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Author Topic: Low Tech or Alternative Tech Worlds?  (Read 4981 times)
Songtress
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« on: March 06, 2014, 01:02:49 am »

So I started making a 'universe' completely unreleated to Mindjammer ( as I don't have the book yet), but I do concepts all the time. and  it dawned on me:

 Can Mindjammer 'handle' lowtech worlds?

 A Game taking place not in a high tech planet of  T5 to T9  (looking at the Preview, though I am not 100% sure what those mean, are we using the GURPS scale or some other detailed scale in the book?)

 But a planet of say Equivalent Medieval/Renaissance, or Naussica of the Valley of the Wind (so its got machine tech but just barely-- and we don't know how they make their ships fly, or what the run on, but they work)

 Does the game actually handle the 'loss of technology well?

 I envision a Mindjammer game where  perhaps a Second Stage crew finds that the planet they've been sent to has 'regressed'.  Now its not so much that they 'lack' technology, but they choose it. They eshew tech for the simple life and they /want/ to rejoin the commonality. ( In a paradox they've chosen to rejoin the high tech univse but culturally /want/ to keep their low " To the Earth"  lifestyle and anyone who sets foot on the planet must also do it. ( Its find if you're a cyborg, or have prosthetics , or have mindscape implant -they do too..).. But  you want apples, organges fruit and fish.. you get them the old fashioned way.

You want to settle down on this planet... you go native.

  I mean how would the commonality deal with dozens of planets as such who are all 'Low tech' or have alterantive technology.. that doesn't exist anywhere else but there (and can't be duplicated)  like the spice from Dune (I am talking the original Dune Novels, including Chapterhouse, in which yes they can 'reproduce' it but its same process as on Dune.)
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Commonality_intendant
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« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2014, 10:46:37 am »

Hi Songtress,

I replied to this on RPG.net too, but you've posted a bit more detail here, sounds like a cool idea for a campaign theme.

Mindjammer handles what you're describing fine - there are worlds and cultures in the book very much like the ones you describe, and it's one of the mandates of SCI Force to evaluate those worlds and handle their integration in whatever way required - which will likely involve the Commonality embargo to some extent, and may even quarantine the world.

The tech index you're talking about is probably T2-4. Here are the Mindjammer tech indices:

T0 - Post-animal
T1 - Stone Age
T2 - Metal Age
T3 - Age of Enlightenment
T4 - Industrial Age
T5 - Computer Age
T6 - Age of Genurgy
T7 - First Age of Space (slower than light)
T8 - Age of Ubiquitous Intelligence
T9 - Second Age of Space (FTL, Commonality standard)
T10 - Age of 3-Space (Commonality maximum)
T11 - Interdimensional Age (theorised next step in Commonality evolution - it's not there yet)
T+ - theoretical higher tech levels.

The whole "eschewing high tech" thing is easy to do in Mindjammer - it's basically a "culture aspect" or "meme" of the culture in question, and a deliberate refusal to improve tech index.  The rules also give you ways to handle what happens when the much higher tech Commonality shows up with all their doo-dads, and the culture shock / upheaval which results.

The "tech that can't be duplicated" thing is doable, though you'd need a setting justification. Right now things like the Planetary Intelligence and the Venu Dark Radiance are examples of apparent tech that the Commonality isn't able to duplicate.

Sounds like a cool theme for a campaign!

Cheers,

Sarah
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Songtress
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« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2014, 02:47:38 pm »

Wait there is no 'Prime Directive' (YES).. .actually that's a bit worrisome. We've seen in the Mass Effect games what happens when you give people who aren't 'ready' for advanced tech--- tech... (To use the Mass Effect example: The Solarians  gave the Krogans tech... ( the Krogans then proceded to be Warlike and brutish with tech.. and the solarians had to create a horrid  plauge which  slowed their reproduction down to almost nill).

 But ooh goodie.  I can do what I was thinking of in a campaign. Fun times, fun times!.

 I didn't realize the Commonality would force worlds to evolve- though I suppose it works for great conflict.
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Commonality_intendant
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« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2014, 10:12:40 am »

Yup - no Prime Directive per se.

IMHO (and Your Commonality May Vary), the Commonality has really only one priority: the protection and vitalisation of the human species, including the stable and safe expansion of the Commonality. Secondarily it wants to integrate lost colonies, but that's definitely subordinated to the overall goal of expansion and rediscovery. Commonality civilisation almost collapsed through stagnation during the First Age of Space, which could have led to extinction of the species; Rediscovery is a shot in the arm that has given the species and the civilisation a new lease of life.

Again IMHO, I see the Commonality as mostly benevolent, well-meaning, a bit of a control freak, and improvising like crazy, surfing a wave which is rapidly going beyond its ability to control. It hasn't yet met a serious alien competitor, so is in a bit of a moral grey area - it's effectively a superpower with no checks and balances other than the Custodians' own consciences, and the sucker punch from the Venu. Things are constantly changing.

Cheers,

Sarah
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