Cimmerians and Thrown Weapons

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Supplement Four
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Cimmerians and Thrown Weapons

Postby Supplement Four » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:58 am

So, Cimmerians will hunt with the bow, but they won't use a bow in combat because it's not honorable. It doesn't fit their code. Conan had to see the Turanians do it before he learned to use one (according to de Camp) in combat (and from horseback).

What about other distance weapons? I'm assuming Cimmerians are fine with throwing spears and axes. Right?

What about slings? I doubt they'd look kindly on a crossbow, but what about throwing a dagger or a knife? A javelin?
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Postby Supplement Four » Sat Jul 17, 2010 4:46 am

Oh, and how to the Nordheimer feel about bows, slings, and crossbows? Distance weapons in general?

I know the Picts use bows, but how about the Hyperboreans?

Is the ban on bows being used in war a "Cimmerian" thing, or more of a "Northern" thing?
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Postby tarkhan bey » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:59 am

I believe that a 'caman'(Hurley stick) from the Irish sport of Hurling was originally also used to fling rocks at enemies before becoming a handy war club.
If you take a look at Brigade Miniatures Website, they produce a set of Gael warriors which I used for a while as Cimmerians. Especially check out the staff slingers, who appear to be armed with a shortspear with a sling attachment. I think it looks pretty cool and would certainly be my weapon of choice as a Cimmerian hunter/warrior.
I also think that Cimmerians would far too practical to set aside any sort of weapon that would give them an advantage over their enemies. If its acceptable to throw beer mugs and stools then, I reckon, its acceptable to use throwing axes etc.
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Postby Supplement Four » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:31 am

Got another question. What about Cimmerians and traps?

They seem a bit 'dishonorable' to me...sneaky...like a Cimmerian wouldn't use them for war. But, the Fiercest has a big section of traps. And, Conan sure used them in the movie.

So, what's your thoughts? Cimmerians won't use a bow in combat, but they'll set up traps?
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Postby Jacek » Sun Jul 18, 2010 8:49 am

They sure will, when they're to defend their own land. In that case they'll use traps, bows, ambushes, boulders thrown off canyon walls, barricades and whatever necessary.

When they should act as invaders though, I doubt in their setting traps. Effective use of traps is only reasonable hwen one knows the land and the prey's habits. Short and quick pillage raids do not offer such possibilties.

And about bows during attacks; of course - how could they ever bring Venarium down otherwise? Stones, swords and axes? Unlikely.

That's just my own opinion, obviously.
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Postby Spectator » Sun Jul 18, 2010 9:16 am

Hmmm my thoughts on this is to REMEMBER THAT CIMMERIA is like the Highlands of Scotland, climatically and culturally.


The highlanders were not known as bowmen, maybe due to the fact that to find and select great bows and numerous arrows, a lot of wood is needed. That's why the southern Celts in Wales, had a great history of archery since they possessed a lot of YEW trees to make their bows.

I could see the Cimmerians being very proficient with slings because the leather sling is relatively cheap and easy to make from one of the cow hides and stones are presumbly plentiful wheter in the riverbed, groud, etc...

I could see the Javelin being a commonplace weapon as well. The Javeling lends itself to a cimmerians strength bonus, his aptitude of hiding, and when a dear comes boy, out hops Conan and flings a well aimed javelin into the deer's neck.
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Postby Jacek » Sun Jul 18, 2010 11:02 am

Spectator wrote:Hmmm my thoughts on this is to REMEMBER THAT CIMMERIA is like the Highlands of Scotland, climatically and culturally.


The highlanders were not known as bowmen, maybe due to the fact that to find and select great bows and numerous arrows, a lot of wood is needed. That's why the southern Celts in Wales, had a great history of archery since they possessed a lot of YEW trees to make their bows.
Good point. However I would maintain my assumption concerning Venarium. It's sacking would heave never been possible without efficient long range weapons (bows).

I'm able to admit though bows were not common among the Cimmerian and only found in several southern clans, which could find some woods nearby or bring in some weaponry as spoils of war.
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Postby Jacek » Sun Jul 18, 2010 4:11 pm

That's interesting. Could you point me to something more about the case, please?
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Postby Spectator » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:15 pm

Jacek wrote:[.
Good point. However I would maintain my assumption concerning Venarium. It's sacking would heave never been possible without efficient long range weapons (bows).

I'm able to admit though bows were not common among the Cimmerian and only found in several southern clans, which could find some woods nearby or bring in some weaponry as spoils of war.[/quote]

Not really sure why you HAVE TO HAVE BOWS to sack a fortress. Slings are effective for tossing clay pots with burning oil. Staff slings could have increased range.

I think the fundamental limitation of ranged weapons is night-time. So if the Aquilonians were able to hold off the cimmerian with Bows (bossonian long bows, presumably) during the Daytime, as soon as a moon-less night came along, the Cimmerain could have assembled their ladders, ropes, hooks, etc, and stormed over the walls like crazy hillmen.

There is no REH passage of how they sacked Venarium, other than it just happened. I assume that the Cimmerians were not besiging the fort like modern europeans, rather they just encircled the fort, did some war dances and had their skalds and bards play cacophonous dirges to unsettle the defender's nerves.

Night-time, would be the ideal time to storm it, since the range of the longbow is effectively 30 feet (point blank), at that range a cimmerian throwing awe to the archer's head give the cimmerian an effective and terrifying range weapon. As he uses his racial bonus of Climb to Scamper up the timber walls of the fort.

Just speculation of course.
Sure some southern/ forest cimmerian tribes had bows, but they would not have been able to go "toe-to-toe" with the Bossonian Longbows in the fort.
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Postby Jacek » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:34 pm

Spectator wrote:Not really sure why you HAVE TO HAVE BOWS to sack a fortress. Slings are effective for tossing clay pots with burning oil. Staff slings could have increased range.
Right, I haven't thought about flammables.
Sure some southern/ forest cimmerian tribes had bows, but they would not have been able to go "toe-to-toe" with the Bossonian Longbows in the fort
Obviously :)

Besides, I like your speculation. And I believe Supplement Four will find a way to use them in his game.
Cheers,
Jacek
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Postby Supplement Four » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:45 pm

Let's not forget range. If the Cimmerians could have used cover in their tree and rocky terrain, they might have defeated the Bossonians by taking away their range advantage, and then just swarmed them.

I think Vincent disagrees, but I really don't have a problem with a Cimmerian chunking a spear. So if there is a horde of Cimmerians at the base of the wall, and a few archers at the top of the wall, the Cimmerians might have just plain out-numbered them.

I mean, it was the only time in Cimmerian history that all the tribes united, right? So, it was the Venarium fort vs. the entire country.
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Postby DooMJake » Sun Jul 18, 2010 7:51 pm

If I recall corectly (dont have book at hand)
The 'Cimmeria' rulebook says that the Cimmerians think using bows or any kind of ranged weapon is unhonorable not only for the user but for the victim as well.
But if they 'have' to use a ranged weapon (because tactic demands it) they will use ranged weapons but will not be very happy about it.

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