New answers tagged

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People would be shocked by some of his behaviour and or appearance on occasion. He would probably be able to avoid detection to begin with if he was careful and knew what he was doing and was aware of his surroundings and how to behave. But some of his potentially outlandish behaviour might draw unwarranted attention. The military would not be involved at ...


2

Your guess of a shorter Cultural Revolution is most likely change. I would go further, in fact this was my first thought, of No Cultural Revolution. Essentially the Chinese Communist party leadership ensures Mao Zedong's enforced retirement in the aftermath of the Great Leap Forward. Mao is unable to rebuild his power base in Shanghai. This could be ...


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You have two choices. Do you specifically want the culture in your story to be the real Pueblo culture (albeit with monsters added), or do you just want a culture of people who dwell on plains, with the intent to use Pueblo cultural history for inspiration? The right response to the two options look very different. If you specifically want Pueblo culture ...


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Possible? Absolutely. Practical? No. Consider the fact that there are dozens of uncontacted tribes in the Amazon rainforest, and one on North Sentinel Island. These people have almost no knowledge about the outside world, and it would not be terribly difficult to recreate the conditions, if you have enough resources, patience and lack all ethical ...


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Weapons and/or ammunition if they are a hunting community. Crafting ammo is possible with limited resources, but eventually they will need ingredients or high quality material. An external menace, like water pollution, maybe a gold fever rush leads an unusual flow of city folk to their territory.


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Well, I'm no scientist or knowledgeable person, but the environment of your worlds would play a big hand at everything. For exemple the 3rd world of "endless darkness", everything in there would adapt or be born/created to deal with this almost total lack of light.Most if not all beings would either "sense" the world through their own means(as a dark world ...


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The scenario is fundamentally flawed in that it suggests a great excess of apex predators. In the film the creatures are extremely efficient and lethal hunters. Once night fell the creatures came out in huge numbers, to the point where they devoured any other creature they found almost instantly. In reality, the population of such a species would be self-...


3

The worst impact this creatures would do on the society would not be direct manhunt, but the destruction of normal Earth biosphere. Night terror would not be the most awfull thing. Wolfs at nights in villages (and even some cities) were not uncommon event in 1800 and people already were consern about keeping their familes and stock safe from wildlife far ...


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In the early days these night creatures might well be a deadly menace, but assuming a village society is able to keep them out at night the creatures are ultimately doomed. The story would be vaguely similar to that of the wolf. Wolves have generally been pushed further and further back by the advance of civilization and these creatures would be no ...


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To be frank about it, you have already answered your own question... (kind of like vampires I guess) The material facts are EXACTLY like vampires for the purposes of your question. They go after animals and humans - whether it is to drink their blood or eat them directly doesn't have any real impact on the threat assessment they represent. The fact that ...


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Breeding A number of genetic disorders arise from a small population continuously inbreeding between themselves. A periodic influx of genetic material (sperm) would occasionally be needed in order to maintain genetic diversity. Technically it would only be females that would have to leave, but for reasons of protection and equality it seems reasonable that ...


1

They tell stories. People are very good at that, and very prone to that when the time allows. Many stories will be focused on the specific aspects of their world, but they will also make stories that highlight moral teachings and those that highlight the cohesion of the group. And when I say "stories", I mean very, very long ones. They have time. They can ...


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Eating is more than just surviving - it is profoundly integral to our lives and our culture On a statistical level, agriculture contributes 6% of a developed nations GDP, however this does not incorporate all the flow on industries related to food, which also include: Hospitality industries Retail in relation to food, supermarkets, cafes and market stalls ...


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If the society knew of the outside world and what it was capable of there might be a number of reasons why the society or members of it would need or want contact with the outside world. There would be many goods that would make their lives easier such as protective clothing and steel blade knives. There would also be some goods that would save their lives ...


7

Retain a lawyer. That requires money. As long as they are not a sovereign state, they are subject to the laws of another state. That means it is a very good idea to follow developments in that state. Someone wants to build an airport next to their land, with an approach path directly overhead. There was public involvement in the planning process, a grass-...


4

Taxes. You may be a-ok never seeing mainstream society again, but father state stil wants his money. Similarly applies for birth registration, conscription, getting a ID/passport, all the other bureaucratic requirements that may come with living in a nation. Vaccines. Hard to produce, not strictly neccessary, but really really useful. Bad harvest, need food ...


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The Game of Spells Has Rules Now these rules are not necessarily written down -- and in fact are prone to changing as time goes on so they almost assuredly aren't documented anywhere. But there are certain things that you Do Not Do when playing the Game of Spells. At least not if you value your reign if you win by that move. See, crossing that invisible ...


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War is not about the stronger force winning It is about achieving your goals by force of arms. This isn't so different from achieving your goals at peacetime, by force of diplomacy. This can play out in a huge number of ways: A strong tide difference may result in attack spells being inevitably destructive. It isn't helpful if you destroy what you wish to ...


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It doesn't affect whole covens. If it's not based on location, as others have suggested, then the cosmological balances of mana depend on the person. Your low tide only occurs when the celestial bodies align similar to how they were at the moment of your birth. Those born under an eclipse are lucky, as they'll almost never experience a low tide. Because ...


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Integration Europe is a continent that has seen a lot of war. It was the theater for both world wars, which were devastating. I believe that a good part of the intention behind creating the European Union was stopping european countries from waging war amongst themselves. So far it has worked. So make war cost more than peace. Yeah, those buggers on the ...


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Alliances If all the various groups have a power that will wax and wane and the power of the various groups is predictable. Then groups will look to create a web of alliances with groups that are powerful when they're weak (and vice versa). The glue that holds it together is that if you attack your ally when they're weak, who is left is help you when your ...


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“Most witches don’t believe in gods. They know that the gods exist, of course. They even deal with them occasionally. But they don’t believe in them. They know them too well. It would be like believing in the postman.” ― Terry Pratchett, Witches Abroad I think that sums it up pretty well. They're there. You deal with them. But you don't believe in them, as "...


4

Mutually Assured Destruction. Even in a Game of Thrones kind of situation, you understand that wars of total destruction are very difficult and you have to be Absolutely certain it will work. If it doesn't you are in deep trouble. If I remember my history correctly, I believe the Assyrians of the ancient world fell victim to this. They were powerful, but ...


2

Magical artifacts Magical artifacts could act as magical batteries. Dump your manana into them during high-tide and draw it out at low-tide. You could limit the storage capacity of these artifacts, so that they must be used strategically and regularly topped up.


1

The Party protects the people. Alien members of the Party form the committee that polices abuses by Aliens. The State keeps it's hands clean and becomes involved only if a mass-reprisal is needed after the committee fails. Of course, potential abusers can join the Party (or the State) to use their talent and lack of restraint, channeling their abuses away ...


11

Wars generally take longer than six hours You experience two high tides and two low tides a day; that's about 6 hours between them. If you attack when you're at high tide, you'll experience a power crash a few hours into the battle. If you attack when at low tide, you'll get a "second wind" after a few hours (and that may actually be smarter). In general,...


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Tide affects magic where the tide is. It is low tide for me in my tropical island hideaway. The moon is sapping my magical strength. Time to work on my scrimshaw. It is high tide for you where you are, up by the glacier. You send powerful high tide bad juju my way because that is how you are. But your bad juju is sapped by the moon as it reaches my ...


5

Already happened! Play with their heads. The Empty Fort Strategy tells of a guy who was in your shoes. So open your doors, get a flute, lyre or whatever have you. And drink tea. Whatever makes it look like you are really at ease. If the other general is a brute, it will kill you. If the other commander is a cunning wolf, it will be spooked. Certainly no ...


4

I'd go for a simple reason: Honour and morals You just don't kick a magic user when they are down. You don't want this done to you, you don't do it to others. I'd give a loose equivalence - fighter pilots in World War 2 didn't shoot catapulting enemy pilots. Even when they are the enemy and it's strategically advantageous to kill them, not to mention easy....


10

Create magical defences during high tide The witches in a coven could pool together their increased mana during high tide to create magical barriers that are strong enough to defend them during low tide when it would otherwise be easier to attack. A coven that decides to attack during high tide might not necessarily have the capacity to also set up their ...


9

That's half the point of choosing your battles You attack when it's best for you to do so rather than when you're forced to do so. Since the defending faction know when they are weakest they should be taking precautions against being attacked at that time. Perhaps physical defences would hold long enough. Perhaps there's some other course of defensive ...


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Not all tides are created equal, so witches wait for special astronomical events. High Tides: Twice a day Your covens will experience two mana influxes every day as the Earth passes beneath or opposite the moon. These influxes will be relatively tame - useless for attacks, but crucial to daily magic usage. Most if not all complex spells will be cast during ...


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Infrared Mass Surveillance + Facial Recognition China already has mass surveillance that makes it an authoritarian dream. A species powerful enough to shapeshift would pose a huge threat to national security - so surveillance seems like the logical, and politically appropriate, solution. I recognize that the question states we have zero tolerance ...


2

Your weaker coven has several options. Politics. Convince the strong-coven leadership that the attack brings unnecessary high risk of unexpected consequences -- like a broad backlash upon themselves. That will make the strong-coven leaders look for a lower-risk alternative. This could include large, powerful multi-coven institutions that police the most ...


32

Distance High and low tides aren't anywhere near each other. Assuming we're going with the 'twice a day high, twice a day low' cycle of tides as is on our Earth, that means that high tide and low tide spots aren't going to be near each other. That is high tide and low tide occurring at the same time are on spot a quarter of the globe away. So the easiest ...


0

This is a little bit of an XY problem. The immediate physical environment matters a lot, but there are in my opinion too many other things at play to be able to focus just on the layout of the island :o) The biggest drivers for development of science, per se, were: Terrain, as mentioned in several other answers and comments, certainly appears to have been ...


1

Fingerprint scanning apps High-level fingerprint scanners can be used to distinguish people's fingerprints 99.6% of the time when using two fingers. And these can be installed on apps on a phone, which means that it's very easy to have widespread use of them to authenticate the person. Obviously, the program itself would need to be heavily encrypted, but ...


0

Note: some of this answer is based on more recent developments in your magic system, that do not appear to have been established at the time this question was asked. Limited resources Eventually the defensive and offensive casters will run out of orgone, and then they're toast. A non-magical body-guard is able to continue fighting and protecting for much ...


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Your verse already has divine beings with power beyond mortal ken. They just have to use a little of it (as little as possible) to keep their people in line. If awareness is relatively cheap, your Human Deity could simply Be Aware and then do something relatively minimal to let everyone else know what they did. Different sins could be associated with ...


1

Creating shortages is the key. People with good hunting grounds don't switch to agriculture. People with steady rainfall don't invent irrigation. People with lots of tin and copper don't invent and improve iron. People with battalions of slaves don't invent the steam engine. People with tons of trees don't invent adobe. People with massive peasant armies don'...


0

Your planet is rotating at the same pace as it travels around your sun, with habitable temperatures around the terminator. Your nomads live in this shifting temperate zone, and must drive their herds ever forwards for fear of freezing temperature and plant-life that goes into deep hibernation for the sunless year-long night. They can't travel too far in one ...


2

Besides the excellent points about diversity and challenges in other answers, let's not forget about a very important challenge: have a geogoraphy and/or location which guarantees that there is a lot of variation between fertile and infertile time periods. To be able to accumulate, preserve, store, and protect food to last during the less fertile period, ...


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Put an Old Faithful type geyser or thermal vent that will erupt at consistent intervals forever. This will give them the notion of repetitive, mechanical action, as well as a preexisting steam engine to clone


1

Depending on your gods' definition of war, it is entirely possible to have superpowers without wars. Maybe through intrigue and certain arranged "circumstances" happening to key people in other nations would force those nations to turn to others, where in turn, they can slowly exploit them for personal gain. If you don't already know about it, you can check ...


0

must make conditions on that island such that a human population will achieve a fully industrial society, similar to Victorian Britain, in as little time as possible. Let's say within 8640 years. The initial stock is a clan of a thousand hunter-gatherers of sufficient genetic diversity, and they cannot ever travel between islands. In the course of actual ...


1

No. Either the gods are real and have always been and faith is just acknologes this or they are false, have always been and will always be and belief is just delusion. You can't make something real by beliving on it.


5

Russian Sci-Fi strikes again! There is a short story from 1990 about two guys from an advanced civilisation that want Micronesia to be able to fend off European expansion during the Age of Exploration. They artificially divide the nation in two, waging a perpetual (but somewhat ethical and controlled) war against each other – no killings of children, no ...


2

They use a secret language The shapeshifters don't have a natural built-in way to tell each other apart but they've come up with a cant they can use. A historical example of this concept is Polari - it was used in some criminal circles as well as the LGBT community. At the time they were basically the same, as being homosexual was a punishable offence. So, ...


1

Parrots, thousands of them, parroting preloaded knowledge. No writing system needed. They'll be gone in a century or so, but being available for even a decade will be enough to jump-start things.


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They need a good motive. The industrial revolution was a disaster for most people in terms of longevity, quality of life and workers rights. If you already have enough food and shelter, you need a very strong motivation— eg a caste of greedy capitalists - to force the people to give up their rural idyll. Most cultures did not go down this route, even after ...


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