Archived Discussion

This is discussion archived from a time before the current discussion method was installed.

Milski: Can we please remove the massive numbers of spoilers in this article? Roy's been dead for multiple years, and people are spoiling even the most trivial things (Nale killing the CPPD chief; for god's sakes, he wasn't even in more than a dozen strips and even in those he wasn't important.)

This article definitely needs to be un-white-shifted.

Discar: For the Take That! example:

can we get a link to those strips in question?

TheTallOne: Someone needs to get in there and clean out the WMG page, remove all the Jossed/Confirmed ones, etc. Any thoughts on that?

JET73L: I would suggest putting them all in a folder. that way we are less likely to get repeats, they're all sorted, examples that were considered jossed too quickly can be moved back to the main section of the page, and we can probably cut use of spoilers in that section. It might be a good idea (mostly after the initial reorganization) to wait a short while before moving a guess into the folder, both to make sure it's happened or made impossible and to avoid something ecoming a spoiler by its absence alone.

The BST: It is done!

phantomreader42: Added link to Failed a Spot Check, of which Order Of The Stick is the Trope Namer.

As to the argument over Elan's level in badass, I'd love to create a home-brewed Badass prestige class for a Dungeons & Dragons game.

I don't believe that Belkar is a heroic sociopath. To do that he would have to be heroic.

—- Ununnilium: Finally. >>c

Jefepato: While Conservation of Ninjutsu does make a heavily lampshaded appearance in this strip, I fail to see how it's a byproduct of D&D rules.

  • Not quite literally. It was a level in "Dashing Swordsman".

A tiny quibble that drains out the funny.

Morgan Wick: Okay, how exactly is this a Five-Man Band? Before The Great Crash, the page in question said Roy was the hero, Haley the Lancer, Durkon the Big Guy, V the Smart Guy, Elan the Chick, and Belkar the Sixth Ranger. Now Roy doubles as the Big Guy and Haley as the Chick, but where does that leave Durkon and Elan? It's really stretching it, I think, to call Elan the Lancer. And if Roy is at times ever not the hero, who is? (Besides Haley, that is, and how does the group break down then?) And you could make a case that V (Word of God has said V was a last-minute addition to the cast) or Durkon (who has a much less fleshed-out personality than anyone else) is the Sixth Ranger, and I see Belkar as more of the "acts big, is small" subversion of the Big Guy, and he certainly has the conflict with the Smart Guy down!

Ununnilium: Elan is The Chick. Duh.

Pteryx: I've just outright removed the Five-Man Band references here due to the new take on it not making sense. I think the old one Morgan Wick mentioned does, but I don't want to jump the gun on this either.

  • Almost literally, depending on whether you refer to taking a level as literal, or taking a level in the Bad Ass class specifically as literal. If it's the former, then sure. The latter, not so much, though a fair argument could be made in favor of the fact that Swashbucklers are Bad Ass by definition.

Ridiculously pedantic Conversation in the Main Page.

Tanto: I think I got dorkier just reading that. Which is no mean feat, I assure you.


Neko Incardine: I'm wondering if the lines at the end of #548, with the "Reanimated Gladiators" gag, are meant to be a parody of Rape The Dog moments, what with the lines around it. It could alternatively be just a highly macabre "cute" moment (at least, as cute as Xykon can get), but with the lines surrounding it, it almost sounds like Redcloak thinks that this of all things was Xykon's "gone-too-far" moment.

Eponymous Kid: Azure City isn't a parody of Far East, that's just what it is. If it were a parody, there would be jokes about it. Instead, it's a straight example, that is every bit as offensive and off-base as "Oriental Adventures". Sorry, I'm just sick of every example being listed as a parody just because it's a humorous webcomic.

HeartBurn Kid: The comic as a whole is a parody of D&D, and the only reason there even is a Far East in it is because of Oriental Adventures. You realize this, right? Parody might not be the right word here, so I will fix that.

Eponymous Kid: I've actually never played Dungeons and Dragons, so until very recently, no, I had no freaking idea. However, I think we can agree that, say, animated skeletons aren't parodied by this comic simply because one of the characters is one.

Ununnilium: There are jokes about it. For instance, the entirety of . (And honestly, I don't find Far East mash-ups offensive at all, any more than I find anime that put the Statue of Liberty in the same general area as Mount Rushmore offensive.) I do agree that pastiche is a better word than parody, though.
Shale: Belkar isn't a Villain Protagonist; he's on the good guys' side, regardless of his alignment.
Ack Sed: Okay,what's the deal with Vaarsuvius just disintegrating the Treacherous Advisor in the latest strip? Can it be a Why Don't Ya Just Shoot Him? if you don't say it beforehand?

Elans line in 597: She was a person, not a bundle of experience points. [She] ... had more depth than you have. Feels like there's at least 2 tropes in there, something along the lines of a subversion of Encounters Are Experience Happy Meals With Legs and Antagonist With More Depth Than A Main Character( Do We Have This One? ), also lampshading the last one.
Waah, what's up with killing the remaining sensible character left?
  • Well She probably won't die. And if she does, Durkon's still sensible. Everybody always forgets Durkon.
Mr Death: Hey, here's a thought: Don't bitch about a character dying until they're actually dead.
Kilyle: With a list of tropes this long, can we at least get them separated into categories? Like, say, character tropes (sorted by character), plot tropes, setting tropes? It's very difficult to scan that list with any speed or sense.

Haven: For my own reference,

    Miko vs the Order 

Goldfritha: Maybe we need a Order Of The Stick character page. Then we can filter out those ones.

Haven: Looking at the Alternate Character Interpretation, I'd just like to say I'm so glad to find out I'm not the only one who thinks Miko is kind of a woobie. She's earned near-universal hate on the boards, which I honestly always thought was at least a little misogynistic.
  • HaseoNatsume My attitude was that 'she's a nazi but I love her anyway.' Also, I do not think that the hate was nearly universal on the boards. I recall how distressed I was with the amount of people saying that she was entirely right and that the Order was horribly wrong to resist her in any way, that and some other things are why I say that there are a lot of Lawful Stupid people on the boards.

Fighteer: Let's not be so quick to jump on the "V has crossed the Moral Event Horizon" bandwagon. There's plenty of foreshadowing going on here, but the trope requires the character to become irredeemable. Although any idiot can see that V's moment of truth is coming, it hasn't happened yet.

Fighteer: Another question - why are we spoiler tagging stuff related to the Snarl? The only way the Snarl eating the original planet could be a spoiler is for people who haven't done an Archive Binge; it's more than 300 strips ago!

Goldfritha: This may come as a shock to you — but really, there are people who haven't read any of this.

Be: 'strue. Until three days ago, I was one of them. Now I'm 350 strips in. I love archive binging. Also, Belkar - possibly Neutral Evil. I agree that Chaotic Neutral is just stupid, he's damn near committed genocide the amount of people he's murdered, but this strip shows him refusing to waste the rest of the Order until Nale makes it worth his while. That's more in character for somebody Neutral Evil rather than Chaotic Evil.

Fighteer: Not even the slightest bit. What he objected to was Nale taking their magic items, as Belkar wanted them for himself. Still absolutely pure Chaotic Evil motives. Lest this discussion ever get started again, please understand that Belkar is intended by the author as an example of how it's possible to play a blatantly Chaotic Evil (not to mention Chaotic Stupid) character in a Good party. Any further commentary on this should be taken to the Characters page.

Diddgery: Okay, so was the most recent strip a Curb-Stomp Battle or a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown? Those two tropes get confused a lot, and I want to make sure which one should be removed from the tropes listing- or if they should both be kept there.

"And above all else, it is awesome."

Look, I'm all for fanboyism. But can we nix this?

1: Not everyone likes it, 2: Just because you link to a page with a long list of Crowning Moments doesn't mean it's awesome, and 3: We've already got enough controversy about every single damn thing going on the Crowning Moments page in the first place.

No objections? All right, then.

Dragon Master: Just a question but is OOTS the Trope Namer for Cruel And Unusual Punishment? Only the first time I read it was in OOTS#171. I'm just wondering if it is or not. I'm a noob so I'm unsure if I should write this here or somewhere else.

HeartBurn Kid: Pretty sure the trope namer for that would be the U.S. Constitution, if it were a trope.

Charred Knight: To be more specific it's one of the Bill of Rights.

Mc Jeff: At the beginning of Oot S, Durkon was Roy's Lancer, and Hailey was, by her own admission, staggeringly irresponsible. This, of course, changed, mainly because Hayley grew up. It should probably be mentioned on the page somewhere.

Mr Death: That's pretty much just straight up Character Development.

Haven: Cut this, because: it's nice to think, but those terms are much, much older than us. Now if he had someone call O-Chul's actions a "Crowning Moment of Awesome", then...
  • It's also pretty much certain he is a troper (referencing lampshades and tropes by name), lurking somewhere among us on this very wiki. So hello to Rich Burlew, if you're reading this, thanks for bringing a lot of joy and fun to a lot of peoples' lives.

Grimace: I'd contest Xykon being considered a "Complete Monster". I took him out previously, but another troper put him back in (fair enough, why I've moved to the discussion page naturally). The argument I raised was Xykon was far too "fun" to be a CM - sure, he massacres loads of people left right and centre, but he's funny. It's that kind of comic. A Complete Monster is not a character you're eagerly waiting to hear more about. You loathe them. Xykon isn't universally loathed by the fandom (as far as I know, anyway). As for the point raised about Heath Ledgers Joker being both funny and a Complete Monster, well, he wasn't. Yes, he wracked up a heck of a body count and was scary as hell at times, but he wasn't that trope. Far too enjoyable to watch (heck, he was the best bit of the movie!).

That said, I recently read Start of Darkness, where Xykon's oppression of the Goblins is a little less "fun", so if other tropers genuinely despise him, fair enough. If they still find him funny despite that, then he's not a CM.

Charred Knight: The Complete Monster was created to separate it from Moral Event Horizon where a character was simply so depraved that he had no Moral Event Horizon he was simply a Complete Monster, Xykon is an obvious example. It shouldn't matter how funny the character is unless you want to make Funny Complete Monsters. That way we don't have people debate whether or not someone was liked well enough to count.

The only difference between Xykon and the necormancer is that the Necromancer didn't have enough screen time to get a fanbase.

I should also point out new discussion goes at the bottom.

Fighteer: This was already discussed extensively on the forums. Xykon is too popular to be counted as a Complete Monster, no matter how monstrous his actions may be within the comic. There's nobody arguing that he's not irredeemable, but a Complete Monster is set up to be hated by the audience. This is not the case for Xykon.

Grimace: 1) Oops. Forgot to place at the bottom. "My bad" ;). 2) What Fighteer said.

The Recreator: Rich Burlew stated in the preface to Start of Darkness that he needed to somehow tell Xykon's backstory without making him likable at all. It may be a case of Misaimed Fandom or such, but I think it's clear that Burlew wants us to hate Xykon - even if we get a few (or a lot) of laughs from him in the meantime.

After reviewing the article for Magnificent Bastard, I think that might be a better fit for Xykon. As the laconic version of the entry states, he gets away with it because he does it with style. The "best" fit, though, would have to be a mix between the two: Xykon seems to regularly cross the line in either direction.

Charred Knight: Complete Monster was changed pretty much immediatly into just someone who was always a monster. Your not supposed to root for Xykon, your not supposed to think his a good guy so he fits. The Magnificent Bastard is SUPPOSED to be somneone who is the guy who is always one step ahead of the heroes using complicated plans. Xykon just uses his powers. Though Magnificent Badtard is a complete mess and is basically "insert favorite villain" here.

Fighteer: Of course we are not supposed to think Xykon is a good guy — that's ridiculous. To say he's disliked by the audience, however, is just as false. Every scene with Xykon in it is awesomely cool and/or funny, despite being horrific. I for one will be sad to see him finally defeated, and that automatically disqualifies him from Complete Monster.

Grimace: Villains that are horrible people, but you still find funny/enjoyable are covered under Laughably Evil and/or Evilly Affable (pretty similar tropes honestly, but nevermind that for now). While unlike Fighteer above me, I genuinely hope the series ends with Xykons embarrassing and well-deserved defeat, I wouldn't want it to happen until the very end of the series, as he's a damn enjoyable villain and without him it'd just be stale. My understanding was that the whole point of Complete Monster was "unenjoyable" characters (such as Gregor Clegan, Joffrey, Anton Chigurh...that's all I can think of right now. It's a pretty small pool, ultimately). Like Smug Snake - you love to hate em. You are right about MB being "insert fav villain here" though, and I don't think Xykon is even close to being a MB either, but that's for another day ;).

The Recreator: One thing I think a lot of people are forgetting is that all these tropes are subjective (well, Evilly Affable isn't listed as such, but it's still based on the audience's reaction). Different people are going to look at Xykon and see different things in him, especially since Xykon's personality is such a mixed bag. What one person might think is an utterly depraved and unforgiveable act may be the very thing that gives the next person his best laugh of the day. Myself, I think some of Xykon's moments fit the literal definition of Magnificent Bastard (gets away with things because of his cajones and his Charisma, though he is admittedly light on The Chessmaster part of it), but others might disagree.

Back to the original point of this discussion though, most people can't consider Xykon to be a Complete Monster just because his antics are too hilarious to inspire the absolution revulsion attached to our image of the character that is needed to fit, but there might be someone out there. The problem here might lie in people's understanding of the trope itself - a Complete Monster doesn't just inspire hatred of the character, he inspires hatred of the thought of the character. It's a subtle, but important distinction.

Based on Start of Darkness alone (specifically excluding the other comics), I could say that Xykon is a Complete Monster - but, then again, Your Mileage May Vary.

  • This can be seen as proof of the Giant's hability in story-telling: despite his Card-Carrying Villain status, Xykon never falls in cartoonish villany, precisely because he can swing in a few strips from Laughably Evil to Evilly Affable to Complete Monster. Start of Darkness is a very good example: whe he kills a lizard man because he is too careless to memorize his Overly Long Name, he's Laughably Evil; when he crushes Dorukan and in same tells the wizard where he can shove his precious finesse, he's Evilly Affable ("because yes, I am a sorcerer - and this magic is in my bones, not cribbled off of Magic for Dummies. And I can keep casting the same friggin' sell at you until you roll over and die"); but when he kills the waitress ("Shut up!") just because he lost his taste, or gives Redcloack his Eviler Than Thou Hannibal Lecture, then he has slipped in Complete Monster territory: he is nor funny, nor entertaining. And the end of Start of Darkness , I must admit it changed my vision of the character.

What's this on the Series Hiatus page about creator Rich Burlow having a chronic illness?

Fighteer: 1 — New discussion goes at the bottom.
2 — Attribute your comments to your Troper name, if you have one.
3 — All the information that needs to be known about Rich's illness can be found on the news portion of the site. He's discussed it as much as he is going to.
Can anyone give directions to the cypher keys for Haley's gibberish? Can they be solved using a code wheel? ZeldaTheSwordsman

Fighteer: Each comic page has its own key, which is a simple substitution cipher. You can find the translations easily by browsing the GITP forum archives, or buy the books, which include the solutions in the commentary.
Peteman: A previous edit made reference to V's kids being 4E references. I don't really understand the line of reasoning that made that implication.
MilskidasithI removed the reference to either Vaarsuvius or his/her mate being a pettanko; a pettanko is not simply a flat girl, but somebody who acknowledges they are flat and is OK with it. Since neither of them even bother to identify their genders (and neither may be female; adopted kids), neither of them is going to identify themselves as a flat woman.
The Recreator: I removed the recent edit to Idiot Ball - according to the War and XPs commentary, the paladins do, in fact, wield a full get-up of magic equipment. However, considering that Xykon took them out with a literal Idiot Ball (the Symbol of Insanity-inscribed bouncy-ball) before they could effectively attack him, the point may be moot anyways.
I don't know if this is the right page so if not please just point out,and I'll delete but if you could help I don't understand the OGL I know it permits the author to use the core rules freely but what about non-core(Warlocks,Tome of Battle,Tome of Magic,etc0 I ask because D&D 3.5 has a huge variety of classes which I think could all be good for a small joke but mostly because I would really like to see how they interact with the world,Mr Burlew already used psionics and mistic theurges and other stuff so I wanna know if there's a chance if he could if he has the oportunity.

Fighteer: Well, you'd probably have more luck on the official discussion forums at — here we are merely passive, snarky observers. As for your actual question, however... Rich can indeed use just about any D&D material he wants on the principle of Fair Use. For the sake of simplicity, he's sticking mainly to OGL content, but he has repeatedly emphasized that the needs of the story trump any desire to stick strictly with the D&D ruleset and canon. It also allows for some great humor when he puts in oddball stuff like the Eye of Fear and Flame during the Azure City siege, or the encounter with the Mind Flayer that got resolved by Hilarity Sues. More to the point, "coolness factor" alone is not sufficient reason to throw in random splatbook material. OotS is first and foremost a story.

Tricksterson: Lately people have been going back and forth about whether Thog and The Monster are Affably Evil or not. Rather than doing an edit war could you just state your cases here? My own opinion is that Monster-San isn't evil enough. Thog is a more iffy story.

Taelor: I agree that the MitD isn't really evil enough. As for Thog, I'd say he's not so much Affably Evil as Ambiguously Innocent in a Psychopathic Manchild sort of way. Alternately, one could make a case for Obliviously Evil.

Tricksterson: Considering the Mit D' childlike behavior, combined with the fact that he apparently used something like a Limited Wish to help O-Chul escape I'm wondering if a case can be made for Goo Goo Godlike

Peteman: No. First off, the age of the MitD, while unknown, is still confirmed to be older than many of the main characters. Secondly, Goo Goo Godlike is about how characters born later in the series tend to be more powerful than the previous generation. That kind of takes MitD out of the running, as he wasn't born in series.
Mr Death: Pulled this from below More Criminals Than Targets:

  • Initially, Eugene was annoying, but he wasn't a Jerkass. He's even had a few pet the dog moments. But lately, the game seems to be, "How big of a dick can Eugene be?"
    • Subverted in Start of Darkness. In a flashback conversation, Eugene adamantly tells Roy that if he'd gotten even one piece of solid information about Xykon's whereabouts, he would have walked out on his family so fast that they'd have thought he'd casted a Haste spell . Cut to a few scenes later where a rebellious Right-Eye gives young Eugene a list of Xykon's plans, whereabouts, and credit card information, but Eugene refuses to kill Xykon because he didn't want the lich to come after his family if he fails. Eugene might have had trouble getting along with his family, but he genuinely loved them, at least until years of being barred from heaven and wandering in limbo made him bitter.

Mostly because they have nothing to do with that trope. If they were accidentally moved from another trope, then feel free to put'em back where they belong.
((Bobfrank}}: Is this also the Trope Namer for Earn Your Happy Ending? (See the conversation between Roy and Elan soon after visiting the Oracle.) Or was that just invoked here? I haven't seen the phrase used so closely anywhere else...

Fighteer: If it is the Trope Namer, nobody bothered to mark it as such.
Azvolrien: I didn't want to clutter up the main page with Natter and wasn't sure how to edit it in smoothly, but under Bilingual Bonus:
Not to mention, "Is it too early to say 'Lord Kubota'?"
* Uh... could you explain that last one? Presume we don't all speak Japanese.
Kubota is a company that makes diggers and other heavy machinery. Not sure if that's what they meant.
Deuxhero: Updated picture is neat and all, but where did it come from?

St Fan: If someone wonders how we know that Daigo's name is alliterative, he tries saying it here.

St Fan: Just for fun, this little reference list. Please complete what I've missed.

Articles using Order of the Stick pictures:

The Recreator: I took some time to clean up Chekhov's Burlew's Armoury a bit.
  • I moved the Belt of Masculinity/Femininity to Olaf's Hammer.
  • I removed the following two examples, as they're really more of Self-Deprecating Humor and Call-Back, respectively, than anything else.
    • And the one no-one saw coming: the diamond from the cast page.
    • And surprisingly... "Roy has boobies". Yeah.
Mind that the diamond problem was only introduced in the comic wherein it was solved, and that Burlew certainly didn't plan on killing off his characters when he first drew the cast page for the comic that would serve as bonus content for visitors to his gaming site.