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Arkaim
2009-03-11, 06:23 PM
How long has this been up?

Maxymiuk
2009-03-11, 06:30 PM
Judging by the fact that the forums just got struck with paralysis... 5 minutes ago?

Before all the rampant speculation starts, let it be stated for the record that although I expected Bogroll to die, it still felt like a kick in the gut to have it confirmed.

Excellent work, Rob and Jamie.

evil_d4_swarm
2009-03-11, 06:32 PM
Aww... Bogroll died... :smallfrown:

Although I'm glad that Ansom died, too.

derfy
2009-03-11, 06:37 PM
Just popped up on RSS for me.

And yes, this is booping awesome. I can imagine Parson semi-growling the last words.

keeganknorr
2009-03-11, 06:38 PM
Set up completely but not predictable, this is why i love this comic.

Hatu
2009-03-11, 06:44 PM
Well, this was everything I was hoping Ansom's defeat would not be: contrived, abrupt and utterly unsatisfying.

Very disappointing.

-H

Graymayre
2009-03-11, 06:47 PM
Wow, I honestly didn't expect Ansom to actually die. I did notice that the Twoll had to be burned. Is that one of the few ways to halt regeneration in the world? Can acid be used? What else can stop it?

I also didn't realize the extent at which GK was rigged to collapse. I expected the worst would be Ansom's coalition lying on a pile of rubble...

afroakuma
2009-03-11, 06:50 PM
I won't believe Ansom died so easily. That looks like a backdoor to me.

Surprising page, though. Wonder how Stanley's going to like the wreck of his city?

Knew Bogroll would die... very unfortunate. :smallfrown:

Grunthos
2009-03-11, 06:50 PM
Somehow, I don't think Stanley is going to be very understanding when he gets back. Although the successful croaking of Ansom should mollify him enough for Parson to survive.

Oracle_Hunter
2009-03-11, 06:51 PM
I also didn't realize the extent at which GK was rigged to collapse. I expected the worst would be Ansom's coalition lying on a pile of rubble...

That sir, was one massive Chekov's Gun! (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html)

I, too, was shocked to find Ansom and Bogroll dead. Well done! Too bad Sizemore couldn't grab the Pliers though.

EDIT: Hey, Red Warlord survived the 4Chan! More surprises! :smalleek:

Shoemaker
2009-03-11, 06:55 PM
Well, this was everything I was hoping Ansom's defeat would not be: contrived, abrupt and utterly unsatisfying.

Very disappointing.

-H

I'm sorry if I'm mistaken, but weren't you also crying foul when Ansom was repeatedly saved by the Archons?

That was really the only other possibility here. He either falls to the ground or the Archons swoop in and save him.

What outcome would you have preferred?

slayerx
2009-03-11, 06:58 PM
Wow, that was seriously unexpected... i mean, i don't think anyone would have foresaw Ansom croaking right there. I'm sure most people were only expecting Ansom to be injured, while Sizemore pops from the ground and claiming the pliers.

though i can admit their is something a bit lost with such a quick and unexpected croak... you never really get to feel ansom's defeat. I mean he only had 2 seconds to acknowledge that he was outplayed before croaking... it would be a bit more satisfiying if he was able to have enough time to really soak in his failure, before making a mad charge and croaking...

its a bit of a double egde sword... on the one had it's very unexpected but acceptable turn of events; but on the other hand, the speed of the death makes it feel a bit lacking... might have been better for a secondary character, but Ansom is a bit too important...

though with Ansom dead, and now massive losses, it seems like the coalition's moral is broken


RIP Bogroll

Calmness
2009-03-11, 06:59 PM
Bah, i liked Ansom. :smallannoyed:

surtt
2009-03-11, 06:59 PM
Wow that was abrupt.

reignofevil
2009-03-11, 07:00 PM
So basically, People boop about ansom not being dead, and now they are about him BEING dead in a heavily forshadowed way that we all pretty much expected...
And its a backdoor?

JT Jag
2009-03-11, 07:04 PM
No way is Ansom actually dead.

glenstorm74
2009-03-11, 07:04 PM
Ansom's defeat was unsatisfying...:smallannoyed:

I feel sorry for Bogroll. I had hope...:smallfrown:

Sizemore seems overpowered...

Where are the Archons?

The Glyphstone
2009-03-11, 07:06 PM
I think it's not because Ansom is dead per say, but because he died "off-screen'. this is something everyone has been anticipating for a very, very long time, and suddenly it's there and gone without even being seen.

Sieggy
2009-03-11, 07:07 PM
Well, this was everything I was hoping Ansom's defeat would not be: contrived, abrupt and utterly unsatisfying.

Very disappointing.

-H


I dunno, works for me. If the RCC hadn't killed Bogroll while he was down, I don't think Parson would have brought down the house. At least Bogroll has been avenged . . . that's the 'ruthlessness' kicking in. I suspect Sizemore will be sent to recover the Arkenpliers, and then Parson & company will be off to the Magic Kingdom. Charley can pick over the rubble, and be Lord of the Ruins . . .

It'll be amusing if the Archons are still there when Stanley arrives . . . and he thinks Charley did it, and that Parson et al are dead . . . I mean, it's not like Stanley will listen to reason, much less from Charley . . .

surtt
2009-03-11, 07:09 PM
So basically, People boop about ansom not being dead, and now they are about him BEING dead in a heavily forshadowed way that we all pretty much expected...
And its a backdoor?



I am sitting here in shock and disbelief.
Thinking Amson somhow is still alive.
Same as I would if someone really died.


I am not complaining.
It was masterfully done.

DCR
2009-03-11, 07:09 PM
Ansom, weakened by Wanda's uber witchslap into falling damage and hordes of undead, perhaps a direct damage spell from a scroll or twelve, takes... um, 9.81 m/s^2 + Bogroll... 487d6 falling damage (cookie for reference catch) without his helmet this time (credit for pointing that out to lamech) and is croaked. Persons seeing this as contrived/backdoor... I disagree. Politely, respectfully - but totally uncompromisingly as well.

The warlord is dead. Long live the warlord.

RIP Bogroll.

Spanishmonk3y
2009-03-11, 07:11 PM
Holy Boop.

I mean wow, I was really expecting something longer and drawn out with Ansom's fall and the repercussions. But I'm really happy with this page since it just drove home the impact of Bogrolls sacrifice.

Yes there is still a chance of Ansom popping up somehow but due to this presentation I feel like this was meant to show us they weren't pulling plot punches.

Ansom's dead.
His army is probably deader.
But Parson has some 'splainin to do to the tool once he is back.

Great page imo

Lamech
2009-03-11, 07:11 PM
Hey, Red Warlord survived the 4Chan! More surprises! Err... she was never in the 4-chan blast, so I'm not sure if that counts as survived.

And didn't Ansom survive his last fall? Although he did lose a helment apperantly. I wonder what Erfworld's main motif is... maybe it has something to do with small details.

And I actually wanted Ansom to die in an abrupt manner. Like smacked down by Wanda, hit by air defenses, or blasted by the thinkamancer. I think this was a very good way for him to go.

slayerx
2009-03-11, 07:14 PM
Sizemore seems overpowered...

Well he's a masterclass dirtomancer...
a Masterclass croakamancer can uncroak 1000's of units in a single turn
a masterclass foolamancer can veil an entire city
There is precedence that masterclass mancers are very powerful

Not to mention that the move Sizemore used came at the cost of an entire city
he can't really pull off this kind of stuff out in the field, and using the moves within your own city requires you to be willing to destory your own processions



Where are the Archons?
flying above giving Charlia a good show and probably waiting to clean up
though it is possible that some were crocked by the falling tower


And didn't Ansom survive his last fall? Although he did lose a helment apperantly. I wonder what Erfworld's main motif is... maybe it has something to do with small details.
Well there's the helmet, the idea that Ansom was much higher up this time, the weight of a twoll falling on top of him with his arms over his neck, AND Bogroll possibly getting a few hits

Oslecamo
2009-03-11, 07:16 PM
That sir, was one massive Chekov's Gun! (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html)

I, too, was shocked to find Ansom and Bogroll dead. Well done! Too bad Sizemore couldn't grab the Pliers though.


Were you really suprised? Bogroll fell on the middle of the coalition forces. After having cracked their leader's skull after a fake surrender. His only true hope would be Sizemore poping out, but alas, Bogroll isn't a mancer. He's a lackey, and altough very loyal, also very expendable. As a garrison unit, Hamster logistic side knew he would be no good once the city was abandoned. And no good risking Sizemore in a rescue atempt. Twolls must be much easier to come by than dirtmancers.

As for Ansom also being dead, well, I believe the game has a HP mechanic. Ansom had already fought a lot that day, draining that HP to shrug the blows from all the undeads and Wanda. His HP should be on his last digits. This allowed Bogroll, as a heavy, to score those final points and bring him down. Hamster had the mathmancy artifact. He would surely send someone who had a good chance of taking out Ansom for good.


Goodbye Bogroll. You were the best Lackey an evil overlord could have asked for, serving even in death.

What caught me by suprise was the city colapsing. Brilliant, and the dots were all there, but I couldn't connect them. Lure the coalition inside and then bring the whole thing down on them.

And so ends the battle for Gobwin Knob. What will follow now? My bet is, Stanley returns, sees most of his army is still alive and kicking, and decides to go in one last quest to get all the tools, with Hamster as his chief warlord. After some discussions of course, but Stanley isn't really in a position to abandon any more troops.

Gez
2009-03-11, 07:16 PM
I suppose Ansom's death would have been more satisfying like this (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0443.html); but then people would have complained about a whole page being "wasted" for that...

Tubercular Ox
2009-03-11, 07:17 PM
So. Ansom, Bogroll. Fine.

What about Sizemore? Maybe page 78 is Chekov's gun, but did he really just collapse all the tunnels with one huge honking spell? Who knew he had it in him? S'bit of a revelation to me. Wow. Go Sizemore.

dragonseth
2009-03-11, 07:18 PM
I was really hoping Bogroll would live. I loved him as a character, and I'd love to see what he can do with some more levels.:smallbiggrin:
On the topic of Ansom, I'm glad he finally died, but I was hoping for it to be a little more dramatic. Like, an internal monologue as he's falling, or something to that effect.

reignofevil
2009-03-11, 07:23 PM
I was really hoping Bogroll would live. I loved him as a character, and I'd love to see what he can do with some more levels.:smallbiggrin:
On the topic of Ansom, I'm glad he finally died, but I was hoping for it to be a little more dramatic. Like, an internal monologue as he's falling, or something to that effect.

I never got that strawberry ca-
Well you meant ansom, but still

Closet_Skeleton
2009-03-11, 07:27 PM
Did the main villain just die offscreen?

Drakron
2009-03-11, 07:28 PM
I suspect the place was rigged to collapse, notice how he mentions parts leaving just the dungeon to not be collapsed.

Either way, next turn I suspect Wanda will just uncroak the dead troops and turn the tide and as long the dungeon is intact the city is standing.

I hope its ends as as grasping victory from the jaws of defeat with the return of the Tool and a new addition, uncroaked Ansom.

Tweed
2009-03-11, 07:28 PM
Hallelujah! Finding out that arrogant boop is dead made my entire night. :smallbiggrin:

elrod13
2009-03-11, 07:29 PM
Don't write off Bogroll just yet. The RCC troops are burning the "beast" for a reason. Parson's interuption of their efforts may give Bogroll the chance he needs to regenerate. The best part of Ansom dying this way is that he died at the hands of a commoner "beast". I hope the disgust Ansom felt was only excelled by the pain of his impact in the courtyard. And, it looks like Sizemore will have one more treasure to mine at GK: The Arkenpliers, buried in the rubble.

Maxymiuk
2009-03-11, 07:32 PM
though with Ansom dead, and now massive losses, it seems like the coalition's morale is broken


I think a lot more than that is broken right now. :smallamused:


As to the abruptness of Ansom's death... no, I like it, and here's why:

Ansom and Parson, when viewed as narrative devices, represent two different ideologies of conducting warfare. Ansom is the archetypal "stout hearts, gentlemen, set your lances and CHARGE" general, who has all the subtlety of a hammer. He thrives on combat - indeed, it's not a far stretch to say that he's the Coalition's best warlord and fighter. Furthermore, he's nobility, which means he brings chivalry, honor, and a sense of superiority - as seen through the lens of Erfworld's rules, of course - to the table.

Also, look at it this way: Ansom has all the trappings of a hero - great fighting ability (along with a magic weapon), charisma, a penchant for self-sacrifice, and copious amounts of good luck. It seems that if he's going do destined to die, he's going to go down fighting, surrounded by the corpses of his enemies - hells, by Erfworld rules, this is probably exactly what would happen.

Meanwhile Parson is the canny general, who knows that in order to win, you have to fight dirty. He also knows that victory often lies beyond the realm of combat - he's capable of fighting this war on multiple levels, hitting the Coalition where they're weakest, in places where stats and bonuses don't really apply.

So the way Ansom croaks is really a two-fer. First, his death shows that Parson is the superior general: he looked past the stats, he found a weakness, and he created a situation in which none of Ansom's combat prowess mattered one whit. Second, such an... ignoble manner of death brings the hero image crashing down. There was no glorious battle, no desperate last stand. Ansom simply died. Without warning. Like any common soldier marching into battle. There's a clear message here: there aren't any heroes in a war - just people doing their damnest to win.

Xenon
2009-03-11, 07:37 PM
O_O

well, i dont think that the fight was off-camera, i think its one of those pages they said was mostly combat that would be in the print-only version.

i miss bogroll already.

Pointyleaf
2009-03-11, 07:40 PM
So - Ansom is dead (and assumably not resurrectable), and the rest of the GK forces are in the dungeon, where Sizemore/goblins have tunnel bonus, and Wanda/uncroaked have dance bonus.

The pliers may be buried, laying around in the rubble, in the hands of a RCC leader, or out of GK proper by now. Same for Ansom's body.

I guess Parson could have just sent Wanda back out to recommence dance-fighting, but with RCC leaders and the archons around, the DDR might have started back up again.. so collapsing the courtyard/tower seemed like the best way to kill off the camping troops.

I'm guessing that Ansom's death will be expounded upon in the book. It *should* be, since he's the main villain so far.. On the other hand, I like Maxymiuk's thoughts.

So.. whose turn is it next? Does the alliance's turn get moved up, since they paired with Charlie? Or is Charlie's turn moved back to later in the day?

Edit: Charlie, not Charley.

Fjolnir
2009-03-11, 07:42 PM
this basically finished off the RCC, now if they end turn all the mighty leader of the doomed has to deal with is the only general who actually is a threat to his prowess in the world without a big hulking army, Charlescomm

The Minx
2009-03-11, 07:43 PM
O_O

Seconded. O_O


well, i dont think that the fight was off-camera, i think its one of those pages they said was mostly combat that would be in the print-only version.

i miss bogroll already.

As do I. But where did you get the news about the print-only version featuring their battle?

mrlovanhey
2009-03-11, 07:46 PM
... 487d6 falling damage (cookie for reference catch) without his helmet this time (credit for pointing that out to lamech) and is croaked.
RIP Bogroll.

487d6 points of damage. If I'm not much mistaken its a Minmax quote from Goblins.

Ozar
2009-03-11, 07:50 PM
This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFtw7qW7Vcw) is the one true proper way to finish off the villain. :smallbiggrin:

Scylfing
2009-03-11, 07:51 PM
Mr. Balder, Mr. Noguchi, I know you guys are saving a lot of the "action scenes" for the print version, I understand why you're doing that, but this was a climactic moment. It really would've helped the readers you have now to see the fight play out on-screen instead of just seeing the opening move and only hearing about the results afterward from a second-hand source.

Dismiss this opinion if you wish, it's not my story, I'm not saying I could do better, but I think it was a mistake to hide the ball like this.


As do I. But where did you get the news about the print-only version featuring their battle?

Point No. 3 in this thread (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=103605) indicates there'll be bonus pages in the print comic, mostly consisting of fight scenes that didn't make it to the web version.

Sunday
2009-03-11, 07:51 PM
He had to die. It just means that if there is anybody left Jill will round them up and hunt down Parson for the rest of his days for revenge.
Plus for you whiners, you must remember that if this was in a book the fall and then the death of Ansom would probably be next to each other so it'd be less abrupt. heck if you read this entire thing again in a few months or so it wouldn't seem so sudden. don't be dissapointed because the character that everyone hated because he was too good to be true died. if anything it offers interesting story development for later.

SteveMB
2009-03-11, 07:56 PM
As do I. But where did you get the news about the print-only version featuring their battle?

There was a general comment about additional pages being included in the print version at some points.

However, I don't think this is likely to be an example. We already saw all the relevant action -- Bogroll showed up veiled to look like Parson, ambushed Ansom, knocked him off his carpet, and the two of them fell with Bogroll's hards on Ansom's throat. Really, what more is there to see other than the aftermath?

(Another thought occurs to me -- how much did Ansom tell any of the other RCC leaders about the "surrender", and if so did those particular leaders survive? It's possible that, as far as the highest-ranking survivors know, Ansom simply went off on a wild tear of derring-do (again) and got himself croaked.)

Gilthans
2009-03-11, 07:57 PM
That was AWESOME.
Rob and Jamie, you never cease to amaze me. Ansom's death was a long time coming, and it was only a matter of time until his recklessness and arrogance would be the end of him, Parson exploited that.
And as the city came crashing down on the city, Parson's chances of winning quickly grew... If RedLord (which I expect will survive the crash, carrying the 'Pliers... Cherkov's gun people, she was just seen holding it) continues the attack, she will probably lose - most of her units are wounded and with extremely low morale. Also, bonuses are on the floor - only one warlord leading that battle.
And if she waits for Charlie's assistance the next day, which I expect she will, she'll have to face Wanda's Uberarmy, lead by an uncroaked Ansom, and bolstered by hundreds more of crushed units, while Charlie will have to deal with Stanley's timely return.
With his array of Ubermancers, Charlie and RedLord will have to retreat and wait for reinforcements (which will probably arrive - the death of a prince doesn't go unavenged), giving Parson time for some more elaborate strategies, raids and victories (RedLord is not as clever as Ansom I assume), victories which will finally win him Stanley's favor and trust.

That's my theory, anyway. I hope Bogroll is not burned in time and does regenerate. RIP.

Dan Hales
2009-03-11, 07:57 PM
Here is what I see so far strategically.

On the attacker's side: Ansom is croaked, massive coalition casualties, significant leadership loss, probable loss of the coalition altogether. Jillian and Vinnie and setch still out there and formidible, Charlie still in the mix.

On the Defender's side: Good chance to recover the pliers on next turn, massive increase in troops/strength with addition of all un-croaked attackers, Charlie cannot get to the pliers this turn, probable return of Stanley with dwagons within the next turn, City all but ruined (unknown effect on income/defense), loss of Bogroll (sniff).

What will Parson do now???? :smallconfused:

Cannnot wait for the next installment. Well Done.

Whispri
2009-03-11, 08:00 PM
Ding Dong the wannabe croaked. Shame about Bogroll though.

dr pepper
2009-03-11, 08:00 PM
Apparently Ansom's death doesn't force an end turn. I wonder who has that authority now?

MattR
2009-03-11, 08:06 PM
So much for Ansom's plot armour! awesome!

Also 'main' villian? im not so sure Ansom really was.. as has been pointed out several times he needed help to overcome the obstacles that Parson presented and those people are still out there. Vinny, Jillian and Charlie are still very much in the game and two of them are probably gonna be pissed and out for revenge.

DoctorJest
2009-03-11, 08:16 PM
What about Sizemore? Maybe page 78 is Chekov's gun, but did he really just collapse all the tunnels with one huge honking spell?

Not exactly. Sizemore previously commented that the tunnels beneath Gobwin Knob were dug to extract gems to fill the treasury, and are quite extensive. However, the amount of tunnels meant that digging any more would make the city collapse. In fact, when Parson asked him if they could collapse tunnels defensively, Sizemore replied that perhaps they could, but there is a risk of the whole city coming down.

So the city was really already in a precarious seismic position. Given the previous discussions, it sounded like collapsing the whole city would have been easy to do even by accident, much less a master class dirtamancer intending to do exactly that.

Solarious
2009-03-11, 08:18 PM
The Twoll leveled.
... Twice.

I don't know why, but that line made me laugh the most here. Bogroll, you'll be missed. Your sacrifice and dedication will be remembered as: YOU GOT BOGROLL'D!

There is no higher honor.

Scylfing
2009-03-11, 08:23 PM
There was a general comment about additional pages being included in the print version at some points.

However, I don't think this is likely to be an example. We already saw all the relevant action -- Bogroll showed up veiled to look like Parson, ambushed Ansom, knocked him off his carpet, and the two of them fell with Bogroll's hards on Ansom's throat. Really, what more is there to see other than the aftermath?

That's a good point, I'll buy that as far as the "action scene" part of it goes, there wouldn't be much need for panels of the fighty-fight beyond that. Still feels like it's missing something though, a moment for last words/thoughts/regrets maybe or a futile attempt at a save--something more than nothing.

The Minx
2009-03-11, 08:24 PM
So much for Ansom's plot armour! awesome!

Also 'main' villian? im not so sure Ansom really was.. as has been pointed out several times he needed help to overcome the obstacles that Parson presented and those people are still out there. Vinny, Jillian and Charlie are still very much in the game and two of them are probably gonna be pissed and out for revenge.

I suggested in another thread that Charlie is Parson's opposite, since they are both behind the scenes chessboard kings. Stanley was Ansom's opposite.

Also, they're both misfits in this world and seemingly understand each other better than many of the other characters do.

Onmi
2009-03-11, 08:27 PM
That's it for the RCC, they can't even pull out now.

Collapsing the city probably ended them all, see what happens when you kill Bogroll? you could have packed up and left but no.

I believe this is called winning the Battle and the War. Vinny and Jillian don't have enough forces to take down an entire city full of Uncroaked. they pretty much killed the entire RCC! The Archons are the only way out and chances are Charlie will screw them horribly.

When the Dwagons return they can muster their forces and capture the cities the RCC once held, rebuild their income and population, Spam a cheap effective unit who doesn't degrade in a turn.

The problem with forces BUILT around a Charismatic leader is that leader going down breaks the army.

It's like Ants, they are incredible for their size, however without a queen to order them they are mindless, like a single cell in the body with no brain to tell it what to do.

Opal Tide
2009-03-11, 08:31 PM
Great strip!

I am with some of the previous posters, Ansom's gloryless and sudden demise is appropriate for a character who embodied Earth's pre-industrial view of war. Parson is the equivalent of the machine gun, forcing opponents to change tactics or be slaughtered by the legion. I think Ansom's demise and Parson's subsequent crippling of the city and RCC was pitch perfect with the rest of the story thus far.

I will also be interested to see Tool's reaction. On the one hand Ansom was crushed and the pliers were/may be acquired, but his last city is now nothing more than a glorified wine cellar. I think if he will, on the whole, be happy with the outcome (though he will probably scream a lot).

Some other random thoughts:

-If Sizemore felt terrible about wiping out Webinar, how horrible do folks think he feel now?
-I wonder how easily the pliers can be located and just how much of the RCC survived the devastation that sizemore laid down on it. I didn't see many units outside the walls in the last panel
-I know Charlie is probably the best military mind in Erfworld (just because of the way he can game the system and the other factions), but I have got to think even this would blow his mind.


Eagerly anticipating the next installment!

RIP Bogroll

Hatu
2009-03-11, 08:32 PM
I'm sorry if I'm mistaken, but weren't you also crying foul when Ansom was repeatedly saved by the Archons?

That was really the only other possibility here. He either falls to the ground or the Archons swoop in and save him.

What outcome would you have preferred?

Well, for starters I'd have preferred if Ansom hadn't suddenly become stupid enough to accept a knave's surrender all alone, deep in enemy territory at the knave's own insistence, much less within arms reach of said knave. That would have helped.

Secondly, if Ansom's final demise was going to depend entirely on Charlie's forces suddenly wanting him dead after they had just saved his bacon for the second time in a row, I'd like to know why. I still have absolutely no idea why Charlie does what he does; when the plot hinges on his actions, the plot winds up feeling extremely contrived because his actions are incapable of growing naturally out of the story. We don't know anything about how Erfworld works mechanically, so we can't even properly weigh the possibilities Charlie is choosing between ourselves.

Thirdly, I'd prefer if Ansom's final defeat didn't just happen because it was suddenly time to wrap up the Ansom storyline. Why on earth did Parson wait until this point to pull this trick? Why didn't he pretend to surrender after Ansom turned the tables on Wanda and broke into the city? There doesn't seem to be any reason this wouldn't have worked just as well then, and it would have made defending the courtyard a lot easier if it had worked. If it hadn't worked then, Parson would be no worse off than if it hadn't worked now.

Finally, I think having Ansom die to a single attack and a long fall is both utterly incredible and pathetically anti-climactic. We just saw Wanda survive a long fall after an assault from an Archon army that could have captured the entire damn city (including Wanda). But now Ansom dies to a fall after an attack from a single unit. How am I supposed to take this as anything other than plot armor being selectively applied? The fact that half of his defeat was off-camera just makes it worse.

So I'm not particularly happy with this. I wanted Parson to prove his "Perfect Warlord" chops. Instead, he spends most of the story getting his ass kicked by his own stupidity and/or Ansom's booppull hijinks, only to finally win when the author randomly replaces Ansom's Luckamany Charms with stupid pills. This is a victory that makes both sides look like clueless puppets.

-H

pendell
2009-03-11, 08:34 PM
There was no glorious battle, no desperate last stand. Ansom simply died. Without warning. Like any common soldier marching into battle. There's a clear message here: there aren't any heroes in a war - just people doing their damnest to win.


Not so.

Heroism is a matter of myth, not of fact.

Ansom died through treachery. Of such stories legends are made. Remember Captain Kirk? He couldn't be defeated fairly, so whoever-it-was killed him sneakily. Same with all the outlaw ballads I can recall. The protaganist is always betrayed , because he's just too damn awesome to lose in a fair fight.

War is one thing, but legends are another.

I imagine they'll make legends about Ansom, the way we Americans make legends about Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. The fact that these romantic, dashing figures were eventually beaten by prosaic, unromantic realists is something that is only remembered in history books.

'Heroism' doesn't always have much to do with 'winning', as anyone who's listened to an Irish ballad knows.

For myself .. I still condemn Parson's treachery. But I acknowledge , nonetheless, that I'm glad pompous Ansom's plot shields finally failed. You can't roll natural 20s forever.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

Ovaltine Patrol
2009-03-11, 08:36 PM
I wonder how Gobwin Knob will be rebuilt. Do you think it will be represented with actual labor, as in gobwins and twolls running around with hammers and saws on scaffolding? Maybe it's going to be some kind of stylized computer RTS approach: spend the schmuckers and watch stuff drop out of the sky and into place.

SeraphRainy
2009-03-11, 08:40 PM
Heh heh at least it wasnt a cliff hanger this time.

It saddens me greatly that Bogroll has died. He and sizemore have been my constant favorits and his croaking, while glorious, is the passing of a well liked character.

Yet I shall honor him in death as best I can. Just as Parson shall now crush the RCC making full use of Bogrolls final effort I intend to crush my enemies under the cry of BOOOOOGRROOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLLLLED

That being said anybody know how we go about creating a fanclub on oots?

PS: I was wanting Ansomes death but I think Ill miss the ol capped crusader, it was cute in a pupy kinda way how trusting he was.

valce
2009-03-11, 08:41 PM
That's it for the RCC, they can't even pull out now.

Collapsing the city probably ended them all, see what happens when you kill Bogroll? you could have packed up and left but no.

In an earlier strip Parson was told that collapsing the ruins wouldn't destroy an invading army, so probably the Coalition isn't wiped out. But they are severely weakened and leadership-deficient...

Bhurin
2009-03-11, 08:45 PM
Booping hard core.

Ansom is as dead as the tropes we were all expecting to be utilize in his death. No last speech. No last agonizing breath. No inner monologue. No 'avenge me...'

An anti-climatic death is his ultimate defeat.

This is Ghengis Kahn falling off his horse.
This is Alexander the Great dying from getting sick.
This is Elvis on his toilet.

If Ansom is still alive, and the authors have an ulterior motive for this scene in mind, then good show.

But if this was Ansom's death, I applaud. Parson killed him, Earth-style.

Boop happens. And it just happened to Ansom.

Meek
2009-03-11, 08:49 PM
I don't know if anyone has thought of this, but perhaps the fight with Ansom is being saved for the actual printed book. It was said that the book would contain action stuff that isn't needed to understand the story, but is cool.

A page of Ansom falling while Bogroll punches him in the face isn't necessary to understand the story, but it's cool.

Seeing him pwned on the ground is needed to understand the story.

So that's my logic in all of this. I may actually buy the published book then, and I've never bought any webcomic books before.

RMS Oceanic
2009-03-11, 08:56 PM
A quote from a recent movie/not so recent comic book seems to suit the situation for Parson:


None of you understand. I'm not locked in here with you. You're locked in here with me.

A quick offscreen death for who had up to then been an important character seems quite surprising, but it suits a character like Ansom.

kreszantas
2009-03-11, 09:00 PM
That sir, was one massive Chekov's Gun! (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html)

I, too, was shocked to find Ansom and Bogroll dead. Well done! Too bad Sizemore couldn't grab the Pliers though.

EDIT: Hey, Red Warlord survived the 4Chan! More surprises! :smalleek:

Redhead was not a part of the 4Chan only the Duke Nozzle and the Blue Warlord

fruityjanitor
2009-03-11, 09:04 PM
I am sitting here in shock and disbelief.
Thinking Amson somhow is still alive.
Same as I would if someone really died.


I am not complaining.
It was masterfully done.

I 100% agree.

My first thought was "They BOTH died?!". You will be missed Bogroll! And killing Ansom offscreen was totally unexpected. I think that it was a very interesting move but I can see how other people are upset about it.

While I was still in WTF mode over the 2 deaths, they go and blow up the city! I was totally shocked. Amazing strip! Yeah it was a massive Chekhov's Gun, and somehow it was still completely unexpected! Awesome!

And the OOTS strip was pretty amazing too. I wouldn't be surprised if the forums explode for quite a while over these two strips :)

Edit: I know there's been all sorts of speculation on who the pliers are attuned to, but I'm kinda thinking that maybe Jillian and Vinnie show up next turn and Jillian (or maybe Vinnie) picks up the pliers and swears to avenge Ansom's death and finds out that the pliers are attuned to her (or him). Depending on what abilities the Pliers grant to the one who is attuned to it, it could quite likely be another huge threat to Parson and Co.

And yeah, somebody pointed out that Sizemore is probably going to be pretty shaken up because of what Parson ordered him to do in this strip... Poor Sizemore :(

Rhuna_Coppermane
2009-03-11, 09:08 PM
Wow. Just... wow.

StrykerX
2009-03-11, 09:10 PM
All I can say is...

Holy booping boop!!! :eek:

NobodySpecial
2009-03-11, 09:13 PM
Well, that's ONE way to get Charlie to not take the city.

After all, he got into this fight to MAKE money, not spend it rebuilding a city...

Alexei P
2009-03-11, 09:14 PM
And so Parson killed his only friend. Was it worth it to get rid of one pompous fool?

Zael Zuran
2009-03-11, 09:17 PM
Wow. That was more than I'd expected. I feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Its now become a real war story. Ansom was just too "larger than life" and seemingly necessary to the plot to have expected such a swift, permanent defeat.

I love it!

And the volcano?!
Ruthlessness indeed.

Doesn't look like Parson's worried about the cooalition. He appears to be digging in for the big fight against Charlie.

Aquillion
2009-03-11, 09:20 PM
Not so.

Heroism is a matter of myth, not of fact.

Ansom died through treachery. Of such stories legends are made. Remember Captain Kirk? He couldn't be defeated fairly, so whoever-it-was killed him sneakily. Same with all the outlaw ballads I can recall. The protaganist is always betrayed , because he's just too damn awesome to lose in a fair fight.

War is one thing, but legends are another.

I imagine they'll make legends about Ansom, the way we Americans make legends about Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. The fact that these romantic, dashing figures were eventually beaten by prosaic, unromantic realists is something that is only remembered in history books.For there to be legends about Ansom, someone would have to survive to tell what happened (the Archons don't seem to be the type.)

Legends are, generally written by the winners; the point about heroism being a matter of myth and not fact is because it doesn't have to be true. Robert E. Lee was lucky enough to be fighting a civil war, so he could survive and the the victors didn't really have to grind his name into the dirt. You rarely hear stories of British heroism during the revolutionary war, though.

Parson can make the legend of this story about how Ansom's pride got him killed by a lowly twoll. Heck, he can make the legend of this story about how Ansom treacherously tried and failed to stab him in the back during a parley if he wants to -- who is going to say otherwise? Heroism is just a matter of being the only one left alive to write the stories.

slayerx
2009-03-11, 09:20 PM
Well, for starters I'd have preferred if Ansom hadn't suddenly become stupid enough to accept a knave's surrender all alone, deep in enemy territory at the knave's own insistence, much less within arms reach of said knave. That would have helped.


He wasn't alone, he had the archons with him... as for why they did not assist, it is possible that Ansom fell below the zone crossing line, and thus fell where the archons could not follow to catch him or attack... Had Parson tried to use crossbowmen on Ansom, the Achons would have toasted them... if not, Ansom always had the option to will his carpet to retreat had attackers showed up; he saw Parson out there alone, if Parson fought him one-on-one Ansom would meet the challange and win, if more enemy troops showed up, Ansom would see them fast enough to tell his carpet to retreat... Bogroll's attack was surprising in that not only was it point back, but it was suicidal

not to mention with the foolamancer gone, Ansom would not know they could use foolamancy... he looked at the situtation and saw it as Parson put himself in as much danger as he himself, if not more so; espeically since Parson would never pull off a one-man attack and Bogroll's victory is thanks to the fact that it was a suicde attack which Ansom would not expect Parson himself to use

Ansom is a man of pride and rules, he is what one might call "lawful stupid"... when an enemy surrenders in a hopeless situtation, or when you make a deal of anykind you expect others to follow the rules as you would... think of the american revolution in how the british fought versus how the americans fought...



Secondly, if Ansom's final demise was going to depend entirely on Charlie's forces suddenly wanting him dead after they had just saved his bacon for the second time in a row, I'd like to know why.

This however ASSUMES that their was anything charlies archons could do to save him... they can't cross battle zones into the courtyard, and thus if Ansom falls into the courtyard zone, the achons are unable to follow, and we don't know exactly where the courtyard zone and the airzone border




Thirdly, I'd prefer if Ansom's final defeat didn't just happen because it was suddenly time to wrap up the Ansom storyline. Why on earth did Parson wait until this point to pull this trick? Why didn't he pretend to surrender after Ansom turned the tables on Wanda and broke into the city? There doesn't seem to be any reason this wouldn't have worked just as well then, and it would have made defending the courtyard a lot easier if it had worked. If it hadn't worked then, Parson would be no worse off than if it hadn't worked now.

because the trick would have been less likely to work... Ansom might have been skeptical if Parson surrendered when he still had the majority of his forces intact. Parson used that trick at the time when he was really against the wall, when Ansom thought he was against the walls... the way Ansom saw it parson had played his final hand and was totally out of options...

Furtharmore, the trick goes well with the timing of collapsing the city... Just loosing their leader would spoil their moral a bit, but the coalition would still fight on... but destorying the city right after that and causing them massive casualties and damage, along with having numerous leadership units croaked, would make them feel like they were in a hopeless position

in fact, had Ansom croaked before the attack on the courtyard, the coalition might have decided to wait 1 turn before attacking the courtyard and thus have charlies aid in the courtyard fight... remember, parson knew ANSOM would attack the courtyard without waiting because of his pride; he could not be sure that the other members of the coalition shared his pride... with the loss of their leader, the coalition might have been more willing to wait until charlie could join them, which would have screwed Parson completely... parson NEEDED them to attack right away




Finally, I think having Ansom die to a single attack and a long fall is both utterly incredible and pathetically anti-climactic. We just saw Wanda survive a long fall after an assault from an Archon army that could have captured the entire damn city (including Wanda). But now Ansom dies to a fall after an attack from a single unit. How am I supposed to take this as anything other than plot armor being selectively applied? The fact that half of his defeat was off-camera just makes it worse.

Wanda took ZERO damage from the archons... the damage she took was 100% falling damage and it was enough to bring her to the near brink of death... Ansom on the other hand not only took the falling damage but also has additional damaged from the crushing weight of a twoll landing on top of him, followed by possible hits bogroll might have gotten in before croaking

Zael Zuran
2009-03-11, 09:24 PM
And so Parson killed his only friend. Was it worth it to get rid of one pompous fool?

He wasn't one pompous fool. He has shown himself to be very capable to adapting to Parson's tactics, and is clearly bestowing massive leadership bonus to his forces.

Bogroll would have died with the rest of them when Ansom disbanded the city. He would have died a gopher and a body double.

He chose to serve his lord Hamster and died a hero. (Probably Jetstone's third most villified citizen of GK.) The real test for GK is whether they remember how one lowly twoll changed EVERYTHING and gave his life for theirs. Or if they just forget about him.

Subtext
2009-03-11, 09:29 PM
This one was unexpected...

It's sad that Bogroll is dead, but it would have been surprising if he had survived. Well, he survived...but only once. About Ansom dying offscreen, I like it. He died like just another normal human, without much attention (from the reader, his army would pay more attention of course).
It would make a terrifying sight - the enemy warlord making a suicidal move just to throw your guy off the tower...and AFTER that hell breaks loose...just nice.

The irony is, that Bogroll got his heroic scene...
this is what I like about this comic - they are not using stereotypes.

Kender Wizard
2009-03-11, 09:42 PM
That was... abrupt. I half-expected Ansom to die on the spot, but I did think that we would see Bogroll get in a few swings before he went down. Given that Red is kneeling next to Ansom, I'd imagine that she was the one to take Bogroll down (if indeed he was standing after that fall. He did level twice, so is possible).

A few other tidbits - I didn't see any archons in this strip. Author blooper, or did Charlie use his teleport ability to get them out of there? I daresay the second option is the correct one; I doubt that Charlie wants to get into a fight with Parson by staying when he can leave and extend job offers later.

Second, we officially have uncroaked marbits!

Third, this solves a major problem that Parson was going to have on his turn. The problem was that if Ansom entered the tower or the dungeon, then the corpses from this turn would be in different hexes. If only one hex could be uncroaked, that would limit the total number possible to be uncroaked. Unless they just moved all the bodies:smalltongue:

Lastly, it is pretty uncertain whether Red will get away with the pliers. She would have almost full move, having started from right outside the city. If she survived the collapse of the tunnels... I am sure we will find out soon. Guess it depends on whether Parson orders cleanup operations.

Dumbledore lives
2009-03-11, 09:59 PM
Sorry I didn't see it since it wasn't stickied and I thought you could delete threads, could someone please delete this?

The Adder
2009-03-11, 10:01 PM
Well, this was everything I was hoping Ansom's defeat would not be: contrived, abrupt and utterly unsatisfying.

Very disappointing.

-H

Contrived? Contrived? Do you even know the meaning of that word? This is the exact opposite of contrived. This was not only simplicity at it's finest, but Bogroll's attack on Ansom itself was foreshadowed.

In no way was this "labored" or "artificial".

Whether you found it satisfying or not is your opinion and you're entitled to it, but don't toss around words that don't apply.

Alexei P
2009-03-11, 10:01 PM
Bogroll would have died with the rest of them when Ansom disbanded the city.


But then, Ansom would have been the killer. Not Parson.

raekuul
2009-03-11, 10:21 PM
I guess now is when we enter "Erfworld: The Aftermath of Gobwin Knob?"

You know, I think a klog would be in order soon.

Goshen
2009-03-11, 10:24 PM
That was Booping Awesome! It was sudden and shocking, but every part of it was heavily foreshadowed. Actually, I had expected Parson to collapse all the tunnels the first time Jetstone filled them with troops. Good thing he didn't. Brilliant, brilliant storytelling.

Soooo, it sounds like those Arkenpliers are buried under tons of rock! I guess that means it'll take a lookamancer to find them and a dirtamancer to get them--or lots of guys with picks and shovels.

Name Lips
2009-03-11, 10:24 PM
My money is on Ansom being uncroaked. You know, the version that takes several turns to accomplish and lasts practically forever.


And maybe then he'll be terminated for good by the Arkenpliers. Just another common undead to re-croak during a battle...


But I also think that Charlie is being set up as the main villain. Or antagonist, rather. He's the only one who's a real match for Parson.

Fjolnir
2009-03-11, 10:24 PM
the only part of the ansom being the murderer not parson is that parson would ALSO probably be dead.

Zeku
2009-03-11, 10:36 PM
Great page. Really brought back that "Parson wins in spite of everything" feeling to the strip, which had been absent for a long time.

I'm extremely surprised that most of you don't seem to realize that Ansom HAD to die both offscreen, and abruptly. He is not a villian, a hero, or a main character. He's a caricature, and a hint as to the scope of the conflict.

This is a character and idealogy study, and Ansom did not possess enough personality to last forever. Stanley may not, either. I wouldn't count anyone out, as far as turning into a major villain.

The particular venue, a turn based strategy game in which the most barbaric and unimaginable things are just things you put your cursor on, is probably both the inspiration, ironic tone, and conclusion of the entire story.

And don't forget Zamussels....I'd love to write some stuff, but I wouldn't want to taint the possibilities.

BTW on Sizemore, he collapsed the escape routes before collapsing the city. That entire sequence could have taken 15 minutes, as far as we know. There's no reason to believe he's a Dirt God.

Lamech
2009-03-11, 10:46 PM
I was under the impression that Sizemore was cooking off pre-made spell defense's that allowed for collapses. Much like Wanda did to all those fliers. Now I wonder how many survivors are left in the ruble.

luffy316
2009-03-11, 10:46 PM
my take is good riddance, but a shame for Bogroll and such a sudden end. i'll be even more ticked if it's "lol, we know foolamancy too" and Ansom's actually feeling better than when Bogroll hit him. tired of Parson's repeated failures


don't necessarily take Ansom as the main villain in the long run. there's several arkentools to find, and Stan may start up a crusade of sorts for them.

Yodimus
2009-03-11, 10:58 PM
I guess now is when we enter "Erfworld: The Aftermath of Gobwin Knob?"

You know, I think a klog would be in order soon.

Ohhh, it's not over yet.

Hatu
2009-03-11, 10:59 PM
He wasn't alone, he had the archons with him... as for why they did not assist, it is possible that Ansom fell below the zone crossing line, and thus fell where the archons could not follow to catch him or attack... Had Parson tried to use crossbowmen on Ansom, the Achons would have toasted them... not to mention with the foolamancer gone, Ansom would not know they could use foolamancy... he looked at the situtation and saw it as Parson put himself in as much danger as he himself, if not more so; espeically since Parson would never pull off a one-man attack and Bogroll's victory is thanks to the fact that it was a suicde attack which Ansom would not expect Parson himself to use


Given that Parson had tried Thinkomancy tricks when the Archons were doing their DDR thing, I'm not sure it is reasonable for Ansom to pay no mind to the possibility of magical chicanery. But that's not really the central issue: even though Ansom got a Twoll when he expected Parson, he still voluntarily put himself within arms reach of an enemy whom he considered to be of the basest character. Why would he do that? I understand that he is prideful, but he could have accepted Parson's surrender at a time and place of his own choosing. I mean, how exactly would Parson have refused if Ansom told Charlie to have Parson meet him in the courtyard?

As for the Archons, they were next to him in appearance only. In order for Bogroll to have attacked him, Ansom must have been in the Tower sub-zone, and we know the Archons cannot leave the Airspace zone. If anything had gone wrong, there's nothing the Archons could have done about it from a combat angle (assuming Charlie hadn't been hanging Ansom out to dry). If Parson/Bogroll himself could fly into the airspace zone, then Archons could have lent him support, but that is not what happened.

Really, this whole thing only works because Ansom falls for the most painfully obvious trap I can imagine, the sort of moronic trick I'd expect the Legion of Doom to pull on the Superfriends. If Ansom is really that guileless, how can I take Parson seriously as a skilled warlord? He barely managed to beat someone who thinks he owns the Brooklyn Bridge. That's not something to brag about on your resume.



because the trick would have been less likely to work... Ansom might have been skeptical if Parson surrendered when he still had the majority of his forces intact. Parson used that trick at the time when he was really against the wall, when Ansom thought he was against the walls... the way Ansom saw it parson had played his final hand and was totally out of options...

Furtharmore, the trick goes well with the timing of collapsing the city... Just loosing their leader would spoil their moral a bit, but the coalition would still fight on... but destorying the city right after that and causing them massive casualties and damage, along with having numerous leadership units croaked, would make them feel like they were in a hopeless position


Pfui. What changed between Ansom trumping one of Parson's plans and Ansom trumping another of Parson's plans? Other than author fiat, why must forcing Parson into the dungeons (where he appeared to be safe from the DDR and could still fight on) signal the end of the war? It seems to me that if Ansom was gullible enough to walk into an obvious trap after he had secured a beachhead, he would have walked into the trap once he survived Wanda's attack and had breached Gobwin Knob's walls. The only thing that changed between those two situations is that the author revoked his Hero Death Battle Exemption card, but presumably the characters didn't actually know that.

And I disagree that this coincides well with the collapse of the city: it has nothing to do with that. Had Parson killed Ansom after the outer walls fell, he might not have needed to collapse the city at all. If the RCC ended its turn, Parson could try any other plans he had, knowing he could still collapse the city at any moment should the need arise. If the RCC pushed on, they would not have had Ansom there to DDR them to victory. It sure seems to me as though killing Ansom earlier had nothing but upside.



in fact, had Ansom croaked before the attack on the courtyard, the coalition might have decided to wait 1 turn before attacking the courtyard and thus have charlies aid in the courtyard fight... remember, parson knew ANSOM would attack the courtyard without waiting because of his pride; he could not be sure that the other members of the coalition shared his pride... with the loss of their leader, the coalition might have been more willing to wait until charlie could join them, which would have screwed Parson completely... parson NEEDED them to attack right away


Actually, this is another problem. Parson makes a big show of how they'd be doomed if Ansom didn't attack on this turn. But how on earth am I supposed to believe that when we now see him collapsing the city and (presumably) devastating the RCC forces in it? If Ansom had camped inside the outer walls HE might have survived (if he stayed on his carpet), but his army wouldn't. And given how easy it was to lure him into a trap, I have an even harder time believing his presence alone would be the difference between the Archons failing to capture the rubble and the Archons succeeding on their next turn.

So what difference did attacking this turn make? AFAICT, it didn't matter in the slightest. It was just a contrived line to add some tension by making it look as though Ansom's tactics made a difference.



Wanda took ZERO damage from the archons... the damage she took was 100% falling damage and it was enough to bring her to the near brink of death... Ansom on the other hand not only took the falling damage but also has additional damaged from the crushing weight of a twoll landing on top of him, followed by possible hits bogroll might have gotten in before croaking

Why would Wanda not have taken any damage? The Archons fired on her, and it was already established that they were strong enough to capture all of GK by themselves. If all of them opened up on a mere fraction of GK's forces (as they did), I would expect them to do some serious damage. Indeed, I find it rather hard to believe that Wanda survived in the first place.

The idea that she survived without a scratch while her mount was incinerated seems too unlikely to consider without some evidence to back it up. Wanda does seem to have some sort of shield around her in Panel 9 of page 121, but the shield is gone by the time she's falling in Panel 10. I think she took some damage there.

Meanwhile, we have Bogroll attacking Ansom by himself. Bogroll is clearly less powerful than Ansom, since killing Ansom leveled him twice. I find it hard to believe that Bogroll's attacks hit harder than all those Archons. So we have to assume that either the fall was much longer than Wanda's, that Bogroll landed on him and squished him, or both.

But either way, I find it very unconvincing. We know nothing of how falling damage works in Erfworld, but we've already seen people survive extremely long falls: if this fall is supposed to be dramatically worse because of its height, I just wind up wondering why Ansom flew up that high in the first place, much less to treat with an enemy on his own. If Bogroll managed to crush him to death in the fall, I think we should at least have seen some of the struggle to call attention to that fact. It makes Bogroll's sacrifice that much more meaningful, and makes Ansom's death look like less of a handwave.

I understand that there's no accounting for tastes, but I'm just disappointed by the way this has gone. As I feared, Parson's first victory over Ansom is also his last.

-H

ThreeEyedOni
2009-03-11, 11:00 PM
Woot!

Seriously, that's my response. I mean, it sucks that Bogroll died... I hope that somehow there'll be a way to bring him back. Maybe Charlie will need information from an insider?

I don't have any issues with "abrupt". I'm glad to know that he's well and truely dead, because (a) there's only so much of him that I can take (b) the next significant issue is Charlie, who may be unaligned now that the one he made a deal with is croaked.

The Old Hack
2009-03-11, 11:02 PM
The collapse of the city was a shock but not entirely unexpected. Sizemore mentioned the defenses that would make it possible way back here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html). What got to me... was the expressions of the Uncroaked when watching Parson's face as he gave that order. They were terrified.

Parson just scared the boop out of a bunch of Uncroaked. That should say a little bit about how happy he isn't right now.

Also, I have the feeling that Parson may not be entirely sure that the dungeons themselves will survive the fall of the city. Which is a quite good reason for telling the casters to assemble right next to the portals to the Magic Kingdom. Back door indeed. And very, very ruthless.

Wonderful page. And even so I still get the feeling that it isn't quite over yet. We'll see.

Aquillion
2009-03-11, 11:04 PM
Meanwhile, we have Bogroll attacking Ansom by himself. Bogroll is clearly less powerful than Ansom, since killing Ansom leveled him twice. I find it hard to believe that Bogroll's attacks hit harder than all those Archons. So we have to assume that either the fall was much longer than Wanda's, that Bogroll landed on him and squished him, or both.
Bogroll is a garrison unit, effectively a defensive structure from a mechanical standpoint. It's not so odd for those to be unusually strong even when their level is low or whatever. (Which they pay for, of course, by not being able to move.) Bogroll's sole purpose, basically, is to be able to beat up on dangerous things and take their hits at the same time.

Meanwhile, while Ansom was tough, we haven't seen any indication that he was amazingly strong in personal combat -- he was a leader and a warlord, not a heavy unit himself, so at least some of his bonuses from leveling up are going to go more into making his stack stronger rather than, say, being able to beat up Twolls singlehandedly. It was a match-up that favored Bogroll in some ways, even with his lower level.

Fjolnir
2009-03-11, 11:06 PM
"there are 4 known arkentools" we know of three (-dish, -hammer, -pliers)
the unseen fourth is out there as well as any that aren't currently known, this battle is showing us the major players in the titan's game and the board isn't fully set yet...

I agree when TB4GK ends, we're probably going to see erfworld: book 2 quest for the arkentools or something equally as inspiring for the title (unless parson goes home with a job well done)

ThreeEyedOni
2009-03-11, 11:15 PM
Pfui. What changed between Ansom trumping one of Parson's plans and Ansom trumping another of Parson's plans?

Available options.

Each one of Parsons moves have been progressively higher in risk in both success probability and risk to assets. His last option after the walls came down was Dancefighting, because the only way his smaller numbers could hold the castle relied on the Coalition lacking the ability to counteract it effectively.

The idea probably didn't take into account Charlie rejoining the Coalition, since by now Parson must see him as some kind of Deus ex Dorkina. Still, it was the only option shy of dropping the castle right away, which would probably be pointless if you couldn't hold a significant portion of enemy troops in the castle courtyard.

Any option is worthwhile to use before dropping the castle, since if that doesn't work to turn the tide there isn't much less.

"To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women" - Might as well have been Ansom

Ansom was just enough of a prig to be unable to resist personally dropping the final hammer of the battle, and just enough of a Royal to think that someone with their back to the wall wouldn't consider suicidal foul play.

Voyager_I
2009-03-11, 11:22 PM
But then, Ansom would have been the killer. Not Parson.

There's nothing Parson could have done to save Bogroll, and given that he existed purely to be a loyal minion, I can imagine no other way he would have chosen to die.

His death is regrettable, but it was also the best Parson could do for him.

Shua
2009-03-11, 11:34 PM
All I can say is, Well played Hamster. "do your worse"

~ Shua

Ragn Charran
2009-03-11, 11:34 PM
Agree with everyone who likes Ansom's lame-ass, non-hero, off-screen death. Kudos to Bogroll, way to earn your greatest wish.

I like the collapse, because it simultaneously hits both of Parson's strategic victory criteria. The weakened size and bonuses of the RCC and (temporarily) increased potential number of uncroaked make the RCC less/un able to take Gobwin Knob. The devastating morale effect on the RCC and destruction of city value make the RCC less/un willing to take Gobwin Knob.

I think Parson just taught Charlie a lesson on the real definition of win-win.

DCR
2009-03-11, 11:36 PM
487d6 points of damage. If I'm not much mistaken its a Minmax quote from Goblins.

Take cookie. (http://www.chocolaterewards.com/img/chocolate-chip-cookie_01.jpg)

Onmi
2009-03-11, 11:36 PM
There's nothing Parson could have done to save Bogroll, and given that he existed purely to be a loyal minion, I can imagine no other way he would have chosen to die.

His death is regrettable, but it was also the best Parson could do for him.

No, you can tell from Parson's 'Really!' that he hoped Bogroll survived, there was a CHANCE he could have survived, if the Coallition burning him is a hint then Regenration might allow croaked units to recover when killed if left alone and the corpse mostly intact, over powered, but for a unit that can't move? who has to defend the walls? yeah.

Parson ordered what he did because they burnt Bogroll, He knew there was a good chance he would die, but he hoped otherwise... So they payed for it, if they aren't all dead, they are trapped with Parsons turn up next. (Since Charlie rejoined the Coalition he loses his turn before Parsons)

slayerx
2009-03-11, 11:45 PM
Given that Parson had tried Thinkomancy tricks when the Archons were doing their DDR thing, I'm not sure it is reasonable for Ansom to pay no mind to the possibility of magical chicanery. But that's not really the central issue: even though Ansom got a Twoll when he expected Parson, he still voluntarily put himself within arms reach of an enemy whom he considered to be of the basest character. Why would he do that? I understand that he is prideful, but he could have accepted Parson's surrender at a time and place of his own choosing. I mean, how exactly would Parson have refused if Ansom told Charlie to have Parson meet him in the courtyard?

As for the Archons, they were next to him in appearance only. In order for Bogroll to have attacked him, Ansom must have been in the Tower sub-zone, and we know the Archons cannot leave the Airspace zone. If anything had gone wrong, there's nothing the Archons could have done about it from a combat angle (assuming Charlie hadn't been hanging Ansom out to dry). If Parson/Bogroll himself could fly into the airspace zone, then Archons could have lent him support, but that is not what happened.

ansom saw Parson was still able to use thinkamancy due to Maggie's attacks on the archons, NOT foolamancy

Well here i ask, what could parson do on his own?... Ansom may have been up there on his own, but as far as he could see Parson was also up there alone... at any point Ansom could will his carpet to retreat backwards back into airspace. If Parson tried to ambush him with troops, they would be far enough away that he could will his carpet away... if Parson were to attack himself, he would be fighting Ansom one-on-one, which Ansom is likely confident he can win; hell if parson stepped on to that carpet, he could will the carpet back into the airzone where the archons could fry him

the reason bogroll's attack was successful was because bogroll attacked and was not planning on surviving... while Ansom might see Parson engaging him in a duel on his carpet, he would not expect parson to tackle him and try to kill both of them. Had bogroll just simply attacked Ansom he would have met bogroll in combat, willed his carpet back, and let the archons fry him and kill the twoll himself; but bogroll didn't JUST attacked, he tackled him in an attempt to kill them both



And I disagree that this coincides well with the collapse of the city: it has nothing to do with that. Had Parson killed Ansom after the outer walls fell, he might not have needed to collapse the city at all. If the RCC ended its turn, Parson could try any other plans he had, knowing he could still collapse the city at any moment should the need arise. If the RCC pushed on, they would not have had Ansom there to DDR them to victory. It sure seems to me as though killing Ansom earlier had nothing but upside.

Parson states outright, that he would not win if they waited for the archons to join



Actually, this is another problem. Parson makes a big show of how they'd be doomed if Ansom didn't attack on this turn. But how on earth am I supposed to believe that when we now see him collapsing the city and (presumably) devastating the RCC forces in it? If Ansom had camped inside the outer walls HE might have survived (if he stayed on his carpet), but his army wouldn't. And given how easy it was to lure him into a trap, I have an even harder time believing his presence alone would be the difference between the Archons failing to capture the rubble and the Archons succeeding on their next turn.

So what difference did attacking this turn make? AFAICT, it didn't matter in the slightest. It was just a contrived line to add some tension by making it look as though Ansom's tactics made a difference.

several differences...
one, by not attacking the courtyard, ansom's troops would receive no additional damage, so they have higher health... furtharmore, the warlords that sizemore croaked during the battle would still be alive and at full health... and if they tried to do those attacks on their turn, the alliance forces would be 100% on the defensive and thus not be taken by surprised by sizemore's attacks; hell Ansom might have stayed together with all the warlords and thus would have croaked Sizemore if he attempt to pull such an attack, since he would be horribly over powered

We do NOT know how much damage collapsing the city has done, and any units that were not croaked can be healed through heals, or healed completely at the beginning of Ansom's next turn. furtharmore, if Parson were to attack Ansom, they would be fighting outside the courtyard out in the open; if the story of the 300 spartans tells us anything, it's that when you have fewer troops you want to fight in narrow areas to take away the enemies numerical advantage; parson was outnumbered like 4 to 1 i believe... the dance fighting was effective in the courtyard, because it took away ansom's ability to just swarm him and overpower him with numbers, and thus parsons quality troops won out; fighting out in the open the dance fighting would have been less effective as they would be fighting much harder



The idea that she survived without a scratch while her mount was incinerated seems too unlikely to consider without some evidence to back it up. Wanda does seem to have some sort of shield around her in Panel 9 of page 121, but the shield is gone by the time she's falling in Panel 10. I think she took some damage there.


Here you are just simply wrong, wanda took NO damage, that shield protected her and there is no indication at all that a single beam managed to hit her... no damage, pure 100% falling damage... your basis for confusion is under the idea that wanda was dealt more damage than Ansom, but there is no indication that she was hurt by the archons... that shield only popped up when a beam was about to hit her and she blocked it, but the shield only covers her and not her mount so she lost her mount and ended up falling... while most people speculate, and reading between the lines, to help make sense of what's going on, you seem to be doing the opposite; you speculate on what COULD be going on like anyone else, but instead of answering question you are adding confusion... you take that comic page at face value and you get wanda taking no archon damage and nearly dying from hitting the ground

Nitan
2009-03-11, 11:50 PM
Ansom. :(

Onmi
2009-03-11, 11:55 PM
What I love about this, is there IS no magical revive spell, no ressurection, otherwise Parson would have done that for Misty. Ansom has bit it, and there is no returning from death. The Coalition has lost the only thing that held them together.

As I used to hear all the time playing Dawn of War "Squad Broken!"

Lombard
2009-03-12, 12:26 AM
No wai, Ansom will get rezzed or something. Otherwise they would have shown the actual scene of him getting killed. Maybe they have a spell or the artifact will do it or he'll come back even more powerful as Ansom the White. :smalltongue:

lostknight
2009-03-12, 12:39 AM
Wonderful. I can't express how much I have been enjoying Erfworld.

And for my first post, I hereby postulate that the archons will soon be dwagon-bait.

ishnar
2009-03-12, 12:43 AM
Booping hard core.

Ansom is as dead as the tropes we were all expecting to be utilize in his death. No last speech. No last agonizing breath. No inner monologue. No 'avenge me...'

An anti-climatic death is his ultimate defeat.

This is Ghengis Kahn falling off his horse.
This is Alexander the Great dying from getting sick.
This is Elvis on his toilet.


The death of Kahn is pure speculation. Historians can't agree, not only on how he died, but where.

DevilDan
2009-03-12, 12:45 AM
Holy boop. They do not kid around. When they deliver want denouement, they really deliver.

I hope that little self-righteous speech was worth it, Ansom.

Arkaim
2009-03-12, 12:56 AM
What I love about this, is there IS no magical revive spell, no ressurection, otherwise Parson would have done that for Misty. Ansom has bit it, and there is no returning from death. The Coalition has lost the only thing that held them together.

As I used to hear all the time playing Dawn of War "Squad Broken!"

You know, a master class healomancer may be able to bring people back to life. Of course, this is just speculation, however, if it is true then it would make healomancers very valuabe indeed. In certain situations. As is the Sizemore.

SmartAlec
2009-03-12, 12:58 AM
Am I alone in thinking that the object of collapsing the city is not just to wipe out the RCC army, but mainly to force the Archons to fight underground if Charlie wants Parson - and being air units, this will put the Archons at enough of a disadvantage to make Parson's earlier mathamancy prediction for Charlie no longer applicable?

Crod
2009-03-12, 12:58 AM
I guess that cuts off the discussion about him having anything to do with FAQ. I find it hard to believe that can be the case now if he's not alive to be confronted by Jillian. It feels like there is a lot of plot yet uncovered, but where can they go from here? A gate in the dungeons was mentioned.

TamLin
2009-03-12, 01:03 AM
Well that was anti-climactic. I have trouble believing Bogroll was that tough. Or that Ansom was that squishy. Ah well. Ansom, of course, gets a bad rep just because he talks like d'Artangnan instead of Harry Callahan. He gets called a "prick" for making a victory speech, but if he had spat out a "I'm the best at what I do," or a "Deserves's got nothin' to do with it," instead he would have been being a "badass". Bogroll, of course, might as well have been walking around with a flashing neon target on his chest this entire time. In fact, I think he literally was at one point?

I wonder how long it's going to take Jillian, Vinny, and Stanley to get back?

Btw, would anyone else consider a moratorium on the use of the term "Checkhov's Gun"? It's starting to get a little annoying.

the_tick_rules
2009-03-12, 01:10 AM
Wow, that's a massive amount of plot to throw down at once. Ansom and Bogroll both going down at once?! I felt sad for bogroll, he was all right. A post of silence for him.

Titanium Dragon
2009-03-12, 01:14 AM
I felt Ansom's death was lame, not because of the manner but because it was offscreen. I would have liked to see him go down and see Bogroll fall fighting. It was rather disappointing this way, and felt very anticlimatic.


Well, for starters I'd have preferred if Ansom hadn't suddenly become stupid enough to accept a knave's surrender all alone, deep in enemy territory at the knave's own insistence, much less within arms reach of said knave. That would have helped.

It was entirely in character. Ansom never was the sharpest tool in the shed. Remember how he wanted to rush off to save a certain barbarian, and Vinny told him not to? This is the same sort of trap. Ansom was playing the hero, as he is wont to, and this time he paid for it.


Thirdly, I'd prefer if Ansom's final defeat didn't just happen because it was suddenly time to wrap up the Ansom storyline. Why on earth did Parson wait until this point to pull this trick? Why didn't he pretend to surrender after Ansom turned the tables on Wanda and broke into the city? There doesn't seem to be any reason this wouldn't have worked just as well then, and it would have made defending the courtyard a lot easier if it had worked. If it hadn't worked then, Parson would be no worse off than if it hadn't worked now.


A few reasons, really.

Firstly, remember, he mentioned his goal is to make the RCC unable or unwilling to take the garrison. Betraying Ansom would have probably just encouraged them to attack them all the harder, and he did not pull this out until the last moment.

Secondly, it involved sacrificing Bogroll, in all probability, something he wouldn't want to do unless he had to.

Third, if it didn't work, he'd have nothing to fall back on. Once he's already "lost", the ruse becomes all the more believable. Additionally, it wasn't until now that he'd wiped out most of the sensible warlords.


this is what I like about this comic - they are not using stereotypes.

Its not a good thing, actually. There's a reason people have death scenes, and its not because it is stereotypical - its because its better.

Sometimes it is appropriate for the villian to die to a single shot to the head, but at least they should die onscreen. Killing major characters offscreen is almost always lame, and the only instance in which it isn't is one wherein the outcome is meant to be ambigious.


I mean, how exactly would Parson have refused if Ansom told Charlie to have Parson meet him in the courtyard?

First off, surrendering from his tower looks more epic.

Secondly, though, it wasn't unreasonable for him to surrender the way he did - wanting to surrender in the presence of Charlie's men is an entirely logical move on Parson's part, and not an illogical suggestion given how much he angered Ansom.


And I disagree that this coincides well with the collapse of the city: it has nothing to do with that. Had Parson killed Ansom after the outer walls fell, he might not have needed to collapse the city at all. If the RCC ended its turn, Parson could try any other plans he had, knowing he could still collapse the city at any moment should the need arise. If the RCC pushed on, they would not have had Ansom there to DDR them to victory. It sure seems to me as though killing Ansom earlier had nothing but upside.


Thing is, you're forgetting when Charlie joined the RCC. When Charlie hadn't joined the RCC, Parson had better than even odds of winning. Once Charlie joined, that was that.

Its also worth noting that the archons are likely not susceptible to ground attacks, or not AS susceptible, which would make his strategy far less effective. With the RCC ground troops destroyed (or at least severely damaged), holed up in the dungeon with a bunch of fresh undead, it may not be a fight the Archons could win at that point. Basically, it was an option of last resort - every time he just took another step back.

Xeticus
2009-03-12, 01:17 AM
A couple of things. First. The Royal Coalition is alive!Before the walls came down they were sending unled troops in for the dance fighting. Parson was even complaining that they weren't sending in any more leaders for Sizemore to croak. So whatever troops are left can fall back to the leadership stacks outside and regroup. The coalition has been seriously mauled. I don't know what sort of troops they'll have left. I doubt enough to dig Parson out of the dungeons.

Second Ansom going in to personally take Hamster's surrender is very typical of him. Ansom always led from the front. As leader of the coalition he didn't risk his allies troops needlessly. That's why he led the dancefighting himself, whiy he sent Dora and Webinar into the tunnels. Ansom and Jetstone were always in the lead, always bearing the brunt of the fighting whenever possible. Ansom took royalty very seriously and lived according to his code of noblesse oblige. Unfortunately for him Hamster plays with a different rule book.

Third as for why the archons didn't take any action they were waiting for the start of a full turn. They had recently rejoined the coalition and didn't have their full actions yet. I think that was why Parson was so much of a hurry to spring the trap. he had the do as much damage as possible before the Archons were fully in play.

Anyway that's how I see it.

MorhgorRB
2009-03-12, 01:28 AM
The Twoll leveled.
... Twice.


Yeah. He snapped Ansom's neck, and landed on someone important. :smallamused:

TamLin
2009-03-12, 01:33 AM
Its not a good thing, actually. There's a reason people have death scenes, and its not because it is stereotypical - its because its better.

Sometimes it is appropriate for the villian to die to a single shot to the head, but at least they should die onscreen. Killing major characters offscreen is almost always lame, and the only instance in which it isn't is one wherein the outcome is meant to be ambigious.

Oh God, I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after "No Country for Old Men" came out about a year back...

Side 1: "Of coure it was anticlimactic, that was the point!"

Side 2: "We realize that was the point, but it being intentional doesn't make it less lame!"

And now I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after the last episode of "The Sopranos" aired a few months before that...

Side 1: "Of coure it was anticlimactic, that was the point!"

Side 2: "We realize that was the point, but it being intentional doesn't make it less lame!"

And now I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" premiered in 1599...

Myself, I always fall back in the differentiation between a story that's succesful and a story that's entertaining.

Aquillion
2009-03-12, 01:35 AM
Second Ansom going in to personally take Hamster's surrender is very typical of him. Ansom always led from the front. As leader of the coalition he didn't risk his allies troops needlessly. That's why he led the dancefighting himself, whiy he sent Dora and Webinar into the tunnels. Ansom and Jetstone were always in the lead, always bearing the brunt of the fighting whenever possible. Ansom took royalty very seriously and lived according to his code of noblesse oblige. Unfortunately for him Hamster plays with a different rule book.Also, don't forget, he went into the Donut of Doom -- and he would have fallen into a trap very similar to this the first time (when picking up Jillian), for the same reasons, if Vinnie hadn't been there to talk him out of it.

Voyager_I
2009-03-12, 01:39 AM
No, you can tell from Parson's 'Really!' that he hoped Bogroll survived, there was a CHANCE he could have survived, if the Coallition burning him is a hint then Regenration might allow croaked units to recover when killed if left alone and the corpse mostly intact, over powered, but for a unit that can't move? who has to defend the walls? yeah.

Parson ordered what he did because they burnt Bogroll, He knew there was a good chance he would die, but he hoped otherwise... So they payed for it, if they aren't all dead, they are trapped with Parsons turn up next. (Since Charlie rejoined the Coalition he loses his turn before Parsons)

That's not what I meant. Parson knew it was a suicide mission, even if he hoped by some miracle Bogroll would survive. In all likelihood, Bogroll knew as well.

However, Bogroll also would have been killed if the city fell, either in battle or via execution, and killing Ansom was one of their last options to tip the odds, and it can probably be assumed that Bogroll was the only available unit with a good chance of succeeding who wasn't absolutely crucial to continued defense thereafter.

runekiri
2009-03-12, 01:47 AM
Hey, i didnt have time to read the whole thread, but i wonder if its really that wise to think ansom is dead, i mean, it could have been a really powerfull foolamancer (explaining 2 level ups), i dont know how foolamancy works, but maybe they just made (whatever her name is) THINK bogroll lvld up.

(Im not very familliar with erfworld, ive read all the pages, but im more of an oots fan)

Werekat
2009-03-12, 02:01 AM
As a fan of off-screen deaths, I loved the development. Besides being nicely symbolic and very realistic at the same time, as per the post of the man who resides in the place which cannot be changed ;-), I believe it's a good way of showing that Ansom is not nearly a main character. Parson, his army, and their collective reactions are all more important than Ansom.

Although I still can't help but wonder why did Parson drop the city at that precise moment. Are the troops supposed to be more vulnerable without Ansom's bonuses? Was he trying to save Bogroll (though he cannot see the twoll being burned, I assume)? Time will tell, I guess.

Looking very much forward to new comics!


Yeah. He snapped Ansom's neck, and landed on someone important. :smallamused:

*laughs out loud* Win!

Onmi
2009-03-12, 02:07 AM
Hey, i didnt have time to read the whole thread, but i wonder if its really that wise to think ansom is dead, i mean, it could have been a really powerfull foolamancer (explaining 2 level ups), i dont know how foolamancy works, but maybe they just made (whatever her name is) THINK bogroll lvld up.

(Im not very familliar with erfworld, ive read all the pages, but im more of an oots fan)

Ansom has no Foolamancer on scene, we can guess from... well from everything that most casters are kept at home. Chances are if he BROUGHT a Foolamancer, Parson would know (breakfast meals)

Ansom is dead. The battle is won, the War may not be over, but this siege definitely will be.

factotum
2009-03-12, 02:32 AM
Even if Ansom is dead, I think people are forgetting the minor detail of a Barbarian princess who's in love with him...I can see Jillian becoming the next major antagonist for Erfworld story #2, if it ever gets written. She could return to FAQ and reclaim the city specifically to fight Stanley and Parson.

Tundar
2009-03-12, 02:36 AM
Impressive work.

1: Main charachter died off screen - that's a new one. If he really did die? Oh the suspence :)

2: Bogroll died, rest in peace.

3: Sizemore showing impressive powers. Again.


It just doesn't get much better than this.

DougTheHead
2009-03-12, 02:44 AM
Holy boop. I guess that ruthlessness really paid off.

Axl_Rose
2009-03-12, 02:44 AM
I don't think it's particularly likely to happen, but I'd be entertained if



The pliers function something like an Anhk of Reincarnation and brings Ansom back to life



It'd be keeping up with one particular motif throughout the series though.

TamLin
2009-03-12, 03:20 AM
I'm skeptical about any sort of "rez magic". Of course, I'm also skeptical that the battle is over. If some people's predicions held any water, this would be the second or third time that Ansom has croaked and the fourth or fifth time that the coalition has been "defeated" (going all the way back to the Donut of Doom. Who came up with that term anyway?).

TheTurnipKing
2009-03-12, 04:43 AM
No way is Ansom actually dead.
He's croaked. There may or may not be a resurrection ritual for heroes, it's difficult to say, though it doesn't seem to fit if there is.

I'm curious as to how Maggie knows that Bogroll was croaked, though I suppose she was under his direct command, so I'm guessing she can probably see his stats.

Called the collapse though. I suppose that's pretty much the end of the "Battle of Gobwin Knob", though it does leave an interesting tactical situation.

Onmi
2009-03-12, 04:47 AM
Even if Jillian does take FAQ, she only has her remaining barbarians, you think she can build up faster than Parson? with Ansom gone it's unlikely anyone's going to go to her aid. Dragon swarm here, FAQ taken, second headquarters.

Unless She's the AI in Gihren's Ambition, then she has Unlimited Funds.

Vreejack
2009-03-12, 05:24 AM
Did the main villain just die offscreen?

Yes. But that appears to be SOP for this story. I predicted way back when that Misty would not die off screen, but she did.

Most everyone dies off-screen in the real world, but you expect something different in drama. So here we have a shot of one of his allies grieving for him. Do you really need to see the splatter? Meanwhile Bogroll is being burned. Do you really need to see his suffering?

hajo
2009-03-12, 05:46 AM
RIP Bogroll
Endgame, indeed :smallamused:

I wonder how end-of-turn is determined when the usual commander is out...

Also, how much does it cost to rebuild a city, and how long does it take ?

Justyn
2009-03-12, 06:17 AM
Also, how much does it cost to rebuild a city, and how long does it take ?

If it can be done by magically taking money out of the treasury and having the city itself do the work, probably a few days to a couple weeks, if even "days" plural... If it has to be done by hand? Considering that there is no heavy industrial equipment, and the fact that they just collapsed the better part of a mountain? With the manpower they have now, we are talking years, if not decades of work.

As for how cost works... we have no frame of reference to what anything costs in Erfworld beyond that Stanley believes that 1,000 Shmuckers a turn for upkeep is high, that 2500 for a two-way thinkagram is somewhat in the high range, and that 500,000 is enough to empty the treasury of a nation that has been beaten back to its capital.

Ave
2009-03-12, 06:33 AM
If it can be done by magically taking money out of the treasury and having the city itself do the work, probably a few days to a couple weeks, if even "days" plural... If it has to be done by hand? Considering that there is no heavy industrial equipment, and the fact that they just collapsed the better part of a mountain? With the manpower they have now, we are talking years, if not decades of work.

Funny you talk about lack of 'manpower', they got lotsa potential manpower (i mean uncroaked).

Revlid
2009-03-12, 06:34 AM
Hurm. As awesome as seeing Gobwin Knob collapse like that was, it was undermined by the anti-climatic nature of Ansom's death - just one page, dedicated to showing Bogroll smash Ansom into the ground, and then get dragged down by the angry mob, would have been brilliant. Instead, it happens off-screen.

As disappointed as I am, I sincerely hope the pliers don't resurrect Ansom. There's been enough ass-pulling on his end already.

Justyn
2009-03-12, 06:39 AM
Funny you talk about lack of 'manpower', they got lotsa potential manpower (i mean uncroaked).

If you mean Manpower, he got destroyed (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0077.html). And those uncroaked are not going to last long (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html).

pendell
2009-03-12, 06:41 AM
Legends are, generally written by the winners;


I don't believe that's true. Again, American Civil War and Ireland; it's the losers in those wars who have all the mythmaking -- the winners have moved on.

As towards who will observe it .. you've already noted that the Archons observed what happened. I'm sure Jillian will ask them what happened and pay a minimal price to find out. From her the rest of the RCC and Vinnie etc. will learn about it. And from there it's in the hands of the bards or what not.

The idea found in 'Da Vinci Code' or Orwell's '1984' that a Ministry of Truth can overwrite human history for all time ... well, doesn't seem to happen often in real life. Remember the Samizdat and the dissidents of Soviet-Era Russia. The Soviets put a lot of effort into trying to control thought at all levels of society, and yet somehow the bankruptcy of their system hit home with the people actually living there.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

teratorn
2009-03-12, 06:50 AM
It's sad but Bogroll was the only one Parson could trust to do this. He was absolutely loyal.

I'm not sure Parson will be able to recover most of these corpses, they'll have a lot of rubble on top of them. Besides better if Wanda spends all of her juice on Ansom. If properly uncroaked, maybe undead Ansom maintains most of the bonuses he had when living. That, added with Wanda's necro-bonus, could make even Charlie hold back.

rxmd
2009-03-12, 06:56 AM
Legends are, generally written by the winners

No, legends are usually written by the losers. It's history that is written by the winner.

History is full of examples: In Germany there's lots of holocaust revisionism and discussions about superweapons that could have been brought to the fron within weeks, or there's East German nostalgia about the lost qualities of life, in American there's all the Confederate stuff, in Russia there's weird Cold War nostalgia, etc.

ReccaSquirrel
2009-03-12, 07:46 AM
I understand why a lot of people are disappointed with the sudden and jarring way we learn of Ansom and Bogrolls death. Some people feel cheated. But I suspect that's the point. When we play video games or role playing games like Parson is accustomed to, we get dramatic deaths right there in front of us. You might have a major duel and finally watch as the bad-guy succumbs. But this is not a game (or at least to Parson). Parson had to give Bogroll an order he knew was going to kill him. The way we learn of the outcome of the order is not for our, the reader's sake, to see Ansom's dramatic demise and Bogroll sacrifice. It is for us to feel how Parson did just now when he learned of the outcome.

For a brief moment, there was the tiniest bit of hope in Parson. There was no cheering or celebration when he learned that Bogroll succeeded. There was no witty comment. There was a sense of doubt that he needed to understand more fully. Then, when he learned Bogroll leveled, the surprise kicks in for perhaps the hope that Bogroll made it. But he learns Bogroll did not the pain of that loss hits him. That's when he orders the city tower destroyed.

This comic very effectively showed to us the character of Parson at a very critical part in his life. The time when he learned of the outcome of orders he gave to someone he considered a friend. It served as a painful reminder to us that to Parson, this is real and not a game.

DMcCoy1693
2009-03-12, 07:51 AM
Goodbye Bogroll. I will miss you.

glenndo
2009-03-12, 07:56 AM
What I don't get is, why did Parson bother to have Bogroll kill Ansom if they were going to collapse the whole thing anyways. All they would have needed to do was get Ansom of his flying carpet, and he would have croaked with everyone else. It seems un-Parson like to finsih a personal vendetta, when just doing the second part of the plan would have achieved the same results.

HandofShadows
2009-03-12, 08:03 AM
Wow. Really didn't think Ansom would bite it so early. Didn't have much hope for Bogroll making it. There is a microscopic chance he will pull though if the cavein put the fire out on time. That makes two characters from the "cast page' dead. Will all of be dead by the end of the story? It's one way to get narrative distance.

As things stand the RCC is royaly screwed. They lost Ansom their commander, they lost all the main warlords at GK and chain of comand is shattered. The lost almost all their ground troops at GK, but they aren't dead yet. There where other forces comeing up behind that where to support Ansom and there should be a few more minor warlords there. Vinny is still alive and so is Jillian. And Jillian is going to br very pissed off and may take command of the RCC through force of will.
GK lost Bogroll :smallannoyed: :smalleek: :smallfrown: and has only limited forces left and few, if any intact defences. But they may be able to "rebuild" some if Wanda can get some halfway intact bodies from the cave in. Sizemore still has his Golums and Stanley is comeing back with some dwagons and an Arkentool. It's possiable that the Arkenpliers could be recovered if someone could find them in the rubble.
The biggest question will be Charlie. Was his contact with Ansom and is it void now? Will he still support the RCC? Will he openly make a play for the Arkenpliers and violate the mercinary status?

HandofShadows
2009-03-12, 08:09 AM
What I don't get is, why did Parson bother to have Bogroll kill Ansom if they were going to collapse the whole thing anyways. All they would have needed to do was get Ansom of his flying carpet, and he would have croaked with everyone else. It seems un-Parson like to finsih a personal vendetta, when just doing the second part of the plan would have achieved the same results.

Ansom always kept his carpet nearby, there would have been no way of catching/killing him when GK came down. Also takeing out Ansom drew almost all the the RCC's local forces into GK as well as their warlords. Parson got most everyone in one fell swoop. If Ansom was still alive he would have meet up with the other forces heading to GK and might have been able to continue to attack.

DigoDragon
2009-03-12, 08:53 AM
While I figured Bogroll was going to by the farm, I didn't expect Ansom to kick the bucket on the way to the pastures. Wow, ruthless indeed :smalleek:
I hope Stanley had GK insured.

TAG
2009-03-12, 09:14 AM
You know, now that there is no city to preserve, I wonder if Siezmore can tap back into the lava flows and "resurrect" the volcano (while the few living members of GK's defense escape) as a final killing blow to the coalition.

Nomti
2009-03-12, 09:27 AM
As for Ansom also being dead, well, I believe the game has a HP mechanic. Ansom had already fought a lot that day, draining that HP to shrug the blows from all the undeads and Wanda. His HP should be on his last digits. This allowed Bogroll, as a heavy, to score those final points and bring him down. Hamster had the mathmancy artifact. He would surely send someone who had a good chance of taking out Ansom for good.



I think this misses something. I'd be willing to bet that Bogroll's odds were lousy. Remember, Parson is surprised that Ansom is dead. I think that was a combo of luckamancy and the fact that longshot isn't noshot.

It wouldn't surprise me to see a comment on it in a future strip. Something along the lines of "Yeah, surprised me too. That was a 13.6 percent chance. Just lucky, I suppose."

nomti

Hatu
2009-03-12, 09:41 AM
It was entirely in character. Ansom never was the sharpest tool in the shed. Remember how he wanted to rush off to save a certain barbarian, and Vinny told him not to? This is the same sort of trap. Ansom was playing the hero, as he is wont to, and this time he paid for it.


Ansom has not been portrayed with William Wallace's ability to ferret out traps, that is true. But the trap he winds up falling for is absurdly simple. Meeting an untrustworthy enemy all by yourself has an obvious and clear risk - that the person you meet will attack you. And sure enough, that's exactly what happens here. Parson didn't foil Ansom's contingency plans or misdirect him with an obvious feint, because Ansom hadn't given the least thought to what he would do if anything unexpected happened during this truce.

I think that's a good deal more blatantly stupid than Ansom's headstrong plan to rescue Jillian himself. Firstly, because we never saw the details of that plan; presumably there was some sort of ruse involved and Parson wasn't counting on Ansom to fall for a Dwagon with a blonde wig. Secondly, because Ansom has clearly learned to respect Parson since then. He specifically presses the attack this turn to avoid giving Lord Hamster more time to plan. After all the trouble Parson has caused, wouldn't Ansom at least contemplate that doing something that Parson himself requested could be bad?

At least make Parson have to lie twice.




Firstly, remember, he mentioned his goal is to make the RCC unable or unwilling to take the garrison. Betraying Ansom would have probably just encouraged them to attack them all the harder, and he did not pull this out until the last moment.

Secondly, it involved sacrificing Bogroll, in all probability, something he wouldn't want to do unless he had to.

Third, if it didn't work, he'd have nothing to fall back on. Once he's already "lost", the ruse becomes all the more believable. Additionally, it wasn't until now that he'd wiped out most of the sensible warlords.


The first and third points make no sense to me. Ansom provides a leadership bonus, presumably a large one. Even if killing him would enrage the RCC rather than splinter it, surely eliminating Ansom's bonus would be worth it; Parson was real big on the importance of force multipliers a few pages ago. Besides, the RCC should be just as enraged now, and they've already used Ansom's bonus and DDR skills to kill a bunch of GK's forces. If Parson can survive their rage now, he could have survived it when he was in an even stronger position.

Similarly, if the plan fails, the consequences would be just as bad now as they would have been then. Unless there's some specific reason why Ansom would be more likely to smell a rat, the plan has the same risk of failure either way. And I've seen no reason why Ansom would be more likely to smell a rat back then. He was just as arrogant, and he'd been trumping Parson's tricks as a matter of course. He had just breached the city's walls despite losing thousands of troops and boosting Parson's army by a large factor. Yet he broke through and had GK within his grasp. If Ansom is stupid enough to fall for this trick now, he was stupid enough to fall for it then.

Your second point, that Parson was reluctant to sacrifice Bogroll, is a good one. At the same time, there's no reason why this plan needed Bogroll specifically to work: Parson could have picked any burly unit to be veiled. Bogroll was not portrayed as particularly strong or smart (definitely not smart). Nor have I seen evidence that any of the other Twolls or KISS would have refused a suicidal order (given that it had an obviously beneficial goal), so I don't think loyalty was the issue. Would Parson really hesitate to sacrifice someone less close to him to eliminate Ansom? I'm not sure. But it is at least a valid argument.



Thing is, you're forgetting when Charlie joined the RCC. When Charlie hadn't joined the RCC, Parson had better than even odds of winning. Once Charlie joined, that was that.

Its also worth noting that the archons are likely not susceptible to ground attacks, or not AS susceptible, which would make his strategy far less effective. With the RCC ground troops destroyed (or at least severely damaged), holed up in the dungeon with a bunch of fresh undead, it may not be a fight the Archons could win at that point. Basically, it was an option of last resort - every time he just took another step back.

But again, everything you say about the RCC ground forces and Archons is just as much of a concern in this situation. If Parson killed Ansom after the outer wall was breeched, how would the RCC have been any more dangerous to him then than it is now?

Even knowing the Archons could join up with an offensive next turn, Parson still tried to defend the courtyard this turn. He obviously though inflicting lopsided casualties would be worth it. Since he'd have inflicted far more lopsided casualties without Ansom there to counter the dance-fighting bonus, I can only assume Parson would have come out ahead. And if by some fluke he didn't, he could still evacuate his troops to the dungeon and detonate GK around the RCC just like he is doing now.

Fundamentally, Parson's plan to kill Ansom had nothing to do with his plan to blow up the city. He could execute either one independently of the other. In a lot of ways, I think it would have been better if the two were related: for example, if Bogroll wasn't supposed to kill Ansom himself, just get him on the ground so the collapse would finish him off.

Intertwining the two plans this way would actually address a few of my concerns. First, it would provide a clear reason for why this plan isn't used until the very end - it destroys most of the city. Second, it makes trap Ansom falls for somewhat more subtle: the danger isn't the obvious risk of "Parson" attacking him, it's being on the ground rather than flying. Still something a cunning warlord might notice, but no longer something a child could point out to him.

It would still be a very abrupt end to Ansom, but at least it would be better grounded in the story (no pun intended).




Its not a good thing, actually. There's a reason people have death scenes, and its not because it is stereotypical - its because its better.

Sometimes it is appropriate for the villian to die to a single shot to the head, but at least they should die onscreen. Killing major characters offscreen is almost always lame, and the only instance in which it isn't is one wherein the outcome is meant to be ambigious.


I'm not sure to whom you're responding here, but on this I agree with you.

-H

Gamebird
2009-03-12, 09:43 AM
Yay! Ansom is dead!


And I'm not sure there's no city to preserve. One of the city segments is still controlled by Gobwin Knob forces. No one can claim to have taken a city until they control ALL parts of it. Parson bringing down the tower and courtyard parts was critical to destroying a large part of the RCC forces, which is critical to him being able to maintain control of a part of Gobwin Knob and thereby hold the city. Killing Ansom and so many RCC troops maximizes his chances of dissolving the coalition. His goal isn't to hold Gobwin Knob, but to make his enemies unwilling or incapable of taking it. He's progressing well towards accomplishing that goal.

AdmiralKit
2009-03-12, 10:14 AM
Ansom has not been portrayed with William Wallace's ability to ferret out traps, that is true. But the trap he winds up falling for is absurdly simple. Meeting an untrustworthy enemy all by yourself has an obvious and clear risk - that the person you meet will attack you. And sure enough, that's exactly what happens here. Parson didn't foil Ansom's contingency plans or misdirect him with an obvious feint, because Ansom hadn't given the least thought to what he would do if anything unexpected happened during this truce.

I think that's a good deal more blatantly stupid than Ansom's headstrong plan to rescue Jillian himself. Firstly, because we never saw the details of that plan; presumably there was some sort of ruse involved and Parson wasn't counting on Ansom to fall for a Dwagon with a blonde wig. Secondly, because Ansom has clearly learned to respect Parson since then. He specifically presses the attack this turn to avoid giving Lord Hamster more time to plan. After all the trouble Parson has caused, wouldn't Ansom at least contemplate that doing something that Parson himself requested could be bad?

At least make Parson have to lie twice.


Hatu, I think all of this comes down to your expectations on how Ansom would behave. Most of us see his actions as being completely in line with his personality. He's an above-average commander with strength in numbers and a variety of blind spots in terms of his strategic capabilities. The main things that we've seen about Ansom is that he's righteous to the point of arrogance, haughty about his position relative to others, a pretty honorable fellow, and not very cunning.

What Parson did was play these personality traits to get Ansom where he needed to be. When you play cunning against arrogance and honor, you're going to get under the skin of the person who is arrogant and honorable. Arrogance means you have to go up and rub it in that you're better, and honorable means that you accept the surrender by your enemy's chief in person; cunning is the ability to set the trap. It's like a good poker player: you play the person and not the cards. We've already seen that Ansom gets extremely offended when the idea of royalty being superior is impugned, and this was supposed to be his chance to prove that royalty is best above all.

As for your complaints about Bogroll vs. Ansom, well, Bogroll didn't need to do anything besides knock Ansom off his carpet and let gravity does the rest. Bogroll gets the XP because he was the character most responsible for dealing the damage, but it's not so much that Bogroll kicked the snot out of Ansom as he got the one sneak attack he needed. Bogroll is comparable to Parson's size, while most Erfworlders are significantly smaller. Simple physics dictates that Force = Mass * Accelleration, and Bogroll had mass and accelleration on his side against a surprised (and moving slightly backward to avoid the assault) Ansom. It's a suicide tactic, pure and simple, but the complete irrationality of suicide tactics is what makes them extremely difficult to defend against.

As for your Ansom vs. Wanda falling arguments, look at the respective heights they fell from. When the Archons destroyed Wanda's mount (as their attack only hurt air units), Wanda was (let's assume, given the panel) 10-15 feet in the air. A fall from that height is survivable, but can be deadly if taken right, and without the healomancy spells she'd have been croaked by now anyway. Ansom's fall was from a significantly bigger height. The Tower Efdup was, reasonably, at least 100' tall, and Ansom and Bogroll were at the highest level that one could stand on the tower. They had a lot farther to fall, which gives them more time to accellerate and get more force behind them before they hit the ground. Not many people fall from those kinds of heights and survive it.


Just some things to keep in mind when you think about it more.
-K

BillyJimBoBob
2009-03-12, 10:27 AM
No way is Ansom actually dead.Yes, he is. Bogroll would not have leveled (twice!) without getting a kill. At least he died a 7. Parson shows again and again that he isn't just a gamer. In the strip Bogroll asked if Parson had a mission for him, Parson says "I hope not." Then, when Parson says to Bogroll "You've got your mission," the next panel shows a very unhappy Parson. And the "oh," and the hanging head upon hearing that Bogroll was croaked again shows his humanity.

Ansom, weakened by Wanda's uber witchslap into falling damage and hordes of undead, perhaps a direct damage spell from a scroll or twelve, takes... um, 9.81 m/s^2 + Bogroll... 487d6 falling damage (cookie for reference catch) without his helmet this time (credit for pointing that out to lamech) and is croaked. Persons seeing this as contrived/backdoor... I disagree. Politely, respectfully - but totally uncompromisingly as well.Goblins. I'll have a macaroon, please. And I agree, Anson had been wounded previously in the turn. I did wonder about Bogroll's chances given that he was only a 5 vs. warlord who I figure is a 9 at minimum plus the Arcenpliers. He lost the 'Pliers right off, but a 9 vs a 5 is still poor odds. The falling damage must have sealed the deal, with Bogroll's regeneration letting him live until swarmed by the RCC troops.

Don't write off Bogroll just yet. The RCC troops are burning the "beast" for a reason.They burned him to croak him. We don't know for sure what Regeneration does, but Bogroll is dead. Maggie has "unitovision", and wouldn't report it if it was not a done deal. I wish we had seen Jillian burn the Twoll she killed while scouting, because that failure to show any special means required to completely finish a twoll was a missed opportunity.

RIP Bogroll, he was a very sympathetic character and I'd have liked for him to make it through this chapter.

Tweed
2009-03-12, 10:30 AM
Oh God, I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after "No Country for Old Men" came out about a year back...

Side 1: "Of coure it was anticlimactic, that was the point!"

Side 2: "We realize that was the point, but it being intentional doesn't make it less lame!"

And now I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after the last episode of "The Sopranos" aired a few months before that...

Side 1: "Of coure it was anticlimactic, that was the point!"

Side 2: "We realize that was the point, but it being intentional doesn't make it less lame!"

And now I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" premiered in 1599...

Myself, I always fall back in the differentiation between a story that's succesful and a story that's entertaining.

In my opinion this is the best rebuttal to the anticlimactic argument I've yet read. You, sir, deserve a cupcake!

Raguzert
2009-03-12, 10:47 AM
The best page i've seen since started reading Erfworld. Really hope that all that happened there is settled!

CaptC
2009-03-12, 10:49 AM
This may have been mentioned elsewhere, but I don't have time to read everything today, I'm afraid.

To those saying that Wanda is going to raise an uber-army: They have to control the battlefield where the slain lay for her to use her necromancy. The reason she could raise her first host was because they owned the tunnels where the bodies lay.

But Parson and the GK units are retreating to the dungeon - so Wanda doesn't have access to the bodies above-ground.

spotmarkedx
2009-03-12, 10:57 AM
I think this misses something. I'd be willing to bet that Bogroll's odds were lousy. Remember, Parson is surprised that Ansom is dead. I think that was a combo of luckamancy and the fact that longshot isn't noshot.

It wouldn't surprise me to see a comment on it in a future strip. Something along the lines of "Yeah, surprised me too. That was a 13.6 percent chance. Just lucky, I suppose."

nomtiThis.

I refer you to this recent strip: here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0142.html)

Pointyleaf
2009-03-12, 10:59 AM
I think this misses something. I'd be willing to bet that Bogroll's odds were lousy. Remember, Parson is surprised that Ansom is dead. I think that was a combo of luckamancy and the fact that longshot isn't noshot.

It wouldn't surprise me to see a comment on it in a future strip. Something along the lines of "Yeah, surprised me too. That was a 13.6 percent chance. Just lucky, I suppose."

nomti

Parson is surprised that Bogroll leveled twice and hopeful that Bogroll might be alive. I don't think he's that surprised that Bogroll won.

SOdhner
2009-03-12, 11:02 AM
As for your complaints about Bogroll vs. Ansom, well, Bogroll didn't need to do anything besides knock Ansom off his carpet and let gravity does the rest.

Gah, you beat me to it. Came here to say that, so I'll say it even though it's now been said:

Even if Bogroll did ZERO damage it's not unreasonable to think the fall alone could kill Ansom.

Even if Wanda took damage from the Archon's attack, it's not unreasonable for the fall to have left her wounded rather than croaked.

As said above, Wanda was flying down to grab the pliers when her mount was destroyed, and she was nearly there - if anything I'd say the falling damage she took would be from the inertia she already had built up flying down there. The actual distance involved was nothing. Ansom, meanwhile, fell from a MASSIVE height.

It may be wrong to figure physics into it, of course, since this isn't the real world. I'd think the most likely thing would be to assume that there's a fixed amount of damage (or fixed number of damage 'dice') per X feet. If that were, say, ten... then Wanda would have taken maybe 2X while Ansom took something closer to 10X. It's a big difference, and I'm betting that X does not equal 1.

FWIW: I would have liked to see Ansom hit the dirt, but it doesn't bother me that they did it the way they did. The little 'urk' noise as Bogroll clamped around his neck is enough.

slayerx
2009-03-12, 11:09 AM
What I don't get is, why did Parson bother to have Bogroll kill Ansom if they were going to collapse the whole thing anyways. All they would have needed to do was get Ansom of his flying carpet, and he would have croaked with everyone else. It seems un-Parson like to finsih a personal vendetta, when just doing the second part of the plan would have achieved the same results.

Well, one thing you have to keep in mind is that we don't know how much damage the collapse actually caused.... we don't know how many units were croaked, if they were badly damaged ofr if it was only enough to croak the heavily wounded or those that got hit hard like having an entire wall fall on top of them

In thoery, much of the coalition could still be alive and ansom and the other remaining warlords could have also survived the attack like that... If Ansom was not croaked this move would just piss him off... he would gather his forces back together, have the healers heal as much as they could and probably push on the charge... With Ansom gone however, his charisma is no longer a factor and as such the remaining warlords might be more willing to call it a day and leave.

x1372
2009-03-12, 11:35 AM
We're no strangers to warfare
You have your rules, and so do I
My lord's survival's what I'm thinking of
You would have simply croaked any other guy

I... just want to crush you into the ground
But you need to understand

never gonna let you up
never gonna let you out
never gonna let you hurt my lord hamster

And I'm gonna make you die
With no chance to say goodbye
And your Jillian's gonna cry 'cuz I broke you.

RIP Bogroll. Best. Lackey. Ever.

SteveMB
2009-03-12, 11:51 AM
But Parson and the GK units are retreating to the dungeon - so Wanda doesn't have access to the bodies above-ground.

GK will get their turn before the RCC (unless the shift to a new command changes where the RCC falls in the daily turn order). If the RCC pulls back from the ruins, or the surviving units holding the ruins are too weak to withstand a sortie from the dungeon, they'll be able to retake the area, though there's also the question of whether the bodies are now buried out of reach.

MReav
2009-03-12, 11:52 AM
To those that say Ansom went alone, he had an escort of Archons. It's not entirely his fault that they screwed him like that.

SteveMB
2009-03-12, 11:58 AM
To those that say Ansom went alone, he had an escort of Archons. It's not entirely his fault that they screwed him like that.

"Based on our last client's experiences, I strongly recommend that you consider purchasing the spell security option. Charlie's fees for this additional protection are nominal."

multilis
2009-03-12, 12:03 PM
To those that say Ansom went alone, he had an escort of Archons. It's not entirely his fault that they screwed him like that.Ansom was a royal who ganged up on non royals. Charlie is a non royal.

Charlie was in it for the *money*, not for helping a friend. Both Ansom and Stanley were threats/enemies, both sides are now weaker and Charlie is richer. Still a win-win for him, will remain so if he doesn't "get a bloody nose" by losing more Archons than the fees cover.

DoomedPaladin
2009-03-12, 12:28 PM
I think it's not because Ansom is dead per say, but because he died "off-screen'. this is something everyone has been anticipating for a very, very long time, and suddenly it's there and gone without even being seen.

I agree. Maybe this is one for a flashback. When Ansom gets rezzed with a 1-up mushroom, or a phoenix down, or something. I hope he truly IS dead. It's time for a new villain for us to love/loathe.

If Wanda has the juice to raise all those buried as undead it would make digging after Hamster a serious pain-in-the-ass. Dig up a rock, fight zombies, dig up another rock, fight more. I suspect though, that Stanley will arrive with his remaining Dwagons, rout the remainders of Ansoms demoralized armies. Then claim to be winner via his own skills. Stanley is still going to *BOOP* himself when he sees the smoking crater that was his home.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-03-12, 12:38 PM
Apparently Ansom's death doesn't force an end turn. I wonder who has that authority now?I was wondering the same thing. I've also been wondering how the mechanics work for Ansom, and not his king, to be the one to be calling for the end of turns, while in the field and not aware of what the king might be doing with the forces remaining to him back home. This is a huge contrast with Parson worrying about Stanley possibly ending turn at a poor moment.

Well, for starters I'd have preferred if Ansom hadn't suddenly become stupid enough to accept a knave's surrender all alone, deep in enemy territory at the knave's own insistence, much less within arms reach of said knave. That would have helped.Anson did have a potent bodyguard force with him, while "Parson" was alone. This does beg the question of why the Archons just hovered there and didn't help at all. Why were they there, if not for a situation such as this? Ansom didn't need a force of mercenaries to conduct his acceptance of Parson's surrender, especially if they are so unreliable as to be useless in any contingency which may arise. So perhaps the Archons were there simply to take Parson into custody. Which brings us back to Ansom being in essence alone, which if correct was a rather stupid decision on his part.

Charlie: Parson says he needs a truce so that he can surrender to you on top of the tower.
Smart Ansom: Ok. Your Archons can be present to bring him into custody. But, tell him to meet me at the base of the tower instead, since I have no flying forces of my own. I'm the victor, I set the terms.


(Another thought occurs to me -- how much did Ansom tell any of the other RCC leaders about the "surrender", and if so did those particular leaders survive? It's possible that, as far as the highest-ranking survivors know, Ansom simply went off on a wild tear of derring-do (again) and got himself croaked.)There was a general melee in progress. Then Parson called for a retreat and for Charlie to relay his desire to surrender to Ansom. Then we see the RCC forces in field parade in front of the tower, after the panels where it can be assumed that Ansom is receiving communications from Charlie. I think it's safe to assume that Ansom relayed what was going on to his other warlords, and then they arrayed their troops formally.

Starwaster
2009-03-12, 01:24 PM
So basically, People boop about ansom not being dead, and now they are about him BEING dead in a heavily forshadowed way that we all pretty much expected...
And its a backdoor?

It's not that he IS dead, it's how he died. The battle that killed Ansom should have taken 2-3 strips and his death should have been portrayed. Not... he's alive in the last panel of one strip.... and then dead in the beginning of the next.

Do the words 'anticlimactic' mean anything?

Starwaster
2009-03-12, 01:34 PM
And... in spite of what I posted a moment ago...

I just have to say this one more time:


Ansom, when the troll fell.

:biggrin:

Balance
2009-03-12, 01:34 PM
Do the words 'anticlimactic' mean anything?
Yes, it does. Just not what you think it does.

:smallbiggrin:

Starwaster
2009-03-12, 01:41 PM
Yes, it does. Just not what you think it does.

:smallbiggrin:


No, it means pretty much exactly what I think it does.

But then again, your reply wasn't actually meant to foster serious discussion, was it. :smallwink:

Kind of like on the Shadowrun forums when people started arguing about whether phys-ads were overpowered or underpowered.

fendrin
2009-03-12, 01:56 PM
And now I'm getting flashbacks of the debate after Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" premiered in 1599...

Myself, I always fall back in the differentiation between a story that's succesful and a story that's entertaining.

I can't really speak about your first two examples as I am not particularly familiar with them.

Shakespeare's "The Tragedie of Julius Caesar", however, is a work of fictionalized history. Of course it's not anticlimactic if you know the story.

Or is it?

A couple years ago, I was in a production of Caesar. With a modern audience, just about everybody knows that Caesar was killed by a gang of senators and the famous line 'Et tu, Brutus?'. Does that mean the death scene was anticlimactic? No! It was wonderfully climactic, even though it's only halfway into the play!

Have you ever seen the play staged? Shakespeare really isn't meant to be read.

For that matter, the BBC/HBO/RAI show Rome pretty much shows the same time frame as Shakespeare's plays (starts a little earlier than Caesar and ends roughly at the end of Antony and Cleopatra). Is it anticlimactic? Not even to me, even though I was already very familiar with both Shakespeare's and Pluturch's renditions of the story).

The big mistake (particularly with the play) is in assuming that just because it's named after Caesar, he is the protagonist. It is quite clearly the story of Brutus (though I'm not sure as anyone qualifies as a protagonist).

You don't get to use the phrase 'gang of senators' every day...

Glome
2009-03-12, 01:58 PM
So perhaps the Archons were there simply to take Parson into custody. Which brings us back to Ansom being in essence alone, which if correct was a rather stupid decision on his part.

Charlie: Parson says he needs a truce so that he can surrender to you on top of the tower.
Smart Ansom: Ok. Your Archons can be present to bring him into custody. But, tell him to meet me at the base of the tower instead, since I have no flying forces of my own. I'm the victor, I set the terms.


"Smart Ansom" would be just as dead after Sizemore came up from under the ground and 4chaned him after Bogroll's surprise attack. And in either case, collapsing the city would have finished Ansom off even if Bogroll failed.

Even knowing what we know now, it seems to me that Ansom was safer accepting Parson's surrender on the tower near where he had complete air superiority and away from the dirtomancer that he knew was capable of sniping commanders regardless of how many troops they were surrounded by.

The only way Ansom could have saved himself is if he sent someone else to accept Parson's surrender instead or simply choose not to accept a surrender and 'needlessly' put his soliders at risk, which I believe would be highly uncharacteristic of who Ansom was in the first place.

For Ansom to believe that Parson or his doppleganger put his life at risk at the tower would require him to assign traits to Parson that he was unwilling to do, namely that Parson/Bogroll was loyal enough to sacrifice their own life to save Gobwin Knob.

Crod
2009-03-12, 01:59 PM
My first reaction was to be a bit disappointed. But after letting it sink in for a while, I must say this is a very strong update. It feels very artistic with great graphics that capture the sad loss of both Bogrol and Ansom. One of the best. It feels very final, but I have a feeling we have a few more turns left.

And you have to love the uncroaked marbit.

fendrin
2009-03-12, 02:11 PM
"Smart Ansom" would be just as dead after Sizemore came up from under the ground and 4chaned him after Bogroll's surprise attack. And in either case, collapsing the city would have finished Ansom off even if Bogroll failed.

Even knowing what we know now, it seems to me that Ansom was safer accepting Parson's surrender on the tower near where he had complete air superiority and away from the dirtomancer that he knew was capable of sniping commanders regardless of how many troops they were surrounded by.

The only way Ansom could have saved himself is if he sent someone else to accept Parson's surrender instead or simply choose not to accept a surrender and 'needlessly' put his soliders at risk, which I believe would be highly uncharacteristic of who Ansom was in the first place.

For Ansom to believe that Parson or his doppleganger put his life at risk at the tower would require him to assign traits to Parson that he was unwilling to do, namely that Parson/Bogroll was loyal enough to sacrifice their own life to save Gobwin Knob.

Arguably, if Ansom was using his carpet as a stage just a few feet off the ground, he could have flown up to evade whatever Sizemore tried to do. Essentially, Parson's plan was playing the player, not the game. He used Ansom's overweening pride to take him down. Pretty much the definition of hubris, and the sort of thing that makes 'pride goeth before a fall' downright literal in this case.

Besides, when have we seen Ansom acting intelligently?

hajo
2009-03-12, 02:33 PM
If properly uncroaked, maybe undead Ansom maintains most of the bonuses he had when living
Nice idea: Wanda in control of Ansom, when Jilian comes back.
How would that play out ? :smalleek:

randomnondescri
2009-03-12, 02:45 PM
Ansom, a lord in the style of old,
Disliked by others to be told,
How nobility's dead,
But so swelled was his head,
That the fool let himself get Bogroll'd

Balance
2009-03-12, 03:05 PM
No, it means pretty much exactly what I think it does.

But then again, your reply wasn't actually meant to foster serious discussion, was it. :smallwink:
Well, it was intended as a light-hearted jab, but still...

You've got a clash of diametrically opposed leader archetypes.
You've got escalating move/countermove exchanges for page after page.
You've got a mass battle, complete with musical score, before the gates of a magic tower.
You've got stunning (and very symbolic), last-minute treachery at the top of the tower, high above the massed army.
You've got a suicidal assault.
You've got a deadly plummet from the sky.
You've got a city collapsing into a volcano.*

All of this, for someone who isn't, in my humble opinion, even the primary antagonist. What more do you want? Do the Titans have to appear in a rain of fire and sequins?

My only concern is that it might make the rest of the story--and there's still a bit more to come--seem small and petty by comparison.

*I find this striking for a reason beyond the sheer scale of it. When the dark fortress collapses, it's usually because the villain has just been killed. :smallsmile:

Yahoo_Serious
2009-03-12, 03:18 PM
Does anyone know the rules for units leveling up?

Bogroll leveling up twice might mean one (or both) of two things:

1) Being the one to finally croak Ansom simply gave him lots of XP, and Erf uses a mechanic where all the XP award for croaking a given unit goes to the one who makes the killing blow, regardless of who did previous damage to the unit or had any other role in its croaking.

2) The mechanics of leveling takes 'heroism' into account, suggesting that a lot happened between 144 and 145, with Bogroll not only taking out Ansom but also making a particularly heroic last stand against impossible odds. That this is unseen in the comic adds IMO to the sense of the loneliness of Bogroll's fate and the depths of his loyalty to Hamster, as well as the extent to which Parson is sobered by his sacrifice.

Carne
2009-03-12, 03:20 PM
Anson did have a potent bodyguard force with him, while "Parson" was alone. This does beg the question of why the Archons just hovered there and didn't help at all. Why were they there, if not for a situation such as this?

The Archons had already moved when Charlie ended his turn. Thus they were all stuck in the Airspace zone with no move. Later, RCC turn begins and Charlie allies with RCC. The Archons are still out of move at this point. In order to move, the turn needs to progress to RCC's next turn (i.e. after GK has moved) whereupon their move is refunded.

However, we also know that movement within a zone is not counted towards actual movement. Apparently, casting is still possible, since the archons could cast at Wanda during the first loss of the Arkenpliers (suggesting that casting takes no move, but not necessarily no time). ALso, since Wanda was flying, we'll assume she's in the same Airspace zone as the archons.

Why not zap Bogroll? Perhaps the tower (and the airspace, little a, surrounding it) are considered courtyard and you can't cast across zone boundaries. Perhaps there wasn't time to cast, since it all happened very quickly. Why not cast feather fall or an equivalent on Ansom? Perhaps they're not "that kind" of caster and don't have utility spells.

There are enough plausible reasons that fit with the facts presented thus far in the storyline that the archons doing nothing is not out of place IMO.

hajo
2009-03-12, 03:26 PM
Stanley is still going to *BOOP* himself when he sees the smoking crater that was his home.

I don't think so - he expected GK to go down when he left for faq with Jack, his dragons, and the knights.
So, the only surprise would be how many losses they managed to inflict on the RCC....

Bongos
2009-03-12, 03:40 PM
NOOO!! BOGROLL!

So sad, yet that is how the Twoll wanted to go out!

As they say, "Pride goeth before a fall" in this case literally for Ansom.
Man, did Ansom get played or what!?!

It's not over yet, with Ansom dead, is Charlie still his ally?
If they are not allies anymore, it's Charlies turn next and he
has all those Archons floating around, and he wants Parson and all the
artifacts.

If they are still allies can Wanda uncwoak all those coalition forces augmenting their defenses even more?

Can those Archons make it into the dungeon? Technically one of the 3 zones
of Gobwin Knob is still standing so GK has not fallen yet.

When is Stanley getting back?

Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of Erfworld to find out!

BillyJimBoBob
2009-03-12, 03:48 PM
"Smart Ansom" would be just as dead after Sizemore came up from under the ground and 4chaned him after Bogroll's surprise attack. And in either case, collapsing the city would have finished Ansom off even if Bogroll failed.Nope. Flying units can not be attacked by ground units without magic or archery. Ansom was safe from Sizemore (we haven't seen Sizemore throwing bolts of power around, yet) and his golems. And Smart Ansom would not be harmed by the collapse of the tunnels for the same reason.

I agree when TB4GK ends, we're probably going to see erfworld: book 2 quest for the arkentools or something equally as inspiring for the title (unless parson goes home with a job well done)I wouldn't mind seeing a little hopping back and forth, Thomas Covenant style.

Bogroll is a garrison unit, effectively a defensive structure from a mechanical standpoint. It's not so odd for those to be unusually strong even when their level is low or whatever. (Which they pay for, of course, by not being able to move.) Bogroll's sole purpose, basically, is to be able to beat up on dangerous things and take their hits at the same time.

Meanwhile, while Ansom was tough, we haven't seen any indication that he was amazingly strong in personal combat -- he was a leader and a warlord, not a heavy unit himself, so at least some of his bonuses from leveling up are going to go more into making his stack stronger rather than, say, being able to beat up Twolls singlehandedly. It was a match-up that favored Bogroll in some ways, even with his lower level.Ansom's unit strength is unknown, it's true. But if there was any foreshadowing done by the authors, then he is at least a 9 without the Arcenpliers. Vinny asked Ansom if he was going to go croak Jillian with his bare hands, and Jillian is a 9. Bare hands would mean without the Arcenpliers. I'm not saying that this chat between friends has to have been a means to try to define Ansom's unit strength, but it could have been.

Thing is, you're forgetting when Charlie joined the RCC. When Charlie hadn't joined the RCC, Parson had better than even odds of winning. Once Charlie joined, that was that.Close. Without Charlie joining the RCC then GK had a 3:2 chance of surviving the turn, not winning. Huge difference.

Do you really need to see [Ansom] splatter? Meanwhile Bogroll is being burned. Do you really need to see his suffering?Agreed. In the same way that we didn't need to see the kids legs broken or the mate being pinned to the tree in the latest OotS.

All they would have needed to do was get Ansom of his flying carpet, and he would have croaked with everyone else.The mice were being harassed by the cat. They held a meeting to see what to do about it. One mouse suggested that if they put a bell around the cat's neck, it would warn the mice when the cat was approaching. All the mice thought that this was a wonderful idea. But....who will bell the cat?

Vinny is still alive and so is Jillian. And Jillian is going to br very pissed off and may take command of the RCC through force of will. I don't think so. Jillian commands her small troop, but has expressed a dislike for being an heir, a dislike for royalty, and a dislike for the heavy responsibilities of leadership in general. She is happy being a mercenary warlord, and I don't see her rallying the remnants of the RCC under her.

Your second point, that Parson was reluctant to sacrifice Bogroll, is a good one. At the same time, there's no reason why this plan needed Bogroll specifically to work: Parson could have picked any burly unit to be veiled. Bogroll was not portrayed as particularly strong or smart (definitely not smart). Nor have I seen evidence that any of the other Twolls or KISS would have refused a suicidal order (given that it had an obviously beneficial goal), so I don't think loyalty was the issue. Would Parson really hesitate to sacrifice someone less close to him to eliminate Ansom? I'm not sure. But it is at least a valid argument.Some magic systems use or at least pay homage to the rules of sympathetic magic. Like with like makes for a stronger magic. Bogroll was essentially Parson's twin brother in twoll form, if Erf magic pays any homage to the principals of sympathy then Bogroll was the candidate who could be given the strongest veil of looking like Parson.

Hatu
2009-03-12, 04:10 PM
Essentially, Parson's plan was playing the player, not the game. He used Ansom's overweening pride to take him down. Pretty much the definition of hubris, and the sort of thing that makes 'pride goeth before a fall' downright literal in this case.

Besides, when have we seen Ansom acting intelligently?

I believe it is possible for someone to be overbearingly arrogant, outraged, and not much given to cunning, yet still be smart enough not to stick his neck into a rival's guillotine on a dare. Ansom is hidebound, but he is also a successful Warlord. To me, that implies a base level of competence. If you tie a towel around your eyes, I'd expect he would still be able to see you. If you claim to be King Slately, I'd expect him to look you over once before following your commands. And if you ask to meet him, alone, at the highest point of your fortress to discuss your surrender, I'd expect him to at least think "Huh, how about I bring a few guards."

It certainly doesn't help that Ansom's acceptance of this monumentally unwise parley was handled almost entirely off-camera. We never did see exactly what Charlie told him, what he told his troops, or what he thought about the arrangement. If Ansom had a concrete reason to expect no treachery (or to believe he was protected against any such attempt), this might have been more palatable.

But as is, it sure seems like Ansom is gullible enough to fall for any bait you choose to offer him. I find that out of character, even for him.

-H

Anias
2009-03-12, 04:55 PM
...the trap he winds up falling for is absurdly simple. Meeting an untrustworthy enemy all by yourself has an obvious and clear risk - that the person you meet will attack you. ...

Ok, let's consider this. Ansom has a handful of archons with him, has the Arkenpliers (an immensely powerful artifact), and is, himself, one of the most powerful warlords in Erf (at least as far as we know). He is meeting with a single, low-level warlord (Parson's bonus was only 2, if you check). The force brought to that meeting could probably destroy most of GK's remaining forces, given the opportunity! Ansom lost, and died, not because he was stupid, not because he was just a plot device, but because he was the height of nobility and honor in Erfworld, because he was already badly injured, and because Parson got lucky. Plain and simple. It's not a ridiculously easy ploy, it's one that few people would have seen through (yourself included, I'd bet), especially given the foolamancy disguise and the fact that his forces were more than sufficient to destroy any unit Parson sent. If Parson had attacked Ansom, Parson would have been dead. If Parson had given another unit, such as Bogroll, a disguise, and had that unit attack Ansom, that unit would be...dead. Only the element of surprise, Ansom's wounded state, and the fact that no one expected a suicidal assassination attempt (a move that no "noble" would even consider).

Kreistor
2009-03-12, 04:57 PM
But as is, it sure seems like Ansom is gullible enough to fall for any bait you choose to offer him. I find that out of character, even for him.

Wizard's First Rule: People will believe any lie they want to be true or fear to be true.

In Ansom's case, he'll believe any lie that proves his superiority. Parson surrendering would fit that bill.

Pointyleaf
2009-03-12, 05:01 PM
I believe it is possible for someone to be overbearingly arrogant, outraged, and not much given to cunning, yet still be smart enough not to stick his neck into a rival's guillotine on a dare. Ansom is hidebound, but he is also a successful Warlord. To me, that implies a base level of competence. If you tie a towel around your eyes, I'd expect he would still be able to see you. If you claim to be King Slately, I'd expect him to look you over once before following your commands. And if you ask to meet him, alone, at the highest point of your fortress to discuss your surrender, I'd expect him to at least think "Huh, how about I bring a few guards."

It certainly doesn't help that Ansom's acceptance of this monumentally unwise parley was handled almost entirely off-camera. We never did see exactly what Charlie told him, what he told his troops, or what he thought about the arrangement. If Ansom had a concrete reason to expect no treachery (or to believe he was protected against any such attempt), this might have been more palatable.

But as is, it sure seems like Ansom is gullible enough to fall for any bait you choose to offer him. I find that out of character, even for him.

-H

Really? Cause I look at the other traps (rescuing Jillian, Donut of Doom) and Ansom going up the wall "to make a weak spot" and almost getting captured by Wanda and I see a brave, daring, naive, shortsighted leader.

DevilDan
2009-03-12, 05:09 PM
Yes, Ansom got snookered. It happened many times when leaders, even capable ones, fought conquerors who had a vaster store of knowledge to call upon or when they presumed that the conquerors would be more honorable.

Look at Lempira, at Atahualpa, and at Moctezuma II.

(For those unfamiliar with Lempira's story, from Wikipedia:

The Spanish, on instruction from their Governor, Francisco de Montejo, attacked him at Cerquin, near Gracias a Dios. Lempira, according to Herrera, retreated to a fortified hill top where he resisted the Spanish for many months. Finally, the Spanish lured him out to talk, and a concealed Spanish soldier with an arquebus shot and killed him. On seeing this, Herrera reports, the Lenca surrendered.

Trixie
2009-03-12, 05:21 PM
"Smart Ansom" would be just as dead after Sizemore came up from under the ground and 4chaned him after Bogroll's surprise attack. And in either case, collapsing the city would have finished Ansom off even if Bogroll failed.

Yup. It is very Un-Parsony to make a plan that will succeed only with a particular enemy move. I think he had plans for all other occasions.


Even knowing what we know now, it seems to me that Ansom was safer accepting Parson's surrender on the tower near where he had complete air superiority and away from the dirtomancer that he knew was capable of sniping commanders regardless of how many troops they were surrounded by.

Yup. He, as far as he saw it, already won, all while trying to prove his nobility.


The only way Ansom could have saved himself is if he sent someone else to accept Parson's surrender instead or simply choose not to accept a surrender and 'needlessly' put his soliders at risk, which I believe would be highly uncharacteristic of who Ansom was in the first place.

And I think that if Ansom tried to pull that, he would pretty much lose all of his remaining prestige on the spot. He was already viewed as incompetent, if he send someone else he wouldn't prove that nobility is better, he would have appeared to be afraid, or, even worse, he would transmit message that this victory is worthless if he hadn't even bothered to confirm it in person.

Sky_Schemer
2009-03-12, 05:51 PM
Fundamentally, Parson's plan to kill Ansom had nothing to do with his plan to blow up the city. He could execute either one independently of the other.

Not true at all, and this is the key point here. Parson had suggested collapsing tunnels several strips ago, but Sizemore suggested that Ansom would just walk in and claim the rubble (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html). For this idea to work at all, Ansom had to be croaked first. He could not do one without the other.

DevilDan
2009-03-12, 06:20 PM
Parson, what is best in life?
To render your enemy incapable or unwilling to take your garrison.

He would always want to keep an option to take out Ansom as part of cutting down bonuses and targeting leadership; but Ansom was also a known quantity. Better the devil you know, right? When all boop breaks loose, you move on multiple fronts, as Parson did.

Parson adapted, planned for contingencies, made quick decisions, used his brains, and played to win.

scotchmonger
2009-03-12, 06:34 PM
Wizard's First Rule: People will believe any lie they want to be true or fear to be true.

In Ansom's case, he'll believe any lie that proves his superiority. Parson surrendering would fit that bill.

I was figuring someone else might bring this up but it seems like Ansom might not have had a choice in attempting the tower capture.

Parson is bound to provide Mathmancy calculations to Charlie as part of the deal he made to save Stanley. Everything that's happened since then makes it seem that Parson has no choice in fulfilling his part of the bargain as long as Charlie doesn't breach first. Especially since the first two calculations he asks for are to Parson's disadvantage (Can I beat you with this force? no? ok, how much more do I need to win?)

On Page 130 Panel 3, Parson guesses that Ansom is bound to capture him. Bound being the operative word -- If Ansom fails or refuses, he is in breach of his latest contract with Charlie.

I think Parson used a confirmed but well-educated guess about the contract - based on his own dealings with Charlie to put Ansom in a compromised situation.

Even if he would have normally been suspicious of Parson's motive's, he really can't afford to miss a capture opportunity with Charlie's contract hanging over his head.

The mechanics of magical contracts or bindings aren't explicit but everything so far suggests that they are potent -- powerful enough for Charlie to base his fees upon at least. Since he says he's in a no-lose situation, I'm guessing he has reason to believe they can be enforced even if we don't know exactly how.

Thayus
2009-03-12, 07:13 PM
Oh the mighty men of Jetstone
Their testes have not yet grown!
Their King stays home and gets stoned
While their prince goes out and gets pwned!

-Thayus

Jeivar
2009-03-12, 07:14 PM
Hm. So Ansom is done for. I personally didn't really have anything against the guy, not in a morally ambiguous setting like Erf, but the plot must move on.

Now I'm wondering what Jillian's new plan is going to be. The man she loved and followed is dead, the woman she loved has proven to be a manipulative, sinister liar, her employers have been devastated, Faq is still unclaimed, and if Stanley manages to rebuild his forces somewhat, she has no realistic chance of getting to him. I guess she could go back to freelance mercenary-work, but that would require her to either leave the plot for a while, or for the comic to do a time-jump, and catch up with all the surviving characters after a period of shaky peace.

abb3w
2009-03-12, 07:17 PM
It seems a missed opportunity; the troops in the courtyard are calling "Burn Beast!" when there is a perfect opportunity for them to be screaming....

"KILL IT WITH FIRE!!!" (http://images.google.com/images?q=%22KILL%20IT%20WITH%20FIRE%22)

It would have made for a more fitting epitaph.

Perhaps it might be changed before the volume reaches print...?

Wakky
2009-03-12, 07:55 PM
A few people in this thread and others previous have mentioned the possibility of the Arkenpliers falling into Wanda's hands, and her becoming attuned to them. However, I find that kind of hard to believe.

Wanda is a Croakamancer. Why would she be attuned to a weapon that destroys uncroaked at a touch? If she dramatically gestures with it it could disintegrate one of her own Warlords!



**SPOILER ALERT!**



I think it's much more likely that although the Pliers fall into Parson's hands, Jillian is the one who's actually attuned to the Arkenpliers. That way, as she's pursuing her revenge against Parson and Stanley, a crucial plot point would be Jillian fighting Wanda for control of the Pliers, with Jillian eventually winning them, along with a crucial turn in a battle.

Anyway, having both the Arkenpliers and the Arkenhammer on Stanley's side would make him overpowered, so that situation cannot last.

Fez
2009-03-12, 08:02 PM
This was discussed briefly in prior threads but,



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.

So what 'zone' is the dungeons? I presume its the garrison essentially? The last fortified zone? Airspace is controlled currently by the RNC via Charlie. The Outer Walls are gone, but would be in control of the RNC. Sizemore is collapsing the tunnels. That leaves the garrison as the sole remaining zone for the GK troops? If there are no more outer walls standing do they still count as a zone? Same for tunnels. I would assume they must, otherwise a town could make itself 'invulnerable' to ground based attacks by having neither tunnel nor wall.

Still, if Parson via Stanley's return can take away the 'total control' of airspace from RNC, could that create a stalemate? Charlie likes pure win engagements, if he has to bear the primary cost of finishing off GK, is this all still worth it to him? He certainly doesn't want to own GK and become the next Stanley that everyone teams up against.

Goshen
2009-03-12, 08:07 PM
I was under the impression that Sizemore was cooking off pre-made spell defense's that allowed for collapses. Much like Wanda did to all those fliers. Now I wonder how many survivors are left in the ruble.I think you mean "rubble". With the current Russian banking crisis, the Ruble is not a sufficiently hard currency to kill anyone by landing on them. :smalltongue:

Subtext
2009-03-12, 08:29 PM
Oof...someone should've shown Ansom that picture before actually laying siege...

http://icanhascheezburger.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/funny-pictures-legos-try-to-lay-siege-on-the-cat.jpg

Lamech
2009-03-12, 09:21 PM
I think you mean "rubble". With the current Russian banking crisis, the Ruble is not a sufficiently hard currency to kill anyone by landing on them. :smalltongue:
:smallbiggrin:lol:smallbiggrin:
I thought something was wrong with my attempt as spelling "rubble". I think the mind-reading capabilities of my spellchecker must not be working. How odd... maybe I should stop relying on it so much.

Ovaltine Patrol
2009-03-12, 09:38 PM
I'm still a little surprised that Charlie let it happen. Even though Ansom had not paid for magic security, Charlie himself more or less knew it was a trap. I know he's got an agenda, but surely he depends on his reputation to get his contracts and at the prices he secures. I don't think other potential employers are going to look at this and say "He adhered so closely to the contract that it contributed to his previous employer getting killed, that's the kind of loyalty I admire in a mercenary!"

Unless of course Charlie is escalating things to the point where he never has to play mercenary again.

RedXian
2009-03-12, 09:39 PM
This isn't over yet...

Is it not Charlie's Turn next?

VariaVespasa
2009-03-12, 09:40 PM
We're no strangers to warfare
You have your rules, and so do I
My lord's survival's what I'm thinking of
You would have simply croaked any other guy

I... just want to crush you into the ground
But you need to understand

never gonna let you up
never gonna let you out
never gonna let you hurt my lord hamster

And I'm gonna make you die
With no chance to say goodbye
And your Jillian's gonna cry 'cuz I broke you.

Did you just Rick-Roll this thread?? Someone kill this man, he must not be allowed to perpetrate such evil again! :P

Partywhipple
2009-03-12, 09:40 PM
Let's hope it's for real. I was never impressed with bogroll so I am happy to lose him killing Ansom. Woot!

Estelindis
2009-03-12, 10:13 PM
Well, that was something of an anti-climax... :smallconfused:

Aquillion
2009-03-12, 10:23 PM
Anyway, having both the Arkenpliers and the Arkenhammer on Stanley's side would make him overpowered, so that situation cannot last.That implies all sorts of assumptions. You're assuming Wanda (and, I suppose, Parson) will remain on Stanley's side indefinitely, you're assuming Stanley will survive, and so forth.

And even with all that, there's no reason to think that Stanley will be any more invulnerable with two Arkentools than he was with one Arkentool. The thing about giving twice as much power to an idiot is that it just lets them fail twice as fast.

LurkerInPlayground
2009-03-12, 10:43 PM
Well, that was something of an anti-climax... :smallconfused:
Of course, I just see Ansom's death as part of a building climax . . .

Fjolnir
2009-03-12, 11:10 PM
@ Varia no, he's Bogroll'd the forums :-)

I think charlie is going to get more proactive since as people already have said, he's completely BOOPED himself as far as reputation goes.

I wouldn't be surprised if WE find out the truth about Faq here before jillian does IF stanley returns after this current turn ends

this is the end of the RCC for now, certain foes may return such as vinny and jillian but I don't know on which side they'll be on

Lombard
2009-03-12, 11:42 PM
Something just seems off with this, Ansom's gonna get rezzed somehow, maybe the only way they attune to you is if you're dead (but not undead) or something and you get rezzed when it happens.

archon_huskie
2009-03-12, 11:44 PM
War is one thing, but legends are another.

I imagine they'll make legends about Ansom, the way we Americans make legends about Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. The fact that these romantic, dashing figures were eventually beaten by prosaic, unromantic realists is something that is only remembered in history books.


Well you are obviously from the South. In the North they are vile villianous men. They did have after all lead open insurrection and betrayed their country.

Ragn Charran
2009-03-12, 11:47 PM
This isn't over yet...

Is it not Charlie's Turn next?

No, unless he breaks alliance, which may be difficult/impossible to do depending on the terms of the contract. As it now stands night will fall, and GK gets first turn in the morning.

Ravenwind
2009-03-12, 11:51 PM
Re: the Julius Caesar comparison. . . .Shakespeare this ain't.

Julius Caesar is assassinated in Act III, Scene 1 of the tragedy. It is, structurally, the climax of the five-act play, because all the action leading up to that point is the decision to act, and all the action after the assassination is the reaction to the act. A group of Concerned Citizens, good "law-abiding" folk, surround a man and murder him in cold blood, after one man agonizes over the decision (Brutus) and then another man seeks retribution and justice for the dead (Antony).

This?

Well, let's ask what all the action of the comic has been building toward. The defense or total destruction of Gobwin Knob. Yep, we got that in the panels at the end. I enjoyed the implication that the volcano's about to be lit, too. Quite nice.

But Ansom is treated as little more than a sidenote, and I, personally, never saw him as a villain. For me, if anyone is the villain in this piece, it's the cowardly and contemptible Tool, who took over city after city only to lose them, treats his underlings with no courtesy or concern and usually very little friendship. . . . Ansom may have been arrogant, but he did have more humanity to him than Stanley. And that makes the crowing over his death in these forums really rather sad.

I'd rather a gentleman, a nobleman, a human, than a user and a coward and a thief, y'know?

Be that as it may, structurally, the climax may be the scene of destruction and devastation as Parson pulls the plug.

The resolution, however, may be the way in which the real villain of the story is dealt with.

Just some thoughts, folks.

TamLin
2009-03-13, 01:02 AM
My point with the comparison to "Julius Caesar", "No Country for Old Men", and "The Sopranos" is that anticlimaxes vary in quality and form. Calling this an anticlimax, either as a way of condeming or defending it, is pretty irrelevant (although it's the kneejerk reaction; I did the very same thing). What matters isn't whether it's anticlimactic but whether it's well-written, properly executed, and appropriate to the story. Do we find this anticlimax believable? Does it add or detract from the comic as a whole to consider that these characters died not because of rules or in-game powers but because of the simple laws of physics? Does hearing about it from Parson's point of view immerse us in his experience, or alienate us from the rest of the story? For that matter, are happy or pissed off that these characters were singled out to die at all? These issues (which are being discussed) are more important than whether the comic is anticlimactic. If we're happy with the execution, then it doesn't really matter what device was or was not used.

The Old Hack
2009-03-13, 02:22 AM
CLIMAX: Death Star, exterior. Luke Skywalker's battered X-Wing dashes madly for his one hope, a longshot aimed at a small exhaust port that is the sole vulnerable point of the Death Star. Darth Vader in his Tie Fighter opens fire on him, and JUST THEN, Han Solo and Chewbacca in the Millennium Falcon show up to save Luke and let him take his desperate shot after all.

ANTI-CLIMAX: Sunnydale Mall, Interior. Buffy is confronting the Judge, an ancient, all but unstoppable evil.

Judge: You fool. It takes the power of an entire army to stop me.
Buffy: That was then. This is now. *readies rocket launcher*
Judge: What's that do?

***** BOOOOOOOOOM *****

What matters is not if it is climactic or anti-climactic. Both are valid. The anti-climax in Buffy works because the setup makes it both dramatic and funny. :smallamused:

Chadwick
2009-03-13, 04:07 AM
Well you are obviously from the South. In the North they are vile villianous men. They did have after all lead open insurrection and betrayed their country.

Thats news to me, mostly as a Northerner I hear how honorable these two men were.

Remember our founding fathers lead an open insurrection and betrayed their country (England) to create this one.

DCR
2009-03-13, 04:42 AM
Thats news to me, mostly as a Northerner I hear how honorable these two men were.

Remember our founding fathers lead an open insurrection and betrayed their country (England) to create this one.

Taxes and won the fight; slavery/secession and lost.
Honorable men, I agree... but they still fought for the wrong cause.

Anyway, I'm kinda curious how the siege of Gobwin Knob ends. I'm guessing dwagon harassment and renewable undead resource disheartens the coalition... which has partially broken up already (page 93). Not broken up in terms of working with each other, but broken up in that unled stacks automatically attack, I b'lieve.

Kilkrazy
2009-03-13, 04:45 AM
Bogroll killing Ansom. Ansom had already taken a lot of hits from previous fighting, shown by his ragged cape.

Why didn't the Archons save him from falling? Perhaps it wasn't in their contract, perhaps under the game rules a fall takes place within one action phase, and they can't react immediately.

Rebuilding the city. If the dungeon is intact, is it possible that the city will rebuild itself overnight in the same way that wounded units recover automatically?

Kilkrazy
2009-03-13, 05:00 AM
The next stage of the siege.

Most of the besieging forces have been lost in the city's collapse. The coalition was already unstable before this disaster and will probably fall apart.

If Charlescomm's contract was with the coalition this would release him, though it may have been with Jetstone directly, in which case the next in line of command of the Jetstone forces will presumably be able to direct the Archons. However it's clear that ultimate authority rests with the head of a faction and is delegated to some extent to lower level commanders. The level of delegation may not go further down than Ansom, which would leave the Archons out of command and control, yet possibly unable to proceed with an attack on their own initiative.

Stanley will shortly arrive with a strong force of dwagons, probably pursued by the Vampire faction and Jillian. Depending on timing and the actions of the Archons, there will be an aerial battle over the city, which Stanley needs to win since this is his last capital. I'm assuming the dwagons and Archons can't go underground.

Moechi_Vill
2009-03-13, 05:26 AM
Yup. It is very Un-Parsony to make a plan that will succeed only with a particular enemy move. I think he had plans for all other occasions.



Yup. He, as far as he saw it, already won, all while trying to prove his nobility.



And I think that if Ansom tried to pull that, he would pretty much lose all of his remaining prestige on the spot. He was already viewed as incompetent, if he send someone else he wouldn't prove that nobility is better, he would have appeared to be afraid, or, even worse, he would transmit message that this victory is worthless if he hadn't even bothered to confirm it in person.


He could've accepted the offer with a ground escort hovering just above ground but out of immediate reach of a disguised flier or unit that can leap high.

MattR
2009-03-13, 05:31 AM
1) Why would Ansom suspect that it was a twoll disguised using foolamancy on the tower?

a) We have no indication that foolamancy scrolls are so common that the use of them should be expected in every situation.

b) Ansom was told that the foolamancer on the GK side had fled with Stanley, an action that is completely believable. It would make sense that the foolamancer showing up at the gap and enabling Stanley to flee would have been communicated to Ansom.

2) Why did Ansom accept the surrender himself?

a) he wanted to make a pretty speech to Parson about his superiority in person

b) Maybe only chief warlords can accept surrender. Every instance we've seen of a chief warlord in action has been on the front line e.g. Manpower, Ansom and Jillian. Only Parson was able to direct things from safety in the capital because of the benefits the trimancer hookup gave.

c) Ansom might be the only surviving warlord for his side at that location and if he doesnt trust the other members of the coalition he wouldn't delegate to them.

Also, fulfilling the requirements of the contract with charlie might mean he HAS to be the one accepting the surrender.

3) Why didnt Ansom dictate a different place to accept the surrender?

a) Parson might have rejected a change of location as trickery. Ansom wants a surrender and wouldnt jeopardize the offer by messing with the location.

c) He thought the location was secure. He had no reason to expect an attack given that he'd seen air defenses used up earlier and GK have no air forces nearby.

d) He thought he was dealing with Parson and didnt expect him to make a suicidal attack. If he'd seen a lackey Twoll standing up there I'm sure he'd have been more wary.

The only reason the attack worked is because he moved in close, we don't know if accepting the defeated person's weapon is required for the surrender to be made effective or if it was Ansom's pride at work again, having to lord it over the fallen just a little bit more.

4) Why didnt the Archons get involved?

a) Ansom didn't pay for spell security, there's no indication that this would be cheap.. in fact considering the cost of just 1 thinkagram it's probably fairly expensive.

b) The events transpired too quickly for the archons had time to act before Ansom passed outside the zone.

c) There's no indication that archons are able to carry people. The only time we've seen them with people it was the warlords from Transilvito who can fly anyway.

d) Ansom and Bogroll were very close together, an attack might have been just as likely to hit Ansom as Bogroll.... also killing Bogroll wouldn't stop Ansom falling.

e) Charlie expected to be able to take GK on his own, he held off his attack just to watch how things played out and its reasonable to assume he'd be happy to stand back again and let things unfold just to see what happens.

f) Maybe Charlie wants Ansom dead! But in a way where he can say his hands are clean. He might stand to gain if the contract is nullified by Ansom's death allowing him to keep his initial fee OR that if there's a forfeit cost for Ansom et al not fulfilling the contract in a set amount of time.

5) Why did Parson use Bogroll and not a different twoll?

a) Bogroll is totally loyal to Parson and he was told directly by Bogroll that he would willingly give his life for him. No other twoll could be trusted to this degree.

Lemarc
2009-03-13, 06:07 AM
Why is everyone assuming the Arkenpliers are lost, buried underground, and up for grabs? Last we saw, the red-headed warlord had them. The city was collapsed, yes, but we know that won't destroy the army, and there's nothing to suggest that the warlord was among the casualties. It's reasonable to assume that she still has them.

Werekat
2009-03-13, 06:24 AM
I was figuring someone else might bring this up but it seems like Ansom might not have had a choice in attempting the tower capture.

Parson is bound to provide Mathmancy calculations to Charlie as part of the deal he made to save Stanley. Everything that's happened since then makes it seem that Parson has no choice in fulfilling his part of the bargain as long as Charlie doesn't breach first. Especially since the first two calculations he asks for are to Parson's disadvantage (Can I beat you with this force? no? ok, how much more do I need to win?)

On Page 130 Panel 3, Parson guesses that Ansom is bound to capture him. Bound being the operative word -- If Ansom fails or refuses, he is in breach of his latest contract with Charlie.

I think Parson used a confirmed but well-educated guess about the contract - based on his own dealings with Charlie to put Ansom in a compromised situation.

Even if he would have normally been suspicious of Parson's motive's, he really can't afford to miss a capture opportunity with Charlie's contract hanging over his head.

The mechanics of magical contracts or bindings aren't explicit but everything so far suggests that they are potent -- powerful enough for Charlie to base his fees upon at least. Since he says he's in a no-lose situation, I'm guessing he has reason to believe they can be enforced even if we don't know exactly how.

This. I didn't think about the situation in this manner, mostly blaming Ansom's actions on his psychology, but this makes perfect sense to me.

Wixit
2009-03-13, 08:14 AM
I have to ask cause I can't seem to find the relevant comic, how do we know Ansom knew the foolamancer was out? AFAIK, Jillian only mentions it to Transylvito troops during the hunt, so an even better question is how do we know Ansom even knew about Jack in the first place?

Ravenwind
2009-03-13, 08:25 AM
My point with the comparison to "Julius Caesar", "No Country for Old Men", and "The Sopranos" is that anticlimaxes vary in quality and form. Calling this an anticlimax, either as a way of condeming or defending it, is pretty irrelevant (although it's the kneejerk reaction; I did the very same thing). What matters isn't whether it's anticlimactic but whether it's well-written, properly executed, and appropriate to the story. Do we find this anticlimax believable? Does it add or detract from the comic as a whole to consider that these characters died not because of rules or in-game powers but because of the simple laws of physics? Does hearing about it from Parson's point of view immerse us in his experience, or alienate us from the rest of the story? For that matter, are happy or pissed off that these characters were singled out to die at all? These issues (which are being discussed) are more important than whether the comic is anticlimactic. If we're happy with the execution, then it doesn't really matter what device was or was not used.


And I think you missed my point. Anston's death feels anticlimactic because it WASN'T the climax, as far as I can tell. Is his death part of it? Sure. But his death wasn't the action towards which the entire story was moving. I mean, he's certainly an antagonist, if not a villain.

As to whether it's more important to discuss whether it's well-written or not, than whether something is anti-climactic. . . isn't determining if something is anti-climactic for the reader a part of deciding for oneself if the story in question is well-written?

But, I'll play along. Do I think it's well-written? I think the pacing has been turgid for quite some time now. Some of that has to do with the update pace. Some of it has to do with the use of klogs to explicate, when showing is usually far more effective than telling. If you need to provide Cliff Notes to your book and your name isn't James Joyce, there may be a problem. So, at this point, we have a lot, a lot, a LOT of buildup.

We've seen quite a bit of the sort of situations one of my professors commented on as traditional in commercial writing: anything the protagonist does to resolve the situation, makes it worse. (It's not unique to sitcoms, by any means; I've seen it used as far back as Pandosto: The Triumph of Time, by Robert Green. There's a reason that book darned near out-sold the Bible in the 16th century, and why Shakespeare cribbed from it for The Winter's Tale.)

But I'm straying from the point. If the authors can take the level of inertia in their long, long buildup, and release it and resolve it here in the denouement in a satisfying way, then yes, I'd call it well-written. If it takes two pages to be resolved: "It was all a dream, and Parson wakes up," "Everyone dies," or whatnot, I wouldn't call it satisfying or well-written. And only waiting to see how the rest of the story plays out will tell me how I'll respond.

Just to give you an example from current writing. . . Robert Jordan spent the first HOW many 800+ page novels leading up to the cleansing of saidin? Yes, we know, we get it, men have been downtrodden for thousands of years because their magical power source is tainted and evil, yes, we get it, Rand is the one who's going to cleanse it, yes, every single new female character we meet is now the most powerful magic user anyone has ever encountered and may be the one to help him cleanse it, okay, already, will you just please cleanse saidin already. . . . wait a minute. He and Nynaeve just cleansed saidin? Wait a damn minute here. That took one page. *flip, flip* It's two pages from the end of this book. Whaddya mean, I've read roughly 10,000 pages to lead up to, "Okay, it's done. Slam, bam, thank you, ma'am?" And then, no follow up, no actually using the magic against the dark powers, no resolution, just "wait for the next book."

Made me glad I'd never bought any of them, only checked them out of the library. ;) But that's just me, and what in my opinion makes for a satisfying read.

SteveMB
2009-03-13, 08:27 AM
I have to ask cause I can't seem to find the relevant comic, how do we know Ansom knew the foolamancer was out? AFAIK, Jillian only mentions it to Transylvito troops during the hunt, so an even better question is how do we know Ansom even knew about Jack in the first place?

Ansom knows that Stanley has a Foolamancer (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0067.html). However, there's no indication that he knows that Stanley took the Foolamancer with him -- though he might have guessed it, since it would obviously make it easier for Stanley to run and hide.

Opal Tide
2009-03-13, 08:50 AM
I think everyone in the forums is in agreement that the RCC is effectively broken (we'll see if that s the case next strip). What I think is a more interesting thought is how this will affect the relations between these factions at their capitals.

Were these faction former enemies that united to defeat Stanley and now have even more reason to hate each other? Were these factions good allies and this loss will strain, but not end their relations? What other factions might take advantage of the new weakness of RCC member factions?

I think there is a lot of potential for chaos within Erf World if the RCC factions were major players. Foriegn Policy, much like nature, abhors a (power) vacuum. If any wars of opportunity to transpire away from GK, that may buy Parson and Co. time to rebuild before any of the RCC factions return for revenge.

I wouldn't be surprised if the second GK book was about the fallout of the RCC's failure and subsequent destruction. That would be pretty interesting, seeing Parson in the field trying to play different feuding fuedal factions off against eah other. Maybe even discovering more about Stanley and GK, pre-Tooolship.

Also Re: Jackson and Lee, as a resident of Northern Virginia, they have WAY too many streets and roads/highways named after them, which makes giving directions to out of towners quite irksome. Apart from that, there are other Forum spaces to refight the Civil War/War of Northern Aggression/The Time of Unpleasantness between the states. Let's leave Scarlet O'Hara out of Erfworld (Johansen on the other hand...)

Cybaster
2009-03-13, 09:26 AM
Man, while satisfying indeed after being so pompous and that speech of his about royalty, that's...a rather cheap way for Ansom to go. :smallwink: But if rezzing your heroes was possible in Warcraft III, it might be possible here (Although if the Alliance could ressurrect their heroes, they'd have done so long ago with Webinar and Dora).

Nonetheless...until Sizemore actually retrieves Ansom's corpse and we're positive he won't be coming back, I ain't holding my breath. X(

Natio
2009-03-14, 04:07 AM
Stanley will shortly arrive with a strong force of dwagons, probably pursued by the Vampire faction and Jillian. Depending on timing and the actions of the Archons, there will be an aerial battle over the city, which Stanley needs to win since this is his last capital. I'm assuming the dwagons and Archons can't go underground.

Everyone seems convinced that Stanley will be coming with lots of dwagons but I am curious why this is so.

Jillian and the vampire warlords forced him to abandon his stack of Dwagons in the fight. He does have a master-class foolamancer and one pretty Red Dwagon.

Lukmar
2009-03-14, 04:30 AM
Everyone seems convinced that Stanley will be coming with lots of dwagons but I am curious why this is so.

Not lots of dwagons, but 6 as shown in panels 4 and 6 in this (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html) comic.

ishnar
2009-03-14, 04:38 AM
Not lots of dwagons, but 6 as shown in panels 4 and 6 in this (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html) comic.

Uncroaked Ansome next turn? He might be unrecoverable though due to the cave-in.

If the coalition caves in, they might do a nice slow uncroak and keep his stats. But I'm expecting another big night-of-the-living-dead moment.

Natio
2009-03-14, 04:50 AM
Not lots of dwagons, but 6 as shown in panels 4 and 6 in this (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html) comic.

Ok, 6 dwagons an artifact and a foolamancer. Sounds better than one dwagon an artifact and a foolamancer. Thanks for the link.

VariaVespasa
2009-03-14, 04:59 AM
Everyone seems convinced that Stanley will be coming with lots of dwagons but I am curious why this is so.

Jillian and the vampire warlords forced him to abandon his stack of Dwagons in the fight. He does have a master-class foolamancer and one pretty Red Dwagon.

He's got 5 dwagons left (2 green, 2 yellow and 1 blue), not including his armored red dwagon, and at least 1 KISS left of the 3 he took with him (riding on the blue). One of the greens is unmounted, but the picture detail isnt good enough to tell about the other 3 dwagons. This is all from http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0128.html

The KISS were originally riding a blue, a green and a red or brown (red when leaving GK, brown charging into battle), so it looks like he can have no more than 1 more KISS with him (on the too-small-to-see-the-saddle-band-green), but the red/brown rider is toast.

Edit- bah, this is what I get for taking so long archive-diving while writing this post. :P

ishnar
2009-03-14, 05:08 AM
As to whether it's more important to discuss whether it's well-written or not, than whether something is anti-climactic. . . isn't determining if something is anti-climactic for the reader a part of deciding for oneself if the story in question is well-written?

I have to agree with you. Well written? Lots of authors are well written but suck. Shakespeare is a great example of this, everyone tells me how great he is, but while he has great one-liners, I'm still unimpressed. I find his comedies tragic and his tragedies comedic. His characters are unlikeable so I feel no compassion at all when Romeo and Juliet die, rather I feel like singing a hymn to God that the show is finally over. In the face of so many teachers preaching that Shakespeare is great, and so many of their loyal brainwashed students swearing to never read another book in frusteration after getting out of College, I've had to form my own theories about what constitutes good writing and ultimately I've concluding that what people consider "good writing" is this:

Writing that reaffirms the reader's values.

Good grammar and sentence variety is good too. But people will wade through lackluster grammar and simple sentences and still be happy if this one criteria is met. The Little Engine that Could. Great story, poor writing, but who cares. It's a great story, because it reaffirms most people's values, even if it lacks great prose and a lot of other "must have" elements people say must be in a story.

I finally concluded that the reason I hate Shakespeare is not, as my detractors often accuse, because I'm unable to read the non-modern English. I can do it just fine, but it's not the grammar and diction that annoys the crap out of me. The reason I hate Shakespeare is because he walks all over my personal values and spits on them, then goes to a latrine and scoops up a bucket or offal and pours it all over them.

I think that's what is happening here. The people that are annoyed is not due to "bad writing" it's because the writers just stomped all over one or more of their personal values and expectations about the "right" way for a story to turn.

T-O-E
2009-03-14, 05:52 AM
Hope the plier doesn't bring him back to life...

HandofShadows
2009-03-14, 07:06 AM
Why is everyone assuming the Arkenpliers are lost, buried underground, and up for grabs? Last we saw, the red-headed warlord had them. The city was collapsed, yes, but we know that won't destroy the army, and there's nothing to suggest that the warlord was among the casualties. It's reasonable to assume that she still has them.

Sizemore's statments about the RCC not being hurt by GK collapsing was based on them being outside the walls when it came down. But nearly all of the RCC's local forces where inside the walls and things where brought down in a fashion to casue the most damage. GK fell into the tunnels below in a controled demolitions. The central tower first, then the courtyard (which crushed the troops near the tower), the walls which fell and croaked those on them and crushed those in the courtyard. Just take a look at the RCC's troops. They are terrified. The Red Warlord was near the tower where Ansom dies and would have had almost no cahnce to make it out before everything fell on her.

krossbow
2009-03-14, 07:30 AM
As much as this is going to sound wishy washy, i'm REALLY going to miss ansom. He wasn't a bad guy really, just... a little off sometimes with his views, and goblin knob certainly had it coming (based on the statements about their aggressive campaign).









Now, i'm almost feeling a backstab by charlie coming on, with the coalition smashed, having the archon's hammer gobwin knob mercilessly in a grab for everything, including the pliers and parson's items (if he refuses to surrender completely).

shamelessmerc
2009-03-14, 07:51 AM
I have to agree with you. Well written? Lots of authors are well written but suck. Shakespeare is a great example of this, everyone tells me how great he is, but while he has great one-liners, I'm still unimpressed. I find his comedies tragic and his tragedies comedic. His characters are unlikeable so I feel no compassion at all when Romeo and Juliet die, rather I feel like singing a hymn to God that the show is finally over. In the face of so many teachers preaching that Shakespeare is great, and so many of their loyal brainwashed students swearing to never read another book in frusteration after getting out of College, I've had to form my own theories about what constitutes good writing and ultimately I've concluding that what people consider "good writing" is this:

Writing that reaffirms the reader's values.

Good grammar and sentence variety is good too. But people will wade through lackluster grammar and simple sentences and still be happy if this one criteria is met. The Little Engine that Could. Great story, poor writing, but who cares. It's a great story, because it reaffirms most people's values, even if it lacks great prose and a lot of other "must have" elements people say must be in a story.

I finally concluded that the reason I hate Shakespeare is not, as my detractors often accuse, because I'm unable to read the non-modern English. I can do it just fine, but it's not the grammar and diction that annoys the crap out of me. The reason I hate Shakespeare is because he walks all over my personal values and spits on them, then goes to a latrine and scoops up a bucket or offal and pours it all over them.

I think that's what is happening here. The people that are annoyed is not due to "bad writing" it's because the writers just stomped all over one or more of their personal values and expectations about the "right" way for a story to turn.


It sounds like you dislike Shakespeare because you had him rammed down your throat for years. I don't think that there is an army of brainwashed shakespeare drones out there (although it is an amusing mental image :-))

In fact I think there is a far larger proportion of people out there that hate Shakespeare because he was rammed down their throats. In between is a large number of people who, like me, enjoy Shakespeare because we were allowed to come to our own understanding of his work.

Also, outside of a classroom, you should never, ever READ a play. Would you sit down with a mug of cocoa and the script of "Die Hard"? Go see a GOOD production (because going to see a bad production of a play is like sitting through a bad remake of a classic movie).

I have to say you are right on the money about affirming people's values though.

Natio
2009-03-14, 08:05 AM
Now, i'm almost feeling a backstab by charlie coming on, with the coalition smashed, having the archon's hammer gobwin knob mercilessly in a grab for everything, including the pliers and parson's items (if he refuses to surrender completely).


Chances are with the tower down there are no more air defences but if Charlie sends his forces down into the dungeon they might be vulnerable to Sizemore.

While an attempt at a backstab might be made by Charlie I think Parson has got something prepared in response, or will when it is Gobwin Knob's turn.

Chadwick
2009-03-14, 08:30 AM
Honorable men, I agree... but they still fought for the wrong cause.




Now this is how most "Northerners" see these men.

Devoured_Dude
2009-03-14, 09:15 AM
My concern is how this the knave's surrender maneuver affects the relationship between Parson and Charlie. Reputation matters in Charlie's business (see #100 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0100.html)), and Parson betraying his word, then destroying the city he was supposed to defend can't be great for his reputation.

1. With Ansom dead, does Charlie still get paid? If not he'll be awfully upset.
2. Does Ansom's death damage Charlie's reputation as a mercenary? Ansom was escorted by his Archons when he was killed.
3. Does Parson's treachery ruin his reputation as a warlord? Does he then become less valuable to Charlie? Would anyone hire Charlie if they knew he had the treacherous warlord Parson on his team?
4. Does Parson's wanton disregard of property in pursuit of victory diminish his value as a warlord? Destroying most of your city so your enemy can't take it would not look very good on a warlord's resume! Who would hire him? Again, would anyone hire Charlie if they knew he had the reckless warlord Parson on his team?
5. If Parson is made less valuable by his treachery/recklessness, is his only value to Charlie the artifacts he carries? The big question I have as a result of Parson's maneuvers is: Is Parson now worth more dead than alive to Charlie?

fendrin
2009-03-14, 09:56 AM
1. With Ansom dead, does Charlie still get paid? If not he'll be awfully upset.Charlie is a smart & devious mercenary, and Ansom's boops were in a vise. Smart & devious mercenaries get paid up front, and when your boops are in a vise you don't have much leeway to argue.


2. Does Ansom's death damage Charlie's reputation as a mercenary? Ansom was escorted by his Archons when he was killed. It depends on the terms of the contract. We know Ansom did not pay for magical security. It is also possible that he did not pay for personal protection/rescue. It's also possible that the Archons were incapable of assisting. They may not be able to carry another person in flight without that net (maybe it's a magic item?), or maybe they couldn't get to him in time. Really, we don't know whether or not any archons tried to save Ansom. If they tried, they failed. If they didn't try, I'm sure there's a way for Charlie to defend his reputation. Of course, I think Charlie wanted Ansom to croak so that he could take the 'pliers with the rest of GK.


3. Does Parson's treachery ruin his reputation as a warlord? Does he then become less valuable to Charlie? Would anyone hire Charlie if they knew he had the treacherous warlord Parson on his team?
4. Does Parson's wanton disregard of property in pursuit of victory diminish his value as a warlord? Destroying most of your city so your enemy can't take it would not look very good on a warlord's resume! Who would hire him? Again, would anyone hire Charlie if they knew he had the reckless warlord Parson on his team?

Ah, but it's Charlie's reputation that matters. If Parson is working for Charlie, he's just one more (talented) mind-slave following Charlie's orders. If Charlie orders no betrayals, Parson will be unable (short of a failing a loyalty check) to betray anyone. Same thing with no-destruction orders. Besides, you don't hire mercenaries because you like them. You hire them because they are effective. No one can argue that Parson hasn't been effective (I'd wager that any erf-native commander in his place would have failed by now).


5. If Parson is made less valuable by his treachery/recklessness, is his only value to Charlie the artifacts he carries? The big question I have as a result of Parson's maneuvers is: Is Parson now worth more dead than alive to Charlie?
I doubt it. If anything, I think Charlie is getting more impressed by Parson.

HandofShadows
2009-03-14, 11:21 AM
Chances are with the tower down there are no more air defences but if Charlie sends his forces down into the dungeon they might be vulnerable to Sizemore.

While an attempt at a backstab might be made by Charlie I think Parson has got something prepared in response, or will when it is Gobwin Knob's turn.

Maggie already burned the remaining air-def spells, so the tower being brought down has no effect there. I agree that sending the Archons into the tunnels will make them vulnerable to Sizemore. And I suspect that they loose a number of advantages as well (they have reduced mobility/agility. And they seem to fairly easily damaged) And after getting screwed by Charlie once, I am sure that Parson has contingency plans for Charlie backstabing him.

Wixit
2009-03-14, 11:23 AM
Ansom knows that Stanley has a Foolamancer (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0067.html). However, there's no indication that he knows that Stanley took the Foolamancer with him -- though he might have guessed it, since it would obviously make it easier for Stanley to run and hide.

Ah, yes. It was Wanda who told us he knew. Still, a guess isn't something you rely on completely.

PapaSloth
2009-03-14, 11:52 AM
My concern is how this the knave's surrender maneuver affects the relationship between Parson and Charlie.

I'd have to say that if I had to choose between having Parson on my side, or having Parson on the enemy's side, I'd choose to have Parson on my side. Therefore, Parson's reputation as a warlord has been enhanced by this campaign.

TheTurnipKing
2009-03-14, 12:41 PM
What I don't get is, why did Parson bother to have Bogroll kill Ansom if they were going to collapse the whole thing anyways. All they would have needed to do was get Ansom of his flying carpet, and he would have croaked with everyone else. It seems un-Parson like to finsih a personal vendetta, when just doing the second part of the plan would have achieved the same results.
It wouldn't have achieved the same results. Most, if not all of the remaining anti-air defences were wasted on the DDR Archons, so there wasn't realistically any other way to get Ansom off that carpet and make him vulnerable to the collapse of the tower like his troops.

But the attack is absolutely consistent with Parson's overall strategy, Render the enemy unable or unwilling to take Gobwin Knob, and preferentially croak the leadership to remove or reduce unit bonuses. It doesn't strike me as an act of malice any more than the death of Webinar or Dora was.

Kilkrazy
2009-03-14, 01:38 PM
It wouldn't have achieved the same results. Most, if not all of the remaining anti-air defences were wasted on the DDR Archons, so there wasn't realistically any other way to get Ansom off that carpet and make him vulnerable to the collapse of the tower like his troops.

But the attack is absolutely consistent with Parson's overall strategy, Render the enemy unable or unwilling to take Gobwin Knob, and preferentially croak the leadership to remove or reduce unit bonuses. It doesn't strike me as an act of malice any more than the death of Webinar or Dora was.

Several reasons to attack Ansom with Bogroll.

1. A surprise attack is most likely to succeed.

2. Ansom might not be killed in the collapse, so best to make sure of him straight away.

3. If he survived the attack of Bogroll, he would be more vulnerable during the subsequent collapse because he would be severely wounded, knocked off his carpet and separated from the Archons.

4. With Ansom dead before the collapse begins, any escape and rescue attempts by the coalition forces are going to be worse coordinated. In fact there may even be infighting as some factions try to escape at the expense of the others.

5. Calling for a truce allowed time for Parson to reorganise his remaining units and for the coalition to bring more units into the danger zone of the collapse.

MattR
2009-03-14, 01:39 PM
Ah, yes. It was Wanda who told us he knew. Still, a guess isn't something you rely on completely.

Also: http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0119.html Vinnie confirms that Ansom knew.

Hann
2009-03-14, 02:02 PM
Ansom, weakened by Wanda's uber witchslap into falling damage and hordes of undead, perhaps a direct damage spell from a scroll or twelve, takes... um, 9.81 m/s^2 + Bogroll... 487d6 falling damage (cookie for reference catch) ...

Is it Goblins?

Natio
2009-03-14, 08:04 PM
Maggie already burned the remaining air-def spells, so the tower being brought down has no effect there. I agree that sending the Archons into the tunnels will make them vulnerable to Sizemore. And I suspect that they loose a number of advantages as well (they have reduced mobility/agility. And they seem to fairly easily damaged) And after getting screwed by Charlie once, I am sure that Parson has contingency plans for Charlie backstabing him.

Well the Archons couldn't attack or move from the airspace until the next turn and we have seen the air defences fired by Wanda and then in another turn used by Misty. It might be that they recharge or reset like how troops heal at the start of a new turn.

mroozee
2009-03-14, 08:04 PM
I don't know if this has been brought up already, but...


I can see Ansom "surviving" the Battle for Gobwin Knob as follows:

1. The RCC is routed by Parson's forces and Ansom is uncroaked.
2. Charlie's Archons step in to turn the tide.
3. Dwagons arrive to turn the tide again.
4. Jillian and Transylvito show up to turn the tide once more.
5. Ansom is un-uncroaked in exchange for the pliers and a truce.

1.-4. seem very plausible - even probable. So the question becomes, after the Transylvito forces shift the balance for the last time, how does Parson get out of it? Cause a volcanic eruption as he runs off to the Magic Kingdom? Cut a deal with Charlie? Or does he find a solution that involves Jillian and Vinny as well?

Just a thought.

Stormthorn
2009-03-14, 08:15 PM
Well, this was everything I was hoping Ansom's defeat would not be: contrived, abrupt and utterly unsatisfying.

Very disappointing.

-H

Abupt yes. Not sure how Contrived or unsatisfying figures in. I for one was very satisfied. I felt that fall was well and goodly symbolic of the fate of conquerers.

Well, a Pyrrhic victory all around. Ansom is dead and a lot of attackers died, but they have taken everything but the dungeons now.

ShiningTed
2009-03-14, 10:11 PM
I'm not normally one for making predictions, but I'll throw in a teeny one now (so teeny it doesn't need spoiler status) - the next comic will NOT be at GK. It will be elsewhere: Don King's place, with Stanley, with Jillian, I have no idea where but it will not be at GK and it will not feature Parson. (Expect voluminous gloating if I am right :smalltongue: )

And since i am posting anyway, I gotta say, I had no issues with Ansom's death and don't even regard it as "off screen". We saw him fall in one panel, we see his corpse in the next. Do we really need to see him hit the ground? How many baddies have died in movies going over a ledge / off a cliff etc without us ever seeing them actually hit the bottom? In fact, how rarely DO you actually see them hit?

Wadoka
2009-03-14, 10:33 PM
Wow, that's a massive amount of plot to throw down at once. Ansom and Bogroll both going down at once?! I felt sad for bogroll, he was all right. A post of silence for him.


"We do not mourn those who die fulfilling their destiny."

Ovaltine Patrol
2009-03-14, 11:49 PM
The Arkenhammer tames dwagons, surely this is distinct from simply spawning them. If Stanely were to encounter dwagons on the way back to GK, that could easily turn the tide.

Another thought, Stanley is low on cash, even though he did without the "support plan," for the summoning spell. Will he even be able to afford to maintain whatever is left of his forces, let alone rebuild GK?

Lizard Lord
2009-03-15, 12:57 AM
"We do not mourn those who die fulfilling their destiny."

Ummm, yea we do.




Maybe you can argue that we shouldn't, but that is totally something humanity in general would do.

For example: If Froda or Sam fell into the magma at mount doom, you bet they would have been mourned by the other members of the fellowship.

The Rose Dragon
2009-03-15, 01:00 AM
In fact, how rarely DO you actually see them hit?

Very rarely, but they usually return for sequels.

RedXian
2009-03-16, 12:30 AM
No, unless he breaks alliance, which may be difficult/impossible to do depending on the terms of the contract. As it now stands night will fall, and GK gets first turn in the morning.

Have you forgotten so soon? Charlie had his go first this turn. See Page #104 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html). Is there anything to suggest he won't go first on the next turn?

But I don't think he can attack the dungeons with air units as per Klog #13 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0129.html). Or perhaps that's is just from the airspace

Fjolnir
2009-03-16, 02:24 AM
Charlie was not allied then, they broke the alliance with the RCC to join up with transylvito who also dropped their alliance with the RCC, this allowed them to enter the battle fresh and at the top of the initiative order, without the leaders of the RCC releasing them, charlie is bound to act on the current turn order which is 1: (NEW CHALLENGER!), 2: THE VALIANT DEFENDERS OF GOBWIN'S KNOB, 3: THE ROYAL CROWN COALITION. If nobody new joins the battle, GK goes first