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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Discussions About Orson Scott Card » OSC needs your help -- Ender's Game reconciliation

   
Author Topic: OSC needs your help -- Ender's Game reconciliation
kacard
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As TOR prepares for a final, reconciled edition of the novel Ender's Game, I would like to make sure we've caught ALL the contradictions between Ender's Game and later books and stories.

There is one big one - Ender's and Valentine's first meeting after the war is written in completely unrelated scenes.

But there are all kinds of little ones that I may overlook. I'd be grateful for help from readers who may have noticed references or events or scenes in books from the Shadow series, the Formic Wars, Ender in Exile, Speaker for the Dead and its sequels, or any of the short stories, which contradict something in the novel Ender's Game.

We would need the reference in BOTH places, including the exact words of a nearby sentence, so that we can search electronically. (Page numbers are a poor second choice, because there are different editions with different numbering).

Please post these contradictions (or possible contradictions) here, so that others can see which ones have already been caught. All we can offer as a tangible thank-you for your help is a signed and personalized copy of the best trade edition of the new reconciled Ender's Game (i.e., hardcover if there is one, but not hyper-expensive signed-limited, if there is one).

It would be most helpful to have all of these posted by 15 August 2014, so I have time to do the rewrites and edits before the due date. But if you don't spot one till after that date, please post it anyway!

Thank you for your help. The Hatrack community has helped me before, since among you there is far more recent expertise about my books than I can possibly carry around in my memory.

Sincerely,
Orson Scott Card

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Szymon
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Gravlens. In EG, Ender and others "suspect" that humans might have a device that controls gravity. In Earth Afire Gravlens-driven vehicle is just there. And EG, obviously, happened after the second invasion, while Earth Afire is during the First Formic War, so no way this technology was just developing - HERC was fully operational.

Quotes:

About HERC:
quote:
in Earth Afire

HERC was the world’s first gravity-lensing aircraft,which used lenses to deflect gravity waves from Earth and send them around the aircraft. The lenses were not mechanical lenses like glass lenses that refracted light, but rather fields created by a centerpoint.By adjusting the shape of the field, it adjusted the direction that gravity waves were focused or deflected. The result was the aircraft felt less gravity. It hovered. It flew without rotor blades. And because gravity lensing adjusted continuous lytoprovide vertical placement above the Earth’s surface, all that was needed to make the HERC fly forward was a means of propulsion, which the rearjet engine provided.


The contradiction:

quote:
Ender's Game, in Battle School.

"You remember this, little boy." When she said little boy it sounded friendly, not
contemptuous. "They never tell you any more truth than they have to. But any kid with
brains knows that there've been some changes in science since the days of old Mazer
Rackham and the Victorious Fleet. Obviously we can now control gravity.

They could a hundred years before. Funny quote, though: it was Mazer himself who flew the first HERC into battle, in the First Formic War

And!
quote:
Ender's Game, on Eros, lecture about what humans learned from Buggers.

We learned gravity manipulation because they enhanced the gravity here.

That's another thing- humans invented it all by themselves, according to Earth Afire, Formics couldn't have anything to do with it, since HERC was constructed before they ever came to Solar System.

More even later:
quote:
in Speaker:

"Isn't it?" Ender retorted. "Why are we so anxious to keep them from any influence from our culture? It isn't just in the interest of science. It isn't just good xenological procedure. Remember, please, that our discovery of the ansible, of starflight, of PARTIAL GRAVITY control, even of the weapon we used to destroy the buggers-- all of them came as a direct result of our contact with the buggers.

Same thing as before.

And more

quote:
in Ender's Shadow


This is how we got our secret technologies, thought Bean. The Buggers had gravity-generating
machines. We learned how they worked and built our own, installing them in the Battle School and
wherever else they were needed. But the I.F. never announced the fact, because it would have
frightened people to realize how advanced their technology was.


Of course, maybe formic technology was far more developed, but no, you just can't have device that deflects gravity and not use it in space flight for a whole century.

Edits: Additional inforamtion

[ July 31, 2014, 09:37 AM: Message edited by: Szymon ]

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BlackBlade
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Curses! Being stuck in China without my books means I won't be much help. But I'll let others know.
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Elison R. Salazar
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Was the number disparity between Ender's Jeesh in EG and ES ever corrected? In my edition of EG his Jeesh was like 30 people.
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Szymon
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If I aren't much mistaken, also the Eros thing during the First Formic Invasion is inconsistent (I haven't read Earth Awakens yet):

quote:
in Ender's Game

"Ender, look around you. Human beings didn't carve this place. We like taller ceilings, for one thing. This was the buggers' advance post in the First Invasion. They carved this place out before we even knew they were here. We're living in a bugger hive. But we already paid our rent. lt cost the marines a thousand lives to clear them out of these honeycombs, room by room. The buggers fought for every meter of it."


But it is pretty clear in Earth Unaware, that Buggers came straight from interstellar space, they didn't build an outpost first

I have no quote, but I checked with Ctrl + F and there is no "Eros" in any of the three prequels, just the ship. No outposts.

Edit: I have some more info, indicating that Eros was drilled by Buggers after First and before Second Invasion.

quote:
in Ender's Shadow

(...)into the bowels of Eros.
Bean knew at once that this place was not shaped by human hands. The tunnels were all too low -- and even then, the ceilings had obviously been raised after the initial construction, since the lower walls were smooth and only the top half-meter showed tool marks. The Buggers made this, probably when they were mounting the Second Invasion. What was once their forward base was now the center of the International Fleet.




[ August 01, 2014, 04:40 AM: Message edited by: Szymon ]

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Dogbreath
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
Curses! Being stuck in China without my books means I won't be much help. But I'll let others know.

I feel your pain - I'm in Colorado right now, and all my books are back home. This is more frustrating because I just reread Ender's Game 2 weeks ago on a 24 hour duty shift, and I noticed a giant disparity (I think it has to do with the follow on schools or something) that I can't remember now. (senility's a bitch) I'm afraid someone else will get to it first, now!

Anyway, I'll be back this weekend, and then hopefully I'll have something better to add.

The one thing I'd add is the "corridors." In EG's, it's mentioned (in Valentine's first chapter, chapter 9?) that Ender spent his entire life on Earth "deep in the corridors" and had never experienced nature. (since Ender's family moves to the country after he leaves for battle school, thinking it might help make Peter less of a sociopathic little shit or somesuch thing) Now I presume OSC is already aware of the major disparity between Ender's Game and Shadow of The Hedgemon (where Bean goes to the house in Greensboro and see's Ender's old room, even though he never lived in Greensboro), but I feel like the entire "corridors" idea gets dropped by Ender's Shadow, with no real explanation.

For example, Dink is from the Netherlands and one of his conversations with Ender is about playing basketball with his brothers "running up and down the corridors" (which means the Netherlands has the enclosed cities as well), but in Ender's Shadow Bean makes no mention of them (despite growing up in the 3rd largest city in the Netherlands), and AFAIK the entire Shadow series never mentions it. Which would seem like a fairly important point, if only for strategy, right?

Also, I suggest maybe changing John Paul's reaction to Graff showing up somewhat, since he clearly knows Graff. (from First Meetings) Though actually, as the scene reads right now, it kind of already feels like this is this is the case. (John Paul speaks to Graff with a level of familiarity you wouldn't expect) Did you already have his back story planned out when you read EG's, or is this just a neat coincidence?

More to come!

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theamazeeaz
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Don't have the books with me right now, but the number of Val's kids changes between Speaker and Xenocide.
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Szymon
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quote:
Originally posted by Dogbreath:

Also, I suggest maybe changing John Paul's reaction to Graff showing up somewhat, since he clearly knows Graff. (from First Meetings) Though actually, as the scene reads right now, it kind of already feels like this is this is the case. (John Paul speaks to Graff with a level of familiarity you wouldn't expect) Did you already have his back story planned out when you read EG's, or is this just a neat coincidence?

I checked in The Polish boy and EG, there is no proof of John Paul not knowing Graff, he is just distanced, which is quite understandable, since the guy wants to steal his boy away from him.
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theamazeeaz
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This thread has a pretty good list.

http://www.hatrack.com/ubb/main/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=2;t=059290;p=1#000004

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Craig Childs
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1) In EG, we learned the first battle of the First Invasion occurred on Eros. The Formics had made Eros their forward base of operations, and they blacked it out so we (humans) couldn't see what they were doing. Earth sent a ship to investigate and the Formics killed all the crew. This was how humans learned of the Formics and how the first war started.

In EG, Mazer explains that people on Earth watched via delayed video feed as buggers boarded the ship sent to Eros and methodically killed the crew. He tells Ender that the buggers probably thought they were killing the ship's communications by doing this. In fact, of course, they never disrupted communications at all because it never occurred to them humans might not communicate telepathically. Mazer points this out as a major weakness of the Formics, one of the few advantages Ender can exploit.

Ender's entire understanding of the biology of the Formics, the role of the queen and drones, and the way in which faster-than-light communication occurred all stemmed from what Mazer told him about the Battle of Eros and the final battle of the Second Invasion, in which Mazer destroyed a queen. Ender's decision at the end of EG was directly influenced by these events.

But in Formic Wars, this Battle of Eros did not happen at all.

2. In EG, we learned Formics made no effort to block radio or video communication. Since they communicated to each other via telepathy, it never occurred to them that humans would communicate via technology.

In Formic Wars and Earth Unaware, the alien ship blocked all radio and satellite communication, at least while in flight. It was surmised by one of the characters that this may have been an inadvertent byproduct of the ship's technology itself rather than an intentional strategic decision .

Still, it's a pretty big discrepancy, since Mazer/Ender used the Formics' lack of radio to make important deductions about how they communicated.

3. In EG, we learned the First Invasion occurred 30 years before the Second Invastion. Mazer Rackham served in the 2nd Invasiion, and is described as "little known, twice court-martialed" before his victory in the 2nd war. Then, he was stationed on Eros for 20 years. Then, he took a relativistic space flight that aged him 8 years, while 50 years passed on Earth. He appears to be around 60 years old at the time of EG.

If you work the timeline backwards, it is not possible for Rackham to have served in the First Invasion. He would have been 2 years old. Plus, it's hard to believe Rackham is an unknown at the time of the Second Invasion, given his huge role in repelling the First Invasion in Formic Wars.

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Lyrhawn
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I seem to remember there being a discrepancy between EG and Ender in Exile over what the name of the first colony Ender is governor of is called. I'll try to hunt down the difference and where it's located in the books.
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Szymon
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I seem to remember there being a discrepancy between EG and Ender in Exile over what the name of the first colony Ender is governor of is called. I'll try to hunt down the difference and where it's located in the books.

I checked, you're right.

quote:
in Xenocide

Valentine wasn't surprised at what they found-- after all, when they were young, she and Ender had been with the first colony on Rov, a former bugger world.


in Ender in Exile

"Yes," said Ender. "Wouldn't it be ridiculous if they finally got peace on Earth and we just started up the whole warfare thing again here on Shakespeare?"


It could be that Shakespeare was just a name of the colony, not the whole planet. But the preposition is "on", not "in", and Shakespeare in the latter is opposed to "Earth". So yeah, Rov in Xenocide, Shakespeare in Exile.
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Szymon
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I think I have another one, technology-wise again.

The MD Device or Dr. Device.

The technology was stolen from Formics, again, but in Earth Unaware the "Glaser" or "Gravity laser" is pretty much a simple MD Device. Developed by humans.

quote:
in Earth Unaware

'All that's left is pushing the button and letting the glasers rip the rock to shreds. The two gravity fields will interact, counter each other, and keep the destructive reach of the fields to a minimum"
'So it works,' said Lem.


Note that "destructive reach of the fields". It is basically the same device, chain reaction and all.

quote:
in Ender in Exile

'Well, this part of the tour usually bores people,' said the captain.
'No, I wasn't bored. Trully. I was just thinking.'
'About what?'
'Stuff that's too classified to talk about using any method but telepathy,' said Ender. Which was true - the existence of the M.D. Device was only on a need-to-know basis, and the secret had been well kept. Even the men who deployed and used the weapons didn't understand what the were and what they could do.


and more importantly, also Exile

Ender thought it was a technology that humans had come up with on their own. But it was clearly based on a formic technology.


How the device works, the molecular decomposition, the fields, were already in development before the First Formic Invasion. It would be difficult to keep such a secret for 200 years or so. But it is conceivable.

More importantly though, one cannot say it was a Formic technology. It was a technology that the mining corps had come up with.

Seems like from the three grand technologies: Ansible, Dr. Device and Gravity control, only ansible was never fully understood (up until Children of the Mind) and the other two were invented thanks to the ingenuity of human race.

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Szymon
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Somebody in a post somewhere mentioned a problem with Valentine's children, and he/she was right:

quote:
about Ren's sex in Speaker:

When Valentine's daughter Syfte was four years old, and her son Ren was two, Plikt came to
her


quote:
in Xenocide:

Only people like Miro, and Jakt's and Valentine's children-- Syfte, Lars, Ro, Varsam-- and the strange quiet woman Plikt;


about secondborn's sex in Xenocide:


Their twenty-year-old daughter, Ro


and about Lars in Xenocide:


compartment they shared with Syfte and her husband, Lars


So firstly: the secondborn's name is not precise. Either Ro or Ren. The sex is also not precise. Although maybe Ren died, and then Valentine gave birth to Ro.

And secondly: Lars is Syfte's husband, not her brother. Although it is possible to call your son-in-law your child, I guess.

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DustinDopps
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I know the graphic novels of the first formic war aren't exactly canon, but they depict some sort of artificial gravity on all of the ships in space.

"Ender's Game" makes it clear that there was no technology for artificial gravity and that's why Battle School rotates.

This might have been done to make drawing the comics easier, but if someone reads the comics before reading "Ender's Game" they could cause confusion.

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DustinDopps
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In "Ender's Game" at the end of the book Valentine says this:

"We're only telling them that Demosthenes is going with the colony. Let them spend the next fifty years poring over the passenger list, trying to figure out which one of them is the great demagogue of the Age of Locke."

And in the new colony, Abra says "The buggers were all dead fifty years before we got here."

This shows that the trip to the colony took fifty years.

But in "Ender in Exile," Dorabella says "The voyage takes forty years—I went next door and looked it up on the net."

I think the journey is referred to as a 40-year trip for all of "Exile," in fact.

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Dogbreath
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Yeah, but Ender's a grown man (mid 20s) in Ender's Game when he has that conversation with Abra, which implies 40 year spaceflight + 10 years governing the colony so, 50 years?
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rollainm
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Hey Mr. Card, since clearly Szymon doesn't need multiple signed copies, if you sent one of his my way, that'd totally be cool with me. [Big Grin]
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Szymon
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[Smile]
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theamazeeaz
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Okay, I got to look this up. Here is the quote that says Val has five children:
SFTD:

"It was Plikt, the good Lutheran who taught Valentine to conceive of Ender's life in religious terms; the powerful stability of her family life and the miracle of each of her five children combined to instill in her the emotions, if not the doctrines of faith."

Xenocide's first Val chapter starts off by talking about what a hardship it was for Jakt to leave Tronheim. It is also stated the the line of sailors ends with him, all of their children have scholarly lives, so they can do their jobs anywhere. Val feels like a lousy mother because she wrote essays instead of playing with her children. The other people (besides Val, Jakt and the crew) on the ship are itemized and they are Syfte, her new husband Lars, and other children Ro(20F) and Varsam (16M).

Given that it is a summary chapter, the omission of children who stayed behind or died young would have had to have been mentioned, given the reminisces about Val's parenting and that they all came.


If you want to edit the books, Speaker should be changed. Change 5 to 3.

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Orincoro
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1. Ender's Game: "8 years in space," is how Mazer describes his relativistic journey after the first invasion.

In Mazer in Prison, the number has been revised to just 2 years. This is possibly dismissible as an unreliable character, and personally I think 8 years plays better than 2 as an offhand reference.

1. Ender's Game: the initial bugger invasion is referred to by Ender's internal frame as "a single ship, burning over China." The later novels (Earth Affire), have it as a ship with several landers.


quote:
"Ender's Game" makes it clear that there was no technology for artificial gravity and that's why Battle School rotates.
No, the battle school rotates, and this is explained as the reason why gravity changes on different levels of the school (and necessitates exercise). However, Petra points out that gravity manipulation is occurring despite claims to the contrary: "these are the mysteries," as she says. It is being masked by the IF so as not to alert planet-side militaries that such technology exists.


quote:
Seems like from the three grand technologies: Ansible, Dr. Device and Gravity control, only ansible was never fully understood (up until Children of the Mind) and the other two were invented thanks to the ingenuity of human race.
This is a sticky wicket. Because Ender in Exile points out that the buggers understood the potential for weaponizing the MD device, but never employed it. But later, Earth Affire and Earth Unaware have the humans inventing *and* attempting to use glazers against the Formics, when it appears that the Formic ship in question may or may not have a Park Shift drive already. Meaning it's possible the Buggers learned this technology from humans.

However, it is also possible that the narrator is unreliable in Ender in Exhile, as Ender may not be aware that humans invented Glasers just before the first invasion. The technology having been classified soon afterward.

What is clear is that the MD device, or Glaser, technology's application as a near-light-speed drive *was* learned from the buggers, but was learned probably during the 2nd invasion, and not the first.


This, along with information from Shadows in Flight, showing that a Formic Ark 700 years old (or constructed somewhere around the 20th century), did *not* have a near-light-speed drive, would indicate that the buggers invented near-light-speed drive within a short period either before or after encountering the Humans.

Given that Earth Unaware is unclear as to whether the bugger ship has this capability, and that humans independently discovered gravity control, this may indicate that the buggers adapted human gravity control technology in order to construct near-light-speed ships. Meaning that the buggers learned gravity control from humans, then humans learned from their innovations in turn to make near-light ships.

This would also gel with the idea that a second invasion came so closely after the first. The buggers immediately applied their new knowledge to launch a second invasion, and the humans, understanding the scope of the threat, immediately launched their own counter invasion. The buggers supplied the technological advances necessary for the humans to destroy them.

quote:
1) In EG, we learned the first battle of the First Invasion occurred on Eros. The Formics had made Eros their forward base of operations, and they blacked it out so we (humans) couldn't see what they were doing. Earth sent a ship to investigate and the Formics killed all the crew. This was how humans learned of the Formics and how the first war started.
This was in reference to the 2nd invasion, and not the first, if I recall correctly. The first invasion was, according to Ender's own information in Ender's Game, begun when a single ship appeared over China.

But the Earth Unaware series has played so loosely with the timeframes involved, that it's really hard to be sure at this point what makes sense.

quote:
3. In EG, we learned the First Invasion occurred 30 years before the Second Invastion. Mazer Rackham served in the 2nd Invasiion, and is described as "little known, twice court-martialed" before his victory in the 2nd war. Then, he was stationed on Eros for 20 years. Then, he took a relativistic space flight that aged him 8 years, while 50 years passed on Earth. He appears to be around 60 years old at the time of EG.

If you work the timeline backwards, it is not possible for Rackham to have served in the First Invasion. He would have been 2 years old. Plus, it's hard to believe Rackham is an unknown at the time of the Second Invasion, given his huge role in repelling the First Invasion in Formic Wars.

As I mentioned, the time of the flight is "50 years in space," but Mazer in Prison shortens this to two. If you just cut down on the 20 years in Aros, say 10, then Mazer is in his 20s for the first invasion.

However, his age is not stated in Ender's Game, so you can take some flex and say he's at least 70 when he meet Ender. That's 25 for the first invasion, then 55 for the second, then 2 years in space (or 50) then 15 or so years on Aros training commanders. Seems to work fine.


quote:
But in "Ender in Exile," Dorabella says "The voyage takes forty years—I went next door and looked it up on the net."
This shaving off of a decade was justified in that Abra may be just exaggerating, and OSC needed it to be 40 years to make some other logistics work in regards to the soldiers who are there when the colonists arrive. And considering that at least a year passes before the first colony ship leaves for Rove, this could easily just be rounding up.

I remember posting a rather long post the last time OSC asked for comments when he was writing Ender in Exile about the timing- particularly the bit about Graff's age that had him still doing stuff at the end of Ender's Game when he would have been like 130 years old, and OSC just fixed all that with stasis sleep. Touché.

[ August 03, 2014, 06:23 PM: Message edited by: Orincoro ]

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Szymon:
quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I seem to remember there being a discrepancy between EG and Ender in Exile over what the name of the first colony Ender is governor of is called. I'll try to hunt down the difference and where it's located in the books.

I checked, you're right.

quote:
in Xenocide

Valentine wasn't surprised at what they found-- after all, when they were young, she and Ender had been with the first colony on Rov, a former bugger world.


in Ender in Exile

"Yes," said Ender. "Wouldn't it be ridiculous if they finally got peace on Earth and we just started up the whole warfare thing again here on Shakespeare?"


It could be that Shakespeare was just a name of the colony, not the whole planet. But the preposition is "on", not "in", and Shakespeare in the latter is opposed to "Earth". So yeah, Rov in Xenocide, Shakespeare in Exile.

Resolved, as pointed out in the afterword of Ender in Exile, that the colony is Shakespeare, and the planet is Rove.
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Craig Childs
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
quote:
1) In EG, we learned the first battle of the First Invasion occurred on Eros. The Formics had made Eros their forward base of operations, and they blacked it out so we (humans) couldn't see what they were doing. Earth sent a ship to investigate and the Formics killed all the crew. This was how humans learned of the Formics and how the first war started.
This was in reference to the 2nd invasion, and not the first, if I recall correctly. The first invasion was, according to Ender's own information in Ender's Game, begun when a single ship appeared over China.

I'm going to stand by my original post. In EG, chapter 14, Mazer Rackham says (about Eros)

"Human beings didn't carve this place. We like taller ceilings, for one thing. This was the buggers' advance post in the First Invasion. They carved this place out before we even knew they were here. It cost the Marines thousands of lives to clear them out of these honeycombs, room by room. The buggers fought for every inch of it."

This goes on for nearly two pages, as Mazer describes the Formics killing the first ship of humans, how they did it without silencing radio or video transmissions, etc. This all seemed to be First Invasion stuff (I've now read the passage 3 times, and it seemed like First Invasion each time).

Also in Chapter 14, Mazer says the "First Invasion was exploratory. The second was colonization."

This may be a contradiction, because Earth Afire clearly shows Formics spraying poison to defoliate China (they were doing it by hand, rather than spraying it out of their ships).

[ August 04, 2014, 11:36 AM: Message edited by: Craig Childs ]

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Orincoro
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It's not a factual contradiction, just a contradiction in terms of what Mazer says, rather than what is described in other parts of the narrative. Mazer could be wrong, or misleading, etc.
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Craig Childs
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
It's not a factual contradiction, just a contradiction in terms of what Mazer says, rather than what is described in other parts of the narrative. Mazer could be wrong, or misleading, etc.

C'mon, it seems like a pretty obvious contradiction between books. If you had read Earth Afire first, then you would have spotted the incongruity right off. The purpose of the EG rewrite is to eliminate little things like this that throw the reader out of the story.

It will be up to OSC in the end, but I think pretending "Oh such and such character just didn't know" is kind of silly.

I'm only halfway through Earth Afire. It seems unlikely Mazer did not realize the Formics were trying to colonize Earth. Heck, even Victor figured it out; and he was on the moon, not fighting the Formics hand to hand like Mazer.

From Earth Afire, chapter 16:

Victor: Terraforming, Imala. They're seeding bacteria in the oceans for the same reason they're using defoliants to kill all plants and animals. They want the planet. They want Earth. But they can't have it in its current state. It ahs to be a planet that conforms to their biology, not ours.

This is a pretty clear picture of terraforming for colonization, not just "exploratory" research.

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Szymon
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
quote:
Originally posted by Szymon:
quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I seem to remember there being a discrepancy between EG and Ender in Exile over what the name of the first colony Ender is governor of is called. I'll try to hunt down the difference and where it's located in the books.

I checked, you're right.

quote:
in Xenocide

Valentine wasn't surprised at what they found-- after all, when they were young, she and Ender had been with the first colony on Rov, a former bugger world.


in Ender in Exile

"Yes," said Ender. "Wouldn't it be ridiculous if they finally got peace on Earth and we just started up the whole warfare thing again here on Shakespeare?"


It could be that Shakespeare was just a name of the colony, not the whole planet. But the preposition is "on", not "in", and Shakespeare in the latter is opposed to "Earth". So yeah, Rov in Xenocide, Shakespeare in Exile.

Resolved, as pointed out in the afterword of Ender in Exile, that the colony is Shakespeare, and the planet is Rove.
Oh, ok. Still, those prepositions... "I was born on Rov, and more specifically on the colony of Shakespeare"?
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Orincoro
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Prepositions are fickle anyway. Born in Stratford upon Avon. A house on the riviera, a restaurant on the Seine, etc.

Maybe Shakespeare is a peninsula, or a plateau, or maybe it is the convention locally is to use "on," instead of "in."

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Craig Childs:
C'mon, it seems like a pretty obvious contradiction between books. If you had read Earth Afire first, then you would have spotted the incongruity right off. The purpose of the EG rewrite is to eliminate little things like this that throw the reader out of the story.

I think a fair amount of the narrative material in these prequel novels serves to make the characters and situations described in later novels a lot less interesting than they were when I read about them the first time.

Mazer, for example, is frankly boring as a hurrah hero with a kid sidekick in China. He was fascinating as a mythic hero who was not valued by his superiors, but fought and won against the buggers, of whom little was understood.

That being said, for the sake of the novel Ender's Game, the lightest possible touch in changes to the story and dialogue are probably desired. Because altering the backstory from the original, very sketchy, references only serves to make it far less appealing or mysterious.

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Craig Childs
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
I think a fair amount of the narrative material in these prequel novels serves to make the characters and situations described in later novels a lot less interesting than they were when I read about them the first time.

Mazer, for example, is frankly boring as a hurrah hero with a kid sidekick in China. He was fascinating as a mythic hero who was not valued by his superiors, but fought and won against the buggers, of whom little was understood.

I agree completely. I enjoyed all the Ender stories, some of them I enjoyed immensely, but the prequels have not been my cup of tea.

But, to be fair, this is the story OSC and Aaron wanted to tell, and it mattered to them enough to write the comics and then expand it to a 1,200 word trilogy. They felt *this* story was more compelling than the original backstory of the Battle of Eros (First Invasion) and Mazer Rackham (Second Invasion).


[QUOTE]Originally posted by Orincoro:
That being said, for the sake of the novel Ender's Game, the lightest possible touch in changes to the story and dialogue are probably desired. Because altering the backstory from the original, very sketchy, references only serves to make it far less appealing or mysterious.


That's where I disagree. The history has been changed (for better or worse) and EG should be updated to reflect the new reality. It may be that EG suffers a little in order to allow OSC's wider, fuller vision to flourish.

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millernumber1
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A minor one for me is when Graff is alive and when he is not. I think there's a bit of contradiction between Ender's Game, Ender in Exile, and Shadow of the Giant.

But the one that's really bothered me is the timing of Peter reading The Hive Queen, contacting Ender, Ender writing The Hegemon, and Peter's death:

In Ender's Game, it says: "By ansible she [Valentine] got an answer from the ancient Hegemon, Peter Wiggin, seventy-seven years old with a failing heart." At the end of the section, it says, "And when he died, Ender wrote a second volume, again signed by the Speaker for the Dead."

In Shadow of the Giant, it says in chapter 26 "Speak for Me": "Peter might be over seventy--and, as he often pointed out to Petra, an old seventy, an ancient seventy..." Then, at the end of the chapter, "Peter lived for some time after that, despite his weak heart. Hoping the whole time that Ender might write the book he wanted. But when he died, the book was still unwritten."

So far, no contradiction.

Then came Ender in Exile. Chapter 19: "On the ansible, they talked for an hour at a time, Peter in his late fifties, with a weak heart that had the doctors worried, Ender still a boy of sixteen." So, 77, 70, or late 50s? [note: Shadow of the Giant has him talk about how he's eternally 12, though that might just be a reference to his defining trauma at that age]

Later, it says, "When Peter had told of his whole life, everything he did that mattered enough to come up in these conversations, Ender spent only five days writing a slim volume called "The Hegemon." He sent a copy to Peter with a note: Since the author will be 'Speaker for the Dead,' this can't be published until after you die." Peter wrote back: "It can't happen a moment too soon for me." But in a letter to valentine, he poured out his heart about what it meant to him to feel so completely understood. "He didn't conceal any of the bad things I did. But he kept them in balance. In perspective.""

So, kind of a big difference there, in both Peter's age, and the fact that Peter actually read the book. I can reconcile the book just not being published to fit with Ender's Game, but it does directly contradict the Shadow of the Giant passage. I find both powerful (but then, I find all three of the Ender meets Valentine after the war scenes to be moving, even though again, the Ender in Exile scene breaks continuity the most).

(Just noticed that in the thread linked by
theamazeeaz, I made the same complaint [Smile]

I was also bit bothered by the discrepancy between what Graff told Ender about the discovery of Eros and the Formic Wars description of the First Invasion - I think Aaron Johnston said that OSC and he had moved Eros to the Second Invasion, so I was hoping that would get changed in a new version of EG.

I've generally really liked the prequel series. I thought Mazer being unvalued by his superiors was actually still present in the book, and expect a lot more in the second trilogy, given how Mazer was expanded in "Ender's Game Alive."

I'm not sure it's really a contradiction, since OSC directly addressed it in Ender's Shadow, but Ender's evaluation of Bean, as supposedly intermediated by Mazer so Bean could be free to handle the battle if Ender failed, has always bothered me as a bit too obvious of a retcon. (Also, I adore Bean, so seeing a bit more of him in EG, like he was in EGA, always makes me happy.)

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Craig Childs:

That's where I disagree. The history has been changed (for better or worse) and EG should be updated to reflect the new reality. It may be that EG suffers a little in order to allow OSC's wider, fuller vision to flourish.

You must be a George Lucas fan.
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millernumber1
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Yup. That's me. George Lucas fan. Just like OSC.
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staredecisis
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I know of a few minor ones. I'll post all I can in the next few days... I apologize for any repeats from above.

There's a contradiction about he gravity level of Eros:

Ender's Shadow, Chapter 22: "Graff got up from the table— laboriously, because he’d put on a lot of weight and they kept Eros at full gravity— and led the way out into the tunnels."

Ender's Game, Chapter 14: "From the start, Ender was plagued by vertigo as he walked through the tunnels, especially the ones that girdled Eros’s narrow circumference. It did not help that gravity was only half of Earth-normal— the illusion of being on the verge of falling was almost complete."

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staredecisis
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This might go along with the edit of Valentine and Ender's meeting, but I think he learned at the lake of her Demosthenes identity.

Ender's Game, Chapter 13: ""It means that you are going to make a difference in the world.” And she told him what she and Peter were doing."

(I take that to mean she talked about the alter egos.)

In Ender in Exile, Chapter 4, Ender doesn't know Demosthenes's identity: "“So, clever boy, who is Demosthenes?” Ender rose to his feet and to his own chagrin he was crying, just like that. He didn’t even know he was crying till his cheeks were wet and he couldn’t see for the blur. “Valentine,” he whispered."

It'd probably be easy to remove the line from the scene at the lake.

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millernumber1
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Good point - I'd forgotten about that contradiction - though in EGA, Val at least alludes to her work as Demosthenes in the lake scene in a bit more detail, so it seems like that might be important at that point in the story?

The Ender in Exile passage is pretty moving, though, so I'm torn as to which I like better.

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GaalDornick
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In Ender's Game, right after Ender is handed his graduation orders from Graff, there is a paragraph from Bean's POV:

quote:
He felt himself wanting to cry. He hadn't cried since the first few days of homesickness after he got here.
After looking through Ender's Shadow, I see no mention of Bean crying in the first few days of Battle School and I can't imagine it would've been because of homesickness. Maybe because of Poke's death, but that's not homesickness.

Also, in Ender's Game:

quote:
He bit down on his hand to stop the feeling, to replace it with pain. It didn't help. He would never see Ender again.
In Ender's Shadow:

quote:
He bit on his lip, trying to let the pain force the emotion away. It didn't help. Ender was gone.
Insignificant contradiction, but there it is.

Also, are we to include contradictions between the movie and the book? [Big Grin]

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millernumber1
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Well, GaalDornick, if we did that, we'd either be here for days, or just a second:

"Ignore everything in the movie with regards to continuity."

There we go. [Smile]

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staredecisis
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One more possible contradiction, although this is extraordinarily minor. There's a difference between Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow on what Eros is called. In Ender's Shadow, it is called a "wandering asteroid." In Ender's Game, it is called a "minor planet," "planetoid," or "asteroid." These terms are traditionally synonymous, although they've started taking on slightly different meanings. (Eros probably isn't large enough to be considered a planetoid under the new definitions.)

Ender's Shadow, Chapter 22: "Just before arrival, the kids were briefed. FleetCom was in the wandering asteroid Eros. And as they approached, they realized that it really was in the asteroid."

Ender's Game, Chapter 13; "I.F. Command is on the minor planet Eros, which should be about three months away from here at the highest possible speed."

Ender's Game, Chapter 14: "Eros was hopeless. It was a roughly spindle-shaped rock only six and a half kilometers thick at its narrowest point. Since the surface of the planetoid was entirely devoted to absorbing sunlight and converting it to energy, everyone lived in the smooth-walled rooms linked by tunnels that laced the interior of the asteroid."

[ August 10, 2014, 06:13 AM: Message edited by: staredecisis ]

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theamazeeaz
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quote:
Originally posted by millernumber1:
[QB]
(Just noticed that in the thread linked by
theamazeeaz, I made the same complaint [Smile]

Yep. I linked to that thread because I didn't want to take credit for things other people have found in the past. [Smile]
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theamazeeaz
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quote:
Originally posted by staredecisis:
One more possible contradiction, although this is extraordinarily minor. There's a difference between Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow on what Eros is called. In Ender's Shadow, it is called a "wandering asteroid." In Ender's Game, it is called a "minor planet," "planetoid," or "asteroid." These terms are traditionally synonymous, although they've started taking on slightly different meanings. (Eros probably isn't large enough to be considered a planetoid under the new definitions.)

Ender's Shadow, Chapter 22: "Just before arrival, the kids were briefed. FleetCom was in the wandering asteroid Eros. And as they approached, they realized that it really was in the asteroid."

Ender's Game, Chapter 13; "I.F. Command is on the minor planet Eros, which should be about three months away from here at the highest possible speed."

Ender's Game, Chapter 14: "Eros was hopeless. It was a roughly spindle-shaped rock only six and a half kilometers thick at its narrowest point. Since the surface of the planetoid was entirely devoted to absorbing sunlight and converting it to energy, everyone lived in the smooth-walled rooms linked by tunnels that laced the interior of the asteroid."

Minor planet and asteroid are both proper terms for Eros, which is a Near-Earth Asteroid. It is not large enough to be considered anything other than an asteroid, period.

In all honesty, I've never heard the word "planetoid" used to describe a dwarf planet, despite Wikipedia saying it's a thing (I work on the outer solar system, so I hear people talking about dwarf planets on the regular, and all but Ceres are KBOs anyway).

The adjective that weirds me out is "wandering". Eros does has an orbit near Mars, I'm not sure what OSC was going for.

Since EG was written, the NEAR spacecraft visited Eros, and the pictures were published in 2000. It was found to be 11km x 11km by 34 km, and has a depression in the middle (doesn't say how deep). We could say that is the 6.5-wide part, but there's no other size given that I can see (Science article, possibly behind a paywall) Eros doesn't quite look like a spindle, it looks like a bent potato (most asteroids look like potatoes, it's a very safe catch-all).

I'd just leave this one be.

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philoticweb
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Ender's Game, Chapter 6:

"I thought it was my socks."

"We don't wear socks anymore."


In A War of Gifts, socks are major plot items.

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Ender's Ansible
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Here are a couple!

In Ender's Game, it says

"Nobody knew how to cook anymore" (Chapter 7)

But in Ender's Shadow Bean notes that

"Here, there were cooks and doctors, clothing and beds. Power wasn't about access to food-it was about getting the approval of adults." (Chapter 6)

Also in Ender's Game, when Ender returns back to his classroom without his monitor they are learning math.

"Miss Pumphrey talked about multiplication" (Chapter 1)

And a little further,

"Arithmetic! Valentine had taught him about Arithmetic when he was three!" (Chapter 1)

But in Ender's Game Alive, when Ender returns the teacher is talking about the Formic Wars (About 20:10 is the time stamp)

And finally, although it's not a direct contradiction, there is a scene in Ender's Game Alive that I feel should be included in a final version of Ender's Game. It's the scene where Ender is getting his monitor removed and the doctor and nurse realize that they might have unplugged him. Later Graff and another IF officer discuss what these fragments in Ender's brain could do. The scene implies that this action is how Jane and the Hive Queen connect with Ender.


-Cassandra Ortiz

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DanielDawg
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There is a character from Ender's Game Alive (Major Jayadi) that is not included in the original Ender's Game which is problematic because she provides a lot of content that connects the series.

- Daniel Jovel

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Ender's Ansible
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quote:
Originally posted by Szymon:
Somebody in a post somewhere mentioned a problem with Valentine's children, and he/she was right:

quote:
about Ren's sex in Speaker:

When Valentine's daughter Syfte was four years old, and her son Ren was two, Plikt came to
her


quote:
in Xenocide:

Only people like Miro, and Jakt's and Valentine's children-- Syfte, Lars, Ro, Varsam-- and the strange quiet woman Plikt;


about secondborn's sex in Xenocide:


Their twenty-year-old daughter, Ro


and about Lars in Xenocide:


compartment they shared with Syfte and her husband, Lars


So firstly: the secondborn's name is not precise. Either Ro or Ren. The sex is also not precise. Although maybe Ren died, and then Valentine gave birth to Ro.

And secondly: Lars is Syfte's husband, not her brother. Although it is possible to call your son-in-law your child, I guess.

Hey! I worked this out with Jake Black on Twitter a couple years ago!

In Speaker for the Dead, Valentine is said to have a son named “Ren” who would be the same age as Valentine’s daughter “Ro” who appears in Xenocide. However, according to The Authorized Ender Companion, Valentine only has 3 children: Styfe, Ro and Versam- with no mention of “Ren.” We could say that this is a small mistake, but Ren is a boy and Ro is a girl which complicates things.

Jake Black told me on Twitter that “Ren” will be cut from future editions of Speaker for the Dead.

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Zotto!
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Don't know if this is really a 'contradiction', but just in case:

In Speaker For The Dead chapter 18, Ender doesn't know how his parents felt about giving him up and is left to speculate:

quote:
Even though she had agreed wholeheartedly with Ender that it was right for Miro to go, it was still unbearable to lose her child. It made Ender wonder if his own parents felt such pain when he was taken away. He suspected they had not. Nor had they hoped for his return. He already loved another man's children more than his parents had loved their own child. Well, he'd get fit revenge for their neglect of him. He'd show them, three thousand years later, how a father should behave.
In chapter 21 of Ender In Exile, Ender seems to have communicated with them and become more reconciled:

quote:
Of course my condolences on the passing of your parents. But I understand from them that you and they corresponded to great mutual satisfaction before they died.

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