Book 2 – Page 106

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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby bladestorm » Thu Apr 11, 2013 10:55 pm

Oberon wrote:
Vreejack wrote:I also have to wonder...what happened to the prince who was going to pop?
He was in a production queue which no longer exists. Ergo, he no longer exists.

In War Barons, the production queue was tied to the city, so if you took over a city that had an Archon at stage 4/5 done, the next round after you had the city, you popped an Archon. This could possibly force an heir to pop for GK. It would indeed be sacrificed by Jetstone, and would make for a lot of turmoil with the decrypted Ansom. And then Tram...Yeah, that whole train gets convoluted quickly.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby ManaCaster » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:42 pm

bladestorm wrote:In War Barons, the production queue was tied to the city, so if you took over a city that had an Archon at stage 4/5 done, the next round after you had the city, you popped an Archon. This could possibly force an heir to pop for GK. It would indeed be sacrificed by Jetstone, and would make for a lot of turmoil with the decrypted Ansom. And then Tram...Yeah, that whole train gets convoluted quickly.

That would be interesting, but since King Slately said "he now shall never be", I'm guessing that the item in the production queue just gets erased.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby drachefly » Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:27 am

Slately could consider a royal prince popped under Gobwin Knob to be a different individual than a royal prince popped under Jetstone. He'd have a different 'father', after all.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Doctor Foreman » Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:47 am

elecampane wrote:
Doctor Foreman wrote:At the extremely high risk of missing some form of sarcasm, facetiousness, or japery...that is his body.

But...
Doesn't purple dwagon's left forepaw rests on the same stone that covers Jack from us? Why is it so much smaller than Jack's hand? And why Bogroll's statue seems to be closer, but appears to be only slightly bigger than lying Jack?
I don't insist that I'm right and anyway Jack's body there is far more probable than a statue, but all we can see of it is in same shades of gray and black as Bogroll, and size really seems off to me.


I forgot to mention: if the purple dwagon was going to rub its head on Jack affectionately, it would choose his body and not a statue.

Regarding the Bogroll statue, it's either smaller than we might think or the perspective in the picture is a little messy. Which...I think is likely.
"If you leave out important things or events that you know about, the story is strengthened. If you leave or skip something because you do not know it, the story will be worthless." - Hemingway
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby tgriff02 » Fri Apr 12, 2013 1:02 am

Oberon wrote:That's because his last name is Xanatos.

Thank you for that beautiful reference to one of the best cartoon ever written outside of Japan. :D
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby elecampane » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:40 am

Doctor Foreman wrote:
elecampane wrote:
Doctor Foreman wrote:At the extremely high risk of missing some form of sarcasm, facetiousness, or japery...that is his body.

But...
Doesn't purple dwagon's left forepaw rests on the same stone that covers Jack from us? Why is it so much smaller than Jack's hand? And why Bogroll's statue seems to be closer, but appears to be only slightly bigger than lying Jack?
I don't insist that I'm right and anyway Jack's body there is far more probable than a statue, but all we can see of it is in same shades of gray and black as Bogroll, and size really seems off to me.


I forgot to mention: if the purple dwagon was going to rub its head on Jack affectionately, it would choose his body and not a statue.

Regarding the Bogroll statue, it's either smaller than we might think or the perspective in the picture is a little messy. Which...I think is likely.

But if Dwagon is rubbing its head it means there's no perspective here, the objects are on the same distance from the viewer, and the hand is of the size with dwagon's head. I thought that maybe dwagon's just peering at Jack from the distance and it only appears that it rests his head on Jack's hand, but then forepaw position makes little sense.
I'll stop arguing now, because it probably really just strange perspective, and we'll know for sure in further updates anyway.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Vreejack » Fri Apr 12, 2013 5:55 am

So Parson's likely course of a action is this: call Stanley on his eyebook and ask to
  • Make sure Wanda and Sizemore are still in the Magic Kingdom
  • Change capitols
  • Order Wanda and Sizemore through the portal to Spacerock
  • Put out the inferno and decrypt Jack, Ace and the rest.

Then Charlie will ask Parson what it will take to beat him, Parson will tell him, and Charlie will send an overkill force of Haggar and archons to be safe. And Parson will win anyway.
So...Watashi wa mizugorō ga sukina koto o kiita, neh?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Doctor Foreman » Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:13 am

elecampane wrote:
Doctor Foreman wrote:
I forgot to mention: if the purple dwagon was going to rub its head on Jack affectionately, it would choose his body and not a statue.

Regarding the Bogroll statue, it's either smaller than we might think or the perspective in the picture is a little messy. Which...I think is likely.

But if Dwagon is rubbing its head it means there's no perspective here, the objects are on the same distance from the viewer, and the hand is of the size with dwagon's head. I thought that maybe dwagon's just peering at Jack from the distance and it only appears that it rests his head on Jack's hand, but then forepaw position makes little sense.
I'll stop arguing now, because it probably really just strange perspective, and we'll know for sure in further updates anyway.


I think you're right that the dwagon's looking at him from a distance (though again, the dwagon would be looking at Jack's body rather than the statue).

My guess is either my visual centers are missing something about the picture, or the artwork itself is slightly off here. But given that we'll probably return to Jack's body in the near future (either to show it being incinerated or to show someone picking it up), I think we'll have it cleared up pretty soon in comic time anyway.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby peteratjet » Fri Apr 12, 2013 7:31 am

Vreejack wrote:So Parson's likely course of a action is this: call Stanley on his eyebook and ask to
  • Make sure Wanda and Sizemore are still in the Magic Kingdom
  • Change capitols
  • Order Wanda and Sizemore through the portal to Spacerock
  • Put out the inferno and decrypt Jack, Ace and the rest.

Then Charlie will ask Parson what it will take to beat him, Parson will tell him, and Charlie will send an overkill force of Haggar and archons to be safe. And Parson will win anyway.


totting up what "the rest" consists of ...

Some of the riders survived the drop as did some of the Dwagons with Hobgobwin riders, as they were not harvested. There were subsequent casualties from the arrow storm, and anything croaked at that point "dead as they are going to be" were included in Wanda's initial mass decrypt, but the survivors of that will be available for decryption. On top of that, the Jetstone units croaked when the tower went, or in fighting elsewhere will be available. Including Lady Artemis and all sorts of giant plush toys.

The surviving GK unit are mostly red dwagons and anything with with Parson. I think he took the portal room guards with him when he headed to the throne room.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby dirocyn » Fri Apr 12, 2013 9:56 am

I'm still trying to work out how changing capitols makes any sense as a trap. Closing the portal has the following effects:

1. Parson can no longer return to the Magic Kingdom. Consequently, Parson can't return to Gobwin Knob. Thus, he is much more vulnerable to some kind of strike--if he remains in Spacerock there are several armies that can reach him next turn (Faq, Hagar, Transylvito, Jetstone, and probably Charlie's archons), if he leaves he's several turns away from reinforcements. In addition, Gobwin Knob itself is considerably more vulnerable. In fact, with all its casters dead or in the MK, with its chief warlord trapped in Jetsone--Gobwin Knob is more vulnerable now than it has ever been before.
2. GK's additional casters cannot get to Spacerock to help.

However, most of these effects would occur if Parson took the city. Changing capitols is v. important to Jetstone's continuation as a side (their cities don't freeze, they keep their production & treasury) but the only aspect in which this is a trap is, Parson can't go back to the MK during the brief time between arriving in Spacerock and taking the city, and also can't get the rest of his casters in. As others have mentioned, having Sizemore & Wanda would be really handy right about now. Sizemore because fire is treated as a dirtamancy trap and an inferno can ONLY be put out by a dirtamancer, Wanda because she could decrypt all the fallen.

Based on my understanding of the rules of Erf, it would be possible for flying units to move into airspace now that it's GK's city and city zones no longer cost move; very likely those units would survive the fire since they're not in the garrison. But Parson's a heavy and can't fly (unless he puts on that jetpack, perhaps). So I think it's this second aspect--the casters can't get in--that's more important to this trap.

Clearly Parson has something in mind, "control z." In Windows it's Undo, in Unix it's suspend. Pause? I can't see how that would be useful from inside the program. Either Parson intends to undo the closing of the portal (by moving the capitol from GK to Spacerock) so Sizemore can come through, or he intends some sort of epic reset. Possibly involving that big power button on his cloak, definitely involving rules/magic we haven't seen before.

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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Dancing Cthulhu » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:18 am

peteratjet wrote:
Vreejack wrote:So Parson's likely course of a action is this: call Stanley on his eyebook and ask to
  • Make sure Wanda and Sizemore are still in the Magic Kingdom
  • Change capitols
  • Order Wanda and Sizemore through the portal to Spacerock
  • Put out the inferno and decrypt Jack, Ace and the rest.

Then Charlie will ask Parson what it will take to beat him, Parson will tell him, and Charlie will send an overkill force of Haggar and archons to be safe. And Parson will win anyway.


totting up what "the rest" consists of ...

Some of the riders survived the drop as did some of the Dwagons with Hobgobwin riders, as they were not harvested. There were subsequent casualties from the arrow storm, and anything croaked at that point "dead as they are going to be" were included in Wanda's initial mass decrypt, but the survivors of that will be available for decryption. On top of that, the Jetstone units croaked when the tower went, or in fighting elsewhere will be available. Including Lady Artemis and all sorts of giant plush toys.

The surviving GK unit are mostly red dwagons and anything with with Parson. I think he took the portal room guards with him when he headed to the throne room.


It'll be interesting to know if there is a limit to what can be decrypted. Back in book 1 Wanda couldn't decrypt Bogroll, and most everyone we saw her decrypt was still mostly "whole". Where as in Spacerock we see, thanks to the explosion (I guess), that at least some of the deceased Jetstone forces have been reduced to skeletons. And some of of Artemis' knights were destroyed in a way that didn't leave much of a body (like eaten by dwagons).

But yes, that seems to be the extent of what's available for decryption.

- Jack/Ace
- The troops in the tower (who appear to have mostly/all been archers)
- The troops Slately led into the courtyard (stabbers/pikers and one or two warlords of unknown rank)
- Anything of GK's that wasn't decrypted when the dwagons exploded.

Also be interesting to see one day if golems can be decrypted or not.

CF_HoneyBadger wrote:Question :

Does killing clones grant experience? I know that when the dwagon tried to eat the king, he kind of popped...did Parson get and experience for killing the king? From the last text update, Jillian seemed pretty happy about the thought of killing a high-level unit. What kind of unit reward would result from killing a king?

I'm going to try to look back at earlier comics tonight...Im pretty sure Parson's stats said he was low level...but I can't remember.


I'd think not, since it seem quite exploitable, someone (like Charlie) would have to have thought of it if it was possible. I mean Lloyd isn't even the highest level caster Jetstone has, so if just a single dittomancer could do it.... Capture someone high level, make a copy, kill. Wash and repeat.

Course in this case I'd think if anything was to get experience it would be the dwagon since it did the actual killing. Much like I don't think Wanda/Sizemore/Maggie got XP for killing an army with a volcano. Parson just shook around an unarmed, injured guy who's already been established as.... actually, now that I'm thinking about it I'm not sure if what I was going to say is correct. Slately - established as low level? I mean he doesn't appear to have ever been a warrior, which would require some non-combat way of level up, which we haven't had much of an indication of. Slately could have been a level 1 or 2 himself.
And so my time with the Tardy Elves draws to a close, and I am let to ponder how the experience will... eh, I'll finish later. No need to rush.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Kreistor » Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:42 am

Vreejack wrote:So Parson's likely course of a action is this: call Stanley on his eyebook and ask to
  • Make sure Wanda and Sizemore are still in the Magic Kingdom
  • Change capitols
  • Order Wanda and Sizemore through the portal to Spacerock
  • Put out the inferno and decrypt Jack, Ace and the rest.

Then Charlie will ask Parson what it will take to beat him, Parson will tell him, and Charlie will send an overkill force of Haggar and archons to be safe. And Parson will win anyway.


That use of the bracer is stretched thin. Charlie could ask "How many Archons and Ground troops would it take to defeat the current city defenses with greater than 80% probability?" But Mathemancy is not predictive nor a determiner of Fate. It could not foresee Parson's deployment, only typical delpoyments, and so could not guarantee success. Charlie wouldn't know if the 20% were jsut a random chance of failure given poor dice rolls, or if 20% of all deployments would inherently defeat his forces, leaving Parson with only a need to choose one of the countering deployments. In other words, the Bracer can't tell him what he needs to know to make the battle successful.

But we also have to recognize that Haggar's forces are almost wiped out. Sammy indicated that they were the forlorn hope in that attack, and would be nearly annihilated. Jetstone was to follow up his attack and finish off GK's siege and ground. There may simply be nothing left of Haggar for Charlie to provoke, and holding a Side hostage this way eventually leads to resistance.

If Wanda and Sizemore alone reach Spacerock, the Tower will be so spelled up that almost no force of Archons could penetrate. Add Ace and Jack (assuming Juice refuel with decryption) and we're looking at stunning air defenses. Foolamancy is useless against a Master class Foolamancer, and any losses become forces for the enemy. Would a Bracer's probability include Wanda's capacities? And can Charlie risk Wanda developing a second power with the Pliers? As tempting a target as Spacerock may be, Charlie is not a full-frontal attacker, and so it won't take much to inspire him to set up another plan, but this time with willing assistance from King Trem and Don King. They, at least, have reason to trust him again.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Goshen » Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:07 pm

Apologies if someone is already posted this, but I have to vent.

This is truly an excellent piece of fiction, and I applaud Rob's writing once again. It really aroused a lot of unpleasant emotions mainly from seeing two people I like fighting to the death, Parson and the King Clonely. It's made all the worse by how one-sided it is, Parson throwing around that helpless little guy. It really depicts the horrors of war, how it dehumanizes all of us, and yet it is always human beings doing the worst of everything.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby teratorn » Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:28 pm

dirocyn wrote:I'm still trying to work out how changing capitols makes any sense as a trap.


Charlie didn't know if Parson would really claim the city. As long as Parson didn't claim the last Jetstone unit in the garrison as a prisoner the portal would remain open. All he would need to do would be to force a Jetstone unit into some place where it can't flee but do not claim it as prisoner, or simply let Cubbins remain hidden. This way Charlie is sure Parson remains trapped.

Since this wasn't in Trammenis original plan, I take it to mean that the treasury isn't affected by not having a capital.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby atalex » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:13 pm

Jeivar wrote:I have to say my sympathy for Parson is kind of circling the drain here. He has no more reason to be personally outraged at the death of a friend than anyone else engaged in this conflict. People are dying left and right, and he's helping with the slaughter and gets indignant that ONE of the casualties is someone he knew.


It is completely in keeping with basic human nature to become more emotional over the death of someone you know and care about than that of any number of faceless victims outside your immediate circle.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Kreistor » Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:16 pm

dirocyn wrote:I'm still trying to work out how changing capitols makes any sense as a trap. Closing the portal has the following effects:

1. Parson can no longer return to the Magic Kingdom. [snip]
2. GK's additional casters cannot get to Spacerock to help.


Tht's the primary trap. It is the one that will most obviously kill Parson.

However, most of these effects would occur if Parson took the city.


Had he seen the inferno forming, and decided he could not fight it, Parson would have the option to escape via the portal, and into TGMTTA protection. Could be worse... could be dead.

Based on my understanding of the rules of Erf, it would be possible for flying units to move into airspace now that it's GK's city and city zones no longer cost move; very likely those units would survive the fire since they're not in the garrison. But Parson's a heavy and can't fly (unless he puts on that jetpack, perhaps). So I think it's this second aspect--the casters can't get in--that's more important to this trap.


Airspace is not described as immune to inferno in the Klog. Entire city burns, everyone dies.

Clearly Parson has something in mind, "control z." In Windows it's Undo, in Unix it's suspend. Pause? I can't see how that would be useful from inside the program.


Far less likely to be Unix/Linux. As a reference, far more are aware of its relationship to Undo.

Either Parson intends to undo the closing of the portal (by moving the capitol from GK to Spacerock) so Sizemore can come through, or he intends some sort of epic reset. Possibly involving that big power button on his cloak, definitely involving rules/magic we haven't seen before.


Moving GK capital to re-open the portal has been proposed since the first mention of Jetstone moving Capital and subsequent verification that each Portal connects to a Capital, only.

Since inferno can only be fought by Dirtamancer, it's the only answer from a Meta-thinking perspective.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby bladestorm » Fri Apr 12, 2013 4:18 pm

Kreistor wrote:Moving GK capital to re-open the portal has been proposed since the first mention of Jetstone moving Capital and subsequent verification that each Portal connects to a Capital, only.

Since inferno can only be fought by Dirtamancer, it's the only answer from a Meta-thinking perspective.

Which means Parson is not going to use it. At the end of Book 1, he had two options: Surrender or die. He made option 3, which was how he had designed his original game. You cannot win within the rules of the game, so you have to come up with a way to cheat the system before it can cheat you.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Chit Rule Railroad » Fri Apr 12, 2013 5:04 pm

I've thought of a way to talk Stanley into changing capitals. Instead of telling him, "We need a portal here!", tell him, "We need you here!" (plus have a consensus among all the casters & Parson that it makes strategic sense to hold onto Spacerock). If Stanley heads off to Spacerock, intending to defend it personally, he would naturally switch the capital over to it first.

Perhaps tell him it would be a better staging ground for an invasion of Jetstone city or Faq. In particular, with the dwagons that have been lost (and the archons no longer available for dwagon-hunting), GK may need to consolidate the relay over a smaller area.


Kreistor wrote:But we also have to recognize that Haggar's forces are almost wiped out. Sammy indicated that they were the forlorn hope in that attack, and would be nearly annihilated. Jetstone was to follow up his attack and finish off GK's siege and ground. There may simply be nothing left of Haggar for Charlie to provoke, and holding a Side hostage this way eventually leads to resistance.

If Wanda and Sizemore alone reach Spacerock, the Tower will be so spelled up that almost no force of Archons could penetrate. Add Ace and Jack (assuming Juice refuel with decryption) and we're looking at stunning air defenses. Foolamancy is useless against a Master class Foolamancer, and any losses become forces for the enemy. Would a Bracer's probability include Wanda's capacities? And can Charlie risk Wanda developing a second power with the Pliers? As tempting a target as Spacerock may be, Charlie is not a full-frontal attacker, and so it won't take much to inspire him to set up another plan, but this time with willing assistance from King Trem and Don King. They, at least, have reason to trust him again.

Actually, it was implied that Haggar lost less than half of their force. Charlie's demand was to fight until Ansom was dusted or half their force was gone, whichever came first. When Sammy went down, Jillian reassured them that she would smooth things over with Charlie if they retreated at that point, implying that they hadn't reached the 50% threshold yet.

But you're right that there's no way Haggar would attack Spacerock if Wanda and Sizemore shore up the defenses. If Charlie strong-arms them again, it will be to induce them to keep their forces away from Jetstone city, so that Jetstone feels more free to commit forces against GK.

As for being tempting to Charlie - I think what's most tempting to him is whichever location has bling but no Wanda, especially given the possibility of getting Wanda onto his Side or into an alliance if she's separated from Stanley.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby erianaiel » Fri Apr 12, 2013 5:11 pm

I can not see any situation where Stanley would be wiling to move his capital city to a burning ruin, just to rescue a warlord he does not particularly like. He just lost one caster he almost could remember the name of, and the other three are safe in the Magic Kingdom and can return home as soon as his turn starts.

Tactically it is a bad idea. He sits in a highly defensible fortress and even if he lost a huge chunk of his forces in the turnamancy trap, he still has a significant army at his disposal. Spacerock is burning down and even if the inferno can be put out somehow, it still is all but finished. Its fortifications have been blown to dust. The city may not be in quite as bad shape as Gobwin Knob was just prior to Parson's gambit, but it can not be that much better either. On top of that it is defended by a level 2 warlord, a few decrypted and a handfull of dwagons.

So Stanley would give up a strong defensible position, put his capital at grave risk of being captured and on top of that will have to make the dangerous trek from Gobwin Knob to Spacerock, and you can be quite sure that Charlie will learn of it and send not only his but every other force that he can bribe, talk or blackmail into croaking Stanley. And just about everybody with move to reach will jump at the chance as soon as Charlie tells them where Stanley is.

Changing the capital might be a quick way out of the current mess, but it is still within the rules. What Parson needs at this point is another cheat. Unless he can change it so that it is his turn again he has no move to leave the burning city. The rules are not entirely clear if the airspace above a city will be burned by an inferno (the one example we were given was without units with the flying special) but it is safe to assume that this is not a safe spot either. There is no portal to escape through to a place without turns (allowing Parson to escape but none of the other units).
Options at this point, somehow, require either the progress of time to be altered (so that the inferno can not further spread) or the inferno or the city to be removed entirely. Or everybody still in the city gaining an immunity to fire somehow
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Re: Book 2 – Page 106

Postby Finwe » Fri Apr 12, 2013 5:26 pm

bladestorm wrote:
Kreistor wrote:Moving GK capital to re-open the portal has been proposed since the first mention of Jetstone moving Capital and subsequent verification that each Portal connects to a Capital, only.

Since inferno can only be fought by Dirtamancer, it's the only answer from a Meta-thinking perspective.

Which means Parson is not going to use it. At the end of Book 1, he had two options: Surrender or die. He made option 3, which was how he had designed his original game. You cannot win within the rules of the game, so you have to come up with a way to cheat the system before it can cheat you.



Parson's only option now is 'die', according to Antium. The 'rules' seem to say that he can't get to Chekhov's gun. Narratively speaking, he's perfectly within his rights to fire the gun so long as he's force to acquire it through lateral thinking. There's no reason why some elements of his "Ctrl-z" plan can't have been foreshadowed.
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