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  1. newbieone

    Small Questions v. 10105

    Is there any basis for regarding Orys Baratheon as a legitimized bastard Targ, so that the Baratheons could become senior agnatic Targs upon the extinction of all senior (later) agnatic lines? So that suddenly Stannis or even legitimized Edric Storm comes before Dany under Salic succession (supposing the Darkfyres, the Brightflames, the lines of Aegon IV's bastards and the rest of them are in fact extinct in the male line)?
  2. We know that the IT has a strong degree of male preference in practical terms, which some believe to be firm law from the 101 AC General Council (skipping Laenor Velaryon, son of Rhaenys Targaryen, herself skipped by Jaehaerys I' s will). But we also know that skipping a daughter in favour of a brother typically takes a Great Council to achieve. Even after the GC of 101 AC, Viserys I appointed Rhaenyra over her own younger brother Aegon II, and most of the realm still supported her. Some time before the last Great Council, the one that chose Egg to be Aegon V in 233 AC, Aelora, daughter of Rhagel (Maekar's older brother), was for a time Aerys I's recognized heir, until her suicide. Her sister Daenora (wife of Aeron and mother of Maegor) was skipped or not even considered(!) (though there's a chance she was regarded as passed over in favour of Maekar's progeny by Aerys I's will already), as was Vaella, the simple-minded daughter of Daeron, Egg's elder brother. I suppose there was no reason to affirm Rhaenyra as the real, valid queen, since she was already dead and her son, Aegon III, was Aegon II's appointed heir and the senior agnatic Targ anyway. Ironically, Stannis Baratheon kind of seems to regard Rhaenyra as a traitor for affirming her rights, even though Robert's conquest was officially supported by recent matrilineal descent from a daughter of Aegon V and his own daughter is his heir (though it's not clear if Stannis really believes that; perhaps she sees death penalty as the only option for Aegon II in consequence of regarding her as such, whether or not Stannis agrees). Also ironically, with Aerys II's descendants passed over, the Brightflames (offspring of Aerion) either extinct or passed over, the Darkfyres extinct in the male line, and no verified unbroken bastard agnatic lines, the Baratheons could perhaps be regarded as senior agnatic Targs available, if one believes Orys was Aegon the Conqueror's bastard brother. But the 101 GC male-preference rule probably didn't go as far as excluding females in favour of non-legitimized bastards. Anyway, would you guys say the IT can be regarded as operating in full Salic mode or more like unclear (without specific decision by the previous king or a GC called to consider his specific succession)?
  3. newbieone

    What if: Emperor Aegon the Conqueror?

    His nickname was Conqueror, but he wasn't one to just simply expand his own power; instead, he had some sort of unification agenda. Westeros fit in, Essos did not.
  4. newbieone

    ASOIAF/D&D Principal Character Classes

    Perhaps Plain Jane Fighter with some sort of knightly kit (2E) or prestige class(es) (3E)? There are plenty NG and LG and to some extent LN knights who live according to the code without the whole holy champion business. That said, the more I like look at her lifestyle and her role in Westeros, the more I'm beginning to think that perhaps she fits. It's just that I can't really complete the mental association with laying on hands, turning undead, casting clerical spells and all that jazz. On the other hand, it's a low-magic word and she meets the dictionary definition of 'paladin' if not the typical D&D externals, so perhaps I'm just being picky. She's full of service with no expectation of reward, other than a deep-seated and disguised craving for acceptance. I've just taken another look at her quotes, and I'm no longer so sure. I'm beginning to see her as having a distinct 'class consciousness' compared to the average 'ser', and not even the bad ones. If you look at the Laughing Storm — Lyonel Baratheon — he's a knight all right, a paragon in his own way, but he doesn't have this kind of largely intangible special thing that Brienne has, in comparison. She's certainly more paladin-y than Dunk (possibly her ancestor) and certainly just as paladin-y as most people who'd be cited as real-life examples of the class. She's no Galahad or Percival, but she probably fits with Lancelot, not to mention anybody from actual real-life history as opposed to legends. So I'm torn on her. I'd probably play her as an NG or even LG fighter in the end, but that's probably mostly because of the whole low-magic thing (almost no magic). But if I could design a paladin class with toned down bells and whistles, she'd be it. Otherwise I'd probably leave the actual class (though she and a bunch of other folks certainly are paladins in the generic sense) to some sort of shining beacons of the Seven around whom supernatural things are happening. Meaning nobody alive unless we see someone yet. So let's say we take the dictionary meaning of 'paladin' and look at the sources D&D took inspiration from and go from there. In which case: Brienne, Dunk, Baelor Breakspear, Faegon, Daemon II (perhaps), Changed Lancel, Barristan Selmy (perhaps), Arthur Dayne (perhaps), Aemon the Dragonknight (perhaps), Egg/Aegon V (perhaps), Lord Dondarrion, Ned (in his own way, without being a charismatic champion), Robb (perhaps, in his own way), Blackfish (in his own rogue way). Possibly Raymun Fossoway, but I'm guessing and stretching it. Possibly some of the guys fighting in King Maegor's Trial by the Seven.
  5. Other than there are no clear parallels, I agree there are similarities like on this list. The entire Seven Kingdoms could be regarded as parallel England, just different parts or versions of it, sometimes shifting in the Scottish, Welsh or Irish direction, and the houses looking more Norman, Celtic, Anglo-Saxon or mixed, or totally foreign. All in all, it's a custom world and one can't really say the Reach is modelled on France, except perhaps in terms of climate, terrain, etc., so physical geography matches Southern France, plus the whole wine (Redwyne) thing, but not really culture. Dorne is obviously exotic, but you still have names like Starfall, Spearpoint, Godsgrace, etc., which hardly brings Spain, Portugal or Italy to mind, though it's obviously full of darker-skinned people who are culturally similar to the rest of the Seven Kingdoms, so it's a bit like Southern Europeans. They share some (few) similarities with early-renaissance Southern Europe, but that's it. In terms of climate and plant life the area would fit anywhere around the Med, but it has deserts and some real nasty hot temperatures, so it's more Levantine than Italian or Spanish. So it's more like: North: snow, marshes, bogs Trident: rivers everywhere, perhaps swamps, some decent fields, a town or two, no vast plains, no real ports Rock: hilly land, good for mining, a port, presumably some farmlands Reach: farmlands, farmlands, farmlands, basically endless plains and agriculture, but also culture (civilization, more like, without the Dornish artsy flair) Vale: mountains, vales, some farmlands, plenty of cliffs Stormlands: presumably stormy, otherwise not particularly standing out Iron islands: islands, islands, islands and plenty of coastline, moderate but not pleasant climate, not that much different from the rest Crownlands: whatever All of it could basically be somewhere England (although in some cases Scotland, Wales or Ireland would be more appropriate). Apart from Dorne or the farthest North. So it's basically England, because that's what GRRM grew up with, just like Sapkowski (the Witcher guy) took some mythical Poland/surroundings because that's what he knew, and a French author's world would presumably be more France-like.
  6. newbieone

    Was Aerion Brightflame really mad?

    Yup. No need to tweak the Ashford Tourney story, and impossible to fake it. Breaking Tanselle's fingers and intentionally killing ser Humfrey's horse establishes sufficiently establishes Aerion as a psycho, even if you discount Egg's tales or Aerion's reputation as recounted by others. So no Egg propaganda, Aerion really was a bad piece of work, just probably not 'legally insane', meaning not someone who can't be expected to control himself, who doesn't know good from evil etc.
  7. newbieone

    Military strength of minor houses of the Reach

    Ser Eustace did in fact raise every able-bodied men he had — that was the content of his summons. He just had so few peasants in total that there were only 8 able-bodied males among them, including a lackwit. He was desperate for mancount and had no reason to leave anybody behind, plus he was fighting on his own doorstep. This is different from taking men on a long campaign far away and leaving your home turf undefended.
  8. Woah, whence all the Blackfyre hate? Once you believe that Daeron II was not Aegon IV's son and that Daemon Blackfyre's legitimization was valid (no reason to believe otherwise), and that Aegon IV was a valid king (this is more up to debate, but Daeron II's right also depends on this), then there is no option but to regard oneself as bound in fealty to follow Daemon Blackfyre and his descendants and see them rule. In fact, DB was only a younger son of Aegon the Unworthy but the eldest son of his mother, who was the senior heir, being the daughter of Aegon III (sister of Daeron II the Young Dragon and Baelor the Blessed), to whom Viserys II, the father of Aegon IV, was a younger brother. Hence even with Daeron II actually being legitimate, DB still can be argued to have a better claim to be the senior representative of the dynasty in general, though not as a direct heir to Aegon IV as the previous king. DB's children through Rohanne of Tyrosh were quite possibly descendants of the bypassed Vaelaryon heirs (through Rhaenys, the Queen Who Never Was), even before the Dance of the Dragons, as Viserys I, the father of both Aegon II and Rhaeryna was not the senior heir. Hence they would have an even better claim than DB himself. So it's not about wanting to usurp the other branch and improve the fate of their own branch of the dynasty, but about where the blood points, who should be king or even who is by right the lawful king, seen as an obligation as much as a right. In their own minds, the Blackfyres are already kings by simply existing and being who they are, and consequently they have the obligation to rule the Seven Kingdoms. That we don't necessarily agree with them (as it's enough to recognize Aegon IV as valid and Daeron II as his bio son — even because of sheer absence of contrary proof — and then go by birth order; this is all perfectly convincing) is a different thing.
  9. newbieone

    robb strategy

    I agree Robb's strategy isn't necessarily flawed — other than his marriage blunder — but there's little he could have done with the resources available and in the circumstances that there were. Still: Not trusting Lord Bolton if there's any knowledge in Stark court about what's going on in Bolton family and lands, even rumours. It's one thing to punish a man based on rumour, a different one to avoid giving important commands to reputed sadists and other degenerates. Not executing Lord Karstark, I think (the Wall, anybody?). Not falling in love and certainly not sleeping with Jeyne Westerling. Cosying up to the Renly camp after Renly's death. Possibly declaring for Stannis rather claiming Kingdom in the North. Even after that, there are still precendents for surrendering the crown without the head, including Stannis's own ancestor Lyonel Baratheon. Even if Stannis didn't want to leave Robb with the King title but as a vassal (similarly to the Prince of Dorne) in the end result, I'm sure he would understand the necessity and expediency of e.g. using the title as opposed to bending the knee in the middle of the war and risking a more drop. Or it could be played out as Robb complying with his father's (newly discovered) wishes and Stannis taking care not ho humiliate Robb. That said, Stannis has fewer resources than Robb and not necessarily more skill or better commanders, so yielding control before the end of the war could be catastrophic. Thus perhaps a more equal alliance could be better or even playing the same role the Tyrells did with Renly. That said, Melisandre would probably not have been acceptable with her barbaric sorcery, and her religious war with burning septs and weirwoods would be too destabilizing. Thus perhaps no chance of alliance with Stannis. For Lannisters: Getting rid of Tywin and preferably Jaime. Peace with Kevan or Tyrion. Pretty much all non-Lannisters want the Lannisters out of the way, so it would make sense to set up a temporary truce among the other parties or even get the Reach to invade simultaneously from the other side without getting in each other's way but without a formal alliance either. Vale: More intense attempts to get it moving. If not Lisa or her regent, then her vassals at least. With the Vale, the Starks would have three of the Seven Kingdoms in their camp with Dorne not participating and the rest not being united. Hence they should have enough leverage to either secede or force a Great Council. In theory. In practice the Tyrells have the largest army, the Lannisters aren't out of the picture yet, and the Ironborn hold the North. So… nope. Tough luck. Stannis has ships so alliance with Stannis could make it possible to take out the Ironborn by striking at Pyke.
  10. newbieone

    Is there anyone here who finds Ramsay boring?

    It'd be hard for me to view unmitigated sadism as interesting, and Ramsay's personality pretty much has nothing else in it, anything else is vestigial and subsumded in it. He knows how to fight and knows the basics of politics/diplomacy/living like a noble, but even in that he's degenerate and all of it. His desire for legitimacy and power stands out a bit, so perhaps he has some ambition to be put in a high place as opposed to merely in a position to hurt others, but I still think the latter is infinitely more important to him and the only thing that really counts. And monothematic sadists are by definition boring.
  11. newbieone

    Tywin's corpse?

    Same. In purely physical/biological terms, I thought the smell was partly due to the manner of his death (he took a bolt in his bowels while emptying them, after all) and partly coincidental (just decomposing badly and possibly suffering from some illness). Varys's disposal of Tywin may well have been making sure Tyrion did what he did, hence poison would be a bit redundant and overkill.
  12. I think it's follow the TV series. Little sense to do otherwise.
  13. newbieone

    ASOIAF/D&D Principal Character Classes

    Thanks! @Faera: I'm not necessarily saying your arguments for Brienne as a paladin are invalid, but in my understanding NGs will still generally respect the law — just as much as even LGs don't always play 100% by the book — and while CGs will be stubborn individualists with perhaps arbitrary ways, the G part will prevent them from intentionally inflicting unwarranted harm, which would be evil. Simply being Good precludes most betrayals and such like, which would generally be evil unless done for a higher purpose (e.g. supporting Renly over loyalty owed to Stannis when you know, which most of the realm doesn't know, about the Lannincesters, or Jaime slaying Aerys II). Generally, CGs can still be relied on to keep their personal oaths because of CGs attachment to personal loyalties. In some cases a CG would hold on to an oath that an LG would regard as illegal or overridden by some other higher directive. I'm not necessarily saying being in Renly's camp precludes Brienne from being Lawful (after all, Renly was annointed by the High Septon and Joff was not, Joff was a bad king, Stannis wasn't heard from, Renly was her liege lord, etc.), but all in all I'm just not convinced she has to be a paladin or even LG. Doesn't mean she can't be, of course. But I find her unlikely in the end. Possible, but unlikely. Can't really agree with Jon as a Blackguard, as I can't see him as at any point becoming Evil. I'm not sure what alignment he should be, but given his morality I'd be inclined to regard him as being either Good or Lawful, not necessarily both. There are some situations when he looks a bit like a paladin of the Old Gods, so I could perhaps give him a level in that, if only to see some nice saves (with CHA bonus) and a bunch of rules to live by, but overall it's hard to tell. So far I'd give him Ranger levels (time ranging) and perhaps a Fighter level or two (Winterfell training and early NW training, which was pure Fighter Training) and perhaps a Barbarian level or two (time among Wildlings). From gameplay perspective, it would probably be more expedient to further train him as a Ranger exclusively for big-time bonding with Ghost and later with dragons, as well as all-round Night-Watch/North stuff. This said, I believe Northern paladins of the Old Gods would by necessity be very similar to Rangers or Barbarians in a lot of ways, especially in terms of ethos and overall impression. Jon as King in the North could possibly gravitate toward Paladin more than Ranger depending on lifestyle and personality. That said, I find your argumentation quite interesting and in fact quite convincing anyway. I can certainly see where you're coming from, and a lot of that is valid points. For the record, killing his superior on the latter's own orders perhaps not, but violating the vows with Ygritte — unless justified/mitigated by the effective blackmail on her part — is among the typical stuff that turns paladins into fallen paladins. And yes, Jon can be seen as leaning CG in a lot of ways, though I still think it fits within acceptable Lawful range after he becomes the Lord Commander. @Hooded Crow: Tywin was an interesting case. By the public image, you could position him as LG in his youth and even later, and certainly at least LN — he was just and fair and made the real prosper, which means that while he may not have been overly concerned with individual people's welfare, he cared for the common good, beyond just running the realm as a profitable well-managed business. That kind of sounds like LN, which includes a lot of decent folks, including dedicated and dutiful public servants who serve the common good (and certainly oppose evil, rather than believing in balance) but don't have much heart for people. Some of Tywin's later actions were selfish or even somewhat evil, precluding him from being Good but not necessarily firmly establishing him as Evil yet. I don't think even Castamere would have been conclusive, although it was a strong indication of sadism, along with the advice given to his father about the Tarbecks. However, I'm finally convinced by his handling of Tysha, Tyrion's wife. A Neutral character could perhaps have had her killed — having been conditioned to regard the high lords as pretty much owning the smallfolk and entitled to punish them harshly for small transgressions — but not gang-raped, not even while thinking her a gold-digger (because that's what Jaime said). I'm not entirely sold on the Lawfulness (in alignment terms) of some of Tywin's various actions, but LEs don't follow the law, they try to make the law follow them. Abusing and twisting the system but generally staying within the established ruleset, that's LE. So Tywin is probably LE in the end, perhaps leaning NE at some points but also sometimes leaning LN (just like he may well have been LN leaning variously LG or LE in his past). Tywin isn't perfectly stable, and/or he's opportunistic and fights dirty. He certainly has two classes of enemies: business (like Ned, whom he'd send to the wall) and personal (like Tysha or the Tarbecks), and he's only sadistic with the latter, while rejecting sadism in general (e.g. he's disgusted with Joffrey's sadistic antics despite having some of his own).
  14. newbieone

    Jamie's second chance.

    Could have knocked him out, yeah, but that would have been a tough risk to take.
  15. newbieone

    Robert Baratheon’s View on the War of the Five Kings

    Robert was jovial and indulgent, but he wasn't incapable or unreasonable, he just simply didn't have the heart to actually rule, meaning manage the realm on a daily basis, i.e. the hard work and drudgery. If you could have your five minutes expounding the case about Cersei's incest and the kids not being Robert's, without being smashed with the hammer, and if you could defeat his stubborn denial, then he would sooner have willed the crown to Ned with no hereditary right than passed it on to the Lannincester kids, even though IIRC the Lannisters were next in line after Robert (but that meant legit Lannisters). That said, he would probably not have wanted to displace his own brothers, in birth order. He didn't do anything about Joff, so he wouldn't have done anything about Stannis. Alternatively, I could see Robert summoning a Great Council and ordering the realm to swear fealty to whomever get's chosen (perhaps with the exception of Aerys II's descendants). This is all subject to overcoming Rob's denial.