The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    My read is that Dorukan's and Lirian's spell sucked him into the Rift as reality folded to close it by making the Gate.
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    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
    I'll take that bet.

  2. - Top - End - #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    My read is that Dorukan's and Lirian's spell sucked him into the Rift as reality folded to close it by making the Gate.
    I have the weird idea that Kraagor will be found wearing sunglasses and a swim suit while living on a beach in that mostly water/ocean filled world that Laurin saw through the gate in the Desert in BRiTF. He'll be sipping a rum based drink, and complaining that you can't get a decent mug of beer on this world ... ... dwarves live long enough for this to be possible.

    Belkar's infamous "maybe someone's been yanking everybone's chain" observation keeps cropping up as I ponder this. Maybe that's Rich dropping a big hint ...

    What Blackwing saw included a land mass

    Therefore, that world has a beach somewhere.
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  3. - Top - End - #123
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by KorvinStarmast View Post
    What Blackwing saw included a land mass

    Therefore, that world has a beach somewhere.
    IF both worlds seem are the same...
    Each one of us, alone, is but a drop in the sea
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  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by D.One View Post
    IF both worlds seem are the same...
    If the Snarl has a lot of worlds in its tummy (greedy little god killing abomination) - then yes, each gate could show a slightly different aspect of the Snarl and thus a different world.
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  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    My own personal theory on this is Belkar chooses his death. Maybe it's because in some major battle to come, the IFCC calls V to keep them out of the fight, and Belkar, knowing the wizard will be more needed than he is, decides to go down there and rescue his frenemy the only way he knows how: with violence! Of course, he has to die to get down to the Hells, so he tells old Durkon to look after Mr. Scruffy and makes sure he dies somehow. He fights his way through the lower planes, rescues V, and decides not to come back, on account of the fact that he's having the time of his afterlife killing every demon and devil he meets. I think that would be a nice ending for him, after a fashion.

  6. - Top - End - #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by jidasfire View Post
    My own personal theory on this is Belkar chooses his death. Maybe it's because in some major battle to come, the IFCC calls V to keep them out of the fight, and Belkar, knowing the wizard will be more needed than he is, decides to go down there and rescue his frenemy the only way he knows how: with violence! Of course, he has to die to get down to the Hells, so he tells old Durkon to look after Mr. Scruffy and makes sure he dies somehow. He fights his way through the lower planes, rescues V, and decides not to come back, on account of the fact that he's having the time of his afterlife killing every demon and devil he meets. I think that would be a nice ending for him, after a fashion.
    Not how that works. The Abyss would chew him up.

  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by jidasfire View Post
    My own personal theory on this is Belkar chooses his death. Maybe it's because in some major battle to come, the IFCC calls V to keep them out of the fight, and Belkar, knowing the wizard will be more needed than he is, decides to go down there and rescue his frenemy the only way he knows how: with violence! Of course, he has to die to get down to the Hells, so he tells old Durkon to look after Mr. Scruffy and makes sure he dies somehow. He fights his way through the lower planes, rescues V, and decides not to come back, on account of the fact that he's having the time of his afterlife killing every demon and devil he meets. I think that would be a nice ending for him, after a fashion.
    Death, and everything that entails. The thing Xykon, an epic-level sorcerer is afraid of. That death. Will be overcome by some guy who likes to stab people.

    .....5 gold on "not that."
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  8. - Top - End - #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Death, and everything that entails. The thing Xykon, an epic-level sorcerer is afraid of. That death. Will be overcome by some guy who likes to stab people.

    .....5 gold on "not that."
    To be fair, we're referring to a universe where death can be regularly, if temporarily, thwarted by a a mid-level Cleric and a satchel of crushed-up carbon. And, for that matter, i'm reasonably certain Belkar's now one of, if not the, highest-level Ranger in the world. But I get your point.
    Last edited by woweedd; 2019-10-15 at 01:09 PM.

  9. - Top - End - #129
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    First time poster. Been reading OOTS for the last few years, now have all the books. Anyway, I've been lurking on the forums for a while, and it seems that everyone assumes that Oracle must be right about Belkar's immident demise. So I have my own theory:

    Belkar is not going to die (permanently) until much later, perhaps even of old age. Definitely not by the end of the (in-comic) year. We have been teased with his death a few times already (getting drained by Durkon*, dominated and made to jump off Mechane by Durkon*, pushed off the mountain by Durkon* and some cases not instigated by Durkon* as well). Storytelling demands that we'll probably get a few more in the same vein. Maybe he'll even die (as in HP to -10), but not *permanently*.

    It's also not going to be a "technical" loophole (becoming undead or something along those lines).

    No, the Oracle is going to be wrong on this one, plain and simple.

    This draws back to the #567, where Belkar gives feedback on the prophecy. Belkar's original did not come true until Belkar made it true (by killing Oracle).
    Essentially: Belkar's CHOICE made him to self-fulfill the prophecy (and his curse activated and all that jazz). He could have simply decided NOT to kill the Oracle and instead gone "nyah-nyah-nyah" and insisted his money back. But that was Belkar before recent...changes.

    So, we will see Belkar run into situation where he has to again make some big Choice. And this time he takes some other option than the one leading to his death (fulfilling the prophecy). It might even a Good vs Evil thing, such as running away vs. doing a heroic sacrifice. Of course we might get some further dramatics (it's supposed to be a story after all), such as him clearly appearing to be dead and not resurrectable (but then it turns out that Blackwing actually nabbed a piece of him for the spell or something). Meaning that the option that *should* kill him will actually end up sparing his life, while the running away will make rocks fall and everybody dies.

    Or, well, the situation in #567 might even be completely reversed, with Oracle (with some pushing by Tiamat) coming to personally make sure the death prediction becomes true...

    Reason why I've come to this conclusion? Mostly meta. The entire OOtS has been giving out pretty consistent message: Choices matter, even if prophecies and predictions and destinies are real things. Eugene's Blood Oath. Haley's choice to go out with Elan (Nale in disguise, but she didn't know that). Elan's speculation on would Nale have been the hero and he the jerk, and his choices about sparing Nale and letting Tarquin fall of Mechane. Durkon's whole life (as seen across book #6). Roy's regrets about abandoning Elan to bandits. Vaarsuvius' own choices with the dragon, and regrets, and atonement.

    You'll note that the above list does not include Belkar. He hasn't yet had to make a *truly* hard choice - but it's going to come up, and it's going to keep him alive despite whatever Oracle might have thought.

    (If you want to explain this mechanically, well, Oracle is channeling Tiamat, and even Tiamat doesn't know everything.).

    Bottom line is that I simply do not think that we are going to see a classic "Redemption equals death" plot with regards to Belkar. Especially if it has been given years in advance.

    Oracle will be wrong (and might try to weasel out claiming that he was accurate, after all, Belkar died during Girard's illusion and didn't come back).
    Last edited by Zarhan; 2019-10-15 at 01:44 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #130
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    I don't think that will happen, but if it does, I'm guessing the Oracle get out of it by claiming the old Evil Belkar died when he made that Choice, and the new Good halfling is metaphorically a whole new guy.

    Like I said, I doubt that will happen though because the Oracle has never been wrong before, AND he was as clear as he could be that it wasn't going to be a metaphorical death.
    "Besides, you know the saying: Kill one, and you are a murderer. Kill millions, and you are a conqueror. Kill them all, and you are a god." -- Fishman

  11. - Top - End - #131
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zarhan View Post
    First time poster. Been reading OOTS for the last few years, now have all the books. Anyway, I've been lurking on the forums for a while, and it seems that everyone assumes that Oracle must be right about Belkar's immident demise.
    Well, "Belkar won't die" predictions are fairly frequent, but fair dues here, yours is an original one (to me, at least). I don't buy into it, mainly because I don't see the point of having an Oracle if the Oracle can be wrong. For Belkar specifically, the Oracle could have refunded his money and not died, or could have just said "no" and not had to worry about it to begin with, both of which would have been infinitely preferable to dying. Neither of those happened. The Oracle knew Belkar would kill him for being a jerk to him. The Oracle still chose to be a jerk to Belkar. Just because characters can make choices doesn't mean that the Oracle doesn't know what those choices will be. Belkar can still make the choices that lead to his death, and the Oracle would still know about them. If Belkar would end up making different choices, the Oracle would know about them instead.
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  12. - Top - End - #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarhan View Post
    First time poster. Been reading OOTS for the last few years, now have all the books. Anyway, I've been lurking on the forums for a while, and it seems that everyone assumes that Oracle must be right about Belkar's immident demise. So I have my own theory:

    Belkar is not going to die (permanently) until much later, perhaps even of old age. Definitely not by the end of the (in-comic) year. We have been teased with his death a few times already (getting drained by Durkon*, dominated and made to jump off Mechane by Durkon*, pushed off the mountain by Durkon* and some cases not instigated by Durkon* as well). Storytelling demands that we'll probably get a few more in the same vein. Maybe he'll even die (as in HP to -10), but not *permanently*.

    It's also not going to be a "technical" loophole (becoming undead or something along those lines).

    No, the Oracle is going to be wrong on this one, plain and simple.

    This draws back to the #567, where Belkar gives feedback on the prophecy. Belkar's original did not come true until Belkar made it true (by killing Oracle).
    Essentially: Belkar's CHOICE made him to self-fulfill the prophecy (and his curse activated and all that jazz). He could have simply decided NOT to kill the Oracle and instead gone "nyah-nyah-nyah" and insisted his money back. But that was Belkar before recent...changes.

    So, we will see Belkar run into situation where he has to again make some big Choice. And this time he takes some other option than the one leading to his death (fulfilling the prophecy). It might even a Good vs Evil thing, such as running away vs. doing a heroic sacrifice. Of course we might get some further dramatics (it's supposed to be a story after all), such as him clearly appearing to be dead and not resurrectable (but then it turns out that Blackwing actually nabbed a piece of him for the spell or something). Meaning that the option that *should* kill him will actually end up sparing his life, while the running away will make rocks fall and everybody dies.

    Or, well, the situation in #567 might even be completely reversed, with Oracle (with some pushing by Tiamat) coming to personally make sure the death prediction becomes true...

    Reason why I've come to this conclusion? Mostly meta. The entire OOtS has been giving out pretty consistent message: Choices matter, even if prophecies and predictions and destinies are real things. Eugene's Blood Oath. Haley's choice to go out with Elan (Nale in disguise, but she didn't know that). Elan's speculation on would Nale have been the hero and he the jerk, and his choices about sparing Nale and letting Tarquin fall of Mechane. Durkon's whole life (as seen across book #6). Roy's regrets about abandoning Elan to bandits. Vaarsuvius' own choices with the dragon, and regrets, and atonement.

    You'll note that the above list does not include Belkar. He hasn't yet had to make a *truly* hard choice - but it's going to come up, and it's going to keep him alive despite whatever Oracle might have thought.

    (If you want to explain this mechanically, well, Oracle is channeling Tiamat, and even Tiamat doesn't know everything.).

    Bottom line is that I simply do not think that we are going to see a classic "Redemption equals death" plot with regards to Belkar. Especially if it has been given years in advance.

    Oracle will be wrong (and might try to weasel out claiming that he was accurate, after all, Belkar died during Girard's illusion and didn't come back).
    The Oracle's predictions haven't been wrong yet. If his powers were faible to individual choice, he would have screwed up at some point, but he hasn't. He didn't, for instance, see any future where V never attained ultimate arcane power, or a world where V's method of attainment did not involve saying the right words at the right time to the right person for all the wrong reasons, nor did he see a future where Haley didn't get her speech back, a future where Elan's story doesn't end happily, a future where a future where Belkar didn't kill one of Roy, Miko, Miko's horse, V, or him, ETC.

  13. - Top - End - #133
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    While I don't have a coherent scenario, I like to imagine his death won't be a selfless act at all, but through his actions he will make a substantial positive impact. He will do something violent and selfish (that will perhaps reaffirm his alignment) of course. Yet it will cause others to contemplate how they perceived him. It would be interesting if he manages to completely twist the outcome in a moment of tactlessness. I can almost hear him saying "this isn't fair".

  14. - Top - End - #134
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    I've got two theories on this.
    The first is that Belkar pulls a Kraagor and dies to the snarl while sacrificing himself for a team mate as the snarl busts loose from its prison at the last second before the gods finally seal it away for good.

    The second (the one I am personally hoping for) is that with all of the changes that Belkar has been going through at the end of the story he finally sees the error of his ways and takes a turn for the neutral (cause honestly he will never be "good") and decides that his old self is dead, he changes his name and leads a much less destructive life, perhaps even "helping" (IE: for pay) people by going after some of the more evil creatures left in the world.

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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yalkara View Post
    The second (the one I am personally hoping for) is that with all of the changes that Belkar has been going through at the end of the story he finally sees the error of his ways and takes a turn for the neutral (cause honestly he will never be "good") and decides that his old self is dead, he changes his name and leads a much less destructive life, perhaps even "helping" (IE: for pay) people by going after some of the more evil creatures left in the world.
    How does that fit the other prophecies (he's not long for this world, should savor his next birthday cake, and shouldn't bother finding his IRA)? And, in case the answer is "not official prophecies," remember the entire purpose of the memory charm.
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  16. - Top - End - #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    How does that fit the other prophecies (he's not long for this world, should savor his next birthday cake, and shouldn't bother finding his IRA)? And, in case the answer is "not official prophecies," remember the entire purpose of the memory charm.
    He changes so much he fundamentally becomes a different person and the old Belkar is effectively dead and gone, heck he's halfway there already.

  17. - Top - End - #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    How does that fit the other prophecies (he's not long for this world, should savor his next birthday cake, and shouldn't bother finding his IRA)? And, in case the answer is "not official prophecies," remember the entire purpose of the memory charm.
    He won't have to fund his IRA if the Order defeats the BBEG's since the loot at that level means that he can retire in comfort.
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  18. - Top - End - #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yalkara View Post
    He changes so much he fundamentally becomes a different person and the old Belkar is effectively dead and gone, heck he's halfway there already.
    Bigger hole: The Oracle didn't just say Belkar. He also referred to "the halfling" and "your friend".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garwain View Post
    Every team member has had their moment in the spotlight, except Belkar. He is now on a slow but steady route to redemption. This is going to be the subject of the next book. I'm predicting that Belkar will 'take one for the team' and die, just as Kraagor died. No coincidence ofcourse that the next gate is in Kraagor's tombe.
    Sorry, but I disagree. Belkar had his moment of glory in DStP. He is the one who undergoes the changes needed to rescue the order from completely falling out.

    In that moment, Haley is facing the Thieves Guild with Celia, Roy is dead, Durkon and Elan are sitting on their thumbs, and V is going nuts. He is the first one to change for the rest of the order to follow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Turin_19 View Post
    Sorry, but I disagree. Belkar had his moment of glory in DStP. He is the one who undergoes the changes needed to rescue the order from completely falling out.

    In that moment, Haley is facing the Thieves Guild with Celia, Roy is dead, Durkon and Elan are sitting on their thumbs, and V is going nuts. He is the first one to change for the rest of the order to follow.
    I have a running theory that all the books after DCF are meant as "focused" around a specific Order member:
    . NCFTPB is Roy's book, as he sees his pseudo-reflection in Miko, begins to think of his non-Durkon companions as actual friends/comrades rather than just "the incompetent bunch of yahoos i'm stuck with", and learns to be a true leader to his party, someone who can earn their loyalty and be loyal in return.
    . WAXP is Haley's book, since a large part of the plot centers on her internal conflict vis-a-vis getting her speech back.
    . DSTP is V's book: They make a deal with fiends, commit genocide, get force-fed humble pie, and overall learn where their eternal greed for arcane power has led them: nowhere good.
    . BRITF is Elan's book: he meets his father, sees how his narrative fixation can hurt people, and comes away hypotheically-wiser.
    . UD is Durkon's book: I shouldn't have to explain this one.
    . That leaves one book and one Order member: it's Belkar's time to shine.
    Last edited by woweedd; 2019-10-28 at 12:44 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by woweedd View Post
    I have a running theory that all the books after DCF are meant as "focused" around a specific Order member:
    . NCFTPB is Roy's book, as he sees his pseudo-reflection in Miko, begins to think of his non-Durkon companions as actual friends/comrades rather than just "the incompetent bunch of yahoos i'm stuck with", and learns to be a true leader to his party, someone who can earn their loyalty and be loyal in return.
    . WAXP is Haley's book, since a large part of the plot centers on her internal conflict vis-a-vis getting her speech back.
    . DSTP is V's book: They make a deal with fiends, commit genocide, get force-fed humble pie, and overall learn where their eternal greed for arcane power has led them: nowhere good.
    . BRITF is Elan's book: he meets his father, sees how his narrative fixation can hurt people, and comes away hypotheically-wiser.
    . UD is Durkon's book: I shouldn't have to explain this one.
    . That leaves one book and one Order member: it's Belkar's time to shine.
    I have had the same thought, though I think the case for NCPB and WXP being Roy- and Haley-centric is not as strong as the case for BRitF and UD. One could argue that DStP is actually Haley-focused, with the whole Greysky Thieves' Guild plot.
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    Quote Originally Posted by knag View Post
    I have had the same thought, though I think the case for NCPB and WXP being Roy- and Haley-centric is not as strong as the case for BRitF and UD. One could argue that DStP is actually Haley-focused, with the whole Greysky Thieves' Guild plot.
    Yeah, fair, but, to me, DSTP pretty much has to be V's.

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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yalkara View Post
    He changes so much he fundamentally becomes a different person and the old Belkar is effectively dead and gone, heck he's halfway there already.
    Quote Originally Posted by woweedd View Post
    Bigger hole: The Oracle didn't just say Belkar. He also referred to "the halfling" and "your friend".
    And the Oracle, who dislikes humanoids in general and hates Belkar in particular, revels in revealing that Belkar will get a change of heart because....?

    When you've already achieved a conclusion and are trying to find evidence to support that conclusion, then you can twist things however you want, regardless of what the evidence is.
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  24. - Top - End - #144
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by woweedd View Post
    I have a running theory that all the books after DCF are meant as "focused" around a specific Order member:
    . NCFTPB is Roy's book, as he sees his pseudo-reflection in Miko, begins to think of his non-Durkon companions as actual friends/comrades rather than just "the incompetent bunch of yahoos i'm stuck with", and learns to be a true leader to his party, someone who can earn their loyalty and be loyal in return.
    . WAXP is Haley's book, since a large part of the plot centers on her internal conflict vis-a-vis getting her speech back.
    . DSTP is V's book: They make a deal with fiends, commit genocide, get force-fed humble pie, and overall learn where their eternal greed for arcane power has led them: nowhere good.
    . BRITF is Elan's book: he meets his father, sees how his narrative fixation can hurt people, and comes away hypotheically-wiser.
    . UD is Durkon's book: I shouldn't have to explain this one.
    . That leaves one book and one Order member: it's Belkar's time to shine.
    He explicitly says this in the NCFTPB commentary (that it's Roy's book). So yes, 1 for the gang and then 1 for each.

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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    And the Oracle, who dislikes humanoids in general and hates Belkar in particular, revels in revealing that Belkar will get a change of heart because....?
    Not that I believe it, but the answer would seem to be "to make him live the rest of the year in existential dread about when he will breath his last".
    "Besides, you know the saying: Kill one, and you are a murderer. Kill millions, and you are a conqueror. Kill them all, and you are a god." -- Fishman

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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by The MunchKING View Post
    Not that I believe it, but the answer would seem to be "to make him live the rest of the year in existential dread about when he will breath his last".
    Except he wouldn't live the rest of the year in existential dread, since he forgets about it the second the leaves he valley.
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-10-28 at 10:54 PM.
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Except he wouldn't live the rest of the year in existential dread, since he forgets about it the second the leaves he valley.
    Well yeah, when Roy tells him about it outside though, THEN the dread kicks in.
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by The MunchKING View Post
    Well yeah, when Roy tells him about it outside though, THEN the dread kicks in.
    Roy hasn't told him yet. Presumably the Oracle would look to see if he would.

    Imean, that's assuming the Oracle wouldn't look to see if Belkar would even feel that in the first place, and even then he'd get at most less than a year's worth of Belkar feeling kinda sorta weird? The Oracle would really stink in this hypothetical.
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Roy hasn't told him yet.
    He SEEMS to have. He keeps repeatedly saying "You'll die long before me".
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    Default Re: What's Going To Kill Belkar?

    Quote Originally Posted by The MunchKING View Post
    He SEEMS to have. He keeps repeatedly saying "You'll die long before me".
    That doesn't really provoke any sort of existential dread, though. Especially since, so far as Belkar knows, Roy's never been to the Oracle without him there.
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