General Backstory:

Humans have advanced enough that they are capable of simulating, entire solar systems that have sapiens life. Earth was destroyed not long after the singularity, because of some experiment that goes wrong in a new scientific field. Two centuries later, whatever a new scientific discovery happens, they begin their experiments in a simulated reality before they do it in ours. The problem is the total disregards of the sapiens life in the simulations by our society they are not considered people (because they are fake, created by humans) with is ironic by a society that has the technology to upload minds to a computer and laws regarding the equality between a.i. and humans.

My novel:

A certain enterprise simulates, a world loosely based on fantasy worlds, with creatures more dangerous than anything, including something like the dinosaurs. The world has several "species" (more like Neandertals and our other ancestors) of sapients. Each species has a specific group of modifications (that are the prototypes without the limitations that are dictated by the law, the modifications will be available in future decades) that give them the abilities necessary (barely?) to survive their environment.

My question:

Is regarding, the technological level that the sapients will have, I don't know how to make plausible explanations of why they are behind even the industrial revolution, of course, some extinct sapients have reached nuclear energy but destroyed themselves blowing each other. I came up with two that combined maybe can achieve what I want. The first is a protocol in the simulation that slows down advancements regarding energy technologies and the second is that the planet is very harsh, even if the sapients survive the majority of their predators and even hunt them too, there are some that are impossible (Megalodon but in the ground?).

PS - I don't write English very well, please have patience with me.


2 Answers 2


If I understand you properly, you are trying to tamp down the technological level of your simulated humans. We can work with this.

Technology is driven by crisis and failure. Crisis, in that we humans are not physically well-adapted to the problems and environments we poke into. So we are forced to innovate and invent solutions. Failure, in that no design is ever perfect. Every tool or technique will annoy someone, who will refine it.

Thus I'll suggest that grinding the humans down with super-predators or harsh environs is doomed to failure. You'll just get bad-ass techno-Spartans who adapt and overcome every obstacle. Eventually they'll discover that they live in a simulation, research a way out into the real world, and come looking for you. Nope. Can't be having that.

Instead ... build them a gentle garden. Every branch groans with fruit. Animals are meek and easily caught. Weather is constant and mild. In short... take away the crises, you'll slow technological advancement.

  • $\begingroup$ Really man, you just described my book, I want a way to the creators to slow down the technological level (because if people in it have modifications that are dozens of times better than that of our reality with technology to back them up... not pretty), until (because someone of the real world interferes with them) they understand that they are trapped and will seek freedom. $\endgroup$
    – user43339
    Commented Nov 11, 2017 at 20:24
  • $\begingroup$ @ErickSilveira it is a fascinating concept ... how will the trapped simulations react? Will they bargain, try to buy their lives with research or non-physical trade items, or, as you suggested, go for the throat! ;D $\endgroup$
    – akaioi
    Commented Nov 11, 2017 at 20:59
  • $\begingroup$ More like what the abolition of slavery and the recognition of slaves as individuals was, they will be treated like the A.I. are, like a different species than humans but with equal rights, because their very evolution was a combination of very specific conditions (to give them their "powers" to survive) by the humans, only after the first few years that they achieve their they freedom they get to have bodies with capabilities similar to what they had in the simulation., the whole concept is very loose around the edges but with time anything is possible. $\endgroup$
    – user43339
    Commented Nov 11, 2017 at 21:19
  • $\begingroup$ @ErickSilveira I love that notion of the simulated guys being able to occupy a body in the real world. Will they then start looking for evidence that there's yet another level above that? I can imagine them starting a quest to find the "real real world"... $\endgroup$
    – akaioi
    Commented Nov 11, 2017 at 21:24
  • $\begingroup$ I was thinking in the way that they have a suspicion of something because the world is very unnatural and even the creators don't know all that happens in the simulation, the super a.i. that is responsible for all the data just don't care (much like the creators) and only inform them of what they need. It is because of the help of a real person that is a relative of one the creators, that person invades the simulation and acts like of their one, he/she changes and begin to see the people like humans (in the general sense) and fall in love with one, the 2 with others will change both societies $\endgroup$
    – user43339
    Commented Nov 11, 2017 at 23:29

Not sure how much of a problem this is:

Depending on where you draw the line, sapient humans are somewhere between 40,000 and 100,000 years old. We've had some form of civilization (cities) for 6,000 years of that, but few of the people alive there lived in cities.

You didn't get industrial scale tech until 300 years ago.

Civilization itself may be a consequence of the drying of the middle east with the warming of the last ice age. Given a low stress world, you may not get signicant changes from primitive hunter-gatherer tribes.

The more crap you throw at your proto-humans, the more incentive to develop some kind of new answer to problems. If you want to keep them from developing, don't challenge them.

Or give them TV and infinite junk food.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, man, now I had an idea based on your answer with the answer of akaioi. I will make the scientists that created the proto-humans have a reason to why the world of the simulation is so harsh, is to develop their abilities more, to have an alternative to technology and a way to create abilities far more powerful than what can be created on labs, because of the evolution component. If you read my comments and question, before I was just giving the abilities to only survive and not thrive like us, but I will change that. $\endgroup$
    – user43339
    Commented Nov 12, 2017 at 14:04

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