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Old 12-16-2004, 02:08 PM   #11
Pesterfield
 
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

I'd be interested in an alternate Infinity that didn't try to discourage parachronics, or even tried to actively promote its discovery. They should be seeking out worlds and trying to form alliances and trade networks instead of surpressing things.

That might work a world where Infinity decides to not be secretive, how would the Homeline Infinity handle the world?

Have any worlds with other Infinities been discovered?
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Old 12-16-2004, 02:21 PM   #12
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pesterfield
I'd be interested in an alternate Infinity that didn't try to discourage parachronics, or even tried to actively promote its discovery. They should be seeking out worlds and trying to form alliances and trade networks instead of surpressing things.
That might be an interesting variant. Maybe even a long Pyramid article.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pesterfield
That might work a world where Infinity decides to not be secretive, how would the Homeline Infinity handle the world?

Have any worlds with other Infinities been discovered?
As far as I've heard there is no other Infinity like worlds that have been discovered yet. If they did find one I think the current Infinity would be scared. Here is a group that would play on a even field with them. No more advantages in trade or tech and other things.
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Old 12-16-2004, 03:58 PM   #13
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by prosfilaes
That is the danger in this setting. I think Infinity is wisely not letting anyone come close to parachronics; if it takes three or four geniuses to discover the basic knowledge for parachronics, if you take out the bottom one, the next never get to stand on his shoulders.
The question is how elastic you make the timelines. If you are talking about the Echoes, and time is inelastic, you don't want to precipitate a shift. That would be Bad.

If your time is elastic, the timeline should/will find a suitable replacement for any such historically important character. Kill Hitler as a kid and some other dictator becomes very Hitler-like in that particular timeline. Stuff like this is covered under timeline shifts.

IOW: it's very much in the GM's hand on how you play Infinity vs. the Minds of History/Alternity.

If we are talking about parallels, not Echoes, then removing said figures may change the course of their future, but then again, we donít know where it was going anyway. We canít just hop back in their history and meddle. Thatís what is so cool about Infinite Worlds: you have semi-time travel in the Echoes, wild stuff in the Alternates and Strange Parallels, all without substantial effect back on Homeline.

The notion that historical characters would or would not care about The Secret is semantic. Play it in your campaign on an adventure-to-adventure basis. If Newton cares and is intrigued, so be it. If some punk kid is screaming that aliens are invading across time, so be it. It will be up to your campaign.

I agree that sometimes, hiring said TL8 scientist is profitable, however, Coventry exists to deal with unwilling, unstable, and generally uncooperative and untrustworthy persons. So if this TL8 pioneer is a madman, or the world jumper is idealistic and doesn't like the idea of serving Infinity, you ship him off to Parachronic Siberia.

For me, that is the interesting aspect of how you play Infinity: Happy and UN-like or the darker, secret Infinity. You can take it in whatever direction you choose.
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Old 12-16-2004, 07:24 PM   #14
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pesterfield
I'd be interested in an alternate Infinity that didn't try to discourage parachronics, or even tried to actively promote its discovery. They should be seeking out worlds and trying to form alliances and trade networks instead of surpressing things.
That was the setup in John Barnes' Timeline Wars trilogy (Patton's Spaceship, Washington's Dirigible, Caesar's Bicycle). As you might guess from the titles, in that series the good guys actively tried to accelerate each line's technical development.
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Old 12-16-2004, 10:03 PM   #15
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by prosfilaes
Originally Posted by DryaUnda
-So, barring allotechnology, he'll never discover parachronics. Thus, rendering Francis a nonissue. I'm talking about a ~TL8 scientist who has discovered parachronics. If this discovery is based on data accessible to anybody who can use them for parachronic applications, Infinity will have to do more than snatch jobs.-

That is the danger in this setting. I think Infinity is wisely not letting anyone come close to parachronics; if it takes three or four geniuses to discover the basic knowledge for parachronics, if you take out the bottom one, the next never get to stand on his shoulders.
The problem as I layed out back in 1998 was the idea falsely assumed that parachronics are the only form of 'time travel' that works and it is always produced by lone inventors.

Given the knowledge I had gained from James Burke's books _Connections_
and the _The Day the Universe Changed_ I know that both these ideas were
quite bluntly total BS. For the most part inventions are the product of people putting already existing ideas together in new ways. Sometimes you do have an inventor who has flashes of insight beyond the existing TL but usially they are too advanced for their times: Leonardo Da Vinci and Nikola Tesla are two prime examples.

It is expressly stated that Infinity kidnaps scientists from other Quanta
who are close to 'discovering the technology' which means technology that
Infinity reconizes as parachronics. As Burke points out in his series
there is no one way to get to a certain technology and how you get there may be totally accidential or by factors totally outside anyone's control.

Infinity's attitude is not only unrealistic but it is pure stupidity to
assume that the methods and theories of Homeline and Centrum are the only ones that work. Not only is Infinity totally hopeless fighting parallel
technology; (ie technology that effectively works like conveyors and
projectors but is baced on theories totally alien to Infinity) but their
attitude about the devlopment of parachronics technology borders on the
mononic.

Infinity seems to taken the view that since parachronics on their world
was developed by one inventor that is that way everywhere else. Against a
world for whom parachronics is the product of something resembling
realistic technological deveopment patterns Infinity is totally helpless
and hopeless. Small wonder they got caught totally flatfooted when Reich-5 went for world Jumping based traveling.

I went even futher IMC with Paradox-1 an Quantum 5 world what uses 'parachronic' like technology based on what they call Trinary Chronal Theory. TCT explains somethings parachronic has problems with and visa versa. It was a way to break the artificial status quo created in Time Travel.
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Old 12-17-2004, 01:49 AM   #16
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed the Coastie
I've always thought that Bacon, should he learn of parachronics, would consider them to be an idle curiosity and certainly nothing with which a gentleman would bother.
I don't know. Didn't he rather emphasise the potential practical uses and benefits of science in his writings?

Sure, this may well have been the classic academic principle of claiming that one's work has potential applications in order to justify the research grants (as a physicist friend of mine once put it, the trick is to take your thesis title and stick "... bomb" on the end), but I suspect that an Elizabethan high government official would be pretty quick to spot the potential of new worlds to plunder, colonise, and trade with. (Get's the Walter Raleighs out of one's hair and making cash, don'cha'know...)

Hmm, there's a thought. John Dee invents Hermetic Parachronics, and Elizabeth, Raleigh, Francis Drake and Philip Sidney decide to show the damn Spaniards what gold from new worlds is really all about...
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Old 12-17-2004, 10:19 AM   #17
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

I just had a thought. What if a key person in an Echo learns the Secret and the Quantum shifts to 5? Now Infinity cannot remove or discredit the guy because they have at least one example of a two step Quantum jump. Do you really want to risk kicking a entire world to Quantum 7 just for the Secret?
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Old 12-17-2004, 01:14 PM   #18
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

As an aside, does anyone else have a really hard time thinking of Homeline and Infinity as "The Good Guys" considering how they abduct otherwise perfectly upstanding scientists or other citizens and imprison them w/o regard to due process or whether or not they've committed any sort of crime? Of course one of the purposes of a good setting is enough gray area that you can have conflict and moral dilemma, but this is the primary organization of which PC's in this setting are supposed to be a part. I could be wrong, but I got from the last chapter in Campaigns that this policy of shuffling unfortunate witnesses to Coventry is fairly widely known, not only among Infinity but in all of Homeline. I find it strange that most people simply accept this policy of wrongful imprisonment. I'd have a hard time playing a character with a conscience that was an ICOP. Especially since it's a rule of "we can have this techonology and exploit it to whatever means we wish, but we can't trust anyone else with it." Granted, I'm certainly seeing some parallels with the US and its treatment of Nukes, but Parachronic technology isn't directly a weapon, or even a road to a weapon, it's like trying to keep other countries from having airplanes because you're afraid they'll build bombers and use them against you.
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Old 12-17-2004, 01:39 PM   #19
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

Actually, it is less that, even. Keep in mind that those parallels that are being held down are the exact same parallels that are being exploited to keep Homeline's economy booming.

If all of those worlds were to begin trading with each other and Homeline on a fair and equitable basis, Time Tours LTD wouldn't be able to charge an arm and a leg, because the locals would be giving the tours.

Infinite worlds, infinite wealth... infinite people, finite wealth.

If I ever ran a campaign in this setting, the players would probably be starting on Coventry. Or on their way there, when a transporter accident sends them to a world where they can go on the down low while they work out a way to destroy Homeline's death grip.

(as an interesting side note: if Homeline truly is the only place projectors can work from, they could have gone a very different route, becoming an ultracosmopolitan center of trade through which all other worlds pass, and would probably be MORE wealthy now, because the wealth would not be limited to what they themselves can manipulate)
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Old 12-18-2004, 03:13 AM   #20
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Default Re: Here's something I don't get about Coventry...

I think I stumbled into a bigger (and simpler) problem. The Infinite Worlds setting was made in a different era. By way of illustration, let us use the President of the United States. A decade ago, the president was a harmless, comical figure who only conspiracy theorists took seriously. A harmless clown, and endless source of background humor for INWO.

With POTUS #43, the sane people have become conspiracy theorists. Evil people and evil empires aren't so funny anymore.

The Infinite Worlds setting presents Infinity as the heroic group, but when we so much as suspect any similarities to infamous governments, we get a nasty jolt of cognitive dissonance.

With Infinite Worlds being the official setting for GURPS, something seriously needs to be done regarding Coventry, as urgently as the 4e covers needed reworking. I'm hopefully mistaken but, apart from the Infinite Worlds Wiki, the main setting seems to have gotten an underwhelming reaction.
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