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55

The elves have handlers. Here is Theodore Roosevelt on safari. He and his buddy there are the great white hunters. Do you see all those other people? Usually they are moved out of the picture but not here. Those are locals who are along to do the work - the beaters, bearers, animal skinners etc. Bringing the hunter to places where there is likely to be ...


45

Langets Real polearms often had langets, or strips of metal attached to the head that extended a significant length of the pole. This made it hard to simply snap the pole off and made the whole thing much sturdier. The small amount of added weight was well worth the better strength. If your mages are going to invest in a polearm they will have langets, not ...


35

Thinner robes? Seriously the broad brimmed hat is great for sunny weather or wet. If the robes are heavy wool they'll be almost water proof and plenty warm, thinner wool for cool spring and autumn weather and linsey-woolsey, a, usually, 50-50 blend of wool and the flax fibre used to make linen for the summer months in cooler climates, cotton, linen or silk ...


33

You may wish to look at inlays. Instead of alloying the materials, merely have a pocket cut out where you put the spectral metals. In the real world, we have variable tempered blades. These are blades which are tempered such that the edge of the blade is very hard (and brittle), while the body of the sword is more flexible. This allows a blade to flex ...


29

Lots of desert people wear long robes; if the sun is punishing enough, you'll want to cover up even if you are quite dark skinned. Loose fitting airy robes help keep you cool in those sorts of conditions, and by way of a bonus stop you getting too cold too quick when the sun sets, as in deserts the nights are often cold. I won't try and ramble on here; ...


21

Another possibility is that the magic needs to be awakened in someone before he can use it and every magic type has a different trigger. For example a wind mage gets awakended in the eye of a storm. Fire getting burned? Lighting getting hit by lightning? Because they are this kind of mage they survive it unharmed but its to dangerous to just randomly try out ...


20

Pattern welding You start with three (or more) rods of different metals. You lay them side by side, with the softest in the middle and the hardest, most brittle on the outside; then heat them, fold them into a spiral and beat them flat. Heat, fold, and beat again; repeat until the metals blend together. This method was used by the Vikings (among others) to ...


19

It's actually remarkably simple to join two pieces of metal together for these purposes. You place the metal parts together and hit them with a hammer until they join. You're joking, it can't be that simple! These days we have fancy names like cold pressure welding, and use machines that do it more efficiently, but in practice it's what blacksmiths have ...


18

Oh this is easy. Who says drugs and alcohol has same effect to the drow. They get unruly and erratic, but they do not suffer in terms of fighting skill. As being far superior to humans, they do not need much of a coordination. Any member of the hunt finding themselves in true danger, they will blend into the shadows and escape. You can even say they have a ...


17

Actually, Catholic doctrine didn't include belief in witchcraft most of the time. To believe that simple village women would make deal with the devil and gain thereby magic powers was a heresy of itself. The Germanic Council of Paderborn in 785 explicitly outlawed the very belief in witches... (from Wikipedia) Even the 'Hammer of Witches', although ...


17

Instead of ice, you could make it a "sword" that uses a jet of extremely high-pressure water to make the cut. From Wikipedia: In the nozzle, the water is focused into a thin beam by a jewel orifice. This beam of water is ejected from the nozzle, cutting through the material by spraying it with the jet of speed on the order of Mach 3, around 2,500 ft/s (...


17

When a spirit possesses a body, it controls its movements: legs walk, hands grasp, eyes blink at the whim of the possessor. Each movement is a conscious act. What most people forget is that the body has completely lost control of everything, so it is up to the spirit to keep the heart pumping, the lungs breathing, and sphincters closed. Besides the fact ...


16

Incest only causes problems because it makes it easier for recessive genetic flaws to manifest, but it does not actually create any flaws that are not already there. If we assume that a demigod has analogous factors to genetics (traits that can be passed down), then all you have to do to prevent incestive flaws is to not have flaws. Since these being are ...


16

Too much of a good thing in the wrong place. Mana causes cell growth. The elf's biology controls the flow of mana to the right places in the body, allowing faster tissue regeneration, muscle strain healing, etc. But if mana just leaks into the body, any tissue it comes into contact with begins to grow uncontrollably, creating large tumors made up of ...


15

They don't hide in public The problem with the spells that hide their form is that they can fail. If the people looking for the hag know what they are looking for, then eventually the spell will be seen through. Either through supernatural means (there are other witches working at this) or maybe through indirect means - finding which person is too heavy or ...


15

How exactly are you defining witchcraft? It’s a tricky one, but aligning witchcraft with midwifery might get you somewhere with “only women have the ability to perform it”. I’ll have to come back to edit this, but I think Diane Purkiss has done some good work looking at the overlap between late medieval midwifery and witchcraft - if the Church sanctioned ...


15

They follow the way of the Berserkir. (Berserkir - whence we get berserker, berserk.) Old Norse warriors (presumably mimicking the Elven ways) drawing their power from one of the three sacred sources; the bear, the wolf and the boar would enter a heightened state, a rage when going into battle: becoming the berserkirgangr. To prepare for this, to make the ...


15

One possibility here is that magic is controlled by a recessive gene. The same kind of random combination (or random mutation) that produces an occasional albino human (rare, but far from unknown) produces a specific variation on a neurotransmitter (or receptor) that gives control of magic. Why hasn't this given an evolutionary advantage and swept through ...


14

Drunken, homicidal mobs can do a lot of damage in real life. It isn't any different for elves. And, yes, drunken, homicidal elves are very likely to cause serious injury to themselves and to other elves. They don't care! Elves are tough ... very difficult to actually kill. So what if a tenth of the elves on the Wild Hunt have to stay in bed afterwards ...


14

The Gandalfesque wizard is a European wizard. Robes make sense if you are in England. If you want a wizard from a hot climate, take a look at how people in that climate dressed historically when they wanted to put on a show and impress. These Javanese performers are not wizards (I don't think) but their outfits would be great for a hot climate wizard: ...


11

They will not need to be very nomadic. This aside from the fact that 150 km is not very big. Life in your magic circle will be next to the river. As an example here is the Amu Darya between Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Life is clustered by the river because there is no rain in the desert. In your windless land there will be no rain and it will look like ...


11

The Wild Hunt is like a tornado. Humans and others are used to these hunts and prepare for them. Like you prepare for a tornado. You don't fight it. You can't fight it. You just have a safe place to run to. Even so, tornados kill and injure many people when they pass through. They're not organized. Tornado shelters exist (some more effective than ...


10

Perspective shift: the body is not alive. Once a body is possessed, it dies. It remains a flesh and bone puppet to the possessing entity. The entity can mimic life signs such as breathing and heartbeat but it's not much different to applying electric stimuli to the correct parts of a cadaver - it only appears living. So, a dead body will naturally start ...


10

Break down the polearm in shorter cylinders. Think of bamboo cane sections. To assemble the polearm, attach each cylinder to its neighbor with a suitable joint. Run a wire from one end to the other, and tension it to ensure proper stability to the assembly. With the above design you can have a polearm which is longer than the bearer height, and yet to ...


9

What you describe might generally be called "localized necrosis." As suggested in comments, gangrene is one form of this. Something similar happens with certain spider bites (though it's often possible to avoid infection in that case because of the small affected area), in Hansen's Disease (colloquially known as leprosy), and necrotizing fascitis ("flesh ...


9

The solution would appear to be Electrolysis. Electrolysis is a common process for plating metal objects with a more valuable metal. For example, Electroplating is a common way of putting gold, silver or nickel over the top of another metal. More recently, there appears to be a process which allows for this to be done with Iron. If you use this process on ...


9

The idea that a wizard wears a long robe is, surprisingly, a pretty old one. It's not a modern fantasy stereotype. At least since the time of a Roman toga there was an implicit connection between long loose clothing and the lack of necessity to fight or work for a living. In the 10th century the whole Europe started adopting Byzantine fashions, and we see ...


9

Using / accessing Magic is instinctive once you know how, but almost impossible to describe in a meaningful manner to someone who can't do it. A "real world" equivalent would be wiggling your ears: Anyone can do it if they can work out how to isolate and move the correct muscles. And, once you can do it, you can just do it - and explaining it to someone ...


8

The classic approach is for the abomination to have a human representative who acts as a proxy in day to day life. They can then keep their monstrous form hidden behind castle walls, only interacting with that single person who is well compensated for keeping the secret.


7

Differential Spectrality In bladesmithing, there is a technique called differential hardening. This simply means that different parts of the blade are cooled at different rates. This creates different types of steel with different properties. The Japanese achieved this by coating parts of their katana blades with clay before tempering them. This meant ...


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