SFFworldia: world building project - The absolute basics.

Discussion in 'Collaborative Stories' started by Andols, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    This thread can serve as the discussion for the basics of the world building project.

    Some points we should probably get out of the way firstly:

    -A name for the universe?

    -SF, Fantasy or Blend?

    -High magic, some magic or no magic?

    -Entirely human or other races/species/sentient creatures?

    -Multiple planets? If so, space travel?

    -Multiple planes of existence? (Spirit world,wormholes etc)?

    -Anything else you can think of.

    I would side with a blend. Some form of magic system, or manilpulation of the elements would be a good time for me as well.

    I always liked genetically modified humanity but other races or sentient beings I can do without.

    Multiple planets and space travel are a must for me. Spirit world I can do without.

    SFFworldia also needs a better name (sorry Hobbit :))
     
  2. Hobbit

    Hobbit Administrator Staff Member

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    No: totally agree. I was joking when I mentioned it in the first place.

    I quite like Dan's suggestion of Andol's World, though it tends to make me think more SF than Fantasy with such a name.

    Mark
     
  3. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    I was just fooling with you, I knew you were joking. I'll accept the namesake if that's what people want. It's a fairly minor point I guess, although if anyone can think of a better one I certainly wont be offended.

    What about the rest of the points, Mark?
     
  4. Hobbit

    Hobbit Administrator Staff Member

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    I'm interested to see what others think on this one.

    Of course you could make your world/s as broad as you like. One world high tech, space travel, culture etc, another a Fantasy style medieval society with magic or what passes for magic. You've even got the old chestnut of technology that seems like magic...

    But it's up to those who want to contribute, I think.

    Mark
     
  5. DailyRich

    DailyRich Damn fool idealist

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    My first thought when it comes to incorporating both sci-fi and fantasy is to have the fantasy aspects exist in the distant past, but that requires either integrating magic into the sci-fi elements of the future (which might not sit well with some) or coming up with some explanation as to why magic disappeared from the world so thoroughly that it's looked on as myth (i.e the Howard/Tolkien approach). Which still doesn't strike me as ideal.

    So I'd come down on picking one or the other, and if I had a choice, I'd go with fantasy. Just my two cents though.
     
  6. PeterWilliam

    PeterWilliam Omnibus Prime

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    DailyRich makes a very persuasive point. I was originally in favor of some kind of blend, but in light of DR's post above, I am persuaded that sticking with one or the other would be a better idea.
     
  7. Hereford Eye

    Hereford Eye Just Another Philistine

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    What comes to my mind is Jack Chalker's Well World and/or Piers Anthony's Phaze. Both give the basis for magic and science existing side by side.

    I think you start with some point and allow people to build from there. I recall Cherryh's Merovingian Nights started out as a fantasy world but by book two or three you realized it was a declination of a future world with the possibility of science hanging in orbit above the planet.
     
  8. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    So fantasy with the possibility of later SF being worked into the mix?

    I can cast my lot in with that idea.
     
  9. DailyRich

    DailyRich Damn fool idealist

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    There's always the "Expedition to the Barrier Peaks" route, where it's a fantasy world with a handful of sci-fi intrusions that are distant and separate enough not to interfere with the wizards and dragons and such. Or a sort of Prime Directive thing, where the technologically advanced race is prohibited from interfering with the natural progression of the indigenous people. Either way gives the option of there being legends of strange gods who walk the earth with weapons and powers beyond that of even the greatest magic.
     
  10. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    I'm pretty much sold on "fantasy with the possible addition of sf later". Let's wait a bit longer incase anyone comes in and smites our idea with a better one.

    How does everyone feel about magic use if we go the fantasy route?
     
  11. DailyRich

    DailyRich Damn fool idealist

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    I'd like to see magic be something anyone can do with the proper training and effort. I've never been a fan of having a special chosen few with "the gift" or whatever you call it.

    But, just because it's something anyone can learn doesn't mean every society will have the same attitudes towards it. In some places, it may be reserved for the wealthy elite, with practice of magic by the lower classes a punishable offense. Other places may look down on magic users, and its use has degraded into cheap cantrips like starting fires and helping crops grow. Some places may outlaw it altogether, while others may fully embrace it and be cities brimming with wonder.
     
  12. hippokrene

    hippokrene Peckish

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    Are we going with English? (I notice that the one city we have is called Hope) Or, would anyone be interested in a constructed language?
     
  13. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    If we kept it fairly simple, it could work. What sort of ideas did you have in mind?
     
  14. goldhawk

    goldhawk aurea plectro

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    You could write it in Anglish. :D
     
  15. Expendable

    Expendable infomaniac

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    You could have a magic guild or school that accepts apprentices to learn high magics. There could be several schools, each with their own specialty of spells. There could be either a university or a master teaches a couple of apprentices, who then go someplace else to set up and study their copied spellbooks while teaching a couple of apprentices who also make copies from their teacher's copied spellbooks, etc.

    You could have classes - expensive wizards using exotic ingredients looking down on humble hedge witches who make do with what they have.
     
  16. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    I like the idea of schools or sects focusing on different aspects of the magic system. i dont like magic systems that use books/scrolls/regeants in order to "cast" magic. id much prefer a mental arts type of system.
     
  17. DailyRich

    DailyRich Damn fool idealist

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    I think there's room for both types. Some cultures may have developed the mental crutch of needing scrolls or spell books to cast anything.

    Another question: are we simply going to say this world is an "other-Earth," with the same flora and fauna, or are we going to come up with fantasy versions of horses and birds and such?
     
  18. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    i think we can see how it goes. if some people want to develop areas down to the subatomic level thats fine, buti think we should leave a little building freedom for the people (read: suckers) that will be writing the stories.

    and im good with having more manual based magic along with mental based magic, but we should probably define it down a little further. there should be some kind of limitation.
     
  19. mylinar

    mylinar Registered User

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    One think I think we should avoid is the D&D like concept where there are literally hundreds of intelligent species from Orcs to Kobolds to Kuo-Toa and Centaurs. This always struck me as a difficult thing to explain. How did they all evolve (or get created and escape into the wild and prolifirate). I can see a few other races, but not overkill.

    We could even be strict about there only being one intelligent race, but that would also limit creativity so I am not a fan of that idea.
     
  20. Andols

    Andols I like stories

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    i agree. id go along with a few specific races if someone could think up some interesting ones, but id prefer human only.