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The "Daily" Worldbuilding Prompt. Chapter 2

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Ban, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    Grains, cereals, fruits, vegetables, products from animals, animals and other such things. The occasional golden goose egg. Silks and the like. Spices. Really whatever sort of things you can think go on farms and ranches and orchards.
     
  2. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    Depends on where they are at. Central Solaria is mostly grains, with a heavy side of veggies and a lot of apple orchards. (one baron in a war devastated area went for cabbages.) North of the empire, barley type plants and more veggies, with an emphasis on root crops - carrots, onions, and potatoes. Carbone - olives and grapes. Nomos, south of the Mare Imperium, dates, figs, and sometime grapes. Niteroi - cotton (big slave worked plantations). Black States south of the empire: all sorts of oddball tropical fruits and veggies. Cimmar, east across the Cauldron from Solaria, a mix of barley, potatoes, and veggies. Hobgoblin Hegemony is big on desert agriculture. Chou, south of that, rice, fruit, and veggies.
     
  3. Ban

    Ban Sir Laserface Article Team

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    Question 86: How far does social mobility extend? (Can a lesser noble become a king? How about a merchant, or a miller?)
     
  4. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    Due to how Narrative works, there is a decent amount of upward mobility in the social context. Though some of it relies on lost parts of bloodlines and peasant farm kids and other bastard lines from time to time. Some places it is very hard, the Celestial Lands, for instance, due to the caste system in place that tends to mean your born into it.

    And this is perhaps one of the few things semi-decent about the wood elves. One can rise through merit, mostly in battle. Though the downside is that still others gain rank by killing the previous holder of it. There are even rules to taking the place of higher nobles and king's. Even a farmer can challenge the ruler and take over. It's happened before. The sea elves are more merit based, but through merchant enterprises and piracy (sometimes one in the same) and one can rise up. Though it has been stifled a little since most the big merchant houses have made their guild's the ones to go through and aren't fond of competition. None of the Merchant Prince's can really go beyond that though, as the current ruling House (House Wave) isn't going to let them join in the rulership that the Sea Queen has solidified under her rule.
     
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  5. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    Outside of Solaria and a few 'oddball realms' like the Free Cities, upward mobility pretty much doesn't happen. Agba and its successor states were pretty much literal caste societies; your social station at death was the same as at your birth. Cimmar, a realm founded by Gotlander conquerors...well there is/was a hard upper limit on how far non-Gotlander's could progress (gets into the social upheaval thing)

    Solaria was originally not so socially stratified - many elected offices, and enterprising plebes could become quite wealthy. That changed with the collapse of Solaria V1.0, when most offices became hereditary and the aristocracy frowned on commoners accumulating wealth. This situation changed again with the reestablishment of Solaria some 150+ years ago: the new dynasty were of 'barbarian' stock, more inclined to merit than birth status. Still, a not-quite hard caste system lingered on, until Emperor Franklin did two things:

    First, he abolished 'private' armies held by various nobles in favor of the legion model, and granted twenty year veterans of the legions land and citizenship. Most of the new army recruits came from the bondsman/serf category; twenty years service jumped them up over plebes to actual citizens.

    Second, the emperor relaxed a huge slew of trade regulations applied to the lower orders, spurring a large amount of commerce. He then made the infamous 'forced loan' on these newly prosperous merchants, extracting a huge amount of money for his projects in exchange for citizenship.

    This set two precedents - rise by service, and rise by wealth.

    Later - the period immediately before my stories - Emperor Morgan DuSwaimair II granted land and citizenship to all veterans, not just those who'd served twenty years, plus (because he needed the money that badly) he relaxed the caste commerce rules even more.
     
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  6. Ban

    Ban Sir Laserface Article Team

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    Question 87: Greasers, punks, goths and tunnel snakes who rule. What subcultures do rebellious youth join in your world?
     
  7. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    As the world comes back to it's own, there are more subcultures coming about. Though many are based on the old military traditions, some of which the youth don't fully understand. The equivalent of bikers and greaser gangs wander about, training mounts like wolves and boars though not joining any of the military orders that use them even as they copy them (with sometimes disastrous consequences when facing insulted veterans who faced undead and regular warfare and understand their appropriated subculture itself). The nobs are also into horse riding and hunting clubs in the manner of the old school versions though with at times less life threatening hunts and trying for the knighthood knock offs. Since they are nobs, they tend to get less hurt then others. Though it doesn't stop actual knight orders from beating them down either. Several of them are actual gangs with a facade and there are still others that are military veterans taking pieces of the big cities for themselves and starting new gang wars that will get them put down.

    For what amounts to goths, one has to look towards the magic community. Particularly anything to do with The Hats guild and anyone within it that deals with the necromancy end. Very stylized and with a more artistic end to it at times. They like the blacks and primary colors and talking with spirits and dead. Still other offshoots among them dealing with other ends of magic.

    Among the gold elves, there are vegetarian sub-sects, very little gaining much ground. They've also been around forever, though they'd have more luck in their cousins countries over in the Celestial Lands. The Fea West mostly mocks them and continues to eat meat as they always have. The drow hold most the LGBTQ sub-cultures and other ones concerning sexual mores the rest of the above grounders either pretend not to notice or persecute, though they've also helped change perception on it a lot. Though with no trouble on the greenskins end with it.

    There are also several intellectual subcultures coming about, mostly with books and new coffee houses. Along with beer snob clubs. And food appreciation groups. Following new self styled supreme celebrity chefs, cooks and bakers. Or those who didn't want the celebrity but got it anyways. With the delver there are more trying to go back to their old ways and celebrating it (often violently) as they get involved in settling old grudges and taking back the old mountain fastness' and fortress monasteries. Which has helped divide the delver culture and may make things worse in the long run. Mostly for themselves. And with them rises many more like it who are insistent the old ways were the best ways and to go back to them. With the wood elves this has meant a lot of smack downs and even sheer offs of more hardcore groups from the main ones.

    Really, there's probably a decent amount among the main cultures. Some good, some bad and some hungry.
     
  8. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    As an addition, concerning the Adventurers culture and sub-cultures of Eld. They've always had a certain following of fads for clothing, gear and weapons of choice. The more successful of the groups that become guild's like the Sword of Dawn's can set their own trends and sub-culture's within it. Which at the time meant a lot of light themed adventurer groups and an influx of high elves taking up the call of adventure. Though with the world remaking itself, adventurers becoming undead hunters and toughs for hire, they sub-cultures have changed. The big one is flame themes and fire motifs along with religious iconography (that involves fire) and a bit of a pyro sub-culture of sorts. Those with firepower can take make undead killing a little easier, disposal more so. Thus it's adapted to it. As for the ones that go thug for hire, they've taken on a gangster sort of look and compared to most other adventurers, they are likely to stay among the less powerful.

    Still others go back to the old way of getting cash. Guarding caravans, merchants and fighting bandits with the odd jobs that involve mysteries they aren't prepared for and struggle through them. Or die. Others guard breweries and fields and have started taking roles as hunters and trappers. Those with actual experience tend to take jobs filling in as house guards and like and all of these sorts consolidate as the sort of classical adventurers who are strapped for cash and take whatever job they can get that doesn't involve too much bodily harm, though might still lead to it.

    And a 'new' sub-culture is monster adventurers, though they've been around a long while, just not acknowledged. As any mixed group of orcs, trolls, goblins and other 'monster' sorts was usually considered not an adventuring group, but a threat. Thus perpetrating a cycle of violence between the two groups that were really just out for some money and some fun. Though the monster groups were more likely hunting adventuring groups that had done wrong to their kind and going out to murder the murder hobo's. So most monster adventurer's are geared for killing those who kill them. Nowadays they just try to avoid each other on threat of powers greater then them wiping them both out with nary a thought.

    Then there's the retired adventurers and their like or ilk who take up as bartenders or tavern owners and dispensers of information for the wet behind the ears newcomers. They tend to be cut from the same cloth and got enough cash to do something after they get taken out of the game or just have had enough of the bloodshed. Others retire when they've taken rulership of some village or city and offer quests or go out and keep their skills honed, though they too mostly are after undead and the more natural problems, so they help create the demands for the specific sub cultures.
     
  9. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    Gangs, mostly, especially for the lower orders. (bandits in the countryside)

    More industrious types join one or another of the 'colleges,' academic or semi-academic groups dedicated to everything from engineering to team sports. Others are little more than excuse for lewd parties.

    Traditionally, many better off Solarians take a 'grand tour' of the empire and sometimes neighboring nations (supposedly to scout out potential alliances and opportunities). Some of these folks are returning with strange ideas and companions.
     
  10. Ban

    Ban Sir Laserface Article Team

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    Question 88: What sort of armour and weaponry can I expect to find if I was inspecting the warriors of your world?
     
  11. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    All sorts. But don't inspect too hard, someone may get ideas. From plate armor and calvary swords to leather armor that's a bit questionable as to whether it's armor or a fetish thing (though nothing stopping it from being both). Just figure it's already a fantasy kitchen sink, so there's plenty of things that show up that might not even be normal to the vaguely European setting it starts off in. There's guns and magic power armor too, though both have became rarer since the Lich Wars, as with most things. War machines like golem horses, cannons and old siege style weapons that, while not entirely obsolete, aren't used much due to the mortal versions of such things. Though the most common for the moment is chain and leather as the prices for the heavy stuff and the training has shot up again. The most basic of weapons abound as they were mass produced for the all out war that took place.

    And of course, nothing is stopping the above from being enchanted, cursed or talking. Some with specific spells layered into them during forging or creation. Just because someone has a sword that starts itself on fire doesn't mean they're the hero/ine. Usually just means they know a guy or got lucky in weapon finding or weapon giving.
     
  12. Vaporo

    Vaporo Sage

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    Question 83: Where, and by whom is healthcare taken care of? (What of specialized care? Dentistry, physical therapy, eye care, palliative care. And what of alternative medicine such as acupuncture and chiropractic care.)

    While medical knowledge is fairly advanced in Untia, there's little to no organized health care system. That may be slowly changing, since medical schools and hospitals have started popping up in major cities, but for now people rely on their local healer's shop for most of their healthcare needs. These healers usually aren't total incompetents and won't usually practice bloodletting or similarly ignorant practices and most will own a few medical encyclopedias and reference books, but you'd be lucky to find one who was professionally educated. Their knowledge usually comes from experience, borrowing or buying medical textbooks, and the teachings of whoever they were apprenticed to. A few healers specialize in things like dentistry, but most are generalists and will work on whatever health condition walks into their shop.

    In Kumbaska and other nations ruled by the Amul, medical care is much more rigidly structured. The Amul have large medical schools, which most of their priests attend for at least a year or two. While their knowledge isn't nearly as advanced as that of the Untian nations and often rooted in poor traditional understanding of the human body, they are still generally very competent and do much more good than harm. Many non-priests attend these schools as well, and these people are typically the ones who go on to become true physicians, including specialists. The Amul have encouraged the construction of hospitals, and working in a hospital is seen as the most prestigious position for a graduate of a medical school. Most people would not trust a doctor who was not trained in a medical school.

    Question 84: It’s been a long day at work, what would your people do to wind down? (Bonus: How does this differ between social classes?)

    The Untians really, REALLY like their alcohol. If you're not going to the local tavern, you're relaxing at home with a bottle of hron beer in your hand. While upper classes usually have their own bars, the basic idea remains the same. The upper classes may go to a theater or something equally intellectual, but no matter what alcohol will usually be involved.

    Question 85: What do your farmers (or your equivalent) harvest?

    Oh, boy. You asked for it.

    While most in my world people harvest things like corn, rice, wheat, and other such grains, the Antisans' staple food is fruit of the marvelous hron tree.

    The hron tree appears similar to a combination between a baboaba and a willow, with a short trunk and wide canopy and long, hanging palm-like leaves. The almost supernaturally useful in practically every way. It grows incredibly quickly, reaching maturity within a year and full size within seven to ten years. The wood is incredibly light, incredibly strong, and very slow to catch fire, making it an excellent building material. However, when it does catch fire it will burn hot and long, making it an excellent fuel as well.

    The fruit looks a bit like a long, thin mango or a fat green straight banana and is produced in absolutely enormous quantities. The flash is a deep brown color and contains many small, black seeds in the core. The seeds are small enough to be easily eaten, to the point that some first-time eaters assume that it doesn't even have seeds. When grown in the tropics, the tree will have thousands of fruits growing at all times. In more temperate climates, the tree can produce three to four harvests in a single growing season.

    The fruit is, like everything else related to hron, incredibly useful. It tastes something like a combination between a mango and a strawberry and can be brewed into a brown, frothy wine called "hron beer." It can be refined into sugar, dried into chips, pretty much anything you can imagine be done with a fruit. Even the skin can be dried and milled into flour.

    The tree has only a few real downsides as a crop. First of all, it's primarily a tropical plant. While it has a mechanism to drop and regrow leaves during winter, it struggles in climates where the temperature dips below freezing. You wouldn't want want to grow it much further north than Florida. Second, it only has one pollinator: hummingbirds. Insects avoid the tree like the plague, which is good for pest control but means that bees and the like can't really be relied on to pollinate them. Since hummingbirds exist almost exclusively in Antisa, it's the only place in the world that the tree can grow. Third, the tree has a rather short lifespan, usually twenty to twenty-five years at the most. However, considering how fast the grow this isn't too big of an issue.

    But, now we get to the actual supernatural stuff.

    The Smet were created at the end of the war with the Generals to act as gatekeepers to the land of the gods. They maintained the gate and worked to prevent the Generals from reentering. The hron trees were as a sort of "body" for the Smet to anchor them to the physical world, so that they would not be true creatures of the land of the gods and thus would be protected from the worst of its horrors. A single Smet is not bound to a single tree. Instead, each tree adds "living space" to allow more Smet to exist. The trees were always meant to be appealing to humans, but not nearly to the degree that they are today.

    However, when the Generals were expelled from the world they created a plague among the Fel, which were created alongside the Smet from the same template. The plague drove the Fel mad, causing them to lash out and potentially kill hundreds before they finally collapsed and died. The corruption was rare at first, but slowly adapted until, two and a half millennia after the end of the war, it spread to the Smet. While the Fel were eventually cured of the plague by the Alstalia, most people were unaware that the Smet even existed. Even more learned people such as Raldan the Immortal didn't realize that the Smet were infected until centuries later.

    The plague drove the Smet mad, but did not kill them. Soon, all of the Smet were infected, turning them into servants of the Generals. When the war between the Fel and the Alstalia of the Amulkine Empire ended, the last few hundred Fel were driven to the planet Gen. The Alstalia then sealed the bridge between the worlds, unintentionally killing most of them in the process. Then, the Generals contacted the remaining Fel through the Smet and offered them a deal: if the Fel would bind themselves to the Smet they, and by extension the Generals, would help them get revenge on humanity. Most Fel are emotional and irrational creatures to begin with, and as consumed by rage and desire for vengeance as they were every single one of them accepted.

    Every few years, the Smet would gather the Fel together and whip them into a rage. Then, they would draw the Fel to the world of Dor by pulling the Fel slightly outside of reality, thus circumventing the Barrier between the Worlds. The Fel would have one night to attack humanity before the Smet would lose their strength and the Barrier would draw the Fel back to Gen. However, this whole process kills billions of Smet, as they were not meant to interact with the physical world in such a direct manner. It takes a few years for them to replenish their numbers before they can do it again. Each attack erodes the Barrier more and more, and eventually it will fall entirely.

    However, in order to draw to Fel to Dor the Smet must have a physical anchor point on Dor. Which is to say, hron trees.

    Eventually, the remnants of the Amulkine Empire banded together and realized that the attacked regions were always among the world's largest growers of hron. It took them centuries to figure out the connection, and centuries more to do something about it since it honestly sounded insane. They're attacking us because of our orchards? I mean, come on? But, eventually there was too much data to deny, and a plan was implemented.

    While cutting down all of the wild hron in the world was impossible, killing their only pollinator was doable. All across the world, orchards were burned and poisoned hummingbird feeders were set up. Within a few decades the world's hummingbird population had dropped below the critical mass necessary to sustain wild hron, and because of the tree's short lifespan it quickly became rarer and rarer until it only existed in a few scattered and isolated groves. And, of course, the Fel attacks stopped.

    Fast forward a millenia and a half and the Antisans have rediscover hron growing in an isolated desert oasis. However, the Generals used the intervening time to modify hron into the almost supernaturally amazing tree that the Antisans know today. The Antisans are completely unaware of the tree's history and grow it in masses, boosting their economy and making Antisa the dominant Untian nation.
     
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  13. Vaporo

    Vaporo Sage

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    Whoa. Had to split this up into two because of character limits.

    Question 86: How far does social mobility extend? (Can a lesser noble become a king? How about a merchant, or a miller?)

    In most Untian nations, nothing there's no true limit to upward social mobility except practical ones. Wealthy folk with enough connections can be raised to nobility, and any financially savvy person can become wealthy. While becoming king is a bit of a stretch since Untian nations use male primogeniture as the default for determining inheritance, a king could declare someone aside from his first son to be his heir. Maybe if he really hated his kids and you were his best friend he would consider it, but I don't know that it's ever actually happened.

    Question 87: Greasers, punks, goths and tunnel snakes who rule. What subcultures do rebellious youth join in your world?

    The old standby of getting mixed up in crime. Many young people together into "dock gangs," which prowl the more seedy shorelines to extort money and goods out of hard-working captains and warehouse managers. Most of them are just small-time thugs, but a few become successful enough to purchase a boat. From there, they can evolve into pirates or smugglers, or go into more legitimate business as sailors. Or, they stick to the docks, but eventually become large enough to attract the notice of a larger crime ring. This can be bad or good, depending on the disposition of the crime ring and how they attracted its attention. In the bad case, they're promptly offed by thugs for cutting into their profits. In the good case, they're approached by the crime ring and asked to work for them. If they refuse, it usually just turns into the bad case again. Some will also just join the larger crime rings directly.

    Question 88: What sort of armour and weaponry can I expect to find if I was inspecting the warriors of your world?

    Pretty standard designs for the most part. Spears, shields, swords, armor, bows. However, the Untians are a bit of an oddity in that their stuff is always made of bronze or copper.

    The entire region of Untia is practically devoid of iron. As a result, they never learned how to smelt it and only recently became aware of its existence through trade with Halgol. While the Untian nations are otherwise the most technologically advanced in the world, having recently invented steam engines, they are seriously behind in this regard.

    At one point, I plan to have a character get pitted against a Kumbaskan warrior wearing steel armor and wielding a steel sword while he is stuck there in bronze. He bends his sword trying to penetrate a weak point and is forced to go for a stranglehold to choke him into submission.

    During the war between the Amulkine Empire and the Fel, the Alstalia constructed specialized magical armor and weapons designed specifically to be effective against Fel. However, they are also pretty effective against humans and are greatly prized by the rich and powerful.
     
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  14. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    With the Solarian legions, and professional soldiers elsewhere (including hobgoblins), armor is a sort of long scale shirt, with the scales being made from fumar tree 'bark' and sewn with wire into a leather under-armor. Troopers wear a thick cloth shirt (gambeson) under this. Most trooper have bracers on their arms and metal plated boots as well. Not so well off knights in Solaria and elsewhere are armored much the same; better off knights go in for plate. Standard legion kit includes a thin metal shield with a wooden back or braces.

    Solarian Liberators and ordinary soldiers elsewhere have leather armor and shields...some of the time. Troops in hot climes, including Solarian legionaries, use leather instead of metal armor. Barbarians and the nomads of the plains use a mish-mash of leather and hide.

    The old Solarian legions were equipped with short swords, javelins (2 each), and sometimes bows. These days, spears have replaced the javelins, and increasing numbers of troopers count crossbows among their kits. Very recently (wake of the Traag War), elite troopers are being issued with explode on contact crossbow bolts, and crude pistols are starting to make an appearance among the officers. Knights use lances, broadswords or long swords, and sometimes maces or battleaxes.

    Very basic single speed bicycles became standard issue for Solarian legionaries during the Traag War. Standard legion kit includes, but is not limited to cup, bowl, entrenching tool, water skin, bedroll, and 10-15 days worth of bread, dried fruit, meat, and other food, plus gear for five man squad.
     
  15. Miles Lacey

    Miles Lacey Sage

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    Question 61: A Jolly old man with elves and reindeer in tow comes riding into your world, bearing gifts. How does your world react?

    They'd all place bets on how long they will survive before the rocs (huge birds of prey), dragons, aristocrats on their al-buraq (flying horses) or the fly boys and girls of the air force kill them.

    Question 70: How does a package or message arrive from one place to another?

    Telegraph, telephone, teletype, mail car, aircraft, airship or carrier pigeon. But al-buraq is the coolest way to deliver mail. Seriously a Dear John letter delivered by flying horse is still awesome!
     
  16. Miles Lacey

    Miles Lacey Sage

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    Question 72: Can you give me an overview of what could be found in your world’s black markets?

    Mages go for black magic items such as blood staffs while ordinary folks who can't do magic tend to go for drugs including the infamous moonshine. And by moonshine I don't mean that puddle water Americans call moonshine. Think of a drug that tastes like the most powerful Russian vodka mixed with crystal meth and looks like something your dog threw up and you'll get a rough idea of what it is.

    Being a maritime nation with lots of islands (literally thousands) just about anything illegal can be traded somewhere for the right price. Don't get caught. For drug or slave trading the authorities take the view the death penalty is too lenient....

    Question 80: A great calamity has occurred, be it fire, flooding or kaiju attack. Who is sent for clean-up and repair?

    With the Kharran Empire being in an economic depression the moment a major disaster happens people who need work will flock to the disaster site to assist any way they can. Mages are often on the scene first so they tend to get on with healing the most seriously injured until medical teams and mages from other areas can move in and offer a co-ordinated disaster relief effort.

    Question 79: Astronaut, fireman, rapper. What's the profession that your kids (and adults for that matter) tend to dream of becoming?

    Many kids hope they will be gifted with the Spark and become a powerful mage. Others want to join the air force and fly airships and planes around the world. For my protagonist she wanted to be the greatest nutball champion in the Empire and be inducted into the Nutcracker Hall of Fame.
     
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  17. Ban

    Ban Sir Laserface Article Team

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    Question 89: How does the balance between civilization and nature hold up in your world? (Does one overwhelm the other? Do they struggle against or compliment one another?)
     
  18. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    Nature and civilization are pretty in balance for many parts of the world. It does make things easier when you can actually talk to it. Entire parts of infrastructure and building can be done pretty cooperatively. Which tends to make for some cities that are fairly clean and country side that's not too roughed up when industry gets big. Back in the day it went back and forth, particularly when humans did something stupid like cutting down the wrong tree and having the wood elves kill the entire village for it. Even the other races had their issues with it from time to time. Mostly when the wars became those of attrition and resources were used heavily on any end. The most recent tipping out of balance led to the eventual Lich Wars. So their settling accounts now and trying to regain the previous balance.
     
  19. ThinkerX

    ThinkerX Myth Weaver

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    key thing to keep in mind (with both the primary and secondary worlds) is that they are the product of terraforming tens of thousands of years prior to the stories. Prior to that, the highest lifeforms were, well, pond slime. The ancestors of EVERYTHING else were imported by the Ancient Aliens - plants, trees, fish, animals, and people. In some places these transplants succeeded pretty well, resulting in large forests and seas full of aquatic life, but there are also huge swaths that are either grassland/scrubland, or just out and out desert.

    That said...

    Much of eastern Solaria used to be forest country...but most of those trees were chopped down in the first empire, and what's left are managed groves. The same fate almost befell the immense Kirkwood in north-central Solaria, but the barbarian Avar invasions put an end to the large scale logging. Tree cutting started to take off in the Kirkwood after the reunification, but Emperor Franklin (in what the aristocracy denounced as a massive power grab) made the forest an imperial preserve. Logging and hunting still takes place, but only with imperial permission.

    Elsewhere (on the primary world), rivers are the key. Civilization, agriculture, and forests tend to be found within a ten or twenty miles of the rivers, past that is a sort of wildish grassland/desert broken only by the occasional road or fortification.

    Aquas (chief secondary world) is dominated by a massive ocean that thrives with marine life from a number of different worlds. It possesses one fair sized continent where strife has gone on for so long that the wild country is starting to overwhelm the devastated inhabited regions. Aquas's other main landmass is the Strand, a ribbon of land usually on the order 12-25 miles wide (with assorted 'knobs' and 'narrows') that extends clear around the world, a distance of some 25,000 miles. This is a world of confederacies and city states, each of which claims a swath of the Strand. Some manage a decent balance with nature, others fight it continually. There are also long unpopulated stretches, usually, but not always desolate.

    Quick mention: (Carcosa - working name). another terraformed world, though far more poorly done than the first two. This is a small world with a thin atmosphere that is breathable only at the bottom of deep basins. Lovecraftian entities rule here, and have imported 'samples' of various lifeforms for various projects, generally kept in different regions. These (control) subjects have planted forests, crops, and whatnot, but these are fragile, marginal operations at best.

    Reluctant quick mention because it's still in development - the 'Eldritch World' - a mostly barren, mostly dry planet with fertile patches here and there, mostly created by Lovecraftian powers and occupied by...people of a sort. Eldritch world does have a much higher tech level than the others - roughly mid 20th century.
     
  20. Miles Lacey

    Miles Lacey Sage

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    Question 86: How far does social mobility extend? (Can a lesser noble become a king? How about a merchant, or a miller?)

    The monarchy is not hereditary and it's illegal for any member of one of the seventeen regional dynastic families from running for the job so nobles from non-ruling families can apply for the job. Because the applicants for the throne have to fight each other to the death it's not exactly a sought after job. Real power lies with the Prime Minister and it's that job that anyone with the time, money and influence can run for.

    Social mobility can and does happen, especially for those who join the military or get a job in the government. However the biggest advances socially is when a poor person is gifted with the Spark (ability to cast spells) because mages are a class of their own and they're near the top of the pecking order once they reach the Adept level. Social mobility also goes the other way: if a heir to a regional throne gets the Spark they forfeit their aristocratic titles and right to rule. At the moment there is an economic depression and not even the wealthy have been spared from going just and joining the poor.

    Question 89: How does the balance between civilization and nature hold up in your world? (Does one overwhelm the other? Do they struggle against or compliment one another?)

    The world is highly complex and even within the area which the story is set in the balance varies. In some areas urbanisation has all but destroyed the natural environment and the animals that relied on it have either died or left the area. Most of the predators have moved with their prey. In many areas nature calls the shots. Even with machine guns, anti-aircraft guns and aircraft you don't mess with a group of rocs or dragons defending their meeting areas during the breeding season. This is a world where some breeds of rabbits are carnivores and huge birds of prey (rocs) could pick up and carry away a mammoth.

    Question 85: What do your farmers (or your equivalent) harvest?

    Being the tropics for the most part the Kharran Empire's farmers harvest rice (which is the staple diet), tropical fruits like citrus fruits and bananas, coconuts (for playing the national sport of nutball rather than for food), root vegetables, berries, edible grasses and fungi and livestock of which the domestic mammoth is the largest. The Empire was founded on spices including hoochie. Hoochie is the world's hottest spice and is so strong that the police feed it to suspects to extract confessions. To give you an idea of how potent it is the usual form of execution is to force the condemned to eat three hoochie plants. Most never survive the second one. If you can eat three of them and live you're pardoned. So far only five people in the last ten years has been pardoned this way.

    Question 83: Where, and by whom is healthcare taken care of? (What of specialized care? Dentistry, physical therapy, eye care, palliative care. And what of alternative medicine such as acupuncture and chiropractic care.)

    In remote areas mages, including temple priests, provide healing for injuries and illnesses where traditional medicines using herbs, spices and other natural ingredients don't cut it. In the built up areas doctors deal with the more serious medical problems while mages deal with the more minor things. In hospitals mages and doctors often compliment each other's skills with the result around 90% of people who get treatment in a hospital will be completely healed. Mages and doctors usually charge fees so the poor will often go to a shrine overseer or temple priest because they are free and also because they can be found in even the remotest areas. As a rule temple priests will only deal with serious problems because their priority is spiritual health, not physical health.
     
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