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Old 09-22-2019, 05:35 AM   #11
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

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Originally Posted by PTTG View Post
I think the defining feature is that Magic involves an element of magical thinking. Sure, sure, mana and ozmic particles provide a sufficient handwave, but Magic is shaped through contagion and as above, so below. Of course, if that works when analyzed rigorously, they become natural laws and can be scienced... but if they vanish when examined, yet function in the field, you'd be hard pressed to unite it with scientific thought.
Horace Mitchell Miner's 1956 "Body Ritual among the Nacirema" caused the anthropological community to stop dismissing magic and seriously look on how people thought it worked. Once they did that it was discovered that magic had a lot more in common with science then had been realized.

In a way, that paper was the grandfather of Isaac Bonewits' Authentic Thaumaturgy with James Burke's Day the Universe Changed as a kind of son.

Also this mindset ignore that science is divided into two main fields: hard (physical) and soft (social) and the mindset itself actually comes from a Newtonian way of looking at the universe...which was on life support at the end of the 19th century and got its plug pulled by Einstein in 1905.

I would like to point out the things you talk about appear as parts of the 26 Laws of Magic that Bonewits pulled out of the various cultures around the world. I see Law of Contagion and Law of Unity in your post and if those and some 24 other Laws can be hammered out by those who believe Magic works in our universe where magic supposedly "vanishes when examined" then they would certainly be well known and used in a world where magic could be produced on demand with regular results.

Heck, Psychology and Psychiatry are sciences that study that most irregular of things: the human mind. And those two sciences have so many problems replicating their results that some regard them as psudosciences with no more validity then astrology. Binford and Dunnel spent over a decade debating if archeological and anthropologically if form and function have any constant relationship and with the high variance in human culture it is one of those things that there is no real answer to. History, even when you have well written records, is somewhat a grab bag.

This is the one thing people don't get about Science because they don't understand what it really is - it is a way to model how it is thought the universe works and when it comes to the social sciences having any kind of certainty is more a fluke then anything else.
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Old 09-23-2019, 07:03 PM   #12
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

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Question 6: To what extent is the general population aware of the struggle?
The general population is well aware of the divide between the two factions, but as to the reasons and the details they are almost completely in the dark. This is mainly due to the propaganda and misinformation spread by groups on both sides. The inhabitants of rural areas are told that the cities are places where rich technocrats keep the workers slaving away to support their machines, where diseases and injury are left untreated for want of a simple spell. On the other hand the urbanites are told that those who live away from the cities are stuck in medieval servitude, broadsheets heavily feature horror stories about strange people from the primitive regions (who are usually bravely vanquished by the guns of a heroic city dwelling hero)

Question 9
Are there any creature of magic, myth or legend that are routinely encountered by anyone in this world?

Question 9A
Are these creatures of magic, myth or legend their own distinct terrestrial races, or is there another mechanism behind them?
(Such as, another realm, latent genetics expressed under specific circumstances etc)
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Old 09-24-2019, 02:29 AM   #13
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

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Question 9
Are there any creature of magic, myth or legend that are routinely encountered by anyone in this world?
Answer 9: There is no such thing as a common magical creature... however, a few rare entities do exist; perhaps a thousand are documented in the whole world. These beings are perhaps most generally termed "spirits." They are nonphysical magical beings with the ability to manipulate human perceptions, communicating through dreams, visions, and hallucinations.

Weak ones whisper in a lonely ear. These small spirits might imprint on humans, being much like figures out of ghost stories. Nobody knows how many of them exist at an even lower level, their cognition barely more than a whispered phrase echoing in a cave, or a cold sensation that remains even on a summer's day.

Many are moderate, communicative with others of their kind, and similar to humans in general capacity. The most powerful -- of these only a dozen are known -- are capable of creating illusions that influence thousands of people at once. No matter how powerful, however, no spirit can actually influence the physical world, only human minds.


Question 10: Why do some Spirits side with technology users in secret?

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Old 09-24-2019, 01:11 PM   #14
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

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Question 10: Why do some Spirits side with technology users in secret?
Because they fear each other and wizards more than they fear technology users. Technology can only be concentrated in a few places at once, and many spirits are resistant to the anti-magic field of technology.

Its a mistake to thing of such spirits as "Siding with technology users". The alliances are usually against specific foes, and the spirit's cooperation can be very fickle once it's goals are achieved.

Question 11:
Do wizards and technologists meet on the open field of battle, or is conflict between the two decided in a more underhanded fashion?
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Old 09-24-2019, 08:47 PM   #15
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

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Question 11:
Do wizards and technologists meet on the open field of battle, or is conflict between the two decided in a more underhanded fashion?
Rarely, because the two sides are pretty devastating when they meet and most rulers refuse to let things come to that sort of a head. Thus the 'feud' tends to be far more subtle, murderous, and political.

Though rumor abounds of an explorer having discovered a far off uncharted land that the two factions (and the subfactions) have heated up the political and money feud over winning exclusive access to.
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Old 09-25-2019, 03:08 PM   #16
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

Question 12
What kind of capabilities
/power level does a fully trained magic user have?

Question 13
What happens when a person is identified as a gifted mage when they live in a technology dominated enclave?

Question 14
What is an example historic conflict between the two powers?
Open question.

Question 15
Name an important historic figure for either side.
Open question
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Old 09-25-2019, 06:56 PM   #17
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Default Re: Campaign Jam: Magic Vrs. Technology

Answer 15: Many figures in science before the 1740's were key to both technology and magic. Even in our world Newton, Dee, Kepler, Boyle, and Roger Bacon as well as many others were involved in occult practices as well as science and there was little distinction between the two. De Carte fled to Sweden because there was a "witch craze" in France and innovative mathematicians were seen as sorcerers. 17th century France, like much of the world at the time, saw mathematics as a form of witchcraft.

I assume the break in this world is tied to the equivalents of the American, Dutch, and French revolutions. ( In real world history the Dutch had a revolution before the French and after the Americans. The Prussians violently put it down.) The magic users are the reactionaries and the technos are the radicals.
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