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Which do you think is more useful?

  1. Spear

    42.9%
  2. Longsword

    57.1%
  1. Meteor

    Meteor Active Member

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    Making it believable

    Discussion in 'Fantasy' started by Meteor, Apr 16, 2017.

    Hello everyone ands thanks for taking a minute to look this one over!

    So I'm trying to make a scenario a bit more believable. Naturally I'm having some problems and I need advice. Long story short I want to shove a typical modern male into a different world.

    The idea I had was using Stonehenge as a gateway for the transition during one of the solstices. That way a lot of people are there to be used to open the portal. When I say used I mean human sacrifice used. The explanation is that Earth has a small amount of latent magic but, not enough to open a portal. Human sacrifice generates a lot of energy, even if it is the bad kind. The guy casting the spell doesn't care. He just wants to get to a world with "real" magic, which he learned about through an external force(god like being). Which is also how he learned Earth still had some latent magical power. The god wants this remaining magical energy but, needs a stronger connection to Earth. Hence he uses the guy, a Druid, to strengthen the portal which allows the Druid to pass through at the cost of a lot of lives.

    Our main character is there for the solstice event, being all merry and what have you, until Stonehenge activates. Next thing he knows he's being sucked through a black tunnel and gets deposited into a forest in the middle of nowhere at night. Boom, he's muling around until he comes across a town where he gets his lights nocked out because reasons. He can't speak the language and spends awhile in a jail cell. Additionally he's in the middle of a war which he promptly gets stuck helping out in as a slave because he's a prisoner. He can use a sword to and fairly well, thanks to his HEMA(Historical European Martial Arts)classes that he attended for several years.

    Edit: He is one of two people who got sucked through rather than dying to the spell.

    Anyway that's it so far everyone. Can I make this work? Please let me know if you need me to give any other details.
     
  2. Elven Candy

    Elven Candy Pay no attention to the foot in my mouth Contributor

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    I have no idea how the vote in the poll, but either one would be fun to read. As to the idea, I think it works quite well. I mean, I've seen crazier, so yours would be very believable in a fantasy book.
     
  3. Jun

    Jun Member

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    I am particularly fond of your idea of utilizing the Stonehenge. Don't think I've seen that very often. Even more intriguing, knowing the fact that archaeologists don't have too much information or history on Stonehenge itself in real life.

    As far as your poll of sword vs spear... this is not a question that can be answered too easily but I personally voted for spear. If you would like I could elaborate.
     
  4. Stormburn

    Stormburn Contributor Contributor

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    Why could he not use both? Weapons load out for most melee combatants is a weapon for reach and then a brawling weapon. For example, Zulu warriors had used a spear, and a spear with an extended blade and shorten handle (think gladius) and a club. It is not uncommon in both history and fictions to have slaves trained to be warriors. Often times, it was the only means for them to advance beyond slavery. I like your set up. Being a slave allows him to build conditioning, knowledge of the people and customs, and eventually arms training. It allows the reader to take this journey along side of the MC and discover the world and his role in it as he does.
    Godspeed!
     
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  5. NiallRoach

    NiallRoach Contributor Contributor

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    Spears are cheaper to get a hold of, and they're very effective when it comes to fending people off. I feel like anyone with HEMA experience, no matter how good they are with a sword, would feel safer on a battleground with a spear, just because you're further away from the other guy's point stick.

    Also, it's pretty easy to get wounded in a sword fight even after you've won. Dying men are really annoyed, generally, especially at whoever killed them, and swords don't stop being pointy just because they bloke holding it has been mortally wounded.
     
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  6. Meteor

    Meteor Active Member

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    I thought about just sticking both on him, or using something akin to a short spear. I feel like anything beyond 5 feet would be to much of a hindrance when carrying a second weapon. I have heard though, that when entering duels, the duelists would often go in with a buckler, spear, sword and a dagger. On the battlefield I know that swords were generally considered sidearms or emergency "Oh dang got me spear stuck in his wooden shield!" weapons. This is part of the reason I decided to give him a HEMA history. From what I've seen HEMA students usually learn a broad spectrum of weapons. As a side effect it'd help him distinguish himself a bit quicker which is what I was aiming towards.



    Yeah that's true, less metal equals less money. Easier to make, less craftsmanship involved so it all makes sense. I watch a lot of Lindybeigh and Skallagrim on youtube because they're seem to know there stuff. I remember Lindy talking about duels at one point, and Skall also said that it wasn't terribly uncommon for both combatants to die in them. I would assume this was likely true for larger battles as well. It doesn't seem unlikely that two opposing soldiers could mortally wound one another when in close line to line fighting. I do know, from some old battle records where bodies were surveyed, that the head seemed to be the common target. Less metal to cut through on a vulnerable part of the body, so it makes sense.
     
  7. Stormburn

    Stormburn Contributor Contributor

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    I recommend watching scholagladiatoria on YouTube also. All three are good and I love Skally. I'm currently creating my fantasy world as well. The approach that I'm taking is 'not reinventing the wheel' so I try to ground as many of the elements of that world in the real world. By pulling inspirations from groups from all over the world, I can have a diverse set of weapons and MA with little invention on my part.
    Godspeed!
     
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  8. Dr.Meow

    Dr.Meow Contributor Contributor

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    Before I could vote in the pole, I'd need a bit more information. Mostly about the regions and battlefields that this person would be fighting on. A sword or a spear, or even a bow or crossbow or mace or whatever, etcetera, are used for specific purposes. Also, depending on your region and time period, one may not be in use as much. Also, everyone that carries a spear, also has a sword strapped to their side. Going into any battle with a situation specific weapon, like a spear, means that they also need to have a more versatile weapon as well. A spear is used for a purpose, which is a more flexible one than some weapons, but still it's very dependent on other factors as to its usefulness.

    A spear is only effective if "A", there's a lot of other people around you with spears and you can form a wall of spikes, or "B", you have a short spear that can be maneuvered quickly and also have a large shield you can use in tandem. In medieval Britain, for example, short spears were not so common, it's typically more of a Roman fighting style. This is primarily due to effectiveness, and also cost. Long spears are made of wood, usually, and don't take very much craftsmanship or time to make one. Short spears, on the other hand, do take a bit of skill, and they're usually made of solid metal since they need to be strong and withstand shorter range combat for longer periods of time. They also take more skill to use as well, the combatant needs to be a lot more precise in using it, sure it has a lot of stopping power, but you're limited to thrusting, and only thrusting. It takes a lot of force and endurance to hold a heavy shield effectively, while also using a spear to jab at an opponent over and over again. I could argue it takes more skill to be able to use it at all and not simply be killed, whereas a sword you don't have to master just to be effective.

    Longspears are used for a reason as well, and every person with a longspear on a battlefield also has a broadsword they can pull out once it breaks or is no longer useful. Longspears are used to stop cavalry charges or charging foot soldiers, and are most effective at the start of a battle while both armies have their lines formed and intact. In well formed battle lines, you'll have spearmen up front, maybe pikes and halberds behind them or mixed in, then behind that are infantrymen to halt the progression of the enemy if they get passed all that, then further back there may be cavalry if your side wasn't charging with them first or something, then behind that you have your archers and whatnot. Strategy is also a huge factor in deciding how these lines are formed, so that's where you can take some liberty. Also note that having your cavalry hidden until ready to charge, while being a bit cliche, is still a great tactic. Having them sweep up from behind is devastating to the infantry, but I digress.

    The point is, no one soldier is just going to have a single weapon unless it's a standard sword and shield, because those are the "swiss army knife" so any battle, you can stab, slash, block and hack your way through an opponent. I recommend studying a bit more about how these weapons are used in warfare, my information here is limited, this is just what I know from personal research, and I can't rightly tell you every detail in one post. Research will be key here.

    Side note: battle in open fields are only one of many types of combat in warfare, in fact most of the time you'd have one army behind a fortress wall of some kind, and another trying to breach. In these situations, spears are only useful if the enemy behind the gates comes charging out to fight. There would still be spears present, but more than likely this will be a fight between archers...and catapults/trebuchets.

    Sources: I've just always been fascinated by medieval warfare and studied it from time to time. Some information here may not be 100% correct, I recommend some research into you era, the countries that are fighting, and the manner in which they'll be fighting. It changes depending on circumstance.
     
  9. Teruzond

    Teruzond New Member

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    Likewise, the Greek hoplites used spears and swords together. The Spartans in particular fought with spear and shield, and used swords in closer melees.

    I think it all comes down to the character's skill with these weapons. If he favours one exclusively, it would make sense to give him that one. Otherwise there's no reason not to have both.
     

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