Taming and Feral

Speculation, discoveries, complaints, accusations, praise, and all other Erfworld discussion.

Taming and Feral

Postby Kreistor » Mon Jul 27, 2009 11:55 am

We interrupt this post to bring you a small moderative announcement.
It's OK to have wiki talk on the forum now and again, but the stuff that belongs here is stuff that can't fit easily on a single page, or that encompasses topics of some interest to all erfworld readers. Please don't use the forum for niggling detail points like this: that is what the talk pages are for.

It'd be a bit draconian to close this, so if people want to discuss taming as a topic here, go ahead, but not in the context of hammering out wiki policy.

We shall now resume the regularly scheduled topic opener.


We just got dumped some new info on taming in Update 16. Before people start jumping on the Wiki, let's talk about how we're going to do this. I think we're going to have some disagreement on what should be created and where. So before we go stomping, let's get on the same page in what we're wanting.

Taming
The "bat" may have been a naturally popped doombat. If it was, or not, we now have a real definition for Stanley's "taming". It isn't just permitting him to pop dwagons at GK (though that likely is a function of the hammer), but it would permit him to tame naturally popped dwagons, however rare those may be.

Feral
I don't think we can do more than Spec on feral right now. Feral means, in our world, a representative of a species that is normally a pet or farm animal that has grown wild. I personally don't think the term "feral" would have been use if Vinny didn't tame a doombat. Bats aren't normally pet animals, and so are inherently feral, not requiring the descriptor. But doombats are units, so a wild doombat would indicate the need for the term feral. Question: is feral just another name for barbarian, then?

So, right now, I am inclined to want a separate page for "feral" referenced from wildlife. Taming now has a definition and deserves its own page, since more than Stanley can do it.
Last edited by Erk on Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Comment on wiki vs forum
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Re: Wiki editors -- Taming and Feral

Postby Arkenputtyknife » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:19 pm

I have a better idea. How about letting the Wiki work the way Wikis are intended to work

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Re: Wiki editors -- Taming and Feral

Postby MisterB777 » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:30 pm

Interesting points, Kreistor.

OK, let me throw this out there.

The simplest definition of "feral" is "not tamed" or the opposite of domesticated. So, it is entirely possible that our author is simply using a turn of phrase to distinguish between one of Vinny's bats and a wild one that he is attempting to tame. In theory, that could mean that any "wildlife" or non-aligned unit could be considered "feral."

I think you are on the right track in bringing up barbarians, but I would almost take it one step further: Are "feral," "Barbarian," and "wild" all just terms for any unit (wildlife or otherwise) that is not aligned with a particular side? Is the concept of Unit itself too narrow, and it should really apply to any animal or construct with move and some sort of stats? If that were the case, then it would be completely relevant to add bats and even wild dwagons to the list of wildlife. Or, perhaps I am hippiemancying about to much here...

I would be inclined to say that Feral does not seem to need a separate page, as it can easily be seen as a synonym for "wild" and therefore fits nicely into the existing Wildlife page. Taming, on the other hand, seems to be a particular action that requires its own, separate entry in the wiki.

/two-cents

As for the horse-boop, I'd say that the fact that the Wiki is generating off site debates over the nuanced definitions of what may, in fact, be completely unimportant turns of phrase is pretty much what Wiki's do best. That said, I'd agree that this discussion should have been conducted on the wiki proper. That's why it has Talk pages...
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Re: Wiki editors -- Taming and Feral

Postby Cmdr I. Heartly Noah » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:43 pm

Kreistor wrote:Taming
The "bat" may have been a naturally popped doombat. If it was, or not, we now have a real definition for Stanley's "taming". It isn't just permitting him to pop dwagons at GK (though that likely is a function of the hammer), but it would permit him to tame naturally popped dwagons, however rare those may be.


Uhh... we've seen him do this with the hammer (in flashback). Who thought it just let him pop them? (I agree that it is 95% likely that having the hammer allows him to pop dwagons - that GK doesn't normally allow for popping them. But I digress.)
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Re: Wiki editors -- Taming and Feral

Postby Erk » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:51 pm

I do like seeing wiki talk on the forum now and again, but the stuff that belongs here is stuff that can't fit easily on a single page, or that encompasses topics of some interest to all erfworld readers. Please don't use the forum for niggling detail points like this: that is, as MrB777 said, precisely what the talk pages are for.

It'd be a bit draconian of me to close this, so just keep in mind in the future that the wiki is the first place for wiki discussion. OK? If people want to discuss taming as a topic here, go ahead, but not in the context of hammering out wiki policy.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Kreistor » Mon Jul 27, 2009 3:17 pm

It is clear that you've never tried to hold a discussion of any magnitude on the Wiki. It does not work as advertised. For the following reasons:

1) To know a discussion is taking place, you must constantly review "Recent Changes". This is the only indicator that a page has been edited and a discussion is underway. There is no "one stop shopping" that a thread list in a forum creates to organize conversations. This means a lot of interested parties will miss a discussion and be unable to participate. "Recent Changes" can also move very quickly: though rare, we have had days where over 500 pages were edited in 8 hours, blowing any conversation of 24 hours earlier straight off the bottom, to be forgotten.
2) "Watch"ing pages for discussions spams your email Inbox. If you try to watch every page and its talk page for changes, you're just asking to get flooded. You're going to get an email for every change to that talk page, and in a discussion with magnitude, that can mean 20 emails at a shot, IF the thing worked the way you guys seem to think it does.
3) Because others can edit your text, anything you post to a Talk thread can be edited away. That's not conducive to safe conversation.
4) There's no organization to the posts: you have to front and back end them manually, including adding your own identity. (--~~~~ does it, but many miss that). Carriage returns don't act nicely, often being ignored. Formatting is terrible. Talk pages use the same interpreter as the main page, and so is written like a Wiki page, not a Message Board.
5) If someone forgets to log in, they post as an ISP number, which really doesn't help us much. They don't even know it, unless they check their post afterward.
6) You can lose who was talking to whom as the new messages can be slotted anywhere into the text.

Wiki "Talk" pages do not work. Period. I've tried. They fail. Sorry, but no, I must take discussion like this here because:
1) Everyone involved in the WIki sees the board daily and participates at a much faster rate than Talk pages. We actually get things doen when we talk here. "Style Guidelines"? The classic talk page. Dead. Nothing. Months pass and nothing gets resolved. Bet we'd finish something if we moved those discussions here, though.
2) Posting is "safe": no one but a mod can edit me. My words are my words, without checking the "History" to check if someone was being a jerk.
3) There's a incontrovertible record of who said what and when.

Considering the vast number of discussions brought here from the Wiki have been about Proposed Canon and Speculative Mechanics, not Wiki formatting, I don't think this was an appropriate comment. This forum is for Speculation, regardless of the original source that spawned the controversy. Controversial speculation on the WIki is no less controversial Speculation than if it came from the Reactions forum. Spec is Spec.

Erk, if we moved Wiki-specific topics out of this forum that were not Speculation, you'd see only one thread gone: my one thread about how I was editing the Wiki. Even this one is primarily about the terms Taming and Feral. Those are Erfworld Mechanics -- Speculative rules -- and appropriate topics for this forum.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Menlo Marseilles » Mon Jul 27, 2009 4:58 pm

Question: was there ever an official indication that wildlife, such as fish and so forth, were not wild ("barbarian") units themselves? I noticed language to that effect in Proposed Canon on the Wildlife page, and took it for granted... but if it was simply promoted from "reasonable speculation" then that means a very different thing for this discussion than it being from a reliable source. It'd also have wide-sweeping effects on the nature of barbarians and especially barbarian "sides" (that is, multiple barbarian units functioning as a single side for alliance and leadership purposes) depending on how the concepts of "wild animal" and "barbarian unit" apply to each other.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Kreistor » Mon Jul 27, 2009 6:03 pm

Menlo, mainly the logic for that goes: if all things can fight, why is "unit" specifically "things that can fight"? If everything is a Unit, then there's no reason to define something as a "Unit".

Rob has gone out of his way to show us wildlife recently, and it's wildlife that doesn't fight back. Fish. Sheep. Now he's shown us something else, something that can be both naturally wild and a unit -- and it is given the adjective feral, which is actually very appropriate if it is in fact a doombat. I think we're jumping the gun a lot if we toss out everything else he has shown us and start thinking that anything alive can be a Unit.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby DevilDan » Mon Jul 27, 2009 6:12 pm

We saw pigeons a long time ago, and bugs more recently. While they could attack, conceivably—as could the fish if you're swimming—I don't think they count as units in terms of game mechanics.

Or seeing as they, like the sheep, can be killed, we could also argue that they could be evaluated as units at least in terms of combat. When Parson spoke about whether he counted as a unit, it was because he knows he is from outside of Erf's reality and doesn't conform completely to game mechanics—for example, Stanley couldn't see his stats.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Menlo Marseilles » Mon Jul 27, 2009 6:43 pm

"Critters" in Warcraft II come to mind, now that you say it that way.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Erk » Tue Jul 28, 2009 1:20 pm

Kreistor, I'll not turn this into a long debate about wiki on the forum after just finishing saying we don't need a ton of wiki on the forum. Suffice to say: I don't object to a discussion of the topic, which is why I kept the thread open, but approaching it from a wiki standpoint makes the thread appear to be a wiki discussion, not one about erfworld details. That will heavily influence the direction the discussion takes, into one I don't believe is really appropriate here.

If you'd like, feel free to make a wiki template like on wikipedia, something along the lines of "The structure of this page is currently under debate. Please see the talk page for details." If you continue to not see any of discussion, I daresay it's not that hot a topic and you can feel free to do as you see fit. That's how a wiki is meant to work.

Regarding the topic at hand: I don't think there's yet sufficient information to define a feral creature in Erfworld terms. The assumption I'd make is that they are associated with given terrains and pop randomly. They probably don't have move or anything like that unless they are tamed, they are just part of the scenery. Once tamed they become true units and behave like any other unit. I'd sort of see them like MMORPG 'mobs', just drifting around and - if capable - attacking nearby units. However, this is entirely conjecture, and while we know more than we did I don't think we really know enough to have a meaningful discussion yet.
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Re: Taming and Feral

Postby Maldeus » Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:06 pm

I think "feral" is most likely just a word for "barbarian that isn't sentient." Admittedly, taming is almost certainly a different process from whatever process (if any) exists for barbarians joining a new Side.
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