gameboy1234 wrote:But in a larger fight, with ten's or hundred's of units per side, you're going to generate a lot of numbers just in the first round. I'm quite certain a decent mathemancer, if such analysis is possible at all, could spot something "fishy" or out of whack very quickly. This sort of thing is never 100% of course. The opponent could just have a lucky round or two. But a good mathematician, and a good mathemancer, does not believe in luck; in our experience there's no such thing as luck (only Luck), and we keep our trusty blaster at our side too.
(I'm assuming that the system Clay, and Rob, describe ultimately works a lot like most table top war games. Both sides roll fist fulls of dice, "casualties" are removed, there's a few options for other play, then the next round happens and fist fulls of dice are rolled again. This is done until one side breaks or is eliminated. If you could record and analyze the rolls, it should be possible to spot say loaded dice really quickly, real time, right there on the battle field. The first round should be enough to tell you something is probably "up.")
Except that Clay is implying that he's not violating the probabilities at all, he's just exchanging one roll for another. A humble piker rolls a 10 and a warlord rolls a 2. A Luckamancer just swaps those rolls. As he says he's not making new "Numbers" he's stealing them. At the most, a Mathamancer could only statistically and intuitively discover what Clay already knows. And that's assuming a Mathamancer even has much experience fighting Luckamancers to care enough in the first place.
Also, luck, such as it is, is a valid abstraction. It is simply the unknowns that cannot be predicted, either due to a lack in knowledge, time or power. And to be perfectly fair, we don't actually know how much math Mathamancers really know, or even how much of the natural world they truly understand. A lot of what a caster says about his own discipline needs to be taken with a grain of salt because Erfworlders are notoriously superstitious.
One example of this superstition is the tendency to use Signamancy in a fashion similar to phrenology, which makes characters make wild and subjective claims about the character of people. Likewise, I think while Obedience is probably real, I don't think Loyalty is. Loyalty is just loyalty. In a tongue-and-cheek way, it is a "hidden Number" which is just a fancy way of saying "hidden variables." It's not neatly summed up in a single Number in a stat block like Erfworlders would like to believe.