The Drunkard

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  1. Hearts of Stone you could do whenever, it's like a (longer/better) Bloody Baron style questline that doesn't tie into the main quest. Blood and Wine is like a conclusion for Geralt, so do that last.
  2. If it's on the west coast then the Twins aren't as important as Robb could simply sail his army south to Seagard or some other port. If it's on the east coast then probably nothing changes, other than maybe he uses it to raid parts of the Crownlands that Stannis doesn't already have under blockade.
  3. Robb was gifted that victory, it wasn't for any action on his part that the victory was great. Any commander would see the value in using a secret path to bypass an unconquerable fortress and surprise an unsuspecting enemy, but not everyone has a magic pet who does all the work in finding one.
  4. He's not close to either of them. Robb essentially made two worthy moves, one of which was the forced march down to Riverrun while his enemies focused on Roose, and the other was capturing Jaime and most of his commanders before the battle outside Riverrun. After that his magic pet finds a secret path allowing him to navigate his army around a fortress he couldn't conquer, then he defeated an army so green it didn't even post scouts. Robb has a high reputation because people didn't expect him to get any significant wins against the Lannisters. If he had lived and fought as long as the other two did he may have achieved something on their level, but as far as his current displays go he isn't close.
  5. Stannis wasn't aware the NW was in danger as Alester Florent kept the letter from him, believing they were too busy in the south to bother with the north. When Davos reads the letter to Stannis, that's the first he hears of any danger at the Wall. He goes north because Davos convinces him that he is mistaken to take the throne before saving the kingdom, and that he should in fact do the reverse. The wildlings aren't an existential threat that the kingdom needs to be saved from, it's the Others. Given that he acknowledges it was wrong to focus on the throne over saving the realm, and given he clearly identifies the Others as the foe he needs to save the realm from, it's obvious he's prioritising the war against the Others over the war for the throne. You say he's obsessed with being king, but it was only by appealing to his sense of responsibility to keep the kingdom safe that Melisandre could convince him to burn Edric. If anything leads him down a tragic path, it would be that sense of responsibility.
  6. The sad tale of Jerusalem came to an end in my HRE CK2 game. After winning a crusade for the kingdom and granting it to my third son Ordgar, I went on to conquer the duchies of Tripoli and Sinai, whose land I gave to the Hospitaller and Templar respectively, and transferred them as vassals to Jerusalem directly. With a fairly strong Jerusalem kingdom established, and with the Muslim world fairly fragmented, I granted Ordgar independence to see how he would fare. But he died within a few years and his adult son Gospatric took the throne. He turned out to be a huge badass, ruling for 44 years and more than doubling the size of his kingdom by holy warring everyone he laid eyes on. He died of natural causes and left the kingdoms of Jerusalem & Baghdad (as well as the vassalage of several other duchies) to his absolutely useless son, who required a regent to rule for him. The regent did quite well, crushing two civil wars (one whose members demanded that my ruler become king) and winning several defensive holy wars. The incapable king later died and the throne passed to his brother, a completely average man. He also fended off several holy wars before the Shia Caliph in Africa declared a Jihad, marched over to Jerusalem and occupied most of it. The king soon died of stress, and his 3 year old son inherited the kingdom. Inevitably the boy and his regent lost the Jihad war, and the Caliph now owns Jerusalem. The Hospitallers gained independence after being kicked out of Tripoli, and in the meantime several other duchies have been lost. The boy king (of Jerusalem in name only) now rules a couple of duchies in the Baghdad kingdom and somehow has managed to hold onto the Templars in Sinai, but his remnant kingdom is done for.
  7. The sample chapter seems to confirm that the Freys rode out the gate and into the traps Mors had set, given Aenys rode into a trench and broke his neck. Mors had seemingly wanted to provoke that sort of response for a while, given his boys were constantly making noise with the drums and he was ambushing Roose's scouts as they left the castle (Roose mentions that none had been returning). Not sure what answer you're after with respect to Tycho locating Stannis. He knew the rough direction, had some guides with him, and Stannis had kept a beacon fire lit 24/7 on the tower at the village. I don't know if it's unrealistic that he found him in the storm, but I never assumed any information was missing.
  8. While Stannis was marching to Winterfell Roose was receiving information about his army's condition and progress from a maester accompanying Arnolf Karstark. In the sample chapter Stannis discovers this and has the maester imprisoned while his men seize the ravens. He simultaneously learns that the Karstarks were planning to betray him, arresting the lords and disarming the men. He's now in a position to send a raven back to Winterfell (supposedly from the maester) claiming that Stannis was defeated, and he can include information that Stannis wouldn't know about it (e.g. the Karstark betrayal). He can then send men back to Winterfell dressed as either Freys or Karstarks, bearing Lightbringer as proof of their victory. The snowstorm allows the rest of Stannis' army to follow unseen, and lie in wait while the disguised soldiers (once inside the walls) seize the gates. There are other factors as well, such as the Manderly men turning their coats and possibly Bran communicating something to Stannis via raven/weirwood.
  9. I've been playing AC: Origins and it's pretty great. I haven't followed the last few games after not enjoying 3 and Revelations very much (nor Black Flag outside of the ship content) but this has been fun. The standout is the world design and setting, which is the best they've done. It reminds me of The Witcher 3 in terms of its size and detail. The downside is that there hasn't been a single interesting assassination yet. Every one has been "climb wall > jump assassinate the target". I'm getting Skyrim flashbacks where every quest seemed to be "walk into cave > stab guy/monster until dead".
  10. My problem with the TW games is that after a point you'll never be in any danger again and any challenge is entirely self-imposed. Even against factions like the Huns or Chaos it's usually pretty easy to beat them as long as you aren't right where they spawn. CK2 gets around that (to a degree) by only letting you efficiently manage a certain amount of land and the rest needs to be delegated to vassals, which can be just as troubling as foreign rulers. So a smaller, tightly-run kingdom might be more effective than a sprawling empire where independently-minded vassals make trouble for you. I'd like it if governors were converted to dukes (or w/e) where the position was inherited rather than appointed, and they weren't just extensions of the player (as they currently are) but not so independent and disloyal as to be useless, like tributaries are in Attila. If nothing else they should bring back some diplomatic options from earlier games, like giving/receiving regions in exchange for peace, money or military assistance.
  11. Bit surprised she hasn't been mentioned yet, but I think Melisandre is the most interesting female character and has the most interesting position of any woman in the series (amalgamation of second-in-command, mistress, queen and pope). She's a deeply religious person but it doesn't stand in the way of sense, her goals are noble but she's completely utilitarian in achieving them and won't shy away from brutality, she's perceived as an evil temptress but as far as she can be she's quite compassionate (even to people who do nothing but make her life difficult, e.g. Davos), and she's essentially Stannis' 2IC but is unconcerned with the power and the prestige insofar as they don't help the cause. I think she gets undue flak from people who judge her on the aesthetics of her magic and religion rather than what she's actually done or expressed a desire to do.
  12. Yeeeeah that's really dodgy. Surprises me that the ESRB doesn't consider it gambling because, at the least, you'll get something in return. Casinos should start handing out lollipops with every turn on a slot machine to skirt all those pesky laws.
  13. Yeah I can't believe WA was the most favourable state after Victoria. Also that Liberal electorates were more favourable on average than ALP ones. The other correlations I've seen (income, education and whether or not you're an immigrant) made sense but those two surprised me. Well I am a bit annoyed I only found out about the mandatory husband clause from the good folks at the ACL. Seems like something the yes campaign should've told me about before I voted.
  14. I saw in the FAQ that Thrones of Britannia will have content up to around 1066, so I wonder if that means the Norman invasion is in or out. A lot of the significant characters (e.g. Luke, Vader or Palpatine) need to be unlocked with credits or obtained from a loot box. People worked out that to get enough credits to play as Luke (who is one of the most expensive) you would need to play something like 40 hours of multiplayer. So to get them all you'd be sinking a ridiculous amount of time in. A question of my own: is it standard practise for loot boxes to tell you the chance you have of winning a particular item/character, or are you going in blind when you buy one?
  15. Jon didn't send him. Mance was a prisoner of Stannis and it was Melisandre who sent him south to grab Arya as a favour to Jon in an effort to gain his trust. Jon's involvement was essentially "ok, I'll let you do that", which is arguably shirking his duty given Mance is an oathbreaker and an invader, but then again if the king has forgiven that, who is the Lord Commander to disagree?