A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #241
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grim Portent View Post
    He was probably treated more respectfully before he came back, he was sort of a hero when he was friends with Bill and Barry, a lost figure of better days. Once he returned and became the domineering tyrant who everyone both respected or resented the Heterodyne Plays would have become a 'safe' medium for venting about him.
    In the print novels at least, it is stated at one point that this is pretty much the case; his portrayal in the shows has deteriorated as the chaos in Europa receded (relatively speaking) and his power increased. It's also noted that of course he's aware of how the shows depict him, and hasn't stopped it because he finds it very funny.

  2. - Top - End - #242
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shining Wrath View Post
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    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
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  3. - Top - End - #243
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Fyraltari.
    D'oh! Sorry.

    Today's strip:

    Lucrezia's arrogance and ego are going to contribute to her comeuppance, or I miss my bet. "And so pretty, too!". Steelgarter missed her chance to compliment Lucrezia on her modesty.

    We now have confirmation that Lucrezia is behind the invasion by the Polar Lords. Not actively directing it, but certainly approving. Which means Zola is cooperating with Lu again, or Zola is no longer in control of the Polar Lords.

    If Zola is allied with Lu, that means that either Zola escaped Grandma, or Grandma's hatred of The Other is a façade and she's also cooperating with Lu.
    If Zola is not in control of the Polar Lords, we have a new piece on the board, a minion of Lu.

    I'm going to go with Grandma as being as wily and devious as we've been led to believe, but not an ally of the Other. That means that Zola being in position to direct the invasion is unlikely.

    Therefore: I'm guessing that the Polar Lords are led by a new minion of Lucrezia, and perhaps we'll see Zola come back as an unexpected ally of Tweedle. If I were Grandma, I'd punish her for her sins by setting her up as Othar's sidekick, but that's a stretch. She does deserve it, though.
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    Alternatively, Zola has successfully conned this iteration of Lucrenza that she is a diverged iteration of lucrenza, and has convinced her that the polar lords are furthering Lucrenza's plans.

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    Or, as was starting to happen with Agatha, the embedded instance of Lucrenza became powerful enough to take Zola over after all. After all, Lucrenza probably knows more about Mutual Brain Death than Zola, and given time can probably work out how to force the issue 1, 2).

    In which case Gil is back to rescuing Zola again (1, 2) - although I suspect the "idiot, but not a malicious one" defense no longer applies...
    Last edited by Manga Shoggoth; 2021-12-03 at 11:49 AM.
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  6. - Top - End - #246
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    Or, as was starting to happen with Agatha, the embedded instance of Lucrenza became powerful enough to take Zola over after all. After all, Lucrenza probably knows more about Mutual Brain Death than Zola, and given time can probably work out how to force the issue 1, 2).

    In which case Gil is back to rescuing Zola again (1, 2) - although I suspect the "idiot, but not a malicious one" defense no longer applies...
    Yes, but even if Lucrezia manages to avoid M.B.D. and take over Zola's corpus, said corpus is still the prisoner of Grandma. And she'd kill Lucrezia in a heartbeat if she couldn't figure out a way to put Zola back in control.

    The sequence of events needs to be:
    1. Lucrezia manages to take over Zola's mind & body without Grandma noticing the struggle
    2. Lu needs to conceal the new personality
    3. Lu needs to escape from Grandma's clutches, with no access to weapons or a lab


    Possible? Sure. Possible within GG's tolerance for suspension of disbelief? Maybe.

    I still think it's more likely to be a fresh minion.

    Also:

    4. Martellus and Tarvek are doubtless in communication with the family, so anything bad happening to Grandma would be known by both of them, and likely remarked upon. Lu has to escape without hurting too many people.
    Last edited by Shining Wrath; 2021-12-03 at 12:51 PM.
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  7. - Top - End - #247
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    Slight digression back to Wednesday's strip, but is Lucrezia in clank form capable of the spark? It seems giving clanks the spark is something unique and special to Agatha, other than that it's been largely depicted as being biologically based, which is why Lucrezia could only become a queen by having her second breakthrough in the flesh.

    My point comes back to the whole knowledge vs ability thing, so Lucrezia in clank form has the memories and knowledge but not the actual capacity to make sparky leaps, which could lead to the mania and transformation into the Other.
    quo nemo sequi potest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkspear View Post
    Slight digression back to Wednesday's strip, but is Lucrezia in clank form capable of the spark? It seems giving clanks the spark is something unique and special to Agatha, other than that it's been largely depicted as being biologically based, which is why Lucrezia could only become a queen by having her second breakthrough in the flesh.

    My point comes back to the whole knowledge vs ability thing, so Lucrezia in clank form has the memories and knowledge but not the actual capacity to make sparky leaps, which could lead to the mania and transformation into the Other.
    Lucrezia's Thing is mind-transfer technology, and Lucrezia's body is based on Anveka, a clank-body designed after the Muses, and designed to serve the function of being a surrogate body for a full human mind. If Tarvek is right, the original Anveka died at some point and the Clank Body just kept going on.


    My guess is that one of the reasons Clankcrezia is still in Anveka's body is because Tarvek managed to build a clank body capable of holding a full human mind, Spark and all, and she can't build a new one of those.



    The Spark is also about Inspiration and Invention, rather than just heightened intelligence. Non-Sparks are perfectly capable of building sparky devices, it just takes The Spark to invent new ones (Sparks are also capable of improvising solutions to problems) Even if Clankcrezia simply had all of Lucrezia's Knowledge and Skills, without the ability to innovate anything via The Madness Place, she'd still be formidable.


    Like, The "Superpowers" of The Spark seem to be

    1) Invention/improvisation
    2) Charisma
    3) Superpowered knowledge retention and recall (Agatha is able to recall and perform obscure medical procedures simply by "having attended a few lectures" back in the day).
    Last edited by BRC; 2021-12-03 at 04:47 PM.
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  9. - Top - End - #249
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkspear View Post
    Slight digression back to Wednesday's strip, but is Lucrezia in clank form capable of the spark? It seems giving clanks the spark is something unique and special to Agatha, other than that it's been largely depicted as being biologically based, which is why Lucrezia could only become a queen by having her second breakthrough in the flesh.

    My point comes back to the whole knowledge vs ability thing, so Lucrezia in clank form has the memories and knowledge but not the actual capacity to make sparky leaps, which could lead to the mania and transformation into the Other.
    Uncertain, I think, but I suspect no? At least, not with the limitations of the body she currently has; it is possible if she had the luxury of her future resources and could build the clanks she wantsto that she could transfer a copy of herself with Spark intact. Or possibly the Spark is a casualty of whatever the summoning beacon does, and none of the Lucrezia shards currently running around are full Sparks. This would fit with what.. Klaus, IIRC? commented on once, that all the people fighting for or claiming to serve The Other aren't bringing anything new. They're modifying and repairing things that already exist, but there's no central mind advancing its science like they would see if there was an active Spark at the middle of it all.

    So except for the one that was in Agatha (and is currently a guest of Queen Albia) all the Lucrezias just have to make do with having literally thousands of years worth of memory and knowledge to draw on, including some understanding of technology that is considered lost to everybody else and some that likely has yet to actually be created in this time.. but, you know, no actual Spark, as such.

  10. - Top - End - #250
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyckspoon View Post
    Uncertain, I think, but I suspect no? At least, not with the limitations of the body she currently has; it is possible if she had the luxury of her future resources and could build the clanks she wantsto that she could transfer a copy of herself with Spark intact. Or possibly the Spark is a casualty of whatever the summoning beacon does, and none of the Lucrezia shards currently running around are full Sparks. This would fit with what.. Klaus, IIRC? commented on once, that all the people fighting for or claiming to serve The Other aren't bringing anything new. They're modifying and repairing things that already exist, but there's no central mind advancing its science like they would see if there was an active Spark at the middle of it all.

    So except for the one that was in Agatha (and is currently a guest of Queen Albia) all the Lucrezias just have to make do with having literally thousands of years worth of memory and knowledge to draw on, including some understanding of technology that is considered lost to everybody else and some that likely has yet to actually be created in this time.. but, you know, no actual Spark, as such.
    The one in Agatha was using Agatha's spark for any sparkiness. Presumably that is why Lucrezia wanted to overwrite her daughter.
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  11. - Top - End - #251
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkspear View Post
    Slight digression back to Wednesday's strip, but is Lucrezia in clank form capable of the spark? It seems giving clanks the spark is something unique and special to Agatha, other than that it's been largely depicted as being biologically based, which is why Lucrezia could only become a queen by having her second breakthrough in the flesh.

    My point comes back to the whole knowledge vs ability thing, so Lucrezia in clank form has the memories and knowledge but not the actual capacity to make sparky leaps, which could lead to the mania and transformation into the Other.
    From how the final confrontation with Lucrezia in Agatha's body went, the answer is no: it takes organic mind to find the spark.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Radar View Post
    From how the final confrontation with Lucrezia in Agatha's body went, the answer is no: it takes organic mind to find the spark.
    Not quite. We know that a non-organic body can find the spark - we've seen it in comic already*.

    It takes an organic mind to find the spark - and build it into a flame! an inferno!

    In other words, it takes an organic body to become a queen.


    * Not the link I was looking for - there's another one where Mittlemind and company make the same observation, but obviously I can't find that one...
    Warning: This posting may contain wit, wisdom, pathos, irony, satire, sarcasm and puns. And traces of nut.

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  13. - Top - End - #253
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    Not quite. We know that a non-organic body can find the spark - we've seen it in comic already*.

    It takes an organic mind to find the spark - and build it into a flame! an inferno!

    In other words, it takes an organic body to become a queen.


    * Not the link I was looking for - there's another one where Mittlemind and company make the same observation, but obviously I can't find that one...
    Honestly, if a non-organic body can have the spark, then I don't think there any barrier for them to become a Queen either. That would be an odd limitation.


    Lucrezia's clank body was build by Travek, and I think its a safe assumption that he didn't build the Spark in it.

    What I find more shocking are the implications how old these memories of Lucrezia are. How did she manage to watch a mirror for 500 years?
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    Quote Originally Posted by PraetorDragoon View Post
    What I find more shocking are the implications how old these memories of Lucrezia are. How did she manage to watch a mirror for 500 years?
    Overweening vanity? I think that's quite simple for Lucrezia.

    Also interesting is that neither the Queens nor Lucrezia created them.
    Warning: This posting may contain wit, wisdom, pathos, irony, satire, sarcasm and puns. And traces of nut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkspear View Post
    Slight digression back to Wednesday's strip, but is Lucrezia in clank form capable of the spark? It seems giving clanks the spark is something unique and special to Agatha, other than that it's been largely depicted as being biologically based, which is why Lucrezia could only become a queen by having her second breakthrough in the flesh.

    My point comes back to the whole knowledge vs ability thing, so Lucrezia in clank form has the memories and knowledge but not the actual capacity to make sparky leaps, which could lead to the mania and transformation into the Other.
    I would say that its most likely no. Klaus has been studying the spark and does seem to find that destorying physical parts of the brain can indeed destroy it, he just hasn't pinpointed which part. Lucrezia only being able to achieve a second breakthrough while in a physical body with a spark i feel is indeed more evidence of this... there is also one other bit, Gil observed that for some reason they haven't seen anything new out of Lucrezia; she's just been using the same old tech she used 20 years ago and all of the new developments are being made by sparky minion. To be, this suggests she may not be capable of making those sparky leaps an innovations which is why she needs to rely on others... Lucrezia is still incredibly brilliant since she retains all of her old knowledge, but as far as inventing new science goes she has to do it the old fashioned way

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    As for Lucrezia watching something for 500 years... she's functionally immortal and signs point to her sanity being a little... frayed.

    At best.

    Also, I suspect that Agatha's little clanks having the spark is something new, and there's no reason to assume that Lucrezia has any knowledge of it or how to do it. My read is also that machines in the GG universe mostly can't be sparky, not just can't be queens.
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    Its entirely possible she either stood there staring at the mirror for 500 years, or, considering time travel is a thing here, that she placed sensors near the mirror, then traveled to whenever the mirror was recorded as doing something and checked it out then. Or something else strange and unexpected. Its honestly hard to tell with her. Most of her backstory is a mystery.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traab View Post
    Its entirely possible she either stood there staring at the mirror for 500 years, or, considering time travel is a thing here, that she placed sensors near the mirror, then traveled to whenever the mirror was recorded as doing something and checked it out then. Or something else strange and unexpected. Its honestly hard to tell with her. Most of her backstory is a mystery.
    My theory (which I might have mentioned above) is that she copied her mind into a body that consisted of a camera and a power supply that lasted 500 years. She then sat there for 500 years and copied the mind back into her head.
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    About sparks and machines, I think it could work this way: most machines cannot support the spark, but some can. As in, a sparky mind can be installed in them, and its spark will function. I would not be surprised if van Rijin's muses were such machines.

    Agatha's machines were extremely unusual in that she didn't just create machines that supported the spark, but she actually gave them sparky minds without transferring e.g. her own mind into them.

    To become a queen, Lucrezia needs a physical body. We know that the spark has something to do with chemistry, because sparks have unusual brain chemistry. It's possible that Lucrezia needs a physical brain because she needs those chemical processes, and her clank bodies can emulate the functions of the normal spark*, but not the way those chemicals can be manipulated into processes that open queendom.

    Maybe, now that she has pulled it off, she has a better chance to one day (possibly in many centuries) ascend as a machine -- maybe to just find out more bugs and limitations in her machine body.

    *she alluded to some extremely complex clank-making loom that took years to create, and I assume she has some good reason for that immense effort: building a spark-compatible machine could be one.

    Anevka also used to be a spark. We never found out whether she was still one when she drove her clank.
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    Was she ever confirmed to have been a spark when she was still alive? I was under the impression her father tried to use the summoning engine on lots of women, sparks or not, out of mad desperation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grim Portent View Post
    Was she ever confirmed to have been a spark when she was still alive? I was under the impression her father tried to use the summoning engine on lots of women, sparks or not, out of mad desperation.
    Yes, in the novels if not the comic. However, I'm pretty sure building a secret lab in Castle Heterodyne followed by transferring a portion of the castle into the body of a muse (and said muse into a ... humanoid ... body) would probably count as evidence...

    She's not just using sparky stuff, she is understanding and adapting it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    Yes, in the novels if not the comic. However, I'm pretty sure building a secret lab in Castle Heterodyne followed by transferring a portion of the castle into the body of a muse (and said muse into a ... humanoid ... body) would probably count as evidence...

    She's not just using sparky stuff, she is understanding and adapting it.
    I meant Anevka Sturmvoraus, though I suppose my post wasn't clear.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grim Portent View Post
    I meant Anevka Sturmvoraus, though I suppose my post wasn't clear.
    Anevka is a harder one. She's not noted in the text to be a spark (as far as I can remember), but it appears that many girls with the spark just disappear, with the blame being put on the Geisterdamen. Tarvek confirms this.

    So, not specifically shown as a spark, but from the parameters used (incorrectly, as it turns out) for the summoning engine, quite possibly is, or her father wouldn't have tried using her.
    Last edited by Manga Shoggoth; 2021-12-05 at 05:40 PM.
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    Ain't it nice when everybody on the team is on the same page?
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    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
    I'll take that bet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Ain't it nice when everybody on the team is on the same page?
    I've never been on a project where murdering the team members was part of the definition of done, but I hypothesize it would be bad for morale and productivity.
    Clearly Dr. Monahan has a plan in place to not die. I wonder if it involves feeding Lucrezia to giant rats? That would be amusing to watch, albeit unlikely of success.

    We have further indication that Queens tap into power sources that pre-exist them, and I'm going to go with these being related to the Mirrors - either the Mirror makers found power sources and located the Mirrors there, or the makers created the power sources where they wanted to place a Mirror. Which means the presence of a Mirror in the Red Cathedral, and the Dyne being deep underground, suggest that a Queen could have arisen in Mechanicsburg.

    Which may have been what caused the explosion that wrecked The Castle - Lucrezia was trying to ascend to Queenhood, and screwed up. And wound up traveling through time.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Scarlet Knight's Avatar

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    Default Re: Girl Genius: XXXenophile Edition

    I suspect every spark knows they are to be killed at the end of a project, but vanity tells them they their escape plan is foolproof since the other spark is obviously a fool!
    “A long surcote of pers upon he hade, / And by his syde he baar a rusty blade.” - Chaucer

  27. - Top - End - #267
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Girl Genius: XXXenophile Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Ain't it nice when everybody on the team is on the same page?
    This is one of Lucrezia's big problems / weaknesses. Her ego is so large, and her paranoia about her secrets so rampant, she destroys assets when she doesn't think she'll need them anymore and they know too much. As a result she's constantly playing a solo hand and any defeat sends her crashing to the ground. Compare that with Agatha, who has surrounded herself with friends and allies. They, loyal to her, knowing some of her secrets, and capable of fighting and creating on their own, frequently save the day when Agatha is inactive or overwhelmed. You would think someone with enough intelligence would be able to understand this.

    But then, while Sparks are intelligent, they're not always sane...

  28. - Top - End - #268
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    SamuraiGuy

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    Default Re: Girl Genius: XXXenophile Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by eee View Post
    This is one of Lucrezia's big problems / weaknesses. Her ego is so large, and her paranoia about her secrets so rampant, she destroys assets when she doesn't think she'll need them anymore and they know too much. As a result she's constantly playing a solo hand and any defeat sends her crashing to the ground. Compare that with Agatha, who has surrounded herself with friends and allies. They, loyal to her, knowing some of her secrets, and capable of fighting and creating on their own, frequently save the day when Agatha is inactive or overwhelmed. You would think someone with enough intelligence would be able to understand this.

    But then, while Sparks are intelligent, they're not always sane...
    Lucrezia realized that Good triumphs over Evil, at least in the case of the Heterodyne boys. What you describe is *why* Good (or at least, Neutral) tends to triumph over Evil. People who will fight to save each other as a team beat groups of individuals who don't trust each other. Also see: military training since the days of Alexander.
    This ... is my signature finishing move!

    "It's never good when you make a fiend cringe" - MadGrady

    According to some online quiz, I'm a 6th level TN Wizard. They didn't give me full XP for all the monsters I've defeated while daydreaming.
    http://easydamus.com/character.html

    I am a Ranger Archetype: Gleaming Warden (thx to Ninja Prawn)

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Fyraltari's Avatar

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    Default Re: Girl Genius: XXXenophile Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Shining Wrath View Post

    We have further indication that Queens tap into power sources that pre-exist them, and I'm going to go with these being related to the Mirrors - either the Mirror makers found power sources and located the Mirrors there, or the makers created the power sources where they wanted to place a Mirror. Which means the presence of a Mirror in the Red Cathedral, and the Dyne being deep underground, suggest that a Queen could have arisen in Mechanicsburg.

    Which may have been what caused the explosion that wrecked The Castle - Lucrezia was trying to ascend to Queenhood, and screwed up. And wound up traveling through time.
    And that original Queen was most likely murdered by Lucrezia, leaving behind naught but a priesthood worshipping/fearing the Dyne until the H'rok'dyn came and drank from it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scarlet Knight View Post
    I suspect every spark knows they are to be killed at the end of a project, but vanity tells them they their escape plan is foolproof since the other spark is obviously a fool!
    Aaand I've just realized that the Great House of Telvanni from Morrowind is populated entirely by Sparks...
    "Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced."
    Gehm's corollary to Clarke's Third Law



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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
    I'll take that bet.

  30. - Top - End - #270
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Default Re: Girl Genius: XXXenophile Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by eee View Post
    This is one of Lucrezia's big problems / weaknesses. Her ego is so large, and her paranoia about her secrets so rampant, she destroys assets when she doesn't think she'll need them anymore and they know too much. As a result she's constantly playing a solo hand and any defeat sends her crashing to the ground.
    I'm not so sure about that. The only instance I can think of is here (and by the Geisters in Stormhalten generally), and that is explicitly to keep the resources out of Klaus' hands.

    I agree her ego is her biggest weakness, though. She underestimates other people very badly...
    Warning: This posting may contain wit, wisdom, pathos, irony, satire, sarcasm and puns. And traces of nut.

    "The main skill of a good ruler seems to be not preventing the conflagrations but rather keeping them contained enough they rate more as campfires." Rogar Demonblud

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