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Questions tagged [alternate-worlds]

For questions about worlds other than Earth that are significantly different. This could be a water, ice, barren or other planet. For questions about planets similar to Earth with specific differences use the *earth-like* tag.

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5 votes
2 answers
1k views

How could the earth's magnetic field become weaker?

I am creating a world where the poles of the planet face extreme radiation while other places not so much. If I understand correctly the earth could have a weaker magnetic field if the core became ...
-1 votes
1 answer
133 views

How can I make a boat world where everyone lives on boats [closed]

Some people live on land, but a greater part decided to not be confined by dirt. Living off boats, fishing and traveling around the world... families on boats living all their lives on the sea, ...
13 votes
15 answers
5k views

How to make animal husbandry the only agriculture possible

This world is inhabited by carnivorous humans, how they came to be remains a mystery. The geography is typical of a post-glacial world (fjords, lots of lakes, valley steppes, all that good stuff) and ...
0 votes
1 answer
159 views

Steampunk-inspired constructed world tips? [closed]

Nothing too complicated but what are some tips and tricks to consider when creating a steampunk-inspired conworld and the like?
28 votes
6 answers
14k views

What if an Earth-like planet had no axial tilt? (impact on ecosystem)

The Premise The Earth rotates on its own axis, which is tilted by about 23 degrees. The setting for my fantasy novel is an earth like planet without the axial tilt, all other factors remaining ...
3 votes
2 answers
288 views

Would a world twice the size of Earth be able to have similar weather patterns?

The TLDR for this is if I have a planet that is twice the diameter of Earth, (so four times the surface area), would continental distribution have more effect on the weather patterns than the sun and ...
0 votes
2 answers
89 views

Auroras of a planet around an active M7 red dwarf

A planet the size of earth around a pretty active M7 red dwarf (think of M to X level flares almost every day) has a decent magnetic field of 0.5-0.8 Gauss, orbiting at a distance of 0.0443AU, with a ...
3 votes
0 answers
66 views

Would the atmospheric circulation experienced on my world's high platforms seem to be reversed?

In this world, that rotates in the same direction and at the same rate as Earth, where the land platforms that cover around 10-20% of the world's surface is (magically) suspended at the 1 ATM level, ...
2 votes
1 answer
124 views

Can ammonia and sulfur dioxide oceans coexist?

I have a world that has a 0.2 bar atmosphere and at -65°C, so theoretically, ammonia and sulfur dioxide can exist as a liquid in those conditions. What if an ocean of both liquids existed? Would it ...
4 votes
14 answers
5k views

Does magic speed up technology?

In a classic RPG magic system, energy/mana/handwavium points are expended to manipulate reality. The cost increases with the complexity and extent of the alterations being made. Natural talents for ...
23 votes
18 answers
5k views

There's no space to construct a runway. Are early planes still useful and promising technology?

My setting exists on a huge vertical cliff with no top or bottom, and currently nearing the end of an steampunk-y industrial revolution, putting its tech level somewhere in the range of 1860s to 1910s....
3 votes
7 answers
1k views

Why is "magic" possible in the Elidrian side of reality but not on Earth? [closed]

TL:DR: "Why is "magic" possible in the Elidrian side of reality but on our terrestrial side of the universe? " I'm creating a game and attempting to breathe life into a story that ...
5 votes
3 answers
202 views

World built inside a gigantic drainage pipe

I'm doing a Pratchett style fantasy book, and the setting - the Downspout - is built in a downspout of an astronomically sized gutter drain pipe. We're assuming an impossibly large structure housing ...
13 votes
2 answers
6k views

What effect would a red sky and/or sun have on plants and animals?

If an Earth-like planet had an older, red sun — or maybe just a reddish sky due to some property of the atmosphere — how would that affect the growth and/or adaptation of plant and animal life on the ...
3 votes
4 answers
1k views

Would a windmill shaped like a waterwheel work?

The culture I'm working on lives in a constant state of snow storms and tundra. In the snow lives a bioluminescent type of algae that thrives on the cold and only glows when its temperature goes above ...
2 votes
2 answers
136 views

How would dimensional travel(similar to Obito's Kamui) work? [closed]

I am writing a story on which several characters are able to create pocket dimensions. For example: character A does this by warping space permanently, through something akin to a programming language,...
3 votes
4 answers
1k views

What kind of world could have humanoid size spiders

It is a classic RPG trope to have the humanoid adventurers battle some spiders that are roughly the same size as the humanoids or even a good deal bigger. There are a number of questions about giant ...
8 votes
13 answers
3k views

How to stop water runoff on floating islands that lack an available surface

I am building a world with islands floating in air, and I'm looking for solutions to loss of water from runoff/erosion (think rivers emptying off the side of the islands). The islands vary in size, ...
7 votes
4 answers
832 views

What would my Sun look like to fit the properties of my Earth?

I want to have a realistic solar system as a home for my planet. My planet must look like Earth, with the exception that each orbit around its sun takes 365 Earth years. Hence a season would last ...
2 votes
1 answer
121 views

Social implication of lion-people living with normal humans and how to make them into free folk and not slaves while maintaing their role as defenders [closed]

Lion-people are kidnapped at birth from humans. Why? Because Lion-folk prey on humans as a form of sport and entertainment Kidnapped cubs of lion-folk are groomed in ''loving'' families in order to ...
2 votes
1 answer
147 views

How do storms scale with planet radius?

I'm trying to figure out how weather scales with planet size, keeping other factors constant. For a specific example, say a planet with the following characteristics: Twice the radius of Earth. ...
2 votes
2 answers
240 views

How could a the global economy have no money/collapse? [closed]

I would like a plausible way to tank the world economy. I am trying to make a political horror world, that would be very different from today. The basis should be a lack of money or decreased value of ...
0 votes
6 answers
266 views

How can a god that loses its memories in becoming mortal, regain them? [closed]

God looked down at his creation, humanity, and was disgusted with what it saw. The race had become so entrenched in hypocrisy and sin that it considered destroying it. However, evil abominations from ...
5 votes
2 answers
134 views

What would the aerodynamics of ships sailing on clouds look like (and thus their design)?

I'm currently working on a TTRPG setting where there is an ocean of caustic clouds surrounding the continents instead of a regular ocean. Tech level is roughly Age of Sail with some deviations due to ...
8 votes
3 answers
614 views

What is the tallest mountain possible in any gravitational environment?

In world building it is often interesting to consider extreme landscapes – how tall can a mountain be on Earth for example. But what is the tallest mountain possible in any gravitational environment? ...
1 vote
1 answer
109 views

Could humans be able to create a modern society in a water planet? [closed]

If the world we live in is a water planet, or a planet with little land, would humanity be able to survive and if they could, can they reach the type of civilization or society we have. Like able to ...
5 votes
3 answers
645 views

Could a Giant Earth planet have lower gravity than Earth?

I'm writing a neo-pulp adventure and one of the planets that appears needs to have the following characteristics: Is populated by giant non-sentient non-humanoid insect-like aliens, some from the ...
0 votes
3 answers
245 views

Could 2 versions of a person from alternate universes be different ages? [closed]

Pretty much what the title says. I have 2 characters who are technically the same person, just from different universes, but for multiple reasons they have to be different ages. Can this make sense? ...
3 votes
2 answers
131 views

Effect of lower average temperatures on the tropical savannahs and deserts of a planet

I have a nagging question that has been eating away at me since I am figuring out the biomes that are present in the world that I am building. For all intents and purposes this world is basically an ...
4 votes
5 answers
770 views

How to set up exchange rate between two very different world

Related to this question. The Science world, of course, has experienced and discarded gold-standard and is using paper currency and floating exchange rates. The magic world, on the other hand, uses ...
11 votes
4 answers
2k views

What type of eyes are best suited towards fog and cloud cover?

I am working on a speculative evolution project at the moment that has a low atmospheric scale. As a result, the ground is almost always covered in fog or cloud-like fog that is universal across ...
5 votes
4 answers
998 views

Could a hypothetical planet composed of a neon-oxygen or argon-oxygen atmosphere with Earth-like pressure levels sustain life?

I'm trying to create a hypothetical planet scenario, where there is a planet that has a similar atmospheric pressure to that of Earth, but in this case, it has a gas different than that of nitrogen. ...
8 votes
9 answers
421 views

How to catch giant sea creatures?

One hundred years into the future, humanity colonizes the first planet in another solar system. A big ocean world! Yay! But there is a problem: Most of the flora is toxic for consumption, so the ...
18 votes
7 answers
2k views

Living on a giant banana world

In my story, which should be taken entirely seriously, mankind encounters a region of space occupied mostly by giant exo-householdobjects. That is, planet sized kettles, saucers, teacups, cutlery, etc....
12 votes
11 answers
3k views

Measuring Time in a World Where the Sun Never Sets

First time here, so I don't know what to expect. I'm writing a dark sci fi mystery story that takes place on a hypothetical megastructure called an "Alderson Disk" (Example seen Below). ...
1 vote
3 answers
137 views

Could the Deutsche Kaiserreich create a U-Boat with the following capabitities for the WWI if some timetraveler give them the blueprints?

Is possible to design a submarine that follows the following restrictions? It must have at least the capabilities of a early „the war to end all wars“ U-Boat (e.g. SM U-19). It must build-able with ...
22 votes
7 answers
4k views

Plausibility of an advanced civilization that never found fire?

A world similar to earth (climate fluctuations, the need to cook food), and because the natural atmosphere doesn't have oxygen, the intelligent organisms there don't breath oxygen. How far could a ...
5 votes
9 answers
3k views

How would computers work if the number zero wasn't invented?

I imagine a parallel world where people instantly went crazy and kill themselves whenever they try to conceptualize nothingness which we now known as the number zero, so no one I mean absolutely ...
5 votes
2 answers
102 views

Shantungosaurus chase, mad max style

I have a scene where there's a Shantungosaurus chase in Mad Max style, except there's no such thing as motor technology and the closest thing to guns are portable repeating polybolos (scoprion ...
1 vote
2 answers
115 views

Can sharkmen perceive your emotions?

alledgedly sharks can feel a humans heartbeat from a mile away or something like that, and they can perceive electrical signals, makes you wonder how come then they are dumb enough to confuse surfing ...
2 votes
5 answers
231 views

Are there things that can make natural lifespan in other planets inherently longer?

How would things like gravity, air composition and density affect the lifespan of the biological protein based life that inhabits the planet, or would they have any significant effect at all? Honestly ...
11 votes
11 answers
3k views

In a supercontinent would ships still be the primary way of transportation before the invention of engines?

introduction My world is made of a super-continent with very little isles, it has 100 countries, 97 of which are on land. 3 of those are underwater for folk who are able to live confortably in the ...
6 votes
1 answer
163 views

human version of hermit crabs

I have some tribes of nomads that live in pretty harsh places, going around by carts or building shelter is usually not an option. They live and sleep in some kind of heavy primitive armor, I was ...
1 vote
3 answers
216 views

what alternative topological shapes could alien life take on?

I've always been intrigued by the idea that alien life would be completely different from life on this planet. recently, I've been doing some research and found out that humans, along with other ...
6 votes
6 answers
414 views

What would cause oceans to disappear?

I'm writing a story that happens on a dry and arid planet that has only a few oasis's where life can thrive. Life on this world either lives in the oases or lurks in the sand waiting for migrating ...
0 votes
1 answer
127 views

What kind of sounds would a creature from the void make? [closed]

For a place I call The Void, its a place filled in darkness with no elements on the galactic periodic table, what sounds would it have? Especially the entities in the Void called VoidSpawn being ...
2 votes
1 answer
63 views

How does the environment shape taste in alternate worlds

We all know there are factors leading to the various ways of flight, walking, running, crawling, climbing and swimming. Those factors are independet of the creature as those are motions and motion is ...
14 votes
8 answers
4k views

How would WW2-level navy deal with my "merfolk"?

The abovementioned fictional race aren't exactly merpeople from fantasy, but I call them like that just for the sake of convenience. Rather, they're semi-aquatic humanoids, who are really good at ...
6 votes
1 answer
190 views

Weather on a flat world illuminated by static luminaries

Consider a flat world illuminated, not by a sun following a daily trajectory overhead, but by luminaries in static locations, fixed at a finite distance above particular locations on the surface, ...
1 vote
2 answers
100 views

Triassic crocodile alternative [closed]

During the Triassic period there were many different varieties of crocodile related species. The dinosaurs weren't as prominent until after a poorly understood extinct event. If this event hadn't ...

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