1078: "Knights"

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SW15243
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1078: "Knights"

Postby SW15243 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:06 am UTC

Image

Title Text: 1. Ne3 ... ↘↘↘ 2. Nc3 ... ↘↘↘ 0-1

Yeah, so this one? Way over my head. Anyone?

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby rhomboidal » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:08 am UTC

"If your rooks can pour boiling oil, I resign."

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby SiriusBeatz » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:08 am UTC

I believe this is the reference here. I had to look it up myself, too.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Masterfool » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:09 am UTC

That's supposed to be 1. Nf3, by the way.

*pushes glasses up ridge of nose*

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby TexasToast » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:14 am UTC

Now who's going to push the pram?

blowfishhootie
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby blowfishhootie » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:15 am UTC

Yeah after skimming that Wiki article, this battle was the first to make predominant use of longbowman. But ... so what? If there is something funny, insightful, or otherwise worthwhile about this comic, I'm not seeing it.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby wgrandbois » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:18 am UTC

The Battle of Agincourt represented a fundamental shift in warfare. Previously, knights fought knights and serfs fought serfs. Armor and a horse made you nigh invincible to anything but another knight, anyway. The Brits broke with tradition, and the longbowman cut down the traditionally charging French cavalry. Suddenly, the pawns were every bit as important as the knights.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby SW15243 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:19 am UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:Yeah after skimming that Wiki article, this battle was the first to make predominant use of longbowman. But ... so what? If there is something funny, insightful, or otherwise worthwhile about this comic, I'm not seeing it.

Yeah, okay. But then it's not really a 'gambit' is it? It's sort of like the 'bring a gun to a knife fight gambit'. It's not a gambit, it's just good sense.
I also still don't get the title text.

garik16
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby garik16 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:19 am UTC

The alt-text is incorrect. The first move has to be Nf3 - Ne3 is an illegal move as it's not possible.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby scfrench » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:19 am UTC

Hmmmm...

I'm pretty sure Ne3 is not a legal opening move for the knight. It should be Nf3.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby garik16 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:20 am UTC

SW15243 wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:Yeah after skimming that Wiki article, this battle was the first to make predominant use of longbowman. But ... so what? If there is something funny, insightful, or otherwise worthwhile about this comic, I'm not seeing it.

Yeah, okay. But then it's not really a 'gambit' is it? It's sort of like the 'bring a gun to a knife fight gambit'. It's not a gambit, it's just good sense.
I also still don't get the title text.


The joke is that "gambit" is a frequent type of Chess opening. So he's combining the battle name with a chess opening.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Waladil » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:24 am UTC

I find it kinda funny. Not his best, but worth a smile.

For those who don't get the title text, it's a reference to chess notation, but I don't think the downward arrows are normal notation, just... arrows. In the knights.

For those looking at the Wikipedia article, it's a joke on the fact that the French had a huge reliance on noble troops (knights), and they got trounced by the "common" longbowmen. (Some sources indicate that the French army actually declined 5,000 Parisian crossbowmen who volunteered to join the army).

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Fire Brns » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:26 am UTC

Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby SW15243 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:29 am UTC

Fire Brns wrote:Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.

If people could customize their chessboard then you'd have invented 40k a few hundred years early.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Number3Pencils » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:33 am UTC

This is pretty good. But I don't think there should be ellipses in that chess notation. [Oh. And the Nf3 thing. Noticed that when I got ninjaed.] The ellipses are only used when you're talking about a move by Black on its own. Like:
"White played a fairly standard opening with 1. Nf3. But Black countered with the brilliant 1...↘↘↘!"
But if you were just telling what happened in the game,
"1. Ne3 ↘↘↘
2. Nc3 ↘↘↘"
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Shadowlost
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Shadowlost » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:39 am UTC

While you guys go off about illegal opening moves... Is the black queen not on the wrong spot?

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby dawyndham » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:44 am UTC

Shadowlost wrote:While you guys go off about illegal opening moves... Is the black queen not on the wrong spot?


I was wondering when someone was going to notice that. Queens always start on own colour, the black queen and king should be swapped.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Jorpho » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:51 am UTC

Forsooth, I did not get this at all. And the arrows do not render correctly in the alt-text in Chrome or IE9. (Works in Firefox though.)

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby StClair » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:54 am UTC

"The flower of French chivalry" are pushing up daisies.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby VectorZero » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:07 am UTC

Shadowlost wrote:While you guys go off about illegal opening moves... Is the black queen not on the wrong spot?
Indeed. As is, by necessity, the king.
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Masterfool » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:12 am UTC

Not only that, the black pawns have bows!

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:20 am UTC

Armored knights weren't nigh-invulnerable on the battlefield; even with all their armor they couldn't just charge into a pike formation as you couldn't train a horse to jump on pikes. They just slaughtered anything that wasn't a disciplined wall of pikes, which admittedly wasn't too common as professional armies hadn't been around since the Roman era.

Generally speaking, knights were useless against well-trained and properly equipped infantry. Just look at what the Roman Legions did to the Cataphracts.
Last edited by CorruptUser on Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:36 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby blowfishhootie » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:26 am UTC

Fire Brns wrote:Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.


What, exactly, is stopping people from customizing chess boards?

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby bisurge » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:32 am UTC

Wow, has a history nerd I found this hilarious.

In the Battle of Agincourt, the French army that outnumbered the English army of Henry the Fifth (the French army also had a significant force of well-trained knights) fought and was defeated by the English because the longbowmen (outranging French archers and crossbowmen) hailed arrows on horses and men. Knights were so heavily armored and their horses were felled from such a distance that they couldn't charge the distance on foot.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:40 am UTC

Well, they couldn't charge the distance on foot without getting hit by arrows. Despite what most people think, full plate was maybe 40 pounds (for reference, a US soldier has about 70+ pounds of gear on him). It was enough to slow you down, especially in melee, but it wasn't as severe as people think.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby TomRobbins » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:42 am UTC

I don't think Randall actually plays chess.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:43 am UTC

...and then Genghis Khan rode in with some mounted archers and everybody was fucked.
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby nmp303 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:50 am UTC

Shadowlost wrote:While you guys go off about illegal opening moves... Is the black queen not on the wrong spot?

Yes, she is. Seems like Randal does not know chess very well. Or perhaps he's just getting sloppy.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:53 am UTC

Not exactly; Genghis Khan didn't defeat the heavily armor knights with horse archers. He was notorious for fake retreats; the enemy would charge to try and cut his armies down, he'd have his men drop silver or gold coins on the ground, which kind of ensured that the supporting infantry would be rather distracted, and the knights would become exhausted and disorganized from chasing down the Mongols. Then, they'd get swarmed by other cavalry that didn't have winded horses. Afterwards, the remaining infantry were slaughtered by the horse archers, and the coins collected.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby mcv » Fri Jul 06, 2012 5:56 am UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:Yeah after skimming that Wiki article, this battle was the first to make predominant use of longbowman.

It's not. The Battle of Crecy, the opening battle of the Hundred Years War, was the first to make predominant use of the longbow. There, the French knights also got slaughtered. It was also one of the first battles where all English knights fought on foot instead of horseback. It's possible that the English foot knights played a bigger role in Crecy than in Agincourt, though. So perhaps Agincourt was entirely longbows, whereas Crecy was a mix.

I'm not a historian and don't know all that much about Agincourt (I don't even know where it is), but I do know quite a bit about Crecy. (Wasn't Crecy also the first non-siege battle to use gunpowder? I think it was.)

But ... so what? If there is something funny, insightful, or otherwise worthwhile about this comic, I'm not seeing it.

Chess is supposed to represent warfare. This comic introduces effective archery.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby AtG » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:02 am UTC

nmp303 wrote:
Shadowlost wrote:While you guys go off about illegal opening moves... Is the black queen not on the wrong spot?

Yes, she is. Seems like Randal does not know chess very well. Or perhaps he's just getting sloppy.

Outrageous. Regina regit colorem!

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Gye » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:26 am UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:
Fire Brns wrote:Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.

What, exactly, is stopping people from customizing chess boards?
Not everyone has been stopped.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Ward » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:28 am UTC

For those wondering, the Queen should always be on a square of her own colour. The setup of a game on each side is a mirrored image, not the same setup turned 180 degrees.


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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Eternal Density » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:35 am UTC

We are the knights who say 'knee'!
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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby blowfishhootie » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:16 am UTC

Gye wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
Fire Brns wrote:Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.

What, exactly, is stopping people from customizing chess boards?
Not everyone has been stopped.


Yes, I'm well aware. That's why I questioned the comment.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby csoanes » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:23 am UTC

The english longbow was the WMD of it's day, until effective mass musket fire came in. We still have a law on statute that grants every english 'yeoman' (i.e. a 'free' man that owns property) the right to carry a longbow in public. It's also still law that every able bodied man be proficient with the bow, and all other sports are technically forbidden on sunday, to encourage the practise of archery.

Note that being 'proficient' with the longbow required a lifetime of practise, as the draw weight was so large that it would modify one's skeletal structure - enough that it's immediately obvious to archaeologists if the skeleton is dug up today, that it belonged to a bowman.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Netreker0 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:04 am UTC

Gye wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
Fire Brns wrote:Besides the historical context of the joke it's funny because he ignores classical chess rules and replaces pawns with archers.

If people could customize their chessboard I think the game would be popular with more people and teach better strategy.

What, exactly, is stopping people from customizing chess boards?
Not everyone has been stopped.


I think that FireBrns' comment was referring to each player being able to customize the types and positions of his own pieces and to fight it out within the same game. I think it would be interesting to have a game where the rules were something like "You get a king and any combination of pieces worth 39 points total" or something like that.

These variants are pretty fun, but I don't think they really add a strategic dimension in the same way, unless you count "hey, let's play connect 4 instead because I'm better at that" as a strategy.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Antior » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:16 am UTC

What do those arrows in the chess notation mean?

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby Dogfish44 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:16 am UTC

Heh, worth a laugh.

Although as a chess nerd, I'm going to simply say "At least the board is oriented properly..."

@Antior - Those mean The pawns attack with arrows.

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Re: 1078: "Knights"

Postby mvp » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:22 am UTC

As someone who plays chess regularly, I love this comic. Everything makes sense to me, except for the errors already mentioned: 1.Nf3 should be the first move, and the black king and queen should be swapped. But since we're already wasting too much time discussing this, we might as well go to town. For instance, what is the lazy g7 pawn doing without a bow, and how come I'm counting 15 arrows (there appear to me to be two arrows toward the upper right of the c3 knight) when there are supposedly 7 (or 8 if you count g7) archers? :P


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