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  1. - Top - End - #241
    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by Rockphed View Post
    I want to say we hear it during the beginning of the Can Full of Sky, but I can't find it there.
    Nope. Massively Parallel, when Petey tries to hire Pranger to rescue K-Prime.

  2. - Top - End - #242
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by Squire Doodad View Post
    I think it's when Pranger or maybe one of his men refuses a job offer.
    Yep. But I couldn't find it either :-).
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
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  3. - Top - End - #243
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    The stip wth Pranger using it as an expression is indeed at the start of Massively Parallel

    And the bit with Kevin at the start of The Longshoreman of the Apocalypse

    (.. which was in 2008. .. darn I feel old.)
    Last edited by smuchmuch; 2020-08-11 at 09:16 AM.
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  4. - Top - End - #244
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by Lvl 2 Expert View Post
    I love the early strips. But there are some marked differences in style between them and the later stuff. There's faster pacing in the stories, but due to the developing art style few convincing action shots, and a bigger emphasis on punny and "immature" humor rather than philosophical inclinations and overarching story lines. The characters are written consistently, but due to how the comic developed are no longer really consistent with their later selves.

    So while I wouldn't want to have missed the early bits, they may not be for everyone and it's good to have al alternative.

    Another good starting point may be the start of book 6. This starts you off at the point where Petey starts doing his Petey thing, and it means you get to read stuff like the "stuck on a primitive planet with amnesia and jeopards" story line. This is probably my recommendation for a middle road between decent art and not missing too much of the best stuff.

    Or if you're just looking to skip past the really early stuff and get to some larger plot lines maybe the start of book 2. (The first story there isn't the best ever, but it's Schlock's origin story. Afterwards it picks up with the teraport wars and the bits where they ride the small Serial Peacemaker with Ennesby as the pilot.)
    I'm doing yet another reread right now, and want to revise the above recommendations. Book 2 is good, but it's stylistically so close to book 1 and story wise such a continuation of the same line of stuff getting established about the setting that you might as well start at the beginning if you're going that far back anyway. Book 6 is a good starting point if you don't want to start at the beginning, but it's also about a big upset story wise. For that reason I'd recommend starting a bit before that in book 5, right after the CSi parody (which is so disconnected from the rest of the comic that in context it's one of the least enjoyable parts anyway, so it makes for an excellent cutoff point). Starting at this exact point (Book 5, Part III: Handle With Care, 31st of May 2004) gives you one story to get caught up on the status quo and who the main characters are and then drops you into what's essentially the prologue to book 6. This is also where Petey becomes, well, Petey, so that major setting element is covered too.
    Last edited by Lvl 2 Expert; 2020-08-28 at 05:24 AM.
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  5. - Top - End - #245
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    OK, time to organize the re-read party. It's mid october now; how about 10 days (next weekend), and then discuss book 1? Is that too ambitious?
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
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  6. - Top - End - #246
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    OK, time to organize the re-read party. It's mid october now; how about 10 days (next weekend), and then discuss book 1? Is that too ambitious?
    Sounds like more than enough time for me, I've re-read the entire strip from start to current in two days a few times in the past.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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  7. - Top - End - #247
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    So far it's been too ambitious for me (sadface). Need to make time / higher priority, waiting for free time isn't working.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
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  8. - Top - End - #248
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Speaking of "Eat it", what does he do with his biological waste, and why has it taken me this long to ask about him going to the bathroom?

    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-14

    And I find myself wanting some of those warning signs:
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-25

    (Especially the naked singularity)

    And the very first mission was intentionally flubbed, without any mention of a cancellation fee, or being in default, etc.
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-28

    Also, I am amazed that he can swallow you, and either keep you safe and unharmed, or dissolve/digest you, at will. I'm suddenly thinking of all sorts of vore fetishes ...
    Last edited by keybounce; 2020-10-28 at 11:31 PM.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
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  9. - Top - End - #249
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    Speaking of "Eat it", what does he do with his biological waste, and why has it taken me this long to ask about him going to the bathroom?

    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-14
    Anything he can't actually simply digest and repurpose he appears to just spit out and deposit with regular trash.. but the list of 'things Schlock can't digest' is very, very short, and seems to be largely limited to like PTUs and nanobots or other devices that are specifically trying to attack him (and he can put up a good fight on those.) Would be similar to owls and other creatures that have highly efficient digestive systems, where there is little to no excrement and they just spit back out whatever they can't actually digest. Everything else.. well, amorphs are ridiculously good at converting what they eat into more amorph. I don't think there *is* such a thing as amorph biological waste, not that any other kind of organic life would recognize. There probably is a general coating of .. uh.. Schlock-dust, composed of the outer bits of him that necessarily get worn away by the general environment, but that's not much different to the organic dust generated by humans. And presumably most other creatures that naturally grow skin, fur, feathers, and hair (Esperrerin probably don't make dust unless they want to.)

  10. - Top - End - #250
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    (I had some edits to my last post, you might want to go back and re-read)

    I find it interesting that Der Trihs, who is a red shirt, was not seen anywhere down on the planet (last seen on the ship during the attorney negotiations), yet still lost an arm.

    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-30

    EDIT: And yep, breach of contract is mentioned once back on the ship.
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-01

    And, a hand-mounted Tear Apart? I don't recall THAT gun ever being fired.
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-07

    Finally (for tonight), I want to give points for "getting stuff past the radar/sensors".
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-09
    But seriously:
    1. What is an "iMAC"?
    2. How would a single small being's explosive cloud be that big?
    Last edited by keybounce; 2020-10-29 at 12:07 AM.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
    GENERATION ω+1: The first time you see this, copy it into your sig and add 1 to the generation. Social experiment. Remember, ω + 1 comes after ω.

  11. - Top - End - #251
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    I find it interesting that Der Trihs, who is a red shirt, was not seen anywhere down on the planet (last seen on the ship during the attorney negotiations), yet still lost an arm.
    I chalk that up to HT not yet being comfortable with lots of background art. Der Trihs isn't drawn until he's relevant, but neither is anything else.

    1. What is an "iMAC"?
    Not sure if you are being serious, but these things (and how odd they looked to people used to beige boxes as desktop computers) were kind of a 'thing to talk about' in 2000.

    2. How would a single small being's explosive cloud be that big?
    I think the idea is that if you pump enough energy into some living thing to disassociate it into its constituent atoms, you turn it into a gas (which takes up a lot more volume than it did as a solid creature). If you pump enough energy in it to separate into its subatomic components, then by golly that would have to be even huger!

  12. - Top - End - #252
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    I was aware of the apple computer, but if you're talking about breaking things into tiny pieces, that's kinda the opposite of Apple's "don't take it apart" philosophy.

    I figured it was a reference to some elementary particle I'm not familiar with.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
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  13. - Top - End - #253
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    I figured it was a reference to some elementary particle I'm not familiar with.
    Pretty sure no. Just some kind of pseudo-topical nerd pseudo-humor.

  14. - Top - End - #254
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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    I was aware of the apple computer, but if you're talking about breaking things into tiny pieces, that's kinda the opposite of Apple's "don't take it apart" philosophy.
    Well yeah. The Callcenter space slug gets turned into a cloud of molecules.
    Her computer stays in one piece.
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  15. - Top - End - #255
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    Pretty sure no. Just some kind of pseudo-topical nerd pseudo-humor.
    Given the nature of the people who decide such things, naming a particle an "iMac" isn't exactly implausible. Particularly in this universe where the main source of power is a comic strip reference.

  16. - Top - End - #256
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    Speaking of "Eat it", what does he do with his biological waste, and why has it taken me this long to ask about him going to the bathroom?

    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-14
    That question is answered here and in what I now realize is a book-exclusive note on the same strip, or else one that got lost in one of the site updates.

    Note: Carbosilicate amorphs are innate, instinctual, expert organic chemists. The things that they consume which are not required for energy, repair, or growth for their bodies are not arbitrarily discarded. They are sorted, catalogued, cracked, and recombined into a veritable arsenal of acids and bases, toxins and antitoxins, and compounds, chemicals, and molecular chains whose categorical inclusion under the heading of "organic chemistry" would be patently absurd if not for the fact that the patent cannot be issued due to prior art.


    When amorphs do decide to excrete they are very tidy, bonding the surplus molecules to flakes of silica or other similarly inert carriers. Then the excess particles are released, and are fundamentally no different from common dust.


    The next time someone tells you that human skin makes up a portion of the dust in your home be glad you aren't living with an amorph, because then the dust in your house would also be made of amorph poo.


    Now you know what it is that Breya doesn't want to.
    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    And, a hand-mounted Tear Apart? I don't recall THAT gun ever being fired.
    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-07
    All teraport units are that size- see here. Ennesby used one that size (if not that selfsame one) repeatedly, for example to rescue Ch'vorthq from lockup, or a bunch of times during the storyline that introduced Haban II (this being the first time shown in that storyline).

    And this is good timing for a re-read, as I've been going through my Schlock books again (although I only have up to #7, I really need to get the others when I can afford them...).
    Last edited by TeChameleon; 2020-11-15 at 06:00 PM.

  17. - Top - End - #257
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Split into packets going through wormholes in parallel?

    ... Why am I thinking of IP over Teraport? :-)

    EDIT: Ohh! https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-19
    Enessby has no compassion or mercy.
    Last edited by keybounce; 2020-11-16 at 02:12 AM.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
    GENERATION ω+1: The first time you see this, copy it into your sig and add 1 to the generation. Social experiment. Remember, ω + 1 comes after ω.

  18. - Top - End - #258
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    Split into packets going through wormholes in parallel?

    ... Why am I thinking of IP over Teraport? :-)

    EDIT: Ohh! https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-19
    Enessby has no compassion or mercy.
    That does explain a few things.
    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    The British conquered the world in search of spices and then decided to use none of them.

  19. - Top - End - #259
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    So https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-20

    Either Howard is having a commentary on how everything (20 years ago!) had anti-drug PSA's, or he's showing either his view, or Kevyn's view, of simulated people not being worth the CPU they are on.

    I disagree strongly with his (Kevyn's) basic premise -- since a simulated person can talk with, and interact with, physical people, it can have an effect on the world. And if we ever get improved brain simulation hardware/software, digital uploading becomes foreseeable even if not feasible. Imagine if Hawkings had lived long enough for a digital upload of himself to continue.

    (Just make sure that the overlady isn't CelestAI :-).

    EDIT: Ohh, so the "Omnimous Hum!" and "THOOM!" can be toned down to just a "thoom", and even made non-leathal. https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-23

    Well, it does count as a warning shot. They lived, they learned, and they are warned about what can come next.

    Edit 2: So https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-28 -- Shlock has spent almost a full week warning people about what's coming up, and been ignored. Not smart.

    Oh my -- I just realized that Der Trihs and the ambassador both got the same replacement arm.

    Edit 3: So https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-14 gives us a heads-up on what Enessby will be able to do. He's "eating", and showing us how much destruction he can do.

    Also, https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-03 was when Kevyn got his promotion and floaty thingies. A lovely little set of warning signs on the wall. And ... whatever that thing on the end of panel 2 that looks like a version of the self-dunking bird on a stick.
    Last edited by keybounce; 2020-11-19 at 03:22 PM.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
    GENERATION ω+1: The first time you see this, copy it into your sig and add 1 to the generation. Social experiment. Remember, ω + 1 comes after ω.

  20. - Top - End - #260
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post

    EDIT: Ohh, so the "Omnimous Hum!" and "THOOM!" can be toned down to just a "thoom", and even made non-leathal. https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-07-23

    Well, it does count as a warning shot. They lived, they learned, and they are warned about what can come next.
    Pretty sure (from other strips) that this is "non-lethal" in the sense that "a bullet in the chest is nonlethal, if there's a good surgeon handy".

  21. - Top - End - #261
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-08-04

    I'm with Schlock. Innocent Diplomats feels wrong for some reason.
    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    The British conquered the world in search of spices and then decided to use none of them.

  22. - Top - End - #262
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Hey, diplomats are there to throw bombs into discussions :-)

    Remember when the Narrator would interact with the characters? https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-23

    OK: So in https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-24, we are told that Schlock was blown up just last week. When was that, in comic?

    Re: https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-10-11
    Can someone explain the military ranks? Where does Corporal rank relative to Sergeant?
    Last edited by keybounce; 2020-11-27 at 03:02 AM.
    Not "fire at". I never used the word "at"
    GENERATION ω+1: The first time you see this, copy it into your sig and add 1 to the generation. Social experiment. Remember, ω + 1 comes after ω.

  23. - Top - End - #263
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by keybounce View Post
    Hey, diplomats are there to throw bombs into discussions :-)

    Remember when the Narrator would interact with the characters? https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-23

    OK: So in https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-09-24, we are told that Schlock was blown up just last week. When was that, in comic?

    Re: https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-10-11
    Can someone explain the military ranks? Where does Corporal rank relative to Sergeant?
    It is interetsing how different early Schlock story and interactions are from later Schlock.

    Schlock blew up when he poured Alcohol over his Plasgun. https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-08-30

    Sergeant ranks just above Corporal iirc.
    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    The British conquered the world in search of spices and then decided to use none of them.

  24. - Top - End - #264
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    There is a link somewhere in a note to a table of ranks in Schlock Mercenary. Like many similar links however it has long been dead.

    This is a shame, because this universe does not map cleanly onto any present day force, and I'm not 100% sure the ranks are consistent between organizations within the universe.

    In general, corporal and sergeant are both non-commissioned officers, ranking just above regular soldiers. Sergeant is the higher rank of the two. Ennesby at some point becomes an adjutant, which in this context appeats to mean adjutant non-con, just above sergeant. Above that there is the officers, where we have luitenant, luitenant commander, commander, captain, commodore and admiral.

    However, this is also the most confusing part, as at some point we have characters like captain Kerchack who seem to be based on the idea of an army captain, which would in today's forces often be the equivalent of one of the higher flavors of lieutenant in the navy, not at all the same rank as a captain in charge of a ship. Yet here they were the same epaulets, but Tagon still gets to boss those guys around, until Kerchack loses his pants and becomes Tagon's employer that is. So it's pretty confusing. But in general the order in the previous paragraph will work.
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  25. - Top - End - #265
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    Default Re: Schlock Mercenary X: The Mundivore, or, "Eat it"

    Quote Originally Posted by Lvl 2 Expert View Post
    There is a link somewhere in a note to a table of ranks in Schlock Mercenary. Like many similar links however it has long been dead.

    This is a shame, because this universe does not map cleanly onto any present day force, and I'm not 100% sure the ranks are consistent between organizations within the universe.

    In general, corporal and sergeant are both non-commissioned officers, ranking just above regular soldiers. Sergeant is the higher rank of the two. Ennesby at some point becomes an adjutant, which in this context appeats to mean adjutant non-con, just above sergeant. Above that there is the officers, where we have luitenant, luitenant commander, commander, captain, commodore and admiral.

    However, this is also the most confusing part, as at some point we have characters like captain Kerchack who seem to be based on the idea of an army captain, which would in today's forces often be the equivalent of one of the higher flavors of lieutenant in the navy, not at all the same rank as a captain in charge of a ship. Yet here they were the same epaulets, but Tagon still gets to boss those guys around, until Kerchack loses his pants and becomes Tagon's employer that is. So it's pretty confusing. But in general the order in the previous paragraph will work.
    The Watsonist explantion is that Tagon's org chart is, like most things in his organization, written by the seat of his pants. The Doylist explanation is that Howard Taylor didn't think too hard about it. US rank tables have something like 10 enlisted ranks, 5 warrant ranks, and 12 officer ranks. Plain sargeant is above corporal, but there are something like 5 flavors of advanced sargeant. In officer ranks "lieutenant" is often appended to things to say "lower rank", so Lieutenant Commander, Lieutenant Colonel, and Lieutenant General.
    Quote Originally Posted by Wardog View Post
    Rockphed said it well.
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