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 Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
 Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:04 am 
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Oberon wrote:

In TBfGK, however, Archons demonstrated the following powers:
Flight;
They can fly.

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Power Beams of differing types;
Thats their attack. They're a ranged unit.

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Thinkagrams;
A thinkamancy ablity

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The uncanny ability to arrive where they were needed exactly when they were needed (We saw two examples of this: Ansom decides to contract with Charlie, and Archons shown in mountainous terrain are suddenly above Ansom's forces; Charlie asks Parson how many Archons he'd need to take out the GK garrison and the next turn that many fly into GK airspace.)
Large movement and Charlie had them in position. Doomabts could to the same.
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More than enough potency to blast a Master Class Croakamancer and a stack of flying uncroaked, killing all of the uncroaked and critically wounding the caster. When it's not their turn, by the way;
They didn't actually hit Wanda, she took falling damage from a head first dive and was probably moving very quickly already. The archons managed to take out three uncroaked fliers, and two of the weakest undead. So with 30 archons thats like nine to a unipegatur and another for each rider. It looks like it takes about 9 archersto croak a dwagon. And since unipegaturs are definitly weaker than dwagons... err... thats not really impressive.

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The ability to see magical compulsions (on Jillian);
Its an ablity from thinkamancy. Comes with the thinkagrams.

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The ability to dispel those compulsions via a pep-talk;
I'm pretty sure anyone could do this no magic required. Well if you know about the spell of course.
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The ability to see through veils (on Bogroll);
Foolamancy; comes with the viels.
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The ability to grant dance fight capabilities to forces who were described as being incapable of dance fighting;
This is a shiny combination of magic, other casters can do this as well.
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And they can fetch you your carpet even when they have zero move.
This is a function of flying, nothing special at all.

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I may have missed some, since the list is so long. But in short, the Archons in TBfGK had the power of plot: They had whatever ability was needed at the time, regardless of whether the readers had been given any inclination that they possessed this capability. They were in essence a flying Deus ex machina, capable of solving any plot issue which needed solving.

The Archons have been less of a spoiler in this Book, which is a very good thing. But then again, Charlie has been trying very hard to operate only through puppets in order to keep his involvement a secret. Now that he has been revealed to both Jetstone and Haggar this may change.
In the first book we didn't know what they could do. So it seemed like they could do anything. In this one we know their ablities, and we also know most of them can't do everything. Archons also don't get all of the six possible ablities, only a few. They are still very powerful, and they have very useful ablities. But they can't do as much as it seemed in book one.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 4:40 am 
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    they can charm too. See their shocking :D

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 12:00 pm 
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    the art in this strip was amazing.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:06 pm 
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    Though the debate has mostly reached this point, I think it is a fair bet that Archons are superior to TVs Skanks, and on par in their own way with the other Artifact-spawned.
    Pliers: The power in it's spawned critters are the numbers and ability to make new one's on the fly, but for the most part the units will be weaker, and are limited to whatever is on hand
    Hammer: Allows the taming of Dwagons, which seem to be a big boopin powerhouse of a unit. They croak, sure, but they take a lot with them, and are quite capable, but aside from popping them, taming them takes a while, if only through the effort of finding them
    Dish: Archons aren't as brute-forcey as Dwagons, but they're versatile. Safe bet the points don't match up with a Dwagons, but the abilities put them on par.

    Ultimately, I'd be like to compare them to the three races of Starcraft: Lotsa little things that keep on coming, with a few bigger things later on, power houses with limited function, and expensive tool boxes.

    But this is of course speculation. I'm sure all will be revealed in time.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:32 pm 
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    When comparing archons to dwagons, you also have to compare the Arkenhammer to the Arkendish.

    The dish grants the ability to pop archons on cities, at a top rate of 1.5/turn. The hammer allows taming dwagons, which can bring in a larger 'harvest' than the dish, but can also fail (Stanley can find 2/3 dwagons a turn, which is better than the archon pop rate, but he can also find nothing). This has been tilted in the hammer's favor by Parson, who breaks everything he gets his hands on.

    The dish gives 'unmatched' Thinkamancy, allowing Charlie to monitor all his units simultaneously, something which, admittedly, GK had, but only by permanently linking 3 of their casters. Most other sides could not do that. In addition, Charlie can pass an unlimited amount of Thinkagrams (BTW, I'm rejecting the opinion that Charlie is limited, based on him leaving Jillian to deal with (possibly) Sammy. I think he can transfer an unlimited amount of Thinkagrams between other parties, but he, like most people, can only be involved in 1-2 intelligent conversations himself), something which has made him incredibly rich. The hammer is Stanley's magic BFS. It hits (hard), shoots lightning, Rocks Out, stuns dwagons (which would be incredibly useful should he come up against other sides with them), flies, and looks awesome.

    Both can be used for long-term strategies (Arkendish, basically what Charlie's doing; Arkenhammer, megasizing dwagon fleet and using them to take cities to support the dwagons) and for shock attacks (Dish, shutting down enemy communications, sending false messages, intercepting messages; Hammer, duh).

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 3:00 pm 
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    Which is one thing I had always wondered about the Arkenpliers, though didn't have the patience to read through the entire magical-theory debate thread on the matter: The Dish and Hammer give, in addition to unit spawning, amazing and wondrous abilities: Rocking out, Thinkagrams, Lightning and all other manner of talents between the two, but beyond Decrypting and the artifact bonus, what do the pliers do? Perhaps a talent we have yet to be shown, or Wanda has yet to discover? Perhaps an ability to 'tame' uncroacked units? I wonder if it still retains the ability to destroy uncroaked units with a single hit, and if not, if possibly passing them to a combat monkey would be a viable tactic if attacked by a large army of uncroaked?

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 3:19 pm 
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    I'd imagine they give a nice combat bonus as well. Wanda (a caster) was able to assist Ansom in defeating Ossomer. Without the pliers, she proly would have gotten hurt just trying to hold him back, even with Ansom's CW bonus.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 5:58 pm 
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    Ninjaguineapig wrote:
    I'd imagine they give a nice combat bonus as well. Wanda (a caster) was able to assist Ansom in defeating Ossomer. Without the pliers, she proly would have gotten hurt just trying to hold him back, even with Ansom's CW bonus.


    She didn't do anything to Ossomer with the pliers that she didn't also do to Living Ansom with a stick (While Ansom had the pliers, incidentally). Wanda's just hardcore like that. The pliers seem to dovetail with her own abilities as a caster, which makes them less overtly awesome as an artifact (More of a power-booster, really), but they do enough that we've seen that some folks are already decrying them as game-breaking. Who says they even NEED more powers?

    Edit: I've recently started thinking of the Arkentools as all part of the same set. Try and imagine them all being wielded by the same army: With the 'Dish, you've got unparalleled intelligence capabilities and special spy units that are a mixture of James Bond and MacGuyver (with boobs). The 'Hammer is brute strength, it would probably be wielded by the Chief Warlord. Other than Dwagons, which are incidental, we've only seen them shine on the battlefield, where they've always changed the odds in favor of the wielder. The 'Pliers create a cheap (Read: free) standing army, which takes care of recruitment and sustainability issues. I'm sure any other Tools that will be found will end up fitting into this schema. With this in mind, it's difficult if not impossible to compare them directly to each other.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 11:52 pm 
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    Were it not for the whole "eggs in one basket" flaw in the plan, I'd like to see a max stack of the most powerful dwagons, decrypted and rocking out under the leadership of Stanley the Chief Warlord (assuming a leader can nominate themselves for the title) and Wanda.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 4:31 am 
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    Sonic Screwdriver wrote:
    Were it not for the whole "eggs in one basket" flaw in the plan, I'd like to see a max stack of the most powerful dwagons, decrypted and rocking out under the leadership of Stanley the Chief Warlord (assuming a leader can nominate themselves for the title) and Wanda.


    There is only one occurence that would justify that much concentration of power, and that is a battle against the Titans themselves. It would be awesome.

    And won't happen.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 11:14 am 
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    Sonic Screwdriver wrote:
    Were it not for the whole "eggs in one basket" flaw in the plan, I'd like to see a max stack of the most powerful dwagons, decrypted and rocking out under the leadership of Stanley the Chief Warlord (assuming a leader can nominate themselves for the title) and Wanda.

    Pfff. The real deal comes with the 4-mancer link of the four (known) tools via the thinkamancy of the dish.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 12:23 pm 
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    robak wrote:
    Sonic Screwdriver wrote:
    Were it not for the whole "eggs in one basket" flaw in the plan, I'd like to see a max stack of the most powerful dwagons, decrypted and rocking out under the leadership of Stanley the Chief Warlord (assuming a leader can nominate themselves for the title) and Wanda.

    Pfff. The real deal comes with the 4-mancer link of the four (known) tools via the thinkamancy of the dish.


    Why think so small (this is speculation after all)? Imagine Dwagons, decrypted, Wanda, Stanley, and then Charlie linked with the entire Magic Kingdom at once? Now THAT is how you take down the Titans themselves!

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 12:54 pm 
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    Revolution!

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 1:36 pm 
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    BLANDCorporatio wrote:

    You say you want a revolution? Well, you know, we all want to change the world . . .

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 3:43 pm 
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    BLANDCorporatio wrote:
    DoctorJest wrote:
    "Wolves are like dogs, but dogs are like dogs, so therefore: kittens".


    DoctorJest, if I weren't referentially married to my sig I'd use that instead.


    Idea = stolen.

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    BLANDCorporatio wrote:
    DoctorJest wrote:
    "Wolves are like dogs, but dogs are like dogs, so therefore: kittens".


    DoctorJest, if I weren't referentially married to my sig I'd use that instead.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 4:19 pm 
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    A couple pages of comments ago people mentioned that dumping money into FAQ wasn't a bad idea because it led to the Kingworld spell. My comment was made under the assumption that the Kingworld spell would have happened regardless of how many units FAQ was there with. I'm guessing Jillian would be at Jetstone with one flyer or a squadron.

    The main reason I can think of that it wouldn't have been better for TV to send their own units obtained with the money they gave to FAQ would be if it were somehow more difficult for TV to get their units from TV to Jetstone. http://www.erfworld.com/page/31/ did make the trip sound non-trivial.

    But then, there is a lot we don't know about this world. Perhaps megalogwiffs are a better buy for a given amount of resource. Perhaps TV is already overburdened with unit upkeep.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 11:16 pm 
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    Quote:
    But then, there is a lot we don't know about this world. Perhaps megalogwiffs are a better buy for a given amount of resource. Perhaps TV is already overburdened with unit upkeep

    We do know that some sort of diminishing returns on kingdom size is involved from Parson's excuse to Charlie about GK quitting expanding.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 11:39 am 
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    Stanley seemed really happy that Ansom drove back Haggar, but then again, Ansom can do no wrong in Stan's eyes. I was thinking, what would the Tool say if he knew that Ansom acted in an un-royal warlordly manner and denied Sammy's challenge to face him one on one?

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 12:08 pm 
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    Ninjaguineapig wrote:
    Stanley seemed really happy that Ansom drove back Haggar, but then again, Ansom can do no wrong in Stan's eyes. I was thinking, what would the Tool say if he knew that Ansom acted in an un-royal warlordly manner and denied Sammy's challenge to face him one on one?


    You know, I never read Sammy's words as an actual challenge to a duel. If Sammy expected this to be a formal duel type thing, then he would have declared so from the beginning. If you look at the panel he makes his "challenge" in, his men are actively screening him from Ansom's forces to give him a clear path to Ansom. It feels less like he threw down the gauntlet to Ansom and more like he told him "it's just you and me now." They know they can't win this fight, so they are trying to meet their primary objective the way they see as being possible, keep Ansom's guards away long enough for Sammy to take him down. The outcome of which is less then they had hoped for.

    That has been my take, clearly it is not the only one and doesn't even seem to be the prevailing theory.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 28
     Post Posted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:25 pm 
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    trotsky wrote:
    Ninjaguineapig wrote:
    Stanley seemed really happy that Ansom drove back Haggar, but then again, Ansom can do no wrong in Stan's eyes. I was thinking, what would the Tool say if he knew that Ansom acted in an un-royal warlordly manner and denied Sammy's challenge to face him one on one?


    You know, I never read Sammy's words as an actual challenge to a duel. If Sammy expected this to be a formal duel type thing, then he would have declared so from the beginning. If you look at the panel he makes his "challenge" in, his men are actively screening him from Ansom's forces to give him a clear path to Ansom. It feels less like he threw down the gauntlet to Ansom and more like he told him "it's just you and me now." They know they can't win this fight, so they are trying to meet their primary objective the way they see as being possible, keep Ansom's guards away long enough for Sammy to take him down. The outcome of which is less then they had hoped for.

    That has been my take, clearly it is not the only one and doesn't even seem to be the prevailing theory.


    Thats how I saw it too. Sammy's words sound more like a "now it's you and me" not like "I challenge you to a duel". In fact, his "It's man to man, eye to eye" thing doesn't necessarily mean just Sammy and Ansom, it could just as easily mean "we're evenly matched, man for man, and our troops are facing each other eye to eye".

    Also, Sammy's words sound like song lyrics, so I imagine he's just Rocking Out.

    I've re-read the strip several times and I just don't see a formal duel challenge there. I think the case for it to be a casual commentary on the state of the battle is alot stronger than it being a direct and formal challenge.

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