December Update

I’ve gotten a decent bit of writing done since the last update, although by efforts have been a bit unfocused. Another chapter of Thrall is done, along with a couple of chapters of the next Alice Long story. I also have another two chapters of the superhero story I mentioned in the last status post.

Letting myself switch stories when inspiration strikes seems to be working better than trying to chain myself to a single book, so I’m going to continue to experiment with it this month. I can live with having a longer delay between books in the same series if it means I get more total work out the door. But I’m going to give this new method anther month or two before I call it a success, so we’ll see how it goes.

63 thoughts on “December Update

  1. How many chapters does that currently make in the respective novels (Thrall, Alice Long 2, 1)?

    Do you have any idea, roughly speaking, how many chapters total there will be in them?

    Somewhat OT (and perhaps improper. if so i apologize): What is your take on the recent changes made by Patreon to their fee structure, and do you think it will impact you?(*)

    _______________________________
    * = For those who don’t know what i am talking about, but are interested:

    https://patreon.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115005631963

    a brief analysis:

    https://gamingballistic.com/2017/12/08/patreon-redux-another-way-of-looking-at-it/

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  2. I’m really looking forward to all the novels when you get them finished and on sale. I became a fan when I encountered your Daniel Black novels and really enjoyed the first Alice Long book when i read it. I’m eagerly anticipating the chance to read the continuation of both stories and I’m sure I’ll enjoy any other work, like this superhero novel you are talking about, as well.
    Keep up the great work Mr. Brown!

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  3. I just want you to know that I love your books. Also, what happened to Avila’s kitchen items that was locked by Daniel in the first book? Just wondering 😀 Anyway can’t wait for the 4th book.

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  4. Thanks for the update can’t wait for the next release waiting with great anticipation. Also if daniel does create an atom bomb what’s he going to use as a delivery system pretty sure he doesn’t have any ballistic missile’s lying around. Oh and not to be that guy but I believe you made a error in your post you said “although by efforts” when I think you meant although my efforts”. Anyway good luck with your writing.

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    1. The Dark Portal. That is a really terrifying weapon, which he needs because an enemy requiring a nuke might well not be physically on Earthh. And it is one of the issues he would face, should Kozalin fall.

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      1. Yea but it runs on human souls so unless he makes his own soulless version that’s not gonna work we already know where he stands on that.

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      2. How shall I put this? If things are desparate and you have pregnant wives at home, ethics tend to take second place. And if he is ready to go nuclear, the situation will indeed be very bad. He might even get volunteers. And if he does not do it, do you really think Cerise wouldn’t grab some unlucky bystander and the device to do what needs to be done?

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      3. The Dark Portal is just a method for the old wizard to resurrect himself. It’s why it only accepts human souls. You wait and see…

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      4. Dark Portal === Thrall.
        Thrall implies under control; I imagine the control is based upon the old wizard.
        Daniel will not use the portal; but must destroy it.
        Calling it now.

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      5. To put it bluntly: Why?

        The Archmage surely was not the nicest person, but he definitely was on the side of mankind, just because he was a man himself. What is in for Daniel if he fights him? What would Benito (by the way – is that a pun on Mussolini?) fight Daniel? For Kozalin or Varmland – doomed on a freezing and starving continent?

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  5. What ever works for you man. Far be it for me to tell an artist how to make their art. I’m just glad to here your still chugging along:)

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  6. Really looking forward to the next Daniel Black! Having characters modify the world around them is always one of my favorite parts of any story and you’re doing a great job with that aspect. My buddies and I have a running conversation about if we got sucked into that world what elements would be take for ourselves. To get my fix I’m relistening to Fimbulwinter on Audio.

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    1. And what would yours be?
      The question is interesting. I would definitely take fire, as fimbulwinter means cold and if you tell me I need to be in battle right away, fire would be my first choice. Healing also goes without saying. Though I think his choice of flesh as an element was peculiar. If you gave me the task to visualize that it would be health or life. What I definitely not would have chosen would be Earth sorcery.
      I admit my first choice would likely have been fire and then healing. And then possibly air hoping it would give me flight or something like space-time. I really doubt I’d have the presence of mind to think of force or mana as elements.

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      1. I can’t imagine I’d have thought of Mana though once it has been suggested it becomes the obvious must have. I could see Energy as an element since that’s essentially acceleration and deceleration of nuclear forces which should give a wide power base and would let you both build and destroy (ice is just low energy water, mist is high energy water, etc). I’d have probably gone with life over flesh which couldn’t have done some of the things DB does but would give animation based abilities and more traditional healing. Then there would have to be something divination based such as a knowledge element that allows you to learn faster and gain information in different ways. That way you could acquire critical skills that we don’t have in our non-magical and modern world and get information about your enemies. Daniel is always playing from behind the eight ball and that would get old in a hurry.

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      2. Mana was the master stroke. I totally agree about that.
        In hindsight it seems clear that his choices were not entirely his own.
        Though why did he leave it last? Did he think it might not work, or did the stuff he learn taking the earlier sorceries influence his later choices?

        If you say Energy, would that replace Fire?
        And if I may, how did you select? Would you follow some rational plan with synergies between abilities? Or would you see problems, prioritize them and select a solution for each individually?
        If so, what would your list of problems be?
        And if you say life over flesh does that mean both thoughts would have occured to you? Or is that a preference in hindsight?

        DB himself addressed some concerns very well and others not at all. DB is infrastructure with a sideline of combat and healing. He did not choose anything for mobility, sensors, supplies, command or communications. In fact he did not even consider how to talk to people at the other end.

        His approach is very much in tools. He did not even think about using flesh magic in his first fight. He might have blinded the troll or even made it drop dead. Nor did he consider picking some indirect approach like picking mind magic, to just tell his enemies to go away.

        And he did not think about more than just the immediate battle. It seemed clear to him that they needed to get away from the house after the battle. In hindsight that was wrong. He never broke contact with the goblins until after the giant attack. Without the luck of meeting Captain Rain and his company. They would have dies during the first few days.
        And that was to an extent predictable. You are not going to outrun on foot with baggage any enemy who has any kind of mount, magical sensing, any form of communication or is faster than humans. In hindsight they should have all hidden in the vault he made for Avilla’s supplies.
        Yet he forsaw a need for mobility but did not select powers based on it. Why?

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  7. hi e william . i’m checking daily to see if either of your series has the new long awaited addition. Already read them 3 times. If they were hard copy they’d be pretty foxed by now. I was hooked in by Alice Long and I then found the DB series. I was totally impressed that both are well written but have a very different style as well as genre. A little hard to reconcile both styles with the same author. I like that, an unpredictable author. Still waiting. and waiting lol. Compared to some authors who churn out readable but 2 dimensional stuff, yours is awesome so the wait is worth it. (better be!!!) Someone already mentioned Avilla and Cerise’s stuff back at her grannys place which also crossed my mind. So dude, still waiting or did i already say that. Sorry don’t want to jiggle your elbow buuut!!!

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  8. I have read perilous waif about 3 times since I first picked it up and I can’t wait to read the second book I’ll definitely be one of those customers who finished it the night it comes out.

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  9. As always i’m glad to see you are working on the next Daniel Black book. We’ve all been waiting and rereading. As for the changes I would have made in what powers he took, I would change earth to nature, would have all elements plus the 99.9% of nature that is space including solar power, black wholes, dark matter, etc. One thing I would like to see Daniel do is thaw out the moat around the city. Seems like a logical choice as when he first saw the city it was mentioned that the moat was like a small lake around the city, but frozen and giants had just finished walking up an smashing a section of wall.

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    1. I can second it. I need my fix of DB.

      Regarding the sorceries, well, it might have failed, if you overspread. Or it might leave you with a stupid power like making flowers bloom and control gophers.
      It leads me to a point however. Does the knowledge of the transferee influence the result? Would flesh include healing infections if the sorcerer did not know the germ theory of disease when getting his sorceries?
      On another vein, DB can generate life. Otherwise he could not just conjure fertile soil. It needs to include soil fauna. Did he know that when you got his sorcery?

      On a meta note, is this the correct forum for such discussions? It feels like have a party in Mr. Brown’s garden without permission. Should we move to Reddit or something?

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  10. I first discovered you through Naruto fanfic lol, and have read all of your work since. Any chance of you going back to write more on the “Indomitable” story? Can’t wait for the next Danial Black/Alice Long books!

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  11. if i had the money i would be tossing it at you and tel you to write faster. alas i do not have that kind of money. but come on i want the next daniel black book. please?

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  12. I think that’s how Brandon Sanderson does it and he is one of the most prolific big name fantasy writers out there these days. He jumps around between series in order to keep inspiration and creativity more fresh. Your works have all been great so far so it isn’t as if I’m looking forward to your next Daniel Black book more than your next Alice Long book. At least not to a significant enough degree for this to be a bummer. If it lets you write more easily/quickly overall then I’m all for it. Though, if you take on too many series at once, it might get a little worrisome. Like 10 years without any releases, then BAM 5 books from 5 different series all at once — by which time interest and awareness might’ve waned drastically for each given series.

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  13. Having just finished the DB series on audible after reading it through twice I want to create a Fimbulwinter military. What would all you do based on what we see at the end of Extermination? The heroes who work for Daniel are getting really powerful but their military game isn’t improving a lot. The holes I see are melee fighters outside the 30 or so dryads and mobility for an expeditionary force. I think I’d create the trollheart or frostheart guard out of humans who eat the hearts of trolls or giants (trolls and giants? What would that do?). Avilla could do the heavy lifting on this one since she’s the one that created the Wolfen. The problem of recruitment of trained soldiers could be done by Elin when she’s out healing. There should be militia and noble guards getting shattered in these huge attacks. When a noble dies their guard force may become unattached and I bet lots of them will get wounded guarding their lord. As they are being healed and are jobless (for a while, no trained warrior will go unemployed long) that could be a primo time to bring them in. Humans who eat the hearts of trolls are giants with Avilla’s ritual should be MUCH stronger and tougher. Start putting them in inch think armor that no unmodified human could even lift with massive damage weapons and body shields. Add magic to those and you should have a force that can mix it up with Andregi and come out on top. If they could do that while the regulars form a base of fire the heroes could jump in and out as they are needed. Then for mobility I’d use something like Cerise’s bike, but ramped down for mortal reflexes. Put a cow catcher on the front and a “sidecar” style gun turret on the left and right with a single heavy cannon going forward the length of the bike that could be fired by the driver. Cover them all in the mica cages like the guys on Intrepid then put a couple of steps on the back outside the armor so infantry guys could step on and sit down (maybe three or four across, nothing big) and get off in a hurry to engage and enemy. Even if they only went 25 or 30 miles an hour that is equivalent of horse cavalry that doesn’t get tired and can go over snow/water without bogging down while offering huge amounts of firepower in a scouting/screening mission. There have got to be some cavalry guys in the city that have lost their mounts or who have been too wounded to fight. I imagine the three armored skimmers rolling out with five or six bikes ahead of them and to each side, four trollhearts on each. Meeting engagements with the enemy and when you find a weak spot drop off your grunts and continue to stir up trouble while they close in and the regular infantry deploys from the skimmers. Ideally with air support from some more purpose designed future versions of the Intrepid. They could also very quickly react to support the city in event of another breech and only the vehicles would take much of Daniel’s time. Thoughts?

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    1. Yes. Actually one thought. Why?

      In other words, what is their mission? Why would Daniel want his troops to get into a melee with enemies? He has artillery, a budding air force and strategic magic, all good for killing at a distance. So why give up those advantages? Ideally he’d slaughter his enemies with artillery guided by aircraft without them able to hit back at all.
      Building a good army is not about being good at everything. It is about being very good at something your enemies cannot counter for the tasks you need your army for. DB is never going to have the numbers necessary for infantry combat at any any scale beyond commando raids. He already has the people for that.

      The only task he needs lots of people for is lookouts on the walls.

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      1. Daniel needs a flexible assault force that can function without him so he doesn’t have to personally defend Kosalin every time it’s attacked. I’m a little surprised the Skimmers have not figured in the fight more strongly. They are also slightly misdesigned for this purpose, being armored personnel carriers instead of tanks. Create remote controls for the guns, crew with four men who are entirely inside the armor and build thirty of the things. They would break any assault.

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      2. Mainly to defend Kozalin. Every time he leaves the house they get attacked and he has to personally save the day when he returns. Even Brand has a group of retainers that do good work without him there. The more he can contribute to the defense of the city the better his chances for recruitment of power players as the losses stack up and everyone starts to look for a way out. Have a hard enough group that they can seal a breach without needing a coven member present at all times. That gives you more options. They would also be good to have on the Intrepid’s rescue missions. Not everyone breaks and runs from bombardment. Some people you just have to kill and the smaller explosions from above won’t take down everybody. It would also be nice if there was a better guard force able to mix it up around the coven members. I wasn’t intending to talk about huge formations to take and hold ground. I was mainly discussing a good strike force to take a point objective, give a coven member time to do their thing and withdraw while causing maximum harm to the enemy. It seems like the big hole at the moment is a force than can mix it up and hold a line of battle without one of the heavy hitters around. In the undead attack on the harbor Daniel mentions a few times that if he hadn’t shown up when he did his expeditionary force would have been wiped out. That’s no good.

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      3. Defending Kozalin is a mission, but there are three points

        a – it is a secondary mission. If Kozalin falls, that will be bad. If Black Island were to fall, it would be a catastrophe.
        b – it is a numbers game. He will never have enough people to hold the walls or plug more than one gap. And is it it worth the risk? Now if it is worth the risk, he can use his best forces
        c – any time spent on building new, less valuable forces, is lost on upgrading his best forces and his fortress. And there is a lot to be done. His people need a way to repair the mortars and air defenses without him. He needs more defenses at home.
        And his personal force field and flight ring could be used by any magic user at least. The Elves surely could build him some war golems to be crewed and so on.

        Finally remember that it is unclear how and whether he can feed Kozalin in the long run anyway. So he might not have a need to defend it in the long run.

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      4. I agree to a point, if Danial’s troops get into melee then he did something wrong, most of his weapons are based on the modern concepts of kill them before they get to you. That said there will always be a need to get up close and personal as when clearing a town via door to door incursions, I’m not sure if a trolls heart would include it’s size and strength, you may just get stupid and healthy. the best option i think would be Dwarven stoutness with elven agility and a cats reflexes. Healing amulets would be nice but i don’t know if a normal person would be able to use one.
        The wolfen will make good shock troops, high endurance, good strength and reflexes as well as enhanced senses, the best way for them to be armored I think is to go with medium armor keeping mobility and flexibility in mind. Chain mail or some type of scale armor (Dragon scales, Sea serpent scales? what is flesh sorcery for if you cant replicate stuff). Weapons, I’d take the rifles, force edged bayonets, maybe force edged axes (no grinders, with that plasma Waaay too many accidents could occur). I say Force edged because any encounter with Magic dispelling wouldn’t leave the troop totally defenseless.
        As for heavy troops Danial could copy Leo’s armor, or make a wearable Golom like the dwarves had with the controller riding along inside, maybe a smaller version. strap on a 20mm cannon and a big axe and go to town.
        Danial really needs to get some help, A team of dwarves for metal working, a group of gnomes for tinkering (rang finder anyone) and a few sages for figuring out the science (firing arcs, windage, weapon ranges ect…) he doesn’t have to figure it all out himself.

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      5. “That said there will always be a need to get up close and personal as when clearing a town via door to door incursions”

        Well, that is the point.There will be tasks that would require that. That does not mean that you need to do them. Daniel is not in the nice situation that he can build a military which can do every desirable mission. He can only afford a military that can do the necessary missions.
        In that concrete example, if that town cannot defend itself, it will be lost. There will always be missions he cannot do. He needs to acknowledge that and concentrate on the necessary. Those who try to do everything get nothing done. So we need to ask what Daniel absolutely must fight for.

        Regarding weapons there are a lot of options. However, there are two principal points I’d like to make

        a – Daniel is too much into the offense. He abandoned shields for no good reason. He neglects air defense. His troops have no defense against curses or gas or insects

        b – He neglects stealth. He could make a subsonic rifle with heavy slugs. Sort of a cross between a crossbow and a rifle

        Regarding healing, if amulets can heal Daniel while he is unconcious and rats, they can heal ordinary people.

        And yes, he needs help. He needs to establish research teams. And likely schools for specialised training.

        And PS, you can live as a vegetarian.

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    2. I keep forgetting to mention if flesh sorcery can enhance growth could Danial make a Factory machine to grow meat? that would greatly enhance the food productivity on the island, beef chunks, venison, hell camel or felwolf whatever happens to be available. if he cant grow the meat separately how about accelerated growth, rapidly increasing a rabbit’s growth rate would make a rabbit farm capable of feeding a huge population.

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  14. Ever since Daniel built the disk to break into the dwarf cavern, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of an Earth Submarine. Spells to banish and conjure earth and stone in any direction, force magic to move it, maybe a quad gun on top. Can get into or out of almost any fight, cannot be chased. Three or four would do a crazy amount of damage to an Andregei siege camp.

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    1. That’s brilliant. What a nightmare it would be to have that thing surface, blow the stuffings out of everybody and then sink back below ground.

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      1. Well, the first time or maybe the first few times. After that the enemy would be pressing his ears to the ground. And you’d surface into metal eating fog or a cloud of insects.

        “Never assume that an enemy is incompetent”

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    2. Until you meet an enemy with earth sorcery.
      Though I admit it is a cool idea. However, if he met an enemy too tough to beat with skimmers and airships, can he assume that enemy lacks the magic that makes a subterrane unviable? And how do you sense where you are going? If he can use magic to look outside, can magic be used to locate the vessel?

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  15. What other enchanted items would all of you try to have created? It seems like having the other coven members make some would be the best use of available power since Daniel is pretty well occupied. How amazing would it be if Elin started making enchanted bandages or something like that. Start teaching first aid and how to clean woulds, set breaks, etc. Then have a bandage that wraps around the wound that does healing energy. I bet she could make a ton of those things without bothering Daniel at all. I’d also strain myself to melt the moat around the city and make incoming attacks more difficult. You should be able to launch heat stones from the walls without being in danger and a functional moat would degrade another force’s attack ability or at least make them work harder. I’d also expand the open portion of the river and try to get some fishing boats working out of Black Island. Having larger number of people around will require lots of protein for good health and you’d want to use the animals for breeding stock more than for food until you have large amounts of them available.

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    1. He’s crazy worried about attrition in his defense force. A factory enchantment to make human-physiology healing amulets seems like a no brainer – all his defenders should wear them.

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      1. Exactly. And the other one offs are candidates.

        – the fire resistance ring he made for Korak
        – his own curse barrier (if it lets the mana links work)
        – the enchanted shields he produced on the trip to Kozalin

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    2. Well, as already mentioned, if Daniel can make a collar for rats, he can make a collar for men, too.
      Daniel would have to make a few blank factory stones first. In fact, if he can, making a factory stone for blank or programmable factory stones would take the idea one step further.

      Elin: water supplies for the skimmers and the Intrepid. A field shower. Magical scuba gear. Magical gas masks

      Cerise: shadow grenades, magic ward rings, frost resistance rings

      Avilla: luck potions, gingerbread golems, armored coats for more people, preserved field rations

      The Groves: magical fish lures, modified animals, chemical weapons, bioweapons

      The Elves: weather control, weather prediction, weaponized storms, magical quivers or ammo pouches, golems

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    3. First off, thank you Mr. Brown for such a wonderful Series, it certainly fires the imagination, I will keep reading any book you care to write.
      as far as enchantments:

      Cerise needs to steel the bodies left over from the black gate and slap some witch ghosts into them (as long as she doesn’t get mother-whats-her-name accidentally)

      Avilla can make some armor out of carbon fiber, it wont protect from blunt force but it would be near impossible to cut but with Daniels push back enchantment it should make great ultra-lightweight armor.

      Sefwin needs to start training up a bevy of cat girls, with the carbon fiber armor they would morph into a clan of ninjas. Maybe Tina could help, being the mother of the goddess of battle has to come with major Skills eventually.

      Danial could banish most of the weight on the island and either float it, drive it or fly it. having it mobile would open up all kinds of combat possibilities, as well as escape options. Chasing down that big dog (or running from) when he slips his chain is going to require lots of Mobility.

      Danial could morph the hover bikes into 1 to 2 man sting ships with his flight ring enchantment 1 pilot 1 gunner/bombardier using the AIK guns he developed for the Island and his special bullets, piloted by dark elves with safe fall rings. air superiority baby!

      The hover tanks just need the AIK guns added for ground defense. though some anti personnel options would help, maybe an encircling flame wall or whirling force blades. I think the best option would simply be a force bubble… with spikes, yea and whirling force blades that spit Cerise’s curses and toss out an army of Avilla’s gingerbread men wielding miniature grinders….

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      1. “thank you Mr. Brown for such a wonderful Series”
        Exactly. Seconded.

        Does Cerise know that the Dark Portal runs on souls? IIRC she had left for home base when the operation of the Dark Portal was discussed between Steelbinder and the Prince. It is a brilliant idea in all other respects. And of course combinable. Resurrected murder witches in cat girl bodies.

        Regarding the flight rings you make me wonder why he would use aircraft at all, unless it is for freight or passengers. The overhead of flight seems to be minute. The logical solution to that would seem to be a magical Iron Man suit in form of a crewed golem with an included flight ring. Or maybe even piloted by a familiar spirit.

        And I think he is making an error by using the skimmers as troop carriers. He should build real hover tanks for battle armed with real cannons. There really is no point in DB building a sizable infantry force. He will never have large numbers. He needs people on his walls and the rest is better used in a magomechanized force (hover tanks, mobile artillery and golems)

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      2. Carbon fiber is quite flammable, so in fantasy setting where everyone slings fireballs and lightning, its not that great, especially with effort needed to produce it.

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  16. OK, I am rereading again. And again I am astonished a hidden subtle things. Or maybe I am seeing things that don’t exist. Coming to the action in Skogheim something hit me. That is fishy. The timing cannot be accidental. Brand attacks at the exact night DB plants the device, yet after he is finished. So what causes that.

    1. Avilla’s potion of luck.
    Frankly it is possible. Yet I do not believe it. Avilla would have want Daniel to get away undetected. And meeting Brand is not luck. He will report meeting Daniel and the Aesir will learn he has a weapon of mass destruction. They will do something. Not good at all.

    2. The Aesir are watching the earth resonance points.
    Possible, but how did they know where the group was headed?

    3. There is a spy on Black Island
    That is a possibility

    4. Hecate, Bast and/or Hestia told the Aesir
    Now you may think this is crazy. But let me explain

    Why does Brand raid the Halls of Slumber? Daniel speculated that it is a deception and the real mission has a connection with the implant. The issue is that it does not explain the timing. So what do the Aesir gain in the attack.

    a – simply salvage the resources. Kozalin in their mind is about to fall. So best make sure many heroes and wizards fall in battle rather than flee and perish from hunger and cold or leave Europe.

    b – remove competitors. They want to trick and tempt Daniel into taking over Kozalin. The advantage is twofold. Daniel does the Aesir an unpaid favor defending their people (and the Archmage’s creations) and is forced to reveal his capabilities

    c – Brand will observe how Daniel’s weapon works
    Is that good for Hecate? Yes it is. It is in effect like inviting enemy observers to have a look at your nukes. Your enemy now is sure you really have them.
    Announcing the attack before it happens
    I – makes the Aesir fear her
    II – makes it likelier that the Aesir see Daniel merely as an agent, not the creator of the weapon

    Gaea may blame Odin. Yet Odin certainly knows that he did not attack the Halls of Slumber with a mysterious new weapon. So Hecate decided to take the initiative. If she cannot stayed hidden, at least she can be feared and come out and openly gain new worshippers in Kozalin.

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    1. I would like to see a multi barrel sub-machine gun (see the gun from Deep Rising) where each barrel summons a different type of bullet (explosive, bouncer, armor piercing, etc.).
      Also Pykrete so Elin could make fortifications like Daniel can.
      Enchanted spike strips.
      With enough witches they could create hundreds of thousands of gingerbread men with force blades, shadow weapons, lift rings, and iron summoning belts.

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      1. I would like to see his gun upgraded, too!

        All of Daniel’s guns can shoot about once per second, because the bullet-factory-enchantment is not faster.
        With the AA (anti aircraft) guns he circumvented this problem by using four barrels (= four shots per second)

        Why not add a second (or more) bullet enchantments for each weapon/barrel for twice the firepower? Or add a second barrel, so now his Magnum-T-Rex-revolver looks really like a sawed off shotgun.

        In order to limit the power balance this will only be implemented with his personal gun, because the enchantments need to be balanced/calibrated with mana-sorcery…

        What about new ammunition?
        So far he only has three types of “bullet blue prints” in his six-shooter.

        High-velocity-rounds for more oompf/penetration power?
        Either upgrade the force slug-throwing enchantment (on DB’s gun) or use bullets with an additional force magic rocket engine to further accelerate them?

        What about a mage-killer?
        A bullet with recurring dispel effects to penetrate magical defences and scramble magical abilities of mages / magical creatures after hitting.
        (= copy of the mage slayer bolt used against him by the dwarves)

        I like the glue round (mentioned in the old blog).
        Imagine a big glue blob (say 2 gallons/7,6 litres) hitting a roughly human-sized target.
        Okay perhaps a little bit too much….but even quarter of that would pin you to the wall/floor like flypaper.
        Think of water balloons…0,05 gallons / 0,2 litres will drench you good. 😉
        It would also be effective against bigger opponents. Glue their limbs, weapons together/against their body/ on the floor…paste their maws, eyes, ears shut…(suffocation?)…
        If you add a numbing/paralysing agent to the mix it would be even more effective.

        The longer I think about it…the more powerful…(insert Count von Count laugh here).

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  17. Until now Daniel/the author used his universal structural-reinforcement-spell to toughen every material (stone, iron, aluminum….).
    So no new materials are really necessary.
    In the end a wooden sword with a reinforcement spell may be as strong as the one of the kind (Excalibur-like) sword made of meteoric adamantium….
    ….but it lacks flavor.

    Hence I would like to see some visible progress.
    Some steel instead of nickel-iron, perhaps some adamantium or gold/platinum instead of anything at hand to enchant….make the items VISIBLY stronger/different….so we can enjoy them (even more).

    Perhaps one of his dark elves did some 50 years as a smith and knows how to make steel or even more exotic materials? Hire a dwarven smith? Or a sage? Perhaps the wizards have information about exotic materials DB can access?

    At the end of book 3 Daniel fought against a neanderthal demigod.
    He won but the powers of his earth talisman were stretched to its limit (and beyond).
    Can Daniel put up with some random pimped mutant savage being stronger than his priced magical items? Noooooo….ergo a power-up is needed.
    Instead of only strengthening the reinforcement and levitation enchantments he could magically insert a diamond (to hold the even stronger enchantment) and from now on the talisman (mark 2) will shimmer a little in bright light or when operating at full power….and can cut even bones of hardy demigods…

    Or now the (mark 2) talisman conjures steel instead of plain nickel-iron….

    Or it is now made of basalt and has heat-/fire powers….

    Perhaps there is a natural/magical rule saying that materials can only be reinforced so far with magic (even unlimited magic), so high quality / exotic materials become more important?

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    1. I am afraid I have to disagree. If he is to do more undercover shit he cannot use suspicious and unique equipment. Mara was right that he has elves for that now. But if he insists he should strengthen his body.

      Otherwise the battle that really left him short was against the dwarves. There he had almost his full equipment, yet he needed to improvise and almost died.

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  18. At the end of “Extermination” Daniel examined the translation ring given to him by the dark elves for the undercover mission.

    He mentioned that the ring had the whole language encoded in its magic. Later he speculated if it would be possible to encode arbitrary skills in an enchantment.

    That is a really powerful idea!

    Instant skills with magic?

    The Conclave’s magic library in a magic item with direct mind-link? Like Magic internet?

    Instant expert combat skills per magical ring (i.e. with a “skill-copy” of dark elf martial arts)?

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