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  1. #1

    Why have the lesser awnies have endured?

    Another thing to consider is the fact that these provinces have been a haven of death and dismemberment for at least 15 centuries. Why would we assume we could march an army in there anyway? If you told me as an enlisted soldier that we were going to march into the most dangerous place in the world, a place famous for how many people die when they go there, then I would be looking for a way out. I would desert outright if possible. Barring that, I would try to make sure I was the last one in line to go in, the one who doesn't have to fight spiders surely elves and I, for sure, would not be in the vanguard. So you end up with soldiers that have very poor morale that are constantly shirking duties and breaking rank in addition to the fact that both places basically ARE deathtraps. And these soldiers are likely patriots. Don't get me started with Mercenaries and their weak loyalty and even weaker morale. They would either rebel outright or at least rout.

    Many of the ideas proposed are based on coordination between neighboring kingdoms (Which is very unlikely in itself. If they are so cooperative then why aren't they allies already? Why don't they all support the same guy for the Iron Throne? Point made)
    But what about the fact that even within a nation the people are going to be very divided on how to handle these awnsheghlien. Some say leave them alone as if they were a hornets nest. Others say burn them out. But even those who say "Let's burn them out" aren't going to volunteer their sons and daughters to go die in a Spider Monster's Jungle Lair. And the soldiers sure as heck won't be in bright spirits if forced to march there.

  2. #2
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    New thread started as the old one was Aug 07 so somewhat of an ex-parrot ;-)

    Morale of any troops marching in to an awnies realm would likely be bad, but not necessarily terribly so - the Gorgon's troops have repeatedly attacked the north, Rhoubhe regularly raids his borders, the Spiders troops often raid - their neighbours are used to fighting awnie-troops so the issue is really "their home or ours".

    The home advantage could be quite literally a killer - the Spider's test has a wonderful scene where the Spider attacks Endier with a creeping carpet of tiny spiders rather than something that can be stabbed or slashed with a sword, the soldiers are unsurprisingly dismayed at an enemy that they can't fight. I suspect that the attrition rate in the Spiderfell would be abysmal - no sentry can spot a swarm of inch-big spiders creeping over their sleeping comrades and cry warning in time to save their fellows so you'd need trenches of pitch dug, trees cut back, etc, etc - other realms may have less "certain doom" about them but any awnie realm is likely a very dangerous place to enter even ignoring the awnies own troops and supporters.

    I note that Rhoubhe, the Gorgon, the Magian, the Raven, etc have such personal power that they can simply wade through armies; the lesser awnies like the spider (notably described as indestructible perhaps to boost longevity and possibly the second or third in a line of spider-awnies), the hydra, basilisk, and other "low rank" awnies tend to live in fairly unpleasant places where the environment is as deadly as the awnie itself or are otherwise quite isolated.

    Politics should probably not be discounted, Rhoubhe sits in a pass that leads from Tuornen (virtually from Avanil) to Boeruine - neither Avanil nor Boeruine could tolerate the other nation or its ally holding the pass so anyone killing, or more likely driving away, Rhoubhe would start a major war on the spot - and many parties would have vested interest in preventing such a war, several other awnies are in similar positions which would make forming a coalition of the willing very difficult.

    That said it is worth noting that many awnies are quite "new", the Swordhawk, Banshee, Sphinx, etc are all "last few decades" awnies from recollection, even major awnies like the Raven (depending on which source you read), White Witch and Magian are very new despite being "major" awnies, so one should expect awnies to come and go as time goes by and not necessarily worry overmuch if a few fall - frankly if the players are having a whale of a time stomping the spider and play well then why shouldn't they finally kill him - or even if they do very well - even end his bloodline and prevent his heir from inheriting and being corrupted into a replacement?

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