New Comics Every Weekday - Written by T Campbell & Phil Kahn - Illustrated by John & Jason Waltrip
I love you so much.
It’s a trap Byron! He’s gonna use ya all and drop you…leave him before it backfires!
It’s a trap! DO A BARREL ROLL! PRESS B! USE AXES WISELY!!
WOOOAAAHHHH, Down Boy, Watch where your flinging those references!
cant let you do that star fox!
Somebody dumped some Ecstacy in Best’s stasis tube.
Bryon and Syr’Nj having a moment in the background.
I’ve got a bottle of wine in the kitchen, waiting for those two to kiss in order to be opened. So you writer folks take your time.
OMG!!! He does have a heart!?
Yeah he is like the Grinch, ya know? His heart has grown three sizes during the latest updates! :)
OR… it’s a trap.
I hate to admit it, but I can’t trust Best for at least 3 untainted good deeds.
Dudes! Its the classic abusive boyfriend act. Don’t fall for it. He will hit you again, Byron. And then save your life and apologize and you’ll take him back… again and again until he finally gets you killed.
Tbh I can’t think of a single trap Best has led them into. In fact the only time the party managed to trap and seriously fuck themselves up was when Best wasn’t there to watch over them.
The situation they’re in now isn’t a “trap”. It’s the party’s payment for tricking Best into saving them plus they also have an interest in finding the Basin so any risk is taken and shared equally by all.
I think Frigg’s reference might be to the fact Best said this place was essentially unguarded since it is so bloody old.
Thus far they’ve encounters a bit more than one or two defensive spells. Not much more, but certainly not the walk in the park Best seemed to think it would be.
I’m going to run a tally to see how my overall reaction to Best is going to be influenced by his positive and negative contributions to the group, more than likely by skimming through the entirety of the archives and putting a numerical value to everything.
I’m still not sure about Best, and that includes my earlier statement in his overall regard to Byron on the last panel’s discussion and my view on why Byron acted as he has.
It’s hard however to credit Best with suddenly finding this aspect of his person as he is now risking himself. As for others talking about his character development and prospective growth I have a question.
Was this growth before or after he pushed Byron into the way of a giant laser blasting golem made from elven magical might? Though I guess that was recklessly endangering a team mate for the sake of a distraction, as opposed to outright selfishness. Oh but he did push him out of the way of the danger he had himself thrust Byron into. And all within the same chapter as all of this new found compassion and heart. Amazing Best, you truly are a gentle and kind soul.
I’ll remain skeptical.
Hail to skepticism. It seems really rather fast for an Heel Face Turn. Sure, it’s possible, but it seems deeply unlikely. That said, a leopard can change its spots. Provided that it finds another leopard to skin first.
The problem with your basic point is that it’s not really a Heel Face Turn. Possibly an Ass Face Turn, but he’ll never really stop being an Assface.
He has that prophesy tossed at him way back and it told him he’d do something good and wonderful, even though it’s debatable it was aimed at him, he still took it to heart, and to head.
No matter how much you might dislike him, or think he’s a complete dickwad, he’s still a good person.
To be fair, there was a fair amount of contemplation going on for Best at the beginning of this arc. Still a bit self-absorbed, but he has been dwelling on his past actions at least.
Yes. He has been thinking on past actions. And noting how much glory he earned in all of them. His reminiscence was not improving, imo.
The twin golems, the chess board, and the mirror room are all pretty classic traps, D&D-wise.
Though to be fair, Frigg triggered the chess board.
But they weren’t devised by Best specifically for the purpose of trapping the party. It’s like saying Syr led Byron into a trap when they went to see that cultist soothsayer.
These thing happen on adventures, missions and the like. No reason to lay them on a single person.
Best took the role of leader and acted like he knew all that there was to know and so everyone else should just do what he said, so he gets the blame when things go wrong. Besides, Frigg is a hothead.
I know who Best is IRL.
He’s been kicked out of every major raiding guild on the server. On multiple servers.
heh,that doesn’t surpirse much
He gets into new guilds all the time because of his gear and his ability to sweet talk and pretend to be a good citizen for a few weeks.
Best is exactly like this guy.
I hate to say it, but I told ya so like two comment sections back.
It would probably easier if you didn’t have axes on those shoulders, though.
Note that in final panel, because of Byron’s rage-hunch, their shoulders line up but their eyes don’t.
Best friends forever! :D
I want to say D’awwwwwwwww
But there’s a small scared voice that’s saying, “Wait, what if Best *IS* using them????”
Best’s future is going to show him betraying them.
Anyway, honestly. I don’t think Best has the right character design to be the supreme evil. He’s a kind of scrawny guy with some wacky hair and a tired/crack addict face. Even with a radical change as we saw from his original appearance to now, he just doesn’t have a villainish air to him.
Even if you toss on a classic dark robe, black aura, and glowing red eyes, Best just doesn’t look like a dark lord.
Now Byron or Gravedust, THEY have potential to look the part.
I was thinking, this does seem like the right direction for the characters to grow in, but Best moved from insight to inner turmoil to resolution very quickly. This would be an excellent time for a plot complication, and a Tragically Misinterpreted Vision of the Future would fit.
The authors may have something less familiar in mind. I’m still guessing it’s a Big Bowl of Brainfsck.
ooo you’re so right about the ‘tragically misinterpreted vision of the future’ part!!!
Just play a couple of JRPGs. They’re full of scrawny villains with wacky hair.
Lol. But the heroes are also scrawny with wacky hair. Even NPCs have wacky hair.
That’s funny, my future looks like a pair of smoking boots….
What, will you stand in front of a Stargate when it activated?
Byron, I thought Syr’nj was the leader of the party now. :|
They’re like co-captains. Byron is in nominally in charge. Syr’nj is like an advisor who steps in whenever he’s frothing at the mouth.
I like that. Somehow that phrasing just makes me grin.
She does strategy, he does tactics.
My thoughts exactly
So who’s in charge of logistics? I dunno about you, but, personally, I like food.
Well…between the sheets.
Hmm, I admit I didn’t really expect that level of self-analysis from Best here. I may have to be thankful that I said I would “probably” never be able to get past his prior actions. (still, a trip to the first village that he ruined, at some point, to make amends would be nice^^)
He and Byron do make a very effective pair when they work together. Especially if Best can guarantee a “snap out of it” effect for Byron’s berserking…
I dunno about that last paragraph.
While it does seem like Byron and Best would work well together, I think it will kind of lower Byrons epicness that Best can just snap him out of Berzerker rage at any time.
I can’t agree; How many times does the man have to kill off his entire party before the authors can introduce a way for him to stay calm? I think his berserking was adequately established in the first TPK.
Well, Best can’t just do it whenever he wants I think. Certianly not if Byron has gone full out bloodcrazy. This was a situation where Byron had enough control to hold back the red mist rather than instantly jumping on the closest moving thing.
Admittedly though, it does introduce the option of making Byron’s berzerking a useful tactics rather than a terrible surprise or last ditch effort.
I’ll be honest, Best and Byron both rub me the wrong way today.
This being said the character development for Best is fascinating. Didn’t think it was going in that direction, and despite appearances I suspect Byron might be coming out of his shell a little. Beginning of a bromance?
Loving Gravedust as always. Cuts right to the chase doesn’t he?
For once I agree – they’re both annoying today. If it turns out to be character development, I will accept that it was fascinating. If, however, it ends in Best’s sudden, but inevitable, betrayal of the party, then I will simply find it vindicating.
Gravedust is spectacular.
Byron ALWAYS rubs you the wrong way, every time I read one of your posts that mentions him.
Recently, Byron has been rather irritating. Previously, he was better. He looked so cute hunched over in the fetal position shuddering.
I’m sure reassembling the shattered remnants of your twice broken psyche isn’t quite as easy as it sounds…
Precisely! And he earned sympathy because he looked cute. It’s like a puppy versus an ugly lima – even though both may be injured, the puppy (usually) gets a better response.
True. True. On a more personal level I’m just a sucker for mercenary types, tacticians, and grown up child soldiers.
It’s like he’s got a freaking check list on him to reference as he’s developing as a character. Ali-Al Saachez, Sumeragi Lee Noriega, and Setsuna F. Seiei in the same character? You kidding me? In any other comic it wouldn’t even be fair to the other party members to have someone that compelling, likable, and just plain awesome.
And then they showed him in the fetal position with a bird nesting in his hair. How could he not get the sympathy vote?
Wow…just wow..especially to the last panel.
nearly every single page of best before the last two made me think “meh he is still just a show off and an asshole underneath.”
But now he is sincere and has some deepness that was only rarely seen before.
And about the last panel:
AMEN to that Broter Byron. I agree with every singe word.
Maybe he really can be a part of the group for longer.
Also,alt-text for the win.
I have to say I like Byron’s attitude here: he’s willing to give Best a second shot- but makes sure everybody involved understands that there will be no third tries.
I don’t consider it particularly fair coming from Byron, who is also on his “second shot.” Still, he has the most reason for negative “lingering impressions” of Best, because it was his noggin that got the axe.
Both of Byrons “shots” have come from an incontrolable affliction (his berzerking) from what has been seen so far, all of Bests “shot” has come from him being an ass.
Yes because Byron can obviously think for himself when in berserker rage. I agree with Atomsk42.
Ah, but Byron is thinking for himself when he opts to carry axes everywhere and go adventuring in spite of his “uncontrollable affliction.”
His choice to do otherwise wouldn’t be terribly productive (see the funk Best snaps him out of by suggesting the current adventure), but it is a choice. Likewise, he chose not to warn, say, Bandit that he couldn’t distinguish friend from foe during a rage.
Most of the time, though, Byron has (previously) been able to restrain his bezerker rage. In his controlled state, carrying axes is actually an intelligent thing to do, because he needs to be able to defend himself. Similarly, he doesn’t really have the choice not to adventure because he has no discernable other marketable skills, a state which will likely continue (unless, that is GA decides to really get into the “reality” of Arkerra by establishing a functioning economy and demanding long, labourious grinds to raise fishing and apothecary skills).
I think they will. I mean, Syr’nj has gotta get more potion ingredients somehow. And crappy gears being placed on the marketplace for absurd price mark-ups…
My only real issue re: his berserking is that he didn’t give the group a complete explanation of that and consciously dodged the issue on multiple occasions.
This being said it can be hard to talk about that kind of stuff. I give him a pass if only because I probably find secrets to be more sympathetic than I should. A lotta pain there. Sucks to see that all brought back to the surface for him. I don’t even know what can be done about it. It’s not a problem you can fix by just slaying a tangible villain or surpassing a predefined obstacle. I just hope the group can somehow make it a little easier on him.
I wonder how Best is going to react if that basin shows him a future that doesn’t live up to his expectations.
There’s a few possibilities. It could focus on Byron instead, like the time he was at the cultist soothsayer’s. Or it could show him some mindless, menial thing like not forgetting to change his socks or clean his weapon.
That’s definitely been a top concern since of mine since the start of the arc. Best is volatile enough where this could end up being a healthy development, a big setback or worse.
I don’t blame the others for not trusting Best. He suddenly smacked Byron from behind and he just keeps banging Frigg!
Remember, Bards get Bluff as a class skill.
Still, I’d like to see Best really make an effort to be less of a douchebag.
Maaaan, now i feel guilty.
i know it’s not the main subject, but i find Syr’nj’s little smile in the first panel.. amusing, in a certain sense. this webcomic (illustrated novel? series of paintings?) continuously surprises me with the meticulous attention to detail and the complexity of the interactions, within the deceptive straightforwardness of the plot. not that i should be surprised – raising the bar seems to be a habit for the authors..
I agree, the small moment between Byron and Syr is nicely done – there, but not in our faces.
I also really really liked the way Best spoke of himself. The way the pauses are written, it comes across how difficult it is for Best to admit such things about himself. The word insignificant gets a lot of weight in that panel, and I think it should. Remember that we’ve learned a little about Best and his mommy issues, and how good ol’ Momma used to call him all sorts of abusive and belittling names. Insignificance is something he was probably very familiar with as a youth.
Perhaps he has been “drunk with power” as it were. Perhaps he is truly coming to see the not-so-heroic effects of his behaviors. Perhaps he does care, and is prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with the group.
And perhaps he’s rolling natural 20s on that Bluff check.
I’m game to keep reading and see what happens :D
To me, this seems like the end of an arc for Best–even if it’s just the end of a particular reason for Best’s BS. There may be a new reason seen in his future–making sure that shit elves stop getting called shit elves–who knows? Maybe he IS manipulative, but we’ll see.
Best is gonna leave them all pregnant. i just know it.
“…Some men are born douches, some achieve douchiness, others have douchiness thrust upon them.”
Character development wins! More Bandit please.
I didn’t know Sky Elves were part Vulcan.
…does explain the ears…
Waiter, there appears to be some character development in my high fantasy.
Wait, are those the stairs to the basin in the doorway there?
Christ, this is like Belkar spinning a sobstory for bonus-exp, it’s PLAUSIBLE, but still out-of-character, and contrary to the mood of the comic.
My bet is that he needs them all alive for something much more specific than “assistance to retrieve an artifact”. Maybe not a full-fledged sacrifice, but definitely something they wouldn’t agree to beforehand.
It’s not really like that and I think you’re deluding yourself if you really think that OotS is a particularly good comparison here given that Belkar practically isn’t even a character and Burlew rather gleefully lampshades the fact that only some characters matter and that character development is a touch and go affair whereas Best’s storyline has had a rather clear arc.
So… I didn’t even realize it for quite a while, but all this has me thinking… What about Bandit guys? Could she be a bad guy? An NPC? Carol? Best is definitely the last guy in the tube. And he seems to be making genuine character development, possibly setting himself up for a more permanent place in the party.
But Bandit and Best have never worked together before. And Bandit might not be the ally we thought she was.
I’m interested to see what’s in the Payet’s future… Wouldn’t it be interesting if Bandit was somewhere there?
I think we ran through these dilemmas back when we first saw “The Five” in their tubes in Sepia World. Bandit is the one we can’t fit into any tube (though could conceivably be Best’s alt). However, our Epileptic Tree Theories could only progress so far before they need to be confirmed by either Canon or Word of God. Canon is in progress, and Word of God isn’t saying anything.
Oh, it’s saying something. Amused chuckling.
In the great words of Helen A. Narbon, “Heh heh heh…”
Daedalus’s tie was purple, which fits Bandit’s color scheme.
All I was trying to say is I’m interested to see how the events of the last couple of chapters pan out when Bandit does return. I believe she was on the cover recently, no?
Okay, I’m for character development and all, but this page is a little… Strange. I think Best might be under the control or influence of something. I mean, I’m fine with him not being a total douche, but his explanation for his past actions is a little iffy.
It might be easier if you mentally paraphrase his explanation to “It’s tough being so awesome.”
This turn of events makes me uneasy =(
So how much of that is BS, and how long do we have before it hits the fan? 10… 9… 8…
He’s just a poor boy
From a poor family…
I’ll stop that right now before I get lynched…
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