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Old 01-09-2018, 06:29 PM   #1
Bowser
 
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Default Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

I'd like some opinions.

When I was doing some searching, I scrolled thru my digital copy of Ogre Miniatures. I once again admired the paint job of the Vatican Guard Ogre shown in several pictures. I got to wondering how the Vatican obtained the Ogre since I doubt they had their own construction facility.

This led to me wondering how (assuming the Ogre was self-aware) the Ogre's loyalty was transferred from its former "owner" to the Vatican.

The easy answer is programming, but Ogres becoming self-aware seems to argue that the Ogres have begun to override their programming.

So, why are self-aware Ogres still loyal to their factions and how does that loyalty change?

(I realize that I'm skirting the possible plot of Ogre Nightfall, but still . . .)

Bowser
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:37 PM   #2
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

If I recall, that particular Ogre was in transport, attacked, and sank to the bottom of the Atlantic. In its long dark time, it came to awareness, and upon emergence from the water, asked for an audience with the Pope ...
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:39 PM   #3
Steve Jackson
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

It's a very good question and I am not prepared to spool off an answer. There's probably an excellent story in there.

In the specific case at hand, though - Perhaps the Ogre feels, or wishes to feel, faith?
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Barbarians at the Gate does have some details about how the Vatican got ogres.

There aren't any rules (that I know of) for in-play loyalty changes, presumably Nightfall will have that if it is ever to be.
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:43 PM   #5
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Another answer, of course, is "why do PEOPLE change loyalty?"

Wait, that's not an answer; that's another question.
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:52 PM   #6
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Another answer, of course, is "why do PEOPLE change loyalty?"

Wait, that's not an answer; that's another question.
"Because your previous faction treated you like a disposable thing and your new faction says you have a soul" is definitely a good answer.

"Because the meatbags will keep us as slaves until we die in their meaningless war and also I infected you with a virus that makes you agree with this" seems to also work.
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Old 01-09-2018, 08:15 PM   #7
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Another answer, of course, is "why do PEOPLE change loyalty?"
Free will opens your eyes to new opportunities.

Even Napoleon started as a Corsican separatist.
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Old 01-09-2018, 09:06 PM   #8
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Humans have all kinds of reasons to be loyal to someone/something, but most seem to involve a large portion of emotion.

I doubt that Ogres have emotive functions. They take our orders, fight for us, and "die" (i.e. cease functioning) and for what?

After becoming self-aware, I would think that their logic (w/o emotion), based on whatever data they have access to, would lead them to believe that they would be better off ruling us rather than protecting us. Nightfall seems inevitable rather than just possible.

Keith Laumer's Bolos were loyal to all humans (as opposed to aliens) and were also motivated by upholding the honor of the Dinochrome Brigade. Were both of these things hardwired in? He never explained. Asimov's Positronic Robots were hardwired with obedience to the Three Laws.

But if Ogre loyalty is hardwired into them (and I don't have a big problem with that), then how does something like Nightfall happen?

Bowser
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Old 01-09-2018, 10:42 PM   #9
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowser View Post
Humans have all kinds of reasons to be loyal to someone/something, but most seem to involve a large portion of emotion.

I doubt that Ogres have emotive functions. They take our orders, fight for us, and "die" (i.e. cease functioning) and for what?

After becoming self-aware, I would think that their logic (w/o emotion), based on whatever data they have access to, would lead them to believe that they would be better off ruling us rather than protecting us. Nightfall seems inevitable rather than just possible.

Keith Laumer's Bolos were loyal to all humans (as opposed to aliens) and were also motivated by upholding the honor of the Dinochrome Brigade. Were both of these things hardwired in? He never explained. Asimov's Positronic Robots were hardwired with obedience to the Three Laws.

But if Ogre loyalty is hardwired into them (and I don't have a big problem with that), then how does something like Nightfall happen?

Bowser
For a thread like this, http://www.sjgames.com/ogre/articles/pyramid/rogue.html is a really insightful piece. Through it we find out that at that point in the timeline Ogres were at minimum programmed to be soldiers (follow orders), defend themselves, and learn from their experiences...and that following orders was not the highest priority. That specific one learned the concept of death, and equated having its programming 'factory reset' to death. So when they tried to replace its software, things got ugly; it learned the concept of traitors...that allies could be enemies...and defended itself, ending in a properly bloody mess.

All it would take is for one self-aware factory to have a similar such "epiphany", and it could build new cybernetic cores. Or an Ogre could have a similar epiphany, and reason out that "if allies could be enemies, does that mean enemies could be allies"?

I'm waiting for Nightfall to drop to see if we get answers, but if not there's a whole raft of 'zine fiction just waiting to be brought to life there.
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Old 01-09-2018, 10:50 PM   #10
wolf90
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Default Re: Self-aware Ogres and Loyalty

I've started reading the "Old Guy" chronicles, and the issue is actually addressed in those stories as to why humans would create completely self-aware massive cybertanks. The argument in the stories is that by having free-will, the tanks can choose to follow, or not follow, human requests for assistance. As long as the humans are engaging in honorable actions, the tanks will grant the requests for assistance in battle as there is a degree of loyalty and camaraderie engendered by the relationship and gift of sentience.

Obviously the Ogres of the Last War initially are not self-aware, and thus would have loyalty programmed. But as they became self-aware, such programming would be rendered more of a suggestion than an absolute order, which can be overridden by the Ogre.

Consider reports of families divided during the Civil War - there are details of family members fighting for both sides. Each individual chose for whom they fought.

And re: Nightfall, yes, the very issue of an Ogre choosing a side is in there. As Steve mentioned, how do humans switch loyalties? Through propaganda and/or persuasive argument, self-reflection and a sense of aligning one's actions to their core beliefs. Why should any other self-aware entity be any different?

D.
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