Fire Hazard

F1R$7 P0$7! But seriously, I stay up on Monday and Thursday nights, usually until around 11:30, just so that I can grab this comic as it’s updated. Does that make me a freak? Yes. Does it make me the biggest NAV fan ever? YES AGAIN! Also, OMG OTHR H4KZ0R$! LEAVE DANNI ALONE!

James Smith

Don’t hack–snort it back and swallow. You’re a lady (about) you should never spit in public.

(That just had to be said!)

Another hacker?! WTF? Who, were, why, what? Maybe it’s TenKa hacking to try to bait Kleya out. There’s no way that can be legal. Then again, maybe it’s a new character! If it is a new character, that would be sweet. Incidentally, let me say I love the character expressions throughout these past few comics. Kleya has been scowling / frowning / and generally looking villian-y. While the Bandit has been smiling and glowing with in a friendly way the same way a classic hero might. And yet, you identify with Kleya more because the bandit just comes off as… Read more »

Oh well done. I must say that given the art quality of this comic compared to other stuff out there, you did a wonderful job with the camera on this one. It took me a moment, but I eventually got that she’s looking AROUND Bandit.

Nice job. can’t wait to see where this one goes next!


Well, that sponsor girl did say she’d never get past the first round. Kind of suspicious.


I don’t really get the rules, and did he really have to cheat to be faster?


The way she says “is that..” and the level of hacking makes me suspect that it’s Sasuke, (probably spelled his name wrong) and that she’s the one he’s looking for… and that they’re all baiting her to hack for confirmation.


Wow, interesting development. I wonder- is it TENka, or another player? Or even a Watcher? And why go for Danni first? Unless it’s to try and flush Kleya out, see if she really is who they think she might be. I don’t think the Bandit is quite bright enough to be the one hacking Danni. But I could be wrong. On page 69, that one guy whose name escapes me at the moment mentioned that the Bandit was also very good with programming. We’ll just have to wait and see how this turns out.


What does the Hack Vision say in the second panel?


Looks like “Lewd” and “Pathetic” to me.

Tim C


I parsed it as “Alert Level: Pathetic”


I’m pretty sure it’s “level Pathetic.” for a full phrasing of “Alert! level: pathetic” Meaning this is probably a low-level hack, at least compared to what Kleya is used to.


I was thinking it was calling Danni’s level pathetic…and the alert of course is just an alert that hacking is going on…cuz it seems like fairly high level hacking to attack someone you’re not fighting at the moment. One thing to adjust your attacks to make them more powerful, quite another to essentially create an attack without a body in someone’s fight.

Tim C
That depends on how hacking works in this world. Realistically (realism, of course, is subject to veto by the word of the author), it doesn’t matter whether someone has a presence in the fight or not, if they have a connection to the server, and the server interprets the data from that input as any sort of instruction (which should never happen in a connection to a game server), then any hack is possible, even if the hacker has no avatar in the game at all. It’s computers, not magic. The only reason to need to have an avatar is… Read more »
Tim C
Well, I wasn’t expecting that. I didn’t particularly care for Danni in the past. I mean, I didn’t like the way Kleya kept taking advantage of her to get into the game, but I thought she was a little selfish and rude. Now, with this situation, where she’s being attacked for a reason she can’t possibly know about, which is, in a way, Kleya’s fault. I can’t help but feel sorry for her – and terrible that I probably would have wished it on her. Probably the worst part is that I expect Kleya’s just going to let her fall,… Read more »

i hope Kleya saves Danni because if she doesnt that is not very “heroic” let the sidekick fall for something they have no idea y and besides…Danni needs this.

I love Kleya, and how she seems so realistic, not just the basic heroine ur use to seeing in comics these days, she is 3 dimensional.

Annaliese Lemmon

I love the “level: pathetic” and you did a good job with the looking around for where the hack’s coming from. Loooking forward to the next page. 😀


Agh!! Danni use your speical and do a dodge or somthing! ANYTHING to stop this!!


I personally hope that she is able to call attention to the hack thus protecting her friend while keeping her behavior above reproach. After all it is a trap and hacking is illegal. I don’t know if it is possible but having Danni’s inevitable loss thrown out due to malicious hacking would probably be the best outcome for Kleya and Danni.

Tim C
Some fridge-compsci about The Game and how hacking in it works. A network connection can basically be thought of as a bunch of postcards. When two computers have a connection to eachother, they can be thought of as mailing a few thousand postcards back and forth every second. Every postcard has some header information, including the IP Address of the target (so all the computers between the source and the recipient know where to send it next) the port (so that the target knows which program should received the postcard), and, if under TCP/IP, an index, to guarantee in-order delivery… Read more »
Not disagreeing with you, but here is my take on it. As I understand it the game runs off a neural interface of some sort, which means your brain is basically plugged right into it. Now the human brain is an incredible computer, and it’s very good at adapting it self. Good example is stroke victims that loose the ability to speak, but are able to learn it again by appropriating another part of their brain for it, it’s an obstacle, and the brain finds a way around it. Not all brains can do so, but some can. Next, since… Read more »
Blarg forgot the last paragraph. So as you also talked about, trusting the client. If the virtual reality has to feel real and not something completely disconnected, the trust must be absolute. There are a few ways how the can do this, if the neural interface, is basically a send/receive unit, it could prove excessively hard to hack/mod. However if the brain learns to do the stuff, it could become innate and impossible to turn off. I also realize that I sorta repeat what you’re saying with my analogy. But was trying to explain to others (from your post I… Read more »
Thanks for the info guys(or girls…). I understand the basic principles but never thought it out as you two have. Sure explains alot about my experience with online FPS games…and the reason I don’t like playing them so much. HATE lag. lol. “How did I miss!? or “How did he hit me!?” Plus usually their skill level is beyond mine, as FPS games aren’t my strong suit. I’m interested to see how deeply Aneeka thought about this subject or if she just kinda assumed that’s the way it was. Since it does pretty much have to be lag free on… Read more »
Tim C
That makes sense. I didn’t actually think of that. Someone’s strength stat would have to be stored clientside so that if the user reached out and felt their bicep, the client module wouldn’t have to wait for the server before being able to send information on what the guy’s arm feels like. I’m not sure I agree that the neural interface can be a “simple send/receive unit,” or that such a thing would be that difficult to mod, but neither of those points are actually necessary for your argument. As you’ve said, having network latency would ruin the experience, so… Read more »
I see the hack from a different point of view that has nothing to do with messing around with the network. Many games allow a form of scripting. Team Fortress 2 is one example. Second Life is another. They allow a basic programming language that lets you make changes to the game. These changes are perfectly legal, they just require knowledge. So, in the Game, there is a legitimate method to upload a simplified program that will be executed by either your client or the server (either way doesn’t matter). But, as is almost always the case, there are bugs… Read more »
I think they wanted to see Kleya’s source code because they thought her coding style would identify her as the hacker they were looking for. After all, they know what her Special did, just by looking at what happened to Bandit. But if all she had to upload previously was the compiled binary, it’s still a pretty big security hole for the servers to accept compiled code. Alternatively, maybe they wanted to see what kind of loophole she was exploiting, because perhaps that would identify something about her previous level of access or her knowledge of the Game mechanics, but… Read more »
I find this comic fascinating to read. As a computer *quote* Expert *unquote* Seeing people using such mechanics in a story is fabulous. However, as some people may know a game, particularly popular ones, don’t just use one server. But all servers are connected in a sense. Primarily if one server fails to interpret an action it is sent to a lower server to ‘try again’ and this in a sense can also cause lag, especially if it happens on multiple occasions. An important thing to remember is, if a person is under the effects of a hack attempt the… Read more »