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137088 No. 137088
“Now,” you murmur to yourself, “now we see who the greater monster is.” You nod to the servitor-drones, steeling yourself inside. Casting off the tattered remnants of your laboratory coat, you roar, “IGNITE...THE CLONEFORGE!”

A crackling arc of neon-blue lightning lashes out from the primary tesla conductor, forking once, twice, a dozen times, galvanizing the ponderous machine before you into action. Howling winds tear at your frame as the contraption groans, steam hissing out of countless vents, actinic bolts of raw energy springing from point to point. The reality of the multiverse shudders, a spatial distortion ripping through the vicinity, earth and sky wobbling as if made of jello.

“KEEP IT STEADY!” You bark, fighting down nausea. You see servitor drones begin to fracture under the strain, and a loosened screw whips past your head, inches from burying itself into your jawbone. With a final blast of lightning, the machine breaks down completely, metal and glass sloughing like a discarded snakeskin off its frame, smoke belching from a dragon-shaped hole in its anterior. Success. You’ve done it - forced the mana inhabiting the Spirit Plague to assume a coherent, physically destructible form. You hope desperately that your predictions are correct, then draw from your mana reserves, boosting your mind to dizzying heights intellect. The world becomes crisp, edges more sharply defined. Of course, if your calculations are wrong, all that means is that the next few moments will be even more painful.

Your enemy’s first spell is a bolt of raw necrotic energy, powerful enough to turn most every being in the multiverse to ash. It fizzles harmlessly against your chest, and you breathe an uncharacteristic sigh of relief. Against this opponent, you couldn’t afford to under- or overestimate even an inch. Every advantage had to be taken, every tiny edge fully exploited. Powerful as it is, it’s new to the world, and doesn’t know the difference between creature and planeswalker. With that in mind, you chose to spend the first exchange increasing your own power, certain that it would first try to do what it had evolved to do: prey on the weak.

”You...” the thing cocks its head, violent eyes blazing. ”You are not like the others. We see. You are like her.”

Its assault is rapid and relentless. It’s too powerful for a Mana Leak to catch the first spell it casts in an exchange, but you can reliably shut down the second. Especially powerful single spells can be countered as well. A screeching, masked abomination appears on the battlefield, followed by a spear of red-black energy. You smirk. Amateur. Easily dissipating the energy, you leave the summon be for now, choosing instead to peer into your foe’s mind.

Simplistic and straightforward. It’s dominated by warring red and black impulses. Frustrated that its blightning failed to stick, next turn it intends to launch a deadlier spell, a choking miasma of profane energies. You consider your options carefully, and as it completes the final incantation, simultaneously copy and counter the spell. Even as his spell fizzles with the soft pop of dispersing mana, your copy destroys his summon and moves on to score a deep furrow across its controller’s thigh. You note curiously that, when you copied his spell, a thin stream of black mana seperated itself from its frame to power it. Curious...

“Grrrrarrrrrrgggggh! You...you are...are...a challenge! Yes! Exultation!” Undeterred, it opens its mana-forged wings and takes to the skies, hurling bolts of eldritch energy at you with maniacal abandon. You grit your teeth and snap-tumble to the side, doing your level best to avoid the jagged blasts of crimson emerging from his mouth. Spasms wrack your frame as one, two, three bolts strike home, and the once-appetizing aroma of cooked human reaches your nostrils. Fighting back the searing pain, you stand and purposefully stagger, defiantly presenting an open target as he moves in to finish you off.

Calling on his reserves, your draconic doppelganger prepares to cast the potent black spell you’d denied earlier, as if in petulant reaffirmation of his superiority. You put on your most aggravating smug grin and counter it again.

“What...this feeling...verbalization protocols...cross-concept diegesis...annoyance? Irritation? Yes...you...are an annoyance! Unworthy of...title...of Nicol Bolas! Sad...simian...remnant!”

Unfortunately, its savvy proves considerably greater than its conversational wit, and the next few exchanges are a brutal fusillade of spell and counterspell. Having finally realized that you most fear the red-black spear of Blightning, it churns blast after blast out with mechanical regularity. Every time, you are forced to draw deep for a hard counter against the first, so that you can mana leak the second. Were this a normal fight you’d simply twincast the spells and beat him on the draw, but you can’t let him land even a single spell that damages your cognition. Not if your plan is to succeed. After a few minutes of this, your throat is dry, your eyes are watering, and your knees feel as if they’re made of tissue paper. Aware that he has only three readied spells remaining, you crumple to one knee.

[i]“Yes, remnant, kneel before your superior. We shall...put a...fittingly ironical- ironytastic- ironic end to...mighty Nicol Bolas. With...your favorite spell.”


Patience. He can channel at most nine units of mana this exchange. Immediately before the finishing blow would resolve, you croak out a weak counterspell, forcing him to invest more mana than he has to complete the sorcery.

“We...foresaw this...eventuality!” It gloats, countering your counter with a ravaging, mana-slaying wind. You merely raise an eyebrow and gesture, and an equal but opposite wind picks up, stifling his ambitions.

“NO! IMPOSSIBLE! YOU...ARE NO FUN! LIKE TO COUNTER SPELLS, HUH? DELAY THE INEVITABLE, HUH? FINE. YOU...COUNTER THIS!”

The Banefire. An avalanche of raw destruction, draconic flame that powers through any counter and tears through any shield. It’s a spell you designed precisely to defeat magi who use blue mana.

You can’t help yourself. You begin to laugh. Everything has gone as you’ve forseen. Every piece has fallen into place. Throughout the battle, you’ve struggled to match his power, draining your core nearly dry and suffering a slow death of a thousand stings. With every exchange, though, you managed to assemble just a few more fragments of arcane thought, pieced together just a few more readied spells. Ever so slowly you managed to ready one more spell than him, then two, three, four, all in preparation for this moment.

Cackling with insane glee, you copy his Banefire. Once. Twice. Three times. Four. Blood leaks freely from your nostrils as you ravage your body for its very last scraps of mana. Breath ceases as you feel your lungs, then heart, shut down. Your vision begins to dim...

Then, you feel it. The energy of his Banefire, enough power to reduce a nation-state to slag, copied four times. As your enemy stares, perplexed, at the stream of red energy flowing out of his body, you manage to twitch your lips in the semblance of a smile. The First Preference of Mana. Mana prefers not to be created or destroyed. In the absence of an experienced magus, uncontrolled mana inevitably gravitates towards the nearest spell which requires it. Red mana enters your body, an ocean of surging energy that electrifies your capillaries and restarts your heart, channeling itself towards your fingertips in anticipation of manifesting your copied spells. With a colossal force of will, you forcibly re-route the energy towards your brain, channeling...what was the phrase you’d used, when you arrived here? - ah yes, channeling enough power to reduce a continent to its constituent elements.

Twitching and convulsing like puppet with tangled strings, you open your mouth as visions assail your spirit. Peal of shattering glass. Blast of rolling thunder. Thighbone of sphinx. Eye of dragon. Angel burning. Mountain cracking. Rain of lava. Boiling seas. Mushroom cloud. The sensations begin to merge, bleeding into one another, melting into a single indescribable stream, a pulsing, molten torrent of unrestrained, unmitigated, unstoppable...

“POWERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!” You roar, unable to control yourself. An incandescent flood of blue-red lightning vomits forth from your outstretched palms, obliterating everything in its path. “UN...LIIIIMITEDDDDDDDD POWERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!”

---

So, Yuyko’s cured, the avatar defeated, and Nicol Bolas has his red groove back. What do you do now?

[ ] Write In. There will be a brief interlude, so you guys have time to research, search for artifact parts, hit on people, whatever.

>> No. 137092
No idea
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GiCznGaex2c
But I felt the need to post this
>> No. 137094
That was my inspiration for that scene, yes. Glad you caught it! There was also a movie reference in the last update that foreshadowed what happens in this one, but I guess people didn't catch it.
>> No. 137097
>outstretched palms
I thought Nicol only had one palm? Did I miss something?

With that in mind,
[x] Ask Eirin for our arm back. Maybe hit on her.

Research later. Arm now.
>> No. 137098
>>137097

Gah, that's what I get for not proofreading enough.
>> No. 137099
>>137097
Same vote as this one, though instead of hitting on her, try and entice her with knowledge, kinda like we did with patchy but more subtle
>> No. 137101
So we've got (some of) our Red mana back? Sweet. That means we have some brute force to fill that tactical gap of mono-Blue.
Do we have a spell list that comes with it (you know, basic stuff. Lightning Bolts, Fireballs, simple artifact destruction), or do we start from scratch?

Either way, I do believe someone owes us an arm, as >>137097 pointed out.

After that, we can see what we can salvage from THE CLONEFORGE!.
(No, I will not refer to it as anything other than "THE CLONEFORGE!", with an overly dramatic voice every time anyone mentions THE CLONEFORGE!.)

I suggest that we also build some simple servitors to scout the land for us. (Basically like the Myr from Mirrodin.) This incident means that there might be other sources of mana for us out there to assimilate. Hopefully ones that aren't as destructive. Or, rather, not as hostile towards us. Destructive is still fine.
They can also keep an eye out for anything else of interest (cheap plot hooks, ho!) while we... Do whatever it is we're gonna do.
I can't think of anything right now. Give me a few moments to check around for ideas, but now that we have Red mana we're gonna do something.
I imagine Nicol will be rather restless from the sudden surge of Red mana because after all, while Blue sits on it's ass, Red gets shit done!
>> No. 137102
Now we plan to recover our black. Once we have that, we just need to invent a way to OMNOMNOM power yet further.
>> No. 137103
>>137099
I think Eirin will be too smart for that and she is actually hostile towards us, while Patchouli was more in a mood of "it seemed like a good idea at the time".
>> No. 137104
>>137102
Bugger that. Red/Blue for life!
>> No. 137105
>>137101

Lightning Bolt
Volcanic Fallout
Banefire
Double Negative
Mark of Mutiny
Elemental Appeal
Dominus of Fealty
Nucklavee
Destructive Force
Bogardan Hellkite

[Form of the Dragon] - Locked
>> No. 137109
>>137094
We've gone Sith Lord, son. Now we've got both the mind and the POWERRRRRRRR!!! to accomplish our goals.

This went far, far better then I anticipated, and I can only thank our resident Magic expert for having given us the way to not only win, but regain our strength from this dangerous battle.

Screw Black. You can be just as tyrannical, controlling and charismatic with White, you get the [completely undeserved] PR boost that comes from using "Holy" mana and it makes you harder to kill thanks to healing effects that work independently of sacrifices (which can be hard to find when you REALLY need them). And do we really need plagues to be an awesome and unstoppable engine of destruction?

We could even justify it in character! After all, the Black way got us here, with all of our plans and powers shattered, didn't it? Maybe it's time to consider a change of tactics. Maybe we'll have to become... good in order to regain our full strength as a True/Pre-Mending Planeswalker, but we don't have to be nice about it, nor do we have to pander to the goody-two-shoes types to be Good. Sure, it might take more time then the quick path Black seemed to offer, but at least we won't have parties of adventurers and lesser Planeswalkers smashing through our doors every time our plans near fruition. And if they do, we'll have a good excuse to beat them to death.

Yes, my plans include us channeling Patrician Vetinari as our public image. Feel free to ignore my insane plans to render us untouchable.

[x] Ask Eirin for our arm back (if we really need to). It's obvious she doesn't like us, but tell her that if she gets other cases that are so interesting we wouldn't be opposed to lending a helping hand/advice again. Hopefully, her curiosity will get the better of her and we can "secure" another semi-reluctant ally/apprentice as well as opportunities to learn/gain more knowledge/power.
[x] Discuss with Yuyuko. Because she's something you haven't really seen before. A sanity restoring Cosmic Horror? What is the Multiverse coming to?! How does that even work? How can I use this to my advantage?
>> No. 137110
>>137104
>Red/Blue for life. A horrible pathetic existence, that can barely be called a life, as a degenerate simian with a brain barely capable of coherent thoughts. Instead of regaining our true power so we can finally get out of here and exact sweet, sweet revenge on the fools who dare to believe that they have defeated Nicol Bolas.

Yeah, about that...


Anyway, I can't think of anything for him to do but, as I said, I believe the Red mana would make him rather restless so no sitting around and researching, at least.
If he absolute must stay in one place, he could maybe be building something. He is still very Blue after all, and the Blue/Red combo does lead to interesting results as far as creative inspiration is concerned.

Mostly, though, I believe he should just go out and get going. Just going somewhere and doing something. He might not even have a clear goal, he just has to work off some of that excess energy from what I imagine must be like a sudden adrenaline spike straight into the soul.
Red mana is chaotic and wild and Nicol just went from zero to UNNNNLIMITED POOOWEEEERRRRR!, just like that.

He should probably be able to suppress it long enough to make sure that he gets his arm back or, if the actual regrowing takes time, he at least stay around long enough to ensure that Eirin keeps her side of the deal before running off.
>> No. 137112
File 130032174274.jpg - (147.98KB , 800x600 , Tsubaki.jpg ) [iqdb]
137112
[x] Rearm Nicol
[x] Discuss with Yuyuko. Because she's something you haven't really seen before. A sanity restoring Cosmic Horror? What is the Multiverse coming to?! How does that even work? How can I use this to my advantage?

"The more pure the person is, the more potential for evil they have."
>> No. 137113
File 130032297737.jpg - (43.87KB , 443x314 , corruption.jpg ) [iqdb]
137113
>>137112
>> No. 137114
>>137110
Calm down, it's not that bad. We just went from focused genius to absent-minded genius. And that's awesome.
>> No. 137115
>>137109
I think those plans are interesting, but what you are describing isn't White.
Even with a nice, polished front, the core of your idea is still Black. Tyrannical oppression and selfish gain are Black, no matter how many pretty words you weave. (And Black have always been good at weaving those pretty words, oh yes.)
Just using White mana isn't hard and can lead to some incredibly destructive results (Vindicate, anyone? Or just Wrath of God), but actually going White would mean really buying into the whole idea of "Good" yourself.
If Nicol goes White he will be nice about it, because that's what White is.


Also, I still have my doubts that trying to recruit Eirin will work out for us. In fact, I believe that we could probably get more out of talking to Yuyuko because even if neither of them likes us she isn't openly hostile towards us.
With Yuyuko it's more like a social battle of wits, while Eirin keeps a barrier of stubborn antagonism raised towards us and we can't break through that with words.
She is openly showing that she does not trust us. Will not trust us. And would probably go back on her deal if she could find a way to justify it, because she honestly believes that the less there is of Nicol Bolas in the world, the better.

Once we have our true power back, though, we'll see decide what she thinks of us then.


Also, I approve of the plan to corrupt Yuyuko.
>>137113
I would post this image myself, it it wasn't already posted.

We will have to be subtle about it, though. She is, in probably every way, a much more dangerous opponent than the Mana Avatar we just fought.
I suggest we leave it until we have access to some Black mana. Black is representative of corruption, after all.
That doesn't mean we can't sow some seeds of corruption already, of course. But we mustn't get carried away and accidentally burn our bridges.
>> No. 137117
>>137114
Yes. I believe that will be the end result, a slightly less focused but more creative "evil genius".. But right now his system is overdosed on Red. You don't shoot lightning bolts out of your hand while screaming about "unlimited power" and having mushroom clouds go off in your head without have a slight problem.

I'm not saying he's gone Chaotic Stupid or anything, it's just that I can't picture him sitting still for the rest of the day, or so.
>> No. 137118
Maybe I should actually post a vote as well, instead of just writing extra text..

[x] Rearm Nicol

[x] Work of some extra energy. Run a few laps around the garden or something.

Just being in a life and death situation dumps a lot of adrenaline in your blood, combine that with the Red mana and he'll be rather restless for a while.
(So yeah, I never meant that he'd go batshit insane and run off, or anything, even if my post might have sounded that way. I just meant that he will have to take some time to calm down.)

[x] Discuss with Yuyuko. Because she's something you haven't really seen before. A sanity restoring Cosmic Horror? What is the Multiverse coming to?! How does that even work? How can I use this to my advantage? (And how do we corrupt her? Because in her current state of mind, she is neither a possible ally nor servant.)
>> No. 137119
Just spending a little bit of time with Yuyuko should fix his Red mana overdose.

Or make him spontaneously propose or something. That'd be neat.
>> No. 137121
>>137119
Oh Gods, I can see that happening. Red has always been the color with no impulse control and even less subtlety.
Now the question is just, is a sudden proposal good or bad fun?
>> No. 137122
File 130032494772.png - (962.01KB , 751x700 , 1299490015929.png ) [iqdb]
137122
>>137115
No... No, White is not Nice. White is ORDER and MORALITY. It can be nice, but it can also be ruthless, stifling order and peace, enforced by righteous strength. Morality is an aspect of White, but Order is it's equal. We can draw only from the Order aspect of White, if we want. Radiant, the Archangel that refused to leave the Garden of Serra despite the Phyrexian invasion and the imminent collapse of the Plane was a mono White, despite being as controlling, selfish and parasitic (on her followers) as a mono Black while she was the "ruler" of the dying Garden.

Hell, to give another, out of Magic canon, example to it. Reading straight from the little wheel of Mana, the Imperium of Man from 40k can be considered a mostly White civilization with dashes of Black( (Paranoia) and Red (Action/Short-sighted). It stands for Peace and Law, while being Uncreative because of the instability that change brings, with the overarching concepts of the ORDER and the MORALITY defined by the Imperial Creed. White is not necessarily Nice.

Or we can go for Black and White. Those can make some rather killer combos.
>> No. 137123
>>137119
>That'd be neat.
That would be hilarious, if only for the WAT factor.
>> No. 137124
>>137118
Okay, never mind working off that extra energy.
Consider it removed from my vote.
Sudden proposal is just too fun a possibility to pass up.
>> No. 137125
>>137123
Who wants to bet she'd use this as something to tease Youmu with. With typical characterization, I can see either a "But I have Youmu!" or a "You can watch or join in, if you like, Youmu." fairly easily.

[x] Rearm Nicol
[x] Discuss with Yuyuko. Because she's something you haven't really seen before. A sanity restoring Cosmic Horror? What is the Multiverse coming to?! How does that even work? How can I use this to my advantage?

Impulse + Curiosity = that five year old that keeps asking why
>> No. 137127
>>137119
Do want. Whatever course of action leads to this has my vote.
>> No. 137128
Thought: At what percent of our strength are we? Certainly not at 20% but, where earlier we were at 3% of our total strength, how much have we regained?
>> No. 137129
File 130032691259.jpg - (31.80KB , 223x310 , Nicolbolas.jpg ) [iqdb]
137129
>>137122
Point taken, but either way Nicol Bolas was originally Black with a splash of each of the two allied colors.
In fact, he was/is the Black one of a set of five dragons from the (fucking old) Legends expansion, each one being an obvious "main color" and the two allied colors of that main color. (And he was studying hard, even back then. He looked kinda funky, though.)
If he is going to become a tyrant, the odds of him doing a sudden shift and going White for ruthlessly enforced Order instead of just staying true to his main nature of Black for plain ol' Tyranny are pretty slim.
>> No. 137132
>>137129
A cognent point. Still, it bears considering if it can allow Nicol to achieve his objectives. The simple fact that Nicol, under our choice, chose to keep his Blue aspects rather then the Black aspects which was his original designation in the Legends set indicates a possibility that his Mana affinity/preference can be subject to change if required by circumstances.

I had never seen a Legends card before, and yet the style is so much more familiar to me then the newer editions and sets. I feel old suddenly.
>> No. 137144
To clarify: That you have Red Mana now does not make you any more likely to take stupid or rash actions. Red mana alone has no counterbalance to its impulses, but with the calculation of blue, you're only likely to actually act on flashes of sudden brilliance or impulses that seem intelligent, especially since your blue mana is more developed than your red. Certainly it will not hinder your research efforts at all - rather, the spontaneous genius of red/blue mana should accelerate your progress significantly. Put simply, you will never become less competent from gaining a color of mana.

>>137128

You're at 6% of your former strength, in terms of raw mana channeling ability only. In terms of intellect, etc, you're still far diminished.

Also, Yuyuko is EX route for a reason. She is a literal Good-aligned Eldritch being. The chances of you successfully corrupting her before she redeems you are rather slim, at least at this stage of the game. Of course, since you guys have been playing Bolas as relatively benevolent, it would be somewhat in character, so I don't mind. I just don't want people to have an unrealistic view of what's achievable.
>> No. 137151
>The chances of you successfully corrupting her before she redeems you are rather slim, at least at this stage of the game.
Eh...still very tempting.

>White or Black to go with the Red/Blue
Why stop there? 5-Color or bust!
>> No. 137154
File 130033983871.jpg - (25.13KB , 223x310 , obliterate.jpg ) [iqdb]
137154
You forget the ultimate red spell.

Let's learn this one.
>> No. 137157
File 130034001526.jpg - (26.27KB , 223x310 , Decree of Annihilation 223x310.jpg ) [iqdb]
137157
>>137154
I don't know. I always kinda liked the Decrees.
>> No. 137169
>>137144
IMO he's been mostly benevolent because of pragmatism and the fact that he does not have enough power to go "Do as I say. Or else." at the moment. But far from Altruistic.
>> No. 137172
>>137144
So. . . Mid to long term goal.
I vote for skipping the uberpowered high cost spells for now. We are better seved by going for low costs like Lightning bolt.
>> No. 137178
>>137172
We already have it. See >>137105
>> No. 137196
>she redeems you

I have no regrets. This is the only path.
>> No. 137200
[X]Summon Niv-Mizzet the Firemind, to discover whether or not all dragons are forced into human form on this plane.
[X]Send him to go gain control over the Kappa for you. Use his telepathic artifact technologies to observe the progress of him and his kappa minions.
>> No. 137201
>>137200

Sorry, I hadn't explained this because it hasn't really come up until now, but due to Bolas rechanneling his Spark, when he 'summons' creatures he's actually reconstituting them out of elemental energy and 'building' them from scratch, as you would have seen if the Inkwell Leviathan option had been chosen. Thus, while you would be able to research a spell that creates a dragon like Niv-Mizzet, you wouldn't be able to get the real Niv-Mizzet (who has been implied to have ascended to Planeswalkerdom), and the resultant creature is not sentient or truly alive. You can still benefit from its advice and defense, but it would only stick around for a scene. This is to prevent you guys from simply summoning up an army of powerful creatures and having them do everything for you. I'm fine with Bolas having an army temporarily when he needs to really kill something, but if he's got one all the time it makes the scope of conflict less interesting.
>> No. 137204
Should we consider investing into an Electrolize? Or maybe Gelectrodes. I love Gelectrodes. And Swerve
>> No. 137206
>>137201
Oh, well. Change >>137200 to:

[X]Investigate the Kappa. They're obviously Red/Blue, so you may be able to gain some sway over them through invention. Possibly try recreating the Firemind for them if possible; it would both improve their capabilities and turn them into your minions.
>> No. 137222
File 13003821687.jpg - (27.93KB , 301x426 , 301px-PMiSS_yuyuko.jpg ) [iqdb]
137222
“Now, woman, I’ve dealt with your problem. You will do something for me.”

Eirin narrows her eyes. “And why should I do anything to help you? Seems like you’ve been paid in full for your services, and then some.”

You growl. “The restoration of my power was a consequence of my own actions. If I had cured Yuyuko in a way that did not strengthen myself, would your objection still hold?”

“Hmph. Let me guess, you want me to regrow your arm back? Well, I won’t say it’s beyond my power, but I’ve got a lot of cases piled up at home.”

“And you would be utterly unable to attend to those cases if you were still here, attending to the ruler of the Netherworld. Accept that my intervention has greatly benefitted you and do what your system of ethics requires of you.”

“...Even though I know you wouldn’t extend any such courtesy to someone who did a favor for you, I won’t sink to your level. Alright, Nicol, I’ll grow your arm back. It’ll take me a few days to create a medicine that can restore its functionality without neural therapy.”

“Acceptable. I will see you in three days, then. Goodbye.”

You walk into Hakugyokuro, past the site of your confrontation with the Plague Avatar. Unfortunately, the Cloneforge was caught in the path of your finishing blow, and not even a melted scrap survives. You feel a twinge of regret at the destruction of your magnificent creation, but it served its master well.

“It’s you.” Youmu Konpaku, Yuyuko’s gardener, glares at you. “Do you know how much time it took to build the section of garden you so carelessly destroyed? I know that wasn’t the only way you could have saved Miss Yuyuko. You did what you did in order to get power out of this situation!”

“I’d estimate about fifty years.”

“Huh?”

“Your question. Fifty years. Am I correct?”

“E-er...that’s exactly right, but h-hey, if you know how much work it took, that just makes it even more inexcusable!”

You stare at her for a long moment.

“W-What?”

“It took you fifty years to create that section of garden. It took me five hundred to build that section of my power. I’d consider that an acceptable trade.”

You brush past her. Despite the warnings of your better judgment, you can’t help but remain fascinated by the ghost princess.

“Bolas-sama.”

“Your...Majesty.”

“I am honored to see you again, Bolas-sama, and cannot express my gratitude for your noble actions in words. However, I must ask you not to be mean to Youmu-chan. She’s a very hard worker, but she gets flustered easily.”

“I was merely putting things in perspective for her.”

“Just so. But, please do so more gently in the future. Would you like to hug Myon? She’s very cute.” Yuyuko holds the colorless blob she was hugging out at you.

“That’s...no, I’m fine.”

She giggles and returns it to its original position. For some reason, you can’t help but feel envious of the stupid thing...

“I’m here to check on your condition. Have you experienced a resurgence of symptoms at all? We were not certain that we’d eliminated the last of the bacterium, even if the mana powering their evolution was gone.”

“I am feeling fine, thank you for asking. Bolas-sama, now that you’ve cured my sickness, I feel obligated to do the same for you.” She reaches over and pokes you in the nose.

Inwardly, you roar in frustration. Were you anywhere near your full power, such insolence wouldn’t even tolerated, even from one such as her. However, you realize also that you power has been lost, and recovering it will be a long and strenuous process. It is counterproductive to think only of what might have been. What is important, you remind yourself, as you have reminded yourself countless times in the past, is what’s real. Reality takes no sympathy on the weak.

“It would appear that the physical symptoms have faded, but some manner of disease still afflicts your mind. Do try to control yourself.”

Yuyuko laughs. “Oh my. I really set myself up for that one, didn’t I? Bolas-sama, would you like some tea?”

---

It’s been a week since you visited Yuyuko. You’ve gotten your arm restored and have familiarized yourself with your ‘new’ powers. As you lean nonchalantly against the gate of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, a sudden sense of unease strikes you, a burst of spontaneous genius that leaves you vaguely unsettled. There’s something you’ve missed, something crucial that you must immediately investigate. There’s something about this plane that seems familiar to you. It stirs a memory so ancient even you have trouble recalling it. You’re restless. The hollow feeling of ignorance nags at you, compelling you to investigate further. The best place to start would be...

[ ] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

[ ] An interrogation of Keine Kamishirasawa. She still needs to pay for what she did to your arm, and with access to all knowledge in Gensokyo, she’ll be a useful source.

[ ] Eirin. Perhaps she has a potion that can bring this memory back into focus.

[ ] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
>> No. 137223
Keine. We don't want to ask Eirin for more stuff, and tea serves no useful purpose.
>> No. 137224
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

Keine can wait, Eirin won't be so helpful this time, Yuyuko is fine doing whatever while being some sort of Anti-Eldritch Abomination, and Meiling is nearby.

Plus, more dragons under our rule.
Maybe.
Sort of.
>> No. 137225
[x] An interrogation of Keine Kamishirasawa. She still needs to pay for what she did to your arm, and with access to all knowledge in Gensokyo, she’ll be a useful source.
>> No. 137229
[X] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
There is a catch here, I`m telling you.
>> No. 137231
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

Need I remind you that our Draconic form is now merely "Locked"? We MUST unlock it.

Afterwards,
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
>> No. 137234
Oh, I forgot to mention that, along with acquiring additional mana, Nicol also rediscovered three spells. They can be red or blue; I recall there were a lot of votes for Narcolepsy in the last thread. Anyway, if you wanna vote on spells, just list 'em in the order of preference (the spell you most want Nicol to have, then the spell you next most want him to have, etc). Allowed spells are the same as they were last time (All Core sets after and including 9th and all Block sets since Time Spiral), with the addition of the red/blue spells from Ravinca block.

Example vote:

1. Negate - if Nicol had had this when he fought the Avatar, he would have roflstomped it!
2. Elixir of Immortality - Take that, Eirin!
3. Demigod of Revenge - It's cool!
>> No. 137235
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
>> No. 137239
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...
>> No. 137242
File 130038737816.jpg - (36.35KB , 223x310 , Izzet Guildmage.jpg ) [iqdb]
137242
[+] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

And then...

[+] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!

As for spells...I kinda like:
>Stitch in Time (1RB)
Sorcery
Flip a coin. If you win the flip, take an extra turn after this one.
>Swerve (RB)
Instant
Change the target of target spell with a single target.
>Izzet Guildmage (R/B,R/B)
Creature — Human Wizard (2/2)
(Blue or Red can be paid with either Blue or Red.)

2B: Copy target instant spell you control with converted mana cost 2 or less. You may choose new targets for the copy.

2R: Copy target sorcery spell you control with converted mana cost 2 or less. You may choose new targets for the copy.
>> No. 137245
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...
1. Wanderwine Prophets
2. Lullmage Mentor
3. Elemental Mastery

Epileptic tree time:
Though Yawgmoth is the one who put Phyrexia on the map, he didn't build it. It was originally a purely technological plane, built by an ancient planeswalker whose name has been lost to time. Pretty much all that is known is that said planeswalker was a dragon.
1) Makes artificial planes, then disappears.
2) Is a dragon.
3) Isn't Bolas.
Sound familiar?

>> No. 137247
>>137242
I say replace Swerve with Lightning Bolt. It's a classic for a reason, capable of taking care of most creatures and wounding enemy players alike, as well as capable of being cloned with Izzet Guildmage, if neccessary.
>> No. 137248
>>137247

You have Lightning Bolt, check >>137105.

>>137245

Wanderwine Prophets can't enter play unless you know another Merfolk or Changeling spell for 'em to Champion.
>> No. 137249
>>137247
We already have Lightning Bolt.

It's a shame we'll never get to abuse Isochron Scepter. It was always fun.
>> No. 137251
>>137248
Lullmage mentor's got that covered (Merfolk everywhere), but I messed up the order.
>> No. 137252
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!

Ex-route. Go go go.
>> No. 137253
>>137248
Missed that. I thought we were only getting three spells. >>137242's suggestions look fine to me, then.
>> No. 137256
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!

Wee Dragonauts are infinitely cooler than Elemental Mastery.
>> No. 137258
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
>> No. 137259
[+] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

I don't think Bolas is strong enough to deal with Yuyuko yet.
>> No. 137260
>>137224
Point.
Changing my vote from Keine to Meileing.
>> No. 137262
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

Need I remind you that our Draconic form is now merely "Locked"? We MUST unlock it.

Afterwards,
[x] Screw that, go have tea with Yuyuko!
Blatant copypasta. I'm not even gonna try to hide it.
>> No. 137264
>>137259
That's the point. He needs to be... whatever the opposite of corrupted is.
>> No. 137266
>>137242

Hm. Stitch in Time has some interesting dramatic potential, yes. I wouldn't be surprised if at some point Bolas was dug into a hole by anon that only an undercosted Time Warp could dig him out of, leaving him to the mercies of blind chance...

Would you consider Wild Ricochet an appropriate substitute for Swerve? I ask mainly because Swerve doesn't work on Spell Cards (they aren't single-target) and Ricochet not only turns an enemy's Spell Card against them, it also copies it for double the pain.
>> No. 137267
>>137266
You know Scribbler, you're a good DM. And by that I mean both in talent, skill and writing, but also as in "Intelligent Lawful Good" DM.

I'll support the spell selection in question, with the addendum of switching Swerve for Wild Ricochet
>> No. 137268
>>137264
>whatever the opposite of corrupted is
Purified.
>>137266
>Would you consider Wild Ricochet an appropriate substitute for Swerve?
Sounds good to me. Better suggestions could, undoubtedly, be found but the mention of my favorite block just forced me to give it my focus.
>> No. 137269
>>137266
>Swerve doesn't work on Spell Cards

>Change the target of target spell with a single target.
I'm sorry you lost me somewhere.
I think Swerve should do fine. We already have something that doubles our opponents spells and Wild Richochet costs twice as much
>> No. 137272
File 130039626329.jpg - (60.04KB , 312x445 , 76.jpg ) [iqdb]
137272
>>137269

I imagine most spell cards would, by their flavor descriptions, look something like Comet Storm in MtG mechanics. That is, intuitively, one would suppose that they can be easily adapted so that they don't merely target one thing. If your enemies figure out that they can defeat your Swerve by slightly tweaking a spell card so that it targets "you and that rock" instead of just "you," Swerve won't be useful. Of course, you could simply learn Swerve and Wild Ricochet, so as to fake them out (they think they've discovered your weakness, then you use Wild Ricochet!). I'll note also that Redirect does the same thing as Swerve but for UU, in case you guys want to favor Blue Mana more.
>> No. 137273
Well we can just counter whatever else flies our way. We have quite a few useful counters and if they'd have a multiple target spell it'd probably cost a fortune ergo very fat flying squid.
Multikicker eh? Haven't seen that one yet. I'm not very familiar with post Morningtide editions
>> No. 137274
>>137273
Splitting it up means we don't have to pay 4 mana if we (though kinda unlikely) only want one of the effects. It costs about the same anyway and I'm quite confident in our card limit so there's really no point getting something that costs twive as much and has a lot less versatility
>> No. 137275
File 130039824391.jpg - (25.98KB , 223x310 , FireballXY.jpg ) [iqdb]
137275
>>137273
They've been adding names for things that were simply described in the past with a vengeance since Zendikar hit. It might be that with power creep they need more space on each card for the abilities, or they think it streamlines game play. Mostly the names just sound silly.
>> No. 137277
>>137274

From my understanding of the rules, it's not legal to counter a Spell Card in a Spell Card Dual. You can't just prevent them from using danmaku at all, thus Bolas' normal solution to enemy spells is useless. You are correct in that a swerve or swerve-like effect is not entirely necessary in serious fights when Bolas already has both Twincast and counterspells (he can just counter the spell and twincast it). However, it should not technically be illegal to have a spell card that takes control of enemy spellcards and then copies them, as you are fighting danmaku with danmaku, albeit in a roundabout way. Basically, you'd claim Wild Ricochet is a Spellcard - [Almighty Sign] Just As Planned - or something and use it to get around your main weakness of being unable to dodge worth a damn by directing your enemy's fire back at them. Thus, the question here is whether the added usefulness of Wild Ricochet (shores up one of Bolas' weaknesses, can affect multi-target spells like the Commands or Arc Trail, is two cards in one) is worth losing the modularity of Swerve or Redirect.

As an aside, because Draining Whelk checks for converted mana cost, using it to counter X-cost spells is generally a bad idea. Converted Mana cost always assumes an X of zero.
>> No. 137278
>>137277
That's not much different from what Satori does with her spell cards, so it should be fine by the rules.
>> No. 137283
You turn to the side. “Meiling.”

“Sir?”


“Do you know anything about the draconic essence inhabiting your corpus?”

“Draconic...essence? Well, I mean, I’ve always thought dragons were cool...”

“You are a youkai, are you not? What sort of youkai are you?”
“Hm...I don’t know. Actually, I don’t remember much of my life before about two hundred years ago. Maybe I’m a dragon youkai!”

“That is one theory. I have an idea. Come with me.”

“But...who will guard the gate?”

“Who are you going to guard the gate from? That witch hasn’t visited in over a week. No one here is Remilia’s enemy; your job is basically pointless. That’s why you’re not terminated for sleeping.”

“E-eh!? I’ve never really thought about it that-”

“Anyway, follow.” You begin walking away from the gate.

“Where are we going?” Meiling jogs to keep up with your relentless pace.

“To see an old...” you smirk. “...friend. In any event, I assume neither Remilia nor Sakuya are aware of your true nature either?”

“Nope! It’s a mystery.”

“Not for long.”

Entering the human village for the first time, you’re surprised to see that there’s a statue of a dragon in the center. It’s unusually stylized, and the proportions are somewhat unrealistic. You recall that Meiling told you that the creator of Gensokyo was a dragon. Maybe it was someone you met before? Another question, perhaps, for your ‘friend.’

“What are we at a school for?” Meiling childishly rises to her tip-toes and looks over the wall.

“Not what, who.” You open the door and stride in. The pathetic human children of this small village are arrayed in neat rows. A few pay close attention to the words of their teacher, but most are pretending not to sleep.

You walk over to Keine and grab her by the wrist. “Your irrelevant hobby can wait. I have important questions for you.”

“Wha- who- You can’t just barge in here and accost me! This is a school. I’m trying to teach these kids their history lesson, and I won’t stand for interruptions!”

You scoff. “I’ll teach these kids a lesson. Children!” The dozing humans snap rapidly awake, shock plastered over their young faces. Keine looks utterly aghast.

“History follows predictable patterns. The most oft-repeated pattern is this: the powerful use their power to prey on those who cannot fight back. Now, observe, the eternal fate of the weak!” The sooner they learn that, you think bitterly, the better.

You grandly drag Keine out of the school house. A muted “awesome!” emanates from behind as you slam the door.

“This is unforgiveable! Do you know what you’ve done? It’ll take me weeks to get them paying attention again!”

“Silence, wench, I have no time to listen to the whining of my would-be murderer. I have a question for you.”

Keine sighs. “Get on with it, then.”

You point to Meiling. “What type of creature is she?”

“A...youkai?”

“Yes, I know that,” you snap. “What type of youkai? There are distinctions, are there not? There’s that rather aggressive youkai of flowers, and also the youkai of boundaries. What is Meiling the youkai of?”

Keine looks puzzled. “I don’t really know. I could check my archives, but it’s not guaranteed to be in there.”

You glare at her. “Do you think I’m unaware that you keep a scroll with a sealed history of the full moon on your person at all times?”

“That’s for emergencies!”

“Yes.”

“This isn’t an emergency, Bolas,” she huffs, hands on her waist.

“It will soon become one if my question goes unanswered,” you reply, growling.

“...Alright, fine. But we need to go somewhere where people won’t see. It’ll be a problem if this secret weapon of mine becomes public knowledge.”

“Fine. Where do you want to go?”

Meiling pipes up. “There’s always the forest. It’s big and people get lost within it pretty easily.”

“That will do. Let’s go.” You grab the females and teleport there.

“Ow! Hey, watch where you’re going!” The four-winged faerie rubs her head vigorously.

A low rumble of frustration escapes you. “Vacate this area, creature, or I’ll forcibly evict you.”

“What?” The fae stares at you as if you’re insane. “Do you know who you’re messing with, crazy hobo?”

“Do you?”

“Doesn’t matter, I’m the strongest!” And with that, she lashes out at your shin, crushing bone with a brutal kick.

[ ] [INCINERATE HER!] “No,” you reply. “I am.”

[ ] [Mind Control] “The strongest, you say?” Holding back the pain, you snap your fingers. “Then, you’ll serve me.”

[ ] Write in. This option is recommended.
>> No. 137286
[x] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa..
>> No. 137288
[x] Blatant Thievery

Mind control isn't enough!
>> No. 137289
>>137288
And you think that will fly with either Keine or Meiling?
>> No. 137290
>>137289
I think someone will come up with a superior write-in within an hour.
>> No. 137291
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa...onto Marisa.

Now that's thinking with portals!
>> No. 137292
>>137283
Cirno has six icicles for wings in most depictions, except for Hisoutensoku where they've apparently fused into a single pair of wings.

[x] Humor option: beat her with her own ice spells. Then explain the history lesson you gave Keine's class.
>> No. 137293
[x] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa.

Easy option. Not worth it to nuke her into a goop.
>> No. 137294
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa...onto Marisa.

sounds...humorous.
>> No. 137295
[x] Try to convince her to leave without resorting to magic.

Someone has to vote for it.
>> No. 137297
>>137275
Well, to be fair, the Multi-Kicker is just the next logical step up from the Kicker mechanic from Invasion.
But they really are on a key-word spree. Wouldn't surprise me if they bring back "bury" soon, as well. ("Bury" was the original wording for "Destroy X, it can't be regenerated".)

>>137269
Spell cards don't really have a single target, they're more like "deal X damage to any number of target creatures", since most of them never actually aim at anything. They just spray multicolored bullets everywhere.

I'd go with Redirect over Wild Ricochet, though. More cost-efficient, since the main use of both would be on defense and we don't need the doubling effect. We can just Twincast anyway.

For our second spell I like Incite. (Target creature becomes red until end of turn. It attacks this turn if able.)
If our opponents aren't making any mistakes, we simply force them to.

As for the third spell, Narcolepsy is still a good idea. We need a good non-lethal lockdown spell, because sometimes you actually need to take them alive.

So:
1. Redirect
2. Incite
3. Narcolepsy

And
[X] Hong Meiling’s draconic nature. Yes, the memory involves dragons, somehow...

Our Red mana is trying to tell us something, and more dragons are always a good thing, when Red mana is involved.
>> No. 137299
>>137297
Ah gods dammit.
I hate this timezone difference. Posting in the middle of the night makes me forget to check for updates while I'm typing, and I always type too much and too slow when I'm tired.

[X] We don't have time for fae with obviously inflated egos. Show her that she is out of her league and send her away. Not worth the trouble of incinerating her and we have things to do that are actually important.
>> No. 137300
>>137286 Here.

>>137294
This option has it. Let's go for it.
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa...onto Marisa.
>> No. 137308
[+] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa...onto Marisa.
We should have her tell Marisa hi for us.
>> No. 137311
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa... onto Marisa.

Increasing our collection of Touhous in the gallery just inside the plane.
>> No. 137314
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa... onto Marisa.
>> No. 137320
[x] [INCINERATE HER!] “No,” you reply. “I am.”

She has to learn someday ...
>> No. 137326
[x]Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa...onto Marisa.

The little fairy is hardly worth the effort of destroying. However, if we did, it would set a bad example before we are prepared for that reputation. Cirno is, after all, not as dangerous as many of the other residents of Gensokyo. Besides, teleporting her onto Marisa is just fun. Especially since we don't know where she is right now. Maybe taking a warm bath? I wonder what introducing an ice fairy will do in that situation...
>> No. 137329
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa... onto Marisa.
>> No. 137332
[x] [INCINERATE HER!] “No,” you reply. “I am.”
Guys, she can respawn. We're the "evil guy" for christ's sake let's act like one. Black mana or not.
>>137297
We don't really need a doubling effect. We have awesome spellcard power but our dodging skills are in the gutter.
>> No. 137333
>>137332
Evil doesn't mean "derp kill everything that bothers me."
>> No. 137334
>>137333
And it's still not interesting. Power obsession is the worst motivation.
>> No. 137337
>>137333
What I mean is that we're the selfish self centered bastard and someone just attacked us out of the blue for practically no reason but DURR YOUR IN MI WAI!! If that does not deserve a fireball to the face by Bolas standards then I don't know what does. It even deserves a fireball to the face by normal Gensokyo standards. 25000 years of history don't change just like that. Nicol can't suddenly have a face heel turn just because he's in a human body.
>> No. 137340
>>137337
Depending on what Marisa is doing, teleporting Cirno to her might be as good as a fireballMaster Spark to the face. And far more amusing.
>> No. 137342
[X]"There is always a greater power."
[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa... onto Marisa.
>> No. 137343
>>137340

Not to mention a fireball is too good for her.
>> No. 137344
>>137340
I don't happen to see it that way

[x]"There is always a greater power."
This however, is awesome
>> No. 137346
File 130044759136.jpg - (88.83KB , 312x445 , 164.jpg ) [iqdb]
137346
>>137342

Sure you don't wanna save that phrase for the spell it's really intended for?
>> No. 137349
>>137346
Unless it drops the black and changes its effect to match, not really.

I'm most likely alone in this.
>> No. 137350
>>137346
Not when someone just boasted about being The Strongest to us. The irony of countering Cirno's catch phrase with our own is hilarious, in my opinion.
>> No. 137352
[x] "No I am"
-[X] Teleport her elsewhere like we did Marisa... onto Marisa.
>> No. 137377
File 130047857564.jpg - (57.84KB , 312x445 , 1.jpg ) [iqdb]
137377
You fall, seeing through a red haze of rage and pain. Meiling springs in front you. “Cirno! What do you think you’re doing, attacking out of nowhere?”

“Hey, he started it!”

“GET. OUT.” You make a sharp slashing gesture with your arm, and Cirno disappears in a flash of blue mana. Meiling gasps. “Where’d...you send her?”

You manage a pained smile-grimace. “I figured someone needed a lesson in what it’s like to deal with a mentally retarded interloper.”

Meiling walks over and helps you up. Keine smiles maliciously. “Hmph. Serves you right.”

“Don’t try me, woman.”

“Yes, yes, let’s get this over with. I don’t want to be here any more than you do.” Keine snaps the scroll open and begins to read. You wonder if you should try to browbeat Eirin into giving you medicine for your leg. It’s not absolutely necessary since you could just fly or teleport everywhere, but the pain is extremely distracting. You close your eyes and try to shut out the sensation of nails scraping against your shin bone.

“Wow,” Meiling exclaims, “Keine, your transformation is just like a magical girl’s!”

“T-that’s not it at all,” you hear Keine gasp, “this is just a were-hakutaku form. I wouldn’t do something ridiculous like fight evil or try to punish you in the name of the moon!”
“Correction. You won’t be doing something ridiculous like trying to fight evil anymore.”

“You are so aggravating!” Something hits you in the face. Spitting out blades of grass, you open your eyes again.

“Well?” You ask.

“Well what?”

“My question. What’s the answer.”

“Oh, right. Um...”

“...”

“...no, that can’t be right...”

“What is it?”

“This...this shouldn’t be possible. Access...Denied?”

“WHAT?” You roar, springing to your feet (favoring your good leg) and rushing forward.

“Creature, if you’re having me on, the eight hells of your religion will seem downright paradisaical in comparison to your fate!”

“No, I wouldn’t lie about something like this. I really can’t access this part of the Akashic record. Huh...looks like it was sealed the day you arrived here, Bolas. Someone’s trying to hide something from you. But, to go so far as to seal the Akashic Record of Meiling’s creature type...who would have the power?”

Meiling looks excited. “Wow, maybe I’m some sort of goddess or secretly the creator of Gensokyo in disguise!”

You look at her. It would explain the nonsensical laws of this plane...but no. Something tells you that line of thinking is a mere red herring. She’s somehow related to the dragon that created this plane, but it’s definitely not her.

Keine ponders for a bit. “Only the most powerful of Gensokyo’s inhabitants should have the power to do something like this. Maybe that Youkai of boundaries...I can’t think of anyone else with the capability. Hold on, let me check something...okay, Eirin hasn’t invented anything that could possibly cross the Akashic border, and neither have you.”

“Obviously.”

She looks skeptical for a second, then continues. “It’s possible that Yukari can conceal her past actions from my power. I don’t see any holes in her history, but she saw through my temporal concealment of the human village easily enough.”

“At any rate, a being with power over boundaries should be able to bypass a seal on information. Let us go speak to Yukari Yakumo.”

“I heard my name~”

Meiling eeps and jumps, knocking you down. You wince and wave off her apologies. “Yes. Keine here is attempting to look up what type of creature Hong Meiling truly is. However, she has run into something - an unprecedented seal, a lock on information within the Akashic Record itself. We were wondering if you were involved in that, or if you know how to break it.”

“Breaking a seal, huh...I don’t know if that’s such a good idea, what with all the seals being broken around the multiverse!”

“What are you talking about?”A cold, damp dread overcomes you. No, she could just be joking. It couldn’t be so convenient. They couldn’t have been released so far ahead of even your schedule...


“Why, just the other day I felt a great disturbance in the boundaries of one particular universe. It’s unusual, I almost never feel events from other planes, so it must have been very large indeed. Strange place, that Zendikar.”

You can’t help it. Cradling your forehead in the palm of your hands, you emit a strangled groan. Were you at your full power they wouldn’t be too much of an issue, but as you are now...

“Zendikar. You’re sure.”

She nods cheerfully.

“Ugin’s Seal?”

She nods, slightly less cheerful than before. You hiss in frustration. What has that idiot Sorin been doing, neglecting the only duty of his seven-thousand-year-long existence?

[ ] OH FUCK IT’S THE ELDRAZI. Abandon your current line of pursuit, if there’s even the remotest chance the Eldrazi are coming here you are all screwed. Unfortunately, you currently lack the ability to move planes, so you’ll have to do your best to build some sort of defense. Forging artifacts to arm the inhabitants of Gensokyo would be a start, but you’d probably need something on the level of the Doom Citadel to oppose the Eldrazi effectively. Maybe some sort of trans-dimensional deflector shield?

[ ] The chance of the Eldrazi actually visiting this plane, of the infinite planes of the multiverse, is astronomically low. Unless there’s something special here - well, besides you, and they shouldn't be all that interested in you - there’s absolutely no reason to worry about them in the short term. Focus on this line of pursuit - your draconic form is more important than these cosmic bogeymen. Once you return to your full majesty, they will be but pawns before you once more.

For those who don’t know what an Eldrazi is -

Killer Bacterium :: Plague Avatar
Great Old One :: Eldrazi

Basically, just as the plague avatar is the physically destructible but incredibly powerful manifestation of the killer bacterium, so are the Eldrazi (theoretically) physically destructible but incredibly powerful cosmic horrors. Rank-and-file Eldrazi are on the level of Cthulhu, whereas legendaries embody the concentrated power of an Azathoth or Yog-Sothoth.
>> No. 137378
[X] OH FUCK IT’S THE ELDRAZI. Abandon your current line of pursuit, if there’s even the remotest chance the Eldrazi are coming here you are all screwed. Unfortunately, you currently lack the ability to move planes, so you’ll have to do your best to build some sort of defense. Forging artifacts to arm the inhabitants of Gensokyo would be a start, but you’d probably need something on the level of the Doom Citadel to oppose the Eldrazi effectively. Maybe some sort of trans-dimensional deflector shield?
>> No. 137381
[x] OH FUCK IT’S THE ELDRAZI. Abandon your current line of pursuit, if there’s even the remotest chance the Eldrazi are coming here you are all screwed. Unfortunately, you currently lack the ability to move planes, so you’ll have to do your best to build some sort of defense. Forging artifacts to arm the inhabitants of Gensokyo would be a start, but you’d probably need something on the level of the Doom Citadel to oppose the Eldrazi effectively. Maybe some sort of trans-dimensional deflector shield?
OH SHIT OH FUCK OH HELL!
>> No. 137383
Almost certainly an issue. This plane is highly unusual. It will attract Eldrazi in for tea.
>> No. 137385
[x] The chance of the Eldrazi actually visiting this plane, of the infinite planes of the multiverse, is astronomically low. Unless there’s something special here - well, besides you, and they shouldn't be all that interested in you - there’s absolutely no reason to worry about them in the short term. Focus on this line of pursuit - your draconic form is more important than these cosmic bogeymen. Once you return to your full majesty, they will be but pawns before you once more.

Yukari is trying to distract Nicol. If we change course now, she's going to be all "Just as planned" for weeks. And the Eldrazi will STILL never show up.
>> No. 137386
Also, make sure to use this threat to try and regain power when feasible. It will meet with suspicion, but we can easily explain that this is a FUCKING HUGE PROBLEM for everything. If we just wanted power, we could have played the long game and waited, patience is easy for an immortal to gain.
>> No. 137387
God damnit.
If the Eldrazi do show up, this can only go down one way, and I don't want to fight/romance adorable girl versions of unknowable horrors.
>> No. 137388
>>137385
Possible, but that would require her to have knowledge on par with us. Which is just plain absurd. Plus this plane is highly unusual. It may not have been chance that we wound up here.
>> No. 137389
Say, if Meiling is a Dragon, what are the chances she would help or be able to do something if Eldrazi was to come to Gensokyo? I'm not exactly sure I comprehend how much of a threat to Eldrazi is. Does Nick consider Eldrazi a minor threat in his original form because he would just plane jump or what?
>> No. 137390
Calm down people. Panicking and rushing to prepare defences is exactly something that would draw the attention of the Eldrazi. Lovecraftian monstrosities work in timescales of eons, so we do have time to figure out what to do. Needless to say, the real problem is that, if they indeed reach the level of Azathoth (The Daemon Sultan, the seething Nuclear Chaos at the Centre of all Reality), we're kind of fucked since they're basically the sentient fundamental concepts of reality/the Multiverse. There is a slight difference between Cthulhu (merely the High Priest of the Great Old Ones, which he can see but dimly) and Azathoth and Yog-Sothoth (Outer Gods and sentient concepts of reality).

In any case, restoring Meiling and ourselves to proper Draconic form is actually a step in the right direction to setting up defences against the Great Old Ones and the Outer Gods. In many universes of fiction, Dragons are generally the first species to stand up and fight back against such creatures with success, so being able to count two Dragons amongst our forces will be useful. That one of them would be ourselves, Nicol Bolas, at full power would merely act as a force multiplier.

In other words,
[X] The chance of the Eldrazi actually visiting this plane, of the infinite planes of the multiverse, is astronomically low. Unless there’s something special here - well, besides you, and they shouldn't be all that interested in you - there’s absolutely no reason to worry about them in the short term. Focus on this line of pursuit - your draconic form is more important than these cosmic bogeymen. Once you return to your full majesty, they will be but pawns before you once more.

Still, talk with Yukari about precautions to take to hide her plane from them, as well as what signs to look for in order to detect either incursion or attention from the Eldrazi. Try to enlist her aid/assistance in restoring our power, as even True Planeswalkers like Urza could be vulnerable to the Eldrazi, and we are so much less than we once were.

However, Yukari used this information to dance around our question, to evade having to answer about the seal on the Akashic Record. Press the question, remark that such a thing means she should seek to prepare her Plane against the Eldrazi, and uncovering the full might of Meiling as a Dragon/restoring us to Draconic form is certainly a step in the right direction. She knows the danger of those creatures and were she to aid us in restoring ourself and uncovering the secret of Meiling would put both her and us in her debt.

As Sufficiently Old Beings of Power, we can surely come to an agreement that is mutually beneficial. Additionally, we're coming to actually *like* this Plane of hers and would not be adverse to helping preserve it, if it is worth our while.
>> No. 137391
File 130048743187.jpg - (122.38KB , 1440x810 , banned from google.jpg ) [iqdb]
137391
>“This...this shouldn’t be possible. Access...Denied?”
>> No. 137392
I'm going to laugh when all these artifacts capable of taking on the Eldrazi are turned on Nicol.
>> No. 137393
[x] The chance of the Eldrazi actually visiting this plane, of the infinite planes of the multiverse, is astronomically low. Unless there’s something special here - well, besides you, and they shouldn't be all that interested in you - there’s absolutely no reason to worry about them in the short term. Focus on this line of pursuit - your draconic form is more important than these cosmic bogeymen. Once you return to your full majesty, they will be but pawns before you once more.
>> No. 137394
>>137392
Unless those artifacts are basically the Ultimate Nullifier from Marvel, none of them should be too threatening to Nicol since they'll have to be primarily Conceptual Weapons.

Although you raise a cogent point and argument towards trying to gain White mana and spells. Disenchant, motherfuckers.
>> No. 137397
File 130048913982.jpg - (37.89KB , 223x310 , emrakul.jpg ) [iqdb]
137397
>>137389
As far as I know, Nicol could probably deal with (some of) the Eldrazi in his original form, but they are pretty much cosmic horrors of pure destruction.
(Pic related. One of the big ones.
It can't be stopped, its mere existence rips a hole in time, no magic that isn't also on the level of "mind destroying cosmic horror" can touch it and everything around it dies, wherever it goes.)
If they show up in force, your options are pretty much to mobilize the entire world and hope that it is enough to stop them, or the get fuck out and pray that they move on to a different plane than the one you just escaped to.

So on a level of "personal safety" they aren't that bad, because he could just evade them until the end of time by planeswalking out whenever they appear, but that's not really an option now. If they show up, we're stuck with them for good or bad or worse.

It's still a creature though, and his -2 Mind Control ability isn't a spell, so the protecion doesn't apply.
Meaning you could just steal control of it and mock your opponent for being stupid enough to play a big creature like that when you have Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker on the table.. But we're talking lore, not rules now.
But yeah, in his original form he could probably take on an Eldrazi one-on-one, but if there are more than one of them...
Not to mention that they'd probably all spam Not Of This World in this setting where spells aren't limited to the M:tG card game rules. (Not of This World is a counter that blocks both spells and abilities, and is free to cast if you use it to protect anything with power 7 or greater. All "true Eldrazi" have power 7 or greater.)
Our best chance of stopping one would be to just have everyone gang up on it and hope we have enough danmaku.
But that's assuming the "everything dies" effect of Eldrazi doesn't fuck us over first.
>> No. 137398
File 130048924289.jpg - (34.32KB , 223x310 , shatterstorm.jpg ) [iqdb]
137398
>>137394
Why get White mana for artifact destruction?
The King of pure artifact destruction is Red and, what do you know, we already have that.
>> No. 137399
[x] The chance of the Eldrazi actually visiting this plane, of the infinite planes of the multiverse, is astronomically low. Unless there’s something special here - well, besides you, and they shouldn't be all that interested in you - there’s absolutely no reason to worry about them in the short term. Focus on this line of pursuit - your draconic form is more important than these cosmic bogeymen. Once you return to your full majesty, they will be but pawns before you once more.
>> No. 137400
>>137390
Pretty much this.

[X] Don't panic, but prepare for the worst and step up the pace. A time-bomb has just appeared. We can't see the timer, but we know it's ticking.

Gensokyo should be a delicious target for the Eldrazi because of its rather unique nature, especially with a weakened Nicol Bolas thrown in as a bonus.
But they are Lovecraftian cosmic horrors, and still on Zendikar (and hopefully not completely free, but still held back by the remnants of the seal) so we can assume that
A. They work on a larger timescale than mere mortals.
and
B. That it will take them some time to be able to move on and come here.

Yukari is evading our question, unless she can provide an adequate reason for this she will help us.
Whether or not we're starting to like this place can be argued, but right now we're stuck here. Meaning that if the Eldrazi arrives to fuck over either Gensokyo or Sorin (or both), we need everyone and everything availible to stop them or we're all dead.
Sorin at his full power would be a great asset for the "home team" and, honestly, he's the lesser evil of the two.
>> No. 137401
>>137400
>Sorin
Derp.
I meant Nicol, obviously. I don't even know where Sorin came from.
>> No. 137402
Yukari may be a troll but she won't want gensokyo deystroyed or enslaved, be it by us or the eldrazi. the fact that she is the only local thing that can seal the record means there are 2 likely scenareos (as in not Kogasa suprising us)

1. Yukari's telling the truth, the eldrazi sealed the record and know we're here or know of melings thret to them and Yukaris's here to help us fight in her own way. If it's this we need an eldrazi defence plan ASAP but meling is a potential powerhouse (or at least related to one)

2. Yukari sealed the record to stop us getting an ally and this is all ment to minimise our thret level to her by distracting us in an amusing (for her) fashion. Good news low eldrazi chance. Bad news Yukaris against us.
Melings still likely strong and related to a planswalker though if she dosn't want us finding out.
Remember that we saved Yuyuko's (un)life a while back and Yukari and Yuyuko are very good friends. If we make better friends with Yuyuko we might be able to convince Yukari to play a more honest hand.

As for what we do the first thing we need to find out if the eldrazi are realy after us or not. I doubt we can just read Yukaris mind so what she does next will be key. If she helps us (likly indirectly) the eldrazi are coming, if she hinders us it's her trolling. I Doubt though she'll risk dealing with the eldrazi without a plan.

[x] Pretend to panic about the eldrazi and see what she does in responce, be particulaly aware of potential indirect actions.
-[x] If she seams to be helping us she's telling the truth. disgus anti-eldrazi plan with Yukari
-[x] If shes distracting us or hindering us, she's bluffing, go see Yuyuko for her take on Yukari, try to read her mind as Yuyu can lie too.
>> No. 137404
I forgot about telepathy.

I support any vote that involves using Peek on Yukari. Do it do it do it do it do it.
>> No. 137405
>>137390 Here.

>>137404
An interesting suggestion. Consider it... conditionally seconded, if we can pull it off without being detected. Which I privately doubt, but could be wrong.
>> No. 137406
>>137405
No, fuck subterfuge. Just ask nicely if we can verify her story. If she doesn't let us, assume it isn't true.

Simple, effective.
>> No. 137408
>>137387

I'm sorry man. With all the Yuyuko votes in this thread, you're already pissing against the tide.

Yukari isn't immune to your telepathy. She could defend herself, but you could counter her defense if you want...
>> No. 137410
>>137408
Yeah, do not want pissed off gap hag. I'll stick with asking nicely.
>> No. 137413
File 130049835566.jpg - (72.72KB , 312x445 , 45.jpg ) [iqdb]
137413
You close your eyes and sigh. “I wouldn’t normally ask this of you, but,” you gesture towards your leg. Yukari looks confused for a moment, then nods.

“Boundary between injury and health!” She touches your leg, and the pain simply disappears. Where once cracked bone had protruded from your skin, now not even a scar remains. You rise to your feet and dust yourself off as Meiling springs also to hers.

“Now then. It’s not that I don’t trust you...well, actually, I don’t trust you. Let me read your mind to confirm that you’re telling the truth.”

Yukari smiles. “Sure, but don’t go looking at things you’re not supposed to.”

“Don’t flatter yourself.”

The Mistress of Boundaries laughs. “Alright, alright. Take a Peek, if you like. Oh, I’m so embarrassed.”

You peer into Yukari’s mind, verifying the memory of the great disturbance she felt. Yes...it seems likely that they’ve escaped their millenia-long prison at last. What could have caused it? You feel a surge of rage at the coalition who laid you so low. Had you been even at the level of your post-Mending self, you could have dealt with the creatures from afar. Still, you’re fairly certain they’ll rampage around Zendikar for a few months before bothering you.

After checking that she did not fabricate the memory, you exit the youkai’s mind. “I believe you. The Eldrazi have indeed escaped.”
Much hangs unsaid between the two of you. You’d claim that this means that recovering your former power has become the priority of all Gensokyo, but she would merely say that you’re looking to escape. It’s true that the amount of effort you’ve put into your relationships here has been significant, but you are not above betraying allies when alliance becomes too inconvenient.

It is to her advantage that you grow strong, but if you become too powerful, you’ll be a greater threat than the Eldrazi, and can simply leave. What, you ask yourself, would be the rational course of action for Yukari? Her predictive skills are not on the level that she could precisely calculate how powerful you will become as a result of specific actions on her part or the part of her allies.

You don’t know enough about her heuristics to predict her actions, either. There are too many variables. Does she understand the concept of a Sabbothian (what humans would call Nash) Equilibrium? How many levels of complexity does she subconsciously operate at? Which mental paradigm is she bringing to bear upon this particular situation? It’s too uncertain. You’ll have to leave your evaluation at, “Yukari is whimsical and probably isn’t used to thinking these things through.”

You prefer not to underestimate potential enemies, but it’s unlikely that a being as innately powerful as Yukari has had to employ her intelligence too often in scenarios like these. With her power over boundaries, she has a fairly direct solution to the vast majority of problems. Unless, like you, she was weak in her formative years...possible, but if she was she did not learn the same lessons you did.

It would be fairly easy for a being like her to leverage her power into more power, and that she is not already at a level that would challenge a true planeswalker shows either a truly startling lack of intelligence (really very startling, as the concepts are quite simple) or a simple satisfaction with the status quo. All this you consider in the moment before Yukari replies, “Well, Bolas-san, this is your time to shine. What an interesting incident this will be...I hope dear Reimu doesn’t get in over her head.”

“Yes, while the Eldrazi are a major threat, they are not one I can realistically face at my current level of power. Perhaps if you helped us find what’s behind that seal, our chances of survival would be greater than zero.”

Yukari looks at you for a moment, then giggles. “Sure. Let’s see...hm...Boundary between Free and Restricted...nope. Boundary between Closed and Open...nope. Specific manipulation of the seal boundary...it’s not responding.”

“Boundary between Unknown and Known?” You suggest an indirect attack.

“Ooh, good idea...but nope.”

“Boundary between Seen and Unseen?”

“Nope.”

“Boundary between illicit and uncensored?”

“That’s the first one I tried, silly.”

“...Naturally. Meta-boundary manipulation? Boundary between Illusion and Reality on the Boundary between the Seal and the rest of the Akashic Record?”

Yukari concentrates for a moment. “Also nope. My, what a marvelously resilient defense!”

You sigh. If even that didn’t work, it’s likely that the being who sealed the information was smart enough to have thought of all possible exploits, or was simply so powerful that magic on the level of Yukari’s is unable to affect his workings at all. You have a hunch, a sneaking suspicion...

“Keine, check the information you have on the dragon who created Gensokyo. More specifically, his exact identity.”

“Okay.” She massages her temple. “Access...denied.” She sighs.

“As expected.” You regard the females. “Your assistance here is no longer required. I will simply have to figure out the result via direct experimentation and observation.”

“E-eh?” Meiling looks nervous. Yukari comes over and wraps her arms around the red-clothed girl. “We won’t let you do ecchi things to Meiling-chan, Bolas-san~” At this, Meiling turns the same shade of red as her dress.

“Don’t scare her,” You say as you advance on the pair. “I’ll be...relatively humane. I’m well aware of the consequences if Remilia’s gate guard were to die. In the meantime, Yukari, see if you can impress the gravity of our situation on the general inhabitants of Gensokyo.”

You’ve chosen to keep calm and carry on. Perhaps if you’d had access to a Plague Wind-level attack you’d fear the Eldrazi less, but in the meantime your own priorities are certain: acquire enough power to defeat them or flee this plane before they depart Zendikar.

[ ] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

[ ] You’ll not rely on the equipment of someone so opposed to your agenda. It’s safer to build your own laboratory, even if it takes much longer!
>> No. 137415
[x] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

If Eirin knows what an Eldrazi is she'll understand.
>> No. 137416
>>137415

[x] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

Damn straight she will. Lunarians might be nigh-immortals (and she might be completely immortal like Kaguya and Mokou) but all that means is more time suffering under the influence of the Eldrazi before they retroactively erase you from the timeline.
>> No. 137417
[x] You’ll not rely on the equipment of someone so opposed to your agenda. It’s safer to build your own laboratory, even if it takes much longer!

Ecchi? You're pushing the boundary between the unacceptable and the acceptable, here.
>> No. 137418
[x] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

We've made a good impression so far and still haven't fucked with her yet, so I don't see why we shouldn't ask for her assistance. Also,

>>137417
>Ecchi? You're pushing the boundary between the unacceptable and the acceptable, here.

I see what you did there. And I see what you mean too, although I don't really think it's that big of a problem.
>> No. 137420
>>137418
[x] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

Inb4 Kaguya decides messing with Nicol is fun.
"In order for met to accept you in my house, you have to perform this impossible request!", etc.
>> No. 137421
>>137420
in b4 Nicol goes "I was Ancient and Legend when your great-great-grandmother wasn't yet a glimmer in her father's eyes. Your so-called impossible request bores me, and is something I did as an intellectual exercise 10 millennia before you were born."

Or in simpler terms:
"Simian bitch, immortal or not, better know her place. This Dragon Planeswalker doesn't give a damn about her requests."
>> No. 137422
I wish Nicol could be content with the status quo. Maybe he could be if he never got his black mana back.
>> No. 137423
[+] You’ll need an artificer’s laboratory to construct a proper diagnostic engine for Meiling. With even the Akashic Record sealed, information-gathering magics won’t help. Seek out Eirin’s laboratory and try to convince her to let you use it.

Kinda wish I hadn't stopped playing before all that Eldrazi crap.
>> No. 137429
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137429
“Hold still.” You place the helmet on Meiling’s head, checking the straps on her chair. “Eirin, you’re sure these will hold? I’m putting her under now.”

“Yes, they incorporate Lunarian technology. Those would hold me as well.”
Nodding in assent, humming to yourself, you plug a large cable into the helmet, then check the fluid levels in the large, phosphorescent tube next to Meiling’s chair. “Hm. We’ll have to downadjust the serum levels before we electrolyze. Otherwise, it could trigger a chain reaction.”

Eirin examines it carefully. “I’m not seeing it. Have you forgotten the Recombinant Principle?”

“Do not presume to lecture me on the Recombinant Principle, woman. I once used it as the basis for a plan whose execution spanned ten human lifetimes. Few in the multiverse are more well-versed in it than I am.”

“Oh? And how’d that plan of yours turn out?”

“I exploited the naturally occuring conflux of the shard-plane of Alara. My plan was to absorb the energy generated when the planes re-fused, and use that magical power to catalyze the ascendance of my Spark. I harnessed enough power to reignite suns or tear whole realities asunder...and I would have gotten away with it, too, if it hadn’t been for those meddling children and that damn cat!”

Eirin laughs. “Is that how you ended here? You plummeted into a dimensional maelstrom?”

“That’s my theory, at least. It doesn’t explain why I suddenly turned into a human, though.”

“I’m curious, Nicol. How did a bunch of children and a cat defeat you in the first place?”

“They cheated, of course. Ajani - the cat - used some sort of ridiculous soul magic and extracted the latent potential for white and green mana in me. It’s the same technique I used to extract the Plague Avatar, though his natural talent for it far exceeds mine. A thoroughly pathetic branch of magic that relies entirely on the strength of one’s allies - or enemies.”

Eirin raises an eyebrow. “Of course. Who but the great Nicol Bolas could defeat himself?”

“You think you’re being sarcastic. In any event, I battled the avatar and, just as I was about to crush it utterly, it sacrificed its own short life, fusing with my body and using the last shreds of its mana to seal my own magical abilities.”

“Wow, what an archetypical hero!” Eirin gives a semi-mocking salute. “He died for a good cause.”

You snort. “‘An hero’ he may have been, his life was nonetheless spent in vain. To me, a delay of a few hundred years is nothing.”

“You say that now, but what about the Eldrazi?”

“Yes, that’s why we’re here. To see if the secrets locked inside this girl can help us oppose them. Alright, I’ve finished calibrating the tesseract modulator. Is the vedalkan orrey positioned exactly as I specified?”
She nods. “I don’t see why we need an astronomical tool, though...”

“Symbolism is important. We peer now past the thin layers of reality that constitute the physical, into a higher and far deadlier realm. Should the energies we channel break free of our holding patterns, none of us will survive. And don’t think the protection afforded by your elixir would be any good, either.”

“Alright, I’ve downadjusted the serum levels.” Eirin takes off her lab gloves and puts on a pair of goggles. “I’ll go wait in the viewing chamber.”

“Suit yourself.” So saying, you pull the primary activation lever, indulging yourself with a spot of maniacal laughter as the machine hums and purrs, captured moonlight spilling out of the tube to send spiraling strands of oriental characters towards the scrolls attached to Meiling’s helmet. You frown as the first symbol scribes itself into the leftmost scroll, livid blue energy fading to the rich black of fresh ink.

World Egg? Realization strikes you like a thunderbolt, and even as the vortex opens you are turning and screaming.

“Code 17! The encapsulating demiplane, immediately!”

Eirin nods, shaken, her hand smashing through protective glass into triggering mechanism, and you breathe a sigh of relief even as you are swallowed by the World Egg Inversion - the rewriting of what is inscribed in the world with what is inscribed on the soul. There is the grasping, empty void of the Blind Eternities, and then you are through.

As you land, you consider the implications of what just happened. Though it had been a possibility, you hadn’t believed Inversion to be likely, as Meiling’s latent power would have to have been within two orders of magnitude of your own in order to trigger it, a laughably unlikely scenario. Within two orders of magnitude of your full power...you may need to reconsider whether her usefulness as a pawn would eclipse her potential to be a threat. In the meantime, you won’t be able to navigate your way out of here without destroying Meiling’s soul or releasing the power sealed within her and using a portion of that to fuel a Walk. Everything is symbolic here, but the nature of Inversion means that, unlike most soul ventures, you won’t be able to simply lucid dream your way out of problems. You will have to tread carefully.

You appear to be in a field (a rice paddy, to be precise) in rural China, circa early nineteenth century. There is a mountain in the distance and what appears to the be the outskirts of a largish city on the other side. A group of soldiers with uniforms you can’t identify appear to be ransacking and burning a nearby farm. It’s likely that the scene unfolding in front of you has something to do with Meiling’s history, but you’d really rather not be trapped in here longer than necessary. You’re pretty certain the seal will be in the mountains, but you also haven’t eaten in nearly two days and are short on sleep. Consequences here are real enough to you: if you die here, at best you might be able to wrest your way into control of Meiling’s next reincarnation.

[ ] Write In.
>> No. 137479
>ou won’t be able to navigate your way out of here without destroying Meiling’s soul
Welp. Let's get started.

[x] Volcanic Fallout those soldiers and the farm.
>> No. 137481
[x] Go to the farm and observe the situation, keeping an eye out for anyone who looks like Meling. Also take any food you see along the way and eat it. Planeswalker needs food badly.

This is likly a repressed memory and if it's linked to her power getting over any grief may make it easier to undo the seal. Also farms have food.
>> No. 137482
>>137481
Oh come on. If you're going to be boring, at least use magic. Eyes are for chumps. Cool kids scry everything.
>> No. 137498
[x] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.

>>137482

Good idea!
>> No. 137500
>>137479

To clarify, you probably won't be able to do serious enough harm to her soul without resorting to something on the level of Destructive Force, just as killing the inhabitants of Earth won't destroy earth.
>> No. 137501
We should probably know what we're doing. How long are we going to stay here for? Depending on the anwser we could probably get some sleep. And something to munch on. Best to be in our best condition.
>> No. 137504
>>137501

You're going to be here until you've broken the seal and / or destroyed Meiling's soul. In order to do the former, you need to locate the seal and figure out how to break it. In order to do the latter, you need to figure out where the most vital part of Meiling's soul is and cast Destructive Force there. In-character time, it shouldn't take Bolas more than a few days, but if you guys wanna explore there's some interesting things in here.
>> No. 137506
[x] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.

Also, according to the Salvation wiki article on him (http://wiki.mtgsalvation.com/article/Nicol_Bolas#The_Elder_Dragon_on_Zendikar), Bolas is ultimately responsible for causing the Eldrazi to be unleashed, possibly as part of a plot to ascend to being an old-style Planeswalker again by consuming their power. Thus, a more in-character response to their escape is probably not "oh fuck" but "just as planned".
>> No. 137509
>>137506

Correct, that's why Bolas was surprised when the Eldrazi are released without his intervention.

>"They couldn’t have been released so far ahead of even your schedule...
"
>> No. 137528
[x] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.

Meiling is a bit stronger than I expected, given that she isn't the original Rainbow Dragon.
>> No. 137533
[+] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.
>> No. 137535
> World Egg Inversion - the rewriting of what is inscribed in the world with what is inscribed on the soul.

Heh. Type-Moon Reality Marble?
>> No. 137546
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137546
[x] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.
[x] Peek on a few minds, find out what's what and who's who.

We want to find Meiling so we can keep an eye on her.
Anything major happens, it will (obviously) relate to her in some way.
But let's try to keep a low profile. Find a safe(r) place to scry from. We have no real idea how the people here will react to strangers and/or magic, yet.
Not to mention there are soldiers here, attacking what appears to be an otherwhise peaceful farm. That implies war, either current (pillaging enemy territory) or very recent (soldiers are suddenly discharged with no way to get home/no life to go home to, so they become bandits).
At best it means "just" a ruthlessly oppressive government suppressing "the wrong opinions" with force.
Either way, not the best time and place to be standing out too much.

Sneak some quick Peeks at a few minds while we're at it. Get a general feel for the surroundings and the locals. Find out what these soldiers are doing (war or "hunting troublemakers"). Stuff like that.


We can't really do anything useful (except by accident) unless we first find out what's going on. So yeah, Spider Jerusalem pretty much sums up my current idea of Nicol's situation.
>> No. 137549
[x] Scry the farm. She has to be here somewhere.
[x] Peek on a few minds, find out what's what and who's who.
>> No. 137583
File 13005854277.jpg - (77.97KB , 312x445 , 38.jpg ) [iqdb]
137583
You scan the farm, finding no signs of life beyond the red-coated soldiers and their victims. There is a dead male with red hair floating in one of the paddies; he appears to have garments similar to the peasants even though demographically he’d be a more likely inclusion among the redcoats.

The soldiers seem to be on the verge of sexually assaulting an adult female who is desperately protecting a red-haired child of about eight years old. As consequences are real to you within the boundaries of the world egg, so are the people within it. Though it is the soul of Meiling, it is simultaneously an actual realm with a history and living sentients. If you interfere here...

Well. You give a mental shrug. It’s not as if you weren’t already planning to interfere greatly with the structure of her soul.

A jagged bolt of lightning strikes the foremost soldier, sending him into shuddering convulsions as blood foams from his mouth. You jauntily walk over as the remaining attackers point their primitive gunpowder weapons at you, arcs of crimson electricity pouring from your fingertips and turning them to ash.

After a moment spent cackling over the simple pleasures in life, your turn to the woman and her child.

“By the Heavens, thank you-” The woman’s cry of jubilation is cut forth as she, too, is incinerated by your hand. Reality shudders as a wave of transformation flows over you, and suddenly your hands are old and wizened, bearing liver spots and wrinkles. You frown. So, this reality is attempting to place you in a role?

Interesting. That implies not only that you have assumed the role of someone rather vital to Meiling’s development, the being who’s part you’re playing was too powerful or too obscure to be replicated by the World Egg.

Only a Planeswalker or an entity of similar power would register in that category. It’d also explain your uncharacteristic lack of calculation before deciding to stop the soldiers.

You turn to the eight-year-old Meiling, who is staring at you with an awe that could not have come from a child whose mother you just slew in cold blood. Hmph.

So in the original reality, the soldiers must have killed the mother just before they were themselves slain; it’s likely the intervention occurred after, rather than before, the sexual assault. The latent magic of this realm is stronger than you thought; if it was able to impair your judgment successfully then you certainly won’t be able to just go to the mountains and break the seal.

No, that’s not quite right.

The longer you stay in this realm, the more subject to its laws you are.

Had you struck out immediately for the seal’s location, using all the magics at your command to speed your way, you may have had a better than even chance of simply breaking it. Now that you’ve been here for an entire hour, though, you’ll need to play more by its rules. Luckily, the integration effect seems to be leveling off over time. This world egg’s claws probably won’t sink any further into you, but you’ve already been at least partially compromised. From now on you’ll have to examine every motive carefully. It’s a good thing mortals think so slow, or you wouldn’t be able to react in time to carry conversations or stop ambushes.

It’s likely that Hong Meiling’s soul was structured sometime after her birth as a defensive container for whatever draconic essence is sealed within her. Therefore, the prevailing forces of fate will do their level best to keep you from breaking in. You have two options:

One, you could weaken the forces of fate by dramatically altering the planned fate of this plane. Now that you’ve had time to think about it, you’re fairly certain the time period is somewhere around 1840 CE, the First Opium War. Hold on, you can simply use telepathy to confirm this.

...Damn. Eight-year-old Meiling doesn’t think in Common Era terms. Still, you now know definitively that Meiling’s nation-state is at war with an industrialized imperial power halfway across the world, and is supposedly winning.

You don’t know much about the history of this world, so the only thing you’re certain of is that Meiling’s nation-state loses the war rather dramatically. Winning a war singlehandedly with your still inferior mana reserves won’t be easy, but surely even that much magic would be enough to smash some barely post-industrial humans.

By adopting a persona from the history or mythology of this world, you can create a self-defined ‘role’ and avoid further mental contamination from this plane. As history veers more and more off course, the plane will exhaust its magical defenses attempting to correct it, so you’ll face significant opposition. However, because planes like this tend to deal with temporal discontinuities through human agents rather than directed energy blasts, it’ll still be safer than trying to break open the seal directly.

Alternatively, you could follow along with Meiling’s life as it is supposed to happen. This would yield greater insight into Meiling’s past, but would probably be excruciatingly boring. You’d merely adopt this mentor figure’s identity and follow the urges this plane gives you until you reach the event where Meiling becomes the container of draconic essence. At that point, if your mental fortitude still holds, you can easily interrupt the event, causing a paradox that will open a window of opportunity for you to unseal the dragon.

[ ] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. If you choose this option, please give a general strategy for Bolas to follow and suggest a persona for him to adopt. Possible personas: The Antichrist, Sun Wukong, Leviathan, Lucifer, Taisuei Xinjung. Not only will this be an interesting intellectual exercise, you’ll also be able to exploit World Egg mechanics, possibly expanding your ability to channel mana.*

*Basically, because all the inhabitants of the World Egg are 'real,' so is the power generated by their collective belief. You should be able to harvest this power and use it even after you return to Gensokyo. Of course, you'll have to become an object of collective fear and/or worship, first.

[ ] Follow along with Meiling’s life and learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner?
>> No. 137587
Power or knowledge? Well, as we all know, knowledge is power.

[x] Follow along with Meiling’s life and learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner?

This guy better be interesting.
>> No. 137593
>>137587
Pretty much my line of thinking.

[+] Follow along with Meiling’s life and learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner?
>> No. 137594
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. If you choose this option, please give a general strategy for Bolas to follow and suggest a persona for him to adopt. Possible personas: The Antichrist, Sun Wukong, Leviathan, Lucifer, Taisuei Xinjung. Not only will this be an interesting intellectual exercise, you’ll also be able to exploit World Egg mechanics, possibly expanding your ability to channel mana.*

We're in this situation because we wanted power to deal with the Eldrazi. We now have the opportunity to harvest the power of an entire world.

Persona: Antichrist
Strategy: All-Out semi-guerilla warfare. Exploit their psychology by showing up, annihilating a chunk of their army, and using special effects to convince them that you really are the Antichrist. Unite the western world against you in hatred and bask in their fear!
>> No. 137595
I already voted for Meiling backstory, but I'm curious what would happen if we attempted to become loved rather than feared.
>> No. 137596
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War.

Lucifer

Assassinate key leaders of the british and replace them with mind-controlled slaves. Stage an epic reveal where they show themselves as satanists who worship you. Chaos and attention ensue.
>> No. 137597
[X] Follow along with Meiling’s life and learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner?

Fucking around with history like this tends to have consequences, we need information before we do anything more reckless then we already have--stick around Meiling, and see what we can dig up.

Immediate power grabs have their place, but not when we're dealing with the sort of target that can successfully balk some of the heaviest hitters of the Plane. Watch, Wait, Learn.
>> No. 137599
[+] Follow along with Meiling’s life and learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner?

>>137595
Love doesn't enter into the equation of Mana colours. We likely just end up inching towards the Good alignment from our starting point of Lawful/Neutral Evil. Personally, I think Yuyuko, due to her nature as a creature of PURE, CONCENTRATED, ELDRITCH GOOD would have more of a chance to make us Neutral Good or True Neutral, because it would be a more personal conversion, rather then a public face to accomplish a goal.

Alternatively, if Anon really wants to try the other choice with a "loved" option, there's two possibilities.

Persona : Jesus Christ.
Strategy: Miracles, Divine Interventions, Wise parables, speak Aramaic and Koine Greek. Be recognized by the Catholic and Orthodox Churches as the Second Coming of Christ. Proceed to tell the English and every other Christian Nations that they've been very, very bad boys and girls. Proceed in reforms based on Love, Understanding, Peace, and Overwhelming Firepower (because the Xenos are coming, and the scum won't hear of peace and love).
Or
Persona: The Immortal God-Emperor of Man.
Strategy: Unify and Uplift Humanity. Reach for the Stars. Form Imperium of Man. Crush the Xenos. Be adored as the Ultimate Paragon of Humanity. Peace, Law, Order. Humanity Unconquered.
>> No. 137600
File 130059258168.jpg - (60.20KB , 312x445 , 11.jpg ) [iqdb]
137600
>>137595

Depending on how you chose to execute it, you could become rather effective. Of course, if you're winning the Opium War for them, most Chinese will love you anyway, Lucifer or not.

>>137597

To be fair, you aren't actually affecting history, since you're not in the actual world. As for the consequences to Meiling's soul...well, breaking open the seal will cause massive alterations to the soul structure anyway.
>> No. 137602
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. If you choose this option, please give a general strategy for Bolas to follow and suggest a persona for him to adopt. Possible personas: The Antichrist, Sun Wukong, Leviathan, Lucifer, Taisuei Xinjung. Not only will this be an interesting intellectual exercise, you’ll also be able to exploit World Egg mechanics, possibly expanding your ability to channel mana.*

Lets take over the British empire
>> No. 137603
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. If you choose this option, please give a general strategy for Bolas to follow and suggest a persona for him to adopt. Possible personas: The Antichrist, Sun Wukong, Leviathan, Lucifer, Taisuei Xinjung. Not only will this be an interesting intellectual exercise, you’ll also be able to exploit World Egg mechanics, possibly expanding your ability to channel mana.*
Leviathan
Try and gather enough power to summon Inkwell for an extended period of time and curbstomp the opposition.
>> No. 137607
File 130059536322.jpg - (62.45KB , 312x445 , 6.jpg ) [iqdb]
137607
I should have included this information in the post; it's what gives you the framework to determine whether the information you gain in option #2 is worth the opportunity cost in mana. In my defense, I spent half of the day on a plane and then hours on really terrible public transit.

Depending on how you go about harvesting this world's mana, you can get between 1 and 2 mana level-ups. If played competently, a 2-mana level up is reasonably difficult to obtain.

A 1 mana level-up:

-Will let you cast 5 mana spells without [M]
-Relevant spells that are not [M]: Mind Control, Dominus of Fealty, Mulldrifter (non-evoked), Tidings
-Will let you cast Divination while keeping Mana Leak / Twincast / Redirect open
-Will make 6+ mana spells much easier to cast.

A 2-mana level up:

-Will let you cast 6 mana spells without [M]
-Relevant Spells: Time Stop (does not make you Sakuya), Banefire for 5, Draining Whelk, Nucklavee
-Will let you cast Divination while keeping Double Negative open, or Tidings while keeping Lightning Bolt open
-Will make 7+ spells much easier to cast. Blatant Thievery only as hard as Mind Control is now, Inkwell Leviathan / Bogardan Hellkite only as hard as Blatant Thievary is now.
>> No. 137609
I am a bit surprised taking on the role of one of the Chinese dragons of myth hasn't been suggested.

They'd eat that shit right up after a half-decent light show & annihilation of some invaders.
>> No. 137616
>>137609
This. There is no way we will lower ourselves to actually imitate a non draconic figure. That said, win the war. Done right, we can gain her loyalty and extra mana.
>> No. 137625
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. If you choose this option, please give a general strategy for Bolas to follow and suggest a persona for him to adopt. Possible personas: The Antichrist, Sun Wukong, Leviathan, Lucifer, Taisuei Xinjung. Not only will this be an interesting intellectual exercise, you’ll also be able to exploit World Egg mechanics, possibly expanding your ability to channel mana.*

Given we're in China (in more ways than one) I want to go for Shen Long.

Normally I'd go for a Hong dragon, but if we play the Rainbow dragon, guess what the world will want to seal when we get there? Replacing the guy we're looking for is silly.
>> No. 137626
Actually, change my vote from this
>>137603
to this
>>137625
>> No. 137633
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese. Have the Chinese worship you as a deity, and conquer the rest of humanity while gaining more power and the adoration of Hong Meiling in the process.

Sounds alright to me.
>> No. 137634
Backstory has no chance against history altering powerups.

Isn't it sad unknown potential enemy Planeswalker ;_;
>> No. 137641
>>137634
You want backstory? Hong dragons with strength of at least Meiling's level have a plane in their soul.

It is entirely reasonable to believe that Yukari used the Hakurei bloodline as an anchor to help glue that Hong dragon's plane to Earth near the Suwa Grand Shrine and allow (relatively) easy access. The dragon is probably somewhere near either the center of Gensokyo, Mayohiga, or at the Hakurei shrine

There, entirely plausible backstory. Accuracy not guaranteed, but it fits the known facts of Gensokyo's creation.
>> No. 137642
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese. Have the Chinese worship you as a deity, and conquer the rest of humanity while gaining more power and the adoration of Hong Meiling in the process.
>> No. 137643
>>137641
I already know canon, bro. I'm interested in this story's twist on it.
>> No. 137648
>>137634

More like backstory has no chance against Nicol Fucking Bolas vs. The British Fucking Empire.
>> No. 137649
File 130061044440.jpg - (33.14KB , 223x310 , seasclaim.jpg ) [iqdb]
137649
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese.

Whether or not we'll conquer the rest of the world, I'll save for later. For now, we're gonna show this plane that we're not so easily cowed as to just go along with it's ideas of what we should be doing.
Nicol isn't one to go along with other's plans, he makes his own, so he'd force this world and its "history" to conform to him, not the other way around.

As for general strategy, well... I don't know much about about chinese dragons nor military matters, so I can't say for sure... Gonna have to do some checking up.
Okay, Wikipedia says Shenlong was "the master of storms and bringer of rain" and that "if the dragons grew angry or felt neglected, the result was bad weather, drought, flood or thunderstorms."
Basically, I imagine he would reveal himself to have appeared to "save glorious China" and use his "control over rain and storms" (Lightning Bolts, Lighting Bolts everywhere) to drive off the invaders. Similar to the japanese "divine wind" which destroyed invading Mongolian fleets in the 1200s.
We could probably improvise something with blue mana for that. Causing rain/floods should be simple enough without casting any really advanced spells.
Sea's Claim "permanently" covers the area with enough water to turn even a mountain into an island, and it costs one mana.
Causing heavy rain/flooding an area should be child's play for any decent Blue mana user.
We also have "divine servants" (Mulldrifter) which proves our position of power in the Divine Hierarchy.

So he would mostly take an inspirational/leadership role, and avoid direct intervention unless absolutely necessary.
The ability to think almost a dozen thoughts simultaneously and millenia of experience in planning and scheming means he should easily out-think the opposing generals at every step of the way.
In eastern mythology dragons are known for their (magical/divine) power and wisdom, unlike western dragons which are "only" physically powerful monsters to be defeated by a knight in shining armor.
We'll hang back from the fighting, unless it's a major confrontation where it is absolutely necessary for us to intervene because, in our Shenlong persona, we're not actually a fighter even if very powerful. (Nicol can most likely do more that way, anyway. Turning the tide of a battle is good and all, but we have to make sure that it's the right battle and that all other fronts aren't falling, as well.)

Also, do you have any idea how powerful Cryptic Command will be? So far we've mostly used it for the hard counter, because we've only been fighting duels.
This is large scale warfare. "Tap all creatures your opponents control" basically means:
The enemy is about to launch a major assault when suddenly DIVINE INTERVENTION, PATHETIC SIMIANS!, and the entire enemy army stops dead in their tracks.

We will also make sure to keep Meiling close, just in case.
"Chosen by the Heavens for a grand purpose" or something, if anyone dares ask.
>> No. 137650
>>137648
You make a compelling point.

It'll be more fun to learn any important backstory by having it bite us in the ass, anyway.
>> No. 137651
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese.
>> No. 137652
Be sure to milk divination for all its worth. Omniscience, always a good trait in a god.
>> No. 137653
File 130061711112.jpg - (27.12KB , 223x310 , Image_ashx.jpg ) [iqdb]
137653
[x]Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese.
-[x] Be indirect at first using floods (Via Seas claim) and summuning storms (using Stormworld with the odd well aimed lightning bolt)
[x] While our "divine wrath" gets to work, slip into the mentor role and see if you can learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner etc:

Power or backstory: Why choose? also storm world looks like another good 1 mana "punishment of shen long" it's flavor seems to be a huge country wide lightning storm, this alone might scare off the invaders.

even with our current power winning this war may take more then an hour so while our "divine" wrath gets everyone panicing we can slip into the mentor role and find out about melings past.
>> No. 137654
[x] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Taisuei Xinjung. Collective fear and worship.

Goody two-shoes Bolas... stop changing all my evil characters into good guys!
>Jesus Christ
Almighty... No.
>> No. 137655
>>137654
[x]Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Taisuei Xinjung.
-[x] Be indirect at first using floods (Via Seas claim) and summuning storms (using Stormworld with the odd well aimed lightning bolt)
[x] While our "divine wrath" gets to work, slip into the mentor role and see if you can learn about the events that lead to the dragon being sealed in her, as well as the mentor figure you’ve replaced. Who is this mysterious Planeswalker? What is his relation to the dragon that created Gensokyo, and why was Meiling chosen as the vessel of her prisoner etc.

This then. Not giving up on Taisuei Xinjung though
>> No. 137656
>>137654
Stop liking shitty characters!
>> No. 137657
>>137656
Stop bumping threads for retarded crap like that
>> No. 137658
>>137657
I didn't bump it. Check the timestamps. Last thread bumped was Fallout thread at 8:30. >>137648 bumped this.

To make this post not useless, there should be a list of known spells in the second post next thread.
>> No. 137659
>>137655
I was thinking about Bolas claiming to be Taisuei Xinjung too, but it doesn't go very well with the idea of trying to make China win the war.


As for turning him good: Eh, I'm not exactly in favor of it either. I still want him to regain his Black mana as soon as possible. It would make the "evil" options more logical since right now he's still very Blue, meaning planning (scheming) and knowledge is still a strong(er) side of his personality.
Black would supply some much needed ambition and ruthlessness, which is why I think he needs to get his Black mana and get them in proper balance (his original proportions of 2 Black vs 1 each of Blue and Red). In other words: he really needs to stop upgrading his Blue already.
More mana should still mean an improved mana pool, making bigger spells possible to cast anyway. In my opinion, the "mono-color" upgrade should mostly affect things like:
Blatant Thievery costs 3 Blue + colorless, which would be harder to cast than Mind Control, which only costs 2 Blue + colorless.
The colorless mana is just about mana pool (i.e. raw power), not actual proficiency at channeling specific mana.
>> No. 137660
>>137659
>proper proportions
He considers blue his best trait in this story. So it should be two blue to every red and black.
>> No. 137664
>>137660
We considered blue to be the best color to start with.

If he regains 100% of his mana, he will have proportions of 2 Black, 1 Blue, 1 Red (and four Colorless. Original mana cost of the card).
That's why I consider that to be "proper proportions".
Until he has all of his mana back he will obviously be biased towards the mana he already has, because it will directly affect his personality and judgement.
We started with Blue, so it is still his "primary color" instead of the original Black. He has 6% of his original power back.
25% of that original power was Black, and 2x12.5% was Red and Blue. (If we count the colorless. Otherwhise 50/2x25%.)
So we're not even near full power in even one color yet, and we're still at 0 in Black mana.
He is not Blue, he is horribly weakened and incomplete.
>> No. 137671
[X] Attempt to alter the course of ‘history’ by causing the wrong side to win the First Opium War. Adopt the persona of Shen Long, a dragon worshipped by the Chinese.
>> No. 137672
>>137664
No, he made that decision when he didn't have any mana in him. He was unbiased.

We should really have another vote sooner or later, though. Votes at the start of stories shouldn't determine long-term effects for obvious reasons.
>> No. 137674
>>137672
Except, you know, "Nicol" never actually makes any decisions. We vote on them and the story follows the votes.
"In character" is good and all, but the decision always lies with the votes and the author.


But eh, I'll stick to my opinions and vote accordingly, and the votes will go wherever they go. This argument isn't accomplishing anything constructive anyway..
>> No. 137675
File 130064899335.jpg - (61.02KB , 312x445 , 12.jpg ) [iqdb]
137675
The situation, you conclude, is dire. Telepathic interrogation of redcoats you captured from nearby farms indicate that the Chinese government is already on the verge of capitulation. British ships have blockaded every major harbor and the 19,000 strong Imperial expeditionary force has already inflicted over ten thousand casualties to the Chinese army - while suffering a mere 67 in return, the majority of those due to heatstroke and malaria.

Even your sublime grasp of tactics and logistics will not be of much help at this stage. Intelligence is a powerful force multiplier, but with so little force to multiply, you’re not sure the native forces could even hold off this one expeditionary force. Support from the common people won’t be of much use either; while incidents like the one involving Meiling’s parents are not especially unusual, neither are they the standard, except for post-siege massacres which leave few survivors to spread tales.

The British forces are exceptionally disciplined and usually far too busy marching or killing to attack civilians. It’s likely the men you intercepted were deserters who saw an opportunity to live like kings off banditry. While the natives do possess firearms and some idea of how to use them, the British army is a well-oiled machine of imperialist might. Every soldier is drilled to a standard of exacting precision, every rifle and cannon made to impressive tolerances, every officer educated in strategy, tactics, and logistics. It is a diverse army, composed of Irish, Scots, Englishmen, and Indians, an that sees combat regularly and is completely familiar with the particulars of crushing an inferior force. It is the backbone of a power whose grip encompasses all the Earth, the iron fist of an empire upon which the sun never sets.

You will have to break it personally.

---

Walter Iversson, first sergeant of the 18th Royal Irish Regiment of Foot, smiled. The sky was blue, the sun was bright, and the city before them looked like easy pickings. A ragtag defense of a few hundred Chinese manned the gates and walls, and one decrepit, near rusted-through cannon feebly attempted to menace the horizon. Any day in which his boys didn’t have to die was a good day, and Iversson had had many good days recently. After they took this godforsaken town, maybe he would go for a dip in the river or something. Had been a while since he’d had a proper bath.

“Alright you sacks of shite,” he snarled, pacing down the line of assembled men like a stalking tiger, “I want this done right and proper. Clean lines of fire, strict military bearing, and no god-forsaken gratuitous killing unless it’s ABSOLUTELY necessary. You will not waste the Crown’s ammunition on noncombatants. You will not sully the Crown’s reputation with acts of dishonor. You will not abuse the Crown’s training with wanton slaughter! Lord forgive me, if I see another Ningpo I will personally lay you down and lash you until your back more blue-and-red than the Union Jack, AM. I. UNDERSTOOD?”

“Sir, yes, sir!”

“THAT’S what I like to hear!” Walter roared, drawing his sabre in a flash of steel. “Now, FIRST RANK, ADVANCE!”

The battle went as battles always did. Though the natives put up a spirited resistance, they were simply no match for British ingenuity, discipline, and experience. The relentless and impeccable barrage of the redcoats scythed down charging enemies by the steady hundred while heavy cannon from field artillery and their supporting gunboat blasted the hastily-built fortifications of the city into flinders. The enemy’s single cannon managed to fire only once, an anemic retort that splashed into the river, before it was annihilated by the fifty-four gun return salvo. It was exactly the kind of victory Walter liked - clean, efficient, and quick.

Then everything went to hell.

Thunder rumbled out of a clear blue sky. The sun passed behind a cloud, and within seconds pristine blue had been replaced by churning, roiling gray. Then the rains began.

It was the most ferocious downpour Walter had ever seen, as if the heavens had grown tired of urinating on the earth and had finally decided it was time for a grand old shite. A near-solid curtain of water forced him to his knees, and the ground up and decided to turn straight into sludge. He could barely see the hand in front of his face, much less fight. When he inhaled, more water than air entered his lungs.

He wasn’t being rained on; he was being drowned! Struggling mightily, Walter managed to pull himself free of the much, slipping and stumbling forward, carried by an errant current of thin mud that deposited him at the city gates. He took a moment to wipe his glasses, then his jaw fell open. For all that the sudden downpour had been miraculous, it compared nothing to this. While the British ranks were being slowly crushed under an unyielding torrent of water, the city itself hadn’t felt a single drop! The Chinese, too, were staring with mouths open as the downpour which afflicted their enemies spared them.

Walter ground his teeth together as he picked up his sodden saber and rifle. By the Queen, they’d been on the cusp of victory! There couldn’t be more than a few dozen surviving defenders. Staying close to the wall, he made a quick lap around the front perimeter, helping other washed-out soldiers to their feet. The company chaplain, Paul Johnson, shook his head as he rose. “I’ve never seen anything like this, Walter.”

“What in God’s name is going on, Paul?” Walter shouted, pressing the chaplain against the splintered gates.

“Walter, I simply don’t know. Perhaps the Lord has seen fit to punish our hubris in the prosecution of this war. Perhaps He has decided to take matters into His own hands.” As Paul finished his sentence, however, Chinese and Briton alike got their answer.

A great hole appeared in the cloud cover, and through it, wreathed in lightning, eyes flaring amethyst, to the fanfare of thunder and the screams of dying men, the maker of rains descended like an angel of judgment. Its eyes burned an unearthly violet, and though its form was of a man, all understood it was no mortal. The storm slowed and stopped so that all could hear its voice, but it spoke not in any language known to man; instead searing its voice directly into the minds of its audience. Walter shuddered as he felt its words brand themselves into his skull, and next to him Paul had dropped to his knees and was muttering a feverish prayer.

Hear me, It spoke, and all across the battlefield there was moaning, and whimpering, and quiet gnashing of teeth, Hear me, men of this Earth, for I am now come into the World, and I am wroth.

“Th-th-the E-End,” Paul whispered, tears running down his cheeks. “It-it’s the End.”

The prayers of the living and the wishes of the dead have reached my ears. Spiraling into the heavens, the souls of those slain under false pretenses of honor demand vengeance. I, Shen Long, The Dragon Who Descends From Heaven, The Serpent of the Eternal Garden, The Shepard of the Dawn, Whose Plumage is Lightning, Whose Eyes are Flame, have seen fit to grant that vengeance. Tremble, dogs of Victoria. Your day of judgment has arrived, and you have been found wanting.

And that was precisely what the Dragon proceeded to demonstrate. Even as the fifty-four guns of the H.M.S. Arondight turned to blast it out of the sky, a bolt of crimson streaked from the Dragon’s finger, shattering the British field artillery with a single stroke. By the time the guns had aligned to fire, the Dragon had loosed four more bolts of scarlet destruction, and just as the cannon were loaded the creature made an imperious gesture and the Arondight simply - disappeared.

An agonized scream brought Walter out of his reverie, and his eyes widened further when he saw that it was Paul who had emitted that grinding ululation, Paul who now was clutching his temples as the sigil of a claw burned itself into existence on his forehead. Stumbling back, Walter was barely able to evade the first swipe, a strike of such power that it tore the sturdy iron of his chest plating to shreds.

“Wha- Paul, what’s gotten into you?”

But there was no response from the kindly old chaplain, whose wiry muscles surged now with daemonic strength. Mark glowing, shedding blood-red light on the battlefield, Paul advanced, hands crooked into savage claws, and then with inhuman strength plunged forward, sending the length of his forearm through Walter’s chest and squeezing the still-beating heart.

“God save us,” Walter croaked, disbelieving eyes still locked to Paul’s flame-red ones. “God save us all.”

The world went dark.

---

“What have I done,” the old man cried, sobbing over the eviscerated remnants of his once-friend. “What...have I done?”

You have done well, Chaplain Johnson.

“N-no! No more! I won’t do any more!”

Your mission has just begun. You will travel to England. You will speak to your Queen. You will tell her of what transpired this day, and impart upon her a message from me.

“W-what message?”

That she has committed the most grievous error of all. That she has, in her greed for silver, challenged a power she can neither contest nor comprehend. That she has stirred a force which should have been left eternally slumbering. That she has woken the Dragon.

---

A bit experimental this time. I’d like your thoughts on the matter; did the descriptions fit the tone? Did you sympathize with Walter, or was he unlikeable?

[ ] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

[ ] Now that you’ve made a strong first impression, it’s time to press the attack. It’ll be far too inconvenient to pretend to care about the suffering of the common people; just focus on shattering the British contingent, then cut a swath of destruction through the colonies, inflicting such terror that all Christendom will believe the end times are come, and you are their harbinger.

[ ] Write In.
>> No. 137677
Walter was pretty cool. I liked his metaphor about the weather.

[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

This way, we get worship from both the Chinese and their enemies.
>> No. 137679
[x] Now that you’ve made a strong first impression, it’s time to press the attack. It’ll be far too inconvenient to pretend to care about the suffering of the common people; just focus on shattering the British contingent, then cut a swath of destruction through the colonies, inflicting such terror that all Christendom will believe the end times are come, and you are their harbinger.

Remember what happened the last time we stalled? This option is clearly the faster one.
>> No. 137680
Poor Walter. He will be missed.

Can we bring him back to life and drag him around as a valet/man-at-arms? Bloody minded Irishness and common sense might actually be good for us in the long run. Yuyuko has Youmu, we'll have Walter Iversson, First Sargeant of the 18th Royal Irish Regiment of Foot, our lucky charm and badass mook. Boosted with magic, he might even be useful on the battlefield. It's sad to break the Redcoats so completely. Still, at least, Nicol Bolas recognized it as a mighty empire for its time, something Worthy of his full attention.

Fucking hell, King Arthur! We should have claimed to be Arthur and taken the throne from Victoria! This was the high era of the British Empire, the WORLD admired and respected its strength and Victoria herself, imagine if we had claimed to be a figure as legendary as King Arthur as well!

Oh well, God-Emperor of China will do just as well.

[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

Consolidate, consolidate, build a navy worthy of respect and consolidate some more to become once more the Mightiest Empire in the East, the only Empire to equal the Glory of Rome. Also, begin programs of careful and selective Occidentalization of the administration and armed forces, Chinese culture is mighty and without equal, but the innovations of the Europeans in warfare and state infrastructure shouldn't be ignored.
>> No. 137681
>>137679

Uh...I don't think you're a bot (or if you are, you're one that can make cogent arguments 0_0), so I guess my suggestion is that you use Tor instead of free internet proxies.
>> No. 137682
>>137680

Sorry for the double post, didn't see this reply. To clarify: Unfortunately, without access to Black or White mana, you won't be able to bring Walter back, even though people believe you are a god. However, there is already someone who will fulfill God Emperor!Bolas' sidekick role. It's someone who Meiling's soul can't work against.
>> No. 137686
[+] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

Let's kick this country into gear.
>> No. 137687
[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

While Nicol is powerful, he will need an army to take on the entire British Empire.
Like I said in my earlier post, Nicol will probably do the most good in a leadership/inspirational role with the occasional divine intervention in critical battles to turn the tide and remind both allies and enemies that a god is here, and He is not happy.

We still don't have to pretend to care about the common man, though.
We're an enraged messenger of Heaven. The Royal family has failed us and allowed foreigners to ravage the glorious lands of China and now it has gone so far that we have to appear in person to sort out these mortals' affairs. Obviously they can't be trusted to do it themselves.

Make sure that we get the worship (and fear, an angry God is a bad thing. For everyone) of the people in the process.
Hell, if we do it right, the masses will beg us for a chance to work themselves to death for us. Religion is a very powerful tool.
>> No. 137688
File 130065535068.jpg - (76.23KB , 312x445 , Day of the Dragons.jpg ) [iqdb]
137688
We cannot under-estimate the power of Imperial Britain. They rule the world for good reason during this time period. We are still pathetically human in this scenario, and Britain can field an asston of pingers.

[x] Who cares about ruling this little pissant country? Stop in long enough to ensure the Machus know who's in town, striking any targets of opportunity along the way.
-Then its time for a brief lesson in counter history. The First Opium War made it very clear that even sheer weight of numbers could not stop the technological and logistical might of the British Empire. We need to... assert the dominance of our species.
--Day of the Dragons
>> No. 137689
>>137682
Given that the only person other than Meiling who was present at the inversion was Eirin, it practically has to be someone native to the plane. Which means we have no idea who you're speaking of until he gets introduced.

Unless Tewi used her luck to land herself a position of great power.

[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

We want to be prepped for this. Trying to take on England without consolidating means China is likely to lose any battles we aren't present at.
>> No. 137690
>>137688

By this I mean take nominal control of the army and cast that spell. Nothing says Shock and Awe like turning a few tens of thousands of 1/1s and 0/1s into 5/5 fliers. Especially when each 5/5 that dies doesn't actually detract from the original pool of weenies.
>> No. 137692
>>137688

This plan is possible and very strong if it goes off. However, you'll have to first research Day of the Dragons, an endeavour that will probably take around 2 weeks with no magic libraries around, and the spell's mana cost is so high that you'll be tired for a month afterwards. Of course, if the World Egg's immune system doesn't take you down while you're researching, you'll be in command of an absurdly powerful force. Depending on how much energy the World Egg has left, it could try to cast a 'board-wiping' spell instead of merely manipulating fate, but that will tax its reserves sorely. In short, it's a powerful plan with high risks but also high rewards; however, even successful execution will not fully guarantee victory.
>> No. 137693
>>137675
>[ ] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.
and, as well
>[ ] Write In.

You are a dragon, and you respect strength and power. You are a living embodiment of growth and the urge to power, a truth that this "China" has shamefully neglected, not like the British, who are much closer to your ideals. Whilst you should cast down the Manchus and install yourself as the Emperor of all China, you should not look to destroy the British, but to make them the other half of your Empire.

Their Empresses is a woman, so you should use your powers of mental domination and make her your bride, and make her counsellors serve you. With the manpower of China wedded to the industry and reach of Britain, all guided by your post-human knowledge and power, this world shall be yours, and you shall make of it a monument to your glory.

Meilong can accompany you on your rise to ultimate power, and see what it truly means to be a dragon.
>> No. 137700
>>137692

Ugh, scratch my vote for it then. Two weeks may as well be an eternity when you're running a lightning war.

This instead.

[x] Now that you’ve made a strong first impression, it’s time to press the attack. It’ll be far too inconvenient to pretend to care about the suffering of the common people; just focus on shattering the British contingent, then cut a swath of destruction through the colonies, inflicting such terror that all Christendom will believe the end times are come, and you are their harbinger.
-Don't play fair either. Make liberal use of our teleport ability and strike targets a great distance from where we're supposed to be. Don't hit strong military targets one day and volcanic fallout them the next, on a whim.
--And lets not forget Meiling in here either. Wonder if we can inspire a deep-seated love for overwhelming power while we're at it.
>> No. 137703
>>137693
This is an excellent plan. Do this.
>> No. 137710
File 130066577143.jpg - (62.91KB , 312x445 , 75.jpg ) [iqdb]
137710
This is something that's been on my mind a while. Due to the nature of my update schedule, it feels like sometimes some or even most of the readership doesn't get an opportunity to vote before I update.

Now, I know most people would prefer two updates with no say to one update in which they get a say, but over the course of the story this can add up. This is especially important when people post write-ins after a large number have already voted. My current practice is, if a write-in happens to catch my eye and it doesn't have enough votes, I'll mention why the circumstances of the write-in didn't occur in the update or perhaps incorporate part of the write-in in the update. However, from a plot point of view this is drastically different than actually implementing the write-in. I absolutely do not want to discourage creative write-ins; in fact I'd like to encourage them as much as possible.

What are your thoughts on this? There is already a certain threshold of votes below which I will not start writing the update, but that has more to do with how motivated I am. I imagine that most people would prefer the current schedule or an even faster one; am I right?
>> No. 137711
>>137710
Yes, I prefer a fast schedule. I lurve me some updates, yes I do.
>> No. 137712
I too prefer fast updates. While we're being all meta, I just wanna say you are really under-appreciated for your references. The Gandalf speech right before the Plague Avatar fight, the "boundary between illicit and uncensored" line, the really seamless "an hero" interjection, and most of all the Scooby-Doo reference. Those were all awesome and had me cracking up. That you can display such wit while in the course of telling a complicated story is really impressive to me.
>> No. 137718
speed is everything. if a write-in catches your eye you can add it later, but keeping up the pace of the story is the most important consideration.
>> No. 137720
Fast updates are fine.

[x] Now that you’ve made a strong first impression, it’s time to press the attack. It’ll be far too inconvenient to pretend to care about the suffering of the common people; just focus on shattering the British contingent, then cut a swath of destruction through the colonies, inflicting such terror that all Christendom will believe the end times are come, and you are their harbinger.
>> No. 137723
[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.
>> No. 137724
[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

I like the idea of allying/taking over the British Empire.
>> No. 137725
[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.
ALL HAIL BOLAS
>> No. 137726
[+] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

Activate RTS Mode.

Oh and fast updates are cool.
>> No. 137754
[X] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.
>> No. 137756
Seizing a government doesn't seem like a very godly thing to do.
>> No. 137761
>>137756
To the Chinese we're a dragon-god, and dragon-gods has always been associated with the emperor.

To the Brits we're the Dragon from Revelations. Uniting the nations is part of the script.
>> No. 137781
[x] Now that you’ve destroyed the point of the spear, you can consolidate power in China and attempt to make a go of this war. Seize the throne from the incompetent Machus by claiming they’ve lost the Mandate of Heaven and take over governance of this nation yourself.

>>137681
>0_0
...Hey. Scribbler. Did you think I was kidding, before?

Kindly fucking refrain from doing that or anything like it ever again.

That shit does not fly on this site.

While you're at it, I would also recommend dropping the use of honorifics, even if you think they're situationally relevant.

Technically, that's just me, but I can't be the only one who cringes at the sight of them.

>> No. 137787
>>137781
I cringe at the sight of your story-derailing post. I also marvel at the fact that you seem to have taken for yourself the role of venerated elder, keeper of the sacred laws of the land and one-man public opinion, on a board that offers no way to verify your identity and in fact frowns upon such.

normally I wouldn't bother posting just to whine about something that irks me on the internets, but since I have your shining example before me, I will make an exception.

Also:

<:-^00^-:> <- this is an emoticon. I made it just to spite you. I don't even know what it represents, because I made it up just now in a fit of randum. Isn't it cool, anon-chwan?
>> No. 137795
>>137781
>>137787

This is an interesting phenomenon. I actually did read the thread on gensokyo before even posting the first part of APvG, but the emoticon thing has always consistently slipped my mind, perhaps because I've never seen a reason for that particular rule. A hostility towards emoticons, of all things, is a fetish I have not seen replicated anywhere among the sites & forums I visit, especially not among sites that represent fandoms of Japanese cultural products. Perhaps it's a generational difference? I can picture thirty- and forty-year olds possibly reacting against emoticons in that manner. In the context of that statement, 137787's "venerated elder" remark takes on an amusing irony. In any event, rageanon, I do not mean to importune you in any way. I understand that your behavior is generally considered socially acceptable on this board; my only rejoinder is that I do not make conscious, effortful decisions to add emoticons in my posts. It's simply how everyone I know (well, except my parents) acts online. In any event I do not believe my rather infrequent usage has violated the spirit of the rules of the board, and if I were to switch from casual writing mode to serious writing mode it would slow the speed of updates down maybe 20%. In any event I'm not willing to compromise my personal habits or expend effort in the course of providing free entertainment for you. You are, of course, welcome to stop reading if it is such a big deal to you.
>> No. 137800
File 130072071977.jpg - (67.28KB , 312x445 , 78.jpg ) [iqdb]
137800
"Learn to overcome the crass demands of flesh and bone, for they warp the matrix through which we perceive the world. Extend your awareness outwards, beyond the self of body, to embrace the self of group and the self of humanity. The goals of the group and the greater race are transcendent, and to embrace them is to achieve enlightenment."

The young lady, seated in the Lotus position, nods, then cracks an eye open and looks at you. “Master, who said that?”

“Hm? I did. Well, one of my guises, in any event. Now, back to your meditation, Meiling.”

“Yes, Master.” The girl gives a slight pout before obediently returning to the contemplation of her inner realm. You suppress an amused smirk at the irony of the situation.

Were it possible you’d simply teleport to London now and mind control the ruling class of the British Empire, but the defenses of this plane will almost certainly expend enormous amounts of energy to fortify such vital figures, and against the power of a world, your current might is insufficient.

You will have to operate under the assumption that, in a straight mental or physical contest with you, everything that can go right for a high-ranking member of the Empire will, and everything that can go wrong with your efforts also will. Until you have exhausted the World Egg’s reserves by forcing it to spend energy in several large-scale interventions, you can’t afford to risk it.

In order to create an operative who will be able to strike at important figures in this world without being thwarted by fate-based defenses (for, after all, a soul cannot oppose its own avatar), you’ve taken it upon yourself to train the young Meiling in the disciplines necessary to an agent: mathematics, history, logistics, tactics, stealth, martial arts, and countless other subjects.

Though her natural proficiency isn’t especially high, she does possess an almost unparalleled talent for the martial arts. If she can learn to sculpt her internal-external mana flows (what the Chinese call chi), she may be able to reproduce the Runes of the Deus within her own body, giving her the strength and endurance of a bull mammoth.

You rise, taking one more glance at Meiling, then survey your assembled congregation. In order to fortify your position against the machinations of the World Egg, you’ve undertaken the inconvenience of marching on the capital with a swelling horde of fanatical worshippers instead of simply teleporting there. Their belief in you will not only lend you strength, but also reinforce the local paradigm against the designs of the World Egg, thus transforming the battle from “you versus this world” to “China, headed by you, versus the rest of the world, manipulated and buttressed by the World Egg.”

Your horde has already overrun several key British positions en route to the capital, and the Western presence here is not long for this world. Until clippers can carry that information all the way back to the capital, though, the sluggish gears of Empire are locked, paralyzed while you freely consolidate your position. In the three months it will take their fastest ships to reach London and return, you will have transformed this stagnant, weakened nation into a well-calibrated engine with one purpose: your glorification.

The journey to the capital is long and excruciatingly boring; you have only the training of Meiling to amuse you, and you learned long ago how to optimize a human agent from birth. Keeping the hundred thousand-strong mob in check isn’t even a challenge; before the first week they’re marching in carefully regimented and well-supplied lines the equal of any Briton Foot Regiment.

You transmit orders by altering the weather - the sky changes colors depending on the urgency of the march, and clouds form arrows or even characters when needed. With the excess power granted by their continual worship and belief in your godly power, such cantrips are easily within your reach even without a formal spell. You are beginning to feel trickles of another power source, as well: the fear and religious terror of those few surviving Britons who know of your presence, and see in you the embodiment of their most ancient evil. Just as planned.

When your legions reach the capital, the Emperor himself greets you, surrounded by a flock of viziers and concubines. You arrange a sneer of disdain on your face and are amused to see him pale as he approaches.

“Ah, my brother in Heaven, it has been-”

Silence, ingrate. There is a city-wide gasp, a collective drawing in of air that leaves you a bit light-headed.

You are nothing more than a preposterous failure. I am no brother of yours. The Mandate has long passed from the grip of your corrupt and venal line. You have failed to carry out that most crucial duty of the emperor...

The sad, pale creature’s eyes widen, then he barks for his guards to slay you. Silence fills the city.

There is no response. The archers, packed four deep and a thousand long across the broad walls of Beijing, fail to nock and loose. The halberdiers, clad in sixty-five pound dragon armor, can only stare at you in supplication, as if begging you not to incinerate them for the impertinence of their former commander. You narrow your eyes.

“THE EMPEROR PROTECTS!” You roar, and an onslaught of lightning pours from your fingertips, scourging the Daoguang Emperor with the force of a thousand lances. Even as his charred, smoking carcass topples unsteadily to the ground, a single phrase erupts from a hundred thousand mouths, echoing off the high walls, bounding across the vale, shaking the very foundations of the city:

“THE EMPEROR PROTECTS! THE EMPEROR PROTECTS! THE EMPEROR PROTECTS!”
>> No. 137801
[ ] Focus on industrializing the country and using the technology of this world. With this country’s population armed and drilled to proper standards, even the full might of the British Empire, augmented by improved luck, won’t be able to stand against you. You’ll contribute your own vast and well-read intellect to the goal of technological advance.

[ ] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.

[ ] Focus on diplomacy and international relations, using your overwhelming force of personality to recruit allies against the British Empire. Fan the fuels of their fear that you are the Antichrist by corrupting and seducing the Continent, then unleash the full might of your coalition against the British.

[ ] Write In. Note that hybrid options will generally lead to you doing both things at 33% instead of one thing at 100%, but sufficient synergy may overcome that problem.
>> No. 137802
[x] Focus on diplomacy and international relations, using your overwhelming force of personality to recruit allies against the British Empire. Fan the fuels of their fear that you are the Antichrist by corrupting and seducing the Continent, then unleash the full might of your coalition against the British.

All the options look fine. I expect someone will come up with a good write-in anyway.
>> No. 137803
File 130072310839.jpg - (42.63KB , 234x320 , izzet_signet.jpg ) [iqdb]
137803
[X] Focus on industrializing the country and using the technology of this world. With this country’s population armed and drilled to proper standards, even the full might of the British Empire, augmented by improved luck, won’t be able to stand against you. You’ll contribute your own vast and well-read intellect to the goal of technological advance.
[X]Also, use magic to turn useful mortals into Izzet Guildmages to lead this and help you develop a magical infrastructure. With any luck, you'll be churning out artifacts in no time.
>> No. 137805
[x] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.
-[x] Use this time to research Day of the Dragons.

Were going to need more power for when the Eldrazi show up outside, if we're wasteing time in here we may as well get stronger. and I doubt whatever the British send can deal with more floods, much less whatever else we can throw at them *cough*shitloadofdragons*cough*.
>> No. 137806
>>137802

Indeed, the vote is partially cosmetic - do you want to see Phyrexia!China vs The British Empire or do you want to see Mythic!China vs The British Empire? However, from a point of view of winning the war, one of the options is the most effective, one is less effective, and one is ineffective.

Oh, btw, if you guys choose either the New Phyrexia or Mythic options, please suggest names for Battlecruisers and Colossi. The first will definitely be named the Taisui Xinjung, but the others are up for grabs.
>> No. 137807
[x] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.

I admit, the words "artifact" and "darksteel" sold me on this option.
>> No. 137811
I doubt we'll be able to take any artifacts with us when we leave. Not very useful in that case.
>> No. 137813
>>137811

Well, when you're Nicol Bolas, where there's a will there's a way...so long as you're willing to pay the cost.
>> No. 137816
[X] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.
>> No. 137818
>>137806
My utter loathing of Phyrexia (what can I say, I started playing with Urza's Saga) pushes me to support Mythic China.

[x] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.
-[x] Use this time to research Day of the Dragons.

Plus, THE EMPEROR PROTECTS! FOR THE IMPERIUM OF... I mean, FOR CHINA!

We're not talking about human sacrifices, right? Those were thought barbaric by the Chinese since the Zhang dynasty.

As for names... Leviathan, Kraken, Behemoth, Cyclops are given for Colossi. Maybe even the names of the mythical Titans like Atlas, Typhon, Python, Ouranos and the others.
For Battlecruisers/Battleships: go the 40k route with names like : Unrelenting Vengeance, Emperor's Light, Emperor's Wrath, etc.
>> No. 137819
Since we're in Meiling's soul, we should consider how these options might influence her, and what kind of influence we desire.
I think
[x] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.

is the most In-Character choice for Bolas, but I'd kind of like to move him towards redemption and all that. I am a sucker for that sort of thing though.

vote is for
[x] Focus on industrializing the country and using the technology of this world. With this country’s population armed and drilled to proper standards, even the full might of the British Empire, augmented by improved luck, won’t be able to stand against you. You’ll contribute your own vast and well-read intellect to the goal of technological advance.

But with minor changes: Train Meiling as your new high-priest/empress what have you. This world is bound and determined to spite us for changing shit, so being one-place removed from the throne seems like a good way to insulate our desired outcomes from direct world-egg intervention. Furthermore, it could help cement Meiling as a loyal servant.
>> No. 137822
>>137819
Your reasoning is sound.

[x] Focus on industrializing the country and using the technology of this world. With this country’s population armed and drilled to proper standards, even the full might of the British Empire, augmented by improved luck, won’t be able to stand against you. You’ll contribute your own vast and well-read intellect to the goal of technological advance.
>> No. 137827
>>137819

When you say "train Meiling as your high priestess/empress," do you mean in lieu of training her as your bodyguard/Royal Assassin, or in addition to it? She unfortunately won't be able to fulfill both roles at once, either is extremely time consuming.
>> No. 137828
>>137827
Yea replace the role, we could make better use of her as a leader.
>> No. 137833
>>137828
I don't know, if the world egg does something drastic and drops a lone planswalker level threat (magicaly buffed general, christian god etc.) We may have to use Melings immunity to bieing screwed with to kill it. An assasin would find this easy but a priestess..?
>> No. 137834
Combine magic and Industry. The brutal and inhumane working conditions of industry will provide us with many, many sacrifices. Factories built in mystic patterns will reinforce and channel the power and artifice of the human spirit.
If we can't manage to get those concepts to synergize, then just go for the mystical route.
>> No. 137838
We are getting caught up in the idea of taking over the pathetic illusion of a pathetic country on a backwater world. WHY do we want to rule this place???


[x] Focus on industrializing the country and using the technology of this world. With this country’s population armed and drilled to proper standards, even the full might of the British Empire, augmented by improved luck, won’t be able to stand against you. You’ll contribute your own vast and well-read intellect to the goal of technological advance.

Look at it from a thematic point of view. How would the World Egg stop the mass sacrifice route? By spawning a Hero to over-throw the evil God-King. This shit happens all the bloody time, even we have fallen prey to it (Burn in hellfire Tetsuo Umezawa!).

Sparking an Industrial Revolution has the benefits of being self-sustaining without our direct influence, it taxes the World Egg without us committing many (or any) of the personal resources we might need for an eventual show-down.

We've done this before as the Madaran Emperor and had the Hammer dropped on us quite literally. He who does not learn from his mistakes is doomed to repeat them.
>> No. 137839
File 130073034243.jpg - (26.21KB , 223x310 , claystatue.jpg ) [iqdb]
137839
[x] Focus on using this country’s culture and tradition of absolute obedience to a god-king to gather magical power. Thousands of sacrifices per day will fuel your mystical might, and all the countryside will scour the land for the few magical reagents and hidden places of power remaining. With those, you’ll forge artifacts of immense power, augmenting the cannon fodder this country produces with towering constructs of darksteel and chrome.
-[x] Also, use magic to empower useful mortals to lead this and help you develop a magical infrastructure. With any luck, you'll be churning out artifacts in no time.
[x] Use the spare time time to research more spells.

Vote #2 is basically an extension of vote #1, since it it just setting up an infrastructure to support the artifact creation.
I believe we would have to do something like that in the first place to build a decent colossus, so I'm assuming that it doesn't negatively affect the efficiency of vote #1 (too much).
#3 is lower priority, but I'm sure there will be some time for Nicol to sit down and do some research. At first it will be because constructing artifacts takes resources that are (still) hard to get, and later because he will have an efficient infrastructure that takes much of the workload off him and delegates it to others. Meaning it shouldn't affect the efficiency too much either.

Early on, the artifact construction will be at a minimum since we're focusing on the infrastructure to improve the efficiency later. We should probably be building something like Cathodions/Metalworkers and Myr at first to improve the forges and get started on finding the resources for more advanced projects, then we can build Golem Artisans to improve the workforce further and maybe some build more advanced troops/weapons like Gemini Engines or Pentavi. Finally we go for things like Darksteel Colossi and Mycosynth Golems (make all other artifacts cheaper as long as you've got a lot of artifacts? Hell yes!) after we've got some decent production up and running.
Just add similar level of non-creature artifacts at each step (1. Boosters 2. Mid level boosters/support and start on some mid-level offense. 3. All out offense baby! Crush the English beneath our darksteel boots!)
Basically, our first constructions should be to increase the speed at which we "tech up" so we can build some reliable mid-power artifacts as soon as possible.
We should have time to get at least that much done before the English can reorganize themselves after news and orders have traveled to the other side of the world and back again.
We then use the mid-power artifacts to keep the pressure on them so they can't interfere with the construction of our indestructible monstrosities.
We also need to build ornithopters.
After all, "Regardless of the century, plane, or species, developing artificers never fail to invent the ornithopter."
Oh, and Clay Statues. Clay Statues everywhere.
It'll pretty much be like building our own, fully functional, terracotta army. (Look it up.)

Now, I definitely don't think it will reach 100% efficiency if he also wants to do some research (or at all, actually) even after he builds up an efficient infrastructure, but not down to 33% at least. With some good help (both mechanical and mortal) it most likely shouldn't even go below 60-70% if he takes a "day off" to do some research once in a while.
In fact, I think with some talented mortals and a few good golems assisting him it will be more efficient than if he works by himself, 8 hours a day, every day.

Speaking of research, what happened to the previous spells we were voting on? (1 or 2 spells from Voile, and three spells we "re-acquired" along with our Red mana, if I recall correctly.)
I don't remember seeing a post (in either thread) with the actual result of those votes, but I might just have missed it.


And it's worth mentioning that I'm also voting under the assumption that this involves property and symbolic sacrifice, not actual human sacrifice. Because no matter how charismatic we are, without blatant mind control or a giant restructuring of China over a longer period of time than we are ready to spend in here, that shit won't fly.


>>137818
I like your idea for ships, but for colossi shouldn't we find something less western?
Those names are more like something our enemies will call them, because they won't know/understand the Chinese names. So they will assign greco-roman mythological names to them.
Some sort of equivalent monsters/divine beings from Chinese mythology would be better, like Taisuei Xinjung. (Which is already confirmed as the name for our first construct, but you get my point.)
Unfortunately, I don't know any Chinese mythology so I can't give any actual examples.

>>137827
I'm in favor of bodyguard/royal assassin, if there is or will be a "vote" on that.
Meiling is a fighter, not a leader.
>> No. 137840
>>137838
We're not trying to rule a country.
This isn't a plane, it's Meiling's soul.
We're trying to mold her soul and make it so that Nicol Bolas is the focal point of her very essence. Both so he can use her power for his own reasons, and to make sure that she will be a loyal ally/servant.
>> No. 137841
>>137840

Exactly! Meiling is going to become our bloody Umezawa in this setting if we don't watch ourselves. We must be benevolent to our own, even if we maintain our fear abroad.

We're setting ourselves up with this one people. The parallels are staggering. We're even training her to be our Imperial Champion!

http://wiki.mtgsalvation.com/article/Nicol_Bolas
>> No. 137842
>>137838
The sacrifice doesn't need to be in blood.
In fact, I'm voting for that route assuming that it isn't, precisely because human sacrifice would give us a short term boost but we'll lose in the long run from both within (a religious/political revolution) and without (the World Egg screwing us over with a "hero"). Probably both at the same time.

Instead, they can sacrifice their time (praying an hour every evening), they can sacrifice love (giving up a relationship because the Heavens ask it of them). Food is a common sacrifice in many religions..
In fact, Buddhism already has a tradition of sacrificing food "to Buddha". (The food really goes to the monks who have spent the prior months in prayer, but the religious significance is still the same.) And so on.
>> No. 137843
>>137842

They can do this without us building otherworldly abominations to conquer with too, and if they're doing the building and fighting themselves that's pure profit in time and mana for us.

Its all about tempo. If we waste our bloody time dropping big creatures, the Wrath of God that the World Egg has been holding since turn one is going to really hurt.
>> No. 137845
>>137841
Hey, I've never been saying we should oppress our own. (Well, not much. We will be strict, but not tyrannical.)
I'm in favor of an image of a kind but vengeful God. "Do well and be rewarded handsomely. Go against me, and by extension the very Heavens themselves, and you will suffer the consequences".

>>137843
One does not exclude the other. People can live a very religious life and still have a "day job" working in the factory.

They can't do the building without us starting up the forges and infrastructure, otherwise they'd be building these things already.
That's why my suggestion was that we devote as much of our time as possible to improvement early on, so we can leave most of the construction to others once the war machine is rolling.

Wrath of God will hurt much less if we have the capability to recover from it quickly. That's why we shouldn't go for a few Colossi to the exclusion of everything else immediately. Instead we start with infrastructure and simpler constructs until we have the production capabilities to just build new big ones if the old ones somehow break.

(In the card game it would be like building up mana generation so we can just cast Darksteel Colossus again if we lose the first one, instead of short term mana boosts to cast it early and hope nothing bad happens to it.)
>> No. 137847
I see what you mean, but I don't agree. Glad you're switching to game terms, because that makes this a bit easier to explain.

So we're looking at two very classic strategies here. The first, as you put mentioned, is the ramp. We tap our creatures to generate extra mana and snag more land so we can cast bigger creatures. Not only is this an awesome tactic because it leaves us in a good position to recover from removal spells on our headbeaters, but its also really fast. Its usually a Green or Artifact strat, and the cards show (Elves, Kodama's Reach, Vernal Bloom, Urza's lands, Cloudpost, Myr, etc)

My problem with the ramp is that a smart opponent doesn't aim for the headbeaters. He waits for you to commit and then kicks the ramp out from under you. Suddenly you have a giant beefy creature or two, and maybe you've hit him a couple of times with them, but you have no infrastructure to rebuild when he smirks and slaps your big creature with a one mana removal spell (Condemn, Swords, etc) or gets around your clever mechanics with similar ease (Wing Shards comes to mind for DSC/Kikki-Jikki). Not to mention a good counter-spell is a lovely way to fuck up your day (I'm looking at you Tooth and Nail) and, well, Energy Flux.

The other option is multi-threat cards and proliferation (not the mechanic that has come out in recent sets). You cast spells that require your opponent deal with them individually because when left alone they well make the game difficult or even unwinnable. You make sure he is running around putting out all the little fires while you drop a land every turn, slowly building up in a way that he can't deal with because he's been swatting your little things every turn. Cards that work with this strat give you more bang for your buck (Spectral Procession, Sprouting Thrinax, Dragon Fodder, Mulldrifter, etc).

The problem with this one is tempo. You either keep up the pace or you die. You either have your bomb waiting when he's out of cards or you're in trouble. Proliferation games can turn into a death by inches, and that's not fun.

In thread relevance, I don't think pace is going to be a problem. In fact, the point seems to be tiring out the World Egg so we can move more overtly. We certainly don't have to worry about holding a bomb either. We're Nicol Fucking Bolas, when we hit the field, games end.

I just have the overwhelming feeling that the World Egg isn't some noob who's dropping all his best spells the moment he has mana for them, hoping that that will be the last counter spell (eyeballs the Plague Avatar). We're going to get screwed if we over-extend, so I prefer that strat that forces your opponent to do so instead.

If all else fails, we still have a pocket full of hard counters for his globals if he can maintain removal through our buildup.
>> No. 137855
File 130073723028.jpg - (80.70KB , 312x445 , 126.jpg ) [iqdb]
137855
The young Queen sighed and buried her face in her hands. Everything had been looking up. The Empire was in a veritable revolution of industry, and all the West hailed Britain as the foremost power of the age. With Napoleon finally defeated, they had experienced a brief few decades of peace and prosperity.

Now a threat that made the Corsican warlord look like a badly-fed Irish rebel had reared its head, a threat that sought not merely to dominate the world, but to damn it for all eternity. Hadn’t she tried her very hardest to be a good queen, to understand the complicated and arcane dealings of Parliament, to stay not only awake but dignified and proper through hundreds of hours of lessons on every conceivable topic every week? Hadn’t she done her best to represent the will of the people, to be as just and fair and kind as she knew how, to put aside her own burning, desperate desire for companionship and project a strong, queenly presence? What had she done - what had Britain done - to deserve this?

“Your Majesty,” her major-domo knocked on the gilded door to her chambers. “the Pope is here to see you.”

Victoria sniffled a bit and wiped her eyes. “Let him know that I’ll receive him in the main chamber. Oh, I’ve got to clean myself up...”

Five minutes later, a significantly less harried-looking Victoria strode to meet His Holiness Gregory XVI. As the various courtiers and wait staff on both sides began the laborious process of formally announcing an interaction between two political personages, the Pope waved his hand impatiently. “Your Majesty, if you agree, would you mind terribly that we skip the pleasantries this time? I think we are all aware exactly why I am here.”

Victoria nodded. “We would not mind doing so, Your Holiness. What can we do for you?”

Gregory the Sixteenth leaned back in his throne and sighed. “I know there have been differences between England and the Papacy in the past. I am not here to re-ignite old feuds, or try to bring you unwillingly into the fold once more. What we face today is a threat against which all Christians must struggle.”

Victoria held back a sigh of relief. “We understand, Your Holiness. However - if we may be frank for a moment, we simply don’t see what can be done. It has been a mere six months since the Dragon descended from the heavens, and already we are hearing reports of monstrous atrocities on an unimaginable scale. Entire mountainsides excavated for ancient and dire treasures, city-sized factories powered by the blood of the innocent, millions in the East converting every day to the worship of the Dragon. The Beast is as cunning and devious as he is cruel. What can we mere mortals hope to do?” Bravely, she held back her tears even as her worries spilled forth. Gregory nodded with understanding.

“My child, once I was plagued with the same doubts that you were, and more. I wondered if we of this world had so thoroughly failed the Lord that he would once again release Lucifer himself from his prison of ice and let him loose on an unprotected and unprepared world. The troubles harrowed me so that my health began to fail, this tired old heart on the verge of ceasing to beat. But just as my last breath passed from me, I saw.

I saw the Lord’s plan for us. Let us never forget that He works in mysterious ways, and that he never places adversity before us unless we can overcome it. That he has set Lucifer free does not mean that he has lost his faith in humanity - for that is not the nature of His character. He has placed His trust in us, and has only set loose the Beast so that we may show Satan how far humanity has come! Every day, the minds of men set forth some new and wondrous invention upon this earth.”

“Victoria,” the Bishop of Rome laid a comforting hand on her shoulder. “That is why I have come today. The Lord spoke to me, and told me of your hesitation and uncertainty. He wants you to know that you have done well, and, more importantly, that you will do well. That the petty differences which have separated us for so long now mean nothing.

Today, we face an enemy who dared challenge the All-Powerful, who raised the standard of rebellion against the Father of All. Today, we are neither Anglicans nor Catholics, neither Britons nor Romans, neither Commoners nor Lords. Today, we are children of God, and we raise a standard of our own, the standard of the Tenth and Ultimate Crusade! Today, my child, we and many others - my delegates to France, to Germany, to America and to the other Colonies - shall rally all Christendom to the sword, and send a message to the Dragon that rose out of the East!

A message that we will fight him to our dying breath, and longer! That we will fight him on the beaches, that we will fight him on the shores, that we will fight him in the streets and in the skies, in the pastures and in the rivers, in our own homes and in his, until he is defeated! That though he may have struck the first blow, we shall strike the last! That this, the final hour of our world, shall also be its finest hour!”

---

BGM: The Imperial March

CE 1841, December: The Dragon-Emperor of China finishes consolidating power and orders the masses of able-bodied unemployed Chinese to scour the realm for items of mystic significance.

CE 1842, January: As Father Johnson reasons England, the first reports of abnormal happenings are seriously investigated by Catholic spies.

CE 1842, March: The first slagwurm bone is unearthed at Llasa, Tibet, in the shadow of the Himalayas. Emperor Shenlong orders the seizure of Mount Everest and the construction of automatic mines along its slope.

CE 1842, June: The first mana-powered assembly line is demonstrated in Wuhan. Tenth Crusade announced by the Papacy to widespread support.

CE 1843, February: Emperor Shenlong announces the First Census. Greater Good program is activated, allowing terminal patients, criminals slated for execution, and willing volunteers to donate their souls to the Emperor.

CE 1843, June: Urbanization of China reaches 30%. Life expectancy increased to 63 years of age; infant mortality decreased to 2.3%. Last Jesuits expelled from China.

CE 1844, January: Innovations in steel construction, electricity, and assembly-line design lead to the opening of five new shipyards in Britain.

CE 1844, October: Annual Halloween parade in Leicester county marred by the actions of a Shenlong Cult.

CE 1844, December: First Shenlong Census conducted; number of opium addicts decreased from 2 million to less than 50,000. First Darksteel Colossus, named the Taisuei Xinjung, marches out of construction facilities in Beijing.

CE 1845, June: Shard of pristine, never-melting ice discovered in a spring in Shandong province. Greater Good program celebrates its 75,000th donor.

CE 1846, March: First Crusade Fleet of 120 vessels reaches Shanghai, is repelled by Imperial defenses. Fifty-six ships sunk, 19,000 men estimated killed, 23,000 taken prisoner, assumed sacrificed.

CE 1846, April: Shenlong’s counterattack leads to the “Bloody Rain” of April. Indian economy collapses, Imperial Cold War begins.

CE 1846, June: Pope Gregory XVI slain by a Chinese assassin, who was never caught.

CE 1847, January: Empire of Great Britain completes annexation of African continent, welcomes its billionth soul, expands Royal shipyards tenfold.

CE 1849, June: More than half of all labor in China done by automated hands; farmers now less than 2% of population. Emperor Shenlong announces Imperial Consort and Royal Assassin Hong Meiling, presents her with sword and greaves rumored to contain elemental spirits of ice, fire, and lightning.

CE 1850, January: Second Crusade Fleet of 847 vessels arrives; inflicts considerable damage as it marauds across Chinese shoreline. New long-range cannon prevent Chinese defenses from firing back. Fleet ultimately defeated by black-armored mechanical dragons. End of Imperial Cold War.

CE 1850, February: Population of the Australian Colony, recently expanded to over fifteen million by vigorous immigration, mysteriously disappears.

CE 1850, March: A pandemic of epic proportions afflicts the Western world; Oriental countries are unaffected. Seventy million die, galvanizing a mad rush towards medical science.

CE 1851, January: A program of vaccination successfully halts what is hailed as Lucifer’s Engineered Plague. Greater Good program celebrates its one millionth donor.

CE 1851, December: Crusader Expeditionary force is dropped in by experimental aircraft, singlehandedly defeated by Hong Meiling. Emperor Shenlong celebrates the 10-year anniversary of his rule by unveiling his new weapon of war, the six hundred and fifty-seven gun Blightsteel War Titan.

CE 1852, February: Journal of the Lunar Society reports that British industrial capacity has expanded over 20,000% in the last decade. 6,000th ironclad sails out of Royal shipyards.

CE 1852, June: Third Crusade Fleet sails from harbor, 8,000 ships strong. Near half a million infantry, armed with state-of-the-art automatic weaponry, accompany the ships.

CE 1852, July: Third Crusade Fleet delayed due to inclement weather; hundreds of ships lost at sea.

CE 1852, August-October: Over two dozen heads of state, important dignitaries, and high-ranking military officials assassinted; culprit never found.

CE 1853, January: Third Crusade Fleet reaches Shanghai; Emperor Shenlong meets them personally and in force. “This,” he declares, “shall be the last gasp of Christendom against my absolute rule.”

---

Twelve years. Twelve long years it’s been since you arrived on this desolate rock. To a human mind, it feels like twelve hundred. Your only comfort has been Meiling, the only being educated and informed enough to hold a somewhat even conversation with you. As well she should be, with every hour of her existence optimized and calibrated. As she stirs next to you and pushes at the lavishly decorated crimson sheets, you sigh and rise out of bed.

“Get dressed,” you say, peering at the rising sun. “It’s time. Today is the day.”

“Yes, Master.” Without a word of complaint she efficiently rises and begins pulling on the black silk stockings of her war garb, a necessity to insulate her body against the mystical charge of her Lightning Greaves. As you begin to slip into the heavy Slagwurm plating that’s saved your life against countless British operatives, you consider yourself in the mirror. Of course you haven’t aged, but nonetheless you are tired. Tired of running an empire with the pitiful wetware of a human body. Tired of fearing for your life. Tired of struggling to outproduce an empire that every day collects a ludicrous harvest of good fortune. Tired of working against a world with only the power of a man.

Meiling, still clad only in her stockings, walks over and wraps her arms around you. “It’s alright, Master. Everything will go as you planned, and even if it doesn’t, you’ll improvise.” She turns you around and embraces you. “The British Empire may have had a decade of assistance from the world itself, but the Chinese Empire has had a decade of rulership from Nicol Bolas. How can the two compare?”

You snort. Have you truly fallen so far that you need the reassurances of a wyrmling to assuage your fears? You’ll be glad when this is all over.

Meiling releases you and looks down. “Besides, if everything fails, I can kill myself and you’ll be free, right? That’s what I’ll do, then, as soon as you give the signal.” A pang of - something strikes you as she says that, but you dismiss it.

“You’re right. I cannot lose.” You repeat that to yourself even as you look out the window, surveying a horizon filled with British ships as far as the eye can see. “Enjoy this hour, my subjects, my foes...for as surely as night follows day, it will be your last.”

---

Your Enemy
-Steampunk technology: Maxim guns, tesla coils, airships with cannons, magnetically propelled flying fortresses
-7,500 warships totalling 585,000 guns and 500 supply and hospital ships (the ones lost to storm were 'miraculously' found several days later)
-500,000 Field infantry equipped with composite armor and automatic weapons. Each soldier drilled to an uncompromising standard of perfection. Each one carries a blessed round capable of penetrating Darksteel.
-30,000 heavy support vehicles
-Extremely lucky high command that always comes up with brilliant plans.
-Unbreakable morale and immunity to chemical and biological weaponry granted by bishops and The Pope, who are present at the battle and will pray for their side.

Your Forces
-5.1 million cannon fodder armed with semi-automatic rifles and heavy leather armor.
-8 Darksteel and 6 Blightsteel Colossi
-24 Darksteel Dragons, each forged from the souls of 10,000 volunteers.
-1,000 Power Armor Infantry, Dragon Marines
-1,200 battlecruisers totaling 126,000 guns in harbor
-7,000 suicide fireships in harbor
-16 entrenched bastions totaling 14,460 guns
-Hong Meiling, a 1/1 enchanted with the Runes of the Deus and equipped with Lightning Greaves and the Sword of Fire and Ice. Total power: 5/5 double strike trample shroud with protection from blue and from red.
-Nicol Bolas, Mana Level 6

[ ] Tell me how you win this.
>> No. 137861
>A pang of - something strikes you as she says that, but you dismiss it.
Is Nicol being, for lack of a better word, humanized? Not sure if want.

>-Unbreakable morale and immunity to chemical and biological weaponry granted by bishops and The Pope, who are present at the battle and will pray for their side.
>who are present at the battle and will pray for their side
I think the clergy just asked for a number of vacancies to be made.
>> No. 137863
Oh, cool. She's protected against the two colors we primarily deal in at the moment and can't be hit by direct removal from either side. Lovely. If she does a Heel-Face Turn, I blame all of you.

Anyway...

What color(s) are our creatures?


Can we cast...
Day of the Dragons
Thoughtweft Gambit
Distortion Strike
Betrothed of Fire
Burst of Speed
Emblem of the Warmind
Dogpile
Mob Justice
Mob Mentality
Furystroke Giant
Heatwave
Dolmen Gate
Incite War
Invert the Skies (With or Without Green)
Levitation
Plaxmanta
Statecraft
Unnerving Assault

If not, what spells have we picked up in 12 years?

I don't suppose we have a Door of Destinies or any other permanent buffs in play do we?
>> No. 137865
>Lightning Greaves
>Total power: 5/5 double strike trample shroud with protection from blue and from red.
Hey where's our Haste?

Fast updates are fine, but maybe you should allow a bit more time for just this one. It's the final battle and all
>> No. 137867
>>137863

Your creatures are colorless, red, or blue, mainly. Some black.

Spells you can cast:

The given list, plus Wild Ricochet, Stitch in Time, Izzet Guildmage, World At War, Corrupted Conscience, Runes of the Deus, Unnerving Assault, Comet Storm, Crucible of Fire, Shivan Dragon, Mindbreak Trap. Do note that there are several battlefield control spells in your arsenal already (Fallout, Destructive Force, Cryptic Command, Dominus of Fealty, Mark of Mutiny to name a few). Given the countermagic of your enemies, you determined Day of the Dragons would be too difficult to resolve (costs 7 + 2 for counter backup) in this fight and did not learn it.

You're pretty sure your enemies have White magic to a pretty extensive degree, including Lapse of Certainty, Mana Tithe, Glorious Anthem, Righteousness, and Wrath of God, but you don't know their exact spell lists.
>> No. 137868
>>137865

Yeah, she's also hasty, but you didn't summon her anyway so she has no summoning sickness.
>> No. 137869
...
All I can think of now is:
"Shit, I suck at strategy games."
So yeah, don't expect any walls of text with winning strategies like our last big battle. (My basic strategy for winning at RTSes is "Never play multiplayer, campaign only. Throw more troops at them.")
I can do okay when we're dealing with vague ideas or "playing Magic", like against the Avatar, but now that there suddenly are actual numbers and specific units in this war, I'm out.

I might think of something, but I doubt it will be in time to post before the next update.

>>137863
There are lots of ways of getting around shroud/protection.
Anything that says "all X" is the easiest one. (Like "Return all creatures to their owners hands" or "Destroy all artifacts" or whatever.)
If she does a heel-face turn, she's back to being 1/1 faster than you can say "Die monster! You don't belong in this world!".
>> No. 137870
>>137869

Don't feel like you need to assemble an entire strategy in one post. I'll take from whatever tactics you guys suggest, so if you can think of a clever interaction between a spell and one of your units, or between one of your units and theirs, go for it. Even something simple, like "Twincast World at War when they're tapped out and your units have the edge," can be helpful.
>> No. 137871
>Hong Meiling
>protection from blue and from red
>protection from red
>Runes of the Deus (a red spell)
I know it's been a bit since I played Magic but I think there's a small problem here.
>> No. 137872
>>137871

Pro red only prevents red spells from targeting her; it doesn't disenchant spells already affecting her.
>> No. 137873
>>137872

Correction; I'm wrong. Protection does have a clause against enchantments. Hm. Well, assume she's got a Runes of the Deus effect innately, as in she's a 3/3 r/g with double strike and trample.
>> No. 137874
>>137873
Protection from X means you can't be directly affected by X in any way.
This includes combat damage, enchantment, targeted by spells and/or effects from sources that are X.
>> No. 137875
Avoid confronting their fleet with yours. Instead turn them into pirates, hit them on their supply lines.

Have an expendable element make trouble on their homefront. Choke off the supply of goods into England from its colonies. Activate the Shenglong Cult cells for rabble-rousing, terrorism and assassinations.

Channel their landing parties onto unfavorable, split-up landing zones using weather manipulation and magical misdirection. Use your familiarity of the land to gain mobility and intelligence. Maul the weaker splinters. let the stronger ones push inland with some resistance, stretching their supply lines, tiring themselves against guerrilla warfare, unfavorable weather and magical diseases.

Use the inevitable horrors of war that the crusaders will cause to inspire sacrifices. ramp up war-time production inland.
>> No. 137876
They are still on the water and we need to keep it that way, or better yet drowning in it.
For the enemy spells, use hard counters on big spells and Mindbreak Trap is they try to spam around it. If we can force them to hit Wrath of God we're winning.

As for the army, our main advantage is in our collossi and dragons, big we need to split up thier ships and trick them into falling for the suicide ships, but don't overextend.

A prolonged, long range battle is to our advantage as we get mana every "turn" while the egg has a large but limited pool of energy.
Remember that we're here to wear out the egg, not conqour this world. Use spells to delay them or wear down thier numbers if you can but time is on our side, no need to rush.

If we can find thier high command we should send meling to assasinate them if at all possible as she's immune to all of the eggs meddling and the egg won't want her dead.

If they make it to land, and we're losing the land war, It's time to break out volacnic fallout and our other crowd controls, with the army busy and thier planeswalker kept busy with us it would be the perfect time for meling to strike.

In this fight a draw is a win as long as the egg is tired.
>> No. 137877
>>137875
also: focus your firepower on taking out their air force. not only is it the most mobile element, it serves as their eyes and ears.

And have Meiling do some assassinations. Especially the priests keeping up the NBC buffs.
>> No. 137878
>>137873
Even if she didn't have Pro. Red the Lightning Greaves' Shroud effect would have invalidated the enchantment. But that's a moot point now.

As for strategy I suggest a basic unbalancing of their forces and then bringing down the hammer on them.

If possible we should try to decapitate their leadership and eliminate the protection given by the bishops & the Pope. I'd gladly settle for merely taking them out of the fight if destruction isn't a practical endeavor.

But, simply, I think we should go with something of an uncomplicated strategy and react & improvise as needed. Use that fusion of Red & Blue to our advantage.

I really miss Flashfires right about now. Nothing quite like burning your enemy's power base to cinders.
>> No. 137881
Ohohohoho, I forgot we already have a swing to win button.

[x]If we can "drop a land" and bring us up to 7 mana, lead with Peek seeing as its not instant in this. If not, hold spells and direct troops. If so, that's all very interesting but we're going to hold for counter anyway and direct troops.
1. Darksteel Dragons to harass those airships. Attain aerial superiority and show them why dragons rule the skies. (i.e., Get above the highest one, destroy, wash rinse repeat. Wounded dragons to target airships that can't fire upwards (envelope in the way maybe) and suicide bomb important targets.
2. Darksteel Colossi to enter the water and scuttle inbound warships, troop transports, and anything else that floats. They may be able to pierce Darksteel, but water says fuck you to anything short of depth charges or torpedoes.
3. Battleruisers depart from the harbor and get out into the open ocean. If they commit, we strike from behind and the flanks. If they don’t, our ships keep them distracted long enough for the Darksteel Colossi to get in position. If enemy fleet retreats to avoid out positioning,
4. Fireships to rush enemy fleet once battleships are in position or begin taking fire. They either charge into a wall of flaming death or get hit by it from behind.
500 Marines to perform strike missions against targets of opportunity.
5. Bastions and Blightsteels to provide cover fire until troops land, then we make that beachhead a hell on earth.
6. Figure out a way to buff our troops so we can start using Volcanic Fallout. Its cheap and can’t be countered.
7. Use canon fodder to chump block for now.
8. Commit to nothing until contents of opponent’s hand can be confirmed. We MUST have a counter prepared for Wrath of God or similar spells. As Meiling pointed out, if she dies, the game is over.
9. Do Not Commit Meiling. Keep the other 500 Marines around her.

Peek every turn in excess of 6 mana.
Self annihilates targets if doing so costs us nothing.

If Opponent has Wrath (or similar spell)
1. Hold counters until they use it.
2. Harass and wittle enemy forces until opponent taps out, or Wrath is wasted.
3. If enemy taps out and won’t be able to cast Wrath, or casts Wrath, try to counter with Cryptic. If Cryptic succeeds, tap all enemy troops and swing to win.
4. Deploy Meiling only under extreme circumstances, and always with double counter protection. If they have more removal than that, we have Mindbreak Traps.

If Not
1. Try to bait a big spell into getting a Cryptic to the face. Tap, swing to win.
2. Peek every turn.
3. Deploy Meiling only under extreme circumstances, and always with double counter protection. If they have more removal than that, we have Mindbreak Traps.

Plan subject to change on contents of hand.
>> No. 137882
Also, Holy Day may fuck all plans. Do not commit if you don't know what kind of shit they're holding.

Even if we get a cryptic off, don't commit a million or so canon fodder and Meiling+Guards, just in case we need to chump next turn or they've got a wing shards/etc.
>> No. 137883
>>137881
The enemy planeswalker is even more keen to keep Meiling alive than we are, considering it's using her soul as a host.

The worst that could happen to her is capture, no death.
>> No. 137884
>>137881
I doubt the World Egg wants her dead. Plus she's immune to any interference it has anyway. So use her to kill the enemy leadership. She's a 5/5, she can almost certainly do it without trouble.
>> No. 137885
>>137875

A good plan, but you've already executed it. You've already done major interference with their supplies, slowing them down several months. You're currently past that stage - the battle is now and they are here. Even if you blow up all their supply barges, that won't affect them until tomorrow. If they break you here, you won't be able to affect their logistics; if you break them here, their supplies won't matter.

>>137876

Good points on the real purpose of this battle. The world egg will have most of its energy invested around the Pope and individual commanders.

>>137878

Shroud does not affect existing enchantments; that was what had me confused about protection.

>>137881

I like your idea of submarine Darksteel Colossi. It'll force them into an uncomfortable position. However, with regards to your volcanic fallout suggestion, there are two flaws:

-> You do not possess any toughness-increasing magics, and supplying toughness-increasing equipment to an army of over 5.1 million will be impossible in this fight.

-> Volcanic Fallout also hurts you, and you do not possess life recovery magics. It also won't kill enemy battleships or tanks unless you cast it a lot, which hurts you a lot.

I'll assume that Cryptic Commanding the enemy to tap them out will 'phase' them out of reality temporarily, allowing you to strike at the Pope and hospital barges but not letting your forces instantly overwhelm theirs for the win, otherwise the battle would revolve entirely around resolving one spell. Of course, the Pope will still do his level best to counter your Cryptics and other battlefield magics while supplying his own.

I'll need a consistent decision from you guys on what you want to do with Meiling.

[ ] Commit her with counter backup (note there are very few spells that will actually kill her)

[ ] At all costs, protect her
>> No. 137888
>>137870
Yeah, that's pretty much what I meant by "I might think of something".

Actually, I'm gonna write a wall on the Magic front because I just realized that this is basically a war where you can gain advantages by winning games of Magic.
And that I can do.

Maybe something on the actual battle too.
Actually, let's start with that.
Get air superiority if possible. Then exploit the fuck out of it.
Shivan/Darksteel Dragons with Crucible of Fire.


Okay, on to Magic.

Of what we know of their spells, I'm mostly worried about Glorious Anthem and Righteousness.
Both are very potent buff spells.
Bounce Anthem, hard counter Righteousness if it threatens our limited resources (Darksteel mostly, but also the Dragon infantry, actual Dragons and the fleet), otherwise we should have the mana pool to Leak it quite often, now that we're at "level 6". We're paying 2 mana, they're paying 4. That's a trade I'm willing to take even if they're still taking down some of our lesser units.
Wrath of God will quite possibly hurt them more than us, if we can just time a bit of strategic bounce on our side. Again, we only need to save the important units. Sacrificing the cannon fodder is fine as long as they eat away a decent chunk of their own troops as well.
Drain it as often as possible. Maybe even hard counter it. If they try to WoG us, it means that we have the advantage in troops.
Not to mention all our Darksteel will just wade straight through it anyway.
Speaking of the Darksteel, I'm a bit worried about the "blessed bullets". But I'm assuming it just means "can deal actually lethal damage to Indestructible", in which case they'd still need quite a lot to take down our heavies. And in terms of magic, that just means "bring chump blockers and slap any possible kind of evasion on the biggies". (Cannon fodder to distract them from shooting the Darksteel I guess?)
Blightsteel, we want these to penetrate as deep into their lines as possible. If they don't reach "player hit points" (i.e. their high command or whatever the equivalence of the "player" is in this battle) before dying, we've fucked up. Poison counters are very powerful, especially against mono-/heavy-White (lifegain like fuck, usually).

Their counters are meh, at best. Mana Tithe is a pretty good harassment since it's so cheap and even a deficit of one mana can tip the scales on a combo.
Our Mana Leak is more effective though. 3-for-2 instead of 1-for-1.
Lapse is derp. It's a delaying tactic and can only really fuck up elaborate combos.
This is, at it's core, a Beatdown match. Combos aren't the main game winners here so I'm not that worried about either of them, actually.

I'm seeing a really nice trick here though. If we assume that the Izzet Guildmages can channel some mana of their own. At least to use their own ability, then:
Cast big fucking spell, e.g. World At War, Twincast it.
Izzet Guildmages can't replicate World At War, but they can replicate Twincast.
Depending on their personal mana pool, they might also be able to help with mass relocations of strategic troops through double (or in a stretch, triple) replicating Boomerangs.
Suddenly moving maybe dozens of units is sure to put our enemy off balance.
They can also be used to "launder" spells into being uncounterable. It costs two extra mana for us, since we have to twincast any spell that costs more than two mana. (Cast, twincast, they replicate twincast through their ability. Can't be countered unless the enemy can counter abilites.)
They should also spend mana on doubling our Mana Drains. Hell, these guys are fucking game winners, as long as we don't have to personally feed them mana every time they're trying to do anything.

This means that we really need to look out for spells like Arrest, Detainment Spell and Faith's Fetters, as they can lock down our Guildmages completely. Pacifism is also very nasty since it will stop all our heavies dead in their tracks until we deal with it. Still, a boomerang solves that problem.
(Unless the mage is vital to us at that specific moment, we should try to boomerang him instead of the enchantment, "killing" the enchantment instead of, at least partially, refunding it.
Heavies... Why didn't we hard counter their spell? They shouldn't be allowed to lock them down in the first place.)
On our side of the "activated abilities" fight, see if we can't get our guildmages some Heartstones for the truly crucial battles. That would put us so far ahead in the magical arms race that it's not even funny. (Each Heartstone reduces the cost of activated abilities by one colorless, to a minimum of one mana. Two stones means feeding them mana beyond their own is more cost efficient than multicasting Twincast.)

Null Rod, Damping Matrix, Cursed Totem: Please tell me we've got some artifact destruction. We've got Red mana, for Gods' Nicol's sake, so we've got to have something that can permanently remove artifacts other than hard countering them on cast.
Otherwise these bastards, and anything like them, is top priority for counters.
We really can't afford a lockdown on abilities and/or artifacts.

Corrupted Conscience is a really nice mind control effect since it also adds Infect.
Again, we want poison counters on the equivalence of "player health", so we should keep it for chances like that. Otherwise we're going for just Mind Control.
Blatant Thievery isn't that good here, unless we can twist it's "for each player" clause to mean units of troops or something.

Unnerving Assault is a really nice spell since we're Blue/Red so we can easily get both effects.
It lends itself well to our quantity over quality as far as basic troops are concerned.
Use it when we send in the cannon fodder to make the opposition really feel it.

Runes of the Deus should be used on our more advanced units. Double Strike will be enough. Trample is nice, but First Strike damage wins more creature battles, and the hitting twice effect is delicious on anything big.

Stitch in Time is unreliable, but really cheap. Use as much as possible, but don't expect it to save our ass in critical moments. It's not a spell to base a strategy around, but it can be liberally used to enhance any and every other strategy.

...Aaand I really need to dig up our spell lists. To be continued.
>> No. 137890
>>137885
Commit her, but don't do anything too risky. She's a 5/5 humanoid with other advantages, with counter support she'll be fine for the most part.
>> No. 137891
>>137881
Basically this -volcanic fallout + knowing that Cryptic only gives us an easier shot at what hasn't phased out.

Still, removing most (or all) of the Pope's guards will help in killing him.
>> No. 137893
(Telepathic) Peek (1) - Look at target player’s hand. Draw a card.
Mana Leak (2) - Counter target spell unless its caster pays 3 mana (this will tire most enemies and outright stop their most powerful attacks).
Trickbind (2) - Counters activated and triggered abilities, can’t be countered itself. 
Boomerang (2) - Return target permanent to its owner’s hand.
Twincast (2) - Copy target instant or sorcery spell. You may choose new targets for the copy.
Mulldrifter (3 or 5) - Draw two cards, or draw two cards and summon a 2/2 flying elemental. 
Cryptic Command (4) - Choose two: Counter target spell, or return target permanent to its owner’s hand, or tap all creatures target player controls, or draw a card. 

Clone (4) - Enters the battlefield as a copy of creature already on the battlefield. 

Mind Control (5) - You control enchanted creature.
Tidings (5) - Draw four cards.

Time Stop (6) - Stops time, variety of effects.
Draining Whelk (6) - Suck the power out of an enemy spell, use it to create a flying squid monster!
Blatant Thievery (7) - For each opponent, gain control of target permanent that player controls. If it's not countered, it can't be dispelled like Mind Control can, but enemies can still Mind Control their minions back.
Inkwell Leviathan (9) - When you really need a mountain-sized, magic-immune, tsunami-breaking, sea-swallowing, battalion-flattening apocalypse monster.

Peek, Mulldrifter, Clone, Tidings, Thievery, Mind Control, and Inkwell are not Instant speed.

This really need to be in this thread as well, so yeah.

Anyway.

Peek should be used as much as possible. We now have the mana pool for it and knowing their strategy will enable us to put up a direct counter for it.

Mana Leak, Boomerang and Twincast. I mentioned most of what I could think of about these in my previous post.
But I'll mention it again for emphasis:
Guildmages should replicate Mana Leak. We're up against a very static, but fucking huge, mana pool. Draining it as much and as fast as (safely) possible is a priority. Once we've bled them dry, we've won.

Mulldrifters are aerial chumps, I guess, even if a bit expensive for that. Their card advantage makes up a bit for their cost, though.

Trickbind. Can we somehow use this to temporarily nullify the protection given to them by the clergy? Basically, is it a passive or an activated ability?

Cryptic Command. Well, we could have a bit fun with it by twincasting it and have our Guildmages replicate it.
Actually, as I said in the previous post: we're gonna do that with everything as long as we don't have to constantly feed them mana to do it.

Clone: This baby is fucking lovely now. My second favorite creature in our army.
Why send in a Darksteel Colossus when we can send in a cloned Darksteel Colossus and keep the original for later?
We need some extra oomph to take down a flying fortress? Clone it. If we're trading one-for-one we win, because their fortress was more valuable than our Clone.

Mind Control. I'm pretty sure I mentioned all of the variations of this spell in my other post. It's a bit disorganized, since I wasn't checking off a spell list.

Tidings. Battlefield intelligence is really. Fucking. Important.
Use this, scouting Mulldrifters and telepathic Peeking often. Information wins wars.

Time stop. Still the best panic spell there is, since it stops any spell and any combo. Can't be countered, can't be exiled. Split Second is crazy. And it simply removes anything that would have happened.
This includes enemy attacks. We stop time, reorganize and "try again" or just move as much of our troops as possible out of there (boomerang + guild mages) and leave a Comet Storm/Volcanic Fallout there to keep them company instead.

Draining Whelk. Same as against the Avatar except not X spells. I forgot that it checks for CMC, not casting cost last time.

Inkwell Leviathan. Well, it's still a mountain-sized, magic-immune, tsunami-breaking, sea-swallowing, battalion-flattening apocalypse monster, so yeah.

Red spells coming up.

I'm also trying to read some of the other suggestions here, but I won't be commenting on them in my walls of text. Too easy for things to get lost in here.
But I just have to say, so I don't forget:

Submarine Colossi. Fucking awesome idea.
They won't have time to prepare enough blessed depth charges/torpedoes to deal with them and small arms fire can't reach them underwater.

I suggest we use Cloned Colossi for it. Sort of "fire and forget". We Clone them, send them out, and then they can stay there until they all break down or the enemy ships have done so.
We don't have to worry as much about not reaching them in time to counter enemy counters that way, since we're keeping the real ones closer to reduce response time.
>> No. 137894
>>137893

Ooh, clever idea. Yes, the presence of Blightsteel Colossi on the field makes Clone the most broken spell ever. 11/11 indestructible trampling infectors for 3U? That could tip the balance real fast.

Unfortunately your Guildmages will need your mana in order to copy your spells. They can sling extremely weak versions of your spells by themselves (represented by their P/T), but in order to replicate the true magic of a Planeswalker, true magic is required.

Trickbind would work to suppress the NBC blessing, but you'd have to target every single cleric with it. Not feasible.
>> No. 137896
>>137890
This is pretty much my idea as well.
She is important because she is incredibly useful, both in a military and in a strategic sense.
It would be a waste not to use her, but an even bigger waste to lose her on a stupid gamble.
Commit, but don't overcommit.

Make sure that, in addition to other backup, there is always at least a boomerang around wherever we send her. Preferably two, just in case.
The artifacts can be recovered later, if they ever try to use them against us. (Boomerang always sends it to their owner. The greaves only give the wearer shroud, they don't actually have shroud themselves.)
We can assume they will most likely let Meiling go, since they can't afford to harm her.

Red spells.

Lightning Bolt. I shouldn't even have to tell you what to do with this one.
Same for Banefire.

Volcanic Fallout is very risky, we're probably better off using Destructive Force in most cases.
Still, that is pretty much our equivalence of their WoG. Not to be used lightly.

Double Negative is probably our new main Hard Counter. It's, CMC, cheaper than Cryptic Command but it uses two kinds of mana and doesn't have the modularity of Command.
It can stop two spells for the cost of one, though so that is a major advantage.

Elemental Appeal is great for opening breaches in the enemy lines. Kamikaze strikes on valuable targets, it won't live to see tomorrow anyway.

Mark of Mutiny. We will use this to grab important targets and scuttle/kamikaze them into the next important target.
Other mind control effects can't really be used this way since they don't give haste.

Dominus of Fealty. Hell yes. Get this guy out and about as soon as possible.
Nothing fucks over your opponents like us Peeking on their plans and Dommy stealing whatever their main unit was and having them self-destruct/attacking their friends at a critical point.

Nucklavee. I'm not sure how to translate this guy's abilities to this setting.
I guess having/sacrificing it makes it easier for us to cast some of our spells.
If so, we should probably have a system of rotating them every now and then. (Send it out, have it fight a bit. Boomerang. Rinse and repeat.)

Bogardan Hellkite. Use sparingly, and only if necessary, to build air superiority. Once we have it, he will be everywhere.
Our opponent can never be sure where and when he will appear, and whenever he does shit will burn.
Once we've managed to deal with the Pope and the clergy, this will be a wonderful terror weapon.
Nowhere is safe. Dragons will rain fire on you at any time, anywhere. Aren't you glad you joined the army to see the world?


...Yeah. Due to timezone differences, it's half past one in the morning here (CET), so I feel my concentration slipping a bit.
At least I've gone through most (95+%) of what I could think of with the spells.

And I can never say this enough times: Guildmages. Twincasts and Mana Sinks. Trollfaces on each and every fucking one of them.
>> No. 137897
Hmm, to really throw off the World Egg, if you have the magic then ensure that Meiling becomes pregnant, and then accelerate the birth.

Possibly more than anything else that's happened, becoming a mother will change her fundamentally..
>> No. 137898
>>137894
Ah, okay.
Well, that makes them slightly less fun.
They can still be used for counter blocking trough spell laundering at least.

Clone takes MVP then.
Followed by Dragons once we have air superiority.
Dominus will supply the troll face, and keep battles chaotic (to our advantage).
>> No. 137901
>>137897
1. I don't think we have the magic for it.
2. What purpose would that serve? We're not just trying to change her, we're trying to change her according to a specific plan.
>> No. 137913
Once this is over, we should do two things:
1. Research Training Ground (a 1 mana Blue enchantment that reduces mana costs for creature abilities by (2)). This lets us have our Guild mages replicate 2 mana spells for 1 mana.
2. Build Meiling a Sword of Light and Darkness, because that way she becomes nigh-invulnerable to everything but Green and she heals us and resurrects our dead creatures whenever she deals damage to the enemy.
>> No. 137930
>>137913
speaking of Training Grounds:

Training Grounds + Filigree Sages + Khalni Gem = infinite mana. We need to work that in there somehow.
>> No. 137937
-_- Guys, save all the Timmy and Johnny shit for later. We just need to win.
>> No. 137938
Lol, check the new thread.