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  1. - Top - End - #1441
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by snowblizz View Post
    Which they absolutely do not. Proven by linguists, there are 4 (though if it was Inuit or another one I can't recall). The idea about the "X amounts of words" is totally bogus.
    I think you're confusing lexemes and words. In an agglutinative language, there are many, many words built up around a core lexeme. It's quite possible that one particular Inuit language has four lexemes meaning "snow", just like it's quite possible that there are a hundred words meaning "snow", that in English would be rendered as multi-word phrases. I doubt, however, that there's exactly four words for "snow" in every Inuit language (or dialect, as you prefer).

    Quote Originally Posted by snowblizz View Post
    And when 1 "word" is an entire sentence (say your entire quoted reply in one "word") of sounds they don't exactly have "words" in a way to compare it to English words. Because you can't compare words like that in any langauge for it to have any meaning.
    Inuit has words and they do compare to English words. They are not the same in all respects, but they can be identified using the same basic tests. Your intuitive use of "word" as being a "short" unit is not the linguistic notion of "word".


    Edit: I agree that the claim that Inuit languages have hundreds of words for snow is uninformative and pointlessly vague, but I don't think your criticism shows why, hence my elaboration.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    About the Rome/Greece vs Christianity thing, it still is an open debate. That famous speech held in Regensburg in 2006 did hold a good summary of the problem, with many points of view. There is little doubt that the church took up a lot of material from Classical Culture. Augustine also talked about how this was necessary, that it might have been a pagan culture, but it gave instruments that could be used by the new faith, too. Just to make an example, allegorical interpretation was an invention of scholars of Homer.

    Galloglaich probably is talking about more practical things. Like the expansion of bureaucracy, the writing of letters, or certain models of teaching in schools. The Church, in this, doubtlessly became the cultural link between the late Western Empire and areas that had never been submitted to it. The use and spread of Latin is the most egregious signal.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    But then you had the Laws of Justinian, which outlawed all sorts of "pagan" elements of Greek culture, like panktration and athletics in general.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepbluediver View Post
    That's very useful, thank you. Most TV shows, movies, cartoons, etc, show a single blacksmith (occasionally with an apprentice) working alone in his shop. It sounds like that's the equivalent of one guy assembling Ford pickup-trucks in his garage. So it's not exactly impossible, but historically inaccurate.
    Yes that is a very good way to put it. A lot of metalwork was basically done in workshops powered by watermills with a variety of large tools like mechanical triphammers and automatic bellows and so on.

    You don't make a suit of armor outside over a campfire with your shirt off.

    This video should give you some idea. He gets the trip hammer going at about 02:15. You need something like that to make armor and swords efficiently.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M24nZbhKkdU

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    But then you had the Laws of Justinian, which outlawed all sorts of "pagan" elements of Greek culture, like panktration and athletics in general.
    They could kind of take what they wanted from Roman Law (including specifically Justinians Laws like the Digest) and it would have the weight of Authority based on previous Church precedent. I.e. the Church approved this or that Auctore or type of law as sufficiently Holy so princes would then use that to justify using it.

    Princes in particular liked Roman Laws that codified the powers of lords, landowners, and princes as being just and righteous. Like laws saying that you needed to pay them rent and taxes.

    Burghers looked for other things like essays on civic virtue and civil law related to the rights of towns, which they used to incorporate into their Handfeste

    For example around ~1250 the city fathers of Berne apparently conspired with the Cistercian Friars of Friensberg Abbey to add legal statutes to a 1218 document which were derived from Justinian law thus creating a falsified document declaring their (extremely extensive) Town Rights as a Free City.

    This is an auto-translation of a German wikipedia page on it.

    The Church even had a term for this kind of 'document hacking' - Pia Fraus "Pious Deception"

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    Last edited by Galloglaich; 2018-07-06 at 10:39 PM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    So... French?
    Not at all!




    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    I understand completely - this happens to me often as well (usually big arguments or interesting discussions start up right when I'm going on a work trip). Enjoy your films, I will only briefly comment to give you something to mull over for your triumphant return.
    As you can see, I had to respond!



    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    I'm not arguing that they are equal, I think they are distinct for sure, but I was saying that what gets labeled as Christianity is often really just Latin or Greek culture, and that these cultural systems - the laws for example, but also less tangible mores and traditions, are as important as Christianity in the development of medieval culture.
    I think the specificity of medieval culture was to operate a synthesis between the huge streams that are the Antiquities and christianity and others even less tangible, like germanic laws, Celtic mythology and so on. That's really apparent in the roman like the famous books of Chretien de Troyes promoted by Marie de France (euh... roman is the name of the post latine language in France, then the name of the literature that followed the chanson de geste, then the French for novel... here, I mean the second). You have like different seams woven together to address the specific of the time. So you can read this kind of book as a way to adapt the christian ideal to the warriors, as a book of rules for the court, as a rewriting of older tales... Each proposition give you different options but each is only a part of the synthesis. It' not that they labeled something this or that, they adapted different sources in a new frame and that's were I think we can speak of a distinct medieval culture or civilisation.


    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    Certainly the dividing line between the Greek influenced zone (Russian alphabet being essentially Greek for example) and the Latin is one of the stronger themes of medieval life in Europe.
    Quite right that! Medieval should perhaps only count as a notion of time for the orthodox part of the world, as much as for China.


    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    I just don't think you could say what was vilified in one place was so in another in the medieval context. The various estates (burghers, clergy, University students, gentry, knights, princes), the hundreds of great families, the numerous cultural-religious milieux (Greek vs. Latin are just two of the bigger ones - but you could also distinguish quite clearly between Tyrolian and Bavarian say, or between Alsatian and Provencal, Occitian and Burgundian, Estonian and Latvian, Croat and Serb and so on), all had their own ideas of what was good and bad, what was fashionable and what was dull.
    Yes and no... You have a material culture, that's not the same as a political identity, again not the same as cultural representations, not the same as literature and son on... Attesting similarities in one domain does not mean that all is equal... And were you trace the limit define subject matter. For example The US and China share a material culture: we wear the same shoes. But I can obviously speak of China and America as different entities. And then in China like in America Beijing is not Nanjing as much as Atlanta is not Philadelphia, I can go on and on, till the street corner, different from the next street corner (and yes, an anthropologist made a book about this specific culture...)
    In my opinion the least common denominator of the medieval culture was christianity. We can choose to discuss the specifics of some place or to look how some phenomenon were more generally adopted.

    And in medieval time, political limits were really less relevant than today. A political map is certainly interesting but tell only part of the story.

    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post

    Each of these tiny polities also had a very uneven and variegated level of indoctrination into Christianity and in many cases, their own regional variants of it, as well as varying degrees of Latin (or sometimes Greek) cultural influence, and new cultural innovations which were happening at a very rapid pace particularly in the most dynamic regions. This is precisely what happened in the Lange D'Oc in Southern France, their rapid local cultural growth had crossed over into 'editing' their own regional version of Christianity (at least among a relatively small if influential minority of people) and the Church reached a breaking point where they could no longer tolerate that, thus leading to the destruction of that region.

    In other places however they weren't so successful - Bohemia defied them successfully and after the 1420's the Church had very little influence there.
    Here I should point out that christianity, the church and the Orthodox Church are in my opinion different things. The power of the church and the level of indoctrination are certainly a thing worth discussing, but again, in the context of christianity, not defining it. I talked to you before of the Six Ages of The World. The copy I'm familiar with is from the bookstore of a bishop of a mountainous region. The surviving ceiling of his son's house is painted with scenes inspired from the book (albeit made a bit latter, in 1505). Like this book, cultural productions and materials artifacts bear testimony of common phenomenons across continental Europe around something that call itself christianity. As much as I think it is illuminating to know the specifics of each time and places, some phenomenon have a wider reach.



    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglaich View Post
    The Church wasn't going to lead an inquisition into Switzerland to revise their practices and say, ban them from dressing up in Krampus costumes on 12th Night / Winter Solstace were they? Who would lead the army there to do it?
    In fact the inquisition in the diocese of Lauanne is really well documented. As soon as 1430 we have the first trial for witchcraft (mainly men and described as heretics and sorcerers but still...). The diocese included a part of the Swiss alps were the same phenomenon are fairly well documented.
    Lausanne was also the place of famous animal trials by the way.
    And the Higher Rhone valley was an independent diocese. The duke of Savoy was all too happy to send his army there.

    I have a few interesting ethnological works on the region, albeit for more modern time obviously. Not only did they show even remote places as populated by peoples with political motivations connected to the rest of Europe, they also paint a dynamic around popular practices were the church is not exactly an opposing force. Also interestingly, I have the field work of an anthropologist on a little town in the mountain. She was on the place for more than 60 years. Interestingly, after a time, the local people were referring to her when they discussed the folklore of their town, as if the observer became the authority.
    I know we are away from medieval time but those little factoids are like warning about the dynamics of popular culture.


    In many places, cultural homogeneity was not the rule, quite to the contrary. The Church tried to manage it as best they could, but it was not as effective as people tend to think, in fact by the later part of the middle ages it was starting to unravel. The Reformation didn't come out of nowhere.
    Yes, but by trying the church shaped the time period. And again, I stress the difference between church and Christianity. The Reformation prove the triumph and integration of christian ideology even among the general population.


    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan
    About the Rome/Greece vs Christianity thing, it still is an open debate. That famous speech held in Regensburg in 2006 did hold a good summary of the problem, with many points of view. There is little doubt that the church took up a lot of material from Classical Culture. Augustine also talked about how this was necessary, that it might have been a pagan culture, but it gave instruments that could be used by the new faith, too. Just to make an example, allegorical interpretation was an invention of scholars of Homer.
    I like the way they used Ovide. But I mainly agree with you here

    probably is talking about more practical things. Like the expansion of bureaucracy, the writing of letters, or certain models of teaching in schools. The Church, in this, doubtlessly became the cultural link between the late Western Empire and areas that had never been submitted to it. The use and spread of Latin is the most egregious signal.
    Again, I think you are quite right on every count. Thank you for that!

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero
    But then you had the Laws of Justinian, which outlawed all sorts of "pagan" elements of Greek culture, like panktration and athletics in general.
    One of the trace that I never really followed was the relative decline of the use of flowers in early medieval time. As valorized as antiquities were, it is again not a univocal phenomenon and some practices were explicitly frown upon.

    Yeah... I should have taken twice as much days of vacation... To remember for next year... And I didn't see the last comment... next time... no more time today till really late...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    But then you had the Laws of Justinian, which outlawed all sorts of "pagan" elements of Greek culture, like panktration and athletics in general.
    This is why I talk about a debate: a debate often between various factions in the church(es). Their religion had been born by Jews, but had almost immediately absorbed Hellenistic cultural traits. As a result, there was (is) a constant conflict between the Jewish and the Hellenised traits. Add to this the new elements, which meant that even the proponents of e.g. Jewish traits had to account for the fact that they weren't Jews themselves. Those who wanted to exclude one side could not just say "we simply are the other side, as is".

    So there is a lot of back-and-forth between two irreconcilable worldviews, for example when it comes to iconism and iconoclasty. Or you have Marcionism.

    Anyway, the point is that they knew that they could pick up from Hellenism, but not from paganism, which was an important part of Hellenism. So they had to draw a lot of lines, which tended to move around a bit. Thinking of Justinian, closing down the Academy probably was a big deal. It's also true that paganism didn't fade away quietly. Iirc, it was actually on the rise in V century Asia Minor. Interestingly, however, Justinian also forbade the destruction of pagan temples, which runs counter to the examples of hagiography, but made a lot of practical sense.

    At the same time, you have II century Christian apologist Justin trying to explain himself by saying "you know, it's kinda like in this pagan myth, where x thing happens".

    Just think about this: until recently, the clergy was forbidden from joining into any celebration of holidays outside the divine service. This is because they were aware of the many pagan rituals that had survived by association with the new holidays. So they didn't go as far as forbidding them to the populace, but they refused to legitimise them by joining in.

    Lots of blurred lines, adoptions, absorption, rejection...

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Ignoring construction, what are the differences between bronze weapons and "iron" weapons. If the timeframe is important, lets say arround 300 BC, hellenistic culture.

    Would a bronze Kopis or Xiphos be functional different then the same weapon made from "iron"?

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Zombimode View Post
    Ignoring construction, what are the differences between bronze weapons and "iron" weapons. If the timeframe is important, lets say arround 300 BC, hellenistic culture.

    Would a bronze Kopis or Xiphos be functional different then the same weapon made from "iron"?
    Iron is cheaper (because iron ore is common, as is coal/charcoal to heat it), though probably doesn't hold an edge as well.

    Bronze is about 10% denser by volume, so slightly heavier. Given the sophistication of bronzework at that time, compared to ironwork, it's probably the better quality weapon.

    If you were outfitting an army, you'd go for mass-produced iron weapons. If you were outfitting your personal panoply, you'd go for bronze.
    Last edited by Kiero; 2018-07-10 at 04:07 PM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    If you want to really get into the christianity and pagan influences, you have to remember that there was this place called Constantinople and that there are, in fact, places east of Vienna. Okay, a bit condescending sentence there, but Anglosphere has a bad tendency to forget about eastern half of Europe, let alone Asia.

    In this context, this is pretty crucial. Not only do you have places like Great Moravia, Hungary, Poland and so on there, there are other areas where islam and christianity were coexisting more or less peacefully. The most prominent was probably Khwarezmian empire, but Hungary was no slouch either (jews and muslims held even very high royal offices, usually economical in focus). Before the rise of Islam, you also need to include north Africa in this - and also after this, of sorts, what with Iberian peninsula.

    An interesting thing to look into are Constantine and Metod, two monks from Constantinople who were invited to Rome and managed to make Slavic language a liturgic one for a time - and also were on missions to the Khwarezmians, they had a pretty interesting life. Their power struggles with East Frank missionaries are pretty well documented. What this shows is that Rome and Constantinople at this time were both kinda-sorta thinking about cancelling the schism thing and weren't as fractured as people tend to think.

    What is also interesting are actual practices of priests in these new areas and how the popes saw them - there were several missions to Hungary to teach the priests how to priest properly and stop them from marrying, gosh dang it. Add to that that there was significant debate over who picks a bishop, king or pope, and there was a lot of uncertainity, conflict and shady practices, and locals often just ignored all that noise and did what they wanted. Last plausible evidence of ritual cannibalism in Europe are from, IIRC 17th century Hungary (present day Slovakia), and those bones with eaten marrow probably weren't meant to be the Body of Christ.

    There is some truth to generalizing the France - Germany - Italy area into one, though. They were all part of Charlemagne's empire, and a lot of their similarities and practical applications of christianity come from that, and since France and HRE were the superpowers of their age, they influenced a lot of satellite kingdoms. Remember struggle between Constantinople and Eastern Francia between who will have the dominant influence over christianity in Hungary? So, while we can talk in some generalization about the Charlemagne's legacy kingdoms, this same generalization doesn't necessarily apply to the rest of christian Europe, christian Africa or christian Asia.

    For a nice place to start looking into this, I suggest Zákon sudnyj ljudem (Judicial law for common people) - it's based in Byzantine laws (specifically the Ekologa), but apparently served as more of an addition to already existing judicial practices, and focuses more on the topics that christianity wanted to regulate. I'd also suggest Regestum Varadiense (actual records of trials), but I have yet to see that one available to public anywere.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Martin Greywolf View Post
    Constantine and Metod, two monks from Constantinople
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiero View Post
    Iron is cheaper (because iron ore is common, as is coal/charcoal to heat it), though probably doesn't hold an edge as well.

    Bronze is about 10% denser by volume, so slightly heavier. Given the sophistication of bronzework at that time, compared to ironwork, it's probably the better quality weapon.

    If you were outfitting an army, you'd go for mass-produced iron weapons. If you were outfitting your personal panoply, you'd go for bronze.
    To add to this, from everything I've read you can't cast iron weapons- they just end up to brittle (or swords do at least, maybe a spear would still be functional). This means you have to forge them individually, and if they break you have to re-purify then re-carbonize the iron to make low-quality steal again. With bronze, you can just melt the chunks down and poor it back into the mold over and over again, with no loss in structural integrity.
    Last edited by Deepbluediver; 2018-07-10 at 10:48 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rater202 View Post
    It's not called common because the sense is common, it's called common because it's about common things.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    The thing about the religion, which I know we have to tread carefully about, is simply in how you define it.

    Today, anyone can call themselves a Christian or a member of any religion and it's accepted. In the Medieval world, at least after Charlemagne's campaign against the Saxons, it's true that most people in Europe accepted Baptism. But that was not sufficient to be called a Christian in the eyes of the Church in Rome.

    Actual instruction in religious canon and enforced adherence to religious codes of behavior, from the paying of tithes etc. to the conduct of holy days to minutae like how weddings were conducted, took place very unevenly across Europe. Many, many wars were fought in attempts to enforce a more uniform and acceptable adherence to Church orthodoxy. The Church heavily used their greatest weapon, the "ban hammer" of interdiction and excommunication in order to get people in line, but they overused it and gradually the impact of it wore off. Locals adapted to the inconvenience and found other ways to sanctify births, marriages and deaths.

    This was especially exacerbated during the so-called "Babylonian Captivity" when there were two and even three rival Popes, each of whom excommunicated the followers of the other.

    There were three main problems for the Church.

    • Church leaders mixed the push to enforce official doctrine with their own personal (family, financial, or power) interests, often rather blatantly. This started to assume labels like Simony, the selling of Indulgences and of course, blatant military exercise of naked force by Bishops and Archbishops and so on.
    • Church doctrine on the finer points of things like marriage, priests celibacy, the prerogatives of prelates or rules for women had more to do with local Italian customs (or perhaps you could say, Latin culture) than they did to actual Christian religion. These kinds of customs were often the ones most hotly resented by locals.
    • and locals often had sufficient political and military power to resist Church pressure.


    The Church attempted to enter Frisia for example on 10 different occasions between 1100- 1500 and were rebuffed every time. The only religious Order the locals would tolerate was the Franciscans.

    Activity within Swiss Confederation territory (as distinct from "Switzerland" alluded to upthread), was entirely contingent on public opinion. If the locals didn't agree someone should be prosecuted, it wasn't going to happen.

    And in Bohemia of course, the attempted Church crackdown and Crusade was catastrophically annihilated. The initial plan was to send an inquisitor to 'correct' local practices, the Bohemian nobles signed a famous letter warning the Vatican not to try it, and that is what led to the Crusade.

    In Lithuania they got a much better deal, including freedom from harassment (or financial depradation) from foreign Priests or prelates.

    All kinds of 'heresies' from numerous variations of Gnosticism such as seen among the Albigensians of Lange D'oc, or the English Wycliffite heresy adopted by the Hussites, were found all over Europe and the Church was playing an increasingly unsuccessful game of "whack a mole" to try to suppress them, sometimes through wars and Crusades, sometimes through inquisitions, sometimes through compromises with political agencies.

    In addition, latent heathenism or paganism (which was generally not considered heresy unless it was used to create some new variant of Christianity) prevailed in much of the countryside and in many towns.

    Even among the Religious, the monks, friars and nuns who lived in cloistered communities, the Church was struggling to control sexual scandals and outbreaks of heresy and other questionable practices. The practice of alchemy and black magic was considered widespread in certain religious orders.

    My point is that the degree of the conformity to what Rome considered appropriate religious practice was very spotty to say the least in later medieval Europe. And this in fact is what directly led to a large number of the more significant wars.


    By the way I think it is disingenuous to suggest that "Christian and Muslim lived in harmony" anywhere in Europe, but it's true that Poland developed a fairly strict religious tolerance law after their family union / merger with Lithuania. This was done at the insistence of the Lithuanians precisely because they did not want foreign prelates to be imposed upon them nor would they accept inquisitors or Dominicans to come among them and verify that they were practicing their religion in accordance with doctrine and canon law. To be sure, they in fact were not.


    There were some 'friendly' Muslims settled in Lithuania and later Poland who were allowed to practice their faith in peace so long as they remained loyal to the Kingdom / Duchy, but the general relationship to Muslim polities ranged from a very wary truce, to skirmishing and raids, to outright full scale war more or less continuously.

    When it comes to individual regions, everybody in Europe tends to think their land was unique and all the others fit the cliche. But in this period the unique and particular local variation was in fact the general pattern.


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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepbluediver View Post
    To add to this, from everything I've read you can't cast iron weapons- they just end up to brittle (or swords do at least, maybe a spear would still be functional). This means you have to forge them individually, and if they break you have to re-purify then re-carbonize the iron to make low-quality steal again. With bronze, you can just melt the chunks down and poor it back into the mold over and over again, with no loss in structural integrity.
    Mostly yes, with the proviso that homogeneous composition is not actually desirable in most weapons. A bronze sword cast in a mold is not the equal of something assembled with the metallurgy of different parts in mind.

    And even then, individual forged iron is still going to be cheaper in most cases.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    As far as I know 'pure' wrought iron swords were pretty rare, they usually had some 'steely iron' in the edges.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    To what extent can PMCs get a hold of military vehicles/military robots (UAVs in particular) I understand one can purchase old fighter planes after they've been de-militarized, and simple military vehicles are often used, but what could a private military company do? Assuming they're strong financially and have ties to companies that can actually make the military stuff.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    To what extent can PMCs get a hold of military vehicles/military robots (UAVs in particular) I understand one can purchase old fighter planes after they've been de-militarized, and simple military vehicles are often used, but what could a private military company do? Assuming they're strong financially and have ties to companies that can actually make the military stuff.
    No idea but I imagine this depends a lot on where they can take delivery. If you want operational tanks delivered to say France, I imagine it's more difficult to arrange purchase than if you can operate out of Djibouti.
    Last edited by Mr Beer; 2018-07-12 at 05:17 PM.
    Re: 100 Things to Beware of that Every DM Should Know

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    93. No matter what the character sheet say, there are only 3 PC alignments: Lawful Snotty, Neutral Greedy, and Chaotic Backstabbing.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    To what extent can PMCs get a hold of military vehicles/military robots (UAVs in particular) I understand one can purchase old fighter planes after they've been de-militarized, and simple military vehicles are often used, but what could a private military company do? Assuming they're strong financially and have ties to companies that can actually make the military stuff.

    mostly, they can get hold of things like MRAPs and other light/medium armoured wheeled vehicles, but anything "front line" is off limits. they could get a MRAP, for example, but not a Bradley, or even a M113 APC. their is just no need for them to have that sort of kit. tanks are out of the question, at least for a "real world" PMC.


    UAV's are a tricky question. theirs no reason they couldn't operate light scouting drones of some sort, but I have never heard of them doing so as thats the sort of investment that gets complex and hard to justify to shareholders when you can piggy back off the military and use its kit.



    the key thing is to understand what PMCs actually do mostly, which is sub out for army soldiers in bodyguarding or logistics duties. these are jobs with (relatively) low risk, good pay and avoid any potentially nasty legal arguments about rules of engagement (since they would only be shooting in self defence). Its cheaper for the Military to use a PMC and its own troops for these jobs, so thats where they get used. assaulting sites, storming building and such need are much more dangerous jobs that are more likely to get PMC operators killed (and unlike governments, PMC are not immune to prosecution), so the PMCs are loath to take these jobs.
    Last edited by Storm Bringer; 2018-07-13 at 01:57 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Bringer View Post
    mostly, they can get hold of things like MRAPs and other light/medium armoured wheeled vehicles, but anything "front line" is off limits. they could get a MRAP, for example, but not a Bradley, or even a M113 APC. their is just no need for them to have that sort of kit. tanks are out of the question, at least for a "real world" PMC.


    UAV's are a tricky question. theirs no reason they couldn't operate light scouting drones of some sort, but I have never heard of them doing so as thats the sort of investment that gets complex and hard to justify to shareholders when you can piggy back off the military and use its kit.
    Is that because of laws or expenses? A PMC, well connected to big businesses, is trying to eradicate shape changers (in secret) They sometimes operate in banana republics, warzones and other places where they can put money in pockets, and wish they could do the same in europe and northern America.

    I was thinking something like a predator drone would be a nice way to deliver sizable explosive payloads, I mean, I could just have some military planes from the 50's or retrofitted civies drop explosives, but that isn't as cool and probably raises it's own questions. I want to modernize a force, but they need to be able to get away with this stuff. It's difficult to hide a plane.
    Last edited by The Jack; 2018-07-14 at 10:16 AM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    Is that because of laws or expenses?
    Laws. And more correctly the ability and willingness of a state to enforce it's monopoly on violence.

    Expense is a relative term after all.

    Just watch Lord of War and realise they are probably not exaggerating too much.

    The problem is that working in any reasonably coherent state means you are 1) outgunned and 2) dealing with some very unhappy people when rolling intoa town with your private tanks.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    I I mean, I could just have some military planes from the 50's or retrofitted civies drop explosives, but that isn't as cool and probably raises it's own questions. I want to modernize a force, but they need to be able to get away with this stuff. It's difficult to hide a plane.
    Oddly enough a Cessna can carry a fairly decent load of boom, and they’re common enough that even moving four or five into an area wouldn't raise alarm. Although he wing mounts might raise eyebrows by people with enough experience.

    http://airportjournals.com/overlooke...etnam-air-war/

    https://www.planespotters.net/photo/...-2-a-skymaster

    http://www.combatreform.org/RLIfireforce.htm (About half way down the page)

    Edit: Geeze, sometimes I'm blind. Last link is Lynx, which look a lot like the Cessna Airmansters.
    Last edited by Telok; 2018-07-14 at 11:01 PM.
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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    No idea where I saw it figured out, but what would be the dmg type of a Klingon Bat’leth from Star Trek TNG as well as feat and stat requirements for effective use? Also, as the bat’leth can be used defensively, what would the AC bonus (if any) be?
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    Is that because of laws or expenses? A PMC, well connected to big businesses, is trying to eradicate shape changers (in secret) They sometimes operate in banana republics, warzones and other places where they can put money in pockets, and wish they could do the same in europe and northern America.

    I was thinking something like a predator drone would be a nice way to deliver sizable explosive payloads, I mean, I could just have some military planes from the 50's or retrofitted civies drop explosives, but that isn't as cool and probably raises it's own questions. I want to modernize a force, but they need to be able to get away with this stuff. It's difficult to hide a plane.
    both.

    the situation your describing is rather unlike the actual real world uses and roles for a PMC, so its hard to make exact comparisons.

    very few governments are comfortable with the idea of a PMC that has access to "warfighting" capability, because they mostly don't trust something as mercenary as well, actual mercenaries. Most countries would treat a PMC with that level of firepower as a invading army and react appropriately. Many would also consider the PMC to be part of the military of whatever country the PMC was based in, and complain to that government about the actions of its citizens.

    added to that, armoured vehicles are extremely expensive to buy, maintain and operate, requiring specialised technical and mechanical support personnel, large stocks of hard to acquire spares, and large amounts of transport assets just to get to the start line.


    Also, what are they fighting that needs a tank to kill? unless the shapeshifters have control of the local military, they wont have anything that requires a tank or pred drone to deal with.


    if your looking for air support, a helicopter is a much better option. it can operate out of many more locations, can be ultilised for transport or extraction missions, and is much less conspicuous and very easy to justify acquiring. think something like a Puma, with door gun or maybe rocket pods
    For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
    But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
    An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
    An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyg3rW01f View Post
    No idea where I saw it figured out, but what would be the dmg type of a Klingon Bat’leth from Star Trek TNG as well as feat and stat requirements for effective use? Also, as the bat’leth can be used defensively, what would the AC bonus (if any) be?
    It looks like a badly designed club/knife combo. I would let someone use it as either weapon, with a -1 to hit. AC bonus would not be happening.

    edit

    If you want it to have some Rule of Cool bonuses rather than be realistic though, do what you like. Maybe damage like a bastard sword, +1 AC and make some kind of Feat available to top it off.
    Last edited by Mr Beer; 2018-07-15 at 06:27 PM.
    Re: 100 Things to Beware of that Every DM Should Know

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    93. No matter what the character sheet say, there are only 3 PC alignments: Lawful Snotty, Neutral Greedy, and Chaotic Backstabbing.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyg3rW01f View Post
    No idea where I saw it figured out, but what would be the dmg type of a Klingon Bat’leth from Star Trek TNG as well as feat and stat requirements for effective use? Also, as the bat’leth can be used defensively, what would the AC bonus (if any) be?
    Bolding mine.

    You can only get one of these things - the bat'leth is a terrible weapon. As for being usable defensively, so are the vast majority of melee weapons, almost all of them much more so than the bat'leth. This isn't a thread for specific mechanics, but if those get a +0 AC bonus and simulating the AC benefit is helpful the bat'leth should probably get a penalty.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Bringer View Post
    both.

    the situation your describing is rather unlike the actual real world uses and roles for a PMC, so its hard to make exact comparisons.

    Also, what are they fighting that needs a tank to kill? unless the shapeshifters have control of the local military, they wont have anything that requires a tank or pred drone to deal with.
    Well, it's Werewolf: the apocalypse. Changers are pretty hard to kill. Silver bullets are good if you can actually hit anything, but all the changers are cunning bastards and you'll likely never see them coming. Fight just one them in the jungle and it'll look like Predator, fight them in a facility and you'll lose at least half of it. Plus, their true forms inflict the delirium, supernatural crippling fear of them,

    Wolves and co need to be wiped out is because they're terrible for business; They're terrorists. Almost all of these changers see themselves as warriors of mother earth, defenders of the green and blue planet, destroyers of demons and so on. They're mass-murdering eco terrorists that attack many multinationals, so pooling together resources and organizing PMCs to kill off the bastards would save billions in the long run. (The PMCs also do regular jobs for all the reasons regular PMCs do. Protecting a VIP doesn't require the threat of werewolf assassination, money'll do).

    Amongst other weaknesses, the beasts draw their power from, and fiercely protect, places of spiritual strength. They need these places for their rituals and often create cult communities nearby where their human relatives support their way of life. If you destroy these often-remote places, they lose a power source, their power diminishes; reinforcements becomes difficult and they often abandon the place.

    So, finding and bombing these places from a high altitude (or blasting them with artillery or what have you) would save the troops countless lives. The monsters typically have minor magical defences around these placces, and many have the power to disable technology temporarily within the range of a shout, but I don't think they could do anything against heavy ordinance from a distance.


    Also, is there even an advantage in using remote UCAV's over manned piloted planes, other than the safety/comfort/ability to switch out pilots? A quick google search reveals that they're often rather slow in comparison to conventional vehicles. At the moment I'm thinking I want them just because they're more techy/more relevant (and more prestigious/exclusive) Pilot comfort isn't really a selling point in a war where ten men dying to kill a wolf is considered a decent trade.
    Last edited by The Jack; 2018-07-16 at 05:33 AM.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Storm Bringer View Post
    both.

    the situation your describing is rather unlike the actual real world uses and roles for a PMC, so its hard to make exact comparisons.

    very few governments are comfortable with the idea of a PMC that has access to "warfighting" capability, because they mostly don't trust something as mercenary as well, actual mercenaries. Most countries would treat a PMC with that level of firepower as a invading army and react appropriately. Many would also consider the PMC to be part of the military of whatever country the PMC was based in, and complain to that government about the actions of its citizens.

    added to that, armoured vehicles are extremely expensive to buy, maintain and operate, requiring specialised technical and mechanical support personnel, large stocks of hard to acquire spares, and large amounts of transport assets just to get to the start line.


    Also, what are they fighting that needs a tank to kill? unless the shapeshifters have control of the local military, they wont have anything that requires a tank or pred drone to deal with.


    if your looking for air support, a helicopter is a much better option. it can operate out of many more locations, can be ultilised for transport or extraction missions, and is much less conspicuous and very easy to justify acquiring. think something like a Puma, with door gun or maybe rocket pods
    To build on this the thing to remember about historical military grade mercenaries is that they existed in an environment where there where a lot of moderately wealthy nation state entities with the desire and money to have a professional fighting force but for one reason or another lacked the ability to raise on themselves. There's a real lack of that in the world today. Most nation states are either prosperous, stable and able to do it themselves or unstable, poor and unstable. The latter is especially important because not only do the hiring nations have to be able to trust the PMC, the PMC has to be able to trust the nation state to not try and stab them in the back for their gear ethier.

    That said it's not unreasonable that there could exist a very different political climate where a large portion of what is today considered the third world could become sufficiently stable and modestly wealthy that many of it's members might desire a more up to date military. In those circumstances assuming it remains primarily smallish states there's a potential for a market to develop.

    But that brings us onto the second problem. One of the advantages old school mercs enjoyed was that they could easily and readily gain access to all the modern implements of warfighting of their era. The sword, the bowm, the cavalryman, the musketm the bolt action rifle where all in their day the primary means of waging war. But around the end of WW1 technology reached a point of destructiveness where for obvious reasons nation states started restricting what people could own. A PMC getting access to that kind of gear is something that makes modern nation states nervous. For better or worse PMC's aren seen as far more likely to engage in old school rape, pillage, burn stuff. And with the size of modern cities no one wants that happening to a major population center of theirs.

    So the really hard part is going to be getting them established. Once they get established it gets a lot easier for them because they will have built a reputation for trustworthiness and that will let them get lobbying pressure from economic groups. It would still be a tough sell but it;s not utterly ridiculous anymore. The mostly likely scenario is a formal military force of a nation state deployed in a country on some sort of peacekeeping operation on behalf of the locals who's nation state implodes in some fashion and due to long deployment a fair chunk of the force decided they'd rather stick around and offer to keep doing the peacekeeping if the locals will pay basic bills. Most nation states are probably going to let that stand whilst keeping a close eye on things, and with a foot in the door and a few decades of time there's room for the to start hiring out.

    The alternative is top have the OMC start as a security arm of some other company with international interest, (some sort of large scale trade company probably makes the most sense), in that case it becomes plausible for a combination of mission creep and in house produced kit to upgrade them to that level. Nation states are probably going to be much less freaked out by a non-arms company fielding it;s own home designed and built tanks and jets and ships because they won't have the tech to make them equivalent to even 4th rate equipment. Their going to be functionally restricted to stuff only slightly more advanced than early post WW2, (approximately, it gets messy because certain civil tech advances will let them beat some area's whilst they'll lag in others), which is going to be enough with proper training to kick the stuffing out of third world powers, (more because of their ability to use the gear better than it's inherent superiority however), and that again gives them the foot in the door. Once they get established it all becomes much easier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    Well, it's Werewolf: the apocalypse. Changers are pretty hard to kill. Silver bullets are good if you can actually hit anything, but all the changers are cunning bastards and you'll likely never see them coming. Fight just one them in the jungle and it'll look like Predator, fight them in a facility and you'll lose at least half of it. Plus, their true forms inflict the delirium, supernatural crippling fear of them,
    Edit: I've added explanations of Werewolf terms for those unfamiliar in parenthesis.

    It's been a while since I've played Werewolf, but fire inflicts aggravated damage and they can only soak (resist) that in their Crinos form (classic werewolf human/wolf hybrid form). Any damage that gets through they can only heal slowly.
    This makes incendiary round, flame throwers and WP effective against them.

    Since this is World of Darkness, the PMC is going to be Pentex funded (main setting antagonist), so would most likely have banes (evil spirits) and other anti-werewolf measures and knowledge. If all else fails, they can purchase/steal/scavenge some Strike Force Zero implants (Japanese anti-supernatural agency) which let human agents resist the Delirium.

    Since World of Darkness goes for the worse case version of the real world, you can rule that corporations have extra-territoriality ala the corps in the Shadowrun setting, so provided that the corporation's security arm keeps their toys on their property, legally import and transport said toys (including suitable taxation and security fees) and deploy them in strict circumstances, then most nations would be tolerant of heavier hardware.
    This would probably be limited to IFVs like the M2 Bradley as without their anti-armour suite, they're mostly ineffective against MBTs, which can be fielded by proper militaries.

    Since Werewolf is mostly small arms, these would be fairly effective against the werewolves - I'd like to see a charging werewolf try and soak HEI from the M2's 25mm autocannon.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    Also, is there even an advantage in using remote UCAV's over manned piloted planes, other than the safety/comfort/ability to switch out pilots? A quick google search reveals that they're often rather slow in comparison to conventional vehicles. At the moment I'm thinking I want them just because they're more techy/more relevant (and more prestigious/exclusive) Pilot comfort isn't really a selling point in a war where ten men dying to kill a wolf is considered a decent trade.
    Endurance and cost are the main advantages. A F18-E costs 70.5 million USD while a MQ-9 Reaper costs 16.9 million USD, so initial capital outlay is a big difference. That said, neither vehicle would be on the market - you'd have repurposed civilian drones (like the not-Russians used in the recent Ukraine conflict) for scouting and suicide attacks with an attached IED and helicopters/Cessnas sneakily retrofitted with rocket pods or a door gun.

    Endurance is the big one as a drone can remain on station for several hours, and can even alert the pilot if something suspicious has entered the patrol zone - thankfully the military still require a human input on the authorisation to fire despite the idea being floated of drones automatically engaging targets.

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Outcomes

    Professional soldiers and military hardware
    As is characteristic of one of the first PMCs, Executive Outcomes was directly involved militarily in Angola and Sierra Leone. The company was notable in its ability to provide all aspects of a highly trained modern army to the less professional government forces of Sierra Leone and Angola. For instance, in Sierra Leone, Executive Outcomes fielded not only professional fighting men, but armour and support aircraft such as one Mi-24 Hind and two Mi-8 Hip helicopters, the BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicle and T-72 main battle tank.[15] Note that these were the property of the client state and not Executive Outcomes itself.[16] It also possessed medevac capabilities to airlift the wounded out of combat zones via Boeing 727 D2-FLZ owned by Ibis Air. These were bought from sources in the worldwide arms trade within Africa as well as Eastern Europe.[17]

    The aircraft were owned and operated by a separate partner company called Ibis Air which also owned MiG-23 "Flogger" fighters and a small fleet of PC-7 turbo-prop trainers converted for the recce and ground attack role (with the capability to fire SNEB air-to-ground rockets). Ibis Air also had the connections to operate MiG-27 "Flogger" strike aircraft and Su-25 "Frogfoot" close support aircraft for EO that were loaned out via the Angolan Air Force.[18]

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    Default Re: Got a Real-World Weapon, Armor or Tactics Question? Mk. XXV

    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    That's actually a common thing for PMCs - the clients own the hardware, the PMC provides 'trainers' to educate the client's own military in the use of said hardware. Even regular armed forces do this with members of various Coalition forces being seconded to help train the Iraqi Armed Forces for example.

    In countries where the government is more amendable to corporate influence, the PMC 'borrowing' government heavy hardware to attack caerns/dragon nests (the aforementioned sites of spiritual power) could very well be a thing.

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