Martial Arts and Crafts – Chapter 7, Prologue 24

And here’s the RPG equivalent of a training montage: a random encounter montage. The effect is the same: compressing extended periods of slow progress and very gradual growth into a short sequence, for the benefit of the nerves of the audience.

The important thing is only to bring the basic nature of the action across, and this should have worked here: Basically, building on that early success with that hobgoblin, K’ip and Si’ri develop a way to progress on their quest relying solely on new skills that K’ip acquires – and this despite the fact that the skills on that lower right corner of the skill grid are not the most useful and combat-oriented ones available.

For if you’re resourceful and clever, even random arts-and-crafts skills can be successfully employed against monsters – you only have to take into account their special vulnerabilities. Pit fiends, for example, are terrifying adversaries even for seasoned adventurers…but, being romantics at heart, they’re surprisingly susceptible to roses. K’ip’s new flower arranging skill comes in handy here, and does the trick…even if the final arrangement betrays the fact that he’s only mastered the first level of that skill. Arranging 30 pounds of roses into a mound on the customer’s face is a bit…unsubtle, by the standards of a really professional flower arranger.

Ents, on the other hand, show a particular vulnerability to being turned into wooden toys. It deals 10x damage to them, 1x being physical damage and 9x being the sheer humiliation. But it’s still nice to see K’ip and Si’ri encountering a forest creature in the forest. If I’m keeping track correctly, that’s their first random encounter that’s not totally random. ._.

At the end of a montage, somebody has to take stock of the achievements, and Si’ri does exactly that in panel five. And the results are positive. Skill growth is coming along nicely, after all – physical growth couldn’t really be expected, you can’t have a new character sprite for every new level you earn. >_> And, if you look very closely, there’s even a bit of character growth there! Really…because even as recently as a couple of days ago, K’ip would have reacted far less sanguinely to a random fairy calling him kinda shortish. >_>

More on Mon…uh, Thursday.

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