1.desire to inflict injury, harm, or suffering on another, either because of a hostile impulse or out of deep-seated meanness
Okay, so if the assumption is correct, we will find malice in every aspect of Erfworld.Desire to Inflict Injury:
I think this is the easiest to find false. No injury is inflicted by the Titans on any Erfworlder, as far as I can identify. All injuries are inflicted by Erfworlders on Erfworlders. That is inconsistent with Malice, which is the desire to inflict injury, not see others inflict injury.
Delighting in the misfortune of others is not itself maliciousness. Nor is it sadism. Both require the person to commit the acts of injury themselves. I can find a German loan word for the act of enjoying seeing others suffer pain, but nothing in common modern English fits that I could find.
Ironically, if you denied Free Will and made all actions by all Erfworlders the result of Titan manipulation, then the Erfworlders are only Tools that can suffer, in which case the Erfworlders would not be responsible for what they do, and the Titans would be directly responsible and malicious.Desire to Inflict Harm
Again, same complaint. The Titans aren't committing harm directly, but by proxy which invalidates the use of the word.
But, again, the harm is extremely temporary. In this case, though, there is some support for your case. Something that heals quickly can be harmed over and over, but never permanently. But I think i can dispel that while facing 3, since the same example covers both cases, so moving on...Desire to Inflict Suffering
dictionary.com wrote:suf·fer [suhf-er] verb (used without object)
1.to undergo or feel pain or distress: The patient is still suffering.
2.to sustain injury, disadvantage, or loss: One's health suffers from overwork. The business suffers from lack of capital.
3.to undergo a penalty, as of death: The traitor was made to suffer on the gallows.
4.to endure pain, disability, death, etc., patiently or willingly.
2 is already covered above in the injury discussion (synonymous). 3 is not consistent with mailce, since it involves immediate death, commonly viewed as merciful rather than malicious. (Disbanding eliminates the need for messy, bloody, cruel execution, which contraindicates suffering in death on Erfworld.) 4 doesn't happen in Erfworld except for death which I just mentioned since no one endures more than 24 hours and this is more akin to those that suffer for months, years, or lifetimes. "Patient and willing" suffering isn't enjoyable for even the most twisted mind, anyway. That leaves definition 1. To undergo or feel pain or distress. I'm pretty certain you're not claiming the Titans enjoy only "distress".
Do Erfworlders feel pain? If they don't, then no evidence of the results of malice are evidenced in Erfworld. And can I prove it doesn't? I can at least cast serious doubt.http://www.erfworld.com/book-2-archive/?px=%2F2011-01-17.jpg
Here we see Duke Antium. He has lost half an arm. He has a hole blasted in his side. He should be suffering incredible pain. He should be suffering from massive blood loss and shock. He should be addled. He shouldn't even be able to stand with that much muscle mass blasted out of his side, much less swing a weapon. Is he any of these things? No. He is fully cognizant and seeking out the highest value target in the region. He is weapon capable and strikes the illusion accurately with what should have been a death blow. He is, for all intents and purposes, fully functional despite the loss of his arm and the fact he lacks the mechanical capacity to stand under Earth's laws. He shows no signs of feeling the debilitating pain he would on Earth with those wounds, nor the physical limitations these "wounds" should inflict.
That begs the question: is he really injured? Is losing "hitsies" actual injury, or just a number to indicate how close one is to dying? Antium is evidence that something is significantly different about injury on Erfworld vs. Earth, and we shouldn't be looking at damage in the same way. No matter how bad the injury, Erfworlders remain functional and combat capable until they die, which denies pain, and anything except the superficiality of the appearance of injury. Injuries, in coputer parlance, are a skin on the character, and not true damage causing true pain.
MarbitChow, you introduced the idea of D&D. I'll extend that. Let's talk hit points (up to V3.5, since I am not familiar with V4,0). As a D&D character is struck, he loses hit points. As he loses HP, does he suffer any ill effects from the pain of that wound? No, he is fully functional right until the moment he hits or is reduced below 0 HP (and what happens then depends on the version). He is fully functional, and thus can be feeling no pain. There are systems that provided pain with a mechanic, but many simply didn't deal with the messiness of it.
Since Antium can wield his spear, I can make the case that he isn't really injured, either. He has an appearance of injury and he lacks a second hand making some tasks impossible for less than 24 hours, but his function is unaffected. He has lost unnecessary bits only, and from that perspective has not lost anything, just been inconvenienced.
On the specific case of enforced attacks by un-led troops: again, this is not the Titans committing the action, but the environment forcing their choice. You're finding Allah guilty of malice because someone that is on a bridge that collapses can't just fly to the land and dies due to gravity. A Force, even a mental one, that is set on automatic does not fulfill the mandate of malice or sadism that the accused sufferers commit the acts themselves.
And that is how you attack an assumption. You attack the derived results that should appear because of the assumption. If none of the derived results exist, then the assumption is not true.
So, the Titans are not malicious because:
1) To be malicious, you must inflict the injury yourself, not just enjoy watching others injure people
2) All of the desired results of malice are undone by the environment they created.
3) There is no pain, harm, or injury in Erfworld, only a superficial appearance of injury and non-debilitating inconvenience.