Chinkoln

Atium vs Steel Compounder

16 posts in this topic

Atium let’s whoever is burning it see into the future. Steel compounding allows you to move at unimaginable speeds. 
Let’s say that a steel compounder saves up steel for years, hiding in his home. A Mistborn saves up atium for years. At the end of x amount of years, they both have a seemingly infinite amount of either speed or atium. (Technically a compounder doesn’t need to save up much speed, but for the scenario we will say they do. We are also going to assume that the Mistborn doesn’t have access to any of the other metals, just atium)

I think that the steel compounder would beat the atium burner. Even if you can see into the future, that doesn’t matter if your enemy can move faster than you can react. 
Thoughts?

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I agree that steel would likely win

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Depends, we know that Steelrunners have a practical upper limit on their speed and it doesn't really matter to A-Atium how fast things are moving because the secondary effect of its power is to speed up your mind so that you can process the information and act upon it. If the mistborn is burning before the Steelrunner starts moving (and the physical setup permits it) they'll know everywhere that person is going to be in advance so all they really need to do is make sure they're in a position to avoid the very first attack and have an appropriate means of counterattacking. Stick something pointy or edged in the path the Steelrunner is going to follow and their own speed will do them in, or at least hurt them and force them to slow down. Or even just throw some pocket change into the space they're going to occupy and watch the Steelrunner swiss-cheese themselves. F-Steel is powerful but it's not going to protect against a creative application of physics.

Now, if they both start using their powers at the exact same time or the fight takes place in a sufficiently enclosed area, it's possible that the atium-burner simply can't reposition themselves quickly enough to make a difference and then the Steelrunner wins. Given the hypothetical though, the mistborn has a lot of atium so it's likely that they're willing to be extravagant in using it.

The other unknown factor is what exactly the two are fighting with. Assuming they're not just using harsh language, the weapons are going to be important. Hand to hand combat isn't going to do the Steelrunner much good because hitting something at high speed is going to hurt them as well. Since you've specified they're a compounder, using A-Steel to launch coins or other projectiles on the other hand would be quite dangerous, as demonstrated by the beginning of Shadows of Self. It does however come down to what the atium-user has to work with, because if they can tell where the Steelrunner and their projectiles are going to be and have enough space to move around, they can still potentially counterattack very effectively.

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I disagree, for two realmic reasons and one thematic one.   

1) I think Speed Compounding (ie infinite Ferichemical Speed) still has upper limits because like all Feruchemy it doesnt provide protection against things outside it's direct effect.  In the case of Steel it will let them take steps without crushing the ground from the forces required for their superspeed accelerations, but I think they'd still face classic Speedster limit of "How can you survive hitting a bug at bullet speeds?" given that and the similar fact that tapping weight doesnt increase your bone density or ability to withstand comparable but external weights/forces. 

 

Quote

 

MoriWillow

When a Steelrunner taps speed, does it work by breaking the laws of motion, letting their speed be higher than it should be when considering their kinetic energy during movement or the force they impart upon impact with something (and inversely while storing)?

Brandon Sanderson

A lot of [Feruchemy] breaks the laws of thermodynamics, and this is indeed an example.

Skyward Pre-Release AMA (Oct. 22, 2018)

 

2)Atuim Precognition expands the mind's capabilities to process all the additional information, and this is sourced directly in the Spritiual realm rather than logic or anything less immune to Free Will and such sources of Error, and doesnt have to wait for decisions to be made to manifest a timeline shadow.  So it's not just a matter of the atium-burner seeing what the Steelrunner is about to do but not being able to react in time. So long as the target was burning Atium, they'd see any and all possible outcomes that would bring the Steelrunner into their timeline, and show them precisely where to be to avoid whatever danger comes at them.  So by the time the Steelrunner starts moving the Seer could be standing in the right spot for the steelrunner to slip on a puddle, or have a bird fly in between them as the knife is thrown, or something.  The only way I see for the Steelrunner to beat the Seer is to get them before they start Burning, at which point they are not defeating atium, they are ambushing a temporarily mundane person.  Or they could set some physically inescapable trap, but either way the Steel Compounding isnt what makes it possible.

 

Thematic Reason:  Atium is a Godmetal, which are supposed to be superior to the base metals.  I dont think Atium would loos such a direct functional contest unless the Steelrunner also brought the Protagonist Power of Plot to the table.  But that's meta-logic.

 

 

 
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48 minutes ago, Ookla the Crimson King said:

 F-Steel is powerful but it's not going to protect against a creative application of physics.

Actually it will, it acts more like a personalized mobile bendalloy bubble, as it doesn't break you legs when you run, despite the fact that that force should obliterate them.

16 minutes ago, Quantus said:

I disagree, for two realmic reasons and one thematic one.   

1) I think Speed Compounding (ie infinite Ferichemical Speed) still has upper limits because like all Feruchemy it doesnt provide protection against things outside it's direct effect.  In the case of Steel it will let them take steps without crushing the ground from the forces required for their superspeed accelerations, but I think they'd still face classic Speedster limit of "How can you survive hitting a bug at bullet speeds?" given that and the similar fact that tapping weight doesnt increase your bone density or ability to withstand comparable but external weights/forces. 

 

2)Atuim Precognition expands the mind's capabilities to process all the additional information, and this is sourced directly in the Spritiual realm rather than logic or anything less immune to Free Will and such sources of Error, and doesnt have to wait for decisions to be made to manifest a timeline shadow.  So it's not just a matter of the atium-burner seeing what the Steelrunner is about to do but not being able to react in time. So long as the target was burning Atium, they'd see any and all possible outcomes that would bring the Steelrunner into their timeline, and show them precisely where to be to avoid whatever danger comes at them.  So by the time the Steelrunner starts moving the Seer could be standing in the right spot for the steelrunner to slip on a puddle, or have a bird fly in between them as the knife is thrown, or something.  The only way I see for the Steelrunner to beat the Seer is to get them before they start Burning, at which point they are not defeating atium, they are ambushing a temporarily mundane person.  Or they could set some physically inescapable trap, but either way the Steel Compounding isnt what makes it possible.

 

Thematic Reason:  Atium is a Godmetal, which are supposed to be superior to the base metals.  I dont think Atium would loos such a direct functional contest unless the Steelrunner also brought the Protagonist Power of Plot to the table.  But that's meta-logic.

 

 

 

True on thematics, but F-steel also increases you mental speed, so you could doge things as well, the way a steelrunner would win is by moving fast enough that it becomes physically impossible for the seer to avoid the attack. 

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Atium does let you see the future, but that doesn't matter when you the steel compounder can literally kill you before you blink.

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14 minutes ago, Ookla The Frustrated said:

Actually it will, it acts more like a personalized mobile bendalloy bubble, as it doesn't break you legs when you run, despite the fact that that force should obliterate them.

True on thematics, but F-steel also increases you mental speed, so you could doge things as well, the way a steelrunner would win is by moving fast enough that it becomes physically impossible for the seer to avoid the attack. 

I guess Im saying that I dont think that is actually possible.  Even if the Steelrunner starts a half-mile away and charges in at superspeed, he cannot outrun his own Atium Shadows that would warn the Seer of his eventual arrival in time for them to avoid the attack.  Aside from beginning things before the Seer starts burning Atium, there simply isnt a way to actually compress the encounter into a short enough timespan for the physical movement limitations of the Seer.  So long as they are burning Atium they will have always seen you coming in time to identify a timeline/shadow path to avoid your attack and gotten on the correct temporal train to make it happen (which may be a simple physical move or a far more esoteric; with the sort of massive Atium stores descried in this scenario the Seer could probably arrange for you to trip and kill yourself Final Destination-style by tripping on a rake they left in the yard a week prior.  To beat Atium you have to attack before they start burning (or really close to it), after they run out of atium, using Aluminum objects that Seer's are blind to, or using some other precog power that confuses the Aitum precognition.  

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53 minutes ago, Quantus said:

I guess Im saying that I dont think that is actually possible.  Even if the Steelrunner starts a half-mile away and charges in at superspeed, he cannot outrun his own Atium Shadows that would warn the Seer of his eventual arrival in time for them to avoid the attack.

I think that they could do this. The following includes a spoiler for Mistborn:Hero of Ages

Spoiler

When Zane was burning atium, Vin defeated him. She did this by not making a decision based on instincts, but based on what Zane thought she was going to do. She did this by not thinking about her actions until the last second, but if someone was extremely fast then it would have the same effect.

 

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15 minutes ago, Chinkoln said:

I think that they could do this. The following includes a spoiler for Mistborn:Hero of Ages

  Hide contents

When Zane was burning atium, Vin defeated him. She did this by not making a decision based on instincts, but based on what Zane thought she was going to do. She did this by not thinking about her actions until the last second, but if someone was extremely fast then it would have the same effect.

 

Fair enough, though in that case the explanation is that

Spoiler

she was able to sort of piggy-back his Atium to

bring herself into the "having your own precognitive knowledge to confuse his", along with a Heavy dose of Plot Power since the whole scene was intended as a nod to Mistborn Prime where it apparently worked better:

Spoiler


 

Quote

 

Brandon Sanderson

Vin Kills Zane despite his Atium

The other thing I had to foreshadow, then make work in this chapter, was the way to kill someone who was burning atium. This is also something I stole from Mistborn Prime, and I'm afraid that it worked better there.

The thing is, I just haven't spent enough of the plot with Vin working on this problem. Killing an atium-burner was a major plotting conflict in Mistborn Prime, which was a much shorter book, without so much going on. In this book, we have many, many different plotlines and secrets interweaving. And so there wasn't a whole lot of time for Vin to worry about how to survive without atium.

According to the laws of Allomancy, this is very in-line with how atium works. Only someone burning atium can change the future–but they can change it accidentally by showing someone else what to do.

The Well of Ascension Annotations (Oct. 13, 2008)

 


 

 

 
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@Quantus

true, but we know from SoS that Steelrunners can move at a speed faster than bullets, so I don't see a seer dodging enough to survive.

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11 minutes ago, Ookla The Frustrated said:

@Quantus

true, but we know from SoS that Steelrunners can move at a speed faster than bullets, so I don't see a seer dodging enough to survive.

True, and admittedly the faster the Steelrunner can move, the less I envision the Seer's escape being related to their own physical capabilities and the more I see it moving into the realm of setting up the perfect situational dominos's to escape (in the vein of what's shown in Deadpool 2 or that Nic Cage flick Next).  And at the end of the day those are situational, so Im taking it on faith a bit that some esoteric escape will exist in the realm of possibility, which wont always be the case. 

I think that puts it into the Toss-up realm where the party most favored by Destiny/Plot will prevail.  

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Guys, a regular person can only go so fast, and the shadow will be going at speeds that they won't be able to properly register. Atium users can be overwhelmed, yes their mind expands to process all the shadows, but it won't speed it up to that degree.

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The Steelrunner would definitely win. Atium lets you see the future, but it doesn't matter if you aren't physically capable of reacting. Even if they see the Steelrunner's atium shadow, and (somehow) are able to react, the Steelrunner will just change whatever it is they are going to do, because steel gives you enough mental speed to function. It would be like fighting someone using atium and bendalloy at the same time. No matter what the Seer does, they will still be essentially frozen from the Steelrunner's perspective (or at least moving so slowly as to be basically frozen anyway). At that point there is nothing they can do with the 2-3 seconds of information they could have.

As for the thing about hand-to-hand combat, and not being able to hit someone, I think that they would probably be fine. As seen in SoS, a Steelrunner can hold things like guns and knives. If they can run while holding those things, without them ripping out of their hand or injuring them, then they can probably hit things. Or at the very least pick something up and throw it.

Edited by Faceless Mist-Wraith
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The fight would go like this:

Atium Seer sees that the Steelrunner is going to run around behind them to cut their throat. They therefore thrust their elbow backwards, timed perfectly so that it will connect with the Steelrunner's gut at the exact moment they rush at the Seer from behind. But! We've seen that Steelrunners can maneuver, change course, and react to new developments while running at high speed. So they'd see that, if they proceeded on their original course, they'd run slam into the Seer's elbow, so instead approach them from another angle. As a result, the Seer's vision of what was going to happen splits in two, because by seeing what was going to happen they've changed what was going to happen, just like with Vin vs. Zane. That particular instance took incredible skill to pull off, but that's because the two combatants were about equally fast; when one combatant is many times faster than the person burning atium, it becomes exponentially easier.

As for the dangers of performing hand-to-hand combat at highspeed, it's a little unclear how that would work. However, even if a Steelrunner punching someone at superspeed would wreck their own hand, so long as they're punching the Seer somewhere vital, like the head, they'd still win. Even if they walk away with a broken hand, the Seer would have a broken skull.

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On 12/6/2020 at 0:32 PM, Raven Wilder said:

 

As for the dangers of performing hand-to-hand combat at highspeed, it's a little unclear how that would work. However, even if a Steelrunner punching someone at superspeed would wreck their own hand, so long as they're punching the Seer somewhere vital, like the head, they'd still win. Even if they walk away with a broken hand, the Seer would have a broken skull.

I think that it would work similar to how F-Pewter and Iron work. The body will withdraw the atribuye, then strengthen your body to deal with that enhanced attribute. F-Iron doesn’t crush you. F-Steel should make you be able to interact with other things. Also, if they couldn’t interact with other things, then their clothes would stop them from moving, because they would be perfectly still.

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Based on what we saw in BoM. I don't think Atium can win against F-Steel past a certain amount of speed. There is simply a point where the Atium user just will not be able to physically move fast enough to compensate know matter whether they see it coming or not.

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