Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by name » February 9th, 2018, 4:12 am

Celtic_Minstrel wrote:General comments on Cold Steel's history: I don't think I like the relationship you've outlined between the jinn and the dunefolk. I'm fine with them being usually on friendly terms, but your description implies them to be close friends and allies. I think the jinn, similar to fairies, are often seen as capricious creatures – sure they might grant you a wish or three, but generally not in the way you expected.
I probably need to work on the wording, but the idea is the human survivors stumbled on a small group of jinni and these particular jinni felt it would be entertaining enough to help the underdogs in that conflict and at the same time groom them for use against the fae. Most jinni outside this one band just do with humans and other races whatever tickles their fancy.

Even within this one odd band of jinni, there are many that see humans only as tools to be exploited, like the one mentioned in the legend that destroys the fae artifact using the ruby of fire. That is some foreshadowing for the idea we talked about much earlier, where a jinn or small group of them trick the (at that point in time) enormously prideful mages of wesnoth's court into accidental turning much of the world to desert whilst trying to lift a third sun into the sky (which sets up and better ties in the oddball but mainline under the burning suns campaign).

And then you have jinni, again within this one band, that grow quite fond of their human pets (or even friends in the minds of the lowliest jinn) due to their demonstrated survivorship and refreshingly steadfast commitment to honor their debt to them even after countless generations. Perhaps some even grow to respect these humans above their own kind.
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Were the dragons canonically "holdovers from the fiery, primordial time after irdya first emerged from the storm of its inception"? This seems like a weird thing to say of dragons in particular. It does seem less strange to say of jinn (or creatures like fire elementals), but... I'm not sure.
It is not canonical, which is why I worded it to be a dunefolk legend. I like to think it is true though, with the jinn and the fae having such a deep history meddling with our world and combating each other. Like two forces of nature with the uneasy balance between them making the world livable to ordinary creatures of the present time.

Dragons have 100% fire resistance (whereas the fire guardians only have 50% for some reason) and seem to grow arguably more rare over the course of the historical timeline. So they fit in well with the dunefolk legend's concept of the fiery primordial world and some of the more awesome (in the true sense of the word) creatures out there being holdovers from that time.
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Jinn leading a caravan of flying carpets across the sea sounds like an amazing sight, though I wonder just how long a jinn can tolerate being above that much water. I assume they can cross the ocean, but crossing the ocean leading a presumably much slower caravan seems less likely.
In my mind, it took everything they had at the time of the crossing, even as relatively quick as it was. Special measures may have been taken, like them having to retreat at times to insulating ceramic vessels (aka lamps?) and whenever land fall was made at an atoll, a great searing pyre would be built to briefly rewarm them. Finally, upon arrival it might have taken a full summer's heat in a subtropical desert of the great continent before they were restored to their full power and vitality.
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Minotaurs: I'll agree it doesn't seem that great for them to be devolved to an ogre-equivalent, though I'm also not sure a full faction would really be needed of them.
Also minotaurs are a greek myth for the most part, right?
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Duneworms: [...] I agree it makes sense to give it a teleport ability.
Better would be a terrain based stealth feature just like submerge is for deep water and ambush is for forest.
But in this case for sand of course.
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Maybe it was mentioned earlier in the thread and I forgot, but what the heck is an indrik?
It is a large highly ornery beast from russian / central asian mythology described as "a gigantic bull with legs of a deer, the head of a horse and an enormous horn in its snout, making it vaguely similar to a rhinoceros" according to wikipedia. It is theorized this legend descends from early prehistoric human encounters with Elasmotherium, which would also be an excellent source of inspiration for the appearance of the sprite because of the powerful, fantastical and strangely iconic look of its physique.

An indrik would make for a more visually stunning "dune piercer" unit with the same or similar stats. Especially since medieval europe inherited persia's obsession with heavy cavalry via the late roman military reforms and the loyalist faction has likewise inherited the same from medieval europe in the form of many heavy cavalry units already. But the loyalists do not field anything like this creature.

It also would explain why the dune piercer unit is so much slower than all the other armor clad horse units. Because it is not a horse, it is a 5 ton elasmotherium!

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Xalzar » February 9th, 2018, 4:37 pm

Cold Steel wrote:
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:Duneworms: [...] I agree it makes sense to give it a teleport ability.
Better would be a terrain based stealth feature just like submerge is for deep water and ambush is for forest.
But in this case for sand of course.
Burrow? :eng:
I think Duneworms - if accepted - should be reserved for campaigns anyway.

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Eagle_11 » February 9th, 2018, 7:01 pm

Hmm, maybe, the dunefolk are such scientifical they dont grasp the djinn having an true sentience, viewing it as some form of talking energy to power their machines, or an physical manifestation of one's knowledge, etc. rather than acknowledging it as an full creature.
Poor, misunderstood djinn then escapes to hide in abandoned gaslamps in the dunes prefering not having anything to do with humans, inspecially dunefolk.

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » February 10th, 2018, 3:19 am

Xalzar wrote:
Cold Steel wrote: Better would be a terrain based stealth feature just like submerge is for deep water and ambush is for forest.
But in this case for sand of course.
Burrow? :eng:
I think Duneworms - if accepted - should be reserved for campaigns anyway.
Oh yeah, a stealth ability would be better! And yeah, it's a monster unit, so it's not going in any factions.

As for minotaurs, yeah, they're Greek or thereabouts. And regarding the indrik / elasmothere, uhhh... I really don't think I like the idea of the dunefolk using these for mounts. They're just too large, and furthermore don't really fit into a desert setting; if I understand correctly, they're more of a grasslands animal.
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by name » February 10th, 2018, 6:37 am

The irdik / elasmotherium is associated with open terrain which includes both grassland and desert. Horses are primarily a grassland animal in the wild and the Dune Piercer unit is a horse rider. If you wanted only purely desert animals that are large enough to be ridden, the dunefolk would have to ride exclusively camels.

The size of the indrik also varies greatly from story to story, with one saying it is only the size of a bull. But even in the largest case it could never be as big as a wose of the same level (a creature that grows as big as a large oak tree) and its full size would only be attained as a level 3 unit (like the roc / ruhk would, I imagine).

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » February 10th, 2018, 7:00 am

Cold Steel wrote:The irdik / elasmotherium is associated with open terrain which includes both grassland and desert. Horses are primarily a grassland animal in the wild and the Dune Piercer unit is a horse rider. If you wanted only purely desert animals that are large enough to be ridden, the dunefolk would have to ride exclusively camels.
Have you forgotten the two desert beasts from the new desert elves Under the Burning Suns? Either or both could be utilized by the dunefolk as well.
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by name » February 10th, 2018, 3:42 pm

The UtBS water buffalo appears to be a beast of burden meant for neither the battlefield nor desert crossing.

Using an eland mount as UtBS has is an interesting idea. An eland has speeds almost as fast as a horse. I think it (along with a dromedary camel) should be considered a candidate replacement mount for the "dune rider" unit, which is also bit slower than a horse mounted unit even though it is unburdened by armor. And it is primarily an archer unit, so the mount does not need to look particularly powerful.

But the dune piercer is slower still than even the dune rider. It's speed is equivalent to foot skirmishers (and slower than the footpad in particular). And it is centered around a single tremendous piercing attack, like what you would expect the single large horn from a lumbering, charging, slightly unwieldy beast to deliver. So for the dune piercer specifically, what better of a mount could there be than an indrik?

Or a karkadann?

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Xalzar » February 10th, 2018, 4:34 pm

Well, horses vary in resilience and speed.
Maybe Dunefolk simply have access to horse breeds which are inferior to the northern ones. ;)

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » February 10th, 2018, 5:11 pm

I still say it's weird to have a rhinoceros in the desert. I'd agree that the buffalo or whatever from UtBS is more of a beast of burden (though the desert elves are clearly using it in battle anyway), so it might be good for caravans instead of camels (which we have sort of assumed they would have, but maybe not).
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by name » February 10th, 2018, 8:22 pm

Xalzar wrote:Well, horses vary in resilience and speed. Maybe Dunefolk simply have access to horse breeds which are inferior to the northern ones. ;)
That works to explain the speed discrepancy but it is not a very inspiring explanation that reflects well on the dunefolk.

Arabian horses were not inferior in terms of speed. And one of not many proposed clear strengths for this faction is their mastery of taming and training animals. Having inferior animals works against this feature of theirs. They should really field impressive animals, like the roc and indrik.
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:I still say it's weird to have a rhinoceros in the desert.
Please compare the natural range map of the Black Rhinoceros with that of Common Eland (that beast being ridden by the desert elves being apparently an eland).

If one does not belong in the desert, then neither does the other. Neither do horses and other equidae.
As far as I can find so far, the only creature large enough to be ridden that inhabits the deep desert is the camel.

Would you prefer a war elephant native to the near east as the Syrian Elephant was?
Celtic_Minstrel wrote:I'd agree that the buffalo or whatever from UtBS is more of a beast of burden (though the desert elves are clearly using it in battle anyway), so it might be good for caravans instead of camels (which we have sort of assumed they would have, but maybe not).
Well camels cannot be beat at desert crossing, certainly not by a buffalo. If humans and horses exist in irdya, it is hard to imagine why camels could not.

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » February 11th, 2018, 12:47 am

There's no reason why camels shouldn't exist in Irdya, but also no particular reason why they should. I have no problems with dunefolk using camels, but I also don't think we should give them camels merely because they live in a desert.
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Pentarctagon » February 11th, 2018, 5:02 pm

To follow up on the OoA mainlining question, Kwandulin replied on Discord:
Kwandulin wrote:I don't know either. There only has been minor talk and some project members were against it. Moreover, the current discussion about the dunefolk are leading so far away, it wouldn't even make sense anymore to mainline OoA, without me needing to change a ton. And I don't want to destroy what I have created. Anyway, there is another dunefolk campaign, which seems to be popular: viewtopic.php?p=601483#p601483
So it looks like there isn't any need to try to avoid conflicting with OoA's lore at this point. Given that, is the most recent proposal by Celtic_Minstrel still up to date? My current understanding is that, while the version in the code has been bumped, 1.13.11 has yet to actually be tagged, so if the description is acceptable or only needs minor changes then I believe it would still be possible to get it into 1.13.
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Celtic_Minstrel » February 11th, 2018, 8:41 pm

Other than one or two grammatical errors, and the question of whether to mention dwarves, I think that description is usable.
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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Eagle_11 » February 11th, 2018, 8:47 pm

I would say
replace 'with drakes and trolls' with something more vague like 'with the less civilized races', the same applies to the bit about naga, jinn and sandworms,
try not to dictate what is there, instead leave it up to imagination so umc author can make what he wants out of it.

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Re: Dunefolk(previously Khalifate) race description

Post by Deciton_Reven » February 11th, 2018, 11:17 pm

I mean it's good to solidify at least some relations. Name dropping Drakes specifically helps tie them in to the game better, which they themselves desperately need. And again anything that's important in mainline needs to be stated in racial descriptions if it can't be found elsewhere in mainline, whether that's jinn in some way or a specific trade partner or natural obstacle. You're working backwards going from details to vagueness.

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