In a special edition of Nowa Fantastyka magazine, Marcin Zwierzchowski interviews showrunner Lauren Hissrich and Executive Producer Tomek Baginski about The Witcher‘s most controversial apparel: the Nilfgaardian armor. This is only one small exchange in a thirteen-page report, which you can purchase and read in Polish.
Marcin Zwierzchowski: One of the hottest topics surrounding the ‘Witcher’ is the look of the Nilfgaardian armies.
Tomek Baginski: I want to specify that the pictures that leaked online were of extras from the back rows of the Nilfgaardian armies. I also think that once the viewers see those armors in good lighting, after post-production is done, the idea behind this look will be clear. The armors aren’t supposed to be expensive – Nilfgaard has a huge army and relies on those numbers. They won’t have many perfectly trained knights in shining armors, but opposite every knight like that, they can have a hundred soldiers.
Marcin Zwierzchowski: An army of expendable soldiers.
Lauren Hissrich: Exactly!
Tomek Baginski: The armours of Nilfgaardian higher-ups are different. For example Cahir. It has the same style, but you can easily recognize that it’s an armor of someone highborn, an officer.
Lauren Hissrich: Tomek put it perfectly. Compared to Cintra, where in the pilot episode we see Calanthe knighting new knights, people who trained for it, Nilfgaard generally recruits people from villages they conquered. Their armors aren’t forged by the royal armorer. They are dressed in something cheap.
This is just a taste from The Witcher‘s coverage in Nowa Fantastyka Magazine. Read the other excerpts: Andrzej Sapkowski on creative freedom and slavicness, Lauren Hissrich and Tomek Baginski on Henry Cavill’s immense dedication to Geralt of Rivia and Lauren, Freya and Anya on various topics.
6 comments on “The Witcher’s showrunner and producer address controversial Nilfgaardian armor”
Nilfgaard has an army of professional soldiers and is economically superior to the northern kingdoms. This means that the production of armor and weapons is more efficient. So more can be produced. Go clearly out of the books. The Battle of the Brenna was not beaten with conscripts on Nilfgaard’s side, but by heavily armored cavalry. You can not put conscripts in expensive heavy armor. The fall after the first 15 minutes of struggle exhausted from the saddle. Even Nilfgaarder nobles fight as knights in the ranks of the army. The North is at a disadvantage because of its weak population and its underdeveloped industry. The only exception is the kingdom Kovir. “The Lord of the Rings” was therefore credible, because there experts have advised what works and what does not. That is so sad.
Sounds like BS
This argument might have had some weight if they’d outfitted the officer/knightly class in black plate armour with Sun crests on their breastplates. But there’s not much about Cahir’s armour to suggest that its of any better quality than the regular soldiery.
Besides, leather armour, which is what this looks like given the wrinkling effect, is functionally a waste of time in terms of weight and expense. Quilted, horse-hair gambesons are virtually arrow proof and are the standard cheap armour for rank and file.