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Old 02-01-2019, 02:46 PM   #101
johndallman
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
The miraculous demiplane full of idealized Westphalian farmland that spontaneously sprang into existence in 1944 ...
This may well be a weak point. I can already hear one of the Infinite Cabal PCs saying "A newly created mini-world that you want me to destroy? Let me at it!"
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Old 02-01-2019, 03:45 PM   #102
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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Originally Posted by Icelander View Post
In this case, however, the elite class has TL7 knowledge and had two years to plan how to preserve it and teach it to new generations. All citizens still get an education that is as close to TL6 and TL7 education as possible, even if they only learn about trains, airplanes and automobiles from books.

As the elite class were the massively powerful inner circle of the SS in Nazi Germany, even during the last two years of its existence, they still had access to stupendous resources, especially once they started becoming more willing to flat-out break the law and loot the Reich in order to prepare the Last Redoubt better.

As noted, they brought 30,000 short tons of tools, equipment, libraries of technical books and völkisch literature (and everything else they could get their hands on) and everything they thought would be needed to be able to maintain eternal warfare with small units with personal TL6-7 firearms, build up a new industrial base at the highest practical level possible (not TL7, certainly, but able to maintain some TL7 gear at very high cost) and build power plants. Also, to eventually build zeppelins to explore other worlds.

During the two years they prepared their escape, studies were done on where important resources were found and how to extract them with technology they could maintain. Civil engineers, mining engineers and mechanical engineers already had a year or two of preparation for the specific mines, power plants and factories they set up on Jötunheim. Not to mention that finding resources to exploit is a lot easier with access to RPM magic and a few powerful magi on your side.
Yes, but in the real world and the history of technology, the problem comes down to having enough bodies to have enough people with the right range of aptitudes to gain and maintain, by experience and practice, the full range of skills required, given regression to the mean and the usual accidents. (So the person teaching chemistry in Gymnasium cannot also be working in a synthetic-oil factory or a propellant works, and the children of a thousand high-achieving, ideologically pure experts will not all be as educateable, hard-working, and conscientious). There are also circular problems where you need the market to develop the skills and build the hardware to let you serve that market.

What seems to happen in places like Polynesia, Australasia and Tierra del Fuego is that someone with key knowledge dies, or access to a key resource is lost, and people learn to do without. It is a common misperception that books can substitute for a community of specialized, experienced workers

There is a legend that the plans for the Saturn V rocket were destroyed, but the actual problems with reproducing one are:
- the workforce with a specific skill-set does not exist any more and would not be cost-effective in a 2010s economy
- it was designed to use parts and materials which don't exist any more, neither do the machines to make them
- if you had the workforce and supply chain, many important technical details were never written down because they constantly changed and because they were things which nobody knew they knew, they just did them (there is a technical term for this)

I can't say anything about the plausibility of your setting (because dude, it has Antarctic Space Nazis and the Dreamlands and ritual magic! Asking about plausibility is like complaining that "lasers don't work like that" in Star Wars or asking whether King Lear would really disown his daughter for that! If you want Antarctic Space Nazis in atomic zepplins, go for it!) but I want to make sure readers are not learning a bad way to think about technology because we all have very important decisions to make about it this century.
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Old 02-01-2019, 03:47 PM   #103
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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Compared to the interstellar colony-in-a-box scenario, the ASN have a much clearer idea of the conditions they'll be arriving in and have the ability to try things out in the new environment and modify their plans and the equipment they bring accordingly. Their drawback is that they're TL6-7, as opposed to a much higher TL for any plausible interstellar scenario.
Indeed so.

The fact that they have a very secure home base, in the form of the mystical demiplane, but access to a whole world within walking distance, is very much in their favour. As are the TL2 quasi-Germanic tribes who live near their first gate on Germania Hyperborea (World 2)*, as 15 months before settlement proved enough to train many interpreters well enough for simple concepts. The fact that no major polity of TL3 was located anywhere closer than a thousand miles or so was another bit of luck.

Finding two more gates on the World Tree leading to other areas of Germania Superior also helped a lot. For the first few years and really the entire first generation, however, these are only used for raiding, as there simply aren't enough ASNs to make settling outposts in the middle of areas controlled by hostile TL3 civilizations profitable. Later on, after a period of study and the ASNs have started to acknowlege certain native cultures as more Aryan and therefore more acceptable than others, they'll start backing 'Cimmerians' against more decadent 'Scythians' and either of them against anyone having the audacity to appear 'Asiatic', 'Semitic' or 'Hamitic'.

Unfortunately, the ASNs managed early on to instill an almost fanatical hatred against them among the peoples living around an inner sea, at least those within reach of the gate used for raiding, so there are hardly any willing takers for their backing and patronage there, once they start to consider diplomacy (and have enough people with some knowledge of local languages).

Some enemies of a powerful seagoing Semitic culture decided they hated their ancient rivals more than the demons who come in the night and Carthage was thoroughly destroyed, though a historian would note that not only is the geography around the inner sea completely different from Earth, but that these quasi-Semites were certainly not speaking actual Punic, merely some distantly related analogue, in that it seems to be an undiscovered Semitic language.

Also, there are no signs of Hellenic civilization, nor, for that matter, Romans, proto-Romans or any equivalent. There are some speakers of languages that might be related to proto-Hellenic languages, but their culture and mythology is completely different. In fact, some of the most dangerous enemies of the ASNs on the world of Germania Hyperborea are peoples who exhibit linguistical and ethnological clues suggesting their language is relatated to some Paleo-Balkan language and who might have arisen through some kind of cultural admixture between quasi-Celtic, quasi-Thracian and quasi-Minoan peoples.

These people, being TL3 and quite advanced in many ways, were the only people on Germania Hyperborea able to mount any kind of effective defence to casual raiding by small groups of ASNs, if only because of the power and sophistication of their magic. Fortunately for the cause of occult Antarctic Space Nazism in the multiverse, that magic is insufficient to directly challenge the technological superiority of the ASNs in direct battle, and in any case, the great distances involved mean that without seizing the fortified gate, the priestesses and their warriors can do little against the ASN homeland.

Of course, if the ASNs had managed to avoid the initial hostility of pretty much everyone, they'd have grown fantastically rich from a trade network linking disparate cultures at TL3, but they're Antarctic Space Nazis, not the kind of can-do Steampunk Victorians who never mean to end up with an empire, but somehow always do, probably because of mercantile considerations and the power of a good cup of tea.

*Technically, Germania Hyperborea was indeed the second habitable world discovered by the ASNs, but the numbering system is arbitrary and based on perceived importance, not the date of discovery, at least for the initial few worlds. For example, Jötunheimr (World 3) was actually the first habitable world discovered, though the local fauna (and even some of the flora) made it hardly attractive to settle. Indeed, exploration was carried out by elite troops at first and before experts and technicians could properly survey the resources there, the SS had to resort to actively warring on the various dangerous fauna. Before the industrial sites were settled, chemical weapons were deployed on a massive scale against local fauna and even the local intelligent life. Fortunately, the local bacteria and microbes posed much less of a threat than the megafauna, being alien enough to rarely infect humans.

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Have they found somewhere where Irminism is actually practiced, or have they had to recreate it from surviving sources in their original world? A recreated religion definitely risks being emotionally unsatisfying or otherwise failing to propagate. Is there an Externsteine in any of the worlds they use?
Yes, they arrived from the World Tree / Irminsul through analogues of the Exernstein in both tbe mystical Wewelsburg demiplane (World 1) and Germania Hyperborea (World 2).

This might reflect the belief structure of the original magicians, lf course, but looks very much like revealed divine truth to fanatical Nazis. And some of the locals.

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One thing that's clear, the ASNs that your PCs are going to meet won't be working off a normal Western or European cultural familiarity. In two generations of isolation, with a different religion and a lot of slave-killing, they'll have ended up with a distinctive culture.
Oh, very much so.
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:41 PM   #104
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

Also, here is the article on reproducing a F1 rocket 50 years later which I was thinking of: https://arstechnica.com/science/2013...-back-to-life/

Icelander's setting is cool, and he is doing the kinds of things which make this colony sound truthy, I just wanted to speak up for the principle that in our world, maintaining early-20th-century technology requires a lot more people than people planning off-world colonies or post-apocalyptic settings want to believe. I don't want to get in the way of having a cool game with Antarctic Space Nazis and their atom-powered zeppelins which are the least frightening thing in their arsenal, because I have no idea whether 50,000 settlers plus local slaves and 30,000 tons of goods is enough.

Edit: A few hundred settlers and their descendants definitely is not, even if they have uncommonly long lives
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:55 PM   #105
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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This may well be a weak point. I can already hear one of the Infinite Cabal PCs saying "A newly created mini-world that you want me to destroy? Let me at it!"
A feature, not a bug. What's the point of anything in an RPG if nothing about it suggest anything the PCs can do about it?

I note that my players have, in fact, infiltrated Das Neues Reich der Schwarzen Sonne through the Irminsul and believed that they destroyed the demiplane containing the Last Redoubt of the occult coterie of the inner SS leadership on April 30, 1945. They were playing different characters, but they remember it all right. Evidently it didn't take. Or never happened, in fact.

The Antarctic Space Nazis will be encountered in the Dreamlands. Perhaps, in the universe of my setting, their presence there is because Ms. Delvona, the dreamer through whose mind they see the Dreamlands, wrote an unpublished fantasy novel about occult, worldwalking Nazis. In her imagination, she's linked them with the Cold Ones and therefore, when her mind shatters and a gateway to the home of the Lords of the Outer Waste starts opening, one of the ways that the influence of the Cold Ones in her subconsciousness is manjfested is through an outpost of Cold One influenced Nazis on the Dreamland analogue of Antarctica.

There, they've begun by clashing with and then defeating some of the Men of Leng, capturing their black galleys and sailng to the Moon, because that's the sort of thing that goes on in the Dreamlands. In this case, the Antarctic Space Nazis are no more real than the wampa-like yetis and G.R.R. Martin inspired White Riders on gigantic ice spiders that Ms. Delvona has stuck in H.P. Lovecraft's Dreamlands.

Or the ASNs could have appeared in the Dreamlands because the PCs, who actually belong to a roleplaying group in-setting, somehow happened to have played the same campaign their players did, as heroic SOE/OSS agents trying to prevent the Nazis in Berlin from Something Terrible at the end of WWII in Europe, and the ritual the PCs cast to enter the dream, and frame their attempt to destroy the gateway to the Outer Dark as a fantasy style Quest, incorporates the Antarctic Space Nazis because, well, as Ken Hite famously said, they are a dish best served cold and really go with everything.

Or maybe it is because the world the PCs are living in is actually a world where the PCs of Götterdämmerung on Walpurgisnacht succeeded in destroying the Wahr Wewelsburg, but in doing so, somehow shattered normal causality and created a Hollow History of a rational, materialistic universe and the Vile Vortices represent things from the mythic, but true, history trying to break through. That would make the Antarctic Space Nazis irruptors.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:40 PM   #106
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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Yes, but in the real world and the history of technology, the problem comes down to having enough bodies to have enough people with the right range of aptitudes to gain and maintain, by experience and practice, the full range of skills required, given regression to the mean and the usual accidents. (So the person teaching chemistry in Gymnasium cannot also be working in a synthetic-oil factory or a propellant works, and the children of a thousand high-achieving, ideologically pure experts will not all be as educateable, hard-working, and conscientious). There are also circular problems where you need the market to develop the skills and build the hardware to let you serve that market.
There is a reason why I'm estimating that it would take the ASNs a century to develop their local slaves and new citizens enough to develop the infrastructure they need to be able just match what they had, for a TL6-7 society worldwide. Then they'd be 50-100 million, trading with another world of 100+ million TL5^ people, with resource-extraction operations on dozens of worlds and probably trading fairly extensively with their neighbours on Germania Hyperborea, who might have reached TL4 in locations where the Nazis allow them enough peace to do so. After all, it's hard to keep technology completely secret and the locals are no dumber than other humans.

Until then, they'll be operating at effective TL4 to TL5 for most of what they do, with the notable exceptions of the vitally important fields where they have to develop ways to maintain the TL7 stuff they brought, i.e. small arms for their elite forces and some way to generate power, probably coal. They'll start developing airships pretty quickly, as they are too useful in exploration and warfare against locals not to try, and they happen to have most of the surviving workforce from Zeppelinwerke, but they realize that they'll have to start with simple wood and coal gas designs, until the local TL and consequently, their economic surplus, is a lot further along.

But note that the initial settlers and their descendants aren't the whole workforce in technical fields. A few thousand TL2-3 locals had already been working as the workforce for a couple of hundred technical experts sent to prepare everything for a year before the official settlement. They wouldn't have TL5-6, but they certainly had developed Perk-level knowledge in performing all sorts of tasks useful to TL7 engineers and technicians, by rote and experience.

And the slave workforce, at least those who were allowed to retain their humanity, would have learned through both education and experience how to do all the mundane work that construction workers, miners, factory hands and laborers learn, because regardless of the TL someone is born, people are pretty quick to pick up simple, practical tasks, which are a lot of what is needed at a work site directed by engineers. Even someone with a low personal TL and no essential understanding of the theory behind coal power plants can learn how to shovel coal pretty quickly. And it's surprising how many helpful things around a work site can be learned without understanding the science or engineering behind them.

Of course, the ASNs would miss having more techinicians who truly understood what they were doing and obviously their first forays into industry will be slow, frustrating and inefficient compared to a real TL6-7 society. But they'll be an enormous advance over TL3 methods of producing a lot of things and the Neue Reich should have the tools to outcompete every other polity on Germania Hyperborea.

From the start, the ASNs were also eduating Germanic locals, 1,000 children of whom were citizens from the founding, and as early as Year 20 or so, free local-born citizens of TL2 tribal ancestry who have attended TL5-6 Nazi schools will outnumber the original German-born settlers and their pure-blood children. The resulting society won't be anything like the Germany they left, but I don't find it inherently implausible that they'd be able to maintain their vital military advantages while they build up the local TL.

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What seems to happen in places like Polynesia, Australasia and Tierra del Fuego is that someone with key knowledge dies, or access to a key resource is lost, and people learn to do without. It is a common misperception that books can substitute for a community of specialized, experienced workers
No one is claiming that they will be able to maintain even a fraction of the luxuries and infrastructure of real TL7 from the beginning. Rather, that they'll be able to maintain an extremely limited subset of technological devices brought with them and preserve enough knowledge of TL7 to make it possible to advance the local TL until they can rediscover from books, plans, designs and notes all the myriad TL7 things they do without for the first generations.

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There is a legend that the plans for the Saturn V rocket were destroyed, but the actual problems with reproducing one are:
- the workforce with a specific skill-set does not exist any more and would not be cost-effective in a 2010s economy
- it was designed to use parts and materials which don't exist any more, neither do the machines to make them
- if you had the workforce and supply chain, many important technical details were never written down because they constantly changed and because they were things which nobody knew they knew, they just did them (there is a technical term for this)
None of which means we couldn't build a close analogue that did the same thing, given time and resources.

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I can't say anything about the plausibility of your setting
Setting?

It's a more-or-less random Dreamlands encounter with a scout zeppelin, which may very well be imaginary, fictional or a fever dream by a dying Himmler. All the detail is because a) One player took a vacation and we couldn't play while he was away, and b) It's fun to fabulate about Antarctic Space Nazis and try to present a ASN scout zeppelin that, while obviously impossible, is carefully rationalized given the impossible premises in place.

I really have no set level of technological sophistication in mind, just that it be compact enough to be transportable through gates and along the World Tree, but as capable and long ranged as could be practical for the Antarctic Space Nazis, fifty years after their founding of the Neues Reich.

I assume liberal use of RPM rituals to make gravity affect the solid parts 30% less (Path of Energy on the materials), make the materials 30% stronger for their weight (Path of Matter on the materials), give the gas used 30% better lift (Path of Matter on the gas) and heat the gas (Path of Energy on the gas, or if there is spare power, just use technology).

But I'm honestly not sure what materials the airship should be made from and how advanced it can be. At best early TL7, with a prototype nuclear reactor on board, which has a lot of Cool going for it, but if there is no way to justify it, a more plausible zeppelin design with occult Antarctic Space Nazis, SS-Hexensoldaten, Dieselpunk 'Zombie' Stormtroopers from the SS-Sturmkampfgruppe Totenkopf, Untierejäger marksmen from SS-Sonderlehrgang z. b. V. Jötunheim and other SS-Sonderkommando units and very special comandos from the SS-Jagtverband Wehrwolf will just have to do.

Maybe it would make more sense to just have an internal combustion engine and carry lots of fuel, even if the fuel is very expensive, because refining it requires comparatively much more effort for a society mostly at TL4-5, but trying to maintain TL6-7 in a few military vital projects. Maybe a steam engine is the best they've been able to do by now, but with RPM improvements, that still gets pretty good performance.

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(because dude, it has Antarctic Space Nazis and the Dreamlands and ritual magic! Asking about plausibility is like complaining that "lasers don't work like that" in Star Wars or asking whether King Lear would really disown his daughter for that! If you want Antarctic Space Nazis in atomic zepplins, go for it!) but I want to make sure readers are not learning a bad way to think about technology because we all have very important decisions to make about it this century.
Ah, but remember, we can still like our imaginary gardens with real toads.
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Old 02-02-2019, 04:49 AM   #107
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

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Icelander's setting is cool, and he is doing the kinds of things which make this colony sound truthy, I just wanted to speak up for the principle that in our world, maintaining early-20th-century technology requires a lot more people than people planning off-world colonies or post-apocalyptic settings want to believe. I don't want to get in the way of having a cool game with Antarctic Space Nazis and their atom-powered zeppelins which are the least frightening thing in their arsenal, because I have no idea whether 50,000 settlers plus local slaves and 30,000 tons of goods is enough.
Obviously, Antarctic Space Nazis are impossible in the real world.

On the other hand, that's no reason not to speculate with as much detail we can muster about the level of their zeppelin technology fifty years into their history, granting the impossible, magical factors that led to ASNs in the first place.

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Edit: A few hundred settlers and their descendants definitely is not, even if they have uncommonly long lives
Well, I established in the campaign where the PCs tried to stop the birth of the new world order desired by the occult inner circle of the SS leadership that 500 carefully chosen SS men and their wives (or women chosen for eugenic purposes to become their wives, for the unmarried) would become the nucleus of a new settlement around Wahr Wewelsburg. They'd be chosen as the most ideologically pure, genetically superior, intelligent, educated and accomplished members of the entire SS.

The PCs were aware that aside from these Übermennsch paragons, there were a lot (many thousands) of Stürmmanner from SS-Sturmkampfgruppe Totenkopf, for security and fighting locals, anywhere from a few dozen to several hundred surviving special forces and commandos serving in the SS-Sonderlehrgang z. b. V. Jötunheim and one or more other SS-Sonderkommando units, and maybe a hundred, maybe several hundreds, of the senior leadership itself and their HQ staff.

There were hints that engineers, technicians, agricultural experts, geologists, munitions experts, logistics personnel and scientists had been at work in the other worlds, but the PCs never actually visited any of the areas where the Nazi leadership planned to set up mining, industry or manufacturing, so they'd have no way of knowing how many people were involved.

On considering it, there doesn't seem to be much reason for the SS leadership to minimize the numbers, as they have plenty of fertile farmland about to yield its first harvest near the time of settlement, vast potential hunting grounds and the opportunity for each settler that is added to the colony of bringing along personal supplies, in any case.

Assuming that people working on preparing the ground for settlement are willing to bring along a package of stuff every day to work and carry it during the 5-10 minute walk to work, they can have anywhere from 600 to 30 such packages for their own personal use in the new world, depending on whether they were brought on early in the preparation process or were a last minute hire. And if they were willing to spend their lunch hour lugging heavy things over the World Tree, well, they can double, triple or quintuple the weight of stuff they personally can haul over. On average, each extra settler can thus add at least a ton of potential weight that can be brought over.

Granted, there are limits to how much useful high-tech even the senior leadership of the SS can scrounge up in a Germany that experiences ever greater shortages of a lot of things as the war goes on, but they'd find something worth bringing. Even if the stuff they bring in addition to the 30,000 tons of strategic materiel that will be carefully obtained from the massive industrial resoueces under SS command might consists of less strategically vital technological devices and more marginally useful knick-nacks at TL7 that will be much more highly sought after on a world where the local TL is mostly TL2, with a few TL3 societies, that's still a net gain for each extra colonist.

Even if the extra weight that more colonists would be bringing thus probably cannot all be more tons of carefully chosen expensive tooling, technical libraries, blueprints and precursors for TL7 industry, but just stuff to make the first few months and years more comfortable and successful, like more seed corn, transplanted garden vegetables, scavenged metal tools, glass jars, canning equipment, tobacco, candy, spices and other luxuries, that still means that adding an extra colonist will never be a net negative, as long as he has at least a month or more to prepare.

All of which is to say that the ca 600 scientists, engineers, technical experts and teachers who I assumed would be working with locals to create the best industry practical at the early days of the colony could fairly plausibly be increased by at least an order of magnitude without contradicting anything established about the Antarctic Space Nazis. Indeed, it is probably more plausible that all the thousands of people that the SS leadership had do specialized design work and various odd scientific analysis, without telling them the true purpose, would be brought into the new world, rather than left behind.

Indeed, there is no compeling reason not to evacuate valued workers of the Wunderwaffen projects under SS-Obergruppenführer Hans Kammler through the World Tree, instead of having them try to escape the Allied advances in the real world (or surrender, as many did in our history). If anything, all the workers simply disappearing is probably better from an operational security standpoint, too, as even tangentially involved people would have heard rumours of all sorts of secret stuff. Granted, the ASNs had good reasons not to worry all that much about the victorious Allies somehow following them, but there's really no reason to simply gift potential foes valuable information, even if you are very certain they won't be able to capitalize on any intelligence they might obtain.

So it might be that the numbers of Earth-born Germans who travelled over before Silesia and Westphalia fell into Allied hands were more like 30,000-50,000 than a few hundred. At the very least, I should assume that they numbered in the thousands, with informal settlement really having started several months before the official founding date of April 30, 1945, as workers involved in preparations related to the Last Redoubt on behalf of the SS, mostly through the SS-WVHA, would be evacuated into the other worlds as the Allies advanced over the areas where they were working.

Yeah, these people wouldn't all be perfect eugenic specimens, ideologically pure Nazis and carefully chosen for quasi-mystical reasons, but then, they wouldn't be settling around Wahr Wewelsburg, just the less symbolically important (but more practically vital) areas in Germania Hyperborea and Jötunheim where the Antarctic Space Nazis plan to establish their manufacturing centres and local industry.

And, well, they'd be some of the best scientists, engineers, technicians and mechanics Germany had, because those were the people working in various Wünderwaffen projects. In addition, anyone working under the auspices of SS-WVHA was a potential colonist, if he was judged to possess critical skills, 'good Aryan blood' and the requisite Nazi political credentials. In case of truly vital skill sets, the requisite political credentials were probably relaxed from 'true Nazi believer' to "seems willing to obey the representatives of the SS (whatever his private beliefs)', as had indeed been done with any number of scientists and engineers throughtout the war.

Some of the better known firms working in some way under the auspices of the SS-WVHA included Heinkel and BMW, firms that produced aircraft and aircraft engines as well as the more familiar vehicles; the chemical giant, IG Farben, which manufactured rubber, synthetic fuels, synthetic explosives and pharmaceuticals; Junkers aircraft; Krupp steel; Messerschmitt; the metal and tubing firm Salzgitter AG (part of Reichswerke Hermann Göring, but received workers through SS-WVHA); the electrical engineering company Siemens-Schuckertwerke; Apollinaris mineral water; Allach porcelain; and DEST (building material and armament). And the V-2 production was done in part in the old Zeppelinwerke, with many of the same people working there.

And that doesn't even begin to cover all the civil engineering and infrastructure projects under the SS-WVHA, as well as the administration of slave labour and manufacturing in the concentration camps, which means that the skill set available for potential colonists would realistically be exactly what they need, i.e. the ability to train unwilling people who might have no previous technical expertise and don't necessarily speak German to become workers in a vast slave industrial economy and then organize and administer the network of slave industries.
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Old 02-02-2019, 07:36 AM   #108
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Default 'Gothic' Cavalry Auxiliaries and Arms

Are there any TL2 to TL4 armour types that early Antarctic Space Nazi society could turn out in massive numbers to arm local cavalry auxiliaries?

The local natives are mostly early TL2, more likely to fight on foot than anything else and few other than their military elite own any armour. Even the nobility rarely own suits of metal armour. There are other cultures south of where the ASNs appeared that have much better smiths and are at mature TL2 and even TL3 in metallurgy, but even among those, mostly only the aristocratic elite will have metal armour.

Ironically, by far the most advanced culture on Germania Hyperborea at the time of settlement (at least the most advanced the ASNs know anything about) would probably be best described as TL1+2^ in technology, with mystical craft secrets and extremely capable esoteric artists and wonderworkers, but the influential religious caste much prefers the aesthetic of bronze over steel and they have a cultural abhorrance of anything resembling mass manufacturing or standardization.* So while they have some very well made personal arms for their elites, the proportion of their potential armed forces who wear armour is actually fairly low.

In any case, the ASNs don't want to allocate any truly scarce resources to improving troop types that they know will be obsolete as soon as the ASN manufacturing capacity catches up with their preserved knowledge base, but they'd like their native auxiliaries of the first couple of generations to be as well equiped as is practical. In particular, if they can make use of local craftsmen who already have TL2 and TL3 and improve their methods in some cheap and simple manner with higher TL knowledge and organization, they'd do that.

Mind you, the main ASN military might is still mostly composed of their firearm-using citizens. The armoured cavalry would be auxiliaries who provided mounted support and fight wars that the SS leadership has only a passing interest in. And such armor might be useful as trade goods with allied tribes.

What are plausible armour designs made by TL2 quasi-Germanic craftsmen, with assistence from some skilled TL3 smiths and design and organization by TL7 German engineers and technicians?

For example, can tanning and leatherworking be done with any mass manufacturing methods, if only in terms of organizing low TL workers efficiently?

Or can jacks or gambesons made from fabric or padding be made with any such methods?

Which would be cheaper?

And what kind of metal armour might it be easiest to teach lower tech smiths to make fast, in standardized sizes?

Eventually, there might be a possibility that locals who have achieved TL4-6 might found crude factories with slave smiths taught rough industrial methods. What might this mean for armour designs for locals?

*No, they really didn't like the Antarctic Space Nazis at first contact... and relations have gotten worse since. The quasi-matriarchial elements of these natives' culture and mythology doesn't help.
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Old 02-02-2019, 09:01 AM   #109
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

I think the best thing the ASN could do would be to teach the auxiliaries how to mass produce iron.
Running a blast furnace requires significant organisation but not a massive change in philosophy if they are already making iron. The majority of people are digging carrying and dumping only a few people need to actually understand what they are doing.
Locating sources of iron ore is something the ASN can be augment with modern geological knowledge.
Fuel might be problem if they have no source of coal, but charcoal can be used if you don't want a massive industrial complex.

The exact type of armour would depend on what they are use to making already. Chainmail is the most common armour throughout history for a reason, it's labour intensive but very simple. After that I would expect a jack of plates because it's also simple to assemble if you are making sheets of metal for another purpose.
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Old 02-02-2019, 09:47 AM   #110
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Default Re: Antarctic Space Nazis Across the Multiverse

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathulhu View Post
I think the best thing the ASN could do would be to teach the auxiliaries how to mass produce iron.
Running a blast furnace requires significant organisation but not a massive change in philosophy if they are already making iron. The majority of people are digging carrying and dumping only a few people need to actually understand what they are doing.
Indeed. On one hand, the ASNs don't want local warlords who might threaten them. On the other hand, they do want the quasi-Germanic tribesmen of their new world to out-breed and out-fight all the 'lesser races' and eventually willingly become part of the Neue Reich.

The ratio of paranoia about local revolts, even from the quasi-Nordic tribes, to romantic notions of Volkdeutsche and idealized Gothic warrior bands will vary with individual Antarctic Space Nazis. Rationally speaking, no conceivable horse cavalry with melee weapons poses any direct threat to the battlefield supremacy of the SS-Sturmkampfgruppe Totenkopf with WWII weaponry, so there is little reason not to allow local tribes who are cooperative to advance their local TL, at least until they start to look likely to start producing firearms independently.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathulhu View Post
Locating sources of iron ore is something the ASN can be augment with modern geological knowledge.
Indeed, which also works extremely well combined with RPM seers and diviners, as the higher TL experts know which questions to ask and the magic users can provide answers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathulhu View Post
Fuel might be problem if they have no source of coal, but charcoal can be used if you don't want a massive industrial complex.
The ASN do want a massive industrial complex. It's just that armoring primitives is so far from being a priority during the hectic schedule of the first generation or two of trying to establish a powerful industrial empire that the only resources available for such a side project so would be time and personal assets of the kind of romantic völkisch enthusiasts who'd consider it.

However, there are quite a few Antarctic Space Nazis who are just the sort to have secretly always wanted to lead a warband of Gothic cavalry. And unlike growing tobacco (another early impractical fixation with ASNs who don't just mechanically go along with plans for their perfect society), raising local auxiliaries and expanding some non-vital resources on making them superior forces to hostile locals has enough credibility so that enthusiasts can get some limited support from the state.

Including, I suspect, some coal, at least by the time sufficient numbers of Earth-horses have been bred with the small local breeds to have enough spare warhorses to enable this sort of völkisch wish-fulfilment fantasy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathulhu View Post
The exact type of armour would depend on what they are use to making already. Chainmail is the most common armour throughout history for a reason, it's labour intensive but very simple. After that I would expect a jack of plates because it's also simple to assemble if you are making sheets of metal for another purpose.
Eh, the local quasi-Germanic tribes weren't making much body armour when the ASNs arrived. They were TL2 in the way prehistoric tribes of pre-Roman Northern Europe were and any body armour they had probably came from their quasi-Celtic neighbours, who have a much more materially advanced culture, even if they mostly count as TL2 as well. The quasi-Celts make beautiful bronze helmets and some can make decent iron mail, but only enough to equip elites, not every warrior. Even nobles often fight with only helmet, spear, longknife/sword and shield, or perhaps have a leather breastplate.

There are advanced quasi-Celtic societies (and others) at TL3, making very good mail, but those are generally a thousand miles away from the initial settlements of the ASNs. Still, the existence of another gate from the World Tree that the ASNs can use to raid areas where there are multiple TL3 societies mean that they can seize plenty of skilled TL3 workers to enslave.

But the best and brightest slaves capable of quickly learning technical skills go to Jötunheim, to become facfory workers. Those available for side projects like making low-tech armour will probably be mostly average TL2 craftsmen, at least at first, though they'd be supplemented fairly quickly with the children of slaves raised in ASN society, who might reach TL3-4 very quickly and TL5-6 for many second-generation children of slaves working with something technical.
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