History Main / CannonFodder

18th Jul '16 9:37:28 AM DavidCowie
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* ''Armageddon: The Battle for Germany, 1944-1945'' (non fiction) by Max Hastings. Hastings discusses how individual soldiers vary widely in competence, and quotes a German officer who said that he would rather fight with 40 men than 200, as long as he could pick the 40. Hastings goes on to say that the 40 wouldn't last very long without the "cannon fodder" to distract enemy attention and soak up the bullets.
1st Jun '16 3:07:51 PM sanfranman91
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* In ''[[Series/Roots2016 Roots (2016)]]'', slaves who tried to join the British Army become this during the American Revolution. Armed with only spears against the comparatively well-armed Continental Army, slaves who fight with the British are essentially being sent to be the first ones to die in battle. Needless to say, Kunta and Carlton [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere decide to escape]] when things go [[CurbStompBattle as well as the viewer expects]].
15th May '16 11:24:04 PM azul120
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[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* Anything fielded by Orcs or Goblins in ''any'' tabletop game, including tanks and HumongousMecha. Dem humies (stunties, skinnies) just rilly cawn't kil us ladz all, can dey?

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[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Anything fielded by Orcs or Goblins in ''any'' tabletop game, including tanks and HumongousMecha. Dem humies (stunties, skinnies) just rilly cawn't kil us ladz all, can dey? dey?



[[folder: Video Games ]]

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[[folder: Video Games ]][[folder:Video Games]]
15th May '16 11:21:18 PM azul120
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WeHaveReserves is a related trope but, as often as it happens to CannonFodder characters, it is different. WeHaveReserves is there to establish a military commander as a particular villain by having him give an inhumane order where it could have been avoided. CannonFodder has no other option but get killed and hope the reserves come in time. And yes, even the good guys employ CannonFodder in battle, as sad as it may be for them.

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WeHaveReserves is a related trope but, as often as it happens to CannonFodder Cannon Fodder characters, it is different. WeHaveReserves is there to establish a military commander as a particular villain by having him give an inhumane order where it could have been avoided. CannonFodder Cannon Fodder has no other option but get killed and hope the reserves come in time. And yes, even the good guys employ CannonFodder Cannon Fodder in battle, as sad as it may be for them.



{{Conscription}} is the TropeMaker for CannonFodder. If the commanding officer treats his troops like CannonFodder, it is WeHaveReserves.

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{{Conscription}} is the TropeMaker for CannonFodder. Cannon Fodder. If the commanding officer treats his troops like CannonFodder, Cannon Fodder, it is WeHaveReserves.



* The Cultists in ''VideoGame/DawnOfWar'' are actually referred to as CannonFodder by their own unit description.

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* The Cultists in ''VideoGame/DawnOfWar'' are actually referred to as CannonFodder Cannon Fodder by their own unit description.



** The initial wave of attacks during D-Day consisted of this almost exclusively. Several thousands of soldiers landed via boats at the beach and were simply ordered "run and take the hills". The purpose of this was a fairly literal invocation of CannonFodder, in that the soldiers were just there to take the bullets and keep the Nazis busy until they simply ran out of ammo. Estimates go that there were around 1000 Nazis dead, ten times as many as that died on the Allied side with 4,414 confirmed according to ''Wiki/{{Wikipedia}}''.

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** The initial wave of attacks during D-Day consisted of this almost exclusively. Several thousands of soldiers landed via boats at the beach and were simply ordered "run and take the hills". The purpose of this was a fairly literal invocation of CannonFodder, Cannon Fodder, in that the soldiers were just there to take the bullets and keep the Nazis busy until they simply ran out of ammo. Estimates go that there were around 1000 Nazis dead, ten times as many as that died on the Allied side with 4,414 confirmed according to ''Wiki/{{Wikipedia}}''.



** Napoleonic armies were raised by {{conscription}}, and any conscription armies tend likewise to be CannonFodder. Equipment and weapons are expensive, human life is cheap.

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** Napoleonic armies were raised by {{conscription}}, and any conscription armies tend likewise to be CannonFodder.Cannon Fodder. Equipment and weapons are expensive, human life is cheap.
4th May '16 7:28:20 AM Euodiachloris
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* ''ASongOfIceAndFire'' gives us... [[BigScrewedUpFamily the Freys]] (and their hapless retainers). [[WeHaveReserves There are a lot of them]], and the House is at least rich enough to equip them all fairly well. There are also a lot of factions willing to wield armies in the field, most of whom they have tried to ally with. They have, however, gone and made the mistake of getting [[HateSink generally hated]] by ''all'' sides for [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder various]] [[SacredHospitality reasons]] just as they've ditched their habit of turning up more than fashionably late to wars. Guess who has pride of place on the top of the list of those chosen for the front lines when any given commander wishes to reserve their best, most loyal troops? Go on... guess.

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* ''ASongOfIceAndFire'' gives us... [[BigScrewedUpFamily the Freys]] (and their hapless retainers). [[WeHaveReserves There are a lot of them]], and the House is at least rich enough to equip them all fairly well. There are also a lot of factions willing to wield armies in the field, most of whom they have tried to ally with. They have, The family has, however, gone and made the strategic mistake of getting [[HateSink generally hated]] by ''all'' sides for [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder various]] [[SacredHospitality reasons]] just as they've ditched their habit of turning up more than fashionably late to wars. Guess who now has pride of place on near the very top of the list of those chosen for the front lines when any given commander wishes to reserve their best, most loyal troops? Go on... guess.
31st Mar '16 1:09:43 PM ObsidianFire
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* {{Discussed}} in ''VideoGame/MassEffect3: Citadel'' between two CAT-6 mercs who've been ordered to slow Shepard down. One of them questions the ExactWords of the order, wondering if they're allowed to kill Shepard. The other suggests that they aren't ''expected'' to. Shepard is [[GenreSavvy fully aware of this]].

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* {{Discussed}} in ''VideoGame/MassEffect3: Citadel'' between two CAT-6 mercs who've been ordered to slow Shepard down. One of them questions the ExactWords of the order, wondering if they're allowed to kill Shepard. The other suggests that they aren't ''expected'' to. Shepard is [[GenreSavvy fully aware of this]].this.
24th Jan '16 3:57:10 PM chc232323
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* One of the most chilling examples is AllQuietOnTheWesternFront, where we are treated to scores of deaths of nameless individuals. The narrator, Paul, only bothers to give a handful of his comrades names, and AnyoneCanDie. Paul shows less and less concern about dying soldiers as time goes on, showing ever growing indifference to the deaths of countless men. The novel may be the TropeCodifier for this trope, at least as far as modern armies go.
30th Dec '15 5:54:44 AM SolidSonicTH
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* The lowest-ranked battle droids in the ''Franchise/StarWars'' prequel trilogy and associated works are a combination of this and ButtMonkey. As robots go they're hilariously incompetent (almost acting sentient but in bad ways like forgetting orders or bickering with each other) and never present any real threat to the Jedi they fight, just minor annoyances before they're maimed and hacked to bits.
26th Dec '15 8:54:59 PM jormis29
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* During the joint infantry-air operation in ''{{Simoun}}'', the AcePilot Floe grows close to a simple rifleman, only to painfully discover the enormous gap between them.
* ''TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' has the mass-produced Grappal Army as cannon fodder; the one-of-a-kind Ganmen and the Gurren Lagann, meanwhile, are the ones who do most of the ass-kicking. Gimmy and Darry, however, are {{Mauve Shirt}}s and often receive PlotArmor.

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* During the joint infantry-air operation in ''{{Simoun}}'', ''Anime/{{Simoun}}'', the AcePilot Floe grows close to a simple rifleman, only to painfully discover the enormous gap between them.
* ''TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' ''Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' has the mass-produced Grappal Army as cannon fodder; the one-of-a-kind Ganmen and the Gurren Lagann, meanwhile, are the ones who do most of the ass-kicking. Gimmy and Darry, however, are {{Mauve Shirt}}s and often receive PlotArmor.
29th Nov '15 10:23:03 PM CountDorku
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** The Iron Warriors Space Marines were so noted for taking this approach to their attached Army regiments that pre-corruption Horus signed a specific order that Perturabo's troops could only be given control over [[BoxedCrook expendable penal regiments]] and enslaved forces from recently conquered worlds.
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