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Old 11-09-2015, 05:13 PM   #31
Gedrin
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Default Re: High TL 9 vs TL2+RPM

A merciless TL9 agressor that doesn't have a use for the indigenous population wins. No contest. Rocks fall, everyone dies. Gen ships hang out for a bit and settle a few decades later.

If the Twoers are given very precise directions, to things they probably never thought to look for, and ways to attack things they'd not conceived of before, they could easily destroy the generation ships. Of course, by that point, you've given them information on who, what, when, where and how to strike.

The Niners have dozens of ways to reach the Twoers. Dozens of ways to destroy them. The Niners don't even have to know about magic to put together the patterns of social structure that point to "drop KKV on this building labled Mages Guild", and they can start in on that from years away.

The final advantage the TL9 crowd has is literary/social. The Niners have Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and the like. There's no Jules Verne in the TL2 society...and if there was, it's likely only a thin fraction of society could read it. The Niners react much more functionally to "they have magic", than the Twoers, who don't know what a windmill is, to "fusion drive powered cities in a vacuum". Hell, the Niners might even know the beginnings of magic by the time they show up, depending on their recon ability and doctrine.

Finally, the Niners represent something that is a fundamental threat to the Twoer society. The Twoers are run by mages. Regardless of their social good intentions, Twoer culture is built on guys with a 25pt advantage, and those are the guys with power. Niners, if it went that far, are a culture where everyone, even a Twoer dirt farmer, can hurl fireballs, cure wounds, live without disease...and so on.

A TL2+7 (notation may be wrong) society would be different. Even TL2+5 would be a challenge. The Tl2RPPM society is dying to flying golems and the meteoric wrath of the gods without ever knowing about the generation fleet two years out.
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Old 11-09-2015, 09:10 PM   #32
starslayer
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Default Re: Polite disagreement

Quote:
Originally Posted by fredtheobviouspseudonym View Post
I'd think the reason is more mental/emotional/instinctual than physical. The human mind is the outcome of some half-million years of evolution -- and creates the desire to live dirtside, to breathe free air, and to feel gravity. We can change the bone/muscle structure -- changing the structure not only of the brain but the mind will be, I would argue, far more difficult.

In short, would you want to live forever in a glorified can in space looking at a perpetual night -- or on a sunny hillside looking down at flowing water?

The latter might be worth killing for.

No reason you can't have both. No shortage of precedents in human history for people destroying other cultures for what would seem a minor advantage. Ask the Arawak Indians.

Just the opposite.

The high tech invaders know that somehow the indigenous peoples have an incomprehensible ability to move across space without high tech. Given that many beings are territorial leaders of the intruders would wonder, really wonder, if these locals will be forever happy letting colonizers use all the resources of the outer solar system. Maybe the locals will see the asteroids as their own birthright. When will the locals say "Enough!" and act to throw the intruders out -- or exterminate them?

Sure, at tech 2 they can't do it now -- but what about a thousand years from now?

One of the best ways to jolt a low-tech society into frantic efforts to advance is the presence of a higher tech exploiter. (See Japan, c. 1868.) If the original inhabitants of the system outnumber you do you as the high-tech intruder want to wait a few centuries then fight outnumbered against folk with only a slightly lower tech level? There are precedents for "pre-emptive wars."

These might well be reasons for deciding on violence.No shortage of historical examples of choosing evil as a policy in Earth's history.Even the largest fleet of generational ships might have a hard time maintaining itself indefinitely. Let's take a TL-8 example. Let's assume that a USN carrier task force is somehow magically transported to an alternate, unpopulated Earth. Even given an unlimited supply of raw materials, and the very high quality of USN engineers and sailor brainpower, could it sustain itself? Remember that this would entail producing microchips, high tech metallurgy (turbine blades and composite materials) etc. Could it reproduce itself without the backing of a high-population, high-tech nation? My guess is that no matter the size of a generation fleet eventually they'll have to land and recreate a civilization -- or die from eventually running out of spare parts.See above.

Remember that the GM doesn't have to have the most rational choices made by the space fleet commanders, nor the best -- only possible ones. Human folly is always credible. See Tuchman's "The Guns of August" for an example, or her later "The March of Folly."

Never underestimate the power of human beings to make the wrong choices.

I am largely in agreement with your statements about the possibility of the invaders actually being that evil. I was never attempting to insinuate they could not be that evil, just that they will be (for the PCs) completely unsympathetic monsters not deserving much in the way of mercy or consideration.

As for the ability/inability to maintain their fleet- technologies like the robotfac, and the microfac (which are barely even speculative at this point) kind of invalidate that; as long as you have one functional robofac you can build more robofacs, and a robofac can (at least in peices) build everything else your society depends on; all it needs is raw materials.

If you loose all your robofacs then you are going all the way back to TL4 or 5 and need to start building yourself back up, but that will STILL be easier to do by boostrapping your existing technology into bases and pods on easy to mind asteroids then going planetside and dealing with unknown diseases and roudy natives with magic powers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gedrin View Post
A merciless TL9 agressor that doesn't have a use for the indigenous population wins. No contest. Rocks fall, everyone dies. Gen ships hang out for a bit and settle a few decades later.

If the Twoers are given very precise directions, to things they probably never thought to look for, and ways to attack things they'd not conceived of before, they could easily destroy the generation ships. Of course, by that point, you've given them information on who, what, when, where and how to strike.

The Niners have dozens of ways to reach the Twoers. Dozens of ways to destroy them. The Niners don't even have to know about magic to put together the patterns of social structure that point to "drop KKV on this building labled Mages Guild", and they can start in on that from years away.

The final advantage the TL9 crowd has is literary/social. The Niners have Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and the like. There's no Jules Verne in the TL2 society...and if there was, it's likely only a thin fraction of society could read it. The Niners react much more functionally to "they have magic", than the Twoers, who don't know what a windmill is, to "fusion drive powered cities in a vacuum". Hell, the Niners might even know the beginnings of magic by the time they show up, depending on their recon ability and doctrine.

Finally, the Niners represent something that is a fundamental threat to the Twoer society. The Twoers are run by mages. Regardless of their social good intentions, Twoer culture is built on guys with a 25pt advantage, and those are the guys with power. Niners, if it went that far, are a culture where everyone, even a Twoer dirt farmer, can hurl fireballs, cure wounds, live without disease...and so on.

A TL2+7 (notation may be wrong) society would be different. Even TL2+5 would be a challenge. The Tl2RPPM society is dying to flying golems and the meteoric wrath of the gods without ever knowing about the generation fleet two years out.

Since they have interplanetary travel the 2 society is 2+something; just don't know what the + would ultimately be. As mentioned they do understand interstellar distances, and how to visit other worlds- and they have access to RPM scrying magic so they will know that the invaders are coming long before they arrive. The twoers will have a SIGNIFICANT element of suprise, and at least until the 9ers get some sort of magical protection from themselves they will be absolutely ravaged if something even as simple as a 'lesser destroy fate -5' gets targeted at them.

That will be even more critical if the 9ers are trying to struggle their tech along and its breaking down, that -5 to repair rolls will be devastation as supposedly minor repairs turn into destructive critical failures. That's just one spell of what will be dozens- with a cost only in line with 'create a magical portal to another world' to colonize it.
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Old 11-09-2015, 11:12 PM   #33
Gedrin
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Default Re: Polite disagreement

Quote:
Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
Since they have interplanetary travel the 2 society is 2+something; just don't know what the + would ultimately be. As mentioned they do understand interstellar distances, and how to visit other worlds- and they have access to RPM scrying magic so they will know that the invaders are coming long before they arrive. The twoers will have a SIGNIFICANT element of suprise, and at least until the 9ers get some sort of magical protection from themselves they will be absolutely ravaged if something even as simple as a 'lesser destroy fate -5' gets targeted at them.

That will be even more critical if the 9ers are trying to struggle their tech along and its breaking down, that -5 to repair rolls will be devastation as supposedly minor repairs turn into destructive critical failures. That's just one spell of what will be dozens- with a cost only in line with 'create a magical portal to another world' to colonize it.

But at that point, we're not talking about TL2 with RPM vs TL9. We're talking about TL2+5 vs desperate and broken TL9 with finite resources. It's an entirely different argument. How does a TL9 space colony survive against weapons they can't detect or defend against. Simple, they don't.

TL2+5(RPM) vs. desperate and broken TL9 with finite resources, ends very quickly. Diviners receive and correctly interpret prophesy about the gen ships and the nukes, rocks and robots they carry. They locate the ships with relative ease. The local collection of wizards, cast "Break Fusion Bottle" and the problem is done.

Once the RPM society has sufficient knowledge to understand what's coming, they have sufficient weapons via RPM to destroy a space ship at TL9. The only conflict scenarios involve preventing both sides from using their "nuke from orbit" options. Both sides are essentially defenseless against each other's kill shots, even on the ground that winds up being the case. Artillery is long enough and plentiful enough that it far outnumbers RPM users capable of finishing it off (unless magery is a default talent...then you're just giving unlimited power to the Twoers). Of course, RPM users could just whip up a "Curse all My Enemies with Sterility" and wait a bit.

Last edited by Gedrin; 11-09-2015 at 11:26 PM.
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Old 11-10-2015, 03:01 PM   #34
starslayer
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Default Re: Polite disagreement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gedrin View Post
But at that point, we're not talking about TL2 with RPM vs TL9. We're talking about TL2+5 vs desperate and broken TL9 with finite resources. It's an entirely different argument. How does a TL9 space colony survive against weapons they can't detect or defend against. Simple, they don't.

TL2+5(RPM) vs. desperate and broken TL9 with finite resources, ends very quickly. Diviners receive and correctly interpret prophesy about the gen ships and the nukes, rocks and robots they carry. They locate the ships with relative ease. The local collection of wizards, cast "Break Fusion Bottle" and the problem is done.

Once the RPM society has sufficient knowledge to understand what's coming, they have sufficient weapons via RPM to destroy a space ship at TL9. The only conflict scenarios involve preventing both sides from using their "nuke from orbit" options. Both sides are essentially defenseless against each other's kill shots, even on the ground that winds up being the case. Artillery is long enough and plentiful enough that it far outnumbers RPM users capable of finishing it off (unless magery is a default talent...then you're just giving unlimited power to the Twoers). Of course, RPM users could just whip up a "Curse all My Enemies with Sterility" and wait a bit.
That's why my proposed scenario for how the 9ers ultimately win involves an initial 80% losses and it seemling like it was going to be a complete an utter victory for the 2ers until it is revealed that a major tribe of the 2ers on an outer planet forging an alliance with the 9ers and scrywalled enough of their ships that they can institute their return fire, and then rely on tactical, observational, and technological dominance to prevent any saccrifical circles large enough to penetrate those scrywalls from becoming active again (They'll probabaly have to round up some sacrificies routinely for their outer planet allies to renew the scrywalls).
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Old 11-10-2015, 06:06 PM   #35
Gedrin
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Default Re: Polite disagreement

Quote:
Originally Posted by starslayer View Post
That's why my proposed scenario for how the 9ers ultimately win involves an initial 80% losses and it seemling like it was going to be a complete an utter victory for the 2ers until it is revealed that a major tribe of the 2ers on an outer planet forging an alliance with the 9ers and scrywalled enough of their ships that they can institute their return fire, and then rely on tactical, observational, and technological dominance to prevent any saccrifical circles large enough to penetrate those scrywalls from becoming active again (They'll probabaly have to round up some sacrificies routinely for their outer planet allies to renew the scrywalls).
The actual setup then is TL9+RPM, vs TL2+5 RPM with many times the population.

Important questions:
Meteoric Iron: Is it magic proof? If not, MI KKVs are super easy to make when you can push space rocks around. MI hulls and cladding for drones also.

Power to Energy Ritual: A TL2+5 society might have these as common rituals. If so...Fusion Bottles make for lots of power.

Tech Theft: How much tech can the Twoers steal while they have their edge? What's their uplift rate? Same for the Niners re RPM, but the Niners have cooperative instructors and a better teaching methodology.

Magery and Niners: Unless there's a significant bias between the peoples, Magery exists in both cultures. You also need to know where Magery comes form. Bloodlines is traditional, but does that mean genetics? The Niners could gene therapy themselves into an all mage society. Why don't the Niners have RPM? Are they from no mana worlds or is it that they lack the marker? No naquadah in the blood? If they're just from no mana words, they begin to notice magical environmental effects when they enter the mana zone. Presumably, that happens before the first divination are available (though that's an interesting question on its own).

Cultural Impact: The Niners in your scenario aren't genocidal. The enemy Twoers are sacrificing their population for their military magic. If the Niners come from an "all people are equal" society, Magery as innate tallent is a big pill to swallow. If some Niners, but not all have Magery, the Twoers may have something to offer the mages. The Niners have something to offer all non-mages, particularly if they can gene therapy or otherwise imbue the tallent.

TL2+X: I keep saying TL2+5, but I pick that because it's the point where people are familiar with the concepts of space travel and have experience with the environment. The +X is a big limiter on the concepts available for the Twoers. However, TL2+7 with RPM is both tech parity and RPM. The closer you get to that point, the less of a fight is possible.


The more I think about it, TLX+RPM seems like a bad representation of things. If you're going to have flat TL and TL+RPM, there's not much comparison. Major advances of TL's are meaningless to RPM. At the same time RPM societies might think ideas like "conservation of mass/energy" are nonsense, and when basic laws like that are effectively bypassed...these people aren't using the same universe anymore.
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