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Old 09-08-2021, 11:26 PM   #1
ProfessorDetective
 
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Default Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

I think this whenever a new setting book for GURPS appears: How can/will it fit in the Quantums? And Girl Genious is no exception. (For the record, I haven't read the book, yet. Money's tight.)

Which quantum do we stick Europa in?

How would Homeline/Centrum/The College react to/handle Europa and the Sparks?

Designation? Spark? Europa? Or Europa-2, since that name could also apply to Castle Falkenstein?

Any relations/parallels to Castle Falkenstein?

What's the mana level? Besides 'None', 'cause let's be honest...

How much of an 'oh no..'. is Europa figuring out the Secret?

How does the Spark interact with parachronics?

How do parachronics interact with the Spark?

Do we get meta with it and make Europa a myth parallel, with Homeline's Phil & Kaja freaking out if/when they get the news? Or have they always known?

Am I a lazy bugger outsourcing this to probably more creative folks? Well, yes, if I'm being honest.
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Old 09-09-2021, 01:12 AM   #2
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

Whichever Quantum level Homeline is in, I'd stick Europa one step up in numbers from Homeline. This gives Centrum access, but I figure Centrum would be scared stiff by it.

I imagine it'd be a "Farther Parallel", closed to exploitation until someone can figure out just what's going on (and even then, the threat of the Other and even the Wulfenbach Empire and the Sparks might be reason enough not to open it).

I'd call it "Heterodyne", for obvious reasons, but I think Infinity might be more likely to call it "Wulfenbach".

I'd also make it a High Mana level. Let's face it, some of the stuff Sparks do in their sleep is downright scary enough....

There's indications that certain Sparks may have discovered the Secret. This, however, is probably easier to handle with liberal doses of Eraser, tentative recruitment of the less-insane Sparks, and making sure the less stable Sparks blow themselves up by integrating folks in as "harmless" Minions. ISWAT would probably be called in when a Spark manages to open a portal to a world devastated with Things Man Was Not Meant to Know.

For fun, I'd permit Sparky technological goodness to work on other worlds - provided the device is built on that world or one with 'close enough' metaphysics! However, things built on one worldline may not work on others, so Infinity's recruited Sparks may get into the habit of building devices for each worldline visited.

The Spark and Parachronics... hoo, that's a tough one.

From a meta standpoint, I say the Foglios have been in contact with their Europa counterparts. ;)
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Old 09-09-2021, 01:46 AM   #3
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

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Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
I'd also make it a High Mana level. Let's face it, some of the stuff Sparks do in their sleep is downright scary enough....
That may have nothing to do with mana levels and may be a demonstration of Clarketech (another name for superscience).
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Old 09-09-2021, 03:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

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That may have nothing to do with mana levels and may be a demonstration of Clarketech (another name for superscience).

Magic in infinite worlds doesn't necessarily have anything to do with mana levels: there are several worlds that have magic that isn't really hooked into the mana system. Girl Genius does do a really good job of making you scratch your head about whether its magic or super-science though.


I'd lean towards making it low mana. Most of the time the magic looks like technology rather than standard magic drawing from ambient magical energy (Gil's lightning pointer is something drawling on something else...).
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Old 09-09-2021, 07:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

Okay, so...

Heterodyne/Wulfenbach; 1880s-1890s

Current Affairs: The Wulfenbach empire continues it's slow conquest of Europa while the recently ignited Agatha Clay/Heterodyne begins making her mark.

Divergence: Uncertain, likely 5000s BCE or earlier.
TL: 5+2 or 6+1
Quantum: Same as Homeline.
Mana: Normal to High.

How's that look? I really need to get the book.
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Old 09-09-2021, 08:28 PM   #6
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

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Quantum: Same as Homeline.
Quantum should be Homeline+1. If Homeline is Q5, Wulfenbach should be Q6. Centrum cannot reach Homeline directly, nor can Homeline reach Centrum.

I can kinda see Centrum supporting the Wulfenbach Empire, but Klaus's disdain for actually uniting seems off. They may support England or one of the Storm King claimants.
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Old 09-09-2021, 08:41 PM   #7
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

The real question is whether or not the Spark is an effect of the dimension's natural laws, or a genetic trait of that Earth's inhabitants.

If it's the former, than any offworld visitor with a particularly inventive streak might develop the Spark once on this Earth, while Sparks who make the jump off-world will be dismayed to discover their "Gift" shuts down once on another Earth.

If it's the latter, than Sparks might become a new resource/threat in the Crosstime Wars, as either Infinity or Centrum (or other powers) might want to try to recruit Sparks. And the moment Raven Division finds out about the Sparks, they'll try dissecting one to see if they can replicate the Spark. Or just recruit a few German Sparks to sign up.

And I foresee calamity should a Spark Paratime Explorer end up on a high-tech parallel like Caliph, Gersnback or Shikaku-Mon. And even more Calamity should one end up in Campbell or, heaven forbid, Yrth.
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Old 09-10-2021, 01:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

I would say that a Spark on a non-mana world would probably be like Agatha before losing her locket: irritated that she ought to be able to understand this, maybe headachey when trying (that part might be just an effect of the constant suppression), but at least scientifically knowledgeable, a capable engineer and (mundane-level) inventor and applier of known theories, and often well-equipped with handy devices, including Gizmos and Gadget-based powers.

Ordinary, non-Sparky mechanics are capable of repairing Spark-built machines, and Sparks insist that their achievements are scientific. Ergo, I would suggest that a Spark-built machine is technology, and like Homeline technology it functions anywhere except worlds that have specific restrictions such as electricity or whatnot.

The magic of the Spark seems to be in visualizing completely sui generis designs that could not plausibly have been derived from generally-known scientific principles, and constructing many, enormous, or extremely fine devices near-instantaneously from improbably poor materials. The moments we've seen Sparks break through or achieve high levels of communion with the Spark itself seem to indicate that it's a form of perception and understanding.

Of course, if the Spark functions on Europa-World only, that would greatly limit the Sparks in IW campaigns. If it functions everywhere... you're right, I think they'd be quite a dangerous resource. Of course, even if it's a one-world trait, if Spark-tech itself functions offworld then it's just a matter of letting a Spark in on the Secret and supplying a factory...
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Old 09-11-2021, 12:40 AM   #9
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

See also this. http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread...=174556&page=6

I'd be more inclined to call the TL a more sweeping 5 + ^Mad Stuff. Looking at the list of milestone technologies on the wiki, Girl Genius has had battlesuits, combat robots and cybernetic implants (TL9) and compact lasers (if you count unspecified "death rays" as lasers), uploading and uplifted animals (TL10), plus whatever TL you would call a time-stopping field.
If you're talking about the general state of society, though, as opposed to things that are occasionally done by Sparks but not in wide use, then 5+2 sounds, er, as close as you can probably get, yes.

I think the Spark might interact more closely with psionics than with magic of the "mana" kind, actually, if it's treated as paranormal at all. (And, as William said, they do talk as if it's technological and not paranormal at all, just technology using laws of nature that nobody else knows, although if it was then there would have to be some extremely strange laws of nature.) If you say it is paranormal, then it looks more like psionics than like the "mana" kind of magic. It seems to involve access to some weird multi-dimensional state of consciousness in which the invention is seen to actually make sense, in a way that nobody else can understand - and the fact that Sparks sometimes invent even more astonishing things in their sleep seems to fit that thematically. And then there's the Queens, who take this to a whole new level.
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Old 09-11-2021, 05:47 AM   #10
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Default Re: Girl Genius' Europa in the Infinite Worlds?

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Originally Posted by Phantasm View Post
I can kinda see Centrum supporting the Wulfenbach Empire, but Klaus's disdain for actually uniting seems off. They may support England or one of the Storm King claimants.
Nope and nope.

Centrum is an Anglophone Evil Empire. They have a fetish about their satrapies speaking English as a universal language, so they tend to use the British Empire as a catspaw. And in the GG-verse, that's ... not advisable.

For the same reason, Centrum and Infinity would likely give the whole reality a wide berth.
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