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    Default Re: Wheel of Time, Amazon Prime

    The biggest reason why all the Male Forsaken keep getting dirt naps is because they keep picking direct flights with Rand.

    You'd think they wouldn't do this after the first two deaths but they just keep on going
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk748 View Post
    The biggest reason why all the Male Forsaken keep getting dirt naps is because they keep picking direct flights with Rand.

    You'd think they wouldn't do this after the first two deaths but they just keep on going
    Sammael: Look - Rahvin, Asmodean, Ishamael, Aginor, Balthamel, and Be'lal were all clearly flukes. I've totally got this!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Sammael: Look - Rahvin, Asmodean, Ishamael, Aginor, Balthamel, and Be'lal were all clearly flukes. I've totally got this!
    Like, I can buy Rahvin fighting him, but NO ONE should be picking direct flights with Rand after he shows he's willing to Final Flash someone with Balefire.

    Like, that man didn't care for quite awhile about using that stuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Sammael: Look - Rahvin, Asmodean, Ishamael, Aginor, Balthamel, and Be'lal were all clearly flukes. I've totally got this!
    Sammael is the only one I really give a pass to personally. He was totally happy to hang out playing nation builder in Illian while Rand killed all the other Forsaken. He even made an offer to Rand to stay out of each others way. Rand came after him, not the other way around.
    If my text is blue, I'm being sarcastic.But you already knew that, right?


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    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Sammael is the only one I really give a pass to personally. He was totally happy to hang out playing nation builder in Illian while Rand killed all the other Forsaken. He even made an offer to Rand to stay out of each others way. Rand came after him, not the other way around.
    Sammael got a very clear middle finger as his response to that truce request. The sensible thing to do would have been to abandon Illian entirely; but every single Forsaken and Rand himself knew he would never run, because at the end of the day he's a moron, or at least stubborn to a fault.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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  6. - Top - End - #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    Sammael got a very clear middle finger as his response to that truce request. The sensible thing to do would have been to abandon Illian entirely; but every single Forsaken and Rand himself knew he would never run, because at the end of the day he's a moron, or at least stubborn to a fault.
    You could make the case that every Forsaken who tried to kill Rand was kind of a moron. Aside from their own personal idiocy, they should all know enough about how prophecy works to know that Rand isnít going to die before he does all the various things heís been foretold to do (WoT has some unpleasant implications for fans of free will). So Iíll give Lanfear half a pass for trying to control Rand rather than kill him, but take that away because her only reason for that is that sheís still hung up on her ex 3,000 freaking years later.

    Ishy is a special case, though. When we see him as Moridin he clearly gets that Rand is going to be at TG, and heís working to manipulate everything leading up to that, not to stop it. Early-book Ishy is less clear, but my headcanon is that he wasnít really trying to win when Rand fought him in the first two books, and even when Rand killed him that may have all been according to plan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    Early-book Ishy is less clear, but my headcanon is that he wasnít really trying to win when Rand fought him in the first two books, and even when Rand killed him that may have all been according to plan.
    To be fair to Ish at this point, he'd just spent 3000 years alive and awake, mostly without his hook to the DO, and hiding from anyone who knew what was going on throughout a literal apocalypse. When we meet him, the only challenger for Oldest Thing Alive is the Green Man. And since the Nym seem almost half-golem in their fixity of purpose, it's hard to say how much he counts.

    At some point Ishmael even stopped interacting with humans like a normal person, and possibly eventually convinced himself that all those years ago he was the big bad. (Or at least other characters, and the names he claims, imply such.) And he started physically degrading into a wandering human furnace at some point.

    Philosophy is a hell of a drug. Philosophical nihilism even more so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    You could make the case that every Forsaken who tried to kill Rand was kind of a moron. Aside from their own personal idiocy, they should all know enough about how prophecy works to know that Rand isnít going to die before he does all the various things heís been foretold to do (WoT has some unpleasant implications for fans of free will). So Iíll give Lanfear half a pass for trying to control Rand rather than kill him, but take that away because her only reason for that is that sheís still hung up on her ex 3,000 freaking years later.

    Ishy is a special case, though. When we see him as Moridin he clearly gets that Rand is going to be at TG, and heís working to manipulate everything leading up to that, not to stop it. Early-book Ishy is less clear, but my headcanon is that he wasnít really trying to win when Rand fought him in the first two books, and even when Rand killed him that may have all been according to plan.
    I disagree about Lanfear; if it weren't for Moiraine
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    literally getting handed a cosmic cheat code, she'd have won. There's nothing Lanfear could have done to counter a divination that specific; that was practically on par with the Creator stepping in. The closest analogue I can think of to Moiraine's infodump about the Tairen dock encounter was Doctor Strange using the Time Stone to beat Thanos.

    (And what does Rand take away from that encounter? "My irrational refusal to kill even women that are actively trying to kill me backfired and got another woman killed anyway - oh well, better triple down!!" )

    As for Isshy, my understanding is that the early attempts to stop Rand before TG could have worked. The Dark One embodies paradox, so converting Rand/getting out early could have indeed invalidated all the previous prophecies and negated TG.


    My issue with Sammael is that he gets talked up a lot as this great general, but he absolutely refused to change tactics when the circumstances changed. When he established himself in Illian, all the Forsaken I listed except Aginor and Balthamel were alive, and Rand didn't even have Callandor yet. As the dominoes fell and Graendal called him a dumbass to his face, his constant refrain was that he had never retreated from Lews Therin - which he literally ended up doing anyway, except he retreated to possibly the dumbest battleground on the planet, a place that (a) Rand knew better than he did, and (b) anything he did to defend himself would put him in more danger. Some general.

    By the end his only real accomplishment, apart from keeping Rand's throne warm for him, was to turn the Shaido into the most annoying filler arc in fantasy history.
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  9. - Top - End - #129
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    My issue with Sammael is that he gets talked up a lot as this great general, but he absolutely refused to change tactics when the circumstances changed. When he established himself in Illian, all the Forsaken I listed except Aginor and Balthamel were alive, and Rand didn't even have Callandor yet. As the dominoes fell and Graendal called him a dumbass to his face, his constant refrain was that he had never retreated from Lews Therin - which he literally ended up doing anyway, except he retreated to possibly the dumbest battleground on the planet, a place that (a) Rand knew better than he did, and (b) anything he did to defend himself would put him in more danger. Some general.
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    Should be pointed out it was rather heavily implied Graendal did a lot of manipulation to make Sammael dig in and suicide against Rand.
    Though also, that it was quite likely Sammael's plan would have worked. And killed Rand. Had Moridin not saved Rand.



    By the end his only real accomplishment, apart from keeping Rand's throne warm for him, was to turn the Shaido into the most annoying filler arc in fantasy history.
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    part credit belongs to Asmodean. Who set that Coul-something guy up as a distraction xD
    thnx to Starwoof for the fine avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    I disagree about Lanfear; if it weren't for Moiraine
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    literally getting handed a cosmic cheat code, she'd have won. There's nothing Lanfear could have done to counter a divination that specific; that was practically on par with the Creator stepping in. The closest analogue I can think of to Moiraine's infodump about the Tairen dock encounter was Doctor Strange using the Time Stone to beat Thanos.

    (And what does Rand take away from that encounter? "My irrational refusal to kill even women that are actively trying to kill me backfired and got another woman killed anyway - oh well, better triple down!!" )

    As for Isshy, my understanding is that the early attempts to stop Rand before TG could have worked. The Dark One embodies paradox, so converting Rand/getting out early could have indeed invalidated all the previous prophecies and negated TG.


    My issue with Sammael is that he gets talked up a lot as this great general, but he absolutely refused to change tactics when the circumstances changed. When he established himself in Illian, all the Forsaken I listed except Aginor and Balthamel were alive, and Rand didn't even have Callandor yet. As the dominoes fell and Graendal called him a dumbass to his face, his constant refrain was that he had never retreated from Lews Therin - which he literally ended up doing anyway, except he retreated to possibly the dumbest battleground on the planet, a place that (a) Rand knew better than he did, and (b) anything he did to defend himself would put him in more danger. Some general.

    By the end his only real accomplishment, apart from keeping Rand's throne warm for him, was to turn the Shaido into the most annoying filler arc in fantasy history.
    Thatís my point, though. The Pattern will do whatever it takes to keep Rand on track for TG, including handing out cosmic cheat codes as needed.

    Whether Rand ever could have been defeated is an open question, since he obviously wasnít. As far as I remember, we donít have any examples of even a minor Foretelling, prophetic dream, or one of Minís viewings being thwarted. Iím open to the idea that Rand is vulnerable when the Dark One touches the pattern directly, though, so perhaps within bubbles of evil or to use of the True Power. So maybe Ishy could have done it, since he used the True Power almost exclusively.

    Completely agree about Sammael, though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
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    Should be pointed out it was rather heavily implied Graendal did a lot of manipulation to make Sammael dig in and suicide against Rand.
    Though also, that it was quite likely Sammael's plan would have worked. And killed Rand. Had Moridin not saved Rand.
    The fact that she could so easily manipulate him, using a several-thousand-year-old understanding of his mindset, proves my point about his unfitness.

    As for Moridin,
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    Rand's dilemma there wasn't truly mortal peril, it was that if he had saved himself with the power Sammael might know where he was. But as we saw several times during that fight, Sammael knowing where he was didn't amount to much. It would have been dangerous, sure, but survivable. Moridin's intervention was welcome, but not truly necessary.


    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
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    part credit belongs to Asmodean. Who set that Coul-something guy up as a distraction xD
    Oh definitely, but without Samm the Shaido would have been completely done in book 5. Partial credit to Asmodean but it only goes so far.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    Thatís my point, though. The Pattern will do whatever it takes to keep Rand on track for TG, including handing out cosmic cheat codes as needed.
    And that's fine, but doesn't make Lanfear stupid the way Sammael was. The Pattern didn't manipulate him into an unwinnable scenario, he did that to himself (with barely a modicum of prodding by Graendal.)

    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    Whether Rand ever could have been defeated is an open question, since he obviously wasnít. As far as I remember, we donít have any examples of even a minor Foretelling, prophetic dream, or one of Minís viewings being thwarted. Iím open to the idea that Rand is vulnerable when the Dark One touches the pattern directly, though, so perhaps within bubbles of evil or to use of the True Power. So maybe Ishy could have done it, since he used the True Power almost exclusively.

    Completely agree about Sammael, though.
    There are a number of foretellings that didn't come true during the series or were too vague to be certain actually, like the trees flowering around Perrin and the raven tattoo on Carlinya (who died). One advantage to the show is that they'll only have to show the stuff that ends up being resolved.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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    The fact that she could so easily manipulate him, using a several-thousand-year-old understanding of his mindset, proves my point about his unfitness.
    Now your being unfair. For a start the comment about the understanding being several thousand years old dont make sense.
    They were locked in stasis. From their point of view no time basically elapsed.

    And all she really did were lure him into doing something he really wanted to do himself.
    Fight the upstart dragon while he had a clear advantage due to his age of legend experience.

    Something by the way, we still dont know were unwinable or not.
    It might have been. But that would take a larger understanding of everything that i think only Ishamel had to realise.

    For that matter. Moridins intervention were a bit larger than that.
    he asked a few key question. That changed how Rand though about the situation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    And that's fine, but doesn't make Lanfear stupid the way Sammael was. The Pattern didn't manipulate him into an unwinnable scenario, he did that to himself (with barely a modicum of prodding by Graendal.)
    I think weíre in agreement there. My original point was that thereís a pretty high degree of arrogant stupidity in any of the Forsaken thinking they could kill Rand before TG when thereís a boatload of apparently-infallible prophecy saying thatís not going to happen. Sammael gets bonus points for stupidity because he probably would have gotten himself killed even without that.

    As for Sammael being a great general, itís definitely more of an informed attribute from what we saw. OTOH, itís worth remembering that the generals at the end of the AoL had to basically figure out the whole concept of war from first principles. Sammael could have gotten his reputation by virtue of being among the first to be moderately competent at warfare, without actually being particularly good at it.

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    He may have not experienced all of it, but he still knows how much time has passed and how much the world has changed. If he were as good a general as he thinks he is, he would adapt (much like Demandred did). That's all I'm saying.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    As for Sammael being a great general, itís definitely more of an informed attribute from what we saw. OTOH, itís worth remembering that the generals at the end of the AoL had to basically figure out the whole concept of war from first principles. Sammael could have gotten his reputation by virtue of being among the first to be moderately competent at warfare, without actually being particularly good at it.
    My thought exactly.
    Last edited by Psyren; 2021-09-17 at 01:13 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    I think weíre in agreement there. My original point was that thereís a pretty high degree of arrogant stupidity in any of the Forsaken thinking they could kill Rand before TG when thereís a boatload of apparently-infallible prophecy saying thatís not going to happen. Sammael gets bonus points for stupidity because he probably would have gotten himself killed even without that.

    As for Sammael being a great general, itís definitely more of an informed attribute from what we saw. OTOH, itís worth remembering that the generals at the end of the AoL had to basically figure out the whole concept of war from first principles. Sammael could have gotten his reputation by virtue of being among the first to be moderately competent at warfare, without actually being particularly good at it.
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    I think he actually does the best of anyone in the series at using tactics that would actually work. He realizes he is out matched magically so he has his troops make hard points that the enemy will have to assault magically to break. The first is an outer line he knows will stop the very large normal forces of his enemies, then an internal trap for anyone who teleports a strike force in.

    It works. Rand's forces fail to breach the outer defenses, he gets impatient and strikes in and his forces are broken and he almost dies.

    Only Mat is really depicted as being better, and even then he usually has more casters/cannons then the enemy. Sammael comes close to beating Rand with truly inferior forces.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
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    Only Mat is really depicted as being better
    I am not so sure about that really. From my impression, nearly all of Mat's success came from his Mary-Sue Luck Levels than anything. If the Pattern re-organizes itself around the three, then I can imagine instances where they should have flat out died instead without the Pattern refusing to allow anything different.

    As for Generalship, I think that the reputation is more about the world in the Age of Legends going boom afterward and so everyone from then probably became epically awesome, despite everything.

    I mean, look at the Story of Arthur and how much change happened there. The original (if any) has become a King and Emperor with an amazing court and great deeds, while the original (if any) was supposedly just a war leader that fought some battles against the Anglo-Saxons who later co opted the narrative.

    So I think a similar thing happened with the various Forsaken, because they all end up being treated as larger as life in all ways, but prove out to be pretty stupid bunches.

    I was also not thrilled about the Dark One rezzing the dead servants, made it way to D&D in my mind. I prefer my villains to go down and stay down. And my heroes too. Probably why I like the Dragonlance stories more than the Forgotten Realms ones. Lord Soth excepted of course, not Toede
    Last edited by russdm; 2021-09-17 at 02:13 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
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    I think he actually does the best of anyone in the series at using tactics that would actually work. He realizes he is out matched magically so he has his troops make hard points that the enemy will have to assault magically to break. The first is an outer line he knows will stop the very large normal forces of his enemies, then an internal trap for anyone who teleports a strike force in.

    It works. Rand's forces fail to breach the outer defenses, he gets impatient and strikes in and his forces are broken and he almost dies.

    Only Mat is really depicted as being better, and even then he usually has more casters/cannons then the enemy. Sammael comes close to beating Rand with truly inferior forces.
    Almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. Sammael does a good job of turtling, but a lousy job of adapting once things go off script. And fighting Rand with an inferior force in the first place was questionable strategy given what had happened to every other Forsaken that openly controlled a nation at that point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
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    I think he actually does the best of anyone in the series at using tactics that would actually work. He realizes he is out matched magically so he has his troops make hard points that the enemy will have to assault magically to break. The first is an outer line he knows will stop the very large normal forces of his enemies, then an internal trap for anyone who teleports a strike force in.

    It works. Rand's forces fail to breach the outer defenses, he gets impatient and strikes in and his forces are broken and he almost dies.

    Only Mat is really depicted as being better, and even then he usually has more casters/cannons then the enemy. Sammael comes close to beating Rand with truly inferior forces.
    This is almost completely inaccurate. He played Sammael like a fiddle.
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    Rand - or more accurately Lews Therin - guessed not only the nature of Sammael's traps, but how to overwhelm them in an instant. He leapt in with the Asha'man and they channeled a fireworks show all over the place, setting off every damn alarm in the city, then all teleported in multiple directions. Sammael had no counter to it at all. He ended up finding Rand eventually, and failed to do any significant damage, then yelled about how he doesn't like breaking his stuff and won't you please follow me to Shadar Logoth instead. The rest is history.

    As for the army - it was only stymied because Rand got himself stabbed by Fain and was out of it for two days. The moment he was back up and around, Sammael's attempts to keep them out failed immediately, and once the man himself fled to Aridhol he was donezo. The whole thing was comical after all three books of build-up.


    Quote Originally Posted by russdm View Post
    I am not so sure about that really. From my impression, nearly all of Mat's success came from his Mary-Sue Luck Levels than anything. If the Pattern re-organizes itself around the three, then I can imagine instances where they should have flat out died instead without the Pattern refusing to allow anything different.
    Mat's luck is a big part of his success, but it's not the only thing. He's genuinely a good leader who is truly beloved by his men, because he doesn't see himself as miles above them like the High Lords and such do. The luck comes into play after that, but that love is what makes them want to be around him in the first place.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    But really, the important lesson here is this: Rather than making assumptions that don't fit with the text and then complaining about the text being wrong, why not just choose different assumptions that DO fit with the text?
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    Very few of the Forsaken actually pick a direct fight with Rand.

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    Rahvin and Sammael were attacked, Asmodean tried to avoid Rand and went for the Access Key, Be lal needed him to get to Callandor and was handling him easily. All of them actually beat him in a straight fight, he survives from outside assistance or angreal.

    Aginor tried, but the thing about Aggy is that despite being super powerful he's terrible in combat, he's a scientist, not a fighter.

    Ishy also tried, but literally forgot about his powers.

    The two Forsaken to actually pick a fight with Rand were Semirhage and Lanfear.


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    Technically Rand just showed up
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    in Rahvin and Sammael's territory. They attacked him. They could have just as easily given up their territory and fled instead, but they chose to stay and fight. So I do count that as picking direct confrontation.

    Aginor being so strong really makes no sense and is something they should probably retcon. If he's so bad at fighting just make him weak - it would also explain why he chose science to serve the Shadow, and why trying to draw on the Eye as much as Rand did fried him like a pork rind. Just make him weaker, it fits the story better.

    I don't think we can really say Ishamael was trying to do anything, except convert Rand on the spot.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk748 View Post
    Like, I can buy Rahvin fighting him, but NO ONE should be picking direct flights with Rand after he shows he's willing to Final Flash someone with Balefire.

    Like, that man didn't care for quite awhile about using that stuff
    Look at any elite athlete, or anyone who is in the top .01% of their field. They all think they're the best. That's the attitude it takes to get to that kind of level. It's no surprise to me that most of the Forsaken are similar. I find it completely realistic.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    You could make the case that every Forsaken who tried to kill Rand was kind of a moron. Aside from their own personal idiocy, they should all know enough about how prophecy works to know that Rand isnít going to die before he does all the various things heís been foretold to do (WoT has some unpleasant implications for fans of free will). So Iíll give Lanfear half a pass for trying to control Rand rather than kill him, but take that away because her only reason for that is that sheís still hung up on her ex 3,000 freaking years later.

    Ishy is a special case, though. When we see him as Moridin he clearly gets that Rand is going to be at TG, and heís working to manipulate everything leading up to that, not to stop it. Early-book Ishy is less clear, but my headcanon is that he wasnít really trying to win when Rand fought him in the first two books, and even when Rand killed him that may have all been according to plan.
    What kind of logic is that? Literally their entire win condition involves circumventing the prophecies. If they're operating under the assumption that prophecies are infallible then they may as well just lay down and wait to die. Rand is literally prophesied to win the final battle.

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    Technically Rand just showed up
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    in Rahvin and Sammael's territory. They attacked him. They could have just as easily given up their territory and fled instead, but they chose to stay and fight. So I do count that as picking direct confrontation.

    Aginor being so strong really makes no sense and is something they should probably retcon. If he's so bad at fighting just make him weak - it would also explain why he chose science to serve the Shadow, and why trying to draw on the Eye as much as Rand did fried him like a pork rind. Just make him weaker, it fits the story better.

    I don't think we can really say Ishamael was trying to do anything, except convert Rand on the spot.
    What are they going to do? Abandon their forces any time their enemy shows up? Yeah, that sounds like a wonderful way to win a war. They totally won't just be on the run forever with an ever-shrinking list of places to hide and build power.

    Even if we assume the Dark One would let them get away with trying to avoid him in the first place. They have to defend themselves when attacked. They have no choice.
    Last edited by Anteros; 2021-09-17 at 03:25 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anteros View Post
    What are they going to do? Abandon their forces any time their enemy shows up? Yeah, that sounds like a wonderful way to win a war. They totally won't just be on the run forever with an ever-shrinking list of places to hide and build power.

    Even if we assume the Dark One would let them get away with trying to avoid him in the first place. They have to defend themselves when attacked. They have no choice.
    Lews (and I think Sammael too in one of his POVs) states that this is exactly what Graendal and Moghedien did during the War, i.e. abandoning their strongholds when attacked - and they were clearly still both alive and Chosen, so the premise that the DO would punish them simply for falling back doesn't hold water. No, nothing is tying them down in their respective strongholds but unchecked ego, with vaguely hypermasculine undertones, because of course.

    As far as where else they could hide - seriously? Semirhage had an entire continent to herself, one that Rand never even visits! (Well there was that one time he banged Aviendha there, but that doesn't really count.) And Demandred had a country of his own too. Not to mention that Moridin became head honcho with no base of power at all. The DO trolled all of them until the very end.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheStranger View Post
    Almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. Sammael does a good job of turtling, but a lousy job of adapting once things go off script. And fighting Rand with an inferior force in the first place was questionable strategy given what had happened to every other Forsaken that openly controlled a nation at that point.
    His offscript was the closest anyone came to defeating Rand? I don't know what you want for tactical genius here.

    By contrast nearly every other organization, including the Seanchen and the Tower, have no defenses against teleporting in alpha strikes. The big tactical brilliance most armies show in series is to use scouts at all, and make squares of human/ trolloc bodies between casters and their enemies.
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    Quite a few of the Forsaken come pretty close to offing Rand, before suddenly getting blindsided by outside help.
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    I think Sammael is one of the ones that Rand actually outsmarts and beats in about as close to a fair fight as possible, outside a little motivational kick in the pants from Moridin. Aginor, Ishamael, and Asmodean are among the others that Rand beats in a straight up duel, with little in the way of outside assistance or sudden surprise saves from allies. Bel'al has him pretty much on the ropes, before Moiraine sneak attack balefires him. Lanfear has him close to submission before Moiraine (again!) tackles her into another dimension. And Rahvin also has him beaten and is about to deal the finishing blow before Nynaeve and Moggy blindside him with a fireball to the face.

    Admittedly, in all these examples Rand is decidedly working against himself. Against Bel'al he's still partially trying to deny his destiny and refuses to take Callandor or channel, against Lanfear he's got his whole insane chivalry deal preventing him from properly fighting her, and against Rahvin he's blind with rage and lashing out at him recklessly after hearing about Morgase (and also the subsequent deaths of Mat and Avhienda). Sammael has to deal with a Rand that's thinking (mostly) clearly, enacting a plan that was fully pre-meditated. And gets totally owned as a result.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    His offscript was the closest anyone came to defeating Rand? I don't know what you want for tactical genius here.

    By contrast nearly every other organization, including the Seanchen and the Tower, have no defenses against teleporting in alpha strikes. The big tactical brilliance most armies show in series is to use scouts at all, and make squares of human/ trolloc bodies between casters and their enemies.
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    Uh, Rahvin did way better against scry-and-die than Sammael did. It took literally rewinding time to save the world, because he actually killed Mat (and Aviendha). And if it weren't for Nynaeve he'd have actually killed Rand too.

    Sammael's wards meanwhile were just alarms, and they got owned in seconds. And retreating to Shadar Logoth of all places - I genuinely have no idea what he was thinking.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anteros View Post
    Look at any elite athlete, or anyone who is in the top .01% of their field. They all think they're the best. That's the attitude it takes to get to that kind of level. It's no surprise to me that most of the Forsaken are similar. I find it completely realistic.
    I can understand it, but they should be way more reluctant to battle after Rand annihilated him, if only out of prudent caution
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
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    Uh, Rahvin did way better against scry-and-die than Sammael did. It took literally rewinding time to save the world, because he actually killed Mat (and Aviendha). And if it weren't for Nynaeve he'd have actually killed Rand too.

    Sammael's wards meanwhile were just alarms, and they got owned in seconds. And retreating to Shadar Logoth of all places - I genuinely have no idea what he was thinking.
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    I actually think Shadar Logoth was a good move. Unlike the rest of the mentioned people, Sammael was fighting Ashamen as well as Rand. His whole strategy was to separate Rand from his army, which outnumbered his in numbers and casters. By a lot.

    Rand also only lived through that encounter because of Moridin and the whole double banefire event that lets him win in the end. I'm not saying Sammael was the best of the Forsaken, but his claims to tactical brilliance are way better established then most of the generals.

    Rand and the Seanchen's battles in the next book are literally an artillery duel in a mountain pass where they hammer on each other until both armies break.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
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    I actually think Shadar Logoth was a good move. Unlike the rest of the mentioned people, Sammael was fighting Ashamen as well as Rand. His whole strategy was to separate Rand from his army, which outnumbered his in numbers and casters. By a lot.

    Rand also only lived through that encounter because of Moridin and the whole double banefire event that lets him win in the end. I'm not saying Sammael was the best of the Forsaken, but his claims to tactical brilliance are way better established then most of the generals.
    I still don't, but I'm okay agreeing to disagree. He could have teleported literally anywhere else to separate Rand. Like the Blight. Or
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    Graendal's palace (she was fooled into thinking he was Nae'blis at this point.) Or jumped into TAR like Rahvin didy, if he didn't want Rand to be able to follow his residues. Instead he went to the most dangerous place for him on the planet, where everything they threw at each other would just attract an unspeakable city-wide ooze that much faster.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
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    Rand and the Seanchen's battles in the next book are literally an artillery duel in a mountain pass where they hammer on each other until both armies break.
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    Rand only lost that one because he didn't know Callandor amplifies the taint too. So he went a bit crazy and zapped both armies. Had he used it properly (Cadsuane's method) he'd have been able to only zap the Seanchan and probably kicked them off the continent again.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    I still don't, but I'm okay agreeing to disagree. He could have teleported literally anywhere else to separate Rand. Like the Blight. Or
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    Graendal's palace (she was fooled into thinking he was Nae'blis at this point.) Or jumped into TAR like Rahvin didy, if he didn't want Rand to be able to follow his residues. Instead he went to the most dangerous place for him on the planet, where everything they threw at each other would just attract an unspeakable city-wide ooze that much faster.




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    Rand only lost that one because he didn't know Callandor amplifies the taint too. So he went a bit crazy and zapped both armies. Had he used it properly (Cadsuane's method) he'd have been able to only zap the Seanchan and probably kicked them off the continent again.
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    I hear you. My interpretation was he was fairly certain he could get out ahead of it, and wanted it to eat any Ashaman that followed them. It was arrogant for sure, but not bad tactics really.


    Rand lost that one because he is a horrible tactician. The Seanchen hardly covered themselves in glory tactically either. That he misused a 3000 year old doomsday weapon instead of having overwhelming force doesn't say anything about tactics either way.

    In a lot of the series this is the case, where the good guys win by personal duels or by overwhelming force. The Seanchen copy the Ashaman scry and die using dragon flights then lose to another ancient doomsday weapon, the Tower still sucked at making any defenses or even responses to the problem of flight or teleporting.

    The high point of the series for actual tactics is Knife of Dreams. Mat and Perrin actually think through the problems and fight equal or better forces without unearthing a nuke or slamming people together in a big mass.
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    Graendal and Moghedien's specialty is intelligence, they don't need to hold land.

    Aginor being so strong really makes no sense and is something they should probably retcon. If he's so bad at fighting just make him weak - it would also explain why he chose science to serve the Shadow, and why trying to draw on the Eye as much as Rand did fried him like a pork rind. Just make him weaker, it fits the story better.
    But why? Shows being good at fighting actually matters rather than just brute force.

    Instead he went to the most dangerous place for him on the planet, where everything they threw at each other would just attract an unspeakable city-wide ooze that much faster.
    That's the point. Means they have to be cautious rather than force v force. Sammael also had one of that pattern disrupting cheat codes in Liah showing up to be the super distraction at the right moment.

    Going to Graendal's palace would involve trusting Graendal. Which is generally a bad idea.

    Rand loses against Rahvin, Belal, Asmodean and Sammael without pattern cheat codes.

    Those lightning attacks hit randomly, Rahvin just got lucky in killing Aviendha and Mat.


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