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The Giant
2011-12-20, 03:50 PM
New comic is up.

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 03:53 PM
Holy crap. The linear guild is complete.

Fitzclowningham
2011-12-20, 03:53 PM
Nale gets to live? Boo.

Timeless Error
2011-12-20, 03:53 PM
Tarquin joining the Linear Guild, huh?

Also, I love that they feel like something's "missing" without a kobold.

tcrudisi
2011-12-20, 03:53 PM
Yay! Thog's gone! And I'm excited to see how the OotS will fare against some much higher-level challenge. I consider this a good gauge on how they will fare against Xykon. If they can't handle this group, they certainly can't handle Xykon and Redcloak.

Strife Warzeal
2011-12-20, 03:53 PM
I wonder what his head is going to become after belkar does his thing.

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 03:54 PM
I noticed Nale's expression when Malack is forced to join.

Also, how could there not be a kobold?

KilKil neads to be renamed. I vote yyk yyk.

Eurus
2011-12-20, 03:55 PM
Oh that poor kobold. He has no idea.

Surfing HalfOrc
2011-12-20, 03:58 PM
Lemon Pudding? :smalleek: :smallamused: :smallsmile: :smallbiggrin:

Morty
2011-12-20, 03:58 PM
Urk. I know we shouldn't really expect anything else from Tarquin, but his treatment of Malack is still jarring.

hamishspence
2011-12-20, 03:58 PM
Looking good.

I wonder just what's going to happen between Malack and Durkon.

NegativeFifteen
2011-12-20, 03:58 PM
Man. Tarquin's a step ahead every time.

Gift Jeraff
2011-12-20, 03:59 PM
Wow, I'm really excited for this...Mr. Plinkett's reviewing Indy 4!

Oh and a new Linear Guild line-up. That's interesting, too, I guess.

Thumbs up to those of us who guessed that Malack would be Durkon's new counterpart. :smallbiggrin: Let's just hope that Thog hasn't been completely written out...

Raimun
2011-12-20, 04:00 PM
Didn't see that one coming but it makes perfect sense. This is (one of the many reasons) why I read this comic.

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 04:00 PM
Wow, I'm really excited for this...Mr. Plinkett's reviewing Indy 4!

Oh and a new Linear Guild line-up. That's interesting, too, I guess.

Thumbs up to those of us who guessed that Malack would be Durkon's new counterpart. :smallbiggrin: Let's just hope that Thog hasn't been completely written out...

to be fair, they were gussing that he was orignally buddies with Nale.

Almaseti
2011-12-20, 04:00 PM
I kinda feel bad for Kilkil, but he does seem to make a good opposite for Belkar.

I'm sure Tarquin is going to do some more double-crossing and such. Should be fun to see.

Also, is Thog really dead for good? Just like that?

The Mad Hatter
2011-12-20, 04:00 PM
I wonder if Malack will actually kill Durkon. :smallfrown:

nli10
2011-12-20, 04:01 PM
A kobold who is the sexy shoeless god of admin? Cool!

Fruchtkracher
2011-12-20, 04:01 PM
I may be dumb but what part - except the obvious fill-in for the belkar-opposite - is the kobold going to fill?

Ancalagon
2011-12-20, 04:01 PM
As suspected: Sticking to the theme. Elan should have known. :smalltongue:

Lateral
2011-12-20, 04:03 PM
Ooh. Kilkil is so very, very screwed.

Cizak
2011-12-20, 04:03 PM
I think my English is failing me on this one. Is Thog dead, or does Tarquin not want to work with him?

zimmerwald1915
2011-12-20, 04:03 PM
BS Tarquin "wouldn't dream of usurping command". He's been backseat commanding for twenty years. Nale won't even notice his command slipping away.

EDIT: just noticed Nale's disappointing childishness in panel eight.

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 04:04 PM
I think my English is failing me on this one. Is Thog dead, or does Tarquin not want to work with him?

I would suspect both.

Grumpy-Mcfart
2011-12-20, 04:04 PM
that was awesome! loved the ending.

I can't wait to see what Belkar turns Kilkil into.

Adicted To
2011-12-20, 04:04 PM
Mister Scruffy is getting a flying litter box :smallcool:

Timeless
2011-12-20, 04:05 PM
Durkon vs Malack it is.

Poor Kilkil.

Voice of Reason
2011-12-20, 04:05 PM
I will be most disappointed if Malack doesn't make at least one [more] serious attempt on Nale's life before this is over.

SamBurke
2011-12-20, 04:05 PM
Poor, poor, kobold.

May he rest in peace.

Now, let's look at the team:

Nale/Sabine. OK, this is pretty much tradition. Nonetheless, I WANT THEM TO DIE. Sometime... sometime?

Tarquin. OK, I get it.. he's buffed and stuff. Nevertheless, he will steal command, possibly killing Nale.

Malack: Um... what? 'SURE I'LL DO IT!!!' Something here is fishy; we'll see later, but this is not going down straight.

Zz'dtri. No threat here; a wise androgynous wizard will take him down with ease.

Kilkil... We all know the joke going down on this guy. BELKAR RULES!

Querzis
2011-12-20, 04:07 PM
Poor, poor, kobold.

May he rest in pieces.

Fixed it for you.

legomaster00156
2011-12-20, 04:07 PM
Well, this could go badly for the Order... :smalleek:

Metahuman1
2011-12-20, 04:07 PM
Wow, just wow.

Trixie
2011-12-20, 04:09 PM
Hmmm, why do I have a feeling 6 vs 6 might become 7 vs 5.

Also, I wonder if mr. Flying Kobold can handle himself in fight at all, and how they will explain this all to the Dragoness.

Gilphon
2011-12-20, 04:09 PM
I think my English is failing me on this one. Is Thog dead, or does Tarquin not want to work with him?

All that is said here is that Tarquin doesn't want to work with him.

Normally, this would strike me as superfluous statement if Thog was dead, but with Raise Dead in the picture, this comic basically says nothing either way about whether or not he's dead.

Also, I can't help but think that Tarquin's making a significant mistake here with his treatment of Malack.

Bonaynay
2011-12-20, 04:11 PM
I hope this means V will rejoin the party now that Z is back.

Mordokai
2011-12-20, 04:12 PM
I sincerely hope Nale dies extremely painful death. It doesn't even need to be anytime soon, but when(I'm not saying if, because I still hope Rich does decide to kill the weasel sooner rather than later) it happen, it needs to be very painful.

Ironic would be a nice bonus.

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 04:13 PM
I hope this means V will rejoin the party now that Z is back.

I'm thinking Tarquin will ask theem where V went, and THEY will rescue V from the Semi-Elemental Plane of Ranch Dressing

Adicted To
2011-12-20, 04:14 PM
Noticed that only Nale and Tarquin are smilling in the last pannel. They must know he is going to "minor inconvience" Belkar.

Adicted To
2011-12-20, 04:17 PM
I'm thinking Tarquin will ask theem where V went, and THEY will rescue V from the Semi-Elemental Plane of Ranch Dressing

They think V is on the Demiplane of Extremely Painful Torture (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0803.html)

Ninja Dragon
2011-12-20, 04:17 PM
Well, I'm looking foward to see tarquin backstabbing Nale.

Also, I'm wondering how longer Malack will be Tarquin's ally.

And finally:

"...they will seize it from him before signaling my forces to secure the area."

Yeah, you can dream. :xykon:

maxon
2011-12-20, 04:21 PM
Oh good, so OoTS will get to off Nale and Tarquin at the same time. It will save time later on.


Also, I'm wondering how longer Malack will be Tarquin's ally.
It wouldn't surprise me if they had some sort of long-standing 'understanding' in this type of situation.

Dr.Epic
2011-12-20, 04:21 PM
WHAT!? Tarquin is nowhere near as entertaining as Thog. And why would he wield an axe? Doesn't he know the main leader guy is supposed to carry a sword weapon? Axes are for the Brute. This makes no sense!

KoboldRevenge
2011-12-20, 04:26 PM
This is my favorite line up of guild members I've seen!

Very good, makes me feel hate for Malack with his easy batrayal.:smallmad:

TinyMushroom
2011-12-20, 04:26 PM
The linear guild found themselves a kobold! I pity the guy already... :smallwink:

Peelee
2011-12-20, 04:26 PM
Well, I'm looking foward to see tarquin backstabbing Nale.

Also, I'm wondering how longer Malack will be Tarquin's ally.


I'm not seeing Tarquin backstabbing Nale, but I am thinking of Malack turning on the blonde basta-imean, jerk. Not sure about turning on Tarquin or teaming up with Durkon (though I would love to see that happen... I really like Malack, and even though he's been part of Tarquin and Team for a long time now, I see him as pretty neutral, and don't like the idea of him leaning on the evil side of neutral). That said, I do hope he will try to neutralize Durkon instead of trying to kill him, but Malack seems very much like he could go either way on this now. I'm liking him a lot more than Tarquin

RndmNumGen
2011-12-20, 04:27 PM
Can Kilkil even fight? He doesn't seem to have any ranger-type skills... though I suppose with those wings he may have draconic powers. I guess we'll see!

Morph Bark
2011-12-20, 04:28 PM
I am curious about this pudding incident.

Peelee
2011-12-20, 04:29 PM
WHAT!? Tarquin is nowhere near as entertaining as Thog. And why would he wield an axe? Doesn't he know the main leader guy is supposed to carry a sword weapon? Axes are for the Brute. This makes no sense!

Axesarecoolyoushutyourmouthkindsir!

DougTheHead
2011-12-20, 04:30 PM
Also, is Thog really dead for good? Just like that?
Nope. Tarquin will return from this expedition to find his throne room filled with lemon pudding.

MammonAzrael
2011-12-20, 04:30 PM
WHAT!? Tarquin is nowhere near as entertaining as Thog. And why would he wield an axe? Doesn't he know the main leader guy is supposed to carry a sword weapon? Axes are for the Brute. This makes no sense!

Ah, but we new he favored an axe since he was first introduced (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0050.html)!

Brumski
2011-12-20, 04:31 PM
Thog will come in later to save the day,
Tarquin, "Hey, that's my axe!"

Anarion
2011-12-20, 04:31 PM
This comic had a lot of info and potential story twists

Tarquin is some sort of front-line fighter who wields an axe. I look forward to seeing him going mano-a-mano with Roy at some point.

Kilkil is apparently at least good enough to be the Belkar distraction for a couple rounds.

Z is totally depleted, so I guess they'll follow the order at a leisurely pace or stay in the palace and teleport to their eventual destination.

The party count is off now. The new Linear Guild has 6, the order presently has 5, and V+Yukyuk are a complete wildcard. Haley's Dad and family are even more of a wildcard.

Potential betrayals: Tarquin-->Nale, Malack-->Nale, Malack-->Tarquin, Yukyuk-->Linear Guild, Nale-->Tarquin, Nale-->Malack, Sabine-->anyone not-Nale

skaddix
2011-12-20, 04:33 PM
Order is Screwed. Especially Since they lost V. Not to mention Tarquin and Malack are higher levels.

Suffice to say Nale is not going to get healed when he runs into trouble. Malack not sure if he turns or not still since Tarquin does not have loose cannons I am sure the cleric can wait.

Also really Tarquin is so impressed with Roy he wants a fight that should be interesting.

warmachine
2011-12-20, 04:33 PM
I wouldn't let Malak on the team. You don't get to be head priest in a city rife with murder and brutality without being a viscous bastard, business or not.

faustin
2011-12-20, 04:34 PM
Am I the only disappointed with Malack, how quickly he drops the blind avenger mode under Tarquin casual pressure? Such a coward :smallannoyed:

Mordokai
2011-12-20, 04:34 PM
This is my favorite line up of guild members I've seen!

Very good, makes me feel hate for Malack with his easy batrayal.:smallmad:

What the high hell are you talking about? What betrayal?

Peelee
2011-12-20, 04:35 PM
I am curious about this pudding incident.

I see it as analogous to a D&D version of the noodle incident (http://calvinandhobbes.wikia.com/wiki/Noodle_Incident)

Ah, but we new he favored an axe since he was first introduced (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0050.html)!

Dear Giant,
That axe is really really really really awesome please make it the same axe he still uses because awesomeness! Also, I in no way expect this plea to work.
Love, Peelee

Dentarg
2011-12-20, 04:37 PM
I still think Tarquin is making a terrible mistake joining the Linear Guild AS THE FIGHTER, we know how well Nale's tactic worked last time he decided to take on Roy.

(Oh yeah, haven't posted in a while, kinda feels good to pop back in!)

- D

Spekari
2011-12-20, 04:40 PM
Wow, this is the very first comic that I was online for at the time of its release! I couldn't possibly be happier!

Anyways, it's interesting to see that Tarquin is tagging along. I'm looking forward to seeing him fight Roy. It's nice to know that Thog might still be alive, given Tarquin's reaction.

Also very funny that they're going to have whats-his-face be the Kobold for Belkar to possibly massacre.

McStabbington
2011-12-20, 04:40 PM
For such a genre-savvy dude, Tarquin is sure making quite a few classic blunders here. Insulting his healing and most powerful ally, stepping out from behind his legions of doom to battle the hero directly, and placing himself in a team where two of his teammates have already tried to depose him all in the span of a minute or two. I suspect, strongly, that between this, the OOTS, the Draketooths and meeting Team Evil, that Tarquin is going to live just long enough to realize that he made a very big mistake.

I can only guess that the story about the Gates really threw a kink into his plans and this is the best he can improvise on extremely short notice.

Tundar
2011-12-20, 04:41 PM
Malack: Um... what? 'SURE I'LL DO IT!!!' Something here is fishy; we'll see later, but this is not going down straight.


Exactly my thoughts.
Nevertheless, this is gonna be interesting!

Adama
2011-12-20, 04:43 PM
BS Tarquin "wouldn't dream of usurping command". He's been backseat commanding for twenty years. Nale won't even notice his command slipping away.

Yeah, I suspect that both that and the demand that Malack put aside vengeance on Nale are both paper thin veneers. Tarquin will really be in control, and I suspect that he's also planning to give Nale to Malack the minute Nale is no longer useful.

What do you want to bet that comment that "This is business" is part of a private code between him and Malack?

Theblackmage
2011-12-20, 04:46 PM
Order is Screwed. Especially Since they lost V. Not to mention Tarquin and Malack are higher levels.

Suffice to say Nale is not going to get healed when he runs into trouble. Malack not sure if he turns or not still since Tarquin does not have loose cannons I am sure the cleric can wait.

Also really Tarquin is so impressed with Roy he wants a fight that should be interesting.
Better yet:
Nale: "I need healing!"
Malack: "One heal coming your way."
*HARM*
Malack: "Oops, wrong spell":smallamused:

Peelee
2011-12-20, 04:46 PM
Yeah, I suspect that both that and the demand that Malack put aside vengeance on Nale are both paper thin veneers. Tarquin will really be in control, and I suspect that he's also planning to give Nale to Malack the minute Nale is no longer useful.

What do you want to bet that comment that "This is business" is part of a private code between him and Malack?

I didn't notice that at first, but I think you're right. Especially since he emphasizes "business" a second time. Definitely some sort of code.

BlackDragonKing
2011-12-20, 04:48 PM
"I wouldn't dream of usurping command", huh?

Oh, sure it's still Nale's team. Just like the Empire of Blood is ruled by the empress, right? :smallamused:

t209
2011-12-20, 04:49 PM
I wonder if Malack will actually kill Durkon. :smallfrown:

Or Durkon will discover that he can return to his homeland and thus fulfilling the "Posthumously" part.
Edit: As in death of Malack.

rbetieh
2011-12-20, 04:50 PM
This seems like an overpowered team, which means something doesn't add up. Removing Thog also doesn't add up, he practically does anything Nale tells him, so Thog isn't that much of a loose cannon, unless Tarquin is trying to keep Nales side of the team even with his own.

What doesnt make any sense is why not have Malak use sending to get 3 of Tarquins other associates involved? That way, he isn't directly involved. I mean why tell Roy that he will kill him and his family should Elan be injured and then show up with Nale (who will most certainly injure Elan), unless he is going to make sure that doesn't happen.....

Talk about a gambit, he is leaving the Empress all by herself, he is inserting himself into a 3-way battle (maybe 4 way if he and Malak are 'planning something', the "this is business" line makes me suspect something is up), he is positioning himself to force a confrontation with Elan early, and he is making himself a target for those looking to control or defend the gate. Meanwhile, the way Sabine has been acting around Tarquin and the things qarr said makes me think that maybe the IFCC don't really want Tarquin involved....

I dont know this seems like way too much risk for someone who seems very adept at calculating risks....

le Suisse
2011-12-20, 04:52 PM
*Belkar grins* "Sooo, they throw an unarmed, bookish, weakling kobold against the sexy, shoeless go..."
*KilKil gets a twenty*
*Belkar dies painfully*

Doug Lampert
2011-12-20, 04:55 PM
Also very funny that they're going to have whats-his-face be the Kobold for Belkar to possibly massacre.

Possibly, but we're VERY close to Belkar's long predicted end, just because Rich has used the Kobolds as a running gag doesn't mean he won't do something different this time.

Yendor
2011-12-20, 04:55 PM
"Kill, Kilkil, kill!"

Adama
2011-12-20, 04:56 PM
I didn't notice that at first, but I think you're right. Especially since he emphasizes "business" a second time. Definitely some sort of code.

And if it is a code, it would make sense for him to deliver it as part of a somewhat backhanded treatment of Malack, because Nale would focus on that--case in point, his facial expression right after--and not on thinking "Hey, why did Malack fold so easily there?"

I could be completely wrong, but it makes sense: Tarquin and Malack specialize in deception, so you'd figure they would have either an organized code of some kind, or at the very least a lot of private references shared from their long partnership, like any other two old friends referencing things outsiders don't get.

Roland Itiative
2011-12-20, 04:58 PM
"Line quality" indeed. The next Linear Guild conflict will be amazing. I wonder how Team Evil will fit into the gate conflict, seeing how the LG is sounding like a legitimate main-plot challenge right now...

Oh yeah, and Nale's face on the eighth panel was priceless :smalltongue:

skaddix
2011-12-20, 04:58 PM
I wonder will this be where the Sexy Shoeless God of War shall fall in battle never to rise again?

Vahir
2011-12-20, 04:59 PM
I found this turn a rather akward attempt to keep Nale alive. Of course, I don't know what Tarquin is thinking, but the logical thing to do would be to have your traitor (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheStarscream) son released, particularily for someone as ridiculously genre saavy as Tarquin.

skaddix
2011-12-20, 05:01 PM
And if it is a code, it would make sense for him to deliver it as part of a somewhat backhanded treatment of Malack, because Nale would focus on that--case in point, his facial expression right after--and not on thinking "Hey, why did Malack fold so easily there?"

I could be completely wrong, but it makes sense: Tarquin and Malack specialize in deception, so you'd figure they would have either an organized code of some kind, or at the very least a lot of private references shared from their long partnership, like any other two old friends referencing things outsiders don't get.

Well the word business repeated twice and is emphasized the second time so I figure its probably code.


"Line quality" indeed. The next Linear Guild conflict will be amazing. I wonder how Team Evil will fit into the gate conflict, seeing how the LG is sounding like a legitimate main-plot challenge right now...

Should be a mess. Although I am going to guess Team Evil is going to port in. They should have a four man squad and maybe some undead grunts. Should be a mess though. I fully expect this gate to also get destroyed which would leave one gate.

Kish
2011-12-20, 05:01 PM
Let's just hope that Thog hasn't been completely written out...
I decline to hope that. Sorry.

Shular
2011-12-20, 05:03 PM
People are making interesting assumptions about Kilkil. Those wings suggest half-dragon, or maybe dragon disciple.

Either way, you don't become the top beaurocrat in an evil empire without knowing a few tricks and eliminating your competition on the way up. Don't "misunderestimate" the seemingly mild mannered kobold.

Silva Stormrage
2011-12-20, 05:04 PM
Okay I did not expect that. At all :smalleek:

Mando Knight
2011-12-20, 05:04 PM
Tarquin just keeps making me like him. Blasted evil overlords.

skaddix
2011-12-20, 05:05 PM
That reminds me there are suppose to be what nine factions in the gates race?

Xykon
Red Cloak
Malack and Club
Linear Guild
Order of Stick
Inter Fiends

I suppose the Paladins of Azure City and now we had Draketooth Family.

Those are all the ones I count as possible anyone else?

Adama
2011-12-20, 05:06 PM
Talk about a gambit, he is leaving the Empress all by herself, he is inserting himself into a 3-way battle (maybe 4 way if he and Malak are 'planning something', the "this is business" line makes me suspect something is up)

Potentially a five sided battle, actually.

You've got the Draketooth clan and whatever allies they may have, the Order, the LG, Tarquin/Malack...

And we know that Xykon, Redcloak, and Tsukiko could be teleporting to the location of the second gate at any time. With a big pack of high-end undead.

Who149
2011-12-20, 05:08 PM
Well, of course it'll be KilKil.

I don't know why. But this page made my stomach turn a little bit. Not saying that it was a bad page, it certainly was powerful.

I guess I can't realistically see Tarquin and Malek as part of the Linear guild. I especially can't get Malek.

I really hope Buisness is a code.

But all in all, good comic.

Musashi
2011-12-20, 05:10 PM
Whoa.
Can this comic handle this much awesome?
... wait, wrong wording. Of course it can. What I mean is... can the Linear Guild handle this much awesome?

WhamBamSam
2011-12-20, 05:10 PM
Noticed that only Nale and Tarquin are smilling in the last pannel. They must know he is going to "minor inconvience" Belkar.Why would either of them know about Belkar's running Kobold head gag? Tarquin hasn't been around to see any of it, and Nale only saw the first time when Belkar made Yikyik into a hat. And I think that Kikil might actually be the one to fulfill the prophecy of Belkar's death, or at least give him a good climactic fight scene before something else randomly finishes him, just because he seems like such a pushover. After all, there are plenty of D&D builds that work off of some silly trick on a seemingly unimpressive character, and "kill" (minus the second "L" but whatever) is right there in his name.

I also suspect that Tarquin has more practical plans in mind than seize gate, steal ritual, ????, Profit! He'll play both sides in the OotS/LG conflict and get whatever it is he really wants out of this whole ordeal while delivering character development to both Roy and Nale.

Hamiltonz
2011-12-20, 05:11 PM
Am I the only one that thought, "Why would Haley's father join the linear Guild" when Kilkil showed up? I just assumed that Tarquin was talking about missing a master level thief.

I see now that what they are really missing is a kobold.

Nevereatcars
2011-12-20, 05:13 PM
Grinning like a loon. Can't wait for this fight!

Howler Dagger
2011-12-20, 05:13 PM
That reminds me there are suppose to be what nine factions in the gates race?

Xykon
Red Cloak
Malack and Club
Linear Guild
Order of Stick
Inter Fiends

I suppose the Paladins of Azure City and now we had Draketooth Family.

Those are all the ones I count as possible anyone else?

You could argue that the LG is part of the IFCC, seing as they called the LG "puppets" and sabine and Quarr are definently on both sides.

Forikroder
2011-12-20, 05:14 PM
i wouldnt be surprised if they manage to rescue the original kobold who was supposed to fight belkar since kil kil obviously wont be a match at all

Kish
2011-12-20, 05:15 PM
WHAT!? Tarquin is nowhere near as entertaining as Thog. And why would he wield an axe? Doesn't he know the main leader guy is supposed to carry a sword weapon? Axes are for the Brute. This makes no sense!
It's almost like Rich didn't consult TVTropes when making Tarquin!

That reminds me there are suppose to be what nine factions in the gates race?
"At least nine" sides, the demon roach said.

Forikroder
2011-12-20, 05:16 PM
This seems like an overpowered team, which means something doesn't add up. Removing Thog also doesn't add up, he practically does anything Nale tells him, so Thog isn't that much of a loose cannon, unless Tarquin is trying to keep Nales side of the team even with his own.

What doesnt make any sense is why not have Malak use sending to get 3 of Tarquins other associates involved? That way, he isn't directly involved. I mean why tell Roy that he will kill him and his family should Elan be injured and then show up with Nale (who will most certainly injure Elan), unless he is going to make sure that doesn't happen.....

Talk about a gambit, he is leaving the Empress all by herself, he is inserting himself into a 3-way battle (maybe 4 way if he and Malak are 'planning something', the "this is business" line makes me suspect something is up), he is positioning himself to force a confrontation with Elan early, and he is making himself a target for those looking to control or defend the gate. Meanwhile, the way Sabine has been acting around Tarquin and the things qarr said makes me think that maybe the IFCC don't really want Tarquin involved....

I dont know this seems like way too much risk for someone who seems very adept at calculating risks....

time constraints, it would take too long for his other associates to be able to sneak out of there countrys in such a way that wont attract suspicion

Thanatosia
2011-12-20, 05:16 PM
I dunno, I'm thinking Kilkil will kill kill Belkar.

Toxinthegreat
2011-12-20, 05:17 PM
I expect it to 7 Vs 6 due to V having Yukyuk under His/her control. But Yukyuk could rejoin the linear guild before the final battle, we just have to wait! I was honestly hoping that Malack wouldn't join Nale, but betrayal is always an option. I do hope Thog didn't die, he provides great comedy during these Linear guild VS the Order.

weckar
2011-12-20, 05:20 PM
Kilkil will win, our halfling friend dies.

Andric
2011-12-20, 05:22 PM
So.. what bonus to Roys atk to beat on some one that looks like Elan, looks like Nale and is Tarquin....

oots is going to visit a high level spell caster clan maybe can fill a temporary hole?

factotum
2011-12-20, 05:23 PM
Not sure how much of a problem this development is. If Tarquin keeps to his word and allows Nale to lead the whole shebang, then disaster is as likely to follow as night follows day--Nale is pretty useless coming up with plans, all told. Conversely, if Tarquin tries to take over in the middle, Nale and Sabine aren't going to follow his orders, so that would split the party and reduce their overall effectiveness.

The real problem becomes: is Tarquin good enough to manipulate Nale into doing things right without Nale realising it? From what we've seen of Tarquin, I'm inclined to suggest yes...

AutomatedTeller
2011-12-20, 05:28 PM
"Why are you all looking at me like that?"

I didn't see Tarquin actually joining the Linear Guild, I have to say.

I guess this puts to rest my thought that Tarquin killed Malack's kids, though.

Craft (Cheese)
2011-12-20, 05:45 PM
Kilkil... We all know the joke going down on this guy. BELKAR RULES!

In a shocking twist, Kilkil kills Belkar and makes a bowl of nachos out of HIS head!

Mantine
2011-12-20, 05:45 PM
Great. So not only the Linear Guild doesn't suffer any form of damage from its 423# defeat, but they even get out stronger from it?

Regardless of the strip's quality (which is good as always) this makes me rage. Defeat is supposed to cost something in the process, which never seems to happen, even to the point of going counter-clockwise in this case.

Kato
2011-12-20, 05:47 PM
Well now, I didn't quite expect that... Kilkil vs Belkar: Fight of the century?!

Peelee
2011-12-20, 05:53 PM
Great. So not only the Linear Guild doesn't suffer any form of damage from its 423# defeat, but they even get out stronger from it?

Regardless of the strip's quality (which is good as always) this makes me rage. Defeat is supposed to cost something in the process, which never seems to happen, even to the point of going counter-clockwise in this case.

Being forced to team up with a very powerful warrior, who also happens to be a master strategist and tactician, and his high-level cleric friend, who personally has a great degree of hate for Nale, both of whom could easily turn on the LG at the moment it could do the most possible damage, relying on a plan formed by the aforementioned fighter/strategist, who by the way also plans on calling an army in to fight by his side when he feels the time is ripe for him to take control doesn't count as any form of a consequence to you?

eilandesq
2011-12-20, 05:53 PM
Tarquin is making a grave error based on inadequate information: he sees Roy as merely a smarter than average fighter PC--not as the actual protagonist. Best bet is Roy forces Tarquin to withdraw after a tough fight, possibly followed by the Final Confrontation between Elan and Tarquin.

Roland Itiative
2011-12-20, 05:54 PM
Regardless of the strip's quality (which is good as always) this makes me rage. Defeat is supposed to cost something in the process, which never seems to happen, even to the point of going counter-clockwise in this case.

They did lose something... Now they're basically Tarquin's unknowing lackeys, just like they're the IFCC's.

bronnt
2011-12-20, 05:54 PM
Intentional reference or not, it turns that Tarquin was tracking the heroes speedy exit back to the secret base all along.

Anyone else notice how this set-up teased us with learning exactly what the deal is with Ian Starshine and Tarquin, then cut us off?

There's so much awesome in this strip.

Whiffet
2011-12-20, 05:54 PM
Once again, I care about the wrong aspect of the comic.

I want to see Thog flooding the palace with lemon pudding! :smallbiggrin:

The Pink Ninja
2011-12-20, 05:55 PM
Yeah, this team up is so going to blow up in everyone's faces.

Tarquin can't trust Nale

Nale can't trust Tarquin

Malack has every reason not to kill Durkon and every reason to kill Nale

Tarquin would kill Malack if he killed or attempted to kill one of his sons

Sabine's first loyalty is to the Arch-Fiends

And does the Kobold even have levels in something other than an NPC class?

It's powerful as all hell but it lacks any cohesion

Belkar is more loyal to the OOTS than any of these guys are.

CelestialMagpie
2011-12-20, 05:57 PM
Oh No! Doesn't Tarquin see the plot he's walking into? I suppose if it's all a meta-ruse then it's okay...but then he seems a little too meta for me. Also, Malack's acceptance of Tarquin's buff refusal of vengeance makes me agree with those who think that there is some sort of code between the two. Because blood vengeance would not be silenced by a mere "give it up, already!"

My initial reaction was - What?! how can Tarquin, who's already proven himself a smug genius, join an obviously inferior group and then force his best compadre into joining as well? It doesn't seem to make logical sense, though in an eventual show-down sort of scenario it is needed to created the proper dramatic tension. Ugh - well, best of luck to them?

Leolo
2011-12-20, 05:59 PM
I think this confrontation will show how a team of people working together will beat a group of people that are only forced together.

Tarquin and Malack are obviously very competent and maybe even overpowered as foes for the order. But Nale is not able to beat Elan. V has beaten the drow wizard twice. And the chance is very high that they will try to kill each other.

My bet is that Malack kills Nale and banishes Sabine, Tarquin kills Malack for this and at the end is all alone against the order.

HandofCrom
2011-12-20, 06:02 PM
This cannot end well. Half of the Linear Guild wants the other half dead more than they want the Order of the Stick dead. Tarquin will not want Elan killed under any circumstances. Malack definitely wants to take out Nale. They're joining up to keep an eye on them, and then double-cross them for whatever new game Tarquin has in store.

Lord Raziere
2011-12-20, 06:02 PM
…..This is an evil party. Malack will try to kill Nale by the time this is over, Kil Kil will probably die to Belkar unless third time's a charm, Tarquin has something to gain from this, and he probably has a plan that won't be in Nales or the OOTS best interests…..

Laws of Chaos
2011-12-20, 06:04 PM
Something smells really fishy about this whole thing! Tarquin is up to something, and I think it's going to be big. I dont see him sitting back and letting Nale get far, and I doubt Malak will do much in the field of aiding him. The Linear Guild is turning into a "Mexican standoff"...

Kaytara
2011-12-20, 06:06 PM
...Is it bad that I suddenly want to root for the bad guys? ^^; Damn Tarquin and his lethal charm. And the bespectacled kobold is just the icing on the cake.

Tragic_Comedian
2011-12-20, 06:22 PM
Doubt Thog's dead. No body.

Adrayll
2011-12-20, 06:25 PM
The fact that this seems so out of character for tarquin makes me assume there's another three layers of genre-savvy plots hiding underneath this one.

Mantine
2011-12-20, 06:30 PM
Being forced to team up with a very powerful warrior, who also happens to be a master strategist and tactician, and his high-level cleric friend, who personally has a great degree of hate for Nale, both of whom could easily turn on the LG at the moment it could do the most possible damage, relying on a plan formed by the aforementioned fighter/strategist, who by the way also plans on calling an army in to fight by his side when he feels the time is ripe for him to take control doesn't count as any form of a consequence to you?

No, it doesn't. This is all just in the realm of speculation, something I hardly care about. What I care about are hard, cold stone facts, based on which what I see is just the usual "oh, I lost. welp, guess I'll just escape and come back".
Seriously, to see this happen again even when, for once, all the odds where against them is disappointing to the least.

DaveMcW
2011-12-20, 06:30 PM
Sabine's first loyalty is to the Arch-Fiends

Sabine is helping the IFCC, but her first loyalty is to Nale (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0804.html).

Caractacus
2011-12-20, 06:37 PM
You don't get to be head priest in a city rife with murder and brutality without being a viscous bastard, business or not.

He sure is oily if he can volte-face like this. That's real viscosity right there! :smalltongue:

Drascin
2011-12-20, 06:37 PM
Tarquin just missed one of the basic rules of adventuring survival.

Never. Ever. EVER. Antagonize your cleric. You're going to be depending on him to keep going later. And it's perfectly easy for him to drop you a Harm instead of a Restoration.

Nale is right screwed here, I think.

homeslice
2011-12-20, 06:43 PM
I'm a little upset that Tarquin isn't going to let malack kill nale. On the other hand, I am very much excited to see how the new members of the linear guild do in combat against the OotS. I like where this story line is going.

edit: I doubt we've seen the last of Thog either.

random11
2011-12-20, 06:44 PM
Something smells really fishy about this whole thing! Tarquin is up to something, and I think it's going to be big. I dont see him sitting back and letting Nale get far, and I doubt Malak will do much in the field of aiding him. The Linear Guild is turning into a "Mexican standoff"...

Why shouldn't he give Nale the leadership?
It's Tarquin's regular strategy to let someone else look like the leader while he manipulates everything from the back.

It's going to explode sooner or later, but I think Tarquin plans for "later" as much as possible.

PrinceOfMadness
2011-12-20, 06:44 PM
I normally refrain from posting about the comic, but here's my thoughts:


Tarquin is WAY too genre-savvy to make this many mistakes. Something's up. I could see Tarquin having lots of reinforcements on standby - to counter Xykon's legions of zombies.
"This is business." Maybe Tarquin and Malack have an arrangement to not kill business partners until the 'deal' is up? I suspect Tarquin will allow Malack to kill Nale once his usefulness has expired.
I can definitely see Tarquin employing reverse psychology (and reverse-reverse, and triple-reverse) against Nale to get him doing what he wants. I think Tarquin will end up running the show for the Linear Guild...at least until his reinforcements show up.
Those are just my thoughts.

Caractacus
2011-12-20, 06:49 PM
Anyone else wonder if the title is meant to be read three ways, not just two?

1) Line Quality - i.e. the quality of the line-up, and

2) a reference to the Linear Guild, and

3) It says Line quality

Are there inequalities involved?

Spookymurloc
2011-12-20, 06:54 PM
Wow, I really, really did not expect that to happen.

._.

Now I'm really looking forward to the confrontation, especially Durkon v Malack.

The Pilgrim
2011-12-20, 06:59 PM
Looks like Thog will be spared from death, then.

Let's see how long it takes until 1) Malak decides to kill Nale or 2) Tarquin and Nale get to each other's throat.

Because, come on, Tarquin has his own team of six people, vastly more professional than anything Nale can come by. So he will use his son, Sabine and Z as cannon fodder, then move in his own, true, teammates.

Cranica
2011-12-20, 07:00 PM
For such a genre-savvy dude, Tarquin is sure making quite a few classic blunders here. Insulting his healing and most powerful ally, stepping out from behind his legions of doom to battle the hero directly, and placing himself in a team where two of his teammates have already tried to depose him all in the span of a minute or two. I suspect, strongly, that between this, the OOTS, the Draketooths and meeting Team Evil, that Tarquin is going to live just long enough to realize that he made a very big mistake.

I can only guess that the story about the Gates really threw a kink into his plans and this is the best he can improvise on extremely short notice.

Or Tarquin is playing an angle, as he virtually always is.

I see this comic as a virtual guarantee that it was, in fact, Tarquin who orchestrated the death of Malack's family. When he discovers that fact at a crucial moment and turns, I suspect we'll see him replace Belkar after his death in the Order, and unlike Durkon, I'm willing to bet his Mass Death Ward works.

Dire Moose
2011-12-20, 07:24 PM
Or Tarquin is playing an angle, as he virtually always is.

I see this comic as a virtual guarantee that it was, in fact, Tarquin who orchestrated the death of Malack's family. When he discovers that fact at a crucial moment and turns, I suspect we'll see him replace Belkar after his death in the Order, and unlike Durkon, I'm willing to bet his Mass Death Ward works.

I think it's likely that Tarquin did kill Malack's children. And given all the previous Star Wars references, I expect Malack to throw Tarquin down some equivalent of a reactor shaft (into Girard's rift?) when he learns this. Come on, black-clad guy with health issues serving as right-hand-man to the evil emperor?

Another interesting thing: There's more of a parallel to the Order of the Stick in the Linear Guild now than before. Tarquin and Malack have already set themselves up as very clear opposites of Roy and Durkon, and both have expressed a desire to take on their opposites at this point. Furthermore, Tarquin (being the Magnificent Bastard that he is) is probably going to wind up becoming the de facto leader of the Linear Guild (without Nale realizing it) and increase the Roy parallel even more.

Chess Tyrant
2011-12-20, 07:39 PM
Or Tarquin is playing an angle, as he virtually always is.

Pretty much a given. I don't see Tarquin as the sort to try using a superweapon like the Snarl to conquer the whole world in one swoop - I think he's far to genre-savvy for that. (Seriously, name one story where a scheme like that has ever succeeded.) So why is he risking his life's work by going after it?

Obviously, because it could throw a wrench in his plans if someone else took it. And who is that someone else? Again, obviously: the primary antagonists of Elan's story. Tarquin might be planning on fighting Team Evil, even if he doesn't know exactly what Team Evil consists of yet.

The second possibility is that Nale didn't tell him the whole truth about the Gates, since the discussion was all off-panel. But that seems really unlikely.

ProfessorAxe
2011-12-20, 07:51 PM
Tarquin could be just using Nale to help Elan and the Order vs. Xykon & Co. He supported Elan in his important quest to save the world (he rules over a significant portion of it), and Nale despises him for being content with small dreams of ruling an empire instead of ruling the world. After learning from Nale about what the Order is up against in Team Evil, he could just be making a move to make sure Team evil does not win. If Xykon beats the Order, Tarquin's dreams of the grand empire and bardic songs are pretty much over.

Lynn
2011-12-20, 07:54 PM
WHAT!? Tarquin is nowhere near as entertaining as Thog. And why would he wield an axe? Doesn't he know the main leader guy is supposed to carry a sword weapon? Axes are for the Brute. This makes no sense!

But the leader is Nale and he does carry a sword, and Tarquin is going to fill the the Brute's role since he is the best melee warrior and he is just going to follow Nale's strategy without doing any scheming on his own.:smallwink:

Btw I cant believe Nale fell for that.

Chess Tyrant
2011-12-20, 07:56 PM
After learning from Nale about what the Order is up against in Team Evil, he could just be making a move to make sure Team evil does not win.

Nale can't have told Tarquin about Xykon & co - he said "I know who [has the ritual.] I've worked with them before. You won't get it from them without my help."

In fact, it seems like Nale is deliberately not telling Tarquin that Xykon is an epic-level sorcerer.

Spookymurloc
2011-12-20, 08:02 PM
Nale can't have told Tarquin about Xykon & co - he said "I know who [has the ritual.] I've worked with them before. You won't get it from them without my help."

In fact, it seems like Nale is deliberately not telling Tarquin that Xykon is an epic-level sorcerer.

Yes, but he did comment that he knows Elan is on a quest to stop a scenery-chewing villain of some sort. And since Tarquin owns a lot of scenery, he wants that villain to be stopped.

skaddix
2011-12-20, 08:09 PM
I don't see why people think Tarquin killed Malack's kids first that is incredibly dumb move for a genre savvy character to make. Next there is no reason for Nale not to say I did not due it especially when Malack's right about to kill him. Literally no reason for Nale not throw his dad under the bus to save his hide. The only way this works is if u think Nale and Tarquin are actually working together.

Michaeler
2011-12-20, 08:11 PM
So, this is business. Malack has to invest a little patience for the promise of a satisfying payoff.

I half expect V, Yukyuk and Thog to end up forming one of the 9 teams now.

Koda the kobold
2011-12-20, 08:11 PM
Poor Kilkil! D:
Great comic Giant! :smallbiggrin: (As Always)

The Guardian
2011-12-20, 08:13 PM
This is all just setup so that...

When Kilkil kills Belkar, Thog will run in, and join the Order!

Seriously though, assuming Belkar DOES die for good, and there's still some fair amount of story left, what other character is interesting and funny enough to take his place?

Ravian
2011-12-20, 08:20 PM
Tarquin definately not showing all of his cards here

A guy this genre savvy does not make so many cliched mistakes, he has to have an ulterior motive somewhere.

Also Belkar has a good number of months left before the year's end, so I seriously doubt that he's going to be offed by Kilkil, especially since we're no where near the final storyline.

Kish
2011-12-20, 08:28 PM
Roy said there were seven weeks left in the timeframe of Belkar's prophecy right after he was resurrected. Where are you getting that there are months left now? (Setting aside the fact that the prophecy doesn't say "Belkar will draw his last breath exactly at the end of the year," and would have come true had Belkar died immediately after the Oracle finished speaking.)

Julian84
2011-12-20, 08:35 PM
...Oh.

Oh crap. :smalleek:

Xondoure
2011-12-20, 08:36 PM
Ooh. Kilkil is so very, very screwed.

Kilkil. Belkar. Prophecy. Kill kill. Uhhh guys… calling foreshadowing. I wouldn't give this one to Belkar just yet.

Edit: Should really catch up on pages first. :smallsigh: Well, I guess I'll stand over there with the rest.

Dire Moose
2011-12-20, 08:41 PM
If Kilkil does kill Belkar (which I suspect will happen), I fully expect him to do something with Belkar's head afterward.

Toxinthegreat
2011-12-20, 08:53 PM
Also Belkar has a good number of months left before the year's end, so I seriously doubt that he's going to be offed by Kilkil, especially since we're no where near the final storyline.

Depends on which year you are counting. The southern year, which will end in a couple of weeks, or the northern year, which should end in months. Regardless, Belkar may just permanently change gender (Unlikely). I do hope Belkar doesn't die, but if he does, maybe Thog or Malack will replace him. I doubt Thog, due to him having an immeasurable loyalty to Nale, but Malack is a higher chance. Even though their will then be two clerics it will still balance out. We will have to wait and see!

Aerysil
2011-12-20, 08:59 PM
This just absolutely cannot end well.

Also, I'm beginning to think Giant put that flying kobold in the strip just for this moment...

silvadel
2011-12-20, 09:00 PM
I knew this would happen when kobolds fly.....

At any rate Malack will NEVER betray Durkon that way for Nale.

Macebook friends forever.

Adama
2011-12-20, 09:15 PM
Re: how much time Belkar has left, didn't we have established somewhere that the Oracle works on the Southern calendar? He is in the South, after all...


But the leader is Nale and he does carry a sword, and Tarquin is going to fill the the Brute's role since he is the best melee warrior and he is just going to follow Nale's strategy without doing any scheming on his own.:smallwink:

Btw I cant believe Nale fell for that.

Frankly, even as clueless as Nale can be at times, I don't think he's stupid enough to think Tarquin is REALLY going to not be in charge. He just knows that he's completely outmatched right now, and the consequences of saying "no" is that Tarquin lets Malack take time killing him.

Nale's probably doing what every cooperative semi-hostage does, hoping that at some point during the affair he gets the opportunity to turn the tables on Tarquin.

Alagaesian
2011-12-20, 09:20 PM
So, yes, Tarquin has apparently made a lot of cliched mistakes in this strip. If this were near the climax of this particular story arc, he would probably make every attempt to avoid things like this, but he probably sees this as disk one of three. He probably sees Xykon as a Big Bad, but himself as a Bigger Bad that will step in just as the Order defeats their disk one boss. He can make mistakes here, but since he probably believes he has a lot of story left before Elan gets the chance to kill him, they aren't going to kill him just yet.

After all, he's genre-savvy enough to know that, unless the final boss is secretly involved with the disk one boss, the final boss needs a decent amount of screentime before the climactic final confrontation can be properly climactic. In his head, he's got at least another two-hundred strips left before he bites the dust.

Unfortunately for him, he is only a side villain that will probably die when Nale double-crosses him/Xykon flies in.

The_Weirdo
2011-12-20, 09:26 PM
Anyone else wonder if the title is meant to be read three ways, not just two?

1) Line Quality - i.e. the quality of the line-up, and

2) a reference to the Linear Guild, and

3) It says Line quality

Are there inequalities involved?

4) Line quality: Bold. As in Business

JSSheridan
2011-12-20, 09:27 PM
Thanks Giant!

zimmerwald1915
2011-12-20, 09:30 PM
Re: how much time Belkar has left, didn't we have established somewhere that the Oracle works on the Southern calendar? He is in the South, after all...
How on Earth would that matter? A week is a week, and a month is a month, regardless of when the year starts.

tiercel
2011-12-20, 09:31 PM
The Order's best play at this point when the LG shows up for its Belloq moment is if Elan is genre-savvy enough to get the Order to play possum, triggering the "sudden but inevitable betrayal" clearly being set up in this comic.

I mean, seriously, Tarquin is so genre-savvy he can utterly crush and defeat Elan purely with his grasp of narrative structure, not to mention turn the Evil Overlord List into a handbook for his minions, and then he *apparently* violates half a dozen rules off the same list? Yeah, right.

If Tarquin was serious (and had the force of will to make Malack be serious about this as well), the Order would be utter toast against this LG if working coherently. But Nale is so outclassed by his dad that this grouping spells utter doom; just a matter of whether Tarquin would prefer not to have even his disappointing son killed, or whether he's all too happy to hand Nale on a silver platter to Malack.

Belsirk
2011-12-20, 09:44 PM
Chan chan chan!
The Oots its... screwed...

Aurabolt
2011-12-20, 09:50 PM
Oh, I really help Malack decides to turn on Nale at the last moment just to kill him. That would be so narratively-appropriate that even Tarquin would be unable to object except on the death of his son.

Oh, and Tarquin getting into combat himself? Am I the only one who thinks that his clear Bard levels are going to gimp him against a straight fighter?

jere7my
2011-12-20, 10:01 PM
I think it's likely that Tarquin did kill Malack's children.

I took Nale's raspberry in panel 8 to be a strong indication that it was Nale. "Nyah nyah, I'm getting away with killing your kids!"

I also think folks are reading too much into the bolded second "business". It's standard movie dialogue to emphasize a repeated word: "Our people are dying! Dying!" "I ordered potatoes! Potatoes!"

If I were a betting man, I'd put money on the notion that Malack is going to remember Tarquin telling him that a business deal is more important than his children's deaths. He hasn't set his revenge aside; he's just put the cover on the fire for the moment. I predict that we'll see him side with Durkon against Tarquin at a climactic moment, and this will be the reason. (In fact, I think he's already planning to do so — that's why he wants alone-time with Durkon during the battle.)

Croverus
2011-12-20, 10:04 PM
Am I the only one that thinks Kilkil is a dragonwrought kobold, and not just a half dragon or something? So his class and stuff could be anything.

Kelvin360
2011-12-20, 10:09 PM
Hmmm, why do I have a feeling 6 vs 6 might become 7 vs 5.

8 vs. 5, actually. V still has the previous Kobold Belkar-Foil under his thumb.


Also, I wonder if mr. Flying Kobold can handle himself in fight at all, and how they will explain this all to the Dragoness.

Well he has wings, which either means he's a half-dragon or a Dragon Disciple. Or maybe something obscure like that one Kobold-specific dragon prestige class thing. If memory serves, any of those make one at worst a badass warrior, but given his size and profession, i'm guessing pacifistic-yet-powerful sorceror with a ridiculous WIS score. Heh. Conspiracy theories.

EDIT: In response to above, that's also a possibility, but I think Dragonwroughts have spots. I could definitely be wrong, though.

Nightmarenny
2011-12-20, 10:34 PM
I would imagine that Tarquin's "code" is "business before pleasure"

WickedWizard17
2011-12-20, 10:36 PM
*chokes* HAHAHAHAHAHA. :smallbiggrin::smallbiggrin::smallbiggrin: Hmm, Tarquin is "joining" the Linear Guild. Who else thinks he's just playing Nale AND Elan and just wants to retain his cushy position as General?
LEMON PUDDING? LEMON PUDDING???!!!
Because they always gotta have a kobold. Wait a sec. Idea. Vaarsuvius is gonna come back with YukYuk in tow, and he'll join the fight on the OotS side? I really just want to see V come back, though. I'M WORRIED! :smalleek:
Hilarious comic, Giant. Can't wait for the next one. I'm kinda hoping you don't celebrate Christmas so there won't be a delay :smalltongue:

If I were a betting man, I'd put money on the notion that Malack is going to remember Tarquin telling him that a business deal is more important than his children's deaths. He hasn't set his revenge aside; he's just put the cover on the fire for the moment. I predict that we'll see him side with Durkon against Tarquin at a climactic moment, and this will be the reason. (In fact, I think he's already planning to do so — that's why he wants alone-time with Durkon during the battle.)
Ooh, I agree.

Toper
2011-12-20, 10:36 PM
Unpredictable and utterly brilliant as usual. Lemon pudding, indeed.

sims796
2011-12-20, 10:43 PM
Am I the only disappointed with Malack, how quickly he drops the blind avenger mode under Tarquin casual pressure? Such a coward :smallannoyed:

No, you are not. I really didn't like that particular scene, though I'm not saying anything was wrong with it. Reminded me that Tarquin is indeed an evil bastard.

Ellen
2011-12-20, 10:51 PM
This family is beyond dysfunctional.

Betcha Malak is planning something.

But, Tarquin, honestly, isn't there something on the Evil Overlord's list about assuming the guy who's survived multiple rounds in the arena is dead/not going to show just because you left him behind? Especially if he has bizarre powers over lemon pudding?

EccentricFellow
2011-12-20, 10:58 PM
Hmmm, I'm not totally buying this. The odds that Tarquin would be completely open with Nale seem somewhat remote, and getting his hands dirty directly also seems out of character so I suspect mischief, but I do not see what it might be yet.

On the face of it, though, I would say this team is a hands-down favorite to beat OOTS though. I was actually expecting Ganji and Enor to make an appearance sometime before too long. I think it should prove interesting to see how this all develops.

Plans within plans....

BayardSPSR
2011-12-20, 11:02 PM
Wait a second - we know exactly what Tarquin's business is. He explained it to us himself. Party A takes [desired thing], Party B takes [desired thing] from Party A, and Party C liberates it from Party B. He's setting the Linear Guild up to take the gate from the Order so that the Empire of Blood can take it from them. Malack's been working with him for years; he knows how it works.

cupkeyk
2011-12-20, 11:04 PM
With this kind of TWEEEEEEEST how farfetched could could a Linear Guild/Team Evil Merge is upcoming? Xykon v. V, Redcloak v. Durkon, MitD v. Belkar, Hellroaches v. Mr Scruffy/Blackwing

ShadeSpark
2011-12-20, 11:14 PM
I thought it would be funny if Tarquin made Malack tag along with the Linear Guild in order to gain the Gate, but I never thought it would actually happen and I never, EVER suspected that Tarquin himself would join up. I suddenly do not feel so good about the Order's chances of winning this fight :smalleek:

Also, this lemon pudding story intrigues me and I wish to learn more :smallamused:

skaddix
2011-12-20, 11:14 PM
Unless v signs another deal no match for the lich and the mitd is clearly too powerful for anyone to take

ghoul-n
2011-12-20, 11:25 PM
Can't wait to see Roy beating crap out of Tarquin.

AgentofOdd
2011-12-20, 11:30 PM
This is the second (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0389.html) time our favorite half-orc managed to procure a large quantity of food without causing a scene. For an idiot man-child that guy sure has some unusual talents... I hope we see it again.
Potentially a five sided battle, actually.

You've got the Draketooth clan and whatever allies they may have, the Order, the LG, Tarquin/Malack...

And we know that Xykon, Redcloak, and Tsukiko could be teleporting to the location of the second gate at any time. With a big pack of high-end undead.There's also the Fiends who have timeshare on Vaarsuvius's soul. This promises to be quite an interesting battle.

Stille_Nacht
2011-12-20, 11:33 PM
BS Tarquin "wouldn't dream of usurping command". He's been backseat commanding for twenty years. Nale won't even notice his command slipping away.

EDIT: just noticed Nale's disappointing childishness in panel eight.

yep, pretty much. I bet tarquin is actually not interested in working with nale, and thinks he is lying about the "ritual to control snarl" (which he probably is). He and malack will probably manipulate the situation to their advantage when the time comes.

i will say one thing too...
tarquin had BETTER NOT DIE. he's my second favorite character ;[, also looking forward to how strong he is

Adama
2011-12-20, 11:33 PM
How on Earth would that matter? A week is a week, and a month is a month, regardless of when the year starts.

Because the Oracle said, specifically, that Belkar would draw his last breath ever before the end of the year.

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0572.html

And here we have Roy checking that against current time, and saying that Belkar's got a maximum of 7 weeks left.

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0666.html

Nevereatcars
2011-12-20, 11:40 PM
Better yet:
Nale: "I need healing!"
Malack: "One heal coming your way."
*HARM*
Malack: "Oops, wrong spell":smallamused:


"Whoops! Had the silly thing on reverse!"

-Chancellor Palpatine, darthsanddroids.net, #556.

Vectner
2011-12-20, 11:45 PM
So is Thog still alive then? They kind of left that ambiguous.

tcrudisi
2011-12-20, 11:59 PM
So is Thog still alive then? They kind of left that ambiguous.

Sadly, he is probably still alive since nothing definitive has been said about him. I have expectations of him showing up later, but in the meantime I'll just be happy that he's (even if only temporarily) out of the picture.

Elan is one of my favorite characters for his lovable child-like nature. For some reason, having a second character like that (except evil) juts doesn't sit well with me.

Raistlin82
2011-12-21, 12:24 AM
Ok, sure, they're missing a kobold. Whatever rocks your boat, Nale.

But Kilkil doesn't look qualified. What is he, a lvl.3 aristocrat?

Maybe next panel they remove Z's gag and find a way to bring back V and Yukyuk... and then the LG will be complete (and V taken prisoner).

rewinn
2011-12-21, 12:29 AM
tarquin had BETTER NOT DIE. he's my second favorite character ;[, also looking forward to how strong he is

My guess: Tarquin survives, because there's not yet enough time for him to be a legend before Elan kills him.

Just because the Order is trying to save the world from Xykon doesn't mean that all the evil in world will be ended.

Mike_the_Mystic
2011-12-21, 12:30 AM
Calling it now, Kilkil is going to kill Belkar.

Shatteredtower
2011-12-21, 12:41 AM
Interesting. Unless Tarquin know about Nale's secret benefactors, he might be biting off a lot more than his allosaur could chew.

Sky_Schemer
2011-12-21, 12:45 AM
Tarquin is some sort of front-line fighter who wields an axe.

This is not news. See #725 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0725.html) and even #50 (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0050.html)

Shoelessgdowar
2011-12-21, 12:48 AM
This comic had a lot of info and potential story twists

Tarquin is some sort of front-line fighter who wields an axe. I look forward to seeing him going mano-a-mano with Roy at some point.

Kilkil is apparently at least good enough to be the Belkar distraction for a couple rounds.

Z is totally depleted, so I guess they'll follow the order at a leisurely pace or stay in the palace and teleport to their eventual destination.

The party count is off now. The new Linear Guild has 6, the order presently has 5, and V+Yukyuk are a complete wildcard. Haley's Dad and family are even more of a wildcard.

Potential betrayals: Tarquin-->Nale, Malack-->Nale, Malack-->Tarquin, Yukyuk-->Linear Guild, Nale-->Tarquin, Nale-->Malack, Sabine-->anyone not-Nale

Your count is off. The Order has 7 (Scruffy and Blackwing are important), the Guild has 7 (Qarr is summonable), and you're missing a wild card... Thog... Tarquin just called him a loose cannon. Betraying Thog is bad... Thog already may have abandonment issues... Thog, V, and Yukyuk all showing up could completely throw all heck. I could easily see Kilkil siding with Yukyuk and getting revenge on the Guild together.

If Kilkil fights as the Guild's 7th, I pity him, because that means he will have to deal with Mr. Scruffy and Belkar by himself, which means Kilkil will be kill-killed.

Also, I'm expecting Elan to click on the genre obvious shift in the balance of power, and the new and improving Elan might actually mention it to Roy. The improving Roy will heed Elan's Bardic Lore - Genre Plot Twists as viable, and that will lead to the Order setting a somewhat ill-fated trap for the Guild.

Seerow
2011-12-21, 01:37 AM
If I were a betting man, I'd put money on the notion that Malack is going to remember Tarquin telling him that a business deal is more important than his children's deaths. He hasn't set his revenge aside; he's just put the cover on the fire for the moment. I predict that we'll see him side with Durkon against Tarquin at a climactic moment, and this will be the reason. (In fact, I think he's already planning to do so — that's why he wants alone-time with Durkon during the battle.)

I'd take that bet. I'm personally leaning towards "This is business" being a prearranged code word they use to signal "This is really important, agree with me now; when we're private we'll discuss this more". I can't see Tarquin being stupid enough to alienate a major ally like that blindly.

Chess Tyrant
2011-12-21, 02:19 AM
This still leaves us the question of how exactly Tarquin plans to proceed. Presuming that 'follow' means actually, physically, following the Order (rather than scrying them and teleporting in at the opportune moment) they may want a faster means of transport than the Order's carpet. (They'll want to be able to give the heroes a good headstart and still be able to track them, or outrun them if need be. Plus, if the Order gets into a fight with someone, they'll want to be able to arrive and interfere before it's over.)

Problem is, Tarquin just gave away his fastest flying carpet (which we know was his fastest, because he had Discern Lies on him [unless Durkon simply didn't mention anything, and we just haven't gotten to the reveal yet.]) So what could he use to outfly the heroes?

And then it hit me. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0754.html)

A normal Carpet of Flying has a speed of 40; an adult (or younger) red dragon has a speed of 150. Since the Empresses' bulk apparently has no bearing on her ability to fly, we can assume it also won't affect her ability as a combatant - which, from what we can see in the flashback, may be formidable. In fact, it might even make her stronger, since her apparent fighting style involves trying to swallow enemies whole.

Yes, I know this is ridiculous. But isn't it awesome? :smallbiggrin:

LuPuWei
2011-12-21, 02:19 AM
I rather liked Kilkil... oh well.

Gift Jeraff
2011-12-21, 02:48 AM
By the way, does anyone else think it's really really bad that Sabine's probably gonna hear the details about Ian? I presume the file would include something about being related to Haley, what with that letter she got. (Unless that was done off the books as part of some conspiracy involving Ivy or someone.)

EDIT: And now that I think about it, both of Roy's counterparts can be considered Evil parallels of Elan.

LudiDrizzt
2011-12-21, 03:06 AM
Best Linear Guild ever. That is all.

snikrept
2011-12-21, 03:13 AM
Respect for Malack - plummeting :(

Knaight
2011-12-21, 03:44 AM
Respect for Malack - plummeting :(

I suspect Malack has a plan of his own, and we are about to see Coen Brother's grade chaos. For instance, look at what we've seen so far, regarding loaded guns courtesy of Chekov and plots up sleeves.
1) Tarquin has basically grabbed the Linear Guild, or so he thinks.
2) Nale has effectively pushed Tarquin in opposition with Xykon, who Tarquin doesn't know about.
3) Malack wants to kill Nale. Moreover, he has demonstrated the capacity.
4) The Order of the Stick is trying to find the gate, but has revealed a connection to Soon. This puts them in opposition to the Draketooth clan.
5) Girard's gate is still actively protected by at least one Draketooth, plus co conspirators - enough to have a betting pool.
6) Qarr, representing the IFCC has put himself in opposition to Z, V, and Sabine.
7) V has potientially made at least a temporary ally in Yuk Yuk.
8) Enor and Ganji personally hate Roy, Kilkil, and Tarquin, which puts them in opposition to both the Linear Guild and the Order of the Stick.
9) Ian and Geoff are off doing something - moreover, Ian believes that Haley is in danger, and may well seek her out. He personally opposes both Elan and Tarquin.
10) Whoever Bozzok was conspiring with has reason to try and deal with Ian and Geoff. Unless that person is Geoff, in which case he only needs to deal with Ian.
11) Amun Zora thinks she is still allied with Nale, but is primarily against Tarquin, who is now allied with Nale.

Looking at all this, what I mostly see is a gigantic mess. Tarquin is trying to manipulate a system he doesn't really know, and I suspect that Xykon is going to deal with him. Malack meanwhile only needs to kill Nale in the confusion, I suspect he'll at least have a role in his death. The point is, I wouldn't count Malack out just yet.

Mastikator
2011-12-21, 03:48 AM
This time the linear guild both outnumber and outgun the oots. The only hope the oots has is that one of them figure out they're being duped and make a trap, or that Malak turns on Nale, which makes Tarqin turn on Malak (maybe).

Palthera
2011-12-21, 03:57 AM
I don't know if anyone else has mentioned it, but the bit where Tarquin tells Malack "this is business. business." and Malack just caves makes me think "business" is a code word...

Icedaemon
2011-12-21, 03:58 AM
What do you want to bet that comment that "This is business" is part of a private code between him and Malack?

Even if it isn't, all it implies is that this is business before pleasure.

Also, the battleaxe might be a clearly inferior weapon to the greatsword, but the dwarven war axe is the best core one-handed weapon. Tarquin does use armour and shields a lot, so I am betting he is a board-and-choppa style fighter who was using a longsword largely as a personal handicap (or possibly because he took a highly enchanted weapon from a previous nearly worthy opponent).

Pheldagriff
2011-12-21, 03:58 AM
I don't know (and I'm too lazy to check) if someone already said this on page 2-6, but I call it now

Kilkil will kill Belkar

Karoug
2011-12-21, 04:57 AM
Malack vs Sabine:
1) Tarquin won't let him kill Nale
2) Nale killed his children, so...
3) 'You killed someone I love, I kill someone of yours!'

Although I can't possibly image how could he do permanent damage to her, since she is an outsider, perhaps a spell of his own design or a modified banishment spell to some special dimension? (or even....the Snarl!)

Also, as a Belkar fan, I have a very bad feeling about Kilkil... Coolheaded, organized, intelligent and flying IS the exact opposite of him. Plus, he has tons of info on everybody, and might as well know their strengths and weaknesses.

Joe22c
2011-12-21, 05:20 AM
WOW. This is an EXTREMELY strong Linear Guild.

Though admittedly the good guys have been pretty powerful lately too (Belkar, V, Haley in particular.)

$20 says Thog does something erratic to inadvertently save the day though.

Rules Lawyer #1
2011-12-21, 05:26 AM
Wow! This was an awesome twist! With the Linear Guild lining up again it just goes to show you how genre savvy Tarquin is. I mean people talk about wanting to see the Linear Guild die for all time, but the Linear Guild clearly falls into the role of recurring villains. Recurring villains can always return to fight again no matter how many times they are defeated as long as they aren't outright killed by the heroes (and even then…). Tarquin effortlessly taps into the trope and reforms the Linear Guild post haste! On top of that Tarquin makes a genius move by adding himself to the team giving it the kick needed to raise the level of dramatic tension about a future conflict because otherwise the linear guild has suffered too many defeats to make them believable antagonists. The only real flaw in Tarquin's plan is the possibility that too much of it has been revealed to the reader… that means that his success may hinge upon a plot twist that takes place later when nothing goes as planned. Fortunately, the dramatic tension for a conflict between Malack and Durkon has been built up over the course of the entire past plot arc! And Zz'dtri although unable to defeat V has shown himself capable of going spell to spell against V (which is all that matters because it keeps the elf out of Tarquin's hair). Ian Starshine may be the Achilles heal for this team because unless I missed something Ian won the dramatic face-off with Tarquin by virtue of the fact that he escaped while Tarquin failed to discover his identity. Ouch!

I'm looking forward to seeing what becomes of V and Yukyuk because there is a serious possibility that Yukyuk will create an odd character out situation and that means Yukyuk could be a swing factor in a face off with the Linear Guild.

Anyways, how cool is it that the readers were brought into the latest re-formation of the Linear Guild because it sparks all sorts of debate about how the encounter will go (assuming for the moment that the obstacle of getting V back is overcome which is by no means yet resolved as even if Durkon can find a properly attuned fork, a plane shift spell is not a destination accurate means of travel). There are solutions, but every spell involving planar travel has some sort of difficulty to overcome. I wonder if this will be hand-waved and described by the party as past events or actually worked out in strip.

For those who think Tarquin is being dumb for becoming directly involved rather than leaving the work to be handled by minions... stop.. just stop... don't you know what happens when the villain leaves a critical conflict with the heroes to be handled by minions?!? The same thing that happens when Xykon throws minions at the party in the beginning of this comic! The minions always lose! It is a classic villain blunder to not be present during a key deciding moment by leaving the outcome to his totally trustworthy hand-picked minions! Besides, Tarquin might actually earn xp... (something he can't do just twiddling his thumbs at home).

Nohar
2011-12-21, 05:28 AM
... This... Don't make any sense.
I can understand the "Keep your friends close, and your ennemies closer" (Sun-tzu) mentality, but it still strikes me as... Odd.
At this point of the story, while Tarquin could just have sent his legions do the dirty work, he joins the fight himself, with his treacherous son and his lackeys. Granted, he and Malack are probably high-level enough to defeat them if the LG original members tried to attack them, but still...
I just can't understand, though I do see in fact 4 reasons :
- "Keep your friends close, and your ennemies closer" as I said.
- "It's personnal" (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ItsPersonal) : after all, someone killed his wife, and surprisingly it was not him or Nale who did the deed. The possibilities are narrowed to the Draketooth family. He might want a piece of them.
- He wants to aknowledge himself the existence and power of the Gate (and meet Xykon instead of his son). Xykon's presence is not guaranted, but let's not forget that he knows the location of the gate, and that he was supposed to go there a while ago. The dramatics require his presence :smalltongue:
- It's been a while since he went adventuring : Tarquin just want to have some fun.

Still, I can't help myself but think that that was poor-decision making... Though, there are some advantages. But after helping Elan and all... :smallfrown:

Icedaemon
2011-12-21, 05:30 AM
I half expect V, Yukyuk and Thog to end up forming one of the 9 teams now.

I like this theory. They would fit together. Monsters with just enough good-ish qualities to possibly seem redeemable acting as a wild card might just throw another group's scheme off balance in an entertaining fashion.

dtilque
2011-12-21, 05:30 AM
With this kind of TWEEEEEEEST how farfetched could could a Linear Guild/Team Evil Merge is upcoming? Xykon v. V, Redcloak v. Durkon, MitD v. Belkar, Hellroaches v. Mr Scruffy/Blackwing

We already had Belkar v MitD (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0477.html)

Bulldog Psion
2011-12-21, 05:32 AM
This has to be the most convoluted, Byzantine, tangled, muddled, confused, baffling, paradoxical, and multi-faceted plot line that's ever appeared in this comic. Possibly, in everything that I've read, and I have a read a lot.

I'm interested to see how it all plays out. :smallsmile:

I do have a suspicion that Malack is going to turn on Tarquin and Nale, though, possibly dying in the process and giving the OotS either the chance to run for it (their main tactic) or weakening T enough so that the characters can kill him.

Kilkil vs. Belkar -- I'm not even going to try to guess where that might go.

V and Yukyuk -- God only knows where they'll fit in.

Roderick_BR
2011-12-21, 06:09 AM
Aw, Thog's not joining.
But hey, Tarquin's getting even better than expected, planning things way ahead. If it all work out, the Order will be in a lot of trouble. I really want to see what'll happen. :smallbiggrin:

Knaight
2011-12-21, 06:15 AM
Still, I can't help myself but think that that was poor-decision making... Though, there are some advantages. But after helping Elan and all... :smallfrown:

Tarquin doesn't have very much of the information, and it is causing him to error. This comic may well mark the point where he screwed up horribly, and caused his own death, and possibly the collapse of his empire(s).

bhtooefr
2011-12-21, 06:19 AM
Newbie here... anyone notice the EXACT line that Tarquin said?


This is business, Malack Business.

Note the lack of punctuation between Malack and Business - meaning "Malack Business".

Tarquin is handling Nale to Malack to one-shot at a convenient time, I think. Or, I'm overanalyzing a typo... :smalleek:

Bulldog Psion
2011-12-21, 06:29 AM
Note the lack of punctuation between Malack and Business - meaning "Malack Business".

Tarquin is handling Nale to Malack to one-shot at a convenient time, I think. Or, I'm overanalyzing a typo... :smalleek:

Probably just a typo, but your theory is interesting. :smallsmile:

Also, welcome to the boards. :smallcool:

Chess Tyrant
2011-12-21, 07:33 AM
Tarquin doesn't have very much of the information, and it is causing him to error. This comic may well mark the point where he screwed up horribly, and caused his own death, and possibly the collapse of his empire(s).

I'm still of the opinion that Tarquin is far too genre-savvy to try conquering the world with a superweapon, and is really just trying to destroy it/make sure Xykon doesn't get it.

He might have enough information about the Battle of Azure City to deduce how outmatched the heroes are, and plan on intercepting/helping with Team Evil. Now that I think about it, "only for the antagonists to seize it from them at the last minute" could really be a reference to the inevitable arrival of Xykon's forces.

Krim
2011-12-21, 07:35 AM
Man. Tarquin's a step ahead every time.
Actually, this is the first time I see him making a horrible mistake. He is simply setting himself up for a very inconvenient cause critical wounds at the wrong time ;).

Alienating your less-evil allies is a very common downfall. I am surprised Tarquin does not realize the mess he is getting himself into.

Chess Tyrant
2011-12-21, 07:42 AM
Actually, this is the first time I see him making a horrible mistake. He is simply setting himself up for a very inconvenient cause critical wounds at the wrong time ;).

Alienating your less-evil allies is a very common downfall. I am surprised Tarquin does not realize the mess he is getting himself into.

This is really the crux of my point. Tarquin's behavior in this strip goes against everything we've learned so far about his character, which is why I think he's pulling yet another fast one over his enemies.

Knaight
2011-12-21, 08:38 AM
This is really the crux of my point. Tarquin's behavior in this strip goes against everything we've learned so far about his character, which is why I think he's pulling yet another fast one over his enemies.

I think that's his plan, absolutely. However, he's already deluded himself into thinking that he is the big villain, Elan is the protagonist, and that Nale couldn't possibly threaten him. Which is just asking for either being taken down by Roy, the real protagonist, or for Nale's little secret about Xykon to put Tarquin up against Team Evil. He might be able to deal with Roy, as the OotS seems to be the Order of the Setback most of the time, but if he goes against Xykon he's well and truly hosed. Xykon has a thing for demonstrating just how nasty he really is, and delusions as to Xykon not really being the main villain fit into the threat to his reputation category - a category we know the response to, due to V's attack. I'm almost tempted to call this foreshadowing - particularly given the number of loose threads Tarquin has going around, that could potentially cause harm.

Brumski
2011-12-21, 09:29 AM
There's a lot going on now, I'd have to say this is either going to be the Gate where the story finally comes to its conclusion, or there is going to be a mass dying off (permanently) of secondary characters to pave the way to Kraagor's Gate. I mean, can you imagine keeping up with all these characters (Team Evil, LG, OotS, Tarquin & Friends, Draketeeth, Sapphire Guard, IFCC) for another gate arc?

I guess Nale doesn't have a choice, but he has to understand he is screwed, unless he can successfully (and totally) double-cross his father. The Mcguffin he wants isn't a little trinket, it's a set location two days away from his father's empire's capital city (probably a few days more by conventional travel). If he won he would have to set up camp there, within easy marching distance of his dad's armies.

I hope Thog comes back, he's one of my favorites, along with Belkar...hmm both CE. Anyway I like how this strip sets up that Tarquin has his favored axe stored somewhere, and that Thog has an unusual mastery of the palace's architecture, Yaay! new axe for Thog.

Also I fully expect Roy to realize the carpet is bugged somehow, and send the LG on a wild goose chase, at least for a little bit.

pendell
2011-12-21, 09:33 AM
The last panel was funny , but Tarquin and Malack in the Linear Guild play a definite false note. It doesn't obviously fit the characters.

I note that the new Linear Guild consists of three individuals who owe loyalty to Tarquin rather than Malack. I suspect they plan to betray Nale after the gate is secured.

Likewise, I can't imagine Nale going along with this except that the alternative is immediate death at Malack's hands. So I suspect Nale and Sabine will also be looking to find some way to get rid of Tarquin and Malack as soon as they are no longer useful.

Should be interesting.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

rbetieh
2011-12-21, 10:50 AM
1) Tarquin has basically grabbed the Linear Guild, or so he thinks.
2) Nale has effectively pushed Tarquin in opposition with Xykon, who Tarquin doesn't know about.
3) Malack wants to kill Nale. Moreover, he has demonstrated the capacity.
4) The Order of the Stick is trying to find the gate, but has revealed a connection to Soon. This puts them in opposition to the Draketooth clan.
5) Girard's gate is still actively protected by at least one Draketooth, plus co conspirators - enough to have a betting pool.
6) Qarr, representing the IFCC has put himself in opposition to Z, V, and Sabine.
7) V has potientially made at least a temporary ally in Yuk Yuk.
8) Enor and Ganji personally hate Roy, Kilkil, and Tarquin, which puts them in opposition to both the Linear Guild and the Order of the Stick.
9) Ian and Geoff are off doing something - moreover, Ian believes that Haley is in danger, and may well seek her out. He personally opposes both Elan and Tarquin.
10) Whoever Bozzok was conspiring with has reason to try and deal with Ian and Geoff. Unless that person is Geoff, in which case he only needs to deal with Ian.



You forgot Amun-Zora....

This is definately not a crowning moment of genre-saviness for Tarquin, who willingly allies himself with a villain that is suffering from major Villain decay. Of course, it self-fullfill that prophecy of recurring villains always get stronger....

permissionmag
2011-12-21, 10:53 AM
This is the first time I've ever been disappointed in an OOTS storyline. I don't find Nale a very interesting antagonist, and find myself constantly wishing for his demise.

Malack rolled over far too quickly, and now I've lost respect for him. I'm just not interested in watching the Linear Guild for another forty or fifty strips.

At least Malack could have killed Nale, while Tarquin led the rest of the LG to find the Gate.

Meh.

I'll be reading all the strips, but mostly just in hopes that Nale dies somewhere soon and the story picks up steam again.

Gift Jeraff
2011-12-21, 11:04 AM
I'll never get the Tarquin love and Nale hate. I find Nale more interesting and entertaining than Tarquin.

There, I said it.

multilis
2011-12-21, 11:41 AM
I think this is an obvious N plans to betray T and T plans to betray N, and T told M a codeword for I want you here as well so you can get your revenge at right time.

Or it could be "Business" is really a codeword for I have a good plan, ask me later. If so the plan may be you get to kill N and get your kids back if we win the gate. (Power from gates means you can order what otherwise your god would refuse)

Belkar may get replaced by Thog.

...

It may make sense from T perspective to get involved personally because the "stakes are so high"... he also dies if world ends.

Forikroder
2011-12-21, 11:52 AM
Even if it isn't, all it implies is that this is business before pleasure.

Also, the battleaxe might be a clearly inferior weapon to the greatsword, but the dwarven war axe is the best core one-handed weapon. Tarquin does use armour and shields a lot, so I am betting he is a board-and-choppa style fighter who was using a longsword largely as a personal handicap (or possibly because he took a highly enchanted weapon from a previous nearly worthy opponent).

if he walks around with a longsowrd it might be for presentation, longsowrds look more official and general-y then walking around with an ax that is more barbaric

DGB
2011-12-21, 11:57 AM
Stop.

A Kobold, aparrently incapable of combat gets pitted against the single best fighter of the Order of the Stick?

There is NO way that kilkil can survive this. No way...
except mabye... it would have to be fate?

fate
FATE!

Kilkil will kill belkar :D you heard it here first.

Knaight
2011-12-21, 12:16 PM
You forgot Amun-Zora....
Whoops. I'll fix that.

TheMeMan
2011-12-21, 12:23 PM
Stop.

A Kobold, aparrently incapable of combat gets pitted against the single best fighter of the Order of the Stick?

There is NO way that kilkil can survive this. No way...
except mabye... it would have to be fate?

fate
FATE!

Kilkil will kill belkar :D you heard it here first.


Which is EXACTLY why Belkar will be killed. The bumbling character always gets lucky, and Belkar has shown an ability to fight those evenly matched. His death will assuredly be at the hands of the most inept foe he has ever faced.

tcrudisi
2011-12-21, 12:34 PM
Kilkil will kill belkar :D you heard it here first.

No, no I didn't. I heard it from the other 20 or so posters who said the same thing before you in this very thread.

Could Belkar die to Kilkil? Sure. Will it happen? Probably not. He's fought more inept foes before (see Azure City) and slaughtered hundreds of them. They were so low that he couldn't get xp from them. Kilkil may be a NPC class, but he's at least higher than level 1.

If nothing else, if Kilkil is that low of level, Mr. Scruffy will take him out.

KuH
2011-12-21, 12:39 PM
Ok, sure, they're missing a kobold.
But Kilkil doesn't look qualified. What is he, a lvl.3 aristocrat?

If you look at the expressions on the faces when KilKil flies in, the people who know him (Tarquin, Nale, Malack) flip from frowns to evil grins/smiles; the ones who don't know KilKil (Sabine, the drow) still have the frowns.

That says to me that the people who know KilKil know something about him and why he is the perfect addition to a party ... while the two not in the know (including many posters) think he's useless.

I'd go for the opinion of those who know KilKil well ...

Scarlet Knight
2011-12-21, 12:40 PM
Stop.

A Kobold, aparrently incapable of combat gets pitted against the single best fighter of the Order of the Stick?

There is NO way that kilkil can survive this. No way...
except mabye... it would have to be fate?

fate
FATE!

Kilkil will kill belkar :D you heard it here first.

:belkar: "Argh! Where's Durkon! I got an infected papercut! Feel...weak..."

Kish
2011-12-21, 12:43 PM
If you look at the expressions on the faces when KilKil flies in, the people who know him (Tarquin, Nale, Malack) flip from frowns to evil grins/smiles; the ones who don't know KilKil (Sabine, the drow) still have the frowns.

That says to me that the people who know KilKil know something about him and why he is the perfect addition to a party ... while the two not in the know (including many posters) think he's useless.

I'd go for the opinion of those who know KilKil well ...
That would seem to presume they care about Kilkil actually being good in a fight, instead of considering him perfect empty slot filler/cannon fodder. Considering both Tarquin and Nale care a great deal about doing the Evil Opposites thing properly and consider the existing party quite powerful enough to crush the Order, I wouldn't bet anything on that.

tcrudisi
2011-12-21, 12:44 PM
If you look at the expressions on the faces when KilKil flies in, the people who know him (Tarquin, Nale, Malack) flip from frowns to evil grins/smiles; the ones who don't know KilKil (Sabine, the drow) still have the frowns.

Good catch. I didn't notice that. That makes me wonder if Kilkil is an assassin. That's the first class that I can think of which fits perfectly with an aristocrat.

ORione
2011-12-21, 12:58 PM
This still leaves us the question of how exactly Tarquin plans to proceed. Presuming that 'follow' means actually, physically, following the Order (rather than scrying them and teleporting in at the opportune moment) they may want a faster means of transport than the Order's carpet. (They'll want to be able to give the heroes a good headstart and still be able to track them, or outrun them if need be. Plus, if the Order gets into a fight with someone, they'll want to be able to arrive and interfere before it's over.)

Problem is, Tarquin just gave away his fastest flying carpet (which we know was his fastest, because he had Discern Lies on him [unless Durkon simply didn't mention anything, and we just haven't gotten to the reveal yet.]) So what could he use to outfly the heroes?

And then it hit me. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0754.html)

A normal Carpet of Flying has a speed of 40; an adult (or younger) red dragon has a speed of 150. Since the Empresses' bulk apparently has no bearing on her ability to fly, we can assume it also won't affect her ability as a combatant - which, from what we can see in the flashback, may be formidable. In fact, it might even make her stronger, since her apparent fighting style involves trying to swallow enemies whole.

Yes, I know this is ridiculous. But isn't it awesome? :smallbiggrin:

Less amusingly, but more practically:

Note to self: Elf cannot cast Teleport. (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0760.html)

Whereas Zz'dtri likely can.


I don't know if anyone else has mentioned it, but the bit where Tarquin tells Malack "this is business. business." and Malack just caves makes me think "business" is a code word...

Nope. No one has mentioned it. You're the first.

Emo Samurai
2011-12-21, 01:08 PM
So we see here that Tarquin is an expert at dealing with the marginal but bad at cultivating loyalty. That's why his friends are scattered all over the continent while his enemies were/are all concentrated in his capital.

Also, Durkon's going to raise Malack's kids.

tcrudisi
2011-12-21, 01:09 PM
I don't know if anyone else has mentioned it, but the bit where Tarquin tells Malack "this is business. business." and Malack just caves makes me think "business" is a code word...
Nope. No one has mentioned it. You're the first.

Sarchasm? http://www.motifake.com/image/demotivational-poster/1002/sarchasm-sarcasm-the-most-delicious-of-the-humors-demotivational-poster-1266401781.jpg


What do you want to bet that comment that "This is business" is part of a private code between him and Malack?


Especially since he emphasizes "business" a second time. Definitely some sort of code.


And if it is a code, it would make sense for him to deliver it as part of a somewhat backhanded treatment of Malack, because Nale would focus on that--case in point, his facial expression right after--and not on thinking "Hey, why did Malack fold so easily there?"

I could be completely wrong, but it makes sense: Tarquin and Malack specialize in deception, so you'd figure they would have either an organized code of some kind, or at the very least a lot of private references shared from their long partnership, like any other two old friends referencing things outsiders don't get.


Well the word business repeated twice and is emphasized the second time so I figure its probably code.


I really hope Buisness is a code.


And all that was just on page 3.

MDR
2011-12-21, 01:44 PM
I didn't notice that at first, but I think you're right. Especially since he emphasizes "business" a second time. Definitely some sort of code.

Oh good. I was reading through all the posts to see in anybody else picked up on that. 'Business' is definately a code...either for some pre-existing plan or something to do with their methods on conquering countries. I'm thinking even 'man up' has some connotations we are not seeing.

I'm also thinking that our lizardy cleric friend is going to plan something against Sabine rather than Nale. Hurt Nale as Nale had hurt him.

SpaceBadger
2011-12-21, 01:57 PM
Great comic, thanks, Giant!

This one was just packed w information that answers a lot of speculation: Malack v Nale, Tarquin v OotS, team line-up (although if anyone thinks that Tarquin is really going to be the follower to Nale's lead... LOL!).

So Malack is agreeing to take out Durkon - I'd say this confirms Malack's alignment as Evil rather than Neutral priest of the death god.

Nice touch, Nale making faces at Malack after Tarquin ordered Malack to back off. I fully expect Malack is still watching for the first chance to get his revenge on Nale, as soon as he can reasonably argue Nale to be unnecessary to their plans, regardless of Tarquin telling him to "get over it."

And note that Tarquin had a perfectly good opportunity to confirm that Thog died in the roof collapse, and did not take it - he said he wouldn't work with Thog, not that he was dead. I'm afraid this means that Thog is still alive in one of Tarquin's dungeons (the prison kind, not the adventure kind) just in case Tarquin decides that he can use him in some way. At the very least, Thog's status has to be considered as "Schroedinger's Thog" rather than "dead Thog".

Drak'rrth
2011-12-21, 02:10 PM
Medium-time lurker, first-time poster. Anyway, here's my thoughts:

My own guess is that Tarquin has some sort of plan set-up, and it will not involve his son getting any sort of benefit out of it. He's shown that he doesn't trust his son with the reins of power, so he's going to dispose or overthrow Nale as leader of the group, or simply slip away somewhere in the middle of the inevitable battle. His survival chances depend on whether he's better as Elan's father (Obi-wan style death) or the bloodthirsty tyrant (Darth Vader style death).

Malack wouldn't know Tarquin's plan, but he's not going to let Nale off the hook that easily. I fully expect a betrayal that goes completely contrary to Tarquin's plan and that may or may not result in Malack's death. Something like Miko's screw-up, but for Tarquin. (The gate itself is going to blow, btw, or end up in the hands of someone who won't or can't make use of it (immediately).) I doubt that he'll survive if Tarquin does - someone's got to die for drama. Or both could die. 'shrugs' If he survives, he's probably going to the Order's side, or become a renegade, but he won't make a regular appearance either way. Status Quo Is God.

No comment on the poor kobold. Maybe Burlew will spare him? He's either going to be ridiculously powerful or an utter joke.

Nale and Sabine are probably going to prevail, for once, only to backstabbed by someone other than Tarquin - could be the Draketeeth, could be Malack. Alternatively, they get beaten down, but said third party, now including Tarquin, will backstab the Order, and in the chaos they escape again. Triple-party fights tend to end with the third party getting eliminated as the guys in the middle, but either drawn to one side or up to Heaven.

Z is expendable. He's safe until the big fight, though.

Thog will return, because people seem to like him for some reason. Not sure what he'll do, though, but he's probably going it alone or hidden.

Yukyuk might pull a heel-face turn, given that Z tried to kill him. Alternatively, Belkar gets a new accessory. Maybe both, but unlikely given Belkar's new outlook.

As for Team Evil... they might be the third party gate-crashers, in which case they're an exception. I doubt they'll make it for the beginning, though.

No ideas for Ian or Gannji, but they'll eventually turn up when least expected.

Counterparts:
Roy vs Tarquin
Durkon vs Malack
Haley vs Sabine
Elan vs Nale
V vs Z
Belkar vs ---
Mr Scruffy, Blackwing and Qarr do whatever they want.

Others:
Draketooth clan
Team Evil

Quite a Battle Royale.
(Ought to stop doing this at 3 in the morning.)

Emulgator
2011-12-21, 02:37 PM
I believe that Tarquin was sincere when he said that Nale impressed him, and that he wants to see Nale handle the situation. After all Nale found the Windy Canyon, while keeping the low profile, [otherwise Tarquin would notice him]. Of course he still made mistakes, like staying close to Tarquin after the ambush, but I'd say that Tarquin still see some potential in him. In strip 821 he seemed quite proud, when Nale managed to survive in quite hopeless situation. Tarquin is a jerk, is very genre savy, but he also loves his sons I think. Especially when one of rhem could make him a legend, and the second could become a succesor [maybe?].

Forealms
2011-12-21, 02:43 PM
Haven't read through 8 pages, so this may be a repeat.

I suspect the three major teams will hit Windy Canyon about the same time (or the first two shortly before the third):

1. Order of the Stick
2. Linear Guild
3. Team Evil

When they collide, I expect Tarquin will be killed in a fight with Xykon. I would put Malack and Redcloak at about even (though Recloak might be a bit higher).

Forikroder
2011-12-21, 03:19 PM
If you look at the expressions on the faces when KilKil flies in, the people who know him (Tarquin, Nale, Malack) flip from frowns to evil grins/smiles; the ones who don't know KilKil (Sabine, the drow) still have the frowns.

That says to me that the people who know KilKil know something about him and why he is the perfect addition to a party ... while the two not in the know (including many posters) think he's useless.

I'd go for the opinion of those who know KilKil well ...

Tarquin assumed taht Belkar was there purely for comedic purposes and actually has no idea that hes an extremely competent fighter since Mr.Scruffy did most of the fighting for him

so really Tarquin being pleased is bad news for kilkil since he would want to being someone who cant fight to fight someone who cant fight

everyone is way overexagerating the need for any secret codes, Tarquin told Malack in plain words exactly what Malack needed to know and thats all, he told malack to stop being so emotional cause this is bussiness

anyone who knows anything about how Tarquin does bussiness should know instantly that after Nale gets them the info they need theyll kill him, why leave someone who hates them and knows such critical info? and its possible Nale could gain the power from a different gate and use it to fight Tarquin

Whiffet
2011-12-21, 04:06 PM
Speculation time! I've thought about everything a bit. I still have no idea what will happen, but a couple thoughts may be worth sharing.

First of all, this team is unstable. There is too much tension between members in the new Linear Guild lineup for nothing to come of it. Also, Tarquin is definitely planning something that we don't know about. These are the only things I can say for sure.

With far less certainty, I doubt the Gate is at the Windy Canyon. There's a good chance it's a hideout for the Draketooths, but it isn't the actual location of the Gate. See, it occurred to me that Windy Canyon is, well, a canyon. The desert is pretty much just sand, so a canyon would probably stick out in your mind. Yet Girard set up a trap in the middle of the desert and expected Soon to believe the Gate was there. At the latest, Soon would have realized something was wrong when he got to the coordinates and there wasn't a canyon anywhere. Why stick around after that? The trap wouldn't have been set off in that case, and then there's no way to know who won the bet.

The Gate could still be there, mind you. Girard's plan to protect the Gate could include hiding the entire canyon, and Soon could know or at least suspect that. An epic illusionist has some interesting options, after all. Or maybe the Windy Canyon is just a deceptive name. :smallwink:

So with that in mind, what could happen when the teams meet at Windy Canyon? At first I thought it would result in the Gate blowing up, possibly due to Tarquin himself, but if we assume the Gate isn't there... who knows?

dtilque
2011-12-21, 04:51 PM
I'm still of the opinion that Tarquin is far too genre-savvy to try conquering the world with a superweapon, and is really just trying to destroy it/make sure Xykon doesn't get it.

I agree completely. This was my thought even before Tarquin joined the group. A superweapon would put a severe cramp in his plans, even if he controls it himself. (If he does control it, he'll become the target of every hero in the world; one of them is sure to get through.) He's planning on destroying it.

But then I expect all the gates to be eventually destroyed.

Joerg
2011-12-21, 04:57 PM
After thinking about it for a while, I am now quite sure that Tarquin's plan is to destroy the Gate.


As many have pointed out, he's not the type who tries to control the Snarl.
He certainly doesn't want the Gate in anyone else's hands.
He has no fear of the Snarl getting free. Instead, he knows that the story demands the destruction of the fourth Gate anyway, and that Elan will defeat Xykon at the last Gate.
Note that he never says that he would want to keep the Gate. He just wants to 'seize' it.
It explains why he's going himself. No other could be trusted with the task or would simply be powerful enough -- even if Xykon doesn't turn up, the Draketooths and the Order will want to keep the Gate intact.

He also may be going to make sure that neither Elan nor Nale are killed. (I don't know how people can assume he would want to use Nale as cannon-fodder or to let Malack kill him. It's clear that he wants Nale alive, and also that he wants Elan alive.)

Further, he may very well be aware that he's not the main villain of the Gate story. Then, he'll want to avoid being killed by Xykon. The easiest way to do that is to remove the reason for Xykon (and the whole story) to be on the continent.

I still wonder how exactly he wants to protect Elan (while fighting Roy) and how he wants to keep Malack from killing Nale afterwards. Anyway, we're heading for an extremely interesting climax with five parties, where the Order of the Stick and the Linear Guild (the original one) are the weakest sides.

Gnoman
2011-12-21, 05:10 PM
So we see here that Tarquin is an expert at dealing with the marginal but bad at cultivating loyalty. That's why his friends are scattered all over the continent while his enemies were/are all concentrated in his capital.


Hardly. Tarquin is so good at cultivating loyalty that he can securely trust his allies to secretly control entire empires without fear of betrayal, and has no need to keep lackeys around just in case one of them betrays him.

Burner28
2011-12-21, 05:34 PM
How badly would a KilKil vs Belkar end up?:smalltongue:

Peelee
2011-12-21, 05:58 PM
He also may be going to make sure that neither Elan nor Nale are killed. (I don't know how people can assume he would want to use Nale as cannon-fodder or to let Malack kill him. It's clear that he wants Nale alive, and also that he wants Elan alive.)


Posting a bounty for his son, which states "dead or alive," does not exactly underscore the your supposed clarity of his conviction that Nale should necessarily live.

ORione
2011-12-21, 06:29 PM
Sarchasm?


Are you saying that I was being sarcastic or the person I quoted was being sarcastic, and I missed it? If the latter, you're probably right. If the former, you're definitely right.

MPG
2011-12-21, 06:30 PM
Wow interesting page.

I'm sure other people have made this speculation but I think Tarquin had somthing to do with the death of Malick's kids and lied about Nale to have him help with the continental conquest.

Wings on a Kobold - - - half-dragon?
Still think Belker will be fine, wonder what he'll turn Kilkil's head into.

Maybe a topic for another thread but I don't post often,
Anyone think the oracl's prediction means something other than Belker's death?

Looking forward to finding out. ^_^

Raistlin82
2011-12-21, 06:31 PM
If you look at the expressions on the faces when KilKil flies in, the people who know him (Tarquin, Nale, Malack) flip from frowns to evil grins/smiles; the ones who don't know KilKil (Sabine, the drow) still have the frowns.

They don't.
You're seeing something that isn't there.
Malack is still frowning as before, despite knownig the guy.
The only people who smile are the drama-loving pair of father and son, who appreciate just the idea of having a kobold as the last member of the LG, as is tradition... just for the dramaticty of it.
That's what the joke is about.

Peelee
2011-12-21, 06:47 PM
I'm sure other people have made this speculation but I think Tarquin had somthing to do with the death of Malick's kids and lied about Nale to have him help with the continental conquest.


It's a fairly popular theory, which I've never liked, and I think it keeps getting weaker. For instance, in the current strip, Malack and Tarquin as much as say Nale murdered Malack's kids, and he wants sweet, sweet revenge, in the form of an extremely dead Nale. Nale has even witnessed firsthand this wrath in his last encounter with Malack. Wouldn't he speak up at some point, ya know, since that would guarantee that he wouldn't need to constantly worry about being killed? Instead, he says things like "how's the family," and gives a neener neener face when given a temporary reprieve. He's not exactly exuding innocence here.

Snurk
2011-12-21, 10:32 PM
Gotta love these quick updates!

3 hoorays for the Giant!
So glad too see you in good shape!

Adama
2011-12-21, 10:47 PM
It's a fairly popular theory, which I've never liked, and I think it keeps getting weaker. For instance, in the current strip, Malack and Tarquin as much as say Nale murdered Malack's kids, and he wants sweet, sweet revenge, in the form of an extremely dead Nale. Nale has even witnessed firsthand this wrath in his last encounter with Malack. Wouldn't he speak up at some point, ya know, since that would guarantee that he wouldn't need to constantly worry about being killed? Instead, he says things like "how's the family," and gives a neener neener face when given a temporary reprieve. He's not exactly exuding innocence here.

Not to mention the fact that Nale referenced it himself when first coming face to face. "Malack. How's the family?"

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0811.html

At no point have we seen any evidence of anything other than Nale being exactly as responsible as advertised.

Aenghus
2011-12-21, 11:08 PM
Personally I think Tarquin cares for both his sons, albeit in a sick and twisted way. He wants Nale to become a competent and successful villian, and is happy with Elan as a successful hero. Keeping them both alive while advancing his own masterplan probably requires his personal involvement.

Tarquin can smell a major narrative afoot, even if he doesn't know some of the the important details.

Too many wheels within wheels to figure out how all this will play out, and I like it that way.

M.A.D
2011-12-21, 11:19 PM
You forgot Amun-Zora....



Huh, if Sabine's fate ended the same way Therkla did, I suppose Amun Zora is fitted to be her replacement.

xyzchyx
2011-12-21, 11:28 PM
Am I missing something here?

The last time we saw Malack and Durkon, they were getting along splendidly. Now Malack wants to "handle the dwarf", suggesting a tone that carries a strong note of finality about it. Even Malack admits that the deception that Durkon and the others had not previously met was billed as "minor", so it seems out of place that Malack would now suddenly be keen on showing Durkon any significant amount of hostility over the issue.

deuxhero
2011-12-22, 12:02 AM
WMG hat on

Tarquin, Malack and Kobold betray the linear guild under the guise of helping Elan, but do it so Tarquin can just come back to the gate latter and use it without either son in the way

Chirios
2011-12-22, 12:13 AM
Wow. Tarquin is a moron. So is Malack for that matter.

BriarHobbit
2011-12-22, 12:42 AM
This looks very promissing. We'll see if "just a clerk" has the same meaning as the phrase "just a cook" from the Steven Siegal movie.

snikrept
2011-12-22, 12:45 AM
"This is business" could be Tarquin metaphorically kicking Malack under the table to shut up and play along with a plan to deceive Nale or something.

I hope.

Otherwise it seems Malack is a serious yes-man despite his bluster before

rbetieh
2011-12-22, 01:14 AM
Maybe Tarquin thinks that the gates are too powerful an item to leave around and is going to destroy it, after Nale identifies the only people who could control the gate of course.

Dentarg
2011-12-22, 01:27 AM
After all I've read in the topics here, I just have one thing to say... (Aside from my previous topic, of course.)

What Would Thor Do?

- D

M.A.D
2011-12-22, 02:07 AM
Am I missing something here?

The last time we saw Malack and Durkon, they were getting along splendidly. Now Malack wants to "handle the dwarf", suggesting a tone that carries a strong note of finality about it. Even Malack admits that the deception that Durkon and the others had not previously met was billed as "minor", so it seems out of place that Malack would now suddenly be keen on showing Durkon any significant amount of hostility over the issue.

I think that's his way of being honourable, to personally kill Durkon instead of leaving him to the mercy of the likes of Nale, giving him a quick death rather than letting the others torture or insult him. Or maybe Malack wants to spare Durkon's life, and of course he can only ensure that if he works at it directly.

This makes the second time Durkon befriend the Cleric of the Linear Guild, so let's just wait to see how it plays out. The previous Cleric sure got pretty close to him

i6uuaq
2011-12-22, 02:20 AM
I can't find the bit of this thread where people were speculating whether Tarquin knew who the scenery-chomping villain was, but one thing I do know:

Tarquin doesn't consider Nale a villain (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0724.html). I'm inclined to take his statement about the scenery-chomping villain at face value, so I'd say he knows there's another big bad about. Possibly they will 'interrogate' Nale further at some later stage.

Moblin
2011-12-22, 03:37 AM
Those who have been trying to place the current Linear Guild in 'evil oposition' to the OotS have made me wonder if, with the current lineup, one half of the Linear Guild could also now be considered as 'opposites' (for all the ill-defined meaning that term actually has, anyway) to the other half of the Linear Guild.

Malack - Pale, Divine Spellcaster = Zz'dtri - Dark, Arcane Spellcaster
Kilkil - Restrained Draconic Kobold = Sabine - Sexual Infernal Succubus
and, of course;
Tarquin - Magnificant Bastard = Nale - Incompetant Boob

Nale's own 'opposites' theme has been turned against him, and he'll get what he gave Elan and the OotS in the Dungeon of Dorukan.