Book 2 – Page 108

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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Keldaria » Wed May 01, 2013 12:35 pm

mroozee wrote:Since lots of people have suggested that Parson could reduce himself to a light unit, jump on a dragon and fly up to avoid the inferno, why couldn't he just use Slately's jetpack to the same effect?


Because its gone, they used the duplicate on cubbins (the original on tramennis)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby kiyote » Wed May 01, 2013 12:57 pm

Oberon wrote:
kiyote wrote:Charlie is not the Mary Sue of the story. He's spent the last who-knows-how-many turns creating himself an unassailable position as a mercenary, [...]
Putting time into one or several master plans doesn't do anything to counter the fact that Charlie constantly pulls new powers and abilities out of his ass any time he needs them. It is a tiresome plot device, at best.


We know that Charlie is attuned to an arkentool that gives him unrivaled thinkamancy, and every one of his new "ass-pull powers" is thinkamancy related, and not a stretch on the powers that he's already revealed. You knew about him being able to set up thinkagrams anywhere in erfworld, which, might I add, seems like an ability all thinkamancers have, but it doesn't seem to cost Charlie any juice.

Way, way before this breaking of the thinkamancy link, Charlie was talking with Parson via the eyebooks, and the GMTTA talked about how he can listen in on their g-strings.

And, finally, Kingworld. You knew that the dish gave super powerful thinkamancy. It follows that it would allow a linkup with a turnamancer at a distance to affect a turn.

Everything else is just a clever use of his units. He was able to screw with Hagar not because of some power, but because he had the foresight to place archerons in that battle space.

All of these things are internally consistent, that followed based on things that you already knew about Charlie. The fact that you don't know everything about Charlie doesn't make it so when we see him use his powers for the first time an ass-pull. It's just the same out-of-the-box thinking you'd expect out of Parson. An ass-pull would be if he somehow developed the ability to use hippiemancy or dirtamancy.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby alowe » Wed May 01, 2013 12:57 pm

The problem I see with people's clever plans are:
1) Parsons said he only had 2 minutes (admittedly maybe exagerating), of which much of it has already been spent. He possibly only has seconds left. There isn't time for complicated plans. Immediate action needs to be taken, e.g. within the first 3 boxes of the next page.
2) Parson usually takes actions that have decisive aims, not desperate hit and hopes. This would be a break of his personality and imho weaken his character. There's no evidence to suggest that the author would result to doing that.

The idea that someone will swoop in to save him also weakens the plot. If that kind of thing happens then readers stop taking any threat seriously. Parson is on his own with this one. He was getting too powerful before risking him becoming boring. This page takes him down a notch and also nicely exposes Charlie making his enemies clearer (if he survives).

Parson getting decrypted also weakens the plot for me. A living Parson I care about, a decrypted one I don't.

He may cast the spell simply because he doesn't have any other choice. That maintains his characters integrity, which isn't one of unrealist I-can-get-out-of-anything-to-the-point-of-taking-the-proverbial.

Just my 2 cents :D
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Morni » Wed May 01, 2013 1:02 pm

Charlie showing his hand so openly to Parson might be fate magic.

Parson was summon to get rid of Charlie. Parson wasn't moving forward on that fate.. so fate is forcing a conflict to happen.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby woort » Wed May 01, 2013 1:11 pm

Totally agree with what alowe said. I think people here have waaaay too much confidence that parson can never be beaten. He's already been beaten several times! Starting with losing the dragons in his siege raid. He didn't manage some clever last minute trick there, he just lost. I think the time has come for him to admit defeat.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby junovalkyrie » Wed May 01, 2013 1:35 pm

As long as we're using this thread for tin-foil hat theories, here's one on a different topic from Parson's method of escape.

Parson was made CW when Maggie used a suggestion spell to compel Stanley to appoint him. As we saw in Book 1, breaking a suggestion spell causes a backlash to either the caster or recipient of such a spell. Stanley was already peeved with Parson when he called, and now Parson is making unreasonable (from Stanley's POV) demands of him on top of that, resulting in Stanley refusing to help even after given enough information to make it clear that he will lose his newly-appointed CW if he doesn't act. This occurred immediately before the thinkagram fizzled. Is it possible that Maggie's thinkagram fizzled not because of Charlie's influence - notice that he neither confirmed nor denied playing a role - but because either she or Stanley has become incapacitated as a result of backlash from the suggestion spell breaking?

(I'd rate it as fairly unlikely myself, but it's an idea I haven't seen anyone bring up yet, so I thought I'd throw it out there.)
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Keldaria » Wed May 01, 2013 1:48 pm

woort wrote:Totally agree with what alowe said. I think people here have waaaay too much confidence that parson can never be beaten. He's already been beaten several times! Starting with losing the dragons in his siege raid. He didn't manage some clever last minute trick there, he just lost. I think the time has come for him to admit defeat.


The point of the comic isn't about parsons journey to death. yes he's been beaten, foiled, and had his tactics broken before. Case in point is the situation he now finds himself in.. very similar to the end of book 1 where he had an unwinnable situation and the forces to be had him backed into a corner and we're doubling down. Well we're there now my friends because plan A, B, C, and D is failing him. Yes he managed to take the capital but that wasn't really a victory for him because it was all part of the plan to catch him in a trap. To be honest he could have stayed in the Gobwin Knob and they probably still would have won the city by dropping the tower and ordering them to search the rubble until they found the last unit. while I know they did get their Chief Warlord bonus back to help fight off the last waves of attack but I'd be willing to bet wanda's bonus as a master class croakamancer would have been better to keep around.

Point is that IMO he has already lost and been shown that he too can be caught with his pants down and now is when parson is going to pull something new out of his bag of tricks and anyone expecting him to just lay down and take it (either dying or using the scroll) is probably mistaken.

For anyone wondering

Plan A: Take the city by air after bluffing an all ground attack force. (Foiled by Jillian and Charlies turn ending magic)
Plan B: Get the tool to Declare a new warlord in the city to help protect the air group with the bonus (Foiled by his own thinkamancer)
Plan C: Infiltrate the capital via the magic kingdom (This was a trap specifically set for him, Not even going to mention the problems his plans encountered trying to get there.. absolutely the opposite of his plan by drawing a lot of attention)
Plan D: Get the tool to move the capital so the portal will reopen allowing him to escape and/or sizemoore to enter and extinguish the fire. (Tool so far has refused and communications shut down by charlie)

I'm sure there was a few more in there but rest assured not a great deal is going according to "plan" atm, Parson is a lateral thinker however and thats the point of this comic IMO is to put him into impossible no-win scenarios and then watch him turn the tables just as he has no way out.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Ambug666 » Wed May 01, 2013 1:56 pm

My theories (which have all been already stated by you clever people), in decreasing order of what I believe will happen.

Parson, having no other choice, will read the scroll. he will end up:
- In Charlescomm, because the scroll is a trap. He will be the prisoner of Charlie. There may be a fake-out sequence where Parson believes he is in Stupidworld, first.
- In Kansas with Judy, and will have to use the shoes to get back thus reuniting the Arkentools. I still really like the idea that Judy is Parson's mom.
- In his room at Gobwin Knob, because Charlie didn't know that home could mean different things.

Parson will die but will rise again Decrypted.

I do not believe that Charlie is a Stupidworlder, but that the Arkendish allows him to see Stupidworld, just like the witch's crystal ball did in the movie version of The Wizard of Oz.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Vreejack » Wed May 01, 2013 2:17 pm

Jamus wrote:Charlie seriously tipped his hand here.

For one thing, although I'd been convinced for a long time that Charlie was erfian, as seems to be the general consensus here, I'm now right back in the stupidworldian camp. GTFO, DIAF, GG? That's too modern. I don't understand the paradox there- he couldn't possibly have gleaned that from old Kansas Judy- who came to Erfworld at LEAST 30 years ago. But then, he predates Judy in Erfworld, too. I don't think he has mind-reading powers great enough to have stolen it all from Parson, though I can't totally rule out that it's some sort of lingo-translation, star trek style, at play.

But after this, I'm seriously starting to think that he's from roughly the same era as Parson. The SPW spell searches across dimensions, and we already know time as a concept in Erfworld is more than a little weird. There were a lot of discussions about how events line up across hex boundaries, and how a great deal of "day" could elapse for one unit travelling to a hex where units would have perceived a much smaller amount of time.

So who's to say SPW doesn't call the most appropriate warlord not just from where, but when he exists?


Are Orlys from Stupidword as well? GTFO and DIAF are old Erf-language idioms.
So...Watashi wa mizugorō ga sukina koto o kiita, neh?
A Prediction is what would have happened had there been no Prediction. What is scary is that they are also what will happen in spite of the Prediction.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Glome » Wed May 01, 2013 2:27 pm

Wayson wrote:Here's a thought that hasn't been suggested by anyone yet, that I can tell. Let me lay out the reasoning first, so I don't look like a lunatic.

We know casters can perform magic outside of their discipline, without scrolls. We've seen Wanda doing Hat Magic in Inner Peace, making a Snow Golem, and probably other things that I've forgotten.

We know that Charlie apparently thinks Parson is a caster of some sort. This is supported by Parson's ability to pass through portals.

Janis's evaluation of Parson as a Hippiemancer is unreliable and quite probably a lie. We know that no one can see Parson's stats, so no one knows what he is or what abilities he has. She may have called him one to defuse the situation, but there is no way she could have known at a glance.

Therefore...

Is it possible that Parson's way out of this is to attempt to cast a Dirtamancy spell to put out the Inferno?


I don't think Janis was lying about Parson being a Hippiemancer. Casters often have senses beyond what normal units can see, it's very well plausible that hippiemancers can recognize each other. And in actually Janis didn't need to lie, the situation was already diffused by Parson being knocked out, nor do I think it would matter what type of caster he was anyway, and if hippiemancers can't recognize other hippiemancers, then it would be an obvious lie anyway. I just don't see Janis risking her reputation on such a lie when her position was enough to keep Parson from being killed.

Anyway, it is very well possible for Parson to cast a dirtamancer spell. If he knew the first thing about spellcasting. Casting out of discipline even normally has a high risk of failure, but for someone who hasn't ever cast a spell before it should be nearly impossible. Unless that is how fate wants Parson to survive the inferno, then the chance becomes 100%. Problem is, I think Parson would try the scroll which has a better shot of working before something as desperate as casting a dirtamancer spell, and if fate expects him to get the last arkentool, this is where he'll do it and the scroll will work, making discussion of dirtamancy a moot point.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Vreejack » Wed May 01, 2013 2:37 pm

Ambug666 wrote:My theories (which have all been already stated by you clever people), in decreasing order of what I believe will happen.
Parson, having no other choice, will read the scroll. he will end up:
- In Charlescomm, because the scroll is a trap. He will be the prisoner of Charlie. There may be a fake-out sequence where Parson believes he is in Stupidworld, first.

I don't see any point in having a fake-out sequence. Charlie is going to need to convince Parson to turn. This will require some blunt honesty. Starting out with a stupid lie would not not be helpful.

Ambug666 wrote:- In Kansas with Judy, and will have to use the shoes to get back thus reuniting the Arkentools. I still really like the idea that Judy is Parson's mom.

That would be pretty funny, if pointless, but if we are going for maximum Oz parallelism then the arkenshoes are still in Erf someplace. Maybe the gobwins have them.

Ambug666 wrote:- In his room at Gobwin Knob, because Charlie didn't know that home could mean different things.

Probable, if disappointing. Of course Charlie knows a lot about summoning warlords from Stupidworld, so it makes sense he would know how to craft that home spell. He also probably knows that Judy Gale used the arkenshoes to return to Kansas. The fact that they once returned her to Elefbaum might not be as well-known.

Ambug666 wrote:Parson will die but will rise again Decrypted.

Will probably happen sooner or later. It will suck, but it can be overcome. Ossimer did it.

Ambug666 wrote:I do not believe that Charlie is a Stupidworlder, but that the Arkendish allows him to see Stupidworld, just like the witch's crystal ball did in the movie version of The Wizard of Oz.

Good point. Not really necessary, though, as Erfworld already has the ability to copy memes from Stupidworld (or vice-versa). Unless you want to argue that Charlie trained all the Orlies. But the parallel to Oz is so good that I think it must be somewhat true.
Edit: I think I have it. After Charlie fails to vanquish Parson he tries to scry someone from Stupidworld who can beat Parson. The catch is that this person will not want to come like Parson did. Or, Parson returns home and then Charlie realizes he needs him back for some reason. Pure conjecture, of course.
So...Watashi wa mizugorō ga sukina koto o kiita, neh?
A Prediction is what would have happened had there been no Prediction. What is scary is that they are also what will happen in spite of the Prediction.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Alphax » Wed May 01, 2013 2:54 pm

Long time reader, first time poster.

The most interesting thing about this page is just how badly Charlie wants Parson to use that scroll. The thing that has always defined Charlie throughout is that he is an unparalleled Thinkmancer, always planning and scheming and, before Parson, always succeeding. Parson's plans so far have been detrimental to the way Charlie wants things to go, which is 1000x worse than just 'hurting' Charlie (and there's plenty of evidence that Parson's appearance has actually been a net benefit to him).

Charlie, pretty desperately, doesn't want Parson to die, he so desperate that he has to spend a calculation to wake Parson up to the fact that he can cast the scroll. Parson dying in the fire would be as much of a defeat for Charlie as if Parson's control-x actually was a reset button that brought back everyone on the GK side while leaving Jetstone defeated. Now the scroll obviously is beneficial to Charlie, whether it sends Parson back to Stupidworld, delivers Parson to Charlescomm with a bow, call the Arkenshoes to Parson or whatever, the scrolls effect probably isn't important. What is important for Charlie is that he'll have taken away all of Parson's options, and things will have gone the way he wanted and expected them to.

If he truly didn't care / just wanted Parson gone / just wanted Parson dead there are innumerable things he could have done, like staying on the Eyebook and saying at the end "Oh BTW thanks for getting so angry at me you wasted all the time you could have spent thinking your way out of this."

As for Charlie gaining power, I don't really see it. All the Arkentool powers we've seen so far have been deific in their respective field. Stanley could probably hop on a dwagon, go to Charelscomm and rock the place down with the Arkenhammer, after all, Translyvito had that insane multiplicative stack and Stanley stomped them in one hit. Wanda can decrypt an entire Side's worth of followers who are completely enslaved as long as she is in the same realm and have no upkeep requirements, so if she founded her own side she could stick her capitol somewhere no one would find or expect and simply win. The Arkenshoes give unlimited movement no matter what... probably the simplest of the powers but also the one that allows you to ignore the most of Erfworld's 'physics' (and the Arkenshoes are the least well described of any of the Tools, so they might very well have even more power). Why wouldn't the Arkendish have similar deific powers when it comes to Thinkmancy? All of Charlie's other tricks and stunts that aren't thinkmancy are accomplished with the massive schmucker reserves that he has built up.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby elecampane » Wed May 01, 2013 2:57 pm

Doctor Foreman wrote:
elecampane wrote:I believe at the very least Parson can use his bracelet to predict chances of scroll harming him or taking him to Stupidworld, Gobwin Knob or Charlescomm.


I kinda doubt it, if only because calculating that sort of probability with the amount of information Parson has is an absurd proposition.

We don't know how much information needs to be supplied to the bracelet. If it can predict how useful calculations will be to Charlie (about whom Parson knows next to nothing) in an undefined future, I assume it can predict actions of a scroll which Parson holds in hand.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby CharlsNChrg » Wed May 01, 2013 2:58 pm

Whispri wrote:Thing is, if he casts the scroll, Charlie wins. Who wants that to happen?


I do.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Doctor Foreman » Wed May 01, 2013 3:21 pm

Cnor wrote:He would, actually - it's strictly forbidden for Casters to go through enemy portals uninvited.

I'm talking about when he first went through the GK portal in Book 1. If he was a caster, there was no reason he wouldn't be allowed to enter the Magic Kingdom then - casters fleeing through portal rooms are standard procedure for when a side is about to fall.

Sure he would have. Charlie has, in the past, been highly sarcastic

...not really, no. Maybe once or twice. He's more facetious than sarcastic.

and moreover, is currently trying to goad Parson into not thinking about other options

Which is why it's a bad idea to order Parson to perform further analysis on his current predicament, which is what a calculation is.

As for wasting the calculation, why would Parson believe anything Charlie says without some form of outside confirmation, such as that provided by his bracer?

Parson doesn't need permission from Charlie to perform calculations. If Charlie knows Parson's a caster, he's just used a calculation to a) force Parson to do something he would have done anyway and b) tell him something he already knows. Charlie's already been burned once in terms of inadvertently benefiting Parson when making him perform a calculation; no way he'd throw away one more like that.

elecampane wrote:We don't know how much information needs to be supplied to the bracelet. If it can predict how useful calculations will be to Charlie (about whom Parson knows next to nothing) in an undefined future, I assume it can predict actions of a scroll which Parson holds in hand.

Things Parson knew about those calculations: they were produced by an artifact and therefore valuable; that GK is constantly decrypting units; that enemy sides are likely to recognize decrypted units; that enemy sides know GK possesses the Arkenpliers. That doesn't require knowing anything about Charlie - I could have told you myself that the answer wasn't worth the calculations, and that goes for anyone in Erfworld.

The thing about calculating probabilities is that probability is a measure of ignorance. The less you know about something, the less you can predict its likelihood. Note how Parson revises his probability estimates for GK taking Spacerock downwards when he takes into account Ossomer's intelligence. His ability to predict things well depends as much on his knowing what to factor into the hypothetical model as it does on the magic of the bracer.

In the case of the scroll, Parson can't ask the bracer to tell him what the scroll does, because he doesn't know all the options for what it does. He doesn't even know what discipline it involves, though Carnymancy would be a good guess. The bracer cannot generate that information for him, unless it's a Predictamancy bracer as well as a Mathamancy bracer, which I see no reason for it to be.

I don't think it can meaningfully tell him what his odds of being a caster are, for the same reasons.
Last edited by Doctor Foreman on Wed May 01, 2013 3:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby CharlesNCharge » Wed May 01, 2013 3:22 pm

CharlsNChrg wrote:
Whispri wrote:Thing is, if he casts the scroll, Charlie wins. Who wants that to happen?


I do.

Imposter...
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby Owenator » Wed May 01, 2013 3:24 pm

CharlesNCharge wrote:
CharlsNChrg wrote:
Whispri wrote:Thing is, if he casts the scroll, Charlie wins. Who wants that to happen?


I do.

Imposter...

"Chuck you Farley!" I love that line!
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Re: The Target of the Scroll

Postby Bogo » Wed May 01, 2013 5:00 pm

Charlie writes "... casting that spell on yourself..."

So doesn't this mean that Parson could cast the scroll at somebody or something else? Wouldn't that open up some options?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby drachefly » Wed May 01, 2013 5:04 pm

Everyone hop in a dwagon's mouth, then cast it on the dwagon?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 108

Postby ftl » Wed May 01, 2013 5:05 pm

Ooh, good call.

Options:
1) Cast the spell on the fire! Ok so that seems like it's sort of cheating and probably shouldn't work, but it might.
2) Cast the spell on, say, Jack's body! It goes home, wanda decrypts it there, they figure out a plan.
3) Cast the spell on a group of people - Parson and a bunch of the dwagons and hobgobwins. Parson's home might be somewhere else, but the dwagons and hobgobwins all come from GK, so the group as a whole goes "home" there.
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