Lotus

QF59--Aftermath: The Final rose

35 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

And with that, the final rose was given. Keredin stood confidently with the rose in his hand, knowing that the wealth of information this would be able to bring his fellow ghost bloods was insurmountable. And besides... Adolin was pretty cute as well. Perhaps they would get along half-decently. And I mean, after that fantasy suite night... This might actually be kind of fun!

The other participants headed home, some in tears, some relieved. Adolin did have a tendency to talk about his sword a lot... err... not that kind of sword.

- - - 

Malliw was not given a rose (voted out)! They were a Honest participant! 

Archer was not given a rose (killed)! They were a Honest participant! 

- - -

 

Vote Count: 

Malliw (3): Kasimir, Archer, Malliw

- - - 

Congratulations on the Ghostblood spies for winning the game! @Kasimir @Orlok Tsubodai@StrikerEZ

- - - 

Doc Links:

Dead Doc

Mod Spreadsheet

Elim Doc

 

Player list: 

 

1. Kasimir-- Keredin Ghostblood spy 

2. Matrim's Dice--Lucy  honest participant 

3. The Unknown Aon--Floradel honest participant 

4. Devotary--Kelath honest participant 

5. JNV--Aracha honest participant 

6. Archer--Nidhonest participant 

7. Experience--Zara  honest participant 

8 .Stricker--Vanala Ghostblood spy 

9. Ash--Tailia  honest participant 

10. Maillwi--Malila honest participant 

11. Thaidakar the Ghostblood--Salana honest participant 

12. Amanuensis--Awoman  honest participant 

13. Illwei--Albert  honest participant 

14. Bort--Bortington the Blind  honest participant 

14. Orlok Ghostblood spy 

Edited by Lotus
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6 minutes ago, Lotus said:

Congratulations on the Ghostblood spies for winning the game! @Kasimir@Archer@StrikerEZ

:thonk:

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Posted (edited)

Whoops double post :D

GG everyone! I hope y'all had as much fun as I did! Especially Kas :P

I love me a close mountainous game :wub:

Thanks for GMing and IMing, Lotus and Araris ^_^

Sorry for not RPing though -_-

Edited by Amanuensis
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Posted (edited)

7 minutes ago, Lotus said:

Congratulations on the Ghostblood spies for winning the game! @Kasimir@Archer@StrikerEZ

Sigh. I'm sorry guys. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry :|

Please, please make me a Villager next time please :sob:

P.S. Think you misplaced Orlok with Archer, as Archer was Village. Not that Archer didn't help, but kind of sad as well, given how much work Orlok put in :P 

Just now, Amanuensis said:

GG everyone! I hope y'all had as much fun as I did! Especially Kas :P

The Elim doc was 90% breakdowns and stress and crying before Orlok returned I can tell you this much :|

Edited by Kasimir
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5 minutes ago, Kasimir said:

P.S. Think you misplaced Orlok with Archer, as Archer was Village. Not that Archer didn't help, but kind of sad as well, given how much work Orlok put in :P 

My brain wanted to replace Striker with Malliw so it tracks. Fixed.

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Lotus you put Archer on the elim team tags to mess with me didn't you

I'm breaking down

what is this

am i being messed with

Archer flipped green right

Anyways

GG elims

honestly didn't expect to die :P.

though ofc, I thought Archer was an Elim. Which...which means I should have expected to die. so.

Look,

I don't claim responsibility for my thoughts.

Anyways

This was a good game, I had fun despite dying inside every cycle telling myself something was obviously wrong with the gamestate but not wanting to go after Kas because if it wasn't Kas then like I'd feel bad because I seem to always go after Kas so anyways gonna stop rambling

this was a good game

I hate QFs as village

lol

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Another victory for an elim team of mine where I get exed D1 :ph34r:

I am so incredibly proud of both of my teammates. @Orlok Tsubodai you were a huge part of figuring out strategy throughout the game when you were around. And @Kasimir you were freaking incredible and I am glad that I can say we have won both of our elim games together. :D Oh also, this was my first elim game with Orlok, which is cool!

Anyway, thank you @Lotus for running this! I had a blast for the day I was playing, even if I did get exed. :P

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Posted (edited)

that's right, I was evil the whole time! no, Lotus, don't... 

sigh

I was planning on some voting shenanigans last cycle to test Kas' willingness to shift to Orlok, but I didn't want to fiddle too much with TUA's vote being uncertain and then TUA apparently forced the right shift and then Kas just went with it? I think the only tell I could have picked up on was TUA being a weird kill. Maybe Mailliw's frustration, but I always read self voting as evil. Good game elims. Was not expecting that outcome.  

EDIT: Oh yeah, thanks for running this, Lotus and Araris. And for going for 3:12 instead of 4:11. Gave us a chance :P.

Edited by Archer
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Hi hi hi wow great job Kasimir that was cool I like your words very nice good job spies fancy footwork there I trust long words too much good note for the future thanks

Thanks to everyone for being great and thanks to Lotus for running the game and wow 

Just... wow

(Also there were like two toher aftermath things and that kinda confused me for a hot second how does that happen)

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1 minute ago, Archer said:

I was planning on some voting shenanigans last cycle to test Kas' willingness to shift to Orlok

Sorry bro :/

That wouldn't have worked. It would have hurt me greatly (and it did in the Elim doc) but I was prepared to bus Orlok without hesitation and had been since C5, just that C5 wasn't the right time due to a lot of factors, including myself finally snapping under the strain of having to act normal and not breakdown in the thread. My in-thread line was "I vote where Archer votes" so I stuck with it.

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A brief summary of the game for me, courtesy of my appearance in the dead doc:

Alive.jpg.7daf19b1f68f0026c6945ecdaef90860.jpg

I'm still not entirely sure why I went Dingo there (usually that's an Elim response or a pressure response, both of which... weren't really present this game, just a lack of time). But it was fun!

Also I think the Aftermath double-posted, maybe

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1 minute ago, Ashbringer said:

Also I think the Aftermath double-posted, maybe

Oh thanks for telling us, didn't realize. :P

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At 240, that elim doc is 11 off the record for most mentions of my name in one. :/

That elim doc is a little worrying. One reason being it sends the message that Kas would struggle to be evil in a longer game, which can serve as a soft clear next time he plays in one, because GMs aren't meanies (despite what you may have heard). I think because they discuss their struggles with burnout so much, while putting in admirable efforts, I have a tendency to think they've done enough, let's not make life harder by voting for them. Which translates into lazy, early clears. So I'm open to suggestions on how to approach such situations now that one has backfired one me, in a way that works for everyone. 

also they banked on me not revising enough and were right. rood. 

But mostly I'm going to chalk this up to good play by Aman and Mat and others for catching one, and then good distancing by team evil. 

 

***

Random death RP:

A producer pulled Nid aside. “You’ve got dirt under your fingernails.”

She locked eyes with him. “So?”

“There’s a sink over here. You should take care of it before you meet with him.”

“Let me ask you something. What’s the worst part about washing your hands?”

He shuffled his papers, confused.

“It’s getting your sleeves wet. I hate getting my sleeves wet. And for some reason, every single outfit you’ve given me has had a massive sleeve on the left side.”

“Well then it’s only half the work to…”

“No. Because you know what’s impossible to do singlehandedly? Use a bar of soap. What am I supposed to do, pet it like a hamster? Spin it like it’s David Bowie’s glass balls?”

“I don’t understand those references. But no matter, we’ll get makeup to sort it out for you. How’d you get muck on you anyway?”

Nid sighed. “Wish it was while digging your grave. Oh! Adolin, honey, you like a dirty gal, don’t you? We were just talking about what I can do with one hand.”

The prince blinked. “Do you like swords?”

“I like it shorter and sturdier. I’m more of a dagger girl, myself.”

“Okay.” He grabbed a sandwich and began to walk away. “It was knife knowing you then. Goodbye.”

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46 minutes ago, Kasimir said:

Sigh. I'm sorry guys. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry :|

Please, please make me a Villager next time please :sob:

P.S. Think you misplaced Orlok with Archer, as Archer was Village. Not that Archer didn't help, but kind of sad as well, given how much work Orlok put in :P 

The Elim doc was 90% breakdowns and stress and crying before Orlok returned I can tell you this much :|

You did get me at the very end there. I had you and Orlok once I did my actual analysis, but for whatever reason, I was convinced Ash was the best starting point. Wish I’d gone for Orlok then instead. :P 

But your arguments in thread were so intensive that I started second guessing it right at the end and Archer’s posts today did feel weird, so at the end I thought maybe it had been him the whole time. 

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1 minute ago, Archer said:

I have a tendency to think they've done enough, let's not make life harder by voting for them. Which translates into lazy, early clears.

That's what I was afraid of :/

It's why I really, really wanted to emphasise that I needed people to not shy away from lynching me if they were down for it in C5, while at the same time, just so tired and done trying to hold everything together that all of it was leaking no matter how much I tried to just not.

I don't really have an answer for this and I think I'm too tired/dead for one, but this is where I said I'm happy to accept a voluntary player ban if necessary.

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I think this is just something that needs talking about, how to deal with burnt-out or overstressed players. I'd normally just say bluetext it, but it's not that simple, because if the stress is caused or aggravated by being Elim or Neutral (or Villager - but mostly those two), then it makes it hard to blue-text because it's hard to judge if you'd really react that way as the other alignment. Bluetext works nicely if you're going to be completely inactive, like going out of internet service, but a lot less so if you just can't find the will to post.

At the same time, I don't think we can say just never lie about personal issues, because 1) some things just don't need to be / shouldn't be explained more than 'I'm going through something stressful', and 2) a full ban on lying about stress or inactivity can lead to a lot of questions if you were to, say, completely miss the fact that someone posted the same idea you had two posts above you, which IMO shouldn't be something that can be verified, and there's a lot of instances I can see it turning into overpressuring people for the truth... and 3) I guess it's a pressure to come up with a reason, when sometimes there isn't a reason that can easily be put into words. Maybe that's category 1. Idk. 

 

Part of it's definitely an equivalence issue or just... not wanting people to have details. Or maybe that's just me trying desperately to draw a Dingo parallel when that's sort of an opposite issue. So maybe a better step is to just start / start 'normalizing' posts saying "I need a break, my parting thoughts are X, make whatever judgement you think is best from my prior posts" and have trust that people will actually do that, and not refuse to exe (or decide to exe) someone who needs a mental break because of that break. Because pretending we're not going through things is Not Good. 

 

That being said, @Lotus, @Araris Valerian, thank you so much for running this game! I feel bad that I wasn't able to get into the Bachelor RP mindset, but it was a really interesting concept with a nice game gimmick that I definitely have no outside attachment to. And from what I've picked up you both did an excellent job with all of this. So thank you.

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Thanks Lotus! It was fun to be back for a bit! Sorry there wasn't much RP this game. 

Looks like even the dead people thought I was evil... I honestly think I just play so differently from a meta perspective than most people here at this point that people just can't see it as village. Except Kas and Orlok who were dead on about my playstyle (but they also were the only ones who knew for a fact that I was good). It's always been a struggle for me, but especially now that I'm so out of touch with this community, I think my playstyle is just read totally differently. 

I'm not sure how Archer ended up so completely convinced against me or how I was so against Ash (again, if only I had flipped my suspect team which was Ash, Kas/Illwei, Orlok as of C5 and then increasingly Kas replaced Illwei and then she died, so it had to be Kas). So well done pitting us against each other. 

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, StrikerEZ said:

Another victory for an elim team of mine where I get exed D1 :ph34r:

Obviously for future elim games you need to immediately out yourself :ph34r: 

Thanks for running the game, Lotus! It was fun to watch, and dying C1 again was fine I guess since I nailed Striker :P I do wonder why I was the priority kill target since the only elim I suspected was Striker and had died C1 recent ish but I don’t really mind. Just curious. Guess I’ll check the elim doc :P 

e!Kas and e!Orlok in the same game teaches everyone a good lesson about effort clearing and the danger of it :P I was happy to see people coming around by the end though. I wonder how much I would have, but seeing as how I sorta pushed Kas and Orlok to the side C1 and didn’t revisit them I, ah, maybe it was a good thing I died :P 

@Kasimir you played excellently as usual, glad you survived the game (literally and figuratively) :P

On the topic of metaing alignments based on the latest games, I don’t really see that being too much of an issue since GMs are trolls to an extent and paranoia is real, but I guess we’ll see.

Edited by Matrim's Dice
That’s a lotta :P’s
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Another game where catching an elim C1 didn't help find the others with the help of anonymous voting, even if it ended up close from good late-game play from the elims and village.

I hadn't died early in a game for a long time, so I was due to be killed in this one even though I don't think I would have gotten around to suspecting Kas and Orlok anytime soon. I managed to fulfill prior obligations to have four RP characters and keep them up as a villager without having to draw it out the whole week, so I can go back to doing whatever I feel like doing in future games.

2 hours ago, Kasimir said:

I don't really have an answer for this and I think I'm too tired/dead for one, but this is where I said I'm happy to accept a voluntary player ban if necessary.

I think people will be more suspicious of you and more likely to vote for you in future games. Is that helpful at all?

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2 hours ago, Kasimir said:

I don't really have an answer for this and I think I'm too tired/dead for one, but this is where I said I'm happy to accept a voluntary player ban if necessary.

Yeah, I don't think a player ban is necessary :P Besides, I need my ThreadPMBro to help temper my insanity. I forget which cycle it was that you said it, but the whole me throwing literally everything I come up with followed by you shooting it down / helping me refine things is such a nice dynamic that I don't want to lose :P

11 minutes ago, Devotary of Spontaneity said:

I think people will be more suspicious of you and more likely to vote for you in future games. Is that helpful at all?

Honestly, this ^_^ but that's the nature of the game and I'm excited for how this new development unfolds!

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Posted (edited)

Warning: This post is going to contain a lot of brutal honesty and discussion of my condition. It may not be pretty. You may not want to continue. But I think it's important because I have questions/comments to bring up.

Kas when the aftermath went up:

Spoiler

bKZFIq.gif

i. documentation

Spoiler

I've napped peacefully for the first time in - a while. No nightmares. No nothing. Just Elysian peace and it felt so good. Still dead tired, but at least I don't think I'm at the brink of a depressive slide anymore, or at least I've stabilised further so I'll take that as a win. I don't know if I'm in the state to coherently discuss these things, but it may be better to say it while the emotions are still raw than not.

Araris gave me a choice. I could delete the heavy content or spoiler it. There were some heavy parts I deleted because no one needed nightmares, but I made the choice to spoiler it  heavily rather than just purge it. Why? I had the sense that my C5 dip out could be read negatively in light of my alignment. I think it's understandable that if anyone backed off of me because of that post (which is why I was worried enough to make the second one appealing to people to just lynch me if they felt I was suspicious), they might feel their goodwill had been manipulated. That's not a healthy state of affairs for SE. (Similar line of thought to emotional manipulation, in my view.) 

The breakdowns in the doc are heavy going. It isn't a light Elim doc by all means. But they're my means of documentation, or 'showing my working.' I think most of them make the C5 collapse a lot more apparent in context, and show how utterly driven to the brink I was by the time I was no longer able to fully hide my condition from the thread. 

The other side, I suppose, is - the guilt. I powerfully felt guilty and checked in with the IM, knowing that I'd felt...at least barely functional, if still deeply-exhausted after grabbing an intermittent one to two hour nap that cycle. I was very aware Village Kas would've just rushed back in half-cocked and probably screwed up or failed to be more coherent as a result. Is that a rational way to feel? I don't know. But I'm at the point of SE where it feels like my Village self is compelled to a lot of self-destruction, people then expect that from me, and then I feel obligated to continue. I think that goes hand-in-hand with the Village anchor problem. I do think I have a lot of playstyle rethinking to do at this point. And that guilt was leaking in because it felt like I was lying to the thread, as though since I was just on the edge of functional, I was obligated to head back in and try to brawl it out. I don't know if that's a healthy way of thinking. After a year of Village anchor, I don't know if I have a healthy sense of boundaries anymore.

To be clear, I do see C5 as a failure on my part, and I apologise to everyone for it. In an ideal world, I'd have hidden it from the thread and staved off the breakdown until I died or the aftermath, whichever first. As I acknowledged in the doc, I accept it raises questions about my fitness to continue to play SE, and if I should be allowed to. 

I think the painful realisation for me is that Village Kas would've rushed back in, because he would have accepted no less for his team, and because no one would have stopped him. And perhaps it's true that it's not the Village's job to stop him. But the only reason I was allowed one cycle to recover in this game rather than pushing myself still further was because Orlok stepped in and told me to stand down. And I listened. Pathetically, gratefully, but I did. I listened, and stood back and took it easy, and was able to at least get some semblance of function back. All because I was Evil. All because I had a teammate.

Maybe this is what Devo meant, when she mentioned that a team wouldn't make me feel that way. I don't know.

5 hours ago, Devotary of Spontaneity said:

I think people will be more suspicious of you and more likely to vote for you in future games. Is that helpful at all?

5 hours ago, Amanuensis said:

Honestly, this ^_^ but that's the nature of the game and I'm excited for how this new development unfolds!

It'll be more like old-school SE for sure. I think this is part of why Devo, Elan, El, Araris, and a lot of people were telling me I needed an Elim game. The idea was it'd at least switch things up and reduce the tendency for the Village to rely on me to anchor. Because I'm not good at saying not, and have a tendency to give my best to my team or die trying. And I think Aman was saying it's good for player growth, which I have to reluctantly agree. It was good for me. Even if it was so much suffering.

The real issue was that by the time Orlok and I committed to the C5 gamble, it was in part an acknowledgement I'd nothing left to give. I was completely dry. Empty. I couldn't bring myself to deepwolf if Orlok died. This was why he extracted from me a promise to concede C6 if he'd died C5, contingent on Araris allowing it. He was worried about the toll to me if I insisted on carrying on somehow.

ii. anatomy of a breakdown

7 hours ago, Archer said:

One reason being it sends the message that Kas would struggle to be evil in a longer game, which can serve as a soft clear next time he plays in one, because GMs aren't meanies (despite what you may have heard).

I'm going to carefully say here that if the first concern is that I might be soft-cleared in longer games (or let's be honest, Lotus games) in future, then the community probably have a problem anyway because players shouldn't be using this level of thinking in order to try to solve or game the game. We can argue about whether they should or will (descriptive versus normative), but I will say that it's concerning to me that this is the first issue that comes to mind out of the raw mess that was the Elim doc.

Spoiler

To be clear, I can't be Evil. As the game showed, I'm not good at it (which, you know, is reasonable after seven years of Village), my tactical sense isn't there, I don't have the nerve for it, and I spent the first couple of cycles in a mix of Thief mode and new Elim nerves which sounds paradoxical but is also I think a fairly reasonable take if you consider that my experience skews very powerfully Village. So that was the first problem: I was in over my head a lot, rocking those training wheels, winging everything, and blundering deep into a position I never played as Evil (in my grand total of two (2) Evil games) - because I've always just been a winger or slid under the radar completely. I didn't have what it took to make sense of things or make judgement calls, which added to my stress levels. The analogy you're looking for here is having a new player mainline a Elim team in their first/first Elim game, which is brutal. The one complicating factor is, obviously, I'm not exactly new.

So that was the first factor. The second factor was that through no fault of their own, Lotus and Araris landed on the one distribution that brought back painful memories of bad Elim games I'd played. No shade on @Mailliw73 - he was my first GM, and his games were fun and will always have a special place in my memories. But as my Elim games, they also cast a powerful negative shadow on being Evil for me, and this was worsened by the surface parallels: teammates with Orlok again, and Ghostbloods. Six years later, I still struggle to re-read LG20. It's actively painful for me, and I can't read the game without the realisation that I left Orlok and Wilson in the lurch, and with it, a powerful sense of guilt. (Incidentally, this set the stage for further breakdowns later - because it was important to me to finish a Elim game without subbing out, to try to face those painful memories, and part of me powerfully wanted to atone to Orlok by not letting him down this time.) The parallels to MR9 also became more powerful when Striker was dead and Orlok MIA (again, for very understandable reasons), and I was once again drowning trying to keep an Elim team afloat on my own.

The third factor was that I was essentially a de facto solo Elim for three to four cycles.

The fourth factor was that I was also fighting off illness at the same time, and the cough was bloody awful and has been double-teaming with the nightmares to keep me from getting enough sleep, which meant that by the C5 breakdown, I was very poorly rested and on the brink.

All of these combined to make a perfect storm which broke me, and just kept on breaking me. 

Would I die just as hard in a LG? Well, maybe don't reskin it Ghostbloods :P And maybe don't make me mainline an Elim team - though I honestly think GMs do need to look to both Village-side balance as well as Elim-team side balance. I strongly feel a team shouldn't be structured with the expectation that one player should anchor it because that just sets it up for huge volatility if the anchor dies early. In this game, that wasn't even the problem - on paper, a Striker/Kas/Orlok team is fairly well-distributed. In practice, because of the way circumstances were set up, I had to anchor. The result was a lot of Kas suffering and eventually, being forced towards my breaking point.

Just to point out, we have an immediate example of a team without a solo anchor - from LG83, an Araris/Archer/TJ/Bip/Karn/Bort team is reasonable and has multiple anchors. This I think is a healthy way to set up a team.

In the end, I don't sign up for games if I don't think I can handle pulling Evil. This did lead to me getting in over my head here, but again - perfect storm.

 

iii. extended and shortened cycles

Spoiler

I think my thoughts on the extended cycle portion have been laid out sufficiently in the Elim doc, but I'll summarise them here - RL is understandable, and the GM's life comes first, but ad hoc extensions can really change the landscape of a game. I regret the extended Night in LG74 on the day I just couldn't do rollover because it made the difference between one to two Elims dying and a clean sweep.

Wyrm, too, grew to regret extended cycles after initially allowing an extension of Nights if three players put in a request. Which the Village abused the hell out of in LG7 to coordinate. I share his view and in future, my take will be that the thread will not be locked, but all shoptalk will not be allowed. Y'all can meme and RP but nothing directly game-related, and rollover will be extended. Probably shutting the PMs though as those are harder to regulate especially if there's a lot of them >>

I'm more lukewarm on requesting a shorter lylo, partly because of how much I was begging for an end - any end - by C7. Village Kas would probably never ask for one and would rethink until the last second, but we've established that Village Kas is a delusional fool who would die trying to help the Village. I can understand the psychology behind the decision because I was this done with it - and in truth, I don't know if I would have also consented as a Villager if I'd inhabited this emotional state. Maybe this is prima facie false because Village Kas would never enter this sort of emotional state anyway, but eh. Whatever.

iv. breaks - Ash stuff

Spoiler
7 hours ago, Ashbringer said:

Part of it's definitely an equivalence issue or just... not wanting people to have details. Or maybe that's just me trying desperately to draw a Dingo parallel when that's sort of an opposite issue. So maybe a better step is to just start / start 'normalizing' posts saying "I need a break, my parting thoughts are X, make whatever judgement you think is best from my prior posts" and have trust that people will actually do that, and not refuse to exe (or decide to exe) someone who needs a mental break because of that break. Because pretending we're not going through things is Not Good. 

I think part of this really has to tie back to the emotional manipulation conversation, or even playstyle changes. I'm happy that SE has become a lot more careful now about preserving room for players to make playstyle changes without sussing or lynching them for it off the bat. It's possible that a player who made a playstyle change might also actually be Evil at the same time, but I like that we're willing to identify them on other grounds.

I feel like this has to be the attitude we have towards players who need to take a break. That it's okay if you need to make that judgement call, and that's what I really wanted people to get out of my follow-up post - that if you do need to lynch me, you have my blessing because I really, really cannot be here anymore for this cycle. 

Just as we try to give space to players who are clearly frustrated and having a hard time, and sometimes don't lynch them that cycle, or sometimes do (this didn't stop us from going in on Heron eventually although Striker was having a very rough game in LG79.) 

Just as we look at a change of playstyle and rule it out of our evidence base, and sometimes find other reasons to suspect a player later on.

This feels like more of the same. On the other hand, players need to be bloody careful not to take advantage of community goodwill, because it's the same deal as bluetext or emotional manipulation - it just becomes a huge spiral down into anything being fair game.

I wanted to highlight that last part because I could have just said "I need a break" but part of me was also screaming about how inadequate that felt. Like, what sort of player are you that you can't even handle a cycle? The alternative was just letting people glimpse how done I was, while hiding the true extent of the emotional damage but that had its own problems too, as we can see.

Sometimes just saying it feels inadequate, I suppose. Maybe this goes back to where I'm just more open about my emotions than others. But I guess I need to rethink how I handle those too. I feel like the final answer anyway is some sort of middle ground: we need to be willing to just take the risk that we're letting an Elim pass up for a cycle or two, and trust we can take the shot later. This is true of playstyle changes, sometimes of frustration/players who just clearly need you to back off. At the same time, we need a robust player consensus that it is not acceptable to exploit these things to run away from suspicion. Because that's how you get scorched earth: because players feel their goodwill was abused.

v. minor stuff:

7 hours ago, Matrim's Dice said:

e!Kas and e!Orlok in the same game teaches everyone a good lesson about effort clearing and the danger of it :P I was happy to see people coming around by the end though. I wonder how much I would have, but seeing as how I sorta pushed Kas and Orlok to the side C1 and didn’t revisit them I, ah, maybe it was a good thing I died :P 

I've always been vocal about not effort-clearing me. Told Archer not to in AG8, told someone (can't remember) that I never effort clear Orlok in MR56, and so on. I think people just have to understand that given my Village playstyle, I'd be under significant pressure to replicate that as a Elim, which means that you can't effort-clear me. It's unfortunate it took this much for people to listen to me. Guess Village Kas just doesn't have enough credibility :( 

I don't mind operationally effort-clearing but in my head it usually comes with an asterisk that this person has to be revisited - it's what happened with Aman for me in AG8.

There's...a way I deal with reading Orlok, but it's based off the fact we have enough of a friendship for me to get a sense of what's baseline for him and not. Probably the same with Wyrm. And even that is fallible. This game, for instance, cemented Orlok's certainty of how to read me, for which I am very grateful due to the paranoia I got from him in MR56 and LG83 :P But I'll be honest, given our threadbrawl C6, I kind of feel like V!Kas/E!Orlok throwing down or E!Kas/V!Orlok throwing down is going to involve some light credibility issues in convincing the Village we're actually right about the other.

P.S. Wyrm threatened to come back to SE just to threadbrawl me :| And all of a sudden, I feel loved...

7 hours ago, Archer said:

also they banked on me not revising enough and were right. rood. 

I think it's one reason our Village selves worked well together, such as in LG79. I will rethink all the things if given the chance, you generally know when to stop. The result is that I encourage you to be more careful about rethinking, and you encourage me to actually stop before I decide against lynching the player who is very obviously Elim (hi LG79 Heron.) The moderation of our tendencies is a good thing.

7 hours ago, Matrim's Dice said:

@Kasimir you played excellently as usual, glad you survived the game (literally and figuratively) :P

Thanks, but honestly I wouldn't consider this good play from myself; just a lot of winging it and trying not to die. I'm glad I survived too, though I really wish I could've saved Orlok and Striker :(

I know what Aman said in the dead doc about it being necessary. I get it, or I wouldn't have done it. But it goes sharply against the grain.

5 hours ago, Amanuensis said:

Besides, I need my ThreadPMBro to help temper my insanity. I forget which cycle it was that you said it, but the whole me throwing literally everything I come up with followed by you shooting it down / helping me refine things is such a nice dynamic that I don't want to lose :P

That post was basically fairly honest. I always like to do first layer thought in PMs but if I can't get PMs, I do it in my GM PM, or just dump it in the thread and see what people make of it. And I need to work off other players to correct my thinking - this is why I was going absolutely nuts in AG8 when no one wanted to help me figure out if I was right about Ocho (I wasn't.)

I did like our ThreadPMBros dynamic, and I think it's quite effective as Villagers together :P I did feel that in MR56, I'd entered a kind of Devil's Advocate mode relative to you but I didn't think it was a bad thing because I think it helped you sell things to the thread in a way people could/would actually buy. Dunno. Guess I'd just say I liked what we had going, yes.

8 hours ago, Amanuensis said:

GG everyone! I hope y'all had as much fun as I did! Especially Kas :P

After sleep - C6 was fun, I think. Once I just let go of any expectation I had to be Village or that what my Village self thought mattered. I think I was juggling that a lot for most of the game, along with remnants of my LG83 Thief play and just nerves and emotional pressure, so just hitting the point where Orlok and I were staking it all on one final roll of the dice was sort of liberating. There was a definite plan/target and I put everything aside to make sure we got there.

In a way it was like the polar opposite to Village Kas I think. Still utter dgaf, just differently-valenced.

Besides, I'd always wanted to threadbrawl with Orlok, even if he was taking it easy on me :P 

vi. final thoughts

Good game from the Village - Orlok and I honestly thought we were dead in the water at so many points. Shout out to @Mailliw73 for the C6 Orlok suggestion, which was the absolutely correct one and the one Village Kas would have pushed for. Also, @Ashbringer - good C5 play, LG74 vibes, and absolutely what V!Kas would have called for as well.

Thanks to @Lotus and @Araris Valerian for their patience and GMing/IMing/Schadenfreude/trolling.

Thanks to @StrikerEZ and @Orlok Tsubodai for being insanely amazing teammates - I've had good prior teamwork with Orlok but almost exclusively as Villagers together or I suppose when he plays Age with Wyrm and myself, so it was fun being Evil with him and as much as I suffered during chunks of the game, I wouldn't trade our cycles scheming together for all the world. (It's great to see our teamwork carries over to being Evil together.)

My contribution to this game that I'm proudest of was taking a beating from Orlok C6 :D 

This was the death RP I edited and submitted - Keredin was a bit of a joke, meant to get back at Wyrm for the trolling he did in LG50.

Kas's Death RP:

Spoiler

Meet me at the dueling square, read the glyphs. It took him a long while to puzzle them out. Wyrum would have laughed at him for getting out of practice. Part of Keredin wondered if that was Adolin’s own hand, but then dismissed it. Only heretics bothered with the glyphs. It wasn’t supposed to be the sort of thing you did as a good Vorin man.

Keredin, though, had never been much of a good Vorin.

Cipher hummed thoughtfully as Keredin folded the slip of paper back again. “Again?”

Keredin shrugged. “I guess he wants to talk,” he said. Though he really wouldn’t have minded if the sort of talking Adolin had in mind involved…more of the sword. There was something raw and direct about crossing blades, as fellow duelists, that beat trying to share a meal and to not sound awkward as all damnation.

“I don’t understand,” Cipher announced. “He is not interested. You are not interested. And yet both of you continue with this…show.”

“He is interesting,” Keredin replied. And damnably attractive, either way you slice it. He scooped up the practice sword and wondered if Adolin was already there.

As it turned out, he was. And he didn’t have a practice sword with him.

“Hi,” Adolin said, when he saw Keredin.

“Not down for some practice?” Keredin wanted to know. He looked at Adolin in a well-tailored coat and drew some conclusions of his own. No sign of a rose, either. He wondered why he was taking this so calmly. Perhaps part of him had known, no matter what.

“I wanted to talk,” Adolin said. “Somewhere where we wouldn’t be overheard.”

“Hard enough to listen in on two men fighting,” Keredin said, with a wry smile.

Adolin shrugged awkwardly. “Yes, well, listen. Keredin. I think you’re nice, and I like your style with a sword, but…I don’t think your heart is in it,” he said, apologetically. “I think you need to think about what you really want.”

He could have wanted to know why. He could have pleaded, Keredin supposed. But he was very calm, now, and it felt as though he was in Stonestance, accepting the blow that fell.

“I signed up to forget someone,” Keredin admitted, perhaps too honestly. “Fell in love with the wrong person. So I suppose you’re not wrong about that.”

Adolin’s smile did reach his eyes, thawing out the blue with sympathy. “Women, huh? Had my share of difficult courtships.”

“It never was one,” Keredin said. He’d never—expected anything. By his lights, expectations inevitably set things up such that the world was ready to knock you down a peg or three. By his lights, he’d never had the right to expect anything.

Adolin clapped him on the shoulder. “I’m glad you joined,” he said. “But I think this isn’t the place for you. I’d like to duel sometime though—I think we could both use the practice.”

“Sure,” said Keredin. He could hear Cipher humming again. “Thanks for that. It’s been a while since I found a good sparring partner.”

“Anytime,” said Adolin, and he turned to leave.

So that was it then, Keredin thought. This was how it ended. Maybe he should have felt devastated. But he only felt curiously empty and relieved.

“Lies,” Cipher said. “You humans lie effortlessly. Do you do it to protect yourselves?”

Keredin blinked. “He is very good with his sword.”

Cipher hummed more, the lines that made up his form shifting furiously. Eventually, the Cryptic said, “Do you know why the Lightweavers must speak truths?”

“Why?” Keredin asked, his voice hushed.

“Because words without truth are breath and dust. They do not live. They are not your truth,” said Cipher. “Because for the words to mean something, for the words to have power, they must live in you.”

Keredin held the pouch of spheres in a hand and breathed in Stormlight, feeling it rage inside him. Wisps of it smoked off his skin. Imperfectly, as all these mortal these were. Always flawed. Always imperfect.

He didn’t know how to describe it. It was the feeling of a lastclap executed perfectly. Of that moment when you stepped into a strike and executed a parry just so, at the right time, at the right angle, and the counterstroke became a thing of beauty. It was the sound of Wyrum’s laugh, the way his smile reached his eyes. It was sweet honey on his tongue. It was the feeling of the morning sun on his skin, or drinking cool water from a skin after hours of sword practice. It was watching Wyrum work on his heretical glyphs. It was watching a master player place a stone in the exact position to win a match: the divine move, they called it, the perfect union of creativity and skill and inspiration.

“I don’t want to,” Keredin breathed, and the storm danced inside him.

“I know.”

“I’m terrified.”

“I know,” Cipher said, implacable.

“I loved him,” Keredin whispered. “I loved my best friend.”

That which had driven a wedge between them. Because it hadn’t been meant to be. Because it hadn’t been supposed to happen. And so Keredin had run. Had lost himself in the dance of the sword, had gone for anyone who caught his eye. Had found the Ghostbloods.

Had found himself chasing Adolin Kholin, who was attractive enough, who was poetry with the blade, and who seemed like a Herald reborn with the sun glinting through the hammered gold of his hair.

The Ghostbloods had set him on this path, but Keredin had fallen into it; had jumped of his own volition.

Cipher shook his head. “Lies,” the Cryptic hummed, his lines dancing, fragmenting into evermore fractals. “Beautiful lies, Keredin.”

Before him, the illusion bloomed to life.

It had been a perfect day, Keredin thought. The sort of day that stayed preserved in your memory, woven now in light before him. Wyrum lying under the tree in the courtyard, reading the book of poems, ever the heretic. The wine glasses on the rim of the fountain, water reflecting the light in a rainbow of colours. It had been a good afternoon: poetry and wine and laughter, over the song of the fountain.

Adolin was attractive. Keredin would never deny that. The girls Adolin went through like changing sparring partners at a dueling square seemed to think so, too.

But it wasn’t Adolin’s smile that haunted Keredin’s memories, the vividity never fading. As though it had all happened yesterday. Adolin wasn’t sarcastic, wasn’t prickly.

He looked at Adolin and he knew why men and women fell in love with him. Adolin was the sunlight; he was easy to love, he was handsome, and he was kind.

But Keredin didn’t love him, and that was the problem.

But Keredin looked at Adolin, and saw another man, and that was the problem.

The illusion shattered, Stormlight leaking from the wine glasses, from the fountains, and Keredin closed his eyes but still he saw nothing but blurry light.

“I love him,” Keredin breathed. “I still do. I still love my best friend. Stormfather help me.”

And he knew then, that he could not carry on.

Cipher hummed approvingly. “Truth,” the Cryptic said. “Your truth, Keredin.”

And then there was a Shardblade at last—a Cipherblade—in Keredin’s free hand, perfectly-balanced and lethal and graceful, and Keredin held on to Cipher and all he could think of was that he had been a fool, and he had run so hard and so fast and he didn’t know what for.

He had been trying so very hard to fall for Adolin Kholin, trying to bury his truth. Trying to keep on running.

And in the end, nothing had come of it.

He had loved his best friend. He still did. And Keredin had seen no answer to the unspeakable except to run, and to keep on running. And now, with the Cipherblade in his hand, humming, with tears in his eyes, all Keredin could think of was that he’d reached the end of the running.

“I’m leaving,” he said aloud. He let go of the Cipherblade, and the Cryptic formed again as a pattern of shifting lines on the sand of the dueling square. “I can’t keep doing this.”

I don’t think your heart is in it, Adolin had said.

He was right.

“What are you planning?”

Keredin swallowed. “I…have an old friend to apologise to,” he said. “And then I’m moving on with my life.” Maybe it was okay to be scared. To not have the answers. He didn’t know where he would be going, or what the future held. Only time would tell.

But it was a start, and Keredin had the strangest feeling that Adolin would approve.

Damn the Ghostbloods.

Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination.

I regret not being able to have the quiet, chill, RPful game I wanted. Sorry to Lotus and Araris for the trauma, and thank you to all friends who heard me out and kept me functioning until the end of the game. Orlok for best bro, seriously. (Get rekt Wyrm.)

To my team, I'm still sorry I struggled so hard, and made a bunch of questionable decisions trying to keep us afloat. I maintain I can't really Elim, as was apparent at many junctures during this game.

But I've got to learn how to, and this game was a start.

I don't really want to pull Evil again for quite a while and hope I'll be able to recover and that RNGesus is kind, but that being said, I understand I'm a bit of a hot commodity at this point because everyone wants the guy who hasn't been Evil in eons...

...so I'm just going to leave off by saying that I look forward to stabbing some Villagers (back or face, not picky) with some of you going forwards :) 

Edited by Kasimir
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To be clear, I can't be Evil. As the game showed, I'm not good at it 

*bonk*  I'm quite happy to continue playing with you if you'd just lower your personal expectations. It would help limit the amount of excuses you make for yourself if you'd accept less from yourself in terms of output amount and quality. Might be less personally satisfying if you're more confused as a result, but if the trade off is a happier outlook, I highly recommend it. And it would make me feel less like you're sacrifing sleep for a bad reason. 

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48 minutes ago, Archer said:

*bonk*  I'm quite happy to continue playing with you if you'd just lower your personal expectations. It would help limit the amount of excuses you make for yourself if you'd accept less from yourself in terms of output amount and quality. Might be less personally satisfying if you're more confused as a result, but if the trade off is a happier outlook, I highly recommend it. And it would make me feel less like you're sacrifing sleep for a bad reason. 

I think you're right about this, but I'm genuinely lost about how to do that by this point. After a year of kayana games (AG7-AG8 period), I feel locked against my will into a playstyle or play attitude where refusing to give my best even to the point of self-destruction is unacceptable. I think MR56 C1 was an instance of where this panned out badly - I was just working against all the negative modifiers, forcing myself to do it, and then making really bad analyses. Part of me also feels it's not ethical to demand of Villagers a level of effort I'm not willing to give myself. That seems to lead to tears all around.

Does anyone have any thoughts on how to reach that state?

Like, LG83 should have been that for me, and in a way, it was. I just did whatever the hell I wanted to in terms of analysis, never backread (almost never anyway) and just more or less dashed off first-level analyses and called it a day. But it turned out I couldn't do über-chill because sitting back and doing nothing also just broke my brain.

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53 minutes ago, Kasimir said:

Does anyone have any thoughts on how to reach that state?

Honestly, I’d say commit to something like what Drake did in LG 83. Set hard limits prior to the game starting up about the amount of effort you will put in. Only memes, or only RP, no vote analysis, 100 word max posts, whatever you think might be fun. If you make it clear you don’t want to carry the village (this would work for either team though) ahead of time, nobody will expect you to, so you will be free to chill or whatever.

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4 hours ago, Kasimir said:

just a lot of winging it and trying not to die

This is all elim play is. :P So I think you succeeded. 

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