Child of Hodor

theory
Who and What Surge Shattered The Plains?

14 posts in this topic

Who: The Heralds did it.  How: They all used the surges each of the 10 had access to in order to send destructive magic from west to east. 

Who

"They blame our people For the loss of that land ...Our gods were not who shattered these plains" WoR Ch. 26 Epigraph

It wasn't our gods (Fused) who did it, it was yours (Heralds). Fused are the Listener gods, reincarnating cognitive shadows. The Listeners would view the Human equivalent, the Heralds, as the Humans gods. The Heralds were incredibly powerful, the Honorblades with Honor still alive allowed the to Surgebind constantly because they had a never ending stream of investiture to draw from and they didn't have the progression of Oaths capping their powers like the KR do, as far as we know. The Heralds were also growing increasingly unstable emotionally and mentally. 

I think it went like this: Humans had taken Stormseat as their own for a long time, in one of the Desolations the Fused took it back and instead of a protracted siege or massive battle to retake the city, the Heralds decided "Storm it! We'll destroy it entirely instead of wasting resources retaking it". 

How

Any number or combination of Surges could have done the damage we see. It's possible for Illumination to be used as a laser in battle https://wob.coppermind.net/events/309/#e11554 I think each of the Heralds ramped the surges they had access to up to maximum power and unleashed them. 

When Kaladin dreams he's the storm in WoK he thinks the plains look like something heavy hit them at the center and it broke outward like a plate being punched. That makes as much sense as anything, but that's not where the impact craters are:

"The western edge is ringed by ten circular craters.[4] "https://coppermind.net/wiki/Shattered_Plains

10 craters, one for each Herald to unleash something devastating that converged on Stormseat and then continued east to the coast. I didn't draw all the lines of destruction because it would be a mess and I'm just guessing on their direction, but you get the idea. 

Shattered_Plains.jpg.69bac22e17cf4eee8f445832212c9793.jpg

Edited by Child of Hodor
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I like it. Seems possible.

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I think it's possible, but just want to note that the poem gives no suggestion as to who did it. It only says that the fused didn't do it.

On another note, it is suggested throughout the books that at one point the plains were symmetrical all the way around. This makes it very unlikely that the power that did it came from any point but the exact center

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That line does sound a bit accusatory, our gods were not the ones responsible for this, now that we know that the Parshendi "gods" refers to the Fused, the human gods would refer to the Heralds. Perhaps Chana, she did have a temple in this city, though that is a rather flimsy connection to make in order to argue that she was the one responsible for its destruction, but the Surge of Division is a good candidate for wide-scale destruction.

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Very interesting theory, love the speculation and explanation. 

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On 16.10.2020 at 11:22 PM, Child of Hodor said:

When Kaladin dreams he's the storm in WoK he thinks the plains look like something heavy hit them at the center and it broke outward like a plate being punched. That makes as much sense as anything, but that's not where the impact craters are:

The map only shows the western part of the Plains, so I would assume that the power converged further to the east and the more destroyed land was closer to the impact site. I agree with the rest, that's an awesome theory :)

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One of the heralds with the surge of division is a great bet. My personal theory however was it was one of the Dawnshards. However, I have absolutely no proof.

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This is a good theory, but I think that the Oathgate itself is the cause. A big circle slammed down with magic into the plains, and everything shattered. I think that from that point a surge was used, probably the surge of division, to harness that destruction into a symmetrical pattern instead of a mess of broken pieces.

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The humans always had Stormseat, that's why an Oathgate was there.

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In Words of Radiance, Shallan says that the patterns suggest cymatics, which is a type of vibration pattern. That might fit with this - people at the edges of the Plains send a huge vibration all the way across, shattering the whole thing symmetrically 

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15 hours ago, MGershone said:

In Words of Radiance, Shallan says that the patterns suggest cymatics, which is a type of vibration pattern. That might fit with this - people at the edges of the Plains send a huge vibration all the way across, shattering the whole thing symmetrically 

I've always thought cymatics in a form we've not yet seen was responsible. A couple things that are probably related:

  • Dawncities being in cymatic patterns indicates that there is some ancient tool or weapon that could create these patterns in rock.
  • Dalinar sees this process, whatever the cause, in the vision he has that shows Kholinar being decimated. Seems hard to conceive of why the heralds might be behind that, rather than a weapon of some sort.

With regard to the 10 'craters' at the warcamps, Kaladin notes at one point that they look like they might have originally been domes, not craters as they are now. More like they might have been for protection than for originating the destruction.

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21 hours ago, MGershone said:

In Words of Radiance, Shallan says that the patterns suggest cymatics, which is a type of vibration pattern. That might fit with this - people at the edges of the Plains send a huge vibration all the way across, shattering the whole thing symmetrically 

 

5 hours ago, Stormfather-in-Law said:

I've always thought cymatics in a form we've not yet seen was responsible. A couple things that are probably related:

  • Dawncities being in cymatic patterns indicates that there is some ancient tool or weapon that could create these patterns in rock.
  • Dalinar sees this process, whatever the cause, in the vision he has that shows Kholinar being decimated. Seems hard to conceive of why the heralds might be behind that, rather than a weapon of some sort.

With regard to the 10 'craters' at the warcamps, Kaladin notes at one point that they look like they might have originally been domes, not craters as they are now. More like they might have been for protection than for originating the destruction.

Because of the connection to cymatics and the Dawncities, I've always thought that this power must have been one of the abilities of the "Dawnsingers." Especially since this is related to sound.

But I've never actually thought about what those 10 craters (or domes) might be!

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I really like this theory.  I think these craters were originally domes to shelter the Heralds while they shattered the Plains.

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On 10/16/2020 at 5:22 PM, Child of Hodor said:

Shattered_Plains.jpg.69bac22e17cf4eee8f445832212c9793.jpg

So, I thought about this some more, and I figured out what was nagging me about it. This isn't a map of the whole Shattered Plains; it covers only about a quarter of them. That means the lines here converge around 1/8 the way through the Shattered Plains, not in the center.

The answer is right in the caption above. The Tower is the place at the end of Alethi reach, shown here at the very right edge of the image (the "largest plateau of the area"). Bad battles were fought over it, with the Parshendi generally having the advantage of arriving first. They were also quicker to travel over this terrain, which makes Stormseat at least twice the distance shown on this map. That would then mean the lines that appear to converge nicely in a radial manner above should instead be much more unidirectional, West to East. 

Hate to rain on the parade, but I don't think it can be correct.

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