Horali and Iron Dwarves

From: Peter Metcalfe (P.Metcalfe@student.canterbury.ac.nz)
Date: Mon 13 May 1996 - 05:27:34 EEST


David Dunham:
=============

>Furthermore, a Horal obeying a radical order would be behaving
>correctly. Only the courageous general who gave the order would suffer a
>horrible, lingering (most of us live at least 20 years past our physical
>prime), inevitable death.

I don't think this is true. The zzaburi who cast the Spell Forbidden
by Urostio age even though the spell can only be cast on the orders of
a Talar. Therefore obeying a radical order is an aging offense. But
most Horali given a radical order, would probably obey it. Why?
Because disobeying a Talar's orders is also an aging offense IMO. The
Talar's Fear of Death is one of the bulwarks of the Brithini Social
Order.

Frank Rafaelsen:
================

I had stated that the dwarves are not innovative and cited their
usage of muskets despite having gunpowder since before the dawn
as evidence.

>Well if my memory isn't failing me, I seem to rememberthat gun powder is
>an old invention, but using it for guns is pretty new. I seem to remeber
>that they only started to use it in this way after humans stole the crossbow
>idea. And the invention of the cannon is something else that shows
>dwarves can think new.

The musket-and-pike regiment was first seen on the outside world
in the Gbaji wars which was 1000 years ago. Its usage has not
spread beyond the Nidan Decamony although individual dwarves are
known to have pistols.

The invention of the Cannon was made by Isidilian the Wise who is
*not* a ordinary dwarf but one of the Old Quicksilver Mostali. He
can think new, most dwarves cannot IMO.

>Now I think that the reason dwarves might seem stagnant is because they
>haven't been involved in all out wars for quite som time.

Um, they did fight a bloody civil war amongst themselves in the second
age which was only halted by a peace treaty after the Red Moon rose.
The Nidan Decamony actually sent armies against enemy conclaves. Some
conclaves were also sacked and pillaged by the God Learners.

>Imagine all the technical horrors they have kept hidden from mans eye
>because they haven't been needed. (Mk. T1000 Jolanti, Enchanted steel
>machine guns that fire 12.7mm MP rounds (MagicPiercing) etc.) Dwarves
>being extremely secretive when it comes to their inventions.

IMHO Dwarvern Technology is baroque rather than cyberpunkish.

me>> Eh? We are talking about an army operating above ground and lousy
>> vision is a minor problem? Operating above ground is the dwarven
>> equivalent of human nightfighting. And I don't see how using sorcery
>> solves their problem.

>Ok, you have conviced me that they are short sighted, but I don't think
>it's this bad. This makes the dwarves even lousier than the Uz at surface
>combat.

The Uz are not lousy at surface combat, they fight better at night. The
dwarves prefer to defend their fortresses rather than engage in risky
aboveground combat because their senses are better for closed confined
spaces rather than the Big Bag World.

>In one area, mesuring distance, I even think dwarves are quite
>good. If not by sight, then by sound. Perhaps this isn't very effective
>above ground, but it's good enough to target an army. And handy if you
>are going to call artillery fire, and I don't, for a second, doubt that
>they have it. :)

The problem is that if the enemy takes to using guerilla tactics, much
of the advantage the dwarves have is neutralized. It's no good ordering
artillery fire if you can't don't know where the enemy actually is. I
think they target their artillery by area-bombing. ('Aim the trebuchets
on that forest and fire explosive kegs. After the forest is completely
razed, aim the trebuchets at the forest beyond the stream...').

- --Peter Metcalfe

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