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Euphanism

A Very Important Question About How Ossiarch Speak

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Posted (edited)

Planning on including a few in my first Soulbound game and I can't decide what they look like when they speak. Do their jaws just open and shut? Do they stay frozen and it's just a sound? Do their eye sockets glow more when they are talking so it's easier to see which one is currently speaking?

Anyway discuss if they talk like Skeletor or Skeletor

 

 

Edited by Euphanism
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Posted (edited)

Since they each are customized golems of bone i'd say all the above depending on that ossiarch's personality.

They are the leader of a group on patrol in dangerous territory: eyes glow to get peoples attention and his jaws stay closed to not give away his position with clatter.

They're a more laid back Ossiarch on guard duty of a tithe town known for it's unending catacombs where bones seem to just manifest: his eyes are blank from laxness, he freely opens his jaw and uses it to drink a realmstone-laced gravesand brew at his hip that reminds him of his living days serving as a Mortarch's guard and drinking spirits(up to you how literal) at a tavern.

Mixed example: at the edges of a Wight swamp which was recently won back from Shyish Ogors who developed a taste for souls, there can be Ossiarchs with glowing eyes they use to mimic will-o-wisps while not only their jaws but their entire faces open up with a rapid clatter like bone wind-chimes to surprise and scare off the undead creatures lurking in the swamp water.

As for Skeletor, yes to the latter but also throw Man-e-faces in there for the warriors with multiple souls in them so they end up switching their bodies around for each soul to talk.

Edited by Baron Klatz

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If you have access to it, read the back of the old Skeketon War Machines boxed set (or was it the Nightmare Legion?).

It has a little story that explains how they talk.

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50 minutes ago, Sleboda said:

If you have access to it, read the back of the old Skeketon War Machines boxed set (or was it the Nightmare Legion?).

It has a little story that explains how they talk.

Longhorn stood looking over the ruined parapet. The chill wind ruffled his surcoat, whistling eerily between his ribs.

"Still coming?" the voice belonged to Screamer, one of his companions-at-arms.

"See for yourself." A black column stretched frorn the horizon to a mile away. like an army of ants on the move.

"Here" said Screamer, struck by a sudden thought, "We can talk, right?"

"Yes." sighed Longhorn. He hated it when Screamer had one of his sudden thoughts.

"And we can see them, right?" Longhorn nodded.

"How?"

"What?"

"We're Skeletons. right? No eyes, no eardrums, no vocal cords - but we can see, heat and talk. -Makes you think, doesn"t it?"

"I try not to think. There's too damn many contradictions to being Undead. Let's see what Morbius is up to." Anything was better than Screamer waxing philosophical.

They found their leader in one of the larger chambers, which was fitted out as a workroom. Books, scrolls and spell ingredients littered the floor and several tables, and the Liche was poring over a mouldering parchment.

"Yes, I know they're getting closer, and yes, I know there's lots and lots of them: he said without looking up. "I'm working on it. So why don't you get to your units and make sure your side of things is ready eh? They should be here in about an hour."

Precisely an hour later, the mortal army was drawn up before the fortress. Longhorn and Screamer stood in the courtyard with their units, along with Reaper and Hellblade, the other two captains. The gates had begun to quiver under the impact of a ram.

"You know," remarked Reaper to no-one in particular, "Being dead already doesn't make this any easier. And where's Morbius? That gate looks like giving any minute:

"Yes, but how can we see it giving?" asked Screamer.

"Give it a rest, will you? sneered Hellblade, hefting his runesword. "Just be happy we can and concentrate on keeping your bones together."

As he spoke, the gates collapsed. Screamer and Hellblade broke into a charge, moving their units to block the gateway while Longhorn's troops covered the flanks and Reaper's held the parapet, pouring arrows and rocks onto the mortal heads beneath.

The battle was deadlocked for nearly an hour. The Undead forces were almost halved, but for each Skeleton destroyed four mortals had run screarning away.

Then a robed figure appeared from the inner fortress.

"Ah, Morbius." Yelled Reaper from atop a pile of Elven heads, "So glad you could drop in. Have a nice kip, did you?"

Ignoring him, the Liche chanted over a pile or shattered bones. and a grey-white mist rose from the ground. When it cleared. the bones fused weirdly into some kind of catapult.

Three armoured Skeletons began to work the machine furiously, loading it with skulls. As the skulls hailed down, the mortals broke, trampling their fellows underfoot in their panic.

"I must admit," remarked Longhorn as they pursued the fleeing mortals, "That was one of Morbius's better ideas:"

"And here comes another one of his better ideas," said Screamer, pointing behind with his spear. A two-horse chariot of fused Dragon-bone had driven out of the fortress, and was gaining on them rapidly.

"Here Morbius," called Screamer as the chariot passed, "How is it we can see and hear and..."

"Not now, Screamer."

198710wd94p00-md8-01.jpg

s-l1600.jpg

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@JPjr Well done!

I bought that thing back in the early days of my hobby and it always stuck with me. I still use several of the models, but the box is buried in storage somewhere. Thanks for the effort.

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@Sleboda I had the Nightmare Legion RoR but I always lusted after the Skullchucker and the Chariot, such cool models, oh god and that big Skeleton Army box set they did back then, what was it? must have been about 88 I guess.

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From what I recall the only real information we have on how they communicate is that the way they talk is likely a little bit like Data from Startrek Alive, but also rather mechanical, with an edge of formality/preciseness. A smart writer would have them speaking rather like a lawyer, with very flowery words, each chosen for their precise subtle meaning not just carrying a general point across. 

 

As for the mechanics of their speech don't forget that they aren't true undead but constructs. They don't even have standard "hollow" bodies; and instead have bodies filled with skulls and other bony constructed elements. They are also formed from the souls of the living so its likely the living would influence how they'd act. So many likely do open their mouths to speak, even though they have no vocal chords, tongues or lips to move to shape words. They might open their mouths and just "hang" them when speaking as the words come out as if commanded by a ventriloquist; or they might move their mouth in time with the words. It might even be a non-conscious thing they do. So they don't have to open their jaws to speak (meaning you could wire/seal them shut and they'd still talk), but they do so out of reflex. 

Indeed this living reflex seems to be a theme within them, giving them more life than the standard mindless skeleton summoned by a lich or necromancer. 

 

 

Another aspect is to consider their source bones and souls as they would influence how they'd speak. Those sourced from the bones of beasts might neigh, scream, roar and such from their dominant parent animal side. Meanwhile those from select areas of the realms might take on accents from those regions. Ossiarchs made from the bones of Aelves might speak and appear and act differently to those sourced from ogors or skaven. Again it would be hints and quirks to their mannerisms, perhaps just really subtle things. We also have to consider the souls as well, since they would also have some influence. 

Some might well shift depending on their mood/actions/situation. The Stalkers are already shown to have four heads for four different styles of fighting, lesser Ossiarchs might not be as extreme, but they might exhibit subtle elements of the same confused mix behaviour 

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Posted (edited)

@JPjr Sounds about right. I had all three. Here's a data point for ya:

The Skeleton Army boxed set, which contained something like 8 horsemen, a chariot, and maybe 24 (more?) infantry sold for, get this, $19.99.

 

I think.

 

Crazy days.

 

I still have about 20 of the chariots, maybe 200 infantry, and dozens of horsemen all on sprues. I use them to decorate scenery now.  🙂

Edited by Sleboda

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1 hour ago, JPjr said:

Longhorn stood looking over the ruined parapet. The chill wind ruffled his surcoat, whistling eerily between his ribs.

"Still coming?" the voice belonged to Screamer, one of his companions-at-arms.

"See for yourself." A black column stretched frorn the horizon to a mile away. like an army of ants on the move.

"Here" said Screamer, struck by a sudden thought, "We can talk, right?"

"Yes." sighed Longhorn. He hated it when Screamer had one of his sudden thoughts.

"And we can see them, right?" Longhorn nodded.

"How?"

"What?"

"We're Skeletons. right? No eyes, no eardrums, no vocal cords - but we can see, heat and talk. -Makes you think, doesn"t it?"

"I try not to think. There's too damn many contradictions to being Undead. Let's see what Morbius is up to." Anything was better than Screamer waxing philosophical.

They found their leader in one of the larger chambers, which was fitted out as a workroom. Books, scrolls and spell ingredients littered the floor and several tables, and the Liche was poring over a mouldering parchment.

"Yes, I know they're getting closer, and yes, I know there's lots and lots of them: he said without looking up. "I'm working on it. So why don't you get to your units and make sure your side of things is ready eh? They should be here in about an hour."

Precisely an hour later, the mortal army was drawn up before the fortress. Longhorn and Screamer stood in the courtyard with their units, along with Reaper and Hellblade, the other two captains. The gates had begun to quiver under the impact of a ram.

"You know," remarked Reaper to no-one in particular, "Being dead already doesn't make this any easier. And where's Morbius? That gate looks like giving any minute:

"Yes, but how can we see it giving?" asked Screamer.

"Give it a rest, will you? sneered Hellblade, hefting his runesword. "Just be happy we can and concentrate on keeping your bones together."

As he spoke, the gates collapsed. Screamer and Hellblade broke into a charge, moving their units to block the gateway while Longhorn's troops covered the flanks and Reaper's held the parapet, pouring arrows and rocks onto the mortal heads beneath.

The battle was deadlocked for nearly an hour. The Undead forces were almost halved, but for each Skeleton destroyed four mortals had run screarning away.

Then a robed figure appeared from the inner fortress.

"Ah, Morbius." Yelled Reaper from atop a pile of Elven heads, "So glad you could drop in. Have a nice kip, did you?"

Ignoring him, the Liche chanted over a pile or shattered bones. and a grey-white mist rose from the ground. When it cleared. the bones fused weirdly into some kind of catapult.

Three armoured Skeletons began to work the machine furiously, loading it with skulls. As the skulls hailed down, the mortals broke, trampling their fellows underfoot in their panic.

"I must admit," remarked Longhorn as they pursued the fleeing mortals, "That was one of Morbius's better ideas:"

"And here comes another one of his better ideas," said Screamer, pointing behind with his spear. A two-horse chariot of fused Dragon-bone had driven out of the fortress, and was gaining on them rapidly.

"Here Morbius," called Screamer as the chariot passed, "How is it we can see and hear and..."

"Not now, Screamer."

198710wd94p00-md8-01.jpg

s-l1600.jpg

Black Library eat your heart out! This is the kind of warhammer fiction we need!

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Posted (edited)

From the battletome you can read a passage about the Soulreapers:

"Long ago, the Soulreaper Tua’ghreph
was possessed by the soul of a powerful aelven mage he intended
to harvest, and babbled a stream of
devastating spells that caused havoc
amongst his own ranks. Since that
magical calamity, many Soulreapers
have been fashioned without mouths."

To go to such lengths pretty clearly points towards they depend on their mouths to communicate and form words for spells etc.

Edited by Scurvydog
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Posted (edited)
On 6/30/2020 at 4:39 AM, Euphanism said:

Planning on including a few in my first Soulbound game and I can't decide what they look like when they speak. Do their jaws just open and shut? Do they stay frozen and it's just a sound? Do their eye sockets glow more when they are talking so it's easier to see which one is currently speaking?

Anyway discuss if they talk like Skeletor or Skeletor

 

 

Through gritted teeth...

badum tss. 🥁... I’ll let myself out shall I. 

Edited by Kramer
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Well here's a possible personality for your Stalkers if my man-e-face version doesn't gel. xD

33vpnev6ydj31.png

 

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