Patterns and Plans

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I seem to post a lot on Mondays… and sporadically otherwise. I haven’t gone back and reviewed my post history to see if this is true. I am merely asserting it. Therefore you must believe.

This is the Internet. That’s the way we do things here.

Anyway, in my last post, I alluded to a cyberpunk-like project. I should, I feel, mention some details of it.

Some influences/origins:

  • An idea I had for a D&D world that was, essentially, one large city.
  • Shadowrun
  • Magi-punk stuffs, mostly that I have read on the Internets
  • The Technocracy from White Wolf’s Mage: The Ascension.
  • Wonders of the Lost Age, the magitech book for Exalted (I like Exalted’s setting. I like magitech. I’m not sure that the former, however, is a good place for a lot of the latter).
  • My inversion of a famous quote: “Sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology.”
  • The Neitherworld cosmology that I’ve been playing with for a few years.
  • The entirety of the cyberpunk genre.

The idea?

Start with a fairly typical fantasy world.

Now imagine that magic becomes industrialized – magical devices become ultra-specialized, but usable by anyone. Magical processes become assembly-line affairs that involve the use of such specialized devices.

Large-scale magic becomes the product of factories. Individual magical theorists end up focusing upon extremely narrow subfields, like the scientists of today. The wizards of the past are all but forgotten.

After centuries pass, a society familiar to readers of cyberpunk emerges, but the world’s technology is powered by magic instead of science.

Many cyberpunk tropes will be easily adapted. Some will port over cleanly. Some will require changes. Others won’t work, but will be replaced by setting-specific weirdness.

The twist? Recently, wizardry has reappeared… but it has done so on the street. With some exceptions, corporations (guilds?) are slow to make use of the resources of the street mage… and there are some complications to them doing so.

There’s more, but that should give you an idea of what I am talking about when I, you know, talk about it…



5 Responses

  1. My inversion of a famous quote: “Sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology.”

    Wow, I’ve been using that for a number of years now, and have never met anyone who used it without getting it from me before!

    Great minds think alike!

    BTW, that line is the thesis behind an upcoming post, I encourage you to check it out.

  2. Looming, yes.

    Right now, ‘looming’ is pretty much what all of my non-work related projects are doing.

    4e did take a bit of the wind out of my sails with respect to Gourm, though. I’ve been looking more at the setting info that at stats and the adventurey bits. Do I wait and release it with 4e stats? I don’t even know anymore.

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