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Strongest of Talithar – 32

Strongest of Talithar – 32 published on 21 Comments on Strongest of Talithar – 32

Whew! We made it! IM ALIVE! The action is going to calm down for a bit. Next chapter is going to be pretty chill. Then we will ramp back up into the next big thing. Hope yall understand, it should still be fun! I also MIGHT take a week off. I will probably do the Chapter cover post instead of a chapter cover post AND a comic page. Haven’t decided yet- but I do need to slow down a bit. Even though I really dont want to…


are her boobs bigger or is it just me?

Her actress has been drinking from the water bottles like the rest, of course they’re bigger.

Their flirting on this page feels like a well-deserved reward, and we get some great poses and expressions to go with it! They even get some amazing scenery with an aurora out there, which is a funny coincidence given the real-world solar storm events of the last weekend that has it on everyone’s mind. I know it could also be just each of them getting a ‘level up’ aura, but I like it better to think a sky glow is happening as if to honor their victory.

I’m actually VERY surprised to hear they’re giving up on hunting down other targets with knowledge of XP and the monster grinding system! At the outset they had said EVERYONE associated with it needed to die to stop the spread of that knowledge, and it felt fairly intense. At /minimum/ the forger(s) need to be dealt with, to say nothing of the still-unknown benefactor that apparently set all this up in the first place! The disconnect between what was said then and what Kaylin said now feels REALLY strange…

Maybe the other elves have been busy and that just gets ‘taken care of’ in the background, including the lower-level nobles that had been paying for xp… but after the earlier encounter I was kinda looking forward to a deeper dive into the Forgers themselves, and possibly some well-deserved revenge against them.

Also to hit the most obvious point… the last panel confirms something special happened when the pair of them got the concentrated xp from this encounter. Breaking the level 100 limit and earning an ‘ascension’ is probably what the king was trying for. I suspect from context that this kind of ‘ascension’ wasn’t possible before in Rune Aria, else Kaylin the max-level adventurer probably would have done it already. And Nyna is now a ‘unique’ instead of either an elite or a raid boss… and her level went up too. Really neat implications for both of them to be explored in future chapters!

The number of people that escaped, will be discussed in the next chapter. The Forgers themselves, weren’t /aren’t very strong. Think of them as crafters. Many of them died in the assault, and Kaylin’s line at the end- she’s implying that she hunted down everyone else left in the castle. If anyone did manage to escape, which she can’t confirm, she wouldn’t be capable of catching them. So it would be up to the team outside to kill them- or track them if they are too dangerous.

It would be odd, so it’s better to assume that she did something. She said – “Made cleaning up easy though” – do you think she meant body disposal? Fixing up walls and sweeping up rubble? Or do you think it means she tracked down anyone else left in the castle? Rather than assuming the negative, especially when it goes against the characters personality and traits, you should assume the most likely, negative or positive. She announced if anyone DID manage to get away, she can’t catch them. There’s no point in running around town randomly searching for people you know nothing about and have no way to track.

Yeah, it would be great if I could show her dealing with everything visually so people don’t have to assume or take context clues, but I am also having to stop myself from just doing exposition dumps and not cheapen the action that has already occurred. If i have Kaylin spend 3 panels talking about everything she just did- who is she telling? Nyna already knows what she was doing. She would just be talking to the readers. The forgers are important in their abilities, but they aren’t special. They aren’t like aliens, or players- they are NPCs that have somehow unlocked some unique abilities- that everyone should know that they were given that power by the benefactor, and while not explicitly mentioned, were shown being killed already on several occasions. Pages 7 and 8, 7 has one being chased down by Kaylin, page 8 has a panel of Nyna burning 2 to death.

I am sorry to disappoint on the forgers, I hope you can shift that to the mystery of the Benefactor. Though, I will say I do plan to have at least one Forger make an appearance later, perhaps not one that escaped the castle, but one that was not in the city during the attack along with a few other mentioned and possibly shown characters.
Finally to be clear – Ascension was not a thing in the game originally, and was the goal of the king. So- how did the King know about it? While Nyna didn’t get the Raid Boss title, she’s now a Unique monster. A technically more rare monster, but not as powerful as a raid boss. She still has the Raid Boss potential of course, but now she’s of another level of monster.

Hope this overly long message helps explain my decisions, and I hope you continue to enjoy the comics!
Kaylin Wave

I think that in my initial reading I didn’t register a gap in time between the previous comic and this one. In my mind this was still right after Nyna burnt the king and said she wanted to spend time with Kaylin instead, leading into them being playful and flirting here in this comic. This idea was reinforced by their “level ups” showing in the final panel, which I associated with being their reward for the king battle.

So yes, your comment definitely helps clear up that point and makes Kaylin’s statement make a LOT more sense! I wasn’t trying to assume a negative, just calling out something that didn’t make sense to me from the first reading to try and because others could have the same impression. Basically feedback that I hope is useful for you, not intended to be criticism or negative, just informative 🙂

The “cleaning up” statement on its own could easily have referred to the king + knights battle; she took out the whole room easily with that cursed gear. In either case it didn’t land strongly for me as a “These words indicate that time has passed” – though honestly it was also 2am for me so maybe I was just tired and missed it 😀 On my second read I also see Kaylin referencing a conversation with Nyna we hadn’t seen on-panel. I totally get that not everything can/should be shown visually, especially taking down a whole kingdom!

I also appreciate the confirmation about Kaylin and Nyna’s new statuses, and look forward to seeing what comes of them in the future! I definitely enjoy the comics and appreciate all the work you put into them, so don’t worry about that 🙂

I think a narrator box in the first panel with something like, “Some time later…” wouldn’t go amiss. I have to admit, with the nondescript stone walls background I also assumed they were just kind of flirting over the king’s freshly-dead corpse. Which is….kind of icky, but they’re both hardened adventurers who are rather used to it. I was assuming “Made cleanup easier” just meant she magicked away her bloody pvp gear for later and magicked into her pve gear.

Love the comic, you do fantastic work!

I agree something like that would help, but I don’t remember if that’s something Sage has used elsewhere in the comic – narrator boxes I mean – so I hesitated to suggest the same idea earlier. It would certainly be a visual answer to confirm that time has passed between the two pages, which is what tripped me up.

There is room for it in the top of the main panel, but you’d probably have to stack the words vertically so that they don’t intersect with Kaylin’s arm. Alternately could just use the single word “Later…” and that might be enough.

It’s certainly possible for the page to stand on its own with dialog only, and per what Sage said earlier there will be more at the start of next chapter to further clarify how the night’s raid went. It’s something that affects us ‘real time’ readers the most, as we anxiously look forward to each new page instead of digesting a whole book or chapter at a time 🙂

I’m worried about that “Ascension Available” tag. Mostly because the way I’m interpreting it is that Kaylin now has the opportunity to become a Goddess in her own right. Likely either the Goddess of Rouges or the Goddess of Adventurers. And, given that the Gods don’t really stay on the planet interacting with people all that much, that would create some problems with her continuing being Nyna’s “pet”.

so wait is pink weaker or stronger than gold letter in the mmo color scheme?

Depends on the game. In Guild Wars 2 pink was the color of Ascended gear which is the best gear in the game. It is often used for Unique in other games which are either the best or more often exceedingly powerful for their level. Nyna is probably somewhere between a regular boss and a raid boss of her level.

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