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Tycho / on Fri, Mar 9 2012 at 12:00 am

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He’s really done it, or perhaps I should say he’s done it again: driven a person so absolutely crazy that the weird threats and even disparaging nicknames are free-flowing.

Gabriel’s contention has long been that I would be murdered first, because people relate to me differently.  That is to say, they can relate to me at all.  Unlike SOME people (!!!) I don’t have a physiology that can metabolize other people’s anguish.  I tend to start shit with concepts, as opposed to individuals, but the main thing is that I don’t have a supernatural ability to discern weakness coupled with a wild animal’s hunger for flesh.

In trying to discuss Mass Effect 3 with Gabriel and Kiko this morning, we discovered how - by this point in the trilogy - we aren’t playing the same game. 

Between a platform switch and a hard drive crash, I don’t have any “past” to speak of in Mass Effect.  It’s defaults all the way down: some of the things represent my true actions, but many don’t.  They’ve stuck with their saves the whole way, and when we sat down it got complex very quickly.  Even the pronoun for Shepard was getting in the way.  People are dead, or gone, or I never met them, or I sent them away, none of which is true for my cohorts.  It’s a nice bit of spoiler protection in some ways, or perhaps something better: the opposite of a spoiler, learning something that did not happen for you.  So many switches are flipped by the time you get to this juncture that people are entering a kind of point-cloud cathedral, a structure formed of past experience.

You may find today’s 4th Panel interesting, or maybe not; it’s the writing process for our recent Mass Effect strip “Configuration.”  We don’t even notice the cameras anymore, which should be apparent to you very quickly.  I wasn’t aware that I was expressing something terribly out of the way, but you can tell that the tenor of the moment warps and buckles.  Ultimately I’m forced to hit him with the Reverse Dawkins in there, a powerful rhetorical grip, and he nearly loses consciousness.

We have a couple episodes like this, episodes where goofy time gives way to something approximating actual dialogue, but I don’t actually know how much of that you want.  Let us know.

(CW)TB out.

(saxophone solo)

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