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 Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 5:38 pm 
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DevilDan wrote:
I had privately speculated that Stanley might view Charlie different now that he's having to accept that there are arkentools not meant for him directly.

Then again, that would require rational behavior on the part of Stanley.

And even if he were looking at the Arkendish with anything other than greedy, selfish eyes, he still faces the unpleasant fact that Charlie is Not On His Side. He might be willing for the Arkendish to attune to Parson or Maggie (or an otherwise appropriate trusted assistant), but Charlie is a rival overlord. That's a whole nother story.

On the subject of the Arkenpliers, they are only as useful as they are because Wanda got lucky. Really lucky. She acquired them, the turn after the most catastrophic battle of recent Erfworld battles and she got them. I know that's rather irrelevant for us, but if some other Croakamancer had gotten the Arkenpliers umpteen hundred turns ago, they would probably hardly be remarked upon.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 5:41 pm 
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    DevilDan wrote:
    I had privately speculated that Stanley might view Charlie different now that he's having to accept that there are arkentools not meant for him directly.

    Then again, that would require rational behavior on the part of Stanley.

    he spent 8 turns sulking about wanda, i think he's gaining some wisdom of what's happening around him. i get the feeling he was named heir and saline IV croaked too soon afterwards. which i'm fairly confident is all wanda's doing. but i doubt stanley was ever trained for being an overlord

    parson has ensured his survival and wanda, willingly or not, has bought him enough time to learn without threat of being attacked. so stanley may be developing as a character this book.

    no matter what happens i doubt anyone who has attuned is ever going to die within the erfworld story. not for biological reasons just for plot reasons

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:06 pm 
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    Mr. Goodwraith wrote:
    I'm wondering exactly how Charlie got the pics from Orgchart. Would he have been able to get a veiled archon in and out of that hex somehow, or did someone in the city -- nominally loyal to someone else's side -- send him a thinkagram before fleeing or being croaked? If the latter, it leads me to the question: Does Charlie have spies working many of the major cities? If so, he'd better hope none of them get decrypted and questioned, or Parson is going to have a really good idea how he gets his intel. In fact, Parson could use a decrypted agent to feed Charlie disinformation; would Charlie be able to tell that an agent had been turned if the agent is careful not to expose his or her livery in a thinkagram?


    Remember last update withing Charlie asking Parson why his forces got attack while in GK's battle space? That's how Charlie got his intel. His forces just weren't passing through GK's battle space.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:20 pm 
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    Decorus wrote:
    Charles' secrets are exposed, because of the Decrypted Archons..
    Seconded. It was a big OMG OMG reading that.

    Stanley deals in information as much as mercenary work.

    I really hope they've been "debriefing" the Archons (nice image). If not, Parson need to start NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:20 pm 
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    Stanley is most certainly maturing. He felt guilty about what he did to Jack Snipe; he's learning the names of some of his minions. I don't expect any miracles, however. Parson gave him a lucrative if busywork assignment to take his minds of his almost childish reaction to having to sit in GK while Wanda and Ansom are out a-conquerin'.

    The changes in the characters, whether it's JIllian, Sizemore, Maggie, or others, is one of my favorite parts of this story.

    HailGreen28 wrote:
    I really hope they've been "debriefing" the Archons (nice image). If not, Parson need to start NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    We know that Parson has talked to archons:

    Quote:
    Parson usually took along someone to talk to as he made his rounds. Sometimes this was Maggie or Sizemore. Sometimes it was one or two of the Decrypted Warlords or Archons. Today, it was Jack, the Foolamancer.

    From summer update 36

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    Last edited by DevilDan on Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:23 pm 
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    Nebulious wrote:
    hazel-rah wrote:
    I think he's in serious trouble and he knows it. He's lost archons, allies, and there's a large army on his doorsteps (not really, but if they were to capture GK, he can guess where they're going next). If he can't ally with FAQ then his last option is Stanley purely out of survival, and the last place he wants to be is in debt to someone else.


    So here's what bothers me: the motives don't match up. Is Charlie claiming he wants to off Stanley just to win Jillian's trust? Revenge? Bad blood? If the RCC II is going to be on a witch-hunt for nonroyals with Arkentools, then Charlie ought to swallow his pride and get himself on better terms with Gobwin Knob, since they hold most of the cards right now.
    If the decrypted Archons are seen working for Stanley, then Charlie might be SCREWED.

    Stanley hates Charlie. And every Royal side already distrusts Charlie after the "offer TV couldn't accept". If the Royals see Archons in Stanley's strikeforce........

    Then Charlie has NO friends in the western conflict. Only enemies.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:26 pm 
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    DevilDan wrote:

    We know that Parson has talked to archons:


    Then what info has Parson got?

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:41 pm 
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    Side note: There was some talk earlier of whether Charlie's Archon's would disband if they disobeyed Charlie's orders.

    Recall Book 1: pg 67 Where the Archons are talking to Jillian, when one let her know about the spell on her, though she is not supposed to know, as Jetstone had not paid for magic security.

    One Archon then states Charlie's Rule 19: Even Charlie's rules need to be bent sometimes.

    So, whether they would disband or not is irrelevent: Charlie has given them a loophole.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:59 pm 
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    Danetrix wrote:
    Side note: There was some talk earlier of whether Charlie's Archon's would disband if they disobeyed Charlie's orders.

    Recall Book 1: pg 67 Where the Archons are talking to Jillian, when one let her know about the spell on her, though she is not supposed to know, as Jetstone had not paid for magic security.

    One Archon then states Charlie's Rule 19: Even Charlie's rules need to be bent sometimes.

    So, whether they would disband or not is irrelevent: Charlie has given them a loophole.


    We know that some orders can be disobeyed. And a rule is not the same as an Erf order.

    But beyond that, if "bending" the rules is part of the rules, then you're still following the rules.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:16 pm 
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    Arkenhammer + Walnut = Pigeon.


    Arkenhammer + Gwiffon = Walnut.


    Arkenhammer + Pigeon = Gwiffon?

    It makes a nice cycle. Walnut -> Pigeon -> Gwiffon -> Walnut.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:19 pm 
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    Decorus wrote:
    Has anyone considered Charles is another Ultimate Warlord summoned by magic?


    over and over again.

    Quote:
    She's gambling the lives of every man, woman and beast loyal to Faq on the strength of her luck. And it's a needless, pointless risk. She's worse than every other ruler we've seen. Up to and including Stanley, the poster child for mismanagement.


    in EVERY single book I've read with a reluctantly crowned ruler. The king or queen is ALWAYS gallivanting off without the support of bodyguards at every available opportunity.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:35 pm 
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    Infidel wrote:
    in EVERY single book I've read with a reluctantly crowned ruler. The king or queen is ALWAYS gallivanting off without the support of bodyguards at every available opportunity.

    Not to mention every single "saner" and "wiser" Starfleet captain and commander on record. Riddle me that one.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:53 pm 
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    Akkristor wrote:
    Arkenhammer + Walnut = Pigeon.


    Arkenhammer + Gwiffon = Walnut.


    Arkenhammer + Pigeon = Gwiffon?

    It makes a nice cycle. Walnut -> Pigeon -> Gwiffon -> Walnut.


    I think it was a bat actually. Small flyers <-> walnuts seems to be how it goes.

    I think when it comes to Charlie and his loss of information it is bad, but Charlie loves being in control so it could be that it's not as bad as he's making out. Sure the Archons will probably tell a whole load about certain forms of intellegence gathering, but I imagine there are some higher up that would know a lot more (like the secretary at parson was first directed to) but who don't go out unless absolutely necessary. The loss of any information is horrible for Charlie, especially since he's had such a monopoly on it up until now and is used to it being that way.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:02 pm 
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    When Charlie said Stanley is telling people that Charlie is on Stan's side to scare them into the coalition he didn't mean the RCC II. Why would he scare people into joining an alliance against him?

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:13 pm 
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    Slately not Stanley. Damn their similar names!

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:19 pm 
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    the_tick_rules wrote:
    When Charlie said Stanley is telling people that Charlie is on Stan's side to scare them into the coalition he didn't mean the RCC II. Why would he scare people into joining an alliance against him?

    Charlie said that SLATELY was claiming Charlie is Stanley's ally.

    Slately != Stanley.

    Either one would croak you for suggesting otherwise.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:26 pm 
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    Retconjurer wrote:
    On the subject of the Arkenpliers, they are only as useful as they are because Wanda got lucky. Really lucky. She acquired them, the turn after the most catastrophic battle of recent Erfworld battles and she got them. I know that's rather irrelevant for us, but if some other Croakamancer had gotten the Arkenpliers umpteen hundred turns ago, they would probably hardly be remarked upon.


    There is no such thing as luck in narrative.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:30 pm 
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    Charlie is one of those gamers who, in massive multiplayer situations, gets his power and jollies from manipulating the other players. His whole strategy isn't to play the game to beat the player, it's to play the PLAYER to beat the game.

    By selling information at high prices, ruthlessly switching sides or dredging up onerous, expensive contracts on a whim to pull someone's nuts out of the fire, and by strategically selling key information to different sides, this sort of player can keep the other's so busy with their conflicts against each other that they willingly fund him and are too busy fighting each other to bother with him.

    This clever little tactic is ruined if said player gets too powerful too fast. So, as a result, one has to project an air of 'cultivated weakness' (too weak to be a threat, too strong to be worth fighting), or give the impression that attacking them is not in the attacker's best interest (whether by him knowing their secrets, having superior forces to make it unwise, or having allies who can affect them in other ways).

    The total 'power' of such a player is thus directly proportional to how much they can influence the other sides.

    Usually, however, such players tend to be considered utter boopbags since they don't really have friends---aside from their money. All of their influence comes from judicious use of power and being more useful than a nuisance.

    Charlie has seen a TREMENDOUS drop in power because of recent events. It's no surprise he's 'lonely' and seems weak. He IS weak. His ability to influence others has taken a sudden and dramatic downturn. Everyone before knew he was trustworthy only when paid, and the only guarantee was that he could turn against your interests if someone else offered him more cash. He was a necessary evil since 'using' his abilities could give one side an edge over the others.

    Now, however, he's not even trusted THAT far.

    The problem with Charlie is that all his tricks depend on having someone ELSE to use. He's become so adept at playing the players that his ability to actually play the GAME has atrophied. This is what makes Parson so special... he knows how to do BOTH. Is it any wonder Charlie wants him on his side so badly?

    ---

    As far as the RCC and major (currently revealed) players of Erfworld can see...

    *He sold various intel and communication at outrageous prices to sides in the Alliance before the Battle of Gobwin Knob.
    *He was willing to assist in battles that put his own units in no extreme risk (Jacelyn was an exception since she did that on her own).
    *He had MORE that sufficient forces ON HAND to take the entire city for himself from Stanely OR the RCC OR whichever side won the fight with the other, but refused to take over in either former case because he was not a true supportive ally and in the latter place because... oh, wait, people don't KNOW what happened after that.
    *After the big showdown where the RCC lost countless units in the final assault, all he did was assist in negating the Dance Fight bonus at great cost.
    *Everything in the Gobwin Knob Hex was annihilated, along with units in the six surrounding hexes... and after this, Charley ONLY offered to tell what happened if people paid an outrageous sum. (This is a case of his tricks biting him in the boop... he may have wanted to give the info out, but was afraid it wouldn't be believed, instead of charging for it. If he had at least TRIED, he would have given the impression that he was as much of a victim as anyone else. Now he looks like he deliberately KNEW EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED and refused to share when it was needed... even though he didn't know then).
    *He has independently lost Archons which NOW show up in the massive force that seems to be swallowing up Allied cities left and right like an unstoppable juggernaut, and he still refuses to give up information for free to anyone who could pose a threat.
    *A major Royal has pointed out these details and concluded that Charlie must be working for the most hated enemy in the game, which effectively cuts off his powerbase at the knees.

    Slately may have figured him out and spread the lie about him being on the other side to drive another nail in the coffin that contains Charlie's powerbase. Or it could be what he honestly believes... he has more than enough evidence to think it's quite likely! Myself, I think he's just like I would be in such a game... despising such an underhanded manipulative player for what they are and finally seeing a chance to remove him from the game, or at least stall him enough to where he devolves into a non-issue. Archon upkeep probably isn't cheap. Doesn't matter if the accusation is true, the guy's done enough nastiness when he had power, it's best not to let him get it back.

    I only wish he had revealed his position to Parson instead of Jillian... "No Royal side west or south of me will even take my calls..." This is the first comfirmable evidence anyone has HEARD of for his location. If someone were to map out the known kingdoms of the RCC and look at the non-allied nations to the east and north of them, they could most likely triangulate the location of his capital. Jillian probably won't put that much thought into it though. I still like her as a character, I just hope she can manage to navigate between the manipulations of everyone else. It seems SHE is currently the weakest known side, even more so than Charley, because at least he has heavy-hitting units he can rely on.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 9:30 pm 
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    Well said.

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     Post subject: Re: Summer Updates - 041
     Post Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:34 pm 
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    Tyris wrote:
    Charlie is one of those gamers who, in massive multiplayer situations, gets his power and jollies from manipulating the other players. His whole strategy isn't to play the game to beat the player, it's to play the PLAYER to beat the game.
    Out of curiosity, what kind of MMO would allow this kind of strategy? It sounds ruthlessly fun, or ruthlessly painful.

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