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Old 08-13-2018, 03:32 PM   #3521
DocRailgun
 
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Default Re: New Reality Seeds

A penny per email isn't going to change people's email habits that much. What it will do is reduce the use of spam emails as marketing. That would be good for the Internet. The 'net will become a much more regulated place, though, as the need to be able to charge people for posts and emails will require ISPs to be looking at everything that gets sent and to who. So, there's unlikely to be as much fraud, child pornography, illegal drug sales, and so on. All in all this seems like it would be a good thing. If it changes people's habits, it will be to make them write emails more like letters they would write on paper and send through the post, to get the most for their money. There minidisc/thumbdrive/SD card/etc. industry might be even more stimulated as people start recording video/audio/letters/so on through dedicated devices and sending them on media through the physical post.

The video game industry is likely to continue to be stimulated, though if a game is taxed there might not be game networks for consoles. There's no reason for computer technology to lag behind a work with no tax - the money can be used to improve the Internet's infrastructure so everyone has yottabit fiber connections even in the rural areas of countries with these taxes.

There may well be ISPs that cut deals with the government to pay a chunk of money up front and then their subscribers have unlimited or a large block of them that is cheaper than "retail" every month.

All this tax would do is cause people to think about what they write and post rather than shoot off a Tweet every five seconds or Instrgram everything they eat. The "Internet" would be used at least as much for entertainment. They're still going to stay in contact with one another but instead of everyone having their heads down in their phones texting they'll be making long video calls and having long conversations like they did on landlines before texting and emails became popular.

Taxes don't stop people from doing things. Maybe they discourage people from starting - high taxes on cigarettes and alcohol in the US prove that. High gasoline taxes don't stop people from driving SUVs. taxing pronography wouldn't change the use of that much.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
Penny-1

In Penny-1, the US government decided to charge a telecommunications tax of $0.01 per email ($0.001 per internet posting) to internet service providers in 1993 (it was quickly followed by similar taxes in Europe and Japan in 1994 and the rest of the world by 1995). Internet service providers passed the cost of the telecommunications tax to their customers and, without relatively free email and internet postings, the internet primarily remained the province of academia and social media never developed beyond the old style BBS. While there are internet companies that provide specialized services, the added cost of communication means that the majority of people only use them when they cannot find local suppliers.
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Old 08-13-2018, 04:01 PM   #3522
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TL10 biotechnology allows nations to design viruses to infect people without specific qualities (such as tailored vaccines) and to allow vaccinated populations to be carriers of the virus. If the virus makes an infected human release specific scents that genetically engineered security animals are designed to detect but which humans cannot smell, it is fairly easy to detect immigrants (illegal or legal) trying to enter secure locations (it is also really easy to detect illegal immigrants). The governments do not even need to inform their populations of the virus, they just have to release the virus within the population and check the documents of everyone who smells funny to the genetically engineered security animals.
I say once again "Bah". If the virus is contagious then infiltrators will catch it as a matter of course. If it isn't then there would be millions of foreigners on legitimate business as well as millions of illegal immigrants are going to ping. Not to mention the large number of citizens who just don't bother getting vaccinated. Extra-dimensional infiltrators aren't exactly going to stand out in the population at large.

And remember what I said about infiltration not involving negotiating laser mazes in a cat suit? Why would they be breaking into high security areas for no reason? That would be the opposite of keeping a low profile and definitely not something they would do without a thorough understanding of local security. That's not how they determine that a given world is a risk of turning into a parachronic competitor/threat. Mostly it consists of keeping current on the published physics literature to see if they're developing the underlying knowledge as a sideline to running their slightly obscure import-export business. They'd only start to worry about secret government projects if there's sort of relevant stuff being published...and then suddenly it stops without the researchers deciding to take a long sabbatical courtesy of Infinity.

Last edited by David Johnston2; 08-13-2018 at 05:25 PM.
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Old 08-13-2018, 04:35 PM   #3523
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Hind-5

The Hind designation covers worlds where the history of India during the British Raj is the change point. In this Q6 world, Churchill is sick for several weeks in the early 1930's and a bill allowing gradual Indian home rule in all but name passes parliament. By 1947 the people of India vote down Partition. Muhammad Ali Jinnah, seeing which way the wind is blowing, moves toward working with Gandhi to promote tolerance within India. Gandhi, seeking the long term survival of the new state, welcomes him. This alienates Nehru and the Congress Party generally. Facilitating several factions working together, B.R.Ambedkar vastly increases his influence.

This India embraces Ladejinsky's land reform ideas, birth control, and industrialization. The economy of India grows rapidly and religious fanaticism fades. Centrum dislikes this world because the Indian economy has, in the year 1995, surpassed the USA's in size. A powerful non-Western democracy is the last thing Centrum wants to deal with.

Meanwhile, the European Union does have that democracy deficit. Centrum is working in this world to move Europe toward Fascism, more of the Italian kind than the German or Spanish types. Meanwhile, the USA in this parallel feels it can collect the peace dividend. China is more than balanced by India and Russia in 1995 is a basket case. India has been a serious strategic partner for decades. So Reganism never really took off. This America is going Social Democratic and is uninterested in overseas crusades.

Homeline has to find a way to get the USA and India to fight for European democracy. The people of India resent Europe's colonial past. The people of the USA feel they already sacrificed for Europe and got treated as parvenus and interlopers. Europe is seeking, under Centrum's influence, anti-Americanism as a way of defining a European identity. A common enough type of strategy, which extends American alienation from Europe. In the case of India, 1990's Europe was more likely to talk about how racist America was than deal with their own racism. The People of India were often on the receiving end of such racism and that deepens their alienation from Europe.

So, get India and the USA to sacrifice for European democracy when Europe looks down on them both and dismisses democracy as vulgar and silly.
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Old 08-15-2018, 11:25 AM   #3524
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It is now the year 2018 in Penny-1 and, while the pace of digital computer technology stagnated comparison to similar timelines, overall technological progress was accelerated as the money that would have been invested in computing technology was channeled into more productive investments. The most extreme example of technological advancement occurred due to breakthroughs in biotechnology in the late 1990s, meaning that the timeline possesses TL9(TL10 biotechnology). Over the past decade, TL10 biological computers have replaced the old TL8 digital computers and have triggered a computer revolution.
This seems like a pretty big handwave. Suppressing development of computing and the internet retards every other field of science too. You don't get the Human Genome Project going anywhere quickly, for example, so I don't see biotech making it to TL10.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:04 PM   #3525
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A total failure of the US landings at Normandy, but Commonwealth forces are successful is a hard sell...
IIRC, "successful" is a strong word for how I described the Commonwealth forces. They established a beachhead, but wound up contributing relatively little compared to the Soviets.


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...overall technological progress was accelerated as the money that would have been invested in computing technology was channeled into more productive investments.
Heh, computers not being a productive technology...
I'm not going to claim that Facebook and the headphone-jack-less iPhone are hugely productive, but they also require little R&D that isn't also used (usually before the introduction of e.g. social media or smartphones) in productive technology. Not to mention that hindering the Internet isn't exactly the same as hindering computers...


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Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
TL10 biotechnology allows nations to design viruses to infect people without specific qualities (such as tailored vaccines) and to allow vaccinated populations to be carriers of the virus. If the virus makes an infected human release specific scents that genetically engineered security animals are designed to detect but which humans cannot smell, it is fairly easy to detect immigrants (illegal or legal) trying to enter secure locations (it is also really easy to detect illegal immigrants). The governments do not even need to inform their populations of the virus, they just have to release the virus within the population and check the documents of everyone who smells funny to the genetically engineered security animals.
1. What part of "Infinity doesn't need to get Homeline agents literally everywhere" did you not grok?
2. What's the motivation? Make sure only citizens are allowed in somewhere? It's cheaper and simpler to set up a well-designed universal ID system (not to be confused with the social security numbers used by the USA).
3. Wouldn't that allow enemy agents to just get copies of the vaccines and make their own fake citizens? Or, for that matter, just find people who emmigrated from the target country? (And wouldn't that be hilariously unfair to anyone who immigrated after getting vaccines and grew up a patriotic Wherever-citizen?)
4. What happens if an enemy agent avoids the virus before entering a secure area?
5. You think that the government can conceal something as big as dosing the general population with a virus specifically meant to mark certain people as security hazards? They can't even hide a little arms trafficking! Combined with the horrible PR you'd get in any culture where "the Mark of the Beast" is a meaningful phrase, and nobody would touch that. They'd find a simpler way to do things. Frig, an RFID chip would be simpler...and it doesn't rely on the Internet.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:05 PM   #3526
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Nika-2

Emperor Justinian of the Eastern Roman Empire was a man of dreams and talent, but no man rules alone. He had a wide variety of other talented men at his side, from Belisarius (the general who destroyed the Vandals, recaptured and held Rome with just a few thousand soldiers) to Tribonian (who turned a millennium of disorganized, byzantine laws and legal decisions into a few dozen volumes, the Corpus Juris Civilis, which is still the basis of civil law for essentially all vaguely Western cultures). Unfortunately, many of these men were...shall we say...quirky. For instance, Tribonian was openly pagan and rather corrupt.
Let's add another man to that list, a diplomat who was good at suing for peace but less good at maintaining it. Let us call him Julius Asianus [probably sic], for his greatest deeds were in Asia, most notably getting a peace with the Persians both sooner and more favorable than in OTL. He was quite convincing in a position of unquestionable power, but didn't really develop any other way of talking with people. At home, this lead to angering both high-ranking members of the demes (sort of a cross between sports clubs, civic groups, and political parties, but more violent) and some of Justinian's generals, including Mundus (a German who had long defended the northern border of the Empire).
But then, around 530, Julius Asianus is sent to the Vandals in North Africa. Julius, abrasive and arrogant as ever, treats the Vandals as he did the Persians, which eventually pisses off King Hilderic and his court enough that he has the "diplomat" either killed or maimed and sent home. (Alternatively, his cousin Gelimer leads an Arian faction who kills Hilderic and Julius alike, much like in OTL except a few years sooner.)
Regardless, Justinian has a casus belli. Hilderic had been a friend of Constantinople, far more accepting of the Empire's trinitarian Christianity than his relatives, but Justinian was unlikely to see him this way after killing/maiming one of this diplomats. So, the reconquest of the Western Roman Empire begins. Belisarius is sent to Africa, and as in our timeline, he kicks butt. But then, the Nika Riots come.

History lesson:
Spoiler:  


But all that was in our timeline. Paying attention, you'll notice that the two generals Justinian had in OTL's Nika riots were Belisarius and Mundus. In this timeline, one is currently fighting Vandals in Africa and the other is rather irritated...as are others in the military and the demes.
Let us say that one demagogue in particular brings the leaders of the demes together with a dream of a new Roman republic. Let us say that he is Avitus Albus, the leader of the relatively small and insignificant White deme. (I haven't found any information on the demes' organization or leadership, so I'm kinda making it up as I go along.) Avitus said the Roman emperors brought misery and corruption to the fine Roman Republic, which prospered and grew as it never had under the rule of its early kings or recent emperors. Surely, we should see this as the sign it is, and return the Republic to its former glory?
The Senators backing the riots were hardly going to disagree with someone who wanted to increase the Senate's power; indeed, they got more senators onboard. Moreover, they convinced Mundus to join them. The soldiers who remained loyal to Justinian fought valiantly, but were ultimately defeated; the survivors fled with Justinian and some of Justinian's court, taking to the seas.
Where would they go? Well, at this time Belisarius was doing well in Africa. When the Emperor arrived, he was swiftly brought to Belisarius and the two of them sorted out a plan of sorts. Belisarius had enough men to capture and hold the Vandal kingdom, but probably not enough to defeat this so-called "new Roman Republic". And so, that is what they did. The Senate in Constantinople was quite happy without an emperor, but saw Justinian as no threat and included enough Justinian sympathizers to halt any attempts at retribution.

And so, two successors to the Roman Empire had formed. One continued the Imperial tradition, ruling from Utica; the other, which would one day be deemed the "Nika Republic" by historians, was governed by a mishmash of traditions; the old Republic, bits of Imperial tradition (including some of Tribonian's clarifications and reforms), and new ideas from Avitus and other deme leaders.
The deme leaders played a large role in writing the new laws of the Republic; after all, they had the people behind them, and the people were willing to be violent. This lead to a republic that, while repugnantly non-egalitarian by modern standards, was less openly biased towards the rich than the original Republic. The demes gained semi-official status, not entirely unlike modern political parties; the sitting Senators added the ability to create new demes if a candidate did not agree with any current demes, and then used this ability to do exactly that. Despite these reforms, they were still Roman at heart.

This is a good time to discuss Justinian's legacy in OTL. He reconquered Africa and Italy for the Roman Empire, becoming the last Roman Emperor to actually rule Rome (with the arguable exceptions of some Holy Roman Emperors, back when they also controlled bits of Italy). But in doing so, he overextended Roman resources; it has been argued that he accelerated the decline of Rome. It has also been argued that, had he not done that and consolidated his gains in Africa, the Empire might have been able to recover properly.
I'm not going to go quite that far. Justinian never forgave the "mob republic," but his nephew, Justin II, reached out an olive branch to the Republic; further emperors strengthened the ties between the Roman states, turning them into allies. Eventually, the African Roman Empire and the Nika Republic unify into a new Roman Empire, with the Emperor retaining governorship over the African provinces but otherwise serving as little more than a figurehead and debate-coordinator to the Senate, not to mention having his successor chosen from among his heirs by the Senate (not unlike the ancient Roman kings).
[cont. next post]
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:05 PM   #3527
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[cont. from previous post]
The new Roman Empire is going strong, driving back Persia, conquering parts of Arabia, and maybe retaking Italy or something. But then, as so often overlooked, Islam became a thing—a thing which changed the world. As with my last eastern-Roman-centric world, I'm going to put that just before the "modern day" of the timeline. This time, however, Islam is not an outside invader, but a new religious movement coming from within the Empire. It is likely more Christian-influenced than in OTL, perhaps to the point of some sects proclaiming Mohammed as the Second Coming of Christ (which he would probably deem heretical and kind of embarrassing).
It's like the rise of Christianity all over again, but on fast-forward. It's hard to imagine an empire dominated by Christianity, with its veneration of martyrs slain by the old Roman Empire, going down the same path, but the best the Muslims will get is the treatment various emperors gave heretics (which still involved persecution, but usually no worse punishment than exile).
Perhaps this would turn into a different "great schism," with the south and east parts of the Empire being Islamified while the rest remains Christian.
Since the Emperor, governing Africa, would have deep ties to the Muslim parts of the Empire, while the Senate would presumably remain tied to Christianity, this would lead to religious divides within the highest levels of government. (Imagine if the US Congress and President hated each others' guts...more than usual, I mean. Except the President doesn't have much power outside of Texas.) This would add a dash of intrigue to the political situation, if it had time to develop.
Let's not give it that time. Early in the spread of Islam, the Emperor (probably one of the Heraclian emperors, or their equivalent in this timeline) dies. The old Emperor had three potential heirs, two Muslim and one Christian. The Senate naturally chooses the Christian heir, which angers the Muslim parts of the Empire. To add fuel to the fire, there is a debate raging in Islam over who the next Caliph (a purely religious title in this timeline, as much as any could be) should be. As fate would have it, the two Muslim heirs are on two of the main sides of this debate, which threatens to tear the Muslim world apart. And in case that's not enough, a political faction (including members from all major sects) arises to argue that whoever the Caliph is, he should also be Emperor. As no Imperial heirs are Caliph candidates, none of said heirs support this position.
We're looking at a civil war with at least four major factions—the Christian Senate trying to support their puppet-emperor, the puppet's two Muslim brothers (who will support each other up until the point it looks like they might win), and a group of lowborn-lead Muslims trying to unify religious and political power (probably drawing on Roman precedent—after all, wasn't Julius Caesar Pontifex Maximus, and wasn't Constantine one of the early shapers of Christianity?).


And if you want to make this a historical fantasy world, it shouldn't be hard. Apparently, Justinian passed a law which banned chariot-racers from putting curses on each other. What if this was a real problem? Perhaps Julius Asianus (or Justinian himself, or maybe his uncle and Emperor Justin) angered the magical division of the army, and with Justinian focusing on the infantry they had reason to join forces with the demes. Justinian and Belisarius persevered through strength of arms with minimal magical support, while the Nika Republic became a magical powerhouse. In the current civil war, the Christian faction has the most magic (thanks to archmages commanding powerful spirits), and one of the Imperial Muslim factions would largely stick to infantry and cavalry with magic relegated to support positions. (The other Imperial Muslim faction and the Caliphate/Imperial faction would be somewhere in between.)
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Old 08-16-2018, 04:11 PM   #3528
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[cont. from previous post]

And if you want to make this a historical fantasy world, it shouldn't be hard. Apparently, Justinian passed a law which banned chariot-racers from putting curses on each other. What if this was a real problem?
According to my reading, Chariot Racers, Hookers, and Wrestlers, were all stereotypically assumed to use magic and cast cures to further their "careers." All these groups lived risk fulled highly vulnerable lives. Thus they, out of desperation, turned to the only means of controlling that riskiness. It doesn't matter that control was an illusion, it was all they had.

Period literature reflected this reality. Several literary witches make clear that they used to be courtesans, their detractors deny that and say the witches were mere streetwalkers. Buying a spell of dubious potency from an elderly crippled ex-athlete is also a period stereotype/trope.
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Old 08-16-2018, 10:42 PM   #3529
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According to my reading, Chariot Racers, Hookers, and Wrestlers, were all stereotypically assumed to use magic and cast cures to further their "careers." All these groups lived risk fulled highly vulnerable lives. Thus they, out of desperation, turned to the only means of controlling that riskiness. It doesn't matter that control was an illusion, it was all they had.

Period literature reflected this reality. Several literary witches make clear that they used to be courtesans, their detractors deny that and say the witches were mere streetwalkers. Buying a spell of dubious potency from an elderly crippled ex-athlete is also a period stereotype/trope.
I guess I shouldn't be surprised. I mean, even in the modern world, many professional athletes cling to whatever superstitions they think will give them a better chance at victory.

—————

Speaking of supernatural stuff...I recently realized I had the CK2 DLC that enables a quest-for-immortality event chain. While I was deciding how to use this (ie, wait for the event to come naturally and savescum like crazy vs. cheat the trait in vs. ???), I read some things other people have done with immortal characters. This got me to thinking about how a few immortals could affect history.

For the sake of argument, let's assume that immortals have age with youth, are immune to organ failure and most mundane diseases (including things like cancer and heart disease), but not to violence and perhaps not some remarkable diseases (e.g, the Black Death). Let's also say that becoming immortal is no small feat (a world where everyone is immortal is a different beast), but where continuing to be immortal is trivial. That should leave plenty of flexibility for your worldbuilding needs.
Regardless, we will also be assuming that the immortal's mind can change. This is good and bad. On the good side, they can continue to learn and improve themselves, meaning they could be unparalleled at multiple skills vital to the sorts of plots immortals would want to get up to; diplomacy, deception, military strategy, turning around in tall chairs just as the heroes enter the room, etc. On the bad side...well, sometimes people are same, and sometimes those people stop being sane. The longer you live, the more likely you are to drift from the carefully-balanced set of behaviors conventionally referred to as "maintaining possession of your marbles". It's hard to imagine why an immortal, whose mind has to process so many more centuries than our ancestors's brains evolved to handle, would be any different.

Let's start by imagining the first immortal as a minor nobleman in early medieval Ireland (sometimes known as Newbie Isle among CK2 players). Not one of the petty kings, not even a powerful earl; one of the lesser earls or lords-mayor or something. This immortal noble might try to push himself into power by force of time and intrigue, but his obvious not-dying-ness would probably get in the way of such plans. If the immortal was concerned about this, he would probably end up as a power behind the throne for his descendants, influencing events to get his favorite great-grandkids on the thrones of all the kingdoms of Ireland before bringing them together to vote on a High King for him to advise. He could then work to spread his dynasty further, bringing other realms into his Kingdom of Kingdoms by sending other descendants to marry into foreign families (and making sure all the great-great-great-grandkids had reason to fear and love their immortal father). This could go until the patriarch's age caught up with him, by which time he could easily affect the history of the British Isles (and, hence, Europe; and, hence, the world).
Alternatively, the immortal could go "Screw it" and aim for an endless reign under himself. With patience and constant self-improvement, and with a list of familial allies to rival Walder Frey, he would likely prove capable of taking control of a respectable chunk of Ireland. He could not, however, do so without catching the attention of Great Britain and a decent chunk of the Continent. Many others would seek this immortality, and those who found it would set up immortal fiefs of their own. Meanwhile, the original immortal would rack up enemies in both church and state, both priests suspecting him of witchcraft most foul and nobles who his machinations disempowered. As long as the immortal maintained his faculties (and avoided ******* off too big of fish), he could probably maintain his position; however, once his senility and other issues caught up with him, he would not be long for this world. If the immortal hadn't made it clear which of his descendants would be next in line for the throne, his kingdom would have quite a succession crisis on its hands...and when the next generation of successful immortality-seekers started to reach the age of senility, all Europe may fall into chaos.

But let us imagine that Europe entered the age of immortals more smoothly. What then? The secret of immortality would creep throughout the Old World, with each ruler who finds it (and presumably shares with his wife/favorite mistress, closest friend(s), wisest and most trusted advisers, probably some of his descendants/possible heirs...) making the secret just a little bit less secret. I could easily see successful questers springing up from Mali to Scandinavia to western India within several decades of immortality becoming public knowledge, and with Chinese alchemists figuring it out within a century.
The influence of aristocratic immortality on feudal politics (or society in general) is, obviously, hard to determine. After all, we don't have any comparable phenomena in real life. However, we can make some guesses:
  • Eventually, spiritual leaders would find a justification to accept the immortals. Historically and over long enough periods of time, humanity has been pretty good at not letting the fact that something is technically against our religious doctrine stop us from doing something useful.
  • Immortals are good at amassing wealth and power for themselves. After all, long cons and lengthy investments pay out well.
  • Monarchy would probably be less bad, on average. In OTL, you have to deal with your good and bad kings, and the incentive for removing bad kings ahead of time isn't that much higher than the incentive for removing good kings. But if your descendants (and possibly you, if you're one of the immortal elite) would have to put up with centuries of Joffery's rule, you'd be a bit more eager to find chances to poison his wine.
  • Eras would be defined by the leading monarchs, even more than in OTL. This is partly because those monarchs would probably have more influence over their nations, and partly because they would be able to live through entire social movements. (Those two factors are, of course, not unrelated.)
  • Social change would likely be slowed. Part of this is because plenty of influential people would have been raised with morals a century or more out of date; however, part of it would simply be because those in power would be that much better at resisting change.
  • Colonialism would probably still be a thing. Europe would have one more tool in its arsenal against the native Americans, but native Africans and Asians would have that tool as well! Hard to say how this would affect things in those places; could go either way, could do nothing at all.
  • If the great powers never had a long-reigning monarch who foresaw the need to give the common people more power...well, we could see events like the (first) French Revolution and the Russian Revolution happening all across the world. This could lead to a worldwide confederation of like-minded idealists leading and supporting revolutionaries around the world to create a worldwide utopia...but more likely, it would lead to several such confederations united by mutually-incompatible ideologies, each split among deep factional lines. (This time of revolution and chaos would be a good place to put a campaign, BTW.)
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Old 08-17-2018, 07:34 AM   #3530
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This Q7 world already diverged from Homeline's history when a team of British and American engineers, working on codebreaking, created a Difference Engine in 1905. Small cumulative changes were mounting up, but a reality quake changed the direction of this world in the local year 1920.

This reality quake seems to have been caused by the crashing of a Centrum interworld craft of unusual design carrying several artifacts stolen from a Cabal site. The reality quake caused three main effects.

First this previously no mana world went to a 50% Low Mana/30% Normal Mana/ 20% High mana world. Most areas tend toward mixed areas of each level of mana. Some places, the Valley of the Nile below Aswan, Western Ireland, and certain valleys in Tibet tend to be large areas of High Mana. In the USA, New Orleans and the nearby bayous tend toward High Mana, San Francisco is High Mana, Hawaii is high mana, and New England and northeastern New York State are also High mana. And strangely enough, Chicago, where the interworld craft wrecked is also High Mana.

Second history seems to be rewritten. Magic is now seen as something that went away and has now renewed itself. Many people believe they've always been witches or wizards and that their family has had magical secrets for generations (but that's common enough in the "real world" too;-)). The various magical lores and traditions are now being brought together and studied. Some progress is being made in rationalizing magical systems and creating "High Magic." Standard GURPS magic is a low magic system, it has hundreds of spells but if you want to do something new, you need to find either an old spell that does what you want, or create a new spell. High Magic systems don't have fire spells, for example, they have a lore of fire that allows you to create any effect you can imagine within limits. The more skill, the fewer functional limits.

Third, after the Spanish Flu outbreak there were changes. Scientists now say that certain groups of Demi-Humans had adapted to falling mana levels by becoming human and marrying into human families. These Demi-Humans are now showing up again. For some reason, this is mainly a Western/European thing.

Elves, Drawfs, Trolls, Goblins, and Pixies/Leprechauns, are the most common types. There is debate over whether or not Pixies and Leprechauns are two different types or two varieties of one type. All Demi-Humans face some prejudice. Elves get the least stigma, Trolls, and Goblins the most. Demi-Humans tend to have almost all Demi-Human children. Humans often have a Demi-Human child in the family. How the child is treated depends on many factors. Some ethnic groups like the Irish are kinder to their Demi-Human children but then the Irish have more demi-humans and exclusively elves and leprechauns. Other groups, particularly those that have mainly Trolls and Goblins, reject their demi-human children, dumping them in foundling homes. Upper-class people tend to reject their demi-human children far more than working class people. Religious groups have inconsistent rules on the subject too.

It is now seven years since the crash. Chicago has never noticed the crash, which wasn't loud. This can be forgiven because Chicago is where the Twenties really ROAR! Jazz, Gangsters, Speakeasies, Feds, Flappers, Tommy guns, and Gun Molls, all mixed with Witches, Wizards, Elves, Goblins, and Trolls. Be careful and say away from the Leprechaun who's packing hexes and heaters.

Basically, the Roaring Twenties ala Shadow Run. The effects of the Reality Quake are still playing out, the parallel is slowly becoming both pulpier and getting more epic fantasy touches. Technology is only just beginning to take on alchemical traits. Gadgeteers or inventors could move the setting in a pulp sci-fi direction easily.

The IW tag for this world is Blackstone after the famous stage magician.
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Last edited by Astromancer; 08-17-2018 at 08:14 AM.
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