Worldbuilding Stack Exchange Community Digest

Top new questions this week:

How can a natural process create a near-perfect geometric shape as the most prominent feature of a planet?

Starship Not-Enterprise exits hyperspace and looks at the planet filling up the window. Their jaws drop. The planet has a perfect geometric shape clearly visible from space, occupying the majority of ...

planets fauna flora clouds  
asked by Ash 18 votes
answered by MatrixManAtYrService 14 votes

Anatomically Correct Sentient Skeletons

This is a submission for the Anatomically Correct Series Sentient Skeletons are a staple in works of fantasy and horror. Sentient Skeletons are commonly depicted as: resembling a human skeleton ...

science-based biology creature-design evolution mythical-creatures  
asked by icewar1908 17 votes
answered by DWKraus 39 votes

Does this time travel delivery service cause paradoxes, and if so how can I avoid them?

After the time travel designs from the CASH WHEN YOU NEED IT YESTERDAY business was stolen by a corporate spy, Amazon now has time travel capabilities. Of course, saying that they could deliver the ...

time-travel paradox  
asked by Ceramicmrno0b 16 votes
answered by magik8ball 3 votes

How could a subterranean alien lifeform develop space travel?

I have a sentient lifeform populating an Earth-like planet in terms of gravity / composition. But since that world is close to an old K Type star, the atmosphere is evaporating and letting UV rays ...

planets science-fiction evolution aliens civilization  
asked by Marpal 16 votes
answered by Jann Poppinga 25 votes

How plausible would a self-aware, conscious viral life-form be?

In my story there is a parasitic viral life form which infects multiple species and has the capability to hijack the entire host body as well as communicating with the host. Essential to the story is ...

science-based reality-check consciousness microorganisms  
asked by xrl 15 votes
answered by L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica 26 votes

Are dragons useless when there are guns?

Right now, I'm facing a problem: Dragons are useless. This is dragons every time they come into contact with any fireteam. Most of my characters are non-humans. Among them, dragons have the problem ...

science-based military dragons  
asked by Mephistopheles 15 votes
answered by Harper - Reinstate Monica 18 votes

Medieval style tactics vs high-positioned archers

I am working out a situation where an army is invading a heavily wooded land, two large units of regular footmen with sword and shield and supporting archers, against a force almost exclusively of ...

warfare medieval tactics  
asked by distracteded 15 votes

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

Plausible Reasons for usage of Combat Mecha

So, assuming that the technology is readily available and that we could build these mecha as easily as we build modern tanks or planes. What would be a good advantage in using a legged (not ...

physics warfare construction  
asked by Feaurie Vladskovitz 72 votes
answered by user6511 81 votes

How would an AI self awareness kill switch work?

Researchers are developing increasingly powerful Artificial Intelligence machines capable of taking over the world. As a precautionary measure, scientists install a self awareness kill switch. In the ...

reality-check artificial-intelligence  
asked by Reactgular 59 votes
answered by Giter 112 votes

Santa is Satan, but why?

Santa is Satan, after all the clue is right there in the name. But why? What reason would the font of all evil and the generally unpleasant one have to pretend to be a jolly fat man and give away ...

religion santa-claus evil  
asked by Tim B 143 votes
answered by Mike.C.Ford 96 votes

What determines the length of a day on a planet?

The length of a day on different planets in the solar system varies a lot. For instance, Mars' day is about the same length as Earth, while a day on Venus is equivalent to 243 Earth days (source). ...

planets astronomy  
asked by JessWelch 18 votes
answered by Donald.McLean 20 votes

You can control a Demon by knowing its True Name, but why?

The power of True Names over demons is unbelievable: A Lamashtu demon can drain you of your blood in under 5 seconds, blend into shadows, and travel at the speed of darkness. Yet it will crumple like ...

reality-check language demons  
asked by Serban Tanasa 144 votes
answered by Cort Ammon 215 votes

How would I know if I were a 1 mm tall robot?

In the 1955 science fiction short story, The Tunnel under the World How would I know if my consciousness had been uploaded into a miniature robot living in a replica town? What would be the most ...

science-based  
asked by donkey 129 votes
answered by Alfred Espinosa 217 votes

What would be the possible issues with an IQ based voting system

I'm thinking of a world that values freedom but rates intelligence and logic so much that it dominates the entire society. Pupils take tests during school and this is averaged out and then given a ...

society politics  
asked by JamesD 75 votes
answered by Josh King 136 votes

Can you answer these questions?

Is it plausible for an alien to evolve a sort of tongue in their airway

So, let's say an alien species has 4 lungs: a pair of smaller lungs for passive breathing and a larger set for conscious breathing and vocalization. Airways are separate from the digestive system. ...

biology evolution aliens  
asked by DedKatEDM 2 votes
answered by The Square-Cube Law 0 votes

Is my topology/are my climate zones alright?

This is my first try at worldbuilding, and I need some feedback. I've filled in what I hope are realistic climate zones, ocean currents and topology for this current state of the world, all done in ...

science-based reality-check planets hard-science topography  
asked by Boff 5 votes

How heavy can my wooden trains get?

A few generations back Her Glorious Majesty decreed the creation of the Imperial Rail Ways. Now, you might immediately think of steam trains and steel rails. Stop that. See, Her Majesty ruled over a ...

medieval materials  
asked by Joe Bloggs 6 votes
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