Here is a prediction on how the Charrs bring down Ascalon in 1090AE.
Ascalonians held their ground against a much superior Charr army since 1072AE. They did this by holding on to 4 strategy locations on the Great Wall. They were:
2) The Breach
3) Great Northern Wall
4) Eastern Wall
King Adelbern decided long ago that neither of the 4 positions can fall. An open field battle against the much superior Charr army is hopeless. And hence all available Ascalon troops were sent to one of the 4 positions to maximize their manpower. Actual men left behind to defend the capital city was limited. This doesn't matter though, since the capital city is safe as long as those 4 positions remains in Ascalon hands.
And for years the plan worked. The Charrs does occasionally "nearly" break though the positions. However troops were able to relocate and drive back the Charrs.
To understand Ascalon's sudden fall in 1090AE one must understand the Catacombs under Ascalon. Here is a map of pre-searing Ascalon, when the Catacombs were still wildly used.
The Catacombs connects various places in Ascalon together. In Pre-Searing travelers would often use the Catacombs. However after the Searing the Catacombs were abandoned. It was rarely mentioned and by 1090AE it was mostly forgotten.
However Charr captured a historian that remembers the Catacombs, and thought torture was able to force him to reveal the enterance locations. There were 2 key exits. Barradin Estate and Ashford Abbey (currently Sardelac Sanitarium). The Barradin Estate exit was only a few miles south of The Breach, while the Ashford Abbey exit was only a few miles south west of Ascalon City itself. Getting troops to Ashford Abbey would allow the Charrs to avoid the Ascalonian defenses and attack their capital city directly. A plan was drafted and carried out.
The Charrs did a major attack against The Breach while another legion matched on to the Barradin Estate exit. As expected, the Catacombs were mostly forgotten and the Charrs got to the weakly defended exit with ease. The Ascalonians didn't sense the seriousness of the situation, and focused on defending The Breach. From there they got to Ashford Abbey and then match onward to the weakly defended Ascalon City.
By the time King Adelbern realized what was going on hundreds of thousands of Charrs has already surrounded Ascalon City. He ordered troops from the 4 defensive locations to rush back to Ascalon City for defense. The forces in the Great Northern Wall were the closest and the first to made it back. With their help King Adelbern was able to defend the city for a few days.
However doom is near. The troops from the other 3 positions never made it back in time to help. And the 4 defensive positions were weakened, and they fall one by one. The Great Northern Wall was no exception. After it falls the Charrs were able to attack Ascalon City from both the South-west and the North. The battle became hopeless.
King Adelbern was furious for being outsmarted by the "barbaric" Charrs. He ordered all surviving Ascalonians to abandon post and escape to Ebonhawke. He then casted Foefire. Millions of lives, both Charrs and Ascalonians, were lost. The rest was history.
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24-02-2011, 23:56 #1
How Ascalon Falls. (Detailed prediction)
25-02-2011, 01:31 #2
GWOnline Site Pal Achievements:
- The Order of Dii [Dii]
25-02-2011, 02:00 #3
Aren't the Catacombs pretty much collapsed under (what once was) Ashford?
25-02-2011, 04:10 #4
- Isle of Janthir
- The Fuzzy Physics Institute
Parts are, but the catacombs were very extensive, underlying a big part of Pre-Searing Ascalon. There were other entrances we know of in Green Hills and Wizard's Folly, and possibly more that we never saw.
26-02-2011, 05:18 #5
An interesting read. My view, though, has always been that Ascalon was ground down through steady attrition rather than some sudden, crushing manoeuvre by the Charr. It’s hinted at in the EotN manual:
Ascalon has become a conquered and savaged nation. Brave heroes have slowed, but not stemmed, the invading hordes. A large military force under the command of King Adelbern continues to defend the nation from incursion, but they slip farther and farther south as their battle lines collapse beneath the strength of the Charr forces.
The quests that have you re-visiting Ascalon (eg the Titan Source chain, and Gwen’s mission to retrieve her flute) also seem to indicate that Charr are spilling past the wall with increasing frequency as time goes on. My natural interpretation was that the Charr simply conquered the territory around the wall and eventually marched on the city en masse, using their superior force to overwhelm the defenders in pitched battle. That said, the fall of the city itself is purely speculative, so there’s no reason why one opinion should be more correct that others.
The only thing I’d really disagree with is ‘millions’ of lives being lost. It seems doubtful that, even at the peak of their strength, there were ever really millions of lives on either side to begin with... but that’s another thread altogether, I think
27-02-2011, 07:48 #6
Ascalon were once a proud nation that pushed the Charr all the way to Charr homeland. Now it has already lost all its strongholds (e.g. Surmia) outside of the wall. The wall and Ascalon city is their last stand. There is no room to retreat anymore. If they lost the wall they have no chance fighting the Charr in open field. It would make sense to throw all its manpower at the wall to hold it. There are occasional breakthroughs, as seen in Fort Ranik and Last Day Dawns. Both times the Charrs made it though the wall and must be pushed back before they can establish a foot hold inside the wall.
It might be a slow process like you said. But if the Charr ever breaks though the wall permanently the battle is lost. There won't be a slow collapse since there are no strongholds left. The only defense left is Ascalon City, which would be the final battle.
The population size in the GW universe has never been stated. However we can estimate them from medieval Europe. That is why I estimate the death tolls to be in the millions.
150AD-400AD 50 million
400AD-1100AD 30 million
1100-1300AD 70 million
1300-1400AD 30 million
Last edited by CHIPS; 27-02-2011 at 07:52.
08-04-2011, 18:05 #7
I would't go that far, comparing pre-Searing Ascalon to the whole Medieval Europe. Please consider Medieval France http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medieval_France . It's peak demographics were about 17 mil. , but you have to count in all it's duchies and counties, with all those main cities. Comparing Ascalon to Paris would't be exagerated, but Paris, being Europe's largest city of those times, was about 200.000 inh. So I'd estimate total population of Ascalon around 1 mil. (but that's largely overrated). Now, the Char invasion could've been triggered by overpopulation in their homelands, but, due to geographical difficulties and to having to fight Norn and Dwarves if going West, they had no option but to concentrate all their offensive force towards the Southern frontier. If we analyse their warrior nature, they could be compared to Vikings or Huns (though these people never really took over all the raided territories). A massive 500.000 Charr army could've invaded Ascalon, but that's also largely overestimated (Norway, the biggest Scandinavian kingdom, was around 150.000 pop. in the 15th century, hundreds of years after the peak of Vikings). Considering that a large number of lives were lost in the previous battles and subsequent civilian massacres at the hands of the Charr, Foefire should've caused at max. 1 mil deaths
22-04-2011, 17:38 #8