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[LP CYOA] Epic

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by treave, Jun 23, 2012.

  1. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    It seems that we're in a bit of a dilemma here: if we pretend to be Shulgi, we won't have enough information to skilfully maintain the deception before this guy is on to us, but if we surprise him, the guy is a powerful psychic that could be too dangerous to interrogate. I am against erasing him from existence - I think that is too drastic and I want to avoid anything approaching a Ghostpocalypse here.

    The upside is that Senya has some very powerful defenses when it comes to psionics:

    Senya was able to shrug this guy off without trying. There's no question that this individual is a much, much stronger psychic, but it's not unreasonable that Senya has the ability to withstand a psychic assault from him based on his past experience. I think that it's possible to get him with A, but we'll have to probably make a big gamble in the next choice as we try and piece together the narrative between this unknown immortal and Shulgi.
     
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  2. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    I'll be closing the votes around three or four more hours from now if possible.

    Right now it appears to be
    A - 2
    B - 4
    C - 3
     
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  3. Crap. This guy is connected to the quantum computer. I forgot. A surprise might not work. He'd be thinking too fast. Flopping to C.
     
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  4. Azira Arcane Patron

    Azira
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    Alright, I'll vote A
     
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  5. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Fine, voting C. I think that it will result in this:

    Plenty of ways for this guy to try and kill us without powers or his connection to the quantum computer.

    Damn, I really don't want to go with C, though. I think A is very much doable, but it will result in us having to guess/make shit up in the subsequent choice. It's definitely the high-risk/high-reward option given our lack of knowledge.
     
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  6. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    I'll go with A if someone bringe up the votes for it. Flopping back. Still prefer B over C, though.
     
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  7. Storyfag Perfidious Pole Patron

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    We will fail A. Quite horribly at that. We're the Codex, for fuck's sake!

    Let's calmly stick with B. We can neutralise the Immortal without wiping him out of existance, I hope. If the head proves to be problematic, we can cut it to smaller pieces. So he will regenerate. Big deal. We'll have defeated the Masters by then.
     
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  8. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    After thinking about it, A does seem like too much risk for too little gain. Out of all the immortals, Shulgi knows the most about the Masters... and we just got an infodump about them that clarified a lot of things. The really crucial thing about knowing Shulgi's whereabouts at this point, wouldn't be Master knowledge (though I'm sure he knows more than the League do), but rather help on how to avoid the death of the multiverse - he'd probably have a few ideas here, considering how many times he had to kill Senya's alter-ego. Interrogating this guy won't get us much, but if it gets us the last place and time they talked, it's still a big help.

    ... If he's telling the truth, of course. :lol:
     
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  9. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Well, it appears as if it still isn't conclusive. :rpgcodex:

    I'm going to be without access to a proper keyboard for a while so don't expect the update till Sunday or so. I suppose you can continue discussing till then, but also consider the fact that you did not take the Council infodump in the previous choices and think about how that will affect this particular one. There's more than one type of knowledge to be had.

    In the meantime, since I've already introduced one of the possible projects after this - a Chinese martial-arts based LP that is system and stats-based, here's the complete prologue for the other candidate, the Lovecraftian breeding project which is less focused on system and more on narrative.

    ***

    Prologue: The Founder’s Decision

    Berestovo, Kiev.
    July 15th, 1015.

    It was summer, yet the breeze was wintry. The falling sun was pale and dim, its light a diseased yellow rather than the brilliant orange that the Mercenary had come to expect from his sunsets. As the shadows crept over the small monastery of Berestovo, the bells began to clang, signalling the advent of twilight. Tekke shook his white mane at the sound, stamping his hooves. The Arabian stallion’s temperament was not helped by the weather. Calming his horse down, the Mercenary sniffed the crisp, cold air. He had not been this far north since he was a boy. He thought the environment would have agreed with him, brought him a sense of nostalgia, but it all felt wrong.

    “Do you sense it too, boy?” The old man besides him gave him a gap-toothed grin, his tanned skin turned leathery by years of the desert sun. That was a far different sun from the one that was slinking off to hide above their heads right now… a sun blazing fierce and strong. How long has it been since the Mercenary was that far south? Ten years, perhaps. Maybe less.

    “You are only twice my age, Mahmud. Yes, I can feel it.” The Mercenary muttered thinly, his eyes scanning the dirt-paved streets. He felt it alright; the black rot underneath the earth, its stink slowly permeating through the ground till it stained the very air they breathed. Ever since his encounter with the Al-Azif in the sandy ruins, he had been cursed with the Sight, weak though it may be. The mad ones said that those with the Sight would be able to see the future, peer into dreams, and discern the thoughts of others. All he got out of the bargain was the ability to sense madness.

    Some bargain.

    Mahmud prodded his donkey onwards, towards the monastery. “Then be prepared. Come. Young Bretislaus is waiting for us. The Grand Prince is dying and already the vultures circle his open grave.”

    “Typical.” The Mercenary snorted, following suit on Tekke. “He throws away the old gods and invites the Christos into his rule, and now on his deathbed he loses his faith in the immortality that they promise.”

    Mahmud let out a small sigh. “What use is immortality, my friend? There is nothing awaiting men after their passing. You and I both know that. Nothing, too, in our living future, except the eternal mocking laughter and cruelty of the gods that dwell in the stars. To leave this mortal coil is to escape their attention. One could wish for nothing more.”

    The Mercenary peered at Mahmud with some concern. He had not heard the man speak in such a manner even once since the day they met. “Are you alright, Mahmud? You almost sound… defeated.”

    “I sound old. Twice your age is a long time to live surrounded by the madness and chaos of the Black Pharaoh’s servants.”

    The Mercenary’s glance fell upon the faded tattoo on Mahmud’s wrinkled wrist. The inverted ankh still marked him. The old man caught the Mercenary’s glance and shifted away, turning the tattoo from his sight. Joviality returned to his expression, wiping out the despair that had laid itself bare on his face for a brief moment.

    “Hah!” laughed Mahmud, a cackling, guttural noise crawling from the depths of his throat. “Look at me. I’m rambling. Next you will call me the Mad Arab reincarnated! That is another form of immortality of the spirit as espoused by the Eastern religions, different from what the Christ-worshippers desire.” He coughed, gripping tightly onto the reins of the donkey. “In the end, though, an eternal spirit does nothing for an ailing conquerer who has partook deeply of the sinful pleasures and joys in life. Hailing God forever and ever in the glory of His heaven? No, that is not for a man like Vladimir. I know his sort. Making flesh immortal is a far better temptation, no?”

    At that moment, Bretislaus rode up, hailing them and saving the Mercenary from having to discuss the philosophy of immortality with Mahmud. The bastard son of Duke Olrich of Bohemia was strapping even at the age of fourteen, almost the size of a full-grown man. Even at such a youthful age he had already developed a reputation as an adventurer, diving into matters of Bohemia’s concern – and plenty that were not. If the Mercenary ever had cause to wonder why he was all the way up here in Kievan Rus, he only had to look at Bretislaus to remember it.

    The boy paid well. Really, really well.

    “We need to get moving now,” said Bretislaus as he reined his horse back. “The monks have already been captured and bound. The cult must be stopped before it’s too late!”

    “Slow down for a second, my lord,” gestured the Mercenary. “I suppose negotiations have failed?”

    “He would not even listen to me. Luckily my father rates highly enough that they would not lay hands on me lightly. Prince Svyatopolk was there too, though he left before I did.” Bretislaus grimaced, reddening at the memory of his diplomatic failure. The Mercenary raised his eyebrows in surprise. “Prince Yaroslav told us that his brother was at Vyshgorod. What was he doing here?”

    Bretislaus shook his head. “I don’t know, but he is probably with the heathen bastards. He was speaking with their witch. I tried to tell them that Yaroslav was not plotting for his throne but only the cult has his ears now. Grand Prince Vladimir is convinced that attaining immortality through their false god is the only way to settle his unfinished earthly matters.”

    “An excuse, one of many,” said Mahmud. “He will find such words coming easily to his mouth to justify whatever he does from now on, if he survives the night.”

    “How many cultists were there?” asked the Mercenary. Bretislaus murmured some numbers softly before giving the answer. “Fourteen in total. Five in the courtyard. Nine with the Grand Prince. They have daggers and axes. Some have bows. Do you fancy our odds?” He did not, but he was being paid to even these odds, and the young Bohemian heir’s knowing stare told him as much. The Mercenary nodded. He had faced worse odds in the field after all, battling against the Lombards and the Normans in southern Italy. The Varangian Guard entered the fray where the fighting was fiercest. Back to back with his brethren, they slew all comers, reaping glory with every head they took. But that was then, back in the prime of his youth. This was now, when the only ones he had by his side were an old Arab and a youth barely grown enough to grow stubble.

    The shadows deepened as the sun finally dropped below the horizon. There was nothing more to be said. Whether for glory, or for money, he would have to go. Whether he died, or he lived, it would not be said that he shied away from a job that he had taken. The Mercenary rode forth, spurring Tekke on. As they approached the monastery he saw that the gates were not closing, despite the cultists’ increasingly panicked attempts to do so.

    “I jammed them,” grinned Bretislaus mischievously, looking every bit his age. The Mercenary gave him a slight smile of approval and charged through the archway. The yellow-robed cultists were fumbling with their weapons – they were just peasant rabble with little experience in war. One of them, standing in the Mercenary’s path like frozen prey, stared blankly while his fingers trembled nervously around his bowstring. Tekke reared back on his hind hooves and stamped his forelegs down on the cultist in front of him. The Mercenary could hear the splintering of the bowman’s bones. He dismounted and quickly pushed his dagger between the stricken cultist’s ribs to finish him off. There was a yell from Bretislaus as he hacked into another cultist with his sword. The boy could handle himself well, thought the Mercenary, and turned his attention towards the others. He hefted a throwing axe in his hand, testing the weight, and hurled it overhand. The axe spun true, embedding itself in a cultist’s skull with a sickening crack.

    Drawing his great dane axe, the Mercenary let out a howling battle cry. He felt the familiar fury grow inside his chest. Shield up, he sprinted towards his next target. The cultist let fly a few arrows which missed their mark entirely; his hands were shivering from fear and adrenaline. Not so for the Mercenary; hot and cold his fury raged, but always he kept it under control. It was a tool, not who he was. Up close, the Mercenary could taste the tangible stink of corruption nestled in the man’s twisted heart. With a swipe of his shield he tore the bow from the cultist’s arms, leaving him wide open for the axe that would bury itself in his torso. His blow almost tore the man in two. With a strong jerk, the Mercenary ripped his axe from the soon-to-be corpse’s body, its entrails spilling onto the dusty ground. He turned the same movement into a circular swing, whirling around to chop into the cultist running at him from behind. The dane axe bit into the man’s neck, cutting through meat, gristle and bone with equal ease. The head parted ways from the body, trailing a brief spurt of arterial blood to mark their separation. And just like that, it was over.

    Walking over to one of the corpses, the Mercenary bent over and plucked the throwing axe from the cultist’s split skull. Bretislaus jogged over to the Mercenary, his sword stained with the blood of his kill. He was panting slightly from his exertions. “That was excellent work,” said the young dukeling. “Where did you learn to fight like that? You remind me of a Varangian I saw once.”

    “No time to pat each other on the back, my boys.” Mahmud stepped into the courtyard over the bodies of the recently departed, a small dagger in his right hand. He had the good sense to stay out of the way during a fight.

    They made their way forward, into the halls of the monastery itself. Here the Mercenary found that the rot had taken hold, almost choking in its thickness. The corridors were lighted but there was no one to be seen. Nothing to be heard, too; the usual chanting of the monks was absent. The only sound was from their echoing footsteps on the polished slabs of stone. When they reached the inner cloister, they stopped.

    “Is it too late?” asked the Mercenary. The old man shook his head, pointing at the stairs leading downwards into the earth. Down there lay the source of the black corruption, the Mercenary knew. The both of them averted their gazes from the flayed monks hanging from the cloister’s beams, their bodies twisted into circles. Bretislaus, on the other hand, could not help but stare, his gaze transfixed by the bloody and raw bodies of people he had just seen whole not an hour before. They still wriggled in their bonds, their mouths opening in silent screams. Their throats had been carefully exposed and their vocal cords taken out. Suspended in such a position they could still breathe, but not for long. They would slowly suffocate to death while suffering the pain of their exposed flesh.

    “This arrangement…” muttered Mahmud. “This is worse than I feared. The stars were right, but I thought my brethren broke these particular cultists and scattered their strength a few months back. The ones we are about to face serve a great power. My friend, we must stop them. This is not just about gold or glory anymore.”

    “Saving the world, Mahmud? You have never been concerned about that.”

    The Mercenary felt Mahmud grip his arm in a frenzy in response. “This isn’t about being heroic, this is survival! These are the circles of the gate! The Grand Prince has been tricked into becoming a vessel, and should he open we are all doomed. Even if I would not live ten years to the day, I am not keen on having it end in some god’s maw.” With a sigh, the Mercenary pried Mahmud’s fingers away. “I will do so, Mahmud. Calm down. You are not acting yourself today.” The old Arab twitched away, attempting to settle his agitation. “Yes, yes, you are right. We must move quickly, nevertheless.”

    “Can we cut them down before that?” asked Bretislaus, subdued by the horrific sight. The Mercenary shook his head. “We have no time. My lord, you need to ride now to Prince Yaroslav and tell him of what you witnessed here. Let him know his brother Svyatopolk was here.”

    “But-“

    “My lord, you hired me to be your swordarm and confidante on this little adventure. I say this from experience – what we are about to face will not be anything you can help with. Your concerns are with Bohemia’s wellbeing. Go to Prince Yaroslav now.” The Mercenary made his point firmly, one hand clasped on his axe’s haft. Bretislaus frowned, his brow creasing as he fought against his innate desire to remain and his duty to Bohemia. Duty won out and he nodded, his shoulders slumping. “If an undead Grand Prince does not arise to terrorize us all over the next week, you will receive riches beyond your imagining,” he promised. “I will see to that.” With that, he gave them a stiff nod and ran off.

    “Well, we’ve gotten rid of the dukeling,” sighed Mahmud. “Unfortunately our own task is far more burdensome.”

    “There’s nothing more to it,” the Mercenary shrugged. “We will do it. We have no choice.”

    Down into the depths they went, the Mercenary and the old man. The stench of rotting flesh grew ever stronger as they descended. The carved stairs winding its way into the bowels of the earth turned into unpolished rock, and then into nothing more than a steep, rocky decline. Their way was lit only by the flickering torches that only seemed all too fragile against the darkness that assailed from all sides. At those depths, the Mercenary lost all track of time. He sped up his footsteps as much as he could, but he could not remember how far they had travelled, or how long. All that kept him moving forward was a soft chanting that had been carried up the stairs some time ago, growing louder with every step he took.

    “…Yi…nash…”

    He continued to descend, Mahmud scraping along behind him.

    “…throdog…”

    “What language is that, Mahmud? Do you know?”

    Mahmud did not respond, instead prodding him to keep on moving.

    “…nash…”

    The Mercenary reached the bottom; the passageway opened out into a chamber, bright but unlit by any torches. Starlight appeared to illuminate the entire hall instead. Here they found the remaining cultists laying on the floor, their bodies bent into a circle in the rituals of their worship. On an altar at the center of the chamber lay the aged body of the Grand Prince, naked and wrinkled. A full-bodied woman sat atop him in a similar state of undress, copulating sensuously with the old ruler. Her red hair floated as if it were real fire in the starlight.

    Witch. The Mercenary cursed. He knew her; he knew her. Every detail of her curves and every memory of her touch. If it were not for her… he would not be here right now. Theodora would not have decreed his exile from Constantinople.

    The cultists continued to chant a single phrase, repeating it as the red-haired woman worked herself into a frenzy, her chest rising and falling rapidly while the Grand Prince groaned in ecstasy.

    “Yi-nash-Yog-Sothoth-he-lgeb-fi-throdog-Yah!”

    The Mercenary rushed forward, kicking the cultists aside as he raised his dane axe. Then, Vladimir the Great shuddered. The woman smiled wickedly, her red lips touching the old man’s ear as she whispered the secrets of the universe to complete the ritual. “There is no time!” screamed Mahmud. The Witch continued to whisper her dark chant; when she had reached the last syllable the gate would open. The Grand Prince’s body bloated, as if there were spheres growing from within. There was a flash of blinding light and for a moment the Mercenary thought that he could see past, present and future, all as one. For a moment, he saw the depths of despair that awaited man, where their only fate was to be food and playthings for the ancient deities that would awaken and ravage all existence. For a moment, he witnessed great towers being thrown down by even greater giants that rose from the oceans, as men screamed and died in pitch black streets. For a moment, he wavered.

    Then, he screamed the battlecry of his ancestors.

    The Mercenary threw the heavy axe with all his might. It flew, and flew straight, but instead of hitting the Witch, as he had surely intended, it buried itself in the Grand Prince’s neck, almost severing it. There was a loud thud as the axe sank even into the rock that the altar was made of. His eyes widened as a bloody gurgle escaped his lips, red bubbles rising from the cavity of his mouth. The globes stretching his skin appeared to deflate, shrinking as quickly as they had appeared, while the cultists screamed and collapsed impotently. With a shriek, the woman stopped her chant, the axe having stopped just short of her face. For the first time, she turned her head towards the Mercenary, finally realizing his presence. Her enraged scowl transformed just as quickly into a smile so familiar that the Mercenary’s chest twinged in pain.

    “Why did you do that, my love?” asked the Witch in a voice as sweet as honey, though her hands were twisted into claws that dug deep into the Grand Prince’s corpse. “Did you know how much I had to sacrifice to get this close to my goal?”

    “We know all too well, Witch!” shouted Mahmud, as he came to my side. “I had not expected that you would escape the purge, and that you would be able to gain access to one of the lineage in time. But it is over now. You have lost.”

    “Ah, so you still have the old fool following you. We have not lost,” said the Witch in that same saccharine tone. “The stars will be right again a thousand years from now. I may not see the return of the gods in my lifetime, but my faith goes beyond such petty matters.”

    “We will stop you again a thousand years from now.” declared Mahmud, though the Mercenary could hear a tinge of uncertainty in his voice.

    “If your people remember. Already your numbers dwindle, complacent in your victory.” She sneered slightly, turning her gaze to the Mercenary. “You saw it, didn’t you?” The Mercenary remained quiet. “You saw the future,” the Witch pressed. “You know it is inevitable. Your only chance… our descendants’ only chance, is for us to keep the faith so that when they return, we will be eaten first. That is all there is to it. That is our fate. Leave this place with me. You have done something terrible here, but together we can set the foundations that will right that wrong.”

    The Witch stretched out her arms to the Mercenary, seeking his aid as she had once did, so many years ago. The woman that he had saved, once upon a time. The woman that had betrayed him. He should not trust her, yet he knew that she was right. When the time came… when the stars were right again, all that he could hope to give the world was a quick death.

    ***

    A. The Mercenary accepted the truthfull proclamations of the Witch. What he saw was no illusion. It was a prophecy; a promise of the terrible things to come, a thousand years from now. There would be no winning side when it came to pass. There would only be the faithful, who would be granted a quick death, and the faithless, who would be subject to torments so terrible that the Church’s vivid imaginations of Hell were mere pinpricks of pain in comparison. Better, then, that his legacy be one of the faithful, so that his descendants do not suffer needlessly when the stars align again.


    B. The Mercenary rejected the Witch’s blandishments. Even if what he saw was the undeniable truth, and a record of the dark days to come, he would not give in. He would fight these unfathomable forces every step of the way, and entrust his descendants with the same responsibility. If the stars would be right a thousand years from now, his lineage would be there too, to stop the followers of the dark gods from achieving their nefarious goals. His would be a legacy that would not give up even in the face of onslaught by powers beyond human understanding.
     
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  10. TOME Cuckmaster General

    TOME
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    Good, I have enough time to properly catch up. Will vote soon. I think.
     
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  11. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    :desu:
    It's... beautiful!
    [​IMG]
    Edit: will we be able to choose where the Mercenary heads off to start his family? Or is it automatically Kiev?
     
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  12. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    No to both. Where he goes is rather unimportant to the narrative since it skips 800 years to 1815, Waterloo. The history of his house for those years will be railroaded. I might do a chapter in 1715 during the Ottoman-Venetian War, but it depends.

    Each chapter should cover one character. Tentatively, 1850s Egypt/Africa, 1890s Victorian London, then World War I, then II, then the Cold War, next the early 90s, and finally the last protagonist in 2015 for the final chapter. The actual adventures during the various chapters will depend on the offspring chosen, and the spouses picked will determine the choices of offspring to play as in the subsequent generation. Relics, contacts, relationships, perhaps inherited abilities will be passed on, mostly. Having a character die will cut the chapter short, though depending on the circumstances a relative might pick up the plot line a bit later with their own investigation into the character's death.

    It will be a history-on-rails narrative, at least overtly, since the story focuses on the secret war behind the scenes as the various groups prepare for the prophesied apocalypse. No lol let's shoot Hitler before he rises to power metagaming based off the players' knowledge of actual history will be had here.

    At any rate, it's not set in stone. I'll put up the choice of which LP to do once we've concluded this one.
     
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  13. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    The Chinese LP sounds cool, but this is too awesome.

    Unless, of course, we'll get a chance to pit our nerd-officer against the Mongol Invasion.
     
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  14. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    No Mongols. And it's more of an open world martial arts tale with a dozen factions and reputation tracking than Romance of the Three Kingdoms strategic play. Which I have no confidence in guiding because Codex. Open world is better, the fuckups will be more hilarious when you break the setting.
     
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  15. Anabanana Augur

    Anabanana
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    Goddamnit treave, I love classic wuxia lit and this sounds like the CYOA of my dreams. Can you please make it into a game if you don't do it as a CYOA so I can play it?
     
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  16. Kipeci Arcane

    Kipeci
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    So, it's confirmed that we're going with this over the Chinese one, then? :(
     
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  17. Azira Arcane Patron

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    I see nothing confirmed. It was just a teaser, just as the preview of the chines CYOA was.
     
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  18. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    There'll be a vote at the end of this LP. I plan on doing both eventually, just that I don't think I can pull off running both at once. Probably.

    If you're familiar with wuxia literature you'll be glad to know the reputation revolves around an orthodoxy-heresy scale which shifts depending on how obedient you are to the 'code of honor' in the pugilistic world. Because it's always fun to cross the various straight-laced orthodox sects over some misunderstanding and have them put out a bounty on you. Or have some crazy, eccentric heretics decide you be an excellent role figure due to your reputation and try to enshrine you as their leader whether you want to or not. There will be no Jade Empire Open Palm Closed Fist Light Side Dark Side bullshit philosophy here.
     
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  19. TOME Cuckmaster General

    TOME
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    I would much rather stay in this universe, maybe play an immortal trying to win one of the earlier games for Masters?

    We don't know a thing about Shulgi and we didn't take the council info, so A is bound to fail.

    I'm fairly certain that surprise attack is "not out of expectation", he'll be ready for it. He'll just activate the defenses and bring down the corridors.

    C. Time to test this power. It will be unexpected and might work now that he isn't expecting it.
     
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  20. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Not the sort of surprise attack that Senya has - he won't expect that. Look, this guy is expecting Shulgi and in many ways, is just like Shulgi himself: arrogant and too dependent on things going according to his expectations. As Kayerts said, the sort of attacks that Senya has aren't something that he'll expect because he's so certain that we're Shulgi. He'll probably account for Boshen's head being used as a projectile weapon, but there's no way he'll account for our limb-severing tentacles.

    We have to be aware of the great cost that this power brings, and I'm not yet ready to pay it. Remember this?

    We've reloaded already, and to make matters worse, our psycho alter-ego was killed a few times by Shulgi. Yes, this single use of the Observer's power won't damn us, but it all adds up. We have alternatives here, and it's best not to rely on a desperate last resort as a first resort.

    To make matters worse, once he's gone, any knowledge he's had is gone as well. So if it turns out Shulgi is still kicking around, good luck finding out:

    @treave, does this mean that deleting him would also erase the memories of all that knew him? So, if we erase him, would the other Council members know if he was ever gone?
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013
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  21. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
    Joined:
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    Voting A. We need to see what's up with this guy and what he knows. Could be the key to figuring out how to defeat the Council, discover if Shulgi is alive or find out more about Mere Tarliss' desertion, IF that was Mere Tarliss.

    I am beginning to really think Mere is Shulgi, can't see a young immortal like that defeating the much more experienced and powerful Shulgi in combat.

    If it is the true Mere, that only raises more questions.
     
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  22. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
    Joined:
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    Brace yourselves everyone, this is tin-foil hat time. Esquilax has gone full retard.

    You know, I've been having a lot of questions about Mere and the circumstances under which she saved us:

    Okay, so according to Mere, she didn't know we were coming and she happened to be on Volkin's ship at the time. So she's basically saying that thanks to this happy coincidence, our asses were saved. But I do find it unusual that Mere was already on her shuttle near the jump point before the drone was launched. Then she tells us that she didn't know it was us, that this was all happenstance. I mean, imagine the odds of Mere being around at exactly the right place and alerting us at the right time to warn us of danger. You'd have to be really lucky, right?

    Then there's the question of why Mere would suddenly defect:

    She said this as if it was certain, but then you have to ask "why the fuck would someone defect to the losing side all of a sudden?" Mere isn't Ean - she isn't going to join a losing side out of sheer moral duty and idealism, she's always struck me as pretty pragmatic. Okay, so Mere never liked the Council and she didn't rat us out about the quantum computer, true, so maybe she found the Council's secret and wants revenge. Hey, that could be it.

    But then you have to ask how the youngest immortal in the League would find a piece of knowledge that important and closely guarded to begin with. She got captured by the Empire on a covert mission not too long ago, how the fuck would she manage to get something like this? A millenia-old chessmaster with a boundless thirst for knowledge might find out about this independently, but someone that low on pecking order?

    Of course, this could all be a red herring by treave, but many things don't add up. But now we head to the enemy fortress, just as our friend is expecting Shulgi to fall into his trap, only we're not Shulgi, and thus outside of his expectations...

    The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn't exist.
     
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  23. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Codex 2012
    No, the database metaphor applies to the records of fate, the perception of the people living in the universe doesn't get retroactively changed. All they'll notice is this guy was here, then now he's not. As for Mere... there are a few possibilities that come to mind.

    She's Shulgi.
    She's a double agent.
    She's unwittingly serving the purpose of another, more experienced and smarter player in this conflict.
    Happy coincidence, you're all just paranoid.

    Or perhaps even a combination of two or more of the above.

    Also, do expect a difference in information obtained from an interrogation (if it works) compared to a smooth con (if it works). I don't feel that what you hear in one case should be exactly the same as what you get in the other.
     
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  24. Anabanana Augur

    Anabanana
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    I think I'm going to vote A for this. Also I really hope Mere turns out to be Shulgi. It'd be the best twist in the entire CYOA. ;D
     
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  25. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
    Joined:
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    Haha, well Dario did turn out to be Dio, so maybe it's something else now. I'm still sticking with B because A is too risky while C is a horrible waste with dire consequences, but I am considering ways that we can make the con work on this guy by piecing together what we know. We need to work out the time frame they've known each other:

    So Shulgi's known this guy ever since Earth's location became uknown to the Masters. I wonder how Shulgi got in contact with the League, and a Council member at that, while Earth was isolated. Not only that, this Council member decided to play along and not reveal Earth's location; I suppose he figured that Shulgi was more useful to him without any of his Council pals knowing about him.

    Moving on:

    Okay, so the last time Shulgi and this guy talked was before our alliance with the Empire. Speaking of names that Shulgi's collected, I can think of one: Senya Hoshikawa. No wonder this guy believes we're Shulgi.

    Any idea as to the real reason that Shulgi took the heat for our alter-ego's crimes?

    As Senya suspected, he's bullshitting. If he knew what we were looking through, it wouldn't be so heavily encrypted and he'd know that we weren't Shulgi just as soon as we started looking for information on the Masters. Shulgi knows more about the Masters than the League does, he wouldn't bother looking through their limited info on the matter.

    Um, I could like, totally kick your ass and stuff, but I don't want to! There is some truth here, but he'd really rather not resort to fucking up the entire fortress. He just told us that we don't stand a chance if they have the superweapon, so why risk the fortress? I'd call his bluff on this one.
     
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