will get an update soonish that will tell us the answer, or at least give us some more info.

On a new note, the mention of the archers just reminded me of the archers on the walls; they aren't out of arrows yet, right? Cause I remember Artemis giving them attack priorities but not ever ordering an attack. I am curious how the fact that their high level warlord isn't leading them will factor into the upcoming air-battle. Or if it will not be covered at all, cause we are supposed to forget that Artemis was insubordinate.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Kreistor » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:21 pm

You know, watching you all dance around trying to figure Cubbins out... it's been hilarious. It's simple. Terribly simple. It's something Sizemore had to face in Book 1, and we actually saw his own rationalized thoughts. (Really... you're trying to use logic to figure out why Cubbins didn't choose to fight? Heh...)

He didn't want to fight. It's really that simple. He created some rationalization which we will never know (unless he pulls the super-sized plush rabbit out of his hat and has to explain to someone). But it's really that simple. He just didn't want to fight.

Where Sizemore lacked the capacity to come up with a rationalization for not killing, and by Obedience had to commit mass murder for Parson and therefore rationalize his own immorality, Cubbins had the easy out that going on a suicide charge into the Archons was not in the best interest of his Ruler (maybe not in the best interest of his Side, either). So, he didn't have to obey the order. That he chose to give two people a chance to live isn't that deep a thought process. One last act of kindness.

Cubbins and Sizemore are remarkably similar. They both create War material, are stay-at-home casters, and have never fought in combat before. And both are placed in a position where they are ordered to fight.
http://www.erfworld.com/wiki/index.php/TBFGK_1 Here you can find all comic pages written as text for convenient quoting.

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby drachefly » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:20 am

… or not, in the light of update 74.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Cnor » Fri Oct 14, 2011 8:21 am

You know, given what he threw at the Archons in update 74, I find it interesting that you mentioned him pulling a supersize plush rabbit out of his hat...
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Kreistor » Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:19 am

Well, you can't get Bun-bun supersize yet... but Cubbins may yet save his own butt to fight for Trammenis.
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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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby happyturtle » Sat Oct 15, 2011 12:04 pm

CaptC wrote:Then barring information we don't have, it's a traitorous heart. Noble? Performing a tactically unjustifiable act, against orders? Only if you think Benedict Arnold deserved praise. Dying pointlessly is not heroic, not worthy of praise. It's just... pointless.

But I'll hang through my annoyance, I expect Rob will redeem Cubbins somehow.


Only kinda a lot. :D
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 054

Postby Goshen » Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:27 pm

Sigh. Looks like KevinCCC looks like another bot. Bloody bots ruined a PHPbb3 forum I had a while ago. Kill him, kill!
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