Book 2 – Text Updates 023

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 023

Postby Lord Kasavin » Fri May 14, 2010 6:09 am

I think the math goes thusly,

Capturing units in combat is difficult (megalogwiffs aside). Captured units are difficult to turn and suffer from low loyalty. Thus, only really valuable units are captured and tried to turn in combat.

However, a city's garrison captured means all units still in the city are automatically shackled. So, hey! Captured units, what to do with them.

Turning them is still probably not a good idea. That would seem to leave execution as the only alternative...

Or does it? Historically in warfare, its standard operating procedure to offer captured units back to their side in exchange for an appropriate ransom. This ransom is typically either money or similarly captured units.

The last option being common, or at least not unheard of, in Erf would not surprise me in the least.

However, in Book 1 this was not an option. GK was the last GK city, when it fell there was going to be no one to ransom captured units to. Furthermore, Stanley and eventually Parson's behavior (such as the mass decryption of Jetstone's finest) made Ansom very unwilling to cut the side any slack. Yet, Charlie got Parson's capture out of Ansome regardless.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 023

Postby DevilDan » Fri May 14, 2010 11:26 am

Capturing for ransom makes excellent sense to me when warfare is often skirmishes between neighboring kingdoms. (I doubt Jill will be leaving anyone alive as she razes her way back to Faq, though. I think we sometimes forget that every person in these cities is a soldier: No civilians, no bystanders, no collateral "damage.")

Jill was taken captive twice. Now, Wanda aside, if capturing at least warlords (even mercenary barbarians) weren't at least done on occasion — whether they are later on turned or croaked — then Vinny and Ansom would have been overly suspicious of Jill's captures. Castles have dungeons and prisons, so prisoners are certainly part of the system.

Hmmm... without the potential for slavery, would prisoners have been taken in earth's ancient history?
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 023

Postby gazes_also » Fri May 14, 2010 11:52 am

Traditionally holding for ransom was only done with those capable of paying it - nobles and landowners.
At Agincourt Henry V had his men cut the throats the large number of French nobles they had captured when the French king did not withdraw after the first wave had failed. Any nobles had been captured as they became bogged down in the mud. This almost lead to an open revolt by his nobles, not on ethical grounds, but because they were throwing away their main chance of making money out of the venture.

The average peasant who was captured was either pressed into service or stripped of his arms and valuables and released. Most foot-soldiers fought out of obligation to their landowner, and didn't have a huge personal loyalty. Conflicts were between lords; foot-soldiers were game pieces and would serve whichever lord took or held their lands. they were chattels, and changed hands like any other piece of property. they only thing they had of value would be any armour or weapons they had been issued with. If they weren't of any use they were sent home, somebody had to tend the land otherwise the lords wouldn't have any income.

The French were in the habit of cutting off the right index and middle fingers of English archers before releasing them so they couldn't draw a bow. In the 100 Years War English archers would taunt the French by holding up their right hands to show they still had those fingers, giving rise to was is still the Ultimate Rude Gesture in Britain.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 023

Postby Reclaimer » Fri May 14, 2010 6:59 pm

Dancing Cthulhu wrote:
Reclaimer wrote:Tram's Attack is incredibly important here, since this fight is going to boil down to his max stack vs. two max stacks of high-level heavies led by Ford and Twenty. This isn't Exalted; his massive infantry force doesn't give him an armor bonus or anything, in fact he himself has no bonuses at all.


That is an interesting point, I'm curious as well. I guess it can't be too bad - Slately didn't have a problem putting him on the front lines with Oss. It could have just been a "well, things are desperate, we need every sword down there" situation, but Slately doesn't seem the type who'd just throw his sons away, if Trem couldn't hold his own he'd have kept him back in capital as "reserves".

And considering the whole plan was for the Jetstone forces to hold GK up and then fall back when Haggar arrived anyway if Trem's attack wasn't all that good he probably wouldn't have made that much difference in the delaying action, so no use risking him (although it could be he was there to be the brain to Oss's brawn, and he'd have hung back).


Tramennis could have led another stack of elite infantry, and at that point would've received Ossomer's large CW Leadership bonus on top of his own, making him much more potent. At this point though he's not going to be nearly as tough as he was with Big Brother standing beside him. And he's going to stand out more, being the only Jetstone royal on the battlefield, unlike when Ossy was around to split their attention. Remember, GK wasn't supposed to just bypass that large blockade. They expected Ansom to march a big siege-heavy ground force up to their gates, not fly right up to the tower and blow it away.

I do agree with your theory of him being there to keep Ossomer in check. Ossomer had all of Ansom's bravado but none of his tactical genius, at least from what I've seen.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 023

Postby Lord Kasavin » Fri May 14, 2010 8:47 pm

Reclaimer wrote:I do agree with your theory of him being there to keep Ossomer in check. Ossomer had all of Ansom's bravado but none of his tactical genius, at least from what I've seen.


Oh, I think Ossomer is getting a little short changed. He may prefer straightforward tactics, but we haven't seen very much of him to really judge him as a commander.

Well, he apparently came up with the bridge stall tactic of using Jetstone's mancers in conjunction with high leadership and heavies to keep the assumed numerically superior GK army at bay. Unfortunately, he fell for an elaborate veil. To give Ossomer credit, though, I did to and I have some degree of genre savy that meant I should have seen in coming where Ossomer has his knowledge of Ansom to fall back on.

Then, he's the one who suggested to Wanda that Jillian be attacked directly to quickly wipe out her fliers. Such straightforward thinking may have saved GK's bacon right there.

Finding a useful truisms regarding warfare and pounding them into you subordinate commanders is actually a pretty good way to set up a complex army.
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