3
$\begingroup$

Context:

I'm working on a fantasy setting and one of the races I want to include are cyclops. When I implement a race into my setting, I usually take one or two sources as the primary inspirations for what I base them on and tweak them to fit the world. In this case, I am leaning towards the Cyclops of Heroes of Might and Magic III (since that is the only game I can think of that has cyclops in it that I've played) for their combat. I was also heavily inspired by the Anatomically Correct Cyclops post, particularly IndigoFenix's answer and I'll be leaning into that one.

In combat, their preferred way of fighting was to hurl boulders over their head at their target (they act as a secondary catapult in castle battles) and hit foes with those same boulders in close quarters.

Using a combination of the two inspirations, I came up with the following:


Definition:

They are a giant humanoid race, standing 9 feet (~2.75 meters) tall on average. Their most notable feature is the large single eye in their head, granting them vision surpassing most races. Their long range sight has lead them to develop nomadic shepherd lifestyles, allowing find new grazing land for their flock, see if that land is being used by another of their kind and spot potential predators from far away. Their primary tactic for dealing with a threat is to throw something heavy (like a large rock) at it, either crushing it or scaring it off if they miss. Melee combat is something of a last resort as they would prefer not to have any threat get that close to their flock.


Question:

Assuming depth perception is not an issue due to either the unique biology of their mono-eye or specific training to overcome their lack of binocular vision, if a species has developed the muscle groups (through a mix of evolution and practice) for an overhead throw using both arms:

  • What other tasks would they be well suited to?
  • What types of melee weapons would they prefer?
$\endgroup$
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Humans are essentially this compared to other animals, so maybe there's some inspiration to be derived there? An overhead cut with any kind of weapon you like is almost exactly the same movement as an overhead throw, for example. Most other cuts use at least fairly heavily overlapping muscle groups. Drawing a bow is mostly the same as lifting the rock up there in the first place, turned 90 degrees. $\endgroup$ – user3482749 Feb 22 at 22:14
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Now you have me visualizing a cyclops using bow with the draw strength of a ballista. $\endgroup$ – Arvex Feb 22 at 22:41
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ It isn't muscles, it's hand eye coordination. Chimps are far stronger than humans, but suck when it comes to accurate throwing. Only human beings seem able to accurately throw things $\endgroup$ – Thucydides Feb 23 at 1:17
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Although it's not part of the question, you might want to look at chameleon vision for solving the depth perception issue. Chameleons have two eyes, but each eye is capable of independent depth perception thanks to some unique anatomical adaptations. $\endgroup$ – IndigoFenix Feb 23 at 9:15
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Thucydides humans are good at throwing because our shoulder muscles and joint are very different than a chimps. $\endgroup$ – John Feb 23 at 17:38
4
$\begingroup$

As already pointed out, this method of attack could make one fairly flexible and strong, suited for a plethora of tasks. However one thing I would note is that depending on how much combat they see, and how often they train for war, this might not at all be the base of their movement. It is more likely their regular activities allow/suit this type of battle.

I will share some ideas as to what they can do with this skill. Or why they could have it to begin with.

Hulk smash!
Assuming they use two warms to reach the boulders behind their back to launch them overhead soccer style, the same movement can be extended downwards to smash. Either with or without holding said boulder. This works as well, though not as efficient with single handed throws. Preferred weapon for this tactic would be large clubs or hammers.

Building/construction
Carrying heavy stuff and the flexibility to place them overhead comes in extremely handy in any type of construction work. Also handling pickaxes (related to above) would be easy.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
2
$\begingroup$

Shock-absorbing arms

The difficulty with a double overhand throw is there is no counterweight for the projectile. Compare to a baseball pitch where the rotation is horizontal and the entire body rotates to act as a counterweight and get a further throw.

If you throw single-overhand, you can rotate one leg and the other arm as a counterweight. But if you throw double-overhand the problem is (a) no second arm as counterweight (b) you cannot counterweight with both legs at once.

Unless of course you use your whole body as the counterweight:

enter image description here

If you throw a bouncy football this can be done without shattering your arms. Replace the football with a boulder and no such luck. To counteract this your cyclopses need footballs for hands and ideally elbows and shoulders.

Bonus Points: Being tall means you can throw further like this:

I predict a race of tall-lanky, rubbery, exceptionally-agile cyclopses. Possibly with huge feet to act as counterweights. See the image (with apologies to Willam Jewell and Selina/Emma)

enter image description here

In melee they would use long blunt weapons with the goal to hit the opponent and then bounce back into a guard position. Essentially you hit them with a heavy rubber ball on a stick. Except the rubber ball is a stone and the bounciness comes from your arms instead.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
1
$\begingroup$

An over head throw is similar to chest and back extension exercise, if the arms do not bend at the elbow much, with a bend at the elbows extending the forearm it becomes an overhead triceps press, getting the boulder up involves shoulder strength, abs and legs will stabilise the action and get stronger too, so really their whole body will be strong and flexible for most tasks.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Although depending on the weight of the boulder will effect how muscular they can become (if they eat a lot), really muscular guys are not so flexible. A lean tall guy can be deadly in close combat because of their range but a very muscular guy will be slower and gas out faster. $\endgroup$ – RandySavage Feb 22 at 23:22
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I was imagining them throwing some pretty hefty rocks, so I could see them not being as flexible from developing a lot of muscle. I also figured they would eat a lot due to their size. $\endgroup$ – Arvex Feb 22 at 23:32
  • $\begingroup$ As mentioned in comments a bow would be perfect, even javelin large spikes or fence posts, a large club would be easy to make and an over head down ward swing is essentially the same action as the over head throw, with their size and strength they could charge and tackle people then ground and pound them if needed. $\endgroup$ – RandySavage Feb 22 at 23:55

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.