Friday, July 01, 2022

Declaration of Victory: First Among Many

Reaches 2-6 and cannot achieve quorum, so it is failed -SingularByte

Adminned at 02 Jul 2022 04:28:15 UTC

My Ideology is the Primary Ideology of Survivor Camp and Waterlogged Shops; I have therefore achieved victory.


Josh: Announcer he/him

01-07-2022 12:45:21 UTC

Note: This scam is based on creating a Phalanx by “reducing” my own Health by -350, to give me enough Health to spend on the two Conquerings.

The use of the term “reduce” in Fleshmancy (“Reduce their own Health by x”) is deliberate. Numbers and Variables says:

Unless otherwise specified, to “spend,” “pay” or “lose” an amount X of a numeric value “V” means to subtract X from V; to “gain” X of a numeric value “V” means to add X to V; and to “transfer” or “pay” X of a numeric value “V” from A to B means to subtract X from A’s V and add X to B’s V. Unless otherwise specified, only positive amounts can be spent, paid, lost, gained, or transferred

“Reduce” is pointedly not one of the terms defined here, and its omission means that a negative quantity reduction is legal.

It would not be legal to make a Phalanx with negative Health, but the Phalanx’s health is never zero; “Create a new Phalanx with Health equal to x/2 rounded down to a minimum of 1” - how to round down a negative number seems to be debated but the closest thing that I could find to a consensus is that where it is defined in the terms of the equation to can just follow that term, so “round down to 1” here seems to mean that -350 can be rounded down to 1.

That’s my mission statement, anyway. Trapdoorspyder gets 50% of this win if it sticks.

SingularByte: he/him

01-07-2022 12:57:53 UTC

I’m going to have to ask here, is there a precise meaning of the word “variable” in the rules?

I know there’s tracked gamestate variables but I’d also argue that “x” is itself a variable which would mean it’s covered under the rule:
“If a set of valid values is not specified in their definition, game variables defined to hold numeric values can hold only non-negative integers.”


01-07-2022 13:36:53 UTC

“Defined to hold numerical values”. As X was never explicitly defined as such, there is no issue in it being a negative number.

Josh: Announcer he/him

01-07-2022 13:49:27 UTC

I’m also not sure where “variable” starts and stops; it’s not defined in the ruleset. At it’s widest you might say “anything that varies” but as the x in this neither holds its value nor is tracked anywhere it doesn’t behave like what we’d generally consider to be a variable.


01-07-2022 14:18:25 UTC


Brendan: he/him

01-07-2022 16:58:05 UTC

against This is fun! But I think that at the very least, it falls apart at the “rounded down” language. Here’s a definition of rounding down:

“To lower (a number) to the nearest whole number or ten, hundred, or thousand below it.”

The integer value of positive one is not lower than or below any negative number, so creating a Phalanx with negative Health cannot be legal.


01-07-2022 17:44:02 UTC

The trick there is that it says “rounded down to a minimum value of one”. Despite saying rounded down, the minimum value restriction means that the result must be at least 1, resulting in one. The same thing would be the case if someone would create a Phalanx using 1 of their own health. Instead of 1/2, or 0.5 going to 0, or being rounded down, or would be set to the minimum value of 1.

Josh: Announcer he/him

01-07-2022 17:47:45 UTC

@Brendan That seems to be the definition from; far be it from me to impugn their good work but it seems to be me to be much more complicated than that when it comes to negative numbers. Take this discussion on stack overflow:

There’s support there for the answer that you round towards zero, and support for the answer that you round towards infinity.

But the rule here actually tells us what you have to do: “round down” is a red herring in this situation as you *have* to have its value end up as “a minimum of 1”. It cannot be any value less than 1; even if it would have a value less than 1 that value is set to 1, right?

SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 18:30:00 UTC

I would argue that because you can’t round down and still have a minimum of 1, you can’t perform the action at all. Official vote will probably come soon

Brendan: he/him

01-07-2022 18:32:13 UTC

I politely disagree. “Perform this action only on a Tuesday, as long as you only perform it on a Thursday” doesn’t boil down to “you can totally do this on Thursday,” but rather “this action cannot legally be performed.”

Josh: Announcer he/him

01-07-2022 18:36:15 UTC

That’s not quite an apt analogy, though, I think? As this isn’t a tautological instruction, it’s a linear instruction with tautological consequences (i.e. “You can only ride a bike on a Thursday; if you do, make your hat red. Hats can only be blue”). The ruleset quite explicitly does not make riding a bike illegal in this situation; it hands off hat-setting to other rules to resolve more explicitly, as indeed is the case in this rule, where hat-setting is defined as “minimum of 1”.

Josh: Announcer he/him

01-07-2022 18:36:52 UTC

Not tautological. You know what I mean.

SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 18:44:39 UTC

against As per my explanation above and Brendan’s continuation of it

SingularByte: he/him

01-07-2022 18:44:54 UTC

I’m also going to point out that you can’t really reduce by a negative number. Subtraction can since that’s a mathematical operation with rigid rules around negative numbers, but reduction is specifically about making something smaller.

The Cambridge dictionary for example defines reduce as “to become or to make something become smaller in size, amount, degree, importance”.
Wiktionary: To bring down the size, quantity, quality, value or intensity of something; to diminish, to lower.
Merriam-Webster: to diminish in size, amount, extent, or number

SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 18:47:39 UTC

I think a better analogy would be if you have an elevator that can pick you up from any floor, but can only go down when it has passengers, and can only take you to a floor numbered 1 or higher. If you’re on floor -3, then the elevator must simultaneously take you up (to floor 1 or higher) and down (because it only moves downwards when it has passengers). Since both can’t be true at once, the action can’t be performed.

SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 18:48:44 UTC

@SB, unfortunately, the ruleset is quite explicit that in this case, reducing unequivocally equals subtraction.

SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 18:49:08 UTC

Wait no I misread, carry on


01-07-2022 19:00:31 UTC

By these arguments, are you guys saying that it is also impossible to create a phalanx using 1 health?

Raven1207: he/him

01-07-2022 19:02:01 UTC


SupernovaStarbright: she/they

01-07-2022 19:13:04 UTC

@TDS Maybe! Honestly not sure, mind quoting the rule in question?

lendunistus: he/him

01-07-2022 19:14:59 UTC


someone should probably pop up a CfJ to patch that up for good, if nobody else does, I’ll do it tomorrow

wdtefv: hu/hum

01-07-2022 22:03:46 UTC

holy- against
yea, what’s causing this one? what exactly do we need to pop a CfJ on here?