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Topics - Denial

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Speculation Nation / The Apostle Diet
« on: July 21, 2005, 12:29:30 AM »
Okay, by this point everyone should know -- Apostles like to chow down on that tasty man-flesh. My question is: How do they maintain a balanced diet? Is this some kind of mega-Atkins?

No, but seriously... While the human-eating antics of Apostles have been adequately explored, do we know if Apostles ever don't-eat human flesh? In other words, is it possible to be an Apostle without constantly having to kill people?

Mainly I ask out of curiousity about the necessity of "evil" to an Apostle's existence, but I suppose it's also interesting from a logistical point of view... Human beings don't grow on trees after all, and most of the Apostles we've seen have pretty ferocious appetites. One might be able to guess some general figures on Apostles given their dietary needs, if they are required to feed on humans...

Shootin' the Breeze / The Role of a New Character...
« on: July 02, 2005, 02:08:07 AM »
What do you guys think?

Creation Station / My Boring Stuff
« on: May 09, 2005, 01:08:18 AM »
What I've been working on, on and off, for awhile...

Kind of inspired by...

Lith can probably own this in a day. Heh.

Creation Station / Dragonslayer Maya Model (.mb)
« on: February 03, 2005, 01:36:13 AM »

File Here: (20k)

Lithrael, am I wasting too many polygons on the hilt/handle area? I was using Nurbs semicircles and lofting between them with polygons, mostly, around 100-300 range. The handle itself is just a cube, but in order to get the slightly curved look that it has in most of the comic images, I had to subdivide it.

Also, right now I'm missing the single chain-link that is on the side of the sword. The only way I could think of to make that object swing realistically when the Dragonslayer is in motion is to turn both into hard bodies, but I wasn't sure if that might have some unintended consequences if I ever wanted to place it into a scene with other particles/etc, so I haven't bothered messing with that yet. (Advice Lithrael? Heh.)

The scaling is kind of difficult, and I might need to work on that some more. Also, there's obviously no textures yet. I may put a textured version up eventually.

Speculation Nation / Piecemeal Elements
« on: October 05, 2004, 12:41:07 PM »
I've been pondering this for awhile now, but haven't really bothered to post about it until now.

Basically, the theory goes, a lot of the elements in Berserk are drawn from the real world. These elements are not just trivial things like historical background but might actually offer significant insight as to the direction of the story.

Now, what spawns this vague sort of pondering is a bit of reading I've been doing about Chinese art. I thought this passage was very interesting:

It was probably in Gandahara that, under these influences and encouraged by the great conference organized by King Kanishka (second century AD) of the Kushans, the first great development in Buddhist doctrine took place.

I wouldn't make too much of the reference if we didn't have such a strong reference that Berserk's Ganishka is based off of the historical one. What does it mean? Well, I don't know enough about Indian historical figures to tell you that. But I'm betting we could find out some interesting facts with a bit of research.

So, yeah, it's not as impressive using just one example of one thing. Well, here's another. How many of you here know what the Qlipoth are?

Here's a rundown. There's an ancient Hebrew text called the Sefer Yetsirah (Book of Formation). In this book, we see the first historical reference to what are known as the Sefirot Belimah (nobody really knows what this term means. P.S. Sefirot = Sephiroth for FF7 fans.). There are 10 Sefirot Belimah and 22 Wondrous Paths of Wisdom. A literal interpretation is that there are 22 Hebrew Letters and 10 numbers.
Jump forward a few hundred years and we have Kabbalah. Kabbalah is based on the Sefirot Belimah, which are typically arranged into a formation that is called the "Tree of Life." The tree of life formation is also supposed to represent the body of God. The ultimate, unknowable manifestation of God is called Ein Sof (Nothing), and that is located "above" and as the source of all the Sefirot.
Jumping forward a bit more in time, we have this guy Isaac Luria. Things get really complicated here. Basically, Ein Sof's creation of the Sefirot is interpreted to be the creation of the world. However, to explain the existence of Evil in the world, essentially an error occurs in creation. The Sefirot shatter, and fall into this amorphous abyss. But the divine light that was in the Sefirot is still trapped inside of their shells (Qlipoth). Eventually Ein Sof creates another set of Sefirot and this time everything goes according to plan.
The Qlipoth are, at least in this interpretation, the world(s) we live in.

Is it too speculative to try and draw some conclusions about Berserk from that? I'm not sure. It seems terribly unlikely that Miura is choosing actual historical figures and actual planar terminology at random. Anyway, I could probably point out a few more if I had the time to dig through recent Volumes, but I don't at the moment.


Note: Since I forgot to add this in there earlier. There are certainly issues of translation to consider. The entire endeavor of trying to look at material translated from the Japanese and examine it from that might be faulty. For instance, I have no idea how we can go from a Japanese symbol to an English transliteration of a Hebrew word (Qlipoth) unless the translator is taking liberties or unless there is some explicit indication of the Hebrew origin of the term in the usage.

Shootin' the Breeze / End this story!
« on: September 11, 2004, 10:16:28 PM »

Creation Station / Skull Knight Colorization
« on: August 05, 2004, 07:09:54 PM »
Not really finished with this one, but spent a fair amount of time on it already and I figured I'll post it up here and get some comments while I take a break from it for a few days.
I want to add more detail to the background (a third layer of distant trees) and make Skull Knight's underarmor look more metallic. Thinking of doing the spikes on the armor as a silver accent color, but not sure since I see Skull Knight as being generally monochromatic and having 3 different materials in his armor rather than 2 reduces the prominence of the bone theme... Also want to do the horse's color myself instead of the black line colorization, but I'll need to see if I can handle that.
In general I want to achieve a sort of half-there look to this piece to emphasize Skull Knight's otherworldly nature, perhaps adding in some mist and messing around with his lines to reduce his appearance of solidity. But I'm not really anywhere near that point yet.

Creation Station / New Character Sneak Peek!
« on: August 05, 2004, 02:02:50 AM »
Hey guys,

I was over at my friend Kentaro's place today, and he was cool enough to show me some of his concept art. I took a scan of this guy slated to appear in the next few chapters. Enjoy!

Speculation Nation / Bloodline - SK and Guts
« on: August 01, 2004, 01:46:13 AM »
Just throwing out this idea to you guys since I have never seen anyone else mention it... Has anyone ever thought that Guts is a descendent of Gaiseric? I was always struck by the physical similarities in skull and build structure between the two. Even the flashback we have of Gaiseric in his helmet looks like Guts wearing his old skull cap helmet from Band of the Hawk days. Not to mention they both seem to be completely badass. That sort of badassness just doesn't come out of nowhere you know, it runs in the family.

Admittedly not too much solid to back it up, but it just strikes me as right. What do you think?

Speculation Nation / Gaiseric and Godhand?
« on: August 01, 2004, 12:12:22 AM »
Hmm. I just took a look at the Berserk encyclopedia the other day and noticed that Gaiseric is placed at -1000, whereas Void is placed -864...

If a Godhand is born every 216 years, and Griffith is the fifth Godhand, then the first Godhand would have been born -1080, not -864 (using the year of Charlotte's story/Griffith's ascension as 0, which the timeline does not do. But it doesn't change the fact that the first Godhand must have ascended around the same time as Gaiseric's rule, not ~136 years after when he was already "dead").

That wasn't really my main point though. When Charlotte is telling the story of Gaiseric, she says that his kingdom was destroyed by 4/5 angels. I have always taken this to mean the Godhand. Is there any other way to take it, after all? I can't think of anything that a group of four or maybe five really powerful servants of God would refer to in the Berserk universe than the Godhand.
When I began to think about the timeline, though, I realized this was impossible-- If the Godhand had anything to do with Gaiseric, there sure as hell weren't 4 of them around at the time of his rule. Void alone? Yeah, maybe. But the rest simply hadn't ascended yet.

So, speculation:
In my opinion, IDEA and the Godhand go back a lot further than 1000 years in the Berserk universe. Looking at the technology level in the Berserk universe and comparing it to our own, we can gather that there's probably a good 1-1500 years of history and maybe around 5-6000 years of pre-history civilization. Since IDEA is supposed to be manifest out of humans' desire for meaning in a world full of suffering, it probably is at least as old as civilization and perhaps older. We don't know how old the institution of the Godhand is, but I am, generally, highly skeptical that it is a "recent," meaning, extant only for 1000 years, convention. Why, after all, if IDEA were floating along nebulously in the web of fate, would it finally decide that it needed to start promoting humans so that it could do its job? Did it suddenly get tired of seeding death, destruction, and despair and decide to start outsourcing so it could go on vacation?

There are some other assumptions we are working under which I don't necessarily think are correct.
Assumption #1, Every 216 years a new Godhand is born. I, for one, do not think this is necessarily the case. While the eclipse might happen every 216 years, I don't think it's necessary that an ascension to Godhand occur. What if there are no suitable human candidates, or if the candidate refuses to make a sacrifice?
Assumption #2, There is no turnover in Godhand-hood. Drawing on my belief that the institution of the Godhand is older than 1000 years, I think there have probably been members of the Godhand other than the current 4/5. I'm not entirely certain on what could cause such turnover, perhaps the will of IDEA or (unlikely) destruction by some other powerful beings-- if certain members of the Godhand plotted against another for some unfathomable reason it is possible that they might eject or destroy one of their own. Another option, which I think is most likely, is that members of the Godhand, if they choose to become manifest in the human world, are no longer considered active members of the Godhand, even if they do retain some of their extraordinary power.
For example, Femto as we knew him no longer exists, and, in my opinion, in 216 years it is possible that another could take the 5th post of the Godhand that has been left empty by Femto returning to become Griffith again. This is just out and out speculation, but Griffith will eventually attain his dream of becoming king. And what then? Griffith's dream should be (and is, though he is taking his time) child's play for him to attain. Once he is king there will be nothing left for him, and I suspect he will lose a great deal of his power.

Now, it's been a few months since I've read some of this stuff, so... doesn't the secondary eclipse-- the one Griffith used to return into human form-- happen approximately every 1000 years?
If that's the case, then I think it may have been the case that Gaiseric/Skull Knight was once a member of the Godhand. Like Griffith, his dream was foiled and in a time of desperation his Beherit was activated. He became a Godhand, but subsequently manifested himself back into the real world to establish his dream and create his empire. Once his dream was satisfied, though, the other four Godhand swooped down and destroyed it all, as he had fulfilled his goal in returning to earth, but the persistence of his empire was something they had no desire in, as it would mean a long period of relative peace and prosperity in the world. Gaiseric was obviously ticked at this, and though he is not as powerful as he once was, he still retains some of his power (hence immortality, etc). Now his purpose is to exact revenge on Void (who may be the only member of the Godhand who is still around from then, or he may be the mastermind of some sort of treachery against Skull Knight that caused him to be ejected from the Godhand).

Feel free to punch holes in my theory.

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