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Atomic Clock is a Crutch
[07/31/2003] [Rufio]

“Atomic clock is a crutch.”

It seems that anytime AC is mentioned, some Shot in Motion lover fires off this statement. Their argument is always based on this kind of logic:

AC is an advantageous style of fighting.
Advantageous styles of fighting are crutches.
AC is a crutch.

This syllogism is both false and hypocritical. First, it is false because the assumed advantage that faster fighters have is the same advantage given to slower fighters. It is not the fault of AC that some fighters are faster than others. Speed is more commonly determined by muscle strength, reaction time, weight and balance of the sword. How can you blame AC for the advantage that a better athlete with a sharper mind has? A slower fighter is unable to take full advantage of the system because of his lack of speed. SiM merely offers that slower fighter a better chance to tie, or possibly beat his opponent.

Secondly, the argument is hypocritical because, although SiM lends certain advantages in certain cases to the slower fighter, it fails in leveling the playing field between faster and slower fighters, and thus the faster fighter still has an advantage. Thus, we can rightly substitute SiM for AC in the syllogism at the top of the page.

Now, in my mind I have debunked the statement “AC is a crutch” by proving it false, but proving it false fails to prove that AC is better than SiM. AC is a set of rules. Both players attempt to overcome their opponent within the rules. The assumption that this is done with speed I find surprising, because anyone who has fought SiM or AC knows that there is much more to winning a fight than speed.

My first point in favor of AC is that in AC there are an increased number of shots that can be thrown. After all, the point is to hit your opponent first and keep him from killing you. Is it not also true that the point of SiM is to hit your opponent and keep him from killing you? AC fighters do it by killing first, SiM fighters do it by killing then blocking.

At this point, it seems I have argued in favor of SiM because it takes more skill to kill and block rather than to kill. That’s not true though, because an AC fighter is able to kill in such a way that leaves him open for death if he were playing SiM. You see? SiM limits the shots that can be thrown to shots that kill and allow for the fighter to block. In that way, AC is superior because it has more shots available to be thrown, making a more complex game if and only if the fighter is able to exploit this.

The realm of reality. Personally I consider historical likeness to be of no significance in a game or, as some would say, a sport such as Amtgard. I do, however, recognize that everyone does not share this opinion and thus I believe it should be addressed.


SiM: Not at all. With a real sword, the first person hit would be in too much pain to continue their swing. Swinging a real sword requires direction the whole cut through, and inertia will not continue it in the path it needs to go in order to cut.

AC: Yes, to certain extent. 0.01 seconds will not matter, but realistically 0.2 will make it difficult to continue a shot. I would also like to add that the placement of the shot is vital to determining if the shot could be continued.

Now, my third and final point,

“In most places that fight Shot in Motion and [still have] really good fighters, they set guidelines by defining the angle of the second shot or the time between contacts, like half a second. I [already] have trouble with too many atomic clock simos, let alone a simo with a .5 second delay or a 45 degree swing angle.”

-- Man-at-Arms Don GilanBluff, Regent of Mystic Glade

In conclusion, I point and laugh at SiM while I gleefully continue my pursuit towards excellent fighting with my superior rules: Atomic Clock.

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