I'm writing a novel with real-world-style settings and minimal magic.
Minimal magic... how can I explain this? The magic in the world is only as good as epoxy to a leaking pipe. The magic can't just make another pipe out of thin air nor instantly transform an entire network of water pipelines to one's will. Plus that minimal magic epoxy will disappear soon and the epoxy won't paste itself into the leak. Someone has to handle it properly.
My story also embraces game elements, albeit very minimal as well, and includes one of their more notorious features --- limiting players' explorable area at the start.
Deadliest waters guard the ruins of the fallen empires.
Therefore, my world is a 1:1 alternate Earth with the exceptions of minimal magic and the majority of the land mass is inaccessible, all being underwater saved for a few beginner-friendly areas.
While the novel has magic, I aim for a setting where science triumphs over magic. A fully realistic world built on modern knowledge... meaning there won't be "unlimited water" or "something super, super, super heavy"...
Question: Is there a scientifically-plausible way to sink a landmass?
- The landmass must remain underwater for at least 1,000 years.
- The transition to and from the flooded state need not be instantaneous.
- The largest landmass considered is an entire tectonic plate.
- The smallest landmass considered is a small island.
I read the comments and will answer some of your questions.
First. What kind of magic is possible? Anything. Fire magic. Ice magic. Healing magic. Predicting the future. Anything known as magical is accepted.
Second. So... magic or science? The method done to sink the islands can be either pure science, magical, or a mix of both. However, the effect must be bound to science. Think of magic as a highly inefficient, one-time effect. If there is a scientific counterpart, you're better off using science. Everything that comes after that, including its unintended consequences... science!
I know, it's weird, to be honest. I didn't include it here but in my setting,
Magic itself is dying. The gods have forsaken us!
The theme is the transition between magic to science.
Or you can completely disregard magic since scientific ways of sinking landmass alone are interesting enough. I'm thinking about scrapping the magic part lol.
I dunno how to close this post. Of course, everyone is welcome to post additional insights and responses. I want to declare that given the numerous answers I got, I decided to take the majority of them to appreciate and not waste their efforts, as well as in comparison to the fact that calamities/large-scale conflicts can have multiple causes that all contribute to the said effect such as flash floods, drought, economic recession, rebellion, et cetera.
I also know that this website acts professional, and as someone that puts a touch of informality as a gesture of friendliness and an intention of goodwill to everything I type, this website... isn't one I'm comfortable with. You might notice me again very soon here (but that time, maybe on the side of culture, tradition, history, archeology, and most likely biology), but if you noticed me, please be patient. And I do not know if this helps but thanks to everyone that contributed to this post.