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Ice Spider

The defense of the North

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Ok, Jon has reclaimed and United the North in the Stark Name. It's pretty much a given that he will need to forgive and enlist the Karstarks and the Umbers as well. Let's also assume he has the support of the Vale (yes, I know LF has to be dealt with, but honestly LF safest play is to have John die in battle and once again try to wed Sansa)

And while he most likely will try to summon help from the South, The only uncommitted forces are the Greyjoy's, and I don't see any way in hell that alliance happens. Maybe the Tully's if Edmure did in fact get released by Arya and he managed to reclaim his kingdom, but then he still has the Frey's to deal with (aka I don't see him leaving his castle undefended). so other than the Crannogmen, I don't see much more help coming Jon's way (let us not forget he has no idea of Dany's existence yet).

So Moving forward, what is Jon's plan? Doe's he commit the bulk of his forces to re-enforcing the wall and fighting the battle there? From a strategic standpoint, this seems like the most logical choice, although the show did foreshadow the walls demise.

Does he instead prepare to fight the battle from the confines of Winterfell? He did just pay a heavy price to retake Winterfell, does he just up and leave? Does he evacuate all the little towns and villages between Winterfell and the Wall, thus making Winterfell a refuge camp of sorts? If not, all those villagers will eventually become wights.

Maybe he takes the bulk of the remaining Karstark and Umber forces and has them re-enforce the manpower at the wall?

 

What do you think?

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On 3 October 2016 at 11:13 PM, Ice Spider said:

Ok, Jon has reclaimed and United the North in the Stark Name. It's pretty much a given that he will need to forgive and enlist the Karstarks and the Umbers as well. Let's also assume he has the support of the Vale (yes, I know LF has to be dealt with, but honestly LF safest play is to have John die in battle and once again try to wed Sansa)

And while he most likely will try to summon help from the South, The only uncommitted forces are the Greyjoy's, and I don't see any way in hell that alliance happens. Maybe the Tully's if Edmure did in fact get released by Arya and he managed to reclaim his kingdom, but then he still has the Frey's to deal with (aka I don't see him leaving his castle undefended). so other than the Crannogmen, I don't see much more help coming Jon's way (let us not forget he has no idea of Dany's existence yet).

So Moving forward, what is Jon's plan? Doe's he commit the bulk of his forces to re-enforcing the wall and fighting the battle there? From a strategic standpoint, this seems like the most logical choice, although the show did foreshadow the walls demise.

Does he instead prepare to fight the battle from the confines of Winterfell? He did just pay a heavy price to retake Winterfell, does he just up and leave? Does he evacuate all the little towns and villages between Winterfell and the Wall, thus making Winterfell a refuge camp of sorts? If not, all those villagers will eventually become wights.

Maybe he takes the bulk of the remaining Karstark and Umber forces and has them re-enforce the manpower at the wall?

 

What do you think?

I think Jon will gather what's left of the north behind him and march to the wall, the Vale army will follow him as well. I don't think he will get any help from the southern lords. He will probably send a raven, he won't risk going in person and he has no one that he can trust and spare to go in his place.

Like you said the show has foreshadowed that the wall will fall, i see Jon most likely arriving at the wall only to see it crumble before his eyes. What will happen afterwards will be interesting, will he fight without the wall? Or will he run back to WinterFell?

I see him trying to fight, failing, then retreating with whatever he has back to Winterfell..enter Dany and her massive army to uplift the siege ( Lord of the rings style again )

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The rest of the realm still believes that the Others are a fairy tale. Outside of the Nights Watch and Wildlings, no one believes there is any threat.

There's no way Jon will get the knights of the Vale to march north to the wall. They are under LF's command and I don't think he'll want to send his entire army to the Wall for, what he would think, is no reason at all. LF would be more interested in installing Sansa in a place of power in the North or moving his schemes back south. The knights of the Vale will be gone just as fast as they showed up... the only way that they factor into the initial fighting is if the Others attack Winterfel immediately, which seems unlikely.

It'll be a tough task to even convince his northern bannermen to march to the Wall with him, despite their proclamation of him being KitN. Why would any lord, or anyone in any lords army, want to march North to the Wall after nearly freezing to death SOUTH of the wall? Why would they want to do that when there is no perceivable threat or reason to do so? They've just been through a horrific civil war between north and south then north and north, they have hardly prepared for Winter, and Winter is here. They have things to do and marching to the Wall for no reason (in their minds) is not one of them. They would only go because their new king commands it but, even then, I don't see all his bannermen or their entire strengths going to the Wall -- especially not the Karstarks (he just barely won a civil war, he can't start another one because a few houses won't listen to a seemingly crazy command).

The Wall is going down. If Jon is there to see it then he'll do it with a very small force at his back. He'll have the Wildlings, the few hundred (heck, maybe even less than a hundred at this point) remaining Nights Watch, and a very small force he might be able to convince to return the Wall with him.

So long story short, to answer your original question of what does Jon do, I believe that Jon marches to the Wall with a very small force and leaves Sansa behind to hold and restore Winterfel in the Stark name (which could lead to Stark v Stark issues due to LF schemes).

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I really hope the Humans vs. The Others isn't a traditional battle such as one of these pitch field battles like outside of Winterfell or when the Wildlings attack the wall. 

What are the humans even going to do? Use flaming arrows all? Are Lord Beric and Thoros of Myr going to show up and hold a seminar on how to set your sword ablaze? Even with that said, the Northerners and the NW don't have enough obsidian and they don't have valyrian steel. Most who show up at the Wall will flee when the Others show up. What's the point in standing there with no way to kill your enemy and just resigning yourself to death?

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12 hours ago, The Lord Bastard said:

I really hope the Humans vs. The Others isn't a traditional battle such as one of these pitch field battles like outside of Winterfell or when the Wildlings attack the wall. 

What are the humans even going to do? Use flaming arrows all? Are Lord Beric and Thoros of Myr going to show up and hold a seminar on how to set your sword ablaze? Even with that said, the Northerners and the NW don't have enough obsidian and they don't have valyrian steel. Most who show up at the Wall will flee when the Others show up. What's the point in standing there with no way to kill your enemy and just resigning yourself to death?

The only creatures that require to be killed by valyrian steel or obsidian are the others, The wights can be killed by conventional swords as we seen at hard home. To date it appears that the Others actual numbers are severely limited, totaling less than 50.

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2 minutes ago, Ice Spider said:

The only creatures that require to be killed by valyrian steel or obsidian are the others, The wights can be killed by conventional swords as we seen at hard home. To date it appears that the Others actual numbers are severely limited, totaling less than 50.

Well that's got me thinking...

The "Army of the Dead" in the show looked a decent size in season 6. Having said that, though, I can't see them being very tactical. The shield wall used by the Bolton Army might be effective. 

I wonder why they're so few "Others" then? My first thought was that perhaps only certain people can actually be converted? I was going to say King's Blood but we've seen Craster's son being turned in the show, and he certainly was not a King. Unless he can trace his descent to a King-beyond-the-Wall? 

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Do we know for a fact that you need obsidian/valyrian steel to kill the Others? I've always wondered that. We've only seen that the Others weapons will destroy regular steel, but we've never seen a regular steel sword land a blow against an Other. 

Maybe it's just that the Others are weak to obsidian, but steel can also kill them? Either way, you're right, it's tough to fight them if their weapons will destroy yours. 

It's definitely odd why the Others numbers are (seemingly) so low. Nothing seems to be special about Craster as to why we've only seen his offspring being turned into Others. 

After Hardhome I don't think the Others can be beaten by conventional means, it'll take a few dragons. The army of the dead is almost infinite as it can replenish itself from every person killed in battle. I think Jons best hope is to secure the Wall but I don't think he'll be successful in that endeavor.   

 

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Zoo_Dane said:

Do we know for a fact that you need obsidian/valyrian steel to kill the Others? I've always wondered that. We've only seen that the Others weapons will destroy regular steel, but we've never seen a regular steel sword land a blow against an Other. 

Maybe it's just that the Others are weak to obsidian, but steel can also kill them? Either way, you're right, it's tough to fight them if their weapons will destroy yours. 

It's definitely odd why the Others numbers are (seemingly) so low. Nothing seems to be special about Craster as to why we've only seen his offspring being turned into Others. 

After Hardhome I don't think the Others can be beaten by conventional means, it'll take a few dragons. The army of the dead is almost infinite as it can replenish itself from every person killed in battle. I think Jons best hope is to secure the Wall but I don't think he'll be successful in that endeavor.   

 

 

 

I think the key to defeating the Others would lie with the killing of the NIghts King. The wights alone would be easy to kill, despite there large numbers. They are essentially mindless drones with no reasoning ability, so staying in a defensible position would make them an ineffective force.

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16 hours ago, Ice Spider said:

I think the key to defeating the Others would lie with the killing of the NIghts King. The wights alone would be easy to kill, despite there large numbers. They are essentially mindless drones with no reasoning ability, so staying in a defensible position would make them an ineffective force.

As we saw with hardhome, the wights are controlled by the Others, so I wouldn't call them completely mindless. 

Wights don't have any regard for their "life" which would make any sort of shield wall irrelevant as they work by keeping opposing soldiers out of your ranks. Wights won't mind just slamming into the wall/jumping over the wall to completely break the ranks. We saw this by their suicidal charge of the fort at hardhome and jumping off that cliff. 

We'll certainly find out soon what the goal of the Others is and that'll help figure out how they'll (I assume) eventually go down. 

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No army of men can stand up to the wights.

It seems very obvious to me that the logical end to that part of the conflict is,   Dragons Kill wights, Others kill dragons humans kill others.

The only other possibility is that they learn to communicate with the others, and make a deal.

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Hold on everyone, theres something you're forgetting that might be important in the upcoming battle. It was Brandon the builder that helped build the wall originally with magic to keep out threats thousands of years ago. 

The same Brandon the builder who built Winterfell and who probably has a tomb in the collapsed part of the crypt underneath winterfell somewhere. The crypt under winterfell is ancient and much of it is unexplored because it is dangerous or has collapsed with age. After all, Brandon existed thousands of years ago and said that a stark should always rule winterfell. 

Winterfell itself probably has some magic woven into its walls by Bran the builder, similar to the castle at Storms end which could oppose the power of the Gods.

Brandon the builder with the help of the andels and the first men drove out the white walkers somehow. Its just a matter of discovering ghow they did it. This was a time before Valerian steel I think.

I'd wager theres something more important in that crypt than just Jon finding out his possible lineage. Theres probably something magic down there as a plan B in case the wall ever fell. Its just been forgotton about. Maybe Sam will find a reference to it at Oldtown.

Edited by cylonhybrid

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Brandon the Younger has a role bigger than telling John his parentage too.  There are ways he could have found that out without all the time spent on Bran.  I don't think its just his passing the wall will break the Magic.

My guess is that he will be the medium through which they communicate with the Night King, but that's just a guess.

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Are we sure that Brandon the Younger isn't also Brandon the Builder?

We have seen BTY interact with and have an effect on those he is observing.   [Ned, Wyllys/Hodor]

Wasn't BTB a 'young boy' when he helped with Storm's End?

Thoughts?

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I will stick to my original opinion, that I have stated a couple of times before: The north will not be successfully defended, and will be lost to the WW and their wights. The 'final battle' will take place around the Trident, as seen by Dany in her dreams:

Quote

That night she dreamt that she was Rhaegar, riding to the Trident. But she was mounted on a dragon, not a horse. When she saw the Usurper's rebel host across the river they were armored all in ice, but she bathed them in dragonfire and they melted away like dew and turned the Trident into a torrent. Some small part of her knew that she was dreaming, but another part exulted.

This shows us that the WW's will have 'conquered' the north and that a major battle between humans and WW/Wights will take place at the trident. Let's just hope that she will not suffer the same fate as Rhaegar when he was leading the Targ army at the battle of the trident.
 

Hmm, this was clearly in the books, but not sure if she had a similar dream/vision in the show.... <_<

Edited by Ser Walter of AShwood

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On ‎11‎/‎9‎/‎2016 at 9:34 AM, Ser Walter of AShwood said:

I will stick to my original opinion, that I have stated a couple of times before: The north will not be successfully defended, and will be lost to the WW and their wights. The 'final battle' will take place around the Trident, as seen by Dany in her dreams:

This shows us that the WW's will have 'conquered' the north and that a major battle between humans and WW/Wights will take place at the trident. Let's just hope that she will not suffer the same fate as Rhaegar when he was leading the Targ army at the battle of the trident.
 

Hmm, this was clearly in the books, but not sure if she had a similar dream/vision in the show.... <_<

Not sure that will happen, we would need snow on all the Southern sets. From a $ perspective, it makes a lot more sense to have the battle in the North.

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2 hours ago, Ice Spider said:

Not sure that will happen, we would need snow on all the Southern sets. From a $ perspective, it makes a lot more sense to have the battle in the North.

Not all of the southern sets. Just a CGI-created frozen/snowed-in twins that already exist as CGI model, adding snow and ice would not cost that much more. Especially if you think about the costs for the battle itself (3 dragons flying, breathing fire, white walkers, a wight army, thousands of men, horses etc). If the major battle will be at the Trident as foreshadowed in her dream, but also in RR (since that was the place where Rheagar was killed by Robert), the  WW can simply move east to the Vale, West to Casterly Rock and the Reach, or South to Kingslanding and Dorne.

Having the major battle at the Trident, would only require 2 or 3 'southern' castles to have snow. It would become a lot more troubling if the final battle was to occur in Kingslanding or Casterly Rock. Please also keep in min that the North if vast, and poorly inhabited. The WW might just decide to skip Winterfell and simply march towards White Harbour and Moat Cailin. If food supplies in the frozen North are stopped, it will simply add wights to their army without a battle.

The Trident is a major strategic stronghold, accompanied by Harrenhall just south of it and at the edge of the Gods Eye (where the isle of faces is, which could also play some role in the 'final battle').

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11 hours ago, Ser Walter of AShwood said:

Not all of the southern sets. Just a CGI-created frozen/snowed-in twins that already exist as CGI model, adding snow and ice would not cost that much more. Especially if you think about the costs for the battle itself (3 dragons flying, breathing fire, white walkers, a wight army, thousands of men, horses etc). If the major battle will be at the Trident as foreshadowed in her dream, but also in RR (since that was the place where Rheagar was killed by Robert), the  WW can simply move east to the Vale, West to Casterly Rock and the Reach, or South to Kingslanding and Dorne.

Having the major battle at the Trident, would only require 2 or 3 'southern' castles to have snow. It would become a lot more troubling if the final battle was to occur in Kingslanding or Casterly Rock. Please also keep in min that the North if vast, and poorly inhabited. The WW might just decide to skip Winterfell and simply march towards White Harbour and Moat Cailin. If food supplies in the frozen North are stopped, it will simply add wights to their army without a battle.

The Trident is a major strategic stronghold, accompanied by Harrenhall just south of it and at the edge of the Gods Eye (where the isle of faces is, which could also play some role in the 'final battle').

Skipping the Northern forces and marching South would be a tactical mistake by the WW. They would then be facing attack on two fronts when pinched at the trident. If this where indeed the case, it would increase humanity's chances at winning.

That being said, I am not so sure the WW would be facing the same normal limitations of a traditional army. I think the WW might posses the ability to freeze water and cross wherever they choose. Not sure though.

I have always thought they (the WW) would adapt more of a scorched earth battle plan, choosing to conquer everything and anything in their path, skipping no one. I am not sure how much tactical knowledge they have of the lands they are about to attack.

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11 hours ago, Ice Spider said:

Skipping the Northern forces and marching South would be a tactical mistake by the WW. They would then be facing attack on two fronts when pinched at the trident. If this where indeed the case, it would increase humanity's chances at winning.

That being said, I am not so sure the WW would be facing the same normal limitations of a traditional army. I think the WW might posses the ability to freeze water and cross wherever they choose. Not sure though.

I have always thought they (the WW) would adapt more of a scorched earth battle plan, choosing to conquer everything and anything in their path, skipping no one. I am not sure how much tactical knowledge they have of the lands they are about to attack.

Strategically you definitely have a point, can't disagree with you there.
WW definitely do not have the same limitations as a traditional army, since they do not need to feed their (entire) army. Also, when WW are around, the temperature drops dramatically. That could indeed mean that they might be able to freeze water. on the other hand, they could just as easily dump wights in the river until a 'dam' is created, so they can cross.

I had some thoughts about this yesterday evening, after my original post.
<time for tinfoil> I think that the God's eye, more specifically the Isle of Faces, could very well be a strategic target for the WW's. Remember, peace between the First Men and the CoTF was made there, it holds specific magic and WW may have been created by the CoTF, possibly even on the Isle of Faces.</time for tinfoil>

 

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On 11/15/2016 at 2:39 AM, Ser Walter of AShwood said:

[snip]

ad some thoughts about this yesterday evening, after my original post.
<time for tinfoil> I think that the God's eye, more specifically the Isle of Faces, could very well be a strategic target for the WW's.

This could be.  Just like the Tree with the 3-Eyed Raven was a target.

Interesting thought/theory.

What about the stronghold/defenses that Bran the Builder helped build?  Would they be targets, or  no?  Maybe, at best, point to seize and destroy.  Or just to avoid, if possible?

On 11/15/2016 at 2:39 AM, Ser Walter of AShwood said:

 

Remember, peace between the First Men and the CoTF was made there, it holds specific magic and WW may have been created by the CoTF, possibly even on the Isle of Faces.</time for tinfoil>

 

From what we saw in the show, there is no 'may' about it.  The WW were 1st created by the CotF.   Maybe by a sub-group of the CotF, but definitely by CotF.  Maybe it was on the Isle, but the show hints strongly that it was in the North, maybe at the Tree where the 3-Eyed Raven ended up.    Did the CotF still control the Isle when the Pact was signed?  Were the WW created before the CotF tried (and failed) to submerge the Neck?  That attempt would indicate that they were North of the Neck at that time.

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On 06/10/2016 at 0:02 AM, Zoo_Dane said:

The rest of the realm still believes that the Others are a fairy tale. Outside of the Nights Watch and Wildlings, no one believes there is any threat.

There's no way Jon will get the knights of the Vale to march north to the wall. They are under LF's command and I don't think he'll want to send his entire army to the Wall for, what he would think, is no reason at all. LF would be more interested in installing Sansa in a place of power in the North or moving his schemes back south. The knights of the Vale will be gone just as fast as they showed up... the only way that they factor into the initial fighting is if the Others attack Winterfel immediately, which seems unlikely.

It'll be a tough task to even convince his northern bannermen to march to the Wall with him, despite their proclamation of him being KitN. Why would any lord, or anyone in any lords army, want to march North to the Wall after nearly freezing to death SOUTH of the wall? Why would they want to do that when there is no perceivable threat or reason to do so? They've just been through a horrific civil war between north and south then north and north, they have hardly prepared for Winter, and Winter is here. They have things to do and marching to the Wall for no reason (in their minds) is not one of them. They would only go because their new king commands it but, even then, I don't see all his bannermen or their entire strengths going to the Wall -- especially not the Karstarks (he just barely won a civil war, he can't start another one because a few houses won't listen to a seemingly crazy command).

The Wall is going down. If Jon is there to see it then he'll do it with a very small force at his back. He'll have the Wildlings, the few hundred (heck, maybe even less than a hundred at this point) remaining Nights Watch, and a very small force he might be able to convince to return the Wall with him.

So long story short, to answer your original question of what does Jon do, I believe that Jon marches to the Wall with a very small force and leaves Sansa behind to hold and restore Winterfel in the Stark name (which could lead to Stark v Stark issues due to LF schemes).

Noone will be able to turn Sansa against her family again, she is learning from past mistakes and she sees LF for what he is POISON. Also she seemed happy when Jon was named KITN untill she locked eyes with LF. 

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