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Author Topic: Elementals as Life Forms  (Read 2701 times)

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Offline manfred

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Elementals as Life Forms
« on: January 16, 2004, 08:08:45 AM »
(From the Bizzare Life Forms Challenge)

Quote from: "Siren no Orakio"
Here, where lead is energized to the point where it behaves like carbon, it has taken elements from around itself to create a kind of strange, metallic RNA. The body of life here is composed of magnetic fields, directing and in turn directed by shifting lead-iron molecules, in a hellish parody of aquatic life. Like the oceans of earth, there is a food chain, ranging from the simplest creatures, free-floating bits that convert the thermal energy of the molten sea to magnetics, and a series of larger and more complex creatures that feed off the magnetics of lesser creatures.


Hmmmm... a very strange thing would be, if this were a part of a "normal", Earth-like world. It would be hard for someone to travel down there, but in a volcanic eruption, some magnetic creature may make the mistake in travelling upwards. Before it dies a painful death in our freezing wasteland (as they would see our world), it could make a strange encounter for anyone near.


:shock:

Now wait, what about Elementals?!

They are some kind of spirits of the elements, right? What if not? What if they are simply another kind of life? If they leave their habitat, they should theoretically die. But if there is magic, it can look differently...


A Summon Elemental spell does in fact three things:
 1. Calls an Elemental
 2. Coerces it to cooperate (or forces)
 3. Binds protective magics around it, making it last long enough to serve

The very first Elementals must have been discovered through chance, perhaps by those with great powers of mind, that contacted these beings living deep down. After creating the necessary magical protections, the Elementals could discover our world. But even if not very smart, a bond could form, and the first Elementalist could call his pet for help. Knowledge has spread... and the spells were improved... and now can practically any powerful wizard call upon this help, enslaving the being in the process. No wonder that Elementals are considered hostile to everything.


I do not like planes very much, and I think some of you don't either. This idea can make Elementals a true part of the world.
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Offline manfred

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2004, 08:09:47 AM »
That was a Fire elemental. (or Earth? I think it is Fire... :? )


The elementals of Air could live in the higher layers of the atmosphere. Their extremely thin body looks very akin to a medusas. They are transparent and almost invisible to our eye, but humanoids usually don't get to see them anyway. Another lifeform based on magnetism, it should be noted it is slightly radioactive.

Once down on the ground and magically pretected, they can fly freely, but are compressed by the cruel pressure together, thus made visible and dangerous in their own way.


The Water elementals exist, as you have already guessed, deep in the Sea. Again is their body composed out of specially charged molecules of water (or air, or metals respectively), with magnetism being the "soul" of the beast. Conversely to the Airy being, the magic holds it together, as it would simply flow apart and be unable to control itself in our low-pressure enviroment.


The elemental of Earth needs yet refining. Maybe it comes from those metallic, but not fluid parts farther from the Earth core? But they are usually from stone. Hmmm...

---

The death of an Elemental as we see it, is the moment, when the supporting magic runs out or is disrupted by outside forces. The elemental is likely to desperately seek its home conditions, and return if it can. Or, in the last death throes attack its "caller", or anyone close.

The Elementals are _very_ misunderstood creatures.
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Offline Siren no Orakio

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2004, 12:35:02 AM »
I'd think one of the Molochi would be best classified as a Lava Demi-Elemental. ;)

For an Earthier sort, I would say this: Deep within the earth, in the places where geodes grow, some of these crystalline masses have tripped over the next step into complexity. Living on a time-scale completely incomprehensible to human beings, these creatures gain energy from the sonic vibrations within the earth's crust, and they manipulate their environment over a geologic timescale via micro-manipulation of gravity, and the controlled emission of radioactive heat.  For one of these creatures to move feet takes literally centuries, if not millenia.

To summon an Earth Elemental is perhaps the very most difficult to practice, for not only must the conjurer pull the creature across space, but he must also alter the flow of time such as the creature percieves it, or it will never be able to react on a human scale.

For the Fire Elemental: These creatures are transient expressions of the exquisitly complex thermal patterns of the flame. These ephemeral constructs cannot exist on their own for a sufficient time to develop real life, at least without aid. To exist as a recognizable entity, the conjurer must prepare a 'blank slate' of magical essence, and he must copy a split seconds grasp of the thermal pattern into the essence. The most curious and grateful of the elementals, these creatures have no previous life-style to be attached to, and are the most likely to be fiercely devoted to their masters.

To conjure a fire elemental requires an exceptionally complex thermal pattern, which almost exclusively from great bonfires, though summonings from spectacularly ill humanoids have been reported.

Offline Kassil

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2004, 04:51:37 AM »
And the "quasielementals"? By which I mean elemental entities who result from a fusion of two or more "pure" elemental forces - such as Earth and Fire producing Magma (possibly, as Siren noted, one of the Molochi ::Or as they're known in the Acheron system, the Dolphins of Moloch:: )

Quite possibly they'd be more enduring than their more pure cousins, simple because they're the result of elements polluting each other...
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Offline MoonHunter

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« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2004, 06:59:39 AM »
We are substituting  organized electrico magnetic field that has the ability to manipulated/ manifest a certain element (normally inannimate), for magical ectomorph/ spirit with an association for a given material element.

Not that I am against it. I am just wondering why we are trying to make psuedo scientific rationals for magikal fantasy creatures.
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Offline Siren no Orakio

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2004, 08:46:13 AM »
The primary reason to do this is to disassociate elementals from extra-planar creatures. While spirits of the elements may certainly exist on the normal world as well, the usual explanation is that elementals are rifted in from elsewhere, and Manfred apparently doesn't like elsewheres. :)

That, and we're playing with an idea which was orginally posited for a zero magic world. This has the potential to introduce an elemental creature into a Deadspace type world. It's very, very, very alien, and potentially very intelligent. That's the truly useful points here.

Offline manfred

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2004, 03:38:32 AM »
Quote from: "Siren no Orakio"
The primary reason to do this is to disassociate elementals from extra-planar creatures. While spirits of the elements may certainly exist on the normal world as well, the usual explanation is that elementals are rifted in from elsewhere, and Manfred apparently doesn't like elsewheres. :)

That, and we're playing with an idea which was orginally posited for a zero magic world. This has the potential to introduce an elemental creature into a Deadspace type world. It's very, very, very alien, and potentially very intelligent. That's the truly useful points here.


All my points. Thank you. Thanks for the other ideas too.
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Offline manfred

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2004, 04:12:39 AM »
Not all explanations sound equally cool to everyone.

Deep in those Middle Ages, it was thought planets would move in beautiful and perfect circles, and around Earth. Later cosmogonic theories tried to make Sun the center, but kept the perfect circles. Still later, discovery and proof of elliptic orbits was quite insulting to many. Why can't be perfect, it's the cosmos!

If we have more explanations at hand, it can get useful. I like the feeling of irony, when one discovers that things don't work as it is believed! In some ways, it sounds better that these weird creatures come from the Plane of Fire (or whatever). If they are just another animals, it's not so cool. You can attach a philosophy to it, and it sounds twice as cool. And if it happens to rhyme with popular religions, even more.

And there is always the option of using this kind of theory (even if wrong) to confuse the PCs and players.


This could be one of the options for high-level PCs: instead of battling larger and larger monsters, find out the Truth about important facts of the game world. A whole campaign could be created around this.
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Offline manfred

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Elementals as Life Forms
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2004, 06:49:11 AM »
One more remark:

(As a random association with the Hauntings Explained? article.)

If minor variable magnetic fields can have certain unsettling effects on people, could not this kind of elementals (a magnetic life-form) have similar effects?

Of course, maybe there is simple no resonance, or people are immune to it, or it could do something else (like make people feel "high" ;) ). But if it does (another IF), elementals would have always a somewhat disturbing aura to people. (I know, as if a walking column of fire were not disturbing.) Yet even the very presence of such a creature, seen or not, would be unsettling.

And that would be no magical effect. It could even affect those with "Nerves of Steel", or "Knows No Fear" characters! Sounds usable.
Do not correct me, I know I am wrong.