569: Borders

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Eventually a UN is set up. And then a lone rebel runs down the line of flags in front of it, runs back to his base, and gets a kajillion points.
Title text: Eventually a UN is set up. And then a lone rebel runs down the line of flags in front of it, runs back to his base, and gets a kajillion points.


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Capture the flag (CTF) is a common way of playing games where the objective is to capture the opponent's flag, while protecting your own team's flag. This comic describes a CTF server where peace has been established, and no one is trying to capture each other's flags, therefore making the game pointless.

The title text refers to the line of flags common in front of UN buildings, where the flags of all the teams has been gathered. One could then quickly capture all the flags and reach a very high score. A kajillion is slang for "an unspecified large number" of something.

LIATE is an acronym sometimes used when integrating "by parts". The preferred part to integrate is "Logarithmic, Inverse-trig, Algebraic, Trig, Exponential. Yarbis is a Turkish name, but may be an error for Yarbus, a Russian psychologist who investigated how the eyes scan faces and other things (thus the borders were set according by looking around).


[Two people stand on a hill overlooking a great city. Between them and the city stands an embassy flying a red flag.]
Three years ago, the kingdom of Liate overthrew their old order and established a constitutional monarchy. Our leaders signed a treaty with their queen, and our borders were set by the Yabris Accords.
Many said war would be unending, that peace would always be a dream deferred. But today, our flag flies proudly over our embassy in their kingdom, and they walk our lands without fear.
So come, traveller. Lay down your grudges and join us in brotherhood. It is time not to fight, but to live.
[Cueball sitting at computer.]
Cueball: This is the worst capture-the-flag server ever.

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Unfortunately, yarbis is not a Turkish word. Its only relation with Turkish is as an acronym for "Yıldız ARastirmaci BIlgi Sistemi" which means "Yildiz Researcher Information System" in English. Yildiz is the name of a university in Turkey. -- (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I don't think the last paragraph is correct. I think they're just random fantasy sounding names like one might find in many modern games. 07:33, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

While I don't think it's a reference to something Turkish, I doubt it's just a random fantasy name. --Alex (talk) 20:49, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Are there actually any computer games that allow carrying multiple flags at once, enabling a player to get "a kajillion points" in one run? Usually CTF is played with only two teams anyway, but some games do offer multi-team setups. I'm not aware of any game that allows a player to carry more than one flag at once, though. --YMS (talk) 21:12, 12 January 2019 (UTC)

Isn't the scenery in the background Jerusalem? I noticed some landmarks like the Holy Sepluchre, the Hurva, the Church of the Redeemer and Dor Mition, as well as the building with the flag seems to be situated in place of the Dome of the Rock.