Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Technomagics

In the rulebooks of Centuria the world beyond Umarald is touched upon but never visited in great detail. There has been forays into these realms, however, and one of the fundamental questions asked is

How does a magical world advance?

As Umarald is the birthplace of science and technology as we would recognize it, this implies the rest of Aladron has advanced in a different fashion: technomagics. Technological advancement not driven by science but by magics. 

Below follows a summary of the various types of technomagics that can be found in Aladron, outside of Umarald. 


Aeromechanics

Basically aeromancy artifacts are used to power various machinery. Civilizations that have developed aeromechanics can use this to power aircrafts, manufactories and even improve agriculture through weather manipulation. The main drawback compared to a scientific approach is that aeromechanics does not help solve issues with material limitations or provide knowledge in fields like aerodynamics or meteorology. Aeromechanics are used by the plains nations of Kamrak on the continent of Thamal.  

Aquamechanics

Basically hydromancy artifacts are used to power various machinery. Civilizations that have developed aquamechanics can use this to power manufactories and provide for transport, sanitation and much else. It can also be used to turn very arid areas habitable, though casting of hydromancy spells are more difficult in such regions. The main drawback compared to a scientific approach is that aquamechanics does not help solve issues with material limitations or provide knowledge in fields like mechanics or construction. Aquamechanics is the most wide-spread type of techomagic and has been developed in Managara, Anaku and Zhizni, Amara independently and then spread both east and west. 

Daemonmechanics

Daemonmechanics is a very versatile technomagic that imbues various artifacts with spellcasting demons that provide power. Civilizations that have developed daemonmechanics can use this to power golems, manufactories as well as various crafts on both land, sea and air. The main drawback is obviously the danger involved in using such dangerous magics on a large scale. The ability to design demonic commands to successfully bind the demons to the desired artifacts also limits the possibilities. Daemonmechanics have been developed semi-independently in the regions of  Allhamar and Caratha in Anaku - both places which does not solely rely on this approach but other technomagics as well.

Divinotech

Divination magic is used to further scientific knowledge. This is the type of technomagic which most resembles the scientific process found in Umarald, but it differs in that knowledge gained through divination is very contextual and it can often be difficult to understand the underlying principles behind the knowledge gained. While divinotech can yield advances in any field it is deeply dependent on magical research and the knowledge gaps it creates makes synergy effects between different projects rare. Divinotech has been developed in the region of Khumbakkla where it is however becoming less potent as age-old artifacts and processes are not fully understood by current generations and thus cannot be utilized to their full potential.

Evomechanics

Evocation artifacts are used to provide power sources, quite similar to electric engines. These can in turn be used to power factories, electric light, vehicles and weapons. Its main limitation is that it is in practice little more than a battery technology; while it provides the energy good scientific understanding is still required to put it to good use. Evomechanics has been developed in the empires of Khizan, Amara where it is used alongside vigotech. 

Geomechanics

Basically geomancy artifacts are used to power various machinery and golems. Civilizations that have developed geomechanics can use this to power manufactories and golems and even for large scale terraforming, such as tunneling. The main drawback compared to a scientific approach is that geomechanics does not help solve issues with material limitations or provide knowledge in fields like mechanics or construction and that it requires rather homogenous terrain to work well. Geomechanics has been developed in the Seven Lakes region of Thamal. 

Imperiotech

Imperiotech utilizes illusion magic mainly to control animals and to some extent people and can also help improve agriculture through light magics. Controlling various animals help to improve transportation, agriculture, construction work and much else but is limited to the capabilities of the animals and their handlers. It does not provide power directly and doesn't drive technological advancement in other areas. Imperiotech has been developed in Riddersmar in Thamal.

Necrotech

Harnessing the powers of necromancy, necrotech provide power through an undead workforce - but nothing as simple as merely raising a horde of zombies. Instead, undead creatures are designed and crafted for particular purposes at which they excel. Apart from manufacturing capabilities this can also be used to construct necrocomputers, necroviruses and, perhaps a bit surprisingly, various medical treatments. The main drawback of this type of technomagic is that is horrendously dangerous, but further drawbacks include relying on a supply of corpses, only driving limited scientific understanding and that the ability to design and command undead limits its applications. Necrotech has been developed by the Nakrath in Osigath, Amara, but is seen as evil by all its neighbors which tires to prevent the practices from spreading.

Phasmatech

Spirit magic is used to imbue artifacts with spirits. The spirits can then continue to act as advisors, preventing loss of knowledge and providing an almost endless number of thinkers and philosophers. Beyond this, a deep understanding of the Spirit Realm allows construction of portals which can be used for transportation. With the right conditions, the Spirit Realm itself can also act as a place for recreation. The main drawback of this type of technomagic is that it doesn't provide a power source and that an ever-increasing number of ancient advisors not always help drive society forward. It has been developed by the Valerygiath of Osigath, Amara. 

Pyromechanics

Basically pyromancy artifacts are used to power various machinery. Civilizations that have developed pyromechanics can use this to power various vehicles, weaponry and manufactories.  The main drawback compared to a scientific approach is that pyromechanics does not help solve issues with material limitations or provide knowledge in fields like mechanics or ballistics. Pyromechanics were developed in Thessia and was inspired by the developments in Umarald. It has since spread to Caratha, Anaku as well. 

Regomechanics

Enchantment artifacts are used on a large scale to provide improved materials and tools. It is an iterative process where the improved tools and materials can be used to create yet more improved tools and materials and so on. It is however not an approach that provides means for mass production nor reduce the need for manual labor. Regomechanics have been developed in the various nations found in Kyngaard and Varangaard, Thamal. 


Regotech

Enchantment artifacts are used to provide power sources, driven by pure magic. These can in turn be used to power factories and vehicles. Its main limitation is that it is in practice little more than a battery technology; while it provides the energy good scientific understanding is still required to put it to good use. Also, using enchantment magic to provide power requires very advanced magical skill. Regotech has been developed in the region of Farreich, Thamal. 


Vigotech

In Vigotech, biomancy is applied to create various organic materials and even to design new forms of life. The latter is usually achieved by taking an existing species and then transforming it for desired effects (such as making it docile and able to be handled by humans). Vigotech allows for replacing a multitude of metals and other hard-to-come-by materials with cultivated crops. It can also be used to develop medicines and even biomodification. Vigotech is a powerful technomagic as it utilizes the already complex biological machinery found in life. Its main drawback is that any new developments take a very long time if potentially devastating side-effects are to be avoided. Vigotech has been developed in the empires of Khizan, Amara from where its usage has spread to Allhamar, Anaku. 


Sunday, May 9, 2021

Mekken forest

Mekken forest. Not many people went there, mostly on account of the goblins but also - as all goths knew - the forest was always dangerous. It was not without reason that the goths of the north stayed in their villages and hamlets, cultivating borders against the wildlands beyond. No one knew what lurked among the moss-covered rocks and trees at night. Orcs and trolls? And perhaps worse yet?

As far as wildlands went though, Mekken didn't have a very bad reputation. The really old forests had scores of legends and spooky tales, but because it was so close - you could go there from Ardborg and back in a day - it didn't feel so threatening. Sure, there were murderers hiding there (provided they hadn't gotten eaten by trolls?), trying to stay away from the noose. Now and then some fool would go missing, but it was not like nobody ever came back. There were some stories; talking animals, flying goblins(!), giant bears and a coven of elven wizards - but of course there were! You could find a man in the Ardborg docks who swore he saw a prostitute jump from street to rooftop (some men just haven't got *it*, you know...) was just chased by a throng of chickens or encountered a stray dog with demon eyes. Why would the forest be any different?



Sunday, May 2, 2021

A Sorcerer in the Inqusition

 The whole family was supposed to do inventory at the shop all day, going through all ingredients, salves and bottles making sure everything was accounted for. But as always, my brothers had taken my youngest siblings and ran off as soon as they had the chance. Not that I could blame them though, doing inventory was tedious work.

The hour was late, and I was stuck in the basement sorting through a shipment which had just come in when suddenly a loud banging on the front door could be heard upstairs. As I walked up the stairs I could hear my  brothers, being the curious devils as they were, rushing down the stairs from our living quarters down to the shop to see who it was as my parents made their way to the door. Given the late hour, Adelia was a bit curious herself and started walking up the stairs and into the shop. The bell on the door chimed as my parents opened the door, a messenger said, “A message for Miss Adelia LeClair!” and then the bell from the door chimed once again as the door closed a short while later. As she entered the store area of their house Adelia turned towards her parents and brothers who stood by the door. They stood frozen all four of them studying the seal of the letter, my parents were visibly pale. Without even seeing the letter I knew who had sent it and thoroughly cursed myself for trying to wait for a good time to tell them about my new employer. Hoping against all hope that it wasn’t the Inquisition that had sent me a letter I made my way over to my family. I could see the look of worry as I met my father's eyes as he wordlessly handed over the letter. My brothers had questions written all over their faces though they were uncharacteristically quiet right now, no doubt realizing the severity of this moment.  Seeing that it was indeed the seal of the Inquisition I carefully opened the letter without breaking the seal and glanced at its content. Realizing that I would have to go I felt a slight moment of relief followed by a sense of guilt. “I… I must go... to… to work... I’ll explain later. This seems urgent” I said as I carefully folded the letter and put it in my satchel.

Adelia grabbed her coat and quickly made her way outside onto a dark street, knowing that when she came back, she would have to have a difficult conversation with her family.