HSuperLee

Marsh's Spikes Discussion

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Hello people's of the 17th Shard. Thanks to RShara for sharing it here via aonstick on Reddit (credit where credit is due) we now have the fabled hemalurgy table.

Now, to my knowledge, the table is based on Spook's knowledge of hemalurgy, which in turn is probably based on Marsh. The table specifically mentions that the 47 bindpoints shown were for making Inquisitors. So, if we assume Marsh had 47 spikes, can we figure out what they all are? 

So, what I know off the top of my head:

Marsh was a full mistborn and a seekerx2 by HOA, excluding the metals they couldn't get. So that's 10 spikes, 4 steel, 4 bronze, 2 electrum. He may or may not have gained the remaining abilities over the next 300 years. If he did, we can add 2 electrum spikes and 2 cadmium spikes. That brings us up to 16. He also had allomatic and feruchemical atium for compounding age, 18; and at the very least feruchemical speed and health, 20. That's not even half-way done.

So, I open this forum page up for discussion, what other spikes did Marsh have?

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I'm pretty sure it's been confirmed that he only had 22 spikes. 

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At least at the time of HoA, maybe more since?

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2 minutes ago, 2001Kra said:

At least at the time of HoA, maybe more since?

I wouldn't think so. I don't think Marsh would want or need any more powers - especially since he's already one of the most powerful beings on Scadrial - and he seems pretty content to sit back and watch. And who can blame him? He was forced into this pretty unexpectedly. I highly doubt he'd want to do anything like that. Not for himself, at the very least.

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I don't know if spook made it, but it seems possible. Peter described the table like this: 

 

Quote

It is an in-world chart according to the knowledge of some people at a certain stage in the history of Roshar.

Notice the focus on Roshar which probably means the table was made at the time of SA, which happens just before era 2. And if spook really did have a 100 year rule where he was specifically studying hemalurgy, I think he could have the info to do it, except for the God metals but maybe marsh knew and told him? Who knows. 

I think it's more likely the chart was made by some arcanist or probably khriss. (or maybe storming jasnah made idk)

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Posted (edited)

On 1/4/2019 at 11:02 PM, Shard of Thought said:

I wouldn't think so. I don't think Marsh would want or need any more powers - especially since he's already one of the most powerful beings on Scadrial - and he seems pretty content to sit back and watch. And who can blame him? He was forced into this pretty unexpectedly. I highly doubt he'd want to do anything like that. Not for himself, at the very least.

Maybe he was the experiment for Spook and them finding out the bind points.

Edited by Invocation
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10 minutes ago, Invocation said:

Maybe he was the experiment for Spook and them finding out the bind points.

That makes more sense, though I have a hard time seeing why Marsh would let them do that. Still, I won't dismiss the possibility. 

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There is a line in HoA from marsh's Pov where he state that he have about twenty spikes in him.

More then normal.

See The Hero of Ages chapter 72.

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13 minutes ago, Blessed peace said:

There is a line in HoA from marsh's Pov where he state that he have about twenty spikes in him.

More then normal.

See The Hero of Ages chapter 72.

 

That makes sense. And I'm pretty sure he has more than normal because Ruin wanted to keep him tethered down. Marsh is a fighter which Ruin would definitely find out pretty quickly (I can only imagine how frustrated he would have been trying to get Marsh to kill Saze in WoA) and the more spikes you have, the harder it would be to resist. Fortunately, Marsh is amazing and he's not going to give up like that. 

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Posted (edited)

On 1/6/2019 at 11:04 AM, Shard of Thought said:

That makes sense. And I'm pretty sure he has more than normal because Ruin wanted to keep him tethered down. Marsh is a fighter which Ruin would definitely find out pretty quickly (I can only imagine how frustrated he would have been trying to get Marsh to kill Saze in WoA) and the more spikes you have, the harder it would be to resist. Fortunately, Marsh is amazing and he's not going to give up like that. 

By the time of Hero of Ages, it seems like Marsh had become Ruin's primary pawn, which would be one reason for Ruin to invest in Marsh having as many useful powers as possible. The additional spikes serving to make him that much more subject to Ruin's domination was more of a side effect.

Why did he settle on Marsh as his primary pawn, and not another Inquisitor (maybe one that had been made from a Mistborn, who would be more powerful)? My guess is that Marsh had killed most, perhaps all of such Inquisitors, who might well have been kept close to TLR in Luthadel, all of who Marsh treacherously killed by removing their linchpin spikes while they were in their resting phase (and unsuspecting of a fellow Inquisitor).

At the end of the first book, Marsh is the only Inquisitor left in the capital; the Inquisitors we see Vin and Elend dealing with in Hero of Ages were the ones outside Luthadel, or made by Ruin after he escaped. And Ruin had already developed an affinity for using Marsh in Well of Ascension, playing on the surviving crewmembers' trust of him.

As for what his "upwards of twenty" spikes consist of:

The Coppermind entry for a Steel Inquisitor states that "The Lord Ruler's steel Inquisitors have eleven spikes in all--two through the eye sockets, one in the middle of the spine on the back, and eight--one for each known Allomantic power--in the torso".

But I'd argue that the standard Inquisitor probably got a spike for A-atium rather than A-gold. We certainly see multiple Inquisitors, not just Marsh, burning atium, so they were either Seers or Mistborn from the get-go, or were given it via a spike like Marsh was. This would be a critical power to give an Inquisitor expected to have to deal with Allomancers, possibly including rogue Mistborn like Kelsier (even without being skaa). On the other hand, there seems to absolutely no reason for TLR or Ruin to want to specifically create a gold-burning Inquisitor who could sit there and reflect on what Might Have Been. (Though finding "Seer" Mistings to create spikes from must have been difficult, maybe they would reuse spikes from previous Inquisitors?)

And why would Ruin be interested in finding a Misting to give Marsh a spike for A-aluminum, or A-gold except to enable compounded health, which he didn't exhibit?

So I'd enumerate Marsh's spikes as:

  • 11 spikes as Final Empire OEM: 2 eye spikes, the linchpin spike, 7 non-gold base metals, plus A-atium
  • 6 more as known or plausibly suspected Ruin add-ons:
    • 2 for allomancy: duralumin and electrum (not seen, but plausible, to serve as a "poor man's atium" defense without needing to use atium)
    • 4 for feruchemy: pewter, gold, steel, atium (all documented in story, or by WOB)

That only adds up to 17, tops. He has at least 4 more spikes to have "upwards of twenty" when facing Elend outside the kandra Homeland. 

Hmm.

The Final Empire had no knowledge of or physical availability for chromium, nicrosil, cadmium, or bendalloy. Even if Ruin knew of the potential for such metals, there would be no way to identify Mistings to harvest for the ability for spikes. Similarly for aluminum, while it was a metal known to them (even if very rare), discovering an aluminum gnat to use to make the spike would have been nigh impossible...

So even if you counted Marsh as having a spike for A-gold - maybe Ruin did it to enable him for gold Compounding, or maybe it really was part of the OEM Inquisitor set - that would still only add up to 18, leaving 3-4 spikes of unknown utility to account for, that would be attainable at the end of Era 1.

Unless a Mistborn were used (wasted) for its creation.

That seems to be the only logical conclusion: to make any more allomantic spikes beyond the "basic" set of 17 or so for Marsh, Ruin would have to have done so by spiking a Mistborn for it, specifically planning for a post-Scadrial run. And if the plans involved the feruchemical use of the metal, Ruin would also have needed to steal that metal's power from a Keeper.

So, assuming the number is 5 to come to 22 spikes for Marsh, and that one of them is indeed for A-gold... What are the other four likely to be, that were so important to Ruin's long-term plans that he harvested full Mistborn and Feruchemists for one ability each? A-nicrosil, F-nicrosil, F-duralumin, and F-aluminum?

This is on top of a WoB stating that Marsh was spiked for A-duralumin by means of a Mistborn. Man, a lot of extremely rare resources sure went into the making of Marsh. (Weren't Keepers even more rare than Mistborn at the end of TFE?)

 

EDIT: In another thread, I realized that for Marsh to live into Era 2 and beyond via the same trick as The Lord Ruler (compounding atium), he must also be compounding bronze to stay awake to do so, just like TLR did. So he's got a spike for F-bronze in his count, too.

Edited by robardin
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Posted (edited)

Let's forget the powers he has. Even with Ruin gone and Sazed in power, giving a bit of mental stability, shouldn't Marsh go bonkers from the sheer amount of holes and patches in his spiritweb? Or was it mentioned somewhere that he got similar treatment as Spook did at the end of TFE? With so many spikes I'm inclined to believe most of the things he did in 300 years

Edited by Morindal
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5 hours ago, Morindal said:

Let's forget the powers he has. Even with Ruin gone and Sazed in power, giving a bit of mental stability, shouldn't Marsh go bonkers from the sheer amount of holes and patches in his spiritweb? Or was it mentioned somewhere that he got similar treatment as Spook did at the end of TFE? With so many spikes I'm inclined to believe most of the things he did in 300 years

That's what the "lynchpin spike" is for, without it his spiritweb would start to unravel from all the splicing, but it serves to hold things together. 

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On 8.01.2019 at 3:02 PM, Quantus said:

That's what the "lynchpin spike" is for, without it his spiritweb would start to unravel from all the splicing, but it serves to hold things together. 

Still, wasn't it stated in the books somewhere that not only did the spikes make you susceptible to external influence (Ruin) but also progressively more mentally unstable? Unless it's just Ruin whispering in the inquisitors' ears all these years

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40 minutes ago, Morindal said:

Still, wasn't it stated in the books somewhere that not only did the spikes make you susceptible to external influence (Ruin) but also progressively more mentally unstable? Unless it's just Ruin whispering in the inquisitors' ears all these years

That was Ruin, trying to destabilize the Inquisitors and everyone else with spikes so that he could try to free himself via pawns. Without that influence, everything should be just fine.

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On 1/7/2019 at 0:31 PM, robardin said:

So, assuming the number is 5 to come to 22 spikes for Marsh, and that one of them is indeed for A-gold... What are the other four likely to be, that were so important to Ruin's long-term plans that he harvested full Mistborn and Feruchemists for one ability each? A-nicrosil, F-nicrosil, F-duralumin, and F-aluminum?

This is on top of a WoB stating that Marsh was spiked for A-duralumin by means of a Mistborn. Man, a lot of extremely rare resources sure went into the making of Marsh. (Weren't Keepers even more rare than Mistborn at the end of TFE?)

 

EDIT: In another thread, I realized that for Marsh to live into Era 2 and beyond via the same trick as The Lord Ruler (compounding atium), he must also be compounding bronze to stay awake to do so, just like TLR did. So he's got a spike for F-bronze in his count, too.

He could have also doubled-up on some powers to amplify them. Extra steel allomancy could be useful.

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5 hours ago, Spoolofwhool said:

He could have also doubled-up on some powers to amplify them. Extra steel allomancy could be useful.

I guess hemalurgy can be stacked as well, then? We have seen hemalurgy used to stack a stolen Allomantic ability on top of what a person's already got, like Vin's and Marsh's bronze, but I don't think we've seen anybody getting the same power multiple times via hemalurgy alone (i.e., Suit theoretically using his two spikes to double up on A-steel to out-Steelpush Wax). It seems plausible, but I could also see a reason for it being mechanically impossible as well.

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On 1/10/2019 at 5:21 AM, robardin said:

I guess hemalurgy can be stacked as well, then? We have seen hemalurgy used to stack a stolen Allomantic ability on top of what a person's already got, like Vin's and Marsh's bronze, but I don't think we've seen anybody getting the same power multiple times via hemalurgy alone (i.e., Suit theoretically using his two spikes to double up on A-steel to out-Steelpush Wax). It seems plausible, but I could also see a reason for it being mechanically impossible as well.

As long as there are enough bindpoints for a power I see no reason why taking multiple spikes for the same power wouldn't cause an amplification.

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On 1/10/2019 at 7:21 AM, robardin said:

I guess hemalurgy can be stacked as well, then? We have seen hemalurgy used to stack a stolen Allomantic ability on top of what a person's already got, like Vin's and Marsh's bronze, but I don't think we've seen anybody getting the same power multiple times via hemalurgy alone (i.e., Suit theoretically using his two spikes to double up on A-steel to out-Steelpush Wax). It seems plausible, but I could also see a reason for it being mechanically impossible as well.

Era 2 doesn't do it so much because they don't see the use in it, since if they do the right combo, they can out-maneuver someone without directly overpowering them. It does stack the Allomantic affects, though, and that would be useful for certain things like extra-efficient compounding with some combination of the same Allomantic and Feruchemical sets of spikes. Two of one, one of the other would help some, probably two Allomancy, one Feruchemy. Unless you were just making yourself a compounder from where you already had the Feruchemy which would be interesting with a 3x multiplier on that.

Bindpoints wouldn't really be an issue, since there's a ton of them. Didn't someone say there was something like 300 bindpoints across a body?

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49 minutes ago, Invocation said:

Era 2 doesn't do it so much because they don't see the use in it, since if they do the right combo, they can out-maneuver someone without directly overpowering them. It does stack the Allomantic affects, though, and that would be useful for certain things like extra-efficient compounding with some combination of the same Allomantic and Feruchemical sets of spikes. Two of one, one of the other would help some, probably two Allomancy, one Feruchemy. Unless you were just making yourself a compounder from where you already had the Feruchemy which would be interesting with a 3x multiplier on that.

Bindpoints wouldn't really be an issue, since there's a ton of them. Didn't someone say there was something like 300 bindpoints across a body?

It's implied that the Ministry of Steel only knew of about 50, but yes, there are like 300.

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