What we once said on the White Wall Wiki

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<Tim> This is the page for Herewardi related issues concerning Whitewall

A heroband from Guy Jobbins' Swords Campaign.

Most background is in the Smartgroup discussion group for this game [http://www.smartgroups.com/groups/swords]

Who was at Whitewall?
* Warleader [Illig Stargazer|Illig]
* Uljar Breaknose is the Standardbearer
* 100-thane Yodi Leg-Breaker
* 100-thane [Seledd Brightspear|Seledd]
* 100-thane, name unknown, who died there (and whose standard was lost!)
* 10-thane Siggyr
* 10-thane Brenna (was she 10-thane then? or afterwards?)
* Dori (and Kristen)
* Jamal (and Abul)
* Hrolf (and Blackbeak and Brightfeather)
* Fynn

*Vastyr was there, but not in the Legion.
*Aelfwyrd, Geran and Enfrew were not at Whitewall.
*No word on Malan's whereabouts.

NPC "grunts":
"Shrev, Egil, Fasten-Spear and Hrodar" who report to Siggyr.

<guy>there could have been other 100-thanes who also died. guidance given in Storm Tribe is that humakti legions always try to fill the top ranks whenever possible. each hundred thane requires the service of 2 ten thanes, and each ten thane requires the service of two warriors - so a 100 thane really needs a the service of 6 warriors, minimum. there are also certain senior 'nco' positions like the standard bearer, drummer, horn-blower, and so on. if we assume that the temple numbered around 100 strong at whitewall, then there could have been the warleader, 10 hundred thanes, the standard bearer, drummer, and horn-blower, 28 ten thanes and 58 warriors. it looks as though 8 100-thanes, around 25 10-thanes and 45 warriors might have died.</guy>

<Jane>Good points. And going by that concept, why do we at start of game have only 2 100-thanes and 4 ten-thanes? If the goal is to have as many as possible? "around 30" total will support more than that. Either that *isn't* the goal, or there's a terrible shortage of possible candidates!</Jane>

<guy>well, i think there's three reasons in my head. first was that i was thinking there was less time between whitewall and the beginning of the campaign. therefore there hadn't been the appropriate holy days for formally investing new hundred-thanes etc. the second idea - which to be honest i forgot when i made the comment above - is that so much of the temple's regalia is missing that some of the hundreds are defunct. each hundred has - or should have - a standard, or treasure. so actually there were far less than 10 hundred-thanes, perhaps only three. if the regalia of only three hundreds survived the temple's decline until whitewall, then the loss of the 3rd standard would be a mighty blow. this ties in very nicely to the idea that a lunar unit captured a treasure from the temple - as someone said, plothook on a plate plus a major, major humiliation on the battlefield. third reason is simple - not enough qualified candidates. hundredthanes have high requirements - perhaps devotees of Hereward, initiates of Efrodar, and have been ten-thanes for a number of years, or something like that, plus the need to be great warriors and leaders. </guy>

<Jane>ST p106
"A Hundred-thane is an experienced warrior who commands a hundred men. He must be a devotee, and must have spent at least 2 years as a Ten-thane. He is expected to have Close Combat 10W2 and Warband Tactics 10W. He has a Shieldman and Swordman, who act as his bodyguard; a servant, who looks after his gear; and a secretary, who takes care of he administration of the unit."
Yes, I do have those numbers marked in as aims on Dori's character sheet, and she has two game-years less 3(?) weeks to get there.

<Jane, later>Guy, if as we suspect, in current game-time we've just managed to mislay our current 100-thane (Yodi was due in Pavis before us!), does that mean that yet another standard went with him?</Jane>

<guy> almost certainly, yes. the alternative is that for some reason the surviving regalia is kept near the warleader. you lot certainly don't have it.</guy>

<Jane>If having regalia is required to be a 100-Thane, I think Yodi must have had it. Drat. I wonder what it was in his case? We'd have known, after all. Probably used to take turns guarding it.</Jane>

<Jane>Makes that trip to visit some Giants even more important, doesn't it?</Jane>

<guy>that's the plan - if any of you ever make it as far as being considered for hundred thane</guy>

<Jane>Two game years less two (three?) weeks to go. More seriously, getting it back for someone else to use would be major brownie points for us.</Jane>

What happened?
* Somehow, we managed to take about 75% casualities.
* Somehow, we felt ourselves to have been disgraced (outsiders may disagree)
* Somehow, Seledd made herself very unpopular.
* For some reason, we left Whitewall early.

Four separate events? Do any of these combine?
Looks from current discussion as if 1 and 2 are both the Shargashi incident.
3, Seledd, may have been us blaming her for that (why?), or a later event at Whitewall (what did she do during the BatBlat?), or something later.
Still no clear idea why we left early

More from Guy by email:

I think that players have overestimated casualties suffered by the temple. We know that the temple currently has aroud 30 members, at least 5 of whom
have been recruited since retreating from Whitewall in late storm season 1620. The temple numbered no more than 100 at the beginning of Whitewall, is my guess. I'd say 75% casualties.

We know some other things for sure:
*the temple retreated from Whitewall well before the end of the seige
*there is a sense of failure, which to me implies a loss of honour rather than simply the suffering of casualties
*Hundredthane Seledd Brightspear is reviled

The loss of honour:
Could it be that while everyone else thinks we did
really well, by our (rather high) standards we failed?
And it's the combination of praise and failure that we
can't take, and drove us to leave?

Suggestions from Donald:

I'm not sure why there
should be some sort of disgrace, perhaps the fact that some Shargashi
escaped back though hell offends the Humatki sense of honour.

<guy> the pervading atmosphere at the beginning of our campaign was one of retreating from failure. given that the company left whitewall almost a year before it falls, i figured that there had to be something which had driven them to leave - otherwise they would stay and fight to the last sword (because they seem to be like that). <Jane>And beyond. Watched a program about the Spartans last night: when their pikes broke, they used swords, when their swords broke, they used fists and teeth. At this point the Persians (who after all only outnumbered them a few thousand to one) decided that enough was enough, retreated and loosed an arrow-storm. I think Leonidas would qualify for the Legion.</Jane> it doesn't necessarily have to be anything to do with the seige, but it probably does.</guy>

Another thought, perhaps they were employed to protect Broyan's
heir and the Shargashi attacked the palace and killed the child.
If there had been a prophesy that Whitewall would not fall while
the child was alive the Humatki failure would be seen as causing
the fall of the city.

<guy> so long as this fits the timelines of the seige and our campaign then i like that idea a great deal. but since the city hasn't fallen at the time of their departure, what is the immediate cause that precipitates their leaving? the decision of the war leader, an argument with another leader, being banished by [Broyan]? </guy>

<Jane> I once came up with a vague idea that one of Hrolf's duck friends blames Kallyr for the ducks being treated as scapegoats in 1613. He challenges her to a duel, loses, and we leave rapidly, dragging him by the scruff of the neck (if he survives).

<guy> i don't think the entire temple would decamp becuase of one duck's problems with authority figures - if they did they'd never stop moving.</guy>

<Jane>Agreed. Unless they thought the duck might try again and win? no way! silly feather-head can just obey orders or get executed.</Jane>
more reasons?

Or, we just aren't a viable fighting force any more?

Or, wait till 1620 and we could be part of the effort to evacuate civilians (see Whitewall list for discussion of this). This doesn't give the "failure" aspect unless we really mess it up, of course. And while we could pick up the "Broyan's heir" idea here, with my Whitewall hat on, I'd rather save that particular disaster for Kallyr to accomplish. So who else could we fail to save?

Reading some of the Lunar stuff, I spotted something about the concept of a Vexillum in Lunar Bits n' Bobs. Go and read that... suppose we somehow became aware that one of the Lunar Vexillia (the gadget, not the unit of troops) is in fact one of the missing Herewardi magical widgets? And that it's been corrupted/we can't get it back? I'm sure we can blame Seledd for this somehow!

<Reinier, by email>
as an idea for failure, how about just losing to a particularly hated enemy, one which the defenders were counting on us to stop?
Losing would be nothing new to the Legion, but it always hurts when you lose to the Special Enemy.

<Jane, in emailed reply>
What Special Enemies does the Legion have?

I have vague memories of there being Arkati trolls out there somewhere...?

<More from Reinier>
Maybe we even lost a treasure, or it became part of that Lunar vexilla you mentioned.

<Jane again>
So we know where it is, and someday we'll get it back.
Plot-hook on a plate.

Remember that idea they had about the Shargashi
popping out of Hell, and being held off by some random
bunch of Humakti (that's us!) until the route got
flooded? Considering the losses we took, I bet we
did lose at least one Hundred's standard there. So
again, we know exactly where it is. In Hell, in a part
that's now flooded and full of dead (or annoyed, or both) Shargashi. Pick it
up next time you're passing, will you?


And it's Seledd's fault because she choose to hold the line while the sea cut off the route to hell instead of going after the standard. Correct tactical decision but not as honourable as expected.

At least some of the Shargashi are still alive to avoid the situation of PC Shargashi being sent on a automatic death mission. They've just got to survive a major conflict with a bunch of Humakti, retreat into hell and then find a way out. Which of course means that trophy they captured probably isn't there any longer.

<Jane>We get to visit Alkoth! Ooh, fun!</Jane>

<TIM> Nicks post on the First Battle of Chaos reminded me of something, as the Bat is rather ingrained into the Carmanian collective consciousness, and as probably the only Carmanian representative on the defending side, perhaps I can work something for Jamal here. Any Ideas? It might at least give me a hook to hang Jamals apparent dislike of Vastyr on.... </TIM>

<Jane>I think we need to hang fire and look at what we were actually doing in the BatBlat first. We weren't flying, we know that much. I bet the Herewardi were in on the "summon every wind you can lay your hands on" bit, as we do have this North Wind connection. But it looks like my original idea of us holding the Lunar Army off the walls with a Bat overhead just isn't going to happen. Sounds like we were down in the cellars fighting undead sea-monsters?
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