1. Hi there, Guest

    Only registered users can really experience what DLP has to offer. Many forums are only accessible if you have an account. Why don't you register?
    Dismiss Notice

WIP A Practical Guide to Evil by Erraticerrata - T - Original Fantasy

Discussion in 'Original Fiction' started by DvorakQ, Apr 14, 2016.

  1. Xarlor

    Xarlor First Year

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2014
    Messages:
    46
    Am I the only one worried about this trend?

    "I let Winter loose, shunting off the alienation into the others who drew on the stuff of my mantle – Diabolist, as always, but now Ivah as well"

    Cat doesn't learn how to deal with the alienation herself, but shunts it into Diabolist and now her loyal Drows. That seems like a remarkable bad idea.
     
  2. Legacy

    Legacy Order Member DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Messages:
    800
    I'm more worried about the fact that we are back here instead of finishing the bit with Black and Pilgrim. Just screams an off screen death happened again and I really don't have the patience to deal with that.
     
  3. Seratin

    Seratin Proudmander Prestige DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,406
    Location:
    Dún na ngall
    High Score:
    3,792

    On the contrary I think showing Black's death in this instance would really have taken away from the scene. His defeat wasn't about getting stabbed, he was outsmarted by a Hero. There's far more weight to that in regards to the death of his character.
     
  4. Ryuugi Shi

    Ryuugi Shi Jazz Hands!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Messages:
    1,806
    In all honesty, this is a very good tactic, though I question it's efficacy when it's being applied only to those that sign on board with her, which is a very small portion of the tide of death she's planning to unleash on the surface. Even so, it's at least a precaution, and her contingencies were good ones as well, which is important because her Lesser oaths won't carry beyond the Drow's sworn periods of service, which is enough time to let them gather a lot of power, first. For all my complaints, it's at least a good attempt.

    But man does Cat try to ruin it immediately.

    Listen. When Cat first decided to use Akua on a regular basis, I expected that it wouldn't end well. When the limitations of Akua's ability to act became clear, the idea that she would use her wits and usefulness to gain an advantage was almost obvious.

    I kind of expected Cat to, I don't know, at least be trying to resist that? Because so far, there's kind of been this ongoing trend of 'What's the biggest, most obviously dangerous part of this plan? Get Akua on it!' that makes sense if you completely ignore the context and Akua's history, but which feels like something Cat should be constantly worrying about in context. We move, in this chapter, to her--the Diabolist, mind you--being responsible for crafting the oaths that bind the drow that are about to make up the majority of Cat's military power and the beginnings of her Court, as well as to fashioning her own internal faction and kill squad with Cat's permissions.

    Did we skip a few steps in this slow seduction of evil? Did I miss something? At this rate, I'm half expecting Akua's backstab to be a literal backstab, delivered after Cat agrees to just give her her own body again. Yeah, she swore to Thief she wouldn't do that, but Thief long since became her Side-Bitch; she listens to Akua more then she used to listen to her actual girlfriend.

    Although I do appreciate Akua keeping things real:

    Still, holy fucking shit.

    TL;DR:

    Girl, you trippin'.
     
  5. Nazgus

    Nazgus Headmaster

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    Messages:
    1,174
    Location:
    USA
    Also note that the oaths give obedience to the Sovereign of the Moonless Night, not to Cat. $20 says that Cat shoving the mantle's effects onto Akua for extended periods of time will result in her usurping the mantle and all the drow with it.
     
  6. Thaumologist

    Thaumologist Chief Warlock

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2011
    Messages:
    1,587
    Location:
    Chester, England
    I'm half expecting Cat to be actually relying on this backstab coming. Black was pretty good at (Callow/Praesi) namelore, or supposed to be - his major setbacks often occurred due to being outstoried.

    Cat's also done some fuckery with namelore, like the sword in the stone, so an asspull based on the Queen outwitting the evil Vizier when All Hope Is Lost could be where Cat's expecting to win.
     
  7. Nazgus

    Nazgus Headmaster

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    Messages:
    1,174
    Location:
    USA
    New chapter is out, and I'm getting very bored of the drow arc. Cat is leaning on Akua to a ridiculous degree, and there's just nothing interesting about Cat cutting her way through the drow. We're told this was going to be the first real fight, but then she creams everyone without trouble. Sure she's just now going against the Mighty, but does anyone doubt she'll be just fine out the other side at this point? She's the last of Winter, and there's no disadvantages to drawing deep anymore, not with her shoving the after effects into Akua without consequence.

    Bring back the Dead King. Now there was an interesting character...

    EDIT: Seriously, look at this shit:
    He's wonderful and I miss him.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018 at 6:23 AM
  8. Ryuugi Shi

    Ryuugi Shi Jazz Hands!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Messages:
    1,806
    This chapter is kind of the perfect example of the issue with the drow arc, really. In it, Cat finally attacks Great Lotow* and...spends basically the entire chapter casually slaughtering her way through everything in her path, none of which has even the slightest chance of meaningfully hurting her. This is necessary, because if she sends her actual army in, they'll get slaughtered, which is understandable.

    But what was the point of the army again, then?

    Seriously, we went from the Battle of the Camps, wherein the vast majority of the Crusaders who died did so to a few minutes of effort from Cat and Masego, to--in a round about way--this fight, wherein the vast majority of the drow who are dying are still doing so because of Cat. This entire quest for the army fails to be convincing, because Cat's army never seems to actually matter outside of cleaning up behind her, if that. Oh, yes, we're told that if Callow has to fight one more battle with it's current forces, it's army is doomed, and I get that. But nothing I've seen makes me believe that losing it's army has any real effect on Callow's military power, seeing as the Woe, specifically Cat and Masego, make up the vast majority of it.

    And thus we reach our current point in time, wherein we've spent something like twenty chapters crawling around in the dark in an attempt to acquire forces that seem far more liability than asset and which the story does absolutely nothing make seem impressive. As Akua very rightly said before:

    TL;DR: If this story wanted to be about military tactics, logistics, and the value of soldiers, that would have been fine. That could have been great, even. But it might have been a good idea to not make it's main character a fucking goddess then.

    *The description of which is actually very cool, credit where it's due. I'd have liked to see the drow who built it, instead of these guys, to be honest.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018 at 7:35 AM
  9. Ferdiad

    Ferdiad Unspeakable

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2011
    Messages:
    717
    Location:
    Limerick, Ireland
    Cat never intended to stay and be Callow's protector so unless she wants Callow annexed again as soon as she leaves she has to build up a military that's capable of acting independent of her.
     
  10. Stealthy

    Stealthy Seventh Year

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2014
    Messages:
    209
    Which is why the drow are being built into an auxiliary army for Callow, one which certainly doesn't need Cat to keep it in line. Cat's goal has never been about making Callow capable of fighting off invaders without her. It's to stop having those invaders in the first place.

    But yeah, Cat's basically a god and the drow - as has been well established - have nothing on her. Some of the more powerful Mighty may be worth effort, but will still be slaughtered. At times, that's been fun. The prologue was good, and I liked all the Named battles in the Battle of Camps (particularly the Akua one), but it was still a novel experience at the time. We were being shown just how much of a wrecking ball Cat had become against pedestrian Named. She's a heavyweight, and only Pilgrim and Saint could stand against a Named of her (and Masego's) caliber.

    Now we've been there, done that. While I get the story's showing me that these new sigils are a step above, the action is just so boring that this became a mediocre way of doing so. Like it's hard to make the point that these sigils are more impressive when they still get cut down like fodder. Gotta find a better way.

    Lotow has potential. Ten sigils of supposed real strength all in constant war within a big setpiece city. I have faith that Errata can make something of that... but this was not an inspiring start.
     
  11. Seratin

    Seratin Proudmander Prestige DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,406
    Location:
    Dún na ngall
    High Score:
    3,792
    I have a feeling that this section of the story is somewhat of a grind for Errata. I can see their endgame, the battle against Sve will probably be more of a test for Cat than we believe, if she goes through with it, but to get there, Errata established that she'll have to grind her way through.
     
  12. Nazgus

    Nazgus Headmaster

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    Messages:
    1,174
    Location:
    USA
    It felt like Errata could've skipped all the non-Mighty fighting. Just have her go in, and skip ahead to when she first meets the mighty. There's just no need to dwell on her scything through grunts, it's boring at this point.
     
  13. Ashan

    Ashan Groundskeeper DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2007
    Messages:
    304
    Location:
    Singapore
    I don't entirely disagree, but there's something to be said for her establishing the ability to strengthen her body's toughness to a stone-like consistency (instead of just misting), and showing her greater mastery over Winter.

    That said, I feel like it could have been cut in half without losing much.
     
  14. Nazgus

    Nazgus Headmaster

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2011
    Messages:
    1,174
    Location:
    USA
    I think it's enough to say that I'm bored enough that I skimmed and didn't come away with that.
     
  15. Legacy

    Legacy Order Member DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Messages:
    800
    I actually feel this is where the story might get itself out of its slump. Showing the decay of the drow from being a decently large empire down to a pack of squabbling tribes fighting over the ruins of their last holdouts. The Sve for all we know could be another entity on the level of the Dead King interest wise, something that has such a fundamentally different viewpoint and goals of it own that Cat will have to contend with. Those two things could at least give me a reason to get invested in what Cat's plans are going forward with the Drow. Worse comes to worse there is always watching the fun little train of poor decisions that will lead to Akua eventually getting free, possibly with an army of Winter powered Drow as well.
     
  16. Ryuugi Shi

    Ryuugi Shi Jazz Hands!!!

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Messages:
    1,806
    So, this chapter was a mixed bag. First, the upside--this chapter was a big course correction on the whole 'The drow are fucking worthless' thing that's been the general trend thus far. We got an actual, dangerous fight where Cat had to test her mettle against a dangerous foe who could, seemingly, actually hurt her. That's actually a bit of a new one, because meaningful injuries haven't really been a thing for Cat lately, to the point that damage to her body has been no different then scenery descriptions. We got a cool, evocative fight and a better look at what Cat's after and against.

    The downside is that it was an over correction.

    Now, before anyone accuses me of being impossible to please--which I won't say I'm not, but calling me that is rude--let me explain what I mean by that. See, I was sick and tired of Cat casually slaughtering her way through the drow. It was one-sided, it was dull, it got old twenty chapters ago. I wanted her to run into a challenge. I wanted her to meet her match.

    I have to admit, however, that I didn't expect that match to be, like, just some fucking guy. Because, here's the thing--this chapter was essentially Cat's first day in the city. In it, she fights the Mighty Urulan of Great Lotow.

    That is to say, she fights the head of the weakest Sigil in the weakest City in the Everdark. The Urulan inhabit the Crossroads because they're a failing, broken Sigil on it's last legs and on their way out, and Lotow is the outermost Outer City in the Everdark, Beyond it the Hallian ways lead to Great Strycht and Great Mokosh, themselves but stops on the way to Holy Tvarigu. The guys there are nobody outcasts compared to those in the Inner Cities, to say nothing of the capital and Urulan is the weakest of it's leaders.

    Have I set the stage enough yet? Okay, good.

    Yeah, that motherfucker is stronger than the Winter Queen. Like, he lost, because he was suffering from lack of knowledge on his enemy and such not--but holy fuck, I don't know if he could have beaten Ms. Highest Noon, because Sun > Night, but was this dude stronger then Larat? Among the City Sigils, this guy is the fucking weakest there is. Also, the drow can just regrow limbs now and melt matter with their minds and forbid healing and artillery bomb shit. Like holy fuck, the tricks this chapter could have eaten armies.

    Until now, we got a bunch of talks about the drow being forgotten, unimportant nobodies and talk of the perilous journey of broken drow into the Burning Lands to claim more Night, but it turns out they just joined the ranks of the fucking ratlings and Dead King as 'dudes who could totally just annihilate any other country on Calernia if they gave a fuck.' Like, holy fuck, we're told there are paths that lead to both Procer and Callow and that sometimes the drow make the trip--imagine if this Lotow guy did that? Screw being the bottom-feeder in the least of the drow cities, he could go be the strongest fucking guy in a country of his choice.

    Again, I appreciate making the drow worth giving a fuck about. But this was a bit much, maybe, because apparently, from now on, we'll be using Winter Queens as a unit of measurement in the Everdark.

    Seriously, how the fuck has the Northern side of Calernia not eaten the rest of it yet?
     
  17. Xarlor

    Xarlor First Year

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2014
    Messages:
    46
    Yeah I also found It strange how strong that one mighty was. He could most likely have killed every name without some healing power casually in a confrontation to the point where I am asking myself how could the dwarves beat that? And even if they beat him could they beat a hundred more powerful people? He was physical nearly as strong as the queen of winter when not holding back (Or is Cat still lowballing it? She didn't use her domain at all after all, so it is hard to tell). That acid field in a chokepoint and the dwarves can do what?

    And what Akua and Cat kinda forgot in their way to bash the drow as vermin and no power worth mentioning, Ranger thought it would be fun to hunt Sve of the Night. And everthing Ranger wants to fight is propably a bad idea to meet, but Cat thinks she can kill her? Where is that confidence coming from? I mean has Cat actually won a fight against a strong opponent since becoming Queen of Winter? So this whole reevaluating of power is leaving me kinda confused, since it looks like the dwarven army should die horrible as soon as they meat a few mighty. Which also means the riped of Cat in their bargaining.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018 at 12:04 PM
  18. Cxjenious

    Cxjenious Supreme Mugwump

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2005
    Messages:
    1,766
    Location:
    TN
    The dwarves probably have ways to deal with Night.

    Also, I think the only reason this Mighty was able to give her such trouble (considering the power of her mantle) is because she's still rather trash at using it. She shouldn't need wings to fly, she shouldn't feel pain...etc.
     
  19. Koalas

    Koalas First Year Prestige DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    Messages:
    36
    Location:
    Halifax
    High Score:
    2024
    Kind of. The reason she had so much trouble this fight is that she's still making the same mistakes the Saint warned her of, namely relying on her regeneration (and her mist form which she was treating as a pseudo generation) even when it's clearly being used against her.

    Cause really the fight wasn't that bad. There was acid AoE (that he couldn't turn off), lasers to restrict mobility and shackles to stop form changes. All designed to counter the common drow abilities and common 'OP' secrets. Just so happened Cat had modeled her abilities based on that. If she had any wind based abilities that would have ended the fight. Or anti acid spell. Its telling that the second she used abilities that weren't direct copies of drow Secrets (illusions and creative mist form) she ended it instantly. If she'd done that right off the bat we'd still be complaining about what a curbstomp this arc is, i'm just praying she takes it to heart and starts doing things unique to Winter not just copied tricks from any two bit Mighty from the Outer Ring.
     
  20. Seratin

    Seratin Proudmander Prestige DLP Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,406
    Location:
    Dún na ngall
    High Score:
    3,792
    This arc just feels like a plot device to get Cat's power levels scaled right ip. The entire thing feels like a montage.

    Right now I don't doubt that if Cat went alone against 5000 troops with no heroes or mages she'd utterly devastate them.