Page 994 - Proof of Purchase

2nd Dec 2017, 5:00 AM in The Best Night Ever, Part 2
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Proof of Purchase
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 2nd Dec 2017, 5:00 AM edit delete
A callback so drastically long ago that I actually edited a screencap of my own to properly convey it. Wow.

When I initially thought up this sequence, I figured it'd be small and contained. "I'll hand the artist a script for, say, six pages of abbreviated events, I'll still get that 'wow' factor, and I won't have to try and stretch the realms of possibility."

This plan fell apart as the transition loomed closer and closer and I just couldn't bring myself to nail down a script, for various real-life-stress reasons. Finally, ChrisTheS (whose page you should follow for the beautiful full-size images and extra notes) pried a basic outline of what I wanted out of me, and then just took off. Just made a huge sequence of "fake" custom screencaps, assuming that I'd do my usual thing and add dialogue and context and layout to them later.

So while this is still a temporary situation – we'll go back to regular screencaps someday – there's gonna be... a bit more of this to come. I plan to show off as much as I reasonably can.

By the by, we did not one but two Tales of New Dunhaven sessions last week, so I've had a heck of a time getting both of them released. And I'm gonna be running two more this weekend! Please enjoy.
Tales of New Dunhaven Session 10 - The Bank Job
Part 1: Libsyn YouTube
Part 2: Libsyn YouTube

Oh, there's only two weeks until Page 1000, huh...

Notice: Guest comic submissions are still open until this arc is finished! Guidelines here.



Guest 2nd Dec 2017, 5:03 AM edit delete reply
Oh, lovely. Now his paranoia is going to stack with its paranoia.

Now they'll NEVER find him.
kuraimizu 2nd Dec 2017, 5:14 AM edit delete reply
Well seeing as they clearly won't be able to trick Elusive into removing the amulet, he's either going to escape to return again, or he is going to get killed.
Given they aren't currently carrying any weapons or the elements, that leaves the it to a magic attack by Rarity or Twilight. The most likely effective attack would be a forcefield used as a shield or a blade. Either pierce his heart or bubble his head and sever it from his neck.
Guest 2nd Dec 2017, 5:32 AM edit delete reply
If they don't have the elements or their equipment, that probably means Elusive + Alicorn Amulet outmatches them. I'd wager he's getting away with this one.

Which, incidentally, gives Rarity a new character arc and introduces a new story plot for the heroes to follow.
GrayGriffin 2nd Dec 2017, 5:12 PM edit delete reply
I would personally be furious beyond words if the DM made an arc boss that was only vulnerable to the two casters in the party. I'm pretty sure the DM here has enough presence of mind to not do that with the whole party present.
Kuraimizu 3rd Dec 2017, 12:49 AM edit delete reply
Are you familiar with the amulet at all?
Do you understand how dangerous it is?
Do you realize how much danger the mane 6 are in at this very moment?
With but a thought elusive could remove their legs horns and wings.
Making any move against him without magic is suicide as long as he is wearing that amulet.
GrayGriffin 3rd Dec 2017, 3:12 AM edit delete reply
Of course I know, don't condescend to me like I'm a kid. I know what the damn amulet is capable of, and I also know that using magic is also a losing proposition, so you're already postulating a version of the amulet that works differently from the show version anyways. If you can't understand why leaving 2/3 of the party unable to participate in a boss fight is a bad idea then I have no hope for you.
kuraimizu 3rd Dec 2017, 5:19 AM edit delete reply
The amulet can only be removed by the wearer.
Meaning for another to remove the amulet they have to instantly kill the wearer, otherwise the wearer will just heal any damage they receive. Even a blade to the heart might not work. Meaning you have to take their head off as quick as possible.
In the show Trixie easily countered every melee attack they attempted. Meaning only a magic attack will work as magic is a ranged attack. You aren't thinking things through.
Newbiespud 3rd Dec 2017, 10:43 AM edit delete reply
Your interpretation of the Alicorn Amulet doesn't sound very fun for a game of D&D.
Kuraimizu 3rd Dec 2017, 6:57 PM edit delete reply
All I said is exactly what happened in the TV show,
assuming you haven't modified how the Alicorn Amulet works.
The alicorn amulet is a very bad plot device,
for dungeons and dragons, to be frank it's overpowered.
it literally gives the wearer the abilities of a God.
It may be named after alicorns like Celestia and Luna,
but with how it was used in the show it worked very similar to discord's powers.
as long as you can imagine it, it happens.
such as when Trixie used a cursor arrow to steal pinkie's mouth
which was similar to when discord stole their wings and horns.

so unless you have completely nerfed the alicorn amulet
I don't see how the mane six could possibly stand a chance
at defeating elusive at the current time.
I'm actually expecting that he escapes,
perhaps with the added distraction of throwing
Pinkie and/or Applejack over the balcony,
so that rainbow and maybe fluttershy have to save them.
maybe he'll even use the Amulet to actually turn himself into an Alicorn
before teleporting or flying away.
Kuraimizu 3rd Dec 2017, 7:11 PM edit delete reply
Though that leaves a new question.
If Elusive uses the Amulet to turn himself into an alicorn,
will the Amulet be "destroyed" as it becomes part of him?
or would the amulet be drained of magic, and become inert,
while Elusive becomes more powerful?

so many questions and possibilities
and the only way to know is to wait for you to tell the story.
GrayGriffin 4th Dec 2017, 9:25 AM edit delete reply
"Only magic attacks work" is not what happened in the TV show and I don't get why you're so insistent on it. Not to mention that if you're going to say "ranged attacks" will work then you seem to have forgotten that pegasi are literally capable of creating lightning, which is coincidentally also a form of magic.
Newbiespud 4th Dec 2017, 11:30 AM edit delete reply
It showed up for literally one 22-minute episode in Season 3, and about half of the things it did was for comedic effect (interacting with Pinkie Pie). Who's to say the show has laid down the law and that we've seen all of its rules, properties, and capabilities?
Kuraimizu 4th Dec 2017, 3:47 PM edit delete reply
Trixie claimed it was impossible to change another pony's gender,
so there might be a few possibilities based on that
1. either trixie couldn't imagine how to change someone's gender
2. trixie didn't know of any spell that could change someone's gender
3. the alicorn amulet can't change someone's gender
4. magic is not capable of changing someone's gender
5. the genetics and biology of gender is too complex
for a mortal to use magic to change someone's gender, but maybe discord could do it.
Kuraimizu 4th Dec 2017, 3:28 PM edit delete reply
In the show the rules were
1. only the wearer can remove it
2. blessed with untold great powers
3. corrupts the user

what it did in the show
1. Create clothing/matter out of thin air
2. Eyes glow red, Red Magic Aura
3. Can grow limbs such as wings to gigantic sizes
4. fuse two ponies together
5. force a dragon into a spherical shape
6. holographic screen
7. bloodlessly remove an entire limb, pinkie's muzzle, but still allowing her to breath
8. lift a giant tree effortlessly
9. selectively undo any previously cast spell
10. send an entire wagon and contents flying
11. summon pies from thin air and launch them
12. summon about 4m x 20m x 20m [1,600 cubic meters] of snow from thin air
13. summon and dispel scissors
14. simultaneously age, and revert two people
15. throw someone out of town, 500m to 1 km
16. summon out of thin air a giant solid glass/forcefield fish bowl
large enough to cover the entire town
city hall and wind mill are about 5 stories tall 15 m
105m tall, 112 m diameter 56 meters radius, about 15 to 20 cm Thick
assuming thicker rim and base, about 5,896 cubic meters of glass/forcefield
17. levitates applejack, summons feathers, throws applejack into apple baskets
18. forces pinkie to dance
19. summoned thunderstorm in town sized fish bowl 34,845 cubic meters of clouds
20. summoned wood sleigh chariot
21. turned wood chariot into gold 4 post bed sleigh
22. unsummoned giant fish bowl
23. age spell again

To get Trixie to remove it they had to appeal to her ego and jealousy
pretty sure they won't be able to trick Elusive into removing it.
Also Trixie wasn't really evil, she just wanted her Ego stroked
Elusive is an actual villian, and what he'd be able to do with the alicorn amulet
would be on an entirely different level than what we saw with Trixie.
34,000 cubic meters of cloud would weight about 17 kg
1,500 cubic meters of snow would weigh at least 150,000 kg
5,500 cubic meters of glass would weigh between 11,000,000 to 176,000,000 kg
there is a lot you could do with being able to summon 150,000 to 11 million Kg of material
especially if you aren't limited on density or composition.

An evil enough villain could replace all the air in a city with silica Aerogel
either a single solid that everyone suffocates inside,
or as a fine to coarse powder so you're basically breathing in sand that floats in the air
and there is a lot of potential hostages inside Canterlot castle for the Gala
all the punch could become sweet and delicious poison perhaps.
Or all metal silverware, pots, and pans, in Canterlot are replaced with Arsenopyrite
which would leech arsenic into food and drinks when used.
Digo Dragon 4th Dec 2017, 10:36 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
This is one of the big issues with my group's current GM. He attacks us with monsters that are highly armored versus the martial classes and vulnerable to the mages and DMPC (who's a mage anyway). Weird thing is that the party bard isn't too effective in that situation and her class is an arcane based spellcasting class so it's not even consistent. :o
Tempestfury 2nd Dec 2017, 5:21 AM edit delete reply
.... Have dealt with the Alicorn Amulet before?
ANW 2nd Dec 2017, 5:23 AM edit delete reply
Did anyone here saw this coming, cause I didn't.
Dragonflight 2nd Dec 2017, 9:19 AM edit delete reply
I'm still reasonably convinced this ties in with Chrysalis. Why? Two possible outcomes occur to me:

1) Elusive is Chrysalis, and the amulet is just her last hurrah. A way to acquire enough power to challenge Celestia and Luna later on in the storyline.

2) Chrysalis doesn't exist yet, but Elusive, using the power of an ancient evil artifact, is transformed into the corrupted alicorn entity. After all, Chrysalis has both a horn and wings, plus she's a corrupted alicorn variant. That would play nicely into the amulet turning Elusive into a corrupted alicorn. The shapeshifting would simply be a visible power based on his prior skills.

Either possibility works. So I'm still waiting to see if either happens. :)
Winged Cat 2nd Dec 2017, 11:00 PM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
You know who else uses the Alicorn Amulet?

Has Elusive actually been Twilight's old school rival all along?
Needling Haystacks 3rd Dec 2017, 10:51 AM edit delete reply

...Heh, Regular Show.
Specter 2nd Dec 2017, 9:54 AM edit delete reply
... I'd still try to stab him. I'm not the brightest when it comes to "Things that will get you killed because you are dumb", but I survive a suprising amount of nonsense like this. Even if I can't survive, I'd take him with me.
Digo Dragon 2nd Dec 2017, 11:24 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
It's six against one. The party does have action economy advantage here.
ChrisTheS 2nd Dec 2017, 2:00 PM edit delete reply
May I direct your attention to the silhouettes in the background of the last panel? :)
Digo Dragon 4th Dec 2017, 10:38 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Hmm. That background was hard to read, it's all jumbles.
Dragonflight 2nd Dec 2017, 2:15 PM edit delete reply
It's a thieve's guild *guildmaster*. Of course he'll have backup. Whether they're just ponies or changelings, they'll be meant to keep the PC's busy while he makes his escape.

The real question is whether or not Rarity gets in a parting shot, and how good that shot is. :)
Needling Haystacks 3rd Dec 2017, 10:55 AM edit delete reply
Stabbing in the back is about the third thing I try in these situations. The first is throwing rocks at the problem (that works far more often than you'd think, you just need big rocks). Second is lighting something on fire.

With enough people the strategy most likely to work is overwhelming with actions, but that's likely to get someone in the party killed. In D&D that's often viable but I don't think they have resurrection spells in this setting.
ChrisTheS 2nd Dec 2017, 1:53 PM edit delete reply
RAWs for this page (minus the flashback, obviously) available here:
Winged Cat 2nd Dec 2017, 10:54 PM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
What, you didn't pull the flashback out of NS's mind and do that one too? :P
Hariman 2nd Dec 2017, 11:04 PM edit delete reply
Hmm. I suspect a heavy beatdown is coming. Or possibly an unexpected strategy that disables/removes the Alicorn Amulet.
Rokas 3rd Dec 2017, 7:37 AM edit delete reply
Great, the setting's "Up to Eleven" artifact.

Maybe our heroines will get lucky and he'll become so paranoid that he'll implode into a negative space wedgie.
Needling Haystacks 3rd Dec 2017, 10:52 AM edit delete reply
I have comedic visions of politeness judo ultimately being used.

Fluttershy: "Um, excuse me, could I see that amulet for a minute?"

Blueblood: "Hmmm? Oh sure."

Not that that entirely makes sense I just love that gag.
Jennifer 3rd Dec 2017, 11:14 AM edit delete reply
Has the Alicorn Amulet ever been mentioned in the comic before?

I can think of a couple possibilities for it - either it provides the sheer magical power of an alicorn, or it turns the bearer INTO an alicorn.
Guest 4th Dec 2017, 3:33 AM edit delete reply
That amulet always reminded me of Sombra.
So, Elusive is going to disguise themself as a traveling magician?
Loving the fun with edited pictures, but I am glad it's not a change for good. One of my favorite things about this is re-contextualizing these familiar scenes and plots into something new that still flows well as it's own story. I love campaign comics!
Richard 4th Dec 2017, 6:06 PM edit delete reply
This is Blueblood

This is Blueblood on Alicorn Amulet.

Don't do artifacts.