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2023.05.29 23:42 TheAngryObserver Angry Observation: it's not the economy anymore, stupid
Given Democrats’ all-out assault on traditional values and the American way of life, a single-minded focus on the economy—especially at the expense of major social and cultural issues at top of mind for many Americans—isn’t the winning strategy some Republicans might believe.
For much of the last year, no cultural issues have dominated the political airwaves more than the rise of Critical Race Theory (CRT) and gender ideology in K-12 education. Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin’s victory last November [...] should serve as a clear sign for conservative candidates everywhere not to hide from the culture wars, but rather to embrace them.
- Seamus Brennan, May 12, 2022
Oftentimes, there are long political traditions that have been dead for years but continue shambling to the frontlines like reanimated corpses, only to be exposed as frauds. Politics doesn't listen to tradition. My favorite example of this is Professor Helmut Norpoth's Primary Model, which basically predicts Presidential elections based on who had the harder time in the primary.
Obviously, this model heavily favors incumbents, who are generally not challenged. It hedges by saying that an incumbent who is facing issues in the primary is in serious trouble. Indeed, it has a fair track record. When George H. W. Bush was rattled in the primary by Pat Buchanan, it was a sign that his tax increases would ultimately come back to bite him. Jimmy Carter's near-defeat to Ted Kennedy foreshadowed that liberals would ultimately defect to moderate Republican John Anderson.
The model gave Donald Trump a 91% chance of winning in 2020, and we all know how that turned out. Political realities change, and sometimes strong predictors for who is going to win are either incidental or outdated. Or both.
Let's keep in mind a tale of two midterms: in 2018 and in 2022, the incumbent President was unpopular and held a trifecta, having passed parts of his agenda but not others. Tradition dictated he was in for an ass-whooping in the midterm.
But the actual picture was far more complex. While Republicans lost the House in 2018 and the year is generally characterized as a blue wave, they actually gained in the Senate. Against all odds, too. Polls showed Missouri and Indiana as pretty close, even blue-leaning, races. Mississippi and Tennessee were supposed to be super competitive. But even as Democrats triumphed nationally, Republicans redoubled their totals with the base and even managed to gain in the Senate.
The Democrats' surprise 2022 overperformance was much more dramatic. Republicans, frankly, got whooped considering the circumstances. Every single incumbent Democrat Senator held on, and one seat, Pennsylvania, flipped despite polls giving Republican Mehmet Oz a lead going into election day. Democrats came very close to winning two seats they'd written off, North Carolina and Wisconsin. Lofty Republican ambitions in New Hampshire, Washington, and Colorado went up in smoke.
What's interesting about both of these elections is that there's one very important thing that doesn't make sense: the economy. Biden and Trump were both unpopular, but things were pretty good when Trump was President. In fact, with the exception of Bill Clinton, it's difficult to imagine any President that was dealt as good of a hand as Trump after World War Two. Under Trump, the economy was better than ever, and it remains the backbone of his electoral strength. Biden, meanwhile, had one of the more difficult terms in recent history. He broke several records when it came to disapproval, at one point being further in the toilet than his predecessor.
The Presidential elections were interesting, too. In 2016, President Obama was just generally popular and the economy was mostly on the right track. However, it was here that Donald Trump managed a huge overperformance that ultimately swept him to the Presidency. True, it is not unheard of for an incumbent party to fumble the ball and narrowly lose to an outsider (2000), but it's certainly rare. Then in 2020, when the country was at the most miserable and leaderless point in recent history, Trump overperformed again and nearly kept the Presidency.
So why did Trump overperform when Obama was popular, get whooped outside of his base when he was in charge and managing an economy most people were begrudgingly pleased with, and then noticeably overperform while having the worst hand of any incumbent since Herbert Hoover? And why did Biden, a well-known, establishment politician, underperform when all the stars had aligned for him but proved surprisingly resilient when everything was against him?
I think the answer is that it's really not about the economy anymore, or at least that the economy occupies a much smaller place in voters' minds than it used to. Another interpretation would be that the economy is now seen largely through a partisan lense-- by which I mean, the Democrats' (they're usually on the ass-end of economy questions these days) dissatisfaction with Biden's economy won't stop them from voting, and even if they are begrudgingly pleased with Trump's economy they'll still vote against him.
A consequence of this is that wave elections are over. In 2010, Obama had a trifecta and entered office with high expectations. However, key parts of his agenda flopped, and in the worst way possible. He managed to trigger the right while deflating his own base. In the 2010 midterms, the right turned out in full force, the left stayed home, and the center figured they weren't happy with the way things were so they might as well give the opposition a shot. Even states like Hawaii and Massachusetts saw breakout Republican success. This is basically the anatomy of a wave election before everything changed, thanks to Trump, and I doubt we're going back.
The matter is of particular importance because right now Trump is the overwhelming favorite to win the Republican nomination. We will get the 2024 election nobody wanted-- a rematch.
In 2020, Trump held an absolutely terrible hand. He attracted withering criticism from many sides due to his response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and conventional wisdom dictated that nice moderate Joe Biden would win just on virtue of that alone. The COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic crash had theoretically robbed Trump of the one thing he could actually tout, and that was an America where he hadn't managed to break anything. The nice, unifying Joe Biden was supposed to sweep him away in an election that resembled 1980, 1992, or 1932. At the end of the day it looked quite a bit more like 1948. Trump ran a bitter, divisive, unpresidential campaign to the fiery end, rallying his base and throwing crude but workable talking points to the suburbanites. He was narrowly edged out after a week of vote-counting in a few key states.
The fact of the matter is, "cultural" issues and a healthy dose of partisanship have at least partially supplanted the economy. At least partially, Trump kept his strength with economy voters because it was impossible to blame him for the country closing down. In 2010, many voters might've abandoned President Obama because he hadn't brought the prosperity he'd promised. In 2020, many voters toughed it out with Trump because (for better or for worse) they were too partisan to blame him for the country's ills. Democrats were destined to do a lot better in 2022 than in 2010 just on this virtue alone. The public now sees not voting like letting cancer win because your doctor didn't cure it in time.
Similarly, culture issues are eclipsing the economy in importance. In 2018, the Trump Administration's shenanigans mostly dictated which way the country voted. Republicans enjoyed miniature waves in a lot of red states, and got absolutely buried in purple and blue states. Similarly, in 2022, when the main issues were Trump's ongoing attempts to subvert the electoral process and red states banning abortion, Democrats were surprisingly resilient. But in solid blue states where those concerns were distant, cultural issues like crime gave Republicans surprise gains. The most infamous was New York, but Republicans also took the House because of strength in states like California and Oregon.
I'm going to close this post by saying that we'll be entering 2024 with the roles basically reversed-- Biden will be the divisive, unpopular incumbent overseeing a shitty America. Trump will be the guy on the outside talking a big game with no real suggestions and banking on dissatisfaction winning out. I had friends tell me the Democrats' 2022 messaging was just January 6th and abortion, and the general expectation (myself included) was that nobody would care about Lake's open declarations that she would overturn the 2024 election if Biden won it, or that abortion really wouldn't weigh on the Wisconsin Republicans.
2024 will be a bitterly partisan race where people will indeed care. If the Republicans nominate Donald Trump, people will care. They will blow yet another perfectly winnable race and hand a desperately unpopular President another term.
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2023.05.29 23:37 CatsInTrenchcoats Peacekeeping Pt.2
An additional thanks to u/An_Insufferable_NEWT
for letting me borrow one of his characters.
...And now for the conclusion.
= = =
Evelra swore. They had come here to uplift humanity from barbarism, not let the powers that be enable humanity’s worst elements while the selfsame Noble cunts indulged in their own pubescent masturbatory power fantasies. Fuck this.
She thought to herself with a growl and flicked her comms channel to all units.
“All forces, this is Captain Evelra. The goddess-damned governess’s private militia have opened fire on the civies. Arrest those brother-fucking [bastards]
on sight before they can fuck this mess up any further!” She barked over the comms, a bit of local English slipping into her words. She couldn’t call them stiffs; the latter had more class than this.
“Capt, we’ve got three APCs in militia markings barreling down the road in front of the Governess’s mansion from the west. ETA 30 seconds. This is about to get messy.” Prex’s voice cut in with a false calm lent by years of experience.
Evelra could feel the material of her suit creak as her hands briefly tightened into hardened fists. “All west side Pods converge on Pod 7, support Lieutenant Eleynor. Eastern Pods, evac the civies. And Prex? Keep the late arrivals occupied. Don’t let these fuckers get another shot off.” She growled, her Second giving a brief click of acknowledgement over the comms before switching channels to give orders of her own.
Turning back to face Isaiah, Evelra reached a hand down to grab the elder by his medical exoskeleton and hoisted him to his feet. “Looks like the Governess ran out of patience. Get your people out of here, we’ll deal with this.” She explained brusquely, jabbing one finger towards the eastern side of the boulevard. She could apologize for womanhandling him later, right now every second counted.
The moment she was sure he had his feet under him, the marine captain let go and tried to move on Eleynor’s position with all due haste. “Out of the way! MOVE!” Evelra shouted as she strode forward, the sea of humans doing their best to get out of her path. Already, people were starting to scramble as panic spread like wildfire. She could hear the cries of terror and confusion all around her; shouted orders from the protest organizers and her own marines were almost inaudible against the din as they tried to control the chaos.
As she neared pod 7’s position, a horrifying scene unfolded before her. In the shadow of the buildings, at least a dozen of the protesters were currently on fire. Harsh yellow and orange flames rose from the flailing figures to form hazy gray clouds of smoke that hung heavy in the air. Even more humans were covered in burn marks and charred clothes. One woman just sat there, trembling and numb from shock as she stared her bloody arm; the melted remains of her synthetic shirt peeling away with boiled skin. Amidst the chaos, the other protesters were doing everything from trying to help the wounded and burning to running in panic and terror; the latter creating a solid wave of bodies in front of Evelra as they stumbled over one another to flee the danger.
From out of sight, she saw one of the Governess’ militia-kitted thugs go flying; only to watch them get back up and charge in to fight whom Evelra assumed to be Pod 7. Shil’vati might be stronger, but when equally equipped, outnumbered and against human reflexes she knew that fight wasn’t going to end well for her girls if the rest of the western Pods didn’t reach them soon. Then, one of the militiamen stepped forward towards the crowd.
As he strode boldly through the mayhem, Evelra could only watch while one of the protesters tried to confront him; the tide of humans preventing the marine captain from intervening. Inaudible words were exchanged, the protester shouting something as they gesticulated wildly. The Governess’ thug merely responded with two swift strikes of his rifle butt, first to the gut, then to the back of the head, the other man dropping like an anchor. In the distance, out of the corner of her eye, she numbly noted that the rest of the governess’ thugs had arrived and were using their APCs as cover between them and the Pods under Prexith’s command.
Evelra felt her gut sink as the militiamen shouldered his rifle once more, stepping out of the building’s shadow to take aim at the crowd. “EVERYBODY DOWN!” The marine captain roared as she planted her feet and pulled her sidearm in one smooth, practiced motion. Drawing a bead on the Governess’ thug, the panicked crowd tried to clear out of her way; but there were just too many people. She wasn’t going to make it in time. No, no more. Not-
The militiaman’s head disappeared.
A split second later, the now infamously familiar thunderous crack and echoing roar of a large bore human chemical ballistic rifle rolled over them as the corpse spasmed on its feet; a shockwave visibly rippling through the suit it was wearing. “SNIPER!”
Somebody bellowed. It might have been her, but in that moment she honestly couldn’t tell. As the headless body crumpled to the ground in a fountain of red, the same gun roared out again… and again. In the distance she could see two sudden sprays of red splatter up the sides of the Militia APCs, one right after the other.
The echoes of gunfire galvanized the crowd into a further panic, a stampede of human protesters slamming into Evelra in their attempt to get away from the violence. For a moment, the marine captain thought she was going to get dragged under by the wave, but then they rolled past her, leaving her staggering into the clear. With the screaming of the crowd now behind her and her ears still ringing from gunshots it was oddly quiet once more, save for the groans of the wounded.
Not letting herself fall into the lull, Evelra kept moving forward only to nearly gag at the smell as she approached the corner of the building. Like a Blue Grail left in the summer sun for a week, the air was heavy with a putrid smoke, reminiscent of the scent of death itself. Quickly sealing her helmet, she took a shuddering breath of fresh air before looking up just in time to see a pair of the Governess’s thugs get bodily tackled into the pavement by Eleynor. The rest of treasonous Militia were either surrendering or trying to run like the Deep-Minder itself was behind them as more Marine Pods came charging around nearby street corners.
Watching the last treasonous bastards eat pavement, the marine captain strode up to the Militaman’s corpse and picked up his blood-stained rifle. Quickly turning the weapon over in her hands, Evelra took one look at its settings and nearly threw the gun away in disgust. Medium power, maximum dispersal. Against even the most basic of modern armor, such settings would be practically useless; but would make for a decent, if imprecise, fire starter. Which is exactly what they’d done. Of course, leave it to the humans to figure out how to turn the most basic of weapons into a tool of terror.
She thought bitterly, adjusting the beam spread back to something more logical before strapping it’s sling to her harness.
Now properly armed for anything else the Deep-Minder might decide to throw at her, Evelra flicked open her wrist-mounted omnipad, the integrated AR display in her helmet seamlessly linking to it. A couple quick taps later and the captain had an outgoing call. As the phone line rang in her ear, she tried not to tap her foot, every second feeling like ten.
“911, what’s your emer-”
Before the woman on the other end could even finish her sentence, Evelra interrupted her. “This is Captain Evelra of the Imperial Marines, 4032nd company. We have at least a dozen, I repeat, at least
a dozen critically injured burn victims at the corner of 3rd and Main. I need emergency Medivac for the critically wounded.” She barked into the mic.
There was a momentary pause on the other end accompanied by the sounds of a physical keyboard before shortly being followed by a muffled “Fuck.”
Evelra shifted impatiently as one second dragged into the next. “Is something the matter?” The marine growled.
“Ahh… No ma’am.” The other woman’s voice was uncertain for a moment before steadying back out. “Just bypassing some red tape. Consider it done. ETA, ten minutes.” She said with a thermocast firmness. Evelra briefly considered hounding the woman for what exactly she meant by ‘red tape’ but decided against it. She sounded confident in her statement and ultimately there was nothing else Evelra could do about it at the moment.
“I’m going to hold you to that.” The marine captain growled before hanging up. One down.
Looking up, she glanced over the growing crowd of Marines. Already, some of her girls were pulling out medkits and burn patches as they moved to help injured protesters; her AR display highlighting their ranks and names.
“Sergeant Quixana!” Evelra barked over the din.
“Ma’am!” The medic shouted back over one shoulder, barely looking up from the burn victim she was currently treating.
“We have civilian medivac for the burn victims inbound, ETA ten minutes. You have command over Triage. Anyone in critical condition they can’t airlift out is your responsibility. Clear?” She commanded, watching the Governess’s thugs like a shark as her girls disarmed and secured them. At this point, Evelra honestly didn’t expect them to try anything else; but as always with humans, one never quite
knew what they’d do.
“Affirmative!” Quixana replied. Taking a moment to ensure the woman she was treating wasn’t in immediate danger, the medic ushered another marine over to help and began shouting orders of her own. Two down.
Satisfied that the situation was under control, Evelra keyed into her comms again.
A couple moments later, the other woman’s voice came to life in her earpiece. “After the gunshots went off, the little fuckers started stumbling over each other to try and surrender. What in the Deep just happened?” Despite the horror around her, Evelra gave a short, mirthless chuckle. “Seems a certain… somebody
decided to more than just ‘play’ at being security. And seeing as I still have my head, they’re not a complete bloodthirsty idiot.”
“You certain it’s… them?”
Prex asked, a hint of dubiousness in her voice.
“Given that there’s one of the Governess’s thugs sans their head while I still have mine? Yeah. About as certain as I can be. Fits what little we know about their M.O.” Evelra shot back.
There were several long moments of silence before her subordinate let out a low whistle. “Make that three. I’ve got two more over here. Definitely explains why the little Turoxes were so fucking panicky. What now Cap?”
“How many of your Pods do you need to secure your prisoners?” Evelra asked.
“Less than half. They’re more terrified of stepping back into the sights of that sniper than anything else, I think.” Prexith snorted, a dry hint of amusement in her voice.
“Take as many as you think you can spare from guard duty and go arrest the Governess. Alive. Though preventing her from causing any more damage takes priority. Clear?” Evelra’s voice was firm, the unspoken message clear. Try not to kill the bitch if at all possible, but ice her tits if she’s going to make this a problem.
“As a laser lens. Prex out.”
When the line clicked dead, the marine captain took a deep breath and tried to center herself. Now came the hard part.
= = =
Evelra stopped outside the governess’ office and took a deep breath to steady herself. Within two hours of getting the fiasco under control, one Agent Lohun had arrived… along with three Pods of Death’s Head Commandos. Upon giving him her report, the petite male had thanked her and politely requested that she remain in her quarters until further notice. The marine captain had known better than to try and test those
particular boundaries. It was only now, three days later, that she’d been summoned once more.
In spite of the not quite lockdown state that was currently in effect, word still traveled. Her orders to arrest the governess had been upheld and the bitch had been transferred out to some Interior facility goddess knows where. A minimal local press release had happened; condemning the governess’ actions and requesting cooperation with the authorities as they investigated the incident. Things were still tense, but the daily gathering of thousands of protesters had dwindled to a hundred or so of the most stubborn.
With a little shake to clear her head, Evelra opened the office door and stepped through. Behind the governess’ massive polished wooden desk sat Lohun. The petite male was almost comically out of place; his simple take on the Interior uniform clashing with the room’s ostentatious opulence. Rumor had it that since he was investigating the room’s previous owner, he’d simply co-opted the office rather than bother to set up another workspace elsewhere. Looking up from his omnipad and what she assumed was a proverbial mountain of reports, the Agent gave her a tired nod of acknowledgement.
“Good. You’re here. Please, take a seat Captain D’saari.” He said, gesturing to a much simpler chair in front of the desk. Wincing internally at his usage of her long-abandoned family name, Evelra complied and settled into the offered seat in silence as she tried not to look at the silent woman in the corner with the three-eyed skull mask. Lohun gave his omnipad one last glance before setting it down and letting his carefully focused gaze settle onto her.
“Six deaths.” He stated simply, letting the fact hang there in the air for a moment. “Only half of which were not the aggressors in this situation. That could have gone much, much
worse. A job well done Captain.”
Evelra gave an awkward shrug. “Without the… unsolicited fire support it would have been. My girls just did the mop up.”
Lohun hummed, double-checking something on his omni-pad. “About that. The audio logs between you and your second indicated a certain familiarity with this assumed insurgent sniper, yet I can’t find any combat reports that you two share featuring any opposition with this kind of firepower. Care to explain what I’m missing here?” He asked calmly, a polite smile on his face; the Commando in the corner shifting her weight slightly.
A bundle of nerves did somersaults in her gut as she felt her throat go dry. “Ah, yeah. About… one local year ago we had a human male turn up dead. Clear signs of abuse. Autopsy report indicated he had both Nightfel and Viagra in him at the time of death. I had my suspicions, but the ensuing investigation never turned up any evidence.” The marine captain grimaced, scratching at one tusk with her thumbnail. “A few months later, A pod on a routine patrol got ambushed. All three of their heads were blown clean off. Big gun. I think you can guess what we found when we cleared out their belongings.”
“Nightfel and Viagra.” Lohun said cooly, his face grim.
Evelra nodded. “Yeah. The Governess covered the whole thing up in the name of keeping the peace. Released a statement that the young man’s murderers had been found and executed while redacting my report.”
Briefly adding a few notes on his omnipad, the Interior agent gave her a careful look. “Why didn’t you report this breach of protocol to the Interior?”
“Because it worked.” Evelra sighed. “Approval ratings ticked up, minor incidents went down. Didn’t hurt that I also publicly doubled down on mandatory etiquette training for my girls. I’ve seen enough of the Empire’s bureaucracy over the years to know better than to stir up the seabed over something like this. Justice was served, even if it was in a less than ideal manner.”
“And what about the young man’s family?” Lohun pressed, his gaze tightening.
Coughing slightly to clear her throat, Evelra looked away as she felt her cheeks heat up. “Officially, they were given the same story as everyone else. However, I… I may have taken one Shel to visit their home and correct that mistake. They deserved to know.” She finished quietly, leaning forward in her chair to look down at the ground. Anywhere but at the male in front of her.
After several agonizingly long moments of silence, the marine captain glanced up to catch sight of Lohun slowly starting to nod. “Good. That’s good. We can work with that.”
At his words, Evelra let out a breath she hadn’t realized she’d been holding. In response, a ghost of a smile pulled at the edges of Lohun’s face. “Yes, you can relax now. You’re here to help me fix this mess, not to have your tits burned off.”
Evelra bobbed her head, eager for the change of topic. “Gladly. What can I do?”
The ghost of a smile on Lohun’s face broadened slightly, hovering on the edge of a smirk. “Simple. You will be taking over as the Local Governess.” The marine captain felt her jaw go slack as the Interior Agent calmly continued along as if he was discussing something as simple as dinner reservations.
“Of course, there’s a plethora of steps to take along the way. In recognition of your service to the citizens of the empire, you will be promoted two ranks to Lieutenant Colonel and discharged with full honors. We’ll then need somebody to fill your current position. One Sergeant… Prexith Van’sar, your current second, should do nicely. With her service record she's certainly earned herself a commission, I think.” He scoffed in amusement, shaking his head at some distant thought. “Deep, her accolades are almost as impressive as her penchant for avoiding promotions. It’s my hope though that continuing to work with you should be enough to dissuade her of that particular tendency.”
Lohun finally took a proper pause, as if he was only now taking in her shock. “Is something the matter Captain D’saari?”
As Evelra heard him refer to her by her family name again something inside her broke. The sheer absurdity of it all was just too much, and a noise of amusement escaped her mouth. It started as a snort, before growing into a full-on barks of laughter as Evelra shook her head in disbelief. “I- I’m sorry, but you want me
, the legally disowned, stiff-sprung cunt to be a local governess?
Goddess, you all must be getting desperate if you’re willing to dredge up the cast-off chaff of the noble houses.”
Lohun merely quirked an eyebrow at her before briefly consulting his omnipad again. “So that explains the three separate attempts to change your last name… aannd
probably why all three of them never went anywhere.” He let out a small humph as a flicker of distaste crossed his face. “An easy enough fix.”
“Goddess. You’re serious.” Evelra muttered as she slumped back in her chair, trying to process the implications. “Ok. Why me?” She asked, throwing a hand wide.
The Interior agent’s gaze focused in on her as he leaned forward onto the table, steepling his fingers. “Because Captain, over the past three days I have spent an exhaustive amount of time interviewing and interrogating people to get a better handle on what happened and why.
Your name came up just as, if not, more frequently than the governess’s; and rarely in a negative light. From both Shil’vati and
humans. Deep, even some of the ones that looked like they wanted to spit in my face refused to speak ill of you. Do you understand how goddess-damned rare that is?” Lohun finished, his voice raised and projected, not quite reaching an actual shout.
Evelra was sorely tempted to argue. She’d spent most of her adult life trying to get as far away from the nobility and politics as she could, as nothing good in her life had ever come from them. Then her conversation with Isaiah flashed through her mind. Fuck.
The marine captain let out a disgusted groan of frustration as she rubbed her face with one hand. “Alright… but how?” She asked, her brain fervently grasping at straws. “I mean no offense, but… isn’t that a little outside your authority as an Interior Agent?..”
Once more, a slight grin pulled at the agent’s face. “Ah yes. Perhaps some reintroductions are in order. Independent Investigator Lohun Vey’elquiese of the Empress’s own and an Agent of her Interior. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Lady Evelra?..” He said smoothly, letting the end of his sentence hang as he leaned across the massive table to offer a petite fist.
For one long moment, Evelra’s brain short-circuited. The petite little male sitting across from her answered to only perhaps a dozen people in the entire Empire, and had the authority to make individuals such as system governesses simply disappear. Of course, abuse of said power carried the death penalty, not that one of the Empress’s own handpicked agents were likely to make that kind of mistake. Suddenly, the three pods of Death’s Head Commandos accompanying him made much, much
After a couple seconds of slight panic, her brain caught back up and she processed the question he’d carefully interwoven into his reintroduction. Taking a moment to think, she settled on her answer. With a slight smile of her own, she reached out her hand to tap her knuckles to his.
“Van’sar. Evelra Van’sar. And the pleasure is all mine Investigator.”
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2023.05.29 23:36 icallshogun Bridgebuilder - Chapter 41
Poorly Hidden First Prev
There were very few things to do in quarantine.
Alex had spent his last two days sleeping as much as he could. There were six movies available to watch and nothing else. His techs steadfastly refused to tell him anything about the outside world, which was standard procedure. Nothing that would get him riled up, as Shawn put it. That sort of riled him up.
Aside from sleeping, the only thing that broke the monotony was meal time. First he would get scanned and then one of the nurses would drop off clean scrubs and a steaming hot bowl of nutragel in the small airlock. In the morning it tasted sort of like a cinnamon roll. The lunch nutragel bore some resemblance to chicken soup and the dinner nutragel was similar to but distinct from beef stew.
Nutragel was easily more dissatisfying to eat than anything else a dispenser produced. It provided everything he needed to live and made things easier on the scanner, but lacked any other redeemable features. Freedom could not come soon enough.
So he thought.
Being released was nearly as strange as being brought in. Shawn gave him his marching orders - There’d be a representative from the Civilian Pilot Program waiting for Carbon and him once he was out of the secure portion of the station, and said his goodbye before turning the airlock on. It cycled automatically around him and he walked from the quarantine room down the hall to the patient elevator. Even before the doors opened, he could smell the cleaning chemicals. A minute later his eyes were stinging and his scrubs smelled like something that would denature a prion, but it did deposit him in front of the first human he’d seen since the day he arrived.
The nurse behind the counter was not operating under the same conditions, and seemed pretty bored by his arrival. He pushed a bag with Alex’s name on it across the stainless countertop, and pointed out where the changing rooms were before turning back to his terminal.
There was technically a shower in the quarantine room. One of those dry ones that used ultrasonic waves and a vacuum. It allegedly did the job. The changing room had a real shower, towels, and the most generic little bottles of soap and shampoo Alex had ever seen. Even if everything was a little threadbare, this still felt like luxury. It had been longer than he cared to think about since he’d gotten the chance to take an actual water shower, and he was not going to skip the opportunity to wash the stink of chemicals off his body.
Once again clean, though looking a bit scruffy from nine days of stubble growth, he donned the same clothing that he had been brought in with, now so thoroughly decontaminated it appeared a shade lighter than it had started, and immediately sat down in the waiting room.
Carbon arrived about fifteen minutes later, slightly damp and visibly exhausted. While she did perk up when she spotted him, a brief flash of a smile tamped down as she glanced over at the attendant operating the elevator to the rest of the station. Alex followed suit, keeping it professional as he requested access to leave quarantine.
Once alone in the elevator, a brief look of longing may have been exchanged.
“Oh. It’s real.” Alex murmured to himself as the doors opened to the main deck of the small station, the smell of cooked food wafting through the air as they stepped out. They had arrived just in time for breakfast. He inhaled deeply. “I think they have bacon. And pancakes? You’ll like both of those, I’m sure.”
“Pilot Alex Sorenson? Shipmaster Tshalen?” An older man wearing a button down shirt and nice slacks stepped forward before Alex could determine which way to go to get to the food. He smiled affably, extending his hand. “Dae Yeong, I’m with the CPP.”
Alex barely kept his shit together and shook his hand. “Oh yes. We were told you’d be here.” He didn’t manage to keep the disappointment out of his voice, though.
Dae gave Carbon a short bow, which she returned, and he handed them both new CPP access badges. They were clearly labeled PILOT and ENGINEER respectively, with photos. Alex grinning like he’d won the lotto, Carbon straight-faced and looking a bit like she was getting a mugshot taken. It wasn’t necessary on the quarantine station, but they’d be needing them for access in secure areas elsewhere. “If you both don’t mind, we should be departing for McFadden station immediately. Traffic is already bad and there’s a lot to do.”
Alex did mind, but he kept it to himself. It was a short walk to the hanger, and they quickly found themselves wedged into the back of a four seat transport. It was an inexpensive but serviceable civilian model with CPP branding all over the outside. Mr. Yeong kept his hands on the controls even though the short jaunt to McFadden station was likely to be entirely autopilot.
“I still cannot believe it is so large.” Carbon leaned over as far as her seat’s safety harness would allow, whispering to him as the station grew on the main screen, already lined up with one of the bays on the docking arc. Parking lot speeds were strictly enforced this close to a structure, they were still 30 minutes from actually coming aboard.
“Third largest in system, twelfth in all of human space.” Alex suppressed the urge to make that
joke, keeping his voice down too. It was probably pointless, Mr. Yeong was just over an arms length away in the pilot’s seat and could easily hear them. It still felt sort of conspiratorial, almost fun.
“I am aware of that, but I do not know why
.” She shifted back into her seat properly, ears twitching as they pressed into the headrest. Carbon had curled her antenna over her shoulder, preferring that to crushing them between her back and the seat that had not been made with that particular biological difference in mind.
He shrugged. “They had to make room for all the old spacecraft in the Exploration museum.”
Carbon straightened up and looked at him, perplexed. “A museum?”
“You put a museum in space? In a station that some of your most advanced spacecraft are based from?” Carbon was starting to get that tone that said she may be offended by the very idea being discussed.
“Not me personally, no. But it does seem like a reasonable place for it.”
“I did not mean you specifically, Alex. I meant as a species. Space is not a reasonable place for a museum, no matter the subject.” She was adamant about that, a finger
“Space is the perfect place for a museum about
space exploration. That was the jingle they used during construction.” He cleared his throat and sang, off key. “Space... is the per-fect place.”
Mr. Yeong chuckled quietly.
Carbon’s jaw set and she huffed with frustration. “Your species is so cavalier about so many things. Space is dangerous, it is no place to leave a collection of historical knowledge.”
Alex looked out of his window with a snort, watching a row of single-container cargo drones waiting for access queuing up as he dismissed her argument with a wave of his hand. “Oh yeah, nothing of value has ever been destroyed on a planet before, right?”
The back seat got very quiet.
When he looked back, Carbon was staring down at balled fists with deadly intensity, normally blue lips pressed so tight they were pale.
He figured out where he had fucked up a moment later. “I didn’t mean- Not like, I... Hell.”
Her words came slowly, precise. “I know you did not mean it that way.”
“You have nothing to apologize for. The statement is true, disaster or not. A planet can still oversee untold destruction.” She closed her eyes and exhaled, her body relaxing. ”It has been a difficult week.”
He had forgotten that isolation is hard on the Tsla’o. It had been annoying for him, but being nearly completely cut off from interaction in what was ultimately an alien prison cell must have weighed heavily on her. “Is it alright if I feel bad?”
Carbon took a deep breath and exhaled slowly again, watching her hands uncurl and fingers stretch as she recentered herself. She straightened back up, ears unfolding from being pressed tight against her head before she glanced over at him with a brief nod. A thin, wry smile slowly working across her short muzzle. “That is acceptable as long as you are done by the time we arrive.”
Alex laughed just as Mr. Yeong looked back at them over his shoulder. The older man gave them a bemused smile. “Has anyone told you two that you sound like a married couple?”
That shut both of them up for the rest of the trip. First Prev
That's right, I wrote the P word.
They're really not good at keeping things under wraps.
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to HFY [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 23:30 Agreeable_Anybody613 What are some key factors to consider when choosing a cleaning service near me? I recently moved to a new city and want to ensure I find a reliable and trustworthy service to take care of my cleaning needs.
I recently relocated for a new job and with a busy schedule, I need to find a cleaning service that can help me maintain a clean and organized living space. I want to make sure I make the right choice and hire a service that meets my expectations.
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to CleaningServiceNearMe [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 23:16 en_flor Left nearly 2 years ago and still tormented by doing something that LOOKS bad; anxiety attack over finding someone else’s keys in my purse
What the title says. As a PIMI I was always tiptoeing making sure I didn’t do anything that could make someone stumble or could look bad even though it wasn’t. I was devout and have always deeply cared about doing the right thing, which is why I think I fell into this cult in the first place.
This led to absolutely awful mental health, being literally driven to thoughts of wanting to die every time I felt I did something wrong and the awful feeling that I did not deserve life. And this thinking still plagues me today, after being awake for 3 years.
Basically, there was party was at my coworker’s/friend’s house on Saturday, the day after one of my friends (not the host) asked if I’d seen “Max’s” keys, that he lost them and hadn’t been able to go home. I obviously said no, as I did not put them in my purse and when I’d used my purse earlier that day I didn’t see anyone else’s keys in there.
Today I am doing laundry and it occurred to me to wash my purse, I dump the contents out and (what I assume to be) max’s keys are in there. This is giving me a lot of anxiety, as I do not want my friends to think I took them. I was completely sober and would in no way have confused them for mine as they have keychains and my key does not. There were others there, who were drunk and high but not drunk or high enough to accidentally do something like that, I don’t think. So I’m wondering if someone else did it on purpose and obviously knows I have them and is waiting for me to speak up.
I just don’t know what to do or how to go about this - part of me is scared and figures he probably bought a new key or had a spare and got home already and to just let it go (bad I know but I’m just so anxious), but I’m also going to work in a little and wondering if I should just tell my friend/coworke party host when I see here there.
I don’t have social media or this guy’s number so I don’t have a way of personally reaching him right now.
I just feel like I want to throw myself off a cliff with the thought of the people at that party thinking I took his keys. I know this is really unhealthy and I need to seek therapy for this in particular (self-condemnation), but for now I just need practical advice. Help please
Also, if it turns out he paid for a new key, would it be the right thing for me to pay him back the money he spent?
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2023.05.29 23:12 HisObstinacy [TotK] The "easy puzzles" critique of the dungeons in BotW and TotK is coming from the right place but it's not the correct argument to make, IMO.
A decent chunk of this sub is pretty disappointed with the dungeons in TotK, as they were with the Divine Beasts of BotW. And I agree with most of the criticisms. They're too short, they're quite lacking in enemy variety, the sense of progression isn't as clear as in other Zelda dungeons, and there's often little need to backtrack since all of the puzzles tend to lie within their own contained spaces. I probably haven't listed all of the common complaints, but these are the ones that come to mind and they're complaints I completely agree with.
However, there's one other complaint that I have never really understood. Supposedly, the individual puzzles in these games are too easy and simple. When I read these criticisms, I have to wonder if those making them played the same Zelda games as myself... because creative individual puzzles tended to be few and far between in the traditional 3D games to the point that I think BotW and TotK pretty much blow them out of the water.
A bold statement to make, no? Well, let's illustrate this by looking at a dungeon generally regarded as being one of the more complex in the 3D Zelda games: Ocarina of Time's infamous Water Temple, of course. I'll give a truncated walkthrough of the temple and whatever puzzles it might contain in the following bullet points.
- The first "puzzle" is just a Triforce on a wall. You've seen this before, so you know exactly what to do: play Zelda's Lullaby. This changes the water level which allows a torch to be lit. Next, you simply use the fire from the torch to light two more torches in the same room.
- The next thing you'll probably do is go to another passage and just push a block. That's it. In the next room, you'll hit a switch that, again, you've seen before. The switch creates geysers that you can hop on to cross to the other side of a pit. An identical switch lies in the next room, but the puzzle is a little more interesting. You have to use your iron boots here or the current will keep moving you around. Simply use your hookshot to hit the switch, open a door, then use the hookshot again on a spot that should be fairly obvious if you were in the right position to hit the switch.
- Another section of the temple has you using your hookshot to get across certain areas. But the spots where you're meant to aim the hookshot are typically right in front of you. There's very little searching going on. Further along, you see yet another switch that you've already seen three times earlier in the dungeon. This time, though, you'll need to hit it with an arrow from afar since the switch's effect doesn't last terribly long. An interesting enough evolution of this mechanic, but still quite trivial.
- Skipping a good chunk of the temple here, the most interesting puzzle IMO is one where you have to alternate between raising and lowering the water level of the room in order to make certain statues rise or sink, which reveal their hookshot targets. It's not a difficult puzzle at all since everything is pretty clearly spelled out to you, but I give it points for creativity at least.
I don't think I should have to spell out the rest of the dungeon because that last puzzle is as complicated as it gets for the Water Temple, and the dungeon item is just a longer hookshot so the puzzles don't really change too much from here on out. The parts I skipped over up to now largely had to do with using bombs on obviously cracked walls, hitting clear hookshot targets, or simply fighting enemies for keys, which doesn't really fall into the realm of puzzle-solving.
Let's contrast these with the puzzles in the Wind Temple of TotK, certainly one of the simpler dungeons in the game if not the simplest. I'll just list a few here.
- You might head to the top of the dungeon and use Ultrahand to open a massive trapdoor. Below is a corridor with several lasers. Here, you should get around those lasers by opening and closing the paraglider so as to navigate around easier and mitigate fall damage.
- There are two doors near the front of the dungeon, and both seem to require pulling a lever to operate. However, the one you actually need to get through has a lever that doesn't work... it's just not long enough. You can, however, use Ultrahand to grab a nearby icicle, stick it to the lever, and then move the whole thing. The trick here is realizing that Ultrahand actually works on the icicles if you haven't already figured that out.
- Below the main deck, there are several gears that seem to operate another door. One side of the mechanism isn't moving, though, because it's not connected to the other side. The trick is to look up and shoot down an icicle, then lodge that to the moving gear in such a way that the other side of the icicle just touches the still mechanism and moves it. A rather interesting puzzle, I think.
- Another puzzle features a windmill lacking its blades. Use Ultrahand to stick blades together so that they form a propeller, then use Tulin's ability to blow the new windmill and activate a door.
The last two puzzles (particularly the third), I think, are more mechanically engaging than any in the Water Temple, and even the first two would fit in quite nicely among the Water Temple's more interesting puzzles in terms of difficulty... so much for easier puzzles. If we're only considering creativity alone without regard for difficulty, then all four of them are well beyond the Water Temple. Only the statue puzzle in the Water Temple really stands a chance here. The other dungeons in OoT are even weaker on the individual puzzle front except maybe the Forest Temple... and this is a game that is generally regarded as having some of the most interesting dungeons in the series. Bringing other games into the comparison here, MM isn't a whole lot tougher than OoT on the individual puzzle front except for maybe Great Bay Temple and its numerous stray fairies. WW and TP are definite steps down in difficulty, especially WW. SS, however, has some promising individual puzzles, I will concede.
So, circling back to the Water Temple, what's the deal here? The Water Temple's puzzles are pretty thoroughly outclassed here, as has been made clear. Yet I doubt anyone would argue that the Wind Temple is a trickier dungeon to complete. On the contrary, it's pretty easy. And while I don't think the Water Temple is as difficult as some may believe, it's definitely leagues ahead of the Wind Temple.
In truth, the individual puzzles were not what made the Water Temple difficult in the first place, and this is true of most 3D Zelda dungeons prior to BotW. To clear a room, one usually had to light a few obvious torches or hit a hookshot target that might as well have had a neon sign hanging over it. Not always, but usually. What made the dungeons difficult was figuring out which room you had to reach in the first place. If there are three locked doors and you only have two keys, where could that missing link possibly be located, and how would you even go about get there from where you currently are in the dungeon? There were also many intra-dungeon mechanics like changing the water level which I wouldn't consider an individual puzzle but rather a mechanic that affected almost every aspect of the dungeon. If I did so-and-so thing here, which paths would this open and which paths would this block? So not really puzzle-solving but navigation was the tricky part of the old Zelda dungeons.
BotW and TotK, on the other hand, indisputably have the most creative puzzles in the entire franchise, and many are far more challenging than your usual torch-lighting or switch-pressing Zelda shenanigans since they often incorporate several aspects of the game and rely heavily on one's spatial thinking and understanding of the physics engine. And the one shrine in BotW that actually did heavily feature the torch-lighting mechanic implemented it in puzzles that frankly left every other game in the dust (see here
). Even cheesing the puzzles often requires a sufficiently deep knowledge of the game's mechanics that goes beyond simply knowing where to aim the hookshot (the Fire Temple in TotK is the one big exception to this, I think). However, these dungeons sacrifice the complex layouts and gated objectives that once forced players to really stop and think about where they needed to go and what they needed to get in the dungeons. There's only one gate that leads to the boss and the objectives are marked on the map for you, so it's not an imposing labyrinth anymore; it's five branching paths that hardly ever overlap with each other (the Fire Temple is another exception here).
THAT is what makes them easier dungeons overall, even though the individual puzzles themselves are mostly better than those of other games. So, to return to the post's title, the argument that these new dungeons are considerably easier is perfectly valid, but I would not pin the blame to the puzzles for this one. If anything, they're more interesting than ever and I would really look forward to a Zelda dungeon that has such fascinating puzzles while retaining the complex layouts and gated objectives of past dungeons. Make them longer too... while the puzzles themselves are great, there aren't enough of them to keep me very busy.
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2023.05.29 23:05 TheRetroWorkshop Hard & Accurate Sci-fi Tip #2: Space Military Structure (Namely, Space Opera):
This is going to be one of my more serious, long posts, so strap in, as they say (though I cannot possibly detail out everything you might need to know. That would require at least three posts). To quote -- and set the stage through -- Dostoevsky (from Notes from Underground):
'Is it [history] many-coloured? May be it is many-coloured, too: if one takes the dress uniforms, military and civilian, of all peoples in all ages--that alone is worth something, and if you take the undress uniforms you will never get to the end of it; no historian would be equal to the job. Is it monotonous? May be it's monotonous too: it's fighting and fighting; they are fighting now, they fought first and they fought last--you will admit, that it is almost too monotonous.
In short, one may say anything about the history of the world--anything that might enter the most disordered imagination. The only thing one can't say is that it's rational. The very word sticks in one's throat. And, indeed, this is the odd thing that is continually happening: there are continually turning up in life moral and rational persons, sages and lovers of humanity who make it their object to live all their lives as morally and rationally as possible, to be, so to speak, a light to their neighbours simply in order to show them that it is possible to live morally and rationally in this world. And yet we all know that those very people sooner or later have been false to themselves, playing some queer trick, often a most unseemly one.
Now I ask you: what can be expected of man since he is a being endowed with strange qualities? Shower upon him every earthly blessing, drown him in a sea of happiness, so that nothing but bubbles of bliss can be seen on the surface; give him economic prosperity, such that he should have nothing else to do but sleep, eat cakes and busy himself with the continuation of his species, and even then out of sheer ingratitude, sheer spite, man would play you some nasty trick. He would even risk his cakes and would deliberately desire the most fatal rubbish, the most uneconomical absurdity, simply to introduce into all this positive good sense his fatal fantastic element. It is just his fantastic dreams, his vulgar folly that he will desire to retain, simply in order to prove to himself--as though that were so necessary--that men still are men and not the keys of a piano, which the laws of nature threaten to control so completely that soon one will be able to desire nothing but by the calendar.'
I would only add that he was rather harsh on the soldier and his general. Many-coloured, is he! The eternal shine of the ten million blades, the wooden hilt; the forgotten hammer, the ships of our forefathers. Ah! Such a pity to see nought in it but blood and sand -- now, that is
monotonous. If man is to mean anything at all, it must be finding some honour in life... and death. War, it must be known, is the great stage-play of time. Surely, then, the warrior is the greatest (male) part to play? Otherwise, it's all for nought!
If you're going to, as the author, gift your setting a military and its honour, you have to actually put yourself inside the mind of the general, the trooper, the law-maker, the wife at home, the child in the street; otherwise, it's going to be a hollowed-out system, a mere mote. It does not matter to me if you believe in war or not, or if all war is just (certainly, it's not): what matters is that you do your setting and peoples justice, regardless of what they may find themselves. After all, this is your job as the writer, as the artist. It's your job to let your characters and their stories free, and follow them, as to see where they may lead.
I'm not even going to dig into the elements at play, such as brotherhood, inter-national conflict resolution, national defence, social structure, and physical fitness. These elements ought to be known to you all: they are some of the clear benefits to warfare and boot camp/training, in general. I have not yet found a defeatist army, for example -- or yet a nation without some kind of guarder force, vast or not. (Note: there are some claims that actual warfare did not exist until around 9,000 BC, but I find this very difficult to believe, and have seen some counter-evidence. For example, Jane Goodall and de Waal find that chimps go to war (raiding parties, sometimes wiping out entire tribes); and there are strong indications that pre-historic human tribes were war-driven, just on smaller scales, and often using wooden weapons (thus, no direct evidence is found). We know that modern hunting (and fire-making, and related matters) existed at least 1.5-2 million years ago, according to the books I own and more recent research. That's the entire history of humanity, ultimately. There is no way these spears and slings were not used against man.)
Well, a big part of space opera is, indeed, warfare (typically in relation to defence of the Good [nation] and psychomachy). Anyway, without further ado, I give to you... Part One: A Brief History of Battles, Great and Small
Let's begin with Alexander the Great, because why not (though I could have started with Sargon of Akkad many years prior). Alexander's army was a powerful, fast-moving, and relatively small force of 40,000 men (equal to a Napoleonic corps or so). Often credited with inventing genius 'shock' tactics (the so-called hammer and anvil tactic) to overwhelm equally-sized forces. He even managed to break up, and then defeat, the vast Persian army under King Darius III (around 1500,000 strong). Alexander the Great's army is as close to the cinematic glory of 300 (2006) as you're likely to find. Soon after, Alexander was crowned King of Asia in a lavish ceremony.
Moving forward a few hundred years, at its peak, the Roman military possibly had over 500,000 soldiers across its regions (around 0.5% of citizens -- which is a fairly reliable standard across history) by 306 AD during the reign of Constantine I. Compare this to the Roman conquest of Britain under Plautius, with just a 40,000-man force (four legions and 20,000 auxiliary troops, including Thracians) in 43 AD. (It's also worth mentioning, if you're in a long-term space war, individual companies, legions, or otherwise could stay outfitted for as long as 500 years at a time without issue. The Roman Legion, Legio IX Hispana, for example, existed for at least 150 years, and led the conquest of Britain. And, within the Warhammer 40,000 universes, a single Space Marine sees battle for about 400 years before he's KIA (killed in action).)
During the Battle of Hastings in 1066 AD, each side only had upwards of 5,000-8,000 men (around 15,000 in total). This was actually a common trend, from what I found: equally common was the notion of 'law of war' and related, which meant that each side wanted to be roughly equal to the other side. This is one of the most profound discoveries of my life (more on this later). (The Japanese invasion of China, for example, taught me that having too much control over your enemy leads to madness -- there must be an innate drive to some sense of honour, fair challenge in war-making. When men are without equals, they become titans, as it were. And, if you know anything about some of the Greek titans: they were not very friendly or sane.)
Around this time (960-1279 AD), the Song Dynasty of China had a remarkable standing army of over two million men, and made use of tank-like carts and newly-invented 'grandes' (known as 'thunder crash bombs'). However, this was financially exhausting, but it was sometimes capable of fighting against invading Khitans, Jurchens, and Mongols, largely thanks to the great iron industry. Individual battles, however, were quite small.
By the time of the First Italian War (1494 AD), Europe was really starting to take its modern shape, and there were hundreds of what are ultimately power struggle wars and rebellions across Europe as we moved out of the Middle Ages. This was the opening phase of the Italian Wars, which existed between 1494 and 1559 AD. The Battle of Marignano was the last major engagement of the War of the League of Cambrai (aka the wars between 1508 and 1516 AD, within the Italian Wars. The main participants were the French, Papal States, and Republic of Venice) and took place in 1515 AD, southeast of Milan. The Battle of Marignano pitted the French army, led by Francis I and the best heavy cavalry and artillery in Europe, against the Old Swiss Confederacy (within the Holy Roman Empire -- this was the precursor of the modern state of Switzerland), whose mercenaries until that point were regarded as the best medieval infantry force in Europe. The French had German landsknechts (mercenaries famed for pike and shot formations) on their side. The French won and suffered just half the losses, and did so with a fairly stronger force -- possibly 35,000 men compared to 22,000 on the Swiss side. This led to the Treaty of Fribourg, which established the 'Perpetual Peace', and ensured good relations between the two nations for nearly 200 years. This event is largely what led to Switzerland's world-famous diplomatic autonomy and militaristic neutrality. Nonetheless, this battle -- and countless others at the time -- saw similar numbers to centuries past: roughly 20,000 on each side. Part Two: An Introduction to Military Divisions & the Numbering System
Enter Maurice de Saxe circa 1710 AD, whom you can thank, at least in part, for the modern military system, largely due to the major increase in soldiers by the 18th century, and his advanced thinking in response. A major battle felt by a young de Saxe was the Battle of Malplaquet during the War of the Spanish Succession. Battles pressed on in this manner, and at some point, de Saxe began to write about it. He wrote Mes Reveries, a profound work on the art of war, which was published after his death in 1757 AD.
He had the grand idea of reshaping the regiment system into large 'legions' (modern divisions), so that the effective officers were not wasted on smaller, single regiments. These divisions would consist of four regiments and would have a more even mix of veteran soldiers and new recruits, as well. On top of this, he -- along with some other key theorists at the time -- had the idea of simply numbering the divisions and regiments, replacing the traditional system of naming them by their commanders or by locations/regions: because that's a very temporary, rigid system that only works for small, tight-knit groups. The divisional system also allowed soldiers to climb the ranks, and effectively learn from the veterans.
The regimental system shatters command structure and weakens mobility, despite the fact you have smaller, often lighter units. Too many small, separate, disorganised units is highly ineffective when you're dealing with large armies, and quite an advanced enemy (be it the British or Prussians, in this case). What de Saxe noticed was a failing system of rigid tradition. He also hated this sort of grenadier mentality of the 17th and 18th centuries, as it displaced all the strongest and most experienced soldiers. Of course, de Saxe was not against the existence of grenadiers: the strongest soldiers, leading the assaults, such as storming fortifications. He simply wanted to evenly spread them out across all the regiments, and legions, so that every single unit was an effective tool. (This grenadier concept actually survives to this day, as a grenade launcher specialist of a typical four-man fireteam (traditionally, sharing much in common with WWII-era shock troops), and you see it all the time in movies, where he is still typically the biggest, strongest of the team.)
Battles were increasingly crossing the 100,000 mark in terms of soldier count; whereas, not long ago (that is, around 1650 AD), the numbers were more likely in the range of 20,000 for most battles, other than a few outliers.
Then, de Saxe died before he had the opportunity to actually implement his system, though the Duke de Broglie led some successful experiments with it during the Seven Years War, but it took until the French Revolution for the 'division' concept to be enforced, systematically. This ultimately fell at the hands of the French Revolutionary Army.
Enter Lazare Carnot. Like de Saxe, Carnot saw that some regiments were full of veterans, whilst others -- namely, the new revolutionary brigades -- were filled with barely-trained recruits. And, like de Saxe, his solution was to separate out the veterans and embed them within these new brigades. More importantly, he embraced de Saxe's idea of the 'division'. The new demi-brigades (regiments, as the Revolutionary Government hated and removed the term regiment) would be combined into brigades, and brigades would be combined into divisions. Later, under Napoleon, divisions themselves were combined into corps (which is and has always been the highest level of operational units for actual combat, with all units larger than corps being purely administrative, with a clear exception being Napoleon's Armee (i.e. modern field army), and a few other, smaller army groups).
This wonderfully created an intermediate level of control between the general and the brigade commanders. The Revolutionary Army became at once an army of mass and mobility. This allowed the army to move faster and more decisively than their enemies, who were still commanding at regiment or brigade level.
Full implementation of the divisional system was not realised until the French Revolutionary Government, in their centralising and anti-aristocratic ways, when they decided to entirely remove the old system of naming regiments after their commanders. They saw all of this as part of the 'ancien regime' (i.e. 'the System' or 'old system', language also used by Hitler in relation to what he called the 'Weimar Republic'. Not uncommon language from any new system). The second factor at play was that the French Revolutionary Government also didn't like the idea of merely naming regiments after regions of France. The final factor was scale: the Army was larger than ever, which made it very difficult to give specific names.
As a result, the Government began numbering their units by the late-1700s. Although the Roman legions themselves had been numbered, and de Saxe argued for it many years prior, some scholars believe that this was purely an administrative decision. (Obviously, your naming convention can be more on the religious/traditional or seculamodern side, depending on just how the entire system is set up. Warhammer 40,000 is a good example of a more Roman-inspired system, despite its far-future nature, so it's not uncommon to find very traditional, religious naming conventions within Warhammer 40,000, coupled with simple, administrative systems. And, again: Nazi Germany and other 20th-century powers, such as America and England, also shifted towards numbered and/or lettered systems for pretty much everything. Not shockingly, this is heavily featured in sci-fi, as well.) Part Three: Napoleon & the Birth of Modern War:
Although the concepts of the 'corps' and 'battalion carre' (that is, four corps) existed, they were also not implemented until the time of Napoleon in the early-1800s. He began grouping divisions into corps, making the largest units in history -- equal to entire armies of older periods (three divisions and some cavalry regiments, for upwards of 30,000 men). He commanded dozens of these corps (I think, around 20 of them for his Grande Armee when he invaded Russia in 1812 AD -- or, 500,000-600,000 men, equal to the entire core Roman military at the height of its power).
Napoleon's genius -- despite his supreme failure to invade Russia -- was ensuring that these corps were typically independent fighting units. This meant they were self-sufficient armies unto themselves. This allowed for a vast force, without the whole system becoming sluggish and disorganised. Of course, as with Alexander the Great before him, this ultimately led to major decentralization and failure once the leader is defeated; thus, without a singular ruler, and without endless success, the entire system breaks down (unless there is something else binding them).
Nonetheless, by now, all the European powers had adopted the divisional system. The first British divisions were established by Arthur Wellesley in 1809 AD, for example. The Napoleonic corps system then became standardised, as well.
On the other hand -- and other side of the world -- the U.S. had its own 'legion', wholly separate from the European divisional evolution. They were independent units for the western wilderness, not sub-elements of a larger army. The U.S. finally adopted a more European system by WWI, however. (Mostly because the U.S. was simply not a large enough force yet, though it did have some major battles and unit examples.)
Regardless, the primary building block for all was still the regiment or division. This remained true through WWII and beyond. Part Four: The Four Spatial Forms of Sci-fi
I shall skip modern history, because it's -- shockingly -- not much different to older history. This further tells me that there are some universal themes and elements to warfare, unless something changes beyond measure. As of 2023 AD, the basic building block of most armies is still the regiment or division, and 'shock' tactics, of smaller units are back in style, and have been since the 1960s or so. (I do have a few things to say about WWI and beyond, but I cannot fit it in this post, and it's not required reading.)
Technically, there is a fifth: space warfare proper (an admixture). But, we shall simply focus on the four primary. I use the term 'spatial forms' because I don't know a better term. See below.
- Space as an ocean (navy propeoceanic)
- Spaceships as submarines (navy/subaquatic)
- Spaceships as tanks (army/ground)
- Space as air with less stuff (air force/air)
You find, and should focus on, one of these as the primary mode (at least). This is true in most combative and non-combative contexts. All are workable and interesting, and have some notable examples, mostly in film/TV and novels. There is much psychology connected to each, and some innate differences to consider; and you have to think about such in relation to your nation/culture, as well, and their pre-spacefaring history.
An interesting, real-world example is America's Space Force. This is fundamentally army-and-naval driven (i.e. Marines), despite its primary air force-like nature in simple terms of the vessels and how it would function in a war. This is evidenced by the fact its ranking system and such is built around the Marine Corps. I guess, that means, going with American Marines (a complex admixture of both soldier and sailor) is not such a bad idea in sci-fi. We all know this is a decent idea, anyway, and it's seen heavily in sci-fi since the 1940s (hence, the term 'space marine'). Other marine forces are fairly in line with this, as well. The typical route here is space as an ocean
. The ships are merely carrying the marines to their location (planet or otherwise). You see this with Star Wars' Stormtroopers (though I did not mention such above, I shall now: this stems from late-WWI when Germany created new advanced tactics for storming British trenches. But, most of all, it speaks to Hitler's Stormtroopers, fused with some kind of space marine position; thus, we end up with Lucas' forgetting Stormtrooper force). (Of course, the Rebels of Star Wars and the Empire's TIE Fighters go with the space as air with less stuff
trope. And, there is a general sense of both army and navy from the Empire. You rarely get the 'submarine feel', in this case.)
Star Trek (at least, the original) takes the spaceships as submarines
trope much of the time (other than the fact, their ships are far too wasteful, volume-wise -- but that's mostly for filming purposes, so I can accept it). I actually love this mode (though I don't care for Star Trek's version so much).
Battlestar Galactica (new series), among others, seems to take a mixed view.
Which form or mode you run with, primarily, really depends upon the exact setting, culture, story, theme, and style you're going with. I suggest figuring out which you want/which fits best, and then trying to stick to that singular vision as much as possible. To get ideas, you can research as much as possible -- both real science/history and fiction.
submitted by TheRetroWorkshop
to TDLH [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:54 shrew_in_a_labcoat Update: Sold car by dealer pretending to be private seller- car dies less than 24hrs later. Won't refund.
So after having the car inspected by a garage, sending the seller the list of faults (which were many and some dangerous), much wrangling and threats of court, the dealer has agreed to a full refund. However he has asked for the car to be returned to him with a signed letter stating I will take no further action against him or his business, only when the car, keys and paper work are in his possession will he credit my account.
I'm nervous to do this as what would stop him from just refusing to refund when the car is on his property? He lives nearly 100 miles away so it's not easy for me to hang around until he payes me.
This was his last email to me:
"I will say again for the last time – The car will be delivered to my car park. The keys/paperwork and paper from you stating no further action. Then and only then, will I refund you the money. If the car is not delivered to me within 14 days from the date of this Mail then the refund offer is retracted.
I will not correspond with you anymore only to confirm your delivery date and time."
I know he cannot legally revoke the refund offer but I'm wondering where I stand with the return issue?
I had said that once the truck arrives and he has the letter of no further action I need the refund in my account before the transport company will unload the truck. Is that unreasonable?
Does he have to have the vehicle on his property before making the refund?
Any advice welcome
submitted by shrew_in_a_labcoat
to LegalAdviceUK [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:50 London-Roma-1980 NON CONFERENCE MATCHDAY 10 RESULTS
Strap in, everyone, because we have a long road ahead of us. In addition to the NINE games between Top 25 teams, FOUR upsets happened. That's right, the Top 25 was below .500 in its entirety today. So let's see how they did it.
***** #1 UCLA 90, #9 Syracuse 79.
The key to beating a 2-3 zone is to shoot over it. Fortunately for the Bruins, they can.
Reggie Miller had 25 points and led an onslaught that included 13 three-pointers as the Bruins (10-0) took out the Orange (8-2) to maintain their winning streak, now at 47 games and counting.
"The shots were falling tonight," Miller said after the game. "We got what we wanted in terms of looks, and we got them to go in."
In addition to Miller's 5 three-pointers, Russell Westbrook had 3, Kiki Vandeweghe had 2, and Gail Goodrich, Kevin Love, and Jrue Holiday each had one. Syracuse, for their part, shot well, with Carmelo Anthony hitting six threes on his own to get to 22 total points, but it wasn't enough.
"They're #1 for a reason," Orange coach Jim Boeheim said. #8 Michigan 68, #4 Duke 61.
The Power Five have been cracked.
Michigan's defense held Duke to 29% shooting and Juwan Howard led the way with 16 points as the Wolverines (9-1) stunned the Blue Devils (8-2) before a court-storming crowd at Michigan Court.
"This is why you play the game," Howard said amidst a crowd of fans. "We shook up the world tonight. We wanted this one. You beat Duke, you've done good!"
Grant Hill led the Devils with 13 points, but the entire team struggled.
"We were cold tonight," Hill said. "Props to Michigan; their defense smothered us. Not much you can do." #3 Kentucky 67, #2 North Carolina 64.
Who do you call on when you have everyone? Someone's bound to be open, and such was the case here.
Louie Dampier found Devin Booker in the corner as time expired, and the Wildcats (9-1) stunned the Tar Heels (8-2) to send them to their second last-second defeat of the non-conference season.
"We ran a pick and roll off the ball to get [Michael] Jordan off of me and get me open," Booker said, recounting the final play. "Louie knew where I was, he got the pass off after driving for the double... everything just fell into place."
Both teams turned up the defense in this one. Dan Issel led Kentucky with 15 points, while Jordan led North Carolina with 13. Outside shooting was particularly hard to go by, as Booker's winner was only the fifth three-pointer of the game combined.
"We did almost everything right," Tar Heels coach Dean Smith said after the game. "Almost." #5 Kansas 75, #14 Arizona 59.
The top teams have shown anyone can step up at any time. Kansas proved it tonight.
Kirk Hinrich caught fire, getting 20 points with five three-pointers, as the Jayhawks (9-1) knocked off the Wildcats (7-3) to produce a potential future matchup with Kentucky.
"We've been seeing how other teams have done," Hinrich said. "It's important we keep winning. We want that last one seed when the dust settles."
Mike Bibby had 15 points, but also committed 8 turnovers as JoJo White's defense proved to be too much for him.
"I had a bad day," Bibby admitted. "This loss is on me." Arkansas 90, #23 Iowa 83.
Are they going to be ranked now? It's not certain what else has to be done.
Joe Johnson went off for 24 points and the full-court pressure held Fred Brown to 5 points as the Razorbacks (8-2) pulled off their second straight top-25 upset, this time knocking off the Hawkeyes (7-3).
"We're just going to keep playing the way we're capable of and we'll be in good shape," Johnson said. "We got off to a slow start, but now we're showing the world what we're capable of."
Don Nelson led the Hawkeyes with 18 points. #12 Connecticut 92, #21 Alabama 80.
A quick rise to the top by the Tide made people wonder if the SEC would have a wild race. Now, it looks like this Tide is receding.
Andre Drummond had 19 points and 15 rebounds to lead the Huskies (8-2) to a big road win over the Tide (7-3) that may solidify them as favorites in the Big East.
"We had an advantage inside, and we knew we could use it," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said after the game. "We needed this win, you know? A chance to show the Big East still goes through us."
Alabama attempted to turn up the pace against the big men of Connecticut, but Kemba Walker and Ray Allen were able to break the press on offense. On defense, super sub Richard Hamilton helped slow down the opposition, getting 4 steals in the second half.
Latrell Sprewell led the Tide with 18 points. #9 Notre Dame 67, #17 DePaul 65, OT.
Most of the game was a battle inside. But it was outside shooting from a very unlikely source that won the game.
John Paxson hit two three-pointers late in overtime to lead the Fighting Irish (8-2) to an overtime victory over the Blue Demons (7-3).
"All of our players can contribute," coach Digger Phelps told reporters after the game. "We hear a lot about Adrian Dantley and Bill Laimbeer, but we're a team of stars. We feel we can beat anyone."
With the game tied at 58 nearing the end of regulation, George Mikan looked to have won the game with a hook shot. However, before he could shoot, he was whistled for a three-second violation. Paxson's heroics in overtime then meant the difference.
"I lost track of time," a dejected Mikan said in the locker room. "I'm sorry, Blue Demon fans." #25 Illinois 66, #19 Georgetown 56.
Illinois coach Lou Henson wanted to focus on defense as much as offense. It's safe to say his team was ready to respond.
A focused effort held Allen Iverson scoreless on the day as the Illini (8-2) stunned the Hoyas (7-3) in a defensive struggle with neither team able to get open shots most of the day.
"That's what I was hoping for," Henson said after the game. "We wanted to get our defensive strength before we faced teams like Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota... I think today we showed we can win ugly as well as win beautifully."
Derek Harper, who led all scorers with 17 points, was the primary responsibility, but Iverson found himself constantly double-teamed with Donnie Freeman and Deron Williams. While Iverson did wind up with 9 assists, the shutout clearly bothered him, as he picked up a late technical foul arguing a no-call.
"We need to work on getting Allen involved more," Hoyas coach John Thompson admitted. "You can't just win inside in this game." Cincinnati 81, #18 LSU 60.
Maybe the adjustment from the AAC to the Big XII will be easier than we were led to believe.
Oscar Robertson had a triple-double with 13 points, 11 rebounds, and 12 assists, while Jack Twyman had 21 points as the Bearcats (8-2) stunned everyone by trouncing the Tigers (7-3) in front of the Cats' home fans.
"That was an incredible win," Bearcats coach Ed Jucker said after the game. "They kept talking about their starting five, but today we showed you need a lot of depth to get anywhere. We got that depth and we got a chance to win it all. I hope Kansas is paying attention -- they're not sweeping us this season."
Defense also proved to be a big deal. Robertson and Nick Van Exel constantly switched off on Pete Maravich, holding the scoring machine to only 8 points on the day. Bob Pettit was able to take some advantage to score 17 points, but the Tigers had no help from the bench, as the Cats' bench outscored the Tigers' reserves 21-3.
"Gotta be more than the first five," center Shaquille O'Neal said after the game. "We can only do so much and if one of us is in trouble, we gotta get stepping up." #15 Southern Cal 78, #16 Maryland 55.
Don't sleep on the Trojans now. When they're going against teams in the second and third tier, they are deadly.
Bill Sharman led all scorers with 24 points as the Trojans (8-2) steamrolled the Terrapins (7-3) to make a statement about their goals for this season.
"We think we can steal a Final Four spot," coach Sam Barry said after the game. "Today proved we have the talent to do it. If the shots fall, we can beat anyone."
Gene Shue led the Terrapins with 13 points. #6 Michigan State 61, #13 Texas 60.
The Longhorns seem to be willing to live and die by Kevin Durant. The Spartans knew it when it mattered.
Draymond Green knocked away a pass intended for Durant on the final play of the game to preserve a victory for the Spartans (8-2) over the Longhorns (7-3) on the road in a critical matchup.
"We saw where they were going, we knew they had one big star and if we denied him, we didn't think anyone else could step up," Green said after the game. "I know how to beat Durant, we know how to win the game, and we're just that good."
Magic Johnson had 14 points and 7 assists to lead the Spartans. Durant, for his part, led all scorers with 21 points, but couldn't get the last two, as Avery Bradley's inbound was knocked away.
"Close isn't good enough in crunch time," Durant said to reporters. NC State 74, #20 Minnesota 65.
Last year, the Wolfpack were controversially sent to the NIT despite going 18-14 in the toughest schedule in the country. If they keep winning, they may take it out of the committee's hands when all is said and done.
JJ Hickson had 5 blocks of Kevin McHale on the day and David Thompson scored 20 as the Wolfpack (8-2) stunned the Golden Gophers (7-3) to pick up a road win.
"We deserve to be ranked, and we deserve to be in the [NIBL] tournament," Thompson said after the game. "We've said all year our goal is to be undeniable. If we qualify for selection, we're going to make sure they have to take us. That means winning a lot in non-con, and that's what we're doing."
With Thompson driving and causing collapses of the defense, the outside shooters also had their chances. Spud Webb and Tom Gugliotta hit three three-pointers each over the Gopher defense.
"This was a bad day," said McHale, who despite being blocked led the Gophers with 14 points. Villanova 79, #24 UNLV 78.
Villanova likes to play slower, while UNLV likes to speed it up. Villanova, it turned out, did just enough to keep the Rebels from getting the win.
Randy Foye had 20 points and Kyle Lowry blocked Ricky Sobers' last second putback attempt as the Wildcats (8-2) held off the Runnin' Rebels (6-4) to most likely knock the last mid-major out of the Top 25.
"Our backcourt carried this one," Villanova coach Jay Wright said after the game. "We wanted to show that Paul [Arizin] had backup, and that's what we were able to get. Everyone played their role, and we kept this team -- a very good offensive team -- to just enough to take the win.
On the final play, Sobers inbounded to leading scorer Shawn Marion (18 points). His three pointer was off the mark, and in the scramble, Sobers got the loose ball. He tried a quick shot to beat the horn, but Lowry was ready.
***** HOW THE TOP 25 FARED
- UCLA 90, 7. Syracuse 79
- North Carolina 64, 3. Kentucky 67
- Kentucky 67, 2. North Carolina 64
- Duke 61, 8. Michigan 68
- Kansas 75, 14. Arizona 59
- Michigan State 61, 13. Texas 60
- Syracuse 79, 1. UCLA 90
- Michigan 68, 4. Duke 61
- Notre Dame 67, 17. DePaul 65, OT
- Indiana 83, Louisiana Tech 57
- Ohio State 87, Saint John's 59
- Connecticut 92, 21. Alabama 80
- Texas 60, 6. Michigan State 61
- Arizona 59, 5. Kansas 75
- Southern Cal 78, 16. Maryland 55
- Maryland 55, 15. Southern Cal 78
- DePaul 65, 9. Notre Dame 67, OT
- LSU 60, Cincinnati 81
- Georgetown 56, 25. Illinois 66
- Minnesota 65, NC State 74
- Alabama 80, 12. Connecticut 92
- Florida 63, California 60
- Iowa 83, Arkansas 90
- UNLV 78, Villanova 79
- Illinois 66, 19. Georgetown 56
submitted by London-Roma-1980
to BestOfDivI [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:48 NetworkDynamo Decoding Success: Requesting Your Expertise in Finding a High-Paying, On-Call-Free Career!
Hello everyone! I've been working in IT support for nearly 2 years, and since joining my current company, I've become one of the key members and have consistently outperformed my teammates. I hold an engineering degree in telecommunications and have a total of 4 years of experience in Network and IT outside the US. Currently, I'm pursuing my CCNP certification and contemplating obtaining cloud certifications thereafter. My goal by the start of 2024 is to secure a higher-paying job (over $100K) with minimal on-call responsibilities, as I'll be expecting a baby soon. If you were in my shoes, how would you suggest mapping out my career path, taking into consideration my lack of a professional network? I would greatly appreciate any help you can provide!
submitted by NetworkDynamo
to ITCareerQuestions [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:40 TippingStreamTTV Should I even go red sweeper trinket? Not finding any wards in Iron/Bronze.
I think in my ELO (Iron/Bronze) people forget to ward or dont feel the need to LMAO. It seems like every time I red trinket sweep I don't find anything - even in key areas that I feel should absolutely be warded nearly at all times, like Baron, Dragon, Mid bushes, etc. Do you think getting blue trinket for the outplays or just keeping yellow trinket for the extra two wards and backing one less time, is worth it? Should I give up on even getting red trinket?
submitted by TippingStreamTTV
to summonerschool [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:28 Aisling_The_Sapphire Subnautica: The Definitive No-Spoilers Guide For New Players
Updated May 2023
I recently changed Reddit accounts and it's been about a year, so it seemed prudent to repost this for visibility. :) https://subnauticamap.io/
- This is an interactive map of the crater. However, be warned that it will show the general location of things you need to find. This can be toggled but if you have zero point of reference for the places mentioned in this guide, this map should provide one.
General tips are at the bottom, however, they rely on you having played at least part of the way through the game so I don't recommend checking them until at least part 3, AKA "Going Traveling"
Subnautica is a game primarily about exploring your environment while overcoming the trepidation that the game sets up in you over doing so. Although there isn't a perfect guide to being able to clear the game, there also isn't an unambiguous path of progression for the player, either.
Consequently new players often find themselves at an impasse in terms of progression and where to go. The following is a no-nonsense, straight to the point guide on how to progress, but it's not a bible. You can do most of this just by exploring and wandering around. A blind playthrough is critical to the first time player experience. This is often true of every game but for Subnautica it makes or breaks the whole story - you need to have no idea what the hell is going on the first time you clear the game. If you spoil it for yourself you will regret it, please believe me in this.
This guide is meant to give you a nudge when you find you don't know where to go next, it's not really meant as a walkthrough, even though it can be used as one. Do yourself a favor friends, don't go wandering /subnautica
or the wiki too much and this guide will not lead you astray. It is written specifically
for brand new players.
When you first arrive on 4546b, you find yourself with basically nothing. You're hungry, thirsty, your lifepod is broken and your cookies are gone. The Aurora is burning (and you nearly did too) but despite all that, you're alive and this planet is about to get some Ryley in it.
The environment around you has most of what you need to get started. The metal scrap strewn around the shallows provides an easy source of Titanium while you can break limestone and sandstone to get the minerals you need for your starting tools. You'll want the quartz you find for glass.
Although you have a number of options for making equipment, at this stage I don't recommend using resources for the air pump or pipes. Truth is they don't really have much use; they create a breathing line from the surface for when you're diving, but they're expensive and there's better alternatives in your near future.
Once you have a scanner and knife, take the time to scan everything you can. All the local wildlife can be scanned and most of the flora. Your objective at this point is to build a repair gun, knife, seaglide, flashlight and scanner.
Now that you've got your basic tools and you can get around a little, it's time to begin exploring. At this point you've seen the deeper waters on the edges of the kelp forest.
It's time to go take a look.
The red grassy plains have what you need to progress to deeper waters. You'll want to explore the wrecks there. There are four grassy plains surrounding the shallows at compass points and cave systems exist in three of them which will become relevant later, but are largely out of your reach for now.
It is out here that you will find fragments necessary for an important task you must complete soon. Raiding the aurora will require the laser cutter you learn to make here. You'll also want a propulsion cannon, which you can find the fragments to near the side of the Aurora. DO NOT GO AROUND THE BACK OF THE AURORA. SERIOUSLY. You are not prepared for that level of giggling insanity yet.
By now you've fixed the radio and may have triggered the sunbeam event, in which case you will want to go follow that. Give yourself the full span of time to go to the island and explore unless you'd prefer to explore after the event, but don't let yourself get distracted by what you find there and miss the ship arriving.
The signals you've been getting are important prompts and need to be checked out when possible, so make sure you take the time to do that. Also, when you go to either island DO NOT PARK YOUR SEAMOTH NEAR THE BEACH. DO NOT PARK YOUR SEAMOTH NEAR THE BEACH.
There is a real risk of it phasing through the ground and becoming inaccessible and then you'll end up on this subreddit asking how to get it back like the other 5 guys a week. Seriously.
Also note that bringing an ion cube to the top of the mountains caves will let you do something interesting up there, but I won't be specific. A scanner room at this spot is ideal not just to track the reaper leviathan on the eastern side of the island
but there is quite a lot of shale and lithium here as well, which is probably something you're gonna want.
At this point you should have a seamoth, your basic tools, a laser cutter, propulsion cannon and lead suit. You are prepared. It's time to go to the Aurora... but only if you've gotten the communication from Alterra with the captains door code. Otherwise, you must wait for that radio event. You can go explore the ship anyways of course, but not having the code means you can't get into the captains room, requiring you to go back and get it later. So it's up to you. You can open the door anyways if you get the code off the internet or something but since the game gives it to you anyways, you can always wait for the prompt. If not, the door code is 2679 If you have a cyclops I don't recommend taking it, since reapers hang out at the front and back ends of the ship. However, a seamoth is small enough to fit through the broken superstructure of the ship at the front and thus avoid this danger.
There are two ways to access the ship and although it seems impossible, you CAN in fact climb up to access the open one. Otherwise, you can use the prop cannon to move the debris out of the way of the door near water level. Be sure to take the time to explore inside and use the carry-all bags to leave stuff you want to keep from the ship out the front so you can come back and pick it all up later. There's lots of useful stuff in there.
As a side note here, the leech-like things that annoy you in the reactor room are called Bleeders. I hate Bleeders personally, but I noted that if you grab one with the propulsion cannon and fling it into the wall
out of sheer spite
then other bleeders will be attracted to the body, which makes grabbing and doing the same to them quite easy. Clearing the entire room of those little #*([email protected]
's only takes a couple minutes.
You can get the codes for various rooms inside from the PDA's you find. Also note that some doors can only be opened once you repair them. Sometimes the Aurora glitches and these repair sections don't work but because the ship has two entrances, you can always go around the back to clear the whole thing, which is... annoying. If you don't mind being patient, leaving the Aurora and doing other things for awhile will reset the wreck, allowing you to come back later and potentially be able to repair the doors then.
The codes for the ship are: Cabin No. 1: 1869 Captain's Quarters: 2679 Cargo Bay: 1454 Lab Access: 6483
Time to go down
With the Aurora repaired you have the ability to wear things other than the lead suit, so it's time to chuck that in the trash 'cuz you won't need it again. It's time to get the outer wrecks in the zones beyond the shallows and hoo boy
ain't that gonna be an experience.
The cyclops is your friend here. But what's this, you don't have a cyclops? Well, that's okay. You may have found one of the engine fragments on the aurora in the cargo bay but if you missed it, it's not really a big deal. Your next objective to build one is to go explore mushroom forest and the underwater floating islands
for the fragments you'll need. If you've been following your radio signals you've probably been to the aurora rendezvous point by now, but if not, take the time to go thoroughly explore that island. One of the PDAs you need to find the next place is not at the degasi base, but on one of the paths of the island near an arch of rock.
You'll need to explore the island thoroughly to find it. Make sure to scan everything and bring back plant samples if you have a seabase. You can use plant pots to keep food trees on your cyclops for easy access to food without worrying about curing everything all the time.
Once you have the cyclops, you need to take the time to upgrade your seamoth to depth so you can explore the various wrecks, supplement your PDA database and establish yourself properly for long-term operations. At this point in the game you should be aiming for or already have: A seabase, even a basic one. A couple corridors with lockers are invaluable for storage and operations and the scanner room is MISSION CRITICAL. If you haven't built one yet, get on that! A seamoth, either at or being upgraded to 500m depth Knife, flashlight, repair gun, seaglide, scanner, laser cutter, propulsion or repulsion cannon, rebreather
Be sure to check everything, then check it again! It's easy to miss things on the island. Be sure to check the buildings on the tops of the hills there too. Although it would be nice to be able to plant land beacons (hint hint, Unknown Worlds), it's not feasible for marking out the precursor gate on the floating island
so unfortunately, it's not of much use unless you have your base on one island or the other. I don't recommend the floating island for this for reasons which will become apparent later in the game.
Looking into the abyss
If you've explored most of or all of the wrecks and no longer have missing technology, it's time to go deeper. If you've been following your PDA signals you need to check out the degasi bases and follow their story, as they lead you to a large, deep cave which is the path to deeper places you need to explore.
There are several inlets to the place you need to reach. Northern Bulb Zone where it meets Mountains has a large entrance. Blood Kelp Zone and Trench both have entrances. The last one is in deep grand reef, where the final Degasi base is.
I personally recommend either Deep Grand Reef
or Bulb Zone
but the latter has the most accessibility.
Raiding the final Degasi Base before exploring this cave system will get you the orange precursor key
which you'll need to access something hidden at the southern end of the caves near blood kelp trench's entrance
. While working down here I strongly recommend making liberal use of beacons as navigational guides if you're new to this place. It is VERY confusing and looks very same-y if you haven't spend a lot of time here.
Deep inside the caves you'll come upon a chamber with a massive skull sitting on a chunk of land in the middle and access to a slightly lower part of the cave system which is not
green. This is the Cove Tree Cave
and the brine there will not hurt you the way the green brine does. This leaves you able to free dive there to gather materials without needing to rely on your prawn.
This chamber with the skull is, in fact, the central chamber of Lost River. It is an excellent place for building a scanner station and the entire area is ludicrously rich in resources. It's a perfect place to stock up and catch up any upgrades, tools or devices you may be lacking so far. You'll want the resource stocks for later and honestly, it's just a really cool place to have a base in general.
The Disease Research Facility
is in the north-eastern arm of Lost River, accessible through the Bulb Zone
entrance. A juvenile ghost leviathan guards the path but as with most leviathans, operating in silent running and staying above or below it while sticking to the cave walls will get you by without any issue. If they do notice you, just pop a decoy, go full speed for about 5-8 seconds and then drop the engine to low and stay in silent running until you get far enough for the big ugly to stop bothering you.
The southern part of Lost River holds a large chamber with a ghost leviathan juvenile
and houses another rather large skeleton. This area in particular is rich in large ore deposits and crystallized sulfur
that you'll be needing for some big upgrades.
By the way, remember the cyclops shield? By now you're probably noticing that using the auxiliary functions on the cyclops eats a lot of power. Redundant power cells are your friend and if you feel you're worried about power costs while exploring, you lose nothing by having a buttload of spare power cells. It can pay off, being able to spam the shield for awhile and run away.
You'll want that shield for what's coming next.
Once More Unto The Deep
By now you've probably explored Lost River a bit and you're wondering where to go from here. If you've built a scanner room in the central chamber, you'll have noticed that the scanner, when at full range, shows a chamber below Lost River.
This is the inactive lava zone and it is here your answers lay.
You have two access points to reach this chamber. The North-east
arm past the disease research facility
and the cove tree caves
. Both entrances are equally difficult to get through but the first one feels more open, if you don't mind the ghost leviathan circling around above the opening.
This chamber is rich with even more valuable resources, if you somehow haven't got enough already. The cove tree cave
entrance leads to the western part of the ILZ chamber. The North-east
entrance leads to the north edge of the chamber. The chamber itself is rather oval-shaped, with the western edge of it relatively empty and the eastern part containing a massive lava bubble.
If you wander around down here long enough the PDA will prompt you to take a look at that bubble a bit more closely. You will need two purple precursor keys to access the facility inside.
Now that you're down here you'll notice there's a fair number of warpers, crimson rays (who are harmless) and leech-like things which will attach to the hull of your ship and drain power. That sounds like a problem, doesn't it?
Don't worry though, we got you covered. Once you're down here, go grab some kyanite and you can build the cyclops thermal reactor
which pretty much eliminates the whole running out of power problem. The shield is a great way to get the leeches off your hull
at the same time.
As for the leviathan, the sea dragon isn't actually a whole lot of threat. It might spit fire at you and is capable of picking up and biting the prawn but will mostly ignore you if you don't go hanging out in front of it
With that said, treat it like any other leviathan while in the cyclops. Drive slow, keep an eye on it and if it gets curious, drop a decoy and move away ASAP. Cutting your engines once you've gotten a little distance will almost always make them lose interest.
But Wait, There's More!
If you've explored the inner depths of the lava bubble, then you have the blue key, ion battery plans and have opened the portal to the QEP
. Great! Now coming down here in the prawn isn't a big deal and you don't have to drive the cyclops all the way down here to go grab resources. A small scanner base down here would be great for quickly finding what you need.
As you can probably guess, there's an even deeper chamber than this, which is the active lava zone. You can find the entrance by following the lava flows around the ILZ and keeping an eye on the floor. You'll find a large space big enough for the cyclops to lower down into.
Down here you'll find 2 sea dragons to avoid, so don't you get conservative with your power. By now you'll probably have built ion power cells and those can run your shield and sonar together for a full 5 minutes with silent running going so don't be shy about using them!
Getting into the alien base
down here will require two blue keys
, one for accessing the facility, the other for accessing the inner facility. It is here you will find the ion cube fabricator
which requires the prawn. You can use this to open the warp gates
in the facility. Six ion cubes in total are required for this. Four for the warp gates on the upper floor and two in the Sea Emperors tank
. One of these leads back to the upper floor, if you find you're struggling to get back out. This gate in particular is about halfway up the tank at the back and sits on a large ledge. An ion cube is provided to activate it, giving you a way to walk out of the tank if you find you're struggling to get out.
And... that's pretty much it, really. After that encounter you'll know where to go and what to do. The paths laid out for you in the final facility
lead you to the places you need to go to find the things you require.
Tips and tricks
- Keep floaters in your cyclops. When you're operating above 500m, running out of power, floaters will allow you to passively bring your ship to the surface without power expense so that you can resupply it. This is pretty much a last ditch move but it never hurts to be prepared.
- You can fit up to 8 basic plant pots in an observatory, which will grant you twice the amount of growing space as an indoor grow bed for the same amount of floor space while also making the crops more easily accessible.
- The engine comparment of the cyclops has a lower deck behind the vehicle bay which everybody ignores, but it's a great spot for plant shelves and marble melons for food security.
- Load your vehicles. Dedicate storage in them to supplies. Water, food, medkits, beacons, flares (bonesharks and crabsquids react to them) and spare power supplies for the vehicles. Keep this kit supplied and you will never be caught unprepared for an 'oh crap' situation.
- Okay, so you don't want to give up inventory space for your vehicles. The next best thing is then to fill a watertight locker or two with food, water, medpacks and maybe a couple spare batteries and power cells, then drop them someplace with a beacon next to them. Do this a dozen times in random spots around the map as you travel and now you have emergency caches you can access if you get into trouble.
- When you reach the point where materials gathering is easy, consider creating vehicle-creation drop points. 2-3 spots on the map with a mobile vehicle bay, a couple lockers with everything you need for a new seamoth and some basic supplies. If you lose your vehicle, it's a lot easier to make a replacement and get the mats than to get the mats to make a replacement.
- The propulsion gun is your friend. Use it to grab items to pick up, use it to grab cave crawlers and yeet them into low orbit, use it to pick up rocks and fling them at things you particularly don't like. Use it to collect gas pods from gasopods without getting hit by the cloud. Use it to move debris in wrecks. Bring a spare battery specifically for it because flinging things around uses a lot of power but the sheer utility of the tool makes it worth the cost.
- You'll be tempted to deck your seamoth out with all the toys but the truth is once you have the prawn, it's obsolete. Don't fall into the temptation of continuing to build tons of upgrades for it unless you plan to use it for a fast-fetch vehicle for things you need from far away. However, with that said, the seamoth is really the superior vehicle for wreck-diving.
- Keeping a second air tank in your inventory and swapping them mid-dive is a perfectly viable option. However, the tanks only refill when wearing them, so make sure to switch again once you're back in breathing space. This can and will save you when wreck diving and two ultra high quality tanks equals 450 seconds of air in total, or 7m30s of air.
- Speaking of air, you can use the air bladders alternate use key (F on PC - the same button for self-scanning) to get a few seconds of air out of it into your tank. It's not much - 20 seconds or so - but sometimes, that little bit extra can save your life if you're just out of reach of your vehicle.
- You can collect flora and fauna samples as you progress through the game and have a garden base specifically for growing plant samples from around the crater. Obviously this looks really nice (creepvine in an alien tank under the floor provides the room in your base with a nice golden glow) but is also useful later.
- SCANNER ROOMS. SERIOUSLY PEOPLE. If you're struggling to find the magnetite, go to Jellyshroom. If you're struggling to find Jellyshroom, always remember that lifepod 17 is directly next to one of its exit points. The range upgrades are incredibly important and the HUD chip makes the whole thing work.
- Farm supplies! You don't need to work or power anything to grow crops. Consider dropping a foundation with some growbeds, a beacon and your farmables (gel sack, creepvine seeds, creepvine samples, acid mushroom, blood oil and deepshrooms). Now you can stock up on things like batteries, rubber, lubricant, benzene, polyaniline. Keep a few of these crops in your cyclops for planting in new spots and never run out of the stuff you need while keeping your home base nice and lag free.
- Creature decoys can be deployed both by hand and by prawn propulsion arm, which lets you pull items out of your inventory to 'throw'. You can also do this with the propulsion cannon by using the F key (the alternate tool use button, the same one you use to self-scan, for all you console folks).
- Turning off your engines greatly reduces the chance of a leviathan damaging the cyclops, even if it's right on top of you. Moving is what gets their attention. If one is swimming near the sub, cut all engines and just wait patiently for it to get a little distance, then silent running and max speed for a few seconds. Pop a decoy for good measure if you want to make absolutely sure.
- You can access the right side of the Aurora relatively safely by going south to Crag Zone and then banking east into the deeper parts of crash zone. Most of the reapers are up by the ship, sticking to the bottom will keep you relatively safe and net you as much titanium as you will ever need.
- Blood kelp zone, the sea treader wreck and the meteor crater in Dunes all have secrets that you may find interesting.
- Remember the Bleeders in the reactor room of the Aurora? Bring a grav trap along - they're cheap, it's disposable - and enter through the top door by climbing along the wreckage up there. Pop the grav trap in the reactor room and kill one of them with the propulsion cannon - the others will come for the body and be stuck in the trap, making picking them off much, much easier than it would be trying to find them all individually. You can just leave the trap behind. If you have the stasis gun, you can wait for them to stack up in the grav trap, stun them, then drop gas pods amidst the several bleeders and watch them get bodied.
- Gas pods 'o doom also work against leviathans. They work against EVERYTHING. You just need a lot of them, but getting a lot of them is really easy with the propulsion cannon (which can fire them too, by the way).
- Reefback barnacles are a good source of copper and silver, but beware the tiger plants on their backs. If you have a reinforced dive suit, tiger plants can't hurt you, but without one they're a pain. You can yeet them with the propulsion cannon. That trick works for drooping stingers too.
- Beacons everywhere. No seriously, everywhere. You'd be amazed how few people use them as much as they ought to be used.
- Eastern red grass plains has deep caves with a type of plant which can only be found in a few select spots on the map. Bulb Zone's lifepod has caves with some nearby and the Dunes also has some, but a Reaper is guarding them. If you do manage to find the spot though, it's GREAT for rubies!
- Scanner room cameras are a good way to keep track of nearby leviathans. They also force the terrain to load, which is required for the scanner room to actually pick things up. Stalkers will snag the cameras and move them around, but they're pretty useful for quickly getting the scanner room working right. The wildlife ignores the cameras too, so if you want a really nice picture of some creature you really hate getting close to, they're a great way to get it.
- Breed some stalkers, release them outside your base next to a pile of metal scrap and never worry about finding teeth for glass again. Barring that? Drop a random beacon in the kelp forest and wait for a stalker to collect it, follow it back to their stash and drop a grav trap.
- Light sticks can be good for wreck diving, as are flares. Flares provide much better lighting in large open spaces than the flashlight or seaglide. It makes them a good alternative to the flashlight in the early game.
DO NOT PARK YOUR SEAMOTH NEAR THE BEACHES. DO NOT PARK YOUR SEAMOTH NEAR THE BEACHES. DO NOT PARK YOUR SEAMOTH NEAR THE BEACHES.
- The following is a list of zones where one can find particular ores. It isn't a complete list, but will allow you to find everything you need in a timely fashion:
Lithium - Jellyshroom, Bulb Zone, Mushroom Forest, Lost River
Loose Lithium - Mushroom Forest, Mountains, Grand Reef, Shale, lost river
Magnetite - Jellyshroom is the only biome with large nodes
Loose Magnetite - Jellyshroom, mountains, cove tree cave, blood kelp zone, lost river
Rubies - Dunes, Spare Reef Caves, Lost River, Grand Reef, Underwater Islands
Diamonds - Lost River, Shale, Inactive Lava Zone, Sea Treader Path, sometimes caves
Table Coral - Shallows, Lost River
Copper - Mushroom forest, blood kelp zone, bulb zone, lost river, limestone, Inactive Lava Zone
Silver - Crag Zone, Mountains, Lost River, sandstone, Inactive Lava Zone
Gold - Jellyshroom, Blood Kelp Zone, Lost River, sandstone, shale
Lead - Sandstone, mountains, crash zone, lost river, Inactive Lava Zone
Titanium - Crash Zone, Dunes, Limestone, Lost River, Inactive Lava Zone
Metal Salvage - Crash Zone, Crag Zone, Kelp Forest
Kyanite - Inactive Lava Zone
Crystalline Sulfur - Lost River
Nickel - Lost River
Uraninite - Blood Kelp Zone, Blood Kelp Trench, Lost River, Inactive Lava Zone, Grand Reef
Quartz - Dunes, Crag Zone, Lost River, Inactive Lava Zone, Red Grassy Plains
If you're reading this guide and have any suggestions for additional information, feel free to share them for the next iteration.
Good luck, survivor!
submitted by Aisling_The_Sapphire
to subnautica [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:13 req-user Does anyone know any electronics disposal/junk removal companies that take old TVs near/around Pace, FL?
For Father's Day we're going to get my Grandfather a new television but that requires someone taking his monstrous 65" flatscreen from the early 2000s (example
I would need the company to do pickups because no way in hell am I going to try and lift that thing.
submitted by req-user
to Pensacola [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:10 rak2007-psn Looking for a spotter
2023.05.29 22:10 ombrebutterfly Regret triggering break clause.
Basically, nearly a year ago I moved in with a close friend of mine. We intended to stay for 2 years but implemented a one year break clause just in case. Long story short, living with my friend was a nightmare. When we moved in I found that they rarely did their chores. I have been the once consistently upkeeping the place (taking out the bins, cleaning communal spaces such as the kitchen and bathroom). Once in a blue moon they might help clean like the living room, but its a very half-hearted effort a lot of the time, and only if they have guests coming over. I came over from holiday once and the whole place was literally upside down. She herself couldnt tolerate it so decided to vacate for a while and then only decided to move back in when I had cleaned it. The whole situation had left me feeling taken for granted since we previously discussed prior to moving in that we would equally divide the chores (i.e one person takes out the bins one week, the other should the next week). She also pays her rent quite late, and I have to keep reminding her, its a bit of a hassle since the total rent money is coming out from my bank account. These are just a few things to list (I've omitted a few to make things anonymous), but every little thing sort of adds up to create a toxic environment. We rarely talk to each other now.
I've ranted to many friends and family about the situation and they all agree that I'm not in the wrong -- i can't help but feel like I'm overreacting however. Especially since I can be an unreliable narrator and we are not hearing things from the other side.
I suggested that we trigger the break clause and made some excuse about not being able to afford rent in the upcoming year. However, since triggering the clause I can't help but feel sad. I really like the place. The area is safe and the flat is amazing, the estate company are also really great. It was such a perfect place and we got lucky to get it - I feel like this is all just such a waste and a shame. Maybe I was overreacting and should have sucked it up. And one key thing was that I never actually had a conversation and sat her down to discuss these issues. I just feel sad that I'll have to be leaving this place soon....
Idk what I really wanted to gain from posting this, just a rant I guess. :/
submitted by ombrebutterfly
to badroommates [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:02 pl8doh Awareness is a pointer, not a thing to be found
A police officer sees a drunken man intently searching the ground near a lamppost and asks him the goal of his quest. The inebriate replies that he is looking for his car keys, and the officer helps for a few minutes without success then he asks whether the man is certain that he dropped the keys near the lamppost.“No,” is the reply, “I lost the keys somewhere across the street.” “Why look here?” asks the surprised and irritated officer. “The light is much better here,” the intoxicated man responds with aplomb.
Quit looking where your fundamental nature cannot be found.
You will never find what you are, in what appears to be.
What you are is nonillusory.
'As the absolute, there is no absolute' - Nisargadatta Maharaj
submitted by pl8doh
to nonduality [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 22:00 d-y-d-y Shadow of War: my least favorite triple-A game
LOTR is not my strong suit (the only Tolkien media I have ever consumed was the Hobbit movie from 2012), so if I show my lack of lore knowledge I apologize in advance. I also haven't played the story expansions as of the time of writing.
I bought this game on sale for eight dollars because I liked Shadow of Mordor (though I had not played that game in years when I bought this). I knew it had a pretty mixed reception but compared to the original price ($50) 8 bucks is nothing. I mention the sale because this game is very good for $8 but absolutely not worth $50. The amount of raw effort put in by the developers may warrant the price in the abstract but that effort adds up to bad controls, janky combat, and a grossly inflated game. Out of all the triple-A games I have played I like this one the least.
I will start with the good. I like the voice acting and the writing of the lines (though I think the story in general is not well-executed). The deliveries and lines of the Men and the elves have this loftiness to them that fits the setting. The orcs sound appropriately brutish and their lines talking about eating humans and arbitrary murder reflect their inhumanity and primitivity.
The "day-to-day" gameplay (traversing the map and combat) is not bad in concept. Parkour and fast movement are nice but as someone who has played more Hitman than Assassin's Creed the implementation of stealth is lacking given how much it comes up in story quests and captain stuff. By the mid-game I found that I barely needed to be actually stealthy; I could run up to someone holding the sneak button and stealth kill them even if I had been detected during the jog over to the enemy (this was actually a thing I remember from Shadow of Mordor so it is unfortunate that nothing much changed). Fighting is not all that complicated but there are flashy executions and ranged attacks that are satisfying in the moment, though I never used the glaive. The problem is more in the execution of both, particularly the tendency for the player character to magnetize towards completely random things during parkour and combat. Talion is only good at moving up, whenever I tried to go sideways during parkour he moved up instead or jumped to god-knows-where. Several times during combat he stopped attacking a captain so that he could literally glide a building's width away to hit a random grunt. There's a move where if you freeze an enemy you can "flurry attack" them (e.g. mash attack). There were times when he stopped doing this to attack random animals. Several times inputs were simply eaten and nothing happened during both parkour and combat. I have no idea what is going on half of the time because what I am doing does not correspond to what is happening on the screen. The nemesis system is fine as a concept - the idea of making long-term enemies that grow stronger over time, but in execution I found myself making no actual nemeses because if a captain killed me I could usually kill or dominate them the next time I saw them. This is because the game never generates a captain that is significantly stronger than the player so killing them is not a large hurdle. It's really an impossible situation because if they were stronger then the player would never fight them, but as they are now it doesn't make for an actual "nemesis" system and is really just a way to procedurally generate boss fights.
There did not need to be five maps. Not enough happens in the game to justify having five maps. Not enough happens in the maps themselves to justify having five. There is a single questline that spans multiple maps that arguably needed to span multiple maps involving a Balrog, and this is only because it comes from a fire level and dies in an ice level. Otherwise, the only reason to have five maps is that the game's central multiplayer and story content revolves around capturing and defending fortresses. I never bothered with any online content so I will just write about fortresses in single-player. Fortress capturing is fine once in a while. You fight a bunch of orcs and orc captains at once and then do a one-on-one fight at the end. The captains are nothing special; they're the same as any other captain you find on the map and there is no special gimmick to any of the fortress captures. I do think that if the fortress captures had some sort of level gimmick to them (e.g., the fire level has a bunch of fire mines or something) it could have justified having five maps, though that is a very big "could". Capturing fortresses is not fun enough for me to want to do it five times and the story's explanation for why you want to do this (raising a big army to fight Sauron) is not presented in a motivating manner. Defense is defending your fort along a bunch of friendly captains against waves of orcs and enemy captains. Again there is no special level gimmick and every orc is one you could find by running around the map. There is especially no reason to do what the final chapter does and make you have to do five consecutive siege defenses with no other story content. The justification for this is that you have to keep Mordor at war so that a future generation of heroes (i.e., Frodo and his crew) can defeat Sauron but this is mentioned so little that I nearly forgot what I was fighting for. Maybe the developers were making a profound statement.
I'll put a warning for spoilers here because this is about plot stuff but I will also tag things.
The game has some fairly severe ludonarrative dissonance (i.e. the plot does not match the gameplay and vice versa). The plot mainly focuses on how Celebrimbor's cynicism, contempt for "bad" decision-making, and militaristic empire-building attitude conflict with Talion's focus on protecting the freedom of Men, as well as Celebrimbor's ring potentially being as morally corrupting as Sauron's. The notion that Celebrimbor's goals are opposed to human nature crops up often in dialogue and is supposed to be the main interpersonal tension driver. The issue I find is that Talion's pushback against Celebrimbor is weak and at the end of the day you have to do both the empire-building quests i.e., conquer forts, mind-control orcs, etc. and the quests where the morality of Celembrimbor's goals are questioned. The feeling I got from the story was that what I was doing was questionable at best but there was no reason not to do it. At the near-end of the game Talion has a "eureka" moment where he realizes "hey, Celebrimbor is just Sauron but blue", but it's a bit blindsiding considering he just went along with Celebrimbor's plans without much of a fight, and he can't really claim deception when half of the elf ghost's dialogue is "every sentient being is merely an asset/pawn to us" and "Men can't make good decisions". I think the writers were going for a "necessary evil" type thing where the empire-building was key to defeating Sauron and Talion's goal was to jump ship right after but it's really not fleshed out. There needed to be more disagreement and more justification if they wanted to tell a whole "power is dangerous, light or dark" story with all the nuances.
The end chapter is a simpler example of such dissonance: Talion is more or less forced by circumstance to wear an actual Sauron-made Ring and as all Rings go it makes him weaker over time until he becomes a Nazgul. I didn't actually become weaker in any measurable game statistic and the game did not get any harder (i.e. Orcs and captains remained on par with my own level. It was about as difficult as the previous 40 hours
The way the story is organized is not great. There are a bunch of mostly-independent questlines that hold little relevance to each other. Two questlines merge at the end but otherwise, they don't "interact" mechanically or conceptually; Talion never mentions how he intends to do the fort capturing stuff in the quests where he rescues human captives, for example, although he does talk about remaining in Mordor. I think that much of the dissonance could have been worked around if the questlines held some relevance to each other i.e., Talion tells the human commanders that he is assembling an Orc army and there is some kind of reaction.
I would in general say that the combat is okay, the movement is okay, the story is poorly executed, and the game is too big. They were better off making a smaller game and honing plot/quest stuff at the absolute minimum and ideally cleaning up the jank. Don't buy at full price.
submitted by d-y-d-y
to patientgamers [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 21:57 jman12234 Some tips from someone further down the path
Your body knows who it is.
Listen to it. Every moment, there are at least ten discrete sensations you can feel on your body. A good way to do this(other than meditation, which is the best way) is to take a moment throughout the day to mentally(preferably printed) check in with those sensations. The important part is that it's about the sensations now. You will want to add in previous sensations that are affecting now. Try to find the sensations from before in your list and remove them.
Your mind is the most powerful program ever run by the most powerful computer ever. But it is still only a tool.
That shit ain't real. It's a program that has a few endlessly complex functions. First, it observes; second, it judges(or compares); third, it analyzes creates a virtual synthesis of your environment; fourth, it makes plans and forecasts the future. It has been designed by 4 billion years of evolution, and it is incredibly good at its job. It's so good that you can start thinking the abstract, unreal, not-you stuff it whispers is ACTUALLY you or worse, actually real. The key to this is to realize that your thoughts come from nowhere. They simply appear in your mind in response to stimuli. There's nothing running the show. Your body is giving it data that it then uses to analyze, but the map can never be the territory. There isn't some hidden you beneath it all, and its syntheses are only, in the end, guesses. It can never interact with reality. Take what is useful and leave the rest.
Emotions are to be cherished, not feared.
How does the mind do that with such little volume and mass to work with(other than increasing surface area)? Well, it has a specific code for a specific set of stimuli. These are your emotions. When the mind notices an emotion, there is an action-urge that follows. It's hardwired, built by evolution specific to the environment, both social and physical, humans found themselves in. The action urge then generates a specific set of thoughts and, yes, emotions.
Anger: I have been hurt. I must flee/fight/fawn/freeze;
Sadness: I am in pain, I need aid and comfort, and if not those, then safety;
Envy: I deserve that because it's mine and they're taking it. I will hurt whoever is causing this emotion;
Fear: I am entering a situation where I will not survive. I must flee/fight/fawn/freeze;
Joy: The activity I'm doing is currently helping me survive/ intake nutrients/reproduce. I love it. Let's keep it up;
Disgust: This thing will make me sick, I must get away from it.
Think of them as evolutionary shorthand. While the mind is powerful, the brain is on a whole other level. Think the difference between a light bulb and the sun. The mind can not handle the input of information the brain is capable of sending. So, it uses shorthands to sum up the scenario and what you must do to survive. These are emotions. In my opinion, the coplexity of human emotions is one of the fundamental reasons we adapt so well. They flow through us and, in doing so, impart knowledge of our ancestors into us, as if by magic. Listen to them. They're there because they're useful.
Everyone's mind is concerned with one thing above all else: the person it rides.
Never, ever, attribute to malice what can be attributed to personal conceit. Never, ever think you can know someone else's mind without asking them. Never, ever think that someone can know your mind without you telling them. Never, ever think that your mind is identical to another's. If you follow these rules, I don't think it's possible to feel much social anxiety.
You are incredible, indescribable, beyond anything that has ever developed and likely will ever develop. But you're also just a person and smaller than almost anything you will ever encounter.
If my summation of some neuroscience analysis tickled your fancy, just wait. Do you know what you are? BILLIONS of individual life forms make you up, all acting in tandem, of their own volition, to make sure you get to eat them fucking tacos. Enjoy those fucking tacos. Worse than that, TRILLIONS UPON TRILLIONS of things make those things up, ad infinitum, to the base of reality. And THOSE things all have to work exactly as expected so you don't implode. It's incredible. Awe-inspiring to a degree that I can't fathom.
And yet you think you're a piece of shit. Why?
Well, because the rest of reality is also incredible, suped up, and designed specifically to contend with an uncaring, cruel, blind, and dumb universe. It makes sense that you struggle. On a galactic scale, you are microscopic, and on a universal scale, galaxies are rice kernels. You can't possibly hope to understand, overcome, civilize, or even reach nearly everything that ever is and ever will be. You can't reach the counter, and there's not a stool big enough to get you there.
But that's okay. Because(ahah, I'm gonna seem very clever) every moment you struggle is a miracle. Every second you pick taco shell out of your teeth is a miraculous second. Yeah, the world sucks and will beat you down. You will lose and lose and lose and eventually lose everything. But, the ride, the sheer magnitude -- Just feeling a brush of air across your skin lift your hair is an effort of TRILLIONS OF TRILLIONS. If you fuck up, it's the effort of more things than you could even possibly contain in your mind. So, fuck up, and then, when you feel sad, realize that sadness is telling you to reach out, to be comforted, and eat some tacos with friends. And ENJOY them. Don't worry about what you were feeling before. Your body is telling you it's okay now with the warm fuzziness.
Life is a totality. Like Doctor K. Says(man is a genius). It is both the hardest thing you will ever hope to do, something you cannot ever defeat, and the easiest, most fulfilling Odyssey you ever experience. All Odysseys end in homecoming. Remember, you walk a path with an end already written. All you have to do is keep going.
submitted by jman12234
to Healthygamergg [link] [comments]
2023.05.29 21:54 EffectSubstantial909 Lost Terran - 1
This is first time writing a story and English is not my primary language, so don’t expect too much on the Grammar and spelling. Before I start I’ll explain a bit of the world building as I did put some thought into the world building. While I’m not a scientist I based a lot of my world building on science. World building The story will be Sci-fi and it will take place in a galaxy far far away (basically don’t expect anyone else besides Mc getting there, I don’t want my story to get too convoluted) Mc is PMC security personnel and would get sent there from a lab explosion. The place Mc gets transported to is a younger part of the universe where a lot of stars that will ever be born hasn’t been born yet, which mean there’s less heavier elements there. To get a better understanding here’s a elemental tier list from light to heavy. Tier 1: Hydrogen (H) Tier 2: Carbon (C), Oxygen (O) Tier 3: Silicon (Si) Tier 4: Iron (Fe), Titanium (Ti) Tier 5:Silver (Ag) Tier 6: Gold (Au), Lead (Pb) Any element below Tier 5 can be created from normal fusion from any Star but those above it can only be formed in the cores of a super Nova a much rarer type of star. So basically Iron where the Mc finds himself is equal to Gold on Earth. In that part of the galaxy dude to the lack of heavier elements most of their construction materials are made using a plastic like substance so it wouldn’t be strange for Mc to rip door off it’s hinges. I do pat myself in the back for my explanation. Natural as per HFY standard the worlds there are mostly low gravity worlds. Next is that the gender ratio of that galaxy place has more female, I’ve also thought of the explanation for this and it would be in the story. Rest assured I would explain despite them having sci-fi technology “why don’t they just make more men?” (Story start)——————————— 14th Jun 2078 23:30 local time Southern Africa ‘Yet another night’ Franz signs as he goes over his monotonous patrol route, not that he’s complaining that nothing is happening especially with the salary he’s getting paid, besides that the benefits are quite good too. Franz walks towards a security door then swipes it with his key card. Click With the click Franz opens the door and examine inside for anything out of place. …… …. .. Not finding anything suspicious he closes the door and goes on his scheduled route lugging his cumbersome bolt-action rifle. ‘Man how old is this thing? My grandfather’s grandfather would have carried these to the battlefield’ FranZ thought as he stares at the Mosin-Nagant he has been issued. ‘The legendary garbage rode’ Franz thought as he looks at the rifle. Ever since the company has been subjected to western sanctions for “human rights abuses” the quality of the equipment non-frontline units like him has seen a major decline. Like dude! How are you supposed to deal with child soldiers insurgents?! Oh and we certainly know how the Americans dealth with it when they were in Africa. They shot them! ‘Those hypocrites, it’s fine if they do it but if others do it it’s a war crime’ Franz grumbled at the antique he has been issued. Of course it’s not just shooting child soldiers in Africa, probably the major reason is that the PMC he’s working for accepted a contract to help Saudi Arabia conquer Iraq. Iraq has always been a sore subject to the Americans and they heavily sanction anyone involved. Currently Iraq is being fought over by Iran and Saudi Arabia. After Iran succeeded in developing a nuke they got bolder and reignited the Iran-Iraq war, but unlike the last Iran-Iraq war that ended in stalemate this time Iran was steamrolling the Iraqi army. Seeing Iraq being steamrolled without much resistance Saudi Arabia took this chance to grab some lands. It didn’t take long before Saudi armies and the Iranians meet near Kuwait which ended in a 3 way cluster fuck. Suffice to say the Americans are not the least bit pleased their ties to the Saudis turned sore and they pulled all support to the Saudis and heavily Sanctioned all the mercenaries that joined in. After that Franz’s SMG got confiscated and replaced with this crappy Bolt-action. Saying that it’s not all bad as China and Russia is more than willing to step in, it’s just that their weapons are not as high tech as the westerns ones, there’s also compatibility issues (like the ammunition calibers, the rail system which all the mods can be attached) and that’s just for things like small arms not mentioning bigger items like tanks and armored vehicles. With all that in mind the PMC is still a business after all so drastic actions were taken and cost cutting measures needed to taken. Anyway as Franz passing a corridor he sees someone he doesn’t recognize coming out of a room. ‘Who that hell is that?’ He wondered as nobody should hear this late at night, like he could understand if someone just wanted to finish an errand which caused the to leave a bit late but it’s almost 12 midnight now there shouldn’t be anyone here. Even so it’s too early to jump to conclusions so Franz did what he was taught to do in this situation. “Who are you?” Franz asked the person from afar thinking that it could be one of the senior researchers need something or some shit. Like there’s no way it could be an intruder life is not like in the movies, there’s no way in hell that he’s dealing with some James Bond espionage nonsense. Right? But seeing the person still not responding Franz asks again “Oi! who are ?” But the person still didn’t respond to him and continues walking away, visibly at an increased pace. ‘Well fuck me!’ Franz cursed inwardly as things seems to have gotten real “Identify yourself!” Franz yells for the last time before he takes drastic actions. In response the person just flat out runs. ‘Shit!’ Franz curses as he calls in control. “Control this is Franz from unit 5, I’ve just spotted an intruder at section D exiting from one of the highly secured rooms. He was heading towards section E when I lost sight of him” There was a brief pause as the personnel at control was probably reviewing the cam footage from his helmet. A reply eventually came back “ other security personnel are now converging on section E, go investigate what that intruder was up to” “Copy that Control” Franz said before making sure his helmet’s built in cams are working properly and that control are receiving his live feed. Franz then head towards the door the intruder came out from and Franz swipes his key card. Booooooot “Control my access is rejected” Franz said as he made sure the cam can see the red light coming out of the access panel. “Ok try again now” the woman at control seems to have given him access and so he swipes his keycard again Click With the click Franz slowly opens the door and looks inside “Well fuck me” Franz said, as soon as he opens the door he sees a bomb was strapped in one of the devices in the lab. “Emmm control I think we may need a bomb squad” Franz said as he was just about prepared to run away but before that an elderly man’s voice came out of the coma “Not enough time the nearest bomb squad is at the capital, you’ll have to disarm the bomb, I’ll patch the you through to the experts and they’ll guide you on how to disarm it” ‘Awww shit’ Franz cursed as that elderly man is probably one of the high ranking personnel, he wants to run but he has seen videos of what happens to cowards and deserters. “Copy that” Franz replied as she sallows a lump in his throat. ‘There better be bonus after this one’ he grumbled inside while maintaining a poker face as he steps closer to the bomb and examines it without touching. Moments later another voice came through the coms “Alright let’s see what we have here…” ‘This must be the expert’ Franz thought “Oh my god, are they insane! The strapped a bomb to anti…” the coms was cut off A bit later the coms came back on “Alright sorry for the interruption, now follow my instruction as closely as possible and DON’T do anything I didn’t tell you too” “You don’t have to tell me that, I want to live to see another day” Franz replied “Alright so let’s…” then the expert gave him instructions on how to proceed He followed the instructions of the expert, but unfortunately despite there having an expert that doesn’t mean the bomb would get defused 100% of the time and this is one of those times that the bomb doesn’t get defused, as Franz doesn’t even know what he did wrong before the bomb exploded. Next thing you know Franz woke up in a totally different place
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2023.05.29 21:29 AlienNationSSB #Alien-Nation Chapter 168: Now or Never
Alien-Nation Chapter 168: Now or Never All Chapters First Chapter of Alien-Nation Previous Chapter
Chapter summary: Elias wanders the grounds inspecting everything he can, has a fatheson moment with Larry then sends Vaughn to go try and spring people from jail. It had been easy for me to see during the speech I'd given roughly how many had already arrived up the narrow pass, and as I stood from inspecting a firing port in a trench, testing whether the old cast iron cannon would roll back far enough on its rails after firing.
I gave it a pass after measuring against a rod. Certainly it was far from the highest of technologies at our disposal, but certainly it would be either lethal, injurious, or at the very least, extremely loud. The gathered mishmashed array of weaponry pointing outward was impressive enough, but the real piece de resistance was the sheer number of railguns we'd had returned to us, frequently carried by a two man team. I signed off on it for final inspection, noting the plug in place over the end, and went to the railgun positioned further down the trench near the intersection.
This was one I recognized. This shared at least something in common to the cannon, insofar as it was far from the latest model at our disposal. I spotted some of my own extremely crude handiwork, a far more rough set of welds performed along the plate's protective, unsanded metal edges. Mister Singer, if he were ever presented with it, may have recognized the shoddy, unstable hand that welded together some of the protective casing. The service flap told me the model without needing to even open it, the household door frame hinges pulled from Verns' stock of spare parts bin, before we implemented something even so basic as refined latches with catch points.
That had to make this a Mk. II. Sentimentality had no place on the front lines. I sucked in a breath at the sight of another old muzzle-loader being carried into the workshop for upgrades, already laid out on the timber worktable and ready for use and sucked in a breath.
I just hoped the earliest design of managing power flow wouldn't give out from the faster firing. Complex but beautifully arrayed piping had given way to simpler, more streamlined designs as we incorporated a greater number of readily available alien parts. Some of which we were supplied an initial batch of in the bag with the blueprints, and then we were told how to work free those same parts from various broken pieces of technology we'd reclaimed off the Shil'vati, or even the freely given away omni-pads. With every iteration we demonstrated a degree of adaptation to using the parts we had available, and each generation marked a leap forward in our own understanding of Shil'vati technology, courtesy of G-Man and his father's handiwork.
The final barrels of the extremely limited run of the second batch we'd paid handsomely for were marked 'present,' too. They had gone the least far afield, with one already slagging itself during the attack on the data center. I frowned at the spreadsheet, as if my impression of it might cause their fate to improve.
The latest blueprints could maintain a decent rate of fire without burning out its power management system located in the welded together case. Or, rather, the barrel gave out first. For the first time, perhaps as a result of being coupled with the magazines and a relatively rapid-fire exchange meant the neosteel barrels we received had finally become the weak point in the design.
It was only after we'd returned to Camp Death that I'd noticed the difference.
The new batch we'd paid dearly for seemed somewhat altered from the first batch we'd been building all the others out of, made from an alloyed material that shone somewhat dimmer under the sun as George and I worked in the shed elbow-to-elbow, though the contrast was not immediately obvious until one held the two against each other. It was slightly thicker, too, all of which to me indicated a change in supply in some manner, but our supplier had hardly announced themselves to Sam.
This was a troubling puzzle to me. I still couldn't be sure it was the new microbatch of barrels alloys being far from equal to the originals we'd finally finished building out? Or was it the expanded magazines and power couplings' ability to fire faster creating an overall volume of fire that overheated the barrel from overuse? Or was the power management design faulty, generating more heat per shot? Were we misusing them?
I measured the barrel of the Mk. II, just to be sure the shelf life of the barrel hadn't come due. So far, inspections of the original batch of barrels had mercifully indicated they'd all been brought back here were in comparatively great shape, with this one being no exception. That lent me some comfort that these new barrels were just not up to the task of heavy, sustained fire. I couldn't know that for certain, and an unreliable weapon was cause for anxiety.
Indeed, there was almost no wear on this version at all, disproving the worst case scenario that these were only good for a certain number of rounds before they'd be worn down to uselessness. Certainly, they'd eventually give out, but it seemed we were still far off from that point.
"Sir?" Asked the gunner, staring at me.
I stared at him, then down at the spreadsheet. "This thing fires three rounds a minute. Do you think that rate of fire is sufficient?"
I could tell he wasn't sure whether a 'no' would have him replaced with someone professing to be more accurate.
"Get it upgraded." I took the white gel pen and scribbled on it- make ready for an upgrade as soon as the final repaired railgun clears the shed. Assigned to casemate #4, Operator... "Call sign?"
"Brut," he answered.
"Brut...with the Umlaut?" He gave a thumbs up and I added them. Costing nothing but a drop of gel ink for a little personalization if it made for a happy gunner was a good investment. "Use it well. Get it upgraded if there's time, keep an eye on the work shed. Once the repairs stop, you can take this to the front of the line, Brüt."
There was no point dismantling all our old ones and creating a backlog while some still needed repairs. I wrote on the hatch Upgrade from Mk. II to Mk. IV. That would give it a magazine and more than triple its firing rate. Anything more than that, I quietly held my doubts for the feasibility of upgrading in a timely manner. The Mark V's took too much time and effort to build their complex power management systems for not enough gain, stuffed too tightly into the protective case to be completed quickly. The Mark VI's tended to overheat their crude fire control circuitry, the consequence of an overcorrection back to simplicity; they could maintain a high fire rate, but were too delicate. The VII's were the ones with the new barrel. Promising, but those barrel faults...I still worried it might have been the power management system.
We'd started considering adding water tanks to help maintain them, but it brought the weight higher than that of a Mk. I, and successfully swapping a boiling hot tank off a delicate, electronically-loaded railgun in combat seemed like a very questionable use of the time. We'd just have to ask the crews manning the railguns to be a bit judicious in our fire, and hope that the flaw was limited to the new little batch of barrels.
How many rounds, exactly, and exactly how fast was yet to be determined; we hadn't conducted the amount of testing a proper military might carry out, but while we had no shortage to man, we also did not have so many as to test dozens until their point of failure, weighing and comparing all their possible conditions.
All this uncertainty kept bouncing around my head. How many troops did we have here? How many rounds for every type of rifle, including the more exotic variants? How reliant on them were we to deal damage, and was it all stored somewhat safely? On the less direct side of things, how many tons of food did we have stored, and was it distributed well? How many thousands of gallons of water could we draw? How many pounds of soap to wash utensils, cups, wounds, and shower with? How many pounds of food over how many men, to last how many days? If it rained, some of these might be alleviated, and yet might kick off a whole host of other issues. There was no way of knowing, no way of taking a perfect stock. But I could estimate.
We had a lot of people. And a lot of guns. And a lot of defenses, and literally countless tons of high explosives, triggered by various means and methods. And we were mad as hell. While exactly how mad was less concrete a figure, I knew this many men away from home could end poorly.
Ultimately, whether it was the fault of the new barrel or the design had finally reached the limitations of its potential rate of fire without causing other issues, I couldn't say for certain. So I had to do my best.
I gave the railgun a clean bill of health to operate if needed, 'priority upgrade,' and noted the rate of fire for the defensive position at 'three a minute.' This one being one of our oldest models, I left it to the operator with my blessings, and made a mental note to add the next railgun we had to be stationed nearby, just so that we weren't under strength from that angle.
I craned my neck from the trench to behold even more insurgents trickling into the old clearing. The arrivals always came in ones-and-twos, their body language telling me the story of the journey it had taken to get here. They'd had to have abandoned their vehicles to the traffic-snarled roads almost certainly some miles away unless they knew the path George and I would occasionally take;.
Those who brought their own heavy weapons lay them down at their feet before collapsing. Water and food was distributed, though I couldn't speak to the quality, and a trash run would have to be made, tossing the empty tins into ammunition containers.
Of all the newcomers who had yet to be organized into place, I counted two mortars, several more volunteers grouping up to retrieve ammo after taking down descriptions of the vehicles from their exhausted owners and sprinting back out into the night to fetch whatever had been left behind.
The resourcefulness lifted my spirits. No one entertained the notion that these men were taking their leave to flee a certain doom. All present felt some degree of faith, understood who they were, why they were here, and what we were setting out to accomplish. Cells worked to find one another in the darkness, congealing themselves into a more coherent, practiced fighting force by virtue of familiarity with one another. Discipline was sharp and needed little enforcement past an initial reminder. No flashlights switched on inside the premises or campfires were lit despite the encroaching edges of the cold front. Insurgents were guided to whatever defensive positions, pillboxes, trenches, battlements, or bunkers still sat empty, depending somewhat on their expected role after detailing their skills to sentries or those otherwise familiar with the camp carefully explaining sight lines and our overall defensive strategy.
Whispered word overheard from those arrivals seemed to indicate a mixture of panic and outrage was fast spreading through the state's populace, carrying them on frightened wings as they took flight in the night, from here to the southernmost beaches and bays. It seemed word had gotten out successfully, then. That knocked down one more obstacle to our success, or at least set the pieces in place. Soon, all that would remain would be the ugly business of following through, and hoping, no praying that I hadn't massively miscalculated in my hubris.
I took the ramp out of the trench so they could pour some loose gravel into it, helping ensure that if those threatening looking storm clouds opened and if the drains clogged, we still would have some footing, and retired to the command cabin, eyeing how empty it felt with all the finished products being set into defensive arrangements; only the workshop still retained all its rather explosive concoctions.
The manpower situation was such that those familiar in reliably manufacturing complex bombs were spending their time setting up defenses in the fields beyond and settling in our new arrivals.
And then I had the couple hostages, weakened by months of captivity, restrained and kept under guard, but still sitting right on top of the half-done armaments.
I told myself that we had taken precautions- the most reactive sets separated by a thin membranous bag of water to prevent chain reactions from taking root and a few emergency containment systems, but they relied on someone present. I'd need all hands on deck- and what if a direct lance of energy landed from some heavy weapon hit the shed, perhaps to try and make a point? No mere bag of water would make a difference then.
Then again, if they brought that king of weaponry to bear, then the outcome would be certain. The Shil'vati would still lose their hostages, and have tacitly admitted I'd forced their hand, and that they'd declared we were enough of a threat to sacrifice noblewomen just to put a stop to.
I hunched over a smaller map in the command cabin, pinning down the garrisons and jails Verns might be held in. Perhaps I'd been premature in my assessment in lacking a future need of a good map when I'd jumped atop the table for my little motivational speech. I'd gotten caught up in the moment; I hadn't foreseen the need for an offensive element.
I was sorely missing my Lieutenants. Vendetta wasn't here, which was one of the greater anxieties weighing on my shoulders.
The one word I'd whispered in his ear all that time ago to bring him around to believing I did, in fact, have a plan: Victory. He should be here already.
He'd sprinted off across the field in glee back when I told him of this plan's possibility, that "Plan C" might come about due to a few cells going dark and my suspicion that it wasn't moles. The null hypothesis, that there were in fact moles, had put him in direct danger by sending him to double-check.
I cursed my blindness. My eagerness to take a night off, to get him out of the way so he wouldn't clash with the others, so I could be a 'normal boy' for a night and attend a party- one I wouldn't be kicked out of, To find social acceptance.
All part of a 'coming of age,' even after I'd already spilt blood, led a war campaign effort, kissed, earned more money than most would see in a lifetime, and mentally cut ties with my family. By almost any account, I already was a man, yet I'd gotten obsessive in imitating the modern trappings of defining such things. I should have seen the cells reporting members' absences and even going dark as a whole for what it was. I could have called off Town Hall, started assembling even more people here.
Then again, if I had, then perhaps...the shil'vati might not have started grabbing everyone. I hated to think of Verns as 'sacrificial.' They likely didn't have much on him, just a neighbor's report. Then again, we'd had that meeting right after the bar fight at Lucky's, right? How thoroughly had George cleared out his house, if they went back to rummage around and investigate? How well could George cover his tracks? We'd left that ammo crate in the hallway, for starters- clumsy of us, yet we were in a panic. Like children. I tensed as I remembered so vividly the sudden sharp report of the gun, watched Patrick's empty eyes stare up. But not children.
There was nothing I could do for Vendetta. We'd sent the Bat Signal out. Either he'd be here, or he'd miss it.
I weighed the value of sending George away once he got here. The order would certainly annoy him after he'd just arrived, something of an arduous task given how far backed up the traffic had become. I also knew it meant I'd have one fewer lieutenant here, where I desperately needed him. I could hardly ask him to burn down the childhood home, and it would certainly reek of hiding evidence.
"Sir," A sentry stood in the door frame, and I stretched from where my muscles had tensed up, pulling my shoulders back and yawning silently beneath my mask, lumbering toward him.
I didn't realize how tall I'd gotten until I realized he was staring up at me and had taken a half-step backwards- not to make way so I could lead from the door, either, but almost defensively.
"Yes, what is it?" I asked, stopping in place.
"We've received a message for you, sir. Radio is reporting that a 'Hex' has checked in from her position. She and Binary report 'Green as Grass,' sir."
I wasn't used to being called 'sir,' and it caught me off guard. I realized he was standing there, waiting for a response from me of some sort, too.
What should I say for him to send back to Hex? I momentarily remembered the sensation of the kiss, the warm, slightly wet softness, the tenderness, and felt a bit of a blush under my mask. While every instinct screamed at me to not air even a hint of my romances or inner turmoil about a kiss over the unencrypted connection, there was a level of 'not talking about it' that I was unfamiliar with and hadn't planned for. Could my message back be coded into something subtle? Nothing came to mind.
"G-good," I finally stuttered a little awkwardly. "That's very good."
"What does it mean, sir?"
I pushed the distractions out of my head. This was no time to be thinking about girls- and my mind stubbornly disobeyed, wandering right back to Natalie. At first to the hug she'd offered me, when I was scared. Frightened of the mind-wiper device. That tenderness she'd offered- I pushed the memory from my mind, too. This wasn't the time to fantasize, either. I had to live in the world that was before me, here in the present. People were relying on me. I could figure out all that other stuff- girls, hope, my future- sometime later.
"It means the operation can proceed as planned."
If the Twins stopped reporting or got caught with the hostages, then we'd have a lot less leverage stopping Azraea from blowing us all sky high. A couple noblewomen- who I wasn't terribly familiar with and seemed to be somewhat less important, provided they were truthful to me of their station. This unfortunate pair had relied on connections to already-stationed family members to arrive, rather than on their raw political power to muscle their way to Earth's then-closely guarded secret coordinates, and were present only for evidence of said hostages' presence.
"Sir, beg your pardon," I could sense something bubbling under his words, against his better judgment, but some sense of desperation demanded he ask me this anyways. "But what is the operation? I've been manning the airwaves with Radio, helping spread word, but everyone I make contact with seems to want to know."
"I don't see the wisdom in broadcasting the finer details of our plan, I'm sure you understand."
I sensed the inner conflict by the way he froze up. He wanted to object, probably, to swear he wouldn't leak more than the minimum. The problem was, anyone listening for long might take a morsel here, a morsel there, and bring it all together and undo us.
"You have all you're meant to have at this point, frustrating though that must be to try and inform others of the going-ons. Our objective is right before us. When the time comes and the enemy appears, blast them." I didn't want to say there isn't much else to plan. At least, not for them to consider.
"And you, sir?"
"I'll be right here, alongside you," I promised. That seemed to ease some of his pressing curiosity, at least. "We'll be here together, to watch the birth of a miracle." That, or we'd die together. Those words didn't quite have the same catchy ring, though.
I looked over my shoulder back at the map. What more good could be wrought over pondering what jail he might be in, without more details?
"Another matter. Hex said G-Man should arrive in a few minutes."
"Thank you. Anything else to report?"
"No sir, the shortwave beckons." They gave a hand-on-heart and stepped out, leaving the doorframe empty.
I told myself I may as well follow. There was no good to come of disappearing into a tent, secluded for long periods, not when anxiety might run through the gathered troops. I had to make myself seen at least periodically. Besides, it was easier to get a more complete picture from out here than in there.
Radio looked like a one-man-band by the way he was surrounded by boxy electronics of varying sizes, their glows dimmed slightly by thin pieces of fabric taped over the tiny glowing screens, and the trap stretched over his head. Wires snaked their way along the ground, a trooper trying to lay the cable into a thin channel of dirt with a spade to reduce the tripping hazard.
Pierce crouched next to him with a laptop plugged into something wired together, the final outlet of which looked vaguely like an international travel inverter, her fingers flying across the trackpad.
"Radio, how are we?"
"We've made lots of contact, I think. So much traffic on the airwaves it's actually hard to find a clear channel to broadcast on."
"Do they have our encryption keys?" I asked, the question almost automatic.
"No, having one kind of defeats the purpose of being heard and getting the signal out. Besides, encrypting's probably easy for the Shil'vati to crack. Less easy for human intelligence agencies, but impossible for the people who we want to hear us."
I already knew most of this, but humoured him. Little entertained radio quite like his namesake.
"What's our chance of discovery, then? Rough time to them figuring out it's us here, and finding the signal's origin."
"At least with a somewhat uncountable number of HAM signals being thrown across the airwaves, we are a really big needle in a gigantic haystack. Besides, how many times have we actually been where we're broadcasting from?"
That was a point I hadn't considered.
The Shil'vati would likely regard our signal as just a relay point, rather than the source, let alone the destination.
Would they strike it just to silence the orders, once they figured out how many of them were originating from the same point?
I comforted myself by staring upstream of the creek that wandered to the south of Camp Death, following its course with my eyes to where it flowed under the concrete tunnels under the highway, under the train tracks, to where it ultimately ran back to where Radio and I had visited Saint Michael's. Then I turned my head back across the field, toward where the foundation of Mojo and Mister Pasta's had been, where Vaughn had called in the kill team on the Fed's sting operation,
We'd certainly set up plenty of remote broadcast towers before, to entice them into launching strikes on collaborationists. That Saint Michael's was still standing after we'd broadcast all kinds of propaganda from there meant they'd almost certainly learned to be a bit more cautious about lashing out blindly.
In the darkness I saw a familiar figure materialize, and with a bit of relief, I ran up to greet Larry. I wanted to give the old mechanic a hug, but knew that expressions of intimacy while standing near the middle of the camp's defensive perimeter in front of everyone was more than a bit inappropriate, and settled for a nod of acknowledgment.
"I cleaned up the mess at Jules place," he said, going back to referring to his friend by their code name, glancing at Pierce.
I felt a moment of shame. We'd panicked and grabbed everything. Perhaps we were like children after all, leaving our toys out and in the hall. "Thank you."
"Patrick saw," I said back. "Patrick- called."
Whatever Larry was about to say, that brought him up short. "Oh. Oh." The words seemed to leave him pained. He'd known Patrick, too, and I felt the weight of guilt. It seemed he moved on faster than I could, because he changed the topic quickly.
"What's up?" He gestured at the radio setup.
Pierce seemed to be quite engrossed in her work, trying to connect the laptop to a radio via a USB cable, fumbling with the port in the dark. The laptop's screen was showing a shaky handheld video of a mass arrest- and I thought I could hear my own voice echoing the words I'd spoken just a short while ago.
"Just uploading the speech. I've spliced it up to some footage that one of the newcomers brought. We'll also be exporting raw versions of both- just the audio, the video, make sure people have the record and can decide for themselves."
Sometimes the truth was the best propaganda.
"How are you getting video out? I thought the internet was down."
Radio held a hand up, and then put it down, as if I'd been a teacher asking a question and he'd been chasing extra credit. The next few sentences were practically a foreign language to me, uttering a series of numbers in rapid succession, followed by what sounded like a name. That may've been a model, an edition of a model, a make, a special form of broadcasting- all of it may well have been bounced off the ionosphere for how far it went over my head. I wasn't used to being so completely out of my depth, but everyone seems to have specialized in some skill or another. I'd preferred getting involved in all aspects of the revolution, but at a certain point delegation was a necessity, and I was watching not just the task's needs, but also the capabilities of my lieutenants grow well past my ability to offer useful insight and guidance.
"I...see." I didn't, but I wasn't sure what else to say. I wanted to express curiosity, but I felt like this new capability was something we'd discuss later, if there was a later. "And people can receive high definition video over shortwave? It just takes a long time?"
It seemed to me to be an apparently somewhat technical process to perform over shortwave, and only when finally pressed for details, Radio at last admitted something I did understand: "I am not sure most people know how to collect the signal, or have the right equipment to, but I'm sure someone will, Maybe that person will redistribute the videos."
There. Actionable, useful information.
"Then continue," I said. "At least unless anything more pressing jumps up to do."
"Let's hope it's good for more than the history books," Pierce commented mildly.
"The world has to know, and I am certain the shil'vati have no interest in putting such footage out there. That's reason enough for us, isn't it?" I watched Radio nod and then scurry about the camp, tracing one of the wires toward the antenna array nearest the highway. I turned to Larry, breaking off from the amusing spectacle. "Do you remember my promise?" My question was genuine, but he seemed to waver slightly, now that the possibility of actually delivering on it was here and present. Perhaps the aura of our inner circle's invincibility had been shattered with the loss of his neighbors, and it would be best to set his mind to something productive. "If you want it to come true, see to it that the mortar teams are trained. Get the cannons in position, and make sure we're good for more than just one wave."
Larry snapped a salute, fingers on brow, and I clumsily approximated one in return, though I had never done a salute before in my life. I could sense the slight smile from behind his mask, and with a quick check over his shoulder that no one was watching, he reached out, straightened my palm out slightly, then brought the edge of my palm higher until it was a bit more level. "That's better," he judged, then leaving me alone once I dropped the hand a few seconds later.
George showed up a few minutes earlier than Hex had predicted, out of breath and escorted by a sentry. "Ditched the truck," he wheezed. "The huge bags of claymores and equipment were really heavy. Had to haul it under the interstate." His shoes shone with creekwater; He'd almost certainly taken the path Larry had forbade us from trying, and I couldn't imagine doing it in the pitch black darkness at any speed.
I motioned to the sentry. "Help him get that bag into the workshop." He was the best bomb maker, but he also had helped build this place. I wanted to pick his brain, but I would give him time to rest, first.
"Hey, Radio. Radio!" I heard the shortwave radio he'd set at the top squawk to life with a familiar grumble on the other end, distorted somewhat by the tinny speaker. I scooped it up. Someone with a vocoder- Radio gave those out sparingly.
"'E' here," I answered for him, but didn't want to announce myself. Not right away.
A moment's pause.
"What are your orders?"
"Vendetta?" I wanted to confirm.
"I'm here with over fifty people waiting at Warehouse Base for something to do," I knew the transmission would likely be monitored, but the time for subtlety was over. "You're on speakerphone, by the way."
The line was likely tapped, or at least would be intercepted, its contents determining priority for being passed upward or presented to someone with authority, possibly even Azraea herself.
Whatever orders I gave, they'd have to be in code, or at least sound like something unimportant, low-priority so that we might give him as much opportunity to get the drop on the enemy as he could be afforded.
"Don't bother trying to come here yet," I quickly supplied. "By now, if you're not on your way here, you have your own party to go to." I took a moment to survey the grounds. "We've practically got a full house. See about getting a house party of your own, though you'll have to pull the guests out of their own company. Or something to flank."
"Any idea where to start?"
The map fresh in my mind, I found the answer sprang to me.
"There's a rest stop along Route One. If you've got any party poppers, you can get them to open up to you like a can opener. You know, it's all about introducing yourself well."
I heard him laugh mirthlessly, the sound coming through like a cheese grater run over the asphalt.
"That one's a big bite, maybe more than we can chew without choking. Why don't we start with something smaller?"
I wanted to protest, to direct him to the biggest ones first. Then again, how much did they have on Verns? How likely was he to be somewhere heavily defended?
"What do you have in mind?"
"Well, right across the river from where the naughty girls all get sent. Why don't we start there? Every party needs a few ladies, right?" I could hear a roar of assent from the background.
I wasn't quite sure what he meant by that- was he going to try and attack the Shil'vati base? Surely not those women? He wasn't that insane. Then it clicked- the Women's Correctional Facility in Wilmington, just upstream of the Christina River from where he was broadcasting from at the old Warehouse Base. Easy to get to, certainly, and right near the interstate with pedestrian bridges and neighborhoods to scatter in after the strike made it an excellent candidate. Almost certain to succeed.
The strike wouldn't yield us Verns, though forcing the Shil'vati to admit that they couldn't both take and hold their prisoners at the same time might force them to at least pause rounding up ever more people.
If I gave it my blessing, I would be sacrificing any chance of rescuing Verns for...for what? The tradeoff strained my soul to even consider.
"If you feel that's best, you know your crowd. That said, they got Jules- we want him back." He'd helped build Camp Death. He knew its ins and outs, though my real reasons were somewhat sentimental. "Keep an eye out for Morningstar and a few other cells. I've little doubt they can party with the best of them." They were one of my heaviest hitters, routinely bragging they could go clay pigeon hunting with an unguided RPG, yet I was pretty sure I'd never rallied them to Camp Death- if they were to rally, Warehouse Base was where they'd be.
There was a moment of silence, until Vaughn reported back- "Yeah, they're here. They were going to move up to you once they got everyone together. Should we leave instructions for where to find us, or to find you?"
"Do it- supplies are overall good here. Lots of...uh, balloons, confetti..." I felt like I was stretching the analogy too far, so I gave up trying to equate weaponry to party paraphranelia. "...you know, the works. Take Morningstar and use 'em as you see best fit. What've you got for your party? Any good party supplies?" We certainly could make a trash run and see if we could also deliver them some RPGs at the same time.
"Got some Bump-n-Grinds, and you know those are always good for an up-close-and-personal encounter."
I laughed. "From what I read about bumping and grinding? The closer, the better." Their accuracy left a fair bit to be desired. Still, it would be a good, even vital carry just in case those dreaded Security Forces Technicals made an appearance, and would probably be 'good enough' against a stationary target like a wall, especially in the hands of a capable squadron like Talonstar.
"What time are you thinking?"
"I'd say as soon as we're all ready. You really overestimated how many people know where Camp Death is. A fair number showed up here, and are still trickling in."
"Enough to throw several parties at once?" I asked, suddenly hopeful.
"Well, I suppose, maybe, but I'd be wary of partygoers without someone in charge to, uh..." the metaphor seemed to be breaking down, but I got what he was going for.
"Yeah, I see."
"Are you thinking if there are too many noise complaints at once, it'll keep the party going longer?"
"That's part of it, but I'm hoping we might find a particular person we're missing, lost him when we were playing unexpected host. Someone of G-Man's, you'd know him as Jules. A divide and conquer might maximize our odds of finding him."
"Plus, maximize the number of partygoers we pick up as we move. I like it. A few small house parties for every big house. Any special orders?"
"None. K.I.S.S. principle applies. Good, bad, I want it all out on the streets. 'KISS' 'em until they can't see straight." Keep It Simple, Stupid.
"You're certain?" I could hear the hesitancy in his voice. "This is going to be the greatest thing we've ever done, and I want to be by your side for it 'til the end. I don't want any last-minute cancellations, and I sure as hell don't wanna miss it. How long should I party?"
We'd be letting absolute chaos loose. Fire. Looting. The worst of humanity, turned loose, with Vaughn potentially at its head if he decided to recruit for some reason. Could I still claim to be the good guy if I turned those kinds of people free to wreak havoc on the state I claimed whose denizens I was protecting?
Blackstone's Ratio holds that it is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer. It would still hold me no less accountable for whatever followed from this mass prison break, though.
I looked over to the recently arrived George, and hung my head.
So be it.
"Confirmed, Vendetta. I'll next talk to you when you're here in person- call it when you start either getting tired or if the hosts hire a doorman, a bouncer, or something you can't handle. Bring any good partygoers and favors you find, guide them here, O Pied Piper. Over and out." The signal went quiet again, and I turned off our radio, standing and yawning. The hour was late, and it would be my last opportunity for some shuteye.
I pulled aside a few sentries to my first order. I felt it was a strange one, and likely futile: I asked everyone to 'try and get some rest.'
The sentries were going to be exhausted, and I needed them to start working in shifts if we were to maintain our vigil and perimeter. Doubtless, more would be coming, and giving them at least some rest might be a difference-maker. G-Man helped lead the newcomers to the subterranean bunkers and tunnels, trying to make sure everyone had a place to stay the night and resources got split, even if it was throwing tarps and blankets on hard-packed dirt. I eyed the tunnels, knowing which one of them would spit me out near the stream, itself running so low I might as well refer to it as a ravine. Digging that had been cramped, paranoia-inducing, but we'd dug out so much of the hill and filled it with enough weapons to wage a full-scale war. What had begun as almost make-work and a place to store things when we'd started out
I couldn't sleep well on the cot that night, tossing and turning- I even tried resting with the mask off, held in my hands, but the risk to my identity if anyone barged in caused me enough stress. Eventually, I stood and donned it, making my rounds around the camp, trying to calm myself. Instead, I felt eyes following me, and I had to force myself to stand tall. For the thousandth time, I thought of this as my Valley Forge.
The sentry at the door to the command cabin gave me a hand-on-heart, and I returned it.
As I patrolled, I could hear whispered prayers, muttered plans of action, and mercifully, snores. At least some were getting some sleep. I could see orange lights reflecting off the clouds, near where I knew Wilmington lay.
I almost jumped a foot in the air when I felt the tap on my shoulder, only to find G-Man's mask staring into mine. How strange that such a haunting visage was a comfort to me.
"Hey. Can't sleep?"
"I can't," I confessed. "G-Man, I'm sorry what happened with your father. Hell of a birthday." I hadn't even had a chance to give him the present I'd bought him- a couple new filters, and vintage craftsman toolkit, "from before they sold out," Verns had told me. The memory of his voice already felt distant somehow- no. I'll see him again.
"Wasn't your fault. Even if Town Hall wasn't your big idea to get them to retaliate, you know? Then they'd still have done something. But, uh, thanks for saying that. And thanks for trying to get dad out. I'll remember that." George said quietly, then the conversation ended when he turned away and went to the edge of the embankment. Just like that.
I could never quite get a read on him.
I went inside, and tried to force myself to get at least some shut-eye.
Thanks to Terran-Armored-Core and DeltaNu for helping with some decisions and spellcheck.
Thanks to Inmutabilis-Ratio for helping with the site, it was very helpful in importing the text.
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2023.05.29 21:26 AzelfWillpower [TotK] A theory about the Master Sword
Now this is partially me coping about the Master Sword being so easily wrecked by a Triforce-less Ganondorf, but hear me out.
The Master Sword, during the time of BotW/TotK, has a number of faults not present in earlier entries of the series. During a fight with Guardians, the sword is damaged so seriously that it has to rest for a whopping one hundred years to recuperate. Not only that, but a further set of trials are required to increase the power of the blade. It is unable to seal Calamity Ganon, requiring Zelda's sage abilities -- something usually only required when Ganon holds a piece of the Triforce. And most notably, in the opening scene of TotK, mere gloom blasts are enough to completely shatter the legendary sword
, rendering it useless until it was given an eons-long nap in the Light Dragon's head.
There's also the matter of the Master Sword needing to recharge within the gameplay of BotW/TotK. However
, do you recall a certain memory in BotW? The one where there are 4-6 deceased Silver Lynels amongst a horde of other slain monsters, all killed by Link with minimal injury? The only weapon Link is shown to have in memories is the Master Sword (although there might be one where he uses a generic metal sword prior to getting the Blade of Evil's Bane), and there's never any mention of it needing to recharge. I think it's a safe conclusion to draw that the Master Sword running out of energy is more or less a gameplay mechanic.
So where does this leave us? Generally speaking, even assuming the recharge thing is a gameplay mechanic, the showings of the Master Sword in the last two games of the series have been a bit weaker than in previous games in the franchise, with the sword being damaged and even straight up broken with relative ease. This is presumably the same blade that caught thunderbolts from Demise, slew an immortal King of Evil holding the Triforce of Power, and depending on the timeline, killed Ganon countless times. Yet a skeletal Ganondorf, not even in his Demon King form, not even holding a Triforce piece, is able to obliterate it with two gloom blasts. That doesn't particularly make sense.
Here's what I propose. The key to the Master Sword's strength in previous games is its most iconic resting place, a location of sacred power so strong that it's directly connected to the Sacred Realm -- the Temple of Time. Let us walk through the Master Sword's various appearances, chronologically.
The Blade of Evil's Bane as depicted in Skyward Sword is arguably the most powerful one. Starting as the Goddess Sword, you gradually power it up throughout the course of the story, from the Goddess Longsword, to the Goddess White Sword, to the Master Sword, and eventually the True Master Sword. This is accomplished through a series of Sacred Flames, described as "the breath of life itself", personally created by the Golden Goddesses. The final touch to the legendary blade is a blessing from Zelda, who in Skyward Sword is the closest thing to Hylia herself.
There's a common misconception that every Zelda is Hylia Reborn. This is false. They carry the Blood
of the Goddess, but only Skyward Sword Zelda is a direct reincarnation of Hylia. She even has Hylia's memories. Skyward Sword's Master Sword is freshly created, bathed in 3 flames made directly by the Golden Goddesses and blessed by the equivalent of Hylia herself. It is used to permanently seal Demise, a demon of such power that the main villain of the series, Ganondorf, is a mere reflection of his hatred. Also, it can catch thunderbolts, which is fucking awesome. After this, the blade is put to rest in the Temple of Time, where it remains for millennia.
Ocarina of Time is the Master Sword's next (and undoubtedly most iconic) appearance, where it, as it was placed in Skyward Sword, is held in the Temple of Time. It serves as a key directly to the Sacred Realm,
a place of such holy magic that the Triforce itself is contained there. Such is the Master Sword's power that, after sealing Link for an entire seven years, it's able to seal the King of Evil and his Triforce of Power with the help of the Seven Sages, besting him in single combat not once, but twice. This is the same Ganondorf who collapsed an entire castle while exhausted.
There are a lot more appearances after this, so I'll be brief.
- Twilight Princess: The sword has no notable weaknesses. It's left in the Temple of Time once more, which still seems to possess some degree of sacred power as well as the ability to travel in time.
- Wind Waker: The sword has been weakened to the point where the blessings of two sages are required in order to keep its sacred power intact. The Temple of Time is presumably gone and it is now stored in Hyrule Castle. Has also been using its power to seal Ganon's magic for a long time.
Now here's where things get interesting. In both A Link to the Past and A Link Between Worlds, the sword has one key quality; it's stored not in the Temple of Time, but rather a pedestal in the Lost Woods. The Pendants of Virtue are required to lift it in both games to prove Link's worth as the hero, allowing him to pluck the Legendary Master Sword. ALTTP is also one of the only games where the Master Sword can not
slay Ganon; the Silver Arrows are required for the job. What could this possibly mean? As most of you know, ALTTP and ALBW are the only games where you can tangibly upgrade the Master Sword in such a way that even its appearance is changed. The methods of upgrading it are a bit mundane, too -- a few Dwarven swordsmiths can as much as quadruple the strength of the Blade of Evil's Bane? A sword so old it has existed nearly as long as time itself? It's a little less silly in ALBW given you need a special ore, but the point remains.
Is the Master Sword from ALTTP/ALBW stronger than the sword immediately after being bathed in three flames from Din, Farore, and Nayru, before being blessed by the literal light of a Goddess? I mean, possibly, this series has had sillier plot points, but I don't think that's the case.
I think the Master Sword has lost some degree of power by the time of ALTTP/ALBW, and the upgrades we see in those games don't make it four times stronger than SS/OoT's Master Sword, but rather restore some of its previous power. They aren't permanent, either. They're superficial upgrades, healed away when the Master Sword is put back into its pedestal. The Master Sword has lost so much power that it's malleable by the hammer of a swordsmith or magic from a mere Great Fairy.
So how does this translate into BotW/TotK? If you'll remember, a major plot point is that the Master Sword is able to gain power when bathed in sacred light.
The Deku Tree says as much to Zelda. A steady stream of sacred light is what's able to restore the Master Sword's luster, bring it back to its status as the legendary sword it's supposed to be. I believe that the reason for the Master Sword's apparent decrease in power throughout the Downfall Timeline as well as the need for the constant blessing of Sages in the Adult Timeline is one thing; the lack of the Temple of Time. To put it bluntly, there is no resting place even remotely as sacred as that of the Temple of Time. Skyward Sword, Ocarina of Time, and Twilight Princess, games where the Master Sword has no known faults and never has to be upgraded or repaired, are ones where it has been in the Temple of Time for millennia. The Temple's pedestal is connected directly to the Sacred Realm, as well as possessing the ability for extremely potent time travel.
This isn't to say that the pedestal found within the woods doesn't have magic properties, but I wouldn't call it exactly "sacred". In Creating a Champion, the following is stated:
"The Master Sword has averted many calamities alongside the hero, and the pedestal that restores the sword from the damage it incurs in those battles is located in Korok Forest, which brims with the energy of the land."
There's specific wording here. The Master Sword, rather than drawing upon sacred power (like that found in the Temple of Time or the energy from the Light Dragon), draws upon the energy of the land in order to heal. Certainly potent, but it's not sacred power. Not only would this explain the sword being weaker in BotW/TotK (and possibly even in ALTTP/ALBW), it would also explain the need for two sages to pray to it in Wind Waker. Not only is it in neither a sacred location nor one full of life, the Master Sword is in a world where the vast majority of life in Hyrule was snuffed out by both Ganon and a terrible flood. There is far less energy "of the land" to gather -- which is especially problematic given that the Master Sword is also sealing Ganondorf's minions and his magic.
TL;DR: The Master Sword loses power when not in a sacred pedestal like the one found in the Temple of Time. In the pedestals of the forest (ALttP/ALBW/BotW/TotK), it draws upon the "power of the land" to heal itself, resulting in an overall weakened blade. The upgrades in ALTTP/ALBW do not make the sword four times stronger than SS/OoT/TP's Master Sword, but are superficial power increases as a result of the sword losing so much power that it has become malleable enough to have its appearance changed by mere swordsmiths and Great Fairies. It requires the prayers of Sages in Wind Waker because it both lacks a sacred pedestal and there is little life of the land to draw energy from. And finally, it is able to be shattered in TotK due to thousands upon thousands of years without being bathed in sacred energy.
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2023.05.29 21:23 SocietyWaste8176 [Grade 9 humanities: Literary analysis] how do I emphasize my purpose better?
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I was given an 8.5 in purpose on my first draft but I don't know how to get that closer to a 10. here's a link to the assignment overview
if it helps. Thanks to anyone who takes the time to read this! Any suggestions or comments help!
The events in George Orwell's Animal Farm are based on actual historical events. After winning their independence, the animals wanted equality which the pigs promised. But long after the rebellion, equality has still not been achieved and the pigs have taken full control. In Animal Farm, George Orwell implements the pig's manipulation, censorship, and Napoleon's takeover to show how corruption progresses.
Censorship is a key part of the process of corruption. George Orwell shows this with the censorship of education. After the rebellion succeeds, "The pigs now revealed that during the past three months, they had taught themselves to read and write from an old spelling book which had belonged to Mr. Jones's children and which had been thrown on the rubbish heap." (23) By learning to read and write and then destroying the book and all other manmade items, the pigs effectively banned anyone from learning and becoming as smart as them. Authoritarian leaders have used this tactic throughout history to limit the power of citizens and force them to look up to the leaders.
With effective censorship, leaders can manipulate their citizens easier. This is demonstrated in Animal Farm when the pigs use their intelligence against the animals.“‘You have heard then, comrades,’ he said, ‘that we pigs now sleep in the beds of the farmhouse? And why not? You did not suppose, surely, that there was ever a ruling against beds? A bed merely means a place to sleep in. A pile of straw in a stall is a bed, properly regarded. The rule was against sheets, which are a human invention. We have removed the sheets from the farmhouse beds, and sleep between blankets. And very comfortable beds they are too! But not more comfortable than we need, I can tell you, comrades, with all the brainwork we have to do nowadays. You would not rob us of our repose, would you, comrades? You would not have us too tired to carry out our duties? Surely none of you wishes to see Jones back?'"(67) By saying this, Squealer convinces Muriel and Clover that the commandment which they both remembered being written had not actually been written as they remembered. When the animals try to correct the pigs they are gaslit with something along the lines of “Surely you don’t wish to see Jones back?” Demonstrating how little the pigs care about the animals. Rather than admitting the truth, they double down and manage to prevail with intimidation.
Orwell portrays Trotsky's exile in Animal Farm when Napoleon had Snowball removed from the farm. When he reached his breaking point, "Napoleon stood up and, casting a peculiar sidelong look at Snowball, uttered a high-pitched whimper of a kind no one had ever heard him utter before." (52) This can be compared to the authoritarian tactic of persecution of political rivals. Similar to the events of the Russian Revolution, when Napoleon felt threatened by Snowball, he exiled Snowball from the farm. After removing his competition, Napoleon had complete control. With this new power, he was able to scapegoat Snowball for all of the farm’s downfalls in order to maintain support.
George Orwell uses manipulation, censorship, and Napoleon's takeover in Animal Farm to illustrate the progression of corruption. Orwell includes events throughout the story that are his interpretations of what happened in the Russian Revolution. The book explains the signs of corruption and how people can fall victim to it, demonstrating how a nearly unanimously accepted rebellion can be manipulated and stolen from the people.