Questions tagged [civilization]

For questions about groups of societies and their defining characteristics and achievements.

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8 votes
6 answers
364 views

How can civlization industrialize amidst a zombie outbreak?

In my world, there is a zombie pandemic that happens. The zombies are fast, but can be defeated by a large army. My world a little before the outbreak was close to having an Industrial Revolution. ...
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  • 897
5 votes
7 answers
175 views

Is it possible for another European-style medieval society to be on a separate continent?

In my world there are multiple continents with many cultures. In a far away continent, there are kingdoms that exist there. I was wondering how could they be medieval style like the mainland, and if ...
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  • 897
0 votes
1 answer
119 views

What trains would survive a post-apocolypse [closed]

My world is in the distant future. While there were nukes, they were not used entirely, and there were many bioweapons like the t virus. The world has a few major governments still standing, but are ...
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  • 897
4 votes
10 answers
2k views

Why would a society be matriarchal instead of patriarchal after the development of agriculture?

My (admittedly limited) understanding of why most human societies became patriarchal basically is that as people developed agriculture and the resources to defend themselves, power shifted to men as ...
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  • 607
27 votes
14 answers
7k views

How would a mermaid jail work?

I'm trying to write a mermaid civilization, although I have one major roadblock when developing a criminal justice system. My mermaids are air breathers (like cetaceans) so I'm not sure how I would ...
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  • 607
17 votes
15 answers
4k views

Why would a desirable technology remain forbidden despite progress of time and civilization?

Around 1100 years in the past, a great empire spanned most of the known human world. At its center was a great city of learning and discovery, where humans first developed methods to channel ...
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  • 276
26 votes
9 answers
4k views

Why would animal people wear clothes?

In my world, there are anthromorphic animal people, similar to the ones in Skyrim. There are many types, so I will just call them all this. Due to them having fur, most specifically the cat people and ...
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  • 897
4 votes
2 answers
170 views

How long would it take to build an underground city?

In my fantasy world, there is a race of ghouls. They are a knit-tit community, and while they built underground cities, including reforming abandoned mines as living places, they eventually kept ...
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  • 897
10 votes
4 answers
1k views

Suitable chairs for hunched, digitigrade lizard people?

My humanoid lizardfolk are 6-7 foot tall digitigrades, some have a slightly hunched posture like Gollum/Smeagol. I'm wondering what kind of chairs that be suitable for these characteristics as well as ...
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  • 1,237
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). ...
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12 votes
9 answers
872 views

Could the movement of animals and plants be used by a future civilization to figure out that it isn't the first civilization?

I noticed that when it comes to the idea of humans going extinct, and how human civilization could be detected by future civilizations, a lot of the ideas for how human civilization could be detected ...
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3 votes
3 answers
171 views

Statistically, what is the best place in the United States to restart civilization?

so for background : the world is post apocalyptic. a handwavium virae kill most of humanity. with the government is collecting is remaining population to a good area,we assume there is only 100.000 ...
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  • 1,732
8 votes
3 answers
284 views

How does a plain surrounded by desert get rain?

So, in my world, I have a city built in a plain surrounded by a desert. The plain got to be there by magic and general hand waving and was sustained in a similar way. At some point, that stopped being ...
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  • 83
4 votes
1 answer
149 views

How long would it take for two civilizations in the same system to notice eachother [closed]

I have this hypothetical world that's a rocky planet about 5 times the size of the earth and its moon about the size of mars. Assuming each civilization starts at the same time and progresses about ...
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  • 1,220
10 votes
3 answers
2k views

Could a river civilization develop in a cold desert climate?

There seems to be a trend with the oldest civilizations (Civilizations being urbanized societies with a government and social heirarchy) starting around river valleys surrounded by desert; the ...
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  • 103
3 votes
2 answers
118 views

Would it be possible to produce energy using copper coils on the moon interacting with the Earth's magnetosphere?

How possible is it to turn the Magnetosphere and our moon into a generator? Lets say we have all the materials and labor needed to perform the construction and that we have the delivery method for ...
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  • 33
4 votes
3 answers
125 views

What kind of houses would giant creatures build?

I have a sapient alien species who weigh on average 4 tonnes and are on average 20 foot tall when standing completely upright. They resemble six-limbed giant sloths; they have an upper pair of arms ...
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2 votes
4 answers
182 views

What types of conditions in an early civilization would create a religion that values joy, celebration, camaraderie and loyalty?

I’m currently in the early stages of building cultures in a high fantasy setting, and what I initially have to work with is a couple of deities- one of which embodies joy, celebration, camaraderie and ...
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  • 29
4 votes
2 answers
105 views

What is the feasibility of a polar civilization using auroras for power?

Okay, so I’m working on making a setting for a TTRPG and am working on what to put on the North Pole area. I’m thinking a big ol’ Antartica-esc continent with a civilization of Nordic-like people that ...
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24 votes
31 answers
7k views

Why would civilizations have no major technological development even after ten thousand years?

Basic Introduction (story background for anyone interested) I have a character whose punishment for causing massive genocide was immortality for ten thousand years. To be more specific, after his ...
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  • 787
0 votes
4 answers
121 views

Could plankton create civilisation? [closed]

Could a species of planktonic beings, with sufficient intelligence, creativity, and physical ability to manipulate objects, create a technological civilisation at the same level as humans? While being ...
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  • 11.8k
10 votes
4 answers
697 views

What kind of alternate history would lead to modern China being a federal constitutional monarchy? [closed]

I'm contemplating writing a fiction set in modern China in an alternate universe. I have thought about how it would look like, but I need a plausible alternate history that could lead to such result. ...
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5 votes
2 answers
233 views

How frequently can I pound my civilization with rocks and expect it to rebuild between?

I have a civilization living on floating reefs on a pure water world (no land other than the reefs). There are creatures on the planet that extract relatively pure metals from the water to use ...
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  • 1,278
3 votes
2 answers
193 views

A world without horse [closed]

Imagine that in ancient times, long before homo sapiens even exist, a certain, or a chain of certain events caused Equidae (horse family) creatures to go extinct, globally. So since the beginning of ...
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  • 1,740
21 votes
8 answers
4k views

How would tiny humanoids progress in a much larger world?

I just recently started reading Gulliver's Travels. If you haven't heard of it, it's basically a story about a 1600's era sailor who gets stranded on various islands with strange humanoids. The first ...
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2 votes
1 answer
69 views

How advanced could a society of intelligent magpies get with help from humans?

How advanced could a society of smart magpies get with help from humans? The magpies have the assistance of near future humans. These magpies are regular Australian magpies, aside from their ...
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  • 2,864
1 vote
7 answers
187 views

How can a blind-mute species develop civilization?

Suppose that the species in question is not at any ecological competitive disadvantage--they live in an environment (e.g., the deep ocean floor, caves) where very few, if any, creatures can see. They ...
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3 votes
1 answer
122 views

how to make a bipedal non colony ant species somewhat believable in a world 20 million years in the future?

I'm trying to plan out a story that flips the roles of a 50's giant monster movie that has a human be awakened by cryostasis 20 million years in the future by an bipedal ant species. The human is as ...
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2 votes
6 answers
804 views

How would a world with limited access to modern technology work?

The setting is a semi-modern fantasy world with pockets of population separated by huge expanses of wild land where monsters and other predatory creatures live, keeping civilization from expanding too ...
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2 votes
2 answers
200 views

How Many Generations for Elves to Match All Other Races in Population?

So Elves and their long lives are well-known to be a fantasy trope but I wanted to determine how long it would take for the Elves to achieve dominance not through magic or wisdom but sheer numbers. ...
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2 votes
2 answers
220 views

Is this Subterranean Isolationist City Self-Sufficient

In the story I'm writing, there is a city located entirely underground in a complex network of artificial and nature tunnels and chambers under and inside of a mineral-rich mountain range. An ...
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7 votes
6 answers
1k views

Why would a sentient and super advanced species begin to think like humans over time?

I have a super advanced sentient species that is not human, and developing by itself on a planet. With such advancement, we expect them to think on a higher plane or at least in a different way to ...
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  • 587
2 votes
1 answer
102 views

Can a mountain catch lightning and store that energy or become conductive?

Can we have a natural or man made mountain / hill of metal / ore that can catch lightning and become conductive so that it can be used as an energy source? What would be the expected energy output or ...
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  • 587
4 votes
2 answers
204 views

What would be the energy requirements to run a world with an artificial sun?

What are the design requirements so an artificial Sun, which is basically a reactor using nuclear fission technology, can give enough energy to power the entire world? Especially on planets like Mars ...
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  • 587
-2 votes
3 answers
100 views

How would a group of people on a rogue planet expand their settlement into an empire with minimal resources? [closed]

The type of rogue planet I am referring to is a terrestrial planet that has been ejected from it's solar system during it forming. The planet has a thin atmosphere and has no star, because of this the ...
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  • 73
7 votes
5 answers
229 views

What technology would allow an advanced civilization to control volcanoes and earthquakes on earth?

How would humans or an advanced civilization control earthquakes and volcanoes and even, if possible, harness their energy? By control, we mean the ability to stop or trigger or accelerate or dampen ...
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  • 587
8 votes
10 answers
1k views

How could one explain why a world would develop solar/hydroelectric/geothermal power before/instead of combustion?

My goal is to create a world somewhere on the line of steampunk and solarpunk, where what we call alternative energies are actually more economically practical than combustion. It's a fantasy book, so ...
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1 vote
3 answers
124 views

Mining, Scavenging and Recycling in an artificial world

Billions of years ago, an extremely advanced civilization created an artificial world. Whether it is a ringworld, a shellworld, or something more isn't really relevant. This world's crust has a depth ...
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  • 496
-1 votes
2 answers
160 views

Civilization's level of intellectual development, we and aliens

I believe that all of you should know the Kardashev scale. The method that the Russian scientist created gave us a practical way - a marker, which allows us to assess the technological level of ...
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  • 131
4 votes
5 answers
355 views

Would an underground species of humanoids need a large landmass to make their cities or could they get by with having mostly islands? [closed]

So I have this species of small humanoids called pinokiins(Pee-no-key-inn) that for the most part live in underground structures called bunktresses(bunker+fortress). Most of them are smaller, like ...
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5 votes
4 answers
208 views

What would drive the native tribes of Australia to form a kingdom?

I've begun to consider an Alternate Reality in which the natives of Australia formed a nation that spanned all of Oceania. This Australian Nation would be formed after several centuries of the ...
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7 votes
4 answers
175 views

Sustainability of a village of giant creatures

Let's say there is a sapient species around the size of an t-rex, they weigh on average 6000-8000 kg and are omnivores whose diet is mostly composed of plant matter, but with some meat. They are ...
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4 votes
9 answers
457 views

How do I determine which areas of my empire would be richest and poorest? [closed]

In my book series, the Aurean Empire spans an entire Earth-sized world called Aurea (however, all of the landmass is on the southern hemisphere, so only that part is inhabited). Overall, the planet's ...
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4 votes
5 answers
524 views

How Could I Combine Imperial, Republican, and Federation Systems of Government?

One of the planets in my book series is Aurea, a very populous planet with about end-of-the-middle-ages technology (cannons galore but still haven't really figured out arquebuses or muskets). Aurea is ...
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1 vote
2 answers
118 views

Moving galaxies to prevent them from passing the cosmic light horizon

Humans have become the leader of the Virgo Cluster faction, 800 billion years in the future. Our enemy factions are, the Fornax, Centaurus, and the Coma clusters, as well as a few dozen lesser ...
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8 votes
5 answers
1k views

How would a civilization of marine life avoid human detection?

In the story I'm writing, there is a global civilization of marine life that's parallel to human civilization on land, however in its world, humans have little-to-no knowledge of the underwater ...
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-5 votes
4 answers
284 views

How to have a religion that would not impede scientific development

The world setting is as follows: The main species is human and beastoid(animals that walk on two legs and have hands capable of dexterity, mostly like dog, wolf, cat, bear, rabbit, goat). Half-blood ...
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  • 205
3 votes
7 answers
383 views

How long does it take to displace and significantly damage a culture?

In this scenario, my protagonist species of aliens stumble upon some pre-industrial civilization. While trying to establish contact with them to uplift their technology and science, they mess up badly ...
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0 votes
1 answer
148 views

Should a space faring species interfere in a Mass-extinction event, which is necessary for the evolution of a future civilization? [closed]

I recently came across an audiobook called Permian by Devyn Regueira. The synopsis was about a recent discovery of fossilized eggs and two strange cave carvings in Siberia, one that describes the ...
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  • 1,895
27 votes
20 answers
6k views

How can a technologically advanced species be conquered by a less advanced one?

When worldbuilding, what elements can be introduced that can justify the conquest or overtaking of a technologically superior species by one that is not as advanced, or much weaker.
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