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Old 11-10-2017, 08:18 AM   #61
RogerBW
 
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
Rather than a mass-produced tool, aircraft might conceivably remain hobbyist curiousities, more like 1910 than 1930.
Anything an aeroplane can do, a torchship can do better!
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Old 11-10-2017, 09:24 AM   #62
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

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Anything an aeroplane can do, a torchship can do better!
except for cheaper. I've always envisioned the superscience elements as being coveted, expensive, and reserved for space travel, the military, and the very rich.

That's just my interpretation, but you need to decide early on just how hard these elements are to get.
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Old 11-10-2017, 09:46 AM   #63
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

Two points.

First, WWI made airplanes, which were better attack platforms, far more popular that airships. There was always a big preference for airships right into the 1930's. heck blimps saw action in WWII. They were very useful against submarines.

No WWI means that Airships get more investment longer. The technical challenges of airships are greater than airplanes, true, but the benefits of greater cargo load and range aren't to be lightly dismissed. Airships would be a going concern in this world for practical reasons.

Second, H.G.Wells is the author this crowd needs to read for this period. From the early 1890s until the 1930s all intellectually serious young people read Wells. There are reasons that C.S.Lewis attacks Wells in several of his works. "Mr. Wells," according to one major period intellectual, "told us all that the future wasn't going to be what respectable people said it was going to be." This news was amazingly radical in it's implications.

Without a WWI to break hearts and kill trust, this would be a vastly more optimistic, if still seriously scary to many people, world. WWI created a sense of total break with what came before, and on a level that WWII never approached, but all the trends of radical where in place before 1900 and normally before 1880. Events came faster because of the war, but they would have sped up anyway.

Take the Irish issue. Even with the crisis this world has from the Tunguska event, Irish Homerule/independence agitation would continue. Home Rule was almost granted. The fact that the Kaiser would have been against Home Rule in Ireland and supportive of Ulster Protestants, would likely make Home Rule in Ireland more attractive to the average Brit in this world.

Lacking the Russian Revolution, this world might be more inclined to socialism and social democracy. The Right would lack a major bogey man.
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Old 11-10-2017, 10:01 AM   #64
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

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Take the Irish issue. Even with the crisis this world has from the Tunguska event, Irish Homerule/independence agitation would continue. Home Rule was almost granted. The fact that the Kaiser would have been against Home Rule in Ireland and supportive of Ulster Protestants, would likely make Home Rule in Ireland more attractive to the average Brit in this world.
I've always assumed that one side effect of no WWI would be that colonialism and other racist BS would last longer without WWI casting doubt on the inherent wonderfulness and superiority of European peoples and culture.

I think Michael Moorcock's Oswald Bastable stories may have inclined me this way.
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Old 11-10-2017, 10:35 AM   #65
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Two points.

No WWI means that Airships get more investment longer. .
Nope, not gonna happen. Every way that torchships outclass airplanes is a way they outclass dirigibles twice over.

I don't think you can make astrometel technology really rare. The 1938 of this world has Earth possessing 4 large space stations and all the major powers having armed moonbases. All of the planets out at least to Saturn and Ceres see major torchship traffic and significant economic activity.

There are multiple major spaceports on Earth too.

Petrinium also seems to have revolutionized electric power generation.
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Old 11-10-2017, 12:04 PM   #66
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

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It would be country by country. The USA would have widespread tech. Nations like France or Britain would be cutting edge in town and prefer the tech to stay out of the countryside. Some nations like Japan or the German client states in what was Russia would want to keep the countryside archaic.

It would be about political goals.

By the way, a WWI free planet could have a USA were socialism is still popular. WWI and the Russian revolution were very bad for socialism in the USA. In this world the USA might even have a viable Labor Party.
USA would still have backward areas, like Appalachia - but the East Coast, Midwest, and maybe California would see more advanced tech. Also possibly parts of the Gulf Coast, as it's closer to super-science deposits in Yucatan (a 'Texan astronium man' archetype could develop, like the Texan oil man IRL).


I hadn't thought about socialism's fate without WWI and Russian Revolution. It would probably still be a popular alternative, but one that's never really been tested. And it would still have the 'workers of the world unite' international appeal, without Moscow demanding fealty or WWI dividing socialist movements.


Moscow would still be known - with St. Petersburg gone, it would be the biggest Russian city. Imperial Germany would try to reduce its importance, as it would likely be the center of anti-German Russian activity.

Interestingly, there would still be Russian emigres in the West, particularly America, but instead of deposed nobility, it would be nationalist & socialist agitators.
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Old 11-10-2017, 12:23 PM   #67
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Perhaps, instead of Lenin in Russia, there's Zapata or Villa in Mexico...
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Old 11-10-2017, 09:06 PM   #68
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Default Re: GURPS Lucifer-5?

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USA would still have backward areas, like Appalachia - but the East Coast, Midwest, and maybe California would see more advanced tech. Also possibly parts of the Gulf Coast, as it's closer to super-science deposits in Yucatan (a 'Texan astronium man' archetype could develop, like the Texan oil man IRL).
Except wouldn't tech like this allow Appalachia to be less isolated compared to historically? The biggest problem the Appalachia region faces OTL, even now, is that the mountainous terrain often makes it difficult to expand stuff like internet access or other rather essential things nowadays.

Here, the tech in use can cut down on those issues with infrastructure growth.
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Old 11-10-2017, 09:37 PM   #69
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Except wouldn't tech like this allow Appalachia to be less isolated compared to historically? The biggest problem the Appalachia region faces OTL, even now, is that the mountainous terrain often makes it difficult to expand stuff like internet access or other rather essential things nowadays.

Here, the tech in use can cut down on those issues with infrastructure growth.
I'm from West Virginia. In the 1930s West Virginia was a major source of coal. If coal is valuable, and in this setting it probably isn't, West Virginia would be ecconomically important and bitterly poor.

Clearcutting of the local forests meant that 1930s had monster floods. We were used as a colony be Wall Street and a dispised one too.

Yes West Virginia would be misserable in this setting as would the Ozarks or the Mississippi Delta. Plenty of areas in other nations were poor and backward too, the Central Masstif of France for example.
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Old 11-11-2017, 04:43 PM   #70
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The best bet for West Virginia would be to market themselves for hunting and tourism. With the mineral wealth from space, there would be no economic reason for mining in Appalachia. You might actually have former Appalachian miners moving into space because they have experience working in mines.
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