Comic 1618 - Anomaly Detected

23rd Jul 2019, 9:00 PM
Anomaly Detected
Average Rating: 5 (20 votes)
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StLOrca 23rd Jul 2019, 9:02 PM edit delete reply

“Now comes the part where we run.”
Haegan2005 23rd Jul 2019, 9:14 PM edit delete reply

Now, just how good are we at running?
Oldarmourer 25th Jul 2019, 3:23 PM edit delete reply

The old officer's maxim...

"When in panic, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout"

aka the 3D principle of leadership...
"Delegate, Disappear, Don't come back"

"hold this position, I'll go for help" ;)
Oldarmourer 30th Jul 2019, 5:33 AM edit delete reply

Exactititcally :) I first heard it over 40 years ago
it even comes with instructions...

megados 30th Jul 2019, 6:41 AM edit delete reply

Minor nitpick: Your instructional chart would not result in a proper circular pattern, but in fact, would result in a figure eight. Just sayin' :-P

Oldarmourer 30th Jul 2019, 9:43 AM edit delete reply
Two circles for the effort of one...officers plan ahead o.O
megados 23rd Jul 2019, 9:15 PM edit delete reply

It's just a scratch Cyana, now get inside! :0

Re: Alt text, He's not just another pretty face! I wonder if he has any armaments. . . Might come in handy! I'm thinking probably. ;)
Lurker314 23rd Jul 2019, 10:14 PM edit delete reply
I do believe I called this one.

As for the proper criteria for such a response, I defer to the wisdom of the inestimable Howard Taylor:
HiFranc 23rd Jul 2019, 11:51 PM edit delete reply

He might have to say that Admiral Picard is ordering her to get behind shields and have her parents break out weapons.
megados 24th Jul 2019, 4:59 AM edit delete reply

Or Commander Pauline. That's actually a good idea. She might respond more quickly, if Skeeter makes it part of their imaginary play.
Lurker314 26th Jul 2019, 4:08 PM edit delete reply
Nope. She's at that age where their play in such situations is highly negotiable. The bot needs to get her out of play mode, or she is d-e-d dead.
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 3:39 AM edit delete reply

"It will buff right out"
could have said the same for Feelie ;)

So much info in that HUD...

Unknown contact
Low radiation zone to the left slightly higher one on the right
(going by intensity of indicators, nice touch on the skulls btw)
Arm state = '0' with secondary scale on the right reading '4' (right between the ONSTAR logo and music icon)
This implies to me that weapons are present since SKEETER doesn't have any arms as such
That and he's got a lot of what might be weapons ports on the sides and centre
I'm thinking Dr Silver might have met her match for cramming things into tight spaces :)

Or....A-R-M is an acronym for something else entirely since the right hand scale might be indicating Cyana and she has an ARM state of 4 and moving at 0.01 metres/second which would be pretty much just starting to stand up ?
Of course it could be a readout that just happens to be overlaid on her and it's showing SKEETER's velocity?
Or maybe it's for her toy ? Does the 'laser' on that ship work ? (as in lighting up like a 'laser tag' game, not necessarily in any intensity to cause damage)

Either way, SKEETER's getting buzzed
(and the D-03 means he's only number 3 of Delta Squadron of the swarm ;) )

Really nice detail and her hair looks a lot better in this one.
The 'road' is still there too..may as well call it one and use it now...
Or maybe it's the outer limit of their shield generator and the sand's just been polished by it ? ;)

stop making me think this early in the hurts !!
robnot 24th Jul 2019, 7:24 AM edit delete reply
now this is just me... but im reading skeeters left screen as the target an the right as what skeeter is doing.. IE: target detected, shields at 100% , no weapons armed.. Skeeter: bringing shields online in .01ms, arming weapons x4..

an judging by the target shimmer , looks like poor skeeter will soon be a particle cloud. :(
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 8:10 AM edit delete reply
Could be that too, hard to say really, there's a lot open to interpretation, but at least nothing's flashing red...yet.
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 8:22 AM edit delete reply

He does have his combat tunes ready to go, that's one good thing, hope they're not...

target danger close

followed up with


came in

and ending with


or hopefully, against all odds, we'll just get to hear SKEETER say...

that's that
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 8:35 AM edit delete reply

While I'm in the musical mood...
I've sort of grown attached to the little bugger,
hope we get to hear him like this

and not this
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 3:23 PM edit delete reply

looking more closely at the HUD...
Fuel's topped out
Battery is at nominal charge and voltage
Oil pressure is good
Filler cap is on his left side ;)
Only 272 km this trip, 1573 total, he's practically new

Looks like he's ready for action...
Hopefully his next step will be to activate the station's shields...and the minefields...and the PPC turrets
SeanR 24th Jul 2019, 8:43 AM edit delete reply
That's nothing. I have a Raspberry Pi that has an ARM 6 processor.
Well, maybe that's just a sub-system, and that ARM 8 is the CPU. That's about the same as a current-make R-Pi's, which also has an ARM-8...
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 9:16 AM edit delete reply
Could very well be that, put nothing and I mean nothing past our writers ;)
KarToon12 24th Jul 2019, 9:27 AM edit delete reply

The Enterprise has been through worse. It'll be fine.
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 9:50 AM edit delete reply
The Enterprise blew up and crashed least twice...
Centcomm 26th Jul 2019, 12:50 AM edit delete reply

there are plenty of letters left in the alphabet...
Oldarmourer 26th Jul 2019, 5:09 AM edit delete reply

Captain's Log:
Stardate 1337-5318008.3.14159

USS Enterprise, Starfleet Registry 1701-WTF
Capt. Heironymus J. Wombat commanding

First report on the maiden voyage of this new Starship
Long range scanners are picking up an unknown signature
Initiating self-destruct sequence
Final entry
megados 26th Jul 2019, 8:11 AM edit delete reply

Well that's kind of defeatist, isn't it? XD
Oldarmourer 27th Jul 2019, 5:45 PM edit delete reply

I figure by the time they get that far down the alphabet more than one 1701's are going to have met a fiery'll probably be part of the Ship Operating Instructions and a part of the daily checklist "destruct system operated successfully"
SteelRev 24th Jul 2019, 11:26 AM edit delete reply
I'm I the only one who sees a bipedal form in the center of his scanner alert?
megados 24th Jul 2019, 11:46 AM edit delete reply

Now that you mention it, there's a shadow form that comes across that way. Cloaked perhaps?
Gilrandir 24th Jul 2019, 11:50 AM edit delete reply
I, also, see what looks like an armored biped in Predator-style camouflage.
mjkj 24th Jul 2019, 12:04 PM edit delete reply

Uh-oh the deathbot is coming... =S
DizzasterJuice 24th Jul 2019, 1:28 PM edit delete reply

Incoming murder-turd!
Oldarmourer 24th Jul 2019, 3:14 PM edit delete reply

Wonder what that might be...
of course it may very well not be, depending on how badly these two want to psyche us out ;)

Still...let's try something completely different

I'll give you the first lines, somebody else get the next, then so on and so nauseum.

tune if anyone needs it and G-d help you if you do....

too obvious ?


" I'm a Feeliewhacker, I'm ok
My armour's made of gold lamé "
Gilrandir 25th Jul 2019, 9:51 AM edit delete reply
"The AFV's, before they launched, fell to my killing spree.
They had no chance against my … advanced technology."
DLKmusic 25th Jul 2019, 5:25 PM edit delete reply

Just too many gutters, out here in The wasteland.
I go out to kill them, then grind them into sand

***Cent-comm doll Chorus line doing the rockettes dance***
"He's a feeliewacker and he's ok,
his armor's made of gold lamé"

I will annihilate them, whoever they might be
but I don't understand the concept of civilian casualties

***Cent-comm doll Chorus line doing the rockettes dance***
"He's a feeliewacker and he's ok,
his armor's made of gold lamé"
megados 25th Jul 2019, 5:36 PM edit delete reply

"My formidable death day, Will melt your armor down,
You'd best go into hiding, ...When I come around!"
Oldarmourer 26th Jul 2019, 5:14 AM edit delete reply

"I've cut down troops, some gutters too, a Cassian and a tank
Now I've come for Cyana's toys, you've Cent and Rose to thank"
Centcomm 26th Jul 2019, 12:49 AM edit delete reply

DLKmusic 26th Jul 2019, 10:53 PM edit delete reply

Is it wrong of me to want to see an incentive pic of the Cent-Comm doll Chorus line doing the Rockettes dance?

complete one piece outfits and plumed hats that weight more than the dolls do?
Oldarmourer 27th Jul 2019, 6:46 AM edit delete reply
Where's a good cyberpath with a grudge when you need one ? :)
megados 27th Jul 2019, 12:01 PM edit delete reply

Point of speculation: Is it even possible for a cyberpath to wrest control of that many dolls away from CentComm? Even one? It would be layers of difficulty beyond what we have seen so far.
Oldarmourer 27th Jul 2019, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
If Ada and TeeDee can play 'dress-up' with a Centcomm doll, then a half-decent cyberpath like the one that attacked Noctis and her sisters, should be able to do a chorus line...the trick is not letting Centcomm find out about it ;)
megados 27th Jul 2019, 2:05 PM edit delete reply

Well, the "not letting CentComm know about it" is the hard part, was what I was thinking. If someone started messing with one of her dolls, I can't imagine it would take her more than a couple microseconds to notice. I think maybe the better bet might be to get CentComm to go along with it. She could get you a full chorus line going without the associated death and destruction! XD

I'd bet Ada would be up for it, but I don't wanna be the one to put it to TeeDee. >_>
Speedy 29th Jul 2019, 9:35 PM edit delete reply
No need for a cyberpath. Centcomm is a master of every form of dance battle. ;)
Oldarmourer 30th Jul 2019, 9:57 AM edit delete reply

Pretty sure Cent's observed more than one dance through her years monitoring New Troy... Dance...
JackOfClubs 24th Jul 2019, 3:25 PM edit delete reply

I'm guessing more "mech looking, shiny gold" than murder turd, but who knows.

As to whether Skeeter is armed, it doesn't look like there is much room for on-board armaments but surely it would have access to any base defenses? Cyana's parents didn't seem like total idiots and yet they let her play outside even though they are actively considering getting a nanny with combat skills. That suggests to me that she is reasonably well defended. However, if I'm right about what is coming, that may not be enough...
Ebonbolt 24th Jul 2019, 4:06 PM edit delete reply

Some notable examples of "comic relief" characters being extremely dangerous: the Mask (from the 1994 film of the same name), Bugs Bunny (indeed, most Looney Tunes characters), George of the Jungle…
Never underestimate the funny guy, especially when he stops being funny. Of course, Skeeter is the straight man. They're even more dangerous, because they're never distracted by trying to get a laugh.
Rashala 25th Jul 2019, 12:55 AM edit delete reply

I hate being right.....things are about to get bad...
Oldarmourer 25th Jul 2019, 3:42 PM edit delete reply

I wonder if there are more than one of those golden 'tech retrieval terrors' ?

Feelie and her Scorpion Squad ran into one fairly close to Nova Roma
I'm going to say around the Miramichi because...well...I've lived in the Miramichi
There was an RCAF base there and the locals I knew would make good gutters...
first rate ones, Gavin would be proud, he might even be from there
Or maybe they were around Moncton or Saint John ? lots of potential there too ;)

As close as I can make out, Braden and Olina's station is close (close as the water tanker flies) to Logrin's,
which is close to where Ada and TeeDee were shot down and is somewhere between New Troy and New Sparta,
I'm going to guess somewhere in the Badlands below Drumheller based on the 'fossil canyon' reference
although it could be closer to Colorado and be in Montana or Wyoming or one of the Dakotas instead of Alberta,
Or maybe the 'fossil canyon' is the Grand Canyon ?
it didn't say which direction Logrin's bunker was or how far away but given a several hour trip at maybe 60mph, or more,
it could easily be 300+ miles away from Olina and Cyana in any direction.

The gold mech had a pretty good distance to travel in the short time since Feelie was sent out after gutters,
which wouldn't have happened until after the riots got sorted out and Maxus got the information on their camps from a particular Senator.

It doesn't seem like a week would have passed since Feelie got 'Paulined', maybe less,
it's at least 3,000 miles to get from Nova Roma to Drumheller,
over some pretty rough terrain even pre-wars and that's without stopping to pillage more tech,
so that's moving at a pretty good clip even at a fast mech walking speed
that's if the highways/railbeds are still in decent shape, otherwise it's some tough slogging
and also assuming it doesn't stop to attack the odd cargo hauler like Mr Black,
so...maybe there are more than one of these things roaming the various wastelands ?

That's a little unnerving to think about, and if so, who's running them ?
The group Dr. Silver was dealing with at the start of the story ?
An unnamed city ?
Someone who was backing douchimus until he went completely nuts ?

Curiouser and curiouser...

Stop making me think !!!!
megados 25th Jul 2019, 4:22 PM edit delete reply

Don't feel too bad, it's somewhat confusing at times. Some of these segments are concurrent, and some are consecutive, which makes it somewhat difficult to pin down some of the timelines. I suspect some of that is a purposeful means of giving room to tell the story, as well as being able to bring in some surprises, and tie-ins. :D

As far as how many there are, it's hard to say, but as you point out, determining that is closely related to figuring out how Feelie's timeline coincides with the burning of Rome ;)
Oldarmourer 25th Jul 2019, 4:26 PM edit delete reply

Oh, I took that into account, I don't see this particular incident being too far removed in time from the concurrent goings on with Gigi in New Troy and Feelie in Nova Roma but it might well be months later, we'll see eventually, it took 12 years to tell the first arc after all and only about ten days passed in story time :)

It's just that I've driven from Nova Roma to New Sparta...several gotta stop for Timmie's more than once.

it's pretty big up here, eh

edit: according to Scorpion Group Feelie met the Feeliewhacker and got whacked "a week after the fall of Prince douchimus"
the shopping trip happened just about the same time, or just a few days prior,
I think Acantha was in the hospital three, maybe four days before they went out ?
megados 25th Jul 2019, 5:10 PM edit delete reply

Hehehe, yeah, and some places are less accessable than others. Another thing that occurs, is that we don't even know if there is additional means of transportation. It/they may not have had to hoof it all the way, if there's something/someone else behind it. Hell, we don't even know yet if this is the same entity here as before.
Bullwinkle 26th Jul 2019, 4:24 PM edit delete reply
As to who is running them in the first few pages it was said there were vault cities. These would be underground with trade quarters close to the surface like Atta for example.It would be very difficult to keep tabs on what they are up to,although Mr Black knows this guy.....
megados 26th Jul 2019, 6:07 PM edit delete reply

It's pretty much wide open. It's certainly possible Mister Black knows a guy, and he might or might not even know whether said guy is involved. It may be one sole rogue killbot. Said killbot may or may not be present here at this time, and this might be another isolated event, distinctly separate from anything we have seen before. It is also possible that this isn't an impending attack at all, although it seems to become more likely that it is.

It might be arguably as difficult to keep track of various surface dwellers as it would be to keep track of vault dwellers, and possibly moreso, since surface dwellers could be somewhat nomadic, where vault dwellers would not.

Hard to say. :D
Centcomm 26th Jul 2019, 12:49 AM edit delete reply

I love the way you guys speculate on stuff! its awesome!
Oldarmourer 26th Jul 2019, 2:53 AM edit delete reply
That's because you guys give us so many things to speculate about :)

No matter how much detail goes into a page it always seems there's that little leftover "what if..." that makes us keep coming back for more.
megados 26th Jul 2019, 9:32 AM edit delete reply

@Centcomm, you provide things to speculate about. Thought provoking ideas from both the story, and other commenters, give everyone a lot to think about. Thanks! I mean that. :)
Oldarmourer 26th Jul 2019, 9:46 AM edit delete reply

Of course some of the 'speculation' is pure tongue-in-cheek, wild-assed having fun with the characters/stories and some 'what if's'
but I for one do enjoy a good rousing game of 'second guess the writers'
because even when you lose, you win...or is that "even when you win you lose" ?
no matter, the fun's in the playing :)

It's not that we want to get ahead of the story and be proven 'right' or applauded for our cleverness in attempts at deduction or humour
it's that between the dialogue and interplay of the characters and the involved participation of their creators in this comments section
you've made us feel like we're part of the story and the process and it's gone beyond simply reading a webcomic to 'belonging to it'
if that makes sense to anyone except me ?
Evervigilant 27th Jul 2019, 1:18 PM edit delete reply
I agree with Megados. Cent and Rose give us a great story that pulls you in, makes you think, and try to anticipate what might happen next. That is the mark of good storytelling. Thank you!
Centcomm 29th Jul 2019, 3:48 PM edit delete reply

aww HUGS
Oldarmourer 27th Jul 2019, 5:40 PM edit delete reply

I can see our creative team discussing the comments section...

Cent: they're getting awfully good at getting ahead of us

Rose: Nope, they're WAAAYYY off, it's not a golden killbot, it's a SILVER killbot... not even close...hahaha

Cent: well, yeah...but they're still guessing

and of course it's going to turn out to be something completely different anyway, or a scene change ;)
Eve Z. 28th Jul 2019, 1:24 PM edit delete reply

I have a feeling that the big golden centurion is approaching.
megados 29th Jul 2019, 9:01 AM edit delete reply

You could be right.
Oldarmourer 28th Jul 2019, 4:34 PM edit delete reply
I have this nagging feeling that Olina might know enough about engineering to be curious about what several industrial strength anti-grav plates buried in the sand might do if someone/thing walks over them :)

Or what two of them would do if they were set to pulse exactly out of phase at a high frequency and shake something that got between them just a little...

Methinks this base isn't going to be as easy to crack as a bunch of gutters or a squad of overconfident and undercautious troops...or at least mehopes....
megados 28th Jul 2019, 6:20 PM edit delete reply

If she's decent enough an engineer to play with the idea, then in either scenario it's important for her to mind her waveform, and power curve. After all, that's going to mean the difference between sitting and eating popcorn and watching the show, or cleaning up endless gruesome messes.

However that turns out, it's probably going to be tough to get in there, yes. (Well for average gutters and the like probably; for Golden Boy, maybe not so much) :D
Oldarmourer 29th Jul 2019, 3:33 AM edit delete reply
well, seeing as SKEETER was named after the common mosquito of the 39th century, a highly evolved and mutated insect that feeds mainly on the blood of murderturds and is the only thing capable of penetrating their armour besides another murderturd... ;)
Oldarmourer 29th Jul 2019, 5:34 AM edit delete reply

Reprinted from "Logrin's Guide to the Wastelands" 3rd edition published 3883

Common Wasteland Mosquito (Anophles Getfukticus):

A not uncommon sight in the Wastes is the Common Wasteland Mosquito:
A down-sized version of the Eastern Canadian Mosquito (Anophles Domesticus LardTundrinJAYZUS)
cross bred with the smaller but more tenacious Northern Albertan Mosquito (Culisita Inhumanitus Horriblus)

Ranging nominally from 15 to 25 metres in length and wingspan with a three metre proboscis
The Wasteland Mosquito feeds mainly on Scythe Lizards (Murderturdus Ohmygodicus Runfastasfuck)
penetrating it's prey's armoured skin with a hydraulically operated reciprocating silicon carbide tipped beak.*
Travellers encountering Mosquitoes are advised to shelter in place only if their craft has Class 7 shields minimum.
Otherwise attempt to flee at maximum possible speed and altitude, preferably both, weapons fire is generally ineffective.
There are no known instances of Wasteland Mosquitoes being kept for research purposes as no researcher has ever been known to survive the trapping attempt. Any positive recordings of the Mosquito have been obtained from surveillance satellite images and are difficult to watch without the observer breaking into a cold sweat and hiding under their chair.


*This feeding process has been known to enrage Scythe Lizards**

**About as much as anything else
Centcomm 29th Jul 2019, 3:47 PM edit delete reply

Oldarmourer 29th Jul 2019, 5:17 PM edit delete reply

You lot could maybe put together a 'Badlands Beastiary' and keep it for times when you need filler...
Of course you could work them into the story first so we don't find out about them ahead of time and spoil it :)
Like we saw the Scythe Lizards on the road long before the fun at the customs dock...still waiting to see those rats.
Sheela 30th Jul 2019, 3:10 AM edit delete reply

Holy shit that thing is pure nightmare fuel - I love it !! 😁
It still wouldn't be a match for Feral Roses, but then nothing really is.

Also, look out for the Mech Doggy of the European wastes .. it's dangerous .. even to spaceships in high earth orbit.
Oldarmourer 30th Jul 2019, 5:35 AM edit delete reply

Nice to see you Sheela, thought a cat chased you up a tree ;)

or a rose....

Sheela 30th Jul 2019, 10:58 PM edit delete reply

I've been busy … and lurking … busy and lurking.
Lurker314 30th Jul 2019, 6:17 PM edit delete reply
OMW. I just noticed the shadow in panel 2. Did you PLAN for this distressed alien to appear?
megados 30th Jul 2019, 7:34 PM edit delete reply

Now I can't unsee it. ;)
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