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Old 06-05-2024, 05:15 PM   #6521
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Default Re: New Reality Seeds

Look up Videntis on YouTube and watch his "What if the Kaiser overthrew Hitler." Then think of it as a Centrum plot to preserve monarchies and and empires.

Set the game in the 1970s with Homeline trying to break Centrum's stifling grip on the USA and restart the anti imperial movements.

Remember, in our history just about every respected and popular figure in European culture and society proclaimed that democracy had failed. Centrum needs a stagnant and corrupt USA to further discredit democracy. Jim Crow is also favored by Centrum as a means to discredit democracy.

This would be a fairly tough struggle and Centrum would have the resources of a triumphalist monarchical Europe to help them both materially and psychologically.
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Old 06-10-2024, 05:13 PM   #6522
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Periods in Chinese history were China breaks into several large competing states. The Manchu invasion that ended the Ming dynasty was massively violent. It is assumed that 90% of all of China's literature and written knowledge was lost in a few weeks! It took the whole of the Middle Ages to come close to doing the same thing to Greek and Latin literature.

Try this idea. The Manchu conquest of China could have shattered China instead of capturing it. Picture China broken into a dozen large mutually hostile states just as the European powers begin to reach into Asia.

One thing I could see is a long three-sided struggle between Britain, France and Russia to control China in the same way Britain controlled India. An interesting somewhat steampunky campaign could take place in this China at the time when Japan is entering into the conflict as a fourth contender in the colonial sweepstakes.
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Old 06-10-2024, 05:47 PM   #6523
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It occurs to me that this shattered China might be more culturally and economically vibrant than Qing China. The authority and cohesion of the Confucian Scholar Class would be greatly weakened. The Confucian Scholar Bureaucrats (CSB) deliberately disrupted many aspects of business, commerce, agriculture, and the popular arts, in order to have greater control over Chinese society.

In this shattered China setting the CSB couldn't assert the same control and might need to get the merchants and land owners onside to hold power. Also the traditional policy of the CSB to interfere with agriculture to force the people to work harder and keep them poor wouldn't be viable. Many factors that created vast poverty in China would be weakened dramatically.

This could be a much richer and more sophisticated China.
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Old 06-11-2024, 06:16 AM   #6524
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One thing I could see is a long three-sided struggle between Britain, France and Russia to control China in the same way Britain controlled India.
To be fair, the British got a bit lucky with India, even beyond the whole Mughal collapse.

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It occurs to me that this shattered China might be more culturally and economically vibrant than Qing China.

This could be a much richer and more sophisticated China.
It could be a more "self-strengthened" China too. Given how early the Qing Dynasty emerged, we're looking at a fragmented China beginning in the 17th (or maybe early 18th) century. With each state competing in an environment of interstate anarchy, it's plausible that by the 19th century events similar to the Perry expedition (or perhaps trading relations with Portugal) could give these states the impression Westernizing will bring great power to them.

Like, I could totally see the British swallowing a big piece of China in a world where that doesn't mean war with all of China. But at the same time, other states in China will be seeing how powerful Western arms are and without the conservative class of bureaucrats, some may conclude, "We need to change." And now China is Japan.
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Old 06-11-2024, 02:20 PM   #6525
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TGLS I see this shattered China as a place were the espionage, Wuxa, Swashbuckler, and Steampunk, genres meet and blend. A China were the Confucian Scholar Bureaucrats had to aid and promote commerce, agriculture, and the popular arts, rather than attack them as alternative powers in society, especially if the Confucian Scholar Bureaucrats see Western tech as vital to survival, could be very advanced and cause faster development in the West.
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Old 06-13-2024, 06:59 PM   #6526
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Quote:
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Periods in Chinese history were China breaks into several large competing states. The Manchu invasion that ended the Ming dynasty was massively violent. It is assumed that 90% of all of China's literature and written knowledge was lost in a few weeks! It took the whole of the Middle Ages to come close to doing the same thing to Greek and Latin literature.
This, in and of itself, sounds like a great I-Cops mission to an echo - recover as much of the lost Chinese literature before the fall. Akin to saving scrolls from the Library of Alexandria before it burns. And could use the excuse that the works can be taken, not just copied, for why it has to be during the tumultuous time.

To give it a twist, Infinity assumes that the language-deficient Centrum would be nowhere near, but then gets hints of some advanced tech that looks like magic. Or is it actual magic, i.e. The Cabal?...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astromancer View Post
Try this idea. The Manchu conquest of China could have shattered China instead of capturing it. Picture China broken into a dozen large mutually hostile states just as the European powers begin to reach into Asia.

One thing I could see is a long three-sided struggle between Britain, France and Russia to control China in the same way Britain controlled India. An interesting somewhat steampunky campaign could take place in this China at the time when Japan is entering into the conflict as a fourth contender in the colonial sweepstakes.
As others noted, it would be interesting to see one of the Chinese states rise - could be sort of akin to Japan's rise IRL. Indeed, while Japan might be having to fend off Russia in Manchuria, a state based around Shanghai could have been far enough for outsiders to stay free, but still connected enough to have absorbed Western knowledge, a-la Meiji Japan.

The actual European contest for China would seem to be an Oriental version of the Great Game, Russia vs. U.K. France and later Japan might be involved, but only in their local spheres of influence.

The third power might actually be U.S.A., blundering in late with lots of bravado & inexperience, but less Old World arrogance and stuck-in-their-ways. Indeed, America could be allied, or at least an inspiration for, a Shanghai Republic.


In Infinite Worlds, Bonaparte-1 - where Napoleon won, but the French Empire fell apart in the 1850s - Russia and America are quarreling over China. Similar sort of Western 'Great Game' - though in that case, it seems like post-French ex-colonies such as in India would be the ones rising, having absorbed Western knowledge & tech.
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Old 06-14-2024, 08:35 AM   #6527
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Astromancer View Post
Periods in Chinese history were China breaks into several large competing states. The Manchu invasion that ended the Ming dynasty was massively violent. It is assumed that 90% of all of China's literature and written knowledge was lost in a few weeks! It took the whole of the Middle Ages to come close to doing the same thing to Greek and Latin literature.
That sounds like a crazy piece of history. Where can I read more about it? A quick google isn't turning anything up. (about the literature destruction, no the Manchu conquest)
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Old 06-14-2024, 03:37 PM   #6528
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That sounds like a crazy piece of history. Where can I read more about it? A quick google isn't turning anything up. (about the literature destruction, no the Manchu conquest)
I've only read about the conquest of China by the Manchus and the founding of the Qing dynasty in a few places. And never found much detail.

Why not look under Ming to Qing transition.
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Old 06-18-2024, 05:27 PM   #6529
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Both Franklin and Washington wanted to bring Native American societies into the United States as States. The broader American society rejected this. But imagine a world were both Franklin and Washington lived longer and Washington switched his alliance from Hamilton and Adams to Franklin, Jefferson, Monroe, and Paine.

The Cherokee nation is brought in as a state and others join them. Native American warriors bring new ideas to the American military and form a blended military doctrine.

When the War of 1812 rolled around the much improved US military trounces the British Army in surprise defeats. Britain loses Western Canada beyond Ontario.

This won't stand. Britain decides to copy American tactics and hopefully improve on them.

An early 19th century Britain with an Army focused on merit rather than class status is automatically an improvement. Several mistakes in the Crimean War were avoided. Britain did so well France, Prussia and Russia are upset and badly worried.

Basically, 19th century European espionage and swashbuckling in a Europe with an unstable balance of power. Also, reforming European armies to focus less on social rank and more on ability has radical implications in post Napoleonic Europe.
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Old 06-19-2024, 02:51 PM   #6530
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Also, reforming European armies to focus less on social rank and more on ability has radical implications in post Napoleonic Europe.
Mmm. As I understand it, the fear (in the establishment) at the time was that a professional, meritocratic army might notice that they had the firepower and the people running the country didn't. (Cromwell was only 150 or so years in the past. Plenty recent enough to still invoke as a warning.) So they recruited the army from the people already running the country instead, thereby obviating the problem.

Now, plenty of professional armies don't launch coups twice a week, but some dark prophecies end up being self-fulfilling; if people seem to expect it of them... Your western Europe suddenly becomes less stable. On the other hand, Wellington would be straining every sinew to prevent this outcome, and it's rarely wise to bet against Wellington's influence on the British Army.
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