World building poll

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AuthorTopic: World building poll
Infiltrator
Member # 4248
Profile #25
Interesting ideas... I'll keep them in mind when I get to design the skeletal ecosystem (we seem to be headed that way at this point).

Nalyd wondered about magic. Currently, I'm considering finally implementing a soul-based system I've been thinking for a while. It would have some of the aspects you are hoping for, such as true magic users being rare and magic requiring life-long devotion. However, magic items would be very rare and the sacrifice-part can be debated...

The crux of my idea is that all living beings have varying amounts of souls; while souls normally retain only a passive connection to their bodies, serving as metadimensional log-books, through great effort and practice one can activate them and thus gain great insight of the world.

Unfortunately, this also means re-experiencing one's past lives, which might have been radically different from the current one. This is usually detrimental to the psyche of the magician, causing their personalities to change radically. In addition, drawing power from one's soul also forces the magician's body to change and adapt, eventually turning them to something else they initially were.

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Life is a neverending carneval where everyone has multiple costumes. I just hope mine are pleasing to the eye.
Posts: 617 | Registered: Tuesday, April 13 2004 07:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #26
If contacting your soul changes your personality, it sort of raises the question of just what 'you' is. If your soul isn't you, then who is it? It sounds as though it might just as well be anything from a guardian angel to a personal demon.

And it might make for an interesting fantasy world, if these questions were open. Magicans contact something, which is in some way linked to them personally, but is also not exactly the same person as they are. Some like to think it is their own soul, whose past lives their normal consciousness had forgotten. Others think that what they are doing is accepting a divine helper spirit. Or some kind of alien symbiont, like the Star Trek Trill. Still others consider the whole business to be nothing more nor less than a pact with a demon. Which theory is true, if any? Could be a very interesting campaign theme.

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Listen carefully because some of your options may have changed.
Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
...b10010b...
Member # 869
Profile Homepage #27
quote:
Originally written by Student of Trinity:

If contacting your soul changes your personality, it sort of raises the question of just what 'you' is. If your soul isn't you, then who is it? It sounds as though it might just as well be anything from a guardian angel to a personal demon.
The way he wrote it, it sounded like the soul was a kind of accumulation of metaphysical detritus that built up, snowball-like, over the course of one's lives. "Old souls" would have more spiritual potential to draw upon, but would also have a greater risk of unleashing more power than they could control.

And of course, one can imagine some mages of great ambition but little innate potential taking a fast-track to power by taking parts of the souls of others, either by agreement (having less of a soul isn't obviously harmful apart from reducing one's magical potential, so it's not hard to imagine someone being willing to sell a part) or by force; presumably, such pieces would then be incorporated into one's own soul-ball and mixed up with one's own past lives to the point that after a few incarnations it'd be hard to tell what was original and what came from someone else.

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The Empire Always Loses: This Time For Sure!
Posts: 9973 | Registered: Saturday, March 30 2002 08:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #28
And "open source soulware" does sound better than "necromancy".

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Listen carefully because some of your options may have changed.
Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 2984
Profile Homepage #29
quote:
Would it be possible to create a subforum on Polaris?
Yeah, srsly, we need a fantasy world building project at Polaris... let's call it... OH I KNOW! :P

(Sorry for being obscure. FF should get it.)
Posts: 8752 | Registered: Wednesday, May 14 2003 07:00
Shaper
Member # 32
Profile #30
I'm still waiting for that scenario... :P

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Lt. Sullust
Quaere verum
Posts: 2462 | Registered: Wednesday, October 3 2001 07:00
Infiltrator
Member # 4248
Profile #31
quote:
Student of Trinity wrote:If contacting your soul changes your personality, it sort of raises the question of just what 'you' is. If your soul isn't you, then who is it? It sounds as though it might just as well be anything from a guardian angel to a personal demon.

And it might make for an interesting fantasy world, if these questions were open.

I usually put my overtly philosophical side away when dealing with the theory, because exactly those kinds of questions cause my head to hurt. And yes, those questions are open.

quote:
Thuryl wrote:The way he wrote it, it sounded like the soul was a kind of accumulation of metaphysical detritus that built up, snowball-like, over the course of one's lives. "Old souls" would have more spiritual potential to draw upon, but would also have a greater risk of unleashing more power than they could control.
Basically right. However, my original theory (we can change it if we want to) had a bit more to it: souls were also compressions of life energy the body possessed. So sending away one of your souls would also had distrupted your body (this is also why I don't feel that "metaphysical" is the right word when talking about; the connection between souls and the physical world is pretty tight).

quote:
Thuryl wrote:
And of course, one can imagine some mages of great ambition but little innate potential taking a fast-track to power by taking parts of the souls of others, either by agreement (having less of a soul isn't obviously harmful apart from reducing one's magical potential, so it's not hard to imagine someone being willing to sell a part) or by force; presumably, such pieces would then be incorporated into one's own soul-ball and mixed up with one's own past lives to the point that after a few incarnations it'd be hard to tell what was original and what came from someone else.

In my original theory, many critters had more than one soul depending on how much life force their bodies can accumulate; bacteria and fungi only had partial souls easily swept away by the Flow (origin of souls, kind of a life stream); simple many-celled organisms had one; complex lifeforms usually had four, and some rare creatures possessed more (of course, more there were souls the more there was magical potential). Humans, dolphins and ravens, for example, had seven, while foxes and cats had nine. Very special critters had a whopping eleven.

So, trading souls is possible according to it (with even other lifeforms), granted that both parties have their souls activated. Such trade of course has exactly the problems you mentioned.

Stealing souls is also possible... but poses even more problems. First of all, it is likely to cause severe problems to the one who got his soul(s) hijacked: diminished mental attributes, shortened life span, fits of split personality (original idea was that souls remember where they're from), general exhaustion and depression. While a creature can remain fully functional as long as it has at least three souls with it (this means that simple organisms are by definition unmagical), loosing that third last will render the creature's body very unstable. It will experience even stronger derealization, will become unable to focus and physically frail if the condition is prolonged (these symptoms also apply to wizards who send too many of their souls elsewhere). Losing all souls would be almost always fatal, as the body would begin to devour itself in order to regain energy from the Flow. The process could probably be reversed by supplying the body with lots of outside sustenance or implanting souls to it. This would, however, result in strong personality change and possibly full and irrecoverable amnesia.

Gaining extra souls wouldn't be exactly healthy either, as it would greatly speed the change the body and mind are going through. Eleven souls in a normally seven-souled creature would probably turn it into a monster within short notice. Just imagine if a magical fox and a human would share a body... erh, lets make it a praying mantis instead. Great power comes with great insanity.

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Life is a neverending carneval where everyone has multiple costumes. I just hope mine are pleasing to the eye.
Posts: 617 | Registered: Tuesday, April 13 2004 07:00
Agent
Member # 4574
Profile #32
quote:
Originally written by Arancaytar:

quote:
The Sea falls eternally down the hole in the center of the planet, and is eternally renewed by neverending rain on the peripherary.
Been done, but nonetheless awesome.

The Torus Age was my inspiration for doing this. I took the basic outlay for it and expanded it, making it my own. I even used the term Torus. Myst rules.

Anways, if the disk idea isn't used, there's always the Hollow World Scenario.

[ Friday, December 21, 2007 10:37: Message edited by: Goldenking ]

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"I'm happy I'm the mentally disturbed person I am." -Nioca
"Yes, Iffy is a demon." -Iffy
The Two Universal Truthes:
"All I know is that I know nothing" -Socrates
"I think, therefore I am." -René Descartes
Posts: 1186 | Registered: Friday, June 18 2004 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #33
Since a torus is just a doughnut shape, sure, go ahead and take the physically accurate name.

Souls seem to have become some kind of biospiritual currency. I'm not sure I like the concrete mathematical nature of it. Giving everything one soul and each soul a different amount of power behind it may be more traditional, but it also seems much closer to the usual use of souls than having seven of them. If there are going to be large collections, they really need another name, quite possibly the kind of name that is a made up word with several apostrophes in it.

—Alorael, who is fine with the idea of making a Polaris subforum for organization. Even if it's just a convenient repository for set information it definitely beats having the world slowly fall off the noticeable pages here until it gets pruned.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Guardian
Member # 5360
Profile #34
Giving exact numbers of souls to each creature and having an accumulation system doesn't seem to fit. It'd be like "I have thirteen souls!" "Well, I have fifteen, so you'd better just give up now."

Perhaps more of a single, but reusable, soul system. As in, everything has one soul, but that soul vaguely - very vaguely - records the minds of all of that persons' past lives and influences their physical life only slightly. A soul would directly influence a persons magical talent at the start, but as all souls are the same age, it wouldn't be too hard to make up for that difference with hard study and devotion. There would be a finite number of souls, so no overpopulation. Or perhaps some things could be born "soulless", where they are either hideous mutant monstrosities or dead at birth.

As to the gods, Nalyd thinks that there should be several superpowerful but not immortal extraplanar beings that watch over the realm. They could be killed, and do age, but no single human could possibly kill them, and they age at such a rate that they are practically ageless, by human reckoning. They should be completely alien to it, and be more observers than meddlers, but will subtly intervene if extinction is imminent. Extinction, not massive death. And by subtly, Nalyd means diverting more reborn souls to humans or wolves or some such thing.

Any more ideas?

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Fear us, mortals, but never envy, for though we burn with power, our fuel is our sorrows.
Posts: 1636 | Registered: Wednesday, January 5 2005 08:00
BANNED
Member # 10021
Profile #35
I thought ofwhat I consider to ba a good replacement name for souls.

Sow'oth

This actually does mean soul in English,
and is pronouced like sonth.

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When I close my eyes at night I see David Bowie.
Posts: 157 | Registered: Saturday, August 25 2007 07:00
Warrior
Member # 12481
Profile #36
This souls idea is really interesting! Of course, some questions are raised: how much use can one get out of one soul before it is depleted utterly? Does having more souls give someone greater power, or just greater capacity for power (for example, does a human with 7 souls have the ability to cast Arcane Blow, or just cast Spray Lightning more often than a human with 5 souls?) Do different "types" of souls exist (for example, some souls being better equipped for the casting of evocation spells, others being better for transformation spells)? Could a wizard harvest the souls of a dead person (because that would be cool but also scary - can you imagine some wizard harvesting Erika, Rentar-Ihrno, Garzhad... you get the idea)...

Overall though, it's SUCH an awesome idea, with heaps of potential for the development of further awesomeness!

[ Friday, December 21, 2007 13:22: Message edited by: Lucheiah ]

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Third generation geek and heathen!
Posts: 93 | Registered: Tuesday, December 11 2007 08:00
Apprentice
Member # 9688
Profile #37
I am merely going to warn you not to get to weird, that will put off a large amount of readers, I know it would to me.

The whole soul thing sounds good, as trinity mentioned necromancy, if you stole a soul and animated a body have you considered what would happen?

I am still thinking about the implications
Posts: 28 | Registered: Friday, August 10 2007 07:00
BANNED
Member # 10021
Profile #38
Does anyone have feedback on wether my name for soul is good or not?

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When I close my eyes at night I see David Bowie.
Posts: 157 | Registered: Saturday, August 25 2007 07:00
Guardian
Member # 5360
Profile #39
There's no need to uselessly complicate things.

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Fear us, mortals, but never envy, for though we burn with power, our fuel is our sorrows.
Posts: 1636 | Registered: Wednesday, January 5 2005 08:00
BANNED
Member # 10021
Profile #40
Well in cas eyou didn't notice whats his name said he wanted a different name for souls.

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When I close my eyes at night I see David Bowie.
Posts: 157 | Registered: Saturday, August 25 2007 07:00
Infiltrator
Member # 7298
Profile #41
Are all souls equal? I'm thinking a person might have a one soul thats worth 3 and have 3 thats only worth 1 and 2 two normal size. So in theory someone could have 5 billion souls and it still be the same has only having 7. One thing you could consider as far as soul stealing is if someone does it upon another persons death. Also one thing we need to consider is what mechanics keep someone from stealing from the flow, what happens if someone tries, and what steps a really evil guy would go through just to over come those steps and become a bastardize version of a god/demigod

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A rock has weight whether you admit it or not
Posts: 479 | Registered: Wednesday, July 12 2006 07:00
Agent
Member # 4574
Profile #42
I've thought of another idea for my little Torus World... A plot idea...

The Seven Seas of Rhye on the Sunside of Torus are plunging into the Hole in the middle of the Earth faster then the Nightside is sending them back via rains.

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"I'm happy I'm the mentally disturbed person I am." -Nioca
"Yes, Iffy is a demon." -Iffy
The Two Universal Truthes:
"All I know is that I know nothing" -Socrates
"I think, therefore I am." -René Descartes
Posts: 1186 | Registered: Friday, June 18 2004 07:00
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Profile #43
I also have an Idea maybe each of the campaigns lead back to one larger campaign that has to do with the passive god deciding to kill us all. Because it's apparent that this is going to be a man vs. nature world so wouldn't the god being on nature's side?

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When I close my eyes at night I see David Bowie.
Posts: 157 | Registered: Saturday, August 25 2007 07:00
Agent
Member # 4574
Profile #44
quote:
Originally written by Starman1985:

I also have an Idea maybe each of the campaigns lead back to one larger campaign that has to do with the passive god deciding to kill us all. Because it's apparent that this is going to be a man vs. nature world so wouldn't the god being on nature's side?
Because the god is passive?

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"I'm happy I'm the mentally disturbed person I am." -Nioca
"Yes, Iffy is a demon." -Iffy
The Two Universal Truthes:
"All I know is that I know nothing" -Socrates
"I think, therefore I am." -René Descartes
Posts: 1186 | Registered: Friday, June 18 2004 07:00
BANNED
Member # 10021
Profile #45
A passive god who only helps the world when it's on the brink of extinction would want to start steering a human vs. nature world to nature surviving.

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When I close my eyes at night I see David Bowie.
Posts: 157 | Registered: Saturday, August 25 2007 07:00
Shock Trooper
Member # 2123
Profile #46
I know I am a little late on voting in the poll and posting but my first thought was not to have a world at all. On top of that to not has any "physical" objects exist, but rather "intelligence." The confict could be that some of these "intelligenceses" wish to move on to another stage or "evolve," while as others would rather have no change. There could also be a large number of these "intelligenceses" that take no side at the start but as both sides argue thier reasons for change or no change, these line sitters chose sides until everyone is on one side or another.

That's as far as I got with that thought, I don't know what side "wins" nor what thier victory would entail. Once again, sorry for the lateness of this post.

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Posts: 228 | Registered: Monday, October 21 2002 07:00
Infiltrator
Member # 4248
Profile #47
*BUMP* Up this goes. I have lot's of things to say.

quote:
Alorael:
Souls seem to have become some kind of biospiritual currency. I'm not sure I like the concrete mathematical nature of it. Giving everything one soul and each soul a different amount of power behind it may be more traditional, but it also seems much closer to the usual use of souls than having seven of them.

I like my magic hardboiled. However, no matter how well-defined or strict the rules are, in the world there might be no-one who knows them all. So while I think the rules of magic should be concrete to us developers, inside the world there should be lots of room for vagueness.

quote:
Alorael:
If there are going to be large collections, they really need another name, quite possibly the kind of name that is a made up word with several apostrophes in it.

I personally think that the word "soul" is just well enough for our use. This simply because my own dislike of made-up words. We can consider giving them a new name in the future once suggestions start to pile up.

quote:
Starman:
I thought of what I consider to ba a good replacement name for souls: Sow'oth.

Nah. Soul will suffice for now.

quote:
Nalyd:
Giving exact numbers of souls to each creature and having an accumulation system doesn't seem to fit. It'd be like "I have thirteen souls!" "Well, I have fifteen, so you'd better just give up now."

I like numbers and detailed accumulation systems because they make things feel more natural to me (for some reason) and make the theory easier to handle. We can revise many of the details, but first I have to get most of them out in the open. Read my answers to Luceiah and Safey and tell me what do you think.

quote:
Nalyd:
As for the gods...

I was thinking around similar lines. However, currently we seem to be headed for a godles world.

quote:
Luceiah:
How much use can one get out of one soul before it is depleted utterly?

In my original vision, souls would not be depleted; it would've been the bodies of wizards that would fail. Eventually a wizard would release more energy than his/her body could cope with, and that would cause his/her body to stop working and make the souls deactivate and scatter.

quote:
Luceiah:
Does having more souls give someone greater power, or just greater capacity for power?

Greater capacity. One really old soul could give more insight than seven young ones, and while having more souls would allow the magician to do more magic without suffering nasty side-effects, activating and managing, say, nine souls instead of seven would require much more work. All in all, the age of souls usually matters more than the amount a given creature has.

quote:
Luceiah:
Do different "types" of souls exist?

Yes. A souls that was passed from a wolf to a human offers different insight than a soul passed from human to human. Different creatures have attunements to different things, and this is reflected in the nature of powers that can be achieved through using their souls.

quote:
Luceiah:
Could a wizard harvest the souls of a dead person?

A soul requires a living body, or at least a link to one, to remain active. A link between an active soul with a body and a passive without a one would not be possible. This is why I mentioned that magic items would be exceedingly rare. Once the body has demised, the souls scatter and pass on to new creatures, so there's no reliable way to harness one's souls post mortem.

quote:
Safey:
Are all souls equal? I'm thinking a person might have a one soul thats worth 3 and have 3 thats only worth 1 and 2 two normal size. So in theory someone could have 5 billion souls and it still be the same has only having 7.

Any soul gained via whatever means quickly become equal to other souls inhabiting the body. This is why most species have fixed limits for the souls they can possess; the type and amount of souls are heavily linked to the physical nature of the creature possessing them. The reason why humans have seven souls instead of 108 is presumably because souls have a fixed "size" and seven energy balls of that "size" are needed for a human body to fully funtion.

quote:
Safey:
One thing you could consider as far as soul stealing is if someone does it upon another persons death.

Stealing all of a creature's souls will kill it, but as mentioned, in my original vision it can't be done in reverse order. After you've killed something, its souls will quickly be gone and unusable.

quote:
Safey:
Also one thing we need to consider is what mechanics keep someone from stealing from the flow, what happens if someone tries, and what steps a really evil guy would go through just to over come those steps and become a bastardize version of a god/demigod.

The only way to get a soul from the Flow is to have a living creature spin it. If your body allready has all the souls it needs, it will not make more; the only way to gain extras is to steal from other beings, and that can have potentially disastrous results. It stands for a reason why in the original theory beings with eleven souls were "very special"; only a very bizarre body would need that many or remain stable with such an amount. So, the future bad guys of the world will likely have an ordinary amount of souls, and they might not even be activated.

I recently took a look at the poll, and it seems that we shifted from a flat world towards a spherical one during my few day absence. Otherwise we seem to be currently headed for a low-magic world with no gods at all. There's still almost a month's time to vote though, so things might change quite a bit.

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Life is a neverending carneval where everyone has multiple costumes. I just hope mine are pleasing to the eye.
Posts: 617 | Registered: Tuesday, April 13 2004 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 2984
Profile Homepage #48
This genesis-by-committee is very amusing to watch. :)

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Posts: 8752 | Registered: Wednesday, May 14 2003 07:00
Shock Trooper
Member # 9906
Profile Homepage #49
A Mobius strip, in the middle of a star system too cool, magic lots o it, no f-ing humans, maybe a passive god, not much animals, awesome terrian, i dont care what, nature.vs.Civillization, you choose which, name: Desomnica, technology: people are zapping each other with four arms armed with nova cannons, a.k.a really cool ****. Just make it intresting i voted to help (yay) Remember space battles are cool, like "Skies of Arcadia" in some aspects

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Posts: 301 | Registered: Tuesday, August 21 2007 07:00

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