Hot answers tagged

99

Honestly, the best use of this would be to turn corpses (their and yours), waste, and the like into nice safe gold. Campaigning armies in medieval times suffered greatly from disease, and poor hygiene was a major part of that. The fewer dead bodies and other disease-spreading elements you have about, the better off you'll be.


79

I was an Anti-tank gunner for 8 years with the Marines, I'll let ya in on why walkers will never be used by a military as an armored vehicle. First, joints are huge weak points. Not just to enemy fire, but also from a maintenance perspective, and the sensitive servos and gyros required will be infinitely more vulnerable to dirt than anything on a tank. ...


75

Assassinate the Garbage Collectors Every city has workers at the bottom, doing the nasty, dirty jobs needed to keep a city livable. Chances are, dear reader, you yourself don't 'see' these people in the places you live, yourself. These people run regular routes, serve everyone, and are likely to be amongst the least protected because they hold jobs people ...


63

An army that moves in the ground Human warfare has actually been conducted under ground. From the cave bases in Afghanistan, to tunnel warfare in Vietnam, to mining in The Great War. In a fantasy world, where some races live under ground, like for example Drow and Duergar, relying solely on being on a hill to be safe against attackers would be folly at ...


61

Assuming they are rare or entirely new, even a single one of these weapons would turn the tide of any war, but it would never see battle. Just follow these simple steps: 1) stab a few cows 2) hire all the mercenaries 3) capture whatever important places your mercenaries can reach 4) enjoy your new kingdom This will continue to work until the market ...


58

Snipers Given the rule that magicians can control what they can see the most effective place for a mage would appear to be as a magical sniper, special forces or artillery. It's also probable the most efficient option in terms of energy. You probably don't want your highly valuable "fuel" falling into enemy hands so it's best to keep mages behind your ...


58

Assuming these Midas weapons convert a person into a statue of that person made of solid gold, we are looking at a pretty effective weapon in certain specific circumstances. A person, on average, has a volume of 95 liters. 95 liters of gold weighs just over 1800kg. A typical car weighs about 1500kg for comparison. So these weapons will be extremely ...


56

The zombies are idiots. Zombies can attack or defend, but they can't attack intelligently, and they can only do both at once with a lot of attention from the sorcerer. In a fight, a skilled fighter (person A) is constantly assessing their opponent(person B) or opponents. Person A's goal is to hurt person B without being hurt in return, so person A puts a ...


53

Machine guns have made human wave attacks ineffective. Where human waves prevailed against modern firepower, it was always that defendants were unprepared for it, due to lack of properly dug-in position, lack of ammunition, gun overheating etc. Thus, if defendants would anticipate such attacks and prepare accordingly, those attacks would almost never ...


47

Short answer: Are you crazy? The key in any planned military encounter is to do everything to tilt the odds in your favour. You want a preponderance of men, proper equipment and logistics, terrain which favours you, accurate and timely intelligence, etc. Meeting these deamons 1:1 on an open plain violates almost any of these rules: you don't have the ...


47

This sort of question comes up quite often in warfare. The answer is simple: the demons have found a way to nullify the advantage of attacking from the air. This is a very common approach in warfare. Instead of trying to attack your opponent where they are best, simply deny that space any value at all. A guerilla fight might be one such example. If the ...


47

1 - Messenger. Pidgeons sent information but had to fear hawks. I would like to see a hawk intercepting mail when the messenger is badder and meaner than them. Also the intelligence would allow for training, and with some selecting breeding, lighter breeds for more speed. Use as pack animals are limited since the food would be a nightmare for logistics on ...


46

Not realistic Where did the rabbits come from? 10,000 rabbits is quite a lot of rabbits. Your army would need to spend a great deal of energy capturing that many live rabbits. Or your army has spent quite some time breeding rabbits and caring for them. Or you have a large force of rabbit-wranglers. Somewhere. Who are now out of work. Either way, that's not ...


46

The answer is Yes, of course, a warrior can grasp his own sword by the blade, and the old fighting manuals show this technique clearly (half-sword technique). There are also instances where it is recommended to grasp the opponent's sword. Here is good treatise on the topic of half-sword technique, when it's used & why. From Medieval Combat (a ...


44

The high ground is better because... you can more easily throw stuff onto the enemy, you can walk down saving strength, you can see further, and in close quarters you stand taller. We need to demolish those bonuses for the attackers, and the accompanying mali for the defenders. Some points (seeing,walking) are already weakend, because the battle site is ...


44

"This is Lord Mountjoy Quckfang Winterforth IV, the hottest dragon in the city. It could burn your head clean off." Commander Vimes limped forward from the shadows. A small and extremely frightened golden dragon was clamped firmly under one arm. His other hand held it by the tail. The rioters watched it, hypnotized. "Now I know what you'...


40

Tercios are Renaissance and Early Modern, crossbows are Middle Ages. The point of the tercio is that it was a combined arms unit; it had similar numbers of pikemen and musketeers, and all pikemen and all musketeers had to have uniform equipment. In the times when crossbows were viable weapons it was not feasible economically to equip as many crossbowmen as ...


39

Spaceships are sacred relics from the Ones-That-Came-Before The techniques of building warp engines have been lost centuries ago and now each of the surviving spaceships capable of FTL is a priceless relic. No one wants to destroy a spaceship, so combat will be more to take control of it then to destroy it. Alternatively: Wars are a thing of savages ...


39

From my experience with dwarf fortress, what you want to do is trap the dragon and use it as a source of FUN. Basically trap it and use it to terrorize prisoners and bad dwarfs. Lava The funnest way is to create a trap passage way. One roughly double the length of Glori and positioned so that if he wants to get access into the inner sanctum of your city, ...


35

Mud Hoses Dwarven engineers create some kind of very big and powerful water/mud hoses. As soon as attackers are charging downhill, they target the hoses against the hillside, to generate a very slippery terrain. You can add spiked traps below or a an elite group of spearmen to deal with the rolling attackers.


35

There are a lot of bad answers here that mainly seem to come out of a few pervasive myths about European colonialism. There is no need to go around killing the natives at a ratio sufficient to match their relative population. There is barely any need to fight the natives at all. Naval or ranged bombardment is neither necessary nor all that effective in the ...


34

Having not seen Ender's Game, I can only comment on the way 3d would affect combat. The answer (at least the way I see it) is that it really depends on the opposing armies and their technology. Currently, if humans went to war in space, we would likely be launching extreme-precision missiles at each other from a long way away, while attempting to shoot down ...


34

Yes, this formation is vulnerable to ranged fire. Light but strong steel armor that became relatively cheap at the time was important, because it improved protection against arrows for pikemen who didn't use shields. Still, it was not enough and a pike square could be well defeated by archers as happened at the battle of Falkirk. Firearms had way better ...


33

The creatures in question will also tend to avoid any areas where lightning or similar electrical discharges have gone off for a few hours, as for some reason, if they enter that area within the stated time, it burns their skin. Ozone generators. source The electromagnetic radiation is long gone. What remains so long after is the result of the energetic ...


32

Zombies have no sense of self-preservation. If you tell a zombie to walk to the castle, they'll do it, even if there's a moat in the way. Or caltrops. Or fire. There is no difference between the actions of a normal zombie and a zombie on fire, unless given a specific order otherwise. A bleeding warrior will stop and get bandaged; a bleeding zombie will keep ...


31

How To Train Kill Your Dragon This is not even close to a fair fight. What you've described is a sort of enormous, slow, heavily armored helicopter lacking long range weaponry against a force designed to repel forces many times larger, faster, and more effective. If he flies, he dies. The MEU has air detection and defense systems to deal with supersonic ...


31

Short answer: Yes, you can defeat pike formation. The longer answer is a bit more complex. As anything in warfare, pike squares or pike formation was conceived and deployed to counter a very specific threat: Namely the cavalry charge. A disciplined body of troops in a shield wall with spears, and later a pike square, can take and repel a cavalry charge. ...


31

Yes, it's possible to stab someone by holding the middle of the blade. As a weapon, the long sword was often used with half-swording techniques; so often, the other hand would be holding the blade. Half Swording was a thing back in the day, where people would grab the middle of their blade with their hands while using the sword. The sharpest part of a ...


31

Psychologically mess with them until they kill each other As long as this family remains armed and paranoid, a doll is going to have a lot of problems killing anyone directly. Fortunately, the very qualities that make this family hard to kill makes them easy to mess with. We've got a lot of psychological problems to work with here - problems that a clever ...


30

As @JohnDallman pointed out, Collisions at star-spanning speeds are suicidal, but that doesn't mean that close in combat would be. Start with star ships that are so expensive to create, that destroying an enemy vessel is considered a crime to both sides. Capture is the name of the game, so if you destroy an enemy's ship either on purpose or by accident, ...


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