Book 3 - Page 280

Predictable

Book 3 - Page 280
Comic - Book 3 - Page 280
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Axiom wrote:
*SNIP*

Obviously, we know that the subconscious desires of the ruler impact the type and temperament of the units that get popped. That means that most units that get popped are going to typically have a disposition which is cohesive with the values of their side. Nobody is going to desire to pop a disloyal unit, in other words. But I don't think it's universally true that units are always loyal to their original side and to any side they join thereafter. I mean, just look at Albert. He seemed really unhappy as a Faq unit, his original side, before the whole Vinny conquering Faq thing went down.


I think Albert is exactly what Jillian was desiring when she popped Albert- she just didn't think things through. She would want a scrapper, who rejects convention and does what needs to be done. Someone who was never subject to the hated wisdom of her father. Someone who just acts, willing to take on authority and fight. Albert is exactly Jillian, and they hate each other because of it. Then she treats him poorly, because she treats everyone poorly, and Albert now sees her as the Authority figure to be fought. His loyalty has been dropping since near day one I'm guessing. Its only the fact that it was his substitute role model that betrayed FAQ that has kept him loyal so far.
easter wrote:
Chiu ChunLing wrote:
Yes, I get that Jillian's reasoning is flawed. She's using her belief that it is impossible for the decrypted to be anything more than puppets as the premise in her proof that Ansom is just a meat puppet. Jillian's reasoning is supposed to be flawed, that's the way her character is written.

But we're suppose to be able to see that, if Jillian is wrong about decrypted being mere puppets, then Ansom's efforts to get Jillian decrypted do not prove he has no love or free will.

See, my point is that Jillian's REASONING is not flawed. Her INFORMATION is incomplete which makes her conclusions flawed. Her argument is valid but not sound.

Her premises area

1a) Ansom knew what Wanda did to Jillian with the suggestion spell
1b) Ansom understood and agreed that this hurt Jillian and was wrong because it took away her ability to choose for herself (her free will)
2a) Magic can't compel someone to hurt someone they love
2b) Ansom really loved Jillian
3a) Nobody who really believed in Royalism could be magically compelled to serve Stanley long term in his mission to wipe out Jetstone
3b) Ansom really believed in Royalism
4a) The decrypted calling itself Ansom serves Stanley and tried to hurt Jillian in a way that, if the decrypted are real, would be comparable to the suggestion spell.

THEREFORE the decrypted calling itself Ansom isn't the real Ansom because Wanda couldn't make the real Ansom do those things.

She isn't using her belief that it is impossible for the decrypted to be anything more than puppets as the premise in her proof that Ansom is just a meat puppet. She's using the false B premises in her proof that Ansom is just a meat puppet.
The flaw in your argument is you have equivocated suggestion magic with orders.

Wanda could not magically compel an enemy unit to act in a way it felt strongly against. That is true. Duty and orders both, on the other hand, have been shown to force units to act against their own wishes. Claude was forced to merge with Big Think at the risk of his life/individuality and to cheat, despite not wanting to do either. For a more exact mirror of your main argument about Ansom and love: earlier in this same book we saw Vinnie betray Jillian and Albert because he was ordered to despite loving both of them and personally knowing everyone he was killing.
Does it seem like Marie usually is telling the truth, but not the whole truth, most of the time? She never did clarify exactly how she was going to deal with the Queen for Georgia, and more or less let her assume that the plan to take the city would somehow include neutralizing Jillian, and GK in charge.

So the plan was to take the city, then put dead bodies through the portal and thereafter take the Magic Kingdom. Next up, getting Wanda into the city and turning to Faq. Does that step preclude the first plan from happening?

Sure, Jillian isn't likely to be all gung ho and happy about such a plan, but what about Wanda? She has her other units still held prisoner to rescue, and being locked out of the MK has to be bad for whatever side she is on.

Exact words matter, for both a signamancer and a predictamancer. The pesky details of contracts, and the fine details of prophecies which can't reveal anything which would prevent the prophecy from happening, but still must provide guidance so that it comes to pass.

"I've served only Fate, and the Crown of Faq." Does it matter whose head the crown sits on? Just how much of her loyalty is given to any side, compared to her devotion to Fate -- and whatever plan has been Predicted? It was pretty easy for her to be completely loyal to Fate when she was a barbarian, but it seems like she followed that path even in the old kingdom of Faq. Banhammer supported her, and perhaps had some input and knowledge about her plans even then.

Jillian can be annoying, but Marie can be downright terrifying when you think about it. What she did after being decrypted is not only very powerful, but cold hearted and calculating. Only justifiable if her predictions are accurate, unavoidable, and perhaps ultimately for the good of all.

It leads me down darker paths, though, thinking about it.

Spoiler: show
Jillian is under the spell of a "monster" -- Charlie -- and curing that could be the only way to return her to her former self, and thereby restore her to the path her father originally set her on. The only way we know to undo the "Deal Of A Lifetime" limitations easily is decryption.
That should also, theoretically, make Jillian "popped again" without any of the effects of Charlie's meddling (or her addiction).

Here's where things get even trickier and darker. While Wanda could happily decrypt Jillian,
if she turned to Faq I doubt that she could croak her ruler, even to cure her. She could,
however, just shoot her before she turned -- except that would mess up the contract, so she can't.

So who could croak Jillian without penalty? How about someone with no strong loyalty to their own side, able to dust a friendly warlord with no real regrets?

Marie croaks Jillian, Wanda decrypts her. We gain a Jillian who is free of all the mind manipulations of the past, and whose appreciation of Wanda just got a big boost.

Since Albert is still out there, the side of Faq doesn't fall. He becomes King, but ICFYS remains a city of Faq -- the capital -- but with Marie and Wanda in control of the tower. What can they do next?

Well, they are sitting in the garrison, and in theory could claim the city themselves. Whether that is Wanda or Jillian, or even Marie, it doesn't matter, as long as the new side isn't GK.
Jillian might -- I don't know if it can work this way -- even claim the city for the side she'll call Faq, even though there is already a side by that name.

Presto! Capture all the former Faq forces, perhaps even the giants, croak and decypt them if needed, push as much as you can through the portal, and boom! Magic Kingdom conquest done easily, and Gobwin Knob isn't on the hook for any of it. Wanda/Marie/Jillian's new side can take on Charlie without contract penalties.

Could all this really work? I'm not sure, but I think it falls within the rules for sides and city conquests. It seems pretty extreme to me, but then, Charlie has been doing some pretty extreme things, and the whole situation in the MK isn't exactly mellow, or to Wanda's liking.



Regardless of how it actually plays out -- and I'm hoping that my dark thoughts aren't the actual plan -- Marie and the Predictamancers seem just as scary as the Thinkamancers (and perhaps just about all the other caster leadership in the MK).
The Unlurked wrote:
Wanda could not magically compel an enemy unit to act in a way it felt strongly against. That is true. Duty and orders both, on the other hand, have been shown to force units to act against their own wishes. Claude was forced to merge with Big Think at the risk of his life/individuality and to cheat, despite not wanting to do either. For a more exact mirror of your main argument about Ansom and love: earlier in this same book we saw Vinnie betray Jillian and Albert because he was ordered to despite loving both of them and personally knowing everyone he was killing.
This is quite a good point, though Claud doesn't count since he's decrypted, but Vinnie totally does, I think he loved Jillian more than Ansom ever did.

Still loves her, really.

On the other hand, we've seen units do things they were not ordered to do because of love. Bunny croaking Don, for instance. And yet, what she would have done for love was tell Caesar to back down...she wanted to, but her duty forbade it. She didn't need to eliminate Don for being a threat to Caesar, she needed to eliminate Don because he was a threat to TV. We see a lot of this from Maggie too...is it something to do with Thinkamancers?

And yet Wanda used the paper-thin pretext of Jillian being useful as a mole to protect and release her when that clearly wasn't in the best interest of GK (or herself). She was lying to Stanley and Parson, not because that was good for GK, but because it protected Jillian. But nobody has ever loved Jillian like Wanda. Not Vinny, and definitely not Ansom.

So here's the case we can build against decrypted. Wanda didn't want to decrypt Jillian, Wanda knows decryption better than anyone else. Wanda could only accept decrypting Jillian by giving up on loving her. Which would make a great case...except Jillian doesn't know all of that.

As for 'darker path' with Marie, I thought it would be the most convenient resolution before, but now I don't. Wanda apparently needs to come to view decryption as a gain that units would willingly embrace before she could ever decrypt Jillian without passing her moral event horizon. Marie is key to that, since it's clear that Marie accepted decryption, but Marie did that not because she wanted to be decrypted but because she'd do anything if it is 'Fated'. Some would regard that as showing that Marie is beyond her moral event horizon, but I'm inclined to believe that for Marie it would be rejecting her Fate that would be immoral.

If one is inclined to take a less relativist view of moral event horizons, so far Fate is still on Parson's side. Since he's the representative of the Stupidworld morality we generally prefer to Erfworld behavior, Fate helping him change Erfworld into something more acceptable to Stupidworld ideals makes Fate one of the good guys...for now.

I'm more of a pragmatist, Wanda needs to start acting like people might volunteer to be decrypted to get anyone to actually be willing to volunteer for it (or at least see it as a viable second chance). She needs to stop acting like she's the ultimate evil to get everyone to stop fighting them. No more of this "convert or die and be converted anyway" crap.

But then again, I don't believe in 'Fate', so I wouldn't bother to fight it.
Metallicat wrote:
Regardless of how it actually plays out -- and I'm hoping that my dark thoughts aren't the actual plan -- Marie and the Predictamancers seem just as scary as the Thinkamancers (and perhaps just about all the other caster leadership in the MK).


That's why you usually shouldn't act when you don't know what the opposition can do to you. and also the reason why experienced players Curbstomp new players on those online games. Since they have seen some real shit happening.

At this rate, we will find out that the seemingly weak Croakmancers could literally bring to fight for a time the spirits of old deceased units from the City of heroes as long as they knew something about them that helps them convince to come. (ofc really guarded secret, or like with those Fate Golems, you can only see them if you have those croakmancer senses)

Btw, I think that Parson will be able to gain those "special senses" as part of the perfect warlord pack, if he ever was told about those. (that those things exist? and then, he starts to see them!) :o
Chiu ChunLing wrote:
And yet Wanda used the paper-thin pretext of Jillian being useful as a mole to protect and release her when that clearly wasn't in the best interest of GK (or herself). She was lying to Stanley and Parson, not because that was good for GK, but because it protected Jillian. But nobody has ever loved Jillian like Wanda. Not Vinny, and definitely not Ansom.


But there is differences in this case compared to vinny case, that you may have been forgetting to consider. The first one is that Wanda on GK is treated like shit and runs on low loyalty while Vinny has such a huge Loyalty that he will choose duty over love.

The second difference you may also be forgetting, is that Wanda is also running on really old orders (be a poison apple to any side you are on) and that one may be still lingering (even if she changed sides) so any chance she has to screw GK over, she is compelled to try to use it.

Also totally understandable that croakmancers over all others casters would value to honor the last wishes of the departed, since they have links to the dead units.
Hmmm...I don't know that I'd characterize Wanda as being bound by the final orders of her old side...she became ruler of that side, however briefly. Not that it doesn't affect what she does, but not in an Erfworld mechanic sort of way. I'd say that her experiences in Haffaton were more formative, especially with Olive.

Of course, that's going to mean that she doesn't have particularly high loyalty to any side, and especially to any ruler. But that very fact makes the lengths she goes to for Jillian all the more remarkable.

Then again, part of what I was saying earlier is that I don't see Erfworld mechanics like "Duty" and "Loyalty" as being all that different (or at all different, really) from their Stupidworld counterparts. Sure, there are magic spells in Erfworld that can quantify and manipulate those things to some degree, but the same is true of psychiatric/marketing/indoctrination methods in our world (and thus presumably Stupidworld).

Units pop with a heavy indoctrination to be loyal to their side. They can then be affected by things like Thinkamancy and Turnamancy. But mostly, their experiences shape their outlook on how worthwhile their companions and leaders are in the same basic way that happens in our world. The big difference is that we live in a world with less clearly distinct sides and change sides a lot...or at least have many chances to turn because we're so heavily exposed to marketing from competing 'sides'.
...So refocusing on the whole GK-vs-CC thing now, when we last left Parson Gotti, he was in Transylvito's war room looking at RVC's image of Charlescomm's old layout from Bonnie's memory.

Is Parson planning an assault? Is Parson going to be rolling into Charlescomm expecting the old layout, and be up against Shirley Temple without meaning to?

Parson might lose this one -big- if he think his info is better than it is. Which is really likely, since he can't just run numbers on the Mathamancy bracelet anymore.
If nothing else, current events make me think it would be within Shirley's purview to either bar Parson from entering or kick him right back out.

"Ooooh no no no! I'm sorry young man, but Charles can't play until he finishes his vegetables and cleans his room. You'll just have to come back some other time. Now scoot."
We don't have the exact terms of the GK-TV alliance, but every canon discussion of it I saw has Parson getting his bracer back, even if he's still letting Ben use it for now (any why exactly shouldn't Ben share his results, like they've been doing?).

I'm sure Parson is still planning an assault, but exactly how would that happen anymore? The topside portals have been sealed and Wanda didn't mention a thing about having Deisaac kipi the SR portal, just cracking the focus collar to allow them to exit the MK. So maybe Claud and Ivan can team up to still send cheap dolls into CC for contract LULZ, but they can't put enough force in those tunnels to actually make a serious attempt, even if they had a way to get Parson through the CC portal (topside or shards).

Besides, it currently seems more likely it will be Buck coming after Wanda. And Wanda will probably go back once she has the 'pliers, there's some bodies she wants to decrypt down there.