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But If You Try Sometimes
Order of the Stick comic
OOTS1078
Comic no. 1078
Date published 1 July 2017
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Roy accidentally discovers a new ability.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

Panel 1, Page 1

Belkar: We should just bolt your sword to your hand and get it over with.
Roy: It's a two-handed weapon.
Belkar: Learn to eat with your feet!
Vaarsuvius: I hasten to interject that I have additional potentially time-sensitive information that merits immediate consideration.

Panel 2, Page 1

Belkar: Yeah, whatever. I'm gonna go feed my cat. At least he can't drop his claws over the side.
Blackwing: Dude, I just made that comment.
Belkar: What do you want, royalties?
Vaarsuvius: Sir Greenhilt, I realize now that I may not have been sufficiently explicit in response to your inquiry.

Panel 3, Page 1

Vaarsuvius: Yes, the Locate Object spell is in my spellbook; no, I do not have it prepared.
Vaarsuvius: I am more than happy to prepare it at the next available opportunity, after I have tranced again.

Panel 4, Page 1

Roy: Tranced? V, that takes eight hours!
Vaarsuvius: Technically, the trance only takes four. But then I must spend an additional four hours further refraining from especially taxing mental activity.
Blackwing: We do a lot of word search puzzles, mostly.

Panel 5, Page 1

Roy: We can't stop here and wait for eight hours! The vampires could get their vote together in that time.
Vaarsuvius: I concur. Nor can I disembark and have any hope of overtaking this vessel's superior maximum velocity after I locate your wayward weapon.

Panel 6, Page 1

Roy: So that's just it. I either get my sword back, or I save the world. Not both.
Vaarsuvius: It is possible that we could return after curtailing the vampiric threat but before facing Xykon.

Panel 7, Page 1

Roy: No, come on. You know that won't happen.
Roy: There will be some new thing we learn that means we have to rush right to the pole, no backtracking even for a day. That's how it always works.

Panel 8, Page 1

Roy: I think that's what makes me the maddest.
Roy: That I thought for a moment we could get something unambiguously positive.
Vaarsuvius: To what are you referring?

Panel 9, Page 1

Roy: This silly "legacy weapon" thing.
Roy: I stood in that cargo hold—wasting time I could've been planning on how to fight Durkon—and tried to get it to shoot fire.
Roy: That was never going to work! Not for me! Not for us!

Panel 10, Page 1

Roy: How was I going to somehow use my "emotions" to change its magic?
Roy: When what I should have been focusing on—

Panel 11, Page 1

Roy: —was to
Roy: JUST
Roy: NOT
Roy: DROP
Roy: IT!!

Panel 1, Page 2

In a circular panel outside of the other two page frames, the Greenhilt Sword appears in Roy's hand with a burst of green flame and a loud "PWOK!"

Panel 1, Page 3

beat

Panel 2, Page 3

Roy tosses the sword across the deck, "clank! clank! clatter!"

Panel 3, Page 3

The sword reappears in Roy's hands, "PWOK!"

Panel 4, Page 3

beat

Panel 5, Page 3

Roy: Never mind, I'm good.

D&D Context Edit

  • The ability to teleport the Greenhilt Sword back to his hand at will is the second special ability for the sword unlocked by Roy. The sword is a Weapon of Legacy, as outlined in the 2005 D&D 3.5 supplement, Weapons of Legacy.[1] It is not clear if this new ability is a Least, Lesser, or Greater, legacy ability (probably not the latter), but the presence of this power along with the other indicates Roy possesses at least the Least Legacy feat, if not the Lesser Legacy feat. Unlocking a new ability could also indicate a increase in level for Roy.
  • The game mechanics of Legacy Weapons are such that gaining its abilities is never "unambiguously positive". Unlocking new abilities comes with a personal cost in the form of penalties to hit points, saving throws, skill points, attack rolls or other penalties.

Trivia Edit

  • The title is a line from the from the chorus of the Rolling Stones' song You Can't Always Get What You Want from their 1969 album, Let it Bleed, originally released as the B-side of the single, Honkey Tonk Women in July of that year. The complete line is, "you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you might find you get what you need". The implication here being that between the categories of things Roy wants and things Roy needs, getting his sword back falls into the latter category. This is the sixth comic title to reference a Rolling Stones song. The others are #155, #485, #591, #635, and #636.
  • The book on Weapons of Legacy that Wrecan gave to Roy states that focusing the user's emotions is the key to unlocking new powers.[2]

External Links Edit

References Edit

  1. Comic #1025, "Mark of Distinction"
  2. Comic #1045, "Studying Up"

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