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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    Like Sarcasm, Hyperbole relies largely on tone of voice and facial expression and is generally best not employed via a textual medium such as forums :P
    You mean apart of the "30 month's worth of strips" and "Xykon blasted by the Enterprise"?

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by joca4christ View Post
    Secondly, I would say that this comic has never seemed to have taken itself too seriously. It has, in fact, broken the fourth wall on occasion. So if one is looking for "serious" storytelling, one may be reading the wrong comic.
    Being plausible and believable isn't requirement only for "serious" stories.
    You could show me Belkar suddenly casting disintegrate next strip, and I still would condemn that even if this story "never took itself too seriously".

    Also, I would add, if one dislikes the mode by which Rich chooses to tell his most excellent story, why would one continue to read the comic? I would say that one is drawn in by the way Rich spins his tale, so like it or not, he has done his job.
    I don't see why one particular instance should be equated to the whole comic.
    There have always been up and downs with the storytelling, disliking the downs isn't reason enough to "leave", nor are the ups reason enough to ignore/justify the downs.
    I always found the whole "you don't like it? leave" argument silly.
    What I don't like I strive to criticize, hoping to see it improved, rather than leaving the burning house together with everything still of value.
    Last edited by Mantine; 2012-09-01 at 01:08 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    That would make a good tagline...

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    Last edited by Smolder; 2012-09-01 at 01:14 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    Glancing at a dictionary, you appear to be correct. Odd, I apparently learned the definition of that word incorrectly!

    Thanks Kish :)
    Yes, "preclude" means the exact opposite. It would have worked if you'd said, "...precludes the dark elf military being terribly far away."
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    "You are what you do. Choose again, and change." --Miles Vorkosigan

    "The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in the future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present--they are real." --Aral Vorkosigan

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Mantine View Post
    You mean apart of the "30 month's worth of strips" and "Xykon blasted by the Enterprise"?
    I don't know, I was not debating with you and have no idea what you're referring to, particularly since you didn't bother to quote yourself. I am just letting you know hyperbole does not typically work well in a textual environment.

    I have to wonder why you are trying to debate that point with me... since you JUST had to explain to someone you were engaging in hyperbole. If you needed evidence to my claim that hyperbole does not work well online, the fact you had to explain what it was you were doing should suffice :P
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Mantine View Post
    Being plausible and believable isn't requirement only for "serious" stories.
    You could show me Belkar suddenly casting disintegrate next strip, and I still would condemn that even if this story "never took itself too seriously".


    I don't see why one particular instance should be equated to the whole comic.
    There have always been up and downs with the storytelling, disliking the downs isn't reason enough to "leave", nor are the ups reason enough to ignore/justify the downs.
    I always found the whole "you don't like it? leave" argument silly.
    What I don't like I strive to criticize, hoping to see it improved, rather than leaving the burning house together with everything still of value.
    I get what you are saying. I'm not saying you are not entitled to disagree. Not even suggesting you, in particular, should leave. Was commenting that, generally speaking, there seem to be several people who disagree with how Rich chooses to tell, at bare minimum, parts, of his story. And despite their protestations, they continue to read, which leads me to conclude Rich may be a better storyteller than they give him credit for.

    Also saying that just because you seem to find this latest exploit implausible, doesn't mean that I have to as well. I'm saying that, in this situation, it is a matter of perception. We both can be "right" without either of us being "wrong." Saying that you don't have the market cornered on what is REALLY plausible (as in universally true for everyone) any more than the rest of us do.
    Last edited by joca4christ; 2012-09-01 at 01:31 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    I don't know, I was not debating with you and have no idea what you're referring to, particularly since you didn't bother to quote yourself. I am just letting you know hyperbole does not typically work well in a textual environment.

    I have to wonder why you are trying to debate that point with me... since you JUST had to explain to someone you were engaging in hyperbole. If you needed evidence to my claim that hyperbole does not work well online, the fact you had to explain what it was you were doing should suffice :P
    ....Well, generally, hyperboles DO work well online, if the... "other side" is even at least a little receptive to the notion.

    I mean, do I really have to spell no to take it literally "Xykon blasted by the Enterprise"?
    Last edited by Mantine; 2012-09-01 at 01:42 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Tarquin is high level, cunning, very experienced, successful. Really, what is so unplausible and unbelievable in his being able to communicate efficiently with his fellow party members while commanding a retreat at the appropriate moment, in the circumstances (smoke clearing, battle not going the right way)...?

    If the reader hasn't gotten that Tarquin is supposed to be kickass by now, well... too bad for that reader.
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    It really says something about the irrationality of the hatred for Tarquin that a strip can be published and, rather than being upset that a Wizard who has never been shown to have Teleport before abruptly has the exact spell needed to get the LG out of a losing battle, people instead complain that the general whose nation borders a Drow kingdom happens to know the Drow language.
    The default assumption for any standard D&D based world is that any Wizard of sufficient level does know Teleport, and has at least one prepared at all times. The Wizards that don't (like Vaarsuvius) are the ones that need special explanation.

    But yeah, the irrational hatred of Tarquin is getting old.
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by brionl View Post
    The default assumption for any standard D&D based world is that any Wizard of sufficient level does know Teleport, and has at least one prepared at all times. The Wizards that don't (like Vaarsuvius) are the ones that need special explanation.

    But yeah, the irrational hatred of Tarquin is getting old.
    I prefer it over the irrational love of him.
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    elan: dad plz dont kill roy
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Gift Jeraff View Post
    I prefer it over the irrational love of him.
    I would too, but I never see anyone irrationally loving him anymore... I haven't seen a people lauding Tarquin's praises for like the last ten strips :P
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Tarquin being hyper-competent at everything has become a running gag. Of course he knows Drow Sign Language!

    Hmm. Perhaps he's really an epic level Factotum...

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    The original complaint about Tarquin was that he was soooo powerful and epic that the Order couldn't plausibly defeat him.

    At this point, he's just a swiss-army-knife of moderately effective gimmicks and schticks.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    I would too, but I never see anyone irrationally loving him anymore... I haven't seen a people lauding Tarquin's praises for like the last ten strips :P
    "If Tarquin seems to be deaf, he's faking, 'cause I said so" between #859 and #860 comes to mind. Some of the recent posts in the "Tarquin's end" thread also qualify as lauding Tarquin/singing Tarquin's praises.

    The people who hate Tarquin tend to not complain when Tarquin's just taken a pratfall, and the people who love him tend to not complain when he's victorious, predictably enough.
    Last edited by Kish; 2012-09-01 at 02:39 PM.
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    "You are what you do. Choose again, and change." --Miles Vorkosigan

    "The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in the future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present--they are real." --Aral Vorkosigan

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    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by The Second View Post
    Hmm...

    He's never surprised. Not even when he's surprised.

    He sends fruit baskets to the Drow. Just in case.

    He doesn't change his plans, his plans change for him.

    He uses escaped slaves to construct one-hundred foot tall birthday messages for his sons.

    He appreciates the value of a good spear.

    His people don't respect him out of fear, they fear him out of respect.

    His plan B has a plan B.

    People never return his gifts (well, except for Elan, but that's a special case).

    By Jove, I've got it! Taquin IS the most interesting man in the world.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Huzzah for the Order to finally start getting some positive results without massive outside help(I'm looking at you EoB fights). However, the person who complained about arcane casters able to undo such an ambush w/ one spell, seems to have forgotten just how devastating a single divine spell was(1 banished, 1 paralyzed, 2 arcane casters w/ 20% spell failure[one of whom specializes in enchantment spells so deafening allies who have poor will saves is nice, btw I really think there needs to be a vocalize spell rather than the silent spell feat]). Also surprised paranoid illusionist didn't cast a dimension anchor or add it to one of the many traps that litter the place.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    "If Tarquin seems to be deaf, he's faking, 'cause I said so" between #859 and #860 comes to mind. Some of the recent posts in the "Tarquin's end" thread also qualify as lauding Tarquin/singing Tarquin's praises.
    I was the one who said that, and it was proven correct. Tarquin wasn't effected by Durkon's Holy Word because he was too high level, as I speculated. I even gave evidence for my side, not 'cause I said so, and asked you to provide any evidence that Tarquin wasn't high level, which you didn't.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Gaxxkang8182 View Post
    btw I really think there needs to be a vocalize spell rather than the silent spell feat]).
    Because?
    Also surprised paranoid illusionist didn't cast a dimension anchor or add it to one of the many traps that litter the place.
    Do you have any idea how expensive it would be to permanently dimensionally lock an entire pyramid? If it's even possible? Dimensional Lock is an eighth-level spell that covers a 20-foot radius and lasts for one day per caster level. Dorukan's signature spell, Cloister, wouldn't even work for what you're surprised Girard didn't do (they could teleport freely inside the Cloister, just not into it from outside).

    Supposing, for an instant, that Girard was able to make an Epic Dimensional Lock the same radius and duration as Cloister despite Girard being known for illusions, not for abjurations. Since we already know Durkon couldn't divine the way and so we can't reduce the presumed power of this spell by losing the "blocks scrying" ability of Cloister, that means this spell is strictly better than Cloister by a lot. But never mind that.

    It would have expired years ago, without Girard alive to recast it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Smolder View Post
    I was the one who said that, and it was proven correct.
    Ah, Smolder? You said he was faking.

    He wasn't faking. He never pretended to be deafened. In fact, he immediately bragged (if only to himself and us-outside-the-fourth-wall) about being strong enough not to be.

    That's you being proven incorrect.
    I even gave evidence for my side, not 'cause I said so, and asked you to provide any evidence that Tarquin wasn't high level, which you didn't.
    That's because I didn't make a statement about Tarquin's level. Beyond that we were about to get evidence of it one way or the other. I would have a similar reaction if you stated that Vaarsuvius is female and, in response to my making a post stating that Vaarsuvius' gender is unknown, asked me to provide evidence that Vaarsuvius is male.

    The extent of the currently available evidence of Tarquin's level indicates that he is at least one level higher than Durkon. At least two levels higher, if Rich didn't forget about/ignore Durkon's having the Good domain, which also requires Nale, Belkar, and Zz'dtri to be exactly one level higher than Durkon, which I would consider rather unlikely, and so I go with "at least one level higher than Durkon." If we get evidence that he is higher level than Xykon, I will acknowledge it; if we get evidence that he is exactly one level above Durkon, I will acknowledge it.
    Last edited by Kish; 2012-09-01 at 03:01 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    D'oh!

    He definitely didn't try to sneak attack the Order or anything like that, so yeah, I was totally wrong.

    It wouldn't even have worked, because Nale would have ended up dead if T had done anything else.
    Last edited by Smolder; 2012-09-01 at 03:22 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    Looks like I was slightly off base... while I was right that people would unreasonably grumble about Drow-cant, I really didn't think there would be so many people to demonstrate such a thorough lack of understanding about what Deus Ex Machina means.

    This is a bit of a pet peeve of mine... and I've posted this before, but people are getting it nearly CRIMINALLY wrong at this point.

    Deus Ex Machina is defined as:

    While typically it is reserved for a device that SOLVES the problems and moves the story into its conclusion, that isn't an inherent part of its definition, so I will be skipping that for now.

    1) Drow Cant isn't a device. Deus Ex Machina explicitly refers to a device, some invention or creation abruptly able to undo whatever problems the characters are encountering in order to let them triumph at a point where all hope seemed to be lost.

    2) Drow Cant didn't resolve any difficulties for the heroes. The Heroes were ALREADY WINNING. This is probably the greatest and most offensive misuse of the term, in my eyes. Deus Ex Machina has a very explicit and context-specific meaning, but a lot of people seem to start throwing it around blindly any time anything happens which they don't like.

    3) Drow Cant didn't even cause anything to happen! It was totally irrelevant. As mentioned, Tarquin had about eight other ways he could have communicated his message, but Rich went with the one that delivered humor. It really says something about the irrationality of the hatred for Tarquin that a strip can be published and, rather than being upset that a Wizard who has never been shown to have Teleport before abruptly has the exact spell needed to get the LG out of a losing battle, people instead complain that the general whose nation borders a Drow kingdom happens to know the Drow language.

    *fume*

    Sorry... but seriously... if you aren't going to use terms correctly, consider not using them... it only makes your argument look weaker.
    While I'm certainly in sympathy with this, I think the implication that a Chekhov's Gun is a "bad" thing is frankly much more objectionable then the misuse of a term that's already been misused on this forum for several years.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    I for one am surprised that Tarquin didn't solo the whole party. he must be lower-level than we thought.
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Ridureyu View Post
    I for one am surprised that Tarquin didn't solo the whole party. he must be lower-level than we thought.
    For certain definitions of "must" and "we".
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    Looks like I was slightly off base... while I was right that people would unreasonably grumble about Drow-cant, I really didn't think there would be so many people to demonstrate such a thorough lack of understanding about what Deus Ex Machina means.

    This is a bit of a pet peeve of mine... and I've posted this before, but people are getting it nearly CRIMINALLY wrong at this point.

    Deus Ex Machina is defined as: "any artificial or improbable device resolving the difficulties of a plot."

    While typically it is reserved for a device that SOLVES the problems and moves the story into its conclusion, that isn't an inherent part of its definition, so I will be skipping that for now.

    1) Drow Cant isn't a device. Deus Ex Machina explicitly refers to a device, some invention or creation abruptly able to undo whatever problems the characters are encountering in order to let them triumph at a point where all hope seemed to be lost.

    2) Drow Cant didn't resolve any difficulties for the heroes. The Heroes were ALREADY WINNING. This is probably the greatest and most offensive misuse of the term, in my eyes. Deus Ex Machina has a very explicit and context-specific meaning, but a lot of people seem to start throwing it around blindly any time anything happens which they don't like.

    3) Drow Cant didn't even cause anything to happen! It was totally irrelevant. As mentioned, Tarquin had about eight other ways he could have communicated his message, but Rich went with the one that delivered humor. It really says something about the irrationality of the hatred for Tarquin that a strip can be published and, rather than being upset that a Wizard who has never been shown to have Teleport before abruptly has the exact spell needed to get the LG out of a losing battle, people instead complain that the general whose nation borders a Drow kingdom happens to know the Drow language.

    *fume*

    Sorry... but seriously... if you aren't going to use terms correctly, consider not using them... it only makes your argument look weaker.
    Hrm. I'm not sure I agree with you here, though I was only using that term because others had used it already in an effort to show why it didn't matter.

    Drow sign-language functions as a device in the story - it doesn't have to be a device as in an object. From the perspective of someone calling this a Deus Ex Machina and bashing it as a result, it's improbable that Tarquin would just happen to know the best and most efficient method of communicating with a deaf teammate whom he has barely known for more than a few days.

    It may not be resolving anything for the heroes, but that isn't necessary either. It's resolving the difficulties encountered by the LG by allowing them to make an escape - the definition you provided made no reference to protagonists. Who it's being used for is entirely irrelevant, so long as it resolves some plot difficulty that wouldn't be resolvable otherwise.

    Yes, the most common usage is to resolve everything for the heroes in one fell swoop and then proceed with tying up loose ends and finishing the story, but that isn't the only way they show up. I'll quote the TVTropes description for contrast:
    A Deus ex Machina is when some new event, character, ability, or object solves a seemingly unsolvable problem in a sudden, unexpected way. If the secret documents are in Russian, one of the spies suddenly reveals that they learned the language.
    This actually fits the first given example quite well. Granted, it's not a massive one, but I think it's pretty clearly a minor type 3 - it was hinted at in the past, with Tarquin's relations with the drow and just general adventuring savviness, but this particular facet hadn't been revealed before, and it is rather convenient. Could the LG have managed without it? Definitely. But it's still a bit of a Chekov's Gun Deus Ex Machina.

    Nothing wrong with that, of course; as I said before, tropes are neither inherently good nor bad, these ones included.
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    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sorator View Post
    I'll quote the TVTropes description for contrast:
    Snrk.

    But it's still a bit of a Chekov's Gun Deus Ex Machina.
    *twitch*

    See, this is what I'm talking about. Those terms are mutually exclusive, something cannot be both foreshadowed and arbitrarily introduced. The fact you use them synonymously continues to make it really difficult for me to view your argument as legitimate...

    Sorry!
    Last edited by FujinAkari; 2012-09-01 at 06:48 PM.
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    It really says something about the irrationality of the hatred for Tarquin that a strip can be published and, rather than being upset that a Wizard who has never been shown to have Teleport before abruptly has the exact spell needed to get the LG out of a losing battle, people instead complain that the general whose nation borders a Drow kingdom happens to know the Drow language.
    I should point out here that Zz'dtri has been shown to have Dimension Door, which would perform the same immediate purpose. I do agree that it's reasonable for Tarquin to know the Drow language.
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Tarquin thought that the Drows were planning to join an alliance with him to fight there above ground enemies, why wouldnt he learn there language(s)?

    and considering that the LG had tons of space to traverse it makes sense to prepare teleport

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    "ELAN IS IT COOL IF I KILL YOUR BROTHER WHAT CAN'T HEAR YOUR ANSWER SORRY!"

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Ridureyu View Post
    I for one am surprised that Tarquin didn't solo the whole party. he must be lower-level than we thought.
    This, Me thinks, is a something akin to playing the board game Risk. A good player takes out another player when they have an opportunity and the player has cards to collect from him.

    A Great player lets a rival attack another rival and then take them out when there weakest. I think Tarquin could've taken on the OotS, but chose not to, as they are just prodding the Order to do their dirty work for them. (find the traps, find the gate, defend it from Xykon and such)

  29. Top - End - #269
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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    To those still intent on bashing Tarquin because he's apparently prepared to pull rabbits out of other peoples bungholes when he's in a pinch I have to say this. That's Tarquin in a nutshell. A not necessarily paranoid eccentric who's been everywhere, done everything, and has a story to tell about it.

    Now, if the comic were full of characters like him, folks who, at the drop of a hat, pulled out the best possible tool or plan to deal with their current problem, then OK, there would be a problem. But so far as I am aware, there's only one Tarquin.

    As for the Linear Guild escaping again, every other time the LG has escaped, they were first captured. In Durokan's Dungeon: Captured. In Cliffport: Captured. In Azure City: Captured, then apparently killed. Empire of Blood? Captured, defeated and or apparently killed. In this instance, however, there's a difference, what Tarquin has done here is make a strategic retreat. Did Tarquin get away? Yes. Did he run full tilt, tail between his legs? I'd say no. He got out while the getting was good, and as to the way he did it, what was keeping him from pulling out a pad and pencil and writing 'Get us out, bring accountant'? Nothing. But since this is Tarwuin we are taking about, the guy who's been everywhere and done everything, and done it all with style, he decided to communicate with Z in a manner that has a little style and flair.

    1782. I will remember we're playing 4th edition and stop using my imagination.
    - From 1975 things MR. Welch is no longer allowed to do in an RPG.

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    Default Re: OOTS #862 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari View Post
    See, this is what I'm talking about. Those terms are mutually exclusive, something cannot be both foreshadowed and arbitrarily introduced. The fact you use them synonymously continues to make it really difficult for me to view your argument as legitimate...

    Sorry!
    Not synonymously, no. It's either one or the other (or both), depending how you want to view it. Either Tarquin's links with the drow were enough to foreshadow him knowing drown sign language, making it a Chekov's Gun, or they weren't, making it a Deus Ex Machina. Or it was foreshadowed enough to make it a mild Chekov's Gun, but used in a completely unexpected way to solve the major pressing issue of that group of characters, thus also making it a Deus Ex Machina. It's unusual, but something can be both at the same time, at least in my opinion (and not just mine, it would seem). *shrug*

    Quote Originally Posted by The Second View Post
    To those still intent on bashing Tarquin because he's apparently prepared to pull rabbits out of other peoples bungholes when he's in a pinch I have to say this. That's Tarquin in a nutshell. A not necessarily paranoid eccentric who's been everywhere, done everything, and has a story to tell about it.
    ...
    But since this is Tarquin we are taking about, the guy who's been everywhere and done everything, and done it all with style, he decided to communicate with Z in a manner that has a little style and flair.
    Very much agreed!
    Last edited by Sorator; 2012-09-01 at 08:06 PM.
    LGBTitP

    Quote Originally Posted by ti'esar View Post
    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

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