Lightning

Question about Weaknesses of Epics [Firefight spoilers included]

26 posts in this topic

From what we learn in Firefight, it appears that epics have different levels of weaknesses.  For instance, Sourcefield's electricity is dampened by kool-aid, but her power is completely nullified if she drinks it.  Similarly, Steelheart's weakness to damage could only be exploited by someone not afraid of him, but the mere presence of someone who was unafraid did not negate his powers completely.

 

So, what was Steelheart's true weakness?  What would have led to his (temporary) loss of all powers?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's possible that nothing would negate SH's powers entirely. After all if his weakness was just being in the presence of someone who was not afraid of him then his powers would never work, since he was not afraid of himself. 

However it is entirely possible that his powers simply wouldn't work on someone who wasn't afraid of him. 

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's possible that nothing would negate SH's powers entirely. After all if his weakness was just being in the presence of someone who was not afraid of him then his powers would never work, since he was not afraid of himself. 

However it is entirely possible that his powers simply wouldn't work on someone who wasn't afraid of him. 

Well, Steelheart made a habit out of executing people that opposed him to a significant extent, like David and his father, with their own guns (at least it was guns in their cases). Until now I just assumed that was supossed to intimidate people and send a symbol but it might as well have been a cover to not risk his powers failing him.

Edited by Edgedancer
8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, Steelheart made a habit out of executing people that opposed him to a significant extent, like David and his father, with their own guns (at least it was guns in their cases). Until now I just assumed that was supossed to intimidate people and send a symbol but it might as well have been a cover to not risk his powers failing him.

 

This is what I assumed at first, then I looked back and he used superhuman strength against David's father, which is what really killed him. A possible explanation to that is that after hurting him, his father grew afraid, but I'm not sure how far I'd trust that to be a rule. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is what I assumed at first, then I looked back and he used superhuman strength against David's father, which is what really killed him. A possible explanation to that is that after hurting him, his father grew afraid, but I'm not sure how far I'd trust that to be a rule. 

True, well from what we have seen the threshold of his weakness seems to be rather low, so I wouldn´t be suprised if worrying that hurting him angered Steelheart would be enough. Alternatively, he got afraid when Steelheart lunged at him. It´s also worth noting that he didn´t shoot an energy beam, though that could have been pure instict.

One way or another, it does cast doubt on the theory.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is what I assumed at first, then I looked back and he used superhuman strength against David's father, which is what really killed him. A possible explanation to that is that after hurting him, his father grew afraid, but I'm not sure how far I'd trust that to be a rule. 

 

I always took this to mean that David's father got at least a little worried when he shot SH. And that was enough to negate the weakness. My take on it has always been that in order to trip SH's weakness you have to be utterly convinced  that SH is no threat to you at all. Even Prof who is pretty ridiculously powerful was worried enough about fighting him that he couldn't exploit the weakness. Same goes for every other High Epic who faced off against SH. No matter how confident they were, even with a Prime Invincibility, they were at least concerned enough that they couldn't trip his weakness.

In fact in the years since David's dad, the only person who was confident enough that SH wasn't a threat to trip the weakness was SH himself.

So I agree his threshold is extremely low. There is no margin for error.

Edited by Galavantes
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So what would happen if you get some sort of automated weapon to attack him anyway? I guess the concept of fear has to exist for the attacking party in the first place to trip the weakness?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So what would happen if you get some sort of automated weapon to attack him anyway? I guess the concept of fear has to exist for the attacking party in the first place to trip the weakness?

 

That's how I would perceive it. Perhaps it's backwards to say there has to be an absence of all fear and worry. It is likely more correct to say that the presence of any fear or concern at all means that you can't harm him. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So what would happen if you get some sort of automated weapon to attack him anyway? I guess the concept of fear has to exist for the attacking party in the first place to trip the weakness?

I think his weakness is specifically a person who doesn't fear him, not just anything that doesn't fear him.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think his weakness is specifically a person who doesn't fear him, not just anything that doesn't fear him.

I agree with this, I also think Steelheart has to be killed by a sentient being who is unafraid of him and not some automated system of any kind.

 

First because it ties with who he was and his own issues, and second because otherwise good ol' Steely would have been Wormfood long before the beginning of the books.

 

 

 A possible explanation to that is that after hurting him, his father grew afraid, but I'm not sure how far I'd trust that to be a rule. 

Well when David's father shot it was to kill Deathpoint and thus in his head save or at least help Steelheart who at that point had done nothng wrong and had actually saved people by preventing deathpoint to murder more by his sheer presence.

 

Of course when the guy came at him angry he had all the reasons in the world to be afraid, but then I do not think Steelheart's weakness is something that cancels all his power I think it just makes him killable with his other abilities staying functional.

 

In fact I would say that the weaknesses of Epic possessing a Prime invincibility ONLY cancel that out.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with this, I also think Steelheart has to be killed by a sentient being who is unafraid of him and not some automated system of any kind.

 

First because it ties with who he was and his own issues, and second because otherwise good ol' Steely would have been Wormfood long before the beginning of the books.

 

 

Well when David's father shot it was to kill Deathpoint and thus in his head save or at least help Steelheart who at that point had done nothng wrong and had actually saved people by preventing deathpoint to murder more by his sheer presence.

 

Of course when the guy came at him angry he had all the reasons in the world to be afraid, but then I do not think Steelheart's weakness is something that cancels all his power I think it just makes him killable with his other abilities staying functional.

 

In fact I would say that the weaknesses of Epic possessing a Prime invincibility ONLY cancel that out.

Megans cancels her illusion things too and Nightwielders shadow stuff got destroyed on contact with UV

Edited by Voidus
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think his weakness is specifically a person who doesn't fear him, not just anything that doesn't fear him.

I wonder, if Steelheart shoots a beam at Newton and the beam then hits him after being reflected, would that still count as his attack and hurt him?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 and Nightwielders shadow stuff got destroyed on contact with UV

 Nightwielder's shadow tentacles are killed by UV but he is still able to block out the sun over the entire city. Logically the sun should neutralise his sun blocking power. Clearly there are odd limits on weaknesses.

Maybe his weakness evolved from a nasty tanning-salon prank rather than the sun itself. Blocking out the sun uses his strongest ability and ordinary sunlight is not enough to cancel it but the UV element of the sunlight is strong enough to cancel his lesser power of intangibility (and maybe flight and the tentacles), perhaps a UV searchlight could punch through his sun blocking?

 

Fortuity was interesting in that his attraction to a woman could lessen his precognition so what exactly was his fear? If he had a fear of beautiful women he would not be spending all his time picking them up so it is probable that it is attractive women doing something specific that would completely neutralise him, as Megan was only stunningly gorgeous she merely dampened his powers a bit. My guess is that he was mocked by a girl he had a crush on when he was younger therefor it is being mocked by attractive women that works fully against him. No woman in Newcago would dare to do so to him, as with Steelheart they would be too afraid.

David did mention that Fortuity does not like his women talking back to him, maybe the whole Extispicy thing began because he gutted a woman who inadvertently triggered his weakness and he wanted to explain it away?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 weaknesses questions...

 

A: The one major problem i have had with book one and steelheart's weakness is...So he can pull a trigger and set off an explosion (Set by someone who did intend to harm and fear him) but...i cant imagine that they never setup Trip mines or other booby traps that steelheart himself would have triggered and thus...set-off the same criteria. But heck...maybe they ran out of stock on trip wires and claymores. 

 

 

B: I cant remember, do they ever explain how David finds out about the Kool-aid and bad rock music?? I know Tia asked him about source field but did he answer her or evade the question?

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 weaknesses questions...

A: The one major problem i have had with book one and steelheart's weakness is...So he can pull a trigger and set off an explosion (Set by someone who did intend to harm and fear him) but...i cant imagine that they never setup Trip mines or other booby traps that steelheart himself would have triggered and thus...set-off the same criteria. But heck...maybe they ran out of stock on trip wires and claymores.

B: I cant remember, do they ever explain how David finds out about the Kool-aid and bad rock music?? I know Tia asked him about source field but did he answer her or evade the question?

Sourcefield and Mitosis probably already had records that he deduced it from.

And Steelheart can fly, so mines don't really do much.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

....Fortuity was interesting in that his attraction to a woman could lessen his precognition so what exactly was his fear?...

I asked Brandon this the other day at a signing, and he said that he was a little surprised by how many people were curious about Fortuity's weakness. He had thought it was one of the more obvious ones. It basically has to do with his fear of rejection by women and his desire but inability to completely conquer/dominate them.

At least, that's how I understood it. I was a little starstruck at the time.  :ph34r:

3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 weaknesses questions...

 

A: The one major problem i have had with book one and steelheart's weakness is...So he can pull a trigger and set off an explosion (Set by someone who did intend to harm and fear him) but...i cant imagine that they never setup Trip mines or other booby traps that steelheart himself would have triggered and thus...set-off the same criteria. But heck...maybe they ran out of stock on trip wires and claymores. 

 

 

B: I cant remember, do they ever explain how David finds out about the Kool-aid and bad rock music?? I know Tia asked him about source field but did he answer her or evade the question?

 

A. It's possible that someone who didn't fear him had to deliberately attack--consciously decide to pull the trigger, and to kill by doing so. If that were the case, accidentally setting off a trip mine wouldn't harm him, as the only deliberate choice to do violence was made by someone who clearly feared him to much to face him directly. (This is also my argument against the robotic automatically firing gun; it was placed and its trigger was set by someone who feared Steelheart too much to face him.)

 

David's father, who didn't fear Steelheart, consciously chose to kill, even if Steelheart wasn't the intended target. When Steelheart fired David's gun, he made the same deliberate choice, even if he didn't realize that he would be included in the blast. By this reasoning, a trip mine would only work if he intentionally triggered it to kill someone else.

 

B. It was never directly stated, but the weaknesses were likely deduced from the notes David and Tia had taken on them, as well as those Tia could gather from other lorists. They probably looked for patterns in what Mitosis and Sourcefield avoided or perhaps destroyed on sight.

 

For example, Sourcefield might have followed a strict all-natural diet and required that all mortals and lesser Epics do the same in her presence and may have once blown up a Kool-Aid factory. Likewise Mitosis could have killed the other members of his band (and maybe any other musicians he caught doing covers of his songs, claiming that others using his creation was "disrespectful") and destroyed any music store that sold his albums.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Nightwielder's shadow tentacles are killed by UV but he is still able to block out the sun over the entire city. Logically the sun should neutralise his sun blocking power. Clearly there are odd limits on weaknesses.

Maybe his weakness evolved from a nasty tanning-salon prank rather than the sun itself. Blocking out the sun uses his strongest ability and ordinary sunlight is not enough to cancel it but the UV element of the sunlight is strong enough to cancel his lesser power of intangibility (and maybe flight and the tentacles), perhaps a UV searchlight could punch through his sun blocking?

Yeah that' long been a problem I've had with Nightwielder, but we did recently get a quote at a signing saying something different is going on with Nightwielder.

On no one trying trip mines on Steelheart, he's completely paranoid, he makes sure no one knows where he eats or sleeps most of the time, it would be extremely difficult to set up a trap like that.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I asked Brandon this the other day at a signing, and he said that he was a little surprised by how many people were curious about Fortuity's weakness. He had thought it was one of the more obvious ones. It basically has to do with his fear of rejection by women and his desire but inability to completely conquer/dominate them.

At least, that's how I understood it. I was a little starstruck at the time.  :ph34r:

Wait!

 

You can´t get more rejecting/humiliated by a woman than have her try to assassinate you. How in the name of Calamity did his powers still work after that?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait!

You can´t get more rejecting/humiliated by a woman than have her try to assassinate you. How in the name of Calamity did his powers still work after that?

Sure you can. Being assassinated in public by the girl :P

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait!

 

You can´t get more rejecting/humiliated by a woman than have her try to assassinate you. How in the name of Calamity did his powers still work after that?

Sure you can. Being assassinated in public by the girl :P

 

Like natc said, I think it had something to do with the fact that Megan didn't humiliate him in front of anyone. By the time they were in public (so to speak) again, Fortuity probably considered it just another attempt on his life.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait!

You can´t get more rejecting/humiliated by a woman than have her try to assassinate you. How in the name of Calamity did his powers still work after that?

New Headcannon: Megan joined the Reckoners after a one night stand with Fortuity in which he promised her the world and never even called her again. Steelheart, being a protective father figure to her, gave her permission to join the Reckoners and assassinate him, because even Steelheart hates living with the reputation people like that give his gender.

6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Nightwielder's shadow tentacles are killed by UV but he is still able to block out the sun over the entire city. Logically the sun should neutralise his sun blocking power. Clearly there are odd limits on weaknesses.

Maybe his weakness evolved from a nasty tanning-salon prank rather than the sun itself. Blocking out the sun uses his strongest ability and ordinary sunlight is not enough to cancel it but the UV element of the sunlight is strong enough to cancel his lesser power of intangibility (and maybe flight and the tentacles), perhaps a UV searchlight could punch through his sun blocking?

 

Fortuity was interesting in that his attraction to a woman could lessen his precognition so what exactly was his fear? If he had a fear of beautiful women he would not be spending all his time picking them up so it is probable that it is attractive women doing something specific that would completely neutralise him, as Megan was only stunningly gorgeous she merely dampened his powers a bit. My guess is that he was mocked by a girl he had a crush on when he was younger therefor it is being mocked by attractive women that works fully against him. No woman in Newcago would dare to do so to him, as with Steelheart they would be too afraid.

David did mention that Fortuity does not like his women talking back to him, maybe the whole Extispicy thing began because he gutted a woman who inadvertently triggered his weakness and he wanted to explain it away?

 

It's always possible that while many epics have one weakness that negates their entire powerset, some epics have multiple weaknesses that each negate a subset of their powers, or that some have just the one weakness that negates a portion of their power. If that's the case, Steelheart might have been even more powerful than he appeared, if his weakness only negated his defensive abilities. AS a bully he might have had multiple weaknesses, but perhaps he managed to kill everyone who knew about the one(s) that negated his offensive powers.

 

As for Nightwielder... it's entirely possible that the UV did disrupt his ability to blackout the whole city, but because it's such a large work, it only shrinks around the edges at first, and that the narrative camera didn't track anywhere that was disrupted while he was under UV light.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, I do assume that the Nightwielder dome probably takes time to break down with its size.

Or maybe it was just nighttime?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.