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GonzoTheGreat
09-20-2013, 07:05 AM
That is something that Rand says (ToM, Chapter 51, A Testing). Based on the evidence, it seems that he was right. The Last Battle was a doddle. Maybe one in every two people died, perhaps as many as two out of every three, but that was it. In the War of Power, it seems as if the survival rate was between one in ten and one in a hundred, and the same was true for the following Breaking of the World. As a result, after LTT's War, there was maybe one human alive for every thousand who had lived before the opening of the Bore, whereas after RaT's War, somewhere between 300 and 500 out of every thousand still lived.

Hugh the Hand
09-20-2013, 10:07 AM
But I am not sure if you are correct.

If we assume your loss calculations are correct for the AoL, I think the losses at the LB were a bit higher. Plus the War of Power took years, or even generations. The LB took a week? Maybe two to three? Plus, we know the "world is not done with war" so many others could also die.

But, all that being said, you are right. Rand did do a better job than LTT in preparing the world for the post-war-world. He had The Pact, had the Aiel, had made many nations actually more stable then before his time. The WT still exists and the level of order it brings. Place balance had been restored with the BT.

So he did a better job, but I am not sure if we have final numbers as to the deaths in the 3rd Age to compare to the AoL.

Plus, was the LB the battle/war Matt fought against the Shadow? Or was it the Dragon's battle/war with the DO that was the real LB?

GonzoTheGreat
09-20-2013, 10:16 AM
Those two were combined, and together they were the Last Battle.
And I'm not only counting the losses during those fights as "belonging to Rand"; I also add in those who died as a result (either directly or indirectly) of the actions of the Shadow since Moiraine found the DR. Which does bring the death toll in the Borderlands at least up to AoL levels, but in other places it is far less than that.

Weird Harold
09-20-2013, 11:10 AM
...I am not sure if we have final numbers as to the deaths in the 3rd Age to compare to the AoL.

T'G was finished as soon as Rand repaired the DO's prison; as soon as T'G was complete, the Third Age Ended and the Fourth began. We may not have exact numbers, but the deaths in the third age have ended and no longer a "moving target."

However, the AOL ended with the Strike on Shayol Ghul and the majority of deaths from the war of power came from the Breaking, with which the Third Age began. One also has to consider the many major and minor wars during the Third Age which were neither Rand's nor LTT's; total third age deaths probably outnumber the AOL's.

There is no major conflict on the horizon -- not even the Seanchan are a major problem, thanks to "The Peace of the Dragon." The End of the AOL at the SoSG was directly responsible for the Breaking and the destruction of civilization; Rand's version of a "Last Battle"/T'G didn't start the Fourth Age off with a century's worth of bloodbath and the destruction of civilization.

Rand al'Fain
09-20-2013, 04:59 PM
Yeah, no real number. But there are estimates.

Out of somewhere around 200,000 Borderlanders, 2/3 were killed in there battle/retreat from the Pass. But they arguably faced the largest of the Trolloc Forces and had few channelers.

We can assume similar numbers for the other Light armies, and they all lost around 50% of their numbers. Though, we never really heard about the Seanchan casualties. We also seem to be missing a good number of Aiel, although it sounds as if a good number were at Shayol Ghul, it also sounds as there were considereably less there than the camps around Cairhein and what not suggested (a "city of tents" was used to describe it more than once).

We know Kandor was being ravaged up until that massive battle, and that Caemlyn was all but destroyed. But little information on the other capitols and major cities/countries (aside from Mayene, which was used as a base/hospital).

I guess we can assume that outside of starvation and what not, that for the most part, the general population survived fairly well, considering in the AOL that enire cities were wiped from the face of the earth. But the fighting forces took massive casualties in several major battles, including Shayol Ghul and where the main forces of the Light and Dark met.

But the Seanchan are far from done. They have to go back to Seandar to bring stability back due to the civil war there.

Seeker
09-21-2013, 12:20 AM
Does anyone else think it's a mistake to evaluate the quality of Rand's character based on the number of people left standing?

GonzoTheGreat
09-21-2013, 03:04 AM
A fair point. On the other hand, a lot of the death in LTT's time was attributable to people who had apparently turned to the Shadow because of his character. No one did that when it came to Rand, suggesting that his character was indeed a better tool for the job.

Seeker
09-21-2013, 10:12 AM
A fair point. On the other hand, a lot of the death in LTT's time was attributable to people who had apparently turned to the Shadow because of his character. No one did that when it came to Rand, suggesting that his character was indeed a better tool for the job.

If I despise you and murder you for it, is that your fault? No amount of competition between Lews Therin and Tel Janin justifies feeding people to trollocs. The fact that Tel thinks it does is a sign that he was already psychotic. Same with Barid Bel.

GonzoTheGreat
09-21-2013, 11:08 AM
If I despise you and murder you for it, is that your fault?
If a dozen of my closest acquaintances grow to hate me that much, then that might be considered a comment on my interpersonal skills.

And not all those who got fed up with LTT turned towards the Shadow, Latra Posae kept walking in the Light even while she did her bit in wrecking the unity of the AS. There is a lot of evidence suggesting that LTT was indeed not at all easy to get along with, and far less to suggest that he was as nice, understanding and friendly as Rand was.

suttree
09-21-2013, 11:23 AM
No amount of competition between Lews Therin and Tel Janin justifies feeding people to trollocs. The fact that Tel thinks it does is a sign that he was already psychotic. Same with Barid Bel.

But was it just competition? That would seem to be oversimplifying things a bit.

padfoot89
09-21-2013, 01:29 PM
I thought Rand's comment was explanation for him not breaking while LTT could have.

LTT had a bit of an arrogance problem but that's understandable given that he was the most acclaimed man of the age. I don't think two people going over to the dark side points to LTT being a hard guy to get along with. He didn't seem to have any lack of support.

I don't think Latra's opposition had anything to do with LTT's character. Besides, Egwene managed to oppose Rand "raised better" Al'Thor and would've split if not for Moiraine's timely arrival.

Seeker
09-21-2013, 03:49 PM
I thought Rand's comment was explanation for him not breaking while LTT could have.

LTT had a bit of an arrogance problem but that's understandable given that he was the most acclaimed man of the age. I don't think two people going over to the dark side points to LTT being a hard guy to get along with. He didn't seem to have any lack of support.

I don't think Latra's opposition had anything to do with LTT's character. Besides, Egwene managed to oppose Rand "raised better" Al'Thor and would've split if not for Moiraine's timely arrival.



Bow to the master, boys. Bow to the master.

I think Padfoot deserves some rep

GonzoTheGreat
09-22-2013, 04:16 AM
LTT had a bit of an arrogance problem but that's understandable given that he was the most acclaimed man of the age.
As Rand al'Thor, the Lord Dragon, the Light made Flesh, the Saviour of All, is in his own time. So that by itself is no different at all.

I don't think two people going over to the dark side points to LTT being a hard guy to get along with.Which two are you thinking of?
Lanfear and Demandred? Be'lal and Sammael?

He didn't seem to have any lack of support.
He had support from a few hundred young enthusiasts who didn't know him all that well yet.

I don't think Latra's opposition had anything to do with LTT's character.
Her opposition, at least in the beginning, probably not. That seems to have been based on a different view of which solution would be preferable. But the fact that she kept opposing the solution which LTT favored even when all alternatives were gone and went out of her way to organise opposition against him does suggest that they did not get along well.

Besides, Egwene managed to oppose Rand "raised better" Al'Thor and would've split if not for Moiraine's timely arrival.
I am not as convinced as you are that Egwene would have kept the forces of the White Tower out of all the fighting if she hadn't been surprised by Moiraine in the way that she was.

Given a choice between "support the Dragon even though you don't believe his plan will work" or "do nothing and let the Shadow win by default", Egwene would have picked the first, while Latra picked the second.

Actually, there is a far better analogue for Latra than Egwene is: Elaida. If Elaida had still been Amyrlin, then she probably would have opted for the "do nothing" option. But Elaida had the touch of Shadar Logoth as an excuse. What was Latra's excuse, if it wasn't LTT's nature?

Daekyras
09-23-2013, 07:38 AM
Actually, there is a far better analogue for Latra than Egwene is: Elaida. If Elaida had still been Amyrlin, then she probably would have opted for the "do nothing" option. But Elaida had the touch of Shadar Logoth as an excuse. What was Latra's excuse, if it wasn't LTT's nature?

Perhaps her excuse for not helping with the strike was that...she did not agree with it?

Latra was one of the most powerful people in the world. maybe she just came to a different conclusion to LTT and chose not to back him.

Perhaps she actually got on well with him on a personal level. We dont know but I think its a long stretch to suggest that it was because she disliked LTT that she didn't back his last, desperate, suicidal plan.

Comparing her to Elaida is a bit of a low blow. We get many PoV's from Elaida showing her frankly bizarre mental processes. We have nothing from Latra.

GonzoTheGreat
09-23-2013, 08:30 AM
Not backing a last, desperate, suicidal plan when there are other options may be quite rational. Not backing a last, desperate, suicidal plan when your second best option is just plain suicide (with third best option switching to the Shadow) makes less sense.

So the fact that she opposed his plan while using the Choedan Kal was still possible is not something I would fault her for. But opposing it when all other hope was gone is less reasonable.
If she had simply stayed out of it, that might still have made some sense without supposing spite. But she went way beyond that, and actively worked to wreck any hope of making this last desperate option work even when things were more desperate than even this plan itself.

padfoot89
09-23-2013, 10:22 AM
As Rand al'Thor, the Lord Dragon, the Light made Flesh, the Saviour of All, is in his own time. So that by itself is no different at all.

Those titles were forced on Rand and that because he fulfilled prophecy. He resisted those titles in the first place and then used them as a club to get things done. Right until Dragonmount, he did the Dragon thing because he felt he had no other choice.

LTT got all his titles and fame because of all his brilliant achievements.


Which two are you thinking of?
Lanfear and Demandred? Be'lal and Sammael?

Demandred and Sammael. Those two were the last of the Forsaken to switch sides and the only ones to switch sides because they hated him.


He had support from a few hundred young enthusiasts who didn't know him all that well yet.

Seems to me that he had most of the male Aes Sedai who hadn't turned to the Shadow on his side. The women didn't oppose him because they knew him well; they did so because they supported Latra.


I am not as convinced as you are that Egwene would have kept the forces of the White Tower out of all the fighting if she hadn't been surprised by Moiraine in the way that she was.
Given a choice between "support the Dragon even though you don't believe his plan will work" or "do nothing and let the Shadow win by default", Egwene would have picked the first, while Latra picked the second.

I believe Brandon mentioned that they would go about the Last Battle in seperate ways. She and her AS would have fought in their own way. Same case as Latra. Forces of the Light still fought; she just wouldn't support LTT's raid.


Her opposition, at least in the beginning, probably not. That seems to have been based on a different view of which solution would be preferable. But the fact that she kept opposing the solution which LTT favored even when all alternatives were gone and went out of her way to organise opposition against him does suggest that they did not get along well.


Actually, there is a far better analogue for Latra than Egwene is: Elaida. If Elaida had still been Amyrlin, then she probably would have opted for the "do nothing" option. But Elaida had the touch of Shadar Logoth as an excuse. What was Latra's excuse, if it wasn't LTT's nature?

Latra thought the plan too dangerous. And it was. I bet LTT's response to the risks was the same as what Rand told Egwene. He had the arrogance to believe that he could do it right without mistakes. Latra preferred the safer (relatively..) option just like Egwene, while Rand and LTT went for high risk high reward. And it was LTT who decided that there was no other choice and to do it alone; Latra was still attempting to salvage the plan by sending people to smuggle the keys out.

The tainting of the male source wasn't even the worst outcome of the raid. The worst was LTT screwing up and freeing the DO completely. Seems to me that LTT did the sealing in the Pit of Doom itself, a place where DO was strongest. I'd bet that if anyone other than LTT had attempted this, it would have been instant win for the DO. I don't fault Latra for having doubts no matter how good LTT was. When the choice is between dying today and dying tomorrow, dying tomorrow is the better choice.

Davian93
09-24-2013, 09:21 AM
In Elaida's defense, she was tainted by Fain so she never had a shot.

Not that she needed much help (based on her appearances in New Spring and tEotW) but she was twisted by his malevolence.

Weiramon
09-24-2013, 04:49 PM
Does anyone else think it's a mistake to evaluate the quality of Rand's character based on the number of people left standing?

Foot, or horse?

fionwe1987
10-05-2013, 01:46 PM
As Rand al'Thor, the Lord Dragon, the Light made Flesh, the Saviour of All, is in his own time. So that by itself is no different at all.
And he ended up way beyond arrogant. If he hadn't had his epiphany which made his relatively sane (but still arrogant) approach seem more palatable, where would the LB be without Tuon and Egwene on his side?

Which two are you thinking of?
Lanfear and Demandred? Be'lal and Sammael?
Moghedien, who worked in LTT's inner circle, said he reeked of goodness. I'm not saying that doesn't make him also likely to be a little arrogant. But unless you have some evidence that he deliberately slighted these people repeatedly, you have to consider that his mild arrogance pissed them off enough to join the Shadow because of their own, much bigger, flaws.

He had support from a few hundred young enthusiasts who didn't know him all that well yet.
He had rabid support from them. We know of nothing which implies he didn't have measured support from others.

Her opposition, at least in the beginning, probably not. That seems to have been based on a different view of which solution would be preferable. But the fact that she kept opposing the solution which LTT favored even when all alternatives were gone and went out of her way to organise opposition against him does suggest that they did not get along well.
It is possible, I suppose. But you need to consider the fact that her staunch opposition to him was also very likely ta'veren work. The Pattern was preventing its own destruction by ensuring saidar doesn't get tainted too.

I am not as convinced as you are that Egwene would have kept the forces of the White Tower out of all the fighting if she hadn't been surprised by Moiraine in the way that she was.
Oh she wouldn't have stayed in the sidelines. But she sure as hell wouldn't have gone along with his plan either. She'd have fought the Shadow where she felt she could hit hardest, and done her damnedest to recover the Seals from him. She might also have flat out hampered his efforts at Shayol Ghul by getting the Wise Ones behind her, as well as the Windfinders. Minus those channelers to protect his back, Rand would have had a hard time going ahead with his plan, even if Nynaeve and Cadsuane would have been with him.
Given a choice between "support the Dragon even though you don't believe his plan will work" or "do nothing and let the Shadow win by default", Egwene would have picked the first, while Latra picked the second.
No, she'd have done what Latra did. Continue to fight the Shadow while thwarting every move the Dragon makes that you disagree with. Latra didn't "do nothing".

Actually, there is a far better analogue for Latra than Egwene is: Elaida. If Elaida had still been Amyrlin, then she probably would have opted for the "do nothing" option. But Elaida had the touch of Shadar Logoth as an excuse. What was Latra's excuse, if it wasn't LTT's nature?
Elaida, do nothing? Do you know the woman at all? She'd have started a war with Rand, end of story. She's incapable of the nuanced effort of not aiding his Seals plan, but fighting the Shadow anyway.

GonzoTheGreat
10-06-2013, 03:03 AM
And he ended up way beyond arrogant. If he hadn't had his epiphany which made his relatively sane (but still arrogant) approach seem more palatable, where would the LB be without Tuon and Egwene on his side?
Said epiphany was a direct result of his being raised better, wasn't it?
And he had not had such an epiphany as LTT, despite having had a lot more time for it (decades instead of a few years), because he had not been raised good enough to help him see his own flaws.

So it seems to me that you are now offering strong support for the thesis I defend in this thread. Thanks for that. :D

Moghedien, who worked in LTT's inner circle, said he reeked of goodness. I'm not saying that doesn't make him also likely to be a little arrogant. But unless you have some evidence that he deliberately slighted these people repeatedly, you have to consider that his mild arrogance pissed them off enough to join the Shadow because of their own, much bigger, flaws.
Yes, he had a bunch of people working with him when he was LTT who were very seriously flawed. One of the important things a leader has to do is pick competent and dependable aides. LTT picked competent ones, but apparently not always dependable ones.
Rand also picked competent ones, but he was never betrayed by one he himself had picked, apart from Taim. And he would not have put Taim in that position if he'd had any choice at all when the Black Tower began.

He had rabid support from them. We know of nothing which implies he didn't have measured support from others.
True. It is a period of which we have very little data, so we can't draw very dependable conclusions about it.

It is possible, I suppose. But you need to consider the fact that her staunch opposition to him was also very likely ta'veren work. The Pattern was preventing its own destruction by ensuring saidar doesn't get tainted too.
I'm not that confident that the Pattern could foresee the DO's actions. All we've ever heard suggests that the DO is at least partially outside the Pattern's power and influence. So I do not see how the Pattern could have foreseen the Tainting at all.

Oh she wouldn't have stayed in the sidelines. But she sure as hell wouldn't have gone along with his plan either. She'd have fought the Shadow where she felt she could hit hardest, and done her damnedest to recover the Seals from him.
Do you mean that while he was fighting Forsaken to the front, she would have whacked him on the head and stolen the Seals from him? Would she then have left him lying unconscious there while she ran off, or would she have tried to fight Demandred with his sa'angreal, and Moridin with Callandor in order to protect the one she herself had just disabled?

She might also have flat out hampered his efforts at Shayol Ghul by getting the Wise Ones behind her, as well as the Windfinders. Minus those channelers to protect his back, Rand would have had a hard time going ahead with his plan, even if Nynaeve and Cadsuane would have been with him.
That would not have stopped Rand. It merely would have made sure that he would have failed once he started. Is that what you think she would have tried to achieve?

No, she'd have done what Latra did. Continue to fight the Shadow while thwarting every move the Dragon makes that you disagree with. Latra didn't "do nothing".
If LTT hadn't done what he did, then what would have prevented a total victory for the Shadow forces?
Latra kept fighting, but she was not effective at it until after LTT removed the DO from the equation.

Elaida, do nothing? Do you know the woman at all? She'd have started a war with Rand, end of story. She's incapable of the nuanced effort of not aiding his Seals plan, but fighting the Shadow anyway.
You just said (fifth quote in this post, if I've counted correctly) that Egwene too would have started a war against the Dragon in order to retrieve the Seals, so there's not all that much difference between them, is there?

Enigma
10-21-2013, 06:11 PM
Its worth remembering that while a person can be very self deluded i.e. Elaida, a person can also be their own harshest critic. I don't doubt that LTT had his flaws but Rand/LTT might just be a bit bias in his assessment on how LTT drove others to the Shadow.

First off he was the leader of the light apparently for most of the war. If he was some complete jerk that no one could work with would he have retained that position as No 1 for 10 years? Even if he bolstered his leadership by first slowing down the Shadow's advance (first three years of the war) and than major victories (next four years) he was still in charge at the end and that was after according to the Guide a year of stalemate and two years of slow retreat before the shadow. So he did not owe his position simply to delivering victories.

One might try and argue that he was so brilliant that people put up with him. If we look at the allies during WW 2 Paton was brilliant, some might say the best battlefield commander in Europe but he had his flaws. Which saw him removed from command for a time and he was never the overall commander because other generals, Monty in particular could not get on with him. So no matter how brilliant you have to be at least part diplomat to be overall commander. Eisenhower may not have been the best general but he was the best commander because he kept all the other generals fighting the Axis forces instead of each other.

Secondly for the forces of the light to have stuck with LTT that long as military commander he must have had some good qualities going for him.

And I have always thought that LTT was pretty much guaranteed to be No 1 with the Shadow forces if he turned and the forsaken admit there were offers made, for him to have stood by the light to the end spoke well of him.

Lastly perhaps LTT could have been more considerate of Demandred's feeling and those of Sammael but what amount of slights would justify joining the Shadow, a group who make the Nazi's look good in comparison? The Shadow had openly slaughtered entire cities by the time Demandred & Sammael jumped ship. There could have been no doubt in their minds what they were signing up for.

If LTT was less that perfect to them it might justify them not liking him. It might justify them even trying to undermine him and being the first to criticise him but how many slights would it take to justify any of us signing up to lead a group who thinks its cool to order entire cities to torture each other or to feel those cities inhabitants to monsters as food?

GonzoTheGreat
10-22-2013, 04:05 AM
If LTT was less that perfect to them it might justify them not liking him. It might justify them even trying to undermine him and being the first to criticise him but how many slights would it take to justify any of us signing up to lead a group who thinks its cool to order entire cities to torture each other or to feel those cities inhabitants to monsters as food?
Seven slights?

It is indeed possible that Demandred and 'friends' overreacted a bit. Still, it is a fact that this time, none of the Dragon's close supporters turned to the Shadow. One part of the explanation is that he was known to come from an uncultured backwater, so that any peculiarities could be forgiven as "quaint" (which the Aiel actually did, though they used somewhat different words). Now, it may seem peculiar, but for this specific purpose being raised as a "yokel from nowhere with dung between his toes" was indeed better than being raised as "one of the elite, who thus was no different from the others". To set him apart from the rest of the Two Rivers population there was of course his special birth, which entitled him to having a harem (which would have been useful for Perrin too if he'd had that option).

padfoot89
10-22-2013, 09:34 AM
Demandred and Sammael weren't best buddies with Lews Therin. They were colleagues working towards a common goal. And they defected 3-4 years into the War of Power. Rand's entire story takes place over 2-3 years and had only sporadic conflicts. Tarmon Gai'don lasted couple of months. Too little time.

GonzoTheGreat
10-22-2013, 10:34 AM
The DO should have had a better PR machine. Previous time, Mesaana took care of that with her schools. This time, she was distracted playing with those silly AS.
Maybe we can credit Egwene with that, who was less of a crazy ex than LTT's first known squeeze was.

Enigma
10-22-2013, 06:21 PM
I think the point about LTT being a world wide figure a long longer that Rand is a valid point. LTT was a prominent figure during the collapse and then in the war. He had a lot of time to work with other leading figures and piss them off. Rand on the other hand was unknown until the series kicked off and its lasted about two to three years. In that time Rand was initially surrounded by his close friends it was only from TSR that he started to attract army sized followers and interact personally with other leaders. Rand simply didn't have the time to alienate fully those who were open to turning their coat because their pride was hurt.

Another thing is that during the war of power people could see the power of the Shadow. Their armies were sweeping across the earth and its victory looked more or less likely during various points in the war. During the third age the Shadow was pulling strings from the shadows. People might intellectually know what power the Shadow might have but it was only very late in the series that they are confronted by armies of shadowspawn. In short the pressure to jump ship from a loosing cause would have been a long stronger and over a more extended timescale in the Aol. In the third age the sort of people who became dark friends were the regular evil or ruthless people with a mingling of those who had the brain power to work out how hard the fight against the Shadow was likely to be without needing the visual aid of a million hungry shadowspawn knocking at your city gates.

I suspect that is why there were probably less dark friends in the third age that during the AoL and fewer of Rand's associates turned.