Saturday, June 19, 2010

Dwarves and Guns

I just wanted to jot down something that occurred to me while watching the opening minute of Sacred Blacksmith's second episode.

Dwarves in Trokair are rare on the surface. Those below ground have created guns. Gunpowder and explosives are indispensible but dangerous tools for mining and tunneling through rock. They can be used to great effect in setting traps (such as triggered cave-ins) but the dangers of collapse prevent greater use in the manner of concussive hand grenades (short-distance projectile/fragmentation grenades and "flash bang" grenades are suitable (a sudden, bright flash of light in the middle of pitch-black tunnels is a great way to dazzle one's foes)). Hence, guns were born. Their guns focus on spread and power (they would love shotguns) as opposed to distance and accuracy because they are used for tunnel fighting (where it is difficult to dodge and long-distance combat is rare).

One of the things that triggered this post was a line from the opening, "descend into the dark heavens." It is an unusual turn of phrase, as the heavens are almost universally considered to be skyward. I wondered if dwarves would think of things backwards, with their heaven beneath the earth and their hell on the surface (how horrific to be deprived of the welcoming embrace of stone and earth on all sides, to face this terrible empty void of the sky).

Then I remembered that the dwarves have guns ... and why they have guns. The depths of the earth spawn creatures twisted with evil and madness. Dark, inhuman creatures constantly bubble up from the darkness and seek to overwhelm the surface. The dwarves are the wall between us and destruction. That is why they have guns. And given that, there is no doubt that the dwarves do not consider the surface hell - hell lies somewhere far below even their subterranean kingdoms.

No comments: