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Old 03-17-2018, 02:05 PM   #3231
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Originally Posted by DocRailgun View Post
Why?

Why is it "smuggling"? Surely there's nothing wrong with bringing back literature to Homeline, even if it's eeeeeevil socialism. Why are you sugggesting that Homeline personnel are doing something illicit?

Why would Star Trek fans care that a Joan Collin's lookalike that is a real person in another universe is a fictional character in their own except for the fact that it's a bit odd? There are universes like this discovered all the time... why is this one epecially odd?

Why would conservatives on Homeline want to kill a peaceful socialist leader that has helped people (and isn't an authoritatian murdering sociopath like Stalin) simply because she's helped lead a world to relative peace through different political means than on Homeline? What do they have to gain other than the pettt satisfaction of murdering a "socialist"?

Why would anyone on Homeline want to kidnap her? People who support her policies want to keep her where she is, 'Star Trek fanboys' surely aren't going to kidnap her and parade her around conventions, and the only thing people who don't care for her politics would gain by kidnapping her is trouble for doing so.

It's an interesting worldline, but why are people interfering in it?
You weren't here when they did reality Rosa?
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Old 03-23-2018, 07:38 AM   #3232
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Given that until the 1870'S Britain seriously feared the USA, because the ruling elites of Britain feared that Democracy could only lead to chaos, it seems to me that conflict between the USA and Britain is simply underused as a seed of alternate histories. Centrum has the same ideas about democracy that the 19th century British elites had. They fear it as a door to chaos and a mask for tyranny. It seems to me that in any parallel were the ACW is occurring Centrum would bend all its efforts toward starting a war between the USA and Britain.

The main problems would be these, first, Prussia's king hates the CSA, second, no one trusts Louie Napoleon, third, Russia wants to embarrass Britain and the Czar wants the Slaves freed, and sees Lincoln as the only man to do it. The Prussian King hates political revolt to begin with. That the CSA is revolting for the right to own slaves makes the king sick to his stomach. I kid you not, he is recorded as actually vomiting at the thought of the CSA! Louie Napoleon is a con man and a risk taker. He is tricky as a matter of policy and pride. The Brits know this and keep their distance. The Tsar wants to do two things, A) promote an end to slavery, the South's defeat looks good to him, and b) steal a march on Britain. The Russian Navy is basically hiding in American ports in this period. This achieves two ends. First the Brits can't blockade them in Russian ports nor can the winter. Second, Britain can't bombard US ports without starting a major European diplomatic incident.

So how do you get Centrum it's shot?
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Old 03-23-2018, 11:14 AM   #3233
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The main problems would be these, first, Prussia's king hates the CSA, second, no one trusts Louie Napoleon, third, Russia wants to embarrass Britain and the Czar wants the Slaves freed, and sees Lincoln as the only man to do it. The Prussian King hates political revolt to begin with. That the CSA is revolting for the right to own slaves makes the king sick to his stomach. I kid you not, he is recorded as actually vomiting at the thought of the CSA! Louie Napoleon is a con man and a risk taker. He is tricky as a matter of policy and pride. The Brits know this and keep their distance. The Tsar wants to do two things, A) promote an end to slavery, the South's defeat looks good to him, and b) steal a march on Britain. The Russian Navy is basically hiding in American ports in this period. This achieves two ends. First the Brits can't blockade them in Russian ports nor can the winter. Second, Britain can't bombard US ports without starting a major European diplomatic incident.

So how do you get Centrum it's shot?
Not sure, as it's even harder than that, I'm pretty sure: The British public, and many politicians and even other elites at the time, strongly hated slavery, such that a PM who tried too hard to bring the UK into the war on the CSA's side would run the risk of, if not being lynched, than at least the Parliament giving a Vote of No Confidence in the Government, and Her Majesty thus needing to call for fresh elections. If Centrum wanted a UK v. USA war during the US Civil War, they'd need to start decades earlier, at which point they might as well start the war well before the 1860s - or, they'd need to be working in a timeline with a different socio-political set-up in Britain.

Of course, Centrum not knowing this, and finding out the hard way when their patsy does get lynched (due to Centrum putting more and more resources into keeping him in power while keeping him on-task) could be an interesting story, and an important learning experience for them.
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Old 03-23-2018, 06:48 PM   #3234
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Originally Posted by Astromancer View Post
Given that until the 1970'S Britain seriously feared the USA, because the ruling elites of Britain feared that Democracy could only lead to chaos, it seems to me that conflict between the USA and Britain is simply underused as a seed of alternate histories. Centrum has the same ideas about democracy that the 19th century British elites had. They fear it as a door to chaos and a mask for tyranny. It seems to me that in any parallel were the ACW is occurring Centrum would bend all its efforts toward starting a war between the USA and Britain.

The main problems would be these, first, Prussia's king hates the CSA, second, no one trusts Louie Napoleon, third, Russia wants to embarrass Britain and the Czar wants the Slaves freed, and sees Lincoln as the only man to do it. The Prussian King hates political revolt to begin with. That the CSA is revolting for the right to own slaves makes the king sick to his stomach. I kid you not, he is recorded as actually vomiting at the thought of the CSA! Louie Napoleon is a con man and a risk taker. He is tricky as a matter of policy and pride. The Brits know this and keep their distance. The Tsar wants to do two things, A) promote an end to slavery, the South's defeat looks good to him, and b) steal a march on Britain. The Russian Navy is basically hiding in American ports in this period. This achieves two ends. First the Brits can't blockade them in Russian ports nor can the winter. Second, Britain can't bombard US ports without starting a major European diplomatic incident.

So how do you get Centrum it's shot?
The best (read: most interesting) way I can see this happening is if Centrum engineers a Norther secession. They need to start early, of course, but if they can tip things so that the slave power gets stronger instead of weaker during the middle of the century, they might be able to push several of the northern states into breaking off - especially if a really intolerable slavery supporter becomes president. This works nicely for a clear-cut adventure in that it puts the Centrum in the position of supporting slavers - perfect for Infinity cops to oppose.
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Old 03-24-2018, 12:37 PM   #3235
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The best (read: most interesting) way I can see this happening is if Centrum engineers a Norther secession. They need to start early, of course, but if they can tip things so that the slave power gets stronger instead of weaker during the middle of the century, they might be able to push several of the northern states into breaking off - especially if a really intolerable slavery supporter becomes president. This works nicely for a clear-cut adventure in that it puts the Centrum in the position of supporting slavers - perfect for Infinity cops to oppose.
In Britannia-6 (or 7, I can't remember - the one with its own GURPS supplement; Princess Charlotte survives and births a whole brood of royals), New England (including New York State) secedes.

Though, in this case, slavery and slave-holding USA decline. But there isn't a Civil War, so slavery does still exist into the 1870s (or whenever the present day was on that world).
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Old 03-24-2018, 03:50 PM   #3236
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In Britannia-6 (or 7, I can't remember - the one with its own GURPS supplement; Princess Charlotte survives and births a whole brood of royals), New England (including New York State) secedes.

Though, in this case, slavery and slave-holding USA decline. But there isn't a Civil War, so slavery does still exist into the 1870s (or whenever the present day was on that world).
That would be odd without the ACW. Slavery was uniquely profitable in the USA. Far from being a fading institution that would fade away, Southern US slavery was as vital as it was evil. Slavery required killing.
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Old 03-24-2018, 11:07 PM   #3237
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That would be odd without the ACW. Slavery was uniquely profitable in the USA. Far from being a fading institution that would fade away, Southern US slavery was as vital as it was evil. Slavery required killing.
The current year is 1887 as of the supplement so that's 20 years for the economics to shift. Not really enough time in my opinion, though. I'd buy if it was 1927
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Old 03-25-2018, 08:00 AM   #3238
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That would be odd without the ACW. Slavery was uniquely profitable in the USA. Far from being a fading institution that would fade away, Southern US slavery was as vital as it was evil. Slavery required killing.
Debatable. The thing that allowed slavery to really boom in the US is that the industrial revolution drove a boom in demand for cotton (and to an extent other agricultural products as it generated urban populations who could afford to buy and ship them from far away) but hadn't yet mechanized agricultural *production*. Britannica-6 is a tech heavy world-line though, it's doubtless filled with all kinds of (admittedly not very standardized) agricultural machinery that will do who knows what to the economics of cotton plantations.
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Old 03-25-2018, 10:13 AM   #3239
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Debatable. The thing that allowed slavery to really boom in the US is that the industrial revolution drove a boom in demand for cotton (and to an extent other agricultural products as it generated urban populations who could afford to buy and ship them from far away) but hadn't yet mechanized agricultural *production*. Britannica-6 is a tech heavy world-line though, it's doubtless filled with all kinds of (admittedly not very standardized) agricultural machinery that will do who knows what to the economics of cotton plantations.
The "standard" Britannica hasn't yet begun to apply their advanced tech to such mundane purposes.
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Old 03-25-2018, 10:53 AM   #3240
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Debatable. The thing that allowed slavery to really boom in the US is that the industrial revolution drove a boom in demand for cotton (and to an extent other agricultural products as it generated urban populations who could afford to buy and ship them from far away) but hadn't yet mechanized agricultural *production*. Britannica-6 is a tech heavy world-line though, it's doubtless filled with all kinds of (admittedly not very standardized) agricultural machinery that will do who knows what to the economics of cotton plantations.
At the end of the Civil War, slavery just shifted to a different name and slightly different structure. Rather than outright legal ownership of other human beings who had no rights whatsoever, the southern planters shifted to a system of sharecropping, in which rights were never respected and black labor was kept in line by informal pressure that included "company stores," systemic debt, and lack of education, as well as terror and murder.

The fact is, cotton remained a labor intensive crop throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, and that meant the planters used any means necessary to keep labor cheap. If the institution of slavery hadn't been destroyed through violence, it would have persisted until the labor was no longer required.

That took place at the end of WWII, with the development by International Harvester of a mechanical cotton harvester that cut labor needs by more than 75 percent. That freed up lots of black labor who, no longer needed or wanted in the rural south, began to migrate in large numbers to northern cities -- especially the feed yards and meat-packing plants of southern Chicago.

So, the key thing is the presence of mechanical harvesting of a labor-intensive, highly valuable, cash crop. If that exists, then the economic incentive for slavery ends -- but until that ends, slavery will exist in some form.
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