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Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting

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So I don't lose it

I am LOVING the names for the topics of study.

Status update:
Work on this continues unabated; unfortunately my laptop which had, until a week ago, struggled valiantly one with a screen that was half dead and battery issues (read: it died if it wasn't plugged in) finally bought the farm.  At this point I actually have a notebook and a half of disjointed notes on the setting.  Around Hanksgiving I'll be able to get a new laptop and resume filling it out.  Until then trying to type stuff on a tablet is too painful.

Enchantment, The Mana Engine, and Practical Thaumaturgy

Prior to the invention of the mana engine magical items were individually crafted by hand, a task that generally required both a master smith and a guild certified enchanter.  A good part of the reason for this is that it even an enchantment that drew its power from ambient magic (a +1 sword) as opposed to requiring an investment of mana from the user (wands et cet) still needed a rather significant investment of mana from the enchanter when being enchanted, else the various runes and formula etched into said item would be little more than glorified artistry rather than imbue the item with whatever powers it was supposed to have. The need for a _skilled_ mage (as opposed to someone with a basic understanding of how magic works) changed (for certain values of change) with the invention of the mana engine by Master Thran. The ability to access raw magical power without any skill in using magic would lead to the ability for anyone, no matter their individual magical ability, to imbue items with enchantments so long as they understood the theory behind them.

For nearly 2 whole generations after the invention of the mana engine the guild managed to hold onto its monopoly on magical items, primarily through targeted assassinations and the fact that it was THE only source of skilled mages or magical items, both of which are generally required for a ruler to maintain their throne. This monopoly ended with the death of King Raignald III or Bum@!#$istan, whose only legal heir is best described as a disestablishmentarian, morally opposed to monopolies in general, and the mages guild in particular.  The first official act upon Colart IV's assumption of the throne was the founding of the Bum@!#$istani Royal College and the legalization of the mana engine.

Having foreseen this action, though unable to sway King Raignald, the mages guild backed the claims of Erling, the Bastard King, leading to the 40 years of the Bum@!#$istani Civil War. At first the civil war _GREATLY_ favored Erling, after about 7 or 8 years he'd achieved control over more than 3/4's of the country. This being in a time when only the richest of Knights and their armsmen could afford so much as a +1 sword, and the support of the guild heavily shifted the balance the bastard king.  Unfortunately for the guild's complete monopoly on magical item creation, by that point in the war, the Loyalist armies had reached to point where arming most/all of its peasant conscripts with equipment better than the traditional rude spear and padded jack was not only ideal but actually viable. It only took about a decade into the war to reach a point where arming a peasant who didn't have 2 silvers to rub together with an enchanted spear and armor became economical.  If the guild had had the benefit of hindsight, this would have been the point where they would have stop providing Erling with any aid, materiel or otherwise.  Unfortunately for them they lacked the benefit of hindsight at that point in time.

Over the next 30+ years king Colart oversaw the expansion of the mana engine, from at first merely a way of providing the mana for the creation of magical items, to the beginning of the modern arcology.

To be continued... I'm going to sleep at this point and I'm only a third of my way through the notes for this saga....

NOTES: Need actual country name for Bum@!#$istan...


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