Jeph Jacques's comics discussion forums

Comic Discussion => ALICE GROVE => Topic started by: jwhouk on 01 Mar 2015, 10:04

Title: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 01 Mar 2015, 10:04
The plot, it thickens.

What will the siblings find in town?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 01 Mar 2015, 10:32
The thick, it plottens.

What will the town find in the siblings?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 01 Mar 2015, 10:47
Innards, probably?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 01 Mar 2015, 11:06
What will the siblings find in town?

ARDENT: "Everyone is gone! It's a ghost town like in the old 2D vids!"

ALICE: "It's past midnight, you idiot! Of course no one is around!"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 11:27
The plot, it thickens.

What will the siblings find in town?

A bit of the old ultraviolence...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 11:29
You forgot a poll!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KOK on 01 Mar 2015, 11:42
Will they get to town?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 01 Mar 2015, 11:52
The plot, it thickens.

What will the siblings find in town?

A bit of the old ultraviolence...
And maybe Canon in D Minor.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 11:56
Don't you mean Beethoven's Ninth?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 01 Mar 2015, 12:08
Seriously, I'm honestly expecting the siblings to go running through the forest chased by beasties real and imagined. As they vanish over a hill, you see a rather annoyed Alice snapping one monster's neck with one hand whilst blasting another back through a tree-trunk using a nanotech kinetic blast (shades of Mass Effect biotics) with the other hand.

They'll arrive in town and find no-one with the possible exception of a night watchman around. Gavia will spend a whole strip calling Ardent an idiot. Ardent will insist that someone has to come along and, reluctantly, Gavia agrees to wait with him, sitting at the base of a statue in the town square. Next panel is Jack and possibly Miss Margaret Wheelwright waking them up as the square fills up as the town awakens post-dawn.

It's difficult to judge, by my guess is that Chapter 2 will probably end with the end of the initial conversation between Ardent, Gavia, Maggie and Jack. Ardent will be complaining about how everyone is willing to give Gavia a free pass because her being mad with him "explains everything". The very last panel will probably be the scene below reflected in Alice's eyes as she watches from the eaves of the roof of a nearby building.

Chapter 3? My guess it will start with Alice on the roof; her concentration is broken by Doc, who just happens to live in that apartment. By his conversation with Alice, we learn a bit about her background and connection with the town (I'm expecting her to be older than she looks by decades). Meanwhile, the serious 'The Origin of the Witch' strips will be balanced with Ardent and Gavia exploring the town with their two new acquaintances.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 12:21
I really hope the comic explains whether or not Alice uses tech or is naturally powerful.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 12:22
I thought it was the Ninth, too, but I haven't seen the movie in years (thought the Canon in D was Pachelbel, though).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 12:25
Canon in D is absolutely Pachelbel, but Alex's favorite piece is 100% Beethoven's Ninth.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 01 Mar 2015, 12:57
The Village is real

The people are Holograms
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 01 Mar 2015, 13:35
Don't you mean Beethoven's Ninth?
Look, all I remember is the guy liked classical music.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 13:46
Beethoven's Ninth was the main piece throughout the movie.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 01 Mar 2015, 13:53
Never saw the movie, just recognized the reference and tried to run with it. Might be It's why I bungled it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 14:04
No worries. But definitely check it out, it's very good.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 14:05
One of the few movies that's better (or at least more comprehensible) than the book.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 14:08
It also removes the last chapter, which is good because that last chapter ruins everything.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 14:25
It also removes the last chapter, which is good because that last chapter ruins everything.

Much as I hate to admit it, I never got to the last chapter. Stopped about halfway through, said the hell with it, and rented the movie. It's one of three books (the others being Ulysses and something by one of the Brontes) that I started and never finished...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: pwhodges on 01 Mar 2015, 14:29

Canon in D is absolutely Pachelbel, but Alex's favorite piece is 100% Beethoven's Ninth.

But as it happens, both pieces are used in Evangelion. :)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 01 Mar 2015, 14:41
Seriously, I'm honestly expecting the siblings to go running through the forest chased by beasties real and imagined. As they vanish over a hill, you see a rather annoyed Alice snapping one monster's neck with one hand whilst blasting another back through a tree-trunk using a nanotech kinetic blast (shades of Mass Effect biotics) with the other hand.

They'll arrive in town and find no-one with the possible exception of a night watchman around. Gavia will spend a whole strip calling Ardent an idiot. Ardent will insist that someone has to come along and, reluctantly, Gavia agrees to wait with him, sitting at the base of a statue in the town square. Next panel is Jack and possibly Miss Margaret Wheelwright waking them up as the square fills up as the town awakens post-dawn.

It's difficult to judge, by my guess is that Chapter 2 will probably end with the end of the initial conversation between Ardent, Gavia, Maggie and Jack. Ardent will be complaining about how everyone is willing to give Gavia a free pass because her being mad with him "explains everything". The very last panel will probably be the scene below reflected in Alice's eyes as she watches from the eaves of the roof of a nearby building.

Chapter 3? My guess it will start with Alice on the roof; her concentration is broken by Doc, who just happens to live in that apartment. By his conversation with Alice, we learn a bit about her background and connection with the town (I'm expecting her to be older than she looks by decades). Meanwhile, the serious 'The Origin of the Witch' strips will be balanced with Ardent and Gavia exploring the town with their two new acquaintances.
(emphasis mine)
Ben, I gotta ask. Do you really believe this is what will happen, or are you just having fun spinning the plot in your mind?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 01 Mar 2015, 14:50
@Loki,

As a general rule, the further into the future my predictions go, the less likely they are. However, I'm willing to stand up and be counted about the run through the forest and sleeping in the town square. That's what I think will happen in this chapter.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 01 Mar 2015, 16:06
My theory used to be that BenRG was actually Jeph, participating in the discussions using a fake profile so he could bounce some of his ideas off the forum crowd to see what managed to stick.  But some of his recent crazy shipper ideas (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,30504.msg1306200.html#msg1306200) have changed my mind.  Sorry, Ben, looks like you really are one of us.

Gooble-gobble!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 16:07
Nah, Benergy can't be Jeph. OR MAYBE HE IS. (I just like saying "Benergy")
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 01 Mar 2015, 16:08
My theory used to be that BenRG was actually Jeph, participating in the discussions using a fake profile so he could bounce some of his ideas off the forum crowd to see what managed to stick.  But some of his recent crazy shipper ideas (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,30504.msg1306200.html#msg1306200) have changed my mind.  Sorry, Ben, looks like you really are one of us.

Gooble-gobble!
[conspiracytheory]Or maybe BenRG was just engaging in shipping shenanigans to throw people like you off the trail.[/conspiracytheory]
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 01 Mar 2015, 16:26
[conspiracytheory]we are all different aspects of jeph. jeph is in a coma and can only escape by writing the perfect webcomic[/conspiracytheory]
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 16:33
And thus the great schism between the Monojephists and the Panjephists has begun.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: cesium133 on 01 Mar 2015, 17:18
There is no Jeph but Jeph and Hannelore is his prophet.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 17:24
It's actually not pronounced "Benergy." It's "Benurge (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demiurge).".
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 17:38
Hmm...nope.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: MrNumbers on 01 Mar 2015, 18:21
What was that thing?

No eyed deer.

(Say it out loud)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 18:24
I think someone already made that pun.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 01 Mar 2015, 18:35
That was last week. Everything old is new again. :P
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 01 Mar 2015, 18:48
You forgot a poll!

I was on my iPad! :P

Updated poll provided.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 01 Mar 2015, 19:02
Awww, you kept my placeholder options! :)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 02 Mar 2015, 00:30
If Gavia has the seeds of adulthood in her, she'll try to make amends to the villagers. She'll try to do it with high technology. It's unlikely to make them more comfortable with her.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 02 Mar 2015, 06:37
And thus the great schism between the Monojephists and the Panjephists has begun.

And a great shame it is because they're both right. There are many Jephs, but they are all one Jeph. Such is the great mystery of Jeph.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 02 Mar 2015, 07:14
One Jeph to rule them all, one Jeph to find them. One Jeph to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 02 Mar 2015, 07:20
One Jeph to rule them all, one Jeph to find them. One Jeph to bring them all and with dorkness bind them.

Fixed that for you.  :claireface:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 02 Mar 2015, 09:12
Sure, that works.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: MrNumbers on 02 Mar 2015, 09:50
Bugger. I feel a right twit: I'm Australian, you see. Odd timezone. I checked in to see the new one and thought because of the time difference that it was actually-

Bah. Nevermind. My apologies.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 02 Mar 2015, 12:19
Nothing weird about our Timezone at all!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Castlerook on 02 Mar 2015, 18:47
THAT'S NO MOON!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 02 Mar 2015, 18:58
Shit just got unreal.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 02 Mar 2015, 19:00
What the hell is that?

Still not as disturbing as those deer, though.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 02 Mar 2015, 19:00
Now there's something you don't want having eyes...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 02 Mar 2015, 19:03
Welp.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Castlerook on 02 Mar 2015, 19:10
Somebody better tell Lady Eboshi to stay clear of any dying wolves and NOT! DECAPITATE! THIS! SPIRIT! (or whatever it is).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: SubaruStephen on 02 Mar 2015, 19:31
Man, the Nightwalker is a shadow of his former self. :claireface:

(http://37.media.tumblr.com/af49febe8fef11aeb526e9e1d146a89d/tumblr_mk1k22JHEN1s88etdo1_1280.png)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 02 Mar 2015, 20:12
So, uh. Hey, Shadow. You're a long way from Gunnerkrigg Court. And also 100 feet tall.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 02 Mar 2015, 20:48
Somebody better tell Lady Eboshi to stay clear of any dying wolves and NOT! DECAPITATE! THIS! SPIRIT! (or whatever it is).

Yup, this was my first thought too. Now I have to go find that movie again...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 02 Mar 2015, 21:00
Joking aside, what the hell is that thing? Nanotech robots exhibiting a hive mind? Holographic intimidation meant to keep the Vicissitudes in Alice's forest shack? Rogue Praeses?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 02 Mar 2015, 21:11
Dooooooooooooooooooooooom.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 02 Mar 2015, 21:20
It's just a weather balloon. Or swamp gas, whatever. Don't even worry.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 02 Mar 2015, 23:13
Damn it! Ninja'd over Princess Mononoke references!

Whatever it is, it's transparent. This suggests to me that it is an energy field or vapour/particle cloud. I'm guessing that Gavia is going to try to blow it up and it won't even notice ( due to having little or no physical substance).

Just something new for Jeph to explain, I guess.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 02 Mar 2015, 23:48
He's kinda looking like "ay wan sum doom?"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: pwhodges on 03 Mar 2015, 00:41
Well, that was unexpected!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: rfrank dodelijk on 03 Mar 2015, 01:32
a crappy shadow.
alice grove is terrible, and i'm finished with it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Castlerook on 03 Mar 2015, 06:46
a crappy shadow.
alice grove is terrible, and i'm finished with it.

Truly, we shall miss you. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojydNb3Lrrs)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ysth on 03 Mar 2015, 06:53
Joking aside, what the hell is that thing? Nanotech robots exhibiting a hive mind? Holographic intimidation meant to keep the Vicissitudes in Alice's forest shack? Rogue Praeses?
Insufficient data.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 03 Mar 2015, 07:02
Joking aside, what the hell is that thing? Nanotech robots exhibiting a hive mind? Holographic intimidation meant to keep the Vicissitudes in Alice's forest shack? Rogue Praeses?

That's something that remains to be seen. FWIW, I'm expecting Alice to at least give the kids a basic explanation. Maybe something along the lines of: "That is why no-one is allowed to just 'visit' this world. It has mysteries that not even the Presides can explain."
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Welu on 03 Mar 2015, 07:18
(http://www.reactiongifs.com/r/oh-shi.gif)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: dexeron on 03 Mar 2015, 08:01
So glad I wasn't the only person who thought of Mononoke.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: rfrank dodelijk on 03 Mar 2015, 08:42
a crappy shadow.
alice grove is terrible, and i'm finished with it.

Truly, we shall miss you. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojydNb3Lrrs)

will you, or were you just being sarcastic? what I was doing was expressing my genuine opinion. it's in the right place as well, it's taken todays "strip" to convince me to pack it in.
I still enjoy qc and will continue to contribute to it's board. should you in fact miss me, you'll find me there.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: LTK on 03 Mar 2015, 09:30
When your 'genuine opinion' is nothing but the sentiment "this sucks" then yes, you can safely assume that someone is sarcastic when they say they will miss you. You're not exactly making a positive and meaningful addition to the discussion.

In fact, saying the same thing in two different threads makes it seem you have an aggressive dislike of Alice Grove, so I think instead of posting about it here you should find something more productive to do.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 03 Mar 2015, 12:36
Mostly, if you don't like something, you should explain why instead of just saying that something people like is bad. There are plenty of people in the QC discussion thread who complain about the direction the comic is going, they just do it in a (mostly) constructive way.

People get defensive about things they like, and if you don't back up your opinions it rubs people the wrong way. Seeing as it seems like you're trying to make someone upset when you do that. At least in this type of setting.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 03 Mar 2015, 14:06
OMG!!!! IT'S MISTER BURNS!!!!!!!!!       ;D
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 03 Mar 2015, 14:09
"Ok, Mr. Burns, what's your first name?"
"I DON'T KNOW!"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Castlerook on 03 Mar 2015, 14:18
(http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m0okwja2Sg1rn9ov6o1_500.jpg)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: rfrank dodelijk on 03 Mar 2015, 15:14
I haven't given my reasons for being disappointed with alice grove because it seemed a bit rude to specifically criticise some of the things a lot of people enjoy about the strip. it did however seem pertinent to illustrate that not all of mr. Jacques existing fans enjoy or are satisfied with alice grove.

my other post, the one in the thread about how many people are reading alice grove is a perfectly reasonable statement for that discussion. the fact that it is basically the same as the sentiments I expressed in this thread is neither here nor there.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Eternal_Newbie on 04 Mar 2015, 04:37
Joking aside, what the hell is that thing? Nanotech robots exhibiting a hive mind? Holographic intimidation meant to keep the Vicissitudes in Alice's forest shack? Rogue Praeses?
All of the above!

But seriously, I have no idea and all of those seem equally possible.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: NilsO on 04 Mar 2015, 06:48
Whatever it is, it's transparent. This suggests to me that it is an energy field or vapour/particle cloud.
An energy field (at least, those we know of) would not block light. A vapor or particle cloud is possible, but if so, it is probably harmless. And why is it shaped as a humanoid? My guess is that it is just a scarecrow, set up to scare explorers away. The preserve the inhabitants live in, must have natural barriers or other means of stopping them from leaving.

Also,  the forest below the scarecrow looks quite impenetrable. This makes me think of Strip #1 (http://40.media.tumblr.com/cd8dd52ac7fbf6e6ed0596cadc5d27bb/tumblr_ncgp1qejht1tl5t55o1_1280.png), which shows the same impenetrable forest on the other side of the dirt road.

Someone has gone to great lengths to isolate the inhabitants from the outside world...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 05 Mar 2015, 19:08
Hey, don't panic, Big Scary Shadow is just trying to give you a pat on the head.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 05 Mar 2015, 19:59
Remember, Alice was awake when they sneaked off



There's your clue.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 05 Mar 2015, 20:10
Remember, Alice was awake when they sneaked off
There's your clue.
On the one hand, this sounds really clever, but on the other, if he pulls that I'm going to be pissed 'cause of how much time was put into the buildup for what would mostly be a joke. Jeph used two panels to just convey 'Big scary monster, so they run.' Especially considering that we only get two updates a week, this is a risky move, and if it amounts to anything except something really grand and awesome, I have a hard time imagining the buildup to be worth it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 05 Mar 2015, 20:27
Actually, I was thinking 'Holographic Projector'

Though I could be wrong and there really IS 'Something out there'
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 05 Mar 2015, 23:29
Gavia, seriously: This is a very bad time to have issues with using your legs like a 'primitive'! That said, you have to wonder how healthy her legs are if she prefers levitation to get around. Maybe she can't run!

Huh... It just occurred to me that Kugai might be right and Alice is teaching the kids some lessons: Ardent, don't sneak off at night! Gavia, don't rely so much on your nanotech!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 06 Mar 2015, 05:25
*loooom*
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: War Sparrow on 06 Mar 2015, 06:57
]I should come to this board more often. It reminds me of things I used to love.

I too believe that this is Alice fucking with them. Break the rules, summon the vaguely transparent enderman. It's important for kids to learn cause and effect relationships.

And since Jeph got this little ditty stuck in my head, I think I'll share it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 06 Mar 2015, 07:57
I'd totally forgotten that song. Thanks for the flashback.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Meph on 06 Mar 2015, 15:45
So far, this story seems to me as if it would take place in a setting similar to the movie "the village" of 2004, spiced up with aliens. The townspeople are kept in isolation, everything unusual or advanced is "none of their business".
Alice is the janitor/engineer of this controlled environment as the only person with knowledge of the outside world (which is not the earth as we know it)...But are the citizens aware of their situation or not? Do they fear the "outside world" or do they reject it voluntarily?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 06 Mar 2015, 17:45
That said, you have to wonder how healthy her legs are if she prefers levitation to get around. Maybe she can't run!

Very dark implication: Gavia's spine is busted and her body doesn't move from the waist down.

(Of course this is a deep 3 I'm throwing, but if I happen to be correct this could go south fast)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: eschaton on 06 Mar 2015, 18:06
Very dark implication: Gavia's spine is busted and her body doesn't move from the waist down.

(Of course this is a deep 3 I'm throwing, but if I happen to be correct this could go south fast)

In a world where nanotech can levitate people, I'm pretty sure that they can fix spinal injuries.

Hell, technically speaking, Ardent growing back his tail was recovery from a spinal injury. 
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 06 Mar 2015, 18:15
Maybe they don't know how to repair the nerve. Or maybe they were like "we can fix this on a very painful process OR you could fly" and Gavia thought "OMG FLIGHT SO COOL".
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 06 Mar 2015, 19:39
I think Gavia's been using that method of self-locomotion over distance for so long it just doesn't register with her she should use anything else.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 06 Mar 2015, 19:57
In other words, she can't walk, let alone run.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 06 Mar 2015, 20:00
I think she can, it's just that floating is her 'Default Distance Covering Method' of locomotion and in the kind of panic situation they're in, she's just doing it without thinking.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 06 Mar 2015, 21:56
Well, we can rule out Praeses routinely having the forms of large humanoid shadows with glowing eyes, otherwise Gavia and Ardent wouldn't have been so scared.

I do think it likely Alice is messing around with them to teach them not to sneak out without her. But if this thing is totally independent of Alice ( then I'm not completely sure it's intentions are bad, as both kids seemed to think. Maybe it was trying to say hello, or was just curious. Or maybe it was trying to protect those silly young idiots from the REAL dangers of being out at night in this bizarre place, which they are about to run into in a panic. But if it's intentions are bad, then Alice is about to do what she does best: rescue helpless idiots.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 06 Mar 2015, 22:01
Golem, maybe?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 07 Mar 2015, 07:14
Golem, maybe?

Maybe an enormous cloud of nanomachines held in formation by magnetic fields generated by more nanomachines in the caster's body? If it's this, then someone is at the centre of that mass; it's either Alice or its our first look at the villain of the piece.

The thing that makes me think it's Alice is Jeph earlier acknowledging that Alice Grove is like the witches of Discworld but with a more sci-fi feel. If she were going to teach someone a lesson, then this strikes me as an appropriate exercise in 'headology'. I also like the thought of Alice being much more experienced and powerful than Gavia to the point that her use of nanotech is indistinguishable from magic and is frequently too subtle to notice. However, when she does let loose...? Well, this fits in with the 'can you put out the sun?' reputation that she apparently has with the locals.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: A Duck on 07 Mar 2015, 08:21
for some reason, I cant see the latest comic...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 07 Mar 2015, 11:31
Anyone else think of this when Ardent said "run"?

Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Tophwells on 08 Mar 2015, 15:49
for some reason, I cant see the latest comic...
Me neither! The rest of the page displays fine, but the image is just a 403 error. Would anyone mind re-hosting it elsewhere so I can see what's going on?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 08 Mar 2015, 15:52
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 08 Mar 2015, 21:10
Anyone else think of this when Ardent said "run"?


Nope. Thought of this:
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 08 Mar 2015, 22:12
Yup. I got a very Whovian vibe as well.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 09 Mar 2015, 04:53
"Nice to meet you, Rose Tyler. Run for your life!"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 09:37
"Run" is just a fairly common word in the Doctor's vernacular. Or, as Eleven said, "Hallo. I'm the Doctor. Basically... Run."
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 09 Mar 2015, 18:36
Never, ever go in the cave. I knew as soon as Ardent mentioned it that going in the cave was a mistake. I was right.

Edit: Those would appear to be a species of Phorusrhacidae (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae), known as "terror birds".
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 09 Mar 2015, 18:41
Ah, I see Jeph belongs to the George Lucas School of Running From Things.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 18:46
I don't know what you are referring to, Gladstone, but I was thinking about running from ISD's so it works just the same.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: eschaton on 09 Mar 2015, 18:48
Never, ever go in the cave. I knew as soon as Ardent mentioned it that going in the cave was a mistake. I was right.

Edit: Those would appear to be a species of Phorusrhacidae (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae), known as "terror birds".

I disagree.  They lack the hooked beak, they look more like Gastornis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gastornis).  Although it was historically considered to be a predator like the terror birds, more recent studies of bone isotopes suggest it ate plants. 

Regardless, the giant birds in the comic do not have hooked beaks, which suggests to me they are not predatory.  Not that I'd still be scared as hell of a bird the size of a horse of course. 
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 18:52
A herbivore with a beak of that size is still a well armed animal. Just because it eats grass, it does not follow that it won't murder the hell out of you.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 09 Mar 2015, 18:54
I don't know what you are referring to, Gladstone, but I was thinking about running from ISD's so it works just the same.

Running from one thing usually causes one to run into another thing, because one monster is never enough.  See Star Wars: Episode I

See also: Star Trek (2009), Avatar, probably dozens of others, etc.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 18:56
Ah.

That;s less cave specific. See Empire Strike Back.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: valkygrrl on 09 Mar 2015, 18:57
Never, ever go in the cave. I knew as soon as Ardent mentioned it that going in the cave was a mistake. I was right.

Edit: Those would appear to be a species of Phorusrhacidae (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae), known as "terror birds".

I disagree.  They lack the hooked beak, they look more like Gastornis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gastornis).  Although it was historically considered to be a predator like the terror birds, more recent studies of bone isotopes suggest it ate plants. 

Regardless, the giant birds in the comic do not have hooked beaks, which suggests to me they are not predatory.  Not that I'd still be scared as hell of a bird the size of a horse of course. 

They are obviously chocobos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocobo)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: SomeCanadianWeirdo on 09 Mar 2015, 19:19
I wonder if next strip the two birds will break into a dialogue like the old Heckle and Jeckle cartoons.

The tone of the last few strips has reminded me of Gamma World, an post apocalypse role playing game that first appeared in the late '70s. 
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 19:23
Feels more Paranoia to me.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: SubaruStephen on 09 Mar 2015, 20:24
They are obviously chocobos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocobo)

Ahh dangit, beaten to the punch.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: valkygrrl on 09 Mar 2015, 20:32
Feels more Paranoia to me.

Friend computer agrees.

They are obviously chocobos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocobo)

Ahh dangit, beaten to the punch.

No punching, I hereby withdraw my attempt at humor so you can do it instead.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ReindeerFlotilla on 09 Mar 2015, 20:38
I like to imagine a world where the punch everyone is trying to reach is in a bowl.

Spiked with Everclear.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: hedgie on 09 Mar 2015, 20:42
A herbivore with a beak of that size is still a well armed animal. Just because it eats grass, it does not follow that it won't murder the hell out of you.

True.  Look at the number of deaths due to hippos in any given year.  I think Ardent and sis are safe for the time being, however, since the birds look rather curious, rather than seeing them as invading their home (at least thus far).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: valkygrrl on 09 Mar 2015, 20:42
I like to imagine a world where the punch everyone is trying to reach is in a bowl.

Spiked with Everclear.

I like you, let's be friends.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 09 Mar 2015, 20:46
I think Ardent and sis are safe for the time being, however, since the birds look rather curious, rather than seeing them as invading their home (at least thus far).

Friday: Alice has to rescue the siblings from their new adoptive parents.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 09 Mar 2015, 20:56
I think Ardent and sis are safe for the time being, however, since the birds look rather curious, rather than seeing them as invading their home (at least thus far).

Friday: Alice has to rescue the siblings from their new adoptive parents.

And she can't understand a word Ardent's saying because he has a mouthful of regurgitated worms.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 09 Mar 2015, 21:38
Ardent:  "AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!"
Gavia:  "AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!"
Bird 1:  "I say old boy!  Do keep it down, we're trying to get a decent nights kip here!"
Bird 2:  "Rawther, and do put that light out thank you!"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: tywren on 09 Mar 2015, 21:47
They are obviously chocobos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocobo)

Ahh dangit, beaten to the punch.

3ed place at the Chocobo Race.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Mar 2015, 21:55
Hiding in caves is strictly for the birds.  :claireface:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: hedgie on 09 Mar 2015, 22:21
And she can't understand a word Ardent's saying because he has a mouthful of regurgitated worms.

I shudder to think of the size of the kind of worms that a chocobo would eat.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ysth on 09 Mar 2015, 22:33
A herbivore with a beak of that size is still a well armed animal. Just because it eats grass, it does not follow that it won't murder the hell out of you.

True.  Look at the number of deaths due to hippos in any given year.  I think Ardent and sis are safe for the time being, however, since the birds look rather curious, rather than seeing them as invading their home (at least thus far).
Yes, but hippos are mean.  Really, really mean.  These weird dogs look friendly, if a little puzzled.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: SubaruStephen on 09 Mar 2015, 23:05
My prediction for next strip: they go jousting. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joust_%28video_game%29)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 10 Mar 2015, 00:10
The don't know the first rule of RPGs with free-roaming monsters: when fleeing from a monster, retreat only into known terrain - otherwise you may attract more monsters.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 10 Mar 2015, 00:40
Never, ever go in the cave. I knew as soon as Ardent mentioned it that going in the cave was a mistake. I was right.

Edit: Those would appear to be a species of Phorusrhacidae (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae), known as "terror birds".

I disagree.  They lack the hooked beak, they look more like Gastornis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gastornis).  Although it was historically considered to be a predator like the terror birds, more recent studies of bone isotopes suggest it ate plants. 

Regardless, the giant birds in the comic do not have hooked beaks, which suggests to me they are not predatory.  Not that I'd still be scared as hell of a bird the size of a horse of course. 

They are obviously chocobos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocobo)

That would make the big-ass shadow of shit in the sky something akin to the Omega Weapon then.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 10 Mar 2015, 00:48
Any remaining doubt that Ardent and Gavia are a pair of city kids in the wilderness for the first time has been laid to rest. Anyone with the slightest knowledge would know that going into a cave in a forest at night is close to a suicide move. Even the nocturnal bugs are enough to literally eat you alive!

Fortunately, those Chocabos seem friendly. Or at least too surprised by Gavia's nano-magic to react. I wonder if they'll start following the kids around?

ALICE: "You found, 'em, you look after 'em!"

You can get Chocabos in a Minecraft mod that I've seen. Big-ass shadow guy looks loke a giant Enderman too... Are they in a Minecraft world?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 10 Mar 2015, 06:25
Nah, the villagers noses would be much larger if they were in Minecraft...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: FunkyTuba on 10 Mar 2015, 10:43
Those would appear to be a species of Phorusrhacidae (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phorusrhacidae), known as "terror birds".

I will call them "D'ohh! D'ohhh! birds"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 10 Mar 2015, 10:53
Nah, the villagers noses would be much larger if they were in Minecraft...

Not to mention that they'd be biologically hermaphroditic (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermaphrodite), like all animals in Minecraft.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 10 Mar 2015, 23:54
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Stoon on 10 Mar 2015, 23:59
Strange.  I couldn't see the last two comics in Firefox or Seamonkey.  I had to switch to Opera to see them.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KevxD on 11 Mar 2015, 02:16
Strange.  I couldn't see the last two comics in Firefox or Seamonkey.  I had to switch to Opera to see them.
Workin' fine for me on Firefox
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 13 Mar 2015, 00:11
I am now convinced those birds are harmless for two reasons. One, they just stood their stupidly and happily while Gavia got ready to burn them to Oblivion. Two, Alice decided it was time to reveal herself after much hiding before the stupid happy birds could get burnt to Oblivion. I wouldn't be surprised if Alice was the guardian of the forest creatures as well as the villagers.

I'm a little sad they didn't make it to town because I wanted more villager interaction, but it looks like the environment as its own surprising incidents.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 13 Mar 2015, 00:17
Gavia, technomage, rolled a 1. Alice showing up to chew you out is a fumble.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 13 Mar 2015, 00:34
"Stupid slippery gun!"

In all honesty, that's a bigger fumble than any of the BL2 quest I took that quote from. An Alice spawn is never positive under any circumstance.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 13 Mar 2015, 00:36
(Singing:) "Uh-oh! We're in trouble! Someone's come to burst our bubble!"

Seriously, I love the work on body language here - Gavia's 'fight or flight' and Alice's dominant air of command. Is she going to talk to them, tell them that this was a test or impose a worse punishment for disobeying her?

The chocabos will love her, of course. She's probably known them since they hatched!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 13 Mar 2015, 00:37
Was anyone else disproportionately relieved that the weird dogs have escaped harm?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: TinPenguin on 13 Mar 2015, 01:36
Note: the 'dogs' also turned their heads at Alice's command.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 13 Mar 2015, 02:18
Note: the 'dogs' also turned their heads at Alice's command.

Calling it now: We're going to see Alice riding chocabo-back at some point.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Tophwells on 13 Mar 2015, 03:06
Strange.  I couldn't see the last two comics in Firefox or Seamonkey.  I had to switch to Opera to see them.
What extensions do you have installed? Turning off the Tumblr rules on HTTPS Everywhere fixed this for me.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 13 Mar 2015, 04:27
STOP!

In the name of love...





There, now it's stuck in your head too.  :evil:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 13 Mar 2015, 05:27
I think it's interesting that Alice showed up at the exact moment things were about to turn violent. More fuel for the idea that she has been closely following them unseen, watching or perhaps causing all the things that spooked the kids. And only stepping in when someone was about to get hurt. Seems more and more that this was 'Teach the house guests why you listen to Alice' night.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 13 Mar 2015, 05:31
STOP!
HAMMERTIME
STOP!
Collaborate and listen!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: MooskiNet on 13 Mar 2015, 05:32
I think it's interesting that Alice showed up at the exact moment things were about to turn violent. More fuel for the idea that she has been closely following them unseen, watching or perhaps causing all the things that spooked the kids. And only stepping in when someone was about to get hurt. Seems more and more that this was 'Teach the house guests why you listen to Alice' night.

...unless Alice was the thing they were running from.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Tophwells on 13 Mar 2015, 06:10
Alice shows up at the precise moment before Gavia risks actually injuring another creature? That's too much of a coincidence. She's clearly been following them and watching the entire time.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 13 Mar 2015, 06:34
Well yeah, was that ever not assumed?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 13 Mar 2015, 07:29
STOP!
HAMMERTIME
STOP!
Collaborate and listen!

STOP for a minute...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Welu on 13 Mar 2015, 08:02
STOP!

Wait a minute!
Fill my cup put some liquor in it!

(http://mtv.mtvnimages.com/uri/mgid:file:http:shared:mtv.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/brunomars5-1416243591.gif)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 13 Mar 2015, 08:08
Ha! I forgot about that one!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 13 Mar 2015, 13:40
Is it just me that thinks Alice looks a bit odd in the last panel? I think it's her arms.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 13 Mar 2015, 13:48
The world is loaded,
It's lit to pop and nobody is gonna stop.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 13 Mar 2015, 13:55
Well, there goes the Fried Terror Bird Franchise.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Schwungrad on 13 Mar 2015, 14:00
Alice was certainly aware of Ardent leaving the house (http://www.alicegrove.com/post/111535511514/if-shes-up-high-she-gets-better-praeses-reception).

Note: the 'dogs' also turned their heads at Alice's command.
Of course this could simply be because they were startled by the unexpected noise.

Is it just me that thinks Alice looks a bit odd in the last panel? I think it's her arms.
I think it's the fact that she manages to have her hair dramatically blown to the side in what should theoretically be a wind-sheltered cave.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: MrNumbers on 14 Mar 2015, 00:49
The birds were obviously jealous.

The human could fly and they couldn't.

No justice in this world I tells ya.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Energia on 14 Mar 2015, 20:21
I've just joined up and read through a lot of past MCDT posts, and I haven't seen any speculation in the following direction.  Now that Iain M Banks has passed away, I'm looking for a replacement for The Culture to follow.  I think right-wing techno tales (which I enjoy) form a lot of current science fiction output, but I welcome exploration of dilemmas for those who have vastly greater capabilities than people who could be in their charge in a post-scarcity society.  I'm seeing hints that Jeph might be working in this direction, and I applaud him if he is.  The twist of the AIs in QC is the closest thing I've seen to the Culture ship AIs, and he is the only other writer I've seen who is optimistic about human AI relations.  The problem is that I reckon IRL humans will be assholes to the AIs and shoot ourselves in the feet rather than presenting anything valuable to future neighbours.  I'm savouring the slow roll out of his comic - but I'm glad I get a QC fix every weekday.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ysth on 14 Mar 2015, 21:44
Well, there goes the Fried Terror Bird Franchise.
http://f8d.org/?c=10 (http://f8d.org/?c=10)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: zeimusu on 16 Mar 2015, 14:09
I just thought of this: The weird dogs/Gastornis/Chocobos look to me more like weird horses, or more exactly Horseclaws, in particular Kui and Kai off of Nausicaa.

So after the Momonoke's Nightwalker I see more Ghibli inspired art.

Didn't Jeph spend a day at a Ghibli art gallery in Paris?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KevxD on 18 Mar 2015, 04:43
No new comic this week?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 18 Mar 2015, 04:47
Jeph has been talking about doing  them Thursday and Friday this week. However, given the incident on his way back from Canada, I wouldn't blame him if he decided to only do a strip Friday this week.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KevxD on 18 Mar 2015, 06:02
Ah, I'm not on twitter so hadn't realised what had happened. Fair enough, he's excused!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 18 Mar 2015, 06:15
Jeph has been talking about doing  them Thursday and Friday this week. However, given the incident on his way back from Canada, I wouldn't blame him if he decided to only do a strip Friday this week.

He originally said Wed-Fri and then had the driving incident, so he decided Thu-Fri. Of course, he might only do Friday this week, but that'd have to do with a different problem.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Stoon on 18 Mar 2015, 11:12
Strange.  I couldn't see the last two comics in Firefox or Seamonkey.  I had to switch to Opera to see them.
Workin' fine for me on Firefox
Ah, that explains it.  Note at bottom of web site:
"Also, if you are having trouble viewing the comics, it is most likely due to a bug in the “https everywhere” plugin for Firefox. I am working on a solution."
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 18 Mar 2015, 12:21
New Comic really early!

So, no great spoiler, the birds are Struthio Ridiculensis, the Ridiculous Ostrich. According to Alice they are vegetarian and mostly harmless. As Gavia has found out 'mostly' doesn't prevent 'ick'.

Alice clearly knows her local fauna! Also, given the way the male lets her manhandle him, she is obviously known to them.

It's all part of teaching the Vicissitude kids that this is a living ecosystem with dangers and complexities that they are ill-equipped to handle. If they want to do stuff, they either have to commit themselves to learn what is or is not safe or just wait until Alice feels like helping them do it. Knowing Ardent, he'll try the latter at least once more before giving in.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: pwhodges on 18 Mar 2015, 12:36
"Mostly" harmless.

Like Earth, then  :wink:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 18 Mar 2015, 13:13
awwww. Gavia made a friend. :)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 18 Mar 2015, 14:26
No Gavia, you cannot keep her.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 18 Mar 2015, 14:38
I think it wants to keep Gavia.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 18 Mar 2015, 14:42
No Gavia, you cannot keep her.

I think that Gavia is more worried about keeping the bird-germs.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 18 Mar 2015, 14:53
With her Nanotech? 

Admittedly, she's not Borg, but she does have that kind of protection surely.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 18 Mar 2015, 15:50
She might not, and stop calling her Shirley.  :claireface:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Energia on 18 Mar 2015, 17:32
Just one more panel please, Jeph ... Ridiculous Ostrich unexpectedly snipping off Gavia's head.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 18 Mar 2015, 20:47
She might not, and stop calling her Shirley.  :claireface:

I was just flying on Otto Pilot.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 18 Mar 2015, 21:36
I appreciate the attempt at science, but it doesn't seem to add up to me. Creatures don't grow that big for no reason (defense, needing to be large to feed from high areas, etc), for one, but more importantly it's (to my knowledge) nigh impossible for a creature of that size to survive on nuts and berries.
Why are they so huge, is the question. They have no natural predators, they don't seem to need their size to hunt or gather food... it just doesn't add up. Is there an actual anthropologist here who can plausibly explain this, or is it as nonsense as it looks?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Energia on 18 Mar 2015, 22:15
I appreciate the attempt at science, but it doesn't seem to add up to me. Creatures don't grow that big for no reason (defense, needing to be large to feed from high areas, etc), for one, but more importantly it's (to my knowledge) nigh impossible for a creature of that size to survive on nuts and berries.
Why are they so huge, is the question. They have no natural predators, they don't seem to need their size to hunt or gather food... it just doesn't add up. Is there an actual anthropologist here who can plausibly explain this, or is it as nonsense as it looks?

They killed all the natural predators, and you should see the big hairy nuts they eat!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KOK on 18 Mar 2015, 23:07
That's Struthio ridiculencis. Species names should not be capitalized.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: pwhodges on 18 Mar 2015, 23:58
That's Struthio ridiculencis. Species names should not be capitalized.

I work in a science building of the University of Oxford; they got that wrong in the murals in the stairwell, and I've been grinding my teeth as I pass them for seven years now.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 00:28
Why are they so huge, is the question. They have no natural predators, they don't seem to need their size to hunt or gather food... it just doesn't add up.

Size allows them to reach higher branches and gives them the height to see potential threats at a greater distance Muscular necks give them the strength to tear roots out of the ground. As herbivores, they probably are roamers; they'd need strong legs to travel miles to find food. They probably have more endurance than sudden bursts of speed and strength.

Form follows function though. I'm pretty sure that Jeph designed them to be ridden.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 19 Mar 2015, 01:57
Also, have you seen some of the flora? There are probably nuts and berries as nutritious as pure protein somewhere.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KevxD on 19 Mar 2015, 02:32
As adults they have no natural predators, likely still have to protect their chicks from predators.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 19 Mar 2015, 03:53
I appreciate the attempt at science, but it doesn't seem to add up to me. Creatures don't grow that big for no reason (defense, needing to be large to feed from high areas, etc), for one, but more importantly it's (to my knowledge) nigh impossible for a creature of that size to survive on nuts and berries.
Why are they so huge, is the question. They have no natural predators, they don't seem to need their size to hunt or gather food... it just doesn't add up. Is there an actual anthropologist here who can plausibly explain this, or is it as nonsense as it looks?

I'm not ruling out the possibility that those birds didn't occurred through the science of natural selection and evolution, but the science of genetic engineering because some idiot scientist thought: "Hey, wouldn't it be funny to have some big friendly herbivorous birds?" Some of my theories for Alice's world include it having a history of idiot scientists which so traumatised the people of history they now have Alices to keep it and people in perfectly balanced harmony, or that Alice is cleaning up the mess made by said idiot scientists, or Alice works for those idiot scientists who don't want their world to get out of harmony.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KevxD on 19 Mar 2015, 04:25
I'm not ruling out the possibility that those birds didn't occurred through the science of natural selection and evolution, but the science of genetic engineering because some idiot scientist thought: "Hey, wouldn't it be funny to have some big friendly herbivorous birds?" Some of my theories for Alice's world include it having a history of idiot scientists which so traumatised the people of history they now have Alices to keep it and people in perfectly balanced harmony, or that Alice is cleaning up the mess made by said idiot scientists, or Alice works for those idiot scientists who don't want their world to get out of harmony.

You really don't like scientists, do you?  :mrgreen:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 19 Mar 2015, 06:23
Not fictional ones. I've studied Literature, I've read many books, I've watched many movies, I've watched much TV and I've played a lot of games. Scientists are the cause of a hell of a lot of problems for fictional characters, either because they are evil, mad, or the sort who would say: "Gee I wonder what would happen if I did this?" or "I'm sure nothing wrong will happen if I do this." Fictional Scientists like Grand Viziers. If characters just killed them as soon as they met them, they'd probably live very peaceful, untroubled lives.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: cesium133 on 19 Mar 2015, 06:35
I am so not inviting you to any of my genetic engineering parties.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 19 Mar 2015, 06:38
I am so not inviting you to any of my genetic engineering parties.

Which is really unfortunate because next time we're going for laser eyes!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: cesium133 on 19 Mar 2015, 06:42
Nah, that's the unnecessary surgery party. I still haven't quite figured out where to stuff the lasers' power supply, though.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 07:09
I still haven't quite figured out where to stuff the lasers' power supply, though.

Meh; there's lots of room in the skull if you remove all the gooey bits most people don't use! :evil:
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 19 Mar 2015, 07:13
I certainly don't use it.

I'd remove the logic part of my brain for laser eyes. Though, I do think that's a prerequesite towards getting laser eyes in the first place.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 19 Mar 2015, 07:16
Scientists are the cause of a hell of a lot of problems for fictional characters, either because they are evil, mad, or the sort who would say: "Gee I wonder what would happen if I did this?" or "I'm sure nothing wrong will happen if I do this." Fictional Scientists like Grand Viziers. If characters just killed them as soon as they met them, they'd probably live very peaceful, untroubled lives.
May I put this into the signature on a roleplaying forum I frequent, and if so, how would you like to be attributed?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 12:41
Size allows them to reach higher branches and gives them the height to see potential threats at a greater distance.
They evolved from birds... Birds which, presumably, could get to higher areas easily. And again, they have no natural predators once they're mature, why do they need to see danger at such a long distance?

Quote
Muscular necks give them the strength to tear roots out of the ground.
That's what their claws are for.

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As herbivores, they probably are roamers; they'd need strong legs to travel miles to find food. They probably have more endurance than sudden bursts of speed and strength.
In a dense forest? They don't live in barren, wide-open areas where food-bearing plants would be few and far between. Plus, they live in a cave, so they clearly live in a settled area. I don't see them roaming. (Especially when they have chicks.)

As adults they have no natural predators, likely still have to protect their chicks from predators.

There are two problems with that idea:
One, it implies that there is a predator which specifically hunts chick Struthio ridiculencis, but doesn't hunt the fully grown ones because they're too dangerous... Even though the fully grown ones would be defending the chicks. If the predator is sneaking into the nest to kill the chicks while the adults are out gathering food, then the Struthio wouldn't need to be large enough to defend their nests, because they would never get a chance to fight the predator.

Two, the comic says that they have NO natural predators. But if they have no natural predators, then they wouldn't need to grow to be so huge, because they never have to fight of predators... Which would make them smaller over time, turning them into better targets for hunters. Natural selection usually finds a happy medium, where the prey is just large enough to fend off or run away from predators without being so small or frail that they're totally helpless and without being so large that it's a waste of energy.

The only exceptions that I am aware of in real life (That is, large animals without predators,) are perhaps the Elephant, Rhino, and Hippo... All three of which do occasionally deal with predators (Usually being attacked in groups,) tend to respond aggressively in the wild, and most importantly are MAMMALS, which create huge physiology differences. The largest bird is the Ostrich, which stands around 7 feet tall and weighs, at most, around 300 Lbs. (346 Lbs. is the highest recorded weight, according to Wikipedia, but 230 Lbs. is the average.)

I'm not ruling out the possibility that those birds didn't occurred through the science of natural selection and evolution, but the science of genetic engineering because some idiot scientist... (Cont.)

I'd buy that for a dollar. It makes a little sense, especially with the rest of the universe we've seen.


I wouldn't mind so much as the silly alien physiology, if Jeph hadn't tried to explain why things were the way they were. Just say 'They're passive creatures,' okay, cool. If you try and explain it thoroughly though, then the explanation has to make sense. (To me, at least.)

(I should mention that I'm a hopeful-but-not-yet-published fantasy and sci-fi writer, and I spend a lot of time thinking about explanations for fantastical concepts and ideas like these, making sure that concepts make sense and aren't just included for the Rule of Cool. Speaker For the Dead is one of my favorite books. This is something I focus on because it's important to me personally, not something I expect everyone to care about.)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 12:50
Size allows them to reach higher branches and gives them the height to see potential threats at a greater distance.
They evolved from birds... Birds which, presumably, could get to higher areas easily. And again, they have no natural predators once they're mature, why do they need to see danger at such a long distance?

Firstly, because they are ground-dwelling and can't fly at all; one development would demand the other. Secondly, because it would still be nice to see a stampede or an on-rushing flash-flood before it arrives.

Muscular necks give them the strength to tear roots out of the ground.
That's what their claws are for.

Bzzt. Wrong. There is a difference between digging up and tearing loose. Birds can't chew and crushing beaks make it unlikely they could cut it up using their beaks like scissors, so they'd have to rip the food into small bits before swallowing.

As herbivores, they probably are roamers; they'd need strong legs to travel miles to find food. They probably have more endurance than sudden bursts of speed and strength.
In a dense forest? They don't live in barren, wide-open areas where food-bearing plants would be few and far between. Plus, they live in a cave, so they clearly live in a settled area. I don't see them roaming. (Especially when they have chicks.)

Yes, even in a forest. Fruits, nuts and other plant materials are relatively energy-poor. They'll use up all the food in any given area very, very quickly so they have to keep moving.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 19 Mar 2015, 12:55
My wild-ass guess for the week: that "shadow" was actually Alice. She apparently has some nanotech tricks up her own overall-covered sleeves.

And I do think we're in a world that was FUBAR'ed by scientists - like, say, a guy who owns his own space station.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 13:14
Firstly, because they are ground-dwelling and can't fly at all; one development would demand the other.
So did they become huge birds and then stop flying, or did they stop flying and then start to grow huge? Either way, the evolutionary line is confusing.

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Secondly, because it would still be nice to see a stampede or an on-rushing flash-flood before it arrives.
A stampede in the forest that we've seen? The thick, dense forest that you can't see very far through except on the path to town? Wouldn't good hearing be more useful in an environment where your visibility is naturally limited?

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Bzzt. Wrong. There is a difference between digging up and tearing loose. Birds can't chew and crushing beaks make it unlikely they could cut it up using their beaks like scissors, so they'd have to rip the food into small bits before swallowing.
Okay, then why do they have crushing beaks? It actively makes it difficult for them to eat some of their food. The anthropology on this bird would have to be split down the middle: They are half developed to eat roots and tubers, but half developed to eat seeds and nuts. Those are opposite directions of evolution. It'd be like a predator developing a lot of strength and bite power to hunt down big, slow prey, but also developing extreme speed to hunt down small, quick prey at the same time. It doesn't work, because those two things don't go together.

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Yes, even in a forest. Fruits, nuts and other plant materials are relatively energy-poor. They'll use up all the food in any given area very, very quickly so they have to keep moving.
Again, this creates a contradiction: If they live on energy-poor foods, then how can they be so huge? The extra energy it would take up to travel across miles to get food would be hugely problematic once you consider how much they must weight and how much energy they'd have to put into that travel. It's like a fully loaded Boeing 747 in LA flying to New York to get fuel, then flying home to LA, then having to go back to New York to get fuel because you burned it all flying back to LA. If it is evolved to cover a lot of ground to gather food, then the rest of its body should be stripped down to keep from burning too much excess energy in that travel.


The different evolutionary paths on this creature just don't line up, because they all contradict each other in one way or another.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 19 Mar 2015, 13:27
They're not big boned! They're just fluffy!

fluffy fluffy fluffy
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 19 Mar 2015, 13:30
The different evolutionary paths on this creature just don't line up, because they all contradict each other in one way or another.

Which is why the "genetically modified" argument holds up. It's the simplest explanation.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 13:31
Firstly, because they are ground-dwelling and can't fly at all; one development would demand the other.

So did they become huge birds and then stop flying, or did they stop flying and then start to grow huge? Either way, the evolutionary line is confusing.

The size and long necks were likely a food-driven adaptation - to reach high-hanging nuts, shoots and fruits. The loss of flight was consequential BUT the long neck and large size counter-balanced it, giving them a survival advantage.

Secondly, because it would still be nice to see a stampede or an on-rushing flash-flood before it arrives.
A stampede in the forest that we've seen? The thick, dense forest that you can't see very far through except on the path to town? Wouldn't good hearing be more useful in an environment where your visibility is naturally limited?

This is assuming that their habitat is exclusively jungle. Remember that there are also open plains and hilly grasslands near the town. In any case height (and thus the ability to see over undergrowth at nearby and more distant hazards remains an advantage, even in the forest.

Bzzt. Wrong. There is a difference between digging up and tearing loose. Birds can't chew and crushing beaks make it unlikely they could cut it up using their beaks like scissors, so they'd have to rip the food into small bits before swallowing.
Okay, then why do they have crushing beaks? It actively makes it difficult for them to eat some of their food. The anthropology on this bird would have to be split down the middle: They are half developed to eat roots and tubers, but half developed to eat seeds and nuts. Those are opposite directions of evolution. It'd be like a predator developing a lot of strength and bite power to hunt down big, slow prey, but also developing extreme speed to hunt down small, quick prey at the same time. It doesn't work, because those two things don't go together.

Wrong again. This adaptation increases the birds' survival chances as they are no longer specialised to a certain type of food and thus can handle environmental changes. In the real world, specialists (like the panda) always do poorly compared to generalists (like the raccoon).

Yes, even in a forest. Fruits, nuts and other plant materials are relatively energy-poor. They'll use up all the food in any given area very, very quickly so they have to keep moving.
Again, this creates a contradiction: If they live on energy-poor foods, then how can they be so huge?

How can an Elephant be so huge? How can a Rhino be so huge? How can an Ultrasaurus be the single largest life-form ever to walk the Earth all despite being pure herbivores?

If these guys are anything like Therapods and modern birds (including pure herbivores), then their likely development is a quick burst to mid-upper size whils still relatively non-mobile and then a very slow development to full adult size.

The different evolutionary paths on this creature just don't line up, because they all contradict each other in one way or another.

Real life biological adaptations don't 'line up' either. Real world biology is always messier and less prone to human linear logic than theoreticians would like.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 14:09
Quote
The size and long necks were likely a food-driven adaptation - to reach high-hanging nuts, shoots and fruits. The loss of flight was consequential BUT the long neck and large size counter-balanced it, giving them a survival advantage.
So, a bird which could fly, grew larger in order to reach food that it couldn't reach? Even though it could fly, it needed long legs to reach nuts that were in trees. Right. And then it lost the ability to fly, because it had to grow larger to reach things which were in the air... Right.

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This is assuming that their habitat is exclusively jungle. Remember that there are also open plains and hilly grasslands near the town. In any case height (and thus the ability to see over undergrowth at nearby and more distant hazards remains an advantage, even in the forest.
Height is an advantage, but size isn't. The larger you are, the more you need to eat. Even if they travel out into the plains or grasslands, they live in the forest/a cave, both places where the height advantage would be minimal next to the huge increase in food consumption that they would need.

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Wrong again. This adaptation increases the birds' survival chances as they are no longer specialised to a certain type of food and thus can handle environmental changes. In the real world, specialists (like the panda) always do poorly compared to generalists (like the raccoon).
Ignoring your 'Always' to describe an extremely large set of examples, (Pretty much nothing with thousands of variables is 'Always' one way or another,) the problem isn't that they developed a way to eat multiple food sources, but that the developments both hinder each other. One evolution actively detracts from the other, based off of the order that it would have had to adapt in.

How can an Elephant be so huge? How can a Rhino be so huge? How can an Ultrasaurus be the single largest life-form ever to walk the Earth all despite being pure herbivores?

I already brought up Elephants and Rhinos briefly, but I'll talk more about them 'cause why not? First off, they are huge because they actually need to fight off predators. Predators which they actually have, unlike this bird. They grow large enough to fight off predators, they don't grow so large that they are never, ever hunted. They also don't settle down in a single area which they would have to return to every night after roaming for food. Not to mention, their natural environments are one where their size actually does give them a large advantage at seeing threats. Another important note: They have babies infrequently, and not in large quantities. Alice clearly says 'Nesting season' and 'Chicks'. This means that 1, they nest and mate annually and 2, they have more than one chick at a time. Unless most or all of their chicks die every year and they only get a survivor occasionally, (which would be extremely strange,) their size would lead to them having a population issue very quickly. They have no natural predators, they take a lot of food to survive, and they have multiple children every year. It doesn't make sense.

As for the Ultrasaurus, I've read speculation that extremely prehistoric times may have had a higher oxygen content in the air, allowing creatures to grow larger than would be possible nowadays. I don't know a lot about dinosaurs, though, so definitely don't quote me on this, and I can't say a lot else on the subject.


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Real life biological adaptations don't 'line up' either. Real world biology is always messier and less prone to human linear logic than theoreticians would like.
And here's where I stop talking about biology and start talking about writing.
There's a rule of thumb for authors when writing a story: Your job is harder than God's. In real life, a long string of coincidences can lead to good or bad things happening. A non sequitor can come in out of the blue, saving the day, and nobody will say it couldn't happen because it actually just happened. The craziest or most insane coincidences can happen, and that's okay. In a story, though, everything has to make sense in a way that the reader can understand, and nothing should come out of the blue. (With exceptions. If you're writing absurdest works or a comedy, it's sometimes okay, but never when it's part of an actual plot or drama. The other exception is when starting your story: Conflict can be started by a character winning the lottery, but it should never be resolved by their winning the lottery.) Plot points can't come out of nowhere, important subplots can't be dropped or forgotten, and what the author says has to make sense. If you want to create a fictional creature, great. Go ahead. If you want to then try and explain the anthropology of the fictional creature, though, it has to make sense. If an author brings up a topic and takes that topic seriously, then they have to be prepared for the audience to take the topic seriously.

An author should never rely on handwaving or 'It's okay because it doesn't make sense in real life.' (Jeph hasn't done this, I'm not criticizing him for it, I'm just saying this as a rule of writing.) Fans shouldn't have to use this defense, either. It's not a large issue here, because I don't think the plot is going to heavily rely on the bird's anthropology or the audience's knowledge and understanding of it, but that doesn't mean it should be defended because we can't explain everything in real life.

Again, if Jeph had just written: They're harmless, don't worry about it, then the setup would be fine because it'd be clear that their evolutionary history doesn't matter. Because he brought it up, though, it's fair game to talk about.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 14:59
Quote
The size and long necks were likely a food-driven adaptation - to reach high-hanging nuts, shoots and fruits. The loss of flight was consequential BUT the long neck and large size counter-balanced it, giving them a survival advantage.
So, a bird which could fly, grew larger in order to reach food that it couldn't reach? Even though it could fly, it needed long legs to reach nuts that were in trees. Right. And then it lost the ability to fly, because it had to grow larger to reach things which were in the air... Right.

Right. Flying, especially if it involves taking off from ground level is higher-energy. No animal would do that if it couldn't reach. Once again, adaptation insists on a lower-energy solution.

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Quote
This is assuming that their habitat is exclusively jungle. Remember that there are also open plains and hilly grasslands near the town. In any case height (and thus the ability to see over undergrowth at nearby and more distant hazards remains an advantage, even in the forest.
Height is an advantage, but size isn't. The larger you are, the more you need to eat. Even if they travel out into the plains or grasslands, they live in the forest/a cave, both places where the height advantage would be minimal next to the huge increase in food consumption that they would need.

Nonetheless, this is what RL animals do. Larger size provides advantages of its own, including reserves of fats that enable the creature to survive lean and dry periods for longer.

Quote
Quote
Wrong again. This adaptation increases the birds' survival chances as they are no longer specialised to a certain type of food and thus can handle environmental changes. In the real world, specialists (like the panda) always do poorly compared to generalists (like the raccoon).
Ignoring your 'Always' to describe an extremely large set of examples, (Pretty much nothing with thousands of variables is 'Always' one way or another,) the problem isn't that they developed a way to eat multiple food sources, but that the developments both hinder each other. One evolution actively detracts from the other, based off of the order that it would have had to adapt in.

How can an Elephant be so huge? How can a Rhino be so huge? How can an Ultrasaurus be the single largest life-form ever to walk the Earth all despite being pure herbivores?

I already brought up Elephants and Rhinos briefly, but I'll talk more about them 'cause why not? First off, they are huge because they actually need to fight off predators. Predators which they actually have, unlike this bird. They grow large enough to fight off predators, they don't grow so large that they are never, ever hunted.

Wrong. Adults are never hunted. Young and juveniles are. Just like the birds.

There is such a thing as being a nit-picker. Can't you just accept that this is what these creatures are and this is Jeph's justification for their characteristics? I don't consider it implausible. Maybe I'm guilty of not knowing enough about RL biology and zoology. However, there is a point where over-thinking it just ruins enjoyment, as it clearly is for you.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 15:32
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Right. Flying, especially if it involves taking off from ground level is higher-energy. No animal would do that if it couldn't reach. Once again, adaptation insists on a lower-energy solution.
But increasing in size wouldn't assist with gathering food unless it was an extreme increase. And now you're arguing that a massive increase in size over the average bird would use lower energy than being small and requiring extremely little food to eat.

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Nonetheless, this is what RL animals do. Larger size provides advantages of its own, including reserves of fats that enable the creature to survive lean and dry periods for longer.
Please, name a real-life bird that is eight feet tall and has bulky muscles and thick limbs. Larger sizes do provide advantages, but you're acting like being large has no downsides. Also, reserves of fat don't seem particularly important in the forest environment that we've seen, where dry periods wouldn't be as bad as they might be in more barren environments.

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Wrong. Adults are never hunted. Young and juveniles are. Just like the birds.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2ZW0EvMzSM - Go to about the 5:45 mark to see a pride of lions take down a fully grown Elephant. I realize that the lions in the video are especially hungry and this isn't an entirely common occurrence, but there's a reason that Elephants travel in large herds, not all alone: They'll get hunted and killed otherwise, because they do have predators. (Also, these birds don't look large enough to fight off most real-life predators of large animals anyways. I'm assuming that there's something equivalent of a bear in the forest, or a pack of wolf-like beings, and I see no reason why they couldn't hunt these birds.)

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There is such a thing as being a nit-picker. Can't you just accept that this is what these creatures are and this is Jeph's justification for their characteristics? I don't consider it implausible. Maybe I'm guilty of not knowing enough about RL biology and zoology. However, there is a point where over-thinking it just ruins enjoyment, as it clearly is for you.
I'm not the one who brought up the issue of anthropology, Jeph is. I can't accept his explanations for the characteristics when the characteristics don't hold up or make sense. As I said a few posts ago, this is something I think about a lot because it's something I have to focus on when I'm writing, so this is an issue that stood out to me pretty obviously. I didn't have to overthink it at all, I just read the comic and was immediately struck with the problem. Something else I've said a few times: If Jeph had just hand-waved it I wouldn't care, it's only because he explained it poorly that I have the issue.

Consider this example: In the original trilogy of Star Wars, the Force was never explained. Nobody even tried to touch on how it worked, but that was fine. Nobody cared, it was just a thing that existed, and it was cool. In Episode I: The Phantom Menace, however, they try and explain that the Force is a microscopic life form called Midichlorians, and everyone hated it because it was an explanation that nobody wanted, didn't add anything to the lore or universe, and didn't make sense. They could have just as easily had Obi-Wan or Qui-Gon say that 'I sense a great power in him' or something and it would have worked fine. It's okay to leave things up to the reader's imagination when it's not something that they need to understand. When the fix to an issue is as simple as 'Don't bring it up,' it leaves me wondering why the problem was included at all, even if it's pretty minor.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 19 Mar 2015, 15:42
@Mikmaxs
Do you even know what 'anthropology' is? It's the study of human social behaviour.

Anyway:
Size: It would have happened this way - neck length and probably leg length to assist in gathering food, making flight difficult or impossible. Size bulks out as the species becomes more and more reliant on ground locomotion. As said before, the neck muscles (and, by structural necessity, the body muscles) bulk out to increase the tearing power of the bird's beak.

Your insistence that I provide an example of a 'real world bird' like this is needlessly restrictive. Still, okay; how about the iguanadon? They have broadly the same body plan and likely, dietary requirements. They are even larger!

Predation: You admit that this is an extreme example. I'm sure that quite a few of these giant birds have been taken down by desperate group hunters. You're taking Alice's statement as an absolute when she's merely giving a general rule - In normal circumstances, local predators can't handle them. Because of this, they are not a particularly aggressive species unless their young is threatened. This is true of elephants too.

Here's the thing - I thought that Jeph's explanation was neat and plausible. We're at a YMMV situation. Just because you don't like it doesn't meant that the explanation is invalid.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 16:00
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Do you even know what 'anthropology' is? It's the study of human social behaviour.
Well now I feel a little silly. Zoology. Zoology is what I meant. :P

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Your insistence that I provide an example of a 'real world bird' like this is needlessly restrictive. Still, okay; how about the iguanadon? They have broadly the same body plan and likely, dietary requirements. They are even larger!
The Iguanodon doesn't have the same body plan at all, though. It has four legs not two, and while it could stand on its hind legs it was mainly quadrupedal. It also has teeth, a long tail, and it's head/neck are of a different shape. Not to mention, lived in a totally different environment, and more importantly: It wasn't a bird! Dinosaurs may have evolved into birds over millions of years, but that doesn't make them the same thing in the slightest. You might as well compare these birds to the elephant again.


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Here's the thing - I thought that Jeph's explanation was neat and plausible. We're at a YMMV situation. Just because you don't like it doesn't meant that the explanation is invalid.
Here's the thing - I thought that Jeph's explanation was unnecessary and implausible. I don't like it because the explanation doesn't work under scrutiny, unless you make a lot of assumptions of very unlikely things happening in succession. It makes it obvious that the birds were designed first and explained second. It doesn't automatically make sense just because people don't care one way or the other. I'm not saying the comic in general is bad because of this, I'm not saying that Jeph is a bad writer, I'm saying that this one comic has an issue and I'm pointing it out because it's something that matters to me.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: pwhodges on 19 Mar 2015, 16:25
Because he brought it up, though, it's fair game to talk about.

But not necessarily interesting; you may be losing your audience.

Anyway, there's an easy way out - Alice gave the idiot children a broad-brush version which she knows as well as you is not the full story.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Energia on 19 Mar 2015, 17:22
For the whole zoology/anthropology genetic engineering thing I just want to point out the kangaroo and the cassowary from my neck of the woods.  The Ridiculous Ostriches are also not a million miles evolved from the bush/scrub turkeys in my garden.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 19 Mar 2015, 18:59
"If you wonder how he eats and breathes
And other science facts (tra-la-la)
You should tell yourselves 'It's just a show
I should probably relax...'"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 19 Mar 2015, 20:34
Comic.

...How con-viiieeeeeen-ient.

All it does is assemble and look up at the moon?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Energia on 19 Mar 2015, 20:53
So all we have left for tension is the Praesususes?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 19 Mar 2015, 21:03
"If you wonder how he eats and breathes
And other science facts (tra-la-la)
You should tell yourselves 'It's just a show
I should probably relax...'"

This wasn't preceded by a verse where they explain how he eats and breathes, though. :P

Also, if it doesn't turn out that Alice is lying, being misleading, or is simply wrong here, I'll buy a hat and eat it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 19 Mar 2015, 22:09
He's a fallen Praesususes



Or is actually Station in the future.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 19 Mar 2015, 22:38
Scientists are the cause of a hell of a lot of problems for fictional characters, either because they are evil, mad, or the sort who would say: "Gee I wonder what would happen if I did this?" or "I'm sure nothing wrong will happen if I do this." Fictional Scientists like Grand Viziers. If characters just killed them as soon as they met them, they'd probably live very peaceful, untroubled lives.
May I put this into the signature on a roleplaying forum I frequent, and if so, how would you like to be attributed?

I don't mind being attributed as Wildroses, but you may want to credit Terry Pratchett as well. The first sentence is completely original to me, but the part about Grand Viziers was inspired by a conversation the character Cohen the Barbarian had with his fellow heroes in which they said they always killed Grand Viziers as soon as they met them as they are all evil so it saves time.

So all this Nightwalker does is stare at the moon? Then why did it try to grab the kids? Was it interested in Gavia's nanotech? I wonder what would have happened if it had touched Gavia? Maybe all her nanotech would have become part of the Nightwalker and Gavia would have been bumped down to Ardent's level.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 19 Mar 2015, 23:01
So all we have left for tension is the Praesususes?

Was it interested in Gavia's nanotech? I wonder what would have happened if it had touched Gavia? Maybe all her nanotech would have become part of the Nightwalker and Gavia would have been bumped down to Ardent's level.

Hush now, we're worldbuilding
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: KOK on 19 Mar 2015, 23:03
That's Struthio ridiculencis. Species names should not be capitalized.

I work in a science building of the University of Oxford; they got that wrong in the murals in the stairwell, and I've been grinding my teeth as I pass them for seven years now.

If Oxford University can't get it right, I think Jeph may be excused.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 20 Mar 2015, 00:38
Well, that's interesting. I've got a feeling that the truth about the Night Walker will be significant somehow. It's going to be a major story twist, in the end.

What is it?
Why did it reach for the kids? Maybe it sensed that they might be a way off of that rock. Or maybe it wanted to consume their nano machines? I don't think that it is malign, just possibly dangerous by the simple fact of its nature.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 20 Mar 2015, 03:25
I knew it! Shadow Guy just wants to go home. And he was trying to give them a nice pat on the head, because he recognizes someone else who wants to go home.  :laugh:

There remains one animal in the forest that hasn't been explained: the no-eye deer. That's going to turn out to have been the truly dangerous one.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 20 Mar 2015, 07:37
Sorry, I just can't figure out the no-eye deer. I just haven't got a clue... It's a total mystery to me.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 20 Mar 2015, 14:59
And the game commences
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Gladstone on 20 Mar 2015, 15:36
GAVIA: "And what the hell is up with those eyeless deer?!"
ALICE: "We--we don't like to talk about them."

And they never did again.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: ysth on 20 Mar 2015, 15:45
I am so not inviting you to any of my genetic engineering parties.

Which is really unfortunate because next time we're going for laser eyes!
http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/?p=602 (http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/?p=602)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Chelicerate on 21 Mar 2015, 09:39
Does Alice Grove take place in the Ninth World? I'm getting some pretty heavy Numenera vibes from the last few strips.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Numenera
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 21 Mar 2015, 18:52
Everyone's missing the truly strange thing about the weird dogs.

They're not afraid of humans.

Neither were dodos, but look how long they lasted after first contact.

The weird dogs are within walking distance of the village and can take it totally for granted that the humans won't kill them for food or for sick amusement.

Law? Custom? Religion? Fear?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 21 Mar 2015, 19:10
I wondered if the villagers never venture out of their village at night, or never enter the forrest. That place is kind of creepy with the Nightwalker and eyeless deer and enormous flytraps.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 21 Mar 2015, 19:11
Everyone's missing the truly strange thing about the weird dogs.

They're not afraid of humans.

Neither were dodos, but look how long they lasted after first contact.

The weird dogs are within walking distance of the village and can take it totally for granted that the humans won't kill them for food or for sick amusement.

Law? Custom? Religion? Fear?

Just like normal dogs, they lick people they like. This makes them outstandingly likable, so nobody hunts weird dogs.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 21 Mar 2015, 19:56
I doubt anyone does do anything to harm them. Alice protects them, so none of the villagers would want to anger her by harming them. They might even be used to human contact. They seemed more curious than anything else.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 22 Mar 2015, 02:20
They might even be used to human contact. They seemed more curious than anything else.

I'm going to say it again: these two are unusual in their behaviour. Alice hand-reared them almost since they hatched, so they are atypically chill with humans, especially when Alice is around. She may even ride them on occasions.

For some reason, I'm thinking of a 1980s-era arcade game called Joust (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joust_(video_game)).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Zebediah on 23 Mar 2015, 19:04
Comic's up.

I'm still going with "friendly pat on the head." Alice is just messing with Gavia.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 23 Mar 2015, 20:05
Well, assuming she is telling the truth I guess we can rule out Alice's abilities being based on nanotech.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 23 Mar 2015, 20:56
Just gotta say, that's a priceless face. You know the one.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 23 Mar 2015, 21:05
I wonder if Alice is being a bit ....... loose with the truth.

And that face .........
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 24 Mar 2015, 00:39
"You'd have protected us, right?"

"Um... Can I get back to you on that?"

Well, we now have it confirmed that nanotech isn't universal for those from 'up'. That surprises me because I was sure that was the source of Ardent's body modifications and Alice's special abilities.

NOTE: Alice is not necessarily a reliable narrator. It's quite possible that she's lying or deliberately treating the most negative and frightening option about certain things as most likely in order to influence the kids' decision-making.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: NilsO on 24 Mar 2015, 02:06
Quote
You're the first that's been around here since... well, for as long as I can remember.
I have the feeling that Alice almost had a slip of the tongue here. The Night Walker is probably originating from an event a very long time ago, and Alice does not want to tell she witnessed that event. That would tell Ardent and Gavia how old she really is.

As for the Night Walker's purpose: Alice wants to suppress nanotech usage in the preserve. When the nanotech machines arrived in that event, Alice would not (or could not) exterminate them, but gave them a mission that would have minimal impact on the society. I would guess the Night Walker is self-aware to some degree, but unable to change his programming, unless rogue nanotech machines arrive from the Outside.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 24 Mar 2015, 03:56
Quote
You're the first that's been around here since... well, for as long as I can remember.

I have the feeling that Alice almost had a slip of the tongue here.

I agree that Alice was about to reveal something important there. However, I think that the significance isn't when, it's who.

CRAZY PLOT IDEA: The Night Walker is the real reason Alice's planet is isolated. The nanomachines that make up the Night Walker are 'viral' and will reprogram any others with which they come in contact into functioning in the same way as they do. If they get off the planet, they could devastate the civilisation of the Outsiders. They're too nice to just blow up the solar system in question (it isn't certain that this would be effective anyway) but they're still the technological equivalent of The Flood.

The reason Gavia and Ardent aren't going anywhere is that they are a potential infection vector...

... Or maybe Gavia is the unwitting carrier of the cure and the Praesides want her to be eaten by the Night Walker.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 24 Mar 2015, 04:30
And Ardent and Gavia continue in their journey of discovery in which they will realise that other people do not consider them the centre of the universe. I get the impression they were very indulged before arriving in Alice Land.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: mikmaxs on 24 Mar 2015, 09:35
So all this Nightwalker does is stare at the moon? Then why did it try to grab the kids? Was it interested in Gavia's nanotech? I wonder what would have happened if it had touched Gavia? Maybe all her nanotech would have become part of the Nightwalker and Gavia would have been bumped down to Ardent's level.

Who called it? This dude called it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: bhtooefr on 24 Mar 2015, 15:20

Well, that's interesting.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: TinPenguin on 24 Mar 2015, 16:05
Well, we already knew it had to be deliberate. We still don't know why, though.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 24 Mar 2015, 16:10
"There is unrest in th forest, there is trouble with the trees..."
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 24 Mar 2015, 16:21
BAROOOOM!!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 24 Mar 2015, 22:00
As long as this doesn't end up like The Happening then sure, why not.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 24 Mar 2015, 22:36
I wonder if Treebeard is there
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 25 Mar 2015, 02:06
It's in the trees! It's coming!
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: katsmeat on 26 Mar 2015, 03:21
First time posting here. Because I dislike the slow update rate, I just do a mini comic-binge about once a month so I tend to be slow on developments.

My current theory is that we're seeing the QC universe a considerable length of time in the future.  Ardent and Gavia have come from Station, or the giant thing that Station will evolve into, or one of a swarm of giant things Station will evolve into.

Alice's nigh indestructibility and her devotion to the interests of the villagers are explained by the fact that she's an AI.  Her chassis is significantly more advanced than the QC-era ones, but she's old-fashioned compared to the other AIs (the praesides). Of course, we know her cottage has an privy/outhouse, which counts against the non-human theory, but I'm willing to handwave that. Perhaps she just has it for guests, or  just to avoid appearing even odder to the townspeople than she already does.

Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 26 Mar 2015, 05:31
I thought that Jeph said that Alice Grove is deliberately not in the QC universe.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: katsmeat on 26 Mar 2015, 06:34
I thought that Jeph said that Alice Grove is deliberately not in the QC universe.

DId he? OK, the theory's knocked on the head. 

I was just going by the comic. I don't follow his Twitter or Tumblr.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Aziraphale on 26 Mar 2015, 07:13
I thought that Jeph said that Alice Grove is deliberately not in the QC universe.

Back when the strip first started, or around the time the Patreon thingy started, I seem to remember him mentioning "guest appearances" or some kind of crossover between the two. A: I could be misremembering that. B: (just as likely, given Jeph's history) Jeph may forget that he said that, change his mind, etc.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: osaka on 26 Mar 2015, 07:46
I could see characters with familiar personalities and names and designs that aren't 100% [insert QC character here] but totally are, in order to make some guest appearances.

Or make one of the praeses named "Station" for no particular reason whatsoever  :-P
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: valkygrrl on 26 Mar 2015, 08:25
Or make one of the praeses named "Station" for no particular reason whatsoever  :-P

As a Bill and Ted shoutout.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Isyrion on 26 Mar 2015, 12:19
I love the face that Alice makes at the end, its a mixture of "what seriously" and "Yeah right sure lets go with that"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 26 Mar 2015, 13:19
There is a 'Sideways' to what Jeph said

Yes, it's not set in the QCverse we all know and love

It's an Alternate Universe, sometime in the future in a Universe where Second Impact had more severe, and perhaps somewhat devastating, results.

The Praesides are the remainder of the AI's that survived whatever happened and are trying to repair the damage - dumping Gavia and Ardent on the Planet is a part of their long range plan..


And the Shadowmonster?


Pintsize, or what's left of him..   ;D
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 26 Mar 2015, 14:24
Nah. Then the nanomachines would form a giant butt every night.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 26 Mar 2015, 15:02
Think about it. It stares at the MOON.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: SomeCanadianWeirdo on 26 Mar 2015, 20:01
So, this seems like it is Earth.  And an Earth where AI apparently didn't appear, or was suppressed at some point, given that Gavia thinks intelligent machine are impossible.

Of course it could be Earth's moon, but not Earth.   And the Walker is waiting for a signal from Moonbase Alpha.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 26 Mar 2015, 20:29
post-post-apocalyptic earth?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Schwungrad on 26 Mar 2015, 21:08
Over time, Gavia's consciousness will meld with her nanotech, as the biological parts of her body decay, and she will become a nightwalker too, gazing at the moon every night, waiting for an answer from the praeses...

Alice's remark about nanotech "working differently" in earlier times might mean that AI were abolished, possibly after a failed robot rebellion or a Butlerian Jihad - or maybe the praesides are the last remaining AIs who keep their nature secret.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Half Empty Coffee Cup on 26 Mar 2015, 23:10
So, this seems like it is Earth.  And an Earth where AI apparently didn't appear, or was suppressed at some point, given that Gavia thinks intelligent machine are impossible.

Of course it could be Earth's moon, but not Earth.   And the Walker is waiting for a signal from Moonbase Alpha.
Let's unpack what Gavia really meant. She didn't say that AI was impossible, she said that the Walker being intelligent was impossible. It could be for other reasons: constraints on complexity imposed by limited space on the nanomachines, the rise of new machine intelligences may be suppressed by the Praeses (which our best guess seems to indicate are AIs themselves), or perhaps just an unwillingness to entertain the notion that an intelligent entity would do nothing other than come out at night to gawk at the Moon.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 27 Mar 2015, 00:00
"For the World is hollow and I have touched the sky!"
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: BenRG on 27 Mar 2015, 00:24
Wow! Lots of world-building in this strip! I'll have to think about it later on!

There is a strong implication that this planet is abandoned and has secrets - technology that still functions but no longer has a purpose because humanity (or at least the part of it that went 'up') moved on and no longer needs it.

Is Alice talking about herself? It's the strongest indication yet that she's an android who survived the end of the civilisation that created her but is still trying to fulfill her purpose of 'serve and protect '. Perhaps, over the millennia, she has been able to outgrow her safeguards, hence her ability to try to kill Gavia. Or, maybe, her creators never included them, trusting in their intelligence that their creations were too perfect to rebel.

So, this seems like it is Earth.  And an Earth where AI apparently didn't appear, or was suppressed at some point, given that Gavia thinks intelligent machine are impossible.

I'm wondering if there was a 'grey goo plague' incident that has led to modern nanotech having very strict safeguards but older iterations, like the Walker's components, don't have them and can operate autonomously. As for AI in general, maybe they did happen but have hidden themselves in other guises. It's easy to hide your nature when you are the guide of the entire civilisation.

Now... Do Ardent and Gavia come from a settlement on the Moon?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Thrudd on 27 Mar 2015, 07:55
Something about the last panel bugged me when I first saw it and still bugs me.
(click to show/hide)
(click to show/hide)
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: cesium133 on 27 Mar 2015, 07:58
Well, at least we know it's not the same universe as Yelling Bird's (http://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=1570).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jheartney on 27 Mar 2015, 19:47
My take-aways so far:

1. AG is set on a far future Earth, not some other planet. Earth has an unusually large moon for its mass, and we wouldn't expect another planet to have such a large satellite. Plus the moon as pictured looks very much like our own moon.

2. The AG Earth civilization has achieved sustainability, at the cost of becoming a rural backwater. It's not without technology (remember the giant windmill Alice was on at the beginning? That suggests electrification), but there's no large-scale industrialization. The windmill may be a leftover that the current Earth population would not be able to replicate. Earth has a "scarcity-based economy" that uses money, which is anachronistic in the larger context.

3. Earth's status is protected by the surrounding Praeses civilization, which is probably interstellar in scope. It has progressed beyond scarcity, and does not use money.

4. The Praeses are AI's, and the civilization they run is similar to the Culture, with humans no longer in charge of anything. Humans are the wards of the all-knowing AI's, the Praeses. Ardent and Gavia should not be seen as representative members of the society, however. They're just children.

5. Earth is run as a kind of nature preserve, in which humans live anachronistically. When AI's took over from humans, the AI's decided to keep the Earth as a kind of historical monument. Its biosphere and humans were kept in a semblance of its earlier natural state. The natural state isn't all that accurate a depiction of earlier times, just as the Yellowstone Park you see now is not the same as the natural wilderness from which it was made.

6. Alice is an agent of the Praeses civilization, and she is tasked with keeping the anachronistic Earth society running smoothly. Alice ultimately reports to the Praeses. I'm doubtful she's an android (though she might be); her function is like a park ranger.

7. Ardent and Gavia (beyond their narrative function as audience stand-ins) were allowed into the usually protected Earth nature preserve for some purpose. Alice knows this, but she does not know any more than we do what that purpose is. The purpose may be large (something to do with the Praeses civilization as a whole) or it may be about them personally (see Spirited Away for something similar).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Schwungrad on 27 Mar 2015, 20:53
1. AG is set on a far future Earth, not some other planet. Earth has an unusually large moon for its mass, and we wouldn't expect another planet to have such a large satellite. Plus the moon as pictured looks very much like our own moon.
Of course, it could be that such an unusual constellation is somehow a prerequisite for a planet being suitable for human habitation (something to do with stabilization of orbit or whatever), and therefore all inhabitated planets (which would have to be very sparse, but the universe is large) look like this.

Quote
6. Alice is an agent of the Praeses civilization, and she is tasked with keeping the anachronistic Earth society running smoothly. Alice ultimately reports to the Praeses. I'm doubtful she's an android (though she might be); her function is like a park ranger.
Somehow I can't see her reporting to the Praeses (Praesides?); I rather have the impression of a "you stick to your business, and I to mine" relationship. My theory is that Alice is not an android (i.e. a silicone-based AI embedded in a mechanical or biomechanical chassis made to resemble a human), but some kind of genetically or nanotechnically enhanced human (cyborg?), and that she (if these enhancements include immortality) or her ancestors were part of a conservative movement who decided to stay on earth and blend in with the "primitives" when the rest of their kind left for their AI-run space colonies.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 27 Mar 2015, 22:41
Maybe they just made it to LOOK LIKE EARTH

(http://ecggaming.com/public/style_emoticons/default/omgcv3.gif)

I'm on a bit of gif binge...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jheartney on 27 Mar 2015, 23:10
1. AG is set on a far future Earth, not some other planet. Earth has an unusually large moon for its mass, and we wouldn't expect another planet to have such a large satellite. Plus the moon as pictured looks very much like our own moon.
Of course, it could be that such an unusual constellation is somehow a prerequisite for a planet being suitable for human habitation (something to do with stabilization of orbit or whatever), and therefore all inhabitated planets (which would have to be very sparse, but the universe is large) look like this.

Quote
6. Alice is an agent of the Praeses civilization, and she is tasked with keeping the anachronistic Earth society running smoothly. Alice ultimately reports to the Praeses. I'm doubtful she's an android (though she might be); her function is like a park ranger.
Somehow I can't see her reporting to the Praeses (Praesides?); I rather have the impression of a "you stick to your business, and I to mine" relationship. My theory is that Alice is not an android (i.e. a silicone-based AI embedded in a mechanical or biomechanical chassis made to resemble a human), but some kind of genetically or nanotechnically enhanced human (cyborg?), and that she (if these enhancements include immortality) or her ancestors were part of a conservative movement who decided to stay on earth and blend in with the "primitives" when the rest of their kind left for their AI-run space colonies.
The main effect the Moon has on Earth is in producing tides. You could argue that from an evolutionary standpoint, you need tides to stir up the boundary between sea and land, and that this allows for dynamic development of life at the boundary layer. Even so, this wouldn't be a necessity for human habitation if you were talking about colonized/terraformed worlds (humans would have already evolved before arriving, and could bring with them appropriate flora and fauna for terraforming).

WRT the idea that Alice might be independent, my feeling is the Praeses are powerful enough that whatever goes on on Earth is under their supervision. Alice may be impressive enough to survive a fall, or to take on a child's nanotech, but I don't see her forcing an entire more advanced civilization away from Earth. If she's there, it's because they want her there. If she were actually independent, I don't think a much more advanced civilization would let her run amok for long. (Unless reining her in is the purpose of sending these two brats her way.)
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Loki on 28 Mar 2015, 00:44
I think she happens to have her own goals, whatever they may be, and they just so happen to align with the goals of the Praesides they leave her be. She may also be handling everyday minutiae the Praesides don't want to deal with. So she gets to live in an environment she enjoys, and the Praesides get a park ranger slash janitor slash sheriff slash caretaker for free. It's kind of a symbiosis, although I get the impression Alice doesn't particularly like the Praesides.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Schwungrad on 28 Mar 2015, 01:28
Maybe Alice knows something about the nature or the origin of the Praeses they don't want to be publicly known, and can blackmail them into leaving her alone. Or they don't want to interfere with earthly matters for ideological reasons. Or they just don't care about what goes on among the primitives and don't even know she exists. I just can't imagine Alice reporting to any higher authority. Among other things, if she were a kind of park ranger, she would probably have called (or tried to) the Praeses herself, and asked what to do with these runaway kids. Of course the advanced civilisation would be able to stop her if she were to do anything that blatantly goes against their interests - but as long as she doesn't, they might well tolerate her existence and actions without considering her an agent of their rule (and much less her considering herself that).
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: grez on 30 Mar 2015, 16:49
Gavia has to give up nanotech to escape for some reason, but because of a last minute glitch Ardent has to sacrifice his body/consciousness to remove the nanotech from her so she can get off this crazy rock. Ardent turns into the night walker, watches the sky mindlessly forever
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: tywren on 30 Mar 2015, 20:28
Could the reason Gavia can't make contact have something to do with the Nightwalker swarm? Think about it, the thing is made up of countless nanites, with a program/AI that's most likely distributed throughout the swarm. That would mean that every unit would have to maintain contact with the swarm as a whole. Could it be that those trillions upon trillions of local com signals are simply flooding the spectrum, thus acting like a jamming field to Gavin's broadcast?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Wildroses on 30 Mar 2015, 21:49
Plausible Tywren. If true, it buries my theory that the Praeses deliberately tricked the terrible twosome into going down there so they could maroon them permanently. I've always assumed the Praeses were getting Gavia's messages and ignoring them.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 30 Mar 2015, 22:30
Today's Comic


BUTTS!!!!




More on Thursday.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 31 Mar 2015, 01:03
Called it.

My guess? Butts.


Wrong thread, but I called it.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: cesium133 on 31 Mar 2015, 06:40
Today's Comic

BUTTS!!!!

Well, the last comic was a moon.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Neko_Ali on 31 Mar 2015, 08:02
Called it.

My guess? Butts.


Wrong thread, but I called it.

To be fair, it's a common theme around these parts...
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Pilchard123 on 31 Mar 2015, 10:50
http://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=2036
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: explicit on 31 Mar 2015, 13:58
I might have refreshed the page a few times.

Having said that, I like where this plot is heading.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: jwhouk on 31 Mar 2015, 15:33
So, who wants to do the MCDT for April?
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Method of Madness on 31 Mar 2015, 15:37
I'm not seeing a new comic.
Title: Re: Alice Grove MCDT March 2015
Post by: Kugai on 31 Mar 2015, 15:41
So, who wants to do the MCDT for April?

Done and dusted.

Should have realised half an hour ago it needed doing as it's already the 1st here.