The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    That's what I would normally believe, but I'll be damned if "Die or Die Trying" doesn't suggest to me that yes, Hel can absolutely die.
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  2. - Top - End - #32
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by hroțila View Post
    That's what I would normally believe, but I'll be damned if "Die or Die Trying" doesn't suggest to me that yes, Hel can absolutely die.
    Personally, I'm not sure where the line on "die" should be on the deific scale, assuming it's even a single line. I mean...between the whole bit about needing Belief (mortals knowing the gods exist in their specific identities), that Belief can influence a deity's mindset; and Hel's threat itself....I think we could be looking at a scenario where a god could become wholly deprived of their identity as an individual deity, losing their sentience and becoming an abstract force of their portfolio. Which...sounds an awful lot like the death of the person they were, regardless of how long the force persists.

  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    What puzzles me somewhat is that the Gods existed before the first world did, when there were no mortals around to feed them souls--so what did they survive on up until that point?

  4. - Top - End - #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    What puzzles me somewhat is that the Gods existed before the first world did, when there were no mortals around to feed them souls--so what did they survive on up until that point?
    There used to be an orange quiddity for the Egyptian gods/Central Pantheon, but we don’t talk about them much anymore.
    In case you couldn’t tell, they ate the Egyptians .

  5. - Top - End - #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    What puzzles me somewhat is that the Gods existed before the first world did, when there were no mortals around to feed them souls--so what did they survive on up until that point?
    Same thing living beings on Earth survived on before the advent of oxygen: something else. Then they evolved to use oxygen (or sunlight), and now they can't go back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by woweedd View Post
    I would say that's the dumbest theory Grey Wolf's heard, but, let's be honest: It's Grey Wolf. They've probably heard dumber theories today. Point is, neat idea, but it's a real stretch.
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  6. - Top - End - #36
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Based on the current comic, Hel sure believes she'll survive even if she gets zero additional souls, and I see no reason to doubt her.
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  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_Wolf_c View Post
    it is hard to not believe in Death.
    Epicurus would want a word with you.
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Based on the current comic, Hel sure believes she'll survive even if she gets zero additional souls, and I see no reason to doubt her.
    She also nearly fades away entirely just saying that and collapses into her chair. Characters can be wrong.

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_Wolf_c View Post
    Yep, this is my point too. Gods (now) exist because their creations believe they exist. Unless the next world is populated by immortal super-immune people, those people will continue to believe in a death & sickness goddess, and Hel will continue to exist. Powerless, a shade of her former self, maybe, but can't completely fade.

    Grey Wolf
    There are other gods of Death. Also if Hel dies and the world start without a god of death for Northerners, they could create one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Based on the current comic, Hel sure believes she'll survive even if she gets zero additional souls, and I see no reason to doubt her.
    I can't remember when there was an occurence of the Giant explaining that characters don't necessarily know how works the world. They don't know about rules like an experienced player would know.

    I wonder if Loki's face in the two last panels is about his daughter threatening him (but he still gets his followers to hate undeads) or because he's trying to give her a chance and thinks she's going to a dead-end. No pun intended.
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  10. - Top - End - #40
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quild View Post
    I can't remember when there was an occurence of the Giant explaining that characters don't necessarily know how works the world. They don't know about rules like an experienced player would know.
    I know the quote you're referring to, but I feel like it doesn't quite apply to a deity who literally created the world, and has literally created all of the billions of worlds past, and has been around for billions to trillions of years that we know of, the same as it applies to, say, a young adult halfling, ya know?

    Hel should be slightly more authoritative on this. Not completely... just more.
    Quote Originally Posted by RatElemental View Post
    She also nearly fades away entirely just saying that and collapses into her chair.
    She got better.
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  11. - Top - End - #41
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Epicurus would want a word with you.
    Hard to do. Turns out that, even if he didn't believe in Death, Death did believe in him.

    Quote Originally Posted by Quild View Post
    There are other gods of Death. Also if Hel dies and the world start without a god of death for Northerners, they could create one.
    Called Hel. So she'd be alive. Again. At which point you'll say something about change, and I'll point to Theseus' Ship.

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    Quote Originally Posted by woweedd View Post
    I would say that's the dumbest theory Grey Wolf's heard, but, let's be honest: It's Grey Wolf. They've probably heard dumber theories today. Point is, neat idea, but it's a real stretch.
    Ceterum autem censeo Hilgya malefica est

  12. - Top - End - #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    I know the quote you're referring to, but I feel like it doesn't quite apply to a deity who literally created the world, and has literally created all of the billions of worlds past, and has been around for billions to trillions of years that we know of, the same as it applies to, say, a young adult halfling, ya know?

    Hel should be slightly more authoritative on this. Not completely... just more.

    She got better.
    Her getting better means she's not seconds away from death, which means nothing, the point of her fading out was to show that she is getting very bad and dying, and while I doubt she'll actually die (story-reasons only), it implies that she can and that stopping her death is a possible reason for her to stay in the story or fix the dwarves deal.

  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_Wolf_c View Post
    Hard to do. Turns out that, even if he didn't believe in Death, Death did believe in him.
    Hence "would".
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  14. - Top - End - #44
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Schroeswald View Post
    Her getting better means she's not seconds away from death, which means nothing, the point of her fading out was to show that she is getting very bad and dying
    I disagree with just about all of that. Her fading means she can't flex her powers without significant strain, not that she's seconds away from dying. Why did she get better? There's no sudden influx of souls or belief. There's no outside influence that we can see. My reading of that is the fading was to show she's exhausted, not that she's dying.
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  15. - Top - End - #45
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_Wolf_c View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Quild View Post
    There are other gods of Death. Also if Hel dies and the world start without a god of death for Northerners, they could create one.
    Called Hel. So she'd be alive. Again. At which point you'll say something about change, and I'll point to Theseus' Ship.
    Would she be alive again? Or would this be a new death god(dess) named Hel? (Same ship with a different captain?)

  16. - Top - End - #46
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    I disagree with just about all of that. Her fading means she can't flex her powers without significant strain, not that she's seconds away from dying. Why did she get better? There's no sudden influx of souls or belief. There's no outside influence that we can see. My reading of that is the fading was to show she's exhausted, not that she's dying.
    Analogy time! Someone starving to death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll be dead soon.

    That's how I read this scene. Hel almost bliked out of existence there because she doesn,'t have enough power to make a show of force for an extended duration of time and stay alive. Looks like soonish she won't have enough power to stay alive at all.

    Maybe Grey Wolf is right and the Northerners' belief in the next wworld would create a new Hel, one who would look and act a lot like her but wouldn't be her in the same way that my new watch is not the same as my old watch despite being almost identical.
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  17. - Top - End - #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    I disagree with just about all of that. Her fading means she can't flex her powers without significant strain, not that she's seconds away from dying. Why did she get better? There's no sudden influx of souls or belief. There's no outside influence that we can see. My reading of that is the fading was to show she's exhausted, not that she's dying.
    1. It can mean both, she was less corporeal than Eugene is, the only time the ghosts are near as close are when he fades out to the astral plane.

    2. She got better because of the baseline belief continuing to power her and the fact that she isn't directly next to death, she just skirted very close, and exhaustion can kill you if you do it to much, and when you get sicker more can exhaust you.

    EDIT: Ninja'd by Fyraltari
    Last edited by Schroeswald; 2019-08-21 at 03:19 PM.

  18. - Top - End - #48
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    A fully loaded car with a small engine and a full tank of gas will struggle going uphill, but will keep running for hundreds of miles.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasdoif View Post
    Would she be alive again? Or would this be a new death god(dess) named Hel? (Same ship with a different captain?)
    She will quit being the godess of Death and become the godess of the swamps.
    Last edited by The Pilgrim; 2019-08-21 at 03:21 PM.

  19. - Top - End - #49
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Analogy time! Someone starving to death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll be dead soon.
    Slightly changed analogy time! Someone malnourished by not in danger of death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll still be malnourished but very much alive, at least for long enough to fix the malnourishment.
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  20. - Top - End - #50
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Slightly changed analogy time! Someone malnourished by not in danger of death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll still be malnourished but very much alive, at least for long enough to fix the malnourishment.
    Is the comic strip where that happens also called "Die or Die Trying"?
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  21. - Top - End - #51
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Analogy time! Someone starving to death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll be dead soon.
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Slightly changed analogy time! Someone malnourished by not in danger of death and consequentially bed-ridden gets so riled up they start yelling at someone. A few seconds in they metabolism realizes it can't cash the checks their mind is writing as their heart can't keep up with that much excitment and they collapse back into their bed. Their heart strts beating at a more normal pace as do their breathing and they look "better" but it's clear to all present that if nothing changes they'll still be malnourished but very much alive, at least for long enough to fix the malnourishment.
    So tell me, can Hel fix her malnourishment? Because it sounds like you agree that if she doesn't, she's going to die.
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  22. - Top - End - #52
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    So tell me, can Hel fix her malnourishment?
    Sure! By the world ending.

    If the world keeps going, I still doubt she'd die; the belief and paltry souls she gets are probably enough to keep her going, but she'll be in a chronically poor state. I just don't think we should be holding gods to the same biological standards we hold ourselves to, ya know? Or maybe she will eventually die after tens or hundreds of thousands of years of not getting enough souls. But for the time frames we're seeing without the Snarl being destroyed, I doubt it'd happen.
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-08-21 at 03:52 PM.
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  23. - Top - End - #53
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Sure! By the world ending.
    My money is on that not happening.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    If the world keeps going, I still doubt she'd die; the belief and paltry souls she gets are probably enough to keep her going, but she'll be in a chronically poor state. I just don't think we should be holding gods to the same biological standards we hold ourselves to, ya know? Or maybe she will eventually die after tens or hundreds of thousands of years of not getting enough souls. But for the time frames we're seeing without the Snarl being destroyed, I doubt it'd happen.
    Okay but the question now becomes "assuming there is a threshold below which she is in mortal (heh) danger, how do we know wether she's crossed it?"

    Well to answer that I have a second question: "Why did the Giant decide to show us her fading away?"
    The only reason I can think of is "To emphasize that, yes she is starving". If that bears being shown rather than simply told a handful of times that tells me that the message The Giant intends to convey is that she really is in danger. And so getting desperate.
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  24. - Top - End - #54
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    My money is on that not happening.
    So is mine, but hers isn't.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Okay but the question now becomes "assuming there is a threshold below which she is in mortal (heh) danger, how do we know wether she's crossed it?"
    Why? It's not going to matter for the story.
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  25. - Top - End - #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Sure! By the world ending.

    If the world keeps going, I still doubt she'd die; the belief and paltry souls she gets are probably enough to keep her going, but she'll be in a chronically poor state. I just don't think we should be holding gods to the same biological standards we hold ourselves to, ya know? Or maybe she will eventually die after tens or hundreds of thousands of years of not getting enough souls. But for the time frames we're seeing without the Snarl being destroyed, I doubt it'd happen.
    Fully agreed that Hel won't burn out within the next year unless she exerts herself in a way beyond anything we've seen a god do so far.

    Still, her fade is either a sign to herself that she's in worse shape than she thought, or a sign to Loki that she's in pretty bad shape. It wouldn't be worth showing if there weren't some larger point to it. So while on a meta level I don't see Hel starving to death (Rich doesn't like that sort of story, especially since it would make Thor an accessory), she's worse off than we thought before this comic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    So tell me, can Hel fix her malnourishment? Because it sounds like you agree that if she doesn't, she's going to die.
    Odin was "malnourished" in a different way in the past world. His was due to belief that wound up being unhealthy for him as opposed to an unbalanced diet, but he made it across. If the vote came off as Hel had planned and the world were to end right there, I think it's safe to say that Hel would survive and even thrive into the next world. (I have a hunch that she'd slow down after her early burst of power and that Odin would have a good chance of reasserting himself in the world after that world, but Rich hasn't given us much info on theodynamics and later worlds are well outside the scope of this comic.)

    Right now? Like I said before, that depends entirely on if the terms of the bet are (meta)physically built into the nature of this world, or if either side could forfeit if they paid our their stakes and swallowed their pride. I have a hunch that it's the pride explanation, because getting two other pantheons to write one pantheon's bet into the nature of the world sounds unlikely. Still, getting Hel to swallow her pride and admit that she was wrong will be hard. Even if Thor is distressed at hearing how badly his niece is holding up, and winds up offering to concede just to give Hel an out.

  26. - Top - End - #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Why? It's not going to matter for the story.
    It gives impetus for Loki to do something about the wager before this world ends, if possible. He clearly is surprised by her fading out and looks sullen as he leaves after.

    Just like I don't think the story can end with "And the goblins go back to being sentient bags of EXP" I don't think it can end with "And the dwarves continue being subjected to the unfairness of the wager" either. This is just to drive home that no one involved in the wager likes that it's in place and they all have very good reasons to do something about it.

  27. - Top - End - #57
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    I believe that Hel won't survive either way. If this world continues, she will eventually starve to death. If this world is destroyed by Snarl, she won't make it to the next one. Hence "Die or die trying".
    Also, this way allows the story to develop Hel further:
    1. Hel's action in this act will become necessary evil instead of mere greed, which allow the reader to sympathize with her somewhat.
    2. Thor and Loki might have to reconsider the bet so Hel can continue to survive.
    Because it wouldn't be fun if Hel is just a one-dimension villain of the arc.

  28. - Top - End - #58
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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Thread: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Of course she would. She has survived the other million or so Snarl-world-eating events. There is not reason she won't be around for the next one.
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  29. - Top - End - #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by KorvinStarmast View Post
    Thread: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Of course she would. She has survived the other million or so Snarl-world-eating events. There is not reason she won't be around for the next one.
    The bet wasn't in place for those other worlds.

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    Default Re: Would Hel survive if the Snarl destroys the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by nmphuong91 View Post
    I believe that Hel won't survive either way. If this world continues, she will eventually starve to death. If this world is destroyed by Snarl, she won't make it to the next one. Hence "Die or die trying".
    Also, this way allows the story to develop Hel further:
    1. Hel's action in this act will become necessary evil instead of mere greed, which allow the reader to sympathize with her somewhat.
    2. Thor and Loki might have to reconsider the bet so Hel can continue to survive.
    Because it wouldn't be fun if Hel is just a one-dimension villain of the arc.
    Odin was similarly malnourished by faulty belief system and made it through fine. Plus, nobody has mentioned that they think she won't survive, and I don't believe that she wouldn't unless someone mentions it in-comic.

    I also believe the bet is firmly baked into the rules of the world and can't or won't be changed. Nobody has mentioned that the bet could be able to end while the world still turns.
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-08-21 at 04:34 PM.
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