Random Conworld idea thread

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Firebird766
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Firebird766 » Mon 07 Nov 2016, 17:40

Your ideas sound nice and interesting, can anyone borrow any of the ideas for their own use? (:
You sure can. #s 1-3 are up for grabs, and I'd be interested in doing a shared universe thing for #4 if anything else is. I'd have to track down my old notes (which have, among other things, actual place names) and make up an infopost, but it could be doable.
These all sound pleasantly dysfunctional! Perhaps they could coalesce into a single setting, perhaps way out on the fringes of USFW? Like the Federation, only nowhere near as clean and spiffy!
The problem with them is that in USFW, humanity is comparatively new on the galactic scene- and is thus pretty limited in its capabilities. While terraforming is certainly possible, it's just not practical until humans manage to get more ship engines (which are tightly controlled by the Jarans, who are more or less leading the scene unless the Sufficiently Advanced Aliens decide to meddle), more money, more political push, etc. The generation ship idea is about three hundred years too early for USFW, as that's about when humans sent out their first and only attempt at one.

USFW is more or less an excercise in humans being, essentially, young and stupid and trying to rush things while the much older species slowly get fed up with them. Being unable to do things that some others can is part of that.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sat 19 Nov 2016, 20:22

I'm creating a world based on WW1 Europe, but with magic.

Idk if I want magic technology where machines and devices are powered by magic or if the mages should use technomancy where machines can work without magic, but magic improves upon it.

Thoughts?
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Axiem » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 00:17

To a certain extent, I think you have to clarify what you mean by "magic", what it can/cannot do, and how it works. Especially if you plan on working with technology—which obeys the laws of physics—in some way, how magic interacts with known (i.e. real) physics would be an important thing to know.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 01:35

Axiem wrote:To a certain extent, I think you have to clarify what you mean by "magic", what it can/cannot do, and how it works. Especially if you plan on working with technology—which obeys the laws of physics—in some way, how magic interacts with known (i.e. real) physics would be an important thing to know.
I have a basic system set up, I just do my know if technology should require magic to run or if it can work without magic.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Firebird766 » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 01:54

Frankly, we don't have enough information to determine that for you. It depends on how your system of magic works (does magic interfere with electricity and vice versa? Can anyone use magic or is it an inborn trait, restricted to the elite, require expensive materials?), the technology you're going for (is it basic WWI-era analog tech, are you trying to kickstart the computer age early, are you trying to make something new entirely?), and what themes you're interested in playing with with the world (a 'magic vs technology' theme will by necessity have incompatible magic and technology, for example). There is no should here, because your magic can do whatever you want it to.

Without some context other than "WWI with magic" all I can do is shrug and say "why not both?"
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 03:25

Firebird766 wrote:Frankly, we don't have enough information to determine that for you. It depends on how your system of magic works (does magic interfere with electricity and vice versa? Can anyone use magic or is it an inborn trait, restricted to the elite, require expensive materials?), the technology you're going for (is it basic WWI-era analog tech, are you trying to kickstart the computer age early, are you trying to make something new entirely?), and what themes you're interested in playing with with the world (a 'magic vs technology' theme will by necessity have incompatible magic and technology, for example). There is no should here, because your magic can do whatever you want it to.

Without some context other than "WWI with magic" all I can do is shrug and say "why not both?"
Well, anyone in theory, can use magic since everyone has mana in them. Most people just find it too complicate and time consuming to really bother learning magic, so most mages belong to powerful families or guilds that pass their on knowledge.

Magic is centered around runes that allow the creator of the runes to be the sole user of the piece of technology since the runes are written in his blood. Basically, magic is both the powersource and key for activating machines. However, there are ways around this to make technology available to the commoners. The runes that allow anyone to use a piece of technology are created from a rare blood type, and humans with those blood types are considered valuable resources that nations fight over. I like the idea, I'm just concerned that it would be impractical.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Firebird766 » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 03:44

Ok yeah. In that case I can definitely see that machines would be analog with magical enhancements, not magic-powered. In war, you want to be able to mass-produce things that any one of your soldiers can use, without having to resort to a workaround. Especially a workaround that requires having someone of the right blood type, since a body's blood is only very slowly naturally replenished so your source would be very limited in the amount they can donate to the cause.

Especially since I imagine that in very short order after the war started, everyone would send out spies and whatnot to assassinate (or kidnap, but assassination's easier) the known bearers of that blood type in enemy nations, in order to reduce their manufacturing ability.

Are the runes built into the machine itself, or can they be transferred?
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 03:57

Firebird766 wrote:Ok yeah. In that case I can definitely see that machines would be analog with magical enhancements, not magic-powered. In war, you want to be able to mass-produce things that any one of your soldiers can use, without having to resort to a workaround. Especially a workaround that requires having someone of the right blood type, since a body's blood is only very slowly naturally replenished so your source would be very limited in the amount they can donate to the cause.

Especially since I imagine that in very short order after the war started, everyone would send out spies and whatnot to assassinate (or kidnap, but assassination's easier) the known bearers of that blood type in enemy nations, in order to reduce their manufacturing ability.

Are the runes built into the machine itself, or can they be transferred?
Well, they're written on the machine itself.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Firebird766 » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 04:11

Yeah definitely then. If you can't transfer 'ownership' of a tank or a gun or a whatever else, then you've basically screwed yourself over.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 04:37

Firebird766 wrote:Yeah definitely then. If you can't transfer 'ownership' of a tank or a gun or a whatever else, then you've basically screwed yourself over.
I guess I shouldn't have technology rely on magic then. I don't see much of a problem if magic enhances technology if technology doesn't need magic to work.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by elemtilas » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 05:12

LinguoFranco wrote:Well, anyone in theory, can use magic since everyone has mana in them. Most people just find it too complicate and time consuming to really bother learning magic, so most mages belong to powerful families or guilds that pass their on knowledge.

Magic is centered around runes that allow the creator of the runes to be the sole user of the piece of technology since the runes are written in his blood. Basically, magic is both the powersource and key for activating machines. However, there are ways around this to make technology available to the commoners. The runes that allow anyone to use a piece of technology are created from a rare blood type, and humans with those blood types are considered valuable resources that nations fight over. I like the idea, I'm just concerned that it would be impractical.
I like the idea of blood being the key that unlocks magic. Perhaps you can consider a scenario like this:

Keep all these ideas of magic use being both (technically) available to all but also (practically) impossible; bloodrunes being the key to unlocking the potential of magic.

This will allow you to have magic for ages and ages but at a relatively restricted level.

Enter your pre-War period, and perhaps it is discovered, incidentally to other medical research, that certain blood components will allow magic to work, but more, will allow it to work on a universal scale. As opposed to the more restricted situation of previous centuries.

Apheresis is the technology at the heart of removing blood from a person, separating certain components for use elsewhere and returning to that person whatever's left over. Suppose some component of this rare blood type turns out to be your universal key to magic? Now, the government of the country where this medical technology is developped has a powerful weapon as everyone around the world gets ready for a good old fashioned blood-letting war!

Not only are people of this rare blood type going to be a valuable commodity --- oo, can they be "farmed" in this scenario? At the least, I'd suspect they would be protected from front-line service! But this technology instantly becomes a matter of national security. All the more reason for countries to go to war!

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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by LinguoFranco » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 05:44

elemtilas wrote:
LinguoFranco wrote:Well, anyone in theory, can use magic since everyone has mana in them. Most people just find it too complicate and time consuming to really bother learning magic, so most mages belong to powerful families or guilds that pass their on knowledge.

Magic is centered around runes that allow the creator of the runes to be the sole user of the piece of technology since the runes are written in his blood. Basically, magic is both the powersource and key for activating machines. However, there are ways around this to make technology available to the commoners. The runes that allow anyone to use a piece of technology are created from a rare blood type, and humans with those blood types are considered valuable resources that nations fight over. I like the idea, I'm just concerned that it would be impractical.
I like the idea of blood being the key that unlocks magic. Perhaps you can consider a scenario like this:

Keep all these ideas of magic use being both (technically) available to all but also (practically) impossible; bloodrunes being the key to unlocking the potential of magic.

This will allow you to have magic for ages and ages but at a relatively restricted level.

Enter your pre-War period, and perhaps it is discovered, incidentally to other medical research, that certain blood components will allow magic to work, but more, will allow it to work on a universal scale. As opposed to the more restricted situation of previous centuries.

Apheresis is the technology at the heart of removing blood from a person, separating certain components for use elsewhere and returning to that person whatever's left over. Suppose some component of this rare blood type turns out to be your universal key to magic? Now, the government of the country where this medical technology is developped has a powerful weapon as everyone around the world gets ready for a good old fashioned blood-letting war!

Not only are people of this rare blood type going to be a valuable commodity --- oo, can they be "farmed" in this scenario? At the least, I'd suspect they would be protected from front-line service! But this technology instantly becomes a matter of national security. All the more reason for countries to go to war!

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I like your suggestions!

I have been considering that the humans with the rare blood are kept in one room prisons to avoid escaping or the possibility of falling into the hands of a rival nation, but these people live as kings within their own prisons. Blood is extracted upon them to create the runes and the guilds have turned this into a business.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by k1234567890y » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 06:00

An idea:

A country where many if not most people are buddhist nuns (and maybe monks if you want), and many if not most temples have developed a way to be self-sustaining...
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by elemtilas » Sun 20 Nov 2016, 06:28

k1234567890y wrote:An idea:

A country where many if not most people are buddhist nuns (and maybe monks if you want), and many if not most temples have developed a way to be self-sustaining...
This. And this.

Monastic settlements are nothing new, and have long been self-sustaining! And at times in history, even relatively independent and self-governing.

A good example of an actual monastic country.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by k1234567890y » Tue 29 Nov 2016, 06:26

An idea:

a country where using actors that are not old enough for ads, TV shows, etc. will need to pay extra taxes
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by gestaltist » Tue 29 Nov 2016, 10:16

I have been thinking about a setting inspired by the game RimWorld recently. The main premise in that game is that there is interstellar travel but no FTL. As a result, planets are very isolated, as it takes years or even centuries to go between them. Some planets can be super-advanced utopias, while others have collapsed and went back to a primitive stage.

I can think of two interesting ideas in such a setting. One would be a collapsed world, where the general level of technology is maybe medieval, but some of the advanced knowledge would be preserved: there would be some working artifacts, some preserved handbooks (and their interpretation would probably become something like alchemy - with a lot of superstition mixed in), and some technologies may have never been lost. For example, maybe they have functioning coal mines and heating, but no gunpowder or electricity. Some technologies may be prohibited by the planet itself (e.g., without natural rubber, much of the modern technology can't really be replicated.)

Once every few centuries, a spaceship might pass by - either to trade (maybe the planet has some rare plant that cures cancer or whatever), to rob (e.g., a slaver ship), or to replenish resources (e.g., water.) The locals would partly understand what's going on (we came from the stars, and other people sometimes visit) but might think that the sky people are gods and they are their descendants, or something else like that.

The other idea I have is a transport spaceship. Since there is no FTL and it takes so long to travel between worlds, its inhabitants live and die on the ship. Only once in a generation, or even less frequently, does the ship come across an inhabited planet. So it is paramount to make the most out of each visit, getting the necessary supplies, selling whatever the planet lacks, and stocking up on things that can be expensive elsewhere. The fact that most of the knowledge about profitability would be tradition, and not personal knowledge, could be an interesting angle to explore. Life in such a confined space, and the necessity to live in relative harmony to sustain the ship, are also interesting. How can our society prevent conflicts that could undo us completely? Etc.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Ebon » Tue 29 Nov 2016, 10:21

gestaltist wrote:I have been thinking about a setting inspired by the game RimWorld recently. The main premise in that game is that there is interstellar travel but no FTL. As a result, planets are very isolated, as it takes years or even centuries to go between them. Some planets can be super-advanced utopias, while others have collapsed and went back to a primitive stage.

I can think of two interesting ideas in such a setting. One would be a collapsed world, where the general level of technology is maybe medieval, but some of the advanced knowledge would be preserved: there would be some working artifacts, some preserved handbooks (and their interpretation would probably become something like alchemy - with a lot of superstition mixed in), and some technologies may have never been lost. For example, maybe they have functioning coal mines and heating, but no gunpowder or electricity. Some technologies may be prohibited by the planet itself (e.g., without natural rubber, much of the modern technology can't really be replicated.)

Once every few centuries, a spaceship might pass by - either to trade (maybe the planet has some rare plant that cures cancer or whatever), to rob (e.g., a slaver ship), or to replenish resources (e.g., water.) The locals would partly understand what's going on (we came from the stars, and other people sometimes visit) but might think that the sky people are gods and they are their descendants, or something else like that.

The other idea I have is a transport spaceship. Since there is no FTL and it takes so long to travel between worlds, its inhabitants live and die on the ship. Only once in a generation, or even less frequently, does the ship come across an inhabited planet. So it is paramount to make the most out of each visit, getting the necessary supplies, selling whatever the planet lacks, and stocking up on things that can be expensive elsewhere. The fact that most of the knowledge about profitability would be tradition, and not personal knowledge, could be an interesting angle to explore. Life in such a confined space, and the necessity to live in relative harmony to sustain the ship, are also interesting. How can our society prevent conflicts that could undo us completely? Etc.
Ooh! I love both of these ideas. A culture with very inconsistent technology levels sounds really interesting to work out, as does a nomad trading culture of people spending their entire life on a spaceship.

If you decide to work them out, I'd love if you posted a bit about them.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by gestaltist » Tue 29 Nov 2016, 12:42

Ebon wrote: Ooh! I love both of these ideas. A culture with very inconsistent technology levels sounds really interesting to work out, as does a nomad trading culture of people spending their entire life on a spaceship.

If you decide to work them out, I'd love if you posted a bit about them.
Thanks!

We'll see about that. I'm much better at coming up with ideas than I am at following up, unfortunately. But one can never have too many conworlds, right?
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Axiem » Wed 30 Nov 2016, 02:29

I recommend the Hugo-winning A Deepness in the Sky as a place to see how other authors have treated some of the same themes.
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Re: Random Conworld idea thread

Post by Egerius » Thu 15 Dec 2016, 07:33

Alt-Earth idea, conceived yesterday while writing a short character-biography.
Genre: Fantasy, Present day: ca. 1650 - 1750.

This Earth is in an alternate universe, magic is as ubibuitous as gravity (though not everyone is using or aware of it), a renewable force.

Conlanging is kept at a minimum (different norms, different dominant dialects), but history may diverge more.
Further ideas: NO VAMPIRES, "Orks" = Neanderthals, Aurochs and Thylacine are alive, well and protected for reasons.

The time frame was chosen to bear some familiarity, while being distant enough to evoke a nostalgic feelings.

Because this is an alt-Earth in a parallel universe, there can be crossing of realities at some point and switching places with one of the original inhabitants is possible (but one can go back to his place, of course).
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