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View Full Version : Erfworld 142 The Battle for Gobwin Knob, Page 129



Mikalyaran
2009-02-15, 04:02 PM
So Parson keeps it cool and gives the orders. As we would expect of him. It appears dancing does continue through combat and the archons are guiding the dance fight. If the fighters must continue to dance this of course means if they stop the bonus goes away. With the Archons guiding that also seems to mean that they arn't breaking any zones rules by acting as they are. Its a line of sight issue not a zone issue and I don't see why troops in the courtyard shouldn't be able to react to the archon's display.

Bogroll's mission...

Saint Nil
2009-02-15, 04:17 PM
To do whatever Maggie says.

It seems to me Parson is starting to care more his troops. Any thoughts on more emotions about his lost troops soon? Maybe the death of a more important character?

I hope Bogrolls mission isn't a sucide one.

seedjar
2009-02-15, 04:17 PM
Mario Paint reference! The fulfillment!
~Joe

Hann
2009-02-15, 04:20 PM
Hmm. I like the plot advancement. But what I REALLY like is the Thriller motion Wanda is doing. :smallbiggrin:

Vreejack
2009-02-15, 04:27 PM
I thought that was Dig Dug (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dig_Dug) in the third panel. Is it a real game or just a mish-mash?

memnarch
2009-02-15, 04:40 PM
I thought that was Dig Dug (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dig_Dug) in the third panel. Is it a real game or just a mish-mash?

Mish-mash can be a real game; it's from the Mario Paint Composer (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mario_Paint#Sequels).

datalaughing
2009-02-15, 04:54 PM
Well, looks like it's coming right down to the wire. I wonder how many guys Parson left up on the wall, because it doesn't seem likely they'll make it down alive.

shadowdemon_lord
2009-02-15, 04:58 PM
Well this answers a lot of questions, apparently the archons were leading the dance off, and not Ansom (unless Parson just royally booped up). Also, apparently all Archons are the same. I find this both appropriate and think it fits. My current theory is that Archons are tied to the Arkendish much the same as Dwagons are tied to the Arkenhammer. Given that the Arkenhammer is a warhammer it makes sense that it would grant power of over the most powerful units in the game stats wise (remember 1 Dwagon managed to take down Jillian in a single volley of attacks), and Jillian is likely quite a high level warlord given her constant battle experience. Given that as a comparison, I find the Archons to be an appropriate power level. It's not like most factions have anything vaguely resembling the power level of either unit.

Anias
2009-02-15, 05:01 PM
Final Stand Time! Looks like Bogroll's going to get his wish...

Sweetie Welf
2009-02-15, 05:06 PM
I wonder what Parson wants from Charley. Will he surrender and try to save his live and maybe of his troops?

T-O-E
2009-02-15, 05:07 PM
Fourth panel. It says "are we not getting though to Ansom at all?"

Doran
2009-02-15, 05:09 PM
Hmm wonder what Parson is calling charlie about?
Maybe to threaten to break his watch, unless charlie stops the archons?

DarkNewton
2009-02-15, 05:13 PM
The real interesting thingis that Parson is going to the dungeon and not the tower, preparing to personally lead the last stand.. and I wonder what the odds of him sending wanda with the casters or having her lead along side him in the dungeons.. I'm betting the second, lest he lose some major bonus's

Anias
2009-02-15, 05:19 PM
Odd thing is, Parson's sending casters to the portal room (in the tower) while retreating to the dungeon for his final stand. I know, he said he was planning to send them to the Magic Kingdom...but Maggie's staying to manage things with Bogroll, Sizemore's being saved for the "endgame," and Wanda's being pulled back to the dungeon. So who's actually going where? Are the casters being sent to the Magic Kingdom? If so, doesn't that kill whatever chances Parson has at holding out? Either way, it looks like he's personally going to fight to the death.

Ragn Charran
2009-02-15, 05:20 PM
I only have one word.

Boop.

Bawon von Howse
2009-02-15, 05:29 PM
...so, to the dungoen it is....still it seems odd that Parson will send the casters to the magic kingdom, ruthlessness and all...i guess we will find out though!

Kholdstare
2009-02-15, 05:33 PM
I guess the theory of sizemore ruling in the dungeon was true.

Still I was hoping that the disruption would have a big penalty.

This is getting pretty damn exciting though.

A_S
2009-02-15, 05:36 PM
I wonder what Parson wants from Charley. Will he surrender and try to save his live and maybe of his troops?
How about this:
"Hey, Charlie, I'm about to send all my casters to the magic kingdom (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0114.html). Do what I want, or I send my bracer with them."

Also, is the "FuMP" sound effect in today's a reference to the FuMP (http://www.thefump.com/)? It doesn't really make sense, but the u is lower case for some reason...

Revlid
2009-02-15, 05:40 PM
Bogroll's going to get his wish.

That's my prediction. Sad, but likely. Ruthlessness indeed.

DarkNewton
2009-02-15, 05:45 PM
It's almost a shame that we didn't get to see any real affect that Maggie had in an offense capacity. I guess I was expecting her to have more of a perceived impact other then as a big walkie talky... altho that may be a good merchandising idea..

slurpz
2009-02-15, 06:03 PM
Suddenly there are multiple people on Ansom's side that can dance/lead a dance fight?

Nevermind. He was referring to the Archons.

Lamech
2009-02-15, 06:15 PM
Parson can certainly break that bracer... and umm...
"I tried to cast luckamancy. Nothing happened. But if I have any to give... good luck." Does that mean Parson ran out while buffing up his units? Or that mean only he can use the luck bonus.

And if he was able to cast it he may be able to run to the magic kingdom, he could certainly force Charlie to bow out if that is the case, or perhaps even render that precious contract invalid.

And see he can't neutrilze Ansom, but he can retreat to the dungeon, incapacitating the Archons, for this turn. Not a deus ex...
P.S. I'm going to conclude the portal room is underground.

KeiranHalcyon
2009-02-15, 06:20 PM
Suddenly there are multiple people on Ansom's side that can dance/lead a dance fight?

Yeah, I'm going to give Rob the benefit of the doubt and say they're going to explain how that happened sometime soon.

There is one ace left in the hole - Stanley. If he arrives in time. It's also uncertain if his dwagon flight could realistically make a difference at this point.

Doran
2009-02-15, 06:21 PM
Suddenly there are multiple people on Ansom's side that can dance/lead a dance fight?

I think dance leading reserves refer to the archons, who parson didn't know could help that turn. Maggie is using thinkamancy on them.

This prolly means Ansom isn't needed for the dance fight bonus, as it would be simpler to focus all thinkamancy on him instead of the archons. Or alternatively maybe he made all his saves versus thinkamancy?

EDIT: No wait, I read panel 1, he used his heavies and archery to try to get to Anson instead. Still it does point to separate bonuses as otherwise throwing everything at Ansom would have made sense.

Douglas
2009-02-15, 06:29 PM
There is one ace left in the hole - Stanley. If he arrives in time. It's also uncertain if his dwagon flight could realistically make a difference at this point.
There are still things that can happen to dramatically shift things in Parson's favor, but that is not one of them. One of the few ironclad rules we have is that units cannot move between hexes out of turn. It is not Stanley's turn and he is not in the hex, therefore he cannot arrive. Ansom's turn will play out completely, one way or another, before there is any possibility of Stanley showing up at the city.

Drakron
2009-02-15, 06:31 PM
If I recall Charley wants Parson and the calculator ...

Unfortunately the only thing I can think off is Parson threating Charley that if he does not back out then he is going to kill himself and destroy the calculator since that is pretty much the only he can do to make him to back out.

Myshlaevsky
2009-02-15, 06:34 PM
It's possible Ansom's small print gives Charlie Parson?

In fact, given the 'must capture' thing I can see that being the case.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-15, 06:50 PM
I think there is a fine distinction between leading a dance fight and guiding it. Maggie clearly states that the Archons are guiding it. That suggests to me that Ansom is leading it. Parson order Anson and the Archons who are guiding targeted because for the him to win in the courtyard he needs to stop the RCC from dance fighting. Ansom is in the courtyard so he can lead but he is also flying which is why Parson orders the heavies and archers to target Ansom. He lacks air force and only those types of non-flyers can engage flyers. Maggie is the only one who can effect the Archons since they are not only flying but in a different zone. The zone aspect might not be as important since the rules don't seem 100% clear. GW troops treat all the zones as one but I believe that is only for movement. Does anyone remember that aspect of the rules better than I?

KeiranHalcyon
2009-02-15, 06:52 PM
There are still things that can happen to dramatically shift things in Parson's favor, but that is not one of them. One of the few ironclad rules we have is that units cannot move between hexes out of turn. It is not Stanley's turn and he is not in the hex, therefore he cannot arrive. Ansom's turn will play out completely, one way or another, before there is any possibility of Stanley showing up at the city.

You're right of course, it just means that Parson has to croak enough of Ansom's forces to convince Ansom that he needs the archons in order to win. With Charlie once again allied to Ansom, the archons will move on the Coalition's next turn, after GK. I could see Stanely arriving in that timespan and wiping out the archons, leaving Ansom in the same boat as he was before.

MalikT
2009-02-15, 06:54 PM
Moving underground removes archons as a factor. So why is Parson calling Charlie, to turn him to his side? Can Charlie break alliance in the middle of Ansoms turn?

fractal
2009-02-15, 06:56 PM
I personally liked how the disrupted "crashed" Archon was generating the wrong symbols for her DDR display. That's a great touch.

VariaVespasa
2009-02-15, 07:06 PM
Of course it is. Its almost guaranteed in fact. Parson and his bracer are Charlies primary interest in all this.

Yes Ansoms turn has to play out before Stanley can arrive, but if the Archons dont have line of sight then they cant guide the dancefight, which means that Ansom cannot assault the dungeons with dancefighting bonuses this turn, and if he tries then he's back to following Parsons initial plan of dancefighting vs non-dancefighting troops with Sizemore raiding the leadership (Or just slaughtering unlead troops if they refuse to send leaders in with the troops), AND with additional bonuses for the remaining GK tunnelfighting troops into the bargain. So Ansom cant finish it this turn, and he's smart enough to know it since he's seen Sizemore and the dancefighting in action. So he'll probably wait till next turn before going after the dungeons, ONCE he realises that Parson is still alive and well down there. Given that Parson is ruthless, Bogroll is dressed like him, people are rather expecting/fearing a heroic sacrifice, the foolamancy spell has not yet been used, and Maggie (fairly ruthless herself) has been left in charge of Bogroll with a mission, and Parsons expression as he leaves for the dungeon, it may well be that Parson intends to fake his own death, thus opening the way for other possible gambits, including luring Ansom into an unwise assault on the dungeon this turn, thinking that with the GK warlord dead its now safe to do so. Being thought dead by the coalition may also give Charlie sufficient weasel room to effectively betray the spirit of his new deal with Ansom while adhering to the letter of it if Parson can find the right idea to present to him.

Graymayre
2009-02-15, 07:10 PM
Of course it is. Its almost guaranteed in fact. Parson and his bracer are Charlies primary interest in all this.

Yes Ansoms turn has to play out before Stanley can arrive, but if the Archons dont have line of sight then they cant guide the dancefight, which means that Ansom cannot assault the dungeons with dancefighting bonuses this turn, and if he tries then he's back to following Parsons initial plan of dancefighting vs non-dancefighting troops with Sizemore raiding the leadership (Or just slaughtering unlead troops if they refuse to send leaders in with the troops), AND with additional bonuses for the remaining GK tunnelfighting troops into the bargain. So Ansom cant finish it this turn, and he's smart enough to know it since he's seen Sizemore and the dancefighting in action. So he'll probably wait till next turn before going after the dungeons, ONCE he realises that Parson is still alive and well down there. Given that Parson is ruthless, Bogroll is dressed like him, people are rather expecting/fearing a heroic sacrifice, the foolamancy spell has not yet been used, and Maggie (fairly ruthless herself) has been left in charge of Bogroll with a mission, and Parsons expression as he leaves for the dungeon, it may well be that Parson intends to fake his own death, thus opening the way for other possible gambits, including luring Ansom into an unwise assault on the dungeon this turn, thinking that with the GK warlord dead its now safe to do so. Being thought dead by the coalition may also give Charlie sufficient weasel room to effectively betray the spirit of his new deal with Ansom while adhering to the letter of it if Parson can find the right idea to present to him.

Well said *pulls out of of his pocket, a linty melting confection* I believe this cookie is for you.

DarkNewton
2009-02-15, 07:53 PM
You know, it just occured to me, since we didn't really know the 'terms of the agreement' with charlie.. maybe there's a massive cost to the RCC if parson gets croaked.. like such a huge cost that they wouldn't push further to take the tower/dungeon if it meant killing Parson.. and if parson somehow snakes that info from charlie during his next conversation.. suddenly he pulls a blazing saddles move and holds himself hostage. "Don't move or the fat man gets it"

BarGamer
2009-02-15, 08:04 PM
... suddenly he pulls a blazing saddles move and holds himself hostage. "Don't move or the fat man gets it"

Yeah, I don't see Parson being emo enough to /wrist. Even to "win." No, I see Stanley pulling a 'Gandalf the White' move.

Stanley: "Look to my coming on the first light of the fifth turn, at dawn look to the east. Unless I got turned around, in which case it'd be west."

A few turns later.
Stanley: *Completely underwhelming entrance.* "Wow, you're all still alive?"

Fez
2009-02-15, 08:17 PM
Ignoring the issues of the archons doing magic outside their turn and such, which is still a low level nit, this was a great strip.

Very melancholy Parson's wishing to Bogroll while likely sending him to his doom (along with Bogroll's happiness to serve, and Parson's grim visage in the next panel.)

I suspect people have hit well on the call to Charlie. Parson knows what Charlie wants and can bargain to deprive him of it.

Overall, not a critical page in terms of progressing things, but a good interstitial to explain the retreat to the dungeons and set up the next point of conflict.

It is still the race against the clock for all involved. Ansom has to finish taking all of GK in this turn, or next Parson's troops heal, they can raise all the dead, and Stanley shows up.

As always, a good job, though I still want the image of Wanda leading the Thriller dance from a couple strips ago blown up. ;)

Fjolnir
2009-02-15, 08:19 PM
I think parson is referring to one of the scrolls that they found, keeping the luckamancy one for him to try to turn the tide of the battle, but it failed. Also, ALL the units besides the ones set up for the delay are going to the dungeon, in order to deny the RCC the ability to get the archons even involved by LOS.There is also the matter of the foolamancy scroll, they may use it as sort of a disguise to make the already resembling bogroll look like parson since they already resemble one another, and MAYBE the RCC will hold back due to the croak, not capture, delaying them possibly even getting them to end turn for some reason. Also the other idea could be made, possibly parson is surrendering to charlie to deny the RCC their assistance after forming the final battle plan and handing the reins to maggie to execute, he MAY even have the authority to surrender to charlie thereby giving the archons reason to swoop the RCC to defend THEIR territory, though I doubt it. (though he did mention that if it all fell he would surrender to the unmentioned "secret allies of his" in the coalition, at the time it was bluster but charlie is on the hook for that role so to speak)

Kholdstare
2009-02-15, 08:31 PM
Also Funkenstein kicked boop.

dr pepper
2009-02-15, 08:44 PM
Given that the Arkenhammer is a warhammer

No, it's a Fisher Price boppy toy.

kreszantas
2009-02-15, 08:55 PM
we don't know about LOS and how it works with Dance fighting... so we will have to wait until we get the next one, or maybe the next one.

ShneekeyTheLost
2009-02-15, 09:42 PM
I can think of one reason why Parson would want to call Charlie... although unless Parson gets creative, which he has done before with certain songs, most of the words are going to end up as 'boop'...

ReccaSquirrel
2009-02-15, 10:10 PM
I personally liked how the disrupted "crashed" Archon was generating the wrong symbols for her DDR display. That's a great touch.

I know. I'm happy I was able to call it for once. :)

Noeru
2009-02-15, 10:11 PM
I think Parson planning to have all the caster to the tower so they can be send back to magic kingdom, and try to save Wanda, Sizemore, Maggie, himself and as many units as he can by having Sizemore to dig a escape tunnel or sort.

Drakron
2009-02-15, 10:52 PM
... it may well be that Parson intends to fake his own death, thus opening the way for other possible gambits, including luring Ansom into an unwise assault on the dungeon this turn, thinking that with the GK warlord dead its now safe to do so.

Issues with that.

Ansom already plans to assault the dungeon since he decided to not wait and strike before Parson could come up with something.

So being dead is not going to change things in relation to the battle.

Second, Ansom intends to conquer Gobwin Knob and that means he have to destroy or make surrender all of Stanley units in Gobwin Knob.

Third, Stanley is supposed to be croaked if things were going to plan so Parson being dead or alive does not change the fundamental that is ... this is Stanley SIDE and so even if Parson dies, it just means the Chief Warlord bonus is lost (there is no greater tactical field were Chief Warlord would have a more reaching role in this case).

Faking death would achieve nothing, Ansom is not going to stop and even if he did ... what? he still have to clean the city of Stanley units.

There is no change in the status quo even if Parson faked that he croaked, Charlie would not back out (no reason, he gets paid and paid for not doing much at this point) and Ansom would simply take the faster and most effective means of cleaning the City, by swarming the dungeon with units.

Ansom is not going to break down and cry if Parson died, he is not going to wait and he is not going to stop.

The only chance Parson have relies on Charlie aid since its the only member of the coalition that is willing to turn side and help him and he have some leverage over him.

chpicker
2009-02-15, 11:16 PM
Odd thing is, Parson's sending casters to the portal room (in the tower) while retreating to the dungeon for his final stand.

I don't think the portal room is in the tower. Looking at page 13 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0013.html), when Wanda and Sizemore come back from the Magic Kingdom, Bogroll passes on the order for her to report to the tower. That would be silly if they were already there.

Decius
2009-02-15, 11:32 PM
dweep DOOPA doop.... Is that the sound effect from Pac-Man getting caught by a ghost?

Well done, tactically wise, on both parts. Parson throws a gambit out, Ansom counters but takes significant losses (in loss of units), returns with a maneuver of his own. Parson counters, but takes significant losses (Loses control of the courtyard). Now lets see if the tunnel units' bonus from Sizemore and any dance-fighting Wanda can do in the tunnels (It should be a little too cramped...) are better than the numerical and leadership advantage that Ansom has.

Also, I also have to conclude either that the portal room is in the tunnels, or than Parson plans to take the casters and leave to the magic kingdom, and abandon the fight. I don't believe that he would separate his leadership from his troops unless he had already acknowledged defeat. Unless he is setting up for his next gambit; Perhaps going on an emergency shopping trip to the magic kingdom and buying a weirdomancy scroll.

How much is left in GK treasury, anyway? After the summoning spell was bought, there was about 150k shmuckers, but I have no idea was the maintenance costs and income has been since then.

And now I have to nurse my own pet theory.
Tardy Elves join Parson/Stanley FTW!

Suicide Junkie
2009-02-15, 11:32 PM
I see three and a half ways that a fake Parson would hurt bad.

1) Bogroll's regeneration.
If the RCC is using non-lethal force against him, thinking he's parson, will Bogroll just keep getting back up until somebody does kill him?
Limited physical damage to the RCC, but morale would drop at the news of a seemingly invulnerable warlord. (Maggie helping that along with her thinkamancy)

2) Charlie's price.
If the penalty for killing Parson is atrocious, the coalition will probably find out, and Ansom could be left holding the bag without an army behind him.
2B) Alternatively, they could be forced to make a grab for GK's treasury to pay the penalties, leading them into the dungeon to be slaughtered without dance bonuses.

3) Grabbing an advantage.
If Ansom thinks Parson is dead, he may decide to continue with his push to take the garrison while he's got momentum, an army, and reduced enemy bonuses.

Ingvert
2009-02-15, 11:42 PM
I can't quite place where I've seen the Funkenstein dance before, but I'm quite sure I have! Does anybody have more specific bits of information than google?

Zeku
2009-02-15, 11:54 PM
I'm not sure which version of "regenerating troll" Bogroll is, but if it's a MoM troll, then he can be completely killed and still revive, provided that his side wins the battle, and he doesn't get killed through any special means. It would be interesting to see if he remembers any of his previous life upon coming back to life. It's sort of a sad concept, since regeneration without memories would still be a lot like dying.

Often Normal
2009-02-16, 12:26 AM
Perhaps the Luckmancy spell actually DID work, and the touching of Bogroll was the last step in the spell process that Parson just didn't know about (as in it only effects someone other than the caster). We've learnt that just because there isn't a flashy effect that doesn't mean the spell hasn't worked.

Bongos
2009-02-16, 12:34 AM
Ignoring the issues of the archons doing magic outside their turn and such, which is still a low level nit, this was a great strip.



Once the Archons allied with Ansom his turn becomes their turn and they acting moving on Charlies turn at dawn, thats why they could used magic on Ansom's turn. I guess they can't move yet for some reason, because they had no move left at the end of their turn or something like that, probabl they have to wait till Ansom's next turn before they can move..

Draz74
2009-02-16, 01:28 AM
There are still things that can happen to dramatically shift things in Parson's favor, but that is not one of them. One of the few ironclad rules we have is that units cannot move between hexes out of turn. It is not Stanley's turn and he is not in the hex, therefore he cannot arrive. Ansom's turn will play out completely, one way or another, before there is any possibility of Stanley showing up at the city.

... which means, if I know Stanley, that he'll certainly show up just in time to think it was him that saved the day. After Parson's had his Crowning Moment of Awesome that somehow throws the Coalition into retreat, Stanley shows up and picks them off as they retreat, thereby convincing himself that he was the entire cause of the victory. :smallyuk:

MalikT
2009-02-16, 01:49 AM
I don't think Parson will send casters to magic kingdom, perhaps he is laying a trap at the portal room, RCC thinks he is fleeing to magic kingdom, rush in to capture him only to fall for his brilliant trap.
Or maybe he will try to summon reinforcements from magic kingdom, who knows what kind of creatures or casters can be hired there.
Or maybe he will seek an asylum at Charlies, probably Charlie has a portal at his capital too.
Or maybe...
Enough wild theories for now, i will think about other variations when i drink my coffee.

Chaotic Descent
2009-02-16, 02:06 AM
anyone thought that maybe the Charlie call and Bogroll mission are that he'll offer himself to Charlie and instead send Bogroll, merely to delay them so he can escape, or perhaps set an ambush? Risky, but no "go to your death, Bogroll" guarantee.

multilis
2009-02-16, 02:21 AM
Once the Archons allied with Ansom his turn becomes their turn and they acting moving on Charlies turn at dawn, thats why they could used magic on Ansom's turn..
Anyone can use magic when not their turn, eg Wanda/tower defences, Sizemore attacking.

I guess that you can't take 2 turns on the same day. You can get a double turn by going last turn of day 1, then first turn of day 2 by alliance... but if switch back you would have to wait till day 3. (Miss an extra turn)

VariaVespasa
2009-02-16, 02:35 AM
Issues with that.

Ansom already plans to assault the dungeon since he decided to not wait and strike before Parson could come up with something.

So being dead is not going to change things in relation to the battle.

Second, Ansom intends to conquer Gobwin Knob and that means he have to destroy or make surrender all of Stanley units in Gobwin Knob.

Third, Stanley is supposed to be croaked if things were going to plan so Parson being dead or alive does not change the fundamental that is ... this is Stanley SIDE and so even if Parson dies, it just means the Chief Warlord bonus is lost (there is no greater tactical field were Chief Warlord would have a more reaching role in this case).

Faking death would achieve nothing, Ansom is not going to stop and even if he did ... what? he still have to clean the city of Stanley units.

There is no change in the status quo even if Parson faked that he croaked, Charlie would not back out (no reason, he gets paid and paid for not doing much at this point) and Ansom would simply take the faster and most effective means of cleaning the City, by swarming the dungeon with units.

Ansom is not going to break down and cry if Parson died, he is not going to wait and he is not going to stop.

The only chance Parson have relies on Charlie aid since its the only member of the coalition that is willing to turn side and help him and he have some leverage over him.

Incorrect. Ansom planned to finish it all up this turn BEFORE he ran into the whole dance-fighting thing. Now that he has, and has seen Sizemores act, he knows at least part of what Parson has planned for defense and knows that that alone is sufficient to make continuing his original plans without a counter to the dancefighting suicidal. The archons were his counter for it for this battle, but he cant get them downstairs this turn, so he either needs some other way of countering the dancefighting, or he has to wait, however reluctant he might be to give Parson time to plan. Countering the dancefighting means either removing that bonus from Parsons side, or coming up with sufficient bonuses for his side to offset it, at least enough to make the attack non-suicidal, even if still expensive. Parsons apparent death and the supposed loss of his warlord bonus *might* be enough to achieve that, especially if Ansom believes he no-longer has to deal with an intelligent defense anymore. After all, Stanley was known for useless commanders before Parson showed up; with him gone any remaining commanders should be useless again. Thus Ansom might be fooled into attacking the dungeon this turn if he thinks the bonuses have shifted enough in his favor with Parsons death. Of course he might also think that with Parson dead there is no longer any time pressure (we cant give him time to plan, was Ansoms whole reason for attacking this turn without Charlie, after all) and he can take his time attacking the dungeon, and will thus wait till next turn.

Of course he has to destroy the defenders. It is NOT a rule that he has to do it THIS turn. He just has to get it done eventually. He can wait several turns before finishing it up if he likes. Indeed, with all those highly temporary undead that GK currently has, waiting those several turns would, in many ways, be the course of wisdom.

What do you mean "it JUST means the chief warlord bonus is lost"? Parson just got through patiently explaining to everyone, including Bogroll, that this game is ALL about bonuses. Losing the chief warlord bonus IS a big deal, since it applies to every single fight in the city.

Faking his death, as I already said, wont make Ansom stop in the long term of course because he does still have to take the city, but it may make him either attack incautiously, believing that the defenders are weaker than they were and that thus he doesnt need to wait for Charlie, or it may make him pause and wait for Charlie for maximum power (remember, its been explicitly stated that Ansom is the kind of guy who likes to have everything in place before he attacks. Thats why he didnt attack the city walls last turn), since the pressure to act fast is no longer there. In either case it changes something.

There IS a (possible) change in the status quo if Parson successfully fakes his death and his bonus alone is enough to turn the tide in the Wanda meatgrinder tactic, and Ansom, believing this, charges his army into the meatgrinder on the false belief that he can in fact now win with wave attacks.

Of course Ansom wont personally cry if Parson is croaked, but thats not the same as not adjusting his tactics if he either croaks or is captured. Ansom likes to take his time attacking. He's going fast this turn specifically because of Parson. If Parson is no longer a factor he might change his tactics again.

Charlie is, probably, Parsons only chance, but I'm not convinced its due to Charlie changing sides. It may be, but it would be more satisfying, and lead to more possibilities for future stories, if Parson can use Charlies personality etc against him to fake him out in the right ways till Parson can whittle down the alliance enough one way or another till Charlies forces are no longer sufficient to take GK. Remember, Parson also explicitly explained to his officers and us that the goal was to make the enemy unable OR unwilling to take GK. Either will do. Unable is more reliable of course, but you take what you can get when youre as badly outnumbered as GK is. What those ways of faking Charlie out might be, specifically, I dont know, but would probably involve using himself and/or the artifacts as bait.

How possibly faking his death might dovetail with his impending call to Charlie I dont know, since they would seem to conflict, but the writers may well have a way. How an attempt to fake hs death would work with the alliances orders to capture and Bogrolls regeneration I dont know. Hilarity may ensue. I can see Parson down in the basement yelling "The plan needs me to appear to die! Why the @*@^#% wont Bogroll fall already??!" So I could potentially see Bogroll being sent in for a heroic sacrifice, only to go on the rampage of his life, killing lots of alliance units and eventually returning to his warlord after the alliance units have fled the courtyard with a huge grin on his face only to find Parson has gnawed through the table in frustration at having his ruthless plan ruined. :)

Not knowing how Bogrolls regeneration works we might also get the interesting situation of Bogroll being "killed", but since they dont know he's a twoll failing to do whatever needs to be done to prevent his regeneration, and thus having a large enemy unit popping up behind their lines next turn in an embarrassing place. I would find it hillarious if Bogroll could bust out from his "final" resting place, trash a commander or two, and steal Ansoms carpet to fly back home on. :) Ok, thats not likely with archons all over the place, but it would be hilarious. In any event, Bogroll is the only unit we know of with regeneration so far, and I'm sort of expecting that to come into play in some fashion.

MalikT
2009-02-16, 02:52 AM
anyone thought that maybe the Charlie call and Bogroll mission are that he'll offer himself to Charlie and instead send Bogroll, merely to delay them so he can escape, or perhaps set an ambush? Risky, but no "go to your death, Bogroll" guarantee.

That is a really good idea.

Why didn't I think of that.

You see what lack of caffeine does to human mind.

hidden_agenda
2009-02-16, 03:04 AM
I apologize that this may be a bit of a rant, but after following this comic since the beginning, I think I have just about enough. :smallfurious:

Don't get me wrong. I like Erfworld -- the concept, the art, many of the cool real world references. It's a creative, witty, and wonderful. But I have a serious issue with the plot line.

The Plot of the comic seems to be along these lines:
1. War with two sides, one side somewhat moronic (setup)
2. The moronic side summons the "protagonist"
3. The protagonist (supposedly a great strategist) puts together cleaver strategy (builds tension)
4. The protagonist puts the strategy into action (builds more tension)
5. The protagonist's strategy fails due to his unfamiliarity with the world (complete let down).
6. Go back to step 3.

142 pages later, all I can see is that the above plot is repeated three times.

It's like playing a video game and coming up with a cleaver solution only to have a computer bug that make you lose. If it keeps happening, how many times would you play this game?

Sure, I understand that the author is trying to build toward some climax and I respect that. But, seriously, the "repeat and rinse" thing on Parson's failure as a warlord really ruins the comic for me.

I think I'll just stick with OOTS.

Daedalus73
2009-02-16, 03:05 AM
Foolamancy scroll + Maggie + Bogroll = fake Parson captured/killed by Ansom's forces.

Charlie really really wants that Luckamancy watch. If Charlie thinks Ansom has it....

Problem with this theory is that Ansom also has the booping Arkenpliers. One would think Charlie would betray him for that over the watch first, and would have done so already if prone to taking that course of action.

I think it's clear Bogroll is going to be a fake Parson, the question is to what end?

mortissimus
2009-02-16, 05:14 AM
Foolamancy scroll + Maggie + Bogroll = fake Parson captured/killed by Ansom's forces.

...

I think it's clear Bogroll is going to be a fake Parson, the question is to what end?

My guess is that the deal between Charlie and Ansom includes Parson handed to Charlie alive, and that killing the fake Parson will be perceived as in violation of the deal.

Sieggy
2009-02-16, 06:18 AM
FWIW, I notice that Bogroll has a bracer on his arm that closely resembles Parson's Mathamancy item, and is now carrying a sword on his hip as opposed to the Great Muckin' Club.

One thing that irritates me is the ease with which the RCC manages to penetrate through relatively small gaps in large numbers and relative ease. I fight SCA heavy combat, and have engaged in enough bridge / gate battles to know that a few good fighters can bottleneck a HUGE opposing force (think Thermopolae). If the enemy is coming through a chokepoint, you set up a Pocket of Death, and then start using their dead as obstacles.

From a fantasy gaming POV and Plotomancy, I guess it works, but experience has shown me that given the forces that Parson had at hand, he should have been able to keep the vast majority of the RCC forces contained around the breach.

Fishy
2009-02-16, 07:11 AM
That's an artifact of Erfworld movement being based around hexes and zones. Remember at the Transylvitian ambush, when Stanley and his dragons flew into the canyon, and were suddenly surrounded by warlords and doombats on both sides? They didn't fly past one group of defenders, they just moved into a hex where defenders already were.

Likewise, the RCC infantry doesn't have to squeeze through a tiny gap in the wall one-by-one, they just move into the courtyard zone.

SteveD
2009-02-16, 07:14 AM
Parson has the mathmancy bracer on his left and a standard armour bracer on his right, but I don't think it coincidence that Parson and Bogroll have identical armour...

Think its likely that Parson will let Bogroll be captured and cast foolmancy on Ansom, who tries to hand him over to Charlie as-per-contract. Charlie assumes he's being duped, and nukes Ansom's guys to get at Parson.

That would explain why Parson used something as useful as Luckmancy on Bogroll...

Goshen
2009-02-16, 08:32 AM
The archons may be stuck in GK airspace for now, but on their turn they could simply walk into the dungeon along with the rest of the allied troops. But by then Stanley will probably be there, raining dragon boop upon Ansom's other forces.

HandofShadows
2009-02-16, 08:48 AM
While Stanley and his dwagons are a threat to the RCC, what makes them REALLY dangerous is the fact there is a Master Level Foolamancery with them (Jack). For example the Archons could be getting ready to head down into the dungeon and a flock of birds flys up. Of course they aren't birds, they are dwagons. Chomp chomp chomp. Five or six Arcons are lunch. Then Stanley unlimbers the Arkenhammer and even more can go down. The effect of surprise cannot ignored.

And why do I get the feeling that Pason may be planning to collapse GK on top on Ansom's head?

docstrange
2009-02-16, 08:50 AM
Oh my... poor Bogroll gets to die for the ruthless uber-warlord. Was hoping it would not come to that.

SteveMB
2009-02-16, 09:27 AM
Ignoring the issues of the archons doing magic outside their turn and such, which is still a low level nit, this was a great strip.

It's already been established (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html) that at least some spells can be cast off-turn.

shamelessmerc
2009-02-16, 09:35 AM
I apologize that this may be a bit of a rant, but after following this comic since the beginning, I think I have just about enough. :smallfurious:

Don't get me wrong. I like Erfworld -- the concept, the art, many of the cool real world references. It's a creative, witty, and wonderful. But I have a serious issue with the plot line.

The Plot of the comic seems to be along these lines:
1. War with two sides, one side somewhat moronic (setup)
2. The moronic side summons the "protagonist"
3. The protagonist (supposedly a great strategist) puts together cleaver strategy (builds tension)
4. The protagonist puts the strategy into action (builds more tension)
5. The protagonist's strategy fails due to his unfamiliarity with the world (complete let down).
6. Go back to step 3.

142 pages later, all I can see is that the above plot is repeated three times.

It's like playing a video game and coming up with a cleaver solution only to have a computer bug that make you lose. If it keeps happening, how many times would you play this game?

Sure, I understand that the author is trying to build toward some climax and I respect that. But, seriously, the "repeat and rinse" thing on Parson's failure as a warlord really ruins the comic for me.

I think I'll just stick with OOTS.

I think there are many that would take issue with 'failure', including parson himself: http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0137.html

Parson says it much better than I can, and if you don't get it after reading that, then you are never going to get it at all.

Which is OK.

If you don't like the narrative we can't force you (although just watch the way people are going to try now you've posted that rant <g>)

But I do enjoy the story, I'm enjoying the slow reveal of the nature of the universe, and while I'm waiting for new info on the world there is plenty of blood-n-guts to go around.

I admire Parson's tenacity and creativity in the face of what any other would call overwhelming odds.

I dislike Ansom but I admire his ability to think on his feet and turn things around when disaster looms.

Most of my favorite books run along the lines of:

1) there are two sides
2) both sides have brilliant generals
3) cunning strategies are perpetrated by both sides and blood and guts ensue
4) one side wins

In the battle for Gobwin Knob we are only at stage (3) if this was a print comic you could have read the story so far in less than two hours. But it is not print, it is online and being written as you read it.

Have faith Padewan, the end has not yet been written....

DigoDragon
2009-02-16, 10:10 AM
The Mario Paint cameo was clever, but my personal favorite part of this page is beautiful composition of panel 2 with the line "My life may end in a big song-and-dance number." I think I have a new favorite line from this comic. :smallbiggrin:

Dang, is it Parson's turn yet?

El_Chupachichis
2009-02-16, 10:45 AM
Well, at least one Archon was blown out of the sky. And another apparently gave dance fighting steps that suggested the fighters dance like Space Invaders :smallbiggrin:


Seems like a couple of theories as to course of action here:


1. Parson messages Charlie to fake a surrender and sends Bogroll in his stead, sowing more discord between Ansom and Charlie.
2. Parson messages Charlie to ... whatever, not really important what is said, as it's a ruse ... but foolamancies a KIA during the call, causing Charlie to blame Ansom for the loss.
3. Parson open-air broadcasts a message, saying, "Ok, Charlie, honor your part of the deal" and disappears, making Ansom suspect Charlie is the aforementioned "secret ally."
4. Simultaneous 1 and 2 -- Sends Bogroll to be "killed" by Ansom and simultaneously tells Charlie he will move toward some "surrender point." This would split coalition objectives.

Anias
2009-02-16, 11:39 AM
4. Simultaneous 1 and 2 -- Sends Bogroll to be "killed" by Ansom and simultaneously tells Charlie he will move toward some "surrender point." This would split coalition objectives.


To me, this sounds most logical and the most effective way to deal with both Ansom/RCC and Charlie. Set a meeting point at an area just as it's being overrun. Charlie sees Bogroll do a heroic charge into Ansom's troops in order to reach the archons with their net; Ansom's troops, being attacked by this enormous 'warlord,' are forced to attack and/or kill Bogroll. Charlie either slaughters Ansom's troops to protect 'Parson' (shredding the coalition as Ansom/Charlie fight) or punishes Ansom for killing 'Parson' (with whatever enormous penalties must be in the contract).

Hatu
2009-02-16, 11:41 AM
Likewise, the RCC infantry doesn't have to squeeze through a tiny gap in the wall one-by-one, they just move into the courtyard zone.

There must be some sort of advantage to defending a breech, since Parson only abandons the courtyard once another hole is torn in the wall.

This is an interesting page with a lot of details to be found. The confused Archon was great. But I still wish I had some idea of why these things were happening. The mechanics behind the battle are still entirely opaque to me.



Most of my favorite books run along the lines of:

1) there are two sides
2) both sides have brilliant generals
3) cunning strategies are perpetrated by both sides and blood and guts ensue
4) one side wins


I just wish I could tell if both sides have competent generals, much less brilliant ones. Without some independent way to judge the outcome of a battle, it's impossible to guage Parson's VORW (Value Over Replacement Warlord). Have Parsons various plans made GK's situation better, worse, or had no net effect? We can only tell that by listening to the analysis of the characters in the story, and their evaluations have proven to be unreliable (at best) at nearly every opportunity.

And without any way to grade Parson's performance, it's equally hard to judge Ansom's. Are his countermoves author fiat? Daring gambles? Blindingly obvious opportunities? Subtly flawed tactics leading to his ultimate defeat? I simply have no idea.

The next page could claim any one of results, and I would have no means by which to judge that claim fairly. Worse, the page after that could claim Ansom's countermove was actually a different result, and I would still be no position to dispute it. In fact, that's exactly what has been happening, and I really wish we could get past all these sudden reversals.

-H

warmachine
2009-02-16, 12:09 PM
Talking to Charlie now strikes me as desperation. What can Parson say now that he couldn't before?

Simons Mith
2009-02-16, 12:34 PM
... without any way to grade Parson's performance, it's equally hard to judge Ansom's. Are his countermoves author fiat? Daring gambles? Blindingly obvious opportunities? Subtly flawed tactics leading to his ultimate defeat? I simply have no idea.
-H

I think you're right. The final vindication (or not) for the comic will probably have to wait until we see the wargame rules that the authors are working from. Then we'll be able to see how big a victory is really being achieved. From my own wargaming expeience, though, the most spectacular victories do not arise from making brilliant moves against an average opponent. The biggest victories rely on an opponent making a critical mistake. A competent general who avoids mistakes is often more valuable than an erratic one who has flashes of brilliance but who also makes mistakes.

Ansom has made more slips than Parson, and has had fewer flashes of inspiration, but like you I'm still not sure if anything he's done has actually been a critical error. I think it will take actually seeing the rules to answer that question.

ShinyBrowncoat
2009-02-16, 01:07 PM
That would explain why Parson used something as useful as Luckmancy on Bogroll...

Yes, and how does one know if a luckamancy spell worked or not, anyway? Maybe Parson just thinks it didn't work, but it will turn out to be the key to victory (survival?)

SteveMB
2009-02-16, 01:16 PM
Yes, and how does one know if a luckamancy spell worked or not, anyway? Maybe Parson just thinks it didn't work, but it will turn out to be the key to victory (survival?)

Personally, I thought the comment about "casting Luckamancy" was simply a bit of gallows humor as he wishes Bogroll good luck.

Fez
2009-02-16, 01:50 PM
Anyone can use magic when not their turn, eg Wanda/tower defences, Sizemore attacking.

I guess that you can't take 2 turns on the same day. You can get a double turn by going last turn of day 1, then first turn of day 2 by alliance... but if switch back you would have to wait till day 3. (Miss an extra turn)

That's not quite correct.

When you are in contact with enemy troops you automatically attack unless led by a warlord in which case you have a choice whether to attack. Wanda unleashing air defenses was with enemy troops having come up into her zone. It was a combat scene even if they had both been withholding their attacks till then.

Sizemore was the same. He was attacking in a combat situation where enemy troops were present.

Generally speaking we know units can't move outside their turn. That's a rule given. We know Thinkamancy (at least communications) can be used on off turns. This makes sense as its a non-aggressive 'action' and is really just a way to communicate.

Now if you look at collectible card games rather than wargames, you do have Interrupt cards that can get played outside your turn. That is what the Archon effect feels like: Interrupt: Grant Dance Fighting of X (where X is probably a low value, but at least something). Its just that dynamic isn't something you tend to see in tactical games much.

Anyway, just curious if there are any examples I've missed in the story before now where someone was able to act in a way that will affect others outside their turn unless it was a combat in their zone/hex or communications.

EDIT: Of course I reply to an earlier post and then see this:

It's already been established (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html) that at least some spells can be cast off-turn.

That's just what I was looking for. So, a non communication spell used off turn. Interesting.

Fez
2009-02-16, 02:02 PM
Btw, I do have to agree with people that Parson is looking to create a break between Charlie and Ansom. Its the obvious path and he may be leaving different options open to maximize his chances:


Bogroll is killed- capturing Parson might be one of the terms between Charlie and Ansom and his loss may break the contract
Bogroll is captured- handed over to Charlie and because not really Parson may violate the contract
Parson threatens to send the bracer away- Charlie is unlikely to just break the contract once made given his history, but who knows
Parson threatens to leave- Again Charlie's history is sticking to contracts, but who knows.


Also, remember from the klog about zones (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0109.html) only light units can operate in the tunnels. Its unclear if Archons as flying units count as light units, so moving down there might nullify Charlie. Similarly most of the Jetstone lights are gone from the last tunnel encounter. This will deprive the RCC of its heavy units and force it to depend on the other coalition members who may be less excited, lower morale, and have already lost their commanders in some cases.

I'm wondering if there is some secret Parson plans to share with Charlie as well to try and influence him, but I can't quite come up with what info Parson has gotten recently.

Kreistor
2009-02-16, 02:13 PM
Personally, I thought the comment about "casting Luckamancy" was simply a bit of gallows humor as he wishes Bogroll good luck.

No, it sounds more to me like Parson was hoping that he had magical abilities in this universe, expecting Luckamancy since it would be the best match for his Mathemancy bracer. I'm thinking that the Mathemancy bracer is his magical ability, since the spell booped up.

Hatu
2009-02-16, 02:42 PM
That's not quite correct.

When you are in contact with enemy troops you automatically attack unless led by a warlord in which case you have a choice whether to attack. Wanda unleashing air defenses was with enemy troops having come up into her zone. It was a combat scene even if they had both been withholding their attacks till then.

Sizemore was the same. He was attacking in a combat situation where enemy troops were present.


That issue is a bit murky, but I believe you are incorrect. Parson says in Klog #4 that stacks "without a leader are forced to autoattack when in contact with units from non-allied capitals." However in Klog #10, we learn that casters are Commanders, meaning that they can lead a stack.

There is some serious ambiguity here, though. In Klog 4 Parson says that a unit with the Leadership ability is called "Commander" or "Warlord." But in #10, he specifically says that only Warlords can have Leadership. So depending on what you choose to believe, you could go either way on whether being a Caster is enough to let your troops selectively engage. My read is that while only Warlords have a Leadership bonus, Casters can still "lead stacks," and thus they can also choose to attack or not.

The only clear example of this we've seen so far is when the Archons did not engage either Ansom or Wanda when they passed through the Airspace zone to fight each other. We've seen no sign of an Archon Warlord, and only a little evidence that they count as Casters. And, of course, it's also possible the very notion that unled stacks must attack is in error: the comic has not been shy about outright disavowing things previously stated.

-H

chpicker
2009-02-16, 03:05 PM
This is actually fully addressed in klog 10:

"[Sizemore] told me that Casters are Commanders, and can lead stacks, but they almost never do. Casters are too rare and valuable to risk, and they give no leadership bonus to the stack anyway. Only Warlords have leadership."

So yes, Casters CAN lead stacks. No, they have no Leadership bonus. The stacks are considered "led", so they can choose not to engage, but they get no bonus from the caster, except under special circumstances.

Fjolnir
2009-02-16, 03:26 PM
Casters= commanders with very specific bonuses, the reason why the archons didn't attack during the time in question is that they aren't "Enemy Combatants" at the time (until ansom rehires them at high cost) they really haven't covered how non-allied, non-enemy units are handled in this system

Thayus
2009-02-16, 03:36 PM
I think there are many that would take issue with 'failure', including parson himself: http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0137.html

Parson says it much better than I can, and if you don't get it after reading that, then you are never going to get it at all.

Which is OK.

If you don't like the narrative we can't force you (although just watch the way people are going to try now you've posted that rant <g>)

But I do enjoy the story, I'm enjoying the slow reveal of the nature of the universe, and while I'm waiting for new info on the world there is plenty of blood-n-guts to go around.

I admire Parson's tenacity and creativity in the face of what any other would call overwhelming odds.

I dislike Ansom but I admire his ability to think on his feet and turn things around when disaster looms.

Most of my favorite books run along the lines of:

1) there are two sides
2) both sides have brilliant generals
3) cunning strategies are perpetrated by both sides and blood and guts ensue
4) one side wins

In the battle for Gobwin Knob we are only at stage (3) if this was a print comic you could have read the story so far in less than two hours. But it is not print, it is online and being written as you read it.

Have faith Padewan, the end has not yet been written....

See, the problem is, the first time that Ansom successfully countered Parson, it was through sheer dumb luck. The second time, it was through reckless bravery and author fiat(battles sure look like they're real-time, so giving him enough time to read the contract and sign it and still leave the Archons enough time to act . . .).

The DDR gambit was clever, and fits #3. The first two? No. Not at all. Which means #3 feels like yet another asspull on the part of the authors, because this kind of cleverness does not feel like Ansom.

-Thayus

drachefly
2009-02-16, 05:07 PM
I wonder how they're going to handle the 'warlord eyes' issue that any warlord can see whether Parson's +2 bonus still applies to everyone in the knob.

A mass foolamancy? That scroll will be stretched pretty thin. Unless all defenders outside the dungeons are dead; in that case, the archons would not be able to verify that Parson was actually alive.

Commander Hayes
2009-02-16, 05:26 PM
I wonder what Parson wants from Charley. Will he surrender and try to save his live and maybe of his troops?

That's really his only option. The battle is lost, so the only thing left is to try to save some of his men by surrendering.

Sieggy
2009-02-16, 06:42 PM
[QUOTE=Fez;5783957

-El Snippo Grando-

Also, remember from the klog about zones (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0109.html) only light units can operate in the tunnels. Its unclear if Archons as flying units count as light units, so moving down there might nullify Charlie. Similarly most of the Jetstone lights are gone from the last tunnel encounter. This will deprive the RCC of its heavy units and force it to depend on the other coalition members who may be less excited, lower morale, and have already lost their commanders in some cases.

I'm wondering if there is some secret Parson plans to share with Charlie as well to try and influence him, but I can't quite come up with what info Parson has gotten recently.[/QUOTE]

I would very strongly doubt that there's ANY way Charlie would let his Archons go down into the dungeons. Given what Sizemore did to the Jetstone units and subsequent events, he has to know that the tunnels are a deathtrap, and that Parson will be fighting to his strengths. The RCC will not be able to bring their superior (if that's what they are by this time) numbers to bear, and I think that if Ansom orders troops to go underground, he's going to face a mutiny. "Hey, there's a wolverine down there! Go in and kill it!" What would YOU say . . ?

While the Archons may be awesome at range, let's face it, they're cute chicks with most likely cute chicks hit points. He's already lost at least two of the thus far on this adventure, and he'll be loathe to risk any more.

If I were Parson, I'd move Bogroll up into the tower and use him as a decoy. Get the RCC forces (preferably the warlords) to chase him up there, and then attack them from the rear, or even better, drop the tower with them in it. This may be endgame, but Parson still has lots of options. Endgame does NOT mean the game is over or that it has been lost.

Decius
2009-02-16, 07:08 PM
The battle is lost, so the only thing left is to try to save some of his men by surrendering.

The battle is far from lost. Ansom is out of tunnel units, while Parson has loads of undead tunnel units. The undead get a bonus for being lead by Wanda, anywhere, while the tunnel units get a bonus and Sizemore gets a bonus. The question is, can Pason get enough boni together to counter Ansom's huge leadership bonus and larger numbers? I suspect that the larger numbers will have reduced effect in a zone that is nothing but choke points.

I think that even regular units can attack the dungeon zone, just not through the tunnel zone. After all, heavies were used as guards for Jillian's cell.



I fight SCA heavy combat, and have engaged in enough bridge / gate battles to know that a few good fighters can bottleneck a HUGE opposing force (think Thermopolae). If the enemy is coming through a chokepoint, you set up a Pocket of Death, and then start using their dead as obstacles.
That only really works if the enemy has some compunction against fighting from atop their dead, or if your troops are individually better than the enemy, but numerically inferior. At Thermopylae, the major issue was that the Greek-allied troops, especially the Spartans, were individually vastly superior fighters, and could win a huge number of successive fights against one or two enemy soldiers. I'm thinking the dungeons will be more like the Battle of Salamis, where huge numbers would be an active hindrance due to limited space and mobility.

And possibly Greek Fire.

Lamech
2009-02-16, 07:20 PM
I would like to point something out because it was asked and I'm pretty sure it wasn't linked. The Portal Room is NOT in the tower of efdup otherwise ordering Wanda "to http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0013.htmlthe tower of efdup" would be inane.

So the portal room is probably in the dungeon...

Decius
2009-02-16, 08:03 PM
Also, remember from the klog about zones (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0109.html) only light units can operate in the tunnels.

It's also clear that the tunnels and dungeon are two separate zones, and what applies to one of them might not apply to the other. Tunnel units do gain a bonus in the dungeon, and Parson should still have a good portion of undead marbits and other tunnel units.

Parson might be able to retreat to/hide in the tunnels, but when the city falls, he no longer has a source for upkeep. I think that would turn him barbarian, like Jillian, but it might simply make him disband.

Although, if Ansom took the dungeon, but not the tower, the city wouldn't fall. I can't for the life of me figure out why that might happen, but that's a possiblity.

Subtext
2009-02-16, 08:14 PM
I have to agree to SteveMB...I also think, Parson's comment about trying to cast luckamancy is some kind of gallows humour. I can't see why he should be able to cast spells at all.


I wonder how they're going to handle the 'warlord eyes' issue that any warlord can see whether Parson's +2 bonus still applies to everyone in the knob.


I don't think they can. I assume that you can only see the stats for your own units.

Kender Wizard
2009-02-16, 08:25 PM
hurrah! This comic was quite a refreshing drink from the well of maintained advantages and one-sidedness. This was not a flip-flop!

I've seen enough to believe that erfworld magic works like dnd magic: each spell has its own powers and limitations (range, aoe, duration). This being the case, there was no problem with spell usage on someone elses turn. :smallbiggrin: Its possible that the player can come up with new spells on the fly with particular units having more variablility, but that still sounds a little too open-ended for it to be my first guess.

People keep writing that the writers are not being consistent, particularly when Wanda passed through the archon group. The argument is that either the unled archons or Wandas troops, or both, should have autoattacked when they entered the same space. As others have said, casters can lead (provide direction and orders to) stacks. They just don't provide leadership (the stat boost provided by the warlord unit type) - the special unit bonuses casters provide are probably a bit different, like Sizemore healing his golems or Wandas' uncroaked doing thriller. As far as why the archons didn't attack, the safe bet is that units can be given remote orders through thinkamancy. Via the arkendish, Charlie can order the archons to ignore the flight of GK troops through their area. Heck, Charlie and Parson had a talk concerning this in advance, after all.

Right now, I'm hard pressed to say that the archons are any less powerful than standard thinkamancers. Even scarier is that Charlie is probably hiding as many of their powers as he can. Through one means or another, Charlie can summon up units within one turn anywhere he wants (including inside a hex of an enemies capital city) (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0115.html). To have archons who can teleport on top of all their other abilities...

Oh, and excellent guessing about Parsons strategy guys! A threat to the mathamancy wristwatch might be the only thing that could influence Charlie. Of course, Parson could call, make the threat, and Maggie gets croaked or stunned trying to protect Parson from the resulting Charlescomm thinkamancy attack.

galdon
2009-02-17, 07:33 AM
Ok, i'm confused, both people on parson's side, and ansom's side said that Charlie's units cannot assist them until their next turn when they can combine forces, yet suddenly charlie's archons are assisting in the fight. what exactly changed to allow them to do that?

Magentawolf
2009-02-17, 08:12 AM
Ok, i'm confused, both people on parson's side, and ansom's side said that Charlie's units cannot assist them until their next turn when they can combine forces, yet suddenly charlie's archons are assisting in the fight. what exactly changed to allow them to do that?

It's not that they couldn't 'assist', it's just that with no movement left, they can't switch zones and join in on the main attack.

Right now, they're just sitting in the airspace zone and projecting pretty lights for the party.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-02-17, 05:17 PM
Moving underground removes archons as a factor. So why is Parson calling Charlie, to turn him to his side? Can Charlie break alliance in the middle of Ansoms turn?I don't know. I just wish the word "Charlie" hadn't come up in this strip, and I hope that whatever the results of the conversation that Charlie and/or the Archons are not pivotal to the conclusion.

FWIW, I notice that Bogroll has a bracer on his arm that closely resembles Parson's Mathamancy item, and is now carrying a sword on his hip as opposed to the Great Muckin' Club.

One thing that irritates me is the ease with which the RCC manages to penetrate through relatively small gaps in large numbers and relative ease. I fight SCA heavy combat, and have engaged in enough bridge / gate battles to know that a few good fighters can bottleneck a HUGE opposing force (think Thermopolae). If the enemy is coming through a chokepoint, you set up a Pocket of Death, and then start using their dead as obstacles.
Bogroll doesn't have a bracer as much as he and Parson have matching armor.

The maneuver issues you mention are great in real life, but this is a TBS game. In every TBS game I've played dead units were simply no part of the combat. They did not turn "clear" terrain into "rough" terrain, for example, they simply were ignored once dead.

It's already been established (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html) that at least some spells can be cast off-turn.Yes. Archons can apparently cast all of their spell off-turn, however. And they also conveniently have whatever ability is needed at the moment.

There must be some sort of advantage to defending a breech, since Parson only abandons the courtyard once another hole is torn in the wall.He abandoned the courtyard after another hole is torn in the wall, yes, but also after Maggy had expended all of her scrolls and had said that she didn't think she could disrupt the Archons enough with her own "juice" (a term she probably picked up from Parson) to halt their dance fighting.

I just wish I could tell if both sides have competent generals, much less brilliant ones. Without some independent way to judge the outcome of a battle, it's impossible to guage Parson's VORW (Value Over Replacement Warlord). Have Parsons various plans made GK's situation better, worse, or had no net effect? We can only tell that by listening to the analysis of the characters in the story, and their evaluations have proven to be unreliable (at best) at nearly every opportunity.Tool was very impressed by Parson taking out a large amount of the RCC siege, after he got over the fact that Parson was pulling out of each battle and thus "losing" all of them. His other plans have had mixed reactions, due to the Archons breaking Jillian out of Wanda's spell, the Archons blasting Wanda before she could claim the 'Pliers, and yet again the Archons granting a counterbalancing dance fight ability to Ansom's forces. Do you see the same theme I see?

[...] my personal favorite part of this page is beautiful composition of panel 2 with the line "My life may end in a big song-and-dance number." I think I have a new favorite line from this comic.My favorite line as well!

On the Luckamancy, I think that Parson was being literal. He had an explanation from Sizemore of how Mathamancy and Luckamancy combine to great effect, after all, and Parson is enough of a gamer to give it a shot. He is also a "Special", whatever that means. It might be that Parson, if he lives, picks up some casting ability in the future.

SteveMB
2009-02-18, 02:11 PM
His other plans have had mixed reactions, due to the Archons breaking Jillian out of Wanda's spell, the Archons blasting Wanda before she could claim the 'Pliers, and yet again the Archons granting a counterbalancing dance fight ability to Ansom's forces. Do you see the same theme I see?

If the Archons are all that powerful (which isn't really clear -- the first example isn't a display of power per se, and the second is a few dozen against a few), that raises the question of why Ansom wasn't interested in having them on his side to begin with until circumstances (first Jillian's capture, then his getting trapped on the walls) forced his hand. Was it merely the expense (presumably, Charlie would charge through the nose for that much assistance even if his client didn't have his boops in a vise), or another expression of his distaste for non-royal Overlords?

MadMaw
2009-02-18, 04:08 PM
On the Luckamancy, I think that Parson was being literal. He had an explanation from Sizemore of how Mathamancy and Luckamancy combine to great effect, after all, and Parson is enough of a gamer to give it a shot. He is also a "Special", whatever that means. It might be that Parson, if he lives, picks up some casting ability in the future.

The luckamancy charms he ate that morning (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0118.html) claimed to have "a full day's supply of Luckamancy". There hasn't been much evidence of Parson having any luck in his engagements today thus far, so perhaps he's figured he needs to cast a spell to trigger the Luckamancy in the cereal.

Fjolnir
2009-02-18, 11:59 PM
if he has the power to, offering GK and it's current holdings to Charlie MIGHT be a decent enough offer to get him off the table, in fact it might actually cause charlie to start to DEFEND his holdings against the now trespassing RCC which would be a best case scenario: causing the archons and the rest of the coalition to battle and waiting for a winner

Almeric
2009-02-19, 08:32 AM
Here's a wild guess, that might explain some of the archons tricks:

We know some units or unit types get bonuses from being led by specific Commanders (either casters or warlords). Examples include Wanda+uncroaked, Sizemore+G÷lems and Transylvitans+bats.
In some cases, special abilities are also granted (like dancefighting to uncroaked).

Now my current hypothesis revolves around two points:

Archons, when led by a thinkamancer, gain some thinkamancy tricks.
The Arkendish allows its owner to lead his troops, as if he were the commander of their stacks, without being there personally.


If true, this would explain the following observations:

A bunch of archons, seemingly leaderless, aren't forced to auto-attack Wanda or Ansom (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0132.html).
Archons appear to have some thinkamancy-like tricks: "Transfer dance-fighting bonus to allied units in {same hex, line-of-sight}" (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0141.html) and Thinkagramming (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0074.html).
Archons can spot active thinkamancy spells on others (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0071.html).


Now there still seems to be a difference between different levels of caster involved (master-class? (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0140.html)) but if my hypothesis were to hold some truth it would explain some hotly-debated things, with just two rules which I personally don't think are much of a stretch.

Edit: I got this idea because: 1. Maggie can disrupt the DDR and 2. Several (maybe all?) archons can do exactly the same, thinkamancy-wise.

shamelessmerc
2009-02-19, 08:46 AM
See, the problem is, the first time that Ansom successfully countered Parson, it was through sheer dumb luck.


Napoleon always said: I don't care if he is smart. Is he lucky?



The second time, it was through reckless bravery and author fiat(battles sure look like they're real-time, so giving him enough time to read the contract and sign it and still leave the Archons enough time to act . . .).


Disagree.

Ansom on his own COULD defeat an entire army of uncroaked. He knew that, and he knew he could call on Charlie for 'disaster relief'.

Since I can skim-read an entire forum page in 15 seconds and spot a reply post I've been waiting for, I have no problems with how fast he checked out the contract



The DDR gambit was clever, and fits #3. The first two? No. Not at all. Which means #3 feels like yet another asspull on the part of the authors, because this kind of cleverness does not feel like Ansom.

-Thayus

I think we just disagree on how smart Ansom is. I think that he seems to be a brilliant 'sword and saddle' commander and a competent hilltop commander. He KNOWS this which also makes him a better commander because he plays to his strengths. His only 'real' flaw has been his pride.

People seem to keep expecting Parson to win because of his character shield, but he is out-numbered, out-gunned and unable to manuver, and yet people say Ansom's victories are deus ex machina? What's that all about????

shamelessmerc
2009-02-19, 08:55 AM
Just a thought:

What is people's feeling of anticipation for the next page?

1) I can't wait to see what happens next

or

2) I can't wait to see if I am right about what happens next

or

3) I can't wait because I know what happens next but I want to SEE it!

I'm a (1)

SteveMB
2009-02-19, 08:57 AM
We know some units or unit types get bonuses from being led by specific Commanders (either casters or warlords). Examples include Wanda+uncroaked, Sizemore+G÷lems and Transylvitans+bats.

I think the last one is not like the other two -- the way Vinny put it makes it sound like a general function of warlords, chief warlords, and chief warlords personally leading a stack, without regard to the specific unit type being buffed by those bonuses. It just happens to be bats because masses of bats are what Transylvito has in the way of cheap mass-popped units.

The golems and uncroaked, on the other hand, have been explicitly identified as unit types that get bonuses when led by specific caster types.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-19, 12:36 PM
Here's a wild guess, that might explain some of the archons tricks:

We know some units or unit types get bonuses from being led by specific Commanders (either casters or warlords). Examples include Wanda+uncroaked, Sizemore+G÷lems and Transylvitans+bats.
In some cases, special abilities are also granted (like dancefighting to uncroaked).

Now my current hypothesis revolves around two points:

Archons, when led by a thinkamancer, gain some thinkamancy tricks.
The Arkendish allows its owner to lead his troops, as if he were the commander of their stacks, without being there personally.


If true, this would explain the following observations:

A bunch of archons, seemingly leaderless, aren't forced to auto-attack Wanda or Ansom (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0132.html).
Archons appear to have some thinkamancy-like tricks: "Transfer dance-fighting bonus to allied units in {same hex, line-of-sight}" (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0141.html) and Thinkagramming (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0074.html).
Archons can spot active thinkamancy spells on others (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0071.html).


Now there still seems to be a difference between different levels of caster involved (master-class? (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0140.html)) but if my hypothesis were to hold some truth it would explain some hotly-debated things, with just two rules which I personally don't think are much of a stretch.

Edit: I got this idea because: 1. Maggie can disrupt the DDR and 2. Several (maybe all?) archons can do exactly the same, thinkamancy-wise.

I think that theory is a very good fit. The Arkendish being a magical satellite dish fits well with Charlie being able to "transmit" powers/leadership to his archons. I also agree with earlier spoken theories (cant remember by who offhand) That the archons are to the Arkendish as dwagons are to the Arkenhammer.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-02-19, 02:13 PM
If the Archons are all that powerful (which isn't really clear -- the first example isn't a display of power per se, and the second is a few dozen against a few), that raises the question of why Ansom wasn't interested in having them on his side to begin with until circumstances (first Jillian's capture, then his getting trapped on the walls) forced his hand. Was it merely the expense (presumably, Charlie would charge through the nose for that much assistance even if his client didn't have his boops in a vise), or another expression of his distaste for non-royal Overlords?I think Ansom was interested in having them on his side. It appears as though Charlie offered his services to all parties involved, but the the price was high, and Ansom (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0034.html) finally decided to meet it. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0046.html) ("Ansom" and "finally decided to meet it" are two separate links)
And my beef with Charlie and the archons isn't their power level, per se. They do appear to be overpowered, but the main issue I have is that they are too central to the story of Parson vs. the RCC. As I've said before, Charlie has been built up to the point where he appears to be The Decider. He has enough archons on hand to take GK in a single turn. So he can either help Parson win, or help Ansom win, or help himself win. This is not a good story element, in my opinion. Adding to this, the archons have been way too potent. Their powers seem to be defined as "whatever is needed to advance the plot", when the plot could be advanced in different, better ways.

Since I can skim-read an entire forum page in 15 seconds and spot a reply post I've been waiting for, I have no problems with how fast he checked out the contractMe, either. For the doubters, remember that Ansom had already read the contract. He just needed to skim the additional terms.

I think we just disagree on how smart Ansom is. I think that he seems to be a brilliant 'sword and saddle' commander and a competent hilltop commander. He KNOWS this which also makes him a better commander because he plays to his strengths. His only 'real' flaw has been his pride.Parson has twice said that Ansom would beat him in a turn if he chose a different action. That he chose different actions (attack with Webinar in the tunnels; attack before awaiting the archons) doesn't look so much like pride to me but poor generalship.

People seem to keep expecting Parson to win because of his character shield, but he is out-numbered, out-gunned and unable to manuver, and yet people say Ansom's victories are deus ex machina? What's that all about????I've used that term, but what I really mean to say is Charlie ex machina. :)

Here's a wild guess, that might explain some of the archons tricks:[snippage]Nice work!

Just a thought:

What is people's feeling of anticipation for the next page?

1) I can't wait to see what happens next
I'm at 1), but with a huge helping of "I hope Charlie isn't instrumental in the outcome, whatever that outcome is."

I enjoy the comic greatly. It has a wonderful premise, great art, and a decent story line. My only jab at it is the character of Charlie, where he sits as The Decider, and the use of his archons to effect key plot points. If Charlie were simply another faction leader, but not set up as he is now, and if the archons weren't used to change the story flow, I think this comic would be much, much better.

SteveMB
2009-02-19, 03:15 PM
Parson has twice said that Ansom would beat him in a turn if he chose a different action. That he chose different actions (attack with Webinar in the tunnels; attack before awaiting the archons) doesn't look so much like pride to me but poor generalship.

To be fair, the decisions he made were reasonable (at least to the level of "pick one option, either of which could work") given the information available to him. That said, I think he let his strategic skills get rusty while fighting Stanley, who did not offer any real challenge in that regard.

Lombard
2009-02-19, 03:20 PM
I think we just disagree on how smart Ansom is. I think that he seems to be a brilliant 'sword and saddle' commander and a competent hilltop commander. He KNOWS this which also makes him a better commander because he plays to his strengths. His only 'real' flaw has been his pride.

People seem to keep expecting Parson to win because of his character shield, but he is out-numbered, out-gunned and unable to manuver, and yet people say Ansom's victories are deus ex machina? What's that all about????

Yup, people think Parson is going to win, or deserves to win somehow, because he's the main character. They just can't seem to accept that Ansom is BETTER and that this strip is the tale of how Parson gets owned. Instead they cry about luck and no fair etc. etc. just like poor sports when they're losing. (I actually rather despise Ansom but that's beside the point. Also Parson has his own issues with likeability.) Be like me and be willing to change your viewpoint, once I too used to whine about Ansom getting saved/lucky over and over again but you can only call luck on someone so many times before you just have to admit that they are better.

This was a good strip because it makes perfect sense and gets us one step closer to end of game. Maybe that's why the discussion page is only four pages long, there's nothing to complain about.

Ovaltine Patrol
2009-02-19, 03:41 PM
Yup, people think Parson is going to win, or deserves to win somehow, because he's the main character. They just can't seem to accept that Ansom is BETTER and that this strip is the tale of how Parson gets owned...

Interesting point, come to think of it, future stories of Parson in Erfworld might well be boring if he does win. I suspect this all ends with Parson getting caught by Charlie and rented out to different factions as the Ultimate Warlord, in turn causing Parson to reconsider his last, fateful words to his friends on Earth.

drachefly
2009-02-19, 04:00 PM
They just can't seem to accept that Ansom is BETTER and that this strip is the tale of how Parson gets owned.

:smallconfused:

I cannot see the case for Ansom being the better general. It's a bit like saying Kutuzov lost to Napoleon.


Ansom started with full control of his coalition.

Parson had incomplete control of his forces, which cost him dearly*.

Even so, now look where they are. A starting numeric advantage of around 15:1 has shrunk to maybe 3:1 tops, and is continuing to shrink. Ansom's control is wavering.

Even without story logic, I would say it is close. At the present rate of gaining advantage, he will win; but he can have only so many tricks.


* did not decapitate the RCC as the price of their taking out two warlords and many dragons. I believe it would have been worth it.

Lamech
2009-02-19, 04:06 PM
Yup, people think Parson is going to win, or deserves to win somehow, because he's the main character. They just can't seem to accept that Ansom is BETTER and that this strip is the tale of how Parson gets owned. Instead they cry about luck and no fair etc. etc. just like poor sports when they're losing. (I actually rather despise Ansom but that's beside the point. Also Parson has his own issues with likeability.) Be like me and be willing to change your viewpoint, once I too used to whine about Ansom getting saved/lucky over and over again but you can only call luck on someone so many times before you just have to admit that they are better.

This was a good strip because it makes perfect sense and gets us one step closer to end of game. Maybe that's why the discussion page is only four pages long, there's nothing to complain about.

I take isssue with saying Ansom is better... it would be like Parson taking the affairs for his side in a 1 vs 4 strategy game against Ansom. And then we'll have Parson's best units leave when he's about to do a killing blow. And while we're at it Ansom's allowed to hire help, but not Parson. And Parson still takes out a one of Ansom's sides.
And then claiming the leader of the four is better... err... clearly Parson is the better commander here.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-19, 07:46 PM
Yup, people think Parson is going to win, or deserves to win somehow, because he's the main character. They just can't seem to accept that Ansom is BETTER and that this strip is the tale of how Parson gets owned.

I have to disagree with Ansom being better and agree with this being about parson losing. Ansom has had the superior situation since the very beginning and Parson has been fighting an uphill struggle. Considering the odds Parson has made progress worthy of the "perfect warlord." Ansom still has a far superior position though. I'm willing to bet Ansom will win but Parson will continue on.

ShneekeyTheLost
2009-02-19, 09:43 PM
Yanno, the more I think about it, the more that Parson would do better if he lost, but made Ansom have a phyrric victory...

Consider:

* He would likely be captured, not croaked, including his mathamancy device, probably handed over to Charlie. This means he doesn't have to work for His Toolship anymore, which is a major bonus.

* Ansom still gets his rear handed to him the following round when His Toolship comes back and stomps all over what is left. Charlie's contract probably specifies 'until the allies take GK', which means Charlie's Archons leave with Ansom in tow and Ansom gets flamed down by Dwagons and the remaining Knights In Stanly's Service.

So at this point, the alliance is in shambles, lost a HECK of a lot more than they anticipated, and are almost helpless. Ditto with Stanley the Plaid. The only side that has any significant force? Charlie.

As for how to make it a phyrric victory... consider:

When the Klog was referencing Dirtmore, there was what, six or seven crap golems? He's used... one. He's got a LOT more, not to mention all the Rock Golems. So tie up troops, get 'em nice and massed, set off crap golem. Rinse, wash, repeat. You can take out an awful lot of troops that way, and there will be boop-all Ansom can do about it, other than decline to continue to advance. If he sends them in piece-meal, they get chewed up. If he masses them, crap golem.

I'll be honest, I'm rooting for Ansom's phyrric victory. Maybe Parson will find a way to go Barbarian (like Jillian), explore Erfworld some more. Find out more on how Erfworld operates, all the little details that the rules-lawyering gamer-geek side of him can use. Ansom, assuming he survives Stanley's return, hates his guts, but Vinnie seemed to respect his leadership skills, can probably convince Ansom that without any army to lead, he's just another barbarian. No one really wants to hire him because he lost GK, regardless of the mitigating circumstances. Finally gets picked up by a small kingdom, bout the size of FAQ, in an out of the way place. Pulls a Stanley, ends up saving the place and named Heir, and ends up with the last ArkenTool that hasn't been named yet. King croaks, Parson ends up leader, which queues up Erfworld War II..

Starwaster
2009-02-19, 10:30 PM
I apologize that this may be a bit of a rant, but after following this comic since the beginning, I think I have just about enough. :smallfurious:

Don't get me wrong. I like Erfworld -- the concept, the art, many of the cool real world references. It's a creative, witty, and wonderful. But I have a serious issue with the plot line.


Dood I know exactly what you mean. I've really been enjoying EW, but the past 5 strips have seen my enthusiasm waning. Ansom's got this whole +22 Plot Armor of Prismatic Invulnerability keeping him alive and going no matter what horrendous gaffes he's tricked into making by Parson. If I were involved in a game like that I'd concede and move on to something fun.

:annoyed: :mad: :furious: :yuk:

Namfoodle2
2009-02-19, 11:06 PM
5. The protagonist's strategy fails due to his unfamiliarity with the world (complete let down).

I think I'll just stick with OOTS.

I think it's a bit harsh to say the Parson's strategies always fail. Seems to me that he's right more often than he's wrong. It's just not possible to counter every single move the enemy makes. He's definately smarter than Stanely, in my opinion.

Edit: And it's not like the characters in OotS never fail...

Xiander
2009-02-20, 07:11 AM
I think it's a bit harsh to say the Parson's strategies always fail. Seems to me that he's right more often than he's wrong. It's just not possible to counter every single move the enemy makes. He's definately smarter than Stanely, in my opinion.

Edit: And it's not like the characters in OotS never fail...

I personally hold that not a single one of parsons strategies have failed, since all of them have had significant results. The fact that non of them turned the war into a win for parsons side hardly qualifies them for being failed strategies, and the fact that none of them achieved all that Parson hoped they would is simply a testament to the fact that there is an opposing player.

Lamech
2009-02-20, 08:21 AM
Hey one thing thats been bugging me is how Charlie wasted a question when he was seeing if he could take GK; he started by asking if 14 archons could do it, but then asked the actual number needed. He completly wasted a mathamancy evaluation... I suppose it could be a ploy trying to show a large force, but why? And then why ask the first question at all? We know the archons have foolamancy, so maybe 18 of those archons are fakes...

Morgaln
2009-02-20, 08:46 AM
I am actually not so sure Stanley will make a difference; to me it seemed like he escaped with only a small number of dwagons, half a dozen or so, and leaving the rest to cover his retreat. Definitely no match for the Archons, which the dwagons will have to go through to link up with other GK units. Charlie threatened Parson with taking the Garrison immediately when he sent the Archons which means there are more than 14 of them. Also, if those Archons alone are capable of taking the Garrison, they have to able to enter the Dungeons. I am not so sure the same is true for the Dwagons. I'd rather think the Dwagons would die and Stanley's only chance is to rely on Jack bringing him to his remaining forces in the dungeons.
Also, Jillian and Transylvito are right behind Stanley, able to follow him as soon as their turn starts. If they had a chance to defeat him last turn, they'll definitely be able to do so assisted by 14+ Archons and Ansom.

Goshen
2009-02-20, 09:50 AM
I also agree with <b>Almeric's theory</b>. It allows the archons to make sense without being insanely powerful. They are certain to be connected with each other and Charlie via a mindlink.

I theorize that Charlie can focus his power through any archon at any time, so he can make each of them seem powerful. This is not to ignore the fact that each archon should have a fair bit of muscle on her own, at least being a heavy unit.

If my follow-on theory is correct, the way to beat the archons hit them all at once, because Charlie could only strongly boost one or a few of them at a time. Of course, I would not want to be a Chief Warlord on the business end of an Arkendish-powered thinkamancy attack from Charlie....

Lamech
2009-02-20, 10:00 AM
The hammer can croak a stack of almost heavies. The dwagons have those AoE breaths. With Jack he could get surpirse easy...
I can see several stack of archons going down quickly, and I betting the magic defenses of GK might have taken down a stack, so Stanley may be able to wipe out those archons. Then he'll provide a leadership bonus and artifact bonus, which will be a huge help.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 10:12 AM
I am actually not so sure Stanley will make a difference; to me it seemed like he escaped with only a small number of dwagons, half a dozen or so, and leaving the rest to cover his retreat. Definitely no match for the Archons, which the dwagons will have to go through to link up with other GK units. Charlie threatened Parson with taking the Garrison immediately when he sent the Archons which means there are more than 14 of them. Also, if those Archons alone are capable of taking the Garrison, they have to able to enter the Dungeons. I am not so sure the same is true for the Dwagons. I'd rather think the Dwagons would die and Stanley's only chance is to rely on Jack bringing him to his remaining forces in the dungeons.
Also, Jillian and Transylvito are right behind Stanley, able to follow him as soon as their turn starts. If they had a chance to defeat him last turn, they'll definitely be able to do so assisted by 14+ Archons and Ansom.

Let's see here...
We don't know how the archons stack up against full-health dwagons. Yeah, they took out heavily wounded dwagons in one hit, but that doesn't mean much (wound a dwagon enough and a doombat could take it out in one hit). All of the archons acting in concert were not enough to take out Wanda and her aerial uncroaked. I would wager that a full-health dwagon can take a lot more punishment than a croakamancer. Add in Stanley's leadership bonus (unknown, I would guess at least 7) and the arkenhammer's artifact bonus (unknown, but if the 'pliers were significant in the lake battle, the 'hammer is likely to be equally if not exceedingly significant) and even a half-dozen dwagons are a significant force. Also, we have no indication of the durability of the archons. A single Van de Graaf attack might take down several in one attack. Further, we have seen what a masterclass foolamancer can do to evade a fight, but we don't know about aiding a fight. The Archons focus their attacks on Stanley to take out his leadership bonus... only to find that they've been attacking a cloud and Stanley is right behind them...
Charlie's threat to take the garrison may have been a bluff. Remember, he doesn't care about GK. what he wants is Parson to surrender to him. Intimidation is obviously a key component to his strategy to convince Parson to surrender.
I concur that the dwagons likely cannot enter the dungeon.
I am doubtful that Transylvito will commit all of the intercept forces to chasing GK. They don't seem to be all that committed to the RCC (sending one warlord and a few dozen bats to join Ansom's column is not much), and we don't know if they can all keep up.
Jillian will not be able to make it back on her next turn (especially if she looks for Stanley or checks on Faq first); it took her two turns of to get to the chokepoint, so . She will likely be able to make it back the turn after that, but I think by then the battle will be over (or almost over)

Sieggy
2009-02-20, 10:31 AM
I am actually not so sure Stanley will make a difference; to me it seemed like he escaped with only a small number of dwagons, half a dozen or so, and leaving the rest to cover his retreat. Definitely no match for the Archons, which the dwagons will have to go through to link up with other GK units. Charlie threatened Parson with taking the Garrison immediately when he sent the Archons which means there are more than 14 of them. Also, if those Archons alone are capable of taking the Garrison, they have to able to enter the Dungeons. I am not so sure the same is true for the Dwagons. I'd rather think the Dwagons would die and Stanley's only chance is to rely on Jack bringing him to his remaining forces in the dungeons.
Also, Jillian and Transylvito are right behind Stanley, able to follow him as soon as their turn starts. If they had a chance to defeat him last turn, they'll definitely be able to do so assisted by 14+ Archons and Ansom.

Ah, but none of the RCC have any idea what happened at the Battle of the Notch. The only thing they can be sure of is that Stanley is still alive, as the city has not gone neutral. Given that and a master-class Foolamancer, they will totally believe it if Stanley comes swooping in with his full complement of dwagons. Remember, if the theory about the Archons being conduits for Charlie's power is correct, he's going to waste an incredible amount of juice trying to take out illusory dwagons, while the real dwagons have will have no trouble targeting the Archons. A few rounds of that, and all of a sudden, Charlie's not much of a threat any more (at least, not till next turn).

I doubt very seriously that Charley will allow his Archons to go into what he is sure will be a deathtrap (he has to know that Parson is ready for them, and is far more aware of the risks). If Ansom is silly enough to heroically lead his forces into the tower / dungeon / tunnels this turn, the Archons will not be with him. And Parson, Wanda, and Sizemore will continue to inflict horrendous casualties. All the while being aware that if things REALLY go sour, they have an escape through the portal.

I don't think Ansom has any choice but to try to pursue into the tower. If he decides not to chase the GK forces into the tunnels, he's going to be facing overwhelming numerical superiority when Wanda uncroaks the bodies, and all of a sudden, the shoe will be on the other foot. So he's forced himself into a position that he HAS to win this turn, or the next turn Parson will eat him for lunch.

The real action will occur tonight, between turns. The strong likelihood is that the coalition will fracture. If the casualties are crippling, and they know that all those uncroaked will be facing them next turn, I can see them deciding that coming back next week (when the uncroaked have decayed away) might be a really good idea.

If Stanley shows up next turn, between the uncroaked on the ground and the dwagons in the air, the RCC is going to be in a world of hurt. The big question is whether or not Ansom can take all the zones this turn. If not, he'll be on the receiving end of a massive counterstroke next turn. If he does, then it's game over, and Parson will be in the Magic Kingdom looking for either a way home, or a new job (hopefully something better than Kinko's)

Often Normal
2009-02-20, 10:44 AM
I wonder what the consequences of Stanley finding Faq and claiming it (perhaps some sort of settlement pops?) instead of going back to GK. Perhaps he can/will declare the new city to be his capital. This would surely cause the RCC to split even further as the whole point was to take away his only city. If he has two, I'm sure there will be Commanders wanting to go to try to take the new, not so heavily fortified/entrenched city. It's possible they'll do the old "You've failed Ansom, now we're going to do it the way WE think" just because he is yet to claim victory. And chances are he will have it in his grasp when this split will happen.

Now, does this mean he would then lose a fight he was about to win? Or perhaps he will win a the fight in spite of the disintegrating alliance, but at "some great cost".

Charlie will be the deciding factor again, and I can see why people don't like it. He's managed to gouge Ansom (and may do so again before the end) and screw over Parson JUST enough time and again. I hope what he says/does will be interesting. It would take something verging on silly to remove the Archons from play, and considering the dragons are off with Stanely (with the Transilvino army between him and GK) the best thing we could see is Charlie making a deal with Parson that the Archons won't progress any deeper into GK for some price.

I can see Bogroll getting captured though. He has luckmancy (now) and hopefully some foolmancy (from Maggie on standby) enough to cause the distraction he was intended to be.

My 2c for now.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 11:00 AM
...

You are mistaken about where Stanley is. He got turned around (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html) and is now between the TV forces and GK.

here is a rough layout of where they are:
GK
large distance
Stanley
unknown distance
TV
small distance
Faq

SteveMB
2009-02-20, 11:53 AM
Jillian will not be able to make it back on her next turn (especially if she looks for Stanley or checks on Faq first); it took her two turns of to get to the chokepoint, so . She will likely be able to make it back the turn after that, but I think by then the battle will be over (or almost over)

I agree with everything on your list except this. Remember, a group travels at the speed of its slowest member -- it would be just like Jillian to ditch the rest of the group and ride her fastest surviving gwiffon back if that's what it took to get into the action again.

Specifically, we can infer that the excursion group had a slowest-member Move of about 26 (the cutoff Jillian gave (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0092.html)). Her original gwiffon had 52 Move (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0008.html) (that specific gwiffon became dwagon chow, but it's still a benchmark for the speed of at least some gwiffons). That suggests that a fast gwiffon that isn't waiting for slower units is about twice as fast as the excursion group as a whole... just what would be needed for her to get back next turn.


And Parson, Wanda, and Sizemore will continue to inflict horrendous casualties. All the while being aware that if things REALLY go sour, they have an escape through the portal.

My LOLErf (http://i163.photobucket.com/albums/t291/smbrinich/Erfworld/LOLErfs/LOLErf_PortalWarning.png) to the contrary notwithstanding, I suspect (based on Parson's promise (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0114.html) to send the casters to the Magic Kingdom if the situation became hopeless) that only casters can use the portals.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 01:19 PM
I agree with everything on your list except this. Remember, a group travels at the speed of its slowest member -- it would be just like Jillian to ditch the rest of the group and ride her fastest surviving gwiffon back if that's what it took to get into the action again.

Specifically, we can infer that the excursion group had a slowest-member Move of about 26 (the cutoff Jillian gave (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0092.html)). Her original gwiffon had 52 Move (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0008.html) (that specific gwiffon became dwagon chow, but it's still a benchmark for the speed of at least some gwiffons). That suggests that a fast gwiffon that isn't waiting for slower units is about twice as fast as the excursion group as a whole... just what would be needed for her to get back next turn.

I would expect the new gwiffon(▀) to be somewhat inferior to her original one (α), otherwise why would she choose α over ▀ initially?

grumbleboom
2009-02-20, 02:50 PM
I personally believe that all of the archons are either not real or more flash then fire. In the strip where Wanda gets owned All Gobwin Knob flyers are accounted for on that page and there are only ten hits and Wanda is not shot while falling helpless and still in the airspace.

That leaves what... 19 archon shots unaccounted for if you take the visible number in panel three on this page http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0117.html as the minimum in GK airspace. That or all 29 could barely take out the GK airforce and didn't have the juice to finish the job.

My point is this. We have yet to see what the archons can actually dish out. We know they can one shot a dwagon with limited hits left and with their powers combined, can drop 6 uncroaked air units... I hardly call that Captain Planet worthy. Basically they have all this hype and really we don't know if they are, quality wise, Milli Vanilli or Aerosmith. IE posers or rock gods.

SteveMB
2009-02-20, 02:52 PM
I would expect the new gwiffon(▀) to be somewhat inferior to her original one (α), otherwise why would she choose α over ▀ initially?

Inferior in what way? Move is only one possibility; another is combat.

Combat would probably be Jillian's main criterion, actually, unless a situation specifically required speed. At the beginning of the story, it's not clear that she knew that high Move would be the main issue -- or that she cared as much about Ansom's priorities (scouting) as she did about her own (seeing some action). Now, the need for speed is more obvious.

On a metastory level, I expect both Jillian and Stanley to show up during their respective turns tomorrow. Fortunately, everything has been set up so that it's possible under Erfworld mechanics (Stanley has also shed quite a few units, and it's reasonable to guess that the slowest ones are among those that didn't get away).

Lamech
2009-02-20, 03:46 PM
I concur that the dwagons likely cannot enter the dungeon.
Stanley used dwagons and the hammer to retake (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0087.html)the city. And I doubt the hammer and a handful of units on dwagon back was strong enough to retake the city... so at least some of the dwagons can attack units in the dungeon.

SteveMB
2009-02-20, 03:56 PM
Stanley used dwagons and the hammer to retake (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0087.html)the city. And I doubt the hammer and a handful of units on dwagon back was strong enough to retake the city... so at least some of the dwagons can attack units in the dungeon.

If the gobwins lacked strong leadership or other big bonuses, Stanley might have been able to just plow through the ones that made a last stand in the dungeon -- he's a strong warlord with an attuned Arkentool, after all. Also, he had Sizemore with him, which is another big advantage if he realized how to use it. Additionally, the dwagonback units on a "special mission" for which he took casters into the field (unusual in itself) were almost certainly the best available (most or all of KISS, perhaps).

HandofShadows
2009-02-20, 04:06 PM
Additionally, the dwagonback units on a "special mission" for which he took casters into the field (unusual in itself) were almost certainly the best available (most or all of KISS, perhaps).

I have always found it strange that we have not learned what that special mission was. Might it have been an expedition to Faq? Or was it something else?

Lamech
2009-02-20, 04:11 PM
If the gobwins lacked strong leadership or other big bonuses, Stanley might have been able to just plow through the ones that made a last stand in the dungeon -- he's a strong warlord with an attuned Arkentool, after all. Also, he had Sizemore with him, which is another big advantage if he realized how to use it. Additionally, the dwagonback units on a "special mission" for which he took casters into the field (unusual in itself) were almost certainly the best available (most or all of KISS, perhaps).
Good points... except if KISS was used, that would be interesting indeed. Those guys looked like gobwin units to me...

Kreistor
2009-02-20, 04:22 PM
I have always found it strange that we have not learned what that special mission was. Might it have been an expedition to Faq? Or was it something else?

No, it was just a made-up mission that was to give Stanley deniability of involvement in the gobwin attack. It created an alibi, so of course he couldn't have been responsible.

Of course, it was all BS. Stanley was behind the attack, just not present with it. The "subdued" gobwins get a city to ally with and long term income. Stanley gets an ally that has no choice but to work for him. He gets to look like a hero for rescuing the city, saving the casters, and he begins his reign with a more powerful military than before the attack. He needed to get the casters out so that they could not defend the city against the gobwins, and at the same time preserve them for his own reign. They would work for him because they couldn't prove disloyalty to Saline, though I doubt he fooled many of them.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 04:51 PM
Inferior in what way? Move is only one possibility; another is combat.

Combat would probably be Jillian's main criterion, actually, unless a situation specifically required speed. At the beginning of the story, it's not clear that she knew that high Move would be the main issue -- or that she cared as much about Ansom's priorities (scouting) as she did about her own (seeing some action). Now, the need for speed is more obvious.

On a metastory level, I expect both Jillian and Stanley to show up during their respective turns tomorrow. Fortunately, everything has been set up so that it's possible under Erfworld mechanics (Stanley has also shed quite a few units, and it's reasonable to guess that the slowest ones are among those that didn't get away).

Ach, sorry. There was originally another sentence that went along the lines of "we don't know how points/levels/stats correlate, it may be that stats rise in pre-defined ways, and thus α would have had at least as much move as ▀, and possibly more". I didn't like the way I had written it, so I deleted it to re-write it. I was interrupted when I came back I must have forgotten to re-write it. :smallredface:

Jillian will not get there on her next turn. Mostly because I feel for metastory reasons that Stanley will get there first. That all hinges on Ansom not capturing GK this turn, though.

Alternately, I suppose it might be interesting if Ansom captured GK, only to have Stanley swoop in at the 13th hour and took it back.

On a completely separate note, I just realized either that Parson's 3D glasses are better than normal warlord stat-vision or Stanley is even more of an idiot than I thought. Parson learned Jack's name via thinkagram/glasses, but Stanley didn't figure it out until he heard Jillian call out to Jack.

SteveMB
2009-02-20, 05:05 PM
On a completely separate note, I just realized either that Parson's 3D glasses are better than normal warlord stat-vision or Stanley is even more of an idiot than I thought. Parson learned Jack's name via thinkagram/glasses, but Stanley didn't figure it out until he heard Jillian call out to Jack.

Actually, Wanda told him (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0119.html) at least Jack's first name before the Thinkagram. It's unclear whether the display of Jack's full name is related to the fact that Parson already knew it (at least in part) or a function of the glasses.

It may or may not be significant that Ansom didn't remark on Parson's (lack of a) stat block during their Thinkagram conversation; perhaps Ansom was simply worked into a fury before he had a chance to notice that oddity.

Balance
2009-02-20, 05:25 PM
It may or may not be significant that Ansom didn't remark on Parson's (lack of a) stat block during their Thinkagram conversation; perhaps Ansom was simply worked into a fury before he had a chance to notice that oddity.
I'm inclined to think that warlords can't normally see the stat blocks of non-allied units, so Ansom wouldn't have been expecting to see it.

There's also no sign of Ansom's stats in their conversation (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0101.html). That doesn't really tell us anything, though, as Parson isn't wearing his glasses during that encounter.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 07:09 PM
Actually, Wanda told him (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0119.html) at least Jack's first name before the Thinkagram. It's unclear whether the display of Jack's full name is related to the fact that Parson already knew it (at least in part) or a function of the glasses. Heh, oops. Forgot that frame. Once again your memory proves superior to mine. :smallbiggrin:


It may or may not be significant that Ansom didn't remark on Parson's (lack of a) stat block during their Thinkagram conversation; perhaps Ansom was simply worked into a fury before he had a chance to notice that oddity. For that matter, no one remarked on his lack of stats during the battle, either. It may be that it takes some concentration for a warlord to see stats. Balance is probably right, though.

Lamech
2009-02-20, 07:21 PM
For that matter, no one remarked on his lack of stats during the battle, either. It may be that it takes some concentration for a warlord to see stats. Balance is probably right, though.
What coalition warlord would have done that... Ansom was the only one in the courtyard. And he wasn't even close.

Lombard
2009-02-20, 08:18 PM
I would expect the new gwiffon(▀) to be somewhat inferior to her original one (α), otherwise why would she choose α over ▀ initially?

Or they could have been equal to each other in which case she still would have had to pick one of them.

fendrin
2009-02-20, 09:25 PM
What coalition warlord would have done that... Ansom was the only one in the courtyard. And he wasn't even close.

And what evidence do we have that distance matters?
Also, one or more of the archons may be warlords and thus able to see stats.


Or they could have been equal to each other in which case she still would have had to pick one of them.
True.

Lamech
2009-02-20, 10:10 PM
And what evidence do we have that distance matters?
Also, one or more of the archons may be warlords and thus able to see stats.
I do remember maggie calling them (or some of them) "casters" so yeah the archons have stat detection. Maybe stat blocks can't be seen across zones?

I have a big long explaination about distance, but basically no...
Doesn't actually matter since, Ansom hasn't had a chance to say anything about it. Maybe he is thinking "Oh titans, they have a foolamancer oh crap oh crap, that means Stanley's here. He wouldn't have left the foolamancer behind, I'm about to get electrecuted..."

I suppose stat blocks being not seeable by enemy warlords is a distinct possiblity, but not seeable across zones/hexes works just as well.

Aquillion
2009-02-21, 05:56 AM
It's already been established (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html) that at least some spells can be cast off-turn.No, it is the Archon's turn -- remember, now that they're allied with Jetstone, they share Jetstone's turn. They just can't move, because you only get move at the start of the turn, and they weren't with Jetstone then. But they can do anything (like spellcasting) that doesn't require move.

Sieggy
2009-02-21, 10:28 AM
Hmmm . . . a couple of things . . . the Archon in panel 3 seems to be . . . a bit apprehensive? What with the dance directors being skragged, she has to know she's being targeted, and the the expression on her face indicates that she's quite aware of this, which may account for the strange dance steps she's generating. Which also gives rise to the question of whether Ansom is doing the dance and the Archons are relaying his moves, or whether they are generating the steps and he's simply playing the game.

And consider why Bogroll would be placed under Maggie's command. She still has the Foolamancy scroll(s). If she sends Bogroll out disguised as Parson, the lack of viewable stats will give the deception away immediately. But if she uses the spell to provide these, it makes the deception almost impenetrable. After all, you never doubt what you expect to see. Given this, I think Bogroll will get his wish.

If Bogroll charges Ansom, Ansom will kill him simply because he will have no choice. If he doesn't, Ansom becomes pate d' warlord. And I think part of the illusion that will be cast is that when Bogroll goes down, the illusory Mathamancy bracer will be destroyed. This will provoke a <ahem> reaction from Charlie, which ought to be really interesting to watch. So far, Charlie has been very calm and collected . . . you have to wonder what he's like when he loses his temper.

After all, he's lost at least two Archons (maybe more) in this escapade, and if the prize he seeks is wiped by Ansom, he may lose it bigtime. In which case, the RCC is in a BIG heap o' hurtin'. If he views this as Ansom breaking the contract, his response may be swift and dramatic. Not to mention painful.

Remember, Parson is going to message Charlie. What if he says 'screw you, if I'm going down, I'm going down fighting!', closes connection, and then Bogroll charges out the door . . ? If Charlie tries to keep Ansom from killing him by interfering, that would be breaking the agreement from the RCC point of view. In the heat of battle, I can just see Charlie trying to tell Ansom not to kill him while Ansom is being beat on.

And if Ansom kills an illusory Parson, I can see Charlie just picking up his Archons and going home at the end of the turn . . . Which means that when Stanley gets there next turn, there will BE no Archons for him to have to deal with.

If all the other GK forces are inside the tower and not visible, the RCC will have no way of knowing whether or not the warlord bonus is still there. The only way to find out will be to go inside, and then it'll be too late . . .

fendrin
2009-02-21, 10:46 AM
stuff

There seems to be a method of incapacitation available. The dwagon knocked Jillian out, Parson ordered Jillian 'croaked, not captured'.

Unless of course Bogroll's regeneration makes him immune to knock-out attacks, at which point Ansom might still be able to resort to a brute-force takedown by having heavies grab and immobilize the monocular twoll.

Of course, such a distraction would be a great time for another crap-bomb, and it probably wouldn't take too much foolamancy to make it look like Bogroll-parson was croaked in the blast.

Lamech
2009-02-21, 10:52 AM
There seems to be a method of incapacitation available. The dwagon knocked Jillian out, Parson ordered Jillian 'croaked, not captured'.

Unless of course Bogroll's regeneration makes him immune to knock-out attacks, at which point Ansom might still be able to resort to a brute-force takedown by having heavies grab and immobilize the monocular twoll.

Of course, such a distraction would be a great time for another crap-bomb, and it probably wouldn't take too much foolamancy to make it look like Bogroll-parson was croaked in the blast.
And after bogroll-Parson is handed over? Charlie will realize bogroll's a fake with his archons thinkamancy. Ansom will think Charlie is being a jerk. So I don't think capturing bogroll will help solve anything.
And the crap bomb is a good idea.

Sieggy
2009-02-21, 12:30 PM
And after bogroll-Parson is handed over? Charlie will realize bogroll's a fake with his archons thinkamancy. Ansom will think Charlie is being a jerk. So I don't think capturing bogroll will help solve anything.
And the crap bomb is a good idea.

I think that given the foreshadowing, Bogroll is going to be martyred for Parson. If Ansom thinks that Parson is dead, he will either charge straight into the tower, thinking that they forces there have lost most of their leadership/bonus only to discover (too late) that they're stuck their hands into a garbage disposal, or he will end turn, assuming that the next day, it will be an easy win. If so, he's in for a tremendous shock next turn.

And that's not taking Charlie into account. Since Charlie has become the dominant force here, I think that's where Parson will make his play.

I think that it's likely that Parson goes with a message to Charlie to the effect of "I'm going to see to it that even if you win, you lose, you booptard! There's no treasury left, and I'm sending all the casters to the Magic Kingdom with what few schmuckers remain, where they'll be safe and beyond your grasp. Then I'm going out to die like a man!". And then he sends out Bogroll with a disguise.

If he sees 'Parson' killed at Ansom's hands and the bracer destroyed, Charlie will have no reason to remain. His reaction, though, to losing the prize that has been keeping him there may be <ah . . .> amusing. At least to Parson . . . That removes Charlie as a factor, as he has nothing left to gain. If Charlie thinks that Ansom killed Parson, that may cause him to break alliance and go home. In which case, it's a WHOLE new battle.

SteveMB
2009-02-21, 01:29 PM
If he sees 'Parson' killed at Ansom's hands and the bracer destroyed, Charlie will have no reason to remain. His reaction, though, to losing the prize that has been keeping him there may be <ah . . .> amusing. At least to Parson . . . That removes Charlie as a factor, as he has nothing left to gain. If Charlie thinks that Ansom killed Parson, that may cause him to break alliance and go home. In which case, it's a WHOLE new battle.

Ansom's order that anybody who killed Parson would forfeit their cut of the spoils makes me suspect a draconian penalty clause in the "amended" terms, that could be offset by taking an extra share of the booty. If Ansom himself (apparently) kills Parson, that may leave him stuck with a bill he can't pay (either at all, or not without ruinous effects on Jetstone's ability to remain a viable side).

Alternatively, the amended terms could simply be "no Parson, no alliance" (and Ansom came up with the penalty to emphasize that Parson must be captured, not croaked). In that case, the RCC is immediately booped (at best, Charlie becomes a free agent again; at worst, he cuts another deal with Parson).

Hmmm.... :smallamused:

Kreistor
2009-02-21, 05:46 PM
I think that it's likely that Parson goes with a message to Charlie to the effect of "I'm going to see to it that even if you win, you lose, you booptard! There's no treasury left, and I'm sending all the casters to the Magic Kingdom with what few schmuckers remain, where they'll be safe and beyond your grasp. Then I'm going out to die like a man!".

"No treasury left"... From what I've seen, Chief Warlords have to justify expenses to their side's leader, which strongly suggests that they have no control over the treasury. Stanley may have done something with the treasury, but I doubt it. 150000 schmuckers probably takes some doing to move.

"sending all the casters to the Magic Kingdom"... This is a place where anyone that wants to can hire the casters, including Charlie. One thing Charlie has is money, so he'd be well placed to grab any caster he wants, just from making a good deal. Further, it doesn't look like anyone can be forced to work for someone, short of magical means. Charlie has above normal control of Thinkamancy, but so far that has been limited to communications. Whether he can enforce his will magically at long range is not yet indicated. Possible, but no more possible than turning all of his archons into toads.

Parson says only, "I'm gonna call Charlie." He doesn't say, "I'm gonna chew out Charlie", or "I'm gonna screw Charlie over." There is no idication at this point whether Parson is in any particular mindset. Don't forget that Parson is a gamer: he won't take Charlie's strategy personally. (If he did, he wouldn't be a good gamer.) Momentary anger, mostly at himself, for not predicting (or predicting and not being able to handle) the event, but he won't retain any serious anger towards another player that just made the winning move. This call is going to be about options, maybe about a particular option. Perhaps he'll try to arrange for the survival of Sizemore, Wanda, and Maggie in Charlescomm (especially Wanda, whose magics are not kosher to many in the RCC, and Sizemore who has killed... maybe murdered is the right word... personal friends of Ansom).

Sieggy
2009-02-21, 06:36 PM
"No treasury left"... From what I've seen, Chief Warlords have to justify expenses to their side's leader, which strongly suggests that they have no control over the treasury. Stanley may have done something with the treasury, but I doubt it. 150000 schmuckers probably takes some doing to move.

"sending all the casters to the Magic Kingdom"... This is a place where anyone that wants to can hire the casters, including Charlie. One thing Charlie has is money, so he'd be well placed to grab any caster he wants, just from making a good deal. Further, it doesn't look like anyone can be forced to work for someone, short of magical means. Charlie has above normal control of Thinkamancy, but so far that has been limited to communications. Whether he can enforce his will magically at long range is not yet indicated. Possible, but no more possible than turning all of his archons into toads.

Parson says only, "I'm gonna call Charlie." He doesn't say, "I'm gonna chew out Charlie", or "I'm gonna screw Charlie over." There is no idication at this point whether Parson is in any particular mindset. Don't forget that Parson is a gamer: he won't take Charlie's strategy personally. (If he did, he wouldn't be a good gamer.) Momentary anger, mostly at himself, for not predicting (or predicting and not being able to handle) the event, but he won't retain any serious anger towards another player that just made the winning move. This call is going to be about options, maybe about a particular option. Perhaps he'll try to arrange for the survival of Sizemore, Wanda, and Maggie in Charlescomm (especially Wanda, whose magics are not kosher to many in the RCC, and Sizemore who has killed... maybe murdered is the right word... personal friends of Ansom).

Oh, no, I'm not saying that Parson actually feels that way - not that he's angry at all. But what better way to split Charlie from the Coalition? I'm assuming that Maggie has been monitoring on what's been going on, and is aware (and has reported to Parson) that whatever deal Ansom cut involves NOT croaking Parson, since Ansom made it clear that Parson was to be taken alive. And Parson knows that Charlie is hot & heavy to get his hands on the bracer and himself. This is a perfect opportunity for a head game. Play the player, not the game . . . He's worked on Ansom's head before, now it's Charlie's turn.

If he can convince Charlie that he doesn't think he can win and that he is willing to die rather than be captured (insert screaming hysteria), it sets up a perfect scenario for Bogroll to go out and make the supreme sacrifice. As long as Maggie can maintain the illusion that it's Parson down there, they would have absolutely no reason to disbelieve any of it.

If the bracer is destroyed and 'Parson' dead, what further interest does Charlie have in the outcome? At best, Charlie just says "Boop it, I'm leaving, you clean up the mess.". At worst, Charlie presents a crushing bill for his services, and / or loses his own cool because Ansom just destroyed the only thing that was of interest to him. Either way, it splits Charlie away from the RCC.

If Parson can trick Ansom into ending turn (after all, with the enemy warlord dead and the casters fled to the Magic Kingdom, he would anticipate that the survivors would surrender on their turn, or be easy meat.), then the very strong likelihood is that Charlie would leave with his Archons, and in the morning, Ansom gets it up the boophole.

Also, it places Charlie in an odd situation, as he broke alliance and / or extracted a huge penalty for croaking someone who pops up hale & hearty next turn. Think what that does to his reputation (foreshadowed).

Also, consider the psychological effect on the RCC and Ansom especially when the warlord he personally killed last turn AND the casters who were supposed to have fled to the Magic Kingdom all show up kicking boop and not bothering to take names . . . And then having Stanley show up with a full compliment of (illusory) dwagons . . .

SteveMB
2009-02-21, 06:54 PM
Oh, no, I'm not saying that Parson actually feels that way - not that he's angry at all. But what better way to split Charlie from the Coalition? I'm assuming that Maggie has been monitoring on what's been going on, and is aware (and has reported to Parson) that whatever deal Ansom cut involves NOT croaking Parson, since Ansom made it clear that Parson was to be taken alive. And Parson knows that Charlie is hot & heavy to get his hands on the bracer and himself. This is a perfect opportunity for a head game. Play the player, not the game . . . He's worked on Ansom's head before, now it's Charlie's turn.

I doubt that Maggie could have broken into Charlie's communication channels, so Parson would have no direct knowledge of the amended terms. He might guess them, though, given that (as you point out) Charlie has an established interest in recruiting him and acquiring the Mathemancy bracer. (He said that he'd take the bracer off Parson's croaked body if necessary, but he'd prefer Parson alive and working for him.)

Decius
2009-02-21, 06:59 PM
I don't see any reasonable way that Parson could know the details of Ansom's contract with Charlie. Certainly I wouldn't go out of my way to inform my enemies of a weakness, and if anyone was close enough to read the contract before it was accepted, why didn't they just attack?

Sieggy
2009-02-21, 07:44 PM
I don't see any reasonable way that Parson could know the details of Ansom's contract with Charlie. Certainly I wouldn't go out of my way to inform my enemies of a weakness, and if anyone was close enough to read the contract before it was accepted, why didn't they just attack?

If Maggie was monitoring the battlefield via Thinkamancy, she would be aware that Ansom gave orders that Parson be taken alive. The only thing that could possibly make Ansom go from wanting Parson's head on a spear to wanting him alive would be the agreement that he made with Charlie. Parson knows that Charlie wants him and the artifact, and so no other factor could have made Ansom change his mind, it's the only variable that makes sense. Remember, all this has taken place in a single turn.

This being the case, it gives Parson an opening. He doesn't know what the details of the agreement are, only that before the agreement, he was to be killed on sight. After the agreement, he was not to be killed without serious penalty to whoever did so. And that's all that a gamer like Parson needs to to work with . . .

Ovaltine Patrol
2009-02-21, 08:47 PM
I like to think that Stanley will elect to tame some dwagons on the way back to Gobwin Knob.

I wonder what Ansom's allies might say or do if they discovered he potentially risked their spoils in a deal with Charlie, I'm guessing he did at any rate.

Kreistor
2009-02-21, 10:09 PM
what further interest does Charlie have in the outcome?

The same things that brought Charlie to this battle long before Parson was summoned. He's not turning around and going home after signing a contract, just because the best prize committed suicide: reputation is important to Charlie, and sulking off like that is bad for the rep. There's lots of loot to go around, and Charlie wants his piece, even if Parson is denied him

glenstorm74
2009-02-22, 01:54 AM
Something interesting:

In panels 9 to 11 Parson says he will call Charlie but leaves Maggie behind to command Bogroll. How does he expect to make a thinkagram without his thinkamancer?

I think Parson either has a direct thinkamancy link to Charlie, or Parson will use an eyebook to contact Charlie, or Parson will climb the tower and speak to an Archon who will send the thinkagram to Charlie.

I really like the Bogroll ideas I've heard so far, so I'm leaning with Parson using the eyebook to contact Charlie. This leaves Maggie free to do her thing while reinforcing the Bogroll illusion.

fendrin
2009-02-22, 09:13 AM
The same things that brought Charlie to this battle long before Parson was summoned. He's not turning around and going home after signing a contract, just because the best prize committed suicide: reputation is important to Charlie, and sulking off like that is bad for the rep. There's lots of loot to go around, and Charlie wants his piece, even if Parson is denied him

Ah, but if Charlie has to choose between letting Ansom croak 'Parson' or intervening, which do you think he'll choose? For that matter, he may be able to use some thinkamancy to get someone else to intervene, and thus allay accusations that he broke his contract.

In fact, that could be what Parson is about to tell Charlie:
"Hey, I'm gonna go challenge Ansom to a one-on-one battle, winner takes all. I'm probably gonna croak, and I'm gonna send my mathamancy bracer to the Magic Kingdom. Now, you can still get what you want if you croak Ansom. Why don't you make mind-slave out of one of Ansom's allies and have them stab him in the back, literally and figuratively? The coalition is so weak no one would be suspicious of you."


Something interesting:

In panels 9 to 11 Parson says he will call Charlie but leaves Maggie behind to command Bogroll. How does he expect to make a thinkagram without his thinkamancer?

I think Parson either has a direct thinkamancy link to Charlie, or Parson will use an eyebook to contact Charlie, or Parson will climb the tower and speak to an Archon who will send the thinkagram to Charlie.

I really like the Bogroll ideas I've heard so far, so I'm leaning with Parson using the eyebook to contact Charlie. This leaves Maggie free to do her thing while reinforcing the Bogroll illusion.

Parson has been using the eyebook to communicate with Charlie ever since "omg hax". Why waste Maggie's casting juice?

Lamech
2009-02-22, 09:49 AM
The same things that brought Charlie to this battle long before Parson was summoned. He's not turning around and going home after signing a contract, just because the best prize committed suicide: reputation is important to Charlie, and sulking off like that is bad for the rep. There's lots of loot to go around, and Charlie wants his piece, even if Parson is denied him

I suspect that the punishment clause is pretty harsh if Charlie loses what he was after, so he may decide that he doesn't want to risk anything else for 50K-100K. And I think that his rep would be better served if he hit the RCC's leadership and took the pliers by force. It would send the message "don't screw me over, or I'll kill you."


In fact, that could be what Parson is about to tell Charlie:
"Hey, I'm gonna go challenge Ansom to a one-on-one battle, winner takes all. I'm probably gonna croak, and I'm gonna send my mathamancy bracer to the Magic Kingdom. Now, you can still get what you want if you croak Ansom. Why don't you make mind-slave out of one of Ansom's allies and have them stab him in the back, literally and figuratively? The coalition is so weak no one would be suspicious of you."
I suspect part of the magic contract was "no removing the bracer", otherwise Parson could have handed it to someone and laughed at Charlie. (Although the coalition will probably want to steal it anyway so moot point.)

More importantly if Charlie could randomly mind slave people anywhere he would have done so already. Like Parson or Wanda during the courtyard battle.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-22, 11:48 AM
To my mind even if Parson pulls a bogroll sacrifice to upset Charlie and fake out the RCC Charlie wont leave in a huff. He has no reason to break contract and damage his reputation. It sounds very much like if Charlie doesn't get what he wants (i.e. Parson and his bracer) he will get significant financial compensation. So he'll stick around, do the job he was hired to do, take his gratuitous loots, and head home richer than before. I think Parson would know this as well. Most of the "evidence" that leads to this line of thought isn't very solid. So I guess we will just have to wait and see. I'm full of anticipation!

Suicide Junkie
2009-02-22, 02:56 PM
Why wouldn't Charlie leave tho?
If the contract is broken by Ansom, then Charlie can take his big penalty clause and is finished.

Charlie could offer another contract for the hatchet fight, but that is a lot of risk in disadvantageous terrain, and Ansom has nothing of value left to offer in return.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-22, 05:21 PM
Why wouldn't Charlie leave tho?
If the contract is broken by Ansom, then Charlie can take his big penalty clause and is finished.

Charlie could offer another contract for the hatchet fight, but that is a lot of risk in disadvantageous terrain, and Ansom has nothing of value left to offer in return.

We don't know the terms of the contract. Nothing implies that Parson's death is a breach of contract. It's possible sure but it's just as likely that Parson's death merely comes with heavy financial repercussions. It's not clear either way.

Decius
2009-02-22, 06:28 PM
If Maggie was monitoring the battlefield via Thinkamancy, she would be aware that Ansom gave orders that Parson be taken alive. The only thing that could possibly make Ansom go from wanting Parson's head on a spear to wanting him alive would be the agreement that he made with Charlie. Parson knows that Charlie wants him and the artifact, and so no other factor could have made Ansom change his mind, it's the only variable that makes sense. Remember, all this has taken place in a single turn.


That's all well and good, but there's no way Thinkamancy can "Monitor the battlefield". If Misty, the Lookamancer were present, and was given orders 'on-screen' to monitor enemy communications and orders, then I'd buy it. I'd also wonder why the air defenses didn't target Ansom as soon as he flew up to talk to the Archons, and why Parson had to see the dance begin to know what was happening.

Basically, I've seen many times where knowing the exact disposition of enemy orders would have changed Parson's actions. Therefore, I believe that he cannot listen in to enemy orders or communications in magical ways.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-22, 10:20 PM
Also Ansom's order to capture was given outside the walls of GK and therefore in a different hex. I can't see basic monitoring being able to see things outside of the caster's hex. Thats what you link them to achieve.

Sieggy
2009-02-23, 05:17 PM
Also Ansom's order to capture was given outside the walls of GK and therefore in a different hex. I can't see basic monitoring being able to see things outside of the caster's hex. Thats what you link them to achieve.

But it's ALL in the defense zone - as defenders have unlimited mobility, I would also assume that they would be able to magically scry within their own domains. Maggie was able to determine Wanda's status from within the tower, which was technically in another hex (tower vs just inside the wall), so being able to monitor what Ansom was saying just outside the courtyard gate (same zone as Wanda was in) is quite within her abilities.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-23, 08:20 PM
But it's ALL in the defense zone

What do you consider the defense zone? I wouldn't consider things outside of the city walls to be in the defense zone.

Sieggy
2009-02-24, 11:01 AM
What do you consider the defense zone? I wouldn't consider things outside of the city walls to be in the defense zone.

No, Ansom ordered that Parson be captured, not killed just outside the gate to the Inner Courtyard, just before ordering the Wiener-rammers at begin their assault. This was inside the Outer Walls, and therefore Maggie should have been able to monitor what was going on via Thinkamancy. Parson ought to be aware that the RCC has orders to take him alive, though I think "My life may end in a big song and dance number' was just WAY too good a line for the authors to let pass . . . (yay Writeomancy!)

Decius
2009-02-24, 12:15 PM
No, Ansom ordered that Parson be captured, not killed just outside the gate to the Inner Courtyard, just before ordering the Wiener-rammers at begin their assault. This was inside the Outer Walls, and therefore Maggie should have been able to monitor what was going on via Thinkamancy. Parson ought to be aware that the RCC has orders to take him alive, though I think "My life may end in a big song and dance number' was just WAY too good a line for the authors to let pass . . . (yay Writeomancy!)

If Maggie can see or hear everything that goes on within the walls without using any of her 'juice', why wasn't Wanda concerned about someone monitoring her <a href="http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0030.html">"interrogation"</a>?

Why would thinkamancy be used to intercept verbal communications? The three I find best suited to "Taking a concept from the vibrations of air" are weirdomancy, dittomancy, and deletionism. I think neither the life element nor the Erf axis are suited to the task. The argument I see for thinkamancy seems to be "I want it to be true and Maggie is a thinkamancer".

I also agree that according to Checkov's gun, Maggie must now demonstrate her ability. That means that she either will, or won't, and that both options are important in the metastory.

I also wonder what Wanda's "Raise all dead in the hex as undead" spell does if her side doesn't control the zone in which the dead lie... I can't imagine that she can do that more than once in a turn.

Other note: Parson has already indicated that he wants to move units at night. Previously he had been shut down by the fact that they can't cross hexes off-turn, but now there's a loophole allowing an exploit...

SteveMB
2009-02-24, 12:17 PM
No, Ansom ordered that Parson be captured, not killed just outside the gate to the Inner Courtyard, just before ordering the Wiener-rammers at begin their assault. This was inside the Outer Walls, and therefore Maggie should have been able to monitor what was going on via Thinkamancy. Parson ought to be aware that the RCC has orders to take him alive, though I think "My life may end in a big song and dance number' was just WAY too good a line for the authors to let pass . . . (yay Writeomancy!)

Except that we have no indication that Thinkamancy allows for that sort of ongoing monitoring of someone else's mind. The fact that a brief message takes a considerable chunk of a caster's endurance (so that Maggie could only send one Thinkagram after using most of her efforts that turn on Wanda) makes me think it unlikely.

Mikalyaran
2009-02-24, 02:10 PM
No, Ansom ordered that Parson be captured, not killed just outside the gate to the Inner Courtyard

Your right. I got where he was mixed up. Like others are saying though thinkamancy might not be the best for that. Reading minds sure but picking up what ansom said? We shall see in the next exciting installment of Erfworld: The Battle for Gobwin Knob!

El_Chupachichis
2009-02-27, 02:28 PM
There's just something visually satisfying about Frame 2, with the Archon being blown out of the sky in the background :smallbiggrin::amused: