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Thread: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

  1. #101

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    I disagree with your original use of the Overmind simply because I don't think that was the way the Overmind was truly portrayed in the games. Yes, the way they did it had problems, but the cerebrates merging together to create a new Overmind makes complete sense, from there point of view.

    Citation needed. The Overmind did use the term "made manifest" in relation to using the Khaydarin crystals, but we have no idea how literally this is meant, given how flowery the Overmind's language is.
    Not quite true. The character entry for the Overmind in the manual specifically states it as a "bodiless entity". As such, it is reasonable to think the Overmind has no form to speak of until it distinctly decides to make itself manifest at the end of the campaign. This gives the impression that the Overmind isn't necessarily tied down to a physical form nor that it is necessary for it to rely on a physical form in order to exist. I know it's maybe easier for the layman audience members peace of mind to think of things in the physical in order to make sense of it, but the Overmind is supposed to be an unconventional, high-mind, sci-fi concept afterall.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    The real issue concerning your complaint is that the UED tried to use the Overmind for its own purposes, creating the whole no-agency thing. I'm saying that the cerebrate part makes sense (despite never being properly shown). The UED part, well, that's a separate issue.
    No, the UED is indeed a separate but compounding issue, but I'm in no way negatively biased against the UED (I actually like them as a concept - I actually like a lot of the ideas that come from the Sc universe, it's just that I rail more against the execution, which is becoming more obvious and appallingly bad) in this specific regard. It goes back to you saying that the Overmind coming back at all devalues Tassadar's sacrifice but it goes beyond that. It kind of potentially devalues the consequence and death of the Overmind as well if it were to comeback in any way. That's why I partially agreed with you about why I think of my very early fanon as being a bit more fanciful than I initially thought it'd be.

    The only way the Overmind can comeback without devaluing Tassdar's sacrifice or the inherent consequence of the Overminds death, is to have some consequence of the Overminds death on the K-sector Zerg to linger. This could be in the form of them being forced to evolve on their own and thrive without a hivemind. More importantly, this evolution should also prevent them from being enthralled by the Overmind coming back, too, (U]if[/U] they indeed decided on bringing it back. That way, the return of the Overmind isn't used merely as plot device (as it plainly is in BW).

    Having "some consequence linger" is actually one of the biggest recurring issues in Starcraft in general. FanaticTemplar once said something about this when he railed against the Zerg being so OP in BW because Sc1 ended with victory for the Protoss and that its ending was clear that an even-handed status quo amongst the races was achieved. I agreed with him mostly there, too, but I was a bit more forgiving than he because the initial idea and consequence of the Zerg still being a threat of a kind despite losing the Overmind was retained - a consequence that lingered - despite it spiralling to the Zerg being actually OP later on within BW. Then we had the UED in BW. We had some massive discussions about that, too... and where we sort of had a role reversal. He felt the UED was so completely pointless by their coming and going since all impact they had was cancelled out in the end. Most of this went into our discussions of Mengsk's position and eventual setup in Sc2. He claimed that Mengsk was deemed untouchable and already prone to miraculous recovery in BW so that, in turn, justifies the position we see him in Sc2. I took the other route of considering the UED should have had a "consequence that lingered" in that Mengsk should remain defeated and that the Terran landscape should've changed again by the time Sc2 because Mengsk was only just a man and not one with infinite improbable comebacks up his sleeve. That it didn't follow through on this in Sc2 and how this probably setup this unhealthy precedent for "plot-armoured characters until a dramatic moment was required" is kinda sad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    Which is another reason why I'd like a cerebrate to come back. That way he can confront Kerrigan for taking the Swarm into a direction it was never intended.
    I don't have an issue with this as a concept, merely in its positioning and timing of it happening. It would've been perfect around the time of BW/as an alternate take on BW, but it would be a very poor use of this were it to come as part of Sc3 because it would seem quite contrived given all that we've been through already. It's also the reason why I have reservations about Sc3 going back and relying on nostalgia and/or going back to UED as the main antagonist (given that whilst the concept of them is quite rad and their characters were memorable, their implementation in the narrative left a lot to be desired the first time around). It all just seems too pat and pandering now. Sc2, in terms of story, was always going to be a sequel for the sake of sequel and it's said it turned actually turned out to be nothing more than that. If Sc3 does see the light day, I'm predicting that in terms of its story, it's just going to be a sequel for the sake of a "proper" sequel. Ugh, sequelitis is real people.
    Last edited by Turalyon; 11-12-2017 at 09:41 AM.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


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  2. #102

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    Which is another reason why I'd like a cerebrate to come back. That way he can confront Kerrigan for taking the Swarm into a direction it was never intended.
    Nissa, the problem here is you're not willing to accept change. You're still going with the whole "Once a monster, ALWAYS a monster." In that regard this is why I was fine with the SC Evolution book, because it at least tried to portray the swarm in a different light.

    After all, back in SC1 the Protoss too were portrayed as homicidal monsters given their actions in burning terran worlds just to kill the zerg. Even Raynor's relationship with Tassadar started off badly. But Raynor chose to believe there was more to the Protoss than what met the eye. In a way this was what Valerian was trying to explain to Artanis in the Evolution book: if people can accept the Firstborn aren't what they once thought, why can't the same hold true for the Zerg?

    You're acting like what was genetically embedded into them can NEVER change. If we follow that logic, humanity never should have evolved beyond the barbarian age, since that was embedded into us so long ago.

  3. #103

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    Nissa, the problem here is you're not willing to accept change. You're still going with the whole "Once a monster, ALWAYS a monster." In that regard this is why I was fine with the SC Evolution book, because it at least tried to portray the swarm in a different light.
    Could someone explain to me what this means/has to do with anything?


    Tura, I won't disagree with you about the manual (mainly because I can't find what I did with my manual pdf), but I think the Overmind's "bodiless" nature, if this is indeed what it says in the manual, is kind of a contradiction with the games. The game itself doesn't make that explicitly clear, and indeed seems to imply that the Overmind has a body.

    In any case, I don't see "timing" as an issue. I mean, I would if I considered SC2 canon, but even then not by much. I'm far more concerned with fixing the story than I am with any sense of what goes when. As far as I'm concerned, one can replay the original game, and if I create a sequel (hypothetically speaking) they can play it immediately afterwards and the sense of story flow isn't interrupted, despite the fact that my hypothetical sequel was made years later.

    In other words, I have no problem with a cerebrate arriving after BW. It's perfectly fine. Kerrigan has been wrecking havoc with the swarm, the new Overmind was killed, many other cerebrates were killed, and the one that Kerrigan lets live is her slave. This would be the point of departure for an escaping cerebrate, not his arrival. Likewise, given that the Swarm has been exploring deep space for a long time, it would could potentially take years for an outside cerebrate to return, and even if he did arrive in time for BW, he might sit to the side and watch for a bit, to see how best to act.

    There's no timing issues, so long as SC2 is out of the picture.
    "Seeing Fenix once more perplexes me. I feel sadness, when I should feel joy."
    - Artanis.

  4. #104

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    Hmmmm... Using this train of logic would actually justify my original, long-ago fanon of the Overmind still being alive/not actually being killed by Tassadar. I already agreed that bringing back the Overmind in any way was somewhats spurious in the same vein that bringing back the cerebrates would also be spurious, now you're backflipping by only specifying it's ok for the cerebrates but not the Overmind.



    I agree with Misla's response to this. The way the the Overmind is brought back in the BW narrative is what, in part, renders the whole race into a plot device (ie: something to be fought over and used) rather than a distinct third race.





    I'm sorry, but Nissa's argument is objectively more solid than yours. Kerrigan was not the exact predestined determinant the Overmind was looking for, but she was the one it had happened to find at a moment of opportunity.



    No. The idea of "the determinant" is the plot device, not Kerrigan specifically. She just happens to be the determinant, as deemed by the Overmind.



    This is also wrong since the Terran population being in the billions is a retcon in Sc2. That it's rare and difficult to find is the reason why the Zerg haven't captured a human psionic before the events of Sc1 started because otherwise we would've seen evidence of it and that the Zerg wouldn't be bothered with the Terrans nor be attracted to the Psi emitters. If it did find a Terran psionic before the events of Sc1 started proper, then the Sc1 story we got wouldn't have played out as it did. It was only via sheer luck and coincidence (watsonian explanation)/ contrived coincidence (Doylist explanation) that it found Kerrigan when it did. Indeed, if it was so easy to find a Terran with psionics and assimilate them, it would not even be necessary to even include the Terrans or their perspectives in the main campaign at all.
    The Terrans stand no chance in a prolonged conflict without a massive population. Skim the links in my signature, they address your complaints. I don't have the time to copypaste everything here.

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    Nissa, the problem here is you're not willing to accept change. You're still going with the whole "Once a monster, ALWAYS a monster." In that regard this is why I was fine with the SC Evolution book, because it at least tried to portray the swarm in a different light.

    After all, back in SC1 the Protoss too were portrayed as homicidal monsters given their actions in burning terran worlds just to kill the zerg. Even Raynor's relationship with Tassadar started off badly. But Raynor chose to believe there was more to the Protoss than what met the eye. In a way this was what Valerian was trying to explain to Artanis in the Evolution book: if people can accept the Firstborn aren't what they once thought, why can't the same hold true for the Zerg?

    You're acting like what was genetically embedded into them can NEVER change. If we follow that logic, humanity never should have evolved beyond the barbarian age, since that was embedded into us so long ago.
    The Zerg are boring without their horrifyingly alien quest for universal conquest and incongruous sophisticated King James Bible/Shakespeare style of speech. The Zerg spent millions of years engineering themselves to become the ultimate lifeforms, to become better killing machines. They are unable to coexist with other life on a cellular level without assimilating it. Their hive clusters are full of deadly pathogens that regulate their physiology while killing anything not Zerg. The primary producer and decomposer of their ecosystem is a voracious colony of grey goo that eats planets. The vast majority of their population is of animal intelligence and produce greater intelligences by networking their minds. They are completely worthless for anything less than universal conquest. What do you expect them to do without that? Bake cookies? Write poetry? Play smartphone games? Perform on broadway?

    The Protoss example is not remotely comparable, because the Protoss have internal factions who disagreed over whether the genocide was necessary and did not undergo the narrative decay the Zerg did. The genocide was totally necessary and would have stopped the Zerg, but the Templar refused due to their foolish idealistic compassion, which adds moral complexity to the story. In fact, the Zerg seeing humanity as a threat deserving genocide makes the Templar more justified in their actions without invalidating the Judicator's complaints. It's certainly better than the absurd "hard man making hard decisions" meme on spacebattles (the hero of a badly written military fiction commits genocide for trivial reasons).

  5. #105
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    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    ^— hit the nail on the head.

  6. #106

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The Zerg are boring without their horrifyingly alien quest for universal conquest and incongruous sophisticated King James Bible/Shakespeare style of speech. The Zerg spent millions of years engineering themselves to become the ultimate lifeforms, to become better killing machines. They are unable to coexist with other life on a cellular level without assimilating it. Their hive clusters are full of deadly pathogens that regulate their physiology while killing anything not Zerg. The primary producer and decomposer of their ecosystem is a voracious colony of grey goo that eats planets. The vast majority of their population is of animal intelligence and produce greater intelligences by networking their minds. They are completely worthless for anything less than universal conquest. What do you expect them to do without that? Bake cookies? Write poetry? Play smartphone games? Perform on broadway?

    The Protoss example is not remotely comparable, because the Protoss have internal factions who disagreed over whether the genocide was necessary and did not undergo the narrative decay the Zerg did. The genocide was totally necessary and would have stopped the Zerg, but the Templar refused due to their foolish idealistic compassion, which adds moral complexity to the story. In fact, the Zerg seeing humanity as a threat deserving genocide makes the Templar more justified in their actions without invalidating the Judicator's complaints. It's certainly better than the absurd "hard man making hard decisions" meme on spacebattles (the hero of a badly written military fiction commits genocide for trivial reasons).
    And I keep telling you that you don't know if that's really the case even using the SC1 lore. Zerus had too harsh an environment for the Zerg parasites to survive very long prior to the arrival of the Xel'Naga. You simply don't know WHAT they would have done had the Xel'Naga not come along. You could argue that because the Xel'Naga helped them survive and then they just evolved on their own for killing, it doesn't prove (though it heavily implies) they would have done the same thing had the Xel'Naga never arrived.

    Now, using your argument for their actions of millions of years engineering themselves for perfection, it wouldn't change the possibility they could become something else. And it doesn't have to be what SC2 tried to do to make them civilized people, but simply something more than just mere killing machines.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gradius View Post
    ^— hit the nail on the head.
    Try coming up with something better, Gradius

  7. #107

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    And I keep telling you that you don't know if that's really the case even using the SC1 lore. Zerus had too harsh an environment for the Zerg parasites to survive very long prior to the arrival of the Xel'Naga. You simply don't know WHAT they would have done had the Xel'Naga not come along. You could argue that because the Xel'Naga helped them survive and then they just evolved on their own for killing, it doesn't prove (though it heavily implies) they would have done the same thing had the Xel'Naga never arrived.

    Now, using your argument for their actions of millions of years engineering themselves for perfection, it wouldn't change the possibility they could become something else. And it doesn't have to be what SC2 tried to do to make them civilized people, but simply something more than just mere killing machines.



    Try coming up with something better, Gradius
    The Zerg probably never would have developed intelligence without the Xel'naga's intervention. They probably would have gone extinct or remained soil-burrowing nematodes until their planet was no longer inhabitable. Even if they did somehow develop intelligence without xel'naga intervention, their biology would still be so fundamentally different from humans that they would not develop civilization along remotely the same lines. Humans and Protoss underwent very similar evolutionary pressures resulting in very similar anatomy and psychology, sufficient for them to interact without falling prey to nightmare scenarios like forcing each other to each children, communicating through sex, lacking consciousness entirely, considering themselves the only conscious existence, or any of the countless other freakish scenarios that occur in harder science fiction. Indeed, the Zerg are a textbook example of a post-singularity civilization typical of really hard scifi, like the Blight, the WAU, the City, SCORN, or even a simple paperclip maximizer. Their alien nature, combined with their loose basis in harder scifi (albeit meaty), is what makes them so interesting to me and probably others.

    You have yet to provide any counterexamples of what else the Zerg could be. If you really believe what you say is true, then please do. I doubt anyone can come up with anything as interesting as a fleshy post-singularity civilization, but you're certainly welcome to try.

  8. #108

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The Zerg probably never would have developed intelligence without the Xel'naga's intervention. They probably would have gone extinct or remained soil-burrowing nematodes until their planet was no longer inhabitable. Even if they did somehow develop intelligence without xel'naga intervention, their biology would still be so fundamentally different from humans that they would not develop civilization along remotely the same lines. Humans and Protoss underwent very similar evolutionary pressures resulting in very similar anatomy and psychology, sufficient for them to interact without falling prey to nightmare scenarios like forcing each other to each children, communicating through sex, lacking consciousness entirely, considering themselves the only conscious existence, or any of the countless other freakish scenarios that occur in harder science fiction. Indeed, the Zerg are a textbook example of a post-singularity civilization typical of really hard scifi, like the Blight, the WAU, the City, SCORN, or even a simple paperclip maximizer. Their alien nature, combined with their loose basis in harder scifi (albeit meaty), is what makes them so interesting to me and probably others.

    You have yet to provide any counterexamples of what else the Zerg could be. If you really believe what you say is true, then please do. I doubt anyone can come up with anything as interesting as a fleshy post-singularity civilization, but you're certainly welcome to try.
    Then if we follow that, you might as well be comparing it to the animals in our world and what would have happened to them if humanity never interfered, tried to domesticate or trained them, etc. I believe if the Xel'Naga never came they would have gone extinct. Now, let's pretend the Xel'Naga allowed them to survive, but never created the Overmind. During the initial stages they'd probably just end up eating themselves into near extinction or something like that. Once there's too few left, I can see them going along the same path as what the Overmind did for the whole assimilation process, but I believe that if they left Zerus and there was NO Overmind to direct them, then once they encounter the terrans and Protoss eventually they'd have to learn and evolve their mentality to something beyond just killing them all. I'm not quite sure what that could be (I'd imagine the initial stages would be little more than to deceive them), but perhaps if they conclude assimilating the terrans/Protoss couldn't be done, they may interact with them on a non-lethal level.

    You're making it sound like as savage animals, they'd never learn.

  9. #109

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    Could someone explain to me what this means/has to do with anything?
    Welcome to Rag-ness!

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    Tura, I won't disagree with you about the manual (mainly because I can't find what I did with my manual pdf), but I think the Overmind's "bodiless" nature, if this is indeed what it says in the manual, is kind of a contradiction with the games. The game itself doesn't make that explicitly clear, and indeed seems to imply that the Overmind has a body.
    You think the Overmind has a body just because it's represented by a portrait of an eyeball and that it deigns to speak? I think that's more to the limitation/difficulty of trying to represent the concept of a hivemind (without actually being in one) than anything else. A human mind can never really contemplate anything truly alien, unless it's rendered into something less alien /we can more easily understand.

    That the Overmind has an actual body is really somewhat of a narrative cheat so that the story can end/ have its main antagonist be defeatable. This is more "glaring" and "wrong" to some because the story is vague about why the Overmind needs to manifest itself in the first place. I find that I vacillate about whether the Overmind having/manifesting a body was a "good" or "bad" thing depending on the context.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    In any case, I don't see "timing" as an issue. I mean, I would if I considered SC2 canon, but even then not by much. I'm far more concerned with fixing the story than I am with any sense of what goes when. As far as I'm concerned, one can replay the original game, and if I create a sequel (hypothetically speaking) they can play it immediately afterwards and the sense of story flow isn't interrupted, despite the fact that my hypothetical sequel was made years later.
    I get where you're coming from but part of me sees your reasoning about fixing the story as being no different as the writers who believed they were fixing some of the inconsistencies/vagueness in Sc1 when they made Sc2. Also, it's not enough justification to limit yourself to "just a hidden cerebrate arriving" because this reasoning can also make my Overminds return fanon just as reasonable option to yours. It doesn't matter whether it's the Overmind, a cerebrate or a magic stick that has Zerg control powers - it all still whiffs of artifice.

    While I get your position of forgetting Sc2 altogether - we can't do that because Sc2 exists like it or not. Any Sc3/sequel hereafter will have to deal with it whether that mean continue using all or some of it or even retconning it entirely. It's not a meaningful exercise either way because the story and its direction is now governed, more than ever, by Doylist/out-of-universe reasons than Watsonian/in-universe reasons.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The Terrans stand no chance in a prolonged conflict without a massive population.
    I know and that's how they were represented in Sc1. The scale was that small initially and though you may not like it, that was the setup.

    The Terrans were always weak and they were left crushed (9 of 13 worlds were destroyed) due to both in-fighting and destruction by aliens. The UED, for all the issues in how they were introduced and implemented, were an opportunity to give the Terrans a "shot in the arm" in terms of making the Terran presence a little more even-handed with the other two races. But alas, it was not to be that either...

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    You're making it sound like as savage animals, they'd never learn.
    But the Zerg are savage animals... by necessity and to pursue their goals. And they do learn - it's the basis in the quest for their ideal of perfection.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


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  10. #110

    Default Re: How you suppose the breeds of the extended Zerg swarms are composed?

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    Then if we follow that, you might as well be comparing it to the animals in our world and what would have happened to them if humanity never interfered, tried to domesticate or trained them, etc. I believe if the Xel'Naga never came they would have gone extinct. Now, let's pretend the Xel'Naga allowed them to survive, but never created the Overmind. During the initial stages they'd probably just end up eating themselves into near extinction or something like that. Once there's too few left, I can see them going along the same path as what the Overmind did for the whole assimilation process, but I believe that if they left Zerus and there was NO Overmind to direct them, then once they encounter the terrans and Protoss eventually they'd have to learn and evolve their mentality to something beyond just killing them all. I'm not quite sure what that could be (I'd imagine the initial stages would be little more than to deceive them), but perhaps if they conclude assimilating the terrans/Protoss couldn't be done, they may interact with them on a non-lethal level.
    You don't like their original portrayal, but you can't actually think of anything to replace it? I can't say I'm surprised (I can't do that either), but I really expected more from you given how much you argue in favor of your case.

    Please give up and admit the Zerg suck without the Overmind. You will feel so much better if you do and will be able to focus your mental energy on much more productive pursuits, like making up new broods that serve the Overmind in some super-specific way like "spawn more warriors," "hunt new species," or "harvest more minerals". I would seriously love to see an entire campaign centered around the exploits and adventures of a Zerg mining brood.

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    You're making it sound like as savage animals, they'd never learn.
    I just gave a half-dozen examples of super-advanced HUMAN civilizations with the universe assimilation goal. For King James' sake, the Zerg speak like Shakespearean actors! You can't get less savage than that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    I know and that's how they were represented in Sc1. The scale was that small initially and though you may not like it, that was the setup.

    The Terrans were always weak and they were left crushed (9 of 13 worlds were destroyed) due to both in-fighting and destruction by aliens. The UED, for all the issues in how they were introduced and implemented, were an opportunity to give the Terrans a "shot in the arm" in terms of making the Terran presence a little more even-handed with the other two races. But alas, it was not to be that either...
    Making the Terrans able to fight back to begin with is logically equivalent to adding the UED later, with the added bonus of not retconning in a silly "Earth was secretly spying on them the whole time!" The original premise was that K-sec was utterly cut off from Earth. Like so many other things, sequelitis ruined that too.

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