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Messages - nervousenergy

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DF Spoilers / Re: Chronicles of Amber
« on: February 08, 2018, 07:14:52 PM »
Cool thread.  The Chronicles of Amber has always been one of my favorite series, having read it shortly after the first series was completed with the Courts of Chaos.  I hadn't considered the close parallels until reading this thread, other than the fact that Amber gets riffed on by a lot of urban fantasy. 

I do like to pretend that the second series around Merlin wasn't written.  One of the great charms of the original 5 was the character of Corwin himself, our narrator.  This series was what first gave me my love of well-executed first person stories.  I've always felt I've known Corwin better than some real friends.  And like many great series, it didn't try to reveal too much.  The second series didn't have nearly as unique a character to narrate in Merlin, and it tried to explain too much.  Magic requires mystery.

Lots of great quotes in this thread.  One of my favorite was a funny throw-away line Corwin uttered after his assassination attempt that I've stolen on occasion:  'If blood be the price of admiralty, I've just bought myself a naval commission...'

DF Spoilers / Re: Deadline end of year
« on: October 22, 2017, 04:23:22 PM »
So we got to hear that forums are not hip anymore and that it was time to move on. As any programmer knows, how the software looks like is more important than the functionality. And young kids use Facebook now.
And that's the part that peeves me off the most about the situation:  the impression of dishonesty.  I say impression because I don't know Iago's mind and won't accuse him of dishonesty if he truly does feel the BB format is dead and we're all very reluctant users who'd much rather be on Facebook or Reddit, despite the copious evidence to the contrary.    If he's tired of it he's tired of it... this happens all the time.  Give it over to someone else, and if nobody wants to step up and JB isn't interested in professional management/hosting then let it die of it's own accord, but don't try and tell us something that's simply not true for what's likely the vast majority of us. 

DF Spoilers / Re: Deadline end of year
« on: October 22, 2017, 02:54:50 PM »
I agree with many in the main exit thread:  Forums aren't dinosaurs OR dying in the niches they occupy.  If anything, they're growing.  No other social media design captures near-time conversation, topic organization, search-ability, anonymity, and global 'one stop shop' for everything that forum is about.  Every other option mentioned (Facebook, G+, Reddit, Discord, etc.) fails one or more of those major features. 

Getting rid of the official forum concept is a big mistake, and will almost certainly spawn another forum(s) that are 'unofficial' for fans to get those community features.  Iago may be done with the forums, but he's likely to find out after they're changed to read-only that the fan base isn't done with the Forum concept.  It'll fracture for a while into all these other SM spaces, then imperfectly coalesce back onto another BBS style forum somewhere else.  After Iago breaks the tablets, and the JBO fanbase spends a few months wandering in the FaceBook, Reddit (lol), and G+ desert, perhaps the 17th Shard will take them in.  They certainly don't seem to be 'dying'. 

DF Spoilers / Re: Murphy in Peace Talks (WoJ spoilers)
« on: August 14, 2017, 06:48:07 PM »
Not to be too ominous or paranoid, butů are you so sure that Murphy is still Murphy right now?
I don't think she is, though in the normal PTSD human sense.  To reiterate:  She trained in physical combat for years with Odin's crowd (not going to try and spell it without a reference at hand ;-)) and came up short.  She focused her whole life on being an cop and had that taken from her.  She tried to take the moral high ground in taking possession of one of the Holy Swords and saw it broken to bits on her actions.  She may have some permanent disability from this last fight. 

People don't just walk away whole and unchanged from shattering events like that.  Everything she's based herself on has been brutally taken from her.

DF Spoilers / Re: Murphy in Peace Talks (WoJ spoilers)
« on: August 10, 2017, 08:48:47 PM »
Saying that Murphy is the last true blue mortal on the team is a good point. However, her getting so badly wounded by Nic that she'll never recover 100% is also a point where you got to wonder what her future role as "the normal" is going to be in the series. It's fully possible that she'll transition into another role, but given how much her identity has been to be this tough woman, I bet it would trigger even more of an identity crisis than she already had after having to leave the CPD.
This is the key point I don't see discussed all that much.  The blow to Murphy at the end of Skin Game was profound, and has come on top of a long series of blows.  As others have noted, she can't hang... not on the physical level that she's spent so much time training for.  And now she's physically broken, and has taken a huge guilt hit by being the catalyst that destroyed one of the holy swords.  Yes, it got remade almost immediately, but it's human nature to feel a huge sense of personal failure for the first event.  Physically broken, morally broken, all of her lifelong personality anchors ripped away.  When I finished Skin Game I thought for sure she was being set up to be tempted by a Coin, given how bad of a place she was going to be in.

Sure, she can do all of these roles that folks are postulating... but look at it from the point of view of her character.  What can she do from the depths of the despair that's *got* to be crushing in on her after the events of SG?  JB can write this sooo many ways...

Cinder Spires Spoilers / Re: Loved it! Thoughts...
« on: January 07, 2016, 04:52:36 PM »
Not saying you were  :) but I didnt connect with it at all, and seeing that someone obviously loves it (a fan of the same author since we are on the forums lol) makes me consider that the fault was with me for rushing through it and being prejudiced against the genre.
I loved the book, but am generally not a big fan of steampunk.  To me, everything works or not based on your connection (or lack thereof) with the characters.  I read all of Codex, and while I enjoyed the action scenes and the magic (summoning?) system, I can't recall a single character a year or so after finishing, other than the villain (the bug queen).  The Cinder Spires characters need some fleshing out, but they started out a lot more vivid to me than Codex, especially the etherialists. 

It's hard to compete against a 15 book series, so I don't even try and compare against DF.  The opening book of CS is light years better than the first couple of DF, but that's not saying anything a DF fan doesn't already know. 

As to the setting, it seems to strongly hint at a steampunk genre in form only, with the eventual underpinning in harder SF.  No way to tell right now what JB has in mind, but it seems to be a stagnant colony on a hostile world that's lost most of it's tech and history.  The characters and story so far are more than good enough to keep me buying, but I'll be happier if it turns out that way.  My dislike of the steampunk setting is due to it usually having no plausible basis of existence, even with strong fantasy elements, and is used as a lazy crutch by authors to do SF or fantasy with a Victorian theme.  Steampunk as a technical regression from a higher-tech base is a lot easier to swallow, combined with the really intriguing physical setting.

Hopefully the characters grow on you, but even with the very best authors that's never a guarantee.   

The bigger limitation on etheric improvements may be cultural.  We don't have enough history yet, but this world seems to be in a typical medieval innovative rut.  Things work the way they work, and there's not much pressure to improve them.  The obvious conclusion is a colony world where the original tech base has been forgotten, but where the original efforts to build the spires has led to a largely comfortable existence for the population. 

One specific exploit that looks possibly like a plot hole is the power of Etherialists to control/subvert etheric weaponry.  This seems pretty axiomatic so far in the story.  But given that, why can't they affect naval weapons?  I kept expecting Ferrus to alter the course of the engagement at the end by turning the weapons of the Auroran BC back on her. 

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