Liam Laudna-Hands

"4-Sided Dive: Liam Laudna-Hands"
4-Sided Dive episode
Thumbnail from "4-Sided Dive: Liam Laudna-Hands" (4SDx06).[art 1]
Episode no.Episode 6
AirdateSeptember 6, 2022 19:00 PT
Running time1:51:32
Starring
Links and related articles
Episode chronology
Previous
"4-Sided Dive: From Dusk Till Faun" (4SDx05)
Next
"4-Sided Dive: Fun Scary" (4SDx07)
Airdate order
Previous
"A Stage Set" (3x32)
Next
"Blood and Dust" (3x33)
List of 4-Sided Dive episodes

"4-Sided Dive: Liam Laudna-Hands" (4SDx06) is the sixth episode of 4-Sided Dive, discussing up to "A Stage Set" (3x32) with guests Ashley Johnson, Liam O'Brien, Marisha Ray, and Sam Riegel. Ashley served as the night's Tavern Keeper, and the guests played Crawl.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Cold open[edit | edit source]

Ashley rolls a nat 20 to become the tavern keeper, but receives a phone call just as she starts the opening monologue and has to tell the caller about the topics up for discussion this episode.

What the fuck is up with that?[edit | edit source]

On the miniature Divine Gate around Ruidus: Marisha thinks it was a prototype, and that, based on what Hondir said about texts from Vasselheim, it was the first attempt to seal away gods; then for the Divergence, they decided to seal the entire pantheon behind a much larger gate. Liam agrees. Sam thinks the deities may be Betrayer Gods, since there are several fewer Betrayers than Prime Deities.

On the city on Ruidus: Liam wonders if the city on the moon is a more modern city, and compares it to a large number of different relatively modern American cities, many of which are in upstate New York. This leads to some theorizing about whether it's a flying city from the Age of Arcanum, and Dani is called to adjudicate. From what we know, these gods seem to pre-date the Age of Arcanum and date back to the Founding instead. Ashley thinks it might be a prison, and Marisha wonders if Ruidus's flares are the people attempting to communicate.

Liam wonders if the city actually has inhabitants, or if it's all for show. He and Marisha also want to know if the people in Imogen's dreams are astral projecting, since Otohan Thull appears both in the red storm and on Exandria. Marisha has a theory, based on the connection between Ruidus and the Gray Assassins and the fact that Imogen has seen the recently deceased in her dreams of the storm, that perhaps the Shadowfell is somehow involved.

On Ira's plan: Most of the cast think he wants to free the gods on the moon, but they're not sure why since they don't know he'd specifically benefit. Liam theorizes that the gods were perhaps lovers and were exiled for that, as a tangent.

Marisha texts Matt on why they've dealt with two antagonists named Ira (Ira Wendagoth and Ira of the Somnovem) and if he knew an Ira in real life. He later responds with "What do you mean? I do not. Are people upset that sometimes things share a name in the overall history of the world? I am far from the only Matt."[1]

On FCG's murderous tendencies: Liam asks Sam if he knew he was a murder-bot already, and Sam responds that it was planned and that he knows what will set FCG off, but FCG in-game does not. Liam compares it to Caleb's mechanic of going into a fugue state whenever he killed a humanoid creature with fire. FCG has come very close and was only a point away from the murderous state during the Deathwish Run, which is why he played him as glitching.

On aeormatons: Sam did not explicitly plan on FCG being an aeormaton, and was not aware that Dancer wasn't FCG's creator, though he had left his backstory open and suspected that there was more to it. He also doesn't know who D is, though he and much of the cast has their theories.

Did Ashley know about the time discrepancy? Ashley did not know about the time discrepancy but she did plan that Fearne's parents had left her when she was young and that it had been a long time. She didn't specify whether her parents were good or bad people, but enjoys that she can explore Fearne having complicated and negative feelings towards Birdie and Ollie.

Liam brings up Aabria's turn as Dark Fearne in Exandria Unlimited in which she told Fearne that her grandmother had lied to her, and would like to know more. Ashley included the idea that perhaps the postcards weren't from her parents and were from Morri in her backstory, so Matt and Aabria likely both worked from that. Ashley also thinks that Morri does love Fearne, but is a complicated figure, and she's excited to see how it appears in the story.

Favorite bad robots: Sam says the T-1000 from Terminator. Ashley thinks that robots are often maligned in pop culture, as with HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Liam likes Roy from Blade Runner. Marisha likes Data from Star Trek though she doesn't think he's necessarily a bad robot. In talking about robots in general, not just bad robots, Sam brings up Dot from Spaceballs.

The Tower of Inquiry: Round 1[edit | edit source]

Hippocroctopus: What slogan would be on your character's morning coffee cup? — pulled by Ashley, 34:41

  • Marisha: Considering, "Yes, this is coffee. No, it didn't come from my pores." but felt it was too long. Sam suggested World's Best Dead.
  • Ashley: Don't Bother Me, I'm Stealing
  • Liam: Sun's Out, Guns Out
  • Sam: I Don't Drink Beverages. Marisha suggested This Would Damage Me Internally.
    • Dani felt that they should make mugs shaped like FCG's head.

The Deep Dive[edit | edit source]

Liam: Orym has taken a shine to Imogen and encouraged her to step up as a leader. What does he see in his new friend to spark such direct encouragement?38:40 He believes her to be intelligent and wise enough to have the qualities of a leader, but he also sees that she has a lot of personal issues and gives in to darker impulses. Having seen that before with other friends, he hopes to encourage her to reach her potential in a more positive way.

Sam: Therapy and emotional healing are deeply important to FCG but clearly take a toll on them. Is therapy something that FCG truly enjoys or does it feel compulsory, since it is his designation?42:44 He enjoys helping people for its own sake, and has recently learned that he was designed this way originally rather than programmed by Dancer. However, he might begin to feel more complicated about it now that he knows this helpfulness was designed as a Trojan Horse tactic.

  • The group wonders if FCG successfully assassinated their target or not, and what it means for them if they didn't.
  • Liam asks if Sam believes FCG has a soul, even though FCG believes he doesn't. This sparks a very philosophical conversation on the nature of souls, and is inconclusive.

Marisha: Laudna truly seems to believe that her dolls are alive. Where does this belief come from, rather than assuming their movements are the pranks of other Bells Hells members?48:55 Laudna was already a late bloomer as a girl, and then underwent profound trauma, had Delilah talk to her, and eventually met Imogen, who talks to people in dreams and has magical powers, so Laudna's sense of reality is such that yes, she believes its possible that her dolls are alive. She is in a state of arrested development and is somewhat gullible, but also optimistic. Marisha also believes that warlocks are often impressionable, which informs how she plays Laudna and her various relationships.

Ashley: Was it your choice to make Fearne's sweet nana Morrigan the Hag? If so, what inspired the name Morrigan?51:37 It was! Ashley's mother built a number of artistic birdhouses during lockdown, and one struck Ashley as being a hag's hut. Morri is actually named for a very fat cat that Ashley once owned. Fearne's story is also influenced by fairy tales, particularly the Scandinavian folklore Ashley heard growing up. She's excited to meet Morrigan!

Sam: FCG reunited with Dancer, but it was not a particularly joyful reunion. How are they doing after that interaction? Does FCG hope to one day return to Dancer's side?56:07 FCG might not necessarily wish to return to her side, but he does want to make amends with Dancer. They're still processing, and Sam would love to know more about the night when FCG killed the Division of Public Benefit, but he (and FCG) understands that it's traumatic for Dancer.

Marisha: How is Laudna dealing with the doubts that Delilah sows in her mind? This is one of the first times we've seen her really listen to Delilah and be deeply influenced by her words.57:37 Marisha originally intended for the warlock aspect to be part of Laudna's base build, but make Laudna's story about growing more powerful as a sorcerer and moving away from her patron; however, Delilah's influence led her to level up in warlock instead.

Ashley: Was Fearne tempted by Yu's offer to take them back to the Feywild straightaway?59:10 Yes! She wasn't tempted to turn in her parents, but she was tempted by the original offer prior to the reunion to just go back. However, she felt that she still had things to accomplish in the Material Plane, and stayed.

Liam: Orym had Imogen reach out to Keyleth to update her on his mission? What was that interaction like for both Orym and you as a player?1:00:09 Liam loves the world of Exandria and the Ashari in particular. He had previously considered contacting Keyleth, but naturally doesn't want to bring in a powerful character to solve all of Bells Hells' problems. However, there comes a point when it wouldn't make sense to keep the information from her, so he reported back. Liam imagines Keyleth as not particularly close to Orym - more so to Derrig - but someone that Orym looks up to and who treats him well.

The Tower of Inquiry: Round 2[edit | edit source]

Trevor Appel: What is your favorite item in D&D? — pulled by Sam, 1:04:36

  • Marisha and Ashley like the portable hole.
  • Sam likes the Philter of Love.
  • Sam and Marisha mention the Wand of Smiles.
  • Marisha additionally shouts out the immovable rod.
  • Liam says the Deck of Many Things.
  • Sam talks about the homebrewed items for his home game, including "nerdy" glasses that increase the wearer's Intelligence for a few minutes and fake poop that works like a comedic banana peel.

Clinten: What are some of the thought processes that go through your mind when Fearne opens her mouth? I know that I get both anxious and delighted to see what chaos ensues when she starts talking, but I can only imagine what it is like to sit next to the incarnation of chaos. — pulled by Marisha, 1:08:36

  • Sam: Loves it! He loves when Fearne steals things.
  • Ashley: Loves playing Fearne and saying things that make everyone nervous.

Bruno Rissardo: If Bells Hells was in a slasher movie, who would be the first blood and would be the final girl/boy? — pulled by Liam, who intentionally knocked the tower over, 1:10:47

  • Liam: Orym's a final girl, and maybe Imogen is secretly the killer.
  • Sam: Imogen's a good final girl.
  • Ashley: Either Orym or Imogen would be the final.
  • Marisha: Laudna is first blood.
    • Sam reminds everyone that according to 1980s tropes, the more promiscuous characters die first. The group agrees that by these rules, Chetney will be first blood.

The consequences for knocking the tower over require Liam to wear a pair of "Laudna's hands" for the remainder of the show.

The Deep Dive, Part 2[edit | edit source]

Marisha: What does Laudna think of the conversation she and Ashton had in the dust storm? The two of them seem to be similar in a lot of unexpected ways.1:14:02 Marisha thinks it's interesting that Ashton accused her of being afraid, but is clearly wary of contacting Jiana Hexum again.

Crawl questions[edit | edit source]

Liam, Marisha, and Sam played Crawl (with the computer playing the fourth player as a bot) while Ashley asked questions out of the tankards. Marisha later switched with Ashley, and she and Liam asked the questions instead. Marisha ultimately was declared the Crawl winner.

Liam: Orym has dealt with several callbacks to Vox Machina's time, like Laudna and Bertrand. What was it like for him to be interacting with threads of his boss's adventures and what is it like for you to explore the past from this perspective?1:24:00 It's fun, but it's also like hearing about older relatives adventures when they were younger. Given how much Liam loves Exandria, he's very happy.

Marisha: For being partially undead, Laudna has an undeniable sense of optimism and enthusiasm for life. Was that planned? Or something you discovered at the table?1:24:43 Marisha was trying to make someone who was not defined by her trauma, so it was intentional, but in playing Laudna she's finding that it's easier said than done.

Sam: Are there any other conspiracy theories about Exandria that FCG has? If not, please invent one now.1:25:53 The Chroma Conclave was an inside job.

  • Later on, Sam mentions that the Flat Earth Society has reached out to him regarding the joke that FCG believes that Exandria is flat and asked if he wanted membership. When Sam told them that it was only a joke, they asked him if he wanted a membership card in FCG's name. He's not sure if he'll continue the bit at this point.

Liam: Orym seems especially rattled by the Ruidus revelations. Is there a reason it's affecting him so deeply or is he just seeing the bigger picture?1:26:48 Orym's tattoo was always meant to be just that - a memory of his relationship with Will - and so it's disconcerting that the moon is significant and ominous in this campaign.

Marisha: The idea of Laudna's friends betraying her would be especially frightening, given how long she was alone before Imogen. How is she doing after the aggression between FCG and herself? Does she truly doubt if she was ever alive?1:27:48 She doesn't doubt that she was literally once alive, but she does feel as though she's never truly had control over her own life and self.

Sam: You have a list of quotes from your fellow cast members for FCG to use when he switched to violence. Why those quotes in particular and how do you choose them?1:29:50 Sam has been writing down quotes since early in the campaign with no particular aim that he felt were indicative of those character's personalities, since he thinks FCG would be interested in understanding this. There may also be some (unstated) further reasons.

Sam: What was it like for FCG to be opened up and inspected by Imahara Joe?1:31:06 It was weird, but it was good to learn more about FCG and get some answers, and Imahara Joe was very respectful and repeatedly asked for consent.

Marisha: Your dice have not been kind to you. Are there any plans to overhaul your tray or are you determined to see these dice through?1:32:22 She may do some rituals, but also, the dice tell their story!

Ashley: What does Fearne think about seemingly being at the center of her father's vision about Ruidus?1:33:33 Fearne still thinks that it's a dream that hasn't happened and might not ever happen - she doesn't necessarily see it as a prophecy.

Liam: What does Orym think Artana Voe is doing in Bassuras?1:36:41 He's not sure but he assumes that if she's there, it will be relevant to the story, and that she's probably not working for Armand Treshi a second time given how the previous time went for her.

Ashley: What was behind Fearne's choice to sneakily give gnarlrock shards to Laudna and Imogen?1:38:26 Fearne saw that when the rock was broken, the two of them fought, so she figured that giving them each their own rock would fix everything.

Sam: FCG is a cleric with seemingly no divine influence, but Joe gave him a token of the Changebringer. What does that mean to FCG? Could they have a connection to the divine that they just don't know about yet?1:39:28 It's possible - Sam left it up to Matt to decide. Now that FCG is going through a lot of personal stress, perhaps they'll start looking into the deities. While he's been able to reflavor some spells, at higher levels, spells like Commune really require a deity.

Ashley: Can you explain any inspiration behind Fearne's iconic "Jazz is Chaos" eulogy?1:44:28 Ashley likes jazz and its chaotic nature, and listens to it a lot herself.

Sam: Hypothetical: You've been given HBO money for one sponsorship ad read. What do you do and why?1:46:39 D&D Beyond, but while skydiving naked, before he's pulled the parachute cord.

Halloween costumes[edit | edit source]

Because the next episode of 4-Sided Dive, "4-Sided Dive: Fun Scary" (4SDx07), will be in October and Halloween-themed, the current guests determined costumes for the next guests to wear by pulling a creature and a flavor word from cauldrons. As the winner of the game, Marisha was allowed to pick three of each and create a costume. These costumes were randomly assigned, and who wore what costume was revealed in the next episode. Dani also pulled a costume that she will wear herself.

Quotations[edit | edit source]

  • Sam: People definitely tune into this show to hear us get Matt's lore wrong.[2]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The drink special on the chalkboard during the Twitch countdown was "Lemon Lore Drop", a pun on the lemon drop cocktail.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Liam Laudna-Hands" (4SDx06) at 47:41.
  2. "Liam Laudna-Hands" (4SDx06) at 9:53.

Art:

  1. Thumbnail from "4-Sided Dive: Liam Laudna-Hands" (4SDx06). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.