The Letters Page: Editor's Note 10
It's the first ever Editor's Note! This is where we fill in the corners and answer any lingering questions.
Run Time: 49:15
- October 3rd: Fanatic
- October 10th: Apostate
- October 17th: The Scholar
- October 24th: Guise
- October 26th: Editor's Note #11
- October 31st: Wager Master
Topics of today's Editor's Note:
With the posting of this Editor's Note, you have under 24 hours to get in your Fanatic questions! Not to worry, though, we already have well over a hundred Fanatic questions received so far...
- Is Haka the physically strongest hero or would that title go to Legacy? Haka is the strongest, by a pretty wide margin. Haka:Legacy::Legacy:an average person.
- Several heroes (Ra, Argent Adept called out in particular) don't seem to have a lot of fine understanding of their powers, does Haka understand how his haka work? He has a primal understanding of them in an action->effect sense, but not a fine understanding. They just do more for him than they do for other people (and they would work for other people), and he performs them knowing what they'll do, but he doesn't know why they're more effective for him than others.
- What happened to some of the more indestructible characters by the time of the Final Wasteland (like Gloomweaver, Zhu Long, or Akash'Bhuta)? In this timeline, all of these semi-immortal beings are gone for one reason or another. Zhu Long is long gone. Gloomweaver is disconnected from the physical realm. Akash'Bhuta is in permanent slumber. Biomancer doesn't survive into that future. There just aren't any people around anymore (except Haka). The Multiverse era is a few decades, but the Final Wasteland is tens of thousands of years in the future and is simultaneously kind of a "worst-case scenario" where everything went wrong.
- There's a long gap in time between when Haka first got his powers and when he became a superhero, and the first episode mentioned that "superheroes" didn't really exist until the first Legacy; you'd think that a huge pile of muscle would be memorable, though - was Haka famous (or infamous) during his wandering? Was he a legend/tall tale like Bigfoot? Right, there weren't "superheroes" until the first Legacy, but "superheroes" in the modern sense are a specific thing that's fairly recent. There are heroes in all cultures going back thousands of years - larger-than-life figures doing things to help people. Stories of Haka would have kind of fallen into these stories, somewhere between stuff like Robin Hood and Paul Bunyan. "Superheroes" coincide with the advent with mass, worldwide media.
- When La Comodora combined all other Hakas into just the two of them, did they receive all of that energy at once and it takes time for their bodies to process it, or do they get the energy gradually over time? A little of both - they get a bunch of energy right away, but there's also a slow trickle as they get more (plus stuff like the timelines continuing to branch off, creating more Hakas that then eventually get absorbed back, etc.).
- After OblivAeon and the impossibility of further travel between times/realities, does that affect how the two Hakas are connected? If the connection is maintained, doesn't that mean that there's still something possible to travel between realities? Realities are normally inaccessible from each other. OblivAeon shattered the timelines, allowing it. Defeating him restored things to their natural state of "no moving between realities", but that doesn't sever the metaphysical connection between the two Hakas. There isn't some energy tethering them together that you could follow to find a path from one to the other.
- How did La Comodora empower/create/link these Hakas? How did she pick the two specific ones to link? As mentioned in her episode, as she acquires items from different times/realities/etc. the ship gets aligned with them. As a result, she can use items related to the two Hakas' realities to form links to each other. OblivAeon's plan lets us know that making two realities similar enough to one another results in them collapsing into each other, destroying both (similar to how matter and antimatter destroy one another to release a lot of energy). This is kind of what she's doing - she gets the life essence of other Hakas, collapses them together to release energy, shunts that through the ship and into the two she's linked through it. Similar to how she is "steering" the canon reality by adjusting events so that it doesn't intersect with others, she's causing various Hakas to intersect to do this collapse on a much smaller, tightly controlled scale. This is kind of terrible in that she's causing a multitude of people to cease to exist, but much like she went back to prune off dozens of La Capitan variants out there, it's for the greater good. She picks these two Hakas specifically because they're the most important ones. Our Haka is the one from the main timeline that's resisting OblivAeon so much already, but there's also kind of a predestination paradox - she goes back in time to make sure this thing happens, but she chose which ones because she knows which ones would still be around at the end of the OblivAeon event already.
- What does the end of OblivAeon mean for Haka's immortality? The thing that was done to Haka has been done - the repairing of all the holes between realities after OblivAeon is defeated doesn't alter that. However, new realities branching off post-OblivAeon that have their own Hakas in them won't have their Hakas collapse into the other two anymore. This would prevent Hakas from continuing to grow more powerful forever, they're still processing the residual power they were picking up to that point, but they'll plateau in the near future rather than continuing to Eternal Haka's level.
- Shrieker used to be a member of the Freedom Four/Five, why did she become a villain as Glamour? In comics publication they had just stopped using her because nobody liked her - she wasn't even treated as a side character or anything. A later writer noticed that "hey, here's this character that was kind of discarded - what if that's how she was treated in-universe too?" and ran with it, everybody stopped talking to her and left her behind without her having done anything to really warrant it. This made her bitter. Combine that with her blowing out her main vocal powers, leaving her with the semi-mind-control subset (and the thing about mind-control is that it's really difficult to not abuse it - see shady stuff done by Visionary) and she kind of went down a dark path.
- In Chrono-Ranger's episode it sounded like he showed up on the Mars Base in time to prevent Ambuscade from setting off his traps, but in Ambuscade's episode it sounded like he showed up after they were already defeated by Tachyon, so what happened? What would have happened if Chrono-Ranger hadn't interfered? Tachyon is on Mars, being hunted by Ambuscade who has set up traps for her. She manages to rescue the scientists present and escape, but the traps are still active as she can't disarm them. The marsquake results in Ambuscade still being trapped since he refused Tachyon's help. Then Chrono-Ranger shows up, locks down Ambuscade with a temporal grenade, and then goes around to disarm the traps which he can do with the aid of future tech. After that's done he has the "knock it off" talk with Ambuscade. Jim was sent into the situation because Ambuscade was going to destroy the Mars Base, whether Ambuscade himself was going to die in the process was unknown, but the way that his plots had been going it was likely that he'd eventually go too far and it was determined that he needed to be stopped permanently. Priority 1 was the Wagner Mars Base. Jim also manages to stop Ambuscade plots, but in a way other than by killing him which the bounty specified (thus causing the timeline to not go in the way it was supposed to and resulting in the malfunction).
- How does recharging Chrono-Ranger's badge work? It was stated that completing a bounty creates temporal energy that powers it, but does nothing else he does change events that would do the same thing? Why was stopping, but not killing Ambuscade insufficient to recharge it while distracting, but not defeating Akash'Bhuta was? It's less tied to creating a change in itself and more changing events in a specific way - it's an incentive to complete the bounties properly in order to keep events on track in the manner that CON has planned out. By not killing Ambuscade, he's jumped the rails that CON had set him on, and so he gets lost.
- Do the other heroes ever learn anything about Chrono-Ranger (like, he just seems to pop in and out without really interacting with anybody)? Not really until fairly late in the story. He's kind of a lone wolf and gets his story told in his own books or things like Disparation, so the readers have a much better idea of who he is than the other heroes.
- Given the Best of Times incap art, it seems unlikely that he survived its immediate effects, let alone a long time afterwards, what's going on? Sure, he took a lot of damage, but a lot of it is superficial and more than you'd expect is synthetic (look at his appearance as Renegade in the Tactics stuff - a lot of "skin" isn't his original organic kind). We see the badge getting blasted away, but the "tin star" part is really just the outer surface of the mechanism and that's all that got knocked away - more inner workings of his time device are internal, but the removal of the star part exposed the button that was crucial for the reset that happens. He is really messed up by this, which is why Renegade has so many problems. He probably would have died if he hadn't been so much machine.
- We heard that Chrono-Ranger was getting suspicious of CON's missions as they turned more towards "killing people" over time, is there some ulterior motive (is it related to Clone-Ranger infiltrating the bunker)? Chrono-Ranger needed to fail. CON wasn't setting him up, but CON had been compromised as guessed and resulted in the more murderous bounties, but more on that in the Biomancer episode. The version of CON that gets pulled through time to the "present" is cleansed of that compromise, though.
- Which hero pressed the button on the badge to pull CON to the "present" during the Rook City battle? Setback. It was pretty random, he got knocked up into the air, landed near Chrono-Ranger by chance, saw a blinking button and of course he pressed it. Does he look like the kind of guy who wouldn't press the button? He didn't know what it would do, but Jim was already pretty beat up so what could it hurt?
- If Doctor Medico was invented for the forum thread as a joke, and therefore the Southwest Sentinels weren't a thing yet, then why is Writhe in the base game (in Tachyon's deck) or who was it meant to represent at that time? It was Writhe - like Setback and Fright Train he was a hold-over character from previous projects Christopher and Adam had worked on in the past (in this case, Writhe was from a comic that Adam drew in college). They had a lot of ideas on the back burner that they weren't sure that they'd get to touch eventually, and Writhe did turn out to get combined with this "hero team deck" idea. Adam mentions that he was looking through some notes from back in the Rook City development era recently and found a note that "it might be cool to have a Thorathian hero."
- Was the Chairman wanting to expand into the Southwest to gain a supply of Isoflux Alpha and had he used it before? Are Absolute Zero, Plague Rat, or Tachyon Omegas? Chairman can't be expanding in order to get Isoflux Alpha because nobody knew about it until right near the end of the Multiverse Era/beginning of the RPG and even there it's more along the lines of knowing that it exists and what it does, but not even yet where it's coming from. While the Nolan Generator is in the Southwest, Isoflux Alpha isn't only found there. AZ, PR, and Tachyon are not Omegas. They were vague at first on Dr. Medico and Mainstay, but going forward if somebody is an Omega we'll be told.
- It's implied that Idealist's projections are invisible, so why all the elaborate robots and stuff? If they were invisible there's no point, but they don't remember saying that they were [editor's note: their bio says that she picked up Writhe with an "invisible hand" during their initial encounter in the bank]. Unlike Visionary's telekinesis that's solely focused on the effect, Idealist's is about making a thing that then itself makes the effect and that shape is important to the process for her.
- If they're invisible are things like light bulbs or sound effect and whatnot her breaking the fourth wall or does her power work like Captain Cosmic? Neither - she's not breaking the fourth wall and Captain Cosmic is creating actual objects that are maintained trivially by continuing to power them. Her creations are actively controlled by her and so require much more concentration (and so in pre-Void Guard times they were very transient). They wind up looking similar, but the mechanisms are pretty different.
- What's the "personal project" that Idealist and Argent Adept are working on? It involves more than the two of them, more about it in the OblivAeon episode as it's tied in there and involves too many people to try to fit it into any one person's episode (it might have been part of the Sentinels/Void Guard episode, but there was already too much to go into there).
Void Guard's Void Problems
- Is the Void energy still leaking in during the Tactics timeline and is Void Guard having trouble with it since they're operating at half-strength? Kind of, less "out in the depths of space" and more "everywhere, especially where the Nexus of the Void used to be". OblivAeon shards are pretty bad news and there's a lot of inappropriate usage of them in Tactics that's exacerbating this situation.
The Crew of the La Paradoja Magnifica
- Vengeance #4 looks to have Siege-Breaker in a fight with Argent Adept - what was La Paradoja Magnifica doing in the area during that event? During the Vengeance event the editors kind of gave writers and artists free reign to invent visually distinct minor villains to throw into the mix to emphasize that the heroes are under attack from all corners and Siege-Breaker was one of those. There wasn't a lot more thought that went into it other than somebody thought "guy in power armor with a halberd" was a neat idea. It wasn't until later that he was incorporated into La Capitan's story (apparently Vengeance is before her first appearance). The later retcon was that she'd sent some crew out to steal stuff during the chaos of this tumultuous event.