We’re doing some more of this today.
As with a lot of these less straightforwardly humanoid videos, Shad’s conclusions are more solid, which I suspect is because there’s more room for creatures with significantly different physical qualities to actually use significantly different weapons for good reasons and less need to try and invent reasons why elves would fight at all differently from humans. So mostly my work here is just summarizing his meandering videos, and when my rambling is a more compressed version of your work, you know you have information density problems.
In melee, giants are going to most benefit from spiked boots and scythes. They’re both great at attacking enemies who are waist level or below. Even relatively light armors like leather are going to be really hard to penetrate for ordinary sized opponents, although (and Shad doesn’t make this point, but it’s true) giants are still going to want proper plate and chain armor for fighting other giants, which will be even harder to pierce. Giants who suffer from the square-cube law will probably be less keen on proportionately heavy armor because a greater proportion of their strength is taken up just standing up (although their absolute strength is still higher), but some fantasy giants are well over the height where they would be unable to stand without shattering their bones if they weren’t somehow magical (when you’re above ten or eleven-ish feet, you just can’t be bipedal anymore, even if you have much thicker feet and broader proportions), and these giants presumably have perfectly proportionate strength to humans. A giant in plate armor is basically invincible to mundane attacks, although the chinks at the joints (normally too small to be effectively exploited) may be big enough for human size attackers to cut apart.
This raises the question: What do humanoids do when confronted with a leather armored, scythe-wielding giant? Assuming you don’t have any player characters with magic weapons who can hew through steel like it’s butter, you’re going to want to rely on either ballistae or the sturdiest goddamn pikes you can find. Pikes are big enough to hit weakspots like the neck and eyes and a full formation may be able to get a pike through the slits in even a plate armored giant’s visor. This is still a battle that will favor the giants by a huge margin if there are remotely even numbers, but pikes and ballistae will given human defenders the best chance.
A giant with a bow is basically a walking ballista, and a giant with a sling is basically a walking trebuchet, and in both cases at far lower material cost and not too much worse supply cost. A ballista or trebuchet requires quite a few people to operate, and a giant eats quite a bit more than one ordinary person, and that mostly balances out, which means the lower material cost and improved mobility are just gravy. Giants are simply better at sieging human fortifications than humans are. On top of that, just like with plate armor, any giants who are giving the square-cube law the finger (including, by necessity, D&D giants who are too tall to walk without doing so) can make proportionately sized siege weapons to siege each other’s proportionately sized castles, and just like with giant plate against puny mortal weapons, these proportionately sized siege weapons will absolutely wreck human fortifications.
Basically, don’t fuck with giants.
Continue reading “Shadiversity Summarized 2: The Re-Re-Arming”