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Author Topic: Kuvira's Fate  (Read 12300 times)
Freedom153
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« Reply #125 on: Jul 29, 2015 11:38 am »

Never noticed that before. Glad to see there's some precedent for something I want in my writing...

They look reminiscent of the crystals beneath Ba Sing Se. On the power storage itself - there's even a kind of crystal that creeps and grows: jennamite. Maybe that's why King Bumi was described as "mad"...

Another question for the trials: would positive impacts be considered? Say Varrick gets spirit power for peace down during the trials, drawing heavily on the Colossus' reactor. Does that mean Kuvira and/or Baatar Jr. get a "positive" credit from that? What about stabilizing the Earth kingdom in the first place...?
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« Reply #126 on: Jul 29, 2015 12:14 pm »

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(which certainly makes for an interesting story, but doesn't exactly tie up any loose ends).

The loose ends would be tied up by the story. With Kuvira's presence, Korra is able to ensure the Earth Empire remnants don't take over the Earth States and allow them to turn into a democracy. Sideplots would be Mako and Wu being in Ba Sing Se and Wu slowly realizing that he needs to also have a role in helping the states stabilize through becoming a constitutional monarchy and becoming a head of state for them, while the states themselves elect a parliament and prime minister to lead the government. I've always thought a Beifong could make a good prime minister. And Asami's would be about being able to make some level of peace with Kuvira while also helping Varrick and Zhu Li develop spirit energy as power for Republic City, and continue her relationship with Korra. (Of course this would change in the story I have planned for it, seeing as Korra ends up with someone else.)

I'm not saying it couldn't get tied up. I'm saying that what we got in the show was the opposite of tied up, hence the need for a new story to fix the problems left open at the end of the show.

(Who are you shipping Korra with, out of curiosity?)


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Did Kuvira's men even know what happened until Kuvira told them about Korra's power, though? Given that it makes little sense for Kuvira to have brought up Korra's power as her own reason for surrender, it seems like Kuvira herself was trying to convince her men that resisting the Avatar was a bad idea.

I'm not exactly sure. Kuvira certainly was telling her men to stand down because she had personally witnessed Korra's power, which wasn't really the reason why she gave up. She did definitely tell them to stand down to avoid a confrontation between everyone.

So if Kuvira told her army to agree to disarmament for the same reason, what do you think would happen?


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I'm not saying that disarmament of that sort is a good idea (though I do think the mechsuits would have to ditch the flamethrowers and lightning cannons to be taken seriously as civilian machinery).  But given that Republic City is at a similar level of development to the WWI Allies and has a similar motivation for retribution against the aggressor, it seems pretty likely to happen anyway.

I think the mechsuits would, but they've been shown to use other tools in place of their flamethrowers and lightning cannons, so I think they're just attachments. It does seem likely that Raiko would push hard for disarming the Earth Empire, but that will cause a lot of tension with them and the United Republic.

It's the same kind of tension Nazi Germany had with the rest of Europe during the lead-up to world war II. And ended in them taking the Rhineland and the Sudetenland, as well as Austria. Which is why Raiko's actions can lead to outright war between the Earth Empire and them again.

Exactly. Hence, the situation at the end of the show is open-ended and almost guaranteed to turn into a giant mess.


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I doubt that gorgeous Art Deco train is ideal for carrying coal. =P Even with Kuvira in it, her train got attacked. A train full of coal (with no Kuvira) would be a much easier target. She could use her army to protect it, of course, but that multiplies the amount of man-hours required for transportation.

Well, it's a command train. So it's unlikely to be carrying all of their freight and supplies. She'd definitely have proper protection and guards for her supply trains. And it is possible to attach freight carriages to the train to carry the supplies with them and have passenger carriages as well. Trains are multipurpose like that.

Well, yeah, but my point is that loss prevention is going to come with serious man-hour costs. =P


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And here I think I've proved my initial point, which is that this whole situation is a giant mess. If the only way to keep the Earth Kingdom from being occupied by Kuvira's former supporters is to have the deposed dictator hold the leash herself, something's gone seriously wrong.

The situation is already pretty messy, yeah. Which is why one of the best ways to mitigate the situation is to use Kuvira to at least placate the Earth Empire remnant. Until she can convince them to stand down or to completely disarm and cooperate, things will be very tense between them, the earth states, and the United Republic.

That's one of the reasons why I think disarmament would be included in the terms of Kuvira's surrender, though -- it'd remove that obvious and immediate threat as quickly as possible.

By doing that, of course, it'd leave a power vacuum that could cause other problems, but Raiko seems like the type who cares more about immediate problems that affect him directly than larger-scale issues that are farther away (see: the end of Book 2).


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As for the relative efficiency... if each lightning strike generates 250kW of power (like a real lightning bolt), each average five-person household uses 500kW of power a day (on the low end in modern terms, but plausible as an average for a '30s era household without computers, televisions, refrigeration, electric heat/air conditioning, etc.), and each lightningbender generates a strike every ten minutes, you could generate power for a million people with under 150 people (including management and repair staff), the vast majority of which are low-paid blue collar guys.

And here's another thing, lightningbenders can not produce 250kw of power with the lightning they produce from their own energy. It's not physically possible, because the human body itself can only  produce between 50 to 2000 watts of electricity, which greatly depends on how active the body is.. Not even enough to power a single cathode.

So we've probably only a seen a fraction of the massive lightningbender workforce that powers Republic City.

Are you really going to argue that people who can shoot fire out of their hands without a fuel source can only generate as much energy as a real-life human body? -_-

Avatarverse lightning acts like real lightning, so it makes far more sense to compare it to lightning than to compare it to the amount of electricity produced by a non-bender.


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People are just as necessary for mining and transporting coal, though... and as far as I can tell, the former is a lot more dangerous than shooting lightning at a device designed to collect electricity. (Not that it matters, though -- '30s era worker safety basically didn't exist.)  It's not like they're burning people for power. They're just converting manual labor to electricity directly

This is even more dangerous because they're working in such conditions. If one of them gets tired or stops paying attention for a instant, someone can get electrocuted and the entire plant would lose its baseload. And there goes the entire power grid for the city for a few hours. In this case, the former is even less dangerous because you have earthbenders to mine the stuff and trucks to transport it. In a world with earthbending in it, mines should be significantly more stable and safer to work in.

I feel like someone would need to be severely intoxicated to mess up shooting a bolt of lightning at a lightning rod a few feet in front of them to the point of electrocuting someone to the side of them. =P

Meanwhile, no matter how stable your mines are, you're going to end up with people getting black lung and probably various other dust-based lung diseases unless you're operating in a far more conscientious way than '30s era mining companies did.


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Which misses the point that Kuvira still needs some other form of power generation.

Not really. We aren't dealing with a society that has massive and modern cities across the entire continent. The Earth Kingdom has massively different cities and towns inside of it. Zaofu and Republic City are probably the only truly modern cities currently built, while the rest of the world still lives in pretty rustic or old cities.

Kuvira's got a massive modern army, though, and her desire for modernization means she's going to need big factories producing stuff. She's going to have significant power needs, and they could be met more efficiently by using firebenders as assets instead of locking them up.


On metalbending for power... using it to turn a wind turbine would be a waste. Just go directly for the source - push the metal magnet that generates electricity by going through a copper wire loop over and over. http://www.solarschools.net/resources/stuff/magnets_and_electricity.aspx

At one point in the commentaries they said the mechasuits ran off magnets. The best way I can see for that to work is to have a very high capacity and highly dense battery charged by using metalbending to spin/push the magnet inside those funny capsules on the mechasuit's back, generating electricity to store power in the battery.

Another thing on power generation - lightning generation is manipulating the energies outside the body, plus and minus in the air, not from within, to create lightning, which is electricity itself. No need to use it to turn a turbine - as long as you had a good enough substation/electrical control system to prevent surges wrecking things or surge protection on everything, you could power a city by zapping an electrical line with bender-generated lightning. If you could harness the direct power of lightning strikes in real life and store the energy in a battery, there wouldn't be a huge issue with power.

I love that magnet idea, especially since it would provide for a way in which metalbenders could recharge the things in the field if necessary.

I agree about the lightning, too. Using the power directly makes way more sense than adding a lossy intermediary step. And they'd deal with the power surges the same way as they dealt with the problems of two-legged robots -- tech growth in the Avatarverse happens in different ways than it does in our world.

For the record, though, firebenders aren't just useful for power generation, even if that's the most obvious use. They'd be more efficient welders, they'd make ideal gunners on aircraft and in tanks due to their lack of need for ammunition and impressive capacity to provide suppression fire (look at how effective Mako was at keeping an entire military camp from fighting back against one plane!), they'd increase the efficiency of fires wherever they're used, they'd provide a valuable alternate skill set as infantry... refusing to use them if you have them available simply doesn't make sense.
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AtoMaki
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« Reply #127 on: Jul 29, 2015 12:45 pm »

Another question for the trials: would positive impacts be considered? Say Varrick gets spirit power for peace down during the trials, drawing heavily on the Colossus' reactor. Does that mean Kuvira and/or Baatar Jr. get a "positive" credit from that? What about stabilizing the Earth kingdom in the first place...?

Spirit power is a dead end. You need spirit vines to harness that stuff, and those things are not just super-rare, but harvesting them also doesn't look like a very good idea.
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Flipdark95
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« Reply #128 on: Jul 29, 2015 10:43 pm »

^ Varrick seemingly didn't have any issues getting a sample while in Republic City, so they probably only respond violently if they're overharvested or just completely carved up like Kuvira's operation did.

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(Who are you shipping Korra with, out of curiosity?)

I have this longstanding fanfiction series with a original character introduced at the beginning during the Equalist conflict, who essentially ends up with Korra. All of the canon ships are still present and follow similar paths, with the change being that Korra and Asami have a extremely deep platonic friendship instead of a relationship. There's a lot of changes and additions and adaptation, but I try to make it be canon-esque without getting too crazy or divorced from it. There's a lot of stuff I want to rewrite, smooth and add, so I'm actually going to finish the 3rd in the series before taking it all down and re-uploading from the beginning.

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So if Kuvira told her army to agree to disarmament for the same reason, what do you think would happen?

Depends. Some of the more radical and fanatical elements probably won't take well to her orders and go rogue, but for the most part there's no reason why they won't follow her orders and cooperate. I doubt complete disarmament would work, but limited disarmament would probably be less difficult to negotiate with them.

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Avatarverse lightning acts like real lightning, so it makes far more sense to compare it to lightning than to compare it to the amount of electricity produced by a non-bender.

Now that we've established that lightningbenders apparently generate enough electrical energy (chi) to create their own lightning strikes, you're just going to have them annihilate any kind of electrical turbines or generators they point their finger at. And forget about putting their lightning straight into the power-lines, because these power lines will overload and cause widespread devastation in the entire electrical grid.

Good job, take five minutes then don't come back. You just wrecked a entire economy.

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I feel like someone would need to be severely intoxicated to mess up shooting a bolt of lightning at a lightning rod a few feet in front of them to the point of electrocuting someone to the side of them. =P

They stand practically shoulder to shoulder and shoot lightning in repetition for their entire workshift, which is probably 8 hours long, and would get exhausted from the work conditions and from lightningbending the entire time. The work is monotonous and grueling, so mistakes and accidents can and probably have happened.

Kuvira applying that kind of work to a industrial scale is just asking for her firebender workforce to quit en-masse.

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Meanwhile, no matter how stable your mines are, you're going to end up with people getting black lung and probably various other dust-based lung diseases unless you're operating in a far more conscientious way than '30s era mining companies did.

It's still a dangerous job, but at the very least you've cut down on a large percentage of work-related deaths thanks to the stability of your mines. black lung can't be helped though, unless you invest in gasmasks and protective gear. Kuvira provides these for her troops already, so it wouldn't be too hard to see her miners get similar protection to keep them healthy and productive.

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Kuvira's got a massive modern army, though, and her desire for modernization means she's going to need big factories producing stuff. She's going to have significant power needs, and they could be met more efficiently by using firebenders as assets instead of locking them up.

No, they won't be more efficient. There's always a point where one type of energy generation simply isn't feasible or efficient or even cost-effective. Having thousands of lightningbenders working around the clock to provide electricity on a industrial scale is grossly ineffective. They can all be replaced by one single strand of spirit vine acting as a power source, or just be replaced by coal plants or steam-power.

It's better to have your power needs met by multiple sources, instead of one that is comprised of human beings.

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I agree about the lightning, too. Using the power directly makes way more sense than adding a lossy intermediary step. And they'd deal with the power surges the same way as they dealt with the problems of two-legged robots -- tech growth in the Avatarverse happens in different ways than it does in our world.

Just because tech growth works differently doesn't negate the laws of nature. Lightning strikes in our world regularly overloard and destroy powerlines, transformers, and substations, even without directly contacting them. If you think that lightningbenders have enough energy in them to discharge electricity from their body as strong as a lightning strike, than that still means they're just going to overload and annihilate whatever powerline they're pumping the energy straight into.

You still need transformers, substations and capacitors to manage all of that energy. And lightningbenders can't just replace any of those. The difference with using them in full place of any other kind of energy source, is that power surges will kill them. And because of that, there's now no source of power to use because all of the people who generate are now dead.

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For the record, though, firebenders aren't just useful for power generation, even if that's the most obvious use. They'd be more efficient welders, they'd make ideal gunners on aircraft and in tanks due to their lack of need for ammunition and impressive capacity to provide suppression fire (look at how effective Mako was at keeping an entire military camp from fighting back against one plane!), they'd increase the efficiency of fires wherever they're used, they'd provide a valuable alternate skill set as infantry... refusing to use them if you have them available simply doesn't make sense.

But this doesn't disprove the fact that they aren't necessary or vital to doing these things. Metalbenders can skip using heat to weld metal together and just do it themselves, no heat required. Having a firebender as gunner clearly didn't work out for the United Force's battleships against fast targets like the Equalist Biplanes, and even then a fireball can only do so much damage against anything it hits because all it has is concussive force. There's no kinetic impact behind it. As for being gunners on aircraft, there's still the risk of them running out of breath or getting exhausted from firebending so rapidly and quickly, and even then they'd need to be skilled enough to do it for the amount of firepower a aircraft needs.

Metalbenders can just fling metal shards and projectiles with infinitely less effort and less exertion, especially if they're around the same size as bullets.
« Last Edit: Jul 30, 2015 12:47 am by Flipdark95 » Logged

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« Reply #129 on: Jul 30, 2015 12:50 am »

^ Varrick seemingly didn't have any issues getting a sample while in Republic City, so they probably only respond violently if they're overharvested or just completely carved up like Kuvira's operation did.

Korra's little waterbending display made them grow back and attack another building during the first episode of Book 3.

Either chainsaws are more effective against spirits than spiritbending boosted by the Avatar state (A state she apparently respected so much she chooses not to use it unless the situation absolutely 100% mandatory without a doubt calls for it,) or the Banyan Grove tree has grown back.

I wonder if the spirits will get off their butts and ask for Kuvira like the Ocean spirit asked for Zhao?
« Last Edit: Jul 30, 2015 12:52 am by ahintoflime » Logged
Flipdark95
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« Reply #130 on: Jul 30, 2015 01:53 am »

^ I think the difference is that Korra was using spiritbending, which actually effects and changes spirits, to force the vines away from the building, but instead they just grew back and intensified in their growth. So her spiritbending affects the vines more directly than physically cutting a small piece does.
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« Reply #131 on: Jul 30, 2015 06:30 am »

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(Who are you shipping Korra with, out of curiosity?)

I have this longstanding fanfiction series with a original character introduced at the beginning during the Equalist conflict, who essentially ends up with Korra. All of the canon ships are still present and follow similar paths, with the change being that Korra and Asami have a extremely deep platonic friendship instead of a relationship. There's a lot of changes and additions and adaptation, but I try to make it be canon-esque without getting too crazy or divorced from it. There's a lot of stuff I want to rewrite, smooth and add, so I'm actually going to finish the 3rd in the series before taking it all down and re-uploading from the beginning.

Ah.  Should have known.


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So if Kuvira told her army to agree to disarmament for the same reason, what do you think would happen?

Depends. Some of the more radical and fanatical elements probably won't take well to her orders and go rogue, but for the most part there's no reason why they won't follow her orders and cooperate. I doubt complete disarmament would work, but limited disarmament would probably be less difficult to negotiate with them.

Sounds about right to me.  That's basically how things worked in my own fic (except that there, Asami came up with the idea of offering the former Earth Empire guys a chance to redeem themselves by helping to rebuild Republic City, which would both give them somewhere to go and help deal with the ridiculous rebuilding costs).


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Avatarverse lightning acts like real lightning, so it makes far more sense to compare it to lightning than to compare it to the amount of electricity produced by a non-bender.

Now that we've established that lightningbenders apparently generate enough electrical energy (chi) to create their own lightning strikes, you're just going to have them annihilate any kind of electrical turbines or generators they point their finger at. And forget about putting their lightning straight into the power-lines, because these power lines will overload and cause widespread devastation in the entire electrical grid.

Good job, take five minutes then don't come back. You just wrecked a entire economy.

I think you're underestimating human ingenuity.

In our world, no one's really had any reason to put much research into harnessing lightning, because it's impractical as a power source for other reasons (it doesn't happen enough and doesn't strike predictably enough to get much usable power out of it).  But since they had the power available, it'd make sense for them to put enough time and money into the problem to come up with a solution.

Also, lightningbenders are able to control the lightning that they generate.  If they can generate the same amount of electricity as a lightningbolt but extend it out over several seconds (instead of 30 microseconds), I imagine it'd be way easier for the collection system to handle.


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I feel like someone would need to be severely intoxicated to mess up shooting a bolt of lightning at a lightning rod a few feet in front of them to the point of electrocuting someone to the side of them. =P

They stand practically shoulder to shoulder and shoot lightning in repetition for their entire workshift, which is probably 8 hours long, and would get exhausted from the work conditions and from lightningbending the entire time. The work is monotonous and grueling, so mistakes and accidents can and probably have happened.

Kuvira applying that kind of work to a industrial scale is just asking for her firebender workforce to quit en-masse.

Republic City already had it working on an industrial scale, though, and it seemed to work fine there.  =P

And exhaustion is one thing, but it's hard to imagine that they'd get so exhausted as to accidentally bend sideways.  If they bent the lightning anywhere close to forward, I imagine the lightning rod-sort of device the collector is using to catch the lightning would draw it in.


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Meanwhile, no matter how stable your mines are, you're going to end up with people getting black lung and probably various other dust-based lung diseases unless you're operating in a far more conscientious way than '30s era mining companies did.

It's still a dangerous job, but at the very least you've cut down on a large percentage of work-related deaths thanks to the stability of your mines. black lung can't be helped though, unless you invest in gasmasks and protective gear. Kuvira provides these for her troops already, so it wouldn't be too hard to see her miners get similar protection to keep them healthy and productive.


Protective gear was available in the real life '30s, too, if woefully underused.  >_>;


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Kuvira's got a massive modern army, though, and her desire for modernization means she's going to need big factories producing stuff. She's going to have significant power needs, and they could be met more efficiently by using firebenders as assets instead of locking them up.

No, they won't be more efficient. There's always a point where one type of energy generation simply isn't feasible or efficient or even cost-effective. Having thousands of lightningbenders working around the clock to provide electricity on a industrial scale is grossly ineffective. They can all be replaced by one single strand of spirit vine acting as a power source, or just be replaced by coal plants or steam-power.

It's better to have your power needs met by multiple sources, instead of one that is comprised of human beings.

I don't think the Colossus uses anywhere near as much energy as Republic City, and that required way more than one spirit vine.  =P

And even if you did use coal (and let's be honest here... "steam" usually means coal), you're still burning stuff, which means that firebenders could make things more efficient.


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I agree about the lightning, too. Using the power directly makes way more sense than adding a lossy intermediary step. And they'd deal with the power surges the same way as they dealt with the problems of two-legged robots -- tech growth in the Avatarverse happens in different ways than it does in our world.

Just because tech growth works differently doesn't negate the laws of nature. Lightning strikes in our world regularly overloard and destroy powerlines, transformers, and substations, even without directly contacting them. If you think that lightningbenders have enough energy in them to discharge electricity from their body as strong as a lightning strike, than that still means they're just going to overload and annihilate whatever powerline they're pumping the energy straight into.

You still need transformers, substations and capacitors to manage all of that energy. And lightningbenders can't just replace any of those. The difference with using them in full place of any other kind of energy source, is that power surges will kill them. And because of that, there's now no source of power to use because all of the people who generate are now dead.

People find ways to cope with the laws of nature all the time, though.  It wouldn't really be any harder for them to overcome the laws of nature that make lightning overload electrical equipment than it would be for them to, say, make giant floating metal airships.  =P


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For the record, though, firebenders aren't just useful for power generation, even if that's the most obvious use. They'd be more efficient welders, they'd make ideal gunners on aircraft and in tanks due to their lack of need for ammunition and impressive capacity to provide suppression fire (look at how effective Mako was at keeping an entire military camp from fighting back against one plane!), they'd increase the efficiency of fires wherever they're used, they'd provide a valuable alternate skill set as infantry... refusing to use them if you have them available simply doesn't make sense.

But this doesn't disprove the fact that they aren't necessary or vital to doing these things. Metalbenders can skip using heat to weld metal together and just do it themselves, no heat required. Having a firebender as gunner clearly didn't work out for the United Force's battleships against fast targets like the Equalist Biplanes, and even then a fireball can only do so much damage against anything it hits because all it has is concussive force. There's no kinetic impact behind it. As for being gunners on aircraft, there's still the risk of them running out of breath or getting exhausted from firebending so rapidly and quickly, and even then they'd need to be skilled enough to do it for the amount of firepower a aircraft needs.

Metalbenders can just fling metal shards and projectiles with infinitely less effort and less exertion, especially if they're around the same size as bullets.

As I've said a million times, it's not necessary to be necessary or vital to something to be more efficient at it.

The appearances of the mechsuits, tanks, and airships make it obvious that they're not just welding things together with metalbending. 

There's a difference between having a gunner on a stationary boat and having one on a flying aircraft, namely, the maneuverability of the weapon itself.  Iroh did more than fine against aircraft while flying one himself.  Firebenders also have lightning as a weapon option, which can do way more damage to hardened targets than a tiny piece of metal.  (Metal bullets are unlikely to be of much use against mechatanks, for instance.)  And skill would be required for extended combat no matter who you put up there.  =P
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« Reply #132 on: Jul 30, 2015 06:53 am »

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Ah.  Should have known.

Is that a good thing or bad thing?

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In our world, no one's really had any reason to put much research into harnessing lightning, because it's impractical as a power source for other reasons (it doesn't happen enough and doesn't strike predictably enough to get much usable power out of it).  But since they had the power available, it'd make sense for them to put enough time and money into the problem to come up with a solution.

They have, and they can catch lightning, but the trouble is... lightning still isn't a effective energy source. In fact, a average 4-person household would need to be struck directly by lightning 40 times a year just to be powered entirely by it without any failure. And to even catch all of the energy from a single bolt would require a massive battery that can withstand the energy, instantly catch the energy as soon as it is struck, and be able to release the energy in a steady stream. These kinds of batteries are already ridiculously expensive and hard to make for us in the 21st century, so for them to be built by a society filled with people who don't fell the need to explore the sciences behind their abilities any deeper, leaving all of that to the non-benders, is very unlikely.

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Also, lightningbenders are able to control the lightning that they generate.  If they can generate the same amount of electricity as a lightningbolt but extend it out over several seconds (instead of 30 microseconds), I imagine it'd be way easier for the collection system to handle.

But that collection system still has to handle 1 billion joules of energy being directly pumped into it in a very short amount of time. Not to mention the risk of the entire system exploding and releasing a massive electrical discharge that will electrocute anyone in the vicinity - lightningbenders included.

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And exhaustion is one thing, but it's hard to imagine that they'd get so exhausted as to accidentally bend sideways.  If they bent the lightning anywhere close to forward, I imagine the lightning rod-sort of device the collector is using to catch the lightning would draw it in.

The danger isn't so much about bending their lightning sideways, the danger is that them being tired can mean they'll stop or get exhausted, and risk the entire collection system grinding to a halt because there isn't enough baseload to keep it running. We're also not talking about how no metal at all would be allowed to be worn by any of them.

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I don't think the Colossus uses anywhere near as much energy as Republic City, and that required way more than one spirit vine.  =P

Seeing as a single piece of spirit vine released enough energy to blast a hole right through a nearby mountain, even that vine released more energy then could possibly be matched by lightningbenders.

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And even if you did use coal (and let's be honest here... "steam" usually means coal), you're still burning stuff, which means that firebenders could make things more efficient.

Earthbenders can pressurize the coal themselves to release the heat and produce energy. There's no point in having entire teams of firebenders pumping heat in the plant when you can just heat the coals directly without them.

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There's a difference between having a gunner on a stationary boat and having one on a flying aircraft, namely, the maneuverability of the weapon itself.  Iroh did more than fine against aircraft while flying one himself.  Firebenders also have lightning as a weapon option, which can do way more damage to hardened targets than a tiny piece of metal.  (Metal bullets are unlikely to be of much use against mechatanks, for instance.)  And skill would be required for extended combat no matter who you put up there.

None of this takes into account that firebending is a slower projectile compared to flinging metal. And lightningbenders have to concentrate to use actually shoot lightning, which means standing still and not moving before lining up a shot at a moving opponent. And the whole dilemma about a small shard of metal being ineffective against hardened targets is to just bigger blocks of metal. The entire idea of artillery is based off of this concept.
« Last Edit: Jul 30, 2015 06:55 am by Flipdark95 » Logged

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« Reply #133 on: Jul 30, 2015 11:59 am »

I assume things will be kept civil in here?
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« Reply #134 on: Jul 30, 2015 12:56 pm »

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Ah.  Should have known.

Is that a good thing or bad thing?

Neutral, I guess? OC romance is a pretty standard thing, after all, and you didn't strike me as a shipper of any non-Korrasami ship.


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In our world, no one's really had any reason to put much research into harnessing lightning, because it's impractical as a power source for other reasons (it doesn't happen enough and doesn't strike predictably enough to get much usable power out of it).  But since they had the power available, it'd make sense for them to put enough time and money into the problem to come up with a solution.

They have, and they can catch lightning, but the trouble is... lightning still isn't a effective energy source. In fact, a average 4-person household would need to be struck directly by lightning 40 times a year just to be powered entirely by it without any failure. And to even catch all of the energy from a single bolt would require a massive battery that can withstand the energy, instantly catch the energy as soon as it is struck, and be able to release the energy in a steady stream. These kinds of batteries are already ridiculously expensive and hard to make for us in the 21st century, so for them to be built by a society filled with people who don't fell the need to explore the sciences behind their abilities any deeper, leaving all of that to the non-benders, is very unlikely.

I like your numbers better than mine, actually. If 40 bolts is enough to power a four person household for a year, you'd only need 17 lightningbenders for every million people, and they could even work 40-hour weeks and take two weeks off per year.

As for batteries, we already know that the Avatarverse has awesome battery tech, because Kuvira's magnet-powered mechsuits wouldn't work without it. Wink


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Also, lightningbenders are able to control the lightning that they generate.  If they can generate the same amount of electricity as a lightningbolt but extend it out over several seconds (instead of 30 microseconds), I imagine it'd be way easier for the collection system to handle.

But that collection system still has to handle 1 billion joules of energy being directly pumped into it in a very short amount of time. Not to mention the risk of the entire system exploding and releasing a massive electrical discharge that will electrocute anyone in the vicinity - lightningbenders included.

I feel like this is the sort of argument that would have made sense prior to 1x04, but has basically been resolved by canon for all intents and purposes. Lightning generation exists, and Republic City considers it efficient enough to use in place of fossil fuels.

The question of whether it makes sense for it to work is rendered moot by the fact that it does work (kind of like the Colossus' ability to balance itself while walking on two legs Wink ).


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And exhaustion is one thing, but it's hard to imagine that they'd get so exhausted as to accidentally bend sideways.  If they bent the lightning anywhere close to forward, I imagine the lightning rod-sort of device the collector is using to catch the lightning would draw it in.

The danger isn't so much about bending their lightning sideways, the danger is that them being tired can mean they'll stop or get exhausted, and risk the entire collection system grinding to a halt because there isn't enough baseload to keep it running. We're also not talking about how no metal at all would be allowed to be worn by any of them.

Again, though, that doesn't appear to be a problem based on what we were shown. Metal welding masks seemed to be standard safety gear.

Anyway, it doesn't really matter how powerful the bent lightning is in absolute terms, because we know it's powerful enough to kill either way (given that we saw it happen twice). As far as I can tell, accidents are just plain unlikely.


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I don't think the Colossus uses anywhere near as much energy as Republic City, and that required way more than one spirit vine.  =P

Seeing as a single piece of spirit vine released enough energy to blast a hole right through a nearby mountain, even that vine released more energy then could possibly be matched by lightningbenders.

If released all at once, sure. But it doesn't seem to put off anywhere near as much energy when kept stable for use as a power source (and blows up when it uses too much at one time).


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And even if you did use coal (and let's be honest here... "steam" usually means coal), you're still burning stuff, which means that firebenders could make things more efficient.

Earthbenders can pressurize the coal themselves to release the heat and produce energy. There's no point in having entire teams of firebenders pumping heat in the plant when you can just heat the coals directly without them.

If you can increase the efficiency of the furnace through the use of firebending, that seems like a good point to me.


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There's a difference between having a gunner on a stationary boat and having one on a flying aircraft, namely, the maneuverability of the weapon itself.  Iroh did more than fine against aircraft while flying one himself.  Firebenders also have lightning as a weapon option, which can do way more damage to hardened targets than a tiny piece of metal.  (Metal bullets are unlikely to be of much use against mechatanks, for instance.)  And skill would be required for extended combat no matter who you put up there.

None of this takes into account that firebending is a slower projectile compared to flinging metal. And lightningbenders have to concentrate to use actually shoot lightning, which means standing still and not moving before lining up a shot at a moving opponent. And the whole dilemma about a small shard of metal being ineffective against hardened targets is to just bigger blocks of metal. The entire idea of artillery is based off of this concept.

Fire might be slower than metal projectiles, but it can do a lot more collateral damage by setting buildings and greenery ablaze, which can be useful for air-to-ground attacks.

Lightning, on the other hand, is faster than metal projectiles, and the limited mobility of a lightningbender can be supplemented by the mobility of the aircraft itself. As such, they'd make great air-to-air and air-to-ground forces.

Bending bigger chunks of metal, in contrast, is of questionable use on an aircraft with limited carrying capacity -- you'd never got a hunk of metal big enough to take out a mechatank on one. Metalbenders would be great for air-to-air (since small metal projectiles can shred wings easily enough) and could suffice for air-to-ground with bendable small explosives (like what Bolin used), but there would still be a place for firebenders that couldn't be fully filled by an earthbender-only military.

And let's not forget waterbenders, who would make incredible support troops. They can turn any water source whatsoever into potable water, they make better healers than anyone else, and they could probably team up with earthbenders to divert enemies' water sources.

(Maybe Kuvira locked up Baraz' crew for resisting conscription... it'd make a lot more sense than the alternative!)
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« Reply #135 on: Jul 30, 2015 02:06 pm »

Metalbending is leagues better for military use than any other bending, because it allows the soldier to create and power its own vehicle. Just get four metalbenders together, give them a big ball of metal with some electronics (comms and some sort of detection), and watch them form an almost invincible Ball of Death.

Almost invincible. Funnily enough, lightningbenders would be the best (if not the only) counters.
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« Reply #136 on: Jul 30, 2015 04:06 pm »

Metalbending is leagues better for military use than any other bending, because it allows the soldier to create and power its own vehicle. Just get four metalbenders together, give them a big ball of metal with some electronics (comms and some sort of detection), and watch them form an almost invincible Ball of Death.

Almost invincible. Funnily enough, lightningbenders would be the best (if not the only) counters.

Plus it comes with Earthbending free of charge
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« Reply #137 on: Jul 30, 2015 07:51 pm »

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Anyway, it doesn't really matter how powerful the bent lightning is in absolute terms, because we know it's powerful enough to kill either way (given that we saw it happen twice). As far as I can tell, accidents are just plain unlikely.

Saying that lightningbending is powerful enough to kill, and then saying that accidents are unlikely to happen is pretty weird.

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If you can increase the efficiency of the furnace through the use of firebending, that seems like a good point to me.

Flames tend to grow hotter by themselves when more heat and friction is created.

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(Maybe Kuvira locked up Baraz' crew for resisting conscription... it'd make a lot more sense than the alternative!)

That actually does make a lot of sense. They may have been arrested for refusing conscription by the local military and been sent to work in a labor camp. I wonder if recruitment in the Earth Empire is done in a mixed system? Many natural-born earthbenders or metalbenders are encouraged to conscript or join, while waterbenders and firebenders are conscripted or forced to work in the labor camps if they refuse or turn violent?

I suppose saying that they were actually put in the labor camp for resisting conscription actually makes sense, seeing as Kuvira's Earth Empire is all about unity and contribution to the welfare of the entire nation - a similar doctrine to soviet communism.
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« Reply #138 on: Jul 30, 2015 09:31 pm »

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Anyway, it doesn't really matter how powerful the bent lightning is in absolute terms, because we know it's powerful enough to kill either way (given that we saw it happen twice). As far as I can tell, accidents are just plain unlikely.

Saying that lightningbending is powerful enough to kill, and then saying that accidents are unlikely to happen is pretty weird.

We know for a fact that lightningbending is powerful enough to kill:




We also know that lightningbending can be used in an industrial context without being unnecessarily dangerous:



As such, it seems reasonable to conclude that the lightningbenders in that factory are not at a greater-than-usual risk of getting killed on the job, because if they were, they'd find some way to mitigate that risk (like, say, putting rubber walls between them).


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If you can increase the efficiency of the furnace through the use of firebending, that seems like a good point to me.

Flames tend to grow hotter by themselves when more heat and friction is created.

They do, but firebenders also seem capable of increasing the amount of heat without increasing the amount of fuel consumed, which seems like a very useful ability when you're dealing with thousands of tons of fuel an hour.


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(Maybe Kuvira locked up Baraz' crew for resisting conscription... it'd make a lot more sense than the alternative!)

That actually does make a lot of sense. They may have been arrested for refusing conscription by the local military and been sent to work in a labor camp. I wonder if recruitment in the Earth Empire is done in a mixed system? Many natural-born earthbenders or metalbenders are encouraged to conscript or join, while waterbenders and firebenders are conscripted or forced to work in the labor camps if they refuse or turn violent?

I suppose saying that they were actually put in the labor camp for resisting conscription actually makes sense, seeing as Kuvira's Earth Empire is all about unity and contribution to the welfare of the entire nation - a similar doctrine to soviet communism.

Exactly.

I feel like Kuvira would want every bender she could get for her military, and it'd make a lot of sense for her to create some sort of civil service to poach people for her infrastructure projects, too, so I'm not sure she'd discriminate in terms of who she'd conscript.

Maybe Opal's thing about seeing towns where the citizens were used as "slave labor" came from her seeing the result of a town largely resisting both military and civil conscription?
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« Reply #139 on: Jul 30, 2015 10:06 pm »

^ That's a very big possibility. Yeah, that actually makes way more sense I suppose. I never really considered that firebenders and waterbenders are conscripted into the military because all we ever see of her troops are metalbender platoons as well as nonbender officers or support staff.

But I won't ever be convinced that lightningbending is ever useful as a power source outside of Republic City. It just has too many risks and has very little advantages over anything else.
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« Reply #140 on: Jul 30, 2015 10:10 pm »

^ That's a very big possibility. Yeah, that actually makes way more sense I suppose. I never really considered that firebenders and waterbenders are conscripted into the military because all we ever see of her troops are metalbender platoons as well as nonbender officers or support staff.

But I won't ever be convinced that lightningbending is ever useful as a power source outside of Republic City. It just has too many risks and has very little advantages over anything else.

If lightningbending is riskier than the alternatives and has few advantages over them, why would Republic City use it, though?  It's not like we're talking about a Fire Nation city without access to other bending types -- Republic City has equal access to everything, but chose to use lightningbending for power generation anyway.
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« Reply #141 on: Jul 30, 2015 10:23 pm »

^ I tend think it's because of their high population. I mean from what we see lightningbending is much more accessible for firebenders to learn than in the Fire Nation 70 years before. I have a feeling that lightningbending in the FN could still be inaccessible to most firebenders, which is why a lot of them may find work in Republic City by learning it there.

I just don't think lightningbending is viable enough as a power source anywhere else than Republic City because nowhere has as high a population apart from Ba Sing Se.... which are either earthbenders who were likely conscripted into labor or the army during the days of the Earth Kingdom, or nonbenders.
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« Reply #142 on: Aug 16, 2015 03:54 pm »

To add on to that, using lightning benders in industrial projects probably provides easy labor for the firebenders in RC. Mako got the job in just one day.
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« Reply #143 on: Sep 13, 2015 01:04 am »

*(Sidenote: I wish they'd given more explanation of her locking up fire/waterbenders though- was it out of prejudice? Paranoia that they'd fight back? A desire to return the Earth Kingdom to its 'original' state? Personally I prefer to think that somebody else was responsible for that, or there were some specific circumstances leading to it.)

Cross-referencing from the shipping thread!  Discussion on how Kuvira's Concentration Camps did or didn't make sense considering everything else we knew about her.  Begin!

For as serious as Concentration Camps are, they were really downplayed in the season.  It seemed to me as a way to give Kuvira her villain cred.  Like, if she had camps where she was locking people up for real or imagined crimes, why did they need the Colossus?  Why did she need to invade RC?  Weren't the camps enough?
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« Reply #144 on: Sep 13, 2015 03:35 am »

*(Sidenote: I wish they'd given more explanation of her locking up fire/waterbenders though- was it out of prejudice? Paranoia that they'd fight back? A desire to return the Earth Kingdom to its 'original' state? Personally I prefer to think that somebody else was responsible for that, or there were some specific circumstances leading to it.)

Cross-referencing from the shipping thread!  Discussion on how Kuvira's Concentration Camps did or didn't make sense considering everything else we knew about her.  Begin!

For as serious as Concentration Camps are, they were really downplayed in the season.  It seemed to me as a way to give Kuvira her villain cred.  Like, if she had camps where she was locking people up for real or imagined crimes, why did they need the Colossus?  Why did she need to invade RC?  Weren't the camps enough?

I don't think that they made such a big deal about the prison camps. I mean, the only time we could see a settlement that was supposed to be a reeducation facility, it actually looked like a comfy place. Also, imprisoning people for random stuff is normal in the Avatarworld, and prisons are bad because they are boring (ref.: the Boiling Rock).

It is also interesting that none of the airbenders were imprisoned, even though they were in the forefront of everything with their peacekeeping op. From this, I would say that Kuvira didn't imprison those fire/waterbenders for nothing.
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« Reply #145 on: Sep 13, 2015 11:25 am »

Felt more like Bryke wanting to give Bolin more of an incentive to switch sides
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« Reply #146 on: Sep 13, 2015 04:07 pm »

*(Sidenote: I wish they'd given more explanation of her locking up fire/waterbenders though- was it out of prejudice? Paranoia that they'd fight back? A desire to return the Earth Kingdom to its 'original' state? Personally I prefer to think that somebody else was responsible for that, or there were some specific circumstances leading to it.)

Cross-referencing from the shipping thread!  Discussion on how Kuvira's Concentration Camps did or didn't make sense considering everything else we knew about her.  Begin!

For as serious as Concentration Camps are, they were really downplayed in the season.  It seemed to me as a way to give Kuvira her villain cred.  Like, if she had camps where she was locking people up for real or imagined crimes, why did they need the Colossus?  Why did she need to invade RC?  Weren't the camps enough?

I don't think that they made such a big deal about the prison camps. I mean, the only time we could see a settlement that was supposed to be a reeducation facility, it actually looked like a comfy place. Also, imprisoning people for random stuff is normal in the Avatarworld, and prisons are bad because they are boring (ref.: the Boiling Rock).

It is also interesting that none of the airbenders were imprisoned, even though they were in the forefront of everything with their peacekeeping op. From this, I would say that Kuvira didn't imprison those fire/waterbenders for nothing.

Yeah, I always saw the prison camps as just that, prisons.  The fact that the show never went in depth to show conditions, and what got you sent there, made it hard for me to take it seriously. 
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« Reply #147 on: Sep 13, 2015 06:39 pm »

Felt more like Bryke wanting to give Bolin more of an incentive to switch sides
A case of too many characters and not enough for them to do or screentime to go around for their bloated cast.
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« Reply #148 on: Sep 13, 2015 06:46 pm »

Felt more like Bryke wanting to give Bolin more of an incentive to switch sides
A case of too many characters and not enough for them to do or screentime to go around for their bloated cast.

Pretty much.  A lot could have been solved by letting characters fade out of the spotlight when it was their time.  Tongue
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« Reply #149 on: Sep 13, 2015 07:03 pm »

Pretty much.  A lot could have been solved by letting characters fade out of the spotlight when it was their time.  Tongue

It's that cursed "New Friends" poster. If it didn't exist then we wouldn't have needed to keep everyone on board.

Kuvira's fate is probably to make a cameo in the comics like how Zaheer did in Book 4. Time to make room for the next Y7 homicidal maniac to have a good point and get the Toph Seal of Approval and for Korra to make no less than 3 mistakes and 4 apologies.
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