So, I have a bit of bad news; not only is this comic a tad light on content, I think I am going to skip Thursday to reestablish a buffer. To be clear, this doesn’t mean I’m just going to kick back on a beach or something, I’m still going to draw the comic, but I think it’s not proven historically to be a good idea to try and run pen to publish without a buffer, so I’m going to take a day off to get at least a little ahead.

I think the light has reemerged here though, as the problem project that has sort of derailed things is… sort of leaving the scope of things developers deal with. Though I would argue it never really entered the scope of something a developer deals with either. Unfortunately I’m not quite sure what that means yet, as my company really doesn’t want to give me back to my old project, so we’ll see what bright idea they are hatching now.

As for the actual comic…

Well, obviously something on this scale I have to be somewhat stylized in how I draw it. The special effects budget is limited after all. It’s one of those things that I felt I should spend space on though, as it helps convey relative relevance. Notably the last few times we’ve seen Kally’s Dragonfire it has not actually hit the ground. Dragonfire is the same general category of magic as the rupture magic we see quite a few IDS people use, and was originally devised from red constructs. The calculation itself can be divided out and used on its own – we have seen everyone from Ila to Nick Otte use it – but if you asked Kally… Dragonfire is rather more pure application.

We’ll probably learn more about it later one, but suffice to say it is neither literally fire, nor entirely just a beam of heat/energy or the like, it’s primarily a data-category effect that uses the real world as an interface medium, which quite a few things do. Transmission is typically easier than remote action, and far more effective at attempting to bypass resistance. Of course, it has it’s own flaws – we’ve seen that neither Rupture nor a remote action data attack like Rovak’s Explosion worked on Tyler. But, well, transmission of data scales better I guess you could say. Using real energy to to transmit (like the lightning arcs or Camillia’s light/laser-like ability) can be more efficient, but has it’s own pros and cons, which if I get into here we’ll be here all day.

How exactly Dragonfire works though is something that most people in-comic could not answer either. It is ludicrously scaled up from more typical applications of Rupture magic, and well out of the range of something a mage can produce directly via a calculation. It is far from the only tactical class magic known, but is fairly unusual in it’s category. There is quite a theoretical divide in IDS researchers if Kally could in principle use dragonfire without the dragon, with many arguing the fundamentally the power comes from her anyway, while others pointing out that if she was powerful enough to produce an effect like that, the rest of her magic should be equally as absurd, rather than just very powerful. For what it’s worth, Kally think the debate is ridiculous. Dragon’s breath fire, people don’t.