Sacred 2:Book 1 - Preface
From Lore of Weaponry
Since the dawn of time, all intelligent races have spent endless resources studying, developing and perfecting the lore of weaponry. The art and science of weaponry is not only about creating the most efficient ways of killing an opponent. It's also about having the best response to an opponents weapon and especially his armor. Of course, this requires dedicated study of your opponents. Generally, there are four categories of weapons: single-handed, two-handed, pole and ranged. All of them have their very own advantages and disadvantages, and play their role in duel as well as battle situations.
This category contains the widest range of weapons. From a simple club to a dagger and all the way to mace, axe and sword. Using a weapon in one hand is the most natural way of fighting, because it emulates the bare fist punch, In addition, single-handed weapons also offer the fighter a good variety of options for the off-hand, thereby determining his fighting style. He can equip a shield to increase his defensive potential, or another weapon to give him more attacking chances.
There are single-handed weapons designed for all kinds of damage, slash, thrust and crush. Some of them are limited to just one type of damage, while other weapons are more versatile in terms of damage output. The most versatile weapon is the sword, which, if used properly, is able to deal all kinds of damage. This flexibility is certainly the main reason why swords and sword-like weapons are the most popular.
A special fighting technique is the Armantin or dual-wield style. Here, the fighter will use one weapon in each hand. There are numerous ideas and tactics for this style. Many fighters are used to wielding two weapons of the same type, others prefer different types of weapons to enhance their offensive abilities.
Two-handed weapons are of longer range than their single-handed counterparts. The combined force of two arms in combination with excellent leverage and swing momentum also means that a blow from a two-handed weapon is much harder than the usual one-handed blow. However, there obviously has to be a drawback somewhere. It's very hard (and in some cases even impossible) to fight at close range with such weapons. Two-handed swords and two-handed battle-axes are the most common weapons of this type. Although they seem to be similar, they require a completely different fighting style. While the sword is controlled from a rather small hilt, the axe fighter has access to the whole shaft, which allows a number of additional moves and levers.
Two-handed weapon fighters dismiss almost all defensive options, and are purely relying on their offensive skills. Fighting with those weapons is extremely aggressive.
Pole-weapons are basically a special form of two-handed weapons. However, since fighting with these weapons requires a special style, they are classified as a different type of weapon. Pole-weapons are polearms, pikestaffs, spears and halberds. All these weapons have a very long range of effect. On the downside, they are almost useless in close range combat, which is one of the reasons why pole-weapon fighters tend to wear a secondary weapon on their belts. Pole-weapons are generally considered weapons for mass battles. When operating from behind a safe shieldwall, a polearm or spear squad is a devastating unit.
Bow, crossbow and all other forms of missile weapons are a special, unique class of weapons. They are used for killing at long distances, so there is no direct contact between the combatants. Missile weapons are the perfect choice for siege situations and for large battles. For single combat, they require a special tactics. Good bowmen will not reveal their location until they have fired their arrow.
Simultaneously to the development of weapons, all Ancarian races have developed some form of armor to counter the effectiveness of weapons. The deciding factor of armor is the trade off between protection on one hand and encumbrance of the wearer on the other hand. All kinds of armor offer good protection against certain types of damage, while being vulnerable to other kinds of damage. Plate armor is especially useful against slash and crush weapons, but considerably weaker against thrust. Chain is the perfect protection against slash, but almost useless against crush Whichever armor a fighter prefers, he always needs to take into consideration that some weapon types will render his suit of armor useless.
Quality of material and craftsmanship should never be underestimated The difference between a good weapon and a mediocre weapon can decide a fight, a battle, possibly an entire war. In centuries of research and development, blacksmiths of all races have gained enough knowledge to create long lasting and flexible weapons. Still, it is the High Elven steel that is considered the best choice for a weapon. A sword made of good High Elven steel is highly resistant against rust. It is also extremely flexible and can bend up to 90 degrees before it finally snaps.
Even the best weapon in the world is just a useless piece of wood and metal if the fighter lacks the skill to wield it properly. The ability to use the weapon is as important as the weapon itself. There are lots of different schools of fighting in Ancaria, some of them more popular than others. But they all have one thing in common and that's the goal of distracting the opponents defense and landing the first and deciding blow. This is mostly achieved by a combination of blows and fast and quick movement.
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