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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

sdelu

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  1. Fair point- but you've got literally hundreds of channelers standing around completely idle for several critical days. In the meantime Lan is being forced back with virtually no channeling support, Bashere is doing god knows what luring trollocs all over andor and cairhein for dubious reasons, Bryne is playing defense in a fixed location when god knows how many trollocs are pouring south around his flank and into the heart of the westlands. Mind you- The Plan was to destroy the shadowspawn army in Andor quickly and lockdown that waygate to close that front permanently. Which had some wisdom- it would allow them to rejoin their forces and choke the shadow forced off further north to starve. Now how the execution turned into fighting a running battle across half the continent i dont entirely get. Was the world better off with a Caemlyn full of trollocs and an observation force? Or a westlands full of trollocs with half the army of the light trudging around. And lets not forget that while arguable the channelers are kinda being husbanded (except that instead of exerting a coordinated effort early and decisively to destroy the Andor force, they are now dripping it away steadily day by day in the battle of attrition they should be trying like hell to avoid), the actual soldiers are being marched and fought to death. There is no factor of 'decisiveness' that is always foremost in real great captains minds. I wonder if the "Great Captains" are being set up to fail so that Mat can take over and, hum, out-Great Captain them all. Bryne's mistake was costly but it wasn't as bad as what's going on in Andor. That might be the ruination of everything. I wonder now if the straws people were picking for the Bashere Darkfriend theory really weren't as thin as I thought. That'd be a shame, because he's awesome. I really hope we don't have to lump Agelmar in there as well. They are doing a whole lot better than the other two armies, so maybe he really is just tired. Really, though, there's no good reason -- aside from stupidity perhaps, which isn't "good" -- that they didn't just blow the hell out of Caemlyn. Make one big push with a large portion of channelers and the dragons to destroy the waygate, then set a smaller army to take out the remaining trollocs. Oh well!
  2. Yeah, that's a bit of a sticking point. But one could argue that Bashere's force was much, much smaller and more mobile than the Army(ies) of Light, with a fitting number of channelers who had the strength to make waygates of the proper size. Currently, the Light dooesn't have the resources to move hundreds of thousands of people around AND keep their channelers in fighting strength, especially over a war some expect might last years. One other distinct advantage the Shadow channelers have is that they do not have to kill what appears to be hundreds of thousands of trollocs on a daily basis. The way it works is comments like that are totally fair game as one offs anywhere. If the discussion continues it needs to go to quality. Seems odd to me, but as long as it does the job I guess.
  3. Agreed, but might some of these sentiments be better left in the "quality discussion" thread? Well- i'd buy that but we're sposed to be talking about great captains here. I mean everybody immediately saw what the dragons could be used for and implemented them immediately. I agree that some REALLY fancy waygate stuff would take time to figure out... but just common sense- like say forming a circle with angreal and opening a big ass gate to move an army instantly, thats just implausible that nobody would think of that. After the first mile of trudging through the mud every last farmer with a pitchfork would be wondering why they were walking everywhere. And the reserve force is really inexplicable- isn't really even travelling related. The AS, if no-one else, had years of training and studying the trolloc wars and everybody knew there would be dreadlords and forsaken that could enter the battle and almost instantly turn the tide at any given moment. Remember how the Salidar crew had their 'we're under attack by forsaken' protocols? Even THAT would have been better than what theyve demonstrated so far. Fair enough. Yes, they should be doing better, and probably should have seen to those two things straight away. But allow me a Devil's Advocate moment: the Aes Sedai have shown time and again that they are mostly big fat phonies. The majority of them have spent the entire series doing one of three things: (1) losing arguments to Egwene, (2) vomiting/fainting, (3)squabbling. You can probably add being captured, sniffing, and baring their breasts to that list as well. They don't have the leadership experience they claim. They don't have the wartime expertise that's supposed to help them win the War of Shadow. They are not what they are supposed to be, save for a select few. We've been shown that plenty of times. As such, yes, it's frustrating that they're failing. It's easy for us to look at it and say "they should be doing better!" But I think there is a lot of precedent showing the opposite as well.
  4. esvath -- Figured that would happen anyway, so no real spoiler for me. Just glad I saw it before others got to it! Edited it out of the quote in my post as well. That said, I agree with you. There is still a lot of discord and dissonance in the Light's forces. Hopefully that changes soon, because the Shadow does not have the same limitation.
  5. Pretty certain #2 is not in the first 25 chapters... =/
  6. I see what you're saying, but until Rand gained Lews Therin's memories in full, nobody on the light side (save maybe Mat) had any real experience running a large-scale war against armies that contain channelers. But yes, Rand probably should have seen that some sort of special channeling reserve forces would have been a benefit. There's only so much you can do in a limited time. As for Travelling . . . well, to be fair, the Sharans are an army commanded by a general who used Travelling in a war that lasted longer than a good number of the Light's channelers have even been alive, and Demandred had full access to his AoL knowledge right off the bat. They are also a single force under one ruler, with channeling resources that seem to outstrip the Aes Sedai. Who knows how much time Demandred has spent training them? Travelling was only rediscovered and distributed to all of the Light's channelers relatively recently. The Light as it stands now simply doesn't have the same experience, even with Rand (who can only do so much). Not that I disagree with you that they're not doing the best job, but it makes sense that the Shadow is more prepared for this war than the Light. We've known that they would be since the early books. And you have to keep in mind that the Darkfriends aren't helping any. Some of the tactics so far seem suspiciously bad...
  7. 1. If Egwene does anything to hurt Rand 2. Rand kneels to Tuon (or worse, as part of Tuon agreeing to the Dragon's Peace: "Pass me his bond.") 3. DO dies / time becomes linear 3a. Extra angry points if it's all thanks to Fain. 4. Some of Rand's close allies don't betray him (they can't all be good guys) 5. Remaining Forsaken go out with a whimper 6. More of a thing that I'll be angry if it DOESN'T happen: "I win again, Lews Therin." At least one time!
  8. This one is easy IMO. There is a large amount of filler in TGS and ToM. You could quite literally cut away whole sections without having to rewrite a thing(as opposed to places in WH-CoT that still held vital info and foreshadowing). The pace of KoD is easily equal to the two Sanderson books so not sure why you woul dreference it as being only a slight improvement. I started a thread about this but I believe given the repitition and filler we have seen from Brandon, RJ could have finished in 1 more book broken into 2 WH sized volumes. Let me be clear, I am not one of these people that thinks RJ is some master. His work doesn't hold up outside of genre and even in, there are many I rate above him. Fantasy has taken a step up with authors such as Bakker in recent times and looking back EotW can almost seem quaint in comparison. This is the one thing I've seen you post repeatedly that I can't come to terms with. I did not read CoT. Had to put it down out of boredom (and this was on a straight read-through of the series, not after a long wait). I skimmed WH. I skip large chunks these titles in re-reads, focusing on a few select scenes. I read the ewot summaries, looked up the prophecies/viewings, and I have never been lost/confused/whathaveyou when reading the final books or the forums. Yes, there is some important stuff in there, but it's buried beneath so much BS (ha) that I didn't really need to shovel through it all. Excusing RJs ponderous fluff simply because there are "some important bits" (my own words) is a weak argument. Don't get me wrong -- some of the Brandon fluff is largely pointless, I agree, and it is a different kind of fluff overall. But much of RJs fluff is largely pointless as well -- perhaps even more so in some cases. I don't understand how you continue to argue that RJ's fluff is somehow better simply because there is an occasional penny hidden in the (much larger) turd. I guess I would say that Brandon's filler is more exciting to me than RJs. That's a positive . . . kind of.
  9. I disagree with the extent to which you think the matter was out of Brandon's and Harriet's hands. First of all, experience shows that when either of them says "this is not ready, we need more time" they got it. Secondly, Harriet holds the rights, and to the best of my knowledge, she doesn't need the income from these books. If she'd said no to a release, it wouldn't happen. As simple as that. Nor do I think Tor would give up on the entire project because of any delay; it's worth money no matter when it comes. You're right, it's not out of entirely out of their hands, and they did have some leeway when they asked for it. However, I don't believe that precludes the whole fiasco from being poorly managed, be that by a "higher power" or by BS/Harriet/TJ themselves. That said, perhaps I misrepresented my stance a bit. I wasn't trying to imply that they (Harriet) had no power, nor that it was necessarily minimal where it existed (though, admittedly, I doubt Brandon had as much power as an author usually does, but that isn't the issue either). What I really meant was that there are other parties interested in selling the book (read: MacMillan) -- possibly much more so than the crew working on it -- that might have even more power. There could have been a lot of internal pressure to finish the series up. And, heck, they knew it would sell regardless of quality, right? There are plenty of behind-the-scenes decisions and discussions we are not privy to. I highly doubt that MacMillan would be okay with pushing the title back over and over again, and I also doubt they would adopt the philosophy of "don't worry, it's worth money no matter when it comes." Further, I don't think a business looking at a potential million-dollar title would care whether or not Harriet does or does not "need the income from these books." MacMillan paid a ton of money for the books and they really do have the final say on when it will be published. But that's all speculation and is for the most part worthless. We'll never know for sure why the books have been pushed out as they are. But they have been, and, as I said, someone somewhere gave the OK for that. We should spread the blame around some is all! Which was what I said. Actually, it was Tom that--upon seeing what Brandon had done after a time--decided to split it into three books. That Brandon promised to do so with expediency, yes. But not fast, necessarily, but rather as fast as possible. Can you supply quotes to support claims to the contrary? You're right, it was Tom's decision to split the books officially, but not before Brandon pointed out that at 250,000 words he felt he only had about 1/3 of the book done and had set his estimate for the total at 750k words. I'm primarily using Brandon's blog entry on the split. Getting this book out ASAP to the waiting fans was not just a priority to Brandon but to Harriet and Tom as well. I think you're calling "fast" what I call "as fast as possible." "Great urgency," "quickly," "as soon as possible." None of these make it sound like they were interested in writing quality books in the first place.
  10. I cut this out of another topic, so bear with me if it doesn't flow with the most recent debates... Yes, I agree there are problems with the novels. Big problems, in some cases, and insignificant problems as well. That said, I do think some of the criticisms presuppose a few things that I do not agree with: 1) That Brandon is a better writer than TGS/ToM show. I don't think he is, at least in terms of peak talent (and maybe overall. I keep flip-flopping on this). I think his other works are more polished and play more to his strengths as a writer, but that's because he owned them completely and had the time to work on them to his satisfaction. 2) That Brandon deserves the amount of blame he receives. I don't think he does. Oh, he does deserve his fair share of it, don't get me wrong. He should have "fixed" a few of his issues if not by ToM then certainly by AMoL. But he's not the only one that should be correcting these things. 3) That Brandon has the final say on what makes it into the book. The fact of the matter is that this is a group effort. WoT as a whole is a poorly edited series (or a brilliantly edited series, I suppose, depending on how monstrous RJs manuscripts were), and it really shows in the BS entries. Someone could have stepped in at any point and said "you need to change this," or "this does not work in a WoT novel," and so on and so forth. Yet apparently someone thought Hinderstap was a good idea, or that it was at least passable enough to make it into series, even if it served no purpose other than inflating the page count. What I think is really telling is that there was almost no beta for the final novel. That is...scary. Were it RJ writing it wouldn't be a bad thing, but this BS took over a series with 12 previous entries and should not be expected to get by without a beta read. It's just not feasible. So, did BS put his full effort into it? I don't know. Did Harriet, Maria, or Alan? I don't know. But someone somewhere along the line made the decision that the book was good enough to be published, and it may not have been a decision made by any of the four people working on this project. Publishing is a business. The final three books were almost guaranteed to sell millions of copies. Spending the time to make the books perfect (years, really) would likely cost more money than would shipping error-riddled books as fast as possible. It's unfortunate, but I highly doubt BS & co. would have been allowed to take any more time than they already did. From an outside perspective, the real issue is that this whole project appears to have been poorly managed. So... there's that. Just adding my own thoughts for the first time in a few years.
  11. As someone who mostly lurks and rarely posts, I don't feel that the criticisms are vile or "vicious" (as BS put it) in and of themselves. The problem lies more in how relentless they can be (or appear to be), in which case I sort of agree with him. It does feel (note, feel) that at some point most quality discussions derail into a "Brandon vs. RJ" or "Brandon did this poorly" or "this is just fluff it could be cut" (and so on). It becomes a matter of perception: we've seen the same old threads over and over--I don't even bother reading through many of the rehashed topics--but now that we finally have new discussions, they don't seem to go very long without some sort of criticism leveled. More than anything else I find it to be annoying. I don't disagree with it, but I don't really care to read about it, either. That said, BS does appear to be a bit delusional in thinking people are only reacting to his popularity. That's not true. But at the same time I really don't think the criticism should be so heavily bent toward him (there are many other parties involved), and I really doubt he has the time to delve into any but the harshest (since that is what will likely be brought to his attention). In short, I think his perspective on the issue as a whole is rather skewed. -- Edited the rest out to keep on-topic.
  12. Even if they are "just people" they're still some of the strongest channelers the AoL had to offer, and they're being upstaged by people who have a fraction of their knowledge. It doesn't matter how "arrogant" or how "human" a master chess player is, he would still obliterate me. Rand is really the ONLY light channeler who should stand a chance against one of the Forsaken. Nynaeve I can accept also because she was always touted as strong... but the rest of them? They may be arrogant, they may have reputations beefed up because the growth of legends, but they should still be able to kill people who have nowhere near their knowledge. So I don't buy that "they're just human" or that "the pattern won't let them" -- that's a bunch of bull. The fact of the matter is that RJ didn't kill off any characters and the story feels cheapened because of this reluctance. Now, as for the Forsaken in this book, I don't think there's much to say. They once again prove their uselessness. And Graendal's "escape" is shown to be a complete deus ex machina, since she's so "brilliant" she can't even figure out how to kill Perrin. Here's an easy plan that requires no brilliance: while he sleeps in the wolf dream, set his tent on fire. (Though I'm sure if she did that, the pattern would have a rainstorm sweep in, flash flood wherever she's standing and drown her.) Phaw.
  13. Problem is not too weak shadow. Mesaana for example threw down the old amyrlin, made a puppet of the new one, split the tower, had every single AS worried about the other Ahjas instead of the last battle etc. The problem is the "light" characters sometimes are too good. Which is fine imo since it's fantasy fiction. Plus the ideas you seem have about the ending now could be deduced from reading one tenth of TEotW. I don't think it's even about the characters being too good. I think it's more about the Shadow not working together. Only Moridin is truly inline with the Dark One's plans. The other Forsaken are each squabbling over who's to be the best among them, so they can't marshall their forces effectively in a grand scheme. Had they acted in concert early on Rand would have easily been destroyed, but their in-fighting allowed him to live and learn and grow and now it's an even fight. Maybe not "too good" but the fact that the Light just keeps getting stronger and stronger has bothered me for books now. Mostly I mean the fact that damn near every character has some Talent. Oh, sure, it can be explained away by the Pattern (which is lame, but that's another topic), but I mean, it's at the point where I'm almost rooting for the Shadow because the odds are stacked so heavily against them. And they are, in my view. Their Chosen suck. They've done nothing. I mean, it's a fantasy book so I don't expect realism, but if someone could go into T'A'R and come out wherever he wanted, and you wanted Perrin dead, how about he just steps out of T'A'R into Perrin's tent and kills him? I mean, come on now. How is that harder than the whole Dreamspike sequence? Every bad guy in the book is just plain dumb, and the good guys are starting to look like superheroes. (Oh, don't mind me, I'll just take down 3 bloodknives at once, while Egwene breaks the mind of one of the Forsaken with barely a struggle. Doot da doo.) The Seanchan have felt like a far bigger threat than the Shadow throughout the series. Somehow I feel like it shouldn't be that way.
  14. I had that thought as well, since I vaguely remembered him being called wolf, and the great generals surely fit the criterion. But he has known death? Guess that's not too literal, unless that has something to do with Graendal. Either that or it's because he's a soldier, which seems a bit simplistic. Either way, couldn't find the reference, even using Ideal Seek, because Ituralde and Wolf don't end up in the same sentence. Doh. Nice one. (should have put it in my post anyway so I could look smart. oh well :P )
  15. There's no need for discussion. The timelines are off. Perrin is pretty far behind Rand at the start of the book. Remember in tGS when Rand had the vision of Perrin standing by the statue with Galad? That's way before Rand meets up with Tam and tries to kill him. That's where Perrin's arc starts (pretty much) in ToM, so he has some catching up to do. Tam being whisked away from Perrin's camp was because of Nynaeve getting him in tGS.
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