Mistakes and things that piss off in the series

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Woden

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« on: September 01, 2017, 07:53:49 pm »
I was searching for a similar thread and I haven't found it - if I'm wrong, please, mods, merge this in the other (if that is possible).

I will start with a minor thing but that I hate it most. SWORDS ON THE BACK. It is a common mistake that is shared in my favorite fantasy books. Why does Kellhus carry his longsword sheathed on his shoulder? WTF! This is silly, maybe it looks badass for noobs but anyone who knows something about HEMA or medieval warfare considers this complete bullshit. It is of no use in real combat and puts the fighter in great disadvantage. Even if you are a fucking übermensch berserker dūnyain warrior-mage you will be cut down by a filthy peasant with a scythe before you can unsheathe your blade.

It is not only a Bakker thing indeed, Martin does the same with Jon Snow (although in the series Jon carries Longclaw correctly, R'hllor be praised for that) and Sapkowski with Geralt of Rivia (the games of the Witcher repeat the iconic mistake).
Who was the first that wrote this shit of swords on the back? I don't know but I hope that the sranc will have his ass.

This is fucking ridiculous.



Some videos about the matter:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoMLrKInT8g

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQBfNoi28Z4&t=731s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IocQ_DZVAU0

« Last Edit: September 01, 2017, 10:45:26 pm by Woden »
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Quinthane

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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2017, 08:54:46 pm »
I have a similar issue with the rank impossibility of dangling someone over the ledge of a cliff. No matter how strong especially if the person being dangled is roughly the same weight as the dangler the physics won't allow for such a thing.
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Woden

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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2017, 09:10:42 pm »
I have a similar issue with the rank impossibility of dangling someone over the ledge of a cliff. No matter how strong especially if the person being dangled is roughly the same weight as the dangler the physics won't allow for such a thing.

Yes, when I read it I have an intense WTF feeling that nearly ruined the scene for me too.
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TaoHorror

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« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2017, 09:31:46 pm »
Interesting point on the sword on the back thing, never thought about it. Guess he needs his hands for sorcery more than the sword? Or simply not considered by the writer.

What pisses me off is this notion that dragons are "bad" ... everyone knows they're great at kids parties, offering free rides, blowing up balloons and certainly don't sport the very bad manners of eating people.
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Woden

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« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2017, 10:33:50 pm »
Interesting point on the sword on the back thing, never thought about it. Guess he needs his hands for sorcery more than the sword? Or simply not considered by the writer.

The later, IMHO. The sword (in a scabbard) was always carried strapped on the hip in real life. And this is the proper way to carry it even if you have decapitants on the belt.
Probably the first writer who put a sword on the back of his hero did not have a sword in his hands in his entire life but now it has become a genre cliche.

There is a lot of shit in the fantasy and "historical" novels about the improper use of arms and armor, like wielding a sword against full plate armor knights and chopping them into pieces. Pretty impossible thing to do (even for Conan the barbarian). The way to fight with sword against knights in full armor is not slashing and cutting (because it has no effect), but use the technics of grappling and halfswording and try to use the point of the sword in the gaps of the armor, etc.
Another crappy example is the extended use of ridiculous overweighted and oversized maces (like Gendry in last GOT season) when the real ones are light and small.
And another one: a knight in full plate armor with a shield in a battle. Why are you using a shield if you have full plate armor protection?
Those things totally ruin a scene for me.

It is very easy for a writer just read a little about warfare and combat technics in the Middle Ages to avoid this bullshit that destroys the suspension of disbelief.
I myself have real swords and real armor and I know what it is possible and impossible to do with them, an author (a writer or an illustrator) can easily obtain both too and so learn from direct experience. With that he could do a more consistent work later but it seems that nobody does that.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 07:09:25 am by Woden »
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Wolfdrop

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« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2017, 06:41:58 am »
The hilt of a sword throughout the entire series is universally referred to as the pommel, which I think is meant to be the part at the bottom.

Been happening since TDTCB, Enshoiya has a long "pommel" when it's clearly a long hilt, like a katana. I thought it was a one off but it seems to be a conscious decision.

Then the antique Cūnuroi swords are referred to as without hilts, and triangular blades. If these are based on Bronze Age swords the triangular blade makes a lot of sense, but it would be a lack of crossguard that makes them antique.

Woden

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« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2017, 07:06:49 am »
Yeah. The pommel is just the end of a hilt, and it can have several forms.
A sword without hilt makes no sense at all.



Pommels:


I hate katanas by the way. I would prefer an Enshoiya like this kriegmesser made by Albion Swords:

« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 11:53:09 am by Woden »
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Duskweaver

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« Reply #7 on: September 02, 2017, 07:33:04 pm »
triangular blades.
I still wonder if Bakker meant triangular like an akinakes, or triangular in cross-section?

And, yeah, fantasy authors saying "without a hilt" when they mean "without a crossguard" annoys me too.
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Wolfdrop

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« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2017, 08:57:41 pm »
I thought it might refer to the blade. They're meant to be antique so I guess the design was based on Bronze Age weaponry.

This is what I imagine the hiltless, triangular Cūnuroi blades to be like.




Woden

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« Reply #9 on: September 02, 2017, 09:46:23 pm »
+1. I've always thought that the Nonmen ancient swords were similar to that.
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themerchant

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« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2017, 02:25:30 am »
Anomander Rake is another with the sword on his back. Probably Elric's as well.

That's why you bring a knife. Or Sharpened knitting needle.

Woden

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« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2017, 07:04:47 am »
If Elric carries the sword in that way, maybe he was the first in doing so, I don't remember now. But I've done a quick research in google images and the illustrations depicted him with the scabbard strapped on the hip.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2017, 07:11:09 am by Woden »
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Quinthane

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« Reply #12 on: September 03, 2017, 07:40:16 am »
For me the most egregious mistake made in the genre is the use of the hooded cloak. Especially as it pertains to any person be it a Warrior or assassin. You know, someone who is interested in keeping clean sightlines, being able to hear unobstructed not to mention someone wanting to blend then because nothing makes you stand out more than shrouding your face in darkness.
Don't get me wrong as an illustrator they are wonderful for coolness and dramatic badass-wry. But for practical purposes they suck.
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Woden

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« Reply #13 on: September 03, 2017, 08:24:34 am »
Totally agreed.
That is one of my top genre fails.
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Wolfdrop

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« Reply #14 on: September 03, 2017, 01:35:45 pm »
I do however think Bakker has a far better grasp of armour than many other fantasy others. I much prefer scale/mail than suits of armour.

I really liked the lore of the Emiorali, or Bronzemen and imagined them to wear something like this: