"Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

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Akkarin345
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Akkarin345 »

But the description i speaking as Elves as a whole it is hardly going to say oh yeah and some are outcasts. Asheviere reign was not lawful and how could she know that there was a pretender with the Elves unless she killed all the other heirs. Furthermore in the last sceanrio where you had to get the gryphon eggs i remember that you could nto let a Loyalist get there i think so that was my point, this may have been changed or i may have rememberd wrong. Also so just because the mages decide not to side with her she decides to take over them, how is that lawful?

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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Orcish Shyde »

Akkarin345 wrote:But the description i speaking as Elves as a whole it is hardly going to say oh yeah and some are outcasts.
Outcasts? The rebellion against the treaty is shown to be pretty ridiculously huge in Sceptre of Fire, to the point where it would be a substantial amount of the elf population in the area. Like, at least 30%.
Akkarin345 wrote:Asheviere reign was not lawful and how could she know that there was a pretender with the Elves unless she killed all the other heirs.
Again we have no proof that the assassination of Garard's nephews was her command, nor that she even wanted it to happen. She could know Konrad is a pretender maybe because he looks nothing like the baby, who very few people actually saw - or maybe just because she's jumping to the conclusion "Delfador wouldn't raise the real heir to the throne in secret" - or maybe, shock horror, someone other than Delfador and the murderer was watching and informed Asheviere that the real Konrad was dead! The "Dark" Queen isn't the only ambitious person in Wesnoth, and bear in mind her husband was the first king after a dark age; I think a noble thought that he could do away with the whole Garardine family and take the throne for himself, and Asheviere merely took advantage of his failure to pull it off.

As it stands, with Eldred and all his siblings down for the count and Li'sar only a baby, Asheviere is the rightful heir to the throne of Wesnoth, or at the very worst, the rightful choice for the regent of Wesnoth until such time as Li'sar is absolutely ready for it. Given the lack of overt in-universe sexism in Wesnoth, by all rights Li'sar should have come before the real Konrad in the line of succession, as the last blood descendant of King Garard - unless you'd like to rewrite the dialogue to insert overt sexism.
Akkarin345 wrote:Furthermore in the last sceanrio where you had to get the gryphon eggs i remember that you could nto let a Loyalist get there i think so that was my point, this may have been changed or i may have rememberd wrong.
Played it recently on Hard, let the loyalists kill the gryphon. The dialogue says explicitly that their interest in the gryphon eggs is to stop Konrad getting them, nothing else.
Akkarin345 wrote:Also so just because the mages decide not to side with her she decides to take over them, how is that lawful?
Because any subject of Wesnoth who does not side with the lawful ruler of Wesnoth is automatically a traitor, Captain Obvious.

EDIT: Wasn't this a rant about elves, and how they are not, in fact, especially non-warlike?
Last edited by Orcish Shyde on December 28th, 2008, 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by The Great Rings »

Limabean wrote:I figured i'd just point out that elves are neutral, not lawful. Therefore, they are neither good nor evil, but a little bit of both. Their actions reflect this "moral standing" in that they do evil as often as they do good.
Lawful does not equal good, and chaotic does not equal evil. While it often breaks down that way, all chaotic actually means is that you fight well at night, while lawful units fight well at day. Elves, being badasses, fight fine in both. :wink:
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by The Great Rings »

Again we have no proof that the assassination of Garard's nephews was her command, nor that she even wanted it to happen. She could know Konrad is a pretender maybe because he looks nothing like the baby, who very few people actually saw - or maybe just because she's jumping to the conclusion "Delfador wouldn't raise the real heir to the throne in secret" - or maybe, shock horror, someone other than Delfador and the murderer was watching and informed Asheviere that the real Konrad was dead! The "Dark" Queen isn't the only ambitious person in Wesnoth, and bear in mind her husband was the first king after a dark age; I think a noble thought that he could do away with the whole Garardine family and take the throne for himself, and Asheviere merely took advantage of his failure to pull it off.
You are criticizing us for having no proof, and then inventing a senario with nothing but the most circumstancial of evidence so far as I can see.
As it stands, with Eldred and all his siblings down for the count and Li'sar only a baby, Asheviere is the rightful heir to the throne of Wesnoth, or at the very worst, the rightful choice for the regent of Wesnoth until such time as Li'sar is absolutely ready for it. Given the lack of overt in-universe sexism in Wesnoth, by all rights Li'sar should have come before the real Konrad in the line of succession, as the last blood descendant of King Garard - unless you'd like to rewrite the dialogue to insert overt sexism.
Not if she took the throne through illegal means. Even if we lack explicite proof that she did so, we also lack solid proof of your version of events.

Frankly I don't particularily like Konrad, and Delfadore was a manipulative old man, and it is probably possible to come up with explanations for the events of Heir to the Throne that show Ashevier in a superior light. However, its not like these claims have any solid evidence to back them, at least so far as I am aware. Since it seems Ashevier was generally percieved as a tyrant, and their is no evidence of a sufficiently high level of sexism against her or anything else to explain this so far as I am aware, and since we have nothing to contradict the narartor's and Delfador's claim about her murdering the young princes (they certainly died, and Ashevier probably had the greatist means and motive to kill them), I must find your claims questionable to say the least. If you have any evidence beyond speculation for your theories, please present it.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Orcish Shyde »

The Great Rings wrote:
Limabean wrote:I figured i'd just point out that elves are neutral, not lawful. Therefore, they are neither good nor evil, but a little bit of both. Their actions reflect this "moral standing" in that they do evil as often as they do good.
Lawful does not equal good, and chaotic does not equal evil. While it often breaks down that way, all chaotic actually means is that you fight well at night, while lawful units fight well at day. Elves, being badasses, fight fine in both. :wink:
WCs, ghouls, and some trolls go even further, fighting amazingly at night yet being fine during the day. Apparently "fearless" means "isn't actively penalised for fighting at a sub-optimal time of day" unless there's a shorter word for that.

What gets me is Chaotic archers. Apparently a Huntsman can do much more damage to you if it's too dark for him to see where the hell he's shooting. Also, if Master Bowmen are meant to be the best human archers ever how come they don't get Marksman and outlaw Huntsmen do? :P

Ref your post questioning my mindless loyalty to Asheviere: The fact she's perceived as a tyrant is likely helped by the fact she lost the war, and history is written by the victors. Konrad would hardly want people to think he forcibly usurped an intelligent and reasonable, if ruthless, Queen, even if she did get the throne by dark deeds. Also, my version of events is no less likely than manipulative elf-agent Delfador's version - there was something of a precedent for ascension by murder in the years leading up to King Garard's reign.

More to the point, we're talking about the continuity of Wesnoth; the best way for me to verify my claims would be to write a campaign where you play as Asheviere and get to see her side of the story, and for it to get mainlined. :lol2:
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by The Great Rings »

Orcish Shyde wrote:
The Great Rings wrote: Lawful does not equal good, and chaotic does not equal evil. While it often breaks down that way, all chaotic actually means is that you fight well at night, while lawful units fight well at day. Elves, being badasses, fight fine in both. :wink:
WCs, ghouls, and some trolls go even further, fighting amazingly at night yet being fine during the day. Apparently "fearless" means "isn't actively penalised for fighting at a sub-optimal time of day" unless there's a shorter word for that.
Just one question: what are WCs? :D
What gets me is Chaotic archers. Apparently a Huntsman can do much more damage to you if it's too dark for him to see where the hell he's shooting. Also, if Master Bowmen are meant to be the best human archers ever how come they don't get Marksman and outlaw Huntsmen do? :P
That bit about chaotic archers is very true, but good luck getting it fixed because of all the reballancing that would have to be done. :wink:
Ref your post questioning my mindless loyalty to Asheviere: The fact she's perceived as a tyrant is likely helped by the fact she lost the war, and history is written by the victors. Konrad would hardly want people to think he forcibly usurped an intelligent and reasonable, if ruthless, Queen, even if she did get the throne by dark deeds. Also, my version of events is no less likely than manipulative elf-agent Delfador's version - there was something of a precedent for ascension by murder in the years leading up to King Garard's reign.
But isn't the campaign shown from the point of view of those who participated in it at the time, rather than being written as "after the fact" history?
More to the point, we're talking about the continuity of Wesnoth; the best way for me to verify my claims would be to write a campaign where you play as Asheviere and get to see her side of the story, and for it to get mainlined. :lol2:
The tricky part being to get it accepted into mainline. :wink: If you find yourself in a position to rewrite continuity, then good for you. Until then, you're going to have to deal with the existing mainline canon.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by michchar »

In HTTT, the elves were attacked by the orcs, not the other way around. Not being warlike does not mean sitting around letting some guy take your stuff, your land and your citizens. It means that they don't START wars. So, you think it is totally unreasonable to retaliate when you have been attacked?
They did not intervene. They got attacked. So what if Asheviere was a good queen? There were lots of leaders overthrown because they pissed off the wrong people. Same thing here. I really don't see why that's wrong.

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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Velensk »

My explanation of chaotic vs lawful is as follows. It has logical inconsistnacies of their own, but it works if you don't like the nocturnal explanation.

Chaotic units are units that benifit more from their enemy being disorganised than by being organised themselves. Lawful units are units that benifit more from being organised themselves than from having their enemies being disorganised.

Neutral units benifit from both.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Limabean »

Orcish Shyde wrote:
Limabean wrote:I figured i'd just point out that elves are neutral, not lawful. Therefore, they are neither good nor evil, but a little bit of both. Their actions reflect this "moral standing" in that they do evil as often as they do good.
I figured I'd just point out that orcs are chaotic, not evil. Therefore, they are neither good nor evil, they just don't respect the law and fight better at night than in daylight. Furthermore, loyalists are lawful, not good. They are organised and are trained to fight best in daylight, but that doesn't mean they're the good guys - or the bad guys, for that matter.
So its just a coincidence that the chaotic factions are undead, orcs, trolls, outlaws, and scary lizards? Hmmm, its been a while since i've seen any of those portrayed as the good guys in other fantasy things. Also, the necromancers and outlaws are humans so its not like they can see better in the dark than the loyalist humans. They are the same species.
:eng: Now we can look at good old symbolism. Ask yourself: What do light and dark usually symbolize? Think Tolkien: Sauron lives in a black tower in the Black land which is defended by the black gate. He commands armies of orcs and trolls as well as the black riders. He also tries to become immortal, kind of like some other sorcerers I can think of. Also, think of Gandalf, the White Rider, nemesis of the black riders. Now look at wesnoth: There are Dark Adepts and Dark Sorcerers. What do their names suggest about their character? Is there any particular reason that all the necromancers parade around in black cloaks? Why don't we see any of them wearing lively happy colors?

Now lets go on to orcs. I'll use the Wiki:
In appearance, orcs are half men and half beasts. They are taller, sturdier and stronger than humans. They are warlike, savage, and cruel by nature. Their blood is darker and thicker than that of normal humans and they have little care for personal hygiene or their personal appearance. Although Orcs are violent even among themselves creatures, they are pack-oriented; an orc never travels long or lives alone in groups smaller than half a dozen
Wow, thats exactly how I would describe a good guy.:annoyed:
Half Beast, cruel by nature, dirty, savage and dark blood (more symbolism!?). Is that a typical descripion for a hero or a villain?

Face facts. Wesnoth has all the classic fantasy stereotypes of good and evil. Lawful represents all the degrees of good, chaotic represents all the degrees of evil.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Jyuukenbu »

Your point cannot possibly be saying that chaotic and lawful units are those because one guy happens to be righteous and a goody-two-shoes while another is a reckless vermin that lives in the dirt and feasts on maggots and whatnot. It's not possible to say that all humans on the Loyalists side are "lawful" by moral definition. They're lawful in that they fight better during the daylight because of reasons due to....lack of perception, human eyesight, and other physical traits along those lines. Now, the Outlaws fight better during nighttime because of their unorthodox training, allowing them to take advantage of the pitch-black so that they can strike harder on their foes without extra-retaliation. They fight worse in daylight because they've done all of their work during night. You know, cutthroats and thieves usually break-and-enter during nighttime. Their lifestyle is completely different than a Loyalist's, because they're living on the edge of society. Murdering and assassinating and so on. They're not evil in the sense that the Grim Reaper or the Boogeyman is evil. If you planted an old woman right in the middle of the road with two Footpads traveling along that road, do you think one of the Footpads will go, "Oh hey, there's an old woman, lets slice her throat for the heck of it because we're totally evil by nature. We're total badasses." No, unless they're on a murder spree, they'll probably ignore and skip the old woman and continue on doing whatever the hell they were doing in the first place. Once again: They're so-called "chaotic" because they physically fight better during nighttime.

As for skeletons, walking hunks of rotting flesh, trolls, orcs, and so on, they fight worse during daylight because it burns their skin or their eyes. Or their bones. Or whatever. Do they seek to kill anything that's cute or fluffy or "good"? Orcs, by their belligerent way-of-life, will war with one another for territory and fight to solve problems and are so bellicose with other races. The same goes for trolls except that most of them are top-grade idiots so smashing things to solve problems is what they do. Undead are just...undead. Lol. They like to eat human flesh, I assume. So that's just what they do. Eat human flesh. And stuff like that. Not to mention that they're under the iron control of their Necromancers all of the time, so if their necromancer has intentions of destroying the nearby village, the Undead servants will carry out their master's bidding. As for why necromancers fight worse in daylight, I really don't have to go so far to explain why a guy who turned to the black arts doesn't like the feeling of sunlight on his skin.

That's just how things work. By their physicality. You can argue that there is a "good" side in Wesnoth and there is a "bad" side in Wesnoth but rarely do things work like that unless it's in a Disney movie. Believe me, I'm a former player of WoW. And in that game, you see arguments all the effing time about whether the Horde is the good side or the Alliance is the bad side. I'm experienced in these arguments. In determining good or bad, you can only judge by looking into an individual's soul, not into the group that he is in.

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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Orcish Shyde »

@Limbean

The manual is not written from an objective, omniscient viewpoint. Notice how it does not explicitly say outright "Dwarvish Thunderers load gunpowder into little machines to propel sharp objects at their enemies"; the manual doesn't even seem to realise that a thunderstick is not a beast fed with gunpowder. The manual is written by an obviously biased Wesnothian scholar. You think orcs are so warlike by nature, play Son of the Black-Eye - on average, orcs aren't much worse than the average human, and the average human is pretty good. Had Asheviere won the war and her scholars wrote the manual, elves would be described as meddling tree-shaggers who don't want anyone to take any natural resource, while orcs would be described as awe-inspiringly skilled and experienced warriors willing to help any good cause if given proper incentive. Trolls, meanwhile, are stated explicitly by this same manual to be misunderstood creatures, forced to fight for the orcs because no one else will stop attacking them and listen (and because they're too simple-minded and reclusive to tell most anthropoid races apart) - although again, 'Son of the Black-Eye' (one of my favourite campaigns) somewhat contradicts this description just as it throws away the idea that orcs are savages.

What does the name Dark Adept or Dark Sorcerer suggest about their character? That they practise dark magic, which can be used for good as well as for evil.

@Jyuukenbu

Technically, the footpads might well ambush the old woman and demand that she hand over her gold - if there is no richer prey at all for them, and they absolutely have to get some gold really quickly. But that's not acting out of evilness, it's just choosing to live to see tomorrow rather than to remain honourable (depending on the age of the footpads - I blame the knife crime increase in Britain on the fact that more weapons are given to younger people who don't fully realise the consequences of murder and are thus more willing to resort to it, but that's another debate).
Trolls, as I said, are people who the manual's writer likes, just like he likes the elves.
Of the undead, only ghouls like to eat human flesh (or indeed, to eat anything) and given they can't enter deep water (which even WCs can) they must need to breathe, indicating that they aren't actually 100% undead if you ask me. Presumably not all undead are under the direct control of a dark mage 100% of the time, and it's implied by the (unreliable) manual that the more powerful ones really are just repeating destructive patterns to their former life, but a necromancer will always need a reason to destroy a village e.g. they chose to fight to the death rather than give him a magical ingredient or tome, perhaps believing that he was stupid enough to waste his time and resources destroying them anyway if they acquiesced.

One last point: LOTR orcs were not 100% evil. The Uruks, at least, had the kindness to heal Merry's wounds - not in any way necessary - and I got the feeling that orcish healing was, if not better overall, then faster working than other peoples' healing even in LOTR. Left a big scar, sounds like healed really quickly if you ask me.

EDIT: I guess all my ranting about how Asheviere isn't really evil is because she's really not a compelling villain, like Rakshas (Northern Rebirth), Yechnagoth AKA the false Eloh (Under the Burning Suns) or Darken Volk (Descent into Darkness). Maybe have her personally lead one of the orcish armies in The Elves Besieged, and show up offering to negotiate with Konrad (and Delfador saying no she can't) before The Princess of Wesnoth gets started. That's still only 3 appearances in an epic 25-scenario campaign (if you include the final battle) but I can't offhand think of any other places where she ought to be crowbared in, though there's surely plenty of opportunities for having her give an enemy leader his orders before going offscreen.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Akkarin345 »

[quote=Orcish Shyde]surely plenty of opportunities for having her give an enemy leader his orders before going offscreen.[/quote]

Well she can hardly run over all of the country, that is what she sent Li'sar to do.

Also on the point of lawful and chaotic, light gives connotations of good and dark gives connotations of bad. Therefore a lot of the units do follow this idea, the only exception is when units change their allegiance. For example a Loyalist joins the undead or Orcs, or the Orcs join in a war with humans to beat a massive enemy.

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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Orcish Shyde »

@Akkarin
Asheviere can be expected to have an active role in hunting down Konrad; however I don't expect her to follow after "The Princess of Wesnoth" as unlike Li'sar, she has a country to run, and cannot afford to pursue the rebels and put her royal personage at risk. Thing is, if Asheviere were to die with both Li'sar and Konrad out of the country, Wesnoth would enter another dark age even worse than her reign could realistically have been. I also find it hard to believe that she doesn't have a reason to despise and attack the elves - war expends resources and people, so the objective has to outweigh the costs for it to be an option.

The unit descriptions do, in fact, follow the idea that lawful = desirable, chaotic = less desirable - I'd rather have order than chaos in life as a rule, if I had to choose. I wouldn't go as far as to say they follow lawful ~= good, chaotic ~= bad though - the thieves in HTTT are portrayed as the good guys, as are the outlaw units in Liberty, and in Son of the Black-Eye, Kapou'e the Orcish Leader/Ruler/Soveriegn is unquestionably in the right from the word "go", and has orcs fighting against him as well as humans and elves (this is not to say he's nice, just that you root for him for the right reasons). As it happens SotBE also has orcs joining evil Loyalists to help in the genocide of orcs, and this is never really explained properly but hey.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by Velensk »

I'd say if anywhere, Ashevire is best shown as being evil in the backstory. I'd say that it shows something, if you are very happy that your son killed your husband.
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Re: "Elves are not warlike by nature..." rant (spoilers)

Post by LemonTea »

Orcish Shyde wrote: The manual is not written from an objective, omniscient viewpoint...
Exactly. It is written in human script, which may imply who was supposedly the author. It's a nice touch that it may seem misleading at times, as most book of bestiary were in the medieval times. (Apple-smellers to the east, Headless men to the south, bottomless pit at the tip of Africa :eng: :eng: ) It actually makes the manual more authentic.

EDIT: It is much better than, for example, 'elves are a race sharing the following common characteristics in their DNA strains: (insert 200-page chemical analysis here). There are 4,678,302 elves living in the Great continent, and the change in population over the last century averages -2.356% per annum, though without wars it would be 3.89%. etc etc...'
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