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Strongest of Talithar – 30

Strongest of Talithar – 30 published on 46 Comments on Strongest of Talithar – 30

Some of you may recall near the end of the previous chapter… Kaala said that Ellisia make the Invulnerable condition only able to exist on one entity, and that is herself. No one else can have the status/condition. Even if a skill granted it before for a limited period of time… Tanks got nerfed. Also, when coming up with the names for the abilities, Bloody Carnival was one I really wanted to use, and even more so when it fit so well with the Final Act:Showstopper. So- for those who don’t know, Showstopper in theater I think is mostly recognized as a positive thing. It usually references a moment where something is so good the audience is applauding so loudly that the show basically has to wait for them to calm down to continue. However, it also has a use in IT where it’s used negatively as “An unforeseen event that causes production/development to halt”. In darker areas, a tragic event in a show might be called a Showstopper. Such as a trapeze artist or highwire acrobatics gone wrong without a net kind of tragic Dick Greyson (Robin/Nightwing from Batman) event. Clearly something like that happens, and it’s a literal show stopper. There is no show after that- That’s the kind of matching wordplay I love for this. It’s on theme, it’s powerful, beautiful (Visually obviously- you may noticed I used some different methods to show the action that aren’t detailed gore), and terrifying all at the same time.

I also decided to not draw detail in the final panel because its rather squeamish inducing to see something realistic like that- to the point I think it’s not allowed in many countries. I don’t think it needs organs and broken bones to emphasize the hole in the chest. As for how he’s still talking- video games man, it’s not “real”. XD


To ask the obvious – if nothing can grant invulnerable now, how did his initial cast of “Fortress of Invulnerability” seem to negate Kaylin’s first stab? I understand the point of this page is Kaylin beating him with knowledge that invincibility has now been nerfed, but that message gets confused when we see it looking like the invincibility /succeeded/ with her first strike.

Because it boosts Defense for a longer period of time than the invulnerability – his Defense is still too high for the attack boost she has. The Showstopper ends her Ultimate, and multiplies her attack boost for a single attack. This allows for high penetration and higher single attack damage output. Giving the ability to reach damage numbers high enough to instantly kill high level high defense targets- at the cost of losing the huge buffs the limited use Skill gives.

Effectively she said “Sword damage times 10!” and he said “Defense times 20!” and she said “Sword damage times 100!” and he said “NOPE! I’m Invulnerable!” and she said “Nope!”. Except rather than kids play fighting at a playground, there’s a system that defines these things as rules and the result is a very dead person O_O
(If you are wondering why would a defensive skill grant a defense boost and a status making you immune to damage- defense has other functions and while being unable to take damage can become very unfair, having an ultimate ability wear off so quickly with no other bonus is a feel bad ability- yay i cant be hurt- but there’s too many monsters to beat for it to matter so all i can do is run- but- oh right- I’m a tank- I’m slow”. You overcome with the help of the invulnerability, and when that wears off you have a few minutes of reduced damage. You also negate negative effects if your defense is high enough, and it affects your characters resistance to being knocked around, which is why Nyna’s attacks throwing him around was a lot bigger deal.)

Hm… for the benefit of later readers who don’t have the commentary and comments, what would you think about adding a blue DEF UP! arrow (or a few of them stacked like Kaylin had ATK UPs stack) to the panel where he activates Fortress of Invincibility? Looking at that panel there’s plenty of ’empty background space’ to the top left, so I think you could do that without it really affecting the rest of the composition, and it would help answer this exact question in a visual way.

Hmm – Yeah I could do that- it’s also consistent with what I already showed. I’ll see if i can add that.

Dang, a whole minute? That’d definitely be crazy to fight against. I remember some older PvP mmog having the invulnerability stuff lasting for no more than about 15 seconds—and that seemed like forever. Thanks for the update, and the great work!

In Tera sorcerers had a skill that gave them a whopping half a second invincibility, very short cooldown though. They did also have a long self petrify one, but you were much more expected to us iframes from dodges, and yeah the iframes on those were often even shorter than a half second. And there was a lot of iframe or die. Depending on the game even a few seconds of invincibility is a massive commodity.

I originally wanted to say 12 seconds- but then i remembered people don’t know how long that is in combat- and think its useless. I’m not a fan, but i get why they do it. You see it all the time in shows like “I need you to hold him off in a knock down drag out fight for 5 minutes-” and its like “Brooo- hes been kicking our butts at the same time for the past 40 seconds and im dying here- but oooook-”
So even the 30 second option seems way too long, but most people will see that and think it’s basically pointless. So I had to argue with myself and settled on a minute. I’m betting most people will still think that’s really short…
(I am shocked how so many people see boxing for the first time and go “wait, rounds are only 3 minutes long?” It’s like – yeah, and they are highly trained, wear gloves to reduce injury, and aren’t swinging around force multipliers like sword and maces or wearing 40lbs of metal armor. It’s exhausting. And in games, they are moving way faster than normal, thankfully its a neural link and not relying on the time it takes for the brain to process data from the eyes and command their body to move- right? o_o;;;

As a specific example, tank invulnerabilities in Final Fantasy XIV are only about 15 seconds long, but y’know what? That’s long enough to keep you alive through a boss’ biggest attack window, including the obnoxiously long wind-up animations. That’s really what the point is – not a permanent condition, but just like what “King” Talithar did up there, attempt to negate the biggest attack(s) coming your way.

Agreed, usually player-granted invulnerability is extremely limited and has to be timed for maximum effect. Thinking of it in tabletop terms, 12 rounds of invulnerability is a LONG time! 30 seconds would be more manageable. I dont think it’d be felt as pointless.

I agree, I’m a D&D player, getting 10 rounds of “Cannot be harmed” is like a lifetime – but I still hear people think people in stories are fighting for hours. I hope people who play games get it more- but I hedged my number. If enough people comment on it- I’ll go back and edit it XD – this is just the feeling ive gotten over the years paying attention to it.

Why not quantify it in something other than minutes then? Perhaps “turns” or “actions” But yeah 1 minute seems damn near eternal.

If I get some more pushback I will probably go back and change it, but I will point out turns and actions wouldnt exist in the game, and most certainly wouldn’t exist from the NPCs perspectives. The only question now- If i do change it to better fit what it actually should be (which i agree with everyone 1 minute is way too long) what would be a proper time for an ultimate skill in a real time action RPG? It’s hard to define- im thinking while 30 seconds is a pretty long time too- it might be more understandable.

It’s not so much pushback from myself. The kinds of fighting where there are huge swathes of dialogue (because in anime, talking is a free action, right?) kinda necessitates such things.

If you really feel pressed, maybe have it as “X number of hits” (and I think something like 10-20 or something would fit well there)? That way he’d still assume she wouldn’t use her big attack right away, but it wouldn’t feel as big a number.

Considering the skill gets bypassed, it doesn’t seem like a narrative requirement that the reader knows how long it would take, since it’s just immediately bypassed anyway. “I’m invulnerable for the next two hours! Wait, how did you – ” *dies*

Probably too much of a chore to update the word bubbles though, so it’s fine as is.

Yeah, DnD/PF has very little, if anything, that can make you invincible without some severe drawbacks (like giving up your ability to attack back [ie Sanctuary, or Sphere of Invulnerability, or Etherealness, etc]), or only works for one attack (ie Hostile Juxtaposition, or Mirror Dodge), or one attack/damage type (ie Mirror Images, or Resist Elements, etc). You could probably find some exploitative workarounds for some builds, but it would take some effort. Getting something like an MMO-style “invulnerable to everything temporarily, but can still function normally” would likely be something like 1-3 turns in DnD.
MMO-wise, my experience with invulnerability-moves (usually tank-class only, if they even get one, but that applies here), it only lasts ~6 seconds (for such as WoW), or 12-15 (for such as FF XIV). It’s more of a “Oh s#it!” button if you’re getting swarmed by adds or if the healer’s busy/bad, or for tanking through a boss’ combo attack or special– see the wind-up, pop the ability, you get to keep your positioning and aggro, and obviously don’t die and possibly wipe the raid or dungeon. It’s not usually an “Ultimate Ability I use to win”-type thing.
TL;DR/conclusion– I think 12 or 15 seconds would be a more fair but still powerful ability duration in this context, especially since it’s paired with a tank class/build. Maybe 20.

But yeah, nice payout for the “Invulnerability doesn’t work anymore except for the top god” thing from earlier! I guess that does mean the rest of the gods are technically mortal too (as implied by the previous Monster Goddess being killed and replaced), though it’d take and extraordinarily powerful (or lucky) mortal to actually do so)…

> However, it also has a use in IT where it’s used negatively as “An unforeseen event that causes production/development to halt”.

Guh, don’t even remind me, I’ve heard that WAY too often at work.

I gotta ask though – given the angles in the penultimate panel, did Kaylin really put her whole-ass arm through him with that penetration? Who’s got the Legendary Skill now? Ahahaha.

i thought this would be one of those things where the final act was an insta-kill move that couldn’t be blocked

Those don’t exist for players. You can’t have unblockable/undodgeable instant kill attacks. You can have huge damage boosts and conditions that seem to cause instant death attacks, but they are more like “this deals so much damage that if your health is bellow a certain level, you cant feasibly survive the attack.” He’s not at full health, he takes damage from the attack holding him back that he disperses in the first panel- but since he’s done that he’s unable to parry with his shield and relies on the activation of his skill and his armor defense.

You can have certain monsters though have Doom and Death attacks, but they have all sorts of rules on how they can apply and work, but they cant ever be unblockable and undodgeable or else you create an unfairness feeling in your game and that’s almost always a huge negative and makes people dislike the game. So its even more important that players cant use such things because then someone will always find ways to abuse and maximize it (Like the tank build abuses the defensive system but it still has weaknesses to be exploited, some created by abilities, some are just tactical or equipment based work arounds).

60 seconds full invulnerablity. No wonder the Grogon builds were notorious. If there wasn’t a hard counter, like easy Buff removal.

It could also have had a shorter Player vs Player version. I know not quite how the setting works, but also common in mixed PvP/PvE games. 60 seconds if no PvP, 6 seconds if PvP is active.

It’d be something the King would never know. Because he technically shouldn’t be able to initiate a PvP state. Even if fighting an actual “Adventurer”.

Or… someone straight-up lied to King Talithar. And gave him bad information.

i wonder, since this transference into the Gameworld happens seemingly at random regardless of circumstance could people have been transferred prior to this a balance update regarding invulnerability nerfs? and if they were would their abilities retain their pre-nerf effects or would they be subject to this update even if they weren’t there to experience it in game?

That’s pretty much answered in the comic. The “update” didn’t occur in the game they were playing. The King, has never “played the game” because he’s an NPC in the world. This update was not made to “the game” but the world, by the goddess, in this world. The game, is separate, which, while it’s not explicitly stated, it has to be the case baring some crazy story gymnastics that the game was or is still happening while this is going on. This has to be the case because Callum has been there for years, the people in the space game for months now, and Kaylin hitting a few months soon herself. She was playing the game, while Callum was in a version of the game that was different from the one she was playing.

Even then, generally speaking your character doesn’t hold information letting you bypass the game rules. If a patch happens, you cant just unpatch your game and still play online, you have to be using a matching version if it’s even something on your system specifically. When it comes to online stuff, it’s very unlikely they would make a change like “Removed this status effect from the game” but some guy just uses a backup of his character data and has a weapon that does that status effect- the item just wouldnt work in the game because it doesnt recognize it.

I agree with Damaged, that a ‘number of hits’ of invulnerability seems far more fitting to this type of world rather than ‘invulnerable for x amount of time’. Obviously, the ability would only last so long, but having a ‘number of hits’ to get through before the invulnerability drops makes having a longer time more reasonable. It also allows that flexibility of how long people talk in stories, which wouldn’t be happening IRL and rarely happens mid fight during actual games that use ‘seconds of invulnerability’ mechanics.

Number of hits wouldnt work though, it could be bypassed by numbers which defeats the point, or just using weak fast strikes to drop it down. It has to be a set time for it to make sense and fits with more games. I will work on modifying the time though since enough people feel it should be different. ^_^

Another possibility would be to remove the duration number entirely and just say something like “I’ve still got my invulnerable status!” – not saying how long it lasts, just that they both know it shouldn’t be gone yet.

The fact that it could be gotten around by using fast, weak strikes sounds like a fair bit of game balance, tbh. The kind of character who’d use this ability would be one against whom fast, weak strikes would just bounce off their armor. So their enemies would most likely be spec’d for stronger, slower strikes, giving them a significant disadvantage against a 10-hit invulnerability buff.

I reject again the idea that that would be better. I am constantly reminded of the hordes of smaller enemies making attacks wasting all of your shields while the big actual threat hits last and actually hurts. Time makes the most sense for what I am going for, but as Auryn said, i don’t actually have to name a time at all!

From looking at this comic FAR TOO CLOSELY for my own good, I noticed something:
Shmuck cast “Fortress of Invulnerability” AFTER her weapon made contact, so even if his AC did go up, she’s now performing a TOUCH ATTACK that does Piercing Damage.
As we D&D veterans all know from 3e and 3.5e, TOUCH Attacks IGNORE your armor, and go off your Natural AC. A Human/NPC has a NatAC of 10. Her AB is now +45 to a weapon doing 15 points of dmg, and his ARMOR Class only got boosted TO 15. She had to roll a ONE in order to miss.
She rolled a nat 19 or 20 with a boost of 45, on top of her weapon also getting a natural x3 bonus on a Critical Success.
Doing MATH here, he had an AC of 15 versus an attack roll of 19 or 20 which then got confirmed, so she did 90 dmg ((15×3)+45) against an HP of 30…
Dude go SPLAT.

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