Goatborn

Checkmating Limelight (SPOILERS!)

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Hey guys!

 

Finished Steelheart a few weeks ago, and one question has been burning: How would you checkmate the most powerful epic in the story?

 

How would you kill Prof?

 

With his combination of powers, I would rank him as a High Epic based on his defensive powers alone. He was able to heal from a skull-crush, and has damage resistance (shields) on top of that.

 

His offensive powers aren't directly damaging to organics, but we've seen what he can do to tech-based enemies, and can also kill/maim using his tensor ability to create badass swords and knives.

 

As I think about it, I would lure him out of Newcago. The all-steel environment is a tensor playground. If I could get him to an organic environment like a field or somewhere heavy in vegetation, that would negate his tensor ability (he would still carry weapons into the fight, but would lose that unpredictability factor).

 

The big question is overcoming his healing/shielding abilities. How do you stop that? Burn his corpse while immobilised? You wouldn't be able to restrain him indefinitely - tensor powers would bust him out of any prison before long.

 

Also, does anything from the story stand out regarding a potential weakness? Gifters aren't noted as having any particular weaknesses, and I can't think of any point in the story where Prof stumbles or isn't laying total waste to everything around him.

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?

 

Might as well ask how you overcome Steelheart.

 

Both are extremely powerful.  And according to the rules as we understand them, both have something that will bypass their powers.  We know what that was in the case of Steelheart.  We don't know what that is for Prof (though I wouldn't be surprised if we eventually find out).

 

As for gifters not having any particular weaknesses?  The gifting power itself has a couple of weaknesses.  First, powers can't be gifted to other epics.  Second, gifting in and of itself is useless to the epic (except as a way of reducing the power-induced sociopathy, as Prof notes).  In short, gifting allows the epic to help other people.  But it provides no immediate benefit to the epic.

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You, uh, shoot him. A lot. His Tensor powers do make it pretty difficult to inflict damage with direct impact, so I would recommend lasers. Incendiaries might work too. He doesn't seem to have much if any defense against poison gas.

 

Unlike Steelheart, he's probably susceptible to a nuclear blast.

 

See, Prof doesn't really have a Prime Invincibility. His shields are tough and he can regenerate rapidly, yes, but there's no infinity symbol in there. While it's pretty difficult to take him out, all it really requires is more power. Unlike Nightwielder, Steelheart, or Firefight, dropping the moon on him would probably guarantee a kill.

Edited by name_here
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Thank you.  I was wondering the same thing, but I was afraid of being the first to bring it up.

 

Since we don't know what Limelight's weakness is we will have to rely on the limitations of his powers.

 

Gifting: This is one of the more useful powers in the Reckoners universe because it means you have minions.  The more powerful the epic, the more competition for minionhood.  Since Limelight is so powerful he would be able to pick competent people as his subordinates.

 

Tensors: We have seen Limelight use this to neutralize a barrage of machine gun fire that was aimed at him and the people behind him. If he gets to close to any weapon or machine that is sent against him he can neutralize it.  He can also construct melee weapons out of surrounding material and escape just about any trap we box the man into.

 

Harmsway: If you don't kill this guy (or his minions) right away he (or they) will get up in a minute for round 2.  Furthermore, if you decide to break off the attack and regroup Limelight will have recovered and on the offensive before you have had enough time to get back to base.

 

Jackets: Limelight has a personal shield.  The shield is not perfect, but it can help him survive most of the more simple attacks that can be thrown at him.

 

So to neutralize his deference and kill the Epic:

 

Launch a multipronged attack on his minions.  It doesn't need to be a hard enough assault to kill them, but if they are tied down and using the gifted powers then Limelight will have less to work with himself.

 

In order to neutralize the tensors we will need to lay a trap with some kind of bait he is willing to take risks for.  Otherwise he will simply escape the situation as soon as he realizes that his enemies are in control of his environment.  The kind of bait will have to depend on what Limelight's agenda is.  Since we are looking at taking him down I have to assume his current agenda is no longer the one he had in the Steelheart book (I cannot bring myself to plan a hit on Prof.) But if we were going against an epic with powers like to Limelight's powers then he would have some need or desire we may be able to exploit.  My suggestion is to put the bait in plain sight and hope that your trap is good enough to work even when the target sees it coming.

 

As long as we kill him quickly and thoroughly the Harmsway should not be that big of an issue.

 

This brings me to the jackets.  I can think of a few ways around them, but I am not sure about any of them.

 

1. Water. Since Limelight needs to breathe (probably) it may be possible to drown him. If he can be lured into a location that we can flood at a moment's notice we may be able to kill him this way.  It would be hard for him to burrow out of danger when the danger flows with him.  There is a problem in that it takes several minutes to drown, Limelight may be a good swimmer, and the Harmsway may be able to help resist the effects of O2 deprivation.  Overall I think it would not work.

 

2. Gas.  Similar to the last suggestion, poison gas can probably bypass his shield.  However the same problems still apply.  The Harmsway factor will make him more resilient to the poison, he can escape most situations quickly once he knows what is going on, and there is the problem of putting innocent lives in the line of fire.  (Hard to avoid with a gas attack.)

 

3. Light.  Finally a plan I like.  There are not very many weapons grade lasers in the world right now, but I am willing to bet that there is some kind of Epic tech that can shoot beams of light strong enough to hurt.  Since the personal shield is invisable I assume that it doesn't block or impede light.  We could do some real damage with a phasor.  Unfortunately, we would need to be careful because if Prof gets to close he can vaporize the gun.

 

4. Heat.  This one seems better then it is.  Heat can do some bad things to people, but usually it needs to happen over period of a few minutes.  These are minutes that we just don't have.  Again, the Harmsway makes things harder for us.

 

This is all I really have.  There is probably a better way to take down an Epic with these powers, but I cannot see it.

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Quick question. Why are we calling him Limelight? I've only read the book once, but I was under the impression that David came up with a fictional name for the "fake epic" that they were creating. I'd be surprised if Prof had an epic name.

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So that the title of this post doesn't give away the spoiler to people looking at the new posts search.

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In my mind Limelight is the name he has when he is being an Epic.  Prof is the name of the man that is leading the Reckoners.

 

It is kind of like how Tolkien distinguished "Smeagol" and "Gollum".

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So that the title of this post doesn't give away the spoiler to people looking at the new posts search.

That makes sense.

 

 

In my mind Limelight is the name he has when he is being an Epic.  Prof is the name of the man that is leading the Reckoners.

 

It is kind of like how Tolkien distinguished "Smeagol" and "Gollum".

But unless I'm recalling incorrectly, Prof had nothing to do with the name Limelight. It was the name David suggested. I kind of doubt that Prof ever would have even been a prominent enough Epic to have a unique name.

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Just fix the green gaussgun and shot him with that. even if he can tensor the shot when its near, it should still explode(or whatever that effect is called, not really an explosion;)) right? even if he dont die hell be hurt enough that you can finish him off.

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1. Water. Since Limelight needs to breathe (probably) it may be possible to drown him. If he can be lured into a location that we can flood at a moment's notice we may be able to kill him this way.  It would be hard for him to burrow out of danger when the danger flows with him.  There is a problem in that it takes several minutes to drown, Limelight may be a good swimmer, and the Harmsway may be able to help resist the effects of O2 deprivation.  Overall I think it would not work.

 

2. Gas.  Similar to the last suggestion, poison gas can probably bypass his shield.  However the same problems still apply.  The Harmsway factor will make him more resilient to the poison, he can escape most situations quickly once he knows what is going on, and there is the problem of putting innocent lives in the line of fire.  (Hard to avoid with a gas attack.)

I do not think water and gas would be nearly as effective as you make it out to be. I think his Tensor power would still work on both of them.

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Just fix the green gaussgun and shot him with that. even if he can tensor the shot when its near, it should still explode(or whatever that effect is called, not really an explosion;)) right? even if he dont die hell be hurt enough that you can finish him off.

 

Maybe, maybe not.  His regenerative powers are pretty strong, as evidenced at the end of the fight with Steelheart (iirc, David initially thinks Prof is dead).  However, unlike Steelheart, getting him on the ropes is a straightforward "hit him until he stops moving" proposition.  In fact, one of the tricks used during the fight with Steelheart would work quite well.  Put him in the middle of a lot of smoke, and then shoot fully automatic weapons at his suspected location.  He won't be able to use his repelling ability because he can't see the incoming fire and is thus unaware of which direction he needs to use his repulsion powers to block the bullets.

 

A sniper catching him unawares would also work quite well - and could probably instantly kill him.

 

 

Gifting: This is one of the more useful powers in the Reckoners universe because it means you have minions. The more powerful the epic, the more competition for minionhood

 

I wonder what Conflux would have to say about that?

Edited by junior
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That makes sense.

 

 

But unless I'm recalling incorrectly, Prof had nothing to do with the name Limelight. It was the name David suggested. I kind of doubt that Prof ever would have even been a prominent enough Epic to have a unique name.

 

David invents it, but during the Conflux jailbreak once things go wrong he steps in, rants about incompetent minions, and declares to everyone that he is Limelight, at least implicitly.

 

His Tensor powers might or might not work on water and gas. I don't think we ever see it affect a material that isn't solid, but by the same token it's never called for. There's also the question of the composition of the dust left behind. Does it transform the material into a harmless compound, or does it break it into tiny particles of the original material? Also, is mass conserved? If it doesn't perform elemental transmutation, it would be pretty ineffective against poison gases. Even if it breaks molecular bonds, elemental chlorine would work. I would guess most of the mass vanishes, since steel is really, really dense.

 

Also, the gifted Tensor powers seem to be directional, so flooding a room with gas would make it difficult to effectively employ them. But that restriction might not apply to the original power.

 

With the way the gifted powers work, I feel fairly confident in stating there is a finite upper limit on all of his powers. The jackets can be overwhelmed, the harmsway does not work instantly, the tensors destroy matter within a limited area. If the base powers were infinite, then I'd expect the gifted powers to have sharply confined limits but work to an unlimited extent, like the jackets only block supersonic rounds but cannot be overwhelmed. Furthermore, note that Steelheart did win the fight, so the shield is not totally invincible. I would thus infer that he can't regenerate from sufficient damage, such as total destruction of the entire nervous system.

 

The Tensor power is another matter; even if it can only destroy a finite amount of matter in a period of time, it eats through solid steel fast enough that overwhelming it with mass is a pretty questionable plan with normal materials. Either find something dangerous that it cannot work on or attack him from an unexpected angle so he doesn't activate it. For bypassing it:

  1. There is no indication that it destroys the atmosphere in the affected area. It might not work on gases period, and even if it can selectively destroy them it might require actively choosing to, so colorless gases could work. The average lethal dose on nerve gases is pretty low, so using a bunch could overwhelm the healing or at least incapacitate him.
  2. It does not seem to obliterate incoming light, so lasers should pass through fine.
  3. No obvious thermal effects from use, so intense heat should work. Normal fires do take a while to actually kill people, so use thermite.
  4. Even if it can destroy poison gases, it does not appear to create oxygen. Remove it from the area with a giant fuel-air bomb and he should suffocate. Alternatively, get yourself a space station, put some form of bait on it, and lure him into coming. Then blow it it up.
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?

 

Might as well ask how you overcome Steelheart.

 

Both are extremely powerful.  And according to the rules as we understand them, both have something that will bypass their powers.  We know what that was in the case of Steelheart.  We don't know what that is for Prof (though I wouldn't be surprised if we eventually find out).

 

As for gifters not having any particular weaknesses?  The gifting power itself has a couple of weaknesses.  First, powers can't be gifted to other epics.  Second, gifting in and of itself is useless to the epic (except as a way of reducing the power-induced sociopathy, as Prof notes).  In short, gifting allows the epic to help other people.  But it provides no immediate benefit to the epic.

Gifting + Superhypnosis/migrating your mind into other bodies = many superminions

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David invents it, but during the Conflux jailbreak once things go wrong he steps in, rants about incompetent minions, and declares to everyone that he is Limelight, at least implicitly.

 

His Tensor powers might or might not work on water and gas. I don't think we ever see it affect a material that isn't solid, but by the same token it's never called for. There's also the question of the composition of the dust left behind. Does it transform the material into a harmless compound, or does it break it into tiny particles of the original material? Also, is mass conserved? If it doesn't perform elemental transmutation, it would be pretty ineffective against poison gases. Even if it breaks molecular bonds, elemental chlorine would work. I would guess most of the mass vanishes, since steel is really, really dense.

 

Also, the gifted Tensor powers seem to be directional, so flooding a room with gas would make it difficult to effectively employ them. But that restriction might not apply to the original power.

 

With the way the gifted powers work, I feel fairly confident in stating there is a finite upper limit on all of his powers. The jackets can be overwhelmed, the harmsway does not work instantly, the tensors destroy matter within a limited area. If the base powers were infinite, then I'd expect the gifted powers to have sharply confined limits but work to an unlimited extent, like the jackets only block supersonic rounds but cannot be overwhelmed. Furthermore, note that Steelheart did win the fight, so the shield is not totally invincible. I would thus infer that he can't regenerate from sufficient damage, such as total destruction of the entire nervous system.

 

The Tensor power is another matter; even if it can only destroy a finite amount of matter in a period of time, it eats through solid steel fast enough that overwhelming it with mass is a pretty questionable plan with normal materials. Either find something dangerous that it cannot work on or attack him from an unexpected angle so he doesn't activate it. For bypassing it:

  1. There is no indication that it destroys the atmosphere in the affected area. It might not work on gases period, and even if it can selectively destroy them it might require actively choosing to, so colorless gases could work. The average lethal dose on nerve gases is pretty low, so using a bunch could overwhelm the healing or at least incapacitate him.
  2. It does not seem to obliterate incoming light, so lasers should pass through fine.
  3. No obvious thermal effects from use, so intense heat should work. Normal fires do take a while to actually kill people, so use thermite.
  4. Even if it can destroy poison gases, it does not appear to create oxygen. Remove it from the area with a giant fuel-air bomb and he should suffocate. Alternatively, get yourself a space station, put some form of bait on it, and lure him into coming. Then blow it it up.

 

Organics are immune. So just shoot him with a turtleshell crossbow bolt, or get a bunch of goons to club him. Maybe Toblakai style.

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I'm pretty sure that it's living matter that is immune, just like Steelheart's transmutation power. And while the shield is of finite power I sincerely doubt breaking through it unarmed is viable.

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David invents it, but during the Conflux jailbreak once things go wrong he steps in, rants about incompetent minions, and declares to everyone that he is Limelight, at least implicitly.

 

His Tensor powers might or might not work on water and gas. I don't think we ever see it affect a material that isn't solid, but by the same token it's never called for. There's also the question of the composition of the dust left behind. Does it transform the material into a harmless compound, or does it break it into tiny particles of the original material? Also, is mass conserved? If it doesn't perform elemental transmutation, it would be pretty ineffective against poison gases. Even if it breaks molecular bonds, elemental chlorine would work. I would guess most of the mass vanishes, since steel is really, really dense.

 

Also, the gifted Tensor powers seem to be directional, so flooding a room with gas would make it difficult to effectively employ them. But that restriction might not apply to the original power.

 

With the way the gifted powers work, I feel fairly confident in stating there is a finite upper limit on all of his powers. The jackets can be overwhelmed, the harmsway does not work instantly, the tensors destroy matter within a limited area. If the base powers were infinite, then I'd expect the gifted powers to have sharply confined limits but work to an unlimited extent, like the jackets only block supersonic rounds but cannot be overwhelmed. Furthermore, note that Steelheart did win the fight, so the shield is not totally invincible. I would thus infer that he can't regenerate from sufficient damage, such as total destruction of the entire nervous system.

 

The Tensor power is another matter; even if it can only destroy a finite amount of matter in a period of time, it eats through solid steel fast enough that overwhelming it with mass is a pretty questionable plan with normal materials. Either find something dangerous that it cannot work on or attack him from an unexpected angle so he doesn't activate it. For bypassing it:

  1. There is no indication that it destroys the atmosphere in the affected area. It might not work on gases period, and even if it can selectively destroy them it might require actively choosing to, so colorless gases could work. The average lethal dose on nerve gases is pretty low, so using a bunch could overwhelm the healing or at least incapacitate him.
  2. It does not seem to obliterate incoming light, so lasers should pass through fine.
  3. No obvious thermal effects from use, so intense heat should work. Normal fires do take a while to actually kill people, so use thermite.
  4. Even if it can destroy poison gases, it does not appear to create oxygen. Remove it from the area with a giant fuel-air bomb and he should suffocate. Alternatively, get yourself a space station, put some form of bait on it, and lure him into coming. Then blow it it up.

 

 

I just used the name Limelight to avoid spoilers - every who has read the book would know pretty quickly what I was talking about, leaving most others in the dark! I generally think of his Epic name as Prof, though. (Not in universe - as someone pointed out, I don't think he made enough of an impact on the Epic scene to have his own name/reputation)

 

I may have totally misinterpreted the explosion that killed Steelheart - I thought that Prof was using his tensor ability to keep the flames at bay, but I get the feeling that everyone here attributed it to his personal shielding. I thought the outstretched hands in that scene indicated tensor techniques, and I never thought that he could project his personal shield (It seemed like an unconscious secondary ability to me, since people it was gifted to never trained in how to use it). Hence, I thought the tensor ability could affect non-solid matter such as explosions and flames...

 

Either way, Prof was able to not just withstand the giant explosion, but also protect a non-Epic from any harm (David didn't even seem to feel the heat).

 

As for gifting, it's still a bit of a black box. Even Prof doesn't seem to have fully explored how it works, with him being unaware that he couldn't gift Epics. With the amount of power Conflux was gifting out, I don't think there's an upper limit to how many times he can gift. He seemed to have most of a police force juiced as well as an entire power grid. But, from what Prof was saying after the Steelheart stadium showdown at sunrise (Woo! Alliteration!) there is an upper limit to the amount that can be gifted to one person. He mentions that if he gives it all to one person, they start to experience morality decay like an Epic.

 

Unfortunately, Calamity and Epics seem to fall into an "Anything is possible" magic system, instead of the rigid systems in other Sanderson works, so different gifters could operate totally differently. Examples from Conflux may not apply to Prof.

 

Brain-thing happening: Did the Reckoners mention that every team has at least one tensor, harmsway and set of jackets? If they did, then Conflux and Prof might be operating within the same boundaries - able to gift many, at varying strengths of gift-dosage. Alas, I digress. Maybe we should start a "Gifting: How does it work?" Thread.

 

So my main question for this post is: Did Prof use the tensor or shielding ability to protect David in the end?

 

Also, I don't think dropping a moon would work - it's solid matter and he could conceivably carve his way through while shielding/healing from the shockwaves. And imagine the collateral. You'd be wiping out humanity to kill one Epic... So how about we hold moon-tossing as Plan B?

 

At the moment, I'm going with nerve gas and laser weaponry as my top 2. What is everyone else's tally?

 

I'm worried that his healing ability does actually count as a Prime Invincibility. With his skull crushed, I would call that pretty significant nervous system collapse. If he can come back from that, he might be in Wolverine-class of healing.

 

The organic matter thing is a little washy. David specifically mentions that playing in parks is no longer an option due to the steel grass in Newcago... so if Steelheart could affect plant material/anything without a pulse, then Prof could probably do the same.

 

This was a long one. How do I break quotes up? Is there a html tag I can use? It's really fun hearing from everyone, and I'm glad I wasn't the only one, MathEpic!

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Living matter is immune to tensors. Heh. Throw a big bunch of poison snakes at him ;). enough poison from the right snake will prolly overload his regen, and even if not he will be incapaciated long enough you can cut his head off;) 

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Maybe if we trapped him on a plane, then unleashed these snakes on him...

 

That reminds me, his shield must be based on velocity/kinetic energy (like the goa'uld shields in Stargate) because he is able to catch things passed to him, and can shake hands with people. Of course, I'm assuming that it's always on unconsciously - he might be dialing it down in non-combat scenarios.

 

I'm seriously liking the snake idea. Now we need to get him into an environment where he can't tensor up a sword to wipe them out.

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Without Samuel L. Jacksons powers of getting stronger by screaming profanities, Limelight would never survive snakes on a plane.

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Yeah, come to think of it, the shield might operate on kinetic energy for activation. Certainly it's somehow selective and doesn't require active thought to engage, and I assume it works on unanticipated attacks since the Reckoners haven't noticed it doesn't. I assume Prof would have told them if it didn't; since it's already supposedly based on analyzing Epic powers it wouldn't strain credibilty to say it only worked on things the user considers a threat and he whipped up a neural interface, which was the cover story for the Tensors already.

Of course, it could be a smart defense that triggers on any danger whether he knows about it or not, like Steelheart's invincibility, but snakes are about as likely to bypass it as poison gas. Lasers are probably the most reliable option, since we're pretty confident the Tensors can't destroy light and they could potentially overwhelm the shield with raw force.

Alternately, if the Tensor is directional, attacking from every direction at once could do it. It'd be a bit tricky to lure him into the killzone, though, since enough firepower to overcome his shield would be hard to hide. Best bet would be to bait him into a stadium with remote mines in the ground, attack drones overhead, and some ground troops in the stands with antitank rocket launchers. Do a double bluff; he might get suspicious if there doesn't seem to be a trap, so make it look like the trap is just the troops in the stands. He'll Tensor in to flank you, clear out a chunk, and hopefully go to the center. Put some heavy weapons, ideally remotely controlled, in there so he goes to clear them out before sweeping the stands. At this point, have the drones attack and detonate the charges.

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Question from Goatborn: Did the Reckoners mention that every team has at least one tensor, harmsway and set of jackets?

 

In Mitosis Tia mentions that since Prof is out of town the Newcago Reckoners do not have any tensors, jackets, or harmsway.  I am not sure why though.  It may be because there is a range on how far someone can be from Prof and still use gifted powers.  Or perhaps Prof cannot keep his powers transferred when he sleeps.  Or maybe it is SOP for Prof to take all his power with him whenever he goes to a new location.

 

I am guessing that it is the range issue.  Remember that Conflux needed to go with Steelheart in order to help put down a rebellion.  If range on gifted powers was infinite Steelheart could have just taken his powered troops and left Conflux in the safety of the city.

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They'd been able to fake the powers being technology before, so I expect that it isn't range-limited. Probably now that the secret is out they decided to confine the powers to people he is in contact with so that if he needs to draw it back in they don't cut out without warning.

As for Conflux getting sent with the army, a couple possibilities exist. Either his powers are range-limited, which is plausible even if Prof's aren't because Epic powers are incredibly varied, or he wasn't just there for gifting. Newcago's heavy tanks might be so energy-hungry that they can't be powered by gifted crewmen, and Conflux was present to charge those high-density power cells like in the power station. Apparently that incident caused blackouts but there is no indication that Enforcement gear stopped working, which would fit with him gifting powers from a distance but charging the tank/power grid cells in person.

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I haven't read Mitosis yet - I'm in Australia, and we're always slow to receive things, even digital stuff :S

 

Prof may have changed his stance on gifting his powers out following the showdown, but I thought that the "It's tech" cover story would raise suspicion if other teams didn't have them. Although, I don't recall any direct confirmation that other Reckoner teams exist. Everyone acts like there are, but David never comes into contact with them directly. Prof's cover could always be that the tensors need constant recalibrating to function, and he's the only guy who can tweak them.

 

In Mitosis, does everyone know that Prof is packing Epicness? The end of Steelheart indicated that only David knew - everyone on the chopper were amazed that the team were healing so quickly.

 

I'm curious to know how long a single gifting could last - Conflux gave me the impression that it would be days or weeks before he'd need to gift again (just going on my own interpretation there; no solid evidence comes to mind). Although Prof's seemed limited to a mission-by-mission basis. He might be worried about morality decay, though, and keeps their exposure limited.

 

Assuming that we come up with an effective trap - massive military strike in a mined/snake infested area - then how do we lure him out? Prof's smart and would see any obvious trap happening... so do we dangle his team off the lip of a snake infested volcano with gunships flying around?

 

I also think that we should stick to a Reckoner budget here. I'm not sure that drone strikes and armies in the stands would be available. 

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I really think some of us are overrating prof´s powerlevel.

 

A snipershot in the head, sure, the shield would block part of it, but likely not enough.

 

Explosions I doubt thou. I think we want the bullet type of attack if its a kinetic one. Its noted in the book that the jackets arent great at stopping bullets, better at say, fall damage and such(meaning it propably protects better against explosions then bullets)

 

And while prof likely still got more of the shield power on him then what he gifted the others in the team, a sniperrifle is way more powerful than say, the gun abraham was shot by. Way way more powerful. A good shot and he´s propably down long enough that he can be finished before he recuperated fully.

 

Better get a good shot right away thou. If you just wound him abit, he´s likely to call back all the gifted powers, and grow stronger.

 

throwing snakes is still a funnier solution thou ;)

Edited by dyring
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It's always better to overestimate your enemy! (Although, I think it's more that I used to be a Scout... Be Prepared!)

 

I'd assume that his personal shield would be ramped up when surrounding himself. Both the gifted harmsway and tensor abilities were shown to be much weaker than when Prof used them at full strength. There's not enough data to confirm it, though.

 

Better get a good shot right away thou. If you just wound him abit, he´s likely to call back all the gifted powers, and grow stronger.

 

"If you shoot at the King, you better damnation well kill him." What would be your back-up strategy if the first shot didn't bring him down? (Snakes! Lots of snakes!) 

 

Steelheart's boot was probably a lot stronger than most guns, but I agree with your reasoning regarding explosions and the shields. And considering that he protected himself and David in the epicenter of the stadium explosion, I wouldn't bother trying explosions unless we were going for a big flashy distraction.

 

The reason I keep thinking that his power level is through the roof is due to his healing ability. I'm not sure that it has an upper limit, but I guess dissolving him in acid could work. We'd have to make sure that he's incapacitated by the rifle shot, so he can't tensor out a side of the tub. Did the book mention any material (apart from organics) that the tensors were less effective against?

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