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#552 Aug 28 2015 at 8:20 AM Rating: Good
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I fully expect Belkar to show up.
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#554 Aug 31 2015 at 10:45 AM Rating: Excellent
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New comic up! That was quick.

When Durkon fought Malack he mentioned to Mr. Scruffy that Roy was strong-willed. And when Roy was getting his soul weighed, the deva mentioned that he had halfway decent Wisdom & Charisma scores and could have made a decent cleric. So I guess this isn't too surprising even from a rules perspective. From a narrative perspective, obviously the fight wouldn't immediately end with Roy getting Dominated.
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#555 Sep 01 2015 at 8:25 AM Rating: Good
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I imagine Roy is the type of player that would rather average out his stats to cover class weaknesses than to min/max.

I wouldn't.
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#556 Sep 01 2015 at 8:29 AM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
I imagine Roy is the type of player that would rather average out his stats to cover class weaknesses than to min/max.

I wouldn't.
For me, it depends on magic item availability. A fighter really ought to have something to defend against dominate, either a good will save or Protection from Evil as a constant or something.
#557 Sep 01 2015 at 3:01 PM Rating: Decent
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lolgaxe wrote:
I imagine Roy is the type of player that would rather average out his stats to cover class weaknesses than to min/max.

I wouldn't.


Hey. His cross class knowledge (architecture and engineering) skill sure helped him defeat Thog. One of the running gags of the strip is that none of the characters are optimized for their class. Oh, why are we using spoiler tags again?
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#558 Sep 01 2015 at 4:16 PM Rating: Excellent
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Roy isn't min-maxed as a fighter but he at least seems to have the relevant skills and Strength stat. He seems to have gotten a bit of luck during the chromosomal dice roll though since he has a good STR stat, "decent" Wisdom & Charisma (enough to be a cleric), presumably good Stamina and enough Intelligence to have studied a little magic* and make skills like Architecture useful. The only stat he might be (below) average in would be Dexterity.

*Not as a caster class, but his father originally had him studying wizardry and V agrees to join Roy when he gives a detailed, technical description of the Fireball spell.
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#559 Sep 03 2015 at 1:59 PM Rating: Decent
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Geez. Another new comic

I'm predicting that Roy and Durkon will wear each other out, with Roy gaining the upper hand, then Durkon will harm himself back to full health (harm?), with a "Hahah. I'm a cleric. Moron!". Then things will look bad. And then (and I can't believe I'm saying this), Belkar will show back up and save the day. He's one of the bodyguards too, so he can attack Durkon. Which should tip the scales. Maybe.

Or something completely different will happen.
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#560 Sep 03 2015 at 7:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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Obvious guess is that V will somehow spot/save Belkar (Fly or Feather Fall) and then Fly him back to the action. As I said above, it make no sense narratively for Belkar to die like a bitch from being tosses out a window and Belkar never got to actually use his Protection from Evil amulet.

V is aware of Roy's misgivings about the Belkar & Durkon situation so that's an easy fit. V might not be able to enter the fight but V can get Belkar back into it easier than anyone else.

It is entirely possible for Belkar to die during the battle since he's fated to do so at some point.

What won't happen but totally should is that Belkar will return with a Heal scroll from Durkon's room and a casting of Owl's Wisdom from V Smiley: grin

Edited, Sep 3rd 2015 8:52pm by Jophiel
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#561 Sep 04 2015 at 10:14 AM Rating: Good
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I'm holding out for Belkar bouncing off an airship balloon to safety and then jumps through a glass / stained glass window. That satisfies both the need for drama and comedy.
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#562 Sep 04 2015 at 11:03 AM Rating: Excellent
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He does have that Ring of Jumping +20...

The hard part is that Roy & Co climbed a rope ladder DOWN to the temple. Admittedly, it's hard to throw a rope ladder up, but they seemed to be a good height above it, not just hanging out next to it. I suppose you could wave it away with Bandana saying they descended while they were waiting because the air is so thin up there or something.

Edited, Sep 4th 2015 12:04pm by Jophiel
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#563 Sep 04 2015 at 3:26 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
He does have that Ring of Jumping +20...

The hard part is that Roy & Co climbed a rope ladder DOWN to the temple. Admittedly, it's hard to throw a rope ladder up, but they seemed to be a good height above it, not just hanging out next to it. I suppose you could wave it away with Bandana saying they descended while they were waiting because the air is so thin up there or something.


I thought that at first, but if you look at the panel again you'll notice that the temple has a windy path leading down below it, with it perched on top of the mountain. In the next comic, you can see them descending the ladder towards a windy path that appears to lead *up* from the spot they went down to (see portion of path to the left and behind Roy's head). And in the next comic, you can see that they are running to the temple entrance from said path. So, as loath as I am to admit that Lolgaxe may be right, he... um... may be right. Based on the apparent steepness of the last part of the ascent, the airship could be well below the level of the window that Belkar fell through, and still be a rope ladders length above wherever it was they dropped them off at initially.

It would make much more logical sense for V to be watching and just feather fall Belkar, grab him with a grippy hand spell or something, and plunk him back into the fight (after talking to Belkar and assessing the situation, of course). But the whole bouncing off the balloon bit would be more dramatic and fits into the whole bit about the Mechane always arriving "just in the nick of time". If it was Elan falling, there'd be no question as to which would happen. With Belkar? Not sure that's quite his style. Getting unceremoniously dumped into the fray by the scruff of his neck might actually be more appropriate.


Agree on the dying bit, maybe. Too easy though, especially with the presence of so many high level clerics to easily resurrect him. Also, they're presumably already going to use that bit on Durkon to get him back for the final gate section of the book (emphasis on presumably, but he's running out of room in the story for more plot twists on the whole Darkon thing, and frankly the only way to resolve this bit is for Darkon to die. Well, almost the only way). Having two characters die to be resurrected in the same time and place just seems like overuse of a plot device. I'm thinking Belkar's death with be more dramatic, and represent a completion of his whole "I'm pretending to be a good party member just to thrown them off, but for some reason it's actually making me into a good party member" bit (which has been hinted at a couple times). Maybe that happens now, but I suspect it'll occur at some point during the fight at the last gate.
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#564 Sep 08 2015 at 1:07 PM Rating: Excellent
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New comic up. Gramp's spell-counter sword maneuver has a name! Also, it looks as though our hero was just energy drained for a couple levels. Belkar better get a move on.
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#565 Sep 08 2015 at 1:30 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
Gramp's spell-counter sword maneuver has a name!
Yeah, but how well would it work during the Kobayashi Maru?

They're really ratcheting that drama up, aren't they? That's really the only reason I believe it'll end in something goofy.
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#566 Sep 08 2015 at 4:01 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
New comic up. Gramp's spell-counter sword maneuver has a name! Also, it looks as though our hero was just energy drained for a couple levels.


Which presents a problem, since presumably he just spent a feat recently to gain the spellsplinter ability in the first place. I'm not super up on how level draining works, but it was mentioned earlier as making newer spell slots unavailable (V's fight with Xykon IIRC), so I'd assume the same would apply to the feats gained in the levels that have been drained.

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Belkar better get a move on.


Ayup.
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#567 Sep 09 2015 at 11:12 AM Rating: Excellent
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Apparently new-fangled energy drain doesn't work like in the olden days and doesn't remove a feat unless 24 hours go by without Restoring it and you blow a Fortitude roll. I only know this because I asked elsewhere, wondering the same thing.

If you're a spellcaster and hit with an energy drain, you lose the spell in your top slot but you don't actually lose the slot or ability to cast spells of that level. If you just got a new spell level but had two slots (say, via a Ring of Wizardy) and were hit with an energy drain, you'd lose one of the spells but still be able to cast the other.
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#568 Sep 09 2015 at 3:42 PM Rating: Decent
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So what does energy drain do to fighters? Just lower their hps and level for purposes of attacks/resists/whatever? I suppose that's still useful, but I'm not sure how much more useful than just hitting him for damage. Are touch attacks easier to do than normal hits (I'm vaguely recalling that some AC works against being hit and some versus taking damage from the hit, but my last experience with D&D was playing NWN like 15 years ago)? Since you don't have to get through worn armor with a touch attack, you could drain the person to the point where you could hit them. Hey. It's like a tactic or something. Clearly that's not Durkon in there...
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#569 Sep 09 2015 at 4:36 PM Rating: Excellent
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D20 Wiki wrote:
A creature takes the following penalties for each negative level it has gained:

-1 on all skill checks and ability checks.
-1 on attack rolls and saving throws.
-5 hit points.
-1 effective level (whenever the creature’s level is used in a die roll or calculation, reduce it by one for each negative level).
If the victim casts spells, she loses access to one spell as if she had cast her highest-level, currently available spell. (If she has more than one spell at her highest level, she chooses which she loses.) In addition, when she next prepares spells or regains spell slots, she gets one less spell slot at her highest spell level.

Annoying and disadvantageous but not nearly as bad as the old school "Welp, look like you just lost 3,000 xp"

Also, Durkon gains 5hp for each level he takes from Roy (two per successful hit).
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#570 Sep 11 2015 at 8:28 AM Rating: Excellent
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New comic up. Not much to say about it -- all action stuff.
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#571 Sep 15 2015 at 1:34 PM Rating: Good
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And... Another new comic up. Hah. Guess Durkon shouldn't have had that second snack.
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#572 Sep 22 2015 at 3:41 AM Rating: Good
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#573 Sep 22 2015 at 10:27 AM Rating: Good
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And the Harm spell's tendency to be overpowered rears it's ugly head.
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#574 Sep 22 2015 at 11:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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I suppose it's less powerful now than in 1st ed, capping now at 150hp instead of infinite hp less 1d4.
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#575 Sep 30 2015 at 7:19 AM Rating: Excellent
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New strip is up. Plot, plot, plot...

Not sure if this was addressed in the main comic but in The Origin of the PCs, it's explained that the high priest of Thor received a prophesy that Durkon would bring "Death and Destruction" to the dwarf lands. Their plan to avoid this was to effectively exile Durkon to the human lands on a supposed indefinite mission to learn about them knowing that Durkon's honor would prevent him from returning unbidden. Of course, prophesies being what they are I guess that only set it all in motion and they would have been better off keeping Durkon under house arrest and feeding him through a slot. They've changed high priests since then though so it's possible that Durkon will never know why he was thrown out.

Anyway, even "Darkest Moment Durkon" doesn't seem the type to destroy the world out of a moment of pique.
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#576 Sep 30 2015 at 4:47 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
Anyway, even "Darkest Moment Durkon" doesn't seem the type to destroy the world out of a moment of pique.


But a spirit created with its base personality formed from that darkest moment, might. At least that's the impression I get. At least that confirms my "newly created spirit formed from the memories and knowledge of the host, but evil" theory of vampirism for OOT. Do I get a prize?

Kinda wondering how Roy's going to get himself out of this one. And how much more exposition we'll have to go through to get there.

Edited, Sep 30th 2015 3:49pm by gbaji
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#577 Oct 01 2015 at 7:34 AM Rating: Good
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"You are who you are on your very worst day." I like that.
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#578 Oct 01 2015 at 2:45 PM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
"You are who you are on your very worst day." I like that.


It's the kind of ********* an evil vampire would come up with to make someone think they're already somehow irredeemable, yeah. Not sure it works very well as a personal philosophy.
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#579 Oct 08 2015 at 10:06 PM Rating: Good
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I did NOT see that coming!



NEW COMIC UP
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#580 Oct 09 2015 at 7:05 AM Rating: Excellent
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Should have this fight wrapped up around Christmas.
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#581 Oct 09 2015 at 10:11 AM Rating: Excellent
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I see what you did there.
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#582 Oct 15 2015 at 3:58 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
I see what you did there.
I don't.





Wait, what? Where am I?
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#583 Oct 19 2015 at 9:16 AM Rating: Excellent
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New comic up -- worth the wait!
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#584 Oct 19 2015 at 9:17 AM Rating: Good
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#1009


@#$% you, Jophiel.Smiley: mad

Edited, Oct 19th 2015 9:18am by Bijou
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#585 Oct 19 2015 at 9:38 AM Rating: Good
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Can't blame Roy. Who could have possibly guessed there would be consequences to being turned into an evil alignment creature?
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#586 Oct 19 2015 at 1:36 PM Rating: Good
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He may be smart, but he's still just a fighter. Questions of Alignment and the nature of turned undead are outside of his skill set. Probably. Honestly, I barely remember.
#587 Oct 19 2015 at 2:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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Roy suspected that something's "up" with Durkon but Roy also (a) has a strong sense of loyalty and (b) isn't always great at someone else being right, i.e. Belkar.
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#588 Oct 28 2015 at 12:17 PM Rating: Good
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#1010
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#589 Oct 28 2015 at 12:35 PM Rating: Good
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Well that was weird.
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#590 Oct 28 2015 at 12:46 PM Rating: Good
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That's how I imagine going Super Saiyan would be.
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#591 Oct 28 2015 at 4:58 PM Rating: Good
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#592 Nov 06 2015 at 7:47 AM Rating: Good
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#1011
Was Roy's Sooper Seekrit melee attack he learned in "heaven" an spellcast disruptor or did it disrupt spells? I'm too lazy to go back and look.

ALSO: I forget if the talisman Durkon has for a neck piece has some awesome property or not? Too lazy to look that up, too. Smiley: tongue

Edited, Nov 6th 2015 11:56am by Bijou
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#593 Nov 06 2015 at 8:45 AM Rating: Good
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Roy wrote:
Get back out there and stall them for another minute or two!
Have them read this chapter. That should do the trick.
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#594 Nov 06 2015 at 5:09 PM Rating: Good
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Friar Bijou wrote:
Was Roy's Sooper Seekrit melee attack he learned in "heaven" an spellcast disruptor or did it disrupt spells? I'm too lazy to go back and look.


It just disrupts spells as they are being cast. So he can't whack the shell and blow it down or anything (unless his swords anti-undead properties apply somehow, but I doubt it).

Quote:
ALSO: I forget if the talisman Durkon has for a neck piece has some awesome property or not? Too lazy to look that up, too. Smiley: tongue


So like double plus good laziness! I think it's just a generic holy symbol. All clerics seem to have one. I don't recall that his had any special properties.

So... How will our heroes get around a field that nothing that is alive can enter? Hmmmm... I'd point out that arrows aren't alive, but that might just tick Roy off.
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#595 Nov 06 2015 at 5:39 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
So... How will our heroes get around a field that nothing that is alive can enter? Hmmmm... I'd point out that arrows aren't alive, but that might just tick Roy off.
Didn't he take a class on structural engineering or something? Seems like that might lend itself to solving the problem. Smiley: tongue
#596 Nov 06 2015 at 6:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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Burlew mentioned before that Durkon was going to be a vampire for a while although who knows if that means in strip time (where the new book started a few days ago in strip time) or real time where this fight alone has been going on for weeks. But the vampire spirit also mentioned a Plan B.

My guess is that the demigods vote against Hel's expectations and the world is saved, however vampire-Durkon departs for now to go Plan B it up, leaving Roy to head to the Gate sans cleric.

Or, you know, maybe Roy just throws his sword or something.
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#597 Nov 09 2015 at 3:20 PM Rating: Decent
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The One and Only Poldaran wrote:
Didn't he take a class on structural engineering or something? Seems like that might lend itself to solving the problem. Smiley: tongue


Jophiel wrote:
My guess is that the demigods vote against Hel's expectations and the world is saved, however vampire-Durkon departs for now to go Plan B it up, leaving Roy to head to the Gate sans cleric.


Could solve both with one method. Technically, Durkon doesn't have to be killed for Hel's vote to not count, just not be in the chamber. Durkon already made a comment about how someone who just happens to be standing in the wrong spot when the floor collapses isn't technically an "attack", so Roy wouldn't even need to do it. The Mechane could blast a hole in the side/floor of the chamber, or V could toss a passwall in there (although I'd assume the structure is reasonably spell defended, so maybe not). There's a ton of possible ways to prevent the vote from completing as planned (including the aforementioned "the demi-gods are now aware of Hel's plan and don't vote as promised" one).

And it's possible a certain elf cleric and her trusty body guard might just volunteer to help save the world and whatnot, so it's not as much of a problem if they don't turn Durkon back in this section.

I kinda do see the potential for Durkon to continue as a vampire for a while longer. Heck. There was a whole strip devoted more or less to simply establishing that the vampire spirit couldn't grasp the concept of character development/change (Durkon wanting too much to "help" leading to trouble, and then later being so concerned about helping when not asked that he nearly let Roy get eaten). I'm not aware that this little factoid, which Durkon seemed to take pride in concealing from the spirit, has had any direct impact on the story. So from a character development/examination point of view, that storyline is still incomplete. Not that minor dangling plot lines has been an obstacle in the past though.

Quote:
Or, you know, maybe Roy just throws his sword or something.


Well, if we're talking about totally out there crazy ideas... How about Belkar shows up (yeah, broken record, sue me), as a totally souped up undead litch or something, with super duper powers, and proceeds to beat the stuffing out of Durkon (and maybe some other folks, who knows). But wait! How does that happen. Well, let's do some quick flashbacks:

Lee and his fellow directors presumably don't want Hel's plan to go forward either, but know the rules of the godsmoot don't allow them to directly intervene. So they use the short duration time with V's soul and pull V down to ****. They show V what's happening and then offer V a "bargain (s)he can't refuse". Providing her with massive necromantic abilities that will allow her to turn the crushed body of Belkar into a mighty undead creature of untold power (and whatnot). V reluctantly agrees, allowing the directors to affect things, while not themselves suffering the consequences. Any violations of the godsmoot rules will fall fully on Belkar and V, which may or may not matter if Belkar is sufficiently super powered. He 'saves the day'. And maybe Durkon still gets away for more character development (and "plan B"). Maybe the gods powers are disrupted somehow in the process (which may be part of the directors sinister plan all along anyway), who knows? I just know that super powered Belkar would be funny, and chaotic. And lots and lots of people will die. This would also wrap up Belkar's whole dying within the year bit as well. And now they'll be *two* undead characters floating around. Can you imagine!?


Or... Maybe something else will happen. Cause you know, that's usually what happens.
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#598 Nov 16 2015 at 12:53 PM Rating: Good
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#599 Nov 16 2015 at 1:03 PM Rating: Good
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Pet Avengers, assemble!
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#600 Nov 16 2015 at 2:17 PM Rating: Excellent
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Burlew had to post a Cliff Notes of sorts because so many people were confused by the strip:
(1) There is a still a demigod cleric who hasn't voted. Hel's plan was to have the score be 4-2 before that one even got a chance to vote rather than hope for a tie breaker.
(2) The vampire on the ship is Gontor, the Exarch that Durkon killed
(3) Durkon turned Gontor into a vampire thrall using Malack's staff, same as Malack made Durkon into a vampire immediately.
(4) Gontor doesn't get a vote

I assume that Gontor is on the ship (in V's room no less) to steal the Orb of Teleportation, thus allowing Gontor and/or Durkon to head directly to the Gate to try and destroy it since that would require the gods to destroy/remake the world to contain the Snarl once more. Thus that being Hel's "Plan B" to get what she wants.
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#601 Nov 16 2015 at 2:23 PM Rating: Good
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That's the dwarf guide he vamped like five minutes ago in story time, if anyone's wondering. I had completely forgotten what he looked like in the intervening months and had to go back and check.

God **** it, Jophiel.

Edited, Nov 16th 2015 3:24pm by Kavekkk
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