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  1. #11
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kgauck View Post
    The elves appear on the battlefield at moments of their choosing, inflict a devestating strike, then fade away before the enemy has a chance to recover their footing and harm any elves.
    Yes, exactly the modern American position -- massive, overwhelming firepower from a distance. Aerial bombardment, in fact.

    Quote Originally Posted by kgauck View Post
    though the fireball does bring up images of the plasma torpedo, others are right to suggest the sidhe won't use it in the forest
    There are several responses to this. The traditional one is that there are many spells other than evocations which are useful in mass combat. While I do appreciate those, I like finding ways for them to use direct-damage area-effect spells also. One is by researching an alternate version which specifically doesn't harm plants in the area of effect; perhaps it can't hurt anything with Int below 3 (to also spare natural animals), or perhaps it even harms *only* humans (or goblins). In some spell design systems, like the generally excellent Sovereign Stone d20 Codex Mysterium, this actually makes it *cheaper* to cast; I wouldn't use that modifier in this particular case, though, because the target limitation is being employed to reduce, rather than increase, the typical restraints on casting the spell. Another way is by ensuring they only have to cast it outside the forest. I see the edge of a Sidhelien forest as essentially a living fortification: trees, brambles and vines with poisonous thorns grown into a massive, tangled barrier thicker and higher than any castle's curtain wall. They don't want visitors, and neither do the trees. Where this border touches unforested human lands, casting *out* from behind the barrier harms no trees -- neither does casting them on the humans below as you fly invisibly over their towns -- so fireballs and ice storms are just peachy as long-distance weapons.


    Ryan

  2. #12
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    Hmm, I'm going to have to disagree with Ryan. If every tree and root attacks an invader then the invader responds by burning them first - the Spiderfell issue. The woods should not be actively hostile in the most part - but then I don't think it needs to be.

    To my mind the elves would use more of a Russian defense - retreat, repeatedly use hit and run attacks, and watch their enemies flail around in hostile terrain with no clear line of attack. Since the elves have superior 'technology' (i.e. better equipment, magic, more skilled warriors) they turn the normal guerrilla-war tactical position of this world on its head - they become the enemy who always chooses time and place of attack, and always out-powers their foe...

    I see an invasion of elven lands as a march into a feared realm of dark forests, punctuated by arrows from the distance and constant attrition of guards. Those soldiers sent to chase the elven attackers either find nothing but air, or vanish never to be seen again. A general could lose half his troops roaming the trackless woods before leaving without ever once drawing blade on an enemy...

    Those people who have elven cities, have the problem of the attackers finding cities and destroying them to defeat the elves. However as virtually the entire population is effectively made up of young adults the best invaders could hope for would be to destroy a few buildings and livestock - the elves themselves would simply fade away and return when the army withdrew. Given the low elven emphasis on material goods, and preference for portable goods if any are required, the loss would not be substantial.

    If the elves have almost no buildings then the invading general has to be able to track the elves down and out-maneuver them to actually do any damage at all, no small task.

    Regarding buildings, as elves have no industry, they only need buildings for shelter. I personally don't see them as needing shelter beyond a comfy tree branch or somewhere to store what few possessions they have as I don't think they should be affected by norms of weather - they are quasi-nature spirits in my system. It's a wood elf view of the sidhe, but that seems more appropriate to BR than the 'high' elven lifestyle (which I accept would require a number of buildings)

  3. #13
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewTall View Post
    If every tree and root attacks an invader then the invader responds by burning them first - the Spiderfell issue.
    I don't think those woods can be burned (at least not without a whole lot of very high-level castings of Dispel Magic and Control Weather), or they would already have been long ago. "Every root and branch attacks the invader" is also a very good summary of exactly how Ruins of Empire describes Sielwode. The other obvious approach is that of Innishiere -- keep the entire realm protected by Warding at all times.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewTall View Post
    I see an invasion of elven lands as a march into a feared realm of dark forests, punctuated by arrows from the distance and constant attrition of guards. Those soldiers sent to chase the elven attackers either find nothing but air, or vanish never to be seen again. A general could lose half his troops roaming the trackless woods before leaving without ever once drawing blade on an enemy...
    I like this image a great deal, but I see it more as the description of the elves in attack, rather than defense. I think the elven magical defenses of their own lands are so strong that they keep out all trespassers on their own, without ever having to interrupt the inhabitants' tea parties at art galleries. Your method might be appropriate for a more human-friendly realm like Rhuannach, but even there I think if the resident refugee humans ever misbehave, the trees will all animate and grind them to mulch at the first hint of Sidhelien displeasure.


    Ryan

  4. #14
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    A further note on Andrew's way of Sidhelien warfare:

    I agree that your model is the correct description of what the war was like before Deismaar, but in the centuries since I think the Sidhelien have invested heavily in fixed defenses. In fact, I think their doing so is essential to explaining why their realms cover such a small fraction of the continent they once filled, especially concerning the tracts of forest adjacent to but not part of the elven realms. If they mainly defended themselves by fighting as you describe, Cariele and the wooded half of Dhoesone should still (or at least again already) be part of Tuarhievel. Only if they created massive magical defenses around small, fixed enclaves within the formerly continent-spanning forest can I explain why they were pressed back into those areas without rapidly expanding again.


    Ryan

  5. #15
    Senior Member Beruin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewTall View Post
    Regarding buildings, as elves have no industry, they only need buildings for shelter. I personally don't see them as needing shelter beyond a comfy tree branch or somewhere to store what few possessions they have as I don't think they should be affected by norms of weather - they are quasi-nature spirits in my system. It's a wood elf view of the sidhe, but that seems more appropriate to BR than the 'high' elven lifestyle (which I accept would require a number of buildings)
    I always found it hard to swallow that elves have no industry. How then do they get their superior equipment? And how do they produce enough food for their population?

  6. #16
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    To think that the Cerilian Elf lacks the skills and organization to have the foundations of trade and craftsmanship is patently false. They are strictly a society that trades within itself, complete with traders, merchants, and guilds. They move though the culture in the most unobtrusive and nature friendly way possible.

    Elven industry and merchants exist in all other types of campaign settings, and I think that the idea would work well for Cerillian Elves to especially in the light of the fact that the Cerillian Elves could well be the ancient pure stock of elves that started it all for elvenkind.

    They don't hare industry and buildings dedicated to it.....I don't know about that.

    Later


  7. #17
    Senior Member Beruin's Avatar
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    I'm inclined to agree. The elves value quality over quantity and will be slow producers of non-perishable goods compared to humans, but the results of their craftsmanship will be designed to last for a millenium. Nevertheless, they need ore to craft weapons, armour and arrowheads, and they need charcoal to smelt the ore and work they metal, so even they will have to cut wood for industrial purposes.

  8. #18
    On that point - it would be patently illogical that they were anything else than stone age if they had no industry or trade (or they may be simply reusing whatever's left of their old arsenals and stores, while elven civilisation follows the elves themselves in their gradual decline - however, a functional great bow will get used up, at some point: it's wood or/and bone, and it's not being treated kindly if it's used).

    I just had an image of the possible spectacle in an elven palace - nobles with tattered clothes along with their newest silks and jewels, hints of rust here and there among the retinues, ruins hidden with plants and fading illusions. I think I like tragedy too much: if I listened to myself, there'd be hints of the shadow world everywhere.
    Last edited by Gwrthefyr; 06-15-2007 at 12:07 PM.

  9. #19
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    Beruin schrieb:
    > This post was generated by the Birthright.net message forum.
    > You can view the entire thread at:
    > http://www.birthright.net/forums/showthread.php?goto=newpost&t=3853
    > Beruin wrote:
    > I`m inclined to agree. The elves value quality over quantity and will be slow producers of non-perishable goods compared to humans, but the results of their craftsmanship will be designed to last for a millenium. Nevertheless, they need ore to craft weapons, armour and arrowheads, and they need charcoal to smelt the ore and work they metal, so even they will have to cut wood for industrial purposes.
    Not necessarily. Wood can be gathered as it falls. The large branch that
    was struck from the tree by lightning could be used for whatever purpose
    an immortal can imagine without any haste. They could "grow" wood in the
    forms they need.

    I really can?t see ore mines in the forest worked by sidhelien. Perhaps
    in former times goblin slaves worked mines for them in the hills and
    nowadays they get the ore in trade from the dwarven realms or melt the
    iron weapons of their slain enemys.

  10. #20
    Senior Member cccpxepoj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ConjurerDragon View Post
    Beruin schrieb:
    I really can?t see ore mines in the forest worked by sidhelien. Perhaps
    in former times goblin slaves worked mines for them in the hills and
    nowadays they get the ore in trade from the dwarven realms or melt the
    iron weapons of their slain enemys.
    i agree with you, dwarfs are probably the only source of ore for the elves .

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