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The Giant
2009-03-28, 03:30 AM
New Erfworld is up.

tomaO2
2009-03-28, 03:33 AM
Sucks to be them.

So not everyone was actually in the city. Some were not even on the volcano. I'm actually shocked by that. I thought everyone was surrounding the walls at this point.

Suddenly the numbers are all confusing to me. How does this work? There were 3000 left? So not all of the 3000 were in the city proper? But if not all were in the city then why would the odds be hopeless? Parson still had most of the 2000 troops he recently uncroaked plus his own forces. Surely Ansom's forces (I really got to get a better name for them now) would need every available troop to win, right?

I wonder if the people a hex away will also get killed.

Highwarlord
2009-03-28, 03:35 AM
I like how the erfworlders are still alive in the fireballs raining down from the volcano - cruel, but a nice touch.

Trixie
2009-03-28, 03:36 AM
Um, the '149' in the title should read '150'.

Unless I'm mistaken.

I thought all of the alliance forces are supposed to be in the castle, pwng Parson's dudz?

kpenguin
2009-03-28, 03:38 AM
Should not the title be Erfworld 150, Giant?

WarriorTribble
2009-03-28, 03:46 AM
Hmm, so the pliers grant fire resistance? Or was that just a dramatic pose, seconds before a fiery death?

User Name
2009-03-28, 03:46 AM
gj with the thread title

Crod
2009-03-28, 03:47 AM
So seeing the red warlord with the pliers. Does that imply that she's somehow saved, maybe protected by the pliers, or was she just used as temporary view?

Marller
2009-03-28, 03:47 AM
I can't help but think the redhead might get a bigger part in the second story.
Everyones burning but she seems to be protected (i assume by the Arkenpliers).

EDIT: Crod was a second faster. :smallannoyed:

Sweetie Welf
2009-03-28, 03:47 AM
So much for the Archons. Zero move is a really bad thing sometimes.

Wonder if the hexes near the vulcano are also affected; in earthworld they would.

And I like the drawing; especially the expression on the foxmud warlord.

User Name
2009-03-28, 03:49 AM
I would say that she's just waiting for the lava to get her, but she has a really weirded out expression on her face. I hate to agree with the speculators, but something's going on there...

Lombard
2009-03-28, 03:53 AM
Hmm maybe you can't die while you have the pliers! Heck seeing as Stanley isn't dead yet either, that could theoretically apply to any artifact. Or maybe it's a bad guess altogether, heh.

I wanna see some Archons fry though, never much cared for 'em. :smallamused:

edit: and why are her eyes all white and possessed-looking? o_O

Suedars
2009-03-28, 04:00 AM
Hmm maybe you can't die while you have the pliers!

It would be a rather frustrating explanation for Ansom's up until this point endless capacity for deus ex machina.

CloverofCanton
2009-03-28, 04:02 AM
Hmmm.. Must be no first edition barbarians in the alliance.... they can swim in lava. Very cool art.

Clover:smallwink:

Sweetie Welf
2009-03-28, 04:10 AM
I wanna see some Archons fry though, never much cared for 'em. :smallamused:

Look at panel 3, and you'll be big amused.

mroozee
2009-03-28, 04:15 AM
Hmm maybe you can't die while you have the pliers! Heck seeing as Stanley isn't dead yet either, that could theoretically apply to any artifact. Or maybe it's a bad guess altogether, heh.

I wanna see some Archons fry though, never much cared for 'em. :smallamused:

edit: and why are her eyes all white and possessed-looking? o_O

I don't think the pliers keep you from dying, and I really don't think the picture of the red-headed warlord is useful as evidence supporting the artifact -> immortality theory. She looks like she has taken no damage which is a very good way to stay alive. Ansom, however, did take damage while wielding the pliers. I don't know that we've seen Stanley take any damage, though, so maybe if you're attuned...

Ronald_saveloy
2009-03-28, 04:25 AM
That just horrible! Who'd have expected that from a comic, that started with such "cute" characters?

Whispri
2009-03-28, 04:25 AM
There are more of them?

I'm guessing those 'troop numbers' were actully side numbers.

ralphmerridew
2009-03-28, 04:27 AM
That does look like a lot of people outside the city. How many were held back?

Lombard
2009-03-28, 04:34 AM
Look at panel 3, and you'll be big amused.

Is that an archon dying in there? I just thought it was falling flaming rocks and someone on the ground getting ashed.

ralphmerridew
2009-03-28, 04:36 AM
And Erfworld apparently has ConvectionSchmonvection rules. (But compared to rules about not being able to leave a hex, that's not unusual.)

Muzzafar
2009-03-28, 04:37 AM
This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGvd-C7bw8g) is what I was hearing in my head when I saw the comic.
Poor boops. Including, I suppose, those poor boops in the last panel. I guess it would be mere minutes before burning bits of lava start falling on their heads. OMGWTFBBQ!

P.S.: Oh yeah, and excellent graphics!

Dreadon
2009-03-28, 04:41 AM
May be the ones outside the city didnt have enough movement to get into the battle. Ansom did push the army rather fast near the end.

Axl_Rose
2009-03-28, 04:46 AM
Dayumn!

They aren't gonna be in Rush Hour 3.

I mean, the next chapter of Erfworld.

factotum
2009-03-28, 04:52 AM
I guess Charlie just learned that it is a REALLY bad idea to bet against Parson in any fight...whatever the Coalition paid him to help out, I doubt it's worth the loss of 30-odd Archons.

+1 for thinking that the warlord carrying the Arkenpliers was protected somehow--can't see any other reason why she would have been the only character in the frame who wasn't a living torch!

Victor Thorian
2009-03-28, 04:54 AM
Majestic. It was worth it.

VariaVespasa
2009-03-28, 05:05 AM
I'm not convinced the units in panel 4 are safe or that the worst isnt yet to come. The first 3 panels are all atop the volcano which is just seeping lava up from below. Panel 4 includes what would seem to be a fresh explosion as lava bursts from the side of the volcano. The whole side of the volcano may be about to let go, and its facing towards those troops. Anyone who remembers Mount Saint Helens knows what that means...

89joka30
2009-03-28, 05:12 AM
To me it seems like that girl at the top is still stunned by the death of ansom, and she's just gone mentally.

What happens to the Arkenpliers if they sink in lava?

And the arkenpliers don't make you invinceble in my opinion, would have been all to easy to just send Ansom in by himself and let him destroy everything, eventually.

daggaz
2009-03-28, 05:21 AM
Sweeeet.. I love volcanos!

SteveD
2009-03-28, 05:29 AM
Those poor devils.

Was wondering what might happen to the Pliers. You know...if Red-Ranger girl there is stuck alone in the hex until her next turn, its still conceivable that Stanley will get his hands on the Pliers.

ghost81
2009-03-28, 05:32 AM
Disturbingly beautiful strip.

I don't think the pliers are saving her - more that it was showing us she was still in harms way and hadn't escaped with them.

Edit: Re panel 3 - if you look at the fireballs closely they have the disintegrating sillohettes of figures in them - my guess - that's the Archons.

ghost81
2009-03-28, 05:36 AM
Further to my comment above the figure to the right of panel three reminds me of 'The Scream' by Edvard Munch. Especially as there is a theory that the red sky in that picture is a result of Krakatoa having exploded earlier the year and tinging the sky that colour.


Edited due to having lost all spleling ability today

Killer Angel
2009-03-28, 05:45 AM
Sleeping volcanoes have the nasty attitude (if unkroaked) to explode in a spectacular way.... (Krakatoa, Mount st. Helens, Vesuvio at Pompei). Maybe I'm wrong, but I won't bet a penny on the survival of the troops at the feet of GK.
I like Erfworld more and more. :smallbiggrin:

Oslecamo
2009-03-28, 05:49 AM
And the arkenpliers don't make you invinceble in my opinion, would have been all to easy to just send Ansom in by himself and let him destroy everything, eventually.

You're forgeting a little detail:

Disarm.

When Wanda and Bogroll attacked Ansom, the first thing they did was disarm him of the pliers.

Altough they probably don't grant outright invincibility, the pliers probably grant a fat defense bonus, enough defence to stand in the middle of a raging volcano and live to tell the tale.

And also the reason why Bogroll was sent in his suicide attack. If the city had been colapsed while Ansom still had the pliers he probably would have simply shrugged it off.

Anyway, great strip! BURN ARCHONS BURN MUAHAHAHAH! Try to mind trick your way out of hot raging uncroacked lava Charlie!

ishnar
2009-03-28, 05:54 AM
Hmm, so the pliers grant fire resistance? Or was that just a dramatic pose, seconds before a fiery death?


Looks like dramatic pose seconds before death. Clear expression of fear on her face. Jets of flame and burning soldiers in the background.


With the figure in panel one and two in the same position, it appears they should the same person. The second panel shows a slightly different perspective to emphasize the rising lava and how the gas is thick enough to obscure the walls in the background. If panel one was supposed to show her immune, then it would show her standing on the lava or something.

DCR
2009-03-28, 05:59 AM
Oh boop me. A beautiful, terrible page.

The volcano is dead, long live the volcano.

RMS Oceanic
2009-03-28, 06:02 AM
KA-BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!![/Demoman]

A glorious end to Gobwin Knob. Beautifully drawn, too.

kreszantas
2009-03-28, 06:05 AM
Now the real question is with what is left of the RCC can they even find the ruins of GK to claim? If indeed this does make Stanley go Barbarian (total destruction of his capitol site) that would allow for all the prior pages blemishes to go off without a hitch.

Awww Poor Charlie don't you feel sorry for him he did get his "Sorry, Charlie" reply so there was your foreshadowing to this fire/lava storm, and if he was a great wheel and dealer he better have gotten paid for it up front. :smalltongue:

This actually causes more questions than answers and I like the fact we see yet we don't know what 'really' happens to the pliers.

timothyx
2009-03-28, 06:11 AM
Scorched Earth For the Win.

I think the Warlord is just looking at her death and it's just "Inevitablity" that's written on her face as opposed to "oh look, I aint gonna die cause I got the pliers" kind of thing.

I almost feel bad for Charlie. Almost.

ishnar
2009-03-28, 06:17 AM
I almost feel bad for Charlie. Almost.

Charlie is alive and well in his mountain hideout.

some guy
2009-03-28, 06:35 AM
Awesome. And check out the plush golem in panel 2.

Oslecamo
2009-03-28, 06:38 AM
Charlie is alive and screwed in his mountain hideout.

Charlie has just lost a LOT of archons, and he can't really have many more otherwise he would simply have conquered Efworld by now since an archon is at least as strong as a dwagon. He will need a lot of time to recover from it.

If he ever recovers. Now that he's on his last troops, Charlie is ripe for attacking from his rivals. Aka Stanley the Tool.

Dizcorp
2009-03-28, 06:49 AM
Well, having read the reams of criticism/praise in the previous comic's post, I have one thing to say.

I like it.

These last two strips have a lot of positives to them. The panel where the Coalition and Gobwin Knob forces (comic #149) are desperately cooperating to try and save themselves struck a nerve in this amateur storywriter's normally frozen heart. The burning fireballs, containing dying soldiers whose screams you can almost hear. And the final panel, which conveys the sheer terror which the surviving soldiers must be feeling at this point.

Boom. GG, Parson, GG indeed.

I particularly like the first panel of #150. The unnamed lieutenant with the Arkenpliers, should the comic's creators will her survival, may well feature in a future storyline. Just think how burning her revenge will be against the masterful generalship of Parson Gotti, having seen thousands of her comrades put to a fiery death. It puts Ansom's feudal "will of the Titans" crusade into a different perspective.

I have enjoyed this comic as a serial (and a worthy complement to The Order of the Stick) and will eagerly continue to read it.

Excellent work, gentlemen. GG.

T-O-E
2009-03-28, 07:11 AM
Aw... Wanted to see Parson leave the portal. Guess I'll have to wait.

Not that this wasn't an awesome page though.

Nekomata
2009-03-28, 07:12 AM
Scorched Earth For the Win.

I think the Warlord is just looking at her death and it's just "Inevitablity" that's written on her face as opposed to "oh look, I aint gonna die cause I got the pliers" kind of thing.

I almost feel bad for Charlie. Almost.
Agreed. I'd call it "Oh, boop." look.
It's pretty common for storytelling purposes - the villain/leader/strongest character, even if he gets obliterated in a mili second by a megaton explosion, he'll still get an "oh, boop" scene.

the_tick_rules
2009-03-28, 07:45 AM
Brutal art there, burning them alive and all. Very short comic. I wonder, has it been said at some point where exactly that portal is taking them?

Strengfellow
2009-03-28, 07:54 AM
Well that has soothed my hangover no end.

Everybodies dead dave.

Splendid work.

Subtext
2009-03-28, 08:03 AM
Agree to dramatic pose instead of pliers drive-by invulnerability...

valce
2009-03-28, 08:12 AM
New meaning to 'wtf bbq' :P

Kreistor
2009-03-28, 08:14 AM
Okay, everybody chant now.,.

Pyroclastic flow! Pyroclastic flow! Pyroclastic flow!

How about...

Dust turning to cement in their lungs! Dust turning...

Drana
2009-03-28, 08:16 AM
Maybe the red-head somehow attuned herself to the Pliers.

Mystyco
2009-03-28, 08:16 AM
Here's some lava, there's some lava, and some other bits of lava
fiery lava, burning lava, lava lava DUCK!

my dog was like "HELL YEAH LAVA!" and so was I.

also love crispy archons, better than fried marbits.

MrPhoenix
2009-03-28, 08:19 AM
My god....

Estelindis
2009-03-28, 08:45 AM
Poor coalition troops and archons. What a horrible way to die. :smallfrown:

marquiz
2009-03-28, 08:55 AM
Methinks for the red-head, two explanations exist, and I am inclined towards the first one.

Arkenpliers are known to be very effective against uncroaked, and technically, the volcano is an uncroaked volcano right now. Perhaps a defense bonus of a sort against any uncroaked attack "the zombie volcano erupts in your face but arkenpliers unply the lava...

Secondly, Arkenpliers, like most artifacts, have some sort of intelligence/protective instict, and instead of accepting to sink into the bottom of the soon to be formed lava pool, they protect their current wielder by the will of titans.

Oh a third option an innate fire resistance/immunity.... or from a ring or potion...

Subtext
2009-03-28, 08:57 AM
So...now where I have a wee bit more time...

I dunno, only because the red-headed chick is yet alive it doesn't have to mean anything.
This is something that's a little bit annoying (for me) in general...people make a theory up that may make sense but are utterly complicated or depend on too many "if"s or maybe aren't plausible at all - but dismiss theories that make sense too (most often more) but are far more simpler to explain.
A good example would be the "fact" that only casters can use the portal because they are casters - based on the statement "You have a way out, use it. I have to stay and fight".
It *can* mean that he can't use the portal. It can also mean that it won't make sense (because he and the troops will probably disband anyway when the city falls) or that the magic kingdom only wants casters or blah...

Okay, making up theories isn't the bad thing...I just don't like how one theory that has no proof or whatsoever (only a mere indication) is granted for fact by so many people...and even worse, that some people are annoyed because if their theory proves wrong they consider it cheating...(I admit, I should have posted it in the previous thread) or scream "Deus Ex Machina!" if there is an unexpected twist...reminds me a bit of the Jehova scene of Monty Python's Life of Brian...

Anyway, end of the rant...

Again, awesome page although I would have loved a bit of text...but it wouldn't have fit.

msb
2009-03-28, 08:58 AM
It kinda looks like the way this page is drawn, it's meant to extend onto the next page, maybe? There's no side borders, and the art is flush with the edge of the image.

Gez
2009-03-28, 09:06 AM
I don't think the pliers are saving her - more that it was showing us she was still in harms way and hadn't escaped with them.

They are artifacts of the Titan, so she might be protected if there's some Artifact-protection rule that prevents lava from flowing in a unit-scale hex (not map-scale hex like the city, just the space a single unit occupies) where an arkentool is present. If there's no convection (or if the space is protected from it), then she might simply survive but be completely surrounded by lava.

The Minx
2009-03-28, 09:28 AM
To me it seems like that girl at the top is still stunned by the death of ansom, and she's just gone mentally.

Or perhaps she is simply resigned to her fate.

I don't think it's implausible that the Tools are immune to the volcano, after all these were used to make the world. As for whether the bearer becomes immune, we'll just have to see I guess. :/

Twin2
2009-03-28, 09:40 AM
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f53/monkeydudesf/cat_its_beautiful.jpg?t=1238251071

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-28, 09:43 AM
Scarlett lives.

Well anyway, we don't see her fried here as all panels show different parts of the battlefield. While death is a likely outcome of standing in the middle of a violent eruption, I am with the ones wanting her to live through this and call upon the

Theory of Narrative Causality (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheoryOfNarrativeCausality)

and

Million-to-One Chance (always succeeds) (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/MillionToOneChance)

So far she has been a minor character, true. But, during the last few strips she's beeing groomed into the next antagonist, should the comic continue.

We haven't seen Stanley's dastardly deeds so it was possible to think that the coalition was a little misguided. But this time, if we see Scarlett pursuing Parson et Co. with a vengeance, we will know why. It looks awesome from our point of view, but if you were Scarlett hacking your way out of pumice and the remains of n*1000 of your people your perspective would be slightly changed. Nothing Stanley might have done could have been as awesome - or destructive - as what Parson did right now.

That said, the likely outcome is we see the Arkenpliers in the next strip, surrounded by amorphous cinder. I for one would be disappointed but hey, it's the writer's and artist's story, and it's been good so far.

Bhurin
2009-03-28, 09:51 AM
I was originally siding with the "dramatic posers" (that's a fun name...) regarding the red-head with the Arkenpliers, in that we were seeing her in her last moment.

But that burst of lava on the left side of the panel... The one that's affecting her lighting/shadows. It seems a bit close for comfort, especially since the only ground we can see in the panel is in fact flooded with lava.

Attunement? Maybe the Arkentool was a wee bit of sentience and can protect itself? Maybe the red-head has natural fire resistance?

I like the theory of the undead-volcano being ineffective against the Arkenpliers somehow.

And as a last thought, I definitely see the silhouette of a skirt in one of those fireballs in panel 3 (The one closest to the bottom of the screen). So long Archons. :)

Lombard
2009-03-28, 09:51 AM
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f53/monkeydudesf/cat_its_beautiful.jpg?t=1238251071

Can't remember when I've ever laughed that hard at a lolcat! Give yourself a healthy chunk of internet xp, mate. :smallwink:

Occasional Sage
2009-03-28, 09:57 AM
Wow. Today's art rocks my socks. Jamie truly outdid himself, especially with the forth panel's smoke; it looks like a photograph. I'm stunned!


I'm not convinced the units in panel 4 are safe or that the worst isnt yet to come. The first 3 panels are all atop the volcano which is just seeping lava up from below. Panel 4 includes what would seem to be a fresh explosion as lava bursts from the side of the volcano. The whole side of the volcano may be about to let go, and its facing towards those troops. Anyone who remembers Mount Saint Helens knows what that means...

That would be me. I the house I lived in (in PDX) had a nice view from the front yard, straight up the street to the eruption. That's something I'll never forget.

dragonseth
2009-03-28, 10:09 AM
He's dead, Jim.

I will also side with the Dramatic Posers. I find it unlikely that she will survive. I love the sight of the cloth golem burning. I also want to know why there were so many people not at the walls yet.

Demonicbunny
2009-03-28, 10:30 AM
This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGvd-C7bw8g) is what I was hearing in my head when I saw the comic.
Poor boops. Including, I suppose, those poor boops in the last panel. I guess it would be mere minutes before burning bits of lava start falling on their heads. OMGWTFBBQ!

P.S.: Oh yeah, and excellent graphics!

This song (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2iv_E-Fn9E) was what was going through my head when I was reading the comic.

...and the flames went higher. And it burns burns burns. The ring of fire, the ring of fire

kunou126
2009-03-28, 10:40 AM
This gives new meaning to the term "Scorched Earth Policy".

Fez
2009-03-28, 10:43 AM
Maybe the red-head somehow attuned herself to the Pliers.

Attuned Arkentools have a sort of sparkly aura around them generally.

Kyouhen
2009-03-28, 10:50 AM
Wow. Amazing art on this one.

I'm with the dramatic pose people too. If anything the look on her face would be that of her trying to figure out where the whole war turned against the RCC.

And I don't see those people at the base of the mountain surviving for long either. They've probably expended all of their move getting that far, and that road is a lovely path for the lava to take. :smallbiggrin:

Voidhawk
2009-03-28, 10:52 AM
Wow. ...just... WOW.

TPK indeed!

Fez
2009-03-28, 10:53 AM
And generally, I'm not going to worry about speculation this strip.

The last few strips have been coming hot and heavy, and so I'm having enough fun just watching them arrive. Great stuff. Wonderful art. I sort of like that we have the equivalent to the summer SFX blockbuster climax happening here. And this is a big budget bunch of CGI. :)

Btw, imagine the emotional impact for those watching below as they watch. Erfworlders live in a 'dead' world that is unchanging and set down by the Titans. Their main impact is the building on cities on the surface. Parson just pulled a titan and has brought a small section of the world to life (or unlife I suppose.) Now that's a life changing view when you realize an eruption is even possible. Gets back to the root of awe, as in awful, to fill with awe, terrifying.

Caledonian
2009-03-28, 10:57 AM
They should have sent a poet.

I'm inclined to think that the enemy forces we see fleeing were those that managed to escape the eruption. It's reasonable to expect that some managed to get back out through the walls to relatively safety.

I suspect that the warlord holding the Pliers is the same one who had Bogroll burned to death just a few strips ago. Fate, as well as her damnable sisters Poetic Justice and Irony, would seem to be involved.

El_Chupachichis
2009-03-28, 11:04 AM
Hm... Will Lava transmit through the portal, or will it break first?

Also, perhaps Parson intends to drop out of sight for awhile -- assuming he doesn't actually return home for good. That could make everyone think it was a true TPK, instead of leaving the Castors and Parson alive.

I suspect Redhead will survive only long enough to deliver the Arkenpliers to a safer location where it won't sink into lava. Buried under tons of ash and rock is more recoverable than sinking into the mountain's lava stream, and if they have a conscious, as is implied, they probably don't want to sit miles underground waiting thousands or millions of years slowly being pushed to the surface.

Eraniverse
2009-03-28, 11:04 AM
How often do you get to use poignant to describe a webcomic? Terrifically executed.

El_Chupachichis
2009-03-28, 11:06 AM
And I don't see those people at the base of the mountain surviving for long either. They've probably expended all of their move getting that far, and that road is a lovely path for the lava to take. :smallbiggrin:

Oh, man. Imagine going splat up against the edge of the hex, and being stuck there while the lava and flaming rock comes ever closer....

TXChris
2009-03-28, 11:11 AM
I noticed earlier that the pliers appeared to have some serious bonuses/resistances vs uncroaked.

The volcano is uncroaked, so it makes me wonder....

Oslecamo
2009-03-28, 11:17 AM
Gets back to the root of awe, as in awful, to fill with awe, terrifying.

Since a volcano erution is actually stronger than a nuke, even in nowadays someone who had the power to awaken volcanos would be righteously feared.

If any of the coalition members lives to tell the tale, Stanley will probably become the most feared comander in Efworld.

Jordite
2009-03-28, 11:25 AM
Anyone else think the lava explosion in the last panel looks a bit like a giant middle finger?

tanonx
2009-03-28, 11:35 AM
Hmm... The Pliers' Resistance vs. Uncroaked does seem like something that would come into play. Maybe if it worked by adding a flat % miss chance... A volcano makes few direct attacks, after all. Course, it's no guarantee she'd survive the whole thing.

SteveMB
2009-03-28, 11:44 AM
Wow. Today's art rocks my socks. Jamie truly outdid himself, especially with the forth panel's smoke; it looks like a photograph. I'm stunned!

IIRC, somebody commented on how realistic some earlier flames were, and Jamie commented on the art technique to depict it. He's definitely outdone even his existing great job on the last few pages.

Gloverboy
2009-03-28, 11:44 AM
yo dawg, I heard you like lava....

So gentle little Sizemore, who we met studying with Hippies, who says he is uncomfortable with killing...

He's more or less responsible for probably the largest scale of death Erfworld has seen.

Massacre in the tunnels? Sizemore. Hit and run terrorist attack? Sizemore Toppling GK on the heads of the enemy? Sizemore. And now he's one third of Erfworld's version of the Manhattan project.

Boop.

by the way. Panel 2 would make Van Gogh chop the other ear for jealousy. Well done.

Bakta
2009-03-28, 11:49 AM
I was originally siding with the "dramatic posers" (that's a fun name...) regarding the red-head with the Arkenpliers, in that we were seeing her in her last moment.

But that burst of lava on the left side of the panel... The one that's affecting her lighting/shadows. It seems a bit close for comfort, especially since the only ground we can see in the panel is in fact flooded with lava.

Attunement? Maybe the Arkentool was a wee bit of sentience and can protect itself? Maybe the red-head has natural fire resistance?

I like the theory of the undead-volcano being ineffective against the Arkenpliers somehow.

And as a last thought, I definitely see the silhouette of a skirt in one of those fireballs in panel 3 (The one closest to the bottom of the screen). So long Archons. :)

I got to agree that something is happening to red warlord.

She's too close to lava not to, at least, smolder (cf burning warriors to her right hand).

While I like the bonus vs uncroaked volcano, it's still lava that's affecting them, not uncroaked lava. I find it hard to think it's the main reason

- Attuning might be an option.

To me, Occam's says no Titan tool would like to stay bathing in lava for all ages, so it might also be a failsafe way for someone to get it out whatever the situation.

And why do I think of "the Shout" by Munch looking at panel 3?.

Ragn Charran
2009-03-28, 12:06 PM
Archons are fallin' on my head
But that doesn't mean my bones won't soon be glowing red

I'm sorry, that was lame, but damn, panel 3, with the glowing little meteorettes falling in their pretty little poodle skirts is the most satisfying thing I've seen in this strip in a loooooooong time.

Maybe I'm sick, but that was just sweet. Great work Jamie.

ShinyBrowncoat
2009-03-28, 12:10 PM
I like how the erfworlders are still alive in the fireballs raining down from the volcano - cruel, but a nice touch.

I think those are meant to be the Archons caught in spewing lava -- note the skirt

mortolani
2009-03-28, 12:13 PM
Sucks to be them.


Suddenly the numbers are all confusing to me. How does this work? There were 3000 left? So not all of the 3000 were in the city proper? But if not all were in the city then why would the odds be hopeless? Parson still had most of the 2000 troops he recently uncroaked plus his own forces. Surely Ansom's forces (I really got to get a better name for them now) would need every available troop to win, right?




I agree... and the uncroaked infantary could still use dance fighting.

Fjolnir
2009-03-28, 12:15 PM
I think she's incinerated, like all the others. I came in with the express idea to say one thing though. Nice touch on the fireballs with archons in them falling from the sky

HPV
2009-03-28, 12:29 PM
Holy molten archons Batman! 'Nother great strip guys, thanks!

To me Red's expression looks like resignation, she might survive through the power of the 'Pliers, but I'm assuming she's toast 'til I see evidence to the contrary *shrug*

I'm also with those who see a possible nod to Munch's "The Scream" (http://weblogs.newsday.com/sports/watchdog/blog/Rep_Edvard_Munch_The_Scream_Oil_Painting_Art_Print s.jpg) in panel 3.
Jamie you've really outdone yourself with this one and the one before last, booping awesome artwork! :)

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-28, 12:52 PM
To me Red's expression (...)

Dammit people.:smallsmile:

http://i580.photobucket.com/albums/ss243/BLANDCorporatio/MyNameIsScarlet.gif

teratorn
2009-03-28, 01:00 PM
I liked Scarlett... And there goes one of the mightiest armies Erfworld had ever seen.

I see no reason for injured units to be inside the city, and as we see in the last panel, a few healthy units didn't have the move to enter the place. GK on the other side is up to 4 casters, one warlord, one overlord, one hobgobwin (maybe 2) and half a dozen dwagons. Charlie's probably not in a better shape.

I still expect Bogroll to rise in some corner of the city, the cast page talks about regeneration and we haven't seen it... Maybe he'll be the one to get the pliers.

JLrep
2009-03-28, 01:01 PM
It really wouldn't make any sense for the Arkenpliers to imbue invincibility. How exactly would that be balanced? Ansom took a lot of abuse, and then at about the same time (game-rules-wise) lost the pliers and fell a great distance, which I assume is instant high damage (no chance of "missing"). However, as for being near the volcano, I assume also that it's something like an enormous amount of damage at a very high chance to hit—say, 99% for normal troops. Why else would it seem like the volcano managed to hit each of the Archons in panel 3 without wasting any extra fireballs?

As for the redhead, I'm sure even holding the Arkenpliers without them being attuned gives a massive stat boost. AND tanonx pointed out that they obviously are strong against uncroaked, which the volcano currently is. Also, this is a bit of a stretch, but if the Arkenpliers have a sort of intelligence of their own, can they "choose" to attune to somebody? And if so, wouldn't they choose to attune to the redhead, given that the only alternative is to be buried/melted?

Mando Knight
2009-03-28, 01:01 PM
When all the land is in ruin,
And BURNiNATION has FORSAKEN the countryside...
Only one 'lord will remain...
My money's on...

PARSON!

And the Parson comes in the NiiiiiIIIIiiIGHT!

Glome
2009-03-28, 01:14 PM
This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGvd-C7bw8g) is what I was hearing in my head when I saw the comic.
Poor boops. Including, I suppose, those poor boops in the last panel. I guess it would be mere minutes before burning bits of lava start falling on their heads. OMGWTFBBQ!

P.S.: Oh yeah, and excellent graphics!

Funny, this is what I hearing in my head
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdbYsoEasio

JLrep
2009-03-28, 01:19 PM
Funny, this is what I hearing in my head
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdbYsoEasio

Not http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzOb3UhPmig&feature=related ? :smalleek:

HandofShadows
2009-03-28, 01:22 PM
DooM!

(need a font around here that looks like fire :smallbiggrin: )

Impressive artwork. I think the red warlord is dead. The expression on her face is that she knows she is dead and is just waiting for it. It also shows the Arkenpliers still being in GK. As I stated before I don't think the volcano could destroy the 'pliers. They might be buried, but not destroyed. And remember Sizemore is still alive (we hope).
Being hit by a large amount of lava is not like being burned to death (which is a VERY bad way to die). For one the lava would destroy your nerves as soon as it touched you, no nerves, no pain. And you would either be incinerated or all the water in your body would turn to steam. The result being that you would be dead before you had time to feel a lot of pain. It's not a nice way to go, but might be less painfull than getting chopped up with a sword or axe. And it would be over very fast.
I think the forces we see in the last panel as the additional forces that where following behind the units that attacked GK (the ones that Ansom didn't want to wait for). I don't give them a very good chance of surviving. GK's eruption is not like that of a Shield Volcano, but a stratovolcanoes (someone already metioned Mount St Helens and Vesuvius). This means a big nasty eruption and things like pyroclastic flows (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyroclastic_flow ) waves of super hot ash (moving at well over 100 miles per hour) and huge amounts of poisonouse gases. Then there is the lighter ash the volcano produces that is more than able to choak a person to death or (worse) get into thier lungs where it can either tear them up (lungs fill up with blood) or the ash mixes with fluid in the lungs and turns into a concrete like substance. (gagh!) The think the people inside GK might have an easier death than those on the outside.

CelebrenIthil
2009-03-28, 01:23 PM
Rock falls, everyone dies...indeed.
Indeed.

Ragn Charran
2009-03-28, 01:30 PM
Random thought: We don't know what the pliers are made of.

And lava is liquid rock and metal.

Assuming they aren't either carried out by Scarlet or melted, they might float. And thus not be lost.

The Old Hack
2009-03-28, 01:37 PM
and as the windshield melts
and my tears evaporate
leaving only charcoal to defend

finally I understand the feelings of the few
ashes and diamonds
foe and friend
we were all equal in the end

-- Pink Floyd, The Final Cut

Beautiful, beautiful page, Jamie. That's all I have to say this time.

hajo
2009-03-28, 02:03 PM
the enemy forces we see fleeing were those that managed to escape the eruption.
The troops in the last panel are not fleeing, they are the last in the column that didn't make it to GK this turn.

Alebak
2009-03-28, 02:11 PM
This strip reminds me of a game that my friend played in high school.

His history teacher made a game out of the inter relationships in the middle east, as a way to show who was who and who wanted what. My friend was Sadam, and a couple other kids were hi advisors, and other kids were the U.S and the other countries.

After surving an assassination attempt, and prevented another by killing off all of his advisors in game, he came to me, out of class for advice on what to do next.

Me: Ok, whats the deal?

Him: The U.S is at my borders pushing inwards and my army cant stop them.

Me: Ok, what do you have?

Him: (so many thousands of soldiers) and some nukes.

We eventually came up with a plan.

Me: Well for starters you should light the oil fields on fire.

Him: Can do!

After that used all his nukes but one to slow down the Americans, and had his guys do a fighting retreat to Baghdad. After holding out as long as he could, he set off his last nuke in his palace. I find the similarities to what Parson did and what me and friend thought up kinda funny.

TLDR version: Me and my friend thought up a plan in a game that turned out similar to whats happening in the strip, and thats funny to me.

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-28, 02:17 PM
On an unrelated note, did the cast page stay the same as it was in the beginning? I ask because when I try to access it

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erfcast.html

the page does not load.

Re: Alebak

Yep, when you can't win make sure the other guy loses. Mutually Assured Destruction.

Partywhipple
2009-03-28, 02:26 PM
I am seriously hoping this damages Charlie. Does his Arkentool allow him to generate his floaty chicks or what? I am a bit confused by how they work. Does each tool come with troops? Allow you to make troops? Have a set number? It was never clear to me if Stanley could make more dragons with the hammer or if he just had a set number from it. Any know any definite answers?
It does look like the redhead isn't burning, right?

*edit*
Also I need to ask, Wanda is definitely going to die, right? That was one of the reasons Parson wanted to not do his plan, wasn't it? When the three casters break the trio it does immense psychic damage. It killed what's her face and made the foolomancer a nutcase. Wanda has shown she does not handle thinkamancy well, having taken great lasting damage from the backlash of her own spell failing. So I assume she is not going to be able to survive the breaking of the trio. I am unsure if Sizemore will be able to survive either. Neither of their magics come from mind magic, right?
*Edit #2*
Ok So about whether Sizemore and Wanda are going to die. Here's how i see it:
Maggie is a Thinkamancer. Thinkamancy is a subset of Eyemancy. Eyemancy is part Life and part Motion.
Wanda is a Coakamancer. Croakamancy is a subset of Naughtymancy. Naughtymancy is part Motion and part Matter.
Sizemore is a Dirtamancer. Dirtamancy is a subset of Stuffamancy. Stuffamancy is soley derived from Matter.

Sizemore's discipline has NOTHING to do with Maggie's. Wanda's touches it in Motion. I would think Sizemore wouldn't be able to handle psychic backlash at all and will definitely die when the link breaks. Wanda would have a better chance since Croakamancy is closer to Thinkamancy than Dirtomancy is. but she is already damaged from a bad spell experience. I have serious doubts she'll live through the breaking. Heck, Maggie might die too. she's already broken the link once and she doesn't look too healthy at this point. parson may have lost all his primary casters. Thoughts?

joosy
2009-03-28, 02:26 PM
I enjoyed the falling arches.. er. archons in panel 3. Dramatic to the end, they are.

To answer some of the questions asked so far:

1) The portal leads to the Magic Kingdom: An Island with sections for each major magic class- color coordinated even, for your convenience. There is a section in the center called "Portal park" where casters or rather those who can use the portals exit and enter. We still don't know why Parson can use the portal but the implication is that it is for casters only.

2) We have no idea of any effect of the arkenpliers on its user for protection from damage, etc. We do know they apply a bonus but whether that is attack or defense remains to be spelled out. Their effect on uncroaked lifeforms is to turn them to dust. This volcano is not 'uncroaked' in the sense of a zombie, but rather an induced eruption. The pliers may have some effect on that but its doubtful that they would preserve their wielder from being at ground zero in this cataclysm.

3) The RCC troops at the end are troops who have not made it up the mountain yet. Remember that when RCC began this turn their seige and other units were still arriving. Ansom had brought in every resource he could even at great hardship to the various factions in the RCC. The other warlords wanted to wait for the rest of the seige but Ansom forced a breach. He clearly had more than enough troops to wipe out GK forces several times over. It seems that he also like to be dramatic and grand in his gestures.

4) Unanswered questions that I consider relevant so far:
a) Where did Parson go and why could he use the portal?
b) Does this effectively end RCC's turn?
c) Why does Wanda follow Stanley of her own free will? Wouldn't loyalty and duty endear her to FAQ? which brings us to:
d) What really happened to FAQ?
Speculation may abound but it is just that, speculation. I prefer to wait for it to play out rather than be like the annoying people in the theater who loudly proclaim their assumed predictions of the unfolding drama


Thank you very much, Rob and Jaime - I love this comic and may your detractors continue to rot in their parents' dank basements.

Sarissofoi
2009-03-28, 02:44 PM
BTW Silly question.
How Parson can uncroak something in the middle on enemy turn?
This shouldnt be posible.
I suppose uncroak volcano was not only a game breaker but a world's rules breaker. Remeber parson blog and god mode?
Secundo.
I supose any units from coalition whose have enough move points can escape from city. Remeber? Turn based game it is.
But archons cant escape they end move. That will hurts them. A lot.
Anyway some units propably dont have enough due to attacks and some units attack from march then they have few or zero move points.

Tercio.
Scarlet. I think this is possibility that she synchronize with arkenpliers.
Ansom not synchronize with them and dont have theirs full powers.
Other hand Stanley find hammer when he was low ranking footsoldier and then become OverLord.

Sarissofoi
2009-03-28, 02:49 PM
Ach.
If coalition troops can still move and be escape that mean this burning corpses belongs to parsons troops. You know city garnizons and uncroaked infrantry mostly.
Of course some troops from coalition cant escape and archons end their move and now fried but other units should easly reatret from city.

DarkNewton
2009-03-28, 03:05 PM
since we all are keenly aware of Charlie's semi-cocky attitude a few strips ago 'you'll learn. We prefer to play games that don't even contain a losing outcome.'

Well it looks like the lesson really is for Charlie, facing Parson in battle doesn't contain a winning solution just varying levels of loss, as Parson fights all the way to the ground and beyond. I'll be surprised if Charlie easily/readily enters a protracted battle on the side opposite Parson again.

Will probably become a deal-breaking clause of his ongoing contracts 'if hampstard suddenly appears in the op4's leadership core, this contract is null and void, an all y'all is on yer own'

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-28, 03:06 PM
Re: Partywhipple

If Popularity Power (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/PopularityPower) is anything to go by, Wanda will live, and Sizemore has a good chance too. It's "what's her name" (Maggie, folks, M A G twice I E) that would be in trouble.

This does not mean that the authors are not preparing to off a few more significant characters btw, but succumbing to link-break is not dramatic enough.

All of this assumes, of course, that Parson does not wake up at the game table among his friends or something.

PS: and her name. Is Scarlett :smallsmile:.

elrod13
2009-03-28, 03:51 PM
[COLOR="DarkOrchid"][COLOR="DarkOrchid"]Ohhh...
very. Very. VERY. GOOD.

Ikialev
2009-03-28, 04:03 PM
Wow, volcano shooting zombies!

workmad3
2009-03-28, 04:37 PM
Wow, I think that was a good climax to the story arc :D

Incidentally, I've not seen anyone comment on the definite ruthless element of this as well. Parson was backed into a corner where the city was lost... he'd burned the chance to surrender (assuming he could anyway without Stanley there to make it official) in order to kill the opposing chief warlord. So he blew the city up, killing all his troops and denying the enemy the spoils.

Awesome, and will make Parson and Stanley feared throughout the (erf)world - 'mess with us and even if we lose you won't gain anything, and we'll blow you up for trying' :D

Opal Tide
2009-03-28, 04:44 PM
"I love the smell of burning Archons in the morning."

Seriously awesome art in this addition, possibly the best of the series.

Several other thoughts:

I think Scarlett may in fact survive and the first panel is not just there for dramatic affect (though it is quite evocative). My thinking behind this is that everyone around her and the very ground itself seem to be alight with fire (see the background). She seems to be almost separate from the events going on around here. The pliers vs. uncroaked theory I think is sustainable with what we have seen thus far and she could serve as a link between the coalition forces from Gobwin Knob and subsequent Erfworld stories.

The Troops at the foot of Gobwin knob are likely the elements of siege that were too slow for the day's battles. If they survive the eruption is yet to be seen since, as many have already pointed out, volcanos are anything but a local event. They may not have move left, else Ansom would have brought them up for the last push against Parson. I would also think thee are a few warlords in those stacks if they are mixed units or else even if they survive the eruption they may be forced to auto attack each other. even if they don't they may fall prey to Tool when he returns with a flight of dragons. I can't imagine weakly led infantry with few heavy units standing up long against Chief Warlord led dragons and an artifact bonus.

Charlies has shown himself to be a master of exploiting the accepted Erfworld rules. But this event casts doubt on how much of an unconventional thinker he is. There is no doubt he has excellent assets available to him and the flexibility to deploy them as he sees fit. But he may be operating within the same limited world view that Ansom is in, just with a better handles on the rules and the means to exploit them. In either event I have to think he got a major bloody nose from the eruption.

All in all I am still at the edge of my seat, waiting for the next exciting events that will unfurl in Erfworld.

raphfrk
2009-03-28, 05:03 PM
What happens to the Arkenpliers if they sink in lava?


They probably wouldn't actually melt. Maybe that is a job for Sizemore in a future volume :)? Also, there seemed to be alot of gems left in the volcano ... maybe he might remember their location.

Lombard
2009-03-28, 05:10 PM
Yeah pliers vs. uncroaked, that's a good point. Maybe it will even end up saving Parson's fat arse from being turned into bacon if that whole portal thing doesn't work out for him!

raphfrk
2009-03-28, 05:13 PM
Btw, a thought occurs, Parson just wiped out the Gobwins and they aren't technically part of Stanley's side, they were just allies.

Yodimus
2009-03-28, 05:31 PM
Dude, the volcano just Mount St. Hellens'd the HELL out of itself!

raphfrk
2009-03-28, 05:38 PM
Dude, the volcano just Mount St. Hellens'd the HELL out of itself!

Well, I was just thinking that wiping out your allies is worse that wiping out your enemies. This is especially true if there are very few/no gobwins anywhere else. Also, Parson basically set off the nuke and ran.

It could potentially lead to issues with making "long term" alliances in the future.

teratorn
2009-03-28, 05:49 PM
Btw, a thought occurs, Parson just wiped out the Gobwins and they aren't technically part of Stanley's side, they were just allies.

They would not survive the fall of the city. Parson had no way to save them.

Occasional Sage
2009-03-28, 07:50 PM
IIRC, somebody commented on how realistic some earlier flames were, and Jamie commented on the art technique to depict it. He's definitely outdone even his existing great job on the last few pages.

Oh yes. that was around the campfire, when Parson became hated.

abb3w
2009-03-28, 08:01 PM
Methinks for the red-head, two explanations exist, and I am inclined towards the first one.

Arkenpliers are known to be very effective against uncroaked, and technically, the volcano is an uncroaked volcano right now. Perhaps a defense bonus of a sort against any uncroaked attack "the zombie volcano erupts in your face but arkenpliers unply the lava...

Secondly, Arkenpliers, like most artifacts, have some sort of intelligence/protective instict, and instead of accepting to sink into the bottom of the soon to be formed lava pool, they protect their current wielder by the will of titans.

Oh a third option an innate fire resistance/immunity.... or from a ring or potion...

Perhaps the Red hair signifies?

I was guessing option 1. That said, even if she lives, her sanity may be a bit fragile.



Also, on an old (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/OlderThanDirt) literary bent, cf. Job 1:13-18. "The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee."

Oracle_Hunter
2009-03-28, 08:33 PM
BTW Silly question.
How Parson can uncroak something in the middle on enemy turn?
This shouldnt be posible.

Sure it is; people are always casting spells on other people's turns. The Linked Eyemancers were monitoring combat (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0066.html) and giving orders (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0072.html) on other people's turns all the time. Maggie cast Ephedera (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0116.html) on Charlie's turn.

It's just a spell - you can cast it whenever you want.

As for the Pliers, I'm thinking Stanley will pick them up when he gets back to the remains of his home - and he is going to be pissed! :smallbiggrin:

mrlovanhey
2009-03-28, 08:45 PM
Wow, that was a very nice page. Great artwork.

Looks to me like the coalition is not enjoying the gentle breeze of a mountain top as much as they would like. :smallsmile:

ishnar
2009-03-28, 09:10 PM
Dude, the volcano just Mount St. Hellens'd the HELL out of itself!

If the volcano did a mount saint helens then all those troops in panel 4 would have been blown away by the blast. It leveled trees for miles.

Abraxes
2009-03-28, 09:20 PM
I haven't really gone back through the comments for http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0106.html, but isn't it conceivable that warlords simply have a high enough defense to negate or soak this sort of damage, at least for a while? The air defenses took out archons, but didn't eliminate the 2 warlords in the same airspace. I don't see the air defenses from the aforementioned page being able to ignore particular targets, so if the arkenpliers do give a decent stat-boost (and maybe even if they don't) , I can see the red warlord surviving this.

elrod13
2009-03-28, 09:29 PM
After careful reflection, a few thoughts:
The first and second panel may be the same scene, separated by a few seconds.
The third panel may not be falling RCC troops, since we see no debris falling in the fourth panel. The third may be the Archons being blasted by the thermal shockwave of the... Zombicano.
The fourth panel is clearly showing an RCC member having an "onosecond".

Boneyard
2009-03-28, 09:48 PM
...
That would be me. I the house I lived in (in PDX) had a nice view from the front yard, straight up the street to the eruption. That's something I'll never forget.

I was living on the east side of Vancouver, by Evergreen High. It was on top of a ridge of sorts, so my backyard had a perfect view of the mountain.

I was in second grade at the time. Every single paper and report that I had a choice in involved volcanoes. I was scared I was going to be 'exploded' and fascinated at the same time.

Anyhoo, I thought they might make it selectively shoot lava out of vents and cause tons of damage to the forces. I never expected him to scorch the earth.

Wow. I feel bad for the GK forces. All the Knights In Stanley's Service and Gobwins that are buying it.

Stanley may have a Morale problem in the future.

Nargrakhan
2009-03-28, 09:52 PM
Kill 'em all. Let God sort 'em out.

Nicely done Parson. You're gonna be remembered like Ghengis Khan in the real world. :smalltongue:

SmallFurryMamml
2009-03-28, 09:52 PM
My thoughts:

Next comic, Scarlett attunes.

One after that, she gets croaked anyway.


Although I do think she'd make a nice antagonist for the next book (or protagonist, we don't know anything about the next book yet)

Lichtouch
2009-03-28, 09:58 PM
When the volcano began to erupt, it's probable that everyone started to run out of the city.
Remember the city was just one hex.

Also, it seems kind of silly that in the enemy's turn, a side can animate a horde of undead, animate a volcano and cast countless spells. I guess it's a Heroes of Might and Magic style gameplay. It's usually hex to hex with your armies, exploring but when you go into a hex, it's a completely different ruleset.

I guess in this game, everything suddenly becomes realtime.

The Old Hack
2009-03-28, 10:05 PM
I just realised. Last time we saw the sky outside, just a few pages before and likely only a few minutes ago in story time, the sky was blue, it was broad daylight. The ashes of the eruption are already turning day to night.

My God, this is seriously terrifying and beautiful art indeed.

fractal
2009-03-28, 10:50 PM
I haven't really gone back through the comments for http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0106.html, but isn't it conceivable that warlords simply have a high enough defense to negate or soak this sort of damage, at least for a while? The air defenses took out archons, but didn't eliminate the 2 warlords in the same airspace. I don't see the air defenses from the aforementioned page being able to ignore particular targets, so if the arkenpliers do give a decent stat-boost (and maybe even if they don't) , I can see the red warlord surviving this.
If so, then that's justification for Bogroll's sacrifice. Presumably (at least prima facie), Scarlett with Pliers is less dangerous than Ansom with Pliers. Making sure Ansom didn't make it out alive could be more important than bringing Bogroll along to the Magic Kingdom or whereever.

Leewei
2009-03-28, 10:58 PM
No, Scarlett isn't burning up -- but she should be. The others aren't falling into lava; they're bursting into flames from superheated volcanic outgassing preceding an eruption. There is no stream of lava, nor signs of any other (temporary) survivor. I expect we'll be seeing her again.

I wonder if Parson becoming a mercenary will allow him to operate independently of Stanley. Cripes, I hope so.

DoctorJest
2009-03-28, 10:59 PM
When the volcano began to erupt, it's probable that everyone started to run out of the city.
Remember the city was just one hex.

Provided they have Move left.


Also, it seems kind of silly that in the enemy's turn, a side can animate a horde of undead, animate a volcano and cast countless spells. I guess it's a Heroes of Might and Magic style gameplay. It's usually hex to hex with your armies, exploring but when you go into a hex, it's a completely different ruleset.

So far the only thing we've seen Turns effect is Move, as when it's not a side's turn, their units move drops to zero. We've seen no indication that they stop or freeze in time during an enemy turn. In fact, we've seen units of all kinds do many things when it's not their turn. Many things other than move, of course.

Occasional Sage
2009-03-28, 11:33 PM
Check out the Bloopers thread; Rob has a post about what can and can't be done in whose turn.

Zael Zuran
2009-03-28, 11:33 PM
Red's expression is clearly one of sheer despair, not fear. Whether she physically survives according to the author's future intentions is likely irrelevent. The person she was inside is probably dead.

Her face betrays a realization that "it was all for nothing." The war, the loss of Ansom, the Arkenpliers themselves...all useless in a zero sum game.

Even Charlie didn't realize what sort of monster Stanley had summoned until the very end.

Warfare has evolved in Erf, and it has been a rude awakening. Much in the way the guerilla tactics of the American and French colonists destroyed the conventions of warfare of their day, and the machine gun butchered the Napoleonic charge in the trenches of WWI; Parson Gotti brought Hell to Gobwin Knob in all of its ruthless glory.

It was beautiful.

So... is Stanley a barbarian now?

Eraniverse
2009-03-28, 11:33 PM
So far the only thing we've seen Turns effect is Move, as when it's not a side's turn, their units move drops to zero. We've seen no indication that they stop or freeze in time during an enemy turn. In fact, we've seen units of all kinds do many things when it's not their turn. Many things other than move, of course.

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0070.html Panel 3.

Admittedly could be referring to veils only (phrasing doesn't imply that though), but certainly an example of spell casting being effected by turns.

EDIT: Ninja'd and more comprehensively too.

FalconPunch
2009-03-28, 11:55 PM
[ARKENPLIERS]
Binds on attunement
Unique
Two-hand Pliers
175-292 Damage Speed 3.80
(61.4 damage per second)
+20 Strength
+20 Stamina
+100 Fire resistance
Chance on hit: Turn target uncroaked to dust
Attunement: Survive plot hole.

Wishful thinking, but it'd be nice.

knives6196
2009-03-29, 01:14 AM
hehehehhe, That must have been really fun to draw and paint.

Nargrakhan
2009-03-29, 01:14 AM
Hmmm… on more serious reflection...

While Parson totally annihilating an enemy force that was far superior to his own, with a magnitude of firepower (ha!) perhaps unseen in the history of the world, will undoubtedly make him a feared individual… it might also have the side effect of unifying everyone to rid someone as dangerous as he. Being the boggieman is a two edge sword: just because you're utterly feared, doesn't mean your enemies automatically cower before you.

Glome
2009-03-29, 01:15 AM
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0070.html Panel 3.

Admittedly could be referring to veils only (phrasing doesn't imply that though), but certainly an example of spell casting being effected by turns.

EDIT: Ninja'd and more comprehensively too.

But Maggie used a veil scroll on the coalition's turn, so that isn't it. I believe he is saying here is that you can't cast spells on outside hexes when it isn't your turn. In other words, Jack wasn't in the dwagon hex and it isn't their turn, thus he can't veil the dwagons.

Lombard
2009-03-29, 01:43 AM
Look how in the first panel she's sitting there calm and unaffected by the same heat that's incinerating others that are nearby. It's clearly intended to show that something strange and different is going on with her. Add to that the white eyes devoid of pupils and irises and... well I guess if you don't see it, you don't see it. o_O

Evil the Cat
2009-03-29, 01:43 AM
I am definitely quite happy with where the story has gone. What started as a mildly entertaining cutesy webcomic (IMO) has developed into a solid, gripping story.

Nargrakhan
2009-03-29, 01:50 AM
Look how in the first panel she's sitting there calm and unaffected by the same heat that's incinerating others that are nearby. It's clearly intended to show that something strange and different is going on with her. Add to that the white eyes devoid of pupils and irises and... well I guess if you don't see it, you don't see it. o_O

Mental scaring at its finest: watching everyone you know (possibly even care for) die around you - horribly no less - while you get a front row seat of the nightmare will unhinge the toughest minds. Throw in some survivor guilt, possible loss of faith in everything you believe in (that nobles are obsolete as Parson put it), and being at ground zero of a WMD lightshow... she's actually taking it quite well, relatively speaking...

He mind has probably "shutdown" (if only temporarily) in rejection of what's she's seeing.

Xeticus
2009-03-29, 02:23 AM
Wow! I'm just thinking, how are Vinnie and Jillian going to react to this? And how about the rest of the coalition when they find out that Ansom and all of the RCC got scragged, GK is a roaring volcano and Stanley, his Chief Warlord, several top level casters and half a dozen dwagons are still out there? A lot of nations armies got completely scragged in that blast. GK turned into the ultimate meat grinder. I can't wait to see how they react.

Glome
2009-03-29, 02:48 AM
Look how in the first panel she's sitting there calm and unaffected by the same heat that's incinerating others that are nearby. It's clearly intended to show that something strange and different is going on with her. Add to that the white eyes devoid of pupils and irises and... well I guess if you don't see it, you don't see it. o_O

She doesn't have pupils or irises normally
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0130.html

In fact I believe the only ones who have irises are Parson and the survivors from Faq.

And we don't really see any sort of magical effect like a shield going on in that panel there. I think she is just having a thousand-yard stare and knows she is about die.

Architect
2009-03-29, 02:55 AM
Several nations banded together under Ansom (Jetstone) to defeat Stanley once and for all. They were reassured that victory was inevitable and that their forces would be led to victory. Then the boop hits the fan and their forces and treasury are completely wasted and victory has turned into ash in their mouths. What happens then? If it's like the real world, it turns into the blame game. You blame your allies, your advisors, your military commanders, and even your gods. Parson hasn't just defeated the RCC, he's killed it and virtually guaranteed that they'll never work together for a very long time... if not go to war with each other.

Parson is still a relative unknown to the leaders of other nations. I'm not sure if they recognize or would believe that he did this. Even if they do, it's not in their best interest to attribute it to him, as it will basically make him more powerful. It's easier and safer to blame it on the Titans. Stanley's kingdom has been wiped out. It's probably safe to say that most of the RCC's forces have been (or will be soon) wiped out. Attributing it to Parson will make him feared without the burden of being hated. That's the second best outcome for Parson.

Remember, from the perspective of Erfworlders, Parson has just done his duty. Stanley was hated because he overturned the status quo (he started as a simple footsoldier) and conquered other kingdoms (ruled by nobles). Parson was brought in to defend GK and did so successfully on behalf of Stanley. Even if the way that he denied them victory was unconventional, his reason (duty) fits their worldview.

Muzzafar
2009-03-29, 02:59 AM
And why do I think of "the Shout" by Munch looking at panel 3?.
Technically, it is usually referred to as The Scream (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Scream).

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-29, 03:17 AM
When the volcano began to erupt, it's probable that everyone started to run out of the city.
Remember the city was just one hex.

Also, it seems kind of silly that in the enemy's turn, a side can animate a horde of undead, animate a volcano and cast countless spells. I guess it's a Heroes of Might and Magic style gameplay. It's usually hex to hex with your armies, exploring but when you go into a hex, it's a completely different ruleset.

I guess in this game, everything suddenly becomes realtime.


Just as Stanley was surprised at our realtime style of warfare, so would we feel awkward reading (and even more so, writing) a story about a turn-based battle. It can be done, but it would look stilted, which is why, I think, the game mechanics drifted to real-time as the comic progressed.

And it didn't drift much, really. So far, it's more like the actions that you do out of turn have a defensive flavour, which to us makes sense. Imagine hacking at an opponent who will, dutifully, wait for their turn to retaliate.

If we have Magic the Gathering players here, could the "Uncroak Volcano" thing be one of those Instants or Enchantements?

(Somewhat btw, some games have, as an option, a "simultaneous turn based" game play (think Age of Wonders 2). You still have to hit that End Turn when you run out of action points, though.)

Tordek
2009-03-29, 03:37 AM
There IS an MTG spell called 'Volcano', which destroys a mountain. Its an enchantment.

And I don't see the alliance surviving this incident, its just too shocking to everyone.

ichthus
2009-03-29, 03:39 AM
Welcome Joan of Arkenpliers (guessing on the name). You've joined such illustrious companions as Charlie and Stanley the Tool.

Anyone thinking that she is not attuned to the pliers and is just standing there in awe before being burned alive are probably the same people that thought Wanda was scared when Tool told her Jillian was in the dungeon. The panel in context doesn't make sense if she is not attuned. There would be no point in showing a completely non-burning person holding the pliers. You would instead show the pliers either being blown from the volcano in the explosion or them sinking into the lava. It's basic storytelling. It is also the second time she has been shown with the pliers. Refer to page 132 (comic 145) panel 3 here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0145.html). We have a new player in the quest to attain the tools.

Edit: Btw, my guess is "Thus ends Part 1: The Battle for Gobwin Knob"

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-29, 03:43 AM
Welcome Joan of Arkenpliers (guessing on the name). You've joined such illustrious companions as Charlie and Stanley the Tool.


Nice to see someone else dignifying Scarlett with a name in her likely last moments, but if you want her to live through the firey death, maybe Joan is not exactly the luckiest choice :smallwink:. It would be ironic though.

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-29, 03:51 AM
There IS an MTG spell called 'Volcano', which destroys a mountain. Its an enchantment.

At one million+ cardsets, anything is probably in MTG. What I meant was if the arcane turn rules of MTG allow enchantments to be cast out of turn (pretty sure Instants can, but I wouldn't know).

ichthus
2009-03-29, 04:24 AM
Also, I'm fairly certain the red-headed commander at the Alliance's round table discussions early on in the comic is not our plier attuned girl. The one at the round-table did not have bangs (and I think she ended up getting croaked with the tunnel crew). The best I can tell, she showed up at about page 117 (comic 130) here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0130.html). She also has a line or two in the following comic. However, she thought Ansom was bat boop crazy.

Edit: Wording issue.

TheTurnipKing
2009-03-29, 04:41 AM
Damn, I guess one of the coalition got the Arkenpliers, then, if that chick in the first panel the one who was standing at Ansom's corpse.

Also, the screaming guy in the last panel makes me giggle for some reason.

factotum
2009-03-29, 04:57 AM
At one million+ cardsets, anything is probably in MTG. What I meant was if the arcane turn rules of MTG allow enchantments to be cast out of turn (pretty sure Instants can, but I wouldn't know).

Instants and creature abilities can all be used on your opponent's turn in MTG. Sorceries and enchantments can't, but then, MTG calls pretty much any spell which has an effect that lasts any time at all an "enchantment" anyway (sorceries and instants are both one-shot things that have an effect and then go away immediately). The things that Parson's side have been casting all appear to be this one-shot type of stuff, apart from possibly the uncroaking of Ansom's dead troops.

Koretsu
2009-03-29, 05:05 AM
Wow, volcano shooting zombies!


Not to nitpick, but don't you mean "Zombie-shooting Volcano"? ;)

ishnar
2009-03-29, 05:18 AM
There would be no point in showing a completely non-burning person holding the pliers. You would instead show the pliers either being blown from the volcano in the explosion or them sinking into the lava. It's basic storytelling. I

Panel one and two are before/after panels. It's basic storytelling. One of the advantages of being a high ranking antagonist is the moment of impending doom. Lowbies might die without warning, but the one in charge always gets a moment to reflect on inevitability.

fractal
2009-03-29, 05:22 AM
Also, I'm fairly certain the red-headed commander at the Alliance's round table discussions early on in the comic is not our plier attuned girl. The one at the round-table did not have bangs (and I think she ended up getting croaked with the tunnel crew). The best I can tell, she showed up at about page 117 (comic 130) here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0130.html). She also has a line or two in the following comic. However, she thought Ansom was bat boop crazy.
It's clearly the same person. Yes, the bangs are a bit different, but the hair color is the same, and the armor is identical. Are you telling me you think there are two long-haired red-headed warlords from the same faction among Ansom's top commanders? Unless they're identical twins...

Jon Pander
2009-03-29, 05:38 AM
Brutal art there, burning them alive and all. Very short comic. I wonder, has it been said at some point where exactly that portal is taking them?

It's taking them to Burbank.

VariaVespasa
2009-03-29, 07:14 AM
Welcome Joan of Arkenpliers (guessing on the name). You've joined such illustrious companions as Charlie and Stanley the Tool.

Anyone thinking that she is not attuned to the pliers and is just standing there in awe before being burned alive are probably the same people that thought Wanda was scared when Tool told her Jillian was in the dungeon. The panel in context doesn't make sense if she is not attuned. There would be no point in showing a completely non-burning person holding the pliers. You would instead show the pliers either being blown from the volcano in the explosion or them sinking into the lava. It's basic storytelling. It is also the second time she has been shown with the pliers. Refer to page 132 (comic 145) panel 3 here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0145.html). We have a new player in the quest to attain the tools.

Edit: Btw, my guess is "Thus ends Part 1: The Battle for Gobwin Knob"

You are incorrect. The attuned tools have a different look to them. The pliers currently dont, therefore they are NOT attuned to Scarlett. I would imagine that there would be a little visual display at the moment of attunement too, which we havent had, although thats just conjecture.

Both this and the other time she was seen holding the pliers were to establish where they were for the readers. The first time to show that hadnt captured them as some conjectured he might, and this time to show that they havent been taken out of GK and are thus vulnerable to the volcano. The eruption is not over yet so being blasted somewhere or sinking is still possible.

We dont know why Scarlett is not currently on fire. Maybe she is somehow fire resistant as you claim, but maybe she is just standing somewhere that hasnt turned to lava yet, or maybe she's standing on Ansoms carpet, which is currently unaccounted for, or maybe she IS on fire up to the knees but hasnt taken enough damage to die yet, or maybe something else which we havent thought of. Personally I'm in the "stare of the doomed" camp, but I wouldnt bet serious money on it. I doubt she has the carpet since that was in the tower zone and I'm not an archon could bring it down to her even if it wanted to, but again I wouldnt bet serious cash on it. I dont predict it, but I wouldnt actually put it past the writers to have her fly out of the volcano on the carpet to "safety", only to run into a veiled Stanley and get croaked for the pliers. :P

The caldera is obviously unsafe for fliers, and should be lifeless by the time RCC ends turn, but I wouldnt rule out Stanley being able to fly when his turn comes on his RED dragon to pillage the pliers from either Scarletts corpse or isolated self. Heck, he might even capture her in the process so he could try to find out what happened. Time will tell.

There is at least 1 more page, and possibly as many as 5, not including any "pretty, an erupting volcano!" pages, assuming that they dont show what happens to Parson in this book. I'm betting they dont show that, but its possible, depending on what the story for book 2 is.

Zolem
2009-03-29, 07:20 AM
This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGvd-C7bw8g) is what I was hearing in my head when I saw the comic.
Poor boops. Including, I suppose, those poor boops in the last panel. I guess it would be mere minutes before burning bits of lava start falling on their heads. OMGWTFBBQ!

P.S.: Oh yeah, and excellent graphics!

Huh, the song I was hearing was Ultra Hot Volcano by Men Women & Children.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIbsHbB7qlw

stsasser
2009-03-29, 09:12 AM
So... is Stanley a barbarian now?

I second that question. Every thing I know about D&D style games, I learned at Giantitp.com. At dawn, how does Stanley feed those dragons and surviving KISS without his last city? For that matter, how does he feed himself?

On the pic of Red: extreme zoomed, it looks like she's staring down in horror at the Hell opening at her feet. No telling what happened after. Pity, she seemed to have a clue.

Nekomata
2009-03-29, 10:00 AM
Her face betrays a realization that "it was all for nothing." The war, the loss of Ansom, the Arkenpliers themselves...all useless in a zero sum game.
It's not a zero sum game.
For example, on this very page, all the sides involved attained negative score.

Fez
2009-03-29, 10:13 AM
It's not a zero sum game.
For example, on this very page, all the sides involved attained negative score.

Perhaps a negative score, but how much experience did the Trimancer and Parson just get? That's a whole lot of stacks ;)

Wakky
2009-03-29, 10:34 AM
Something that no one has mentioned:

The Arkenpliers turn most undead to dust on contact. What if they protect Scarlett by "killing" the uncroaked lava around her? The result of this is that at the end of the turn she will be the only surviving unit in Gobwin Knob, and Scarlet captures the city.

What happens to Stanley and his surviving forces if he loses his final city?

Nekomata
2009-03-29, 11:17 AM
Perhaps a negative score, but how much experience did the Trimancer and Parson just get? That's a whole lot of stacks ;)
Yeah, I thought of that. Their value could increase in proportion... but they could have died, for example if the portal malfunctioned due to the volcano, or if they weren't in the portal room. So there are at least 2 possible outcomes: croaked everyone, and croaked everyone but the select few. These outcomes have different value, so at least one of them must be non-zero, so it can't be a zero-sum game. QED ;)

ichthus
2009-03-29, 11:38 AM
...the only surviving unit in Gobwin Knob, and Scarlet captures the city.

What city? I'm pretty sure that there will be no structures to claim as a 'city' after that volcano has done its thing.

abb3w
2009-03-29, 11:53 AM
The Arkenpliers turn most undead to dust on contact. What if they protect Scarlett by "killing" the uncroaked lava around her?

Mentioned by marquiz (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=5930354#post5930354). I'm pretty sure it's the Arkenpliers protecting her from the volcano, due to the volcano being a form of uncroaked.


The result of this is that at the end of the turn she will be the only surviving unit in Gobwin Knob, and Scarlet captures the city. What happens to Stanley and his surviving forces if he loses his final city?

Depends whether "capture" only requires "hold at end-of-turn" or "hold at end-of-day". If "end-of-turn", Stanley briefly turns barbarian, arrives back at the capital with a brace of dragons and a few knights, faces down a lone redhead armed with the Arkenpliers, captures himself a capital, and ends his status as a barbarian. If "end-of-day", same shtick, only without the barbarian interlude.

More likely, our new favorite hot redhead will not try to hold the city. She's aware that Stanley fled with some of his strongest forces, and will withdraw. I suspect that might lead to Jillian Zamussels getting the Arkenpliers.

teratorn
2009-03-29, 12:05 PM
Panel one and two are before/after panels. .

Unlikely. There's a cloth golem burning in panel two, none in panel one. In panel one they're near the city walls, in panel two they're being carried down the volcano slope by a lava river.

Arkenputtyknife
2009-03-29, 12:44 PM
BTW Silly question.
How Parson can uncroak something in the middle on enemy turn?
This shouldnt be posible.

There's been plenty of evidence that casting is possible during the enemy's turn, and we have seen nothing to the contrary—we only had Parson's word for it. Parson's statement to the contrary was either in error, or (more likely) was specific to what he had in mind at the time.

SteveMB
2009-03-29, 12:45 PM
Perhaps a negative score, but how much experience did the Trimancer and Parson just get? That's a whole lot of stacks ;)

I'm guessing none, because they retreated from the battle.

Zael Zuran
2009-03-29, 12:47 PM
It's not a zero sum game.
For example, on this very page, all the sides involved attained negative score.

Let me clarify. I meant zero sum regarding my personal interpretation of Red's psychological reaction to the story thus far based purely on the artwork. Not a blanket statement on story events that haven't transpired yet, or an assessment of casualty figures that haven't been revealed to us.

She just has a look of dread certainty that it has all been a big rush for nothing more than mutually assured destruction. I freely acknowledge that I may be reading too much into the artwork.

Like the end of War Games (the movie). The only way to win is not to play.

In a way, I hope she survives as the development potential for such a character could be a lot of fun. A misguided fascist peacemonger, enforcing altruism at the point of a sword? A vengeance obsessed crusader? An apathetic loner attuned to an artifact and relentlessly hunted? Who knows?

To me, she just seems like she has more potential to the story alive than dead. But I accept the author's direction either way.

Lot of words, I know. But as a testament to the quality of the art in this strip, the image of her face was powerful enough to let them loose.

Zael Zuran
2009-03-29, 12:50 PM
I'm guessing none, because they retreated from the battle.

Agreed. If the hit and run on the siege towers are any indication, then probably none.

ViciousMink
2009-03-29, 01:27 PM
Looks like someone is going to be gearing up for some BLOODY VENGEANCE! against Parson....

Nekomata
2009-03-29, 02:14 PM
Let me clarify. I meant zero sum regarding my personal interpretation of Red's psychological reaction to the story thus far based purely on the artwork. Not a blanket statement on story events that haven't transpired yet, or an assessment of casualty figures that haven't been revealed to us.
Oh, I just meant to point out that, as far as I can tell, you mis-used the term "zero sum game". Though, honestly, I'm not quite clear on what you meant, what is "the game" and why is it zero sum?

Goshen
2009-03-29, 08:22 PM
I think the explosion on the side of the mountain was probably from that side entrance to the tunnels under GK. I sure feel sorry for all those poor troops on the ring road outside of the walls.

I'm a bit surprised that the road up the mountain is clear. That makes me think that the troops at the bottom of the mountain were being held in reserve. Perhaps the ring road around the city was full and it was deemed not-good to have the rest of the troops camping on the steep slope for the road.

Brilliant, awesome, excellent page. It works because of what has come before.

Wadoka
2009-03-29, 09:03 PM
What happens to the Arkenpliers if they sink in lava?

Unless it was the very lava from the Mountain in which they were forged, nothing.

Oops, wrong milieu! :smallbiggrin:

Nice use of Munch's "The Scream" in panel 3.

los olvidados
2009-03-29, 10:16 PM
Last panel. Is the mountain giving the bird?

Kreistor
2009-03-29, 11:51 PM
There's been plenty of evidence that casting is possible during the enemy's turn, and we have seen nothing to the contrary—we only had Parson's word for it. Parson's statement to the contrary was either in error, or (more likely) was specific to what he had in mind at the time.

Not true. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0070.html) Parson said it in Wanda and Sizemore's presence, and they confirmed it. The problem is that the sentence should read, "And we can't cast it on the enemy's turn." That suggests there are other spells that can only be cast on your own turn. Uncroaking is brought up here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0138.html) where it is specifically mentioned to take place on their own Turn.

Occasional Sage
2009-03-30, 12:01 AM
There's been plenty of evidence that casting is possible during the enemy's turn, and we have seen nothing to the contrary—we only had Parson's word for it. Parson's statement to the contrary was either in error, or (more likely) was specific to what he had in mind at the time.

Not true. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0070.html) Parson said it in Wanda and Sizemore's presence, and they confirmed it. The problem is that the sentence should read, "And we can't cast it on the enemy's turn." That suggests there are other spells that can only be cast on your own turn. Uncroaking is brought up here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0138.html) where it is specifically mentioned to take place on their own Turn.


I refer you here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=5931853&postcount=231) for the Word of the Titan on the subject. Rob explained in fairly fine detail, since it's causing so much confusion.



I was living on the east side of Vancouver, by Evergreen High. It was on top of a ridge of sorts, so my backyard had a perfect view of the mountain.

I was in second grade at the time. Every single paper and report that I had a choice in involved volcanoes. I was scared I was going to be 'exploded' and fascinated at the same time.


What I remember most is taking a trip to the national park a few months later. It looked like God had run his comb through the forest; far enough away the trees survived the blast intact, but laid over on their sides in perfect alignment. It was a horribly frightening sight for me.

Muzzafar
2009-03-30, 12:22 AM
I refer you here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=5931853&postcount=231) for the Word of the Titan on the subject. Rob explained in fairly fine detail, since it's causing so much confusion.
I guess it just needs quoting. Last time you (or someone else) brought it up in this thread it was ignored for the most part.
Soooo...
Hear, hear!

p64 panel 3 seems to be a major hangup. Wasn't intentional and I agree that it's misleading. We'll clarify that for the book.

For the record, the rule is actually pretty simple and I am amazed it's been such a sticking point for people.


You can move only on your turn, and you can cast only on your turn.
When an enemy comes to you on their turn, you can engage, and you can cast. This includes when they are attacking your city.


Why could Parson not have ordered a veil to be cast, even if the Foolamancer had been in the group with the wounded dwagons? It was not his turn, and they were not under attack. Once Jillian entered the hex, a theoretical Foolamancer within that hex could have veiled, but it wouldn't have been very effective at fooling her.

Why could Parson have his casters cast on the Coalition's turn, later in the story? His city was being attacked.

Why could the Archons cast the DDR spell? They were part of the Coalition and it was now technically their turn. But they could not move because all of Charlescomm's units' move went to zero when Charlie ended turn. Move and hits are restored to full at the beginning of a side's turn, and (re)forming an alliance does not count as starting a new turn.

Why could the Archons "cast" the contract, when it was not their turn? Well, why could they still fly? It's not a spell, it's a natural magic. There's also a heavy dose of "talking is a free action" in that scene, another thing about turn based games that is silly but almost universally true. It's no sillier than food popping at the start of a turn.

Kreistor
2009-03-30, 12:30 AM
Well, I'm not going to apologize for missing one link in a thread 6 pages long. Some of us don't have all the time in the world... or care about everything that might happen in a thread as general as this one.

Thank you for pointing that out, though. I hadn't spotted that the blooper thread got updated.

TheJustWiseSage
2009-03-30, 04:22 AM
I feel everyone may have missed something here, according to erf0022 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0022.html) the pliers are linked to FATE magic.

Surely, then by picking up the pliers, Scarlett (Red Head) is now FATED to survive?

It's not fire resistence that's defending her, it's fate and the power of Fate is greater.

*edit: Just a point of note from Klog 2 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0040.html) both croakamancy and predictomancy are of the FATE line. So Wanda is definately linked to fate by her Croakomancy, doubly so if she's the missing predictomancer.

Matuse
2009-03-30, 06:39 AM
Looks like the superfluous elves are going to be needed after all!

MickJay
2009-03-30, 07:42 AM
Not to nitpick, but don't you mean "Zombie-shooting Volcano"? ;)

Unless it was meant as "the volcano is shooting zombies" :smallwink:

The city can probably be still captured, as a site, at least, or perhaps a 0-level city or completely empty city site, depending on what categories are being used. It could have simply become a "ruin", as well.

fendrin
2009-03-30, 09:51 AM
Let me clarify. I meant zero sum regarding my personal interpretation of Red's psychological reaction to the story thus far based purely on the artwork. Not a blanket statement on story events that haven't transpired yet, or an assessment of casualty figures that haven't been revealed to us.

To be clear, a zero sum game is one in which the 'points' each side has always sum to the same total. For instance, poker. Each player starts with a certain value of chips, and each transaction of chips is zero-sum; that is, any time somebody gets additional chips, other players (in aggregate) lose the exact same amount.

War is not a zero-sum 'game'.

Unless you mean the card game. That is a zero-sum game.

One Skunk Todd
2009-03-30, 10:40 AM
Red's expression is clearly one of sheer despair, not fear. Whether she physically survives according to the author's future intentions is likely irrelevent. The person she was inside is probably dead.

I agree. If the pliers are granting her immunity from the volcano I wouldn't be at all surprised if she simply let go of them to make the pain stop.

sabremeister
2009-03-30, 12:08 PM
I feel everyone may have missed something here, according to erf0022 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0022.html) the pliers are linked to FATE magic.


I don't read it like that. I read Ansom's statement that, "Fate magic is powerless in my case; I cannot unlock their secrets. I know of no-one who can," to be saying that all Tools are controlled by Fate magic, and if you are Fated to attune to an Artefact, you will - otherwise, nothing will let you Attune. And as Artefacts were left by the Titans, they have a much higher enchantment power than any Erfly caster who might be able to divine who any Tool is Fated to Attune to (hence, the divination is blocked).

In other words, Ansom is basically saying, "I have the Pliers, I am not Attuned to them. My best Predictamancers, Findamancers and Thinkamancers cannot find out who will Attune to them."

I think.

chefsotero
2009-03-30, 01:16 PM
And on panel 4 is that Tarfu or just an randon elf?

That would make 3 warlords left on the coalition (Tarfu, Scarllet and Vinnie) am I missing someone?

SauroGrenom
2009-03-30, 02:27 PM
I haven't commented often, but with how exciting the last few updates have been, I want to say how much I'm enjoying the comic.

I love how each comic leaves a bit open as to how the loose ends may or may not be tied up. That keeps me coming back for more.

Before we got to this update I was already thinking about what Stanley will do now that he's a barbarian, or what will happen to Parson and the casters, or how Charley's going to deal with the situation.

The first panel on this update opens another question. I look at that and I wonder if the redheaded leader is somehow immune to the volcano, or if she's one of the screaming fireballs in the next panels? It kind of makes sense for her to be immune, since the pliers have always seamed to be effective against uncroaked and the volcano is uncroaked...

Anyway very exciting. Keep it coming please.

fendrin
2009-03-30, 03:07 PM
And on panel 4 is that Tarfu or just an randon elf?

That would make 3 warlords left on the coalition (Tarfu, Scarllet and Vinnie) am I missing someone?

Jillian, who also has the distinction of being an Overlord.

MReav
2009-03-30, 05:01 PM
Vinnie and Jillian broke from the coalition to hunt down Stanley. They are currently not with the RCC. They can rejoin (assuming there is a coalition to join after this debacle).

chefsotero
2009-03-30, 05:48 PM
So that leaves us with Tarfu (possibly) and Scarlet (that may or may not be alive) and any minor warlord that may still be around the back-up troops/siege

That raises some questions:

W/out no warlord the remaining troops would auto-engage Jillian and Vinnie when/if they come back?

What happens with the capitol-less troops from the RCC if they don't have an warlord from their faction? Go Barbarian? Disband? Fall under some other alied faction?

Besides the burning questions of were the boop is Parson and what will happen to generic-sexy-sonja Scarllet?:smalltongue:

fendrin
2009-03-30, 05:54 PM
Vinnie and Jillian broke from the coalition to hunt down Stanley. They are currently not with the RCC. They can rejoin (assuming there is a coalition to join after this debacle).

Well yes, I was thinking of warlords on the coalition's side in the fight.

Clearly, Scarlett the Red is the ranking warlord in the coalition currently. Assuming she survived this page (I am doubtful, though I also don't think she is one of the flaming units we see on this page).

We have no confirmation of any other warlords, but unless there are special rules for coalitions (probable, really), any hex with units from different sides would need one warlord per side. Considering the number of hexes the column used to occupy, it is likely that either are special rules for coalition members not attacking each other or there are a lot of unknown warlords in the coalition ranks.

SeraphRainy
2009-03-30, 07:31 PM
Hmmmm welllll I dont see how scarlet could survive the volcano because even with maaaaasssssive def/res/imunity she'll at least be burried under molten lava or ash. Buuuut there is no reason why the plyers cant live and if they are burried under the rock that is ok they can still be recovered.

I personaly am voting for the GK to regroup and since sizemore is still alive it would be reeeal convinient for him to dig em up.

What do yall think?

Nargrakhan
2009-03-30, 10:03 PM
Remember, from the perspective of Erfworlders, Parson has just done his duty. Stanley was hated because he overturned the status quo (he started as a simple footsoldier) and conquered other kingdoms (ruled by nobles). Parson was brought in to defend GK and did so successfully on behalf of Stanley. Even if the way that he denied them victory was unconventional, his reason (duty) fits their worldview.

Hmmm... I guess you're right. I suppose on Erfworld, the Nuremberg Defense is a valid argument, given you can't defy Duty.

Kreistor
2009-03-30, 11:11 PM
Hmmm... I guess you're right. I suppose on Erfworld, the Nuremberg Defense is a valid argument, given you can't defy Duty.

If that were the entire story, then Stanley must not have involvement in his own ascension to ruler status. If there was absolutely no possibility of free will, he could not have been behind the gobwin betrayal of Saline. I doubt there are many that truly believe that he wasn't behind it.

Opal Tide
2009-03-30, 11:25 PM
RE: Autoengage of remaining RCC units

I would guess that most armies have a heavy does of very low level commanders (I think Webinar's girlfriend was a 2). No reason why there wouldn't be more like here serving as the equivalent of sergeants or 1st lieutenants in armies, granting the warlord better tactical control over a battle where thinkamancy was lacking.

So no, I don't think the RCC will rip itself apart due to the rules. They may rip each other apart with recriminations, but I think most will be in shock for a while and have no heart to fight and kill those whom they have already traveled and bled with.

Of course the stories they bring back tot heir respective capitals will likely be shaded to cast their side in the best light and lay the blame on the other factions. I think we have not even seen the beginning of the fracturing of the existing status quo that Parson has created. Heads must roll for this disaster and since many of the on the scene leadership is croaked, those heads may be demanded from other factions.

Should be fun to see, I hope we get to see the shakeout of this encounter on Erfworld as a whole. <<crosses fingers>>

SteveMB
2009-03-30, 11:37 PM
RE: Autoengage of remaining RCC units

I would guess that most armies have a heavy does of very low level commanders (I think Webinar's girlfriend was a 2). No reason why there wouldn't be more like here serving as the equivalent of sergeants or 1st lieutenants in armies, granting the warlord better tactical control over a battle where thinkamancy was lacking.

Way back when Ansom first presented the attack plan, he addressed a fairly large audience as "courageous and competent warlords" (emphasis added).

Kreistor
2009-03-30, 11:52 PM
No reason why there wouldn't be more like here serving as the equivalent of sergeants or 1st lieutenants in armies, granting the warlord better tactical control over a battle where thinkamancy was lacking.

Upkeep. A darned good reason to limit commanders. We don't know the rules for how much each costs initially and per turn, nor how much it costs to raise a soldier to commander state. Parson runs 1000 schmuckers a turn, and after summoning him, Stanley only had 150000 left in the bank. Parson alone burned nearly 0.67% of the bank per turn.

So the answer to your question is cash. Raise yoour upkeep too high, and you can't replace losses. Let's say you bring in 2000 per day. If your upkeep is 1900 and it costs 2000 to buy a new unit, you can only afford a loss rate of 1/20 days. The higher the upkeep, the fewer losses you can sustain. Simple math, really.

Opal Tide
2009-03-31, 12:29 AM
Re: Upkeep

The same could be said about "commanders" in the real world. they cost money to train initially as well as continuing eduction but are worth more than their weight in gold when it comes to coordinating and leading troops. We obviously don't have an army containing just commissioned officers and non-coms, but the right ratio of enlisted to officers makes effective fighting units.

Keep in mind we don't have a great grasp on how upkeep works in Erfworld, we just have Parson as an example. For all we know Ansom had the same upkeep as Webinar (maybe a little higher if he had nicer accommodations and food). We are told warlords take longer to produce, but that is also the case with officers in the real world. Given that factions have multiple cities (Stanley had 12 at one point) one could be speced to produce warlords (the faction's West Point) while others concentrate on units

My intuition is that there should not be a huge difference between warlords and regular units upkeep apart from field amenities. I don't think we can make any blanket assumptions about commander costs/upkeep until given more information. Besides, slightly higher upkeep costs could be more than made up for with tactical flexibility and leadership bonuses they provide.

It would come down to the preferred strategy of a faction. We saw Vinnie's faction prefer lots of warlords and lots of cheaper, expendable units while Stanley seems to have preferred one central commander leading forces as one unit instead of separate units acting together as part of an overall plan (maybe concern over somebody pulling a Stanley on him?)

Edited to add:

Also keep in mind these lower level commanders will not have Warlord status like Parson, but low level leaders that may not progress very high in level. Think the difference between paying a 1st lieutenant and a general or joint chief of staff. We simply don't have enough information about the economics of Erfworld (maybe 1,000 shmuckers isn't a lot for a faction with multiple cities) or preferred war strategies. Sufficed to say, I don't think a lack of commanders will cause an auto-attack bloodbath with the remaining RCC troops.

caranha
2009-03-31, 01:18 AM
I personaly am voting for the GK to regroup and since sizemore is still alive it would be reeeal convinient for him to dig em up.

What do yall think?

I think that Book 1 of Erfword is done. Battle ended. Game over. Good game. We will probably have two or three more strips depicting the aftermath for each side (wild guess: 1 for vinne+Jillian, one for stanley + parson, and a final one for Charlie + hook for book 2), and then the credits will start to roll.

By the way, I loved the last 10 strips or so.

spite48
2009-03-31, 02:43 AM
I think that Book 1 of Erfword is done. Battle ended. Game over. Good game. We will probably have two or three more strips depicting the aftermath for each side (wild guess: 1 for vinne+Jillian, one for stanley + parson, and a final one for Charlie + hook for book 2), and then the credits will start to roll.

By the way, I loved the last 10 strips or so.

Yeah, we know that the battle for gobwin knob is over, and that was the topic of book 1. The war may continue I suppose, but the battle is over.

SomeUnregPunk
2009-03-31, 05:08 AM
I read this entire thread...took ten minutes... and afew ideas have popped up in my head.

Stanley is currently being chased by Vinnie and his vampire group/army(?) with Ansom's girlfriend(?). He is running because even with his dragons he can not face them without a true warlord running the battle..... he just not smart enough to run battles for more than a small skirmish.

Stanley is trying to head back to his base to attempt to recoup and regather his forces. Before he reaches his base he will find that his base is now an volcano. Whether or not he can see it is uncroaked or not is debatable.

He has no base to recoup. where does he go? He might be pissed and angry but I believe he is going to get really depressed first.

Vinnie and his gang might actually stop chasing Stanley and try to find surviors and(or) Ansom which might give Stanley the opportunity to turn around and head back to his original destination. Or they may not and Stanley will be running for a long time.

Parson sounds like Charlie to me. They both tend to think "outside of the box" while all the others who were born here tend to be stuck in their class or form.

The redhead may be fire resistant after all she is wearing red armor.

User Name
2009-03-31, 05:47 AM
The redhead may be fire resistant after all she is wearing red armor.

Great logic.

BLANDCorporatio
2009-03-31, 05:51 AM
Great logic.

Yep, it's called sympathetic magic. But I don't think it works here, surely there were other units wearing red armor that are now, alas, toasty.

Sarissofoi
2009-03-31, 08:20 AM
Or meyby they already escaped from city or if they cant they sit in some corner and plays with red azbest cards.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-03-31, 12:45 PM
4) Unanswered questions that I consider relevant so far:
a) Where did Parson go and why could he use the portal?
b) Does this effectively end RCC's turn?
c) Why does Wanda follow Stanley of her own free will? Wouldn't loyalty and duty endear her to FAQ? which brings us to:
d) What really happened to FAQ?
Speculation may abound but it is just that, speculation. I prefer to wait for it to play out rather than be like the annoying people in the theater who loudly proclaim their assumed predictions of the unfolding dramaAh, but this forum is for just such loud proclamations. If you don't care to participate, I refer you to the comic, and you can confine your reading to that portion of the site.
a) Where did Parson go and why could he use the portal?
- Unknown where, and why is also unknown but promised to be forthcoming.
b) Does this effectively end RCC's turn?
- This has been inconsistently shown. For the RCC Ansom has been calling for the end of turns, even though he is not the leader of his side. For GK it has always been Stanley who controlled the ending of the turn, which has been of some concern to Parson. With Ansom dead, it's anyone's guess as to who can end turn for the RCC.
c) Why does Wanda follow Stanley of her own free will? Wouldn't loyalty and duty endear her to FAQ?
- FAQ is no longer a side, and so no loyalty should convey. And the same question applies to Sizemore and Jack, since Wanda and they are all from FAQ. As to why they follow Stanley, and apparently with a high degree of loyalty and initiative, this is a mystery. Some say it's the game mechanics of Loyalty and Duty which compel this, but Sizemore told Parson that a captured unit has a low Loyalty, which hasn't been demonstrated as both Wanda and Jack were given opportunities to turn, in both cases with flying units present which could have taken them away, and both remained loyal to Stanley even in the face of clear dangers for remaining with the GK side.
d) What really happened to FAQ?
- Unknown, although Jillian thinks that Stanley attacked it, and Stanley knows where it was located. I suspect that the details will be more complex than "Stanley destroyed FAQ", but anyone's guess is as valid.

Thank you very much, Rob and Jaime - I love this comic and may your detractors continue to rot in their parents' dank basements.Reading a story with a critical eye to the details doesn't make someone a "detractor", any more than accepting every inconsistency or reversal without question or comment makes someone a "fanboy."

If that were the entire story, then Stanley must not have involvement in his own ascension to ruler status. If there was absolutely no possibility of free will, he could not have been behind the gobwin betrayal of Saline. I doubt there are many that truly believe that he wasn't behind it.I believe that Stanley wasn't behind it. Not only was he bound by Duty and Loyalty to Saline IV, but "can't plot against" was explicitly stated as a function of those mechanics. Also, Stanley is such a poor strategist that his capability to put together a coup which works is in grave doubt. Finally, I don't think he was involved for the same reason I don't think he was the one who conquered FAQ, it seems to pat and simple, and I expect more complexity in the details.

What I remember most is taking a trip to the national park [near Mt St. Helens] a few months later. It looked like God had run his comb through the forest; far enough away the trees survived the blast intact, but laid over on their sides in perfect alignment. It was a horribly frightening sight for me.I was visiting family in Great Falls, MT when the mountain blew. We had 1/8 inch of volcanic ash on the cars, about 750 miles away.

Oslecamo
2009-03-31, 02:06 PM
Yep, it's called sympathetic magic. But I don't think it works here, surely there were other units wearing red armor that are now, alas, toasty.

Since she's clearly a higer level unit, she would probably be more resistant to fire than the fire-resistant mooks.

sabremeister
2009-03-31, 02:35 PM
4) Unanswered questions that I consider relevant so far:
a) Where did Parson go and why could he use the portal?
b) Does this effectively end RCC's turn?
c) Why does Wanda follow Stanley of her own free will? Wouldn't loyalty and duty endear her to FAQ? which brings us to:
d) What really happened to FAQ?
Speculation may abound but it is just that, speculation. I prefer to wait for it to play out rather than be like the annoying people in the theater who loudly proclaim their assumed predictions of the unfolding drama
Ah, but this forum is for just such loud proclamations. If you don't care to participate, I refer you to the comic, and you can confine your reading to that portion of the site.
a) Where did Parson go and why could he use the portal?
- Unknown where, and why is also unknown but promised to be forthcoming.
b) Does this effectively end RCC's turn?
- This has been inconsistently shown. For the RCC Ansom has been calling for the end of turns, even though he is not the leader of his side. For GK it has always been Stanley who controlled the ending of the turn, which has been of some concern to Parson. With Ansom dead, it's anyone's guess as to who can end turn for the RCC.
I'm guessing Scarlet now has that authority, as she's the senior surviving Warlord of a multi-nation alliance. How much longer she survives is, however, an entirely new speculation. So until she croaks, she's in charge.

c) Why does Wanda follow Stanley of her own free will? Wouldn't loyalty and duty endear her to FAQ?
- FAQ is no longer a side, and so no loyalty should convey. And the same question applies to Sizemore and Jack, since Wanda and they are all from FAQ. As to why they follow Stanley, and apparently with a high degree of loyalty and initiative, this is a mystery. Some say it's the game mechanics of Loyalty and Duty which compel this, but Sizemore told Parson that a captured unit has a low Loyalty, which hasn't been demonstrated as both Wanda and Jack were given opportunities to turn, in both cases with flying units present which could have taken them away, and both remained loyal to Stanley even in the face of clear dangers for remaining with the GK side.
I don't think it's quite like that. I don't think Jillian has Loyalty to anywhere or anyone since FAQ fell - she is, after all, the next in line to FAQ's throne, and FAQ's chief warlord. So, as her city and liege have gone, she's in charge, and doesn't need Loyalty. From text clues, I think Wanda may have been popped in a city under FAQ's control (but not the capital), and so might have lower Loyalty. Jack ... don't know. As units disband when cities fall, he would have to have been captured before FAQ fell, meaning if he turned, he would retain his high Loyalty to FAQ. Maybe Stanley had Maggie or Misty cast a spell to make him think FAQ had already fallen, so he could turn of his own free will and get a high Loyalty to Stanley.
Sizemore, BTW, was popped in GK.

d) What really happened to FAQ?
- Unknown, although Jillian thinks that Stanley attacked it, and Stanley knows where it was located. I suspect that the details will be more complex than "Stanley destroyed FAQ", but anyone's guess is as valid.
A lot of circumstantial evidence points to it being Stanley responsible for the fall of FAQ - possibly before Saline IV died, as it does indeed show evidence of being a rather more complex plan than Stanley has been shown to be capable of, and so may have been orchestrated from back home. Or even, the Gobwin coup that ended Saline occurred while Stanley was attacking FAQ.



If that were the entire story, then Stanley must not have involvement in his own ascension to ruler status. If there was absolutely no possibility of free will, he could not have been behind the gobwin betrayal of Saline. I doubt there are many that truly believe that he wasn't behind it.
I believe that Stanley wasn't behind it. Not only was he bound by Duty and Loyalty to Saline IV, but "can't plot against" was explicitly stated as a function of those mechanics. Also, Stanley is such a poor strategist that his capability to put together a coup which works is in grave doubt. Finally, I don't think he was involved for the same reason I don't think he was the one who conquered FAQ, it seems to pat and simple, and I expect more complexity in the details.
Maybe the Arkentools allow a greater degree of freedom about things like Duty and Loyalty? Charlie, the only other person we've seen who's attuned to their artefact, is not exactly known for consistency of support and assistance supposedly guaranteed by contract. Stanley found the Arkenhammer, attuned to it, and was granted command of dwagons. Saline IV recognised this as a useful ability, and promoted him to warlord, and eventually to chief overlord and heir. With loads of dwagons in their army, and more warlords than just Stanley, GK conquered lots of cities. However, power-mad and convinced of his own superiority, and strangely un-hindered by Duty and Loyalty now that he's heir apparent and in possession of an attuned Arkentool, Stanley arranges with the Gobwins to stage a coup while he's in the field, and acts surprised upon return to find Saline IV croaked. He's got lots of dwagons with him, so it's no trouble to make it appear as though the treacherous Gobwins have been massacred, then assume the throne of GK. And then, since he's thick as some of the stuff we've seen Sizemore dealing with, he goes and loses all the other cities he had control of, in a quest to find and control the other Arkentools.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-03-31, 03:43 PM
Sizemore, BTW, was popped in GK.Was he? I don't recall seeing that specified, and someone, in some thread a while back, posted a picture of FAQ that had a guy who looked exactly like Sizemore snoozing against a tree. And it would explain Sizemore's peaceful nature in a world made for war, since FAQ was also a peaceful place which used distraction and veils to avoid discovery by the more warlike sides.

Maybe the Arkentools allow a greater degree of freedom about things like Duty and Loyalty? Charlie, the only other person we've seen who's attuned to their artefact, is not exactly known for consistency of support and assistance supposedly guaranteed by contract. Stanley found the Arkenhammer, attuned to it, and was granted command of dwagons. Saline IV recognised this as a useful ability, and promoted him to warlord, and eventually to chief overlord and heir. With loads of dwagons in their army, and more warlords than just Stanley, GK conquered lots of cities. However, power-mad and convinced of his own superiority, and strangely un-hindered by Duty and Loyalty now that he's heir apparent and in possession of an attuned Arkentool, Stanley arranges with the Gobwins to stage a coup while he's in the field, and acts surprised upon return to find Saline IV croaked. He's got lots of dwagons with him, so it's no trouble to make it appear as though the treacherous Gobwins have been massacred, then assume the throne of GK. And then, since he's thick as some of the stuff we've seen Sizemore dealing with, he goes and loses all the other cities he had control of, in a quest to find and control the other Arkentools.This is an internally consistent theory which does cover all of the questions raised. I wouldn't place "Archentool trumps Loyalty/Duty" under the "too pat and simple" qualifier I used above. And I don't have a theory of my own. It just seems to me that with so many people (in the strip, who cares about forums speculation:smallsmile:) convinced that Stanley rose to power through regicide, that this won't be the case. Same with FAQ. We'll see as things progress, I hope.

fendrin
2009-03-31, 03:58 PM
Maybe the Arkentools allow a greater degree of freedom about things like Duty and Loyalty? Charlie, the only other person we've seen who's attuned to their artefact, is not exactly known for consistency of support and assistance supposedly guaranteed by contract. On the contrary, all the evidence points to Charlie following his contracts to the letter. He does not, however, do anything not specified in the contract unless it is in his own best interest.

My position is that Stanley isn't bright enough to have arranged for the coup. If he could disregard the loyalty issues, I would expect him to go for a frontal assault. Heck, even if he was that devious, it's just not his style.


Was he? I don't recall seeing that specified, and someone, in some thread a while back, posted a picture of FAQ that had a guy who looked exactly like Sizemore snoozing against a tree.
"I popped under the reign of King Saline IV." (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html)
This is not Sizemore. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0091.html)

Suicide Junkie
2009-03-31, 04:20 PM
Was he? I don't recall seeing that specified, and someone, in some thread a while back, posted a picture of FAQ that had a guy who looked exactly like Sizemore snoozing against a tree.Sizemore himself said that he popped under Saline IV, not Banhammer.

Oslecamo
2009-03-31, 04:27 PM
On the contrary, all the evidence points to Charlie following his contracts to the letter. He does not, however, do anything not specified in the contract unless it is in his own best interest.


But the archons seem to have a free will of their own. We all know how the other one warned Jillian that she was mind-controled, and she comented on how Charlie taught them that rules must be bent sometimes.

Also, altough technically speaking Charlie follows the contracts to the letter, that is hardly a sign of honesty when he changes his contracts at last minute to take advantage of the situation, including making super-big contracts wich the contractor has no time to read but must acept out of desesperation, or raising his prices to the sky for some time so he benefits the guy he was fighting not 5 minutes ago.

Name Lips
2009-03-31, 05:26 PM
B
Also, altough technically speaking Charlie follows the contracts to the letter, that is hardly a sign of honesty when he changes his contracts at last minute to take advantage of the situation, including making super-big contracts wich the contractor has no time to read but must acept out of desesperation, or raising his prices to the sky for some time so he benefits the guy he was fighting not 5 minutes ago.

I believe that's called Lawful Evil. :smalltongue:

Daelach
2009-03-31, 05:36 PM
Charlie has just lost a LOT of archons, and he can't really have many more otherwise he would simply have conquered Efworld by now since an archon is at least as strong as a dwagon. He will need a lot of time to recover from it.

If he ever recovers. Now that he's on his last troops, Charlie is ripe for attacking from his rivals. Aka Stanley the Tool.

Charlie is certainly ripe for attacking but not from Stanley. Stanley has also lost most of his units and is now a barbarian. His entire force consists of himself, six dwagons (five of which are likely mounted by KISS), one foolamancer, one thinkamancer-croakamancer-dirtamancer combo (Parson never ordered them to break the link), and one chief warlord. Heck, the portal to the magic kingdom is probably destroyed so half that list is likely not even available.

My guess on what happens next:

Stanley will have to found some sort of city. He needs a city to create new units. He also needs a source of income to pay upkeep on the few (expensive) units he does have. The city might provide that income or he might have to do something else.

As to where the city will be located -- he could either re-occupy Gobwin Knob (assuming the Volcano quiets) or he could found a veiled city (Faq style) elsewhere. I'm still pretty sure the comic will focus on Gobwin Knob. This is partially because of the title but there is also a known artifact there.

I'm pretty sure that the red warlord dies in this comic. Thus, the arkenpliers will be buried somewhere the Gobwin Knob hex. This will cause every coalition in the world to try and take control of of the Knob. Once in control of the Knob, a side will probably start "mining" to look for the pliers.

I doubt that the RCC will stay together after such a huge loss. Going forward, the "game" represented by the comic will turn into a free-for-all king-of-the-hill match-up. And Parson will somehow be in the middle trying to play every side against every other.

dr pepper
2009-03-31, 05:58 PM
I'm still pretty sure the comic will focus on Gobwin Knob. This is partially because of the title but there is also a known artifact there.


The title is "Erfworld: The Battle for Gobwin Knob". The title next time will be "Erfworld: Something Else". Gobwin Knob might or might not be involved.

Goshen
2009-03-31, 06:25 PM
What is an "Erf"? :smallconfused:

fendrin
2009-03-31, 07:34 PM
What is an "Erf"? :smallconfused:

Dwagon : Dragon :: Erf : Earth

BillyArell
2009-03-31, 08:21 PM
If I recall correctly Ansom was never properly attuned with the arkenpliers. All he could do was turn undead to dust. In contrast Stanely is attuned with the arkenhammer and he can wield the powers of the dragons.

Perhaps the red warlord could be the arkenpliers true wielder and have unlocked its higher power. This could allow her to potentially survive the eruption. Just a theory really.

Kreistor
2009-03-31, 08:59 PM
I believe that Stanley wasn't behind it. Not only was he bound by Duty and Loyalty to Saline IV, but "can't plot against" was explicitly stated as a function of those mechanics. Also, Stanley is such a poor strategist that his capability to put together a coup which works is in grave doubt. Finally, I don't think he was involved for the same reason I don't think he was the one who conquered FAQ, it seems to pat and simple, and I expect more complexity in the details.

34.8 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0034.html) Ansom believes Stanley commited regicide. If there was no possibility of it, the word wouldn't exist. And Ansom wouldn't consider it even possible.

Somehow, it must be possible. I can see how he gets past Obedience... he only has to believe that he obeys higher orders, say from the Titans.

Loyalty affects a unit only when he is double-dealing or defecting. That might not kick in here. Perhaps he could convince himself that his loyalty is to the side, not the ruler, and thus he could feel he is destined to rule, and then he's still being loyal to the side.

Duty is the stickler. It says, "Can't conspire against the Ruler." But it also says, "Has higher affect on Warlords...". Okay, hold it. In one place it says that it has an increasing strength as rank increases, but the last sentence says that it is an absolute? That's inconsistent. With Ansom believing it can happen, and that inconsistency, I'm going to have to say that Parson simply didn't have the full story. There's wiggle room: there has to be. Parson thinks there has to be, but he lacks experience to count: he's no expert on Erfworld yet.


Maybe the Arkentools allow a greater degree of freedom about things like Duty and Loyalty? Charlie, the only other person we've seen who's attuned to their artefact, is not exactly known for consistency of support and assistance supposedly guaranteed by contract. Stanley found the Arkenhammer, attuned to it, and was granted command of dwagons. Saline IV recognised this as a useful ability, and promoted him to warlord, and eventually to chief overlord and heir. With loads of dwagons in their army, and more warlords than just Stanley, GK conquered lots of cities. However, power-mad and convinced of his own superiority, and strangely un-hindered by Duty and Loyalty now that he's heir apparent and in possession of an attuned Arkentool, Stanley arranges with the Gobwins to stage a coup while he's in the field, and acts surprised upon return to find Saline IV croaked. He's got lots of dwagons with him, so it's no trouble to make it appear as though the treacherous Gobwins have been massacred, then assume the throne of GK. And then, since he's thick as some of the stuff we've seen Sizemore dealing with, he goes and loses all the other cities he had control of, in a quest to find and control the other Arkentools.

Conceivable. At the very least, the Arkentool probably inspired Stanley to overcome Obedience just by attuning to him. It's not magically responsible: Stanley would basically feel that he was chosen and destined, and so he could view himself being ordered to rule by the Titans. Whether it makes him immune to Duty? Not going to guess. Possible. Necessary? I think we don't know enough yet to say it must be.

Arkenputtyknife
2009-03-31, 09:00 PM
Not true. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0070.html) Parson said it in Wanda and Sizemore's presence, and they confirmed it.

Er, no. That page shows Sizemore confirming Parson's previous point; neither Sizemore nor Wanda said anything in response to his comment regarding casting on the opponent's turn. They neither confirmed nor denied it.

Thanks to Occasional Sage for the Titans info. It's nice to have a definitive answer once in a while.

Fjolnir
2009-03-31, 09:07 PM
Quick question, are we so sure that panel in panel 3 the person who is front row focused isn't Scarlette? I can't tell what it is they're holding in their bright red fingers but it could be the pliers, pressed against their head as she screams in agony...

ishnar
2009-03-31, 09:13 PM
.

Unlikely. There's a cloth golem burning in panel two, none in panel one. In panel one they're near the city walls, in panel two they're being carried down the volcano slope by a lava river.

Since I'm saying this is the "I"m going to die moment" physics doesn't necessarily apply. In stories, the head antagonist of the moment gets to reflect on their impending demise, even if they are shot without warning, by laser beams, or a supersonic bullet. This is even more commonly true in comic books, and the character doesn't necessarily have any special powers.

Character shoots supersonic bullet, main antagonist of the moment turns and looks up at the protagonist , even though there is no reason too, mouths "Oh sh.."--even though the gunner is too far away and effectively invisible due to cover, then crosses his eyes and watches the bullet fly in just above his nose, and then gets hit in the head by the supersonic bullet.

Kreistor
2009-04-01, 12:01 AM
Er, no. That page shows Sizemore confirming Parson's previous point; neither Sizemore nor Wanda said anything in response to his comment regarding casting on the opponent's turn. They neither confirmed nor denied it.

You might want to check out the Blooper thread, where everything Parson stated in frame 3 has been confirmed. I personally think it is blatantly obvious that Parson is merely repeating the lessons about magic he just received off-panel. You can go ahead and think that Parson makes up magic rules for fun and profit, but I highly recommend you re-read that section and consider the possibility that he's correct because he has been told, and isn't just lucky to have guessed those rules.

glissle
2009-04-01, 12:18 AM
If that were the entire story, then Stanley must not have involvement in his own ascension to ruler status. If there was absolutely no possibility of free will, he could not have been behind the gobwin betrayal of Saline. I doubt there are many that truly believe that he wasn't behind it.

Since both known attuned users of Arkentools are non-royal Overlords, I also suspect that attuning to an Arkentool may free one from Natural Thinkamancy. If that were the case, and if Wanda lost the Arkenpliers after attuning to them, it would explain a lot about her control-freakiness. She's had a taste of freedom most non-royals can't conceive of (and that royals don't appreciate, having been born with it - I forget where, but I got that impression from one of the conversations with Jillian).

Kreistor
2009-04-01, 12:52 AM
Er, no. That page shows Sizemore confirming Parson's previous point; neither Sizemore nor Wanda said anything in response to his comment regarding casting on the opponent's turn. They neither confirmed nor denied it.

You might want to check out the Blooper thread, where everything Parson stated in frame 3 has been confirmed. I personally think it is blatantly obvious that Parson is merely repeating the lessons about magic he just received off-panel. You can go ahead and think that Parson makes up magic rules for fun and profit, but I highly recommend you re-read that section and consider the possibility that he's correct because he has been told, and isn't just lucky to have guessed those rules.

Pointyleaf
2009-04-01, 01:56 AM
I'm pretty sure that the red warlord dies in this comic. Thus, the arkenpliers will be buried somewhere the Gobwin Knob hex. This will cause every coalition in the world to try and take control of of the Knob. Once in control of the Knob, a side will probably start "mining" to look for the pliers.

I doubt that the RCC will stay together after such a huge loss. Going forward, the "game" represented by the comic will turn into a free-for-all king-of-the-hill match-up. And Parson will somehow be in the middle trying to play every side against every other.

I highly doubt, after getting their @sses kicked all over the place, that all the other nations are going to try to come to take GK for the pliers. On top of that, who wants to mount a digging expedition in a recently exploding volcano? Nuh-uh, not me.

BLANDCorporatio
2009-04-01, 05:01 AM
Character shoots supersonic bullet, main antagonist of the moment turns and looks up at the protagonist , even though there is no reason too, mouths "Oh sh.."--even though the gunner is too far away and effectively invisible due to cover, then crosses his eyes and watches the bullet fly in just above his nose, and then gets hit in the head by the supersonic bullet.

The point here is that the whole scene in panel 1 is different, way different, from panel 2. In your example, the background wouldn't usually change much. So, likely this is not the freeze frame of "Oh, boop" followed by gory death.

fendrin
2009-04-01, 08:22 AM
I highly doubt, after getting their @sses kicked all over the place, that all the other nations are going to try to come to take GK for the pliers. On top of that, who wants to mount a digging expedition in a recently exploding volcano? Nuh-uh, not me.

When the overlord says "Dig!" you ask "How deep?"

Not like the grunts get a choice.

Kreistor
2009-04-01, 08:30 AM
When the overlord says "Dig!" you ask "How deep?"

It takes more than an order to dig. It takes military force to deal with anyone else interested in the pliers, diplomats to try to stavve off aggression, and so on. This would be an archaeological dig under fire: not a commander's favorite mission. It's really bad escort duty, where what you're escorting isn't moving and is extremely vulnerable.

BillyJimBoBob
2009-04-01, 11:49 AM
My position is that Stanley isn't bright enough to have arranged for the coup. If he could disregard the loyalty issues, I would expect him to go for a frontal assault. Heck, even if he was that devious, it's just not his style.My thoughts exactly. Stanley is so poor strategically that seems improbable that he could pull off a successful coup, even if he was allowed to violate his Loyalty and Duty obligations.

"I popped under the reign of King Saline IV." (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0086.html)
This is not Sizemore. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0091.html)Thanks! The second strip panel 4 sure looks like Sizemore, but the first strip does make it quite clear.

34.8 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0034.html) Ansom believes Stanley commited regicide. If there was no possibility of it, the word wouldn't exist. And Ansom wouldn't consider it even possible.

Somehow, it must be possible. I can see how he gets past Obedience... he only has to believe that he obeys higher orders, say from the Titans.
[...]
Perhaps he could convince himself that his loyalty is to the side, not the ruler, and thus he could feel he is destined to rule, and then he's still being loyal to the side.Or perhaps if it's for the greater good of the side, not that this has been described anywhere. It's one of the rather unclear points. Ansom says it's regicide, but perhaps he has motives which make it a convenient charge. Vinny replies "kinda", which leaves things very undetermined.

Duty is the stickler. It says, "Can't conspire against the Ruler." But it also says, "Has higher affect on Warlords...". Okay, hold it. In one place it says that it has an increasing strength as rank increases, but the last sentence says that it is an absolute? That's inconsistent. With Ansom believing it can happen, and that inconsistency, I'm going to have to say that Parson simply didn't have the full story. There's wiggle room: there has to be. Parson thinks there has to be, but he lacks experience to count: he's no expert on Erfworld yet.Or Duty could have a stronger effect as rank increases, as far as the effects on Parson we've seen. Parson had to order the trimancer rather than relying on his battle calculation to let him not risk the three casters on an unknown attempt to wake the volcano. A unit with a lower Duty might not have to go all out like that, but still could be absolutely prevented from conspiring against.

And then there is the battle right before Stanley took off. He says "I don't know if you've betrayed me, or just failed me." Which tends to give the impression that betrayal is quite possible even by the highest ranking units, including Parson who is a Warlord.

It's a muddle, for sure.

joosy
2009-04-01, 12:46 PM
regarding the whole Mystery of FAQ

We know that FAQ disappeared in one turn - and that there were reports of dragons.

We know that Wanda and Jack both used to be part of FAQ but are now loyal to Stanley.

We know that Jillian is the de facto leader of FAQ but is now a barbarian.

We don't know how many former FAQ forces she commands. So far all we have seen are chewy/crunchy Gwiffons and those are dwindling in number all the time. It's not important to know, just an observation.

What we know of loyalty comes mainly from:
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0094.html

"Loyalty - An unknowable unit stat, affecting how likely a unit is to defect or double-deal with possible. Thinkamancy spells can modify Loyalty."

We are also told that captured units "have notoriously low Loyalty, that is why it is reserved for valuable casters."
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0110.html

We know that Wanda is under no Loyalty spell so its inferred that the serves Stanley of her own free will. It is still possible that Jack is under a loyalty spell, of course, but that is not important in this observation.

So.. Wanda may have had low Loyalty to FAQ to begin with - but wouldn't that transfer to low loyalty to Stanley as well? If so, she has Stanley fooled - up until the loss of the dragons over the lake she was trusted completely. It should be noted that Wanda HAS been keeping things from Stanley re: Jillian such as the fact that she was the leader of and even from FAQ. She does not even offer it as a reason as to why Jillian hates Stanley:
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/erf0072.html

I'm assuming this is because Wanda thinks that has no bearing on her Duty to Stanley. We've seen Wanda stretch the limit of Duty by concealing information, standing up to Stanley, planning Stanley's rescue(although that one would be Duty to Stanley vs Parson).

OR Wanda still has loyalty to FAQ and for some reason that Loyalty has been transferred to Stanley. The answer to that question lies in the mystery of what happened to FAQ.

Wanda has had Jillian in private conversations for some time but apparently has no loyalty to her even though she technically is FAQ's leader. It is implied that she has not divulged what happened to FAQ to Jillian.

It does strike me as odd that Jillian has never asked Wanda what happened in FAQ - but that could be explained by assuming that Jillian
1) Assumes her version of things is correct and
2) Assumes that Wanda is under a loyalty spell to Stanley.

Since 1) is dubious and 2) has been undermined by Archon Jacqueline, it throws things back into uncertainty for Jillian. The next time they meet I'm sure Jillian is going into her Ricky Ricardo act: "Wanda, you have some 'splaining to do"

I would guess that Rob is hinting that Wanda, although bound by Duty like any other unit, has a gameplan of her own and/or has her own twisted sense of Loyalty and Duty.

Of course, it could very well be just another MacGuffin being used to further the plot and to add drama between the two sides (Jillian and Wanda).

Whether it is or isn't important it is standard in storytelling. You don't go into exposition explaining every last thing other wise it detracts from the story and certainly ruins the drama/tension. You have to leave some things a mystery :) I mean if Star Wars Episode IV had Kenobi reveal that Vader was Anakin Skywalker, if Keyser Soze had been identified immediately, or if Citizen Kane has started out with "my sled was named Rosebud" those stories wouldn't have been so memorable.

I mean, now that you know the story when you play the inevitable table top game the first thing you are going to do is "link the casters and uncroak the volcano", right? :) Takes all of the fun out of it.

Thanks again to Rob and Jaime for such careful storytelling, in creating this rich and awesome Erfworld. May your detractors keep rotting in the sun-bereft, dankest corner of their mother's sub-basement.

ishnar
2009-04-01, 04:56 PM
The point here is that the whole scene in panel 1 is different, way different, from panel 2. In your example, the background wouldn't usually change much. So, likely this is not the freeze frame of "Oh, boop" followed by gory death.

Although I reserve the right to be wrong now and again, in this case I'd attribute the difference in scenery to the cataclysmic effect of standing in the caldera of an erupting volcano.

kynalvarus
2009-04-01, 09:15 PM
The Erf cast page is broken ATM, but archive.org saves the day!

http://tinyurl.com/dny7lw

The Arkenhammer is described as having the following weaknesses: Inconspicuousness, Clarity of Purpose, Personal Taste in Friends.

Now, normally, it would seem very unlikely that a Chief Warlord and Heir would plot a coup against his sovereign. Loyalty and Duty would seem to prevent it. However, who can know the true purpose of the Arkentools? I'd expect that they could override Natural Thinkamancy and produce all sorts of unlikely behavior in their wielders.

The Titans work in mysterious ways...

Rebarth
2009-04-04, 10:54 AM
Not http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzOb3UhPmig&feature=related ? :smalleek:


My friends... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mw6H3crLzpg THIS is the song that plays during the strip

talse
2009-04-28, 10:48 AM
http://fc01.deviantart.com/fs45/f/2009/118/a/7/casters_by_talse.jpg
I did up the last panel in a fitting way.

HandofShadows
2009-04-28, 02:05 PM
Looks good talse. Some alternate test idea's.

"We are SOOOOO screwed"

"Look at the preaty colors!"

"We are so booping dead."

"Look out! Their remaking the movie "Volcano!""

Kreistor
2009-04-28, 07:38 PM
"I don't think the umbrellas are going to cut it!"