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In my setting there is a race of vaguely humanoid creatures that are related to the aye-aye lemur and accordingly posses many strange features such as:

•Large ears and extremely good hearing far beyond anything human.

•Good night vision and smell.

•Extremely adept climbers who can move swiftly and silently.

But they have some weaknesses.

•They are quite small, being about a meter tall.

•They are slow and awkward on the ground.

•Their fingers are too specialized to use most human tools, but they can use knives, blowguns, and open doors fine. Don’t give them a heavy weapon or bow, nor expect them to work on anything complex.

Cognitively they are about as intelligent as a human with some weird mental quirks that rent relevant to this question.

Humans have access to these creatures and wish to use them, what would be the best usage for this creature given it’s sharp senses and stealth?

Humans are at a 14th century European level

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Sailors or Navy crew, especially on ships with actual sails and rigging, which will benefit from fast, swift climbers and rope swingers (hoisting and letting the sails loose depending on the orders, especially in the later, and traditional marine action (boarding enemy vessels)). Watch any scene in Pirates of the Carribean and replace the humans doing those jobs with Aye-Ayes in your imagination. Guns at the time wouldn't be very acurate and the combat would quickly break into melee... at a close distance, knives are more dangerous then even modern guns (statistically speaking) and your tech wouldn't have semi-automatic or automatic weapons until until the 1700s in their crudest form and they wouldn't be viable in combat until sometime post-U.S. civil war (assuming tech development is consistent with reality. U.S. Civil War predates Trench Warfare, but not the reason why Trench Warfare was used, which is why it's still the deadliest war in U.S. History to this date) and Rifling emerged in the early 19th century. Knives and blunt instruments would be perfectly deadly in boarding actions.

And keep in mind Letters of Marque and Reprisal (allowing legalized piracy against enemies of the issuing country, aka Priviteering) were still a thing during this time.

Calvary would also be a viable land option. If you can sit on a branch, you can sit on a horse, and if you can hold a knife, you can hold a long stick with a pointy knife on it.

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  • $\begingroup$ I really like the idea of them as sailors $\endgroup$ – NixonCranium Mar 5 at 20:14
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They would be extremely suitable for anything related to intelligence gathering, especially in forested environments.

Their small size and silence makes them very suitable for spying, as well as assassinations. They could sneak in places humans have no chance of entering, and could poison, stab, or blow dart their way out with any amount of knowledge about the enemy.

A larger group could also be an effective opening assault for a surprise attack or ambush. They could hide in a spot one wouldn't expect a human to fit in, or in trees around, and rain blow darts upon the enemy before sending in the humans to mop up what's left.

In actual combat I expect them to not be too useful apart from hit and run tactics. Depending on whether they can wear armour, they would be fairly squishy. Mainly I think they would attack people from behind, jump on their backs, and stab their eyes out swiftly. Lashing their enemies Achilles' heels would be fairly suitable to them as well. Basically everything we would consider "fighting dirty".

I should also point out that most lemurs aren't as slow and awkward on the ground as you think. They hop along quite easily. Of course they aren't as fast as humans in full sprint, but that is unexpected in the trees as well. Besides, how often do humans actually sprint, even in battle?

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    $\begingroup$ No human expects danger from above. And it would be quite hard to train for it if you don't have access to those lemurs. $\endgroup$ – Jan Dorniak Mar 4 at 9:15
  • $\begingroup$ @JanDorniak depends on how commonly used these creatures are. If they are used more often, humans would learn quite quickly to look up... $\endgroup$ – Plutian Mar 4 at 10:56
  • $\begingroup$ considering the setting I'd wager they're natives of newly discovered lands - not something humans commonly interacted with. $\endgroup$ – Jan Dorniak Mar 4 at 11:01
  • $\begingroup$ Besides, knowing something and actually using that knowledge in a combat situation are two entirely separate things. $\endgroup$ – Jan Dorniak Mar 4 at 11:02
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Spy, thief and/or anything to do with infiltration.

Imagine a Bilbo Baggins that is naturally talented (no need for a ring) but nocturnal only.
Or maybe a Gollum.

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Sentries

No more nightshifts for soldiers, place Lemurs on top of the towers and they will do way better.

On forest they can also do recognizance tasks, just don't send them to the open field. Also, no fighting for them, since they do poorly against a human.

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  • $\begingroup$ As a sailor I can say that reducing burden of night time watch standing would be great for morale $\endgroup$ – NixonCranium Mar 5 at 20:14

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