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The Merling King

What would happen if you removed dragons from The Dance of the Dragons?

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What would happen if you removed dragons from The Dance of the Dragons? Who would benefit more, the greens or the blacks? Would the blacks even have a chance or without dragons would it be more drawn out like the anarchy and turn into a slow war of attrition and siege-craft?

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Rhaenyra had most House supporting her and four Great houses supporting her Starks, Arryns, Tullys and Greyjoys but Aegon II had the Lannisters and the Baratheons and he also had the most powerful bannermens from the Reach Hightower, Redwyne, Ambrose, Fossoway and Peake. Weirdly enough the Tyrells didn’t support either the Greens or Blacks. Still even without the dragons I would think that the Blacks would have won at the end.

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I believe Green's would benefit most without dragons as they had four of fighting size  Vhagar, Sunfyre, Tessarion and Dreamfyre/Helaena which wasn't at all utilized during the war.

Quote

“We have more,” said Princess Rhaenys, the Queen Who Never Was, who had been a dragonrider longer than all of them. “And ours are larger and stronger, but for Vhagar. Dragons thrive best here on Dragonstone.” 

Even with two betrayers turning against the Blacks in Tumbleton, they quickly impacted disintegration of Reach army and had to be dealt themselves as a threat, so they weren't significant or long term gain for Greens.

Opening moves were crucial and utilization of Dragons was important in taking of Harrenhall or King's Landing so lack of them would impact the war in Green's favor including the need for diplomacy with Rhaenyra's children.

Edited by Eltharion21

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2 hours ago, The Merling King said:

What would happen if you removed dragons from The Dance of the Dragons? Who would benefit more, the greens or the blacks? Would the blacks even have a chance or without dragons would it be more drawn out like the anarchy and turn into a slow war of attrition and siege-craft?

 

2 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

It would be just boring without the dragons.

The war would have lasted longer.  A long war would prolong the suffering.  Man's ingenuity for inflicting destruction would compensate for the lack of air power.  The WotFK is so damaging because of duration.  Long wars will cause famine and disease.  More people may end up dying. 

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The Greens lose badly. 

 

50 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

Even with two betrayers turning against the Blacks in Tumbleton, they quickly impacted disintegration of Reach army and had to be dealt themselves as a threat, so they weren't significant or long term gain for Greens.

The reason why the Greens reached Tumbleton in the first place was because Tessarion. Had it not been for dragons the Reach Blacks would have wiped out the Reach Greens.

56 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

Opening moves were crucial and utilization of Dragons was important in taking of Harrenhall or King's Landing so lack of them would impact the war in Green's favor including the need for diplomacy with Rhaenyra's children.

The Riverlands was almost completely pro Rhaenrya, Jeyne Arryn too supported Rhaenrya. The only wildcards of the war would still being Cregan and Borros.

The Blacks had more manpower and far better commanders. The outcome seems particularly one sided.

12 minutes ago, Quoth the raven, said:

The WotFK is so damaging because of duration. 

That war is has only lasted months longer than the Dance...

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Just now, frenin said:

The Greens lose badly. 

 

The reason why the Greens reached Tumbleton in the first place was because Tessarion. Had it not been for dragons the Reach Blacks would have wiped out the Reach Greens.

The Riverlands was almost completely pro Rhaenrya, Jeyne Arryn too supported Rhaenrya. The only wildcards of the war would still being Cregan and Borros.

The Blacks had more manpower and far better commanders. The outcome seems particularly one sided.

That war is has only lasted months longer than the Dance...

The WotFK is still not resolved.  Parts of it, such as the battle of ice, are ongoing. 

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Without the dragons there wouldn't have been the motivation to engineer the Dance.  Wouldn't have started.

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2 hours ago, frenin said:

The Greens lose badly. 

 

The reason why the Greens reached Tumbleton in the first place was because Tessarion. Had it not been for dragons the Reach Blacks would have wiped out the Reach Greens.

The Riverlands was almost completely pro Rhaenrya, Jeyne Arryn too supported Rhaenrya. The only wildcards of the war would still being Cregan and Borros.

The Blacks had more manpower and far better commanders. The outcome seems particularly one sided.

That war is has only lasted months longer than the Dance...

Without dragons there was no room for  pivotal maneuvers of Blacks - mostly Daemon taking Harrenhall as rallying point in Riverlands , converging of Dragons in undefended King's Landing and burning of the Triarchy Fleet -  which would decimate Velaryons.

Blacks main advantage were dragon as was explicitly stated in the novel.

Greens still had all of the Royal treasury - one of the main reasons Rhaenyra lost the city and her life - “The sinews of war, a limitless supply of money.”  

Neither side had very capable commanders, Daemon had most experience  in war  and success in his plans, yet he made errors in using corruption : blood & cheese, mysaria, goldcloaks, betrayers which all had detrimental effect to Black cause.  Ser Criston Cole had turned around situation that was going badly by giving some victories to his side - yet was destroyed when Aemond abandoned his army to go on a futile burnination campaign. It goes like that with many of notable commanders.

Far lesser butterfly effect than exemption of the dragons could change the outcome of war. Greens even could have won if Borros  won battle of Kingsroad or if you replace him with more capable commander like Stannis.

Edited by Eltharion21

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2 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Without dragons there was no room for  pivotal maneuvers of Blacks - mostly Daemon taking Harrenhall as rallying point in Riverlands , converging of Dragons in undefended King's Landing and burning of the Triarchy Fleet -  which would decimate Velaryons.

Sure but that would not have changed the war. 

1) Harrenhall was a rallying point, that does not mean that the Riverlords would somehow become less loyal.

2) King's Landing can be taken later.

3) The Gullet, even without dragons, was going to be a defeat for the Greens. No Gullet and Jacaerys still lives.

 

 

2 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Blacks main advantage were dragon as was explicitly stated in the novel.

Main, not unique. As it happened, the Greens had dragons too and were decisive.

 

 

2 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Greens still had all of the Royal treasury - one of the main reasons Rhaenyra lost the city and her life - “The sinews of war, a limitless supply of money.” 

Given that without dragons, Rhaenrya wouldn't need have King's Landing and thus she would not need the Royal Treasure so badly, I'd say that's a disadvantage.

 

 

2 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Neither side had very capable commanders, Daemon had most experience  in war  and success in his plans, yet he made errors in using corruption : blood & cheese, mysaria, goldcloaks, betrayers which all had detrimental effect to Black cause.  Ser Criston Cole had turned around situation that was going badly by giving some victories to his side - yet was destroyed when Aemond abandoned his army to go on a futile burnination campaign. It goes like that with many of notable commanders.

You sure?? Because Dustin, the Lads, Pate etc. They do all sound like capable commanders. They effectively wiped out the Western army and did the same with the Baratheon one... And the only reason they did not destroy Hightower's was fue to... Well dragons. In fact the only reason Hightower lived so long was due to dragons, which not only bailed him out in more than one battle but make him able to add Black loyalists to his own levies by force.

I don't know how using corruption was a mistake. Nor did he gave dragons to the two betrayers. He wanted to give them, Casterly Rock and Storm's End. Had that happened is very unlikely they would have betrayed Rhaenrya.

 

 

2 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Far lesser butterfly effect than exemption of the dragons could change the outcome of war. Greens even could have won if Borros  won battle of Kingsroad or if you replace him with more capable commander like Stannis.

Yet, once again. Blacks had the competent commanders. 

And i don't know how the Greens would have won the war, nor how Stannis would've made it better than Borros without retorting to hindsight,  Cregan's army was days from reaching the capital.

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Without Dragons, I don't know if the blacks would have as much support.  The blacks would probably be more like Stannis stuck on Dragonstone with no Melisandre of shadowbabies. They have the wealth and fleet of house Veleryon but all they can really do is blockade and raid or maybe set up bases in friendly territories but where is the manpower coming from Difrtmark,, Dragonstone, mercenaries? The north and Vale provided limited support due to the coming Winter and subsequently the Hightowers and the Reach have to be depowered for the Riverlords and winter wolves to realistically hold out.

According to F&B, the Redwynes are close kin to the Hightowers but are a totall no-show in the dance, I cant think of any reason besides oversight and they did not want there fleet burned, I understand why the greens would seek an alliance with the Triarchy on the east coast but it makes no sense that they offer Dalton Greyjoy MOS and then let him raid unchallenged. Did the greens forget about the Redwynes?

Also Jace and Luc would not personally go to the North, Vale or Stormlands. They would have to communicate to potential supporters with Ravens or send envoys on week or month long journeys. The Greens already had a solid power base in Kingslanding, the Westerlands and the Reach. Most of the Riverlords were torn until Daemon showed up on Caraxes, so the Riverlands might have been more equal. Jeyne Arryn would most likely still support her cousin at the very least to protect her own position but would Creagan come south if Jace didn't personally build a relationship and supposedly make the pact of ice and fire?  

I don't know if Kinglanding would fall without dragons, even if Cole and Aemond leave and Aegon is still injured or incapacitated, especially if the Triarchy still attacks Driftmark, maybe I am underestimating the Goldcloaks loyalty to Daemon but again where is the manpower coming from. Again I could see Aemond going to Stomsend with an escort to gain support but not Luc or Jace

The greens were meant to loose from the beginning, the Reach is torn even the Hightowers own vassals side with the blacks. I guess they took affront to the killing of Lyman Beesbury.  The greens supposedly have the full or majority support of the Westerlands and Stormland but their armies are relatively small compared to WOTFK for 80 years of peace. You could probably drop a nuke on the Riverlands and they would still show up to the next battle with around 10k men, led by 13 year old Ben Blackwood. I always thought it would make more sense for Boros to route the Riverlords and then get defeated by the Northmen.

The Greens are so incompetent, they make Renly and Mace look like Stannis and Randyl Tarley.

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5 hours ago, Jay21 said:

Without the dragons there wouldn't have been the motivation to engineer the Dance.  Wouldn't have started.

Damn, You beat me to it! 

3 hours ago, Canon Claude said:
6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It would be just boring without the dragons.

Did you also find the War of the Five Kings boring?

The War of the Five fools, sry *cough*, Kings was/is elaborate. But The Dance wasn't so. To an extent. Dragons spiced it up quite literally. Medieval nukes 

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My comment was actually referencing George's own disinterst into writing the boring history of the kings of Westeros who didn't have dragons.

ASoIaF is a proper fantasy series with dragons and ice demons and zombies and sorcerers ... the Dance of the Dragons would be kind of a complete fantasy ripoff of the English Anarchy era if it were lacking the dragons.

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15 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

My comment was actually referencing George's own disinterst into writing the boring history of the kings of Westeros who didn't have dragons.

ASoIaF is a proper fantasy series with dragons and ice demons and zombies and sorcerers ... the Dance of the Dragons would be kind of a complete fantasy ripoff of the English Anarchy era if it were lacking the dragons.

Speak for yourself. That history isn’t boring to everyone. And if GRRM called it boring, then he’s biting the hand which feeds him.

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5 minutes ago, Canon Claude said:

Speak for yourself. That history isn’t boring to everyone. And if GRRM called it boring, then he’s biting the hand which feeds him.

Did you have any impression that I was speaking for anyone but myself?

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10 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Did you have any impression that I was speaking for anyone but myself?

That’s fair. I retract that. Though one thing I would ask is whether you could clarify if GRRM actually called it boring or if that was your word choice? 

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1 hour ago, The Merling King said:

They have the wealth and fleet of house Veleryon but all they can really do is blockade and raid or maybe set up bases in friendly territories but where is the manpower coming from Difrtmark,, Dragonstone, mercenaries?

At the start of the war the Blacks had the support of the Crownlands, who had to be subdued by Dragonfire, half the Reach  (which was the reason the Tyrells decided to sit that one out) and most of the Riverlords.

I don't really know where the idea of people not supporting the Blacks come but certainly not from the books.

 

 

1 hour ago, The Merling King said:

Most of the Riverlords were torn until Daemon showed up on Caraxes, so the Riverlands might have been more equal.

No, they weren tho.

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10 hours ago, frenin said:

Sure but that would not have changed the war. 

1) Harrenhall was a rallying point, that does not mean that the Riverlords would somehow become less loyal.

2) King's Landing can be taken later.

3) The Gullet, even without dragons, was going to be a defeat for the Greens. No Gullet and Jacaerys still lives.

Loyalty is fine but not enough for winning a war. Most Lords change theirs as power of rulers waxes and wanes.

Riverlands also was divided initially - when Brackens and Harrenhall were taken that turned tables, and Houses started joining for Blacks. Tullys' were actually neutral since aging Lord Grover supported Aegon II as a man of principles, Vances of Ataranta also were for Aegon II. 

King's Landing would be difficult to besiege in proximity of Storm's End and if they no longer hold the naval supremacy- without Dragons.

The Gullet never would have been defeat for the Greens- Triarchy lost 2/3rds of  and Velaryons 1/3rd  of their fleet and that is with the aid of 5 dragons, Triarchy also managed to sack Driftmark.  I don't doubt Jacaerys would find some equally daft way to get himself killed later.

10 hours ago, frenin said:

Main, not unique. As it happened, the Greens had dragons too and were decisive.

Dragons - though significant, were hardly main power of the Greens   whose main power is House Hightower - the real Kingmaker in the story. At the beginning of conflict Martin claims that forces of Black council are inferior to Hightowers "All their hosts combined could not match the power the Hightowers alone could field."

10 hours ago, frenin said:

Given that without dragons, Rhaenrya wouldn't need have King's Landing and thus she would not need the Royal Treasure so badly, I'd say that's a disadvantage.

Greens would had used funds for mercenaries, their losses weren't as significant as those of Blacks, main casualties were death of Important commanders, without dragons as weapons of mass destruction- war would had stalled for longer time. Funds were taken to Casterly Rock, Braavos and Oldtown for safekeeping and they could had finance war for longer then Blacks especially North with issue of Winter.

10 hours ago, frenin said:

You sure?? Because Dustin, the Lads, Pate etc. They do all sound like capable commanders. They effectively wiped out the Western army and did the same with the Baratheon one... And the only reason they did not destroy Hightower's was fue to... Well dragons. In fact the only reason Hightower lived so long was due to dragons, which not only bailed him out in more than one battle but make him able to add Black loyalists to his own levies by force.

Dustin and old Wolves who came to die, during Fishfeed he got 2/3rd's of his men killed.  Total casualties came to around 2000 for each side. Butcher's Ball wasn't a battle. He managed to kill Lord Ormund Hightower and Ser Bryndon Hightower - but died to the wounds latter had given him- great warrior - not so much of a commander.

I wont deem myself to consider either bunch of Muppets who came to war late, Crash Bandicoot which seems like he belongs in fairy tale or Pate the trampled as anything meaningful.

Commanders and men present during the Fishfeed, Butcher's Ball and First Tumbleton aren't the same as those in Second Tumbleton and Kingsroad and last battle is mostly success due to failure of Lord Borros Baratheon.

10 hours ago, frenin said:

I don't know how using corruption was a mistake. Nor did he gave dragons to the two betrayers. He wanted to give them, Casterly Rock and Storm's End. Had that happened is very unlikely they would have betrayed Rhaenrya.

If you don't know that you are blinder than Aemond One-Eye. Act of murdering Viserys grandchild alone moved chain of events that costed Rhaenyra her crown, life along with her son and all dragons in her care. 

Betrayers wouldn't settle for anything less than becoming Kings themselves fault wasn't in their rewards but their character:

"For all these reasons, Lord Hammer (as he now styled himself) began to dream of crowns. “Why be a lord when you can be a king?” he told the men who began to gather round him. And talk was heard in camp of a prophecy of ancient days that said, “When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him.” Whence came these words remains a mystery (not from Hammer himself, who could neither read nor write), but within a few days every man at Tumbleton had heard them."

10 hours ago, frenin said:

Yet, once again. Blacks had the competent commanders. 

And i don't know how the Greens would have won the war, nor how Stannis would've made it better than Borros without retorting to hindsight,  Cregan's army was days from reaching the capital.

Repeating things  doesn't make them true.

Stannis would had given meaningful and timely support to the Greens, unlike Borros who waited for coast to clear. Hindsight isn't needed. Stannis knows his history and strength of each House in Westeros.

Battle of Kingsroad who was very similar to  The Last Storm- charging uphill with knights in muddy terrain on a defensive position, even more leaving flanks open and allowing Crownland turn cloaks  to attack from rear - when they should had been used as arrow fodder.

If they had won - they would prepare King's Landing for Northern siege- House Hightower still had strength  and mercenaries could had been recruited.  North if defeated wouldn't manage to return for years because of Winter. 

Edited by Eltharion21

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