Ran

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About Ran

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  • Birthday 05/06/1978

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    Balerion (Admin), Aidan Dayne, Rhodry Martell

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    Westeros! History (ancient and medieval), SF/F, adventure and strategy gaming, MUSHes and MUXes (but not MUDs), Linda.

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    Elio

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  1. Should be fixed now!
  2. You should be able to. What does it say when you try to do so?
  3. This is an issue we have not yet been able to resolve, I'm afraid. Got a couple other server-related things to worry about, including moving the wiki from its current server to a different one, but once that's done we'll try and figure it out if the move doesn't resolve the issue. No firm ETA at present, but hoping to have the move done some time in the next two weeks.
  4. Those remarks are much along the lines of Edward the Black Prince being called the greatest knight of his age by contemporaries: "You're an important royal figure, you can fight, you've got a magic sword, you must therefore be one of the greatest warriors of them all because flattery will get me everywhere." Aegon has no noteworthy personal feats of arms, however, and in generally we know the feats of the great Targaryen warriors when they have them. His willingness to fight personally can't be questioned, but then competent Ned was also willing to fight personally. Killing a fool and a minor ironborn lord who is not noted as having any particular prowess isn't much to go on, given his lack of involvement in tourneys and melees or indeed in any other personal combat that we know of (besides surviving the Dornish assassins, to be sure). And it's worth remembering that other figures like Maegor, Aemon the Dragonknight, and so on, do get examples providing evidence to the claims they were truly great knights. How can a warrior who doesn't fight be counted great? Well, because it tells you a lot more about the attitudes around them at the time.
  5. Jaime never killed anyone of note in battle, and yet we believe him to be one of the great knights and swordsmen in the history of Westeros. Why? Because contemporaries attest to this. Contemporaries attest to Ser Arthur Dayne's skill, and to Baristan's as well. No contemporaries attest to Aegon the Conqueror being a great fighter. There's simply no evidence for his being one of the"greats if all time". Viserys's comparison of Drogo to Aegon is the closest you can get, and he's talking about winning battles on that occasion. This is getting as silly as the insistence that Ned just have been a great fighter despite all evidence to the contrary. George it's not so simplistic as to insist that great men and women in Westeros must all be great warriors. In fact, he went out of his way to show that they are not.
  6. We know Aegon the Conqueror trained from childhood, as did Visenya, and that both were "true warriors" (unlike Rhaenys). This doesn't necessarily mean they were fantastic fighters, however. Either could have been no better than Ned, who George describes as capable but not great. Being trained from childhood isn't going to guarantee you're a great anything, especially in a world where all your peers are also being trained from childhood; look at the massive ranks of young athletes who don't get anywhere near professional levels because they just lack that "something" -- usually some mixture of physical and mental capabilities, depending on the sport -- that would put them in the top .1% who could make a living in their chosen area of expertise. That's all the evidence we have. Everything else is speculative.
  7. John Jackson Miller, not John Jos Miller. Different guy.
  8. Why give any weight to "could have been an interesting idea"? Every film ever made, good or bad, has some idea at its core that is interesting if you're willing to elaborate on it enough, IMO. STID had an incompetent script; STV had an incompetent-almost-everything. At worst (to bring it back on topic), Episode XI will be a mediocre film, IMO, based on Abram's track record.
  9. INTO DARKNESS > STAR TREK V. I find the film deeply mediocre, given the possibilities in the talents involved, but if you want to call that "bad", we've in very different spaces. Perhaps it's that Khan raised expectations of matching or surpassing STII? That was a fool's hope.
  10. Yes. Upper right, click the down arrow by your name, select Account Settings, then Display Name. Sorry for the problem! As to your old account, you can email [email protected] -- that's me -- and let me know what your account name is or what your email associated with it was, and I can sort it out for you.
  11. Good to know. I'm guessing some of the material in the first season was pulled from those later books.
  12. The squires may in fact have been included in the "men-at-arms", to be sure. Similarly, the heavy cavalry under Marbrand at the Green Fork was full of knights, but also other heavy cavalry. And yes, at Moat Cailin the Manderley host is specifically broken down into knights, squires, and other cavalry.
  13. Don't know if that much originality is going to be needed. And given that it's more space opera than science fiction, I don't really mind the visuals not being representative of what space is like. That said, Abrams has never directed a truly great film, so I wouldn't expect too high a bar for the final film in the trilogy. Then again, he's never directed a truly bad film, either, so it should be solid entertainment which is more than what could have been expected as the baseline of a Trevorrow-directed film. I still think Rian Johnson's Episode VIII is going to be the best film of the trilogy.
  14. Regarding Tywin's host raised against the Reynes, it's worth considering that "men-at-arms" is used in the novels to represent both men who fight on foot and men who fight on horseback. 500 knights is, literally, 500 knights who generally make up heavy cavalry -- but we don't know what proportion of "men-at-arms" is foot and what proportion is horse. One example of this are the "masterless men-at-arms" who join Robb's all-cavalry force as it sweeps toward Riverrun. Another would be the men-at-arms that were part of Dondarrion's force to bring the Mountain to the king's justice. Their position "behind" the knights could be argued that their usage here is that they're all foot... but it can simply be about the fact that among them were a class of cavalry that were clearly distinct from the cavalry of the knights.
  15. Only read the first book in the series. Enjoyable, but flawed -- as others have said, two POV characters, and my understanding is that the writers split the workload between them based on those POVs (and then would trade chapters and touch them up). But Abraham is a much more experienced writer, so I think you can tell which character is primarily his and which is primarily Franck's based on that. So, suffice it to say, for me 50% of the story (i.e. that told through Miller's POV) was an excellent, noir-styled story of melancholy and redemption, and 50% of the story (i.e. told through Holden's POV) is emotionally inert and features an insufferable character (as @Caligula_K3 puts it) who I understand is kind of their take on a "real" James Kirk-type, self-righteous guy, but there's not enough meat to the character to make him enjoyable for me. The TV series mitigates this quite a lot -- you're not in Holden's head, and his crewmates get more space and so it becomes more interesting, while Thomas Jane does a fine job conveying Miller's traumas, problems, and obsessions (you do lose out on some of the richer atmosphere of the prose, which is inevitable). As I understand it they also introduce a third primary character, who comes from a later novel, who provides a perspective of events unique to the TV series and I think that works fine in developing the more political, system-wide aspect of the story but on the other hand it does reduce the quality of two different heroes coming from two different ends of the problem and coming together part way through. In the end, the series strikes me as very much as art-as-entertainment, with no very great depth to it, but there's nothing wrong with that. But I'd almost say try the TV series first, and if you're intrigued, then try the books.