Sunday, June 16, 2024

Choose Your Weapon - Ranged


Archery in Anime

Ranged Weapons

In today's issue of Choose Your Weapon, we will consider 'ranged' weapons, a category that includes the bow, crossbow, repeating crossbow, slingshot and blow gun. As you can see, the main focus is on the archer.

Archery has been with us from the start of humankind,  with arrowheads found in South Africa dating back 60,000 years. Think of this weapon as 'archetypal' in that it has been found in all places, all cultures and all times, from neolithic beginnings to contemporary Olympic games. 

It's as pervasive in pictorial form and literature too, from cave paintings in Spain from 20,000 years ago to Homer's account of Prince Paris who slays Achilles. Of course, he also told stories about the huntress, the goddess Artemis and Eros, the god of love whose dart would cause his victims to fall in love.

Writing characters who use archery is often intricate, centering and poetic. There is something about the moments before, during and after the shot that defies time, creating the opportunity for an inner journey that no other weapon can, at least to me.

Whether to feed the tribe, slay the enemy or seduce the lover, archery holds a powerful position in storytelling. 

Subgenres with Archery

Fantasy Books - examples are LOTR by JRR Tolkien, Fire by Kristin Kashor, Heir of Fire by Sarah J Mass and The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black.

Anime - Ashitaka in Princess Momonoke, Tigreurmud Vorn, Lord Marksman and Vanadis.

Superhero Comics - Marvel's Hawkeye and DC Comic's Green Arrow.

Urban Fantasy Books- Katniss Everdeen in the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan.

Film and Gaming

- Merida in Brave, Cassandra in Tangled and of course Hercules ... in Hercules.

Adventure - Lara Croft in Tomb Raider!

Ledgen - Robin Hood!

Ancient Myths - Psyche and Eros, Apollo, Artemis, Ullr (Norse god of the hunt).

Gaming - Diablo, Elder Scrolls, Witcher, Path of Exile, Baldur's Gate, Minecraft Dungeons, Chop-Chop, Divinity, Magic the Gathering...

What are your favorite archers in the Fantasy genre? I'd love to hear about them.

See you in the comments.


Choose Your Weapon Series


The Perfect Storm

The Sword




About Kim Falconer

Kim Falconer, currently writing as AK Wilder, has released Crown of Bones, a YA Epic Fantasy with Curse of Shadows as book 2 in the series. Currently, she is working on the third book, out in 2024.

Kim can be found on  AKWilder TwitterFacebook and Instagram

Throw the bones, read your horoscopes or Raise Your Phantom on the site

No comments: