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Author Topic: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?  (Read 23579 times)

ein

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #60 on: August 21, 2009, 02:53:18 pm »

Dwarves are stoic, voilently masculine and gleefully mad.

Elves are self-righteous hypocrits who look down on everyone.

Humans are manipulative and xenophobic.

Goblins are hateful and stupid psychopaths.

Kobolds are humanoid vermin... scavenging for the scraps of greater races.

Is it just me or does that make it sound like kobolds are the noblest of those races?

Greiger

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #61 on: August 21, 2009, 04:08:18 pm »

Are you saying they aren't?  Kobolds are awesome.

They bravely volunteer to steal the other races important objects to spread madness and dissent. Yet they know, since they are quite small and fragile compared to these other creatures that they cannot do battle toe to toe with them, so they try to accomplish their task with stealth.

They are smart enough to avoid carefully lain traps, and avoid a fight when outmatched. They don't bring any valuable gear with them on the raids, so that if they do fall they don't aid their enemies.  They also don't make permanent structures so that if an enemy does determine where they live they can be gone with no loss before the enemy even realizes they left.

Kobolds are hardcore.  And are probably the single most intelligent race currently in the game.  Would YOU siege fortresses with these kinds of defenses with only 80 units?  I sure as hell wouldn't.  Would YOU continue trade relations with people who regularly dip your merchants in magma, or trade you subpar stone crafts no matter what you request and make sure you do it at a loss? I sure as hell wouldn't. After all travel is expensive and the dwarves are trying to buy the stuff from you at cost and usually succeed.  Would YOU migrate to a place where every migrant that went there was never allowed to leave again? I sure as hell wouldn't.

(anyway back on topic I go with a slightly more disheveled looking D&D dwarf with a few layers of mud and vomit.)
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Armok

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #62 on: August 21, 2009, 05:40:36 pm »

Are you saying they aren't?  Kobolds are awesome.

They bravely volunteer to steal the other races important objects to spread madness and dissent. Yet they know, since they are quite small and fragile compared to these other creatures that they cannot do battle toe to toe with them, so they try to accomplish their task with stealth.

They are smart enough to avoid carefully lain traps, and avoid a fight when outmatched. They don't bring any valuable gear with them on the raids, so that if they do fall they don't aid their enemies.  They also don't make permanent structures so that if an enemy does determine where they live they can be gone with no loss before the enemy even realizes they left.

Kobolds are hardcore.  And are probably the single most intelligent race currently in the game.  Would YOU siege fortresses with these kinds of defenses with only 80 units?  I sure as hell wouldn't.  Would YOU continue trade relations with people who regularly dip your merchants in magma, or trade you subpar stone crafts no matter what you request and make sure you do it at a loss? I sure as hell wouldn't. After all travel is expensive and the dwarves are trying to buy the stuff from you at cost and usually succeed.  Would YOU migrate to a place where every migrant that went there was never allowed to leave again? I sure as hell wouldn't.

(anyway back on topic I go with a slightly more disheveled looking D&D dwarf with a few layers of mud and vomit.)

Seconded.

I <3 kobolds! ^_^
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ein

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #63 on: August 21, 2009, 05:56:57 pm »

Who doesn't like kobolds?
The bay12 community has made them really awesome.

Sensei

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #64 on: August 21, 2009, 06:05:38 pm »

The way I see it, there's a limited area between where your dwarves are too cliched, and where you're just calling them dwarves (so that my mind doesn't really have them fill the 'dwarf' slot).

There's the original dwarves of legend, dupes and slaves of Loki. Then there's Tolkiens dwarves, which are now the all-dwarves-are-the-same. Putting an ADATS in a cyberpunk setting doesn't make it any different. There's the more Germanic idea of dwarves, in which they are more reclusive and mysterious (rather than living in great cities). Assyrian works too... then there's warhammer/DF, which I generally seem as some or all of the ADATS attributes taken to the illogical extreme.
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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #65 on: August 21, 2009, 08:12:44 pm »

Such as? I may have an incredibly narrow view of dwarven portrayals, but aside from the Assyrian Elder Scrolls dwemer I'd be hard pressed to come up with a single case of dwarves not being based on Nordic mythology.

As previously stated, there's the Dwarves from the Artimis Fowl books, i've also run into two other major variations.

The first variation puts the Dwarves as having a powerful connection to the earth, through this connection they draw some serious magics, they can make their flesh as tough as the rock itself and can put all the force of an erupting volcano behind their blows. As a result the entire race is basically naked monks; they don't wear armor because no man-made armor is tougher than their skin, and they don't use weapons because no man-made weapon can survive their blows. Their skin is white, pallid and hairless from spending all their time living in caves, they don't mine, both due to lack of toolusing and because the thought of hurting the earth from which they draw their strength is incredibly abhorrant to them. They can eat and drink as much as they want, but it won't ever affect their system, as they draw their nourishment from the earth itself, any normal food just passes harmlessly through their body.

The second variation was a bit less out there, fairly standard Dwarves at first glance, the trick was they actually sucked at mining and metalworking, but were unmatched summoners. They used their summoning magics to enslave entire races of extradimensional creatures, such as a type of earth elemental called an Imp. Imps were unbelievably good at mining and had the uncanny ability to seek out metal and gems. They also used another kind of earth elemental called a Drauer that were supurb builders and smiths. All of this was kept secret and hidden in the depths of their halls, so the rest of the world contributed the mining and metalworking as Dwarven traits, completely oblivious to the fact that the real Dwarven trait was summoning and they were running the most giganticest slave ring ever concieved.


And of course there's thousands of lesser variations.

Sordid

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #66 on: August 21, 2009, 08:39:07 pm »

Well I'd chalk up that first one under the "just calling them dwarves" category. The second is an interesting twist that manages to do away with the classic dwarfy traits, I like that.

I also realized that another reason I like the dwemer so much and why I have no problem thinking of them as a kind of dwarves is that they are very dwarfy - they're reclusive, they live in underground strongholds carved into the mountains, they're superb metalsmiths and engineers, they don't get along with the (other) elves, and they have big, long beards. Bethsoft managed to keep the archetype almost completely intact (minus the Scottish accent and the beer-guzzling), yet the way in which a simple change of the visual portrayal makes it new and unique and exciting again is quite remarkable, in my opinion.
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Neruz

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #67 on: August 22, 2009, 06:45:22 am »

The first one still shares many Dwarven traits though, they're just twisted somewhat.

Jamuk

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #68 on: August 22, 2009, 07:39:20 am »

Although I can't say I have any unique view of what they look like, culturally I see them as being a lot more balanced than just the general stereotype.

Although normally people think of them as being rude to other races, I see it more as that they don't come into contact normally.  I mean, who would want to live in their dimly lit, underground abode other than the dwarves themselves?  Only the ones that trade or do combat aboveground would interact with other races normally.  This leads to a general misunderstanding of what they are like.  I can imagine a parent telling stories about elves to frighten their children into behaving, or rumors and misconceptions spreading throughout about other races.

Although they use booze, it could likely be that the most clean and safe to drink source of water actually -is- alcohol.  It isn't like they can always boil river water when they get a drink.  Dwarves would just have a body that is effective at processing it, and doesn't allow it to interfere with mental capacities.

I also see them as being more down to earth (lol) and simple than other races.  And I don't mean stupid, but they don't make issues more complex than they need to.  Knowledge might be passed on through common sayings instead of actually understanding some of the issues, like "Honey attracts more flies than vinegar" (even though that saying is technically incorrect.)  This might make them appear simple or folksy, but in reality most of their actions would actually be the right ones.

For example, the nobles may not punish the right person when a mandate isn't fulfilled, but the resulting fear from just having someone randomly punished would be more than enough.  Fear is a better motivator than pain generally.  A dwarf would be thinking, "Shit, next time if I don't do this job it could be me or my family that gets punished, I better get to work."  It also encourages them to encourage other dwarves to work, "Bob if yeh don't get back to work I'll smack yeh... I don't wanna get hammered 'cause you were being lazy."  However, the noble might have no idea of the actual effects of his actions.  He just wanted to punish someone and common knowledge told him it was okay to do.

A lot of things about them can be rationalized... Except for where actual limitations in the coding like with sock collecting are found.  Tantrums also don't really fit into my view of what a dwarf might act like, although I do agree they would be more prone to brawls than other races because they are tougher and less likely to be injured in a fistfight.  However, this wouldn't be due to alcohol and would likely be viewed as an enjoyable activity.  Much in the same way children might wrestle with each other for play.
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Timst

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #69 on: August 23, 2009, 03:53:05 pm »

Well, let's not forget that the dwarves in DF doesn't kill kittens, flood the world with magma or undertake useless megaprojects naturally : the player make them do that. It's totally possible to start a fortress that'll look like a human city, with dwarves that'll not be different from standard humans, except for these few differences :

- A size shorter (in the raw).
- Dependent to alcohol.
- Able to enter into martial trance.

All the kitten-eatin', noble-burnin', elves-killin' only happens because the player decided to do it. And if you mod the game to play, say, humans or elves, you'll also be able to build ice towers or to eat +Cat meat biscuit+.

Sensei

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Re: Images of dwarfs/dwarves; how do you visualise them?
« Reply #70 on: August 23, 2009, 04:01:20 pm »

Don't forgot [STOUT] and [ALCOHOL_DEPENDENT].

The former affects their size, latter their personality. Don't forget fey moods and tantrums too (we can assume this only happens, or almost only happens to dwarves, because without modding it doesn't happen to other races, they aren't meant to be played without bugs). Or "...Urist admired a fine trap lately, urist took joy in slaughter lately...".

And then there's personality and morals in the entity.

Code: [Select]
[RELIGION:PANTHEON]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:FORTRESSES]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:JEWELS]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:METALS]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:MINERALS]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:MOUNTAINS]
[RELIGION_SPHERE:WEALTH]
...
[ETHIC:KILL_ENTITY_MEMBER:PUNISH_CAPITAL]
[ETHIC:KILL_NEUTRAL:ONLY_IF_SANCTIONED]
[ETHIC:KILL_ENEMY:ACCEPTABLE]
[ETHIC:KILL_ANIMAL:ACCEPTABLE]
[ETHIC:KILL_PLANT:ACCEPTABLE]
[ETHIC:TORTURE_AS_EXAMPLE:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:TORTURE_FOR_INFORMATION:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:TORTURE_FOR_FUN:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:TORTURE_ANIMALS:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:TREASON:PUNISH_CAPITAL]
[ETHIC:OATH_BREAKING:PUNISH_CAPITAL]
[ETHIC:LYING:PERSONAL_MATTER]
[ETHIC:VANDALISM:PUNISH_SERIOUS]
[ETHIC:TRESPASSING:PUNISH_SERIOUS]
[ETHIC:THEFT:PUNISH_SERIOUS]
[ETHIC:ASSAULT:PUNISH_SERIOUS]
[ETHIC:SLAVERY:PUNISH_CAPITAL]
[ETHIC:EAT_SAPIENT_OTHER:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:EAT_SAPIENT_KILL:UNTHINKABLE]
[ETHIC:MAKE_TROPHY_SAME_RACE:APPALLING]
[ETHIC:MAKE_TROPHY_SAPIENT:SHUN]
[ETHIC:MAKE_TROPHY_ANIMAL:ACCEPTABLE]
...and in the creature:
[PERSONALITY:IMMODERATION:0:55:100]
[PERSONALITY:VULNERABILITY:0:45:100]
[PERSONALITY:STRAIGHTFORWARDNESS:0:55:100]

So it's a given that dwarves love wealth and mining, are immoderate, secure and straightforward, hate torture, and consider themselves more important than other races which are more important than animals and plants. Strong punishments also indicate a strong sense of duty and morality, or at least loyalty and honor.
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