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The Giant
2006-03-20, 04:10 PM
New comic is up.

Jibar
2006-03-20, 04:11 PM
I must say, there's some certain pleasure in seeing the most recent post is the Giant.

Well, now we can safely (I hope) say that there won't be any more arguments concerning Belkar's release.
Now we know, he's only been let out to help Roy. And he also, can't escape, run around killing people, or annoy them all too much. Meaning, he ahs truly been brought to justice.

Reivas_Genocai
2006-03-20, 04:13 PM
Awesome, awesome and amazing, thank you Giant!

Greebo
2006-03-20, 04:15 PM
Stock phrase complimenting the author on a job well done.

That was brilliant! Love the terms of the curse!

Frito_Butterbuns
2006-03-20, 04:16 PM
I think eventually Roy is going to be cursing the terms of the curse!

PhoeKun
2006-03-20, 04:17 PM
Well, that'll teach me to question my faith in Paladins.

Thank you, Giant, for restoring my faith in stick figure humanity.

Grimblade
2006-03-20, 04:17 PM
Great comic, Giant!

Yep, that illusion does sound exactly like Belkar :D

theKOT
2006-03-20, 04:17 PM
And I thought Roy was simply overconfident. Oh well, this is cool! And Durkon was shocked and somewhat apalled, so at least I got that right. Those terms should be permanent.

That was a GREAT ending joke! I loved the Giant's self-depriciating humor. Generic response... teehee.



Edit: Why do I get the feeling that killing within a city's boundaries thing will come back to bite Roy in the butt?

fwiffo
2006-03-20, 04:18 PM
Ooooh. Cunning illusion. No guard is possibly going to see through that one. :)

Caird_MacCondolach
2006-03-20, 04:18 PM
I love it. All those people who immediately questioned Roy's Lawful Goodness can go suck eggs. He gets to keep his lawfullness and his goodness, complete his mission and still see Belkar stand trial. (With Belkar's share of the treasure paying for the costs. Brilliant!)

It just goes to show what happens when you 'assume' too much....


Caird.

edited for spelling and grammatical errors. WooT! I was so excited to get on the front page my fingers got too happy.

TinSoldier
2006-03-20, 04:18 PM
So much speculation in the forums wasn't even close!

"Generic comment questioning your parentage."
"Mumbled statement disparaging your masculinity."

The curse on Belkar -- that is very cool. [mild speculation] He'll either find a loophole at some point, or it will kick in when the rest of the party *doesn't* want it too...[/mild speculation]

Hyrael
2006-03-20, 04:19 PM
SWEEEEEEEEEEETTTTTT

tell me, the buisness with the illusion's lines:
I assume that the words are a mental impression, and the guards are 'filling in' the specifics if the preset insults. Is this correct, or are they actually getting riled by those exact words?

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 04:19 PM
Glad to see the concerns were addressed here. I hope we can move away from Roy's bad habit of giving annoying speeches and go back to the adventures and jokes on D&D

Jack Squat
2006-03-20, 04:20 PM
Great comic, as usual. keep up the good work.

oh and First Page W00t! :)

evnafets
2006-03-20, 04:20 PM
First Roy says he doesn't want to compel any of them to help him.
Then he treats Belkar like this?

Maybe hes not so different from his dear old Dad.

Swashbuckler
2006-03-20, 04:20 PM
AHA! You see, silly anti-Belkarites?? He's confined to the terms of the deal.

Brilliant comic, Rich!

Muz
2006-03-20, 04:22 PM
I had a feeling something like this might be happening. :) (And I'm glad to see it--Now maybe people will stop arguing that Roy's switched over to chaotic evil.)

Of course, maybe if I'd gone on record of saying something like this would happen BEFORE it happened, I might get more credit for suspecting it would happen. ;D

theKOT
2006-03-20, 04:22 PM
First Roy says he doesn't want to compel any of them to help him.
Then he treats Belkar like this?

Maybe hes not so different from his dear old Dad.

And.... treating Belkar like this is bad how?

Krytha
2006-03-20, 04:23 PM
Well at least Roy hasnt gone completely nuts. But is Belkar worth all that trouble?


I had a feeling something like this might be happening. :) (And I'm glad to see it--Now maybe people will stop arguing that Roy's switched over to chaotic evil.)

Of course, maybe if I'd gone on record of saying something like this would happen BEFORE it happened, I might get more credit for suspecting it would happen. ;D

I don't think anyone gets credit for suspecting things. That falls under spoilers. The Giant hates spoilers.

Ironfang
2006-03-20, 04:25 PM
Woo hoo 2nd page?

theKOT
2006-03-20, 04:25 PM
Well at least Roy hasnt gone completely nuts. But is Belkar worth all that trouble?
It isn't really trouble. Besides, Belkar already knows about the gates and the Giant called him an "Extremely capable melee fighter", So I'd say so.

GeekDaddy
2006-03-20, 04:26 PM
Wow! Page 2! My earliest post yet!

Perchance has The Giant read/watched A Clockwork Orange of late? Belkar's Rune sounds strikingly familiar to that.

SPOILER: Of course this only means that it will come down to Belkar to deliver the killing blow to Xykon but as it will undoubtedly happen inside of the hobgoblin town outside of his mountain estate and thus will be unable to do so due to the constraints of his release.

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 04:27 PM
AHA! You see, silly anti-Belkarites?? He's confined to the terms of the deal.

Brilliant comic, Rich!
It does make me wonder if the debate caused a rewrite of the original to cover the objections to Roy's behavior ;)

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 04:27 PM
Just out of curiosity, is Mark of Justice a real 3.x spell either from WotC or a d20 company?

Greebo
2006-03-20, 04:30 PM
First Roy says he doesn't want to compel any of them to help him.
Then he treats Belkar like this?

Maybe hes not so different from his dear old Dad.
Belkar's choices were:
1) Stay in prison being bored.
2) Go along with Roy.

Belkar HATES being bored.

This isn't compulsion, its a safeguard to prevent Belkar from getting away. Belkar really doesn't have to do anything to help. IF Belkar does nothing to help, and Roy uses the command word, THEN its compulsion.

Muz
2006-03-20, 04:31 PM
It does make me wonder if the debate caused a rewrite of the original to cover the objections to Roy's behavior ;)

I think it's more a case of it being planned out ahead of time and there just wasn't enough time/space in the last panel to explain everything when we first saw him show up. (Not to mention it would've gotten in the way of the humor to shove all the detail into one regular-length strip.)

Greebo
2006-03-20, 04:32 PM
Well at least Roy hasnt gone completely nuts. But is Belkar worth all that trouble?

Who's trouble? It's not Roy's trouble, its Dad's and the Saphire Order's trouble.

And Roy doesn't have any reason to mind troubling them. :)

The Giant
2006-03-20, 04:32 PM
Just out of curiosity, is Mark of Justice a real 3.x spell either from WotC or a d20 company?



Mark of Justice (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/markofJustice.htm)

Hawkeye
2006-03-20, 04:33 PM
Well at least Roy hasnt gone completely nuts. But is Belkar worth all that trouble?




Belker has done some notable things to help the party, like killing the chimera (although he was supposed to come back as he was a named villain, but we'll let that one slide) and saved the party from the goblin shaman that cast unholy blight. It sort of helps that their is an evil character in a party sometimes.

(hides from the flames where people claim that belker is CN)

TinSoldier
2006-03-20, 04:34 PM
Mark of Justice (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/markofJustice.htm)Oh. That's clever. 8)

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 04:34 PM
I think it's more a case of it being planned out ahead of time and there just wasn't enough time/space in the last panel to explain everything when we first saw him show up. (Not to mention it would've gotten in the way of the humor to shove all the detail into one regular-length strip.)
Works for me. Though I wonder if there would have been a civil war among the posters if this hadn't been done. I'm still pro-Miko, but this strip satisfies most of my concerns... except I think Roy is still a jerk ;)

Peptuck
2006-03-20, 04:37 PM
Why am I imagining the Belkar illusion speaking with HK-47's voice to the guards now? :P



Though now I imagine that Belkar's going to have some trouble if the OOTS encounters an enemy that have to lethal damage in an urban setting. Imagine if the hobgoblin horde comes storming into the city. Belkar's going to cry at all the killing he gets to forgo.

Illsbane
2006-03-20, 04:38 PM
This was deliciously ironic. ^^ And not only has Belkar been muzzled - although he might still do horrible things outside settlements - Eugene has been put to work for something useful for the first in a long time. Heh.

Marller
2006-03-20, 04:39 PM
There are so many comedic uses for the Mark of Justice, it makes me dizzy. ;D

Deuce
2006-03-20, 04:40 PM
Generic post commenting on greatness of strip!!!

;D

theKOT
2006-03-20, 04:42 PM
This was deliciously ironic. ^^ And not only has Belkar been muzzled - although he might still do horrible things outside settlements - Eugene has been put to work for something useful for the first in a long time. Heh.
But he must be within 1 mile of Roy and Roy can activate his symbol, so it is possible, but unlikely.

I can just imagine Roy's revenge on a Belkar that is unable to move....

Seft Sirag
2006-03-20, 04:43 PM
I'm a man of few words, so here's two for Rich...

"Nice One!" ;D

Regards,
VV.

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 04:46 PM
Mark of Justice (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/markofJustice.htm)

Hmmm. And who is the 7th level cleric that cast that spell without wondering what it should be used for? I can just imagine that scene...

Shojo: I'd like you to cast Mark of Justice on this halfling
Cleric: The escaped murderer? My pleasure. What's the curse.
Shojo: Well, the curse is that he progressively loses Strength upon violating the curse terms.
Cleric: Excellent, sir. And I assume the curse term is escaping from our prison?
Shojo: Er, no. First that he must remain within one mile of Roy, leader of the newly acquitted Order of the Stick
Cleric: Ah, this Roy must be acting as his defense attorney. Very good, sir.
Shojo: Second, that the Mark shall be activated upon uttering the phrase "I know the activation word for your Mark of Justice."
Cleric: Excellent, sir. Just be sure not to tell any of Belkar's allies that phrase. I don't trust them.
Roy: I'm standing right here. >:(
Shojo: Third, he may not inflict lethal damage to any living creature within the bounds of any city, town or village.
Cleric: Surely you mean within Azure City, as he is to be incarcerated until his trial?
Shojo: Um... er... no.
Cleric: But that would mean... hey... hmmm... oh, well, what the heck!
Roy: Good thing Intelligence is often a dump stat for clerics. ::)

(It couldn't have been cast by a paladin, because it would require a 16th level paladin, and Miko, who probably doesn't have 16 paladin levels, is the most powerful palading in the Sapphire guard.)

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 04:46 PM
Why am I imagining the Belkar illusion speaking with HK-47's voice to the guards now? :P



Though now I imagine that Belkar's going to have some trouble if the OOTS encounters an enemy that have to lethal damage in an urban setting. Imagine if the hobgoblin horde comes storming into the city. Belkar's going to cry at all the killing he gets to forgo.




Don't forget the Hobgoblin city that caused the "evilgasm"

codemartin
2006-03-20, 04:48 PM
First must say to quote aabove poster yes nice one.

Then now i know what mark of justice is for I never had an exusue for it now.

Flak_Razorwill
2006-03-20, 04:48 PM
First thing I thought of in the last panel:

<Donut[AFK]> HEY EURAKARTE
<Donut[AFK]> INSULT
<Eurakarte> RETORT
<Donut[AFK]> COUNTER-RETORT
<Eurakarte> QUESTIONING OF SEXUAL PREFERENCE
<Donut[AFK]> SUGGESTION TO STFU
<Eurakarte> NOTATION THAT YOU CREATE A VACUUM
<Donut[AFK]> RIPOSTE
<Donut[AFK]> ADDON RIPOSTE
<Eurakarte> COUNTER-RIPOSTE
<Donut[AFK]> COUNTER-COUNTER RIPOSTE
<Eurakarte> NONSENSICAL STATEMENT INVOLVING PLANKTON
<Miles_Prower> RESPONSE TO RANDOM STATEMENT AND THREAT TO BAN OPPOSING SIDES
<Eurakarte> WORDS OF PRAISE FOR FISHFOOD
<Miles_Prower> ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND ACCEPTENCE OF TERMS

demonfey
2006-03-20, 04:51 PM
Belkar is taking it well, though.

Belkar will probably take on more undead foes because of it.

Illsbane
2006-03-20, 04:54 PM
I just thought of something. If the Belkar-illusion is really, literally saying what we read, it is yet more evidence of the ultimate worthlessness of one Eugene Greenhilt. -_-* 'Indistinguishable from the real Belkar'... He doesn't even know Belkar that well! Roy goofed; he should've force-fed Eugene everything he knew on Belkar before letting the old fart cast the spell.

Grunjon
2006-03-20, 04:55 PM
...a mark of justice cannot be dispelled, but it can be removed with a break enchantment, limited wish, miracle, remove curse, or wish spell.

Betcha Belkar's gonna be on the lookout for digging up one of these! Of course, he probably doesn't know (yet?) that this is what it takes to remove the mark.

At some point Miko will see through the illusion of the cell's occupant and come running after everyone, I betcha.


Good job as always, Giant!


EDIT: Woohoo! 3rd page! ;D

Vargtass
2006-03-20, 04:56 PM
Mark of Justice, programmed illusion - the Giant sure knows his spells! Looking forward to the resolution of of this mark ... from past experience, I am certain the Giant did not put it on Belkar just to appease the current board, but rather has something planned up his sleeve.

Soul_Selim
2006-03-20, 04:56 PM
That was Awesome. Kudos Giant.

Also, What would happen if Miko was watching through the Diviners at one point? That would be trouble....

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 04:58 PM
I just thought of something. If the Belkar-illusion is really, literally saying what we read, it is yet more evidence of the ultimate worthlessness of one Eugene Greenhilt. -_-* 'Indistinguishable from the real Belkar'... He doesn't even know Belkar that well! Roy goofed; he should've force-fed Eugene everything he knew on Belkar before letting the old fart cast the spell.

I think that was the point of the joke... that it wasn't that hard to fool the guards

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 05:00 PM
That was Awesome. Kudos Giant.

Also, What would happen if Miko was watching through the Diviners at one point? That would be trouble....


I'm not sure there are any actual diviners.

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 05:00 PM
heh! thanks giant!

As for who cast it, I'm sure Miko would have been willing to. Or, actually, any paladin or cleric at all who simply wasn't going to know everything. The guys who thought they summoned the being of pure law and good (aka Roy's Dad) for example.

They only question they might have would be "and where is Roy?" and Shojo could just say "around, but never mind. This is a secret!"

Greebo
2006-03-20, 05:01 PM
That was Awesome. Kudos Giant.

Also, What would happen if Miko was watching through the Diviners at one point? That would be trouble....
You're not suggesting that Miko would spy on her superior and sworn master, now are you?

The stick in her bum won't let her bend her personal code of honor that far!

AmoDman
2006-03-20, 05:01 PM
He can't deal letahl damage in all cities, villages, and towns? Such as, goblin cities, orc villages, and ogre towns? Sucks.

Also, I love how nonchalantly the OotS is taking the actions of the crazy cat man and mention of Roy's father (since they don't technically know ;)). Let me guess, Haley told them! :D

Greebo
2006-03-20, 05:03 PM
I'm not sure there are any actual diviners.
Unlikely, I think. How else would Eugene have found Shojo?

Evik
2006-03-20, 05:03 PM
Kudos on the illusion, mark of justice and disguise while in town.
I have some ?'s but will post it seperatly as i do not know wheather it constitutes a spoiler or not.

TinSoldier
2006-03-20, 05:04 PM
Also, I love how nonchalantly the OotS is taking the actions of the crazy cat man and mention of Roy's father (since they don't technically know ;)). Let me guess, Haley told them! :DGood point. I think he forgot "I thought you said your dad was dead."

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 05:07 PM
heh! thanks giant!

As for who cast it, I'm sure Miko would have been willing to. Or, actually, any paladin or cleric at all who simply wasn't going to know everything. The guys who thought they summoned the being of pure law and good (aka Roy's Dad) for example.

They only question they might have would be "and where is Roy?" and Shojo could just say "around, but never mind. This is a secret!"


I don't think Miko would co-operate with anythig that allowed Belkar to walk free.

As for Roy and the others, they were acquitted. So I imagine Shoko could just shrug and say "Why should I know?"

The_Kobold_Hero
2006-03-20, 05:09 PM
I love that curse! Try to scalp me now shorty! Ha ha ha! >:-}

Leo_Forestclaw
2006-03-20, 05:10 PM
It isn't really trouble. Besides, Belkar already knows about the gates and the Giant called him an "Extremely capable melee fighter", So I'd say so.

As Belkar wasn't present for the trail, which comic makes you think he knows about the significance of the gates? Obviously, he knows the the Order is going to go check out some gates, but I don't think we've seen anything to indicate he knows why...

And kudos to Rich for clearing up all my cold-fuzzies about Belkar's release!

mimicgogo
2006-03-20, 05:10 PM
Ah, it appears that everyone is focusing on the city term of the Mark and forgetting there are two more.

<spoiler>For example, what if Roy or Belkar were to get hit with a spell causing them to randomly travel a great distance? That could cause some trouble.</spolier>

Or...

<spoiler>What if Roy gets compelled/possessed, etc? The controller/possessee would know the trigger word as well...</spoiler>

nightfire8199
2006-03-20, 05:12 PM
i liked the comic...it was SWEET. the belkar was cool at the end

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 05:12 PM
I don't think Miko would co-operate with anythig that allowed Belkar to walk free

Yeah, on second thought I'm having a hard time with this. She can follow direct orders in the heat of battle, but even then Shojo had to clam her down by telling her due process was in motion.

But still, we both agree that there should be somebody in that huge castle that will cast the spell and shut up about it. Or at least, as you mentioned, might simply not think anything of it.

Alfryd
2006-03-20, 05:13 PM
New comic is up.
Hilarity factor 8.3.

Roy, all is forgiven. I love you dearly.

It just goes to show what happens when you 'assume' too much...
I am a very bad man.

Adeptus
2006-03-20, 05:13 PM
Excellent comic Rich! Clever and funny. My personal favorite in quite a while.

Poor Belkar though! Clockwork Orange strikes again.

metalphil
2006-03-20, 05:14 PM
"Mumbled statement disparaging your parentage." Hahaha. Awesome.

Thanks Giant.

Balthor
2006-03-20, 05:14 PM
There is much comedy to insue from the mark. Oh, and

W00T: 4th page!! 5th. Dang simu-nija's!

Hawkeye
2006-03-20, 05:16 PM
First thing I thought of in the last panel:

<Donut[AFK]> HEY EURAKARTE
<Donut[AFK]> INSULT
<Eurakarte> RETORT
<Donut[AFK]> COUNTER-RETORT
<Eurakarte> QUESTIONING OF SEXUAL PREFERENCE
<Donut[AFK]> SUGGESTION TO STFU
<Eurakarte> NOTATION THAT YOU CREATE A VACUUM
<Donut[AFK]> RIPOSTE
<Donut[AFK]> ADDON RIPOSTE
<Eurakarte> COUNTER-RIPOSTE
<Donut[AFK]> COUNTER-COUNTER RIPOSTE
<Eurakarte> NONSENSICAL STATEMENT INVOLVING PLANKTON
<Miles_Prower> RESPONSE TO RANDOM STATEMENT AND THREAT TO BAN OPPOSING SIDES
<Eurakarte> WORDS OF PRAISE FOR FISHFOOD
<Miles_Prower> ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND ACCEPTENCE OF TERMS



hideously ripping off bash.org

theKOT
2006-03-20, 05:16 PM
As Belkar wasn't present for the trail, which comic makes you think he knows about the significance of the gates? Obviously, he knows the the Order is going to go check out some gates, but I don't think we've seen anything to indicate he knows why...

And kudos to Rich for clearing up all my cold-fuzzies about Belkar's release!
Oh right, I forgot about that.
I still think it wasn't any trouble, anyway.

Greebo
2006-03-20, 05:16 PM
It is a castle full of paladins. Its been demonstrated that not ALL of the paladins have a Miko-style ramrod of uptightness inserted in their posterior cavaties.

I'm sure Shojo has a few high level paladins who he trusts, and who trust him. Clearly he doesn't trust Miko to that degree - he manipulated Miko because he needed a job done - he doesn't appear to tell her more than he needs her to know.

And it appears that she doesn't question.

RyanL330
2006-03-20, 05:17 PM
Mimicgogo

<spoile....Hey, I just made my spot check!!!

;D

theKOT
2006-03-20, 05:19 PM
It is a castle full of paladins. Its been demonstrated that not ALL of the paladins have a Miko-style ramrod of uptightness inserted in their posterior cavaties.

I'm sure Shojo has a few high level paladins who he trusts, and who trust him. Clearly he doesn't trust Miko to that degree - he manipulated Miko because he needed a job done - he doesn't appear to tell her more than he needs her to know.

And it appears that she doesn't question.

Except no one knows that he is just pretending to be senile. "And no one knows? No one."

Eriol
2006-03-20, 05:19 PM
Edit: Why do I get the feeling that killing within a city's boundaries thing will come back to bite Roy in the butt?
No kidding. That's the first thing I was thinking: who thought up these crappy-ass release terms? Obviously not somebody adept in closing logical loopholes. I'm not accusing the Giant of that (I think they're crafted specifically to PRODUCE logical loopholes, for plot effect), but I can't believe that Roy didn't pick up on this when the Mark was being cast.

The effects of each term:

1. Belkar can't kill in towns/etc: Of course, some battle versus evil will occur in towns, and he'll only be able to knock people out... or something.

2. Belkar can't be more than a mile from Roy: why isn't it a LOT shorter? Like can't be more than 50ft? Or something? Methinks the leash should be a lot shorter. But then again, that restricts Roy just as much. Should be "50ft from any member of the Order" or something. Basically just-about keeping him in sight IMO. As a corollery, what happens if Roy's dead? Can Belkar just carry around a piece of Roy with him and that counts? Or what?

3. Activation Word: Should be "intense thought" or something, so Belkar can't just silence him some other way, like a Gag, etc.

If I were in charge of the rules, I'd do the following:

1. Belkar can't kill or ATTACK any creature that Roy (or whomever... Like Durkon maybe) wouldn't approve of. Roy doesn't need to say "OK" before every hit or anything, but the "mystical powers" in the world can enforce this. ;)

2. Belkar is leashed to ANY Order member, rather than just Roy, but at a MUCH smaller leash, as said above. Like 50ft. This keeps him from more mischeif that doesn't involve attacking.

3. "Intense thought" from Roy triggers it rather than spoken words (though this is less necessary because of modified condition #1).

This would be "safe" conditions... though as I said, I'm sure that's exactly the opposite of The Giant's intentions.

fithi
2006-03-20, 05:19 PM
:D Okay, I am muchly enjoying the whole "Belkar is in my custody, and I can curse him" thing going on.

Keep up the great work, Giant!

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 05:20 PM
It is a castle full of paladins. Its been demonstrated that not ALL of the paladins have a Miko-style ramrod of uptightness inserted in their posterior cavaties.

Doesn't matter. Miko isn't high enough level to cast mark of Justice and Shojo said she was their most powerful paladin.

It had to be a priest. I assume it was one of the priests who unwittingly summoned Eugene. I just though it was funny to imagine who that scene played out.

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 05:22 PM
Yeah, on second thought I'm having a hard time with this. She can follow direct orders in the heat of battle, but even then Shojo had to clam her down by telling her due process was in motion.

But still, we both agree that there should be somebody in that huge castle that will cast the spell and shut up about it. Or at least, as you mentioned, might simply not think anything of it.






Yeah, I think Giant established that Miko and Belkar are permanent enemies now. There's some cool stories that could be taken out of this emnity though, so long as she isn't played where her LG is worse than Belkar's CE

mipers
2006-03-20, 05:25 PM
Reiterated comment of general praise.

Statement of anticipation.

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 05:25 PM
1. Belkar can't kill in towns/etc: Of course, some battle versus evil will occur in towns, and he'll only be able to knock people out... or something.

That's kind of the point.


2. Belkar can't be more than a mile from Roy: why isn't it a LOT shorter?

Because he's the party ranger. He to have space to range. Resumably he hunts game for th party outdoors and he probably needs more than 50' leeway to scout.


3. Activation Word: Should be "intense thought" or something, so Belkar can't just silence him some other way, like a Gag, etc.

That seems unlikely.


1. Belkar can't kill or ATTACK any creature that Roy (or whomever... Like Durkon maybe) wouldn't approve of. Roy doesn't need to say "OK" before every hit or anything, but the "mystical powers" in the world can enforce this. ;)

That seems a bit beyond the range of the spell. plus, the Mark doesn't prevent you from taking the action. it curses you if you do. it seems a bit unfair to require Belkar to have to figure out what wishy-washy Roy would or would not want him to kill.


2. Belkar is leashed to ANY Order member, rather than just Roy...

Right, because there's no way Belkar would convince, say, Elan to come with him on some mischief. ::)

[quote author=Eriol link=board=comics;num=1142885451;start=60#69 date=03/20/06 at 16:19:30]at a MUCH smaller leash, as said above. Like 50ft. This keeps him from more mischeif that doesn't involve attacking.

But hinders his abilities as a ranger/tracker.

Greebo
2006-03-20, 05:25 PM
Except no one knows that he is just pretending to be senile. "And no one knows? No one."

Good point.

Allow me to riposte:
The Saphire Order appears to follow Shojo and cat's orders without question.

So surely Shojo knows at least one high level paladin to whom he can say, "Cast this spell with these terms and tell NO ONE of it." and they will obey without fail or question?

Greebo
2006-03-20, 05:26 PM
Doesn't matter. Miko isn't high enough level to cast mark of Justice and Shojo said she was their most powerful paladin.

He did?

Where? I don't recall that.

Arkadian
2006-03-20, 05:27 PM
I just thought of something. If the Belkar-illusion is really, literally saying what we read, it is yet more evidence of the ultimate worthlessness of one Eugene Greenhilt. -_-* 'Indistinguishable from the real Belkar'... He doesn't even know Belkar that well! Roy goofed; he should've force-fed Eugene everything he knew on Belkar before letting the old fart cast the spell.

Who says he wasn't? time flys between panels and strips. Plot progression without having to reveal the boring mundane parts.

bosssmiley
2006-03-20, 05:28 PM
Great episode! So many funny lines

"I can still knock your teeth in with nonlethal damage!"

Kanashimi
2006-03-20, 05:29 PM
Yay!!! funny, funny, I've used the spell many times, and to good effect. That ought to keep Belkar in line, especially the clause about not pissing Roy off to bad.

Grat job!

Sylian
2006-03-20, 05:32 PM
Was the illusion saying these things or was it just to show us?

Runolfr
2006-03-20, 05:32 PM
*Mini Spoiler*
I look forward to Belkar's next confrontation with a fly, mosquito, bedbug, or ant while in a city, town, or village.

I think I would go mad...

Blah

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 05:33 PM
He did?

Where? I don't recall that.


"I sent my most powerful paladin to the North to collect you," (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=290) said by Shojo to Roy.

Muz
2006-03-20, 05:33 PM
Reiterated comment of general praise.

Statement of anticipation.

Wish I'd thought of that. ;D

Zargon
2006-03-20, 05:35 PM
Belkar has to be happy that he got out of jail, no matter what the restrictions, but I'm sure he'll start looking for loopholes and chaff at the restrictions - not an issue if they are in a dungeon, but a hobgoblin city - ouch!
But at least he has a real chance to feed his favorite hobby/addicition of stabity!
Oh, and belkar as a tracker - hah! a reasonable good fighter yes, but had stated he has no real abilities in tracking (or spot, or ...).

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 05:36 PM
Geeze, I'm a freakin' idiot!!

Like it would be hard for Roy's dad to cast an illusion of something else on Belkar to make Belkar look like someone else before anyone cast the Mark of Justice. Heck, they could have made the illusion of Haley and not only would have Miko done it gleefully, but it would be in character for the Belkar-Haley illusion not to say anything.

Yeah, OK, I'm done for now.

canonade
2006-03-20, 05:40 PM
Man! That's good stuff.

Reborn
2006-03-20, 05:42 PM
Awesome strip, best since the Belkar burning Miko episode...

Zantetsuken_Kokoro
2006-03-20, 05:42 PM
It's just sad for Belkar that he got this for the one time that he actually had some justification for killing someone.

chaospet
2006-03-20, 05:43 PM
Yay! A new comic. The Giant still loves us.

Kish
2006-03-20, 05:47 PM
I love this one.

So much for Roy feeling any real obligation to Belkar (it's entirely to his credit that he doesn't, I hasten to add). As soon as Xykon's dead, Belkar goes back to jail.

It is established that Miko is the Sapphire's Guard's strongest paladin; it is not established that she can't cast Mark of Justice, however, and therefore not established that no member of the Guard can.

Belkar can't hunt effectively; he has 0 ranks in Survival and a Wisdom penalty.

aaronbourque
2006-03-20, 05:48 PM
Heh heh heh. I like faux-Belkar better than the real thing.


First Roy says he doesn't want to compel any of them to help him.
Then he treats Belkar like this?

Maybe hes not so different from his dear old Dad.
Oh for bleepity bleep's sake.

Belkar's untrustworthy already; plus they had to come up with a situation that would at least give the appearance of appeasing the Gigantic Army of Ass-Kicking Paladins.

Sheesh.


Poor Belkar though! Clockwork Orange strikes again.
. . .

Do you even know what A Clockwork Orange is about?


2. Belkar can't be more than a mile from Roy: why isn't it a LOT shorter? Like can't be more than 50ft? Or something? Methinks the leash should be a lot shorter. But then again, that restricts Roy just as much. Should be "50ft from any member of the Order" or something. Basically just-about keeping him in sight IMO. As a corollery, what happens if Roy's dead? Can Belkar just carry around a piece of Roy with him and that counts? Or what?
In case they go dungeon crawling and Belkar has to scout. As the tracker. And Ranger. And scout.


"I sent my most powerful paladin to the North to collect you," (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=290) said by Shojo to Roy.
Okay . . . but what makes you think she's not a 20th level character? Or just 18th, with only 2 levels in Monk?


It's just sad for Belkar that he got this for the one time that he actually had some justification for killing someone.
No he didn't. The entire effing trial should have proved that. Even if it was just a set-up.

Nyax
2006-03-20, 05:53 PM
wow that strip had a funny thing in almost , if not all, panels!
oh, and the last part with the programmed illusion of belkar, priceless! Generic comment questioning your parentage! that's my new favorite sentence :)

little_earthquake
2006-03-20, 05:54 PM
Am I the only one to think this famous "mark of justice" looks like the anarchy symbol?

Gary_Schaper
2006-03-20, 05:58 PM
I love this one.

So much for Roy feeling any real obligation to Belkar (it's entirely to his credit that he doesn't, I hasten to add). As soon as Xykon's dead, Belkar goes back to jail.
I'm sure that the plan is that, if Belkar contributes to the destruction of Xykon and the preservation of the gates, that and his contribution to raising the guard will be points in his favor when he's tried and sentenced.

Sean_Barry
2006-03-20, 05:58 PM
Am I the only one to think this famous "mark of justice" looks like the anarchy symbol?
Actually, if you look close, it says "punk is dead".

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 06:07 PM
It looks a little more like the Half-Life symbol to me. You know, from the FPS game?

kit
2006-03-20, 06:13 PM
1. Belkar can't kill in towns/etc: Of course, some battle versus evil will occur in towns, and he'll only be able to knock people out... or something.



Belkar can't use lethal force on living creatures in cities, towns, and villages. Since Our Dear Lich seems to have undead-ified all his goblin hordes, I doubt there will be a problem there. However, yes, there may be problems en route.

The_Weirdo
2006-03-20, 06:19 PM
Generic praising remark about the strip.
Comment on which page I posted.
Generic thanks to the Giant.
Usual remark on Belkar's probable reactions.
Generic ironic remark on Miko's, Eugene's and Shojo's alignments.
Generic literary remark about character building.

Dudukain
2006-03-20, 06:21 PM
But Belkar can still attack them during the night in a dungeon, as long as he gets Roy first. How are they going to deal with that one?


Also, it doesn't look like it says "the punk is dead" I copied it and zoomed it on paint to make sure that it didn't. It looks like either the Peace sign or a Mercedes-Benz symbol.

The_Weirdo
2006-03-20, 06:31 PM
Spoiler:

What will happen once they realize that the prisoner isn't eating ANYTHING and yet looks perfectly fine?

Umbral_Arcanist
2006-03-20, 06:31 PM
SPOILER

Why do i get the feeling that "no more than one mile form roy" clause willl cause trouble?

Funny Comic... really funny, especially the Belkar illusion and the guard getting upset

RebelRogue
2006-03-20, 06:41 PM
It looks a little more like the Half-Life symbol to me. You know, from the FPS game?
A lower case lambda?

Anyway, great comic :)

Jacklu
2006-03-20, 06:45 PM
"Generic comment questioning your parentage." Hehehe.

Blaznak
2006-03-20, 06:48 PM
The Generic Belkar comments are priceless! Classic Order of the Stick stuff.

Well, played...

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 06:49 PM
Okay . . . but what makes you think she's not a 20th level character?

According to the giant she can Smite Evil only 3 times per day. That puts her between 10th and 14th level. 14th level is the lowest level paladin who can cast mark of Justice. Since all the paladins are weaker than her, the highest level non-Miko paladin is no higher than 13th level.

Wrecan
2006-03-20, 06:51 PM
Am I the only one to think this famous "mark of justice" looks like the anarchy symbol?

Looked like a peace symbol to me.

Coldwind
2006-03-20, 06:59 PM
Poor Belkar.
He'll care that thing until Xykon killed, that means it would be around strip #400 I guess, or more, like #500.

100+ strips with a sadist Roy and a bounded Belkar. Maybe funny in first episodes but.. does not sound pretty good.

Melnor
2006-03-20, 07:06 PM
Hee hee
Good comic, Giant!
I think that you've just run Belkar's personality traits down to their pure form!

Eriol
2006-03-20, 07:10 PM
100+ strips with a sadist Roy and a bounded Belkar.
Please explain how restraining a mass-murderer to only kill enemies and not indiscriminately makes Roy a sadist?

sukotto
2006-03-20, 07:10 PM
I'm impressed that Roy's dad can cast illusions in the anti-magic cell block (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=261). ;-)

Eriol
2006-03-20, 07:18 PM
I'm impressed that Roy's dad can cast illusions in the anti-magic call block (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=261). ;-)
Not necessarily the same cell block. All of the non-anti-magic don't need to be solitary as well. There could be "normal" cell blocks with bars, and not ONLY the anti-magic one.

The_Weirdo
2006-03-20, 07:28 PM
Please explain how restraining a mass-murderer to only kill enemies and not indiscriminately makes Roy a sadist?

I think he meant in relation to Belkar.

SpaceCoyoteVega
2006-03-20, 07:37 PM
Heh heh... I can think of like 10 ways to get around that one... first of all, does it have to be live Roy that Belkar needs to be within a mile of? Does it have to be capable-of-speech Roy? All of Roy? Granted, it would be inconveniant to have to haul dead Roy around everywhere you go... though we could probably fit 22 of him in the ash tray...

we had a sorcerer in our party once that got stuck with a tracking beacon that'd go off if he was separated from it... so he cut off his toe, stuck it to the token, and fed them both to a fish. Which shouldn't have worked, of course, but I think the GM got bored.

EscherEnigma
2006-03-20, 07:43 PM
uh, so far Roy has only shown sadistic tendencies once, and that was when he fought Nale in melee. So calling him a sadist just sounds... well, I'm sure you can think of words that ends that sentence.

Further, I think that the mark won't last the entire time. I really doubt that he'll have that mark on when/if he comes back for trial. There will be some situation that demands V or Durkon remove it. After, of course, trouble has arisen due to its restraints on him. I mean, the laws of comedic physics DEMANDS that it causes trouble.

Holy_Knight
2006-03-20, 07:47 PM
According to the giant she can Smite Evil only 3 times per day. That puts her between 10th and 14th level. 14th level is the lowest level paladin who can cast mark of Justice. Since all the paladins are weaker than her, the highest level non-Miko paladin is no higher than 13th level.

This isn't necessarily true. Miko has a few levels in monk, which means that she might be more powerful overall, even though some other paladin has more paladin levels than she does. Perhaps Hinjo is a 14th level paladin, only slightly weaker than Miko, and he cast the Mark of Justice Spell for Shojo.

Now, in response to a spoiler by the KoT and others (spoiler):

I would be extremely surprised if any of the terms of the curse didn't come back to bite Roy and the Order in the butt. In my mind it's practically a given that all of them will cause problems.

Examples:

--86 of 87 of Xykon's hobgoblin legions live in a walled hobgoblin city--where Belkar can't use lethal force on any of them.

--If Roy and Belkar get separated by more than a mile accidentally somehow--or as the result of an enemy's trap or magic--not only will the party be divided and thus weaker, Belkar will be debilitated.

--Roy may (I'd speculate will) say the command word accidentally somehow.

This is going to be bad for the Order... ...and very funny for us! ;D

SpaceCoyoteVega
2006-03-20, 07:57 PM
uh, so far Roy has only shown sadistic tendencies once, and that was when he fought Nale in melee. So calling him a sadist just sounds... well, I'm sure you can think of words that ends that sentence.


I think our friend is speaking English as a second language. Might wanna cut him some slack for word choice.

Talas
2006-03-20, 08:03 PM
Poor Belkar.
He'll care that thing until Xykon killed, that means it would be around strip #400 I guess, or more, like #500.

100+ strips with a sadist Roy and a bounded Belkar. Maybe funny in first episodes but.. does not sound pretty good.

umm... for some reason, I think the group will need him to do something and he will be released.

But really... This comic is great. The fake Belkar is SOO much like the real one ;)

Winged One
2006-03-20, 08:08 PM
Generic response to the last panel2

ElfLad
2006-03-20, 08:22 PM
Wow, so Roy is more realistic about Belkar now. That's good.

And the rules aren't necessarily going to bite the OotS in the back. Since paladins can break the laws in enemy territory but still remain lawful, I see no reason why Belkar can't wreak some havoc in the Hobgoblin camp.

I only really see that rule going badly if Xykon attacks a city or if they meet up with the Linear Guild.

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 08:45 PM
And the rules aren't necessarily going to bite the OotS in the back. Since paladins can break the laws in enemy territory but still remain lawful, I see no reason why Belkar can't wreak some havoc in the Hobgoblin camp.

I only really see that rule going badly if Xykon attacks a city or if they meet up with the Linear Guild.

Nah. Belkar can get them down to -1 and then even Elan can pull a coup de grace attack.

Of course this raises the disturbing possibility that Elan becomes useful in combat.

Lianae
2006-03-20, 08:51 PM
Hehehe, that last panel is great!
Belkar not allowed to be more than a mile away from Roy? So much potential hilarity! ;)

xyzchyx
2006-03-20, 09:00 PM
Fortunately...

Xykon isn't a living creature, a concept that Roy's Dad seemed to have a lot of trouble verbalizing in a coherent manner.

So even if Xykon and crew do end up in a town or somplace where Belkar's terms might seem to be enforced, he could still whale on Xykon without limitation.

Also...

the curse specifies nothing about inflicting gratuitous amounts of pain... as long as it's not lethal.

Zaku_III
2006-03-20, 09:12 PM
I think Roy should've had three magic words. One that triggers the curse, one that lets Belkar kill, and one that turns the former off. In that way, he can let Belkar kill anytime he wants, and stop him just as easily.

Edit: Also, the mark itself is clearly a butterfly.

Brasswatchman
2006-03-20, 09:36 PM
Mark of Justice (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/markofJustice.htm)

Huh. But doesn't that mean Shojo must've found a cleric or a paladin willing to cast that on Belkar? Suggesting that someone in the Azure Order must be in on the plot?

Figured you had this one figured out, Giant. Kind of have to wonder what would have happened to Belkar with a helm of opposite alignment... now that's Clockwork Orange stuff.

Brasswatchman
2006-03-20, 09:38 PM
Works for me. Though I wonder if there would have been a civil war among the posters if this hadn't been done. I'm still pro-Miko, but this strip satisfies most of my concerns... except I think Roy is still a jerk ;)

Like his father before him.

BiggusGeekus
2006-03-20, 09:46 PM
Huh. But doesn't that mean Shojo must've found a cleric or a paladin willing to cast that on Belkar? Suggesting that someone in the Azure Order must be in on the plot?

As long as Roy's Dad was willing to illusionate Belkar, the cleric or paladin could have thought they were casting it on Mickey Mouse or Patrick Swayze or even ... Chuck Norris!

Methuselah_Amakiir
2006-03-20, 09:53 PM
Who would cast a guarding ward on chuck norris? Chuck would just round-house kick them in the face. And then round-house kick his way outta Azure City.

redmind0
2006-03-20, 09:53 PM
Thumbs up ;)
Too much photoshop :P

dpm
2006-03-20, 09:53 PM
Mark of Justice (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/markofJustice.htm)

"Typically, you designate some sort of criminal behavior that activates the mark, but you can pick any act you please."

As the father of a girl just entering her teens, my first thought for the act was "placing your hands in non-designated areas". A useful spell, that, when she begins dating . . .

Peptuck
2006-03-20, 10:00 PM
As long as Roy's Dad was willing to illusionate Belkar, the cleric or paladin could have thought they were casting it on Mickey Mouse or Patrick Swayze or even ... Chuck Norris!

No cleric would be foolish enough to cast any spell on Chuck Norris. Not even a healing spell, as Chuck thrives on pain...unless it is Jack Bauer giving out the pain in question.

Corestimah
2006-03-20, 10:00 PM
Would someone please explain this "Clockwork Orange" to me?

GrauGeist
2006-03-20, 10:09 PM
Would someone please explain this "Clockwork Orange" to me?
search IMDB...

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-20, 10:15 PM
Like his father before him.

Well that goes without saying ;)

Xenon
2006-03-20, 10:17 PM
wow.... belkar got screwed. badly. that hobgoblin town we saw before? yeah. i can think of a hundred ways that curse is gonna get everyone in trouble...

nice one giant!

ElfLad
2006-03-20, 10:20 PM
I think Roy should've had three magic words. One that triggers the curse, one that lets Belkar kill, and one that turns the former off. In that way, he can let Belkar kill anytime he wants, and stop him just as easily.

Edit: Also, the mark itself is clearly a butterfly.
And one that reverses the curse, in case Roy had to call Belkar off and wants to restore him again.

And I was about to ask if Durkon had been able to cast it, but then I remembered how surprised he was. Adoy.

Hawkeye
2006-03-20, 10:31 PM
As long as Roy's Dad was willing to illusionate Belkar, the cleric or paladin could have thought they were casting it on Mickey Mouse or Patrick Swayze or even ... Chuck Norris!



Illusions are negated by a sucessful will save, and high level clerics are very good at them.

AmoDman
2006-03-20, 10:36 PM
No one ever said his dog can't do lethal damage!

*recalls strip where Belkar is hanging onto his weiner dog while it's biting and dangling on the ogre's arm*

Mr._Blinky
2006-03-20, 10:37 PM
Actually, I may have the answer to who cast the Mark of Justice. While Shojo said that his Paladins have all taken oaths, I don't think he ever said anything about the priests.

The Giant
2006-03-20, 11:14 PM
If I were in charge of the rules, I'd do the following:

1. Belkar can't kill or ATTACK any creature that Roy (or whomever... Like Durkon maybe) wouldn't approve of. Roy doesn't need to say "OK" before every hit or anything, but the "mystical powers" in the world can enforce this. ;)

No, they can't. The spell is mindless, it can't make judgment calls and it can't predict what Roy might or might not be thinking. It can only respond to actual events and positions in space, like the legal borders of a city or the relative position of Roy. The spell description is pretty clear; even the command word is kind of stretching it.


2. Belkar is leashed to ANY Order member, rather than just Roy, but at a MUCH smaller leash, as said above. Like 50ft. This keeps him from more mischeif that doesn't involve attacking.

This is implausible because it prevents Belkar from even charging his full rate if he wins initiative—he moves 60 feet on a charge, thanks to his barbarian level. And leashing him to any member opens the door to Belkar talking Elan or Haley into something of which Roy wouldn't approve.

The thing top remember here is that Mark of Justice is one-time-only; it's permanent once triggered, it does not revert to dormancy once the conditions are reversed. Once it is sprung, Belkar will continue to get sicker and sicker until the curse is removed by a equal-or-higher level cleric, regardless of if he subsequently moves back within range of Roy. So it would be pointless to make it 50 feet, since they might as well just curse him outright and be done with it.


3. "Intense thought" from Roy triggers it rather than spoken words (though this is less necessary because of modified condition #1).

This presumes two things: That the magic of the spell is capable of reading Roy's thoughts (it is not), and that Roy is capable of keeping his intense thoughts under control (debatable).

--------

Regarding paladin casting levels, it's a moot point. There are any number of clerics in Azure City that are not affiliated with the Sapphire Guard and know nothing about the gates, the Order, or what Belkar is charged with. If the lord of the city calls you in and asks for a spell to be cast, and you're, say, a Lawful Neutral cleric of the Ox, you pretty much just do it. The fact that Shojo chose the Mark of Justice method implies that he had a caster in mind that was readily available and would ask no questions. Shojo is only limited to using the Sapphire Guard's resources when the situation directly involves the gates themselves; otherwise, he has the whole city at his disposal.

Invariel
2006-03-20, 11:32 PM
I'm impressed that Roy's dad can cast illusions in the anti-magic call block (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=261). ;-)

Easily. Belkar wasn't confined in it. (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=261) I think the irony of this post comes from the fact that I'm linking the same comic you did.

Panel 6 (Row 2, Column 3) and Panel 7 (Row 3, Column 1). It's why the Ring of Jumping still worked.

As for the terms of the curse itself, they have probably been written exactly as they have for the sheer hilarity of presenting situations involving the rules coming into effect. As Rich has stated time and time again, (on the F.A.Q., for example), the reason the characters don't do the most logical things is because it wouldn't be funny if they did. And, it's a lot easier to write "teh funnah" every few days when you leave yourself material to work with.

TinSoldier
2006-03-20, 11:35 PM
Thanks, Giant!

I was wondering about some of these discussions but I kind of chalked the solution up to DM/author's fiat. That was a very logical situation.

I knew Shojo had clerics within the palace at his disposal who weren't necessarily in the Sapphire Guard, but I didn't consider the ramifications of being an important (albeit one considered senile) noble in a large city.

Hopefully he didn't just summon just *any* cleric, but one who he knew would honor the confidetiality required.

WNxArrakis
2006-03-20, 11:40 PM
The whole lethal-damage statement brings something to mind.. if the OotS gets ambushed in the city, Belkar can't do anything even though he has the right to defend himself!

Oh wait, thats where it gets funny :D

Arrakis

Bilbo27
2006-03-20, 11:53 PM
mumbled comment about your masculinity!!

I am rolling on the floor til Wednesday

Curse you Giant!! Belkar can't live like that--It is pure torture

I love it!!

Keep it up!

sukotto
2006-03-21, 12:07 AM
Easily. Belkar wasn't confined in it. (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=261) I think the irony of this post comes from the fact that I'm linking the same comic you did.

Panel 6 (Row 2, Column 3) and Panel 7 (Row 3, Column 1). It's why the Ring of Jumping still worked.

As for the terms of the curse itself, they have probably been written exactly as they have for the sheer hilarity of presenting situations involving the rules coming into effect. As Rich has stated time and time again, (on the F.A.Q., for example), the reason the characters don't do the most logical things is because it wouldn't be funny if they did. And, it's a lot easier to write "teh funnah" every few days when you leave yourself material to work with.

Actually, the irony is that you seem to have misunderstood my original statement.

The illusion is not in the the same prison cell as the one Belkar escaped from. It looks a lot like the anti-magic cells where the rest of oots were kept. Which makes sense. If I captured an escaped prisoner like him (and didn't know how he got out since the only witness is dead), I'd probably put him in the most secure area possible (which I assume is where Roy et. al. were kept.)

So, if it's the anti-magic cell block, how could anyone cast an illusion there?

Obviously it's not the anti-magic area... because the illusion is there. I just thought it was amusing :-)

Sorry I didn't spell it all out earlier.

infiniteviking
2006-03-21, 12:25 AM
1) Hah! Take that, ye Roy-bashers! See, he is intelligent.

2) Glad that guard's going to be Raised. Though I wonder whether that's going to happen before or after the quest?

3) Does anyone else find Vaarsuvius-with-glowing-purple-eyes just a bit scary? Cos I do. (And I love that scornful expression at "Perish the thought". He obviously takes Belkar VERY seriously. ;D)

4) Great exposition, and great comic! Thanks, Giant!

Invariel
2006-03-21, 12:30 AM
There's no real reason for him to be put back in the anti-magic area, though, since as the guard (he killed) points out, Belkar isn't a spellcaster (despite the fact that he is).

TinSoldier
2006-03-21, 12:37 AM
(And I love that scornful expression at "Perish the thought". He obviously takes Belkar VERY seriously. ;D) - Detect Sarcasm - I got a 16!

V's expression looks very much like an affectionate smirk to me. He/she is glad that his/her team mate is back. See the difference in the expression two panels back.

Whether Belkar appreciates it or not, most of his team mates like and/or value his presence.

TinSoldier
2006-03-21, 12:39 AM
There's no real reason for him to be put back in the anti-magic area, though, since as the guard (he killed) points out, Belkar isn't a spellcaster (despite the fact that he is).Plus I'm sure they removed his Ring of Jumping (however painful that may have been ;D)

Invariel
2006-03-21, 12:42 AM
The only person who knows where the Ring of Jumping is is Belkar. He hinted at where it might be to the guard (and then made with the killing of said guard), and he earned that piece of treasure fair and square. He's used it effectively in combat (against the Annis) outside of the Azure City, and nobody else has brought it up.

Kish
2006-03-21, 12:56 AM
and that Roy is capable of keeping his intense thoughts under control (debatable).

*laughs*

"You're lucky that attacking ends the spell, or I would smack the crap out of all of you."
"Bite my 50% miss...ooh...uuh...I don't feel...agh..."

Pvednes
2006-03-21, 01:07 AM
I love how Belkar seems willing to lose an arm to be rid of the Mark of Justice.

Not that easy...noooo...

LostOne
2006-03-21, 01:08 AM
I was disturbed by profanity used in the last panel of this comic. While I realize you are trying to portray Belkar as evil, using racial slurs and offensive language is innappropiate for some of the younger readers of Order of the Stick. Please don't tarnish an otherwise fine comic, Giant.

A Loyal Reader ;)

Invariel
2006-03-21, 01:09 AM
He could always remove that patch of flesh with his daggers, but he'd have some serious explaining to do to Durkon afterwards, I'm sure.

TinSoldier
2006-03-21, 01:15 AM
I love how Belkar seems willing to lose an arm to be rid of the Mark of Justice.

Not that easy...noooo...Oh. That's clever. I didn't think of that one.

Vampire_Boy
2006-03-21, 01:19 AM
And he also, can't escape, run around killing people, or annoy them all too much. Meaning, he ahs truly been brought to justice.

So basically, Belkar can no longer do any of those things that made him so much fun - now that's just effing marvellous!

metalphil
2006-03-21, 01:30 AM
So basically, Belkar can no longer do any of those things that made him so much fun - now that's just effing marvellous!


Quit whining. ;)

Glome
2006-03-21, 01:37 AM
what's interesting is that we don't know what the mark of justice curse is actually set up to do. It might be funny if it was set up to give a -6 on wisdom, I wonder what Belkar with a 3 wisdom would be like?

mec
2006-03-21, 01:47 AM
3) Does anyone else find Vaarsuvius-with-glowing-purple-eyes just a bit scary? Cos I do. (And I love that scornful expression at "Perish the thought". He obviously takes Belkar VERY seriously. ;D

I like that glowing-eye-effect every time: with Hilgya and Durkon way back when, and with Miko, and with Vaarsuvius.

And I noticed that smirky perish-the-thought, too! V is already thinking about more fun with Belkar.

BigT
2006-03-21, 01:50 AM
I'm sure that whatever fun is lost from Belkar not being able to do his crazy stuff will be made up for by all the fun the rest of the party is going to have with him.
Vaarsuvius looks quite pleased i must say.

Vampire_Boy
2006-03-21, 02:16 AM
Come to think of it, Miko is in need of a similar 'Mark of Justice', at least the first part of conditions: "She can't deal lethal damage to any living creature within the bounds of any city, town or village." Otherwise she tends to forget that lawful justice in settlements is normally in the jurisdiction of the courts, not in hands of smite-happy vigilantes. ;)

ElfLad
2006-03-21, 02:22 AM
Yes, because Miko quite regularly has problems controlling her lust for blood, and kills people despite orders from her superiors...

Magus
2006-03-21, 03:08 AM
Awesome comic, Giant!

I love how the Order members interact.

Illsbane
2006-03-21, 03:41 AM
"I sent my most powerful paladin to the North to collect you," (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/GiantITP/ootscript?SK=290) said by Shojo to Roy.

Remember Miko's multiclassed, though. 'Most powerful' could be 'most powerful overall', not necessarily 'my most powerful Paladin in every Paladin field, like spellcasting'.

Chronomancer
2006-03-21, 04:15 AM
OMG! Giant stop doing that! I nearly fell from my chair laughing when I was reading the last panel, guess how people here at work looked at me! ;D



Now... eh.... why should Belkar behave ANY different than before? He won't.
As soon as the OotS leaves town he is free to wreak havoc whenever he wants. For example he could sneak away in the night when the OotS makes camp and slay some helpless farmers in their sleep without triggering the "Mark of Justice".
Belkar is back and that's simply "good". :P
Hope we'll never ever have to see that b**** Miko again.

Vampire_Boy
2006-03-21, 04:27 AM
Yes, because Miko quite regularly has problems controlling her lust for blood, and kills people despite orders from her superiors...

Now, now, you are being far too harsh towards poor abused Miko, slandering her like that. She does have big problems controlling her lust for blood and obeying the orders from her superiors, but to be fair, we haven't actually seen her killing someone and stepping over the line, yes?

That's why I said it, a little 'Mark of Justice' to ensure that she doesn't cross the line, yes? It would only do her good, isn't that so? :)

Devils_Advocate
2006-03-21, 04:30 AM
Good point. I think he forgot "I thought you said your dad was dead."
The "..." at the begining of comic #294 kinda implies that Roy explained to them what happened, presumably including his father's involvement. ;)


It's just sad for Belkar that he got this for the one time that he actually had some justification for killing someone.
But Belkar is never going to learn not to kill just because it isn't justified. Why would he even want to, after all? On the other hand, it's not entirely inconceivable that he could learn that he can't always get away with killing, and that he needs to show a bit more restraint in cases where someone has both the power and the desire to punish him for his misdeeds. And that's pretty much the lesson here. Maybe this will help Belkar to develop a healthy level of respect for the law. It COULD happen...

S'yeah, right! And monkeys will fly out of my butt!



. . .

Do you even know what A Clockwork Orange is about?
. . .

It's about, in part, a character conditioned to feel sick if he attempts to commit violent acts.


And the rules aren't necessarily going to bite the OotS in the back. Since paladins can break the laws in enemy territory but still remain lawful, I see no reason why Belkar can't wreak some havoc in the Hobgoblin camp.
Well, he can't if the camp qualifies as a "city, town, or village" (and it looks like one), as that would trigger the Mark.


As the father of a girl just entering her teens, my first thought for the act was "placing your hands in non-designated areas". A useful spell, that, when she begins dating . . .
Does producing offspring turn people Lawful Evil or something?


Would someone please explain this "Clockwork Orange" to me?
Wikipedia to the rescue! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Clockwork_Orange)

For future reference: Wikipedia knows everything. (More specifically, it knows almost everything true and more than a few things that aren't.)


And I was about to ask if Durkon had been able to cast it, but then I remembered how surprised he was. Adoy.
Durkon is certainly high-level enough to cast Mark of Justice. In fact, should Belkar's be removed, Durkon could just cast it again with the same conditions. Or different conditions, if desired.


No, they can't. The spell is mindless, it can't make judgment calls and it can't predict what Roy might or might not be thinking. It can only respond to actual events and positions in space, like the legal borders of a city or the relative position of Roy. The spell description is pretty clear; even the command word is kind of stretching it.
Well, that's your interpretation. I don't think that follows from the spell description at all; in fact, based just on the wording, I'd say that it can cover any behavior that can be described, including "any act that Roy would disapprove of if he knew about it" and "any act that causes Roy to say the word '____'."

Some spells require that a trigger be specified using only x words or less, or "a sentence or two". The Contingency spell explicitly can fail due to complicated or convoluted conditions. No such limitations are given for Mark of Justice. I think one could make a case that such exceptions prove the rule.

I see no reason why magic can't deal with rather abstract concepts. In fact, I suspect that there are a few spells in the PHB that would be nigh-impossible to port to a computer game because they require an intelligent mind (i.e. a DM) to implement them properly. Heck, "legal borders" strikes me as an excellent example of an abstract thing that doesn't exist except by convention. In short, who says that magic isn't intelligent?

Well, the DM, natch. Only you can decide how magic works in your world. I just don't think it follows from the spell description is all.


Once it is sprung, Belkar will continue to get sicker and sicker until the curse is removed by a equal-or-higher level cleric
An equal-or-higher level cleric is only needed for it to be removed with Remove Curse. Elan could undo it with a Song of Freedom, for example, if he has sufficient level and Perform ranks. (And what sort of bard doesn't have max ranks in at least one Perform?) Not that Elan has the brains to remember his own class features, but someone else, like, say, Vaarsuvius, might suggest it if the situation warranted.


2) Glad that guard's going to be Raised. Though I wonder whether that's going to happen before or after the quest?
If it's the latter, someone will need to keep casting Gentle Repose on the guard to prevent decay. I suspect that Roy already paid for it out of the party's treasure, and if that totalled less than 30,000 gp (i.e. Belkar's share is less than 5000 gp), Belkar's share of future earnings will be used to pay the rest of the Order back.


So basically, Belkar can no longer do any of those things that made him so much fun - now that's just effing marvellous!
As Belkar points out, he can still punch teeth out. He can also still make cutting remarks. I forsee much complaining in his future...

Vampire_Boy
2006-03-21, 04:31 AM
Now... eh.... why should Belkar behave ANY different than before? He won't.

Amen to that! The day that Belkar learns from his 'mistakes' and 'changes his Evil ways' must also be the day he must die, horribly, gruesomely and painfully. So I hope he never learns and always stays his lovable immoral and violent self.

50% of all the fun I get from Belkar is by seeing the cries of moral outrage he causes in the local crowd of self proclaimed Lawful Good defenders of justice. :)

Delgarde
2006-03-21, 05:46 AM
An equal-or-higher level cleric is only needed for it to be removed with Remove Curse. Elan could undo it with a Song of Freedom, for example, if he has sufficient level and Perform ranks. (And what sort of bard doesn't have max ranks in at least one Perform?) Not that Elan has the brains to remember his own class features, but someone else, like, say, Vaarsuvius, might suggest it if the situation warranted.

Yes, was thinking that myself. If it really came to it, several of the party could probably manage some sufficient magic to remove the curse.

Zantetsuken_Kokoro
2006-03-21, 06:22 AM
Lament not, for I'm sure that Belkar can find all sorts of ways to work around this foul coercion inflicted on him.

Also, I think we can safely rule out Miko having done it, simply because
the paladins are being played for fools, and getting her to inflict the curse upon Belkar would sort of fly entirely in the face of that.

Coffee_Dragon
2006-03-21, 06:39 AM
Well, that's your interpretation. I don't think that follows from the spell description at all; in fact, based just on the wording, I'd say that it can cover any behavior that can be described, including "any act that Roy would disapprove of if he knew about it" and "any act that causes Roy to say the word '____'."

"Any act that would annoy Pete, where Pete is a hypothetical omniscient snail that wants Belkar to behave just like we'd want him to behave if we were omniscient."


50% of all the fun I get from Belkar is by seeing the cries of moral outrage he causes in the local crowd of self proclaimed Lawful Good defenders of justice.

And they say it's "just a comic". ;)

zimri
2006-03-21, 06:55 AM
Yes, because Miko quite regularly has problems controlling her lust for blood, and kills people despite orders from her superiors...

umm actually I made my "detect sarcasm" check but you're wrong. She was quite actually all set to give in to her lust for blood and kill someone despite having delivered him to a lawful court of judgement.

U2QueenBee
2006-03-21, 07:24 AM
Just dropping in to say that I now fully intend to use 'Generic comment questioning your parentage' in my everyday speech from now on. ;D Awesome.

Albion
2006-03-21, 07:53 AM
V, the handy detecting machine. :P
I thought Durkon would have at least some comradeship(is that a word?) towards Belkar, but this works just as well, I'm not complaining...

Oh, and I didn't notice Belkar's willingness to lose an arm either, had to read the msg board.

Alfryd
2006-03-21, 08:29 AM
Yay! A new comic. The Giant still loves us.
I wanted double-length. And a toblerone.

Obviously, there are plenty of loopholes in the wording of the compulsion for Belkar or enemies to abuse, but increasing the complexity of the rules runs the risk of introducing contradictions and/or additional loopholes.


...appeasing the Gigantic Army of Ass-Kicking Paladins.
I should start a guild with that name.


Belkar has to be happy that he got out of jail, no matter what the restrictions, but I'm sure he'll start looking for loopholes and chaff at the restrictions - not an issue if they are in a dungeon, but a hobgoblin city - ouch!
Depends. Does this mean he can't deal a killing blow, or can't deal anything but subdual damage?

"You're lucky that attacking ends the spell, or I would smack the crap out of all of you."
"Bite my 50% miss...ooh...uuh...I don't feel...agh..."
...Eeexcellent.

It might be funny if it was set up to give a -6 on wisdom, I wonder what Belkar with a 3 wisdom would be like?
An avatar of heedless destruction... oh, right.

I'm sure that the plan is that, if Belkar contributes to the destruction of Xykon and the preservation of the gates, that and his contribution to raising the guard will be points in his favor when he's tried and sentenced.
Perhaps he could pick up some appropriate feats to enhance his subdual damage abilities? I do hope there will be an alignment shift to CN.

The day that Belkar learns from his 'mistakes' and 'changes his Evil ways' must also be the day he must die, horribly, gruesomely and painfully...
Oh. So, you just loathe and despise all those who display a regard for the sanctitiy and dignity of innocent sentient life. I have been labouring under a misapprehension.
Thing is, I'd be quite happy to forgive and forget Belkar's past transgressions if he genuinely repented, since he'd be unlikely to present a further threat. Because I'm Chaotic.


Since all the paladins are weaker than her, the highest level non-Miko paladin is no higher than 13th level.
A one or two level difference between characters might not make the inexperienced less 'powerful', depending on their build and attributes.


...Miko is in need of a similar 'Mark of Justice', at least the first part of conditions: "She can't deal lethal damage to any living creature within the bounds of any city, town or village."
Amend that to a 'city, town or village of legitimate lawful jurisdiction,' and you might have a case.

She was quite actually all set to give in to her lust for blood and kill someone despite having delivered him to a lawful court of judgement.
Only once! It's not like it was a habit!

Hope we'll never ever have to see that b**** Miko again.
I suspect you may be disappointed.

Zantetsuken_Kokoro
2006-03-21, 08:46 AM
I wanted double-length. And a toblerone.

That elicited a chuckle!

Antina
2006-03-21, 09:17 AM
I think the curse to be very dangerous and easy malfunctionable - at least for belkar.
Good for the rest of the world ;)

Ilanin
2006-03-21, 09:25 AM
Obviously, there are plenty of loopholes in the wording of the compulsion for Belkar or enemies to abuse, but increasing the complexity of the rules runs the risk of introducing contradictions and/or additional loopholes.


Perhaps more importantly, it also decreases the probability of the Giant being able to fit the text of the complusion into the panel, given that he barely managed it as it was.

Or perhaps it is more complex than that, but Roy doesn't want to come off sounding like V by explaining the full text. *rereads Origins* Um, yeah. Scratch that idea.

Greebo
2006-03-21, 09:39 AM
With regard to who cast the Mark - I think we've forgotten that the ruler of the Saphire Order is also the leader of Azure City.

The Order may not have a paladin of high enough level to cast the spell, but I'll wager a city of that size has a cleric who can.

So Shojo sends out a low level paladin with a purchase order to the Temple of the Dragon (or whomever) for services of one "Mark of Justice". The Arch Cleric of the Dragon, having seen in a vision from his God that he should "fulfil the order and not ask questions" does just that.

Problem solved. :)

Lady_Orc
2006-03-21, 09:50 AM
Oh. So, you just loathe and despise all those who display a regard for the sanctitiy and dignity of innocent sentient life. I have been labouring under a misapprehension.
Thing is, I'd be quite happy to forgive and forget Belkar's past transgressions if he genuinely repented, since he'd be unlikely to present a further threat. Because I'm Chaotic.


Seven. 8)

Ravenwind
2006-03-21, 10:40 AM
Hope we'll never ever have to see that b**** Miko again.

Any character that provokes the emotional responses of the readers the way Miko does, on both sides, is obviously an asset to be saved and deployed again and again. . . just when the furor of her last appearance has finally died down. She's like a landmine. ;) Love her or hate her, she makes the plot go, and gets the audience involved. I have NO doubts that she'll reappear at some point.


Over the past 12 or so pages (as I write this, no doubt more pages are spawning), I couldn't help but notice that only one person pointed out that the guard will be raised.

If the guard is brought back to life, IS there a crime for which Belkar can even be tried?

Or will he simply be tried for the guard's loss of levels, since he's being raised, not resurrected? Obviously, a lesser charge than murder. ;) He might even get out of it with "time served," having quested with Roy under a geas of sorts, and having made restitution with his share of the treasure.

Of course, the guard could always sue in civil court for "emotional distress. . . " ("I'll never forget that white light. . . I see it over and over again in my sleep. . . I can't return to my workplace. . . I've been diagnosed with Post-Mortality Stress Disorder. . . I need a million in gold, and my lawyer needs two million in gold before I'll feel that I've been made whole. . . . ")

:P

Edit: Aha, someone did reply to the issue of the guard being raised on p. 12, but still only one person, er, raised the issue of their own accord before. *cough*

Gleanerizer
2006-03-21, 10:50 AM
I love how Belkar seems willing to lose an arm to be rid of the Mark of Justice.

Not that easy...noooo...
Ooof, a choice between being free of the Mark and losing TWF? Perhaps it's better that the Mark is on his head, so he can be spared the torturous choice...

Illsbane
2006-03-21, 11:32 AM
Hope we'll never ever have to see that b**** Miko again.

And now that you've jinxed it, she's sure to return ...

Illsbane
2006-03-21, 11:35 AM
Regarding paladin casting levels, it's a moot point. There are any number of clerics in Azure City that are not affiliated with the Sapphire Guard and know nothing about the gates, the Order, or what Belkar is charged with. If the lord of the city calls you in and asks for a spell to be cast, and you're, say, a Lawful Neutral cleric of the Ox, you pretty much just do it. The fact that Shojo chose the Mark of Justice method implies that he had a caster in mind that was readily available and would ask no questions. Shojo is only limited to using the Sapphire Guard's resources when the situation directly involves the gates themselves; otherwise, he has the whole city at his disposal.


You know, that's actually a pretty scary thought. Shojo is a far cry from trustworthy ... and he has the secular, clerical and military capacity of a whole city to back him up.

AtomicKitKat
2006-03-21, 02:01 PM
Nobody pointed out that Belkar's Mark of Justice is eerily similar to another hairy protagonist, in a Journey to the uh...North, I guess. ;D ::)

Eriol
2006-03-21, 02:26 PM
Well, that's your interpretation. I don't think that follows from the spell description at all; in fact, based just on the wording, I'd say that it can cover any behavior that can be described, including "any act that Roy would disapprove of if he knew about it" and "any act that causes Roy to say the word '____'."

Some spells require that a trigger be specified using only x words or less, or "a sentence or two". The Contingency spell explicitly can fail due to complicated or convoluted conditions. No such limitations are given for Mark of Justice. I think one could make a case that such exceptions prove the rule.

I see no reason why magic can't deal with rather abstract concepts. In fact, I suspect that there are a few spells in the PHB that would be nigh-impossible to port to a computer game because they require an intelligent mind (i.e. a DM) to implement them properly. Heck, "legal borders" strikes me as an excellent example of an abstract thing that doesn't exist except by convention. In short, who says that magic isn't intelligent?

Well, the DM, natch. Only you can decide how magic works in your world. I just don't think it follows from the spell description is all.
Thanks DA. I looked at the spell description before I wrote up my "3 points", and to me it seemed to say "blank cheque" for conditions. And whenever people say limitations I kind of respond with "it's magic". Your referring to other spells that have more stringent 1 or 2 line short requirements just reinforces the whole "blank cheque" approach to conditions, no matter how strange they might seem.

And I didn't know about the 50ft thing as related to charging, as I don't play D&D. ;) 100ft then. Basically I didn't think Belkar should be allowed to be away from the party members plotting to have them killed with the evil opposites, or whatever. If that means he needs to sneak around with Haley when scouting, then so be it. She's no handicap to him (he's a handicap to her), and why would you sent Belkar scouting anyways? He can't see jack with his crappy spot.

But as I said in my Original Post, I think the whole point of the conditions is to CREATE problems, not to alleviate them. Kind of like Asimov's 3 laws of robotics, these rules are plot devices, not meant to keep anybody out of trouble. I just posted my "actual good restraint" alternatives as a lark.

Frank
2006-03-21, 03:04 PM
I can just picture the agony Belkar would be in while being restrained for that spell. Or, perhaps, maybe he'd just be throwing in those "generic" and "muffled" insults.

That last panel was laugh out loud funny. Good to see more magic being played on the non-magic characters to the amusement of all.

-Frank

Gary_Schaper
2006-03-21, 03:08 PM
If the guard is brought back to life, IS there a crime for which Belkar can even be tried*
In real life, people can be tried, convicted and imprisoned for assault even if the injuries of the victim heal over time.

Eriol
2006-03-21, 03:15 PM
In real life, people can be tried, convicted and imprisoned for assault even if the injuries of the victim heal over time.
Same with stealing. Though in some cases if you give it back they'll forgive, often they won't, and it's still a crime.

In this case, I wouldn't be suprised if the sentence is less if they are able to be raised (and the perp pays for the costs of such a raising), but it would still be a crime IMO.

Leonidas
2006-03-21, 05:09 PM
Eriol - it is a little funny that Belkar is "bad" because he likes to kill (and did kill the guard), but stealing is simply "what Rogues do."

On the other hand, if a prisoner of war kills a guard during an escape, it's also simply "what PoW's do" in that case. So it's a relative question.

I do think Belkar is evil, but in terms of being imprisoned and then trying to get away, I didn't take his action against the guard to be evil. In a world in which a person can be rezzed, it seems to only make sense that his punishment should be geared toward repayment and rectification, rather than eye-for-eye counterpunishment or life-imprisonment of some kind.

The problem still boils down to relative vs absolute in terms of the good/evil paradigm. Belkar is simply selfish and placed his own freedom above the life of the guard... he'd probably make the same argument a soldier would about killing in war: "if he didn't want to risk dying that way, he shouldn't have signed on to fight/guard."

Eriol
2006-03-21, 05:22 PM
Eriol - it is a little funny that Belkar is "bad" because he likes to kill (and did kill the guard), but stealing is simply "what Rogues do."

On the other hand, if a prisoner of war kills a guard during an escape, it's also simply "what PoW's do" in that case. So it's a relative question.

I do think Belkar is evil, but in terms of being imprisoned and then trying to get away, I didn't take his action against the guard to be evil. In a world in which a person can be rezzed, it seems to only make sense that his punishment should be geared toward repayment and rectification, rather than eye-for-eye counterpunishment or life-imprisonment of some kind.

The problem still boils down to relative vs absolute in terms of the good/evil paradigm. Belkar is simply selfish and placed his own freedom above the life of the guard... he'd probably make the same argument a soldier would about killing in war: "if he didn't want to risk dying that way, he shouldn't have signed on to fight/guard."
I see where you're coming from, but rather than a PoW perspective, I see it more from a criminal court perspective: even if you're arrested for a crime you didn't commit, that doesn't give you free reign to kill your guards and attempt to escape. And since it's PALADINS doing it, you know that it's EXTREMELY likely that you're the prisoner of a "Good" authority, rather than "Evil" and thus escaping from such isn't a justified act on the good/evil scale.


As for the "badness" of Belkar versus Haley, it's not "bad", but EVIL what Belkar does. What Haley does could easily be seen more chaotic neutral, rather than evil. She herself is more "good", and thus probably wouldn't rob just anybody (I see her more likely a robin hood-ish type in that while she might not give back to the poor, she wouldn't steal from them either), but I wouldn't put any of her acts on the level of Evil. So Chaotic actions of Haley, versus the Evil acts of Belkar.

Callae
2006-03-21, 06:30 PM
I see where you're coming from, but rather than a PoW perspective, I see it more from a criminal court perspective: even if you're arrested for a crime you didn't commit, that doesn't give you free reign to kill your guards and attempt to escape. And since it's PALADINS doing it, you know that it's EXTREMELY likely that you're the prisoner of a "Good" authority, rather than "Evil" and thus escaping from such isn't a justified act on the good/evil scale.

Actually, I would contend that regardless of the change to the criminal court perspective, it gives you equal reign to attempt an escape. Especially in the situation of the OoTS (and therefore, Belkar), as they were being held by an association that they did not recognise as a legitimate authority, much like a P.O.W. being held by an enemy. Regardless of the concept of a fair trial, if one is being held by a group that they do not recognise the authority of, be it a hobgoblin camp, foreign nation, or opponent in war, one is equally empowered to escape from the situation. Escaping, and any incidental killing involved, are morally neutral actions. They may fall on the ethical spectrum (law/chaos), depending on situation, but the actions involved in escaping are neither good nor evil. Had the guard been sleeping in another, locked room, and Belkar had somehow managed to get into the room for the express purpose of killing the guard, then yes, that would be murder, and in any game I was running it would be considered an evil act. As it stands, Belkar could reasonably assume that the guard would decide to do his job and stop the escapee were he not properly subdued. If lethal force is used to dispatch the guard, so be it. Still neither good nor evil, although it is up to a court of law to determine whether or not it qualifies as 'murder,' and such a decision would be very much subjective on the court, unfortunately.

~C

Ravenwind
2006-03-21, 07:32 PM
In real life, people can be tried, convicted and imprisoned for assault even if the injuries of the victim heal over time.

Yes, hence the rest of my post about being tried on a lesser charge. Like the difference between murder and attempted murder, yes? Only in this case, this would be successful murder, only the person's not quite dead anymore.

I meant the question meant to amuse and provoke thought.

BURNhollywoodBURN
2006-03-21, 08:19 PM
I love it. All those people who immediately questioned Roy's Lawful Goodness can go suck eggs.

But I like eggs
:'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( How about all those people who didn't immediately question Roy's Lawful goodness and like eggs get eggs?

Kresalak
2006-03-21, 09:00 PM
Actually, I would contend that regardless of the change to the criminal court perspective, it gives you equal reign to attempt an escape. Especially in the situation of the OoTS (and therefore, Belkar), as they were being held by an association that they did not recognise as a legitimate authority, much like a P.O.W. being held by an enemy. Regardless of the concept of a fair trial, if one is being held by a group that they do not recognise the authority of, be it a hobgoblin camp, foreign nation, or opponent in war, one is equally empowered to escape from the situation. Escaping, and any incidental killing involved, are morally neutral actions. They may fall on the ethical spectrum (law/chaos), depending on situation, but the actions involved in escaping are neither good nor evil. Had the guard been sleeping in another, locked room, and Belkar had somehow managed to get into the room for the express purpose of killing the guard, then yes, that would be murder, and in any game I was running it would be considered an evil act. As it stands, Belkar could reasonably assume that the guard would decide to do his job and stop the escapee were he not properly subdued. If lethal force is used to dispatch the guard, so be it. Still neither good nor evil, although it is up to a court of law to determine whether or not it qualifies as 'murder,' and such a decision would be very much subjective on the court, unfortunately.

~C

Statement about having previously argued this point.

Generic spoiler about the contents of comic.

Theodoxus
2006-03-21, 09:03 PM
Yes, hence the rest of my post about being tried on a lesser charge. Like the difference between murder and attempted murder, yes? Only in this case, this would be successful murder, only the person's not quite dead anymore.

I meant the question meant to amuse and provoke thought.

To provoke thought... I have a feeling that in a society where death isn't necessarily permanent - especially premature death - they would have laws covering that very thing. They wouldn't have Vehicular Manslaughter on the books (as you can generally get out of the way of an ox and cart) but I could see Murder Annuled or a law for Unmurder, etc.

Similarly, there would probably be laws regarding the animation of the dead, regardless of the circumstances. Yeah, it's nice that Grandma's back, but she really doesn't bake her chocolate chip cookies quite as well, what with her brain half rotted out. I mean, logically, Animate Dead is the really really poor mans resurrect. Not much of a conversationalist, and you'd best be wearing your M1 helmet to save your own brains - but having your companion move under their own power to a more powerful cleric should never be skoffed at - especially if it's the 450 lb Half Orc Barbarian who bit the bullet, and the rest of the party are elves and halflings.

Magical societies are always fun to speculate over... would castles really exist? What about wells and farms and serfs and all the other mundania that magic could readily solve. Its interesting that a huge portion of magical fantasy takes place in a medieval setting, when more than likely, the wizards would of bipassed such a pastoral setting and gone straight to something more akin to steampunk.

One of the very few things I like about Eberron is their take on technomagery. One of the many things I distaste about it is they didn't take it far enough... but then, people would probably complain that it wasn't D&D anymore.

Meh... Thought provoking to say the least ;)

Theo

aaronbourque
2006-03-21, 09:40 PM
umm actually I made my "detect sarcasm" check but you're wrong. She was quite actually all set to give in to her lust for blood and kill someone despite having delivered him to a lawful court of judgement.
Yeah. That's why Belkar's all dead and everything.

. . .

Aaron "The Mad Whitaker" Bourque

Steward
2006-03-21, 09:45 PM
Yeah. That's why Belkar's all dead and everything.

. . .

Aaron "The Mad Whitaker" Bourque


Belkar's not dead. That was just a badly-programmed illusion.

Ravenwind
2006-03-21, 10:02 PM
To provoke thought... I have a feeling that in a society where death isn't necessarily permanent - especially premature death - they would have laws covering that very thing. They wouldn't have Vehicular Manslaughter on the books (as you can generally get out of the way of an ox and cart) but I could see Murder Annuled or a law for Unmurder, etc.

Thank you. . . I was hoping someone would make their Intuit Direction roll and run with this line of thought thataway. :-)



Similarly, there would probably be laws regarding the animation of the dead, regardless of the circumstances. Yeah, it's nice that Grandma's back, but she really doesn't bake her chocolate chip cookies quite as well, what with her brain half rotted out. I mean, logically, Animate Dead is the really really poor mans resurrect.

And if grandma left it in her will that she be animated, it's one thing, but the various necromancers that go around violating graves in such a society to create their zombies, mummies, and vampires must have a full-time litigation staff. "No, no, Gammy Smith was indeed in her right mind when she signed her eventual corpse over to my client. What? You'll never prove that she didn't die of entirely natural causes. . . ."




Then it becomes Rifts or White Wolf or whatever, but it's all roleplay to me, so long as everyone follows the rules laid down by the DM within a coherent plan for the setting. ;)


Theo

zimri
2006-03-21, 11:07 PM
Yeah. That's why Belkar's all dead and everything.

. . .

Aaron "The Mad Whitaker" Bourque


she was all set to give in but had to be told to stop and then physically attacked to keep her from killing him.

theKOT
2006-03-21, 11:31 PM
she was all set to give in but had to be told to stop and then physically attacked to keep her from killing him.

Yes, but the physical attack has nothing to do with why she stopped. She stopped when her liege told her to, and not a moment sooner. She only heeds those she respects, like Durkon or Shojo.

Jothki
2006-03-22, 12:26 AM
Yes, but the physical attack has nothing to do with why she stopped. She stopped when her liege told her to, and not a moment sooner. She only heeds those she respects, like Durkon or Shojo.

Kinda interesting how much she squirmed when Durkon told her she was wrong. She didn't care about the opinions of the rest of the Order, but after Durkon spoke up she had to completely rework her view of the Order in order to avoid being convinced that she was wrong.

Ooh, the speech bubbles are illusions too!

theKOT
2006-03-22, 12:35 AM
Yeah, she looked like she had been slapped in the face when Durkon said that. I wonder what went on in her head that made her attack the OOTS. Other than the fact that she was bordering on psychotic at the time...
Anyway, I didn't initially read that arm comment as meaning Belkar was willing to cut off his arm, I thought he just meant it was humiliating that it was on his forehead. But that doesn't make much sense with his comment... hmmmm

@V And they need to take some deeeeeeep breaths.

Solara
2006-03-22, 01:10 AM
Oh. So, you just loathe and despise all those who display a regard for the sanctitiy and dignity of innocent sentient life. I have been labouring under a misapprehension.

Oh my. Someone needs to learn the difference between fiction and reality...

Vampire_Boy
2006-03-22, 01:33 AM
Yes, but the physical attack has nothing to do with why she stopped. She stopped when her liege told her to, and not a moment sooner.

Actually, she stopped from murdering Belkar when V scorched her butt a little. Shojo stopped her only when she proceeded to murder the rest of the Order.

Hawkeye
2006-03-22, 01:42 AM
err, you do all realize that Miko hasn't been appeared in the comic since strip 285, 10 strips (thats over 3 weeks) ago? Why are you still talking about the pro/anti miko thing?

theKOT
2006-03-22, 01:47 AM
Actually, she stopped from murdering Belkar when V scorched her butt a little. Shojo stopped her only when she proceeded to murder the rest of the Order.
But that would have included Belkar.

err, you do all realize that Miko hasn't been appeared in the comic since strip 285, 10 strips (thats over 3 weeks) ago? Why are you still talking about the pro/anti miko thing?
Because someone said Miko should be given a similar mark. Huh, yaknow, that could have been a way to work Miko into the group. That way, she would have to listen to Roy and wouldn't be dangerous anymore.

Evik
2006-03-22, 04:38 AM
Huh, yaknow, that could have been a way to work Miko into the group. That way, she would have to listen to Roy and wouldn't be dangerous anymore.
That probably would work..at least until the quest was over...but it probably would of driven Miko mad.
Who knows she may even prefer death to working with the OOTS.

The Giant
2006-03-22, 06:29 AM
Anyway, I didn't initially read that arm comment as meaning Belkar was willing to cut off his arm, I thought he just meant it was humiliating that it was on his forehead. But that doesn't make much sense with his comment... hmmmm

No, you were right: it's meant to say that they put it in the most humiliating place possible, because apparently it would be somehow not acceptable for them to put it somewhere that wasn't right in the middle of his friggin' forehead. It's not a reference to cutting off his arm, though that would have been kind of funny...he'd only be one Regeneration spell away from being free!

Delgarde
2006-03-22, 07:02 AM
And if grandma left it in her will...

Now there's a headache. Take Roy's dad, for example. According to Origins, he'd already died six times before eventually dying permanently of old age - and he's still hanging around. Think about the paperwork involved in that, the death certificates, the processing of wills and testaments.

For that matter, consider the situation where someone chooses not to raise somone so that they benefit from the will. Does that become a crime? If the estate can afford to have the person raised, surely not doing so is almost the same as murder?

Indeed, what happens to the property of someone who dies and comes back as some kind of intelligent undead? What's their legal status - can they still own property?

Delgarde
2006-03-22, 07:09 AM
It's not a reference to cutting off his arm, though that would have been kind of funny...he'd only be one Regeneration spell away from being free!

I'm thinking he'd do it, too, but that's obviously ruled out. Unless maybe he wants to trade for the head of vecna? :)

houseofcommons
2006-03-22, 07:49 AM
Indeed, what happens to the property of someone who dies and comes back as some kind of intelligent undead? What's their legal status - can they still own property?

Just try telling Xykon that he'd have to give up the time-share by the lake.

Alfryd
2006-03-22, 08:37 AM
Its interesting that a huge portion of magical fantasy takes place in a medieval setting, when more than likely, the wizards would of bipassed such a pastoral setting and gone straight to something more akin to steampunk.
Yeah, but in a universe where arcane magic actually worked, it would most likely have been incorporated into survival mechanisms at such a basic level during the course of evolution that nothing remotely akin to human life could ever be viable. Being able to tell the laws of physics to shut up and sit down has far more profound implications than Final Fantasy/Arcanum-style settings.

Oh my. Someone needs to learn the difference between fiction and reality...
And someone needs to distingush the fantastic from the surreal.

Ravenwind
2006-03-22, 09:27 AM
Now there's a headache. Take Roy's dad, for example. According to Origins, he'd already died six times before eventually dying permanently of old age - and he's still hanging around. Think about the paperwork involved in that, the death certificates, the processing of wills and testaments.

I love it. Naming someone the executor of your estate might become just about the the best way to tell someone that you're p.o.'d at them. Not to mention if any of your heirs contest the will, only to have dear ol' dad pop back up and say, "Oh, so you didn't think I was fair? That's it, you're out of the next one. . . "

Of course, if the legal system interpreted the will as being final, each time an adventurer died, and his or her wealth was distributed to the next of kin (including, presumably, prized weapons and equipment), he or she would be reliant on the good-will of said kin to retrieve their worldly goods. . . or would have to start over, from scratch, without even a dagger +1 to their name. (Given Eugene's attitude, I think we can safely say he didn't need to rely on his kids to give him back his toys on his various returns from the afterlife. . . .) But it sure would be a neat way to drain a PC's coffers. . . .



For that matter, consider the situation where someone chooses not to raise somone so that they benefit from the will. Does that become a crime? If the estate can afford to have the person raised, surely not doing so is almost the same as murder?


Except in cases where the deceased left an UnLiving Will, religious beliefs ("It goes against the will of the gods to raise the dead!" "Not if the gods don't say 'no,' it doesn't."), and, well, cases when the gods DO say no, because that's a DM's final option.

Given the expense of resurrection, do adventurers participate in any UnLife Insurance plans?


Indeed, what happens to the property of someone who dies and comes back as some kind of intelligent undead? What's their legal status - can they still own property?

Vampires, sure. Mummies are pretty partial to their treasures and sarcophagi. Banshees collect goods as well. . . so yes, everything other than mindless undead should well have property rights. Xykon, I should think, could pretty well try to have the Order arrested for stealing objects d'art like his crown, and various other treasures. Of course, that would mean risking his own arrest on crimes against the universe, but. . .

Frankly, it's amazing thieves like Haley don't spend more time in court and behind bars. *sigh* If the living don't charge her, the monsters could. And what's her defense? That she was only doing her job? Just. . . following orders?

;)

Vengeful_Hand
2006-03-22, 10:32 AM
Over the past 12 or so pages (as I write this, no doubt more pages are spawning), I couldn't help but notice that only one person pointed out that the guard will be raised.

If the guard is brought back to life, IS there a crime for which Belkar can even be tried?

Or will he simply be tried for the guard's loss of levels, since he's being raised, not resurrected? Obviously, a lesser charge than murder. ;) He might even get out of it with "time served," having quested with Roy under a geas of sorts, and having made restitution with his share of the treasure.

Of course, the guard could always sue in civil court for "emotional distress. . . " ("I'll never forget that white light. . . I see it over and over again in my sleep. . . I can't return to my workplace. . . I've been diagnosed with Post-Mortality Stress Disorder. . . I need a million in gold, and my lawyer needs two million in gold before I'll feel that I've been made whole. . . . ")

:P

Edit: Aha, someone did reply to the issue of the guard being raised on p. 12, but still only one person, er, raised the issue of their own accord before. *cough*

I don't understand why his raising would wave his murder charge. If someone breaks my arm, that's assault and battery. The attacker doesn't get off because the hospital can set my arm and mend the bone. The crime was committed.

In a Dark Age justice system much harsher than our own, the charge would still stand. The point is that the damage was done, not that the damage is irreperable. If D&D courts did not try criminals for crimes that could be repaired, then there wouldn't even be courts, because virtually everything can be fixed.

Can you imagine a justice system wherin the judge says, "oh, we can just bring them back, so you get off with a slap on the wrist?" (for emotional duress, or what have you) It's absurd. There would be no consequences and crime would run rampant, with everyone and their brother killing whever they felt like it because no one would convict them.

TinSoldier
2006-03-22, 10:44 AM
Frankly, it's amazing thieves like Haley don't spend more time in court and behind bars. *sigh* If the living don't charge her, the monsters could. And what's her defense? That she was only doing her job? Just. . . following orders?

;)I... I... I can't believe you just said that. ::)
That is the best worst pun I've heard in awhile!

Zann
2006-03-22, 11:48 AM
I don't get it.

GeekDaddy
2006-03-22, 12:07 PM
I don't understand why his raising would wave his murder charge. If someone breaks my arm, that's assault and battery. The attacker doesn't get off because the hospital can set my arm and mend the bone. The crime was committed.

In a Dark Age justice system much harsher than our own, the charge would still stand. The point is that the damage was done, not that the damage is irreperable. If D&D courts did not try criminals for crimes that could be repaired, then there wouldn't even be courts, because virtually everything can be fixed.

Can you imagine a justice system wherin the judge says, "oh, we can just bring them back, so you get off with a slap on the wrist?" (for emotional duress, or what have you) It's absurd. There would be no consequences and crime would run rampant, with everyone and their brother killing whever they felt like it because no one would convict them.

It's called writ of habeus corpus.

"Your honor, how can my client be accused of murdering the plaintif when the plaintif is clearly alive. The prosecution cannot possibly meet habeus corpus because they cannot produce a dead body. Only a live one who said he was dead once but now feels much better."

Yeah, Rez spells definitely throw a wrnch in the capital murder justice system.

Of course, if you are of an evil alignment and use REZ or Raise Dead to bring someone back to life after torturing them to death as a means to continue torturing them until they talk...

I had a cleric of Cyric who would do that or at least torture someone then use healing spells to repair the damage.

Then there was the 1st Edition Cleric/Assassin who would kill people then pray for absolution...

Zann
2006-03-22, 12:13 PM
*gigglesnort*

I guess that would work.

Nerd-o-rama
2006-03-22, 12:21 PM
That's not what habeas corpus means, but in the American legal system (which does not take magic into account) you have a point. However, in a world of fully integrated magic, anyone with access to the wealth and divine power required will likely be Raised at the earliest opportunity, and the courts would know this. Presumably, charges would be pressed and evidence entered before said spell was cast.

I think, should resurrection exist in a modern criminal justice system (by default, D&D certainly is not, and most of the things we take for granted like freedom to face the accuser, the fifth amendment or its equivalent, and habeas corpus don't exist,) that Murder would be dropped to a lesser charge (but still a pretty harsh one, just because killing sentient beings is so horrible) if the defendant paid for a successful ressurection. Of course, then we open up the door to civil suits for ridiculous amounts of coin for emotional damages and the aftereffects of Raise Dead

Ravenwind
2006-03-22, 12:47 PM
I... I... I can't believe you just said that. ::)
That is the best worst pun I've heard in awhile!

Following the Order of the Stick? I didn't actually mean this as a pun, but more of a play on her likely-chaotic alignment vs. a lawful attitude of a soldier who has done wrong, but uses orders as an excuse. So if it amuses you as punny, I'm glad, though I didn't intend it!


That's not what habeas corpus means, but in the American legal system (which does not take magic into account) you have a point. However, in a world of fully integrated magic, anyone with access to the wealth and divine power required will likely be Raised at the earliest opportunity, and the courts would know this. Presumably, charges would be pressed and evidence entered before said spell was cast.

I think, should resurrection exist in a modern criminal justice system (by default, D&D certainly is not, and most of the things we take for granted like freedom to face the accuser, the fifth amendment or its equivalent, and habeas corpus don't exist,) that Murder would be dropped to a lesser charge (but still a pretty harsh one, just because killing sentient beings is so horrible) if the defendant paid for a successful ressurection. Of course, then we open up the door to civil suits for ridiculous amounts of coin for emotional damages and the aftereffects of Raise Dead

*chuckles* Of course our modern system of law and rights doesn't generally exist in most D&D worlds. . . and they don't in Stickland, other than to bring the funny. I noted the emotional damages issue in an earlier post, actually, but I still like the concept.

I really liked your point that "However, in a world of fully integrated magic, anyone with access to the wealth and divine power required will likely be Raised at the earliest opportunity, and the courts would know this."

Which would lead into a legal system segregated entirely on the basis of wealth, and adventurers, being wealthy and having access to resources outside those available to the general population, which would lead to massive resentment from poor NPCs, and that would differ from our current legal system. . . .er. . . *finds cyncism switch, turns it to OFF mode*

Leonidas
2006-03-22, 01:06 PM
Though it does bring a certain level of amusement to the Linear Guild containing a Kobold (doglike) as their opposite number to the ranger Belkar...

I wonder if they told him to "Fetch the Order of the Stick, boy!"

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-22, 02:49 PM
Following the Order of the Stick? I didn't actually mean this as a pun, but more of a play on her likely-chaotic alignment vs. a lawful attitude of a soldier who has done wrong, but uses orders as an excuse. So if it amuses you as punny, I'm glad, though I didn't intend it!
"Was Just Following Orders" seems like a LN or LE defense. I think Chaotic would say "Don't push your laws on me"

Ravenwind
2006-03-22, 04:11 PM
"Was Just Following Orders" seems like a LN or LE defense. I think Chaotic would say "Don't push your laws on me"

Precisely wherein the irony of that being the defense of a chaotic character would lie, yes.

As in. . . if you read the original post. . . it was a joke.

I've never had to explain my sense of humor so much before.

Sebastian
2006-03-22, 04:53 PM
I love it. Naming someone the executor of your estate might become just about the the best way to tell someone that you're p.o.'d at them. Not to mention if any of your heirs contest the will, only to have dear ol' dad pop back up and say, "Oh, so you didn't think I was fair? That's it, you're out of the next one. . . "

Of course, if the legal system interpreted the will as being final, each time an adventurer died, and his or her wealth was distributed to the next of kin (including, presumably, prized weapons and equipment), he or she would be reliant on the good-will of said kin to retrieve their worldly goods. . . or would have to start over, from scratch, without even a dagger +1 to their name. (Given Eugene's attitude, I think we can safely say he didn't need to rely on his kids to give him back his toys on his various returns from the afterlife. . . .) But it sure would be a neat way to drain a PC's coffers. . . .


And that is still nothing, think to the legal nightmare that must be Reincarnation. :)

EscherEnigma
2006-03-22, 07:01 PM
Hm... coming up with a cohesive and sound legal system for a world the recognizes magic would be... interestting.

Probably the easiest way would be that magic is inadmissable in the court of law, since it is as fallible as more mundane forms of investigation. The only divination magic allowed is zone of truth.

O' course, that sounds more like the reaction of a legal system that has to adapt to magic, not a legal system that was built with magic.

Another thing to remember is that in mideval societies the laws weren't always fair. Eyewitness testimony was even more valued back then then it is now, and even now its one of the most persuassive things a lawyer can bring to court, even if it has been repeatedly proven to be unreliable.

So, "He killed me! ... I got better!" may be a valid and persuassive testimony. Much like "She turned me into a newt! ... I got better!"

Ravenwind
2006-03-22, 07:06 PM
And that is still nothing, think to the legal nightmare that must be Reincarnation. :)


*shudder* The mind boggles! ;D

BurntOfferings
2006-03-22, 08:45 PM
Probably the easiest way would be that magic is inadmissable in the court of law, since it is as fallible as more mundane forms of investigation. The only divination magic allowed is zone of truth.

Nah, zone of truth (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/zoneOfTruth.htm) is an area effect spell, which means the caster can't know whether or not anyone succeeded on their save (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicOverview/spellDescriptions.htm#succeedingonaSavingThrow) (and can therefore lie through their teeth). Discern lies (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/discernLies.htm) is the way to go. ;)

infiniteviking
2006-03-22, 08:49 PM
Hm... coming up with a cohesive and sound legal system for a world the recognizes magic would be... interestting.
Wouldn't it just? Worldbuilders have the same problem with telepathic societies. And then there's the division between divine and manmade laws -- when your divinity of choice can actually testify in court....


Much like "She turned me into a newt! ... I got better!"
That happened to Lord Vetinari once. Nobody ever talks about it, though, so I doubt it has any value as a precedent. XD

Hyrael
2006-03-22, 09:15 PM
Yeah, but in a universe where arcane magic actually worked, it would most likely have been incorporated into survival mechanisms at such a basic level during the course of evolution that nothing remotely akin to human life could ever be viable. Being able to tell the laws of physics to shut up and sit down has far more profound implications than Final Fantasy/Arcanum-style settings.

Well said. thats where dragons came from, after all. lizards that discovered that magic was just a new resource that could be exploited, allowing them to ignore stupid laws like "vertibrates only have 4 limbs" or "creatures weighed in tonns covered in scales and with no flotation bladders or something CANT fly" and dont get me started on the breath weapons.

Of course, such acheivements could be extremely rare, and only humans and other sentient creatures can tap into such power as a general rule. so, youre back to the beginning.

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-22, 10:06 PM
Nah, zone of truth (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/zoneOfTruth.htm) is an area effect spell, which means the caster can't know whether or not anyone succeeded on their save (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicOverview/spellDescriptions.htm#succeedingonaSavingThrow) (and can therefore lie through their teeth). Discern lies (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/discernLies.htm) is the way to go. ;)
I would think that if the legal system had the equivalent of the 5th Amendment (no self incrimination), magical compulsion would have to be forbidden

TheLastOfTheFallen
2006-03-22, 10:29 PM
I would think that if the legal system had the equivalent of the 5th Amendment (no self incrimination), magical compulsion would have to be forbidden
Hence discern lies - no compulsion to tell the truth, but you know if they are lying or not. I think that IS the best way to go.

Finwe
2006-03-22, 10:33 PM
According to the giant she can Smite Evil only 3 times per day. That puts her between 10th and 14th level. 14th level is the lowest level paladin who can cast mark of Justice. Since all the paladins are weaker than her, the highest level non-Miko paladin is no higher than 13th level.


Actualy, she could be far higher than 14, since she's a pal/monk, which means that there may be one or two other paladins of level 14+. Shojo never stipulated that Miko had the most PALADIN levels of anyone in the guard.

mastroyo
2006-03-22, 10:40 PM
Hey!. I am a level 1 Barbarian just like Belkar!


NOOOOOOO!
WHYYYYY???

(I reaaaly did not post a lot to get this. I mean, I joined here like more than a year ago!)

Sorry for this pathetic post.

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-22, 10:41 PM
Hence discern lies - no compulsion to tell the truth, but you know if they are lying or not. I think that IS the best way to go.
Nice distinction. I guess in that case, with magic, is it incriminating to refuse to testify?

RBloom0566
2006-03-22, 10:48 PM
Just curious -
Comicish goodness before Midnight Eastern?
Got an early day tomorrow and just wanted to know.
???

TinSoldier
2006-03-22, 10:53 PM
Nice distinction. I guess in that case, with magic, is it incriminating to refuse to testify?In a pseudo-medieval world, I would say yes.

Remember, the concept of humanoid rights is still in its infancy. Might makes right in a feudal world where good and evil are objectively defined.

But wouldn't discern lies, zone of truth, resurrection, speak with dead, and other divination spells make for a more sure criminal justice system? It would be easier to mete out justice in such a world.

It would be interesting to see how such things would be twisted by prosecution and defense lawyers to their own ends, though.

AnimeHeretic
2006-03-22, 10:58 PM
In a pseudo-medieval world, I would say yes.

Remember, the concept of humanoid rights is still in its infancy. Might makes right in a feudal world where good and evil are objectively defined.

But wouldn't discern lies, zone of truth, resurrection, speak with dead, and other divination spells make for a more sure criminal justice system? It would be easier to mete out justice in such a world.

It would be interesting to see how such things would be twisted by prosecution and defense lawyers to their own ends, though.
Well in such a world, the lawyers wouldn't control the system, the Wizards would

TinSoldier
2006-03-22, 11:02 PM
Well in such a world, the lawyers wouldn't control the system, the Wizards wouldOr the clerics. The spoooky clerics! ;) (who are also versed in the intricacies of the law...)

Oooh. Oooh. Oooh. Another pun! Gaaah! (Wizards)

Aevii
2006-03-22, 11:41 PM
Belker has done some notable things to help the party, like killing the chimera (although he was supposed to come back as he was a named villain, but we'll let that one slide) and saved the party from the goblin shaman that cast unholy blight. It sort of helps that their is an evil character in a party sometimes.

(hides from the flames where people claim that belker is CN)

Belkar is the character of a Player. While the player may be fictional, along with the players of Roy, Haley and the others, players often meet each other outside of gametime.

And, I realize this can be seen as a generalization, but from my own experiences the players that chose personas similar to Belkar's are also the vocal ones, whether they're demanding attention or complaining about their character is being treated as the DM or other players fashion excuses or plot devices to explain why their characters would willingly abide the company of him.

This extends to covering the offending character's ass, because you don't want to hear the player whining about it for weeks afterwards if you do otherwise.

Euphemism
2006-03-23, 12:01 AM
I was disturbed by profanity used in the last panel of this comic. While I realize you are trying to portray Belkar as evil, using racial slurs and offensive language is innappropiate for some of the younger readers of Order of the Stick. Please don't tarnish an otherwise fine comic, Giant.

If I may be so bold, what in the name of Dom Deluise are you talking about, sir?

EDIT: Mea culpa, apparently I'm too tired to recognize sarcasm tonight.

Pvednes
2006-03-23, 12:25 AM
No, you were right: it's meant to say that they put it in the most humiliating place possible, because apparently it would be somehow not acceptable for them to put it somewhere that wasn't right in the middle of his friggin' forehead. It's not a reference to cutting off his arm, though that would have been kind of funny...he'd only be one Regeneration spell away from being free!

I read it as the amputation thing...it seems very Belkar to find such restriction on his behaviour so intolerable.

theKOT
2006-03-23, 12:46 AM
No, you were right: it's meant to say that they put it in the most humiliating place possible, because apparently it would be somehow not acceptable for them to put it somewhere that wasn't right in the middle of his friggin' forehead. It's not a reference to cutting off his arm, though that would have been kind of funny...he'd only be one Regeneration spell away from being free!
I can think of a MUCH more humiliating place... But that's probably just the 8bit theater talkin.

The_Ducky_Ninja
2006-03-23, 12:52 AM
LMAO @ KOT. Yea, currently 8-Bit is discussing...strange things.

Anyway, 8 minutes til Thursday EST. Cmon Giant, you can do it!

Tomada
2006-03-23, 12:54 AM
I think it's implied by the news that there is not going to be a new comic today...

But I may have read it the wrong way

EDIT
He isn't even online. Usually he is online the last few hours before he posts the comic

The Giant
2006-03-23, 12:57 AM
Comic is coming in the next half hour, just got too busy preparing for the convention (that I should have left for three hours ago).

theKOT
2006-03-23, 12:58 AM
LMAO @ KOT. Yea, currently 8-Bit is discussing...strange things.

Chocobos.... *shudders*

Anyway, He might sneak it in. No ETA always scares me though; it tends to mean somethin' bad. Still, he is really busy and might just not have the time.
Edit:
Way to simupost me Giant. I can still feel where that 1337 sword got me....




WTF?!?!?!? You weren't online just a few secconds ago!

How can a Giant be so nimble?
He's a frickin' simu-ninja. They are all nimble.

Tomada
2006-03-23, 12:58 AM
Comic is coming in the next half hour, just got too busy preparing for the convention (that I should have left for three hours ago).


WTF?!?!?!? You weren't online just a few secconds ago!

How can a Giant be so nimble?

EDIT: IS wtf considered a bad wold?

Wukei
2006-03-23, 12:58 AM
Comic is coming in the next half hour, just got too busy preparing for the convention (that I should have left for three hours ago).

Don't rush yourself and end up hurting yourself somehow.

Enjoy yourself at the convention.

Renmazuo
2006-03-23, 01:01 AM
Woot. I'll be expecting it then giant! ;D