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Offline Pariah

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Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« on: October 26, 2013, 03:33:57 AM »
7Cs: Consistancy, Connection, Chrome, Cycle, Conflict, Control, Continuity

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"Any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology." Niven's Corollary to Clarke's Third Law

Take your average DnD setting, what with the monsters roaming the countryside, and make enchanting items cheap.  Rather than your average mage making one or two low level items, then one or two mid level items, then one or two world shaking items of ego stroking; instead said mage makes a factory to produce a bunch of low level items, trains some craftsmen on how to do the individual parts and proceeds to repeat for the mid level stuff.  Magic turns into tech.  Of  course you still have the problem of owlbears roaming the countryside and mauling people, but magic can solve that problem too.  Or at least make it so that it isn't a problem.  Everyone lives in self sufficient arcologies, live and die w/out seeing the outside world.

Worlds Specs:
Terra Standard (TS)
Terrain:
TS
Flora/Fauna:
DnD Standard (DS)
Resources:
TS
Races and Peoples:
DS
Cultural Overview:
TBD
Calendar/Standards:
TBD
Institutions-Major:
TBD
Laws and Morals:
TBD
Family:
TBD
Social classes:
TBD
Political Power:
TBD
Economics:
TBD
Religion:
TBD
Technology and Common Power:
Military Weapons and Tactics
Fantasy Gun Control is in effect, mainly because I can't think of a logical reason for peoples that have access to Fireball spells to need to invent the cannon to take down fortress walls, and w/out the development of the cannon, I can't really see the musket having developed.  Additionally, the rule of cool states that the development of industrial armies with hundreds and thousands of barely trained recruits is less desirable than some war zone that kewl knights can exist in.

Powered Armor - with the ability to cast spells that increase the strength of the recipient, powered armor would likely become quite common among the knightly ranks, because nothing is cooler than cutting through a horse lengthwise.

Fantasy Mecha - When simple powered armor isn't enough, for instance when your average knight needs to take down a dragon, step into this bad boy.  Increased size does come with a couple downsides; the armor is more expensive, you don't fit in tight spaces, you're easier to hit.  But I'm sure you'd agree, being able to wrestle with trolls is awesome.

Though the real thing that turns fantasy warfare on its head are the Mage Corps.  When a group of 4 mere mortals is capable of routing an entire peasant army, the view that anything resembling 'classical' warfare would exist in a setting like this must be abandoned.  Warfare in this setting went straight from Romans beating down on barbarians to post industrial brushfire wars fought primarily by highly trained specialists on one side and hordes of ill tempered locals on the other.
 
Industrial/ Production
TBD
Medical
Anything and Everything can be cured, if you have enough money.  It's likely that the lower classes are kept at a minimum well fed and healthy enough to work; mainly because it's easier to keep the elite healthy if herd immunity is strong.
Agricultural
Soylent Green for the common man up to real meat for those who can afford it.  It's hard to provide actual food for everyone when 90% of the farmable land is too dangerous to actually have farmers live on it due to wandering owlbears.
Communication
Cheap communication between mages is commonplace, thus the highest levels of society.  Whether is prototypical ARPANET has filtered down to the common man is up for debate.  Circuses, being one of the two pillars of any functioning society, means that some portion of the comm network is likely used to spread both propaganda down to the masses as well as cheap entertainment.  The question here being, is there a TV in every house, or is that something that you only find in movie theaters?
Math and Science
Magic
Construction
Magic allows the construction of super structures that your traditional fantasy totally ignores.  Not only floating cities, but towers miles tall.  Those living on the lowest levels of a city like that might believe that the sun itself is a myth.
Information
TBD
Other Knowledge
TBD
Holidays:
TBD
Transportation:
Trains would likely be the most common form of transit between cities, though I could see blimps and airplanes being another logical choice.  Both have their upsides. Trains are quicker than blimps and can carry larger loads, where as the airships wouldn't be exposed to the potential of orcish raiding parties (see Indians attacking trains in westerns) but are still vulnerable to roaming dragons (probably more so seeing as they're more visable.) Inside the city transport pads are much more likely than cars.  Cars are much more likely to spawn sprawling cities like LA, where in this setting intelligent species have fled to dense arcologies to escape the ravages of wandering owlbears.
Arts/ Literature:
TBD
Shadow:
TBD
Power:
TBD
Paranormal:
DS
History Brief:
TBD
Rules:
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

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Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2013, 04:38:12 AM »
Since I've decided on small highly trained militaries, I need some way to get them there.  Thus Blimps.  While lighter than air transport is a slow, easy to hit target it can carry a larger amount of men and materiel than fixed wing.  The easy target problem can even be solved by magic (who would've thought), mainly be the clever application of multiple shielding spells, which also allows the crew of a ship of this type to loudly complain to the captain that the "shields are failing"

Air drops from a ship like this would either be in drop pods that shield the encased from damage due to magical dampening of force inside, or the use of magical antigrav devices that gradually slow you the closer to the ground you get, at which point you have 20 odd angry knights in power armor ready to take down any horde of wandering owlbears.

Ship mounted weaponry is also a must, with magic coming to the rescue once again.  Rather than having to have a whole mage cadre to throw fireballs at hostiles, instead have magically powered rail guns, which would actually be a strict progression of the crossbow/ballista.  Instead of relying on a piece of metal with a string to propel your bolt, you either use magic to force it out directly, or you use magic to create a traditional rail gun.  After doing some math I've decided that war between states scares me in this setting.  While fireballs are the most iconic wizard spell, what with the fire and the burning and what have you, in dnd they top out at 10d6, where as going with falling damage for a railgun would have it do 20d6, every other round.  Assuming your average ship of the line carries 50 guns you get (20d6/2x25=~875 damage a round) and I'm pretty sure with weapons like that on a tall wall a city cannot be taken by force.
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Chaosmark

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2013, 08:15:47 AM »
All of my this.

This is the core setting concept I've been looking for my entire life (well, okay, just the past few years). It combines just about everything that I love conceptually, but never thought could be reasonably combined, into a single setting. Magitech, steampunk, swords-n-sorcery, vast tracks of unexplored wilderness, but massive cityscapes to get lost in as well. I'll definitely be contributing to this.

As a downpayment, your history is probably going to look something like Greece scaled up. Warring city-states squabbling over the most valuable pieces of developed land (after all, why waste the time and money to clear an area and develop it when you can just take an already-productive one from your neighbors by force?).
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

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Offline Scrasamax

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2013, 10:00:58 AM »
Teleportation and Gating

the ultimate form of logistics, deserves some attention both in civilian terms for moving goods and people from place to place, and in military applications for moving soldiers, removing soldiers and randomly summoning a powerful monster and then instantly teleporting it somewhere very inconvenient for your enemies.

Wards, Palings and Shields

In a world with clairvoyance, scrying, etc, there has to be some way to protect secrets. Likwise there needs to be a way to limit the places that can be targeted with teleportation spells, or ranged magical attacks.

Crop and Plant manipulation spells

More food from less land, super important



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Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2013, 10:55:10 AM »
Evil races that actually prosper from arcologies:
Kobolds - the cockroaches of the fantasy setting, if there's sewers or something that looks like sewers kobolds will be there.  Probably a secondary protien source for the lower levels.
Illithids - so many brains, so little walking between them.
Vampires - as above, only with blood.
Dopplegangers
Yuan-ti - Snake cults, forced conversion.  At this point I'm starting to wonder if wandering owlbears aren't safer.
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2013, 09:02:41 AM »
The 5 Races of Goodness
Dwarves remain almost entirely unchanged, the stereotypical dwarven culture already has them livung in easily defensible bunkers underground, with them in constant warfare with Drow, Duergar, Derro, Goblins, Bugbears, etc etc.  Despite this Dwarves are also the most likely to found new colonies outside of their fortress cities, as their insatiable need to dig up gold and other shinies drives them ever outward.  They're also the most likely to have a colony go missing and just shrug their shoulders and wait 20 years to find out what happened. (See Moria, Mines of)
Elves are also more or less unchanged, in that they still live in forests and are insufferable pricks.  Also, hearkening back to their Tolkienesque roots, if you enter one of their forests witout permission they will shoot you, repeatedly, until you die.  Needless to say this xenophobic mentality and the fact that no one really understands how a race that breeds once every hundred years or so has led to some wild rumors among those in the Poleis; they worship Chaos, Faerie, the Dark from before Creation, they drink blood, they don't actually kill you but instead capture you to perform vile experiments on, they think human flesh is a delicacy.
Humans are already the above ground city builders in fantasy, the fact that having magical healing would mean that plagues don't happen.  And by retreating into easily defendable Poleis to defend themselves from wandering owlbears, the only thing that would cause a mass die off is if magic stopped working.
Halflings have a few options.  The Tolkien option is that they go back to being farmers, in the DMZs surrounding most Poleis and near Dwarven cities, living underground in burrows because it both frees up farmland and means that owlbears can't burn down their house.  The Kender option has them being wander gypsies that literally don't realize that everything in your average DnD setting wants to eat them.  This implementation of them would probably be required if interpolis travel is expensive and/or nonexistent, but airship and rails mean that information will alreasy pass largely unrestricted between poleis.  The Eberron option has them becoming seminomadic tribesmen, almost like good orcs; at which point we run into the problems that elves would have surviving living in the woods, except much worse because it's much harder to defend a caravan than a city of tree houses.  The last option is the Kithkin from the Eveningtide/Shadowmoor expansion of Magic.  They become exceedingly xenophobic, live in communal burrows, pick up illusions from the gnomes and trapmaking from the kobolds, and possibly become a low grade hive mind.  This option seems excessively grimdark to me.
Gnomes... I've got nothing.  If I had to guess I'd say option four off the halflings, maybe without he xenophobia.  Or possibly fantasy stereotypical Jewish moneylender/jewelers engaged in a worldwide conspiracy (though what they're conspiring to achieve is, as ever, entirely undefined.)
« Last Edit: October 27, 2013, 09:13:17 AM by Pariah »
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Gossamer

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2013, 12:11:56 PM »
You don't really need gnomes at all. I hate the old version of the gnomes, because if you're going medieval, why mix in a bunch of steampunk without it affecting the rest of the world. It's like the gnomes and their technology exists in a vacuum. But if you want an alternative from the old tinker gnomes, take a look at 4E's gnomes, they're more eldritch.

Also, regarding the name Gnomes, if you choose to use them, why not call them Hobbesneblins instead.
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Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2013, 10:36:39 PM »
This started out as a search for stats on power armor/railguns, but rapidly expanded.  Now it's just a collection of links that I need to go over tomorrow.

http://1d4chan.org/wiki/15,000,000_Gold_a_Day
http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/time-travel-2098/items/rail-gun
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/gravity.age.weapons.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/information.age.equipment.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/fusion.age.weapons.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/fusion.age.equipment.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/gravity.age.weapon.gadgets.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/gravity.age.armor.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/gravity.age.armor.gadgets.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/energy.age.armor.php
http://www.d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/equipment/energy.age.equipment.php
http://www.clanofthegraywolf.com/images/Sewers01.jpeg
I don't even want to think of what happens if that 10' sphere doesn't fully encompass your target.
http://i.imgur.com/joMwNny.gif
Not entirely related, but ran into it when searching for DnD railgun stats; came off a page about someone trying to make a character paying homage to A Certain Scientific Railgun using psion/monk/psionic class/psionic prestige class.  Not the most broken minmax I've ever seen, and flavorful.
http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?345484-The-Railgun-(no-not-the-peasant-kind)
Quote from page discussing peasant railgun: Nothing crazier than casting fabricate at will. Just enchant an item with that ability and hyper-industrialize a few millennia early. Even startrek replicators cannot compete. Everything is even recyclable, and at no cost..
Craft X +1 as a skill investment should be enough with a added int 30+ to allow for the most intricate and difficult worksmanship
http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=10279.0
http://amethyst-d20-rpg.wikidot.com/start
This one actually helps a lot, someone looked at the standard DnD setting and saw something very similar that forces a similar state of megacities.  In this case it's the teleportation circle leading to the Tippyverse.
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=222007
More Tippyverse inspired stuff:
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/archive/index.php?t-125679.html
1d4chan creates a hive world in a fantasy setting:
http://uberstadt.wikispaces.com/Home
Quick readthrough provided a thought about a world where no one (rich) ever actually dies due to the fact that they can always have a rez spell cast on them.
http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?322812-Economy-and-D-amp-D
Frank and K's sourcebooks, generally a big source of cheese, but some important points are brought up, putting them all down here so I can read through them again, with this setting in mind:
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Book_of_Elements_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Book_of_Gears_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Dungeonomicon_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Races_of_War_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Tome_of_Fiends_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Tome_of_Necromancy_(3.5e_Sourcebook)

Entirely unrelated:
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/E6_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Grimoire_of_the_Balanced_Wheel_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
http://dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Tome_of_Prowess_(3.5e_Sourcebook)
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2013, 12:48:54 PM »
Alright, except for some of the ideas for the 30 I'm working on (which will be actually written up once I get a laptop) that I was able to pull from the D20 future SRD, most of those links were actually crap.

Tippyverse - cheap teleportation circles leads to mega cities.  On the surface it looks like this might be helpful, but the entire thread was about how the DnD rules either would or wouldn't allow this to work, and/or some way to block teleportation into the cities using rules as written. (RAW)  No one even mentioned the fact that if some one were to invent such an antiteleportation device, it would massively destabilize the world power structure (much like what the Soviet-American Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty was set up to prevent)

Amethyst - might pull some stats from here, but that's about it.

Frank and K's splats - due to the fact that they're written to assume you're keeping the psuedo Middle Ages Europe setting intact, much of it doesn't help at all, flavorwise.  The racial profiles from Races of War is useful as a starting point though.

On to new content!  Copying notes I made last night about mecha.  Will probably pull more stuff on this from a 6 year old conversation with Pieh and from Scras.

The Red Queen's Race
"Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!"

I've already decided that fireballs and the existence of persons of heroic power would likely prevent the application of black powder to warfare.  I may be entirely wrong on this premise, and should probably write on it more latter, just so that I can get my thoughts straight on it.  Anyway, with that in mind, Full Plate doesn't go out of style.  Add to that the fact that mages have a long tradition of enchanting items to increase their wearer's strength, it isn't a leap at all to say that eventually someone would develop a cheap way to produce power armor.

Even assuming that all this prototype power armor did was add +2 str, over a long enough time frame it would push more and more of this army into heavy armor.  When you start adding in some of the other things that power armor regularly does in SciFi (increased speed, extra survivability, HUDs) the advantage provided by powered armor swings right into walking tank with a greatsword territory.  At this point (with only bows/crossbows as man portable missile systems, and then mages as field mobile artillery) the next logical step is to make the suit stronger and heavier, making it larger would also allow it to gain a marked mechanical advantage over smaller suits.  Eventually you would cross over that murky grey line separating Mech and Power Suit.

Thus, sometime during this period, something needs to be invented to allow someone to run twice as fast (even if only for a day before everyone else copies it).  Cue the Gnomish engineer Armo Gauss, with his fabulous Gaussbow.  By electromagically accelerating bolts out of a crossbow, instead of relying on mere mechanical acceleration, he was able to make versions of his Gaussbow capable of taking down even the largest mech, though these versions are far from what could be described as man portable.  The availability of such a weapon tends to force an upper limit on the size of any Mech, generally about the point where the knee becomes a valid target.
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2013, 02:20:30 PM »
This is a world brief in progress... Will edit this much like I'll go back and edit Moon's worldbuilding sheet.
Arcologies
  • Reasons for Development In a world where anything and everything can and will kill a commoner, just because said commoner is there.  The races of Man would be much more likely to settle in heavily defended areas rather than try and survive in a village where a single monster could wipe out your, your family, and everyone you know.  This trend led directly to the development of the Polis as the primary political unit of the UHTF world.  Where as in your traditional fantasy setting, the PC's will the randomly mauled by a pack of owlbears not 3 miles outside of a village composed entirely of LVL 1 Commoners (which we all know can be killed by a housecat); UHFT has all the commoners living in easily defended Poleis.
  • Additional Benefits Beyond the mere strength in numbers that having so many people living in one place provides, the fact that people are living so close together would force a positive feedback loop, whereby magic would be used to make sure they didn't starve or die of the plague, allowing the population to grow to the point where a group of mages would no longer be able to support them directly, forcing the creation of more efficient ways to make sure the populace was fed and healthy.  Magic becomes mundane, much like our modern day society just takes the existence of such marvels as the moon landing and the internet for granted.
  • Post-Scarcity Utopia or Dolist Dystopia Magic is, at least in your average DnD setting, more than capable of producing a post scarcity utopia, much like the Federation in Star Trek.  One the other end of the scale, while 3 Goodberries would feed a commoner, and keep him from dying of anything other than old age or a magical disease, it isn't exactly the most filling meal known to man.  Personally I'm going to go with a point that's halfway between the 2.  While, yes, magic is used to care for the absolute basic needs of the society, there is still limits.  The city will provide you with 3 meals and a place to lay your head, but without any extra money, those meals are going to be tasteless gruel and that place to lay your head is going to resemble one of those coffin hotels in Japan, with communal everything else.

Black Powder
  • History in Our World
  • Reasons Against The things that early gunpowder weapons were used for are all strictly worse than what a single level 5 mage can do.  Using the gunpowder to make a rocket is still worse than a Fireball, and using it to make a hand cannon is worse than Magic Missle.
  • Reasons For Dwarven alchemists might still perfect the use of gunpowder weaponry, despite the fact that for most applications magic is better.  The primary driving force behind this would be all the enemies the Dwarves have in the Underdark that have some form of spell resistance.  While against an Orc, fireball may be better, when you're facing Drow you'd be much more likely to take less overall damage for the fact that you know it's not just going to shrug off a cannonball to the face.

Industrial Magic
  • Transportation and Trade Trains and Airships go here.  As well as teleportation at a local level.
  • Consumer Products Magic items are mundane, they don't break down like tech products.
  • Warfare in a Magitech World All the reasons mass charges of pike armed commoners won't happen.

Red Queen's Race
  • Rundown of Scras's Mecha post
  • Rundown of conversation with Pieh
  • Potential Stat Blocks

Races of the World
  • The Races of the Cities
    • Dwarves
    • Humans
    • Gnomes
    • Drow
    • Vampires
    • Illithids
    • Yuan-ti
    • Kobolds
  • The Races of the Wilds
    • Goblins
    • Elves
    • Orcs
    • Halflings

Campaign Specifics
  • The Peloponnesian League basic human multicity alliance
  • Agency 17 Dealing with all the things that threaten our society and the societies of our allies.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2013, 02:47:30 PM by Pariah »
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2013, 01:07:16 PM »
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.

Offline Chaosmark

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2013, 09:32:55 PM »
I am LOVING the names for the topics of study.
P(A|B) = P(B|A)*P(A)/P(B)

By the power of Bayes!

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Offline Pariah

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Re: Unnamed High Tech Fantasy Setting
« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2013, 10:27:44 PM »
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.
One can cure oneself of the not un- formation by memorizing this sentence: A not unblack dog was chasing a not unsmall rabbit across a not ungreen field.  Orwell

(13:23:49) (Chinchillas): See? You can write like an 4$$h013 when you're not writing like a pompous 4$$h013.