You do a great job of walking the line between showing the awful violence and cruelty of the Viking raids without being too graphic. A neat trick, LD.
Not too hard at all. Wonderful to see some proper Viking stuff. Nothing like a good pillage
Wonderfully written, as ever. That Frank was certainly wise to comply - the threat of Uncle Ivar is a potent one.
I remember when I was a wee lad and first started learning more than stereotypes about Vikings, I was very impressed about them sailing upriver to Paris and wandering around in Russia and all. So I'm looking forward to these guys looting Paris and Chartres.
Ah, old history books, educational in so many ways... Got into trouble with your family? Money problems? Get yourself down south for a spot of nice weather and the opportunity for some ready cash
So what do the feeble followers of Hvitakristr fear even more than the fury of the Northmen? Well, now we know - it's the indifference of that dormant chthonic kraken-headed elder god that certain of those Northmen have started sacrificing people to!
Brilliant writing, Lord Durham - believe me, I'm taking stylistic notes for my next AAR. Please do keep it up!
Finally caught up with this AAR. Excellent work, Bruce; I love the way the "present" day (1932) and the "historical" sections play off each other.
Good to see that Gudfrid exhorts to Odin like a proper Viking and not the alternative. I hope that the raiders end up sacking Paris but I have a sneaking suspicion that something will go wrong sooner or later, either being intercepted by Frankish forces or foul.
It really drives home how unpleasant a business this pillaging is - quite apart from the basic 'steal everything that isn't tied down'.
Gudfrid's not very pleasant, but I can't deny he is clever and knows how to get things done. Threatening people with Ivar... nasty, but very effective. Even though Gudfrid probably doesn't approve of Ivar's dealings with the Old Ones, he's more than happy to use his uncle's reputation as a tool (wait, that didn't sound right. I meant that Gudfrid is more than happy to use his uncle's reputation as a means to achieve Gudfrid's own goals, even if he doesn't approve of Uncle Ivar).
You do a great job of walking the line between showing the awful violence and cruelty of the Viking raids without being too graphic. A neat trick, LD. Brings home why Europe was so terrified of the Vikings, and shows why they were so hard to fend off. Think of them as Mongols of the Sea, able to strike anywhere within twenty miles of a seashore or river bank with no warning...
You're going against West Francia so soon? This will be a glorious campaign indeed!
An evocative scene! Love that image, too -- wow.
Gudfrid seems like a clever lad, more than a little on the brutal side. In game terms, guessing Skilled Tactician, Cruel, Viking (probably soon to be acquired if not already).
Director says what I wish I had had the words for. You don't gloss over the violence and brutality that these campaigns entail, but the descriptions are never gratuitous. Very well done. It shows me what happens, but I don't feel like I'm reading anything exploitative.
Fantastically written, you leave me with a hunger for more, more, MORE! ^^
I have shamefully forgot most, if not all, of the gruesome and raw history of the Vikings and their raids, being a student of the Abrahamian religions during medieval times - completely ignoring Norse history. To be more precise, Islam & Christian science up until the Holy Wars (for Iberia) and the knowledge exchanges (christian philosophers reaching the Library in Córdoba).
But ah, reading this made me thirst for more knowledge. Off to the library I go... after I get off this nine to five T_T
It's a pity CK2 forces you to besiege holdings in a set order. "So we came from the north... step one, march past that juicy city and the cathedral, and attack that castle in the south!" In your case, admittedly, the map makes sense of their wanderings, and for that matter shows part of the problem. Why march that far south and out of position if the goal is to pillage to the northeast? From a Viking standpoint, might have made more sense to go Chartres-Orleans-Paris, though Orleans has no river access.
Liked the battle description. I had expected a Poitiers, with the light cavalry acting as the Captal de Buch's right-hook charge, but this makes more sense in the 800s... though a Poitiers-plan victory would have been ironic facing a Poitevin duke.
In the event that any of the Cthulhuites capture a duke or somebody, is he as likely to be sacrificed as anyone else, or will they take ransom and buy a bunch of tasty lower class folks to slay?
Great stuff Lord Durham. I'll echo the praise for your portrayal of the Viking raids, unflinching without being gratuitous. Also, I like how you've kept the Mythos element in the background thus far; we all know it's there but it remains a threat for our imaginations to worry over while you establish the characters in the story. Looking forward to more!
A nice update. It's a slightly odd feeling seeing a battle with hundreds a side as being important when campaigns have gotten you used to seeing such numbers as being insignificant with a 'real' battle needing tens or even hundreds of thousands of men to matter.
A successful campaign of plunder. Yes, Gudfrid is right to state he won a costly victory, but it could have been a defeat. And at least he can now retreat before he is caught by a larger army. Oh, and on a practical side: fewer surviving Vikings = more loot for the survivors. But maybe Gudfrid is thinking longer-term than the quick infusion of gold this one raid brought.
Where will you go next?
I've had battles like that one where flank-action really starts to matter; they can get pretty tense. A difference of just a couple of points of morale can mean the difference between victory or rout. Great update, Lord Durham, and looking forward to more from Ivarr, not to mention the modern-day interludes!
The plunder must have been great for such a small army to move inland!
Your point about tactics is well-taken; there's basically zero command and control, so subtlety has to go out the window. Everyone understood dressing and alignment (one more reason for putting your most experienced man on the rightmost end of your line, everyone dresses off of him), but when battlefield communications technology is limited to flags and drums, and you're eyes-front to keep from eating a spear, even that breaks down. About the only way you can use cavalry as cavalryeffectively on a battlefield like that is independently during actual operations, trying to raid the enemy's camp, or as a pursuit force. You could fight them as dismounts, but they'd lose their mobility edge and lose a percentage as horse-holders.
I don't see why the Old Ones would care about a human duke any more than a human thrall, actually. "As flies to wanton boys" and all that. If anything, the ransom from a duke could pay for a nice new lodge for the Esoteric Order of Dagon, restoration of the altars, quests for manuscripts...
Two-hundred and twenty-nine Vikings roaming northern France? Well, this could get very interesting quite soon. Especially if the Poitevin keeps poking his nose where it probably shouldn't go...
I foresee a few close battles yet – in between the plunder, of course. Hopefully this little jaunt will end in some good old-fashioned sacrifice
Oh bloody hell, Lord Durham, Vikings and Eldritch things, how did I not notice this entity squirming through the ill-lit corridors of AARland? Count me subscribed.
I hope his brother is not jealous when he finds out about all these French exploits, he might decide he wants to outdo him, and, you know, Paris is well worth an unholy mass...