I can't decide if this game should be played with fantasy or sci-fi lore... — Guild Wars 2 Forums
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I can't decide if this game should be played with fantasy or sci-fi lore...

montecristo.1324montecristo.1324 Member ✭✭✭

When I log in with my tech ele/asura I don't enjoy how most of the world is fantasy lore. But when I log in with my human guardian, and Taimi start to talk to me with his radio, it feels so wrong... I don't know if it's just me but there are too many discrepancies between the two lores.
There is also the steampunk lore of charrs, but this bother me less because it feels more like mechanical...
How do you guys feels about this? Am I the only one that can't live with all these different styles?

Comments

  • Randulf.7614Randulf.7614 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 15, 2020

    It's fantasy. But, fantasy that shows signs of technological advancement.
    Sometimes that gets blended together to become a science fantasy sub-genre, but ultimately it doesn't really matter. Fantasy and sci fi elements can co-exist together and have been doing so for decades across many mediums - my 2000 book catalogue is filled with many examples

    The main backdrop though - the foundation if you like - is fantasy and much of the tech is based on magic as well.

    As for can I live with the styles? Largely yes because in the main everything works and it is nice to see a fantasy World actually advance in real time. Occasionally Anet puts out things that are horribly jarring, but these tend to be black lion/gem store stuff which are less connected with the lore and sometimes Taimi will push things a little too far with her sudden genius inventions and ideas. The actual technology of the races and organisations like the Inquest are largely quite consistent and with reasonable boundaries for the setting though

    The fact that the races have these technological differences is really what gives them their flavour. The races got a lot of watering down post-GW1 to make them more universal as playable characters and to be able to have them represent all the Orders even when it doesn't always seem fitting. The varied techs help flesh out cultures in the absence of a spiritual or religious dominance for those races (hence partly why the Charr have progressed so far since over throwing the Flame Legion zealous rule)

    What sleep is here? What dreams there are in the unctuous coiling of the snakes mortal shuffling. weapon in my hand. My hand the arcing deathblow at the end of all things. The horror. The horror. I embrace it. . .

  • Vayne.8563Vayne.8563 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @montecristo.1324 said:
    When I log in with my tech ele/asura I don't enjoy how most of the world is fantasy lore. But when I log in with my human guardian, and Taimi start to talk to me with his radio, it feels so wrong... I don't know if it's just me but there are too many discrepancies between the two lores.
    There is also the steampunk lore of charrs, but this bother me less because it feels more like mechanical...
    How do you guys feels about this? Am I the only one that can't live with all these different styles?

    Genres used to have harder lines years ago, but now genre lines are blurred. It all falls under a category called speculatiive fiction a term coined quite a long time ago, but one that never got into common usage. Spec fic, as it's called, included fantasy, scifi, horror, and various other subgenres like slipstream, magical realism and alternate history.

    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    The new wave of scifi writers that followed Asimov, Bradbury and Heinlein moved into cross genre books. Roger Zelazny, one of my favorite authors, wrote books like Madwand and Jack of Shadows, on worlds that included both magic and technology. It's been going on for a long time. You don't have to choose one or the other to write.

  • Dawdler.8521Dawdler.8521 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 16, 2020

    @Vayne.8563 said:
    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    I would say yes... and no. Star Wars is a complete mess today. I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU. Why? Take something as simple as "lightspeed skipping". It makes zero sense in the Star Wars universe, because we know that according to the more scientific aspect of the lore, a gravity well mess up lightspeed and it requires complicated math to calculate the route. You shouldnt be able to move like a fricking TP daredevil through the "scenic sites" of the galaxy. It is, in every sense of the word, a complete fantasy. And dont even get me started on arcing mortars. In space.

    For GW2, it really is fantasy though. Players have such magical skills that cant really be "explained" through anything other than "its magic". It would only be scifi when looking at it in a very selective angle.

    gaggle - /ˈɡaɡ(ə)l/ - noun
    A disorderly group of Asura.
    "The gaggle of Asura tried to agree on whether a phase-shifted thermonuclear energy matrix was sufficiently powerful for a device capable of heating bread"

  • White Kitsunee.4620White Kitsunee.4620 Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 16, 2020

    The problem you're having here is that each of the races have a different design theme, which most are realistically non-compaticable/ non-complimentary.

    Humans -european fantasy
    Sylvari - elven fantasy
    Charr - steampunk /oilpunk
    Asura- sci-fi
    Norn- nordic/ native American

    I personally think this was all blended really well in the core game, but ever since lws3 asuran tech started being used as plot devices and I guess the writers couldn't stop themselves since taimi was a popular character.
    Ultimately I think it's a good thing that every race has a different visual theme, it makes them all much more distinct from each other,
    But something is definitely lost when Blish just rips open a hole in space-time with 'science' and his arm allows free long range teleportation.

  • Vayne.8563Vayne.8563 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:
    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    I would say yes... and no. Star Wars is a complete mess today. I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU. Why? Take something as simple as "lightspeed skipping". It makes zero sense in the Star Wars universe, because we know that according to the more scientific aspect of the lore, a gravity well mess up lightspeed and it requires complicated math to calculate the route. You shouldnt be able to move like a fricking TP daredevil through the "scenic sites" of the galaxy. It is, in every sense of the word, a complete fantasy. And dont even get me started on arcing mortars. In space.

    For GW2, it really is fantasy though. Players have such magical skills that cant really be "explained" through anything other than "its magic". It would only be scifi when looking at it in a very selective angle.

    Star Wars, when it came out anyway, was science fantasy becasue of the force, not because of ftl drive. Plenty of scifi has ftl drive in it, and we can sorta see how we can get from here to there, even if the science to do so doesn't exist yet. The force, at least when it came out, wasn't really explained at all and was a fantasy element.

  • Dawdler.8521Dawdler.8521 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 16, 2020

    @Vayne.8563 said:

    @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:
    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    I would say yes... and no. Star Wars is a complete mess today. I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU. Why? Take something as simple as "lightspeed skipping". It makes zero sense in the Star Wars universe, because we know that according to the more scientific aspect of the lore, a gravity well mess up lightspeed and it requires complicated math to calculate the route. You shouldnt be able to move like a fricking TP daredevil through the "scenic sites" of the galaxy. It is, in every sense of the word, a complete fantasy. And dont even get me started on arcing mortars. In space.

    For GW2, it really is fantasy though. Players have such magical skills that cant really be "explained" through anything other than "its magic". It would only be scifi when looking at it in a very selective angle.

    Star Wars, when it came out anyway, was science fantasy becasue of the force, not because of ftl drive. Plenty of scifi has ftl drive in it, and we can sorta see how we can get from here to there, even if the science to do so doesn't exist yet. The force, at least when it came out, wasn't really explained at all and was a fantasy element.

    It was, but still very much grounded in the physical and mental realm and required training (again why Disney Star Wars is kitten and breaks the lore, Rey can do anything in days). It is very, very low fantasy IMO. Luke Skywalker wasnt running around tossing magic missiles or summoning hell hounds because he read a scroll he found in a random chest.

    gaggle - /ˈɡaɡ(ə)l/ - noun
    A disorderly group of Asura.
    "The gaggle of Asura tried to agree on whether a phase-shifted thermonuclear energy matrix was sufficiently powerful for a device capable of heating bread"

  • Psientist.6437Psientist.6437 Member ✭✭✭

    I like the concept of magiphysics or hard magic systems in general. If magic exists in a universe and can be learned, then it must have predictable qualities that would yield to the scientific method. There would be laws of magic that explained how reading a scroll grants abilities. Soft magic systems can be a lot of fun but it is difficult for me to take the worlds built from them seriously.

    all primes work and not tearing down has value
    ready purrlayer @ any parsed feels enhance the value of something that is already worth everything
    what other chordal approach but penultimate singing along with other quantum cuddle clocks

  • thepenmonster.3621thepenmonster.3621 Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 16, 2020

    @montecristo.1324 said:
    How do you guys feels about this?

    Ehn. It's magitech. It's pretty a common trope. Final Fantasy and Discworld are the biggest examples I can think of. D&D's Eberron setting as well. And like Discworld towards the end of the series, Tyria is also undergoing rapid industrialization.

    Also...

    Star Wars went to kitten with "I am your father" and never recovered due to the focus on ubermensch after that.

    The Commander will end you.

  • Dustfinger.9510Dustfinger.9510 Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 16, 2020

    @Dawdler.8521 said:
    I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU.

    Tbf: The EU had powers like the Force supernova that allowed a user to rip the entire core out of any star and throw it at another planet

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Unlike GW1, GW2 veers towards the Science Fantasy genre more than sticking to straight-up Fantasy. It's easier to go with under this kind of idea; similar to Final Fantasy games that have settings which look fairly modern but is still a world of witchcraft and wizardry.

    Asura is all magitech - it's magic that has been developed to mirror what technology can do. The only straight-up science technology there is in GW2 is from the charr, which are in somewhat of an Industrial Era level of advancement. To me, it's more the charr than the asura that's jarring, given their appearance in GW1 (250 years ago) was practically Bronze Age equivalents.

    @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:
    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    I would say yes... and no. Star Wars is a complete mess today. I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU.

    Original Trilogy was still very much science fantasy over science fiction.

    Science fiction is typically described as a setting in which the author is looking at a scientific advancement in technology. Thus the technology has explanation behind it. Science Fantasy, however, is more a setting in which the author is using technology as a worldbuilder or means of advancing the plot in a similar way fantasy uses magic as such - there's no need to explain it, because it's just there.

    The Force, droids, etc. in the OT were never explained, and didn't need to be because it's just there. Later installments (before Disney) did try to add explanations. But those tended to fall short (midichorlians say hi).

    It might not have been in-your-face nonsensical science fantasy like some later elements in Star Wars (even in the EU), but the OT was very much science fantasy and not science fiction.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Vayne.8563Vayne.8563 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:

    @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Vayne.8563 said:
    Star Wars is largely regarded as science fantasy.

    I would say yes... and no. Star Wars is a complete mess today. I would regard Disney SW as far more fantasy than fiction, compared to the OT and EU. Why? Take something as simple as "lightspeed skipping". It makes zero sense in the Star Wars universe, because we know that according to the more scientific aspect of the lore, a gravity well mess up lightspeed and it requires complicated math to calculate the route. You shouldnt be able to move like a fricking TP daredevil through the "scenic sites" of the galaxy. It is, in every sense of the word, a complete fantasy. And dont even get me started on arcing mortars. In space.

    For GW2, it really is fantasy though. Players have such magical skills that cant really be "explained" through anything other than "its magic". It would only be scifi when looking at it in a very selective angle.

    Star Wars, when it came out anyway, was science fantasy becasue of the force, not because of ftl drive. Plenty of scifi has ftl drive in it, and we can sorta see how we can get from here to there, even if the science to do so doesn't exist yet. The force, at least when it came out, wasn't really explained at all and was a fantasy element.

    It was, but still very much grounded in the physical and mental realm and required training (again why Disney Star Wars is kitten and breaks the lore, Rey can do anything in days). It is very, very low fantasy IMO. Luke Skywalker wasnt running around tossing magic missiles or summoning hell hounds because he read a scroll he found in a random chest.

    But that's not the difference between fantasy and science fiction. You need to be able to get from our background to that background essentially. There's no scientific way to travel faster than light that we know, but we can understand and see using current tech how it's possible. The force is a mystical force, rather than a scientific one, even if they tried after the fact to retcon it with midiclorions or whatever they are. It doesn't have to be high fantasy or swords and sorcery to be fantasy. Mr. Ed is fantasy because horses don't talk. The Ghost and Mrs Muir is fantasy because ghosts don't exist scientifically.

    It's easy to conflate high fantasy and swords and sorcery with all fantasy, but that's just not the definition of fantasy. It's simply the most common usage.

  • @montecristo.1324 said:
    When I log in with my tech ele/asura I don't enjoy how most of the world is fantasy lore. But when I log in with my human guardian, and Taimi start to talk to me with his radio, it feels so wrong... I don't know if it's just me but there are too many discrepancies between the two lores.
    There is also the steampunk lore of charrs, but this bother me less because it feels more like mechanical...
    How do you guys feels about this? Am I the only one that can't live with all these different styles?

    Hello friend. The bottom line is that this is a different world, technological progress is developing in it, as in any other world. It's just that dragons inhabit this world - the source of all magic in Tyria.

  • Hypnowulf.7403Hypnowulf.7403 Member ✭✭
    edited May 17, 2020

    @Konig Des Todes.2086 said:
    To me, it's more the charr than the asura that's jarring, given their appearance in GW1 (250 years ago) was practically Bronze Age equivalents.

    That's a very neurotypical way of looking at things (focused upon the familiar and the superiority of the familiar), it's entirely possible that one race can advance faster than another even given a similar set of circumstances. I mean, even in Guild Wars 1 I recall they had, oh, advanced cryptography and printing presses. In Bound by Blood we even see they've got electricity licked because they have generators, turbines, solar panels, and a hydroelectric dam. The charr are just very good at advancing very quickly, that's just their thing.

    Consider the Olmakhan and how quickly they made use of the wreckage of the pact airship that the Inquest shot down. Then consider how quickly the Olmakhan adapt to using asura magitech to set things up in Dragonfall. It isn't that the Olmakhan can't advance but rather that they've been living an intentionally Amish-like existence. There's something about the charr mindset that lends itself to speedy scientific advancement.

    I would argue that part of it is their obsession with practicality and safety. Yes, safety. In Rata Sum you can fall off just about anywhere, there are holes all over the place. In the Black Citadel they have guard rails everywhere to protect not just their own children but also the other races who're visiting. The charr may seem intimidating but they have this visible undercurrent of thoughtfulness and you can see it in everything they do. They're just a very introspective, introverted, insightful race that values scientific knowledge.

    From what I understand, the reason why many asura experiments are failures whereas the charr create reliable technology isn't solely due to the instability of magic but rather that the asura are always fighting one another. They're always disagreeing and looking for one-upmanship. They have a very earth-like attitude of publish or perish which leads to a lot of unnecessarily toxic competition, which means that in their rush the finish-line the asura make a lot of inventions that just... explode. It's unfortunate as they clearly are very intelligent. The problem with the asura is societal, not intellectual.

    The charr, however, have a more practised society that values cooperation. The charr value cooperation above all else, it's in their fahrars, the structure of their warbands, the loyalty to their legions, et cetera. There's something about charr culture that reminds me of Linux programmers (as a programmer myself I've seen this). I'll try to explain it, if you'll give me a chance.

    I've heard from engineers at Microsoft that iteration is a bad word. If you iterate, it irritates all of the other departments. As production has to look it over and give it the thumbs up, Q&A then has to test it, and it has to go through this whole process for every update. That sounds good, except their process is very inefficient and poorly, it rewards creating new, shaky, and unstable projects over iterating existing ones. This is why, for example, Windows now has PowerShell. I know of an engineer in Microsoft who was pushing to just iterate upon cmd.exe (the command prompt, which would've been an intelligent choice), but the asura-like nature of Microsoft made them push out PowerShell as a new feature before it was ready.

    Contrary to this very capitalist approach, the Linux community believes in the glory of getting things right. They love iteration and they'll often push their projects to perfection. Optimising, bugfixing, optimising, bugfixing, over and over in a cycle of iteration. This, as I understand it, is how the charr function. It comes up in the charr personal storyline quite a few times, it's also mentioned elsewhere. The charr like to prototype, test, go back to the drawing board, and so on in a contiual proces of iteration. This is why when a charr project finally makes it to the point where it can be released for mass production, it's an almost flawless piece of engineering because it was designed iteratively and cooperatively.

    Amongst humans, the desire for iteration and cooperation is very low. It's confined to niches. In our hierarchy backstabbing hierarchies are the norm, as we see in just about every corporate setting. Our world is run to suit a more sociopathic outlook, one that doesn't really value people. It's rare to find humans who believe that it should be any different, which is why even Socialism is looked down upon by the most corporatist places in the world. To understand the charr, you have to understand those niches to see how fast, safe, iterative advancement can work. It isn't our standard which is why it seems especially jarring.

    If humanity was logical, cooperative, and focused on iteration rather than reinvention for the sake of reinvention then we would've advanced as quickly as the charr did. The charr aren't jarring, they're an incredibly well-written species from a quite distinctively not neurotypical perspective. They, quite frankly, are like a race of introverted autists.

    I feel this is how the charr confuse people as well. For a charr I get the feeling that emotional processing is slower but more profound and passionate, much like it is with autism. You can see this in conversations between charr and the other races. I feel it's becoming even more noticeable over time. If you look at the conversations between Gorrik and Almorra Soulkeeper, for example, you can see this. The charr can be very emotional and it can lead to emotional damage for them as well, I feel that many of them are secretly big babies who've had to toughen up because there have been so many genocide attempts against them.

    Look at Rytlock. He's a big baby too. Yes, he puts on a tough front but he's also very, very vulnerable. In Path of Fire he confides in us that he needs a win. In Icebrood, we find out why. He's scared of commitment because he genuinely believes he isn't worthy of anyone. That's a... very autistic thing to go through, to place someone you care about on such a high pedestal that you believe you have to find ways of being worthy of their emotions for you. Rytlock is really scarred in this regard. I feel that with the Olmakhan we get much more of a view of what well-adjusted charr look like: a little grumpy, thirty, very feelsy, passionate, and very caring and kind. I mean, look at what the Olmakhan value about the Commander, that they're good with children.

    It's this undercurrent of care that's lead the charr to where they are. Their militaristic society as it stands today is more of an effort just to protect one another from genocide than anything else, that's why they're so passionate about it. It's also why the charr can be just as passionate about protecting anyone who isn't mean to them. See the interactions between the Iron Legion charr and the human in Bound by Blood for an example of that. It also means that the charr are very easy to traumatise and they can get PTSD pretty badly, which I think Bangar is the posterchild for.

    The long and short of all this is that humans often look at things through a very neurotypical, extraverted filter. I don't think that the charr are neurotypical or extraverted. They remind me of autistic Linux coders more than anything else. The kind of person who keeps optimising their code because they're worried that someone will encounter a bug and that'll make the coder feel really bad, so they try to ensure that there are as few bugs as possible. For the charr, though, it's even more real. If you don't deal with your bugs, then people can die. That's what drives the charr to prototype and iterate so heavily. They won't use something unless it's as tried and tested as it can be.

    I mean, good grief, they have a strike mission where they're stress-testing a prototype tank that's been put through its paces enough for a test in the field. That's a very charr thing to do. Honestly, a lot of Icebrood feels like it pertains to emotional vulnerability, trauma, PTSD, and feelings of inadequacy but I won't get into that more right now.

    The point is? If humanity were less capitalist and more like Linux coders, we'd advance in a better way too. The reason we get setbacks is for the same reason as what I described engineers seeing at Microsoft. "No, we can't make cmd.exe better. We need to push out the updates as a shoddy new product called PowerShell to improve the appearance of value of our overall brand in a capitalist culture!" Microsoft is lagging behind Linux in so many areas because of this mindset, and companies that are becoming more Linux-like are constantly poaching people from Microsoft.

    That's what I think of it, anyway. I don't think the charr are jarring, they're just exceptionally well written although not from a very neurotypical perspective.

    Footnote: I've brought it up before but this is why the charr have fahrars. Long, long before I played Guild Wars 2 I kept wishing that state-mandated systems of nannies, carers, and educators were a thing. So that children could have the help they need growing up, so that classrooms could be smaller allowing each kid to have more attention. Then I play Guild Wars 2 and I find that the charr have actually instituted that exact system out of empathy. I think the only flaw with fahrars is that they don't allow the biological parents to continue to connect with their kids.

    Statistically we now have more broken homes than at any other point in history, neurotypicals are getting increasingly worse at parenting and it's leading to children being more broken and traumatised than ever. That's why this is the generation of depression and self-harm. The solution to this would be a state-handled system of nannies, carers, and small-scale education. To see that the charr had already implemented this, yeah, that told me everything I needed to know about them. I feel that the charr are just innately very progressive, it's their jam and their toast. They're just better at puting these things into effect than we are, which makes me look at them as a species of autists.

  • Dustfinger.9510Dustfinger.9510 Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 17, 2020

    Then I play Guild Wars 2 and I find that the charr have actually instituted that exact system out of empathy. I think the only flaw with fahrars is that they don't allow the biological parents to continue to connect with their kids.

    Excellent post. The only contention I'd have is to suggest that fahraras had less do with empathy and more to do with serving the state. Evidence for this would be the fact that biological parents are cut off. A dedicated system of nannies is nice but if the emotional evelopment of children were the priority for the state and culture, the culture probably would have implemented the biological parents into the system as there is a greater chance that biological parents will provide more intimate emotional bonding experience than several strangers who may just see it as a job. In fact, the clues that charr are just really big ol' lovable babies deep down, may actually be an indication that they don't receive much in emotional development.

    Considering the heavy military theme that pervades the entire Charr society, it seems more likely that the fahrars are modeled after the Spartans and their boot camps schools. Spartans went to bootcamp early in life at age seven, were separated from their parents, and stayed there for years, in order to become better warriors, to better serve the state and community as a whole, rather than prioritizing the emotional development of the child. While Spartan men stayed in the barracks, even after they graduated military school, A-net seems to have differed by making both male and females continuing to live in their barracks. As the fahrar simply becomes it's own military unit, upon graduatation, as a warband.

    https://hsp3mspartans.weebly.com/social-institutions.html

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 17, 2020

    @Hypnowulf.7403 said:

    @Konig Des Todes.2086 said:
    To me, it's more the charr than the asura that's jarring, given their appearance in GW1 (250 years ago) was practically Bronze Age equivalents.

    That's a very neurotypical way of looking at things (focused upon the familiar and the superiority of the familiar), it's entirely possible that one race can advance faster than another even given a similar set of circumstances. I mean, even in Guild Wars 1 I recall they had, oh, advanced cryptography and printing presses. In Bound by Blood we even see they've got electricity licked because they have generators, turbines, solar panels, and a hydroelectric dam. The charr are just very good at advancing very quickly, that's just their thing.

    Consider the Olmakhan and how quickly they made use of the wreckage of the pact airship that the Inquest shot down. Then consider how quickly the Olmakhan adapt to using asura magitech to set things up in Dragonfall. It isn't that the Olmakhan can't advance but rather that they've been living an intentionally Amish-like existence. There's something about the charr mindset that lends itself to speedy scientific advancement.

    I'm going to avoid the off-topic ranting as it's been discussed elsewhere in length, so I'll focus on the advancement part that I brought up.

    First off, to correct some things: they did not have advanced cryptography or printing presses. Printing presses wasn't a thing until post-GW1, and the cryptography was (and still is) very primitive, with only a handful of meanings behind icons. Your use of Bound by Blood is similarly irrelevant because I'm talking about the leap from GW1 to GW2.

    In GW1, they presumably had off-screen forges and... that was pretty much it. Their explosives came from volatile oozes, their weapons of war were beasts of burden (siege devourers), and their greatest buildings were structures of crude metal that looked like gigantic armor, or sticks and leather. The only real implication of them having forges is the fact they have armored soldiers - but even then, their warriors' armor looks like crudely tacted on, as if they had just invented forges. Their weapons looked like fangs and stones cobbled together - basically, their weaponry that implies potential forges, could be easily interpreted as being purely scavenged.

    There is a reason why Ascalonians considered the charr to be animals and savages. They didn't show anything in culture beyond a basic heirarchal structure and a very crude ideogram written language.

    Unlike the Olmakhan who were able to comprehend pre-existing asura technology (saying they used the skeleton of the airship well is an overstatement, they just used it as a structure where it laid), the charr of GW1 had only one confirmed thing discovered to miraculously reach their GW2 point: blackpowder.

    But blackpowder does not invent repeating guns, or steam powered engines.

    One could argue that along with discovering dwarven blackpowder, they also found dwarven gears - not too far fetched; very likely in fact, though not confirmed. But how would finding giant gears that move chains and levers account for the charr suddenly having tanks, submarines, steam powered ships, and repeating rifles within two centuries?

    It's a leap that took us several centuries and multiple economical needs to reinvent the wheel, and they got it in one and a half without any such need (as steam powered ships and guns that didn't need reloading with each shot existed when Zhaitan rose in 1120 AE).

    It's a very fast advancement that may seem normal to many when they consider where we were 250 years ago compared to today. But when you consider the fact that technology advancement increases exponentially, and look at where we were 250 years ago compared to 500 years ago, or compare 500 to 750 years ago, it's a lot less convincing to see gears and pulleys advance into steam powered engines and blackpowder cannons to repeating handheld guns in 150 years.

    Now, I'm no expert in history or technological advancement over the ages, so I'm sure I've missed some things, but the advancement of charr is a very different case than Olmakhan reading some instructions or turning a burnt out metal ship hull into a building.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Dustfinger.9510Dustfinger.9510 Member ✭✭✭

    @Konig Des Todes.2086 said:

    It's a very fast advancement that may seem normal to many when they consider where we were 250 years ago compared to today. But when you consider the fact that technology advancement increases exponentially, and look at where we were 250 years ago compared to 500 years ago, or compare 500 to 750 years ago, it's a lot less convincing to see gears and pulleys advance into steam powered engines and blackpowder cannons to repeating handheld guns in 150 years.

    This is a really good point. ^

    It seems A-net wanted a steam punk race but they also didn't want to follow the pack and make it human lead so it was thrown to the Charr.

  • @Konig Des Todes.2086 said:
    It's a very fast advancement that may seem normal to many when they consider where we were 250 years ago compared to today. But when you consider the fact that technology advancement increases exponentially, and look at where we were 250 years ago compared to 500 years ago, or compare 500 to 750 years ago, it's a lot less convincing to see gears and pulleys advance into steam powered engines and blackpowder cannons to repeating handheld guns in 150 years.

    I don't really see any reason that the timescales of human technological development in the real world should generalize to any species in any world. Technological development is pretty stochastic. Stagnation for years, then a burst of development after some accidental discovery or brilliant insight that could have happened at any point. There's no reason much of out technology couldn't have been invented sooner. And I don't really know what "exponential" technological development means. There's not really a number you can assign to that.

    Plus Charr had who knows how much Dwarven technology to reverse engineer. "Gears" seems like an understatement of what may have been available to them, we really don't know. There are also several technologically developed races they could have learned from, albeit indirectly (Dredge, Norn blacksmiths, Humans were enemies but they could still figure out some of their engineering I'm sure.)

    And I have my own pet theory that the Charr have an unusual amount of knowledge about combustion and forging due to their Flame Legion history. They may not use magic (Much. Important to remember that they do take advantage of it when practical, it's more religion that they're completely against. They're just a bit untrusting of magic.), but I like to think there might be a reason they were so attracted to black powder and flamethrowers when they started tinkering. They might have a lot of cultural skill and knowledge around working with fire even if they're not using magic directly.

    Learning to forge metal might happen a lot faster if you have a lot of former Flame shamans around.

  • Amy of Darkness.5248Amy of Darkness.5248 Member ✭✭
    edited May 18, 2020

    The Charr fit less into "steampunk" and more "dieselpunk", the distinction being steampunk is Alternate Universe Victorian whereas Dieselpunk is more World War era, with a larger focus on the machines of war and a world in conflict.
    And definitely not Sci-fi, science fiction denotes some remote possibility and plausibility to the science part. Science fantasy or aetherpunk are a better fit.
    I don't have a problem with a genre blend, I actually really appreciate that about this game. Maybe I'm a little biased for reasons. I just wish they had a dedicated lore team that focused on each race and really filled things out. There's too much even on the fan-cultivated wiki that's like "We guess it's like this? Probably? Allegedly..." and I don't feel like that's because they drip-feed us lore and more because that was a blind spot for the people developing the lore, and it hasn't been discussed by those folks in a while and/or people who were passionate advocates left and took the rest of their ideas with them. There's a lot of assumptions the fans make that simply don't gel with what's in the game. There's things even the devs say that are simply not supported by the game! Could really use a lore wrangler.

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Perihen the Thawk.9527 said:
    I don't really see any reason that the timescales of human technological development in the real world should generalize to any species in any world. -snip a bit-

    While I do agree, timescales of real technological development in various societies does give a solid case of empirical data. It most certainly is no solid direct comparison - but that argument goes against those I was arguing against who like to use the past 250 of our own tech and history changes, incidentally enough.

    And I don't really know what "exponential" technological development means. There's not really a number you can assign to that.

    TL;DR it basically means that the more advanced technology is, the faster technology advances. Even with periodical stagnation followed by boosts of advancements, rinse repeat, those periods of stagnation tends to be shorter while the boosts greater the more advanced technology a culture has or is exposed to (and the more educated the masses are).

    Plus Charr had who knows how much Dwarven technology to reverse engineer. "Gears" seems like an understatement of what may have been available to them, we really don't know. There are also several technologically developed races they could have learned from, albeit indirectly (Dredge, Norn blacksmiths, Humans were enemies but they could still figure out some of their engineering I'm sure.)

    Regardless of the quantity of dwarven tech the charr had access to to reverse engineer, the level of technology the dwarves had is very solidly depicted in GW1, and that comes nowhere close to the charr of GW2. Dwarves in GW1 even lacked cannons, despite having blackpowder, and there was not a vehicle in sight. From what we saw, the most advanced piece of tech was the Iron Forgeman, which was a one-of-a-kind thing powered by fire djinn which charr didn't get access to (dredge and asura did); beyond that, their technology was complex pulleys, levers, gears, and the like. Their wagons and sleds were dolyak-pulled, and their ships were no different than any other ship aside from being able to go on ice and water equally.

    Dredge tech, btw, also comes from dwarven technology - so both charr and dredge have same origins and timeframe for advancement, but they have divergence in design (charr going steam/clockwork, while dredge went sonic). So dredge advancement is also a bit weird, but they had more dwarven tech to work from and isn't quite so advanced as the charr. And the rest... they aren't more advanced than dwarves - only humans and asura were on par / greater, and as said, charr actively avoid asura tech, while human tech would only add cannons to the dwarven array of tech the charr could take.

    Yet somehow, it was the charr who invented vehicles, steam powered ships, printing presses, submarines, helicopters, and hand-held pistols and rifles. All post-GW1 at that.

    Learning to forge metal might happen a lot faster if you have a lot of former Flame shamans around.

    It's not really the forging metal part that is discerning from the rate of charr advancement.

    @Amy of Darkness.5248 said:
    The Charr fit less into "steampunk" and more "dieselpunk", the distinction being steampunk is Alternate Universe Victorian whereas Dieselpunk is more World War era, with a larger focus on the machines of war and a world in conflict.

    While the aesthetic does more fall in line with dieselpunk, the technology they use is steam-powered (though electrical power is beginning to enter the stage, and we saw our first example of such in Bound by Blood), hence the association with steampunk.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Jimbru.6014Jimbru.6014 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 6, 2020

    Either way, fantasy or sci-fi, it should have been made with a much tighter focus in regards to the tactics and strategy to go with the technology and the hazards we face. I realize GW2 is a game and we have to suspend disbelief to some degree just to be able to log in, but the rationality meter really is pegged low when it comes to the magi-technical status of the GW2 universe. In reality, melee weapons were obsolete as primary tools of war in the 18th century, and tight formations ended the hard way in WW1. Tyria is a world filled with ranged magic, AOE attacks of every description, bows, guns, artillery, siege engines, tanks, helicopters, airships, Vigil Megalasers, golems, Engineers, mountain-sized Elder Dragons, and even worse, pocket raptors. What are the primary tactics in at least 80% of the game? Melee weapons and stacking in groups. Yeah, right...

  • Kalavier.1097Kalavier.1097 Member ✭✭✭

    @Jimbru.6014 said:
    Either way, fantasy or sci-fi, it should have been made with a much tighter focus in regards to the tactics and strategy to go with the technology and the hazards we face. I realize GW2 is a game and we have to suspend disbelief to some degree just to be able to log in, but the rationality meter really is pegged low when it comes to the magi-technical status of the GW2 universe. In reality, melee weapons were obsolete as primary tools of war in the 18th century, and tight formations ended the hard way in WW1. Tyria is a world filled with ranged magic, AOE attacks of every description, bows, guns, artillery, siege engines, tanks, helicopters, airships, Vigil Megalasers, golems, Engineers, mountain-sized Elder Dragons, and even worse, pocket raptors. What are the primary tactics in at least 80% of the game? Melee weapons and stacking in groups. Yeah, right...

    And alongside the rifles and artillery, there are magical melee attacks and the ability to close the distance. Bullets could universally kill/disable troops across the board IRL when they started coming out, but in Tyria? A bullet will hit a charr with different results then a human. A bullet works to down a human quickly but what about that rampaging Centaur group? Or the crazed Ettins in the hills?

    Another thing you must understand is Gameplay does not = lore entirely. The whole concept of mass stacking players to burn down a boss in dungeons or other things isn't going to work in actual lore. Mostly because you can't have 20 people literally standing in the same area. Simply put, Tyria is filled with a lot of races and monsters that won't go down that quickly, meaning Melee weapons are still very much viable and important.

  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 7, 2020

    @Kalavier.1097 said:
    Another thing you must understand is Gameplay does not = lore entirely.

    So much this, and not just about mass amount of players stacking, but even the damage ratio of skills.

    If the game was made to be more realistic, then auto-attacks would have a chance to one-hit kill bosses like Caudecus, and vice versa, a random mook's attacks would have a chance to one-hit kill PCs if they get a bullet, arrow, or sword between the eyes.

    This is why you have situations where you're taking a dozen hits from a boss, then a cinematic occurs and that boss just one-shots an NPC who also took a dozen hits without issue earlier (or vice versa occurs - the cinematic one-shoting an NPC then you fight the boss taking a dozen similar hits). In lore, there's probably a much higher usage of agility and magical barriers - and a much higher death rate than visibly shown. But such gameplay isn't fun, especially for non-shooters where you can't pin-point where your attacks land on the enemy with different areas registering different armor/damage negation (aka without things like headshots).

    Gameplay like this has to be taken with a good dosage of suspension of belief.

    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.
    All these squares make a circle.

  • Kulvar.1239Kulvar.1239 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @L Bagrova.1372 said:
    Hello friend. The bottom line is that this is a different world, technological progress is developing in it, as in any other world. It's just that dragons inhabit this world - the source of all magic in Tyria.

    Dragons are not the source of all magic in Tyria, they're what prevent an overflow by consuming it.

  • draxynnic.3719draxynnic.3719 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Dustfinger.9510 said:
    It helps to realize that even top Asuran tech, is ultimately just magictech. The radio might as well just be a magic gem or cowl you talk into for all intents and purposes.

    Pretty much this.

    The "science fiction" elements of Guild Wars 2 are essentially magical devices mimicking technology. While the people of Tyria might not fully understand the rules, there is an underlying "sufficiently analysed magic is indistinguishable from SCIENCE!!!" aspect - magical energy can be harnessed and channeled through magic-powered devices to achieve reproducible results. For people familiar with D&D settings, I think Eberron is a good example of this principle - a world with equivalents to trains and other industrial-era devices which are actually magic items being produced on a large scale.

    Guild Wars 2 complicates this by having advanced nonmagical technology as well (albeit with whateverpunk tropes), but the nonmagical technology is still behind modern technology, with the possible exception of dredge sonic weaponry.

    @Kalavier.1097 said:

    @Jimbru.6014 said:
    Either way, fantasy or sci-fi, it should have been made with a much tighter focus in regards to the tactics and strategy to go with the technology and the hazards we face. I realize GW2 is a game and we have to suspend disbelief to some degree just to be able to log in, but the rationality meter really is pegged low when it comes to the magi-technical status of the GW2 universe. In reality, melee weapons were obsolete as primary tools of war in the 18th century, and tight formations ended the hard way in WW1. Tyria is a world filled with ranged magic, AOE attacks of every description, bows, guns, artillery, siege engines, tanks, helicopters, airships, Vigil Megalasers, golems, Engineers, mountain-sized Elder Dragons, and even worse, pocket raptors. What are the primary tactics in at least 80% of the game? Melee weapons and stacking in groups. Yeah, right...

    And alongside the rifles and artillery, there are magical melee attacks and the ability to close the distance. Bullets could universally kill/disable troops across the board IRL when they started coming out, but in Tyria? A bullet will hit a charr with different results then a human. A bullet works to down a human quickly but what about that rampaging Centaur group? Or the crazed Ettins in the hills?

    Another thing you must understand is Gameplay does not = lore entirely. The whole concept of mass stacking players to burn down a boss in dungeons or other things isn't going to work in actual lore. Mostly because you can't have 20 people literally standing in the same area. Simply put, Tyria is filled with a lot of races and monsters that won't go down that quickly, meaning Melee weapons are still very much viable and important.

    Possibly more important than having different races is the presence of improved armour.

    Consider that historically, the most advanced armour until recently was made of steel. In Tyria, on the other hand, steel is tier 3 of seven tiers of armour materials technology, and putting aside the likelihood that darksteel and up are inherently magical materials, the materials that go into insignias indicate that the armour is enchanted. Leather and cloth 'armour' isn't so easy to compare with history, but you're still likely looking at magic protection on top of whatever physical protection they provide. This means that personal armour in Tyria is going to stand up to threats that would render 15th century full plate obsolete.

    Now, we also have magic weapons as well, but it's probably impractical making individual bullets, arrowheads, and even artillery shells out of deldrimor steel infused with Zojja's inscriptions. So however enchanted the bow or handgun might be, it's probably still firing relatively mundane ammunition. Meanwhile, melee weapons may well be made out of the same special materials (mithril seems to be fairly standard among the Pact based on requisitions, for instance), and therefore is just as good against that armour as historical steel melee weapons were against historical steel armour.

    If we had mithril, orichalcum, and deldrimor steel in the real world, it's entirely likely that we'd have continued to see elite units of knights and men-at-arms continue to be used up until close to modern times. Especially if those heavily armoured soldiers were supported by magic that protected against projectiles.