Waking to Another Sky Ch3 bit – Primitive

“It doesn’t make sense,” Sam protested. “If you’re going to use the game to teach them an offworld language, why not let them learn it unconsciously? And why give them swords and armor? If these are supposed to be SGC scenarios – it’s like sending people up against a tank with a paintball gun!”

“Such weapons are considered primitive by all the advanced races,” Teal’c agreed. “Yet the ancestors of the Tau’ri found them sufficient to drive Ra from Earth.” He studied the screen. “I am curious to see what allies Kayaba crafted for his game.”

“No kidding,” Jack agreed, pressing play. “Too short to be most of the guys we know, and eyes like that aren’t Asgard….”

Something massive moved in the bushes.

“Definitely not Asgard,” Janet managed, as creatures like nine-foot panthers flowed out of bushes and trees. Dark fur shimmered with hints of violet and azure. Long, razor-edged tentacles, rooted behind the shoulder-blades, tested the air in lazy curls. And the teeth….

Argo wasn’t the only one who gulped.

Teal’c straightened. “They bear Jaffa marks.”

Traced in seared brands on furred brows, instead of black tattoos or golden discs. But definitely Jaffa symbols.

A gray-muzzled felinoid approached the pair, one eye cloudy with age. <<How is it that a two-legs speaks the tongue of the gods?>>

<<The yuan-ti aren’t gods,>> Kirito stated. <<You know that, or you wouldn’t be fighting them!>> He jerked his head toward the shadows. <<Some of your pride let me help them. I don’t know what other humans have done to you, but Argo and Fuurinkazan are in my pride.>> He lifted one shoulder, a half-shrug. <<As for how I know – I found where you were teaching the cubs….>>

“Oh, that’s a lousy spot to cut it!” Jack grumbled, as the image shrank to black. Hitting pause, he eyed a very startled Jaffa. “Anybody else hear what I just heard?”

Teal’c eyed the video as if it’d turned into a scorpion. “The creature had the voice of Tekma’teh Bra’tac.”

“He did,” Sam agreed, shaken. “That was really weird, sir.”

“Okay, that I missed.” Jack shook his head. “‘We come in peace. The Goa’uld aren’t gods.’ Anybody else think Kayaba stole our script? And while we’re on the subject… Danny? You have any Japanese kids we don’t know about?”

53 thoughts on “Waking to Another Sky Ch3 bit – Primitive

  1. >Anybody else think Kayaba stole our script? >
    Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery you know.

    >Danny? You have any Japanese kids we don’t know about?”>
    No but apparently his aunt/mother Midori Kirigaya works as a translator.

    Also Kayaba turned the Jaffa into Displacer beasts……
    I am OK with this.

    The fun thing is that these cat!Jaffa have to be commanded by an AI of some form as Kayaba apparently wanted the players to be able to properly interact and converse with them. Because it’s not like he would grab Bra’tac, slap a Nervegear on him and reprogram his mind and memories so he thinks he’s a giant alien cat.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. >It’s an AI. It’s an AI based on info from SG-1 Kayaba shouldn’t have had. Anyone surprised? >
        Let me think about that. Nope. *G*

        Course it might be ‘fun’ if the players end up managing to extract/free some of the AIs that were in the game. Well aside from Kirito getting Yui out of course. Problem is getting them bodies

        -Thinks about the Asurans/Replicators-

        So just how flexible in function are those nanites that Kayaba used? *EG*

        Liked by 3 people

  2. And while we’re on the subject… Danny? You have any Japanese kids we don’t know about?”

    Can’t really blame him for that question.

    Because how many other people has he seen pull something like that off?

    And this is AU . . .

    Re: Jaffa as giant cats . . .

    It works. It introduces the concept of Jaffa to the players and gets them used to the idea of dangerous, can be an enemy but sometimes you can talk them around to your side . . .

    “Such weapons are considered primitive by all the advanced races,” Teal’c agreed. “Yet the ancestors of the Tau’ri found them sufficient to drive Ra from Earth.”

    Just because it is very old doesn’t mean it is not effective.

    It doesn’t matter how primitive you consider the sword to be, it can still cut you in half.

    Especially if you were too busy scoffing at your opponent to be pay attention to defending yourself.

    Or your opponent can move faster than you can raise your more advanced weapon and fire it.

    Advanced weapons only work against technological inferior opponents when you can actually deploy them.

    Also you are assuming that the ones with the more primitive weapons are planning to come at you like it’s a fair fight . . . which if they are smart, they aren’t going to. They will ambush you, sneak in while people are sleeping, do hit and runs, lay traps, etc . . . all tactics that I believe the SAO players are very familiar with.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Whew! Kayaba wanted to play up “dangerous, not humans as you know them,” to make it mentally easier for the players to make the leap of “let’s try to find common ground to negotiate”.

      As for primitive – “You’re just as dead if they kill you with a pointy stick.”

      Besides. This is SAO. Enhanced weapons are a thing. They may look magical, but….

      *Nod* Yep. SAO taught all those tactics and more. *EG*

      Liked by 2 people

      1. IIRC the episode where we met the Nox has O’Neil use a ‘primitive’ knife to get through a Goa’uld’s personal shield, and embed the thrown knife in his hand device, and the hand wearing it at the time.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I remember a book I read where the soldiers had shields that snapped around them only if objects traveling at a certain speed crossed the boundary. Chainsaws would set it off, so they all came equipped with some really lethal knives for when the enemy came too close. I kinda figured the Go’Auld devices were similar.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Yup, and the sequel, The Rats, the Bats, and the Ugly, and the prequel, Genie Out of the Bottle. Fun times, fun times. Also, an interesting look at what metabolism needs can do to drive actions.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. *cough* If a man goes willingly into a battle with the plans to slice someone to ittybitty ribbons and can stare them in the face while he does so, run the krif in the opposite direction. It is one thing to have a distant death, even one that you caused. It is one thing to pull a trigger. It is another thing when the death happens directly in front of you, when you have to push the blade through skin and sinew. The resolve to do that, and to keep doing that, and to go where you know you will need to do that again and again? That is the resolve that will destroy any obstacle. To say nothing of the mindset needed to go against highly advanced weapons with sharp pointy objects.

    After all, you’re just as dead by a pointed stick as by a zat.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. *Snrk*

        One of my favorite lines on the subject – and one my friends hear me paraphrase on occasion – was actually from Witchy Woman:

        Sword? Not good. Not that armed Kin were unusual, even in Club AfterDark – but most enchanted weapons these days ran to magical Uzis, not enspelled swords. Melee weapons meant somebody was willing to get up close and personal. Oh, really not good.

        To this day, whenever I design a World of Darkness character that’s a passage I think of. Granted, White Wolf/Onyx Path’s ST system tends to favour melee over guns anyway – ‘specially at higher power levels – but still. Can never quite shake it loose from my head. 😉

        Liked by 2 people

    1. *nods*

      Through the describtion of that mindset made the bunnies present two images:
      (1) A certain Wolf of Mibu watching the SAO footage from inside the game and getting a very toothy smile.

      (2) Battousai giving someone who totally deserves it his very best look of I will be just as cool and calm stepping over your corpse as I am right now.

      The bunnies want them to be involved outside of SAO because putting them inside the SAO game might steal people like Kirito’s thunder and that’s a crossover no-no.

      Through if you can pull it off without doing that, they think our favorite heroes reincarnated, getting trapped in the game and it stirs up some very old memories would be pretty cool.

      Argggh . . . sorry if any of these bunnies prove infectious . . .

      Liked by 3 people

      1. 🙂

        Thinking about it more, the bunnies really like the story opportunities for Log Horizon. Because it’d be easier to include some of the less sword-obsessed characters like Megumi and/or their sword-less fighting moves like Sano’s punches.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m assuming that those kitty cats are, in fact, actually present and not just AI. If this not so, Bra’tac will have an interesting reception by the players. But, question. What was Kirito gathering allies *for?* And why was it important that he show off his ‘pack?’ As a solo, he could reasonably expect not to run into the others all that often. The only reason I can think of to intro the pack would be if Kirito has reason to assume they will be either working in concert or coming into lots of contact. SG-1 should be trying to track that down. Also, they’ve missed something. Asuna isn’t there. Which means this is past level 25. Agil isn’t there.

    But the info broker *was.* Was he introducing the people in his pack that wouldn’t necessarily have adequate back up? You can’t tell me that Furinkaazan being on good terms with The Beater didn’t cause them some problems. And info broker is a dangerous job no matter what world you’re in.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. “It doesn’t make sense,” Sam protested. “If you’re going to use the game to teach them an offworld language, why not let them learn it unconsciously? And why give them swords and armor? If these are supposed to be SGC scenarios – it’s like sending people up against a tank with a paintball gun!”

    Re: Language) Kayaba is doing an experiment to study the process. Even if he may be screwing the experiment up because he hasn’t consulted with anyone. Sane competent scientists benefit from having another pair of eyes check their thinking.

    Re: Swords) a) legacy b) anyone remember Tunnel In The Sky? c) sword freak d) Kayaba doesn’t understand guns, can’t teach guns, and this way people are less confused retraining (the melee techniques aren’t necessarily up to RL battlefield standards either) e) Technical realism

    Expanding on the last, the tool chain he sets up in game is more suited for one off production of designs. Partly driven by non-NPC manpower limits, and the fact that automation is legitimately complex, and not necessarily something that can be learned that quickly even with the help he provides. That works better for melee fighters in small groups that don’t use instruction. Combat MMOs are not often built around everyone using the same weapon in similar ways.

    This manufacturing situation is one where a simulationist approach would probably mean that the game takes much longer to clear with ranged weapons. Don’t get me wrong, swords can have a lot of design complexity, and manufacturing them isn’t trivial and straightforward. Consider maintenance, repair, and supply. SAO could potentially tolerate a fletching skill, with a bunch of bunch of people producing arrows. Beyond that and one starts to run into a lot more problems of replacement parts. A bunch of one off ranged weapons designs, especially if they have to change to cope with advanced monsters, would be horrible for the crafters. The fighters might have to sink time into crafting just to keep them working. Fewer fighters spending less time fighting means weaker skills and slower clearing.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. I didn’t mention armor. This Carter is post Iraqi Freedom and does infantry work. So she’s heard some of the consensus about modern armor. (In many cases, skip it, speed keeps you alive better.) Stat gains in SAO and modification in WtAS RL would decrease these tradeoffs.

        Lizbeth is going to make a group of mechanical engineers/metallurgists/material scientists very happy once she gets a workshop going. Doesn’t matter if she can’t automate stuff yet, she could produce a lot of samples that they’ve never seen before. Testing the samples to destruction and looking at the microstructure would teach them a lot. The lessons learned there can then be applied to scaled up mass production.

        Liked by 3 people

    1. Ooh. That’s a really good point on Lisbeth and modern armor. I’d assume that SGC’s engineers already have some idea of how to do that stuff, what with there being a decent chance the Jaffa use similar things… Except that SGC’s P90s punch through Jaffa armor just as easily as they do everything else, don’t they?

      I’m far more curious on some of the infrastructure possibilities of materials that are tough enough to be good armor, and light enough to be worth their slow down…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It isn’t clear how good the Goa’uld are as metallurgists. Culturalist nationalist that I am, I suspect that how the Goa’uld manage their empire may be worse at infrastructure and institutions than a free society with the scientific method. (I recall a fanfic writer who argued that the P90 might’ve legitimately been chosen for superior penetration versus Jaffa armor.) If the engineers don’t already have Lizbeth’s process down, her results will be new to them, and hence something they can learn from.

        If this SAO uses STR, DEX, and VIT, then ‘light enough to be worth the slow down’ might be relative. I’d guess that the property ‘space’ Lizbeth works in is more steel than aluminum.

        Thing about infrastructure applications (as opposed to supplied from infrastructure) is that steel is cheap. The stuff used a lot is going to be cheap and easy to use, which is partly how many people know how to handle it. That may happen, but it’ll probably be decades.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Jaffa armor and helmets suck. There ought to be improvements.

        They probably suck because the Gao’uld don’t care how many of their Jaffa die. Maybe for their First Prime or the ones incubating the offspring they really give a hoot about they spring for good armor but the rest . . . well, they are expendable and there is no point in wasting the resources.

        And the Gao’uld themselves don’t wear armor for what I’ve seen. They rely on their healing, their healing devices, the coffin-thing, and the fact that it isn’t THEIR body on the line and they can always abandon ship as it were.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. In regards to Jaffa armor, weapons and helmets we have to remember that the things are designed to look big and impressive in order to scare the slaves. Looks comes before effectiveness

        Say what you may in regards to SAO but for an RPGMMO the designs of the armor and weapons tends to be surprisingly bling free. If you take a look at WoW or other MMOs the high end gear tends to be extremely fancy. It’s sort of like the bright colors on poisonous animals advertising just how badly they can **** up your day if you tick them off. Of course the ‘boring’ designs in SAO can be explained by Kayaba wanting the world to seem more realistic.

        Now before anyone here mentions it, In regards to Asuna’s somewhat less then practical Zettai Ryouiki Custom Uniform of Sexy; apparently it was customized by the other members of her guild. They then guilt-tripped her into wearing it due to how much it cost. -Facepalm-

        But yes, I am interested in seeing what the various crafters can do. Particularly those specializing in cloth/leather (light) armor in the short term. Why? Because Asuna set Lisbeth and Agil on getting as many players as ‘regular people’ as possible. And since they are in a hospital there are plenty of sheets, medical scrubs, needles, thread, scissors etc that they can ‘borrow’ for this task.

        Liked by 3 people

      4. Actually, from the point of view of what constitutes ‘effectiveness’ one could argue that since they are intimidating the Jaffa armor is perfectly effective. After all, they’re designed for that over protection, and any Jaffa important enough to be saved can just be put in the sarcophagus.

        At least, that’s probably System Lord thinking on the matter.

        Liked by 2 people

      5. In response to trantos01’s comment on players sewing new clothes from surrounding materials, you also have to remember that some of the players are refusing to wear other guild’s colors, and that they are still trying to stay polite. They are also trying to get ready to bolt in a Colorado winter if necessary.

        The polite factor makes me wonder if any breakroom couches with fabric covers in the appropriate covers would be cannibalized, and possibly have the covers replaced with hand-sewn sheet covers that came in less appropriate colors. This could happen to breakroom curtains as well. Given how insanely busy the staff is, it could take awhile for this both to get noticed and be considered important enough to bring to someone’s attention.

        The Colorado winter factor makes me wonder if any blankets or duffels sent to various players that were in appropriate colors would be cannibalized or left alone.

        How long will it be before a player who just isn’t comfortable in colors outside of their guild finds pens or markers to take to their sheet-clothes, or worse yet, breaks into the drug stores in search of something that could be used as an appropriate dye? Idiots went into the game as well as the players we know and love. Some idiots probably even beat Murphy’s odds.

        Liked by 3 people

      6. I’d bet some of the color schemes was a) to prevent friendly fire incidents (because friendly fire isn’t) especially during boss fights. It’s impressive they didn’t have any that I can remember being mentioned. Which leads to b) have the wrong guild’s color is like trying to pass yourself off as a member of the guild. Odds that someone would get mad and at least try to beat you are pretty good.

        But, yes. There are idiots who somehow have a working relationship with Lady Luck and M who would try and dye things. Or break into locker rooms for more color choices. The interesting people are going to be the ones who are wearing someone else’s clothes sent by parents because of color, like Asuna and Lisbeth.

        Liked by 3 people

    2. I’ve argued that the complex design space around automation and ranged weapons would have so steep a learning curve that it would prohibitively slow game progress. Reflection suggests that the skills for making tools and capital equipment (big things like waterwheels and powered hammers), implied by WtAS canon, might be similar.

      The design space can be simplified by limiting the variation in the recipes to a relatively few set designs.

      Okay, but then there’s the problem of too much and too little work for the players leveling those skills. Too much, because big things can take a lot of manhours. Too little, because crafters can only buy so many tools, and there is only so much space for big things. If it is comparable to other leveling, it should take gobs of resources to level enough tool/equipment crafters to build the advanced big things needed for the highest end equipment.

      The guilds can collect the resources, and Kayaba was running an influential guild, so he could have influenced the other guilds to nurture tool/equipment crafters. Plus, he could have made regular smithing give a leveling discount to tool crafting. Maintaining, watching, operating, troubleshooting and repairing capital equipment might give a leveling discount to crafting it. He could have specifically selected people to play who would find the tool/equipment crafting curve easier, intervened to keep them alive, and intervened to keep them moving in the right direction. He had the beta to investigate people, and could have picked key people from there and made certain they ended up in the death game.

      Yeah, if my speculations about tool/equipment crafters are correct, they would have been an inviting target for Laughing Coffin to stop clearing progress. Again, guilds and designing the game so that crafting isn’t as lethal as clearing and farming.

      In conclusion, I thought I’d found a problem, but it is fixable by assuming Kayaba designed around it, and was willing to subtly cheat if he had enough reason to.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. Honestly, Jaffa armor is probably good enough for what they were expected to fight when it was designed. IE, other Jaffa and slaves whom don’t know their place. It might not be good against gunpowder projectile attacks, but before the Tau’ri showed up what they’d expect to be shot at with are probably along the lines of simple bows, which it is probably good enough with unless the slaves in question have been using something exotic for their arrowheads, and staff weapon bolts which I doubt any amount of mass producable man portable non-powered armor is going to be sufficient against… Assuming the staff weapon actually hit in the first place given how bad a ranged weapon design it’s been repeatedly stated to be. And it’s not like the Goa’uld are going to mass hand out personal force fields to everyone, which is probably what they’d need to do if they actually wanted their troops to be staff bolt resistant.

    Meanwhile, the other main threat a Jaffa is going to be expected to run into is physical melee attacks. Like, say, being hit with a staff weapon or a sword or some upset slave’s club. And against that sort of thing the chain mail looking armor is probably going to be just fine.

    Liked by 3 people

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