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Great battle plan! Dubious tactics discussion.

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20 minutes ago, Wik said:

Ya, I just have to respectfully disagree on that. I think proper tactics could have mitigated the initial disaster at the start. But I think it's reasonable, based on the hype and the show track that the only way they would have won that fight was killing the NK. 

The problem is, as far as we know the only real threat they were facing was the frost dragon. Why? Simply because if they didn't have the frost dragon the walls of winterfell would be impossible to reach with proper tactics knowing the most of the enemy (99.99%) were absolute idiots who'd charge without thinking. Knowing that, they only needed to slowly control the masses of wights with, trenchs, holes with raw obsidian, archers, fire from the dragons who could've been behind the walls as well (the NK would have to expose himself to throw a random spear), flanking tactics with archer horses (the dothraki are specialized on that) etcetera. But the show did what? They made the situation look dire on purpose so we could have the EPIC STYLE SCENE where arya from literally nowhere could save the day. That's it. If the screenwriters wanted we could have the heroes winning without that much loss because inside the walls each men would worth EASILY 100 wights.

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6 minutes ago, Ser Loras The Gay said:

That's not a argument. Just because the show is stupid we aren't supposed to say it's more plausible when people choose to be stupid.

/sarcasm

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I think viewers need to suspend logic at this point in the show.

  • The open field battle with the AotD was stupid.
  • Sending the Dorthraki in a head on charge was stupid.
  • Not using the dragons to attack the AotD sooner was stupid.
  • Not having more fortifications to slow down the initial charge was stupid.

But it was done to make for an awesome viewing experience. 

Lighting the Dortahki swords ablaze and having them charge was the equivalent to modern soldiers using tracer bullets at night. It shows the viewer a cool image of what is happening from a distance. Then when the lights get snuffed out, it creates that feeling of doom for the characters (Sam's look to Edd). 

A long seige would be boring (see the siege of Riverrun), using the dragons to nuke the AotD before they get to Winterfell wasn't in the story. Having all the soldiers sitting on the walls of Winterfell picking off wights with spears and arrows would not have been that cinematic. It's a show meant to entertain, not necessarily make a lot of sense. 

Even Arya's attack on the Night King was meant to look cool to the viewer. The shot of the Night King looking down on a helpless Bran then switches to a camera angle representing what Bran sees from a seated position. Arya had to be several feet in the air so that the viewer could see her face over the Night Kings shoulder. Practical, nope. But it looked cool.

The biggest problem with the last few seasons are that the show had budget and time constants that forced them to compress a lot of story into a shorter period of time. This change in pace resulted in less attention to detail that was there in the first few seasons. We, as viewers, don't factor the logistics behind creating a show of this magnitude into how we see the story. We just over analyse and look for fault. These days, anyone with a keyboard is a critic.

 

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3 hours ago, Dragon Glass said:

I think viewers need to suspend logic at this point in the show.

  • The open field battle with the AotD was stupid.
  • Sending the Dorthraki in a head on charge was stupid.
  • Not using the dragons to attack the AotD sooner was stupid.
  • Not having more fortifications to slow down the initial charge was stupid.

But it was done to make for an awesome viewing experience. 

Lighting the Dortahki swords ablaze and having them charge was the equivalent to modern soldiers using tracer bullets at night. It shows the viewer a cool image of what is happening from a distance. Then when the lights get snuffed out, it creates that feeling of doom for the characters (Sam's look to Edd). 

A long seige would be boring (see the siege of Riverrun), using the dragons to nuke the AotD before they get to Winterfell wasn't in the story. Having all the soldiers sitting on the walls of Winterfell picking off wights with spears and arrows would not have been that cinematic. It's a show meant to entertain, not necessarily make a lot of sense. 

Even Arya's attack on the Night King was meant to look cool to the viewer. The shot of the Night King looking down on a helpless Bran then switches to a camera angle representing what Bran sees from a seated position. Arya had to be several feet in the air so that the viewer could see her face over the Night Kings shoulder. Practical, nope. But it looked cool.

The biggest problem with the last few seasons are that the show had budget and time constants that forced them to compress a lot of story into a shorter period of time. This change in pace resulted in less attention to detail that was there in the first few seasons. We, as viewers, don't factor the logistics behind creating a show of this magnitude into how we see the story. We just over analyse and look for fault. These days, anyone with a keyboard is a critic.

 

Through first 4 seasons and a few episodes since, the show was not about  "look cool to the viewer" .  Bad writing has been inexcusable precisely b/c it focuses on "looking cool" at the expense of all else.  They chickened out and went for the the low hanging fruit.

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10 hours ago, ferrelhadley said:

The biggest "fail" was the Night King. All he needed to do was turn up and wait. Within a month or two the starvation would have brought most of Winterfell to near death. 

He could have turned up and stood, a dozen hours or so and the defenders would have been exhausted. 

I think that most of the nonsense fan fiction about using Dothraki to attack "flanks" or in reserve (for what) is just people who cannot concieve of being  in an overwhelmingly hopeless situation. That and people who think that its like a video game, you just click and the force moves, be it horses in very tight packed spaces or across kilometres of dark fields. 

It takes a huge amount of space to redeploy a squadron of cavalry, let alone something along the lines of supposedly 3 mounted divisions in the order of 30 000 horsemen. It will occupy a square kilometre or more and take an hour or more to perform simple manoeuvres like assembling to the side of the infantry if its deployed behind them. It would take hundreds of metres "at the advance" to bring it from standing to a steady gallop. 

The British\Allies only about 11000 cavalry at Waterloo, but that was over a battle 4km wide and many kilometres deep. Yet these battles developed over many hours with small attacks on small units, not a vast mindless host coming at you at about 9kmh.

 

I guess it is what it is. People who play video games think like videogamers. 

I’m video game player enjoying strategic games for like for like 20 years. Here is what I think:

1. NK didn’t have to wait. What for? He can waste his whole army and get a new one at nearest graveyard or battlefield. Since he has a dragon it will not take long to reach it.

2. The biggest challenge with cavalry is turning a horse. I think you need 6 square meters per horse to do that? It’s true that in video games they turn at the spot. So the battlefield in the show seems to small to deploy this amount of horsemen in a flanking maneuver. A series of trenches was a better choice.

3. However during Hussite wars a cavalry detachment was tucked inside wagenburg prepared to counter. If so they could have deployed some cavalry within Winterfell and/or behind trenches to counterattack especially after Danny strafed the undead and created an opening. This would require more than one sally point (though not all to be used) but perhaps sounds plausible?

4. I imagine that if you break through with about 2-3 elite troopers per WW is enough to take them all down so two pronged attack is enough which quite limits the number of cavalrymen and space necessary. You can eat remaining horses.

5. If you start the charge with say 100 horsemen covered by dragons and but as few as 30 are about to reach the WWs it is probably enough to lure the NK to attack one of the dragons.

6. However if the WWs are protected by schiltrons of high quality monsters then the task becomes more difficult or suicidal. Good thing that NK was poor gamer and noob-rushing.

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The battle took place pretty much on the same battlefield where the Boltons crushed Stannis. We saw a massive cavalry charge in that battle, which even involved some flanking. So there's room to maneuver. Brienne was witness to that.

The second battle at Winterfell may have been on the south side of the castle, I don't know, the terrain does change as the plot demands it, but we see Ramsay use other tactics, including massive archer volleys, and combination of shield-bearers and pikemen. 

If only Ramsay had still been alive, he might have held the wight army at bay. And Jon and the rest failed to learn from his enemy, on more than one occasion. 

Truth be told, the tactics employed had to be silly, since on the side of the WW, winter was fairly mild. Barely any snow on the ground, allowing for a massive cavalry charge. Inside of Winterfell, all the snow was neatly scraped away, the battlements were free of ice. Other than a blizzard that temporarily befuddled the dragon riders, visibility was ok. And no one was really freezing their extremities off. Sensible battle tactics would have made it too easy for the living.

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To me the only real complaints I had from tactical standpoint off the top of my head were Dany and Jon not doing a fly over first and then wiping out as much of the charging horde as they could. Jon was shown sitting on the castle wall with his dragon and that should not have happened. I get the whole protect Bran thing but damn.  Second would be archers, they should have been firing long shots as soon as the horde hit the army on foot, fire into the darkness and keep the catapults firing at that point.

As to the Dothraki, I think they should have had a scout out there with a signal saying the dead were coming, then the Dothraki charge.  I did love that scene though, it felt of the impending doom as you watched the foot soldiers looking at each flame go out one by one.

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Posted (edited)

 

It seems like the battle had to be a strategy disaster not for any other reason but for Danny to lose her army or at least the majority of it so they would even her power with that of Cersei to crate suspense for the finale. As I said before it’s quite disturbing when the viewers can see the stitches behind the scenes. Still it would be appreciated if they had done it in a way where all heroes don’t present themselves as totally ignorants of any battle plan. 

Edited by Nightwish

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On 4/29/2019 at 7:22 AM, ferrelhadley said:

So everyone is complaining they attacked when they could not see but now you suggest having them pre-positioned to attack "a flank" that know one could see. 
Tell me about this flank you seen. 

Why is pre-positioned in bold? The Dothraki were pre-positioned in the episode, as it turns out in an idiotic spot. 

Why is flank in quotes? You know, flank just means side. However big the zombie horde is, it's going to have sides. And if it subdivides into smaller hordes, they'll all have sides. 

The advantage of light cavalry like the Dothraki is that if they can't see, they ride around and get a better look. 

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On 4/29/2019 at 8:03 AM, ferrelhadley said:

Still waiting for this "flank" or where you would have positioned the cavalry. For those who are not following this, the reason cavalry would want to attack a flank is that there would be no shield wall or spears in that direction, it breaks the formation and thus induces infantry to break and run with fear. 
Not exactly a plan with a massive hoard of undead. 
This TV show's battles have always been silly fun with minimal realism. Perhaps this will inspire one or two to read up on medieval warfare and from there read more in the incredible histories this show is based on.
But I am unconvinced by peoples efforts to pick apart tactics when they seem to have a poor grasp of them. 

That's not the only reason to attack a flank. For one thing, even zombies could be temporarily distracted from their main purpose by the physical weight of the attack. And the Dothraki would be less likely to be surrounded and swallowed up whole, especially if they did glancing blows instead of a headlong rush. 

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Still remains a mystery how all this mass of zombies crashed on the unsullied who managed to hold them back whereas Dothraki with all the horse speed disappeared within seconds. Crazy script...

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10 hours ago, #teamNightking said:

Maybe the Night King was smarter than we realize and he only committed part of his forces to Winterfell. Meanwhile the main body bypassed Winterfell led by his second in command and are killing everyone and everything on their way to King's Landing. 

Cut scene to the second in command growing a crown on his head and becoming the next Night King. 

Battle battle battle 

Cersei is defeated and becomes a wight. 

The new NK sits down on the IT. 

Bran, seeing all this using his magic sight turns to Arya:

"Help us Jedi Stark, you're our only hope" 

Yeah, I could see it going down like that 

: )

 

Uh, didn't killing the Night King shatter the White Walkers and re-corpsify the zombies? Why would we assume he had other forces with independent means of magical animation? 

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3 minutes ago, darmody said:

Uh, didn't killing the Night King shatter the White Walkers and re-corpsify the zombies? Why would we assume he had other forces with independent means of magical animation? 

Because maybe only the white walkers he created were destroyed and they only showed those. Maybe there are older ones. Maybe he couldn't possibly be as stupid as he appeared to be. But maybe my post was just sarcasm. ; )

 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, #teamNightking said:

The unsullied need lots of room to fight. Packing them like sardines inside the walls might have been unwise especially given the undead easily scaled the walls in mass numbers.  The inside wasn't much safer than the outside. Except for plot protected named Characters.

Somebody missed the episode where they took Casterly Rock. 

And the inside was safer. It had walls and places to hide. The horde outside was crashing over troops like a literal wave, if you'll recall. 

Edited by darmody

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9 hours ago, Ser Loras The Gay said:

Considering the wights were like, 20 to 30 times larger than the winterfell army's number how do you proceed in a battle like that? Well, if we all remember at season 4 we have a situation just like that on the battle against the free folk. They had like 300 men against possibly 10000 free folk people. And what they did to win? They all waited at the wall and showered them with arrows. I don't understand why in the name of all the gods they had ANYONE outside the walls besides the cavalry waiting to hit when the wights would be trying to climb the walls, I don't understand why they didn't have more archers and more arrows, I don't understand why they used the trebuchets so poorly, I don't understand why they had just ONE trench. They knew the army of the dead were coming for like... MONTHS and the best preparation they had was that? Wtf my dude, it was like they were trying to LOSE. 

Tbf, that was a big fricken wall and its defenses were designed by people who knew what they were doing, apparently. 

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More fire (not necessarily dragonfire) would definitely have been better. Also pouring hot pitch from the walls and lighting it with a torch once the dead start climbing.

Some have suggested that people should have all been carrying their own torches, which is funny. I mean sure, you could use it to light up a few wights but it would mean wielding a longsword with only one hand.

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8 hours ago, Ser Loras The Gay said:

The problem is, as far as we know the only real threat they were facing was the frost dragon. Why? Simply because if they didn't have the frost dragon the walls of winterfell would be impossible to reach with proper tactics knowing the most of the enemy (99.99%) were absolute idiots who'd charge without thinking. Knowing that, they only needed to slowly control the masses of wights with, trenchs, holes with raw obsidian, archers, fire from the dragons who could've been behind the walls as well (the NK would have to expose himself to throw a random spear), flanking tactics with archer horses (the dothraki are specialized on that) etcetera. But the show did what? They made the situation look dire on purpose so we could have the EPIC STYLE SCENE where arya from literally nowhere could save the day. That's it. If the screenwriters wanted we could have the heroes winning without that much loss because inside the walls each men would worth EASILY 100 wights.

Did we watch the same episode, because it was an ice giant that broke through WF not the ice dragon. Also sheer mass of the dead army was able to climb itseft to breach the walls, the ice dragon wasn't a factor until much later.

Now I do agree that they should have had more obstacles outside the walls with dragon glass, like they had inside since it proved more effective than fire. Also more archers on the walls with dragon glass.

Now if we are talking reality then the NK would've had someone drag Bran out to him and killed him there, he surely never would've went into WF unless every soul was dead but Bran. But we are talking entertainment, and as such, yes of course they have to do things to entertain the viewers or tv wouldn't exist beyond the news, which nowadays is morphed into entertainment too.

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11 hours ago, Tywin Tytosson said:

I took it that it was the Dothraki who decided to charge, as is the wont. 

Rewatched it. They waited for the signal, and Jorah was the one giving the signal.

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10 hours ago, #teamNightking said:

It appears the Dothroki charged on their own. Arrogant Dothroki doing what they do. What the original plan was who knows.

No they didn't. After Mel lights their arakhs, they nicely wait for the order to charage. Jorah takes out his sword even, in readiness for the charge. So that was the battle plan.

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, sweetsunray said:

No they didn't. After Mel lights their arakhs, they nicely wait for the order to charage. Jorah takes out his sword even, in readiness for the charge. So that was the battle plan.

But there was no order to charge shown. Wouldn't Jorah have been in the front instead of being passed? 

And the thought is not that they weren't supposed to charge at all, just not yet. 

Honestly I don't care. It doesn't matter. It's just that this was the least of the episodes issues to me. 

I mean I have more of an issue of how they only lasted a matter of seconds when later our heroes and even the unsullied last waaaaay longer.

I could guess that possibly the WW or NK somehow extinguished their flaming weapons but that wasn't shown. So as far as I'm concerned it didn't happen. 

They should have survived longer and more should have been able to retreat than was shown. 

The total annihilation was a bit over the top and in my opinion was clearly meant as an OMG moment and to insure Dany lost her army making fighting Cersei later more challenging. 

Edited by #teamNightking
Sp.

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