Book 2 – Page 110

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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:32 pm

Just because it's a definition you don't like, doesn't make it ridiculous. It's the only definition of free will. In your example, the only reason Anne and Bob want to get married is because of the chemicals in their brain, and every other determined event leading up to their marriage. And even if there is someone with a shotgun to his back, he can still "decide" to do whatever he wants anyway. The idea that you have free will whenever you make a decision without somebody else coercing you is self-defeating.

But the illusion of free will, which Anne and Bob do have, is practically the same anyway, so there's no existential crisis.

I have no idea what you're describing with HTTP requests and quarks and "do chairs exist?" Yes? Because it seems to me, that you're agreeing with me, and saying that "Well, if you ignore all the tiny things that decide everything we do, then voila, you have free will." Which is how the illusion works.

EDIT: And damn you Lipkin! You know as well as I do that the answer is 7!!!
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lipkin » Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:40 pm

Denar wrote:Just because it's a definition you don't like, doesn't make it ridiculous. It's the only definition of free will. In your example, the only reason Anne and Bob want to get married is because of the chemicals in their brain, and every other determined event leading up to their marriage. And even if there is someone with a shotgun to his back, he can still "decide" to do whatever he wants anyway. The idea that you have free will whenever you make a decision without somebody else coercing you is self-defeating.

But the illusion of free will, which Anne and Bob do have, is practically the same anyway, so there's no existential crisis.

I have no idea what you're describing with HTTP requests and quarks and "do chairs exist?" Yes? Because it seems to me, that you're agreeing with me, and saying that "Well, if you ignore all the tiny things that decide everything we do, then voila, you have free will." Which is how the illusion works.

EDIT: And damn you Lipkin! You know as well as I do that the answer is 7!!!

It's only the illusion of 7, because the friction caused by the dance agitates our perceptions! This is obvious stuff!

That big long post you recently made was a good one by the way. I enjoyed it. And yeah, I don't object to determinism in the real world. But Erf isn't run by science. We have nothing telling us that for every action there is an equal and opposite yadda yadda yadda. Some things happen, and we have no idea if there is a reason beyond just magic. Like popping.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:42 pm

Pft. Typical Lipkin response - "It's only the illusion!" You're intentionally ignoring the fact that seven is a prime number, and is therefore imaginary itself. What's obvious is your severe lack of understanding regarding meta-number-physics!!!
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lipkin » Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:43 pm

Denar wrote:Pft. Typical Lipkin response - "It's only the illusion!" You're intentionally ignoring the fact that seven is a prime number, and is therefore imaginary itself. What's obvious is your severe lack of understanding regarding meta-number-physics!!!

You've only proved my point for me! It couldn't possibly be 7.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:48 pm

Yeah, and do you know what 6 is? Un-imaginary. It's so unreal, that it's a whole new level of make believe. How (in)convenient of you to forget that!

Besides, have you ever tried putting just 6 Fate Particles on the head of a needle? They demand 7, in order to pair up with all the angels!

Or (scoff), are you seriously suggesting that there is also only room for 6 angels on the head of a needle?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lipkin » Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:01 pm

Denar wrote:Yeah, and do you know what 6 is? Un-imaginary. It's so unreal, that it's a whole new level of make believe. How (in)convenient of you to forget that!

Besides, have you ever tried putting just 6 Fate Particles on the head of a needle? They demand 7, in order to pair up with all the angels!

Or (scoff), are you seriously suggesting that there is also only room for 6 angels on the head of a needle?

Of course I'm not claiming there is only room for 6. But if they are going to do any dancing beyond a simple mosh pit, and lets face it, fate particles don't mosh, then you don't pack anymore in.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby zilfallon » Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:19 pm

Lipkin wrote:
zilfallon wrote:I feel like quoting what arkerpay said on Erfabet reactions topic:

arkerpay wrote:All I have to read now is the reaction forum where people are having verbal knife-fights over how many subatomic fate particles can co-exist on the head of a needle.


Not complaining, just pointing it out :P

6


I think I've read most of the posts here but I completely missed how you found that number.

/cry
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby effataigus » Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:49 pm

Lipkin wrote:
zilfallon wrote:I feel like quoting what arkerpay said on Erfabet reactions topic:

arkerpay wrote:All I have to read now is the reaction forum where people are having verbal knife-fights over how many subatomic fate particles can co-exist on the head of a needle.


Not complaining, just pointing it out :P

6
I think it was a trick question, actually. In one of the previous reactions threads we proved that Fate particles are of comparable size to an atom, so they aren't subatomic at all. I'm going with 0, but I could be convinced that the real answer could be greater... or perhaps negative.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lilwik » Mon Jun 10, 2013 5:17 pm

Denar wrote:OK, there seems to be a misunderstanding between what determinism/Fate would be in a literary work and what it entails in real life, and you're moving the problems from one into the other.
I'm having that problem too because I can't see why we should expect there to be any difference between how determinism and free will work in a story and how they work in real life. People generally assume that stories are like real life at some level where no differences are mentioned.

Denar wrote:The truth is, that in real life, we're entirely mechanical beings. Everything in the universe is mechanical. This is what is meant by having no free will, that there is absolutely nothing you or anybody else can do except for what you will do.
You sound like you believe in determinism and incompatibilism.

Denar wrote:But Lipkin isn't talking about determinism and free will going together in our world - which I presume he's ok with (I hope he is).
Now I'm confused about whether you think we have free will in real life or not. This seems to contradict the stuff you said above about us being mechanical. Unless you would hope Lipkin believes something that you don't believe yourself.

Denar wrote:In a story, we do not assume that the characters have no control over their actions and are predetermined like we are.
I find that attitude very curious. It is good enough for real life, but not good enough for a story? Does this make nonfiction stories like biographies less entertaining, since you know the characters have no free will?

Denar wrote:Incompatabilists say that it is futile, and that the "freedom of choice" that compatabalists come up with isn't the same as "free will", which is true.
If that's true then it's one of those things you need to know in your gut, because no one can come up with a convincing description of how they differ.

Denar wrote:"it's not determinism! It's just the end that's predetermined, not every action that's made leading up to it!" (which is paradoxical)
That's not paradoxical; it's just inevitability which you already agreed can happen sometimes.

Denar wrote:"Parson's free to make all these decisions, as long as they also bring him closer to his Fate."
He's actually even more free than that, since he can also make moves away from his Fate. Imagine a barbarian in a hex and his Fate is waiting for him in all six directions, and disbanding from lack of upkeep is also his Fate. He can walk toward the hex boundary. He can walk away from it. He can do anything he likes, with total free will, and yet we still know that his Fate is inevitable.

Denar wrote:Well, yeah, again, that's mixing up free will with freedom of choice. Just because he has the freedom to choose from a set of predetermined paths that all lead to the same end (which in itself is story-ruining enough), doesn't mean he has free will.
I still don't know the difference between freedom of choice and free will, but I would like to point out that just like the barbarian above, there can be an infinite set of possible paths, and they don't all lead to the same end; they just all lead to his Fate, which always includes an enormous number of possible outcomes, maybe even infinite possible outcomes. I mean, Wanda had the Fate of serving under Olive, but there is a huge difference between Wanda serving Olive with Wanda's family still alive, and Wanda serving Olive with Wanda's family dead. In the first one there is always a chance that Goodminton might eventually find a way to get Wanda traded back.

Denar wrote:The real cage analogy, of course, would be that in Passive Fate your mind is in a cage and can't move at all.
That seems like an imaginary cage to me. The person in that cage doesn't feel restricted. On the other hand having Fate magically block you from doing what you want is a real cage, only slightly metaphorical.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:15 pm

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:The truth is, that in real life, we're entirely mechanical beings. Everything in the universe is mechanical. This is what is meant by having no free will, that there is absolutely nothing you or anybody else can do except for what you will do.
You sound like you believe in determinism and incompatibilism.


These aren't things to believe in.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:But Lipkin isn't talking about determinism and free will going together in our world - which I presume he's ok with (I hope he is).
Now I'm confused about whether you think we have free will in real life or not. This seems to contradict the stuff you said above about us being mechanical. Unless you would hope Lipkin believes something that you don't believe yourself.


As I've said multiple times now, we have the illusion of free will, but not free will itself. But the illusion is practically the same thing. Doesn't contradict us being mechanical.
And some people can find that rather depressing. I was hoping Lipkin "was OK with that".

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:In a story, we do not assume that the characters have no control over their actions and are predetermined like we are.
I find that attitude very curious. It is good enough for real life, but not good enough for a story? Does this make nonfiction stories like biographies less entertaining, since you know the characters have no free will?


Not good enough for a story, no. At least not one that isn't all postmodern and all in your face about it. Generally the message of determinism becomes "everything is pointless". We do not assume that most stories are like this.
As you point out yourself, biographies are non-fiction and belong to a different genre than fantasy. And like I said,
I'm saying we shouldn't be determinist about Erfworld at all (or any story really).
it's shouldn't be something we consider when reading a story.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:Incompatabilists say that it is futile, and that the "freedom of choice" that compatabalists come up with isn't the same as "free will", which is true.
If that's true then it's one of those things you need to know in your gut, because no one can come up with a convincing description of how they differ.


Lots of people have defined free will, and criticised compatabilism for getting it wrong. Having Free Will is being a free agent, making decisions not influenced by the determined universe. The fact that it's impossible in the real world doesn't make the definition wrong.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:"it's not determinism! It's just the end that's predetermined, not every action that's made leading up to it!" (which is paradoxical)
That's not paradoxical; it's just inevitability which you already agreed can happen sometimes.

Denar wrote:"Parson's free to make all these decisions, as long as they also bring him closer to his Fate."
He's actually even more free than that, since he can also make moves away from his Fate. Imagine a barbarian in a hex and his Fate is waiting for him in all six directions, and disbanding from lack of upkeep is also his Fate. He can walk toward the hex boundary. He can walk away from it. He can do anything he likes, with total free will, and yet we still know that his Fate is inevitable.


That's an incredibly simplistic reduction of what Fate is in Erfworld.

That "Fate" is the scenario of picking up a Barbarian, dropping him in an empty hex surrounded by nothing and no one, and saying "Look, he's definitely going to disband next turn - must be Fate!"

What we actually know Fate is - Delphie knowing before Wanda had even began being produced who she would be, and that she would serve under Olive. That she would attune to an Arkentool - or rather, as Delphie put it, would become a "very special unit". Definitely also knew about the stages of her journey, as Jillian found out. All this, all those turns before Wanda popped (I believe one of the updates implies that a warlord (an heir though, admittedly) takes 40 turns to pop with a Turnamancer).

It's a far cry from an isolated individual in a hex disbanding at the start of the next turn. Yet you're treating both cases as though it's the same "Fate" that's involved.

One is just Mathamancy coming to the conclusion that there's no choice he can make that doesn't lead to him disbanding the next turn.

The other is Predictamancy that has seen which unit is going to pop, and would apparently know all their decisions that lead to her serving under a particular caster, and then going on to meet Jillian, and eventually end up destroying that side, and then going on to attune to an arkentool, before going on to do whatever else her prophecy demands. And that nothing anyone could do can challenge any of those stages, because in those cases, trying to challenge it just moves the process along as had been foreseen. And that Delphie would also even need to convince the Ruler to actually pop a Warlord because of the Prediction, so where did that inevitability come from beforehand? It's just a paradox - Fate only presents itself whenever some future event becomes inevitable, but also whenever the act of revealing itself makes the event inevitable... Which is it? I'm sure that, if Fate is that good with Wanda, all those hundreds of turns before she gets hold of the Arkenpliers it knew every major event (at least) that would happen to her along the way, that there must be an infinite number of other events that would become "inevitable" if they were revealed to Predictamancers in the right way. Why would it choose to only reveal Fate about Wanda?

Please do not insist that the former scenario is comparable to the latter.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:Well, yeah, again, that's mixing up free will with freedom of choice. Just because he has the freedom to choose from a set of predetermined paths that all lead to the same end (which in itself is story-ruining enough), doesn't mean he has free will.
I still don't know the difference between freedom of choice and free will, but I would like to point out that just like the barbarian above, there can be an infinite set of possible paths, and they don't all lead to the same end; they just all lead to his Fate, which always includes an enormous number of possible outcomes, maybe even infinite possible outcomes. I mean, Wanda had the Fate of serving under Olive, but there is a huge difference between Wanda serving Olive with Wanda's family still alive, and Wanda serving Olive with Wanda's family dead. In the first one there is always a chance that Goodminton might eventually find a way to get Wanda traded back.


That's something Active Fate doesn't deny either, and is the basis of Wanda's philosophy which you call her crazy for - "choose the easy path to avoid suffering."

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:The real cage analogy, of course, would be that in Passive Fate your mind is in a cage and can't move at all.
That seems like an imaginary cage to me. The person in that cage doesn't feel restricted. On the other hand having Fate magically block you from doing what you want is a real cage, only slightly metaphorical.


Or a bully stopping you from doing what you want - that's a cage, right? Because if a bully tells you not to do something, it stops you from being capable of doing it. Do you think also bullies take away your "free will"?
I don't think you're getting what "free will" means... that you're free to make any decision you want. Passive Fate - you're restricted, can't make any decision that it hasn't foreseen. You can't consider making any decision that hasn't been predetermined. In active fate, it's "sure, go ahead, try doing whatever you want. every option's open to you... oh you've chosen that one, well that'll make what's been planned impossible, so I'm gonna go and knock you out."
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 8:03 pm

I'm going to try and put my thoughts into better words in this post, so if you want to quote me - please also do in the context of this (entire) one. Assume that this one is right if anything seems poorly written.

Just to start off with Determinism and Indeterminism and blah di blah in stories;

I may accept determinism in real life. I do not, however, (and I think everyone would agree with me) like reading or interpreting stories with any determinism.

But this is what Passive Fate entails. Because determinism and Fate are not examples of inevitability as Lilwik describes - - a unit being about to disband on the next turn, and nothing can change that. Determinism and inevitability are not the same. If Passive Fate is either, we would see every major outcome of Wanda's story being the result of "inevitability". Wanda being popped, Wanda serving under Olive, meeting Jillian, destroying FAQ, getting the Arknepliers... All of these things "decided" when Delphie had the vision of it happening (itself a crucial step that meant the whole thing became inevitable only after she had the vision).

It is paradoxical and also bad storytelling that all these things simply were BOUND to happen because Delphie told her Ruler to start popping a Warlord, and that she only told her Ruler to pop a Warlord because she saw those things happening.

This also applies to Parson's summoning. Parson would make every decision correctly that leads to the prophecy of the perfect warlord being fulfilled. He wouldn't have to earn it. (This is not the same as saying "He will do it effortlessly"). But also in Passive Fate, the spell apparently only pulled him into Erfworld because he was the one who'll make the "correct" decisions. Not even the "best" ones - just the ones that lead to his Fate being met. Otherwise the spell would never have pulled him in.

And basically, yes, I and many others refuse to believe that - at the moment Delphie learnt about Wanda, and the moment Parson was pulled into Erfworld - that how they would think and act became inevitable. It is much better storytelling and fits in line with every character's philosophy of Fate that there is a plan that Fate tries to keep everyone to adhere to. Like an overbearing GM, that Parson compares Fate to in the previous text update.

And all this talk from Jojo and Maggie and Wanda and Jillian, about whether people can fight Fate or are stuck to their predetermined ends (Maggie even asks him that directly, and Parson says he doesn't believe so),

"She says this is Fated to work. Hope she's right."

"Oh do you? You hope our ends are ultimately predetermined and inescapable, Lord?

"Heh. Not really, no."


I certainly believe this is foreshadowing - now that Parson has taken a Manos beam to the face, he is definitely going to be wondering how he can challenge his Fate (remember he's also learnt how he was summoned to fulfil four separate prophecies). It's in his nature to ask questions regarding the impossible in Erfworld (multi-hex Dirtamancy traps, moving across hexes without move) - doing something to "break Fate" is something I fully expect him to be doing in a near update.

As an aside, do you, Lilwik, still think that none of this is foreshadowing?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Pokota » Mon Jun 10, 2013 9:17 pm

I have one - just one - thing to say in support of the "The Scroll is Haxxing the Bracer" argument.

We're assuming that Charlie benefits more from Parson casting the scroll than he would from Parson having died in a fire. Both of them remove Parson as a threat. Maybe the scroll is the bluff and DIAF is the preferred result? If Charlie is capable of doing it, he certainly would try and hax the bracer in such a way as to make Parson waste valuable time... but not if Scroll!Parson is a more valuable result than Ash!Parson.
zyxophoj wrote:Also, it depends rather heavily on Wanda ... not being Wanda.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lipkin » Mon Jun 10, 2013 9:36 pm

Passive vs Active.

Everything that happens in Erf is a script.

Passive fate is taking that script and making a movie. Once the movie is made, the choices made in that movie will never change (barring George Lucas).

Active fate is using that script to make a play. Maybe you follow the script precisely, but more likely you adapt it. The main themes and beats will remain the same, but maybe the setting changes, characters may be removed or modified, and the performers can still screw up and have to ad-lib to correct the situation.

In passive fate, the characters have freedom of choice. They are free to choose whatever they want, but once they choose that choice will never change. In active fate, everything is happening live. The characters could do something different than what is in the script. They likely won't, even night after night, because characters obviously follow a script. This makes it superficially similar to passive fate, because it's the same story, and fate is still achieved. But with a play, every night is going to be slightly different, with the chance that it could be very different. And so the stakes are higher.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lilwik » Mon Jun 10, 2013 9:37 pm

Denar wrote:Not good enough for a story, no. At least not one that isn't all postmodern and all in your face about it. Generally the message of determinism becomes "everything is pointless". We do not assume that most stories are like this.
Thank you, that clears up my confusion about that.

Denar wrote:As you point out yourself, biographies are non-fiction and belong to a different genre than fantasy.
I agree they are a different genre, and as I understand it you consider that genre to be inferior because "everything is pointless" in those stories.

Denar wrote:That's an incredibly simplistic reduction of what Fate is in Erfworld.
The point of the simplicity is to make the possibility of inevitability beyond doubt. Once you accept that inevitability is possible in simple cases, it seems natural to me that suppose that with the help of magic one could find inevitabilities in more complicated situations, especially in Erfworld where people's choices are constrained in many ways that they aren't constrained in real life.

Denar wrote:What we actually know Fate is - Delphie knowing before Wanda had even began being produced who she would be, and that she would serve under Olive. That she would attune to an Arkentool - or rather, as Delphie put it, would become a "very special unit". Definitely also knew about the stages of her journey, as Jillian found out. All this, all those turns before Wanda popped.
We don't have such a complete timeline of when exactly Delphie discovered the things that she knew, but I have no problem accepting that she might have known all these things that many turns in advance or even further in advance. It's just a question of the power of Predictamancy and how good it is at finding inevitabilities. We know nothing about what determines the personality of a newly popped unit, so there's no foundation for saying that it couldn't be inevitable in some situations.

Denar wrote:The other is Predictamancy that has seen which unit is going to pop, and would apparently know all their decisions that lead to her serving under a particular caster, and then going on to meet Jillian, and eventually end up destroying that side, and then going on to attune to an arkentool, before going on to do whatever else her prophecy demands.
There's a lot of interesting speculation in there. We don't know if Delphie knew that Wanda would destroy Faq. Even more interesting is the possibility that Marie knew it, which would have been a terribly awkward situation for her. It seems pretty clear that Olive knew that Wanda would attune to an Arkentool that would give her the power of decryption and the endless army of zero-upkeep units that would have given Haffaton the power to conquer the world, but I doubt that Delphie would have chosen to pop Wanda if Delphie saw that coming in advance.

Denar wrote:And that Delphie would also even need to convince the Ruler to actually pop a Warlord because of the Prediction, so where did that inevitability come from beforehand?
Delphie didn't need to convince Firebaugh to pop Wanda; that was a choice. Or at least I suppose it was a choice, though if Delphie believed back then that popping Wanda and making the deal was the only hope Goodminton had for survival, then maybe she didn't have much choice at all. At least we can be sure that Delphie never Predicted herself tricking Firebaugh into popping Wanda. All Delphie Predicted was something about what Wanda would become if she were popped, and the rest was Delphie's choice to make that happen. We know without doubt that Predictamancers are capable of making conditional Predictions, such as Marie checking moment-by-moment if Wanda's shot will hit or miss the fleeing Olive. If you have a choice to make, you can ask a Predictamancer about the result of each option.

Denar wrote:It's just a paradox - Fate only presents itself whenever some future event becomes inevitable, but also whenever the act of revealing itself makes the event inevitable... Which is it?
I don't see the conflict that you seem to see. Just imagine the magic like a computer running through every imaginable Prediction and testing each to see if it will be inevitable if it is revealed to a Predictamancer, and then only revealing the ones that will be inevitable.

Denar wrote:I'm sure that, if Fate is that good with Wanda, all those hundreds of turns before she gets hold of the Arkenpliers it knew every major event (at least) that would happen to her along the way, that there must be an infinite number of other events that would become "inevitable" if they were revealed to Predictamancers in the right way. Why would it choose to only reveal Fate about Wanda?
You say that you're sure, but we don't have Predictamancy to tell us what is inevitable and what isn't inevitable. I recognize that inevitability exists, and each of the Predictions that we've seen looks like it was probably inevitable in retrospect, but trying to guess what is inevitable in Erfworld without the aid of magic is hopeless. On the other hand, we know that Predictamancers make vast quantities of little Predictions all the time, so many that it can even be used as part of a combat tactic.

Denar wrote:Do you think also bullies take away your "free will"?
I do, but I recognize that's a deep philosophical issue that I'm not qualified to properly argue about.

Denar wrote:Determinism and inevitability are not the same.
Agreed, and Passive Fate only requires inevitability, so it should be at least theoretically acceptable to unshakable incompatibilists.

Denar wrote:It is paradoxical and also bad storytelling that all these things simply were BOUND to happen because Delphie told her Ruler to start popping a Warlord, and that she only told her Ruler to pop a Warlord because she saw those things happening.
That's just a conditional Prediction. Like Marie checking to see when Wanda should shoot to hit Olive, Delphie came up with a plan to save Goodminton by coming up with a valuable unit to trade, so she spent a little juice each turn until she figured out the perfect moment for Firebaugh to start the popping process. Delphie is the cause of all this, not some Prediction causing itself.

Denar wrote:Parson would make every decision correctly that leads to the prophecy of the perfect warlord being fulfilled.
We don't even know what the Predictions are for Parson, so it's premature to start complaining about them. Most likely the Predictions are much like Wanda's, able to be fulfilled in many ways, some much better than others. Parson has many real decisions to make that really affect the outcome he gets, including the lives of countless units who most likely can be alive or dead without affecting the Prediction at all, much like Wanda's family. Even more dramatic is the possibility that Parson might not survive fulfilling the Predictions, and his own survival could easily depend on the path he chooses.

Denar wrote:He wouldn't have to earn it.
He doesn't have to earn his Predictions coming true no matter what brand of Fate you buy. At least under Passive Fate he gets his Predictions because of his own abilities instead of because he has omnipotent magical help, but either way it's just going to happen. The issue for story-telling is that (just like Wanda and Jillian) the specific Predictions are probably not what Parson wants at all. Of course Jillian wanted to croak the ruler of Haffaton, but Jillian valued the survival of Faq's people much more; she gets croaking the ruler of Haffaton for free, but everything else she wants is something she needs to earn. In the same way Parson doesn't want to cause people to die needlessly and I'd bet that his Predictions don't say anything about that, especially considering how little value Erfworlders put on life.

Denar wrote:But also in Passive Fate, the spell apparently only pulled him into Erfworld because he was the one who'll make the "correct" decisions. Not even the "best" ones - just the ones that lead to his Fate being met. Otherwise the spell would never have pulled him in.
He'd better make the best decisions or else the Summon Perfect Warlord spell suffered from brutal false advertising and Stanley should get his shmuckers back. That's why they had a Predictamancer in on the deal, so they could ensure they weren't getting an almost-perfect warlord.

Denar wrote:As an aside, do you, Lilwik, still think that none of this is foreshadowing?
I've learned from long experience that Erfworld is a story that is totally impossible to predict. I never expect to be right about where the plot will go.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Denar » Mon Jun 10, 2013 10:13 pm

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:As you point out yourself, biographies are non-fiction and belong to a different genre than fantasy.
and as I understand it you consider that genre to be inferior because "everything is pointless" in those stories.


Nope.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:What we actually know Fate is - Delphie knowing before Wanda had even began being produced who she would be, and that she would serve under Olive. That she would attune to an Arkentool - or rather, as Delphie put it, would become a "very special unit". Definitely also knew about the stages of her journey, as Jillian found out. All this, all those turns before Wanda popped.
We don't have such a complete timeline of when exactly Delphie discovered the things that she knew, but I have no problem accepting that she might have known all these things that many turns in advance or even further in advance. It's just a question of the power of Predictamancy and how good it is at finding inevitabilities. We know nothing about what determines the personality of a newly popped unit, so there's no foundation for saying that it couldn't be inevitable in some situations.


She knew from the start that passing on Wanda ASAP would be the only way "we would survive you." Not the only way "we would survive," (i.e. if this was all part of Delphie's plan to pop a unit to trade to Haffaton), but the only way to survive "you".

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:The other is Predictamancy that has seen which unit is going to pop, and would apparently know all their decisions that lead to her serving under a particular caster, and then going on to meet Jillian, and eventually end up destroying that side, and then going on to attune to an arkentool, before going on to do whatever else her prophecy demands.
There's a lot of interesting speculation in there. We don't know if Delphie knew that Wanda would destroy Faq. Even more interesting is the possibility that Marie knew it, which would have been a terribly awkward situation for her.


I like to think for now that Marie did not know that Wanda would end up destroying FAQ the way she did. Marie certainly knew that Wanda would be the agent of FAQ's destruction, but by the time Wanda turned she had already personally destroyed FAQ once before. When we were given that update from Jannis' perspective, she talks about how Marie is clever and strong and all, but whenever she talks about Wanda she can clearly see how Marie is hurting.

So I think maybe Marie thought that Wanda had already fulfilled her Prediction of destroying FAQ, and then would at some point carry on with the Prediction she gave her of attuning to an Arkentool. I don't think the Prediction was ever that Wanda would kill Banhammer, but Banhammer had a Prediction that he would die soon and Wanda had a Prediction that she would destroy FAQ. And so Marie felt horribly betrayed when Wanda "sold out" her side to Stanley.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:It is paradoxical and also bad storytelling that all these things simply were BOUND to happen because Delphie told her Ruler to start popping a Warlord, and that she only told her Ruler to pop a Warlord because she saw those things happening.
That's just a conditional Prediction. Like Marie checking to see when Wanda should shoot to hit Olive, Delphie came up with a plan to save Goodminton by coming up with a valuable unit to trade, so she spent a little juice each turn until she figured out the perfect moment for Firebaugh to start the popping process. Delphie is the cause of all this, not some Prediction causing itself.


Or, in Active Fate, "You were to be popped. And you were to be passed on." Delphie, being a Predictamancer, didn't want to challenge Fate's plan.

Lilwik wrote:
Denar wrote:As an aside, do you, Lilwik, still think that none of this is foreshadowing?
I've learned from long experience that Erfworld is a story that is totally impossible to predict. I never expect to be right about where the plot will go.


A bit of a change in tone from there being no foreshadowing whatsoever regarding this!
Last edited by Denar on Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lipkin » Mon Jun 10, 2013 10:39 pm

You don't partake in a biography for the same reason that you do a work of fiction. It's less that everything is pointless than it is that everything is a foregone conclusion. There is no suspense in a biography, because the result has already happened.

As for Olive knowing Wanda's fate? Doubtful. Wanda herself didn't know which tool she would attune to, or what abilities it would grant her. More likely, Olive knew Wanda was fated to attune to an arkentool, one of which Olive had custody of. Olive wanted Judy croaked, and Judy was attuned to the arken shoes, so it makes sense to try and make the paths of Wanda and Judy cross.

When it comes to free will, the phrase is often used in two ways. When someone is forced to do something against their will, due to being threatened, coerced, or black mailed, their free will is not being taken away. In order for it to be against their will, they have to have one. Being held prisoner does not remove your free will. Being mind controlled does.


And on the subject of inevitability, I don't believe in it. Not truly, and especially not in fiction. I do not think Parson's bracer will ever get a reading of 100%.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lilwik » Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:01 pm

Denar wrote:She knew from the start that passing on Wanda ASAP would be the only way "we would survive you." Not the only way "we would survive," (i.e. if this was all part of Delphie's plan to pop a unit to trade to Haffaton), but the only way to survive "you".
Naturally Wanda had to be traded once she was popped! Delphie engineered Wanda's popping using Predictamancy, no doubt deliberately aiming for a unit that would be Predicted to be traded to Haffaton. She didn't get exactly that, but she got a unit who was Predicted to serve under Olive which Delphie probably thought was good enough at the time, especially when time was so limited. Unfortunately the plans didn't survive contact with Wanda and since Wanda didn't get traded to Haffaton then she would inevitably be taken by force, something that Delphie never expected until it was too late to stop. So yes, exactly, Delphie played with fire and didn't survive it.

Denar wrote:When we were given that update from Jannis' perspective, she talks about how Marie is clever and strong and all, but whenever she talks about Wanda she can clearly see how Marie is hurting.
I suspect that all Predictamancers are probably compatibilists. They all think their Predictions are inevitable, but they can still blame people for the things they are Predicted to do. It would be hard to function as a practical Predictamancer otherwise.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby ftl » Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:07 pm

Lilwik wrote: no doubt deliberately aiming for a unit that would be Predicted to be traded to Haffaton.


I think this isn't supported by the text at all. We have no idea of Delphies pre-popping plans for Wanda.

It could be as simple as "she saw that Wanda was fated to pop here" and, being a predictamancer, went along instead of fighting it.

You may be giving Delphie too much credit if you think she can deliberately CHOOSE to pop someone with so much Fate baggage.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby Lilwik » Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:14 pm

ftl wrote:You may be giving Delphie too much credit if you think she can deliberately CHOOSE to pop someone with so much Fate baggage.

But if it weren't part of Delphie's plan then why would she trick her Overlord to make it happen? I know that Delphie is arrogant, but even she must have known that using lies to manipulate her Overlord is a dangerous thing not to be taken lightly! She must have wanted Wanda popped for a reason, and the reason seems obvious. Most of the Fate baggage was probably just a side-effect, but to get a good deal with Haffaton you can't offer just an ordinary unit.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 110

Postby ftl » Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:26 pm

Not sure - I would have guessed the same reason Delphie did all those other secretive things, because it was Fated to happen anyway, and fighting it would just make things worse, and she was trying to smooth along the Fated path. Badly, but what can you do.

Maybe I'm missing something from the beginning - was it said that Delphie was able to actually manipulate who was going to pop? I thought she just lied about it but wasn't actually the one who made it happen. Or am I just wrong on that, did Delphie claim responsibility for a caster being popped instead of a Warlord?

I'll go back and look for quotes.
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