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Old 01-14-2018, 05:26 PM   #61
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Default Re: New Sci Fi Setting Seeds

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Radiation does not work that way. You are talking about intense enough energy to strip off the atmosphere, boil the oceans, and vaporize the first fifty miles of crust. Nothing in the Solar System (or any system within a few light years) would be suitable for colonization after that, as everything in the Solar System would be equally baked, because you are talking about levels of radiation equal to a nearby hypernova (or a relatively close AGN). In fact, given a minimum distance of 85 light-years, you are talking about an event that would make every planet within 1000 light-years of the event unsuitable for colonization.
I didn't say fifty miles of planetary crust would be vaporized. I said it wouldn't protect you. Not the same thing at all. And I also specified that a "botched stellar engineering project" was the source of the radiation. I know physics isn't my long suit. However I did try to get it right.
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Old 01-14-2018, 06:24 PM   #62
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I had a similar idea where benefactor aliens export humans to an artificial habitat -- essentially allowing humans to rebuild their societies on the (insert cool Big Dumb Object here).

Then there's the actual rescue process. Aliens show up to explain that a phenomenon that doesn't match our know physics is going to destroy Earth. What method do they use to explain the problem? Do they try to teach us first where our physics is wrong (which requires accelerators of much higher energy level than what we currently have), or do they try emotional, or even manipulative means in order to save humanity?
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Old 01-14-2018, 06:43 PM   #63
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Try this idea. Alien contact in the 1940s, if you like, at Roswell. The Aliens find humans advanced enough to be worthy of rescue. In the year 2025 a wave of radiation from a botched stellar engineering project will rip through the solar system. Nothing that lacks fifty miles of shielding will survive.

The Aliens offer Humanity a lift.

It's now the year 2347. The radiation has subsided and Earth can be resettled. Some terraformation will be needed. Different groups that left Earth feel they should either get first pick of the land, or simply they alone are worthy of owning the Earth.

Basically a reworking of GURPS:Alpha Centauri. Different cultural groups fighting for dominance politically and memetically.

The simple fact of off-world backing and aid both limits and extends what PCs and their cultures can do.

Many things that made no sense in a low population frontier area cut off from the outside world can now be made logical/functional.
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Radiation does not work that way. You are talking about intense enough energy to strip off the atmosphere, boil the oceans, and vaporize the first fifty miles of crust. Nothing in the Solar System (or any system within a few light years) would be suitable for colonization after that, as everything in the Solar System would be equally baked, because you are talking about levels of radiation equal to a nearby hypernova (or a relatively close AGN). In fact, given a minimum distance of 85 light-years, you are talking about an event that would make every planet within 1000 light-years of the event unsuitable for colonization.
It should be possible to tone down the radiation so that it will wreck the biosphere but not actually boil off the oceans. So yeah you can survive in a bunker but with nearly all the animal and plant life killed off, your atmosphere is ruined and there's no food chain.

I think though the problem is that if the aliens have 80 years to work with and the tech to lift 1940s human population off the Earth, they should be able to run a megaproject to shield the planet anyway.

Maybe they have excellent wormhole tech and everything else is TL9. The disaster is going to strike in less than 1 year's time. The aliens can erect multiple large wormholes to a human-habitable safe planet. Everyone can get out, they have to be willing and able to travel to a wormhole and walk (or drive) through.

Of course, many millions of people simply won't want to go. Some governments will actively prevent people from leaving or reaching wormholes which are activated in their territory.

Actually this is probably a bigger story than the Return To Earth.
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Old 01-14-2018, 07:25 PM   #64
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The Mandate: Instead of a faux Rome in space, a faux Chinese Empire in space. NeoConfucian legalism and bioroids instead of eunuchs.
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Old 01-14-2018, 08:31 PM   #65
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The Mandate: Instead of a faux Rome in space, a faux Chinese Empire in space. NeoConfucian legalism and bioroids instead of eunuchs.
There's a sci fi trilogy or longer series with Earth ruled by a brutal racist Chinese empire. Those seeking FTL drives are hunted rebels.
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Old 01-15-2018, 06:02 PM   #66
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I had a similar idea where benefactor aliens export humans to an artificial habitat -- essentially allowing humans to rebuild their societies on the (insert cool Big Dumb Object here).

Then there's the actual rescue process. Aliens show up to explain that a phenomenon that doesn't match our know physics is going to destroy Earth. What method do they use to explain the problem? Do they try to teach us first where our physics is wrong (which requires accelerators of much higher energy level than what we currently have), or do they try emotional, or even manipulative means in order to save humanity?
The idea of the peoples of 1940s Earth scattered on the Ringworld and striving to rebuild their lives is grand. Placing Stalin and Mao to far away to harm the West would both give the West security and lock their nations in misery.

I could see great migrations of peoples seeking peace and security.
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:04 PM   #67
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What method do they use to explain the problem? Do they try to teach us first where our physics is wrong (which requires accelerators of much higher energy level than what we currently have), or do they try emotional, or even manipulative means in order to save humanity?
If they're really lazy (or simply desperately short on time), create a menace who'll attack the humans in some horribly destructive way., but not actually kill anyone. Then show up to "save" the day. But then you tell the humans that an even bigger menace is going to show up, so the humans need to evacuate.
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Old 01-15-2018, 08:24 PM   #68
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Ringworlds possess millions of times the area of Earth, so humans would be very spread out (around 1 person per million square kilometers). Humanity would go extinct within a century just because it would be impossible to find anyone to breed with.
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Old 01-15-2018, 09:22 PM   #69
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Well they'd go extinct if the aliens decided to make human population density uniform across an entire Ringworld, but they might decide to apply a less extreme version of 'scattered'.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:43 AM   #70
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Well they'd go extinct if the aliens decided to make human population density uniform across an entire Ringworld, but they might decide to apply a less extreme version of 'scattered'.
Agreed! They'd scatter the nations and communities. The people who make up these communities would be more clumped together. England might be twelve thousand miles from Wales. Nations might be on different sides of the great oceans or maybe even on one of the island maps of worlds.
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