Ranged Weapons in Araea
Even in the cramped and winding tunnels of Araea, warriors from every culture have found it useful to try and strike their foes from too far to be struck in turn. While the geography of Araea imposes certain limitations on what works, ranged weapons see use from the Surface to the Far Deep.
Ranged weapons in Araea tend to be compact, with more consideration given towards being able to use them in the tight quarters rather than range. Since it is uncommon for combatants to be more than fifty yards, the weapons have adapted to fit these constraints. Below are a list of the most common ranged weapons found in Araea:
Types of Weapons
Javelins have been used as long as anyone can remember, first for hunting and later for war. They are easy to manufacture, simple to use and can in a pinch be used in melee. As a result, they are popular across Araea and see use in almost every army in some form or another. The straight throw motion mean it can be used in some of the smaller caves and narrower tunnels, while the weight and heft of a javelin is capable of inflicting great damage.
It's all in the wrist. Even if you hit the shield, you'll have slowed your opponent down.
Size doesn't matter. It's how you use it.Wardarts are essentially much smaller javelins. They have less impact and force, but are easier to throw and more can be carried without slowing a soldier down. They are particularly popular in the Outer Shell, where the spaces are smaller. The typical wardart in Araea are about ten to twenty centimeters long with a sharp tip.
Crossbows are another common missile weapon, most commonly found in the Inner Shell. Capable of greater range and power than a javelin or dart, they still require no more space to use. They are made out of Hattick or Bone, which means that they can be fragile and can break in a scuffle or during travel. Quarrels are tipped by iron, steel or bone and can punch through lighter armor. Larger variants, called arbalests, are used to defend fortifications.
Keep the string under your helmet. With a wet string, you might as well try using harsh words.
Eh? Seems pretty impractical. Where would you even keep it?Bows are only really used on the Surface. They are made from bone and horn, with middling range and power. The Exiled use them to hunt and on occasion harry explorers and prospectors. They are almost unknown in the depths and never used in war.
Shrooms of War Araea are home to an endless array of mushrooms, from humble to horrible. It should come as no surprise that for as long as people have tried to kill one another, they've tried everything - including pelting each other with mushrooms. Horoi fed on a diet of feces are unpleasant missiles for both parties while others release toxic spores on impact. While they are not a common part of war, someone tries them out every now and then.
Mostly used for ambush and stealth, blowdarts are short-ranged weapons: a simple tube that propels a small dart by the lung-power of the operator. Typically these darts are laced with poison or contaminated in some other way which form the main danger of the small dart.
These are dangerous weapons. Not so much for the damage they deal but because what they tell you about who is wielding them. Tread carefully.
Hah! A sling! Just about a step up from pelting someone with a ro-Another weapon most commonly encountered on the surface, slings also see some use in the largest caverns of the Inner Shell. In Araea's current age, it is the weapon of those who may not be able to afford better. Still, a sling bullet can be hurled with considerable force and accuracy. They are more than capable of killing if they should strike an unarmored head.
When forces meet for a pitched battle, missile fire is often part of a skirmish or harassing action before either side are really ready to commit. Massed crossbow fire can change the tide of battle, but more common than not the caves do not allow for true and concentrated fire like that. Most battles take place on a smaller scale, across a range of tunnels and caves. Foraging forces often clash during war and controlling your opponents access to supplies means controlling the flow of battle and movement - often the key to victory. In those kind of battles, ranged weapons are immensely useful for disrupting troops attempting to gather food, water or other necessary supplies without putting yourself at risk. Missile weapons take a much more central role in siege weapons, when fortification separate the combatants from each other. Similarly, in the rare battle that take place on the surface or in caverns vast enough to hold full armies, missile fire become a central and crucial component to the battle. Crossbows, javelins and slings dominate those exchanges, while smaller engagements see a wider range of weapons used. Kaia and other adventurers find it useful to always have ranged weapons at hand, as one can never be sure when it'll come in handy.
Melee WeaponsFor the brutal and bloody affair of face to face killing, the denizens of Araea use a whole other range of terrible implements. Read more about Melee Weapons
WarfareWar is difficult to wage in a world of winding caverns, abyssal drops and ravenous predators but that's done nothing to stop people from doing it. Warriors have adapted to the unique conditions of Araea and learned how to best bring death and destruction to their enemies. Read more about Warfare in Araea
Made by Monsters While many of weapons found in Araea are made from metal and hattick, there exists an endless array of strange beasts in the caves with sharp claws and sharper teeth. Just as often, the weapons and armors in Araea are made from things harvested from these beasts, from armor made of insect-like carapace to swords taken from the claw of some gargantuan monster.