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scalping - uh gross

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glorfindel
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scalping - uh gross

Postby glorfindel » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:19 am

Hey,

One thing that I always disliked that scalping was an elvandar thing. I mean, I can not see a good reason for any Taniel worshipping person to wish to violate the dead body of their fallen foes to remove their bloody scalp. I would think that to be more of an human/asral thing.

I always think it feels sort of 'wrong' for my character to do this and I ponder countless times how this could be made any better. Or is it just that my view is wrong there ?

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Delia
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Delia » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:52 am

When it is primarily thought of as a means for gathering wealth it becomes gross.and questionable.

As a competition between warriors - gathering proofs of kill - it has more sense and an elf who has indeed killed many foul foes of Elvandar and Taniel should be treated with respect. Other races, of course are honoured as well but elves should be more celebrated.

Legion had a similar thing but it was only about the contest, honor, valor and all that fightery stuff. Coin had nothing to do with it.

If you gather scalps you brand yourself to the fighter caste, so to speak. Your reasons of doing so evaluate your character though that can be a little hard to discern.

Anyways, yes it is gross and not to mention not very lady-like or something fancy dress-like.
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Zehren » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:53 am

My main problems with scalping:

1. Partial skinning. Skinning is evil.
2. Is "to keep the Queen's realm/roads (can't remember which) safe". Buys scalps from Arborean domain, Amwards, everywhere.
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adanath
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby adanath » Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:46 am

Zehren wrote:My main problems with scalping:

1. Partial skinning. Skinning is evil.
2. Is "to keep the Queen's realm/roads (can't remember which) safe". Buys scalps from Arborean domain, Amwards, everywhere.


The second one mainly.

I would opt for carrying heads instead as it makes more warrior sense in some ways, but you know they get heavy.

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arxthas
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby arxthas » Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:18 pm

glorfindel wrote:Or is it just that my view is wrong there ?


Your view is right. Warning: Generalized statement.

Design problem: The Queen likes it.

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Zehren » Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:47 pm

adanath wrote:
Zehren wrote:My main problems with scalping:

1. Partial skinning. Skinning is evil.
2. Is "to keep the Queen's realm/roads (can't remember which) safe". Buys scalps from Arborean domain, Amwards, everywhere.


The second one mainly.

I would opt for carrying heads instead as it makes more warrior sense in some ways, but you know they get heavy.


Well, since the stereotypical elf is supposed to not lie, one would not ideally need take anything from a corpse whatsoever to prove the kill, but just inform the clerk (presumably truthfully) of the number of foes slain :P

This would open for IC trickery such as informing Lanshea about those two hundred trolls you slew in a single afternoon. Would likely raise some suspicion if you look like a squishy git.
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby adanath » Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:25 pm

Zehren wrote:
adanath wrote:
Zehren wrote:My main problems with scalping:

1. Partial skinning. Skinning is evil.
2. Is "to keep the Queen's realm/roads (can't remember which) safe". Buys scalps from Arborean domain, Amwards, everywhere.


The second one mainly.

I would opt for carrying heads instead as it makes more warrior sense in some ways, but you know they get heavy.


Well, since the stereotypical elf is supposed to not lie, one would not ideally need take anything from a corpse whatsoever to prove the kill, but just inform the clerk (presumably truthfully) of the number of foes slain :P

This would open for IC trickery such as informing Lanshea about those two hundred trolls you slew in a single afternoon. Would likely raise some suspicion if you look like a squishy git.


I wouldn't say not lie (though perhaps I misconveyed), but perhaps be too proper to lie unless it suites their propriety, too noble..but there are ones who aren't!

Scalps are received from all races however.

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Drayn » Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:37 pm

There have, historically, been many ways to prove bounties. Scalping is one, collecting ears and hands is another. Scalping was always popular because a person could not live long without a scalp, but could get by without a hand or ear. Also the skin and hair colour of the scalp would help identify what race the original owner was. We're viewing this as gross, because to us it is. That's applying a modern sensibility to a medieval act. Scalping ain't pretty, it's not supposed to be, but it's effective. Why would Taniel frown on it? It's not exactly skinning and it can be put down to an "ends justifying the means". It's not perfect, but neither was trial by fire or the ducking stool.

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Zehren » Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:46 pm

Drayn wrote:There have, historically, been many ways to prove bounties. Scalping is one, collecting ears and hands is another. Scalping was always popular because a person could not live long without a scalp, but could get by without a hand or ear. Also the skin and hair colour of the scalp would help identify what race the original owner was. We're viewing this as gross, because to us it is. That's applying a modern sensibility to a medieval act. Scalping ain't pretty, it's not supposed to be, but it's effective. Why would Taniel frown on it? It's not exactly skinning and it can be put down to an "ends justifying the means". It's not perfect, but neither was trial by fire or the ducking stool.


I have seen some picture of some guy who survived a scalping. Can't locate it again, though :(

I would have a much easier time if Elvandar/Arborea both allowed skinning and dissecting humanoids as well as scalping. It seems very arbitrary to me.
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby ghalt » Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:19 am

Zehren wrote:I have seen some picture of some guy who survived a scalping. Can't locate it again, though :(

I would have a much easier time if Elvandar/Arborea both allowed skinning and dissecting humanoids as well as scalping. It seems very arbitrary to me.

I am very glad you could not find that picture. :/

Scalping is horrific and evil and you know, etc., but has at various historical times been considered "just part of war." Skinning some dude and putting his eyeballs in a jar I want to think has almost always been considered Super Axemurder Crazy. I'm imagining, at least, that there's a lot of times in history you can show up with 20 scalps and be a hero, and show up with just one people skin and get thrown in jail. This is all knowledge justified by #1 growing up watching tons of westerns and #2 a quick wikipedia visit, so it may be horribly wrong. ^_^

Skalping is still pretty... frontier? I have problems fitting it in with elvendar as well. It makes more sense if I think of it as controlled by the crusaders / rangers, a bit less when I think of elves dragging people foreheads through the town square to the judge's office. There's weirder things in game though!

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby fernao » Tue Mar 05, 2013 4:53 am

I'd suggest you folks read up a bit on medieval punishments. Stuff like skinning people alive, cutting of limbs and other parts of the body orpartly skinning people and so on. Torture was a normal means to get a confession. And confession was necessary for the guilty party to able to atone for whatever crimes were (allegedly) commited.
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arxthas
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby arxthas » Tue Mar 05, 2013 12:02 pm

punishment != interrogation != bounty hunting (different things)

And uhm.. torture is a pretty modern tool still used by Morally Superior Countries as well as Less-Than Morally Superior Countries :) There is nothing medieval about it really. Big wave happened in Algeria. The french got a hang of it. Then southamerica. And so on. The knowledge has been passed on (sold, stolen and educated). Happens every day in many, many places around the world.

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Zehren » Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:10 am

ghalt wrote:
Zehren wrote:I have seen some picture of some guy who survived a scalping. Can't locate it again, though :(

I am very glad you could not find that picture. :/


I FOUND THE PICTURE! YES!

I provide link to picture (and some guy's blog post thingie about it), seeing as some forum viewers may be squeamish :)

http://old-photos.blogspot.no/2008/04/robert-mcgee.html
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby fernao » Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:16 am

arxthas wrote:punishment != interrogation != bounty hunting (different things)

And uhm.. torture is a pretty modern tool still used by Morally Superior Countries as well as Less-Than Morally Superior Countries :) There is nothing medieval about it really. Big wave happened in Algeria. The french got a hang of it. Then southamerica. And so on. The knowledge has been passed on (sold, stolen and educated). Happens every day in many, many places around the world.


Sorry for the unclear reference. I was more pointing out to the assumption that scalping was gross.
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arxthas
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby arxthas » Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:09 pm

ah

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Drayn » Fri Mar 08, 2013 5:29 am

Elvandar is Taniel based and there have always been strong parallels between Taniel and the medieval Christian church. The old church has some mighty dicey policies which by today's standards would be considered outright evil:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trial_by_ordeal
http://www.anindependentasatru.com/1/po ... rance.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salem_witch_trials
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_by_burning
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_I_of_England
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanish_In ... on#Torture

Some of this is even in times more "advanced" and "enlightened" than of Geas. I agree dissection should become a morally neutral act. Medical science never advances more than during a war.

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arxthas
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby arxthas » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:32 am

Sure. I am just saying that "medieval punishments" is not necessarily related to proving that you are loyal. I think there is a difference in how you far you are willing to go depending on if you are punishing/interrogating someone or if you just want to prove your loyalty/worth.

But it's sort of a hard to fix since the Queen has already said that it's OK and good once. You would have to manipulate the history to solve that. I would not personally object to re-writing that part of history, though.

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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Zehren » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:38 am

Drayn wrote:Elvandar is Taniel based and there have always been strong parallels between Taniel and the medieval Christian church. The old church has some mighty dicey policies which by today's standards would be considered outright evil:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trial_by_ordeal
http://www.anindependentasatru.com/1/po ... rance.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salem_witch_trials
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_by_burning
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_I_of_England
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanish_In ... on#Torture

Some of this is even in times more "advanced" and "enlightened" than of Geas. I agree dissection should become a morally neutral act. Medical science never advances more than during a war.


Methinks spanish inquisition begun in the age of "reason" >.> (Just read The Big Book of Pain. Spanish inquisition is placed there there.

Also, most of the trials of ordeals do not seem so very dicey if you accept the basic premise of God, hmm, deciding the outcome.

Death by burning was also seen (during medieval christian times) as an attempt to purify the soul and give the burned a better chance of a happy afterlife, so it was seen as merciful. According to TBBoP.

As for re-writing history/retcon (@Arxthas), I am really fine with it, if the end result is good, and could not be accomplished in any other way (lest it be seriously clumsy.)
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Re: scalping - uh gross

Postby Drayn » Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:28 am

Zehren wrote:... most of the trials of ordeals do not seem so very dicey if you accept the basic premise of God, hmm, deciding the outcome.

Death by burning was also seen (during medieval christian times) as an attempt to purify the soul and give the burned a better chance of a happy afterlife, so it was seen as merciful. According to TBBoP.
...



Precisely, everything was perfectly justified by the morals and values of society at that time. Is Elvandar collecting scalps creepy? Yeah. Is frowning on the butchery and skinning of corpses a double standard? Yeah. Is it all justifiable? The queen seems to think so, that's good enough for me :)


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