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 Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 28, 2010 5:06 pm 
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Sygerrik wrote:
I don't get where this "diplomacy/counter-intel" thing is coming from. We've never seen him do any of that. We've seen him try diplomacy on multiple occasions, and he's failed. It's an informed ability that he never seems to use. It's possible he's the diplomatic specialist simply because his brothers were both so bad at it that he seemed better in comparison, but he's nowhere near the diplomat Parson is (read Book 1: Parson is very, very good at reading people and very clever).

Hamster is an human. And, by Erfworld measure, an elder.

This is Erfworld we're talking about. War is the norm. Unleaded units will charge foaming from their mouths if they spot any unit from other side unless ordered otherwise. The only persons worth taking prisioners are high level warlords and rare valuable mancers so you can brainwash them to work for you. So yes, most diplomacy in Erfworld is quite rudimentary and secondary, because violence is the most popular solution, and nobody seems to have problems with massive slaughters.

That trems even tries to use diplomacy is a sign he's good at it. Other warlords normally just think "What's the best way of spliting that guy's head in half?" instead of "How can I not fight this guy?".

Hamster however came from a world where violence is the last resort. He's used to needing to read other people. He's used to subtle manipulation, lying, deceiving and sweet talking that exists in our world. Pretty much all erfworlders aren't. They live short brutal lifes of just some dozens of turns (hundreds if you're lucky), and they are born "taught" to just fight and conquer on their side's name.

Sygerrik wrote:
Tramennis is clever, but he's not a very good diplomat and he's not a very good commander. And we've never had any indication that he actually knows what counter-intelligence is-- not that counter-intelligence would be a particularly valuable specialization in a world with Lookamancers and Thinkamancers.


Well, he already showed signs of counter intelgence. He knew the rockers planned to backstab him if he showed weakness.

As for mancers, they would give you a big edge, yes, but remember, mancers are rare and precious. You're lucky if you have either a lookamancer OR a thinkmancer, but both at the same time? We haven't met such a side yet. And yes their intelegence network would be something to fear.

If you don't have any diplomat-warlord, you seriously risk ending up like Stanley. With a massive coalition after your head because you just went attacking other sides willy nilly whitout any kind of excuse or someone to tell you that may not be the brightest idea.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Mon Jun 28, 2010 5:16 pm 
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    Misty was a Lookamancer. Maggie is a Thinkamancer.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Mon Jun 28, 2010 5:47 pm 
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    Tramennis may well be a genius at diplomacy and at counter-intelligence, intrigue, and subterfuge by Erf standards. He certainly has less of a taste for pitched battle or for power games than his brothers did.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 1:10 am 
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    oslecamo2 wrote:
    because you just went attacking other sides willy nilly whitout any kind of excuse


    actually, I think that describes all sides in erfworld? it's all about fighting and conquest. the thing about Stanley re: coalition against him was (IIRC from what was said before in various conversations, e.g. between Vinny and Ansom) the "not royal" business, and re: "bad idea" was because Stanley is, in Wanda's words, an imbecile :-P Each side in erfworld would be taking potshots at every other side they could reach anyway, it's just that Stanley wasn't really any good at it

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 1:21 am 
    E is for Erfworld Supporter This user was a Tool before it was cool Here for the 10th Anniversary Has collected at least one unit
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    No, I don't think so. Smart sides wouldn't attack everyone at once - they'd try to be at peace with MOST of their neighbors, and fight only one at a time. (Or, possibly, spend some time not fighting at all to build up their forces for a campaign.)

    Even in a game where all sides want to conquer all other sides, the side that immediately attacks everyone is being stupid.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:26 am 
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    ftl wrote:
    No, I don't think so. Smart sides wouldn't attack everyone at once - they'd try to be at peace with MOST of their neighbors, and fight only one at a time. (Or, possibly, spend some time not fighting at all to build up their forces for a campaign.)

    Even in a game where all sides want to conquer all other sides, the side that immediately attacks everyone is being stupid.


    Precisely what I was gonna say.

    Sure, everybody wants to kill each other, but spreading your forces and attacking everybody at the same time is an horrible idea. Because then all those sides you attacked will have a personal grudge against you. Or you just worn yourself down fighting multiple enemies and then somebody appears and finishes you.

    This happens a lot when you play free for all in an RTS. If you go and are too agressive, the other players will see you as the bigger threat and gank on you. A much better strategy is to avoid conflict as much as possible, wait untill two sides duke it out, then jump in and kill whoever's left standing. If you really have to attack one side first, then make sure you finish them off before moving on to another.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:54 am 
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    I'm ... gonna disagree. heh :-P

    many times we've heard/read about sides that got wiped out. Jetstone itself has its current capital in a city that used to be someone else's capital city. People fight in erfworld all the time, and some win and some lose. (or you could say, "they're all in the process of losing, it's only a question of how long it takes) Look at how gigantic the city Jetsone is using as a capital is - Spacerock doesn't look like a small side that got wiped out, i.e. strong sides still get wiped out, all the time. Was Spacerock playing a smart game, waiting for targets of opportunity, never biting off more than they can chew? If yes, it didn't seem to have done them any good.

    Sitting and waiting to hope for some other side to make a mistake you can capitalise on - that's certainly an option if you want to play a "long game" - but, will it change anything over the long term?

    What I'm trying to say is, that it doesn't matter. In a world where there is no reason for existence other than fighting and conquering, can there be "peace"? Note the conversations Trammenis has had about "the purpose of their existence". There's no such thing as peace, i.e. there's no such thing as a permanent alliance/non-aggression pact - these only last for as long as you have other threats you'd rather face first, but Things Change. If Caesar assassinated Don and took over (let's say it's possible), would they still be allied to Jetstone? Let's say no. Then, for no reason of anything they themselves did, Jetstone would suddenly have lost an ally.

    If you're talking about "growth" as a side: as a tactic, it would be good to eliminate/fight only "controllable" enemies at a time? For how long would this be possible until people start noticing that you're getting bigger and bigger, wiping out smaller sides one by one? What happens to you, at "peace" with a nearby non-aggressive neighbour that's getting bigger and bigger, when this side ends up bigger than you? I'll bet you get real nervous the larger they get. In fact, I'd say it would be stupid to let them get strong enough to where nobody would be strong enough to fight him.

    Haven't you noticed in RPG or board games that when one side gets really strong, all of a sudden coalitions start forming against it, even between people who'd fought each other? Sure everybody can wait for someone else to make a mistake, but there's such a thing as luck (I played a D&D game once where one guy just rolled 1s EVERY ROLL for a couple of turns), and eventually something is going to happen that's going to make one side just so big of a threat that whatever they do, they're gonna make a lot of enemies who want to be friends with each other:

    remember what Wanda said to Stanley early on in Book 1: GK was a very strong side with many cities. And, for goodness' sake, an arkentool that controls dragons. DRAGONS. (ok, dwagons). These aren't invincible critters in this world, but they sure ain't weak. You don't think a coalition would naturally form against it as it gets stronger, absorbing more and more cities and territories? I think it's inevitable that people would want to gang up against GK, Stanley's actions just made it a bit of a shortcut and speeded things up re: coalition-forming. Call it unintended consequences re: Wanda's manipulation of Stanley early on such that Stanley wanted to collect arkentools, but if you actually have a goal in life (however grounded/rational that goal is) other than "live as long as you can", and that goal inevitably puts you in conflict (and, Jetstone has arkenpliers - were they going to give it to GK?)... if you attack and lose that just means your goal is impossible and your defeat inevitable, it doesn't necessarily mean that "you're going about it wrong". Note that his "stupidly attacking everyone" actually put him closer to his goal (getting all arkentools together) because it led to Wanda getting the arkenpliers (via having a need for, and obtaining, Parson), than "sitting and waiting for opportunity" would likely ever have done.

    We don't know if collecting the arkentools is really a valid goal, but stanley certainly thinks it is, and - like so many religious zealots - surely going after what you think "faith" compels you to do ... "let the Titans worry about the details, I mean, they want it to happen, surely I will win". It's in character for Stanley, all it means is he wasn't prepared to "wait forever". He certainly is a moron, but somehow the Titans have provided him with servants that achieve the goals he wants. Does that make what he did wrong, or right?

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:30 am 
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    @build6
    you make some good points, but are off on few things.
    Erfworld is not a game, there is no 'winning' the game where one side conquers all the others, GAME OVER you win.
    As result over time powers will rise and fall but overall there will be a dynamic equilibrium between sides where a few cities change hands but there is a basic stability in the system.
    What happens if one side becomes dominant? First, yes, alliances will form for defense, but a large side becomes over extended and will leave some other front open to attack and be nibbled at by smaller sides unconnected to the primary conflict. If they don't deal with it then others will prey on them too and they will necessarily contract to a defensible scale even if they win all their battles.

    While there are natural balancing dynamics, there is also the balancing effect of someone like Charlie. I would even say that Charlie is essential to the long-term stability of Erfworld. He has no territorial ambitions himself, but will actively counter-balance the effect of strong sides by supporting week sides, because perpetuating conflict between multiple sides with a level playing field is in his best interest. A world like Erfworld needs Charlies to manage the trade in conquest.

    GK is really a case of 'folie a due'. Stanley wants to beat up on the royals who look down on him for not being one of them, Wanda manipulates him because she wants to bring the tools together. This turns into a quest for world domination, (Wanda is the L Ron Hubbard of Toolism, she created teh religion , but knows it's really bs.) As a croakamancer Wanda can turn even the most costly defeat to her advantage up to a point, but it has diminishing returns ( once the army is all uncroaked/decrypted you gain only from the enemy fallen, not your own.).
    Eventually even crazy sides like GK will stabilize at a size and stop aggressive expansion or will fall under the weight of their own excess.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:38 am 
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    build6 wrote:
    many times we've heard/read about sides that got wiped out. Jetstone itself has its current capital in a city that used to be someone else's capital city. People fight in erfworld all the time, and some win and some lose. (or you could say, "they're all in the process of losing, it's only a question of how long it takes) Look at how gigantic the city Jetsone is using as a capital is - Spacerock doesn't look like a small side that got wiped out, i.e. strong sides still get wiped out, all the time. Was Spacerock playing a smart game, waiting for targets of opportunity, never biting off more than they can chew? If yes, it didn't seem to have done them any good.

    Well, it's pretty common for leaders to become arrogant when they get more power. Spacerock may indeed have been a side wich became veryy powerfull trough carefull actions, only for then to squander it's resources trying to squash everybody around them and then Jetstone jumping in to finish it.

    This goes double in a world with sides like Charlie pulling strings from the background, making sure no side gets specially powerfull.

    build6 wrote:
    Sitting and waiting to hope for some other side to make a mistake you can capitalise on - that's certainly an option if you want to play a "long game" - but, will it change anything over the long term?

    Everything dies eventually, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try to last as long as possible. Attacking mindlessly everything and everyone will burn you much faster.

    build6 wrote:
    What I'm trying to say is, that it doesn't matter. In a world where there is no reason for existence other than fighting and conquering, can there be "peace"? Note the conversations Trammenis has had about "the purpose of their existence". There's no such thing as peace, i.e. there's no such thing as a permanent alliance/non-aggression pact - these only last for as long as you have other threats you'd rather face first, but Things Change. If Caesar assassinated Don and took over (let's say it's possible), would they still be allied to Jetstone? Let's say no. Then, for no reason of anything they themselves did, Jetstone would suddenly have lost an ally.

    And now I point you to the great hippymancer, wich says there's a light at the end of the tunnel. It would actualy be possible for Erfworld to know peace if one side managed to overwhelm all others. And Hamster seems to be the kind of warlord who could finally acomplish that.

    build6 wrote:
    If you're talking about "growth" as a side: as a tactic, it would be good to eliminate/fight only "controllable" enemies at a time? For how long would this be possible until people start noticing that you're getting bigger and bigger, wiping out smaller sides one by one? What happens to you, at "peace" with a nearby non-aggressive neighbour that's getting bigger and bigger, when this side ends up bigger than you? I'll bet you get real nervous the larger they get. In fact, I'd say it would be stupid to let them get strong enough to where nobody would be strong enough to fight him.

    Haven't you noticed in RPG or board games that when one side gets really strong, all of a sudden coalitions start forming against it, even between people who'd fought each other? Sure everybody can wait for someone else to make a mistake, but there's such a thing as luck (I played a D&D game once where one guy just rolled 1s EVERY ROLL for a couple of turns), and eventually something is going to happen that's going to make one side just so big of a threat that
    whatever they do, they're gonna make a lot of enemies who want to be friends with each other:

    Good points, but that doesn't mean you should just throw caution to the wind and burn y. Far from it. It means you've got a great task at hand if you want to "win" Erfworld.

    The best comparison would be the Three Kingdoms era of China. A LOT of factions, alliances and treacheries around every corner, the weaker ones ganking the stronger ones, and almost constant war among several borders for almost a century.

    And yet, somehow, one leader managed to emerge victoriuous from that and unite all of China. And trust me, he didn't just go attacking everybody in his way. He had to make alliances, predict betrayals, knowing when to retreat and when to stand and when to attack. It isn't easy, it's very hard actualy, but you can "win" this kind of situation if you've got the needed tactical genius and charisma. And luck.

    build6 wrote:
    remember what Wanda said to Stanley early on in Book 1: GK was a very strong side with many cities. And, for goodness' sake, an arkentool that controls dragons. DRAGONS. (ok, dwagons). These aren't invincible critters in this world, but they sure ain't weak. You don't think a coalition would naturally form against it as it gets stronger, absorbing more and more cities and territories? I think it's inevitable that people would want to gang up against GK, Stanley's actions just made it a bit of a shortcut and speeded things up re: coalition-forming. Call it unintended consequences re: Wanda's manipulation of Stanley early on such that Stanley wanted to collect arkentools, but if you actually have a goal in life (however grounded/rational that goal is) other than "live as long as you can", and that goal inevitably puts you in conflict (and, Jetstone has arkenpliers - were they going to give it to GK?)... if you attack and lose that just means your goal is impossible and your defeat inevitable,

    No, it means you're doing it wrong. Like Charlie pointed out only a fool attacks the oponent where they are strongest. You look out for his weak points, cut out his allies and only then you go for the heavily defended artifact.

    build6 wrote:
    it doesn't necessarily mean that "you're going about it wrong". Note that his "stupidly attacking everyone" actually put him closer to his goal (getting all arkentools together) because it led to Wanda getting the arkenpliers (via having a need for, and obtaining, Parson), than "sitting and waiting for opportunity" would likely ever have done.

    Questionable. If Ansom liked to run around with the arkenpliers, it would be a matter of preparing an ambush. If Stanley had hired Charlie to begin with book 1 would've ended a lot faster.

    build6 wrote:
    We don't know if collecting the arkentools is really a valid goal, but stanley certainly thinks it is, and - like so many religious zealots - surely going after what you think "faith" compels you to do ... "let the Titans worry about the details, I mean, they want it to happen, surely I will win". It's in character for Stanley, all it means is he wasn't prepared to "wait forever". He certainly is a moron, but somehow the Titans have provided him with servants that achieve the goals he wants. Does that make what he did wrong, or right?


    Stanley made a lot of mistakes. Luckily his servants managed to correct them. Like shown on the last comics, choosing Ansom as the new warchief warlord was one such horrible mistake. Because he's Wanda's pet now, and so when she met Jillian and had her at killing range she let her go and use the time stop combo.

    Maggie had to sugest Stanley to go to the kitchen so Hamster can finally start to clean the mess he and Wanda created. Actualy Wanda is an excellent example of what I said about power arrogance. Wanda was pretty smart before, knowing how to manipulate people behind the scenes and use her resources to her fullest.

    But since she got her army of doom, she's now "Hur dur zombie rush lulz!", and thanks to that she's now in a pretty messed up situation. Power doesn't only corrupts. It also makes you overconfident. And overconfidence leads to mistakes. And that's how you take down oponents bigger than you.

    So no, Stanley blindly rushing everyone didn't help his quest. Actualy, things only started to turn around when Wanda began refusing Stanley's order of making the new warlord the next pretty boy in line.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:05 am 
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    gazes_also wrote:
    What happens if one side becomes dominant? First, yes, alliances will form for defense, but a large side becomes over extended and will leave some other front open to attack and be nibbled at by smaller sides unconnected to the primary conflict. If they don't deal with it then others will prey on them too and they will necessarily contract to a defensible scale even if they win all their battles.
    Err... unless there is some sort of "diminishing return" for income from cities being big will give you more neighbors, but it will also give you more forces, and since the "area" of side expands as a square of its distance across, while the boarders go up linearly... While a large side will have significantly more boarder to defend, they will have more cities for each portion of the boarder. So a larger side can actually spend more to defend each portion of their boarder than a small one.

    Here's an example of what I mean: Side A has on its boarders B,C, and D. B has sides 1 and 2 to defend against as well. If Side A takes side B it now has four sides to defend against, but it has twice as much to do it with.

    Simply being a large side makes one MORE defensible. Not less. Of course, most strategy games I've played come with natural balancing factors against this. Many simply reduce the income of cities the farther away from the capital they are. Parson mentioned something like this, but it was unclear if he meant that the increased "upkeep" was not keeping up with the increased income from razed cities, or if larger empires get less income per city.
    Quote:
    Questionable. If Ansom liked to run around with the arkenpliers, it would be a matter of preparing an ambush. If Stanley had hired Charlie to begin with book 1 would've ended a lot faster.
    This is very true. In fact the RRC would have gotten pretty throughly stomped. In fact they probably would have fallen at Parson's first strike with the doughnut.

    Quote:
    Maggie had to sugest Stanley to go to the kitchen so Hamster can finally start to clean the mess he and Wanda created. Actualy Wanda is an excellent example of what I said about power arrogance. Wanda was pretty smart before, knowing how to manipulate people behind the scenes and use her resources to her fullest.

    But since she got her army of doom, she's now "Hur dur zombie rush lulz!", and thanks to that she's now in a pretty messed up situation. Power doesn't only corrupts. It also makes you overconfident. And overconfidence leads to mistakes. And that's how you take down oponents bigger than you.
    No she's pretty much always been overconfident and foolish. See: Jillian mind control fiasco. See: her not studying all the kinds of magic she's good at. (Think of how much a flight spell or even "feather fall", would have done for GK; and why doesn't she know a single healomancy spell) See: her not telling Parson about her magic stash. (Some of those dwagons from the doughnut could have been healed.) Wanda is actually pretty foolish the whole time. But she's worse now with the whole zombie rush.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:55 am 
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    gazes_also wrote:
    Athiesh wrote:
    Ok so first post and supposition...

    I think that razing units for upkeep is a clue. Ossomer will make it to the throne room and have a confrontation with his father. Despite, subtly, fighting Wanda's control he ends up croaking Slately. Slately being the sly old codger that he is sacks the city / units for upkeep (remember this is natural thinkamancy) and promotes Tramennis to Overlord with his last breath.

    [...]

    Then again I have another theory that Rob has a long, long checklist of things that could happen and crosses out something whenever he sees it mentioned on the Forums.


    It's the quantum physics of Erfworld - once forumites are sure something will happen it is becomes impossible in the comic.
    It's the Heisenberg Absolute Freakin' Certainty Principle.


    Hahah... wow. That is a pretty awesome idea, Athiesh. I wouldn't have thought that Slately is smart enough to think of it, but I also expected him to spend his call with Don congratulating himself rather than thanking Don, confiding in Don, and bringing up a very valid strategic worry. Perhaps he'll surprise us yet!

    I wonder what happens if you're standing in a tower that just got sacked for upkeep...?

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:27 pm 
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    gazes_also wrote:
    GK is really a case of 'folie a due'. Stanley wants to beat up on the royals who look down on him for not being one of them, Wanda manipulates him because she wants to bring the tools together. This turns into a quest for world domination, (Wanda is the L Ron Hubbard of Toolism, she created teh religion , but knows it's really bs.) As a croakamancer Wanda can turn even the most costly defeat to her advantage up to a point, but it has diminishing returns ( once the army is all uncroaked/decrypted you gain only from the enemy fallen, not your own.).
    Eventually even crazy sides like GK will stabilize at a size and stop aggressive expansion or will fall under the weight of their own excess.


    Wanda absolutely believes in Toolism. She believes it so hard she refused an alliance with her ex-lover that would have given her much more power at little cost.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:47 pm 
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    build6 wrote:
    I'm ... gonna disagree. heh :-P

    many times we've heard/read about sides that got wiped out. Jetstone itself has its current capital in a city that used to be someone else's capital city. People fight in erfworld all the time, and some win and some lose. (or you could say, "they're all in the process of losing, it's only a question of how long it takes) Look at how gigantic the city Jetsone is using as a capital is - Spacerock doesn't look like a small side that got wiped out, i.e. strong sides still get wiped out, all the time. Was Spacerock playing a smart game, waiting for targets of opportunity, never biting off more than they can chew? If yes, it didn't seem to have done them any good.


    Well, so far we heard of 7 sides that were destroyed or nearly destroyed. GK was nearly destroyed, but that is an unusual case, because of Stanley's lack of diplomacy. Unaroyal was destroyed, Jetszone was/is on the brinck, but that is also unusual, because of the unique effect of the uncroaked volcano and the pliers. Faq is also not the normal case, because it's main defence was it's hidden position; it had few forces and no allies.
    Then remain Napster, Spacerock and the Milquetoast clan. Stanley erased the Milquetost clan with his divine artefact that gives him a powerful unit and many fighting bonuses. And apparently it was considered impressive enough by Saline IV that he made him heir apparent, in breach of all traditions. And we know nothing about the fall of Napster and Spacerock. it could be the result of an single war between two sides, but also the outcome of an series of wars between a number of coalitions.
    I think sides usually exist for a long time and exterminating one is a rare occasion. GK existed long enough to reach a fourth Saline, and both Jetstone and TV look back on a number of former rulers.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:51 pm 
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    Sygerrik wrote:
    gazes_also wrote:
    GK is really a case of 'folie a due'. Stanley wants to beat up on the royals who look down on him for not being one of them, Wanda manipulates him because she wants to bring the tools together. This turns into a quest for world domination, (Wanda is the L Ron Hubbard of Toolism, she created teh religion , but knows it's really bs.) As a croakamancer Wanda can turn even the most costly defeat to her advantage up to a point, but it has diminishing returns ( once the army is all uncroaked/decrypted you gain only from the enemy fallen, not your own.).
    Eventually even crazy sides like GK will stabilize at a size and stop aggressive expansion or will fall under the weight of their own excess.


    Wanda absolutely believes in Toolism. She believes it so hard she refused an alliance with her ex-lover that would have given her much more power at little cost.


    No.
    Stanley's Toolism is the belief that the Toolwielders are ordained by the Titans to rule the world and are entitled to stomp everyone who gets in their way. Wanda believes that Toolwielders are servants of fate and will bring the tools together, that's all. Toolism is a ploy to achieve that.
    If she could have been told that Charlie was Jillian's partner, the opportunity to get in contact with the only other known toolwielder would have turned her. She has one tool, she has control over another, at some point she has to try to get close to Charlie to get influence over the third.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 1:11 pm 
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    Sygerrik wrote:
    Tramennis is clever, but he's not a very good diplomat and he's not a very good commander.


    This needs correction. We have seen exactly one battle that fell under Tram's responsibility - and he gloriously won. With minimal losses. This makes him a good commander in my eyes. All we know is that Tram likes the diplomatic way (by listening to his thoughts) - yet he is still a warlord. Heck, even Rambo wanted to live in peace...

    And Slately says Tram doesnt want to lead. This could mean a hundred different things. The most likely being that the king doesnt see Tram fit to fill the role of an arrogant snotty ruler. Tram seems to be of the direct opposite type - affectionate. Which is a pretty rare attribute for a unit in Erfworld.

    Good at least there is consense about Tram being clever. The decision to eliminate the stack in front of the bridge - and this with ground-based units only - was a strategic and cunning move. This adds more to him being a good than a bad commander.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 2:56 pm 
    Print Book 2 & Draw Book 3 Supporter Here for the 10th Anniversary Has collected at least one unit
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    Quote:
    This needs correction. We have seen exactly one battle that fell under Tram's responsibility - and he gloriously won. With minimal losses. This makes him a good commander in my eyes. All we know is that Tram likes the diplomatic way (by listening to his thoughts) - yet he is still a warlord. Heck, even Rambo wanted to live in peace...
    He was facing units that were not even attempting victory. They were simply attempting a desperate strike to protect Wanda. Needless to say he won, and pointlessly endangered units that might help with that victory. And right now he is splitting up his archers and leadership from his heavies and infantry. He is pretty much asking for a few decrypted dwagons to croak every archer or perhaps every unit in the atrium. This isn't what I call a good strategy.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:19 pm 
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    gazes_also wrote:
    If she could have been told that Charlie was Jillian's partner, the opportunity to get in contact with the only other known toolwielder would have turned her. She has one tool, she has control over another, at some point she has to try to get close to Charlie to get influence over the third.


    I find that unclear. It makes no sense to distance one's self from one tool wielder to get closer to a second. Net gain=0.

    Furthermore, Wanda respects Parson's intelligence, so she would hardly wish to pit herself against it. Who would make, or edit, her plans? Jillian, who is impulsive and short-sighted? Charlie, a person seemingly motivated purely by greed? Any Decrypted warlord, many of whom(e.g. Ossomer) have already shown themselves easy to fool with a simple veil?

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:00 pm 
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    Lamech wrote:
    No she's pretty much always been overconfident and foolish. See: Jillian mind control fiasco.

    What fiasco? Jillian is pretty strong willed naturally. She had the archons helping her. She was bound to break out of it sooner or later, but Wanda was limited on choices. She's a master croackmancer, not a master thinkmancer. In my view she did what she could and the mind control lasted pretty long. Even Maggie supports this by commenting it would take a very experienced thinkmancer to prevent the backslash.

    Lamech wrote:
    See: her not studying all the kinds of magic she's good at. (Think of how much a flight spell or even "feather fall", would have done for GK; and why doesn't she know a single healomancy spell)

    However she did knew a "shield" spell. Better to risk a fall than be killed by some lazer beam don't you think?

    This isn't D&D where a wizard has all the time in the world to learn new spells. Wanda has got a pretty busy schedule everyday of manipulation, mindraping, croackmancy and other stuff. She's not exactly free to research every spell in Erfworld.

    Also, see: Wanda geting the spell to summon the ultimate warlord.

    Lamech wrote:
    See: her not telling Parson about her magic stash. (Some of those dwagons from the doughnut could have been healed.)

    Well, to be fair, neither the other mancers said anything about it. Are you implying sizemore is overconifdent? :lol:
    And even if they did, that would've demanded a mancer to be with the dwagons to use the scroll. Right, brilliant idea.

    Lamech wrote:
    Wanda is actually pretty foolish the whole time. But she's worse now with the whole zombie rush.


    No, before Wanda was a very clever manipulator, but not perfect. She made some mistakes here and there, but she was also the one to present the idea of the perfect warlord to Stanley, intercepting Jillian's air force our of her own will, wich granted them flying mounts to intercept Ansom and ultimately the one who started and profited more from the whole GK war.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:01 pm 
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    gazes_also wrote:
    Sygerrik wrote:
    gazes_also wrote:
    GK is really a case of 'folie a due'. Stanley wants to beat up on the royals who look down on him for not being one of them, Wanda manipulates him because she wants to bring the tools together. This turns into a quest for world domination, (Wanda is the L Ron Hubbard of Toolism, she created teh religion , but knows it's really bs.) As a croakamancer Wanda can turn even the most costly defeat to her advantage up to a point, but it has diminishing returns ( once the army is all uncroaked/decrypted you gain only from the enemy fallen, not your own.).
    Eventually even crazy sides like GK will stabilize at a size and stop aggressive expansion or will fall under the weight of their own excess.


    Wanda absolutely believes in Toolism. She believes it so hard she refused an alliance with her ex-lover that would have given her much more power at little cost.


    No.
    Stanley's Toolism is the belief that the Toolwielders are ordained by the Titans to rule the world and are entitled to stomp everyone who gets in their way. Wanda believes that Toolwielders are servants of fate and will bring the tools together, that's all. Toolism is a ploy to achieve that.
    If she could have been told that Charlie was Jillian's partner, the opportunity to get in contact with the only other known toolwielder would have turned her. She has one tool, she has control over another, at some point she has to try to get close to Charlie to get influence over the third.


    That's not really true. She believes that the rights and needs of the Tools and the importance of their mission supersedes the rights of everyone else. She would never abandon Stanley to join Charlie, because she knows that without her, Stanley would die. She would rather stay with him and leave Charlie to do his own thing until, such time, by his own Fate, he joined them. Wanda believes implicitly in the implacability of Fate. She knows that it can't be broken or denied.
    "Charlie is an enigma, but he is attuned, and he will play out his part just as I have, and will. As a neutral non-Royal, let him stand aside and watch for now."

    It doesn't matter what the non-Attuned do, in her eyes. She believes that inevitably Charlie will join her, and thus she has no incentive to join him if doing so betrays Stanley. Either way, there would be two Tools together, but at least this way the third is out there. Charlie's hostility doesn't matter to her because she knows that he will either change his mind or circumstances will force him to join her.

    So yes. She does believe in Toolism. She may not care about conquering the world, but insofar as the belief that the attuned wielders of the Tools have been chosen by the Titans to perform some grand mission, and non-Tools cannot stand in their way, is Toolism, she is the alpha-Toolist.

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     Post subject: Re: Book 2 – Page 35
     Post Posted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:38 pm 
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    Just a point about being "constantly" at war. I'm sure that there is a balance on Erf: statistically, most kingdoms fight wars just as most nations fight wars on earth. Perhaps the balance point is different, possibly tending to a higher frequency of conflict on Erf; I'm not necessarily convinced even that is the case. We're not surprised to read earth histories full of nearly constant warfare. But they have to rebuild their strength after larger conflicts, so it's no surprise that many kingdoms will maintain truces, low-intensity border skirmishing, or alliances with most sides surrounding them. Stanley and Banhammer are two extremes of the same spectrum.

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