Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:20 pm

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.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Kreistor » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:25 pm

BLANDCorporatio wrote:Because if you would define randomness as "not obeying a (causal) pattern", funnily enough, it's still random. Imagine this. I generate 1000 numbers, randomly. Truly random, by whatever definition you care to apply, and no predictamancer in the universe will know my next number.


No, I don't think that model is backed by Delhpie's response to Wanda's questions. She couldn't answer if an attack on airspace could be defended. All she could do was say that airspace would be attacked... eventually. She didn't even get when. Predictamancy does not appear to be that specific.

Wanda isn't told which Tool she will obtain. She isn't told how long it will take to get her Tool. Marie is not forewarned of Parson's arrival in time to have her plan in place, nor does she foresee the Thinkamancer betrayal. No, Predictamancy is very non-specific. It can no more predict the outcome of a coin toss than a Croakamancer could.

I think flipping the coin is an example of where a Predictamancer would fail but a Mathamancer would partially succeed. The Mathamancer can say that it will be heads 50% of the time. Easy, and not much of a magic trick. But change the coin flip to three pikers fighting two archers starting at 50 metres separation. The Mathamancer would be able to say which would win and with how any losses, but the Predictamancer could not, because it's too specific. The Predictamancer couldn't tell you if those three pikers will fight those two archers during a battle, but she could tell you that the battle hinges on winning a battle between three pikers against two archers.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:34 pm

Kreistor wrote:Wanda isn't told which Tool she will obtain. She isn't told how long it will take to get her Tool. Marie is not forewarned of Parson's arrival in time to have her plan in place, nor does she foresee the Thinkamancer betrayal. No, Predictamancy is very non-specific. It can no more predict the outcome of a coin toss than a Croakamancer could.

I think flipping the coin is an example of where a Predictamancer would fail but a Mathamancer would partially succeed. The Mathamancer can say that it will be heads 50% of the time. Easy, and not much of a magic trick. But change the coin flip to three pikers fighting two archers starting at 50 metres separation. The Mathamancer would be able to say which would win and with how any losses, but the Predictamancer could not, because it's too specific. The Predictamancer couldn't tell you if those three pikers will fight those two archers during a battle, but she could tell you that the battle hinges on winning a battle between three pikers against two archers.

Ehhh that's tricky. A coin toss is a pretty limited circumstance. If you can predict that Wanda will get a Tool or is that the airspace will be attacked, then you can probably predict the coin toss as a Predictomancer if you concentrated hard enough on learning that one answer.

What I'm implying is that Predicting might take a great deal of effort, Juice or time and therefore there's only so many answers that a Predictomancer might obtain. Although you may be right in saying that perhaps the picture they predict isn't the highest resolution one might really want.

I guess it might depend on what kind of "scan" the Predictomancer runs. If he knew what he wanted to learn and had narrow search parameters, then he might discover a single relevant fact with a great deal of accuracy. But if you scan broadly and want to just know the fortunes of a single unit that is about to pop in Goodminton (e.g. Wanda) then you might only get broad generalities and little snippets of information.

Also people seemed to be getting confused about one very basic thing:
Luck and mathematics are not mutually exclusive. Nor does the existence of luck imply that the universe is non-deterministic.

Nobody actually knows what Mathamancers do. I'm skeptical that Mathamancy is just the work of mundane calculations, which Erfworlders are likely just to call "natural Mathamancy." I just think Mathamancers are good at math because they pop with personalities with an interest in such things and have magical senses that lend itself well to those operations. (Which also might mean they aren't particularly good at it by Earth standards.) I think Erfworlders are mystified by mundane math the way medieval Earth peasants were mystified by literacy and reading/writing. So generic math is just dismissed as a Mathamancer thing.

Assuming that is true, what exactly is it that their spells do?
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby sleepymancer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:46 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote: I think Erfworlders are mystified by mundane math the way medieval Earth peasants were mystified by literacy and reading/writing.


ooohh! define 'literacy' in a medieval context - I am glad that you draw a distinction between it and reading/writing, by the way :D

Yes, I realise that I am being completely off-topic here. sorry!

Regarding the mathemancers, I guess they are like proper computers, (as in people that do computations, not the new-fangled machines that have had the name nicked for them). The magic in that, the science of computus, used primarily to calculate Easter (so turnamancy) borders into astronomy/astrology (so predictamancy on one half), The connections it ties together might be such that, to bang on an overplayed drum, a mathemancer might be able to form the central part of a fundamentally different type of biwizard or triwizard link up. Analogous but far different to one with a thinkamancer in it.

please note the stressing of the word 'might' in the previous ramble. Its my fluttering heart at the thought of defining/discussing early(ish)-medieval literacy that really got me posting today :D
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Dr Pepper » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:16 pm

Luckamancer vs Mathamancer = Deck Stacker vs Card Counter.
Read, like there won't be a movie
Game, like the die rolls don't matter
Filk, like everyone is tone deaf anyway

10 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
. . . . . . Dr Pepper
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . .4
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Kreistor » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:24 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote:Ehhh that's tricky. A coin toss is a pretty limited circumstance. If you can predict that Wanda will get a Tool or is that the airspace will be attacked, then you can probably predict the coin toss as a Predictomancer if you concentrated hard enough on learning that one answer.


I hope we'll find out. Clay has explained his magic... Delphie might be next.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Sir_Dr_D » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:31 pm

There is a lot of interesting discussions on here, but I have interpretted some of the information differently. One piece of information that I picked up from the previous update, is that erfworld does not roll any random numbers. "dice are imaginary" Clay had said. Everything that happens has to do with the decisions, and skill , of the people in Erfworld. In a real life , we do not usually say a someone is lucky if they win a fight against an equally skilled opponent. We say that person did good. In a role playing game though, since dice roles are involved, it means the player got lucky. Erfworld has no more random numbers generated then the real world example. But because it is a game like world, the results of peoples actions are translated into probabilites for the purpose of Mathamancy. If a unit makes a bad timing decision on when to make a thrust, it may get translated into a '2'. It is not the case that the unit made the bad decision on the thrust , because a '2' was rolled on some imaginary dice.

Luckamancy increases a units 'intuition' at the cost of decreasing the intution on those around them. That is all. The term Luckamancy,is meant to be a game like term, but is deceiving for what it actually does.

My personal theory is that luckamany works by 'reclycling' g-strings. In the update where Maggie was talking about G-strings, (book 2- text 38) she describes everyone as having their own personal G-Strings. She mentioned intution as being natural predictamancy. "Thinkamancers understood intuition to be a form of natural Predictamancy, in which a unit can dimly perceive its Fate on a subconscious level." This intuition had a lot of parallels to how Clay described luck being related to a units actions. My theory is that since luckamancy uses neither 'Life', 'Motion' or 'Matter' elements it cannot just increase a units natural intuition. So instead it borrows G-String power from units around it. It is easier to borrow from allies, since there is more synergy.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Sir_Dr_D » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:49 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote:
Sir_Dr_D wrote::shock: This update provides a deep revelation on some key aspects of the plot.

If you put the following together
1) In order for one person to benefit from luckamancy, other people need to receive bad luck .
2) We know that there is at least two characters that are destinied by fate. Parson and Wanda.
3) Fate seems to protect people by using Luckmancy.

You realize that suffering is going to always surround these two. No wonder Wanda's sides always fell. No wonder she said she had to suffer so much to get her arkentool. No wonder she said Parson is giong to face so much hardships in his life. This is an actual Erfwold mechanic, and not just Wanda's personal beliefs. Erfworld suddenly seems much more cruel. Parson has a huge fight ahead of him.

.

Actually, you don't know that Fate is the same as Luckamancy. But I can see why it would make Wanda such a fatalist.

A major major theme in Erfworld is that it's a zero-sum game. And that's what this is trying to imply.


You are right. Anything about the connection between fate and luckamancy is per speculation. And I found your reply to echo the thoughts I was thinking. I still found this update gave Wanda's words much more weight. If luckamancy causes one bad luck to happen to other people, it is probable that a simalar mechanic could be inplace to force a person into what fate has planned for them. I beleive Erfworld/(the fate axis) needs to work to get a person to their desired destination. The more a unit fights against it, the harder fate needs to work to get them there. The result would be more suffering to the people around them. If Parson plans to break fate, the cost would be very heavy.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby BCCroaker » Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:26 pm

[quote="ParsonIsOP

Nobody actually knows what Mathamancers do. I'm skeptical that Mathamancy is just the work of mundane calculations, which Erfworlders are likely just to call "natural Mathamancy." I just think Mathamancers are good at math because they pop with personalities with an interest in such things and have magical senses that lend itself well to those operations. (Which also might mean they aren't particularly good at it by Earth standards.) I think Erfworlders are mystified by mundane math the way medieval Earth peasants were mystified by literacy and reading/writing. So generic math is just dismissed as a Mathamancer thing.

Assuming that is true, what exactly is it that their spells do?[/quote]
But we do what Mathamancers do, at least partially. Parson does Mathamancy all the time, calculating the odds on all sorts of outcomes. This is so valuable Charlie has bought some of these predictions off Parson and the skill lead Lord Hamster to consider the lack of gobwins at Gobwins Knob was down to Charlie.
Now some may say that Parson is not a true Mathamancer, but that can only do this stuff through the bracer, but I think he is a Mathamancer (as well as a Hippiemancer and other things) who is enhanced by the magical object.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:10 pm

BCCroaker wrote:But we do what Mathamancers do, at least partially. Parson does Mathamancy all the time, calculating the odds on all sorts of outcomes. This is so valuable Charlie has bought some of these predictions off Parson and the skill lead Lord Hamster to consider the lack of gobwins at Gobwins Knob was down to Charlie.
Now some may say that Parson is not a true Mathamancer, but that can only do this stuff through the bracer, but I think he is a Mathamancer (as well as a Hippiemancer and other things) who is enhanced by the magical object.


I think Parson does math, not Mathamancy. The distinction is meaningless to an Erfworlder because the spells of Mathamancer and the calculations they do are one-in-the-same discipline to their minds. I think, Mathamancers are (on average) good at it, but I don't think doing math is exclusive to them. I think they're just stereotyped as possessing secrets that nobody else is capable of. It's a culturally-imposed mental block to my mind.

Remember, these are people who think that gravity is natural Shockamancy and that being able to dig is some kind of natural magic. I think they would write off arithmetic as "basic Mathamancy." I believe this was meant to mirror our own early history in that this is how humans used to think about the world. It's inexplicable and magic. Whether those Erfworld phenomena are relatively more inexplicable than their Earth equivalents is a mystery for now.

When I say that Erfworlders are superstitious, I meant it. You cannot take their philosophers or naturalists seriously because these people are still fighting wars over unproveable supernatural claims. Even Sizemore seems to think that people defend their chosen systems for personal reasons and then debate it verbally, rather than doing scientific testing and making useful pragmatic categories rather than arbitrary ones. It's definitely Erfworlder mentality to just shove things under Big Name headings, whether or not that really does anybody any good or not.

It's absurd, they're debating that Wanda's Croakmancy has been extended the Life Axises. Now you've got to ask if this is really that profound or if it's just a pointless naming exercise.

http://www.erfworld.com/book-1-archive/?px=%2F038a.jpg

Parson:
"Anyway, he's as knowledgeable a guy as I could want for a teacher, but I have to wonder how much anyone here really knows about their world. What he told me sounds a lot like that crap about the four basic elements that people believed for centuries just because Aristotle said it."
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:15 pm

Sir_Dr_D wrote:
ParsonIsOP wrote:
Sir_Dr_D wrote::shock: This update provides a deep revelation on some key aspects of the plot.

If you put the following together
1) In order for one person to benefit from luckamancy, other people need to receive bad luck .
2) We know that there is at least two characters that are destinied by fate. Parson and Wanda.
3) Fate seems to protect people by using Luckmancy.

You realize that suffering is going to always surround these two. No wonder Wanda's sides always fell. No wonder she said she had to suffer so much to get her arkentool. No wonder she said Parson is giong to face so much hardships in his life. This is an actual Erfwold mechanic, and not just Wanda's personal beliefs. Erfworld suddenly seems much more cruel. Parson has a huge fight ahead of him.

.

Actually, you don't know that Fate is the same as Luckamancy. But I can see why it would make Wanda such a fatalist.

A major major theme in Erfworld is that it's a zero-sum game. And that's what this is trying to imply.


You are right. Anything about the connection between fate and luckamancy is per speculation. And I found your reply to echo the thoughts I was thinking. I still found this update gave Wanda's words much more weight. If luckamancy causes one bad luck to happen to other people, it is probable that a simalar mechanic could be inplace to force a person into what fate has planned for them. I beleive Erfworld/(the fate axis) needs to work to get a person to their desired destination. The more a unit fights against it, the harder fate needs to work to get them there. The result would be more suffering to the people around them. If Parson plans to break fate, the cost would be very heavy.

Wanda is psychologically broken. Jack points out her "conceptual crap golem" and I have to agree. Her beliefs are totally irrational. She's trying to deny what her reasoned rational part of mind believes is true with what she wants to be true.

Clay definitely is part of what shaped her into who she will be. Wanda is a control freak who is being told that control is an illusion. And she's told that she has some great Fate or Destiny and that it is inevitable? Of course, it's going to break her.

The dice don't control her actions. But that's not the point. They describe them. Not all the factors that cause where the dice will land are accounted for or known, so their end position is unknown. We can only do statistical analysis, not know exactly what each die will do under given circumstances.

It's the same with her life. She will do what she will do because she has absolutely no control over those factors in the world that will push her this way or that. She gets no choice of where she pops or who her mentors will be or what battles she will fight. These will all shape her, whether she will it or not.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby BCCroaker » Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:19 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote:
BCCroaker wrote:But we do what Mathamancers do, at least partially. Parson does Mathamancy all the time, calculating the odds on all sorts of outcomes. This is so valuable Charlie has bought some of these predictions off Parson and the skill lead Lord Hamster to consider the lack of gobwins at Gobwins Knob was down to Charlie.
Now some may say that Parson is not a true Mathamancer, but that can only do this stuff through the bracer, but I think he is a Mathamancer (as well as a Hippiemancer and other things) who is enhanced by the magical object.


I think Parson does math, not Mathamancy. The distinction is meaningless to an Erfworlder because the spells of Mathamancer and the calculations they do are one-in-the-same discipline to their minds. I think, Mathamancers are (on average) good at it, but I don't think doing math is exclusive to them. I think they're just stereotyped as possessing secrets that nobody else is capable of. It's a culturally-imposed mental block to my mind.

Remember, these are people who think that gravity is natural Shockamancy and that being able to dig is some kind of natural magic. I think they would write off arithmetic as "basic Mathamancy." I believe this was meant to mirror our own early history in that this is how humans used to think about the world. It's inexplicable and magic. Whether those Erfworld phenomena are relatively more inexplicable than their Earth equivalents is a mystery for now.

When I say that Erfworlders are superstitious, I meant it. You cannot take their philosophers or naturalists seriously because these people are still fighting wars over unproveable supernatural claims. Even Sizemore seems to think that people defend their chosen systems for personal reasons and then debate it verbally, rather than doing scientific testing and making useful pragmatic categories rather than arbitrary ones. It's definitely Erfworlder mentality to just shove things under Big Name headings, whether or not that really does anybody any good or not.

It's absurd, they're debating that Wanda's Croakmancy has been extended the Life Axises. Now you've got to ask if this is really that profound or if it's just a pointless naming exercise.

http://www.erfworld.com/book-1-archive/?px=%2F038a.jpg

Parson:
"Anyway, he's as knowledgeable a guy as I could want for a teacher, but I have to wonder how much anyone here really knows about their world. What he told me sounds a lot like that crap about the four basic elements that people believed for centuries just because Aristotle said it."

I would rather say that Parson's Stupidworld talents and training have been converted to Erfworld abilities.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:29 pm

BCCroaker wrote:
ParsonIsOP wrote:
BCCroaker wrote:But we do what Mathamancers do, at least partially. Parson does Mathamancy all the time, calculating the odds on all sorts of outcomes. This is so valuable Charlie has bought some of these predictions off Parson and the skill lead Lord Hamster to consider the lack of gobwins at Gobwins Knob was down to Charlie.
Now some may say that Parson is not a true Mathamancer, but that can only do this stuff through the bracer, but I think he is a Mathamancer (as well as a Hippiemancer and other things) who is enhanced by the magical object.


I think Parson does math, not Mathamancy. The distinction is meaningless to an Erfworlder because the spells of Mathamancer and the calculations they do are one-in-the-same discipline to their minds. I think, Mathamancers are (on average) good at it, but I don't think doing math is exclusive to them. I think they're just stereotyped as possessing secrets that nobody else is capable of. It's a culturally-imposed mental block to my mind.

Remember, these are people who think that gravity is natural Shockamancy and that being able to dig is some kind of natural magic. I think they would write off arithmetic as "basic Mathamancy." I believe this was meant to mirror our own early history in that this is how humans used to think about the world. It's inexplicable and magic. Whether those Erfworld phenomena are relatively more inexplicable than their Earth equivalents is a mystery for now.

When I say that Erfworlders are superstitious, I meant it. You cannot take their philosophers or naturalists seriously because these people are still fighting wars over unproveable supernatural claims. Even Sizemore seems to think that people defend their chosen systems for personal reasons and then debate it verbally, rather than doing scientific testing and making useful pragmatic categories rather than arbitrary ones. It's definitely Erfworlder mentality to just shove things under Big Name headings, whether or not that really does anybody any good or not.

It's absurd, they're debating that Wanda's Croakmancy has been extended the Life Axises. Now you've got to ask if this is really that profound or if it's just a pointless naming exercise.

http://www.erfworld.com/book-1-archive/?px=%2F038a.jpg

Parson:
"Anyway, he's as knowledgeable a guy as I could want for a teacher, but I have to wonder how much anyone here really knows about their world. What he told me sounds a lot like that crap about the four basic elements that people believed for centuries just because Aristotle said it."

I would rather say that Parson's Stupidworld talents and training have been converted to Erfworld abilities.

The irony is that this is warlord-jock thinking.

Warlords think of magic as being a discrete set of spells and abilities, not a plethora of complex ones. Likewise, I think the statistical abstractions they see in a stat-block are not the be-all end all descriptor of a person.

The "Special" description under Parson is an ability technically, but not as clean and gamist as you might imagine.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Sir_Dr_D » Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:22 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote:Wanda is psychologically broken. Jack points out her "conceptual crap golem" and I have to agree. Her beliefs are totally irrational. She's trying to deny what her reasoned rational part of mind believes is true with what she wants to be true.

Clay definitely is part of what shaped her into who she will be. Wanda is a control freak who is being told that control is an illusion. And she's told that she has some great Fate or Destiny and that it is inevitable? Of course, it's going to break her.

The dice don't control her actions. But that's not the point. They describe them. Not all the factors that cause where the dice will land are accounted for or known, so their end position is unknown. We can only do statistical analysis, not know exactly what each die will do under given circumstances.

It's the same with her life. She will do what she will do because she has absolutely no control over those factors in the world that will push her this way or that. She gets no choice of where she pops or who her mentors will be or what battles she will fight. These will all shape her, whether she will it or not.


Wanda is psychologically broken. That is true. And she is obsessed with her own destinany. I always took what she said to be her own beleif system. But everything she says seems to be echos of what Predictamancers say. The Predictamancers all beleive you can't fight fate. You can only help it. And more, evidence keeps appearing that shows there is validity to Wanda's beliefs.

However there is evidence to also show that fate can be broken. Jojo said as much directly, and I see no reason to doubt those words of his.

It seems to me that fate can be broken, but it is very hard to do.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby gameboy1234 » Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:25 pm

ParsonIsOP wrote:
gameboy1234 wrote: I'm quite certain a decent mathemancer, if such analysis is possible at all, could spot something "fishy" or out of whack very quickly.


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.


Except that's exactly what Clay is implying. Luckmancy violates the laws of probability. Swapping those rolls is cheatin' and he knows it. And regardless of what Clay "knows," it does violate the real laws of probability, period. There's no argument there.

As he says he's not making new "Numbers" he's stealing them.


Which works out to violating the laws of probability. Dealing from the bottom of the deck violates the laws of probability.

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.


Everything in Erfworld is geared towards combat. I'm sure they'd care, and be proficient at it.

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.


Not really.


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.


But correct ones, for Erfworld, which therefore are neither wild nor subjective. Signmancy works on Erfworld; it's objective. Really, it's like you're not even reading the comic.
"Do it?" Dan, I'm not a Republic serial villain. Do you seriously think I'd explain my master-stroke if there remained the slightest chance of you affecting its outcome?

I did it thirty-five minutes ago.

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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:55 pm

gameboy1234 wrote:Which works out to violating the laws of probability. Dealing from the bottom of the deck violates the laws of probability.

Dealing from the bottom of the deck cannot be described by probability?

Really? That isn't a violation of any law what-so-ever.

If a casino decides to use a brick of several decks mixed together to foil card-counting is that a violation of the game of poker? Or does it just offend the person expecting to win by easy card counting?

If I shave a die, suddenly it breaks the laws of probability? Or am simply cheating your expectations of how the game should work?

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.


Not really.

Yeah really.

See? I can do it too.

You just don't actually know what luck is.

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.


But correct ones, for Erfworld, which therefore are neither wild nor subjective. Signmancy works on Erfworld; it's objective. Really, it's like you're not even reading the comic.

Signamancy might be real, but attaching that name to everything doesn't make one correct about what one's appearance actually indicates.

King Slately put off promoting Tramennis because his Signamancy was "less than manly." He failed to recognize Tramennis's superior intellect because he had preconceptions about what a good leader was supposed to be.

How is that not subjective?

They'd probably say there is a "Royal" Signamancy that proves Royalty's superior moral and intellectual fitness. If I said that having black skin or sloped foreheads where an indication of inferior intellectual and moral fitness, you'd just call me ignorant and backwards.

The problem is that Signamancy isn't just the word they use to describe the dynamics behind appearance but a lot of quack pseudoscience to boot. It's fair to say you'd be fat because you are a sedentary person. But they often take it quite further than that.
Last edited by ParsonIsOP on Sat Nov 19, 2011 2:06 am, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby kiyote » Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:27 am

I wonder why everyone seems to be having such a hard time wrapping their heads around this one, but I'll try to explain how I see it:

At every moment in time in Erfworld, the world is rolling a dice for every action that is occurring at that moment, all at once, and dolling out the results to everyone in the universe. Usually this process is seamless and unknowable, but a mathamancer can probably tell what are the likelihood a person is going to get a certain number is, a predictamancer can tell you for certain what number a person is going to get, a carnymancer can change what value is needed for a successful state, and a luckamancer can specify what value a person is going to get.

But the luckamancer doesn't create that value, he swaps it out from another roll that's currently happening at the same time at random. If, for example, Clay cast a spell on a Level 4 warlord so that every attack on him is a botch, every time, Erfworld swipes the nearest botch on the enemy's side (because as someone stated before, Erfworld does play sides, and if it swiped it from an allied side, it would probably be considered 'too lucky'). If, lets say, 20 attack rolls of d20s are going on at once, odds are one person has botched a roll at 1 out of 20 odds. The luckamancy spell guarantees that person is the guy attacking the Level 4 warlord. But in exchange, everyone else's odds of botching a roll drop to 1 out of 400 (the odds of rolling 1 out of 20 twice).

It makes sense that the Wanda's side feels the affect of the luckamancy spell hardest in it's unled infantry. While a Level 4 warlord can probably take a bit of a beating before croaking, a Level 1 Infantry without a leadership bonus who's taking every hit probably can't. And the more Clay casts his luckamancy spells on multiple warlords, the less bad rolls on the enemy's side to go around, and now all the unled Level 1 Infantry aren't just getting hit every attack, they're getting hit hard.

Now this being said, luckamancy is still a ridiculously powerful magic. Guaranteeing that your key players, say your casters and high level warlords, keep living is worth the acceptable casualties of expendable Level 1s. You can pop more on your next turn for cheap, or even better, have a croakamancer turn them into zero upkeep soldiers. ;)

edit:
Here's a graph of the probabilities of a luckamancy spell with 4d4s:
http://anydice.com/program/c20

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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby drachefly » Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:56 am

Fortunately, I don't really care if someone on the internet is wrong; doubly so when he has amply indicated himself resistant to reason.

Incidentally, Bland, the policy of the Bayesian Conspiracy on the treatment of Frequentists is not murder.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby ParsonIsOP » Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:07 am

Sir_Dr_D wrote:
ParsonIsOP wrote:Wanda is psychologically broken. Jack points out her "conceptual crap golem" and I have to agree. Her beliefs are totally irrational. She's trying to deny what her reasoned rational part of mind believes is true with what she wants to be true.

Clay definitely is part of what shaped her into who she will be. Wanda is a control freak who is being told that control is an illusion. And she's told that she has some great Fate or Destiny and that it is inevitable? Of course, it's going to break her.

The dice don't control her actions. But that's not the point. They describe them. Not all the factors that cause where the dice will land are accounted for or known, so their end position is unknown. We can only do statistical analysis, not know exactly what each die will do under given circumstances.

It's the same with her life. She will do what she will do because she has absolutely no control over those factors in the world that will push her this way or that. She gets no choice of where she pops or who her mentors will be or what battles she will fight. These will all shape her, whether she will it or not.


Wanda is psychologically broken. That is true. And she is obsessed with her own destinany. I always took what she said to be her own beleif system. But everything she says seems to be echos of what Predictamancers say. The Predictamancers all beleive you can't fight fate. You can only help it. And more, evidence keeps appearing that shows there is validity to Wanda's beliefs.

However there is evidence to also show that fate can be broken. Jojo said as much directly, and I see no reason to doubt those words of his.

It seems to me that fate can be broken, but it is very hard to do.

I think Wanda has perhaps an incomplete understanding of what Predictamancers say (and English teachers on Earth as well).

Of course your effort causes the predestined effects to occur. It seems hard for you, but your subjective feelings of accomplishment and difficulty isn't object here. You put in the effort because you were destined to.

"Choices" is just a name given to an event involving cogitating animals. Causality may bottle-neck through mental engines called "brains" but it is a mistake to think that choices actually give you control over anything. It is only our arrogance that makes us think that we are the supreme causative agents in the universe. We don't move the world, the world moves us. Our personal triumphs, tragedies and cleverness are themselves events.

Predestination and the decision-making are not mutually exclusive propositions.

And you're entirely right, Wanda is narcissistically obsessed with her destiny. It's downright pathological.

She presumes that the universe is there to entitle her to special animal privileges and presumes that it gives a damn if we put in an honest effort or made the "right" decisions or not. Worse still, she thinks it justifies the human misery she perpetuates.

And just because she has a tool, she doesn't take Jillian up on her offer because it's against her destiny as a Toolist? How could she ever know that? It's her obsession that makes her destiny, not a sacred relic and not some Titanic providence.
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Re: Inner Peace (Through Superior Firepower) – Episode 008

Postby Sir_Dr_D » Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:25 am

kiyote wrote:At every moment in time in Erfworld, the world is rolling a dice for every action that is occurring at that moment, all at once, and dolling out the results to everyone in the universe.


Sorry, but no dice. (pun intended)

There has been no in comic proof at all that there is any behind the scene dice rolling in Erfworld at all. In fact for human actions, Clay flat out said that dice do not determine a persons actions. A persons actions is translated into a dice roll, (the inverse of a game.)

here are some quotes
______________
Something about it struck Wanda as terribly wrong. “The Titans...play dice? And we must do what the dice say? We flourish or perish at random?”

Clay was shaking his head. “No, no...I think it’s the opposite.”

------
Clay - - In real life, you are real, but the dice are imaginary. The dice that describe your choices.
_____________

Mathamanacy in Erfworld would be like watching football in real life, looking at how good the players did with every move, and then determining what their dice rolling would have been if it was a role playing game. Then it turns all of that into statistical probabilities . 'Dice' is a theoritectical word in Erfworld, used to put numbers behind peoples actions.

The word Luckamancy is a misleading term. It causes a person to make better reflexive choices, and that is all. It is the real world equivalent of giving someone Ritalin, or some mind enhancment drug. A person boosted would attack better because of it, and defend better because of it. But it does not cause the envirnoment to go their way, or anything like that. The spell does seem to come at the cost of causing those around the boosted person of becoming less good at intuitive decisions. Luckamancers do not understand the mechanics of their spells, so they do not know why.
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