Recent Chat Activity (Main Lobby)
Join Chat

Loading Chat Log...

Prefer not to see ads? Become a Community Supporter.

View Poll Results: What about a new sci-fi setting?

Voters
64. You may not vote on this poll
  • IF it's something completely new. Don't need more of the same Thank You.

    10 15.63%
  • I like having SOME of the standard stuff in there, but you need to bring SOMETHING new to the table.

    31 48.44%
  • I don't want or need ANY new sci-fi setting Thank You.

    1 1.56%
  • If I find it interesting, maybe. Otherwise, I don't care.

    22 34.38%
Page 6 of 8 FirstFirst ... 2345678 LastLast
Results 76 to 90 of 110

Thread: What about a new sci-fi setting?

  1. #76
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Richardson
    Age
    48
    Posts
    1,288
    Blog Entries
    30
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0
    Prefer not to see ads?
    Become a Community Supporter.
    Quote Originally Posted by yukonhorror View Post
    ... non-universal access to space travel (too many planet systems with similar levels of technology).
    If traveling to another star system is as easy as a ride on a jet today, or even as easy as a 17th century ship voyage, technology will transfer relatively quickly to all worlds on standard routes. (A thumb-drive, or its ultra-tech equivalent, has negligible mass.) Star Wars, for example, implied that ships regularly carried goods to Tatooine, surely a Force-forsaken hellhole if there ever was one.

    However, consider all conditions where even technology transfer becomes far less likely:
    • Some worlds are seldom if ever visited by starships after initial settlement. Maybe initial colonization used generation ships, the mysterious Ancients seeded humans all over the galaxy, or the non-human(?) natives evolved on that planet.
    • Interstellar travel is perilous, expensive, time consuming, or otherwise uncommon. For example, FTL travel and communication are impossible, so that colonies 100 LY away will always remain over a century out of date.
    • Most planets lack the industrial base to replicate high-technology items, even if they get plans from the next passing ship or over the FTL telegraph.
    • FTL travel is only possible/likely between certain points in space, leaving worlds without a jump gate to fend for themselves.
    • FTL is a closely guarded secret, rare gift, or technology wholly under alien control. (Mi-Go brain cylinders, anybody?)

    Possibly, also, some technologies progress faster in some cultures than others. Even in our planet, the Mayans invented wheels but used them only for toys because their mountainous terrain precluded smooth roads. So, for example, one planet far advanced in biotechnology invents bio-ships ahead of anyone else ... armed with missiles and rail guns, since their physicists never discovered principles required to build disruptors.
    "On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament], 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
    - Charles Babbage (1791 - 1871)

  2. #77
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    All of the above. Nice summation of the usual tropes. Industrial base is my favorite. Recall that today many countries do not build their own ships or jets. The industrial base to do so isn't present in that country. And we are talking counties that are critically dependant on the technology like Micronesia.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  3. #78
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Richardson
    Age
    48
    Posts
    1,288
    Blog Entries
    30
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0
    On the scale of a whole planet, I'd imagine the only worlds without the industrial base are isolated, low-population startup colonies or post-apocalyptic regressed civilizations.

    The RPG Stars Without Number (free on RPGNow) posits a level of technology possible only with advanced psionics ... and all the psionicists died in a catastrophic galaxy-wide Scream. Artifacts produced before then are extremely valuable. While I'm not keen on the psionic angle, I like the general idea of technology nobody knows how to produce locally (anymore).

    As those who have read my previous threads will remember, I'm fascinated with the idea of an interstellar civilization without FTL. You'd need some sort of pilot for the long centuries between worlds (e.g. an AI, an alien or mutant with near immortality) and a way to keep humans in stasis for that long. (Generation ships require too many resources to be common.) Restricting FTL to certain star systems, groups, or alien species is a limited version of "no FTL". So is Ursula K. LeGuin's universe in which allows FTL communication but not physical FTL travel (for living creatures, at least): technology and basic knowledge remains up to date, but inhabitants of each planet might differ wildly from human cultural and biological norms.

    Now I really want to develop a universe where humans travel FTL only in Mi-Go brain cylinders ... (Or a software equivalent, a la Accelerando.)
    Last edited by fmitchell; 01-11-2011 at 11:02 AM.
    "On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament], 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
    - Charles Babbage (1791 - 1871)

  4. #79
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Don't forget relativity. If you had STL fast ships rather than slow ones the survival problem is eliminated. Relativity effects keep your crew young, but you still take years to get from planet to planet. Say you get to 0.5c. That would be 8 years to Alpha Centauri, doable, plus you get the anti aging of relativity. (I don't have the exact formula handy.)

    It still means that your interstellar Empire is going to be small. 100 light years is still 200 years away. You can't alter that. So outside a handfull of stars a planetary government could not exert any influence. By the time the proclimations of El Generalissimo gets to the next world someone has shot him already.

    Star Voyagers are going to seem near immortal. Centuries pass and they age but little. The ship would become their world. Everything they care about would have to be there. Anything left on a planet is left behind forever.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  5. #80
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Given the question further thought Larry Niven wrote several tales that involved bussard ramjets. Exactly the kind of circumstane I was discussing. Mr. Niven is among the hardest of the Hard SF writers.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  6. #81
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    New Castle
    Age
    44
    Posts
    22
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0
    I don't like slow-boats for exactly that reason. The starship becomes a one-way portal to each world, and is in fact their only home. There is no going back.

    I like a universe with multiple political entities - a la the Honorverse - because it gives you more plot lines than "Rebels vs Government". Each polity can have different technological biases, so you can see different tech levels, etc (And a lively trade in tech transfers).

    I subscribe to Clarke's "Apes or Angels" conclusion: It is extraordinarily unlikely to encounter another species in the same range of technological development - look at how much we've changed in 200 years. Even if you propose a Berzerker/Gamma Ray Burst scenario to give the region a common start, one minor theological dispute can alter your development calendar by hundreds of years.
    I suppose you could propose a "Universal Tech Barrier" - the idea of a plateau in technology that allows only tweaks in our relatively complete understanding of the universe. Any significant advances would require a change in philosophy/comprehension/etc that implies Ascension to a new order of life - thus the Angels.
    I did work out a couple of ways you can get aliens in space, though:
    -Anthropology 101 - find primitives, misuse them until they kill you and take your stuff. You can get barbs in space that way.
    -Make 'em ourselves - Big Bad Corporation fiddles with ye olde genetic code to make the Best New Thing in tailored lifeforms. Typical malfeasance and incompetence leads to unexpected developments, seeds of a new race with a hate-on for Humanity takes their creche, their Maker's computers, and a starship or three to Beyond Known Space to make a new start. Fast Forward a couple hundred years and suddenly scouts on one end of the fringe are reporting attacks by an alien race using comparable technology (Woohoo! Somebody else to talk to!).

    I like fringe regions - areas of space with only limited governmental control reminiscent of the Old West. That's where you get adventures. You don't see too many RPGs aimed at Mall Shopping, after all.

  7. #82
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Richardson
    Age
    48
    Posts
    1,288
    Blog Entries
    30
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by ashewyntr View Post
    I subscribe to Clarke's "Apes or Angels" conclusion: It is extraordinarily unlikely to encounter another species in the same range of technological development - look at how much we've changed in 200 years. Even if you propose a Berzerker/Gamma Ray Burst scenario to give the region a common start, one minor theological dispute can alter your development calendar by hundreds of years.
    Stars Without Number assumes that all advanced technology ("pretech") depended on a mastery of psionics. "The Scream" killed or brain-fried all living psychics, rendering all pretech either useless or priceless. Subsequent generations of psychics learned a little from written records, but secrets beyond the basic disciplines remain a mystery. Meanwhile, the majority of humans and aliens make do with "postech", comparatively primitive physics and engineering that includes star-drives and fusion weaponry.

    Quote Originally Posted by ashewyntr View Post
    I suppose you could propose a "Universal Tech Barrier" - the idea of a plateau in technology that allows only tweaks in our relatively complete understanding of the universe. Any significant advances would require a change in philosophy/comprehension/etc that implies Ascension to a new order of life - thus the Angels.
    Perhaps monkey-brains (and extraterrestrial equivalents) suffice for life planet-side and a few steps into space, but can't handle the complexity of interstellar travel. Certainly enough physical barriers exist to make human travel beyond the orbit of the moon extremely resource-intensive. Routine space travel may require a post-scarcity society with nigh-unlimited energy, biomechanical organisms adapted to space, or a comprehension and exploitation of physical principles far beyond current human limits. (And who says they're Angels? Maybe they're Great Old Ones.)

    Quote Originally Posted by ashewyntr View Post
    Big Bad Corporation fiddles with ye olde genetic code to make the Best New Thing in tailored lifeforms. Typical malfeasance and incompetence leads to unexpected developments, seeds of a new race with a hate-on for Humanity takes their creche, their Maker's computers, and a starship or three to Beyond Known Space to make a new start. Fast Forward a couple hundred years and suddenly scouts on one end of the fringe are reporting attacks by an alien race using comparable technology (Woohoo! Somebody else to talk to!).
    Sounds like a universe I developed a while back. The first wave of human interstellar settlers founded various transhumanist civilizations, many of which abused their creations. The second wave, powered by religious zeal, turned a humanistic religion into a humanocentric one, killing, restricting, or neutering non-humans. (A few species who can "pass", or survive in environments humans won't go, live secretly under humanity's pure-strain noses.) At the fringes, where the Terran Empire's power is weakest, lie only recently discovered genetic experiments, rebel artificial intelligences, and breakaway republics/dictatorships/failed states. Beyond that boundary, and in a few scattered systems within the Empire's volume, lie alien civilizations either far ahead or far behind human development, separated from humanity by ultra-powerful aliens obsessed with preserving the children of one planet from exterminating the children of others.
    "On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament], 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
    - Charles Babbage (1791 - 1871)

  8. #83
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by ashewyntr View Post
    I like fringe regions - areas of space with only limited governmental control reminiscent of the Old West. That's where you get adventures. You don't see too many RPGs aimed at Mall Shopping, after all.
    That would depend on the maul.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  9. #84
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Jordan
    Posts
    5,207
    Blog Entries
    42
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by cliff View Post
    This is true to a limited sense, but not in the shape of the stories themselves. Fantasy and Science Fiction tend to explore different ideas, and I personally always found DRoP to be Fantasy wearing a Science Fiction overcoat.
    i would have said that it was sci-fi wearing a fantasy overcoat. the more you read, the more hard and soft science you uncover. but then, she always was fond of psionics.


    Quote Originally Posted by Hoitash View Post
    I think an RPG based on Resistance: Fall of Man would be cool.

    It depends on how you difen sci-fi also, I think. Dungeons in Dragons in space? Wait, that sounds cool, too. I better write that down...
    check out the Dragonstar d20 rpg. some interesting ideas.


    Quote Originally Posted by Hoitash View Post
    I use wormholes in my writing.

    Artificial ones, like Stargate. Think of it as like a magnetic train, with the wormhole as the rail. It's also one of the most plausible forms of FTL, although I'm also fond of the Battlestar Galactica method of beinding space/time (I think Wing Commander used that, too.)

    Jump Gates do have their appeal, though.
    one of the most intriguing descriptions of an angelic visit i have ever read was as follows; i quote in part:

    "...I discovered a light appearing in my room, which continued to increase until the room was lighter than at noonday, when immediately a personage appeared at my bedside, standing in the air, for his feet did not touch the floor...."

    "After this communication, I saw the light in the room begin to gather immediately around the person of him who had been speaking to me, and it continued to do so, until the room was again left dark, except just around him, when instantly I saw, as it were, a conduit open right up into heaven, and he ascended until he entirely disappeared, and the room was left as it had been before this heavenly light had made its appearance."
    This would seem to imply something we would recognize as tech, namely a portal or gate of some kind. it seems to only be visible at the entry point, rather than the exit point, given the differences in arrival. perhaps a focus point of some kind?


    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    There was a Lensman game done, it sucked. A better Lensman game would be cool.
    are you speaking of the gurps version, perchance?


    Quote Originally Posted by WhiskeyFur View Post
    Stuff like BSG, pure utter drivel. Yuck.
    which one? the original had some interesting takes on hard science.


    Quote Originally Posted by WCRPG Butcher View Post
    I think the sci-fi trope that bothers me the most is that typically humans are sub-par when compared to the other life forms in the set universe, their only redeeming feature being their ability to adapt and overcome much like sewer rats. In this case, it's either usually looked upon in a tolerant manner by the galactic community (or hated by what usually the bad-guy species), or it's lauded as the one thing everyone else lacks and can SAVE THE UNIVERSE FROM DESTRUCTION.

    Personally, I'd like to see a sci-fi setting where either humanity is treated like backwater trash by the universe, or humanity turns out to be the most advanced species in the universe and has to deal with a "we're not alone, but we're alone at the top" situation.
    seen titan ae? does both in the same movie....


    Quote Originally Posted by trechriron View Post
    Eclipse Phase is tickling my sci-fi yearnings. It is mostly hard science. :-D

    I am learning to enjoy harder sci-fi and get past my aversion to zero-g, micro-gravity stuff.
    check out quantum locking (levitation) phenomena and successful acts of modern teleportation....

    your reality just got a bit more hard sci-fi. ^^


    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    Don't forget relativity. If you had STL fast ships rather than slow ones the survival problem is eliminated. Relativity effects keep your crew young, but you still take years to get from planet to planet. Say you get to 0.5c. That would be 8 years to Alpha Centauri, doable, plus you get the anti aging of relativity. (I don't have the exact formula handy.)

    It still means that your interstellar Empire is going to be small. 100 light years is still 200 years away. You can't alter that. So outside a handfull of stars a planetary government could not exert any influence. By the time the proclimations of El Generalissimo gets to the next world someone has shot him already.

    Star Voyagers are going to seem near immortal. Centuries pass and they age but little. The ship would become their world. Everything they care about would have to be there. Anything left on a planet is left behind forever.
    there are some intriguing hints that there is a state of existence outside of our universe in which time does not operate under the same rules, if at all. here, here, and here for some interesting reading.
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

  10. #85
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by nijineko
    are you speaking of the gurps version, perchance?
    It was a Byzantine d100 system with a skill list that took up most of the character sheet in very small print. I only encountered it the one time and was confounding the GM I think because I understood the setting. I cut my space opera teeth on Lensman after all. From Triplanitary to Children of the Lens. The system was overly complex and under explained, typical of the early systems.,

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  11. #86
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Jordan
    Posts
    5,207
    Blog Entries
    42
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    i've never seen an old lensman system. own most of the books, though. fun reading. =D
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

  12. #87
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Something late 70s. I never owned the book myself so I don't even know the proper name of it.
    Last edited by tesral; 12-19-2011 at 04:39 AM.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  13. #88
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Jordan
    Posts
    5,207
    Blog Entries
    42
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    indeed, that is a proper.

    ;D
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

  14. #89
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Dearborn
    Posts
    7,295
    Blog Entries
    14
    Downloads
    1
    Uploads
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by nijineko View Post
    indeed, that is a proper.

    ;D
    Never trust a smiling spell checker after one AM.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

  15. #90
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Jordan
    Posts
    5,207
    Blog Entries
    42
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

Page 6 of 8 FirstFirst ... 2345678 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Campaign Setting
    By Hel in forum Dungeons & Dragons
    Replies: 21
    Last Post: 09-10-2009, 04:33 AM
  2. [D&D] And the Next Campaign Setting is ...
    By PnP News Bot in forum News
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-17-2009, 03:12 PM
  3. What's this campaign setting?
    By Arch Lich Thoth-Amon in forum Horror / Dark Future
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 04-17-2009, 02:18 PM
  4. What's your favorite D&D setting?
    By Farcaster in forum Dungeons & Dragons
    Replies: 153
    Last Post: 06-30-2008, 09:49 PM
  5. The Design of a New Setting
    By InfoStorm in forum Campaign Resources
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 12-17-2007, 04:43 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •