Page 1106 - Impact Learning

21st Aug 2018, 6:00 AM in The Return of Harmony, Part 1
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Impact Learning
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Newbiespud 21st Aug 2018, 6:00 AM edit delete
Putting aside the "dumb bruiser" jokes for a moment, there's value in keeping the hitter's tools in your toolbox - especially when you're up against the mind-games type. Your enemies might put so much effort into arcane trickery, devious puzzles, and cutting speeches that they might forget that the cell door's hinges are rusty and brittle and will shatter with a few good shoulder charges.

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Digo Dragon 21st Aug 2018, 6:08 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
There is a good reason why many trickster bosses employ a bruiser for a bodyguard in these stories. ;)

Dash's fighting pose in the first panel is pretty cute.
albedoequals1 21st Aug 2018, 6:24 AM edit delete reply
Dash isn't as crazy as she sounds. Punching the prankster may not kill them, but it will keep them from getting much pranking done. It's also meta-gaming, but she's right that Discord can't kill anyone, putting more power on Dash's side when she resorts to violence.

I once played a barbarian that used a similar tactic, and the god-like enemy ended up having to retreat, since it had too much GM time invested in a complicated story to just kill me (also, it had so many troll powers it forgot to leave room for attacks :P).
Luna 21st Aug 2018, 7:45 AM edit delete reply
In my experience as both DM, when players start feeling like they can't die because of metagaming reasons like that to the point where they're actualy willing to fight a godlike entity they can't possibly beat unless the DM actually pull their punches... then it's time to actually kill the fool(s) and adapt the campaign if they actually attack.
albedoequals1 21st Aug 2018, 10:14 PM edit delete reply
Except that Discord's only the guest GM, so he really doesn't have much power at all unless the players willingly play along.
Tarrangar 22nd Aug 2018, 1:11 AM edit delete reply
Yeah but that's when they're facing something like a dragon, when they are facing the mighty prankster, well the mighty Prankster want to have fun messing with them, so he actively don't want to kill them, which makes the attitude justified, if Rainbow Dash was trying to solo a dragon, that had been plundering towns and eating the inhabitants, then death should absolutely be the most likely outcome, but what she's doing is trying to fight the trickster god, and the trickster god plays tricks, he don't kill, so while there should be high chances of curses or weird situations, there should be low chances of death, because Rainbow Dash death is simply not his goal.

So yeah what Rainbow Dash is doing is a valid tactic, but only because she's doing it to someone who wants her alive, attacking the murderous monster who don't care about you is foolish, attacking the enemy whose plans need you alive to get information for the rematch, is a smart move.

If you're playing a Teen Titan game, Raven can totally attack the Trigon cultists, no matter how much stronger they are than she is, because the worst they can do to her is capture her, their god needs her alive to get into their world after all, so if they are fanatic enough, they will literally take a bullet for her, while she's attacking them, so it's not metagaming, to have Raven attack a vastly superior gathering of Trigon cultists, because Raven knows that they need her alive, so she has no fear of dying to them, similarly here Discord want to play with the PCs, and broken toys are no fun, so unless Rainbow Dask actually manage to put his life in danger, there's no chance of him killing her, and if she manage to put his life in danger, there's a chance she kills him first.
Zaranthan 21st Aug 2018, 8:03 AM edit delete reply
I don't think Dash is metagaming here, she's simply read Discord like a book. A god of pranks and mischief doesn't want to kill anyone, because the dead cannot laugh (or be embarrassed, or uncomfortable, or whatever emotion he's fishing for).

She might be totally unable to defeat Discord, and he's just going to toy with her the whole time, but winning and losing isn't always about who runs out of hit points first. Dashie stands a good chance of gaining a bit of insight into how Discord's powers work when applied the the lowest common denominator, and that info may well come in handy for breaking the curses later.
Aeshdan 21st Aug 2018, 8:16 AM edit delete reply
Agree with Zaranthan here. One of the recurring quirks of this campaign is that, because Discord is effectively an incarnate GM, metagame reasoning becomes a perfectly legitimate tactic.
Digo Dragon 21st Aug 2018, 10:57 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
I agree. Dash knows she'll lose in a straight fight, but she's attempting to learn how his powers operate. Knowing a magician's tricks can defeat the magician.
redwings1340 21st Aug 2018, 3:05 PM edit delete reply
Yeah, I think Dash's plan makes sense here. It sounded crazy at first, but her logic is spot on.

I don't think her plan is going to work, because Discord's power level is on such another level that Dash doesn't give him a reason to go all out, but this is a pretty viable strategy with almost no risk factor.
HappyEevee 21st Aug 2018, 7:12 PM edit delete reply
Well, as long as you don't mind the GM killing your character so you have to pony up the money for a rez, it's a fine tactic. Simply killing a PC doesn't slow them down much in a long campaign, it just gives them a time-out for doing stupid stuff. Like trying to fight a deity solo.
Freemage 22nd Aug 2018, 4:12 PM edit delete reply
I don't even think I'd call this 'metagamey'. It's clear to Dash, just as it was to Fluttershy, that Discord is NOT going for the kill, not yet, at least. Once you've determined that the Big Boss has a reason to keep you alive, that allows for a certain degree of latitude in directing an attack against them.
ThatGuest 21st Aug 2018, 6:25 AM edit delete reply
Actually pulled this once with a friend in a poorly run campaign. The DM was so fixated on making the world such a depressing sinkhole of the worst of humanity (we later figured out he was pretty nihlistic IRL) that by the 4th session we decided we were going to fix this world if we had to fight 95% of it's disgusting population with our bare hands.

We basically turned into a pair of medieval Judge Dredds and totally wrecked his campaign about how everyone was awful no matter whose side we joined by deciding to take no sides and fight everyone.
Guest 21st Aug 2018, 6:47 AM edit delete reply
It's always fun when someone goes to so much trouble to make a setting depressing, that they forget to include the actual reasons for why the setting is depressing.

'Cause when (not if) they get players who actually want to fix the world, those players are left with nothing concrete to focus on and work toward. So the actual solution tends to default to "punch it until it stops being wrong." Which is silly and therapeutic, instead of the intended serious and depressing. Makes it doubly fun.

Though, sometimes you get the GMs who really did put the kind of depth into their setting that results in everything being miserable, and then you get to go proper noir on the mess. Those are fun, too.
ThatGuest 21st Aug 2018, 6:57 AM edit delete reply
Oh he tried to give a reason, mostly that almost everyone who lived there was apathetic at best and most were somewhere on the Evil scale, even the gods. By the time he threw a tantrum over us 'ruining' his game we were more than willing to fight the gods themselves if we had to.

He mainly quit because our almost anime-ish devotion to love, friendship and courage was starting to win over the other players too and me and my friend had already proven to be an unstoppable duo. If we'd actually united the party rather than drive them apart like he wanted to he couldn't have stopped us.
Guest 21st Aug 2018, 7:05 AM edit delete reply
Which is ALSO a form of nihilism, when you think about it.
Anvildude 21st Aug 2018, 7:07 AM edit delete reply
Our current DM is doing something like that- but it's more from a desire for good storytelling than because of personal nihilism. And it's got a reason- he's basically treating world-invasion-war and autocratic theocracies, well, realistically. Was so little fun for a couple players that they left the game (we still play Starfinder with them, tho, so not too bad- the campaign just didn't leave much room for some of the sillier stuff, like a Heavy Metal pirate bard or whatnot).

Of course, the two Paladins and my LG Sentinel are right at home here.
FanOfMostEverything 21st Aug 2018, 6:37 AM edit delete reply
I'm going to have to remember "I'll LARP this if I have to!" Though my primary playgroup these days is connected via Discord (no relation.)

... Actually, that might make the threat more effective in some cases.
Rakaydos 21st Aug 2018, 9:10 AM edit delete reply
Isnt threatening to LAPR over discord basically the classic, "Fite me irl!"
Theris91 21st Aug 2018, 6:45 AM edit delete reply
Now I'm wondering if DiscordGM even bothered to make a stat sheet for his character.
So far it doesn't look like he assumed he would have to make any kind of roll for this campaign.
Winged Cat 21st Aug 2018, 10:13 AM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
He's Discord. His physical stats are whatever he wants them to be at that time.
Discord 21st Aug 2018, 6:48 AM edit delete reply
Like a bunch of bugs once said,
"You aren't comprehending the position that you're in.".
Greenhornet 21st Aug 2018, 7:05 AM edit delete reply
Or, as Genie pointed out in "Return Of Jafar" (Referring to the "genies can't kill" rule):
"... But you'd be surprised what you can live through."
ThatGuest 21st Aug 2018, 7:05 AM edit delete reply
Dash: "You're corporeal right now and you know what else is? Your face.....and my fist!"
Guest 21st Aug 2018, 7:38 AM edit delete reply
Hoof. These *are* still ponies.
Discord 21st Aug 2018, 8:57 AM edit delete reply
A:you're by yourself, no backup available.
2:no wings, no speed or air advantage.
$:no element, no real way to hurt me.
Joe the Rat 21st Aug 2018, 9:02 AM edit delete reply
I much prefer "If you kill him, he won't learn nothin'"

A good trickster hoists the mark by his own petard.

A great trickster leaves the autopetardinated mark with a better understanding of himself. Character growth via hilarious failure.

The source of the quote was not a very good trickster. Just loud.
Freelance 21st Aug 2018, 12:48 PM edit delete reply
How about... "Have you ever read _I Have no Mouth and I Must Scream_?"
Rakaydos 21st Aug 2018, 9:45 AM edit delete reply
I've never really done much with trickstter characters, but I once baited a party into being framed for the NPCs they were chasing.

So a bit of backstory, system was FFG Star wars (Edge of Empire, mostly), and the ominusly returning villian from the first arc "Let slip" that he was going to be doin a job at Kuat, Planet of Star Destroyer Shipyards. (before the villian's team almost jacked the player's ship, and the team successfully got away)

I'm kinda fuzzy on the order here, but...
they found the villian's ship (stripped and up for sale),
met an old contact who had sold the villian a B1 battle droid Control module and a few hundred droids,
They found that a SECOND villian (an Inquisitor who's ship the player's destroyed recently) is making an "Inspection",
they witness a known assoctiate of villian 1 ingratiate themselves with villian 2,
They find out that the Inquisitor is here to pick up a new ship, and where it's at,
The players WITNESS battle droids taking over the inquisitor's new ship, and one of the players hijack a space-taxi to interfere,
And get a front row seat when both villians show up to "stop" him, villian 1 blindsides the inquisitor, hijacks the ship himself and blames the PC, throwing the PC in an escape pod on an deserted planet, with an angry inquisitor thinking the players are responsible for the theft.

The next week we rotated GMs, and the abandoned PC's player ran a "search for spock" type adventure to recover his PC.
Balrighty 21st Aug 2018, 10:17 AM edit delete reply
Discord's comment in the last panel seems to be the second time he didn't anticipate a player's reaction, though it may just be the degree that RD is going to that's surprising him, rather than her entire method.

Unrelated, anyone else remembering how Q never showed up on DS9 again after Sisko decked him to the floor?
Digo Dragon 21st Aug 2018, 11:00 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Q getting punched out by Sisko pretty much sealed Sisko as one of my favorite captains in Starfleet.
Greenhornet 22nd Aug 2018, 6:34 AM edit delete reply
In my opinion, it should have been revealed in the last Q episode that he was pledging for a college fraternity to explain all the stupid crap he pulled.
Much better than the tired old "omnipotent being teaches the dumb humans a valuable lesson" trope.
Dragonflight 22nd Aug 2018, 6:32 PM edit delete reply
I recall somewhere there was a comment or two about the Continuum seeing the future of Humanity, and realizing that someday they'd achieve Ascendance themselves. But that what *kind* of ascended beings they'd become was 50/50. Either they'd be people you can get along with, or they'd be like the Klingons on super-steroids, and hostile to everyone else.

The Continuum decide to try and control the outcome, so they can get a Human race that they can live with. So they give the job to Discord Q Lancie... and probably regret that colossal blunder every time he shows up going forward... :)
ClutchedbyanAngel 21st Aug 2018, 11:27 AM edit delete reply
Reminds me of the time Commander Sisko beat Q's ass in the boxing ring.
Needling Haystacks 21st Aug 2018, 1:22 PM edit delete reply
Hitting things does provoke a reaction.

Personally, I prefer throwing rocks, but the principle's the same.
Robin Bobcat 21st Aug 2018, 7:36 PM edit delete reply
Yeah, I've encountered this in my LARP. The feared spellcaster, who freely tosses Death spells at those who even mildly annoy him... can be knocked down in a few hits. Because he has no fighting ability. At all. A one-shot Shield Magic and a stout swinging arm, and he's done for.
NexAngelus405 21st Aug 2018, 8:09 PM edit delete reply
Reminds me of the analogy of arguing with trolls being like playing Chess with a pigeon. While you'd be all about following the rules of the game the pigeon will just knock all the pieces over, crap on the board and afterwards strut around acting like it "won".
Needling Haystacks 22nd Aug 2018, 9:17 AM edit delete reply
When my brother was like 5 he invented "Monkey Chess". I don't know if it's intentional but the idea was playing chess like a monkey would: They have some vague idea that the pieces move on the board, but that's it.

He'd move pieces randomly but would claim the other person's moves were against the rules. Thus he always won. Except against our grandmother for some reason. I assume he was letting her win.

I tried to attach actual rules to the game but now I realize that's kind of counter to the point.
War Doctor 21st Aug 2018, 10:20 PM edit delete reply
Great mares are forged in fire.

It is the privilege of lesser mares to light the flame.

Whatever the cost. Never give up, never give in.
Greenhornet 22nd Aug 2018, 6:40 AM edit delete reply
Another word for "forged" is "faked".
Keep the great humble. Remind them that a elite commando with years of experience and the latest high tech equipment can be brought down by a draftee just out of training with a twenty year old rifle.
Needling Haystacks 22nd Aug 2018, 9:21 AM edit delete reply
Or by microscopic organisms. Alexander the Great found that one out... probably.

Oh and I assume you're being poetic but forged and faked are not etymologically connected, the former being from Latin and the latter from German... probably. I seem to be saying that a lot, so... plausibly?
Jennifer 22nd Aug 2018, 7:28 AM edit delete reply
Been reading the Horus Heresy novels. Best moment so far is when the finest swordsman in the Legions challenges a line officer to a duel -- and the officer just decks him with a clenched fist.
Cheerful_Dragon 22nd Aug 2018, 10:23 AM edit delete reply
> Your enemies might put so much effort into arcane trickery, devious puzzles, and cutting speeches that they might forget that the cell door's hinges are rusty and brittle and will shatter with a few good shoulder charges.

Wasn't there a Doctor Who episode where three doctors were trying to mess around with a sonic screwdriver attack on a door, and none of them bothered to see if it was unlocked?
that should be the person behind the doctor who references

but yes, it was Day of the Doctor of which the War Doctor and the quotes I used come from.

In this case the 'War Doctor' (me) is saying that Dashie (best pone :P ) is doing exactly what the War Doctor would have done..bought enough time for her friends (the 'great mares') to rescue her and save the day.
Guest 22nd Aug 2018, 12:21 PM edit delete reply
Dash is Sisko, not Picard.
Great Luck? 22nd Aug 2018, 12:40 PM edit delete reply
Now it could be a good WTF for Dissy if suddenly Rainbow got a Natural 20 and he got a 1 and is defeated de-railing his plans
Guest 22nd Aug 2018, 1:11 PM edit delete reply
To be fair, a good trickster should have at least one plan in place for the classic dumb brute tactics. It may be low hanging fruit, but the heaviest fruits are down there because they're the juiciest.