The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesnoth?

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Midnight_Carnival » October 12th, 2010, 2:11 pm

I personally have a major argument with humans descending from faeries near the same time as orcs, for the simple reason that humans have a strongish resistance to arcane; if humans are resistant to arcane and orcs are not there must be a heck of a difference around.
Humans (living) have a huge diffrence in resistance to arcane to Humans (undead). I think of magic as being like stiches that hold things together, and arcane is like one of those unpicking tool thingies: take the stitches out of a human and it's fine, take the stitches out of a skeleton and it falls apart. If you accept that Orcs were transformed partly by sorcery then the difference in arcane resistance makes perfect sense.
But I also dislike the idea that Humans and Orcs decended from fairies.

I think you were refering to all the elemental infusion things, not just mine, since I said that my idea didn't work so well in Wesnoth.
I also never really thought the Dwarves as having any link with Faerie at all, since their lack of magic drives them to use thundersticks, etc. Even trolls can connect with Faerie and cast magic (troll shamans) and, as you know from SotBE, so can orcs, but Dwarves and Humans can't.
My excuse for the bacteria theory is WINR and I know nothing about evolution. :augh:

Anyway, this new faerie thing.
I personally have a major argument with humans descending from faeries near the same time as orcs, for the simple reason that humans have a strongish resistance to arcane; if humans are resistant to arcane and orcs are not there must be a heck of a difference around.

And yeah, I really don't like this element infusion thing. There is, as someone else said, no evidence of elements in Wesnoth. Sure, there's fire, but you need fire for goblin pillagers and stuff. Water has to be impact or cold, earth has to be blade, pierce or impact and there is no damage element for life at all. (Unless you count Arcane, which is more of a mystical, demystifying element)

Okay. Disproving element thingy with, er, elements. Not working. Okay. But if all things descended from Faerie beings, how can you explain that elves can become Faerie beings once again? Evolution doesn't work that way...

I also never really thought the Dwarves as having any link with Faerie at all, since their lack of magic drives them to use thundersticks, etc. Even trolls can connect with Faerie and cast magic (troll shamans) and, as you know from SotBE, so can orcs, but Dwarves and Humans can't.
Dwarves used to have the Runemaster. In most generic fantasy, Dwarvish magic wielders are the exception, rather than the rule, yet Dwarves are consistenly portrayed as a magical race (even if they choose not to use that magic, or at least not in obvious ways). I dont' know how or where Human magi are supposed to get their power from in Wesnoth.
...apparenly we can't go with it or something.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by thespaceinvader » October 12th, 2010, 2:33 pm

They will again have the rune master soon (when the sprites are done), and indeed still have him in tSoF, and the magic-using Witness line in tHoT.

Their magic is not showy, however, and tends to be imbued in items rather than cast as spells.

I reiterate that there's no explicit or implicit four-elements system in Wesnoth...
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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by johndh » October 12th, 2010, 4:41 pm

thespaceinvader wrote:I reiterate that there's no explicit or implicit four-elements system in Wesnoth...
Maybe "elements" was the wrong word. I'm not talking about a four-element rock-paper-scissors earth-air-fire-water thing. I'm just referring to the various aspects and components of the natural world. The idea is that when a magical faerie-type being becomes associated with a thing, they take on aspects of that thing. Woses inhabit and protect the forest, so they become like the trees, trolls inhabit the rocks, so they become tough and long-lived, and so on.
It's spelled "definitely", not "definately". "Defiantly" is a different word entirely.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by StDrake » October 12th, 2010, 5:25 pm

but in that case you suggest that all living beings are adapted faeries..ehm it's a little stingy when you remember that as elven mages advance they get closer to their faerie nature - means they advance by evolving backwards?

I'd rather keep faeries limited to scarce contact and influence on some of the organisms

..and i take that as a silent 'no' to even trying anything about a silicoidal nature of trolls
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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by johndh » October 12th, 2010, 5:56 pm

StDrake wrote:but in that case you suggest that all living beings are adapted faeries..ehm it's a little stingy when you remember that as elven mages advance they get closer to their faerie nature - means they advance by evolving backwards?
AFAIK all elves have a latent faerie nature to them, so it's just a matter of tapping into it. I don't think "evolving backwards" is even a valid phrase, really. Evolution wanders around in all kinds of crazy directions with no destination in mind, not in a straight line.
It's spelled "definitely", not "definately". "Defiantly" is a different word entirely.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by thespaceinvader » October 12th, 2010, 6:05 pm

Indeed. TO clear up that particular issue, evolution only has one direction, forwards in time. It doesn't have a set destination, and it will not always work towards what we would see as the advancement of the species. The ONLY thing which is sure to result from evolution is enhanced survival. This could happen in any way, it doesn't have to be by the addition of cool new factors.
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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by johndh » October 12th, 2010, 8:21 pm

Midnight_Carnival wrote: Humans (living) have a huge diffrence in resistance to arcane to Humans (undead). I think of magic as being like stiches that hold things together, and arcane is like one of those unpicking tool thingies: take the stitches out of a human and it's fine, take the stitches out of a skeleton and it falls apart. If you accept that Orcs were transformed partly by sorcery then the difference in arcane resistance makes perfect sense.
But I also dislike the idea that Humans and Orcs decended from fairies.
I also never really thought the Dwarves as having any link with Faerie at all, since their lack of magic drives them to use thundersticks, etc. Even trolls can connect with Faerie and cast magic (troll shamans) and, as you know from SotBE, so can orcs, but Dwarves and Humans can't.
Come to think of it, this brings up an interesting point. Maybe since humanity is separated from magic and doesn't have it as part of their nature, that's why they are so adaptable when it comes to magic, and why they can command it so well. Humans don't have natural weapons (claws, horns, tusks), so we make our own (knives, spears, guns), and the ones we make end up being more efficient than the ones that come with the default package of other species. Similarly, humans and saurians on Irdya had to invent their own magic, because nature didn't provide them with any. Elven magic comes from having a strong innate affinity for vegetation and healing due to their strong Life element, and mer magic comes from having a strong affinity for the elements of Life and Water, while human and saurian magic comes from studying the (super)natural world and learning to bend it to their wills.

The only troll shamans I know of are in UtBS, and I think a tribe of trolls left to their own devices for a few centuries after the fall could have easily invented magic of their own. However, the fact that they're [acronym=–noun (esp. among certain tribal peoples) a person who acts as intermediary between the natural and supernatural worlds, using magic to cure illness, foretell the future, control spiritual forces, etc.]shamans[/acronym] does support that it's a connection with faerie.
It's spelled "definitely", not "definately". "Defiantly" is a different word entirely.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Midnight_Carnival » October 13th, 2010, 9:14 am

I'm not sure about the "life element" bit, but the humans not naturally having magic works for me. Humans 'stole' magic from magical races and found clever short cuts and cludges. Humans don't have particularly strong magic, but they use it cleverly. As for Dwarves, I'm not even sure they would regard their rune magic as "magic", perhaps it's just 'a better way of doing things'. From what I know of Dwarves they are practical to a fault. Why work so only a select few can spend years studying to cast a destructive fireball when you could teach a child how to make gunpowder (I learnt it at age 8!) and make a bomb that anyone can cast which does just as much damage?
Last edited by Midnight_Carnival on October 14th, 2010, 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
...apparenly we can't go with it or something.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by johndh » October 13th, 2010, 9:03 pm

Midnight_Carnival wrote:I'm not sure about the "life element" bit
If we used a word other than "element", would that help? Aspects, constituents, components, metaphysical materials, think of them however you wish. They're just the things that comprise existence in my mental representation of the universe in which Irdya sits. Elves, to me at least, seem closely linked to Life-related things, like control of plants, reverence for the natural world, longevity, healing, and so on. Woses are even stronger in these areas, so I would assume a stronger link. Most of the races have pretty obvious (to me, anyway) links to such metaphysical materials, some stronger than others, so it seemed natural to integrate that into their creation evolution development story. The process is pretty simple. Think of a race, and start saying some words that come to mind, then figure out what they have in common. E.g. orcs - strong, tough, angry, breed like rabbits... all aspects of the Flesh (some in a metaphorical sense). :wink:
Humans 'stole' magic from magical races and found clever short cuts and cludges.
I wouldn't say they stole it, but rather they came up with a different sort of magic on their own. It works differently, but accomplishes similar ends of exerting power on their surroundings through manipulation of the natural world. Think of it as a different sort of science and technology, if you like.
It's spelled "definitely", not "definately". "Defiantly" is a different word entirely.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by tr0ll » October 14th, 2010, 5:03 am

hmm. the Rise of the Elementalist add-on campaign parts 1 and 2 does use a 4 elements system and the level 0 and 1 elementals look non-humanoid except for the rock ones which resemble inukshuks. an add-on is obviously not canon but perhaps interesting for discussion. i dont know if the author of that is around, his still-unfinished campaign could be affected by this discussion ;) anyway when the elements gain levels (water, earth and fire) they seem to acquire more spirit / willforce and start to look more humanoid
Spoiler:
. so maybe the thing which drives the tendency to humanoid shapes is the spirit animating them all.
(and since the Creator (Sirp) of Wesnoth is human the high level spirits are in his image. perhaps an irreverent bit of meta-humour, perhaps useful, i dunno.)

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Midnight_Carnival » October 14th, 2010, 9:11 am

so maybe the thing which drives the tendency to humanoid shapes is the spirit animating them all.
I like that, but I don't see a way to incoroprate such notions into Wesnoth ...not that anyone has ever asked my opinion on what should be incoroprated, but... The point is, if you have a system that works (even if you don't understand it fully), it's best not to change it. If you have great ideas (and I have loads), that's well and good, if they don't fit in, make your own thing in which they will.

Proposal: everyone with element ideas should get together and see what they can come up with. There could be great new eras and campaigns. If something from this fits into vanilla Wesnoth, I think nobody would object to using it, if it doesn't fit, then even if it only gets as far as the level of concepts, it could at least provide inspiration.

I frankly feel a lot of good ideas are going to waste here becasue people are looking for somewhere to make them fit into Wesnoth. Some of these ideas would require people to rethink a lot of what has been established, others wouldn't, but becasue they are presented alongside those that would, some people don't want to go near them.

-ok, thanks.
...apparenly we can't go with it or something.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Myrien » October 14th, 2010, 10:33 am

pauxlo wrote:Ah, there still is the possibility of a crazy wizard doing strange stuff.
If a crazy wizard would create a half-breed race of his own, there would be a few problems. Firstly, the numbers would be relatively small at the start of his experiments. And even if he put his whole life into the creation of, say, half-elves, he would only produce a few thousand - a small town rather than a city even for medieval standards, and certainly not enough for a common race.
Second, the majority of sentient races in Wesnoth (elves, dwarves, humans) detest and hunt down people who practice magic of manipulation (see necromancy, manipulation of death). If necromancy, which brings the dead back to life, thus manipulating the nature of death and dead beings is this abhorred - how strong would this fear, distrust and hate be if living beings and life were controlled? The wizard would be instantly executed or killed in battle, and with him, his "perverted" creations.
I say - though creating half-breeds by magic would be possible (as said by MidnightCarnival - "a pretty elf lady and a human knight"), it would be feared and detested, and thus, forbidden.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by johndh » October 14th, 2010, 12:36 pm

Myrien wrote:If a crazy wizard would create a half-breed race of his own, there would be a few problems. Firstly, the numbers would be relatively small at the start of his experiments. And even if he put his whole life into the creation of, say, half-elves, he would only produce a few thousand - a small town rather than a city even for medieval standards, and certainly not enough for a common race.
Second, the majority of sentient races in Wesnoth (elves, dwarves, humans) detest and hunt down people who practice magic of manipulation (see necromancy, manipulation of death). If necromancy, which brings the dead back to life, thus manipulating the nature of death and dead beings is this abhorred - how strong would this fear, distrust and hate be if living beings and life were controlled? The wizard would be instantly executed or killed in battle, and with him, his "perverted" creations.
I say - though creating half-breeds by magic would be possible (as said by MidnightCarnival - "a pretty elf lady and a human knight"), it would be feared and detested, and thus, forbidden.
Myrien, I support the entirety of your post, with the exception of changing one thing.
I say - though even if creating half-breeds by magic would be possible (as said by MidnightCarnival - "a pretty elf lady and a human knight"), it would be feared and detested, and thus, forbidden.
(You're off to a good start -- 3:3 for posts that are insightful and coherent.)
It's spelled "definitely", not "definately". "Defiantly" is a different word entirely.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Midnight_Carnival » October 14th, 2010, 12:53 pm

Makes sense, since the only people who "mutate" beings magically are Necormancers making Ghouls. But I would wonder if it was a question of the magic itself being frowned upon (as is raising the dead) or the uses to which it is put being upsetting. Consider neurosurgery: someone using it to save lives or better understand the workings of the brain is encouraged, but someone what wanted to hack away at people's brains in order to create an army which would not feel pain and be perfectly obedient would not be encouraged at all.

On another note: there has been a lot of discussion on Human/Elf hybrids: what about Humans and Dwarves. I feel that of all the Wesnoth races those two are the closest.
...apparenly we can't go with it or something.

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Re: The Origin of (Wesnoth) Species, or: Half-Breeds in Wesn

Post by Myrien » October 14th, 2010, 8:36 pm

Midnight_Carnival wrote:Makes sense, since the only people who "mutate" beings magically are Necormancers making Ghouls. But I would wonder if it was a question of the magic itself being frowned upon (as is raising the dead) or the uses to which it is put being upsetting. Consider neurosurgery: someone using it to save lives or better understand the workings of the brain is encouraged, but someone what wanted to hack away at people's brains in order to create an army which would not feel pain and be perfectly obedient would not be encouraged at all.

On another note: there has been a lot of discussion on Human/Elf hybrids: what about Humans and Dwarves. I feel that of all the Wesnoth races those two are the closest.
In Wesnoth, the type of magic is hated, not the use - consider Malin, who used necromancy to protect his village, but was still exiled. I think the attitude is more black-and-white - there is "unnatural" magic, e.g. necromancy, black magic, and the like, and "good magic", e.g. the white mage's healing and light-bringing magic.
A black mage who uses his powers for the good or a white mage who is obsessed with power would still have their magic described as bad in the case of the black mage or good in case of the white mage.

On the Dwarves - though the character of humans is certainly closer to the dwarves than to the elves, is their anatomy not more like the Elves' anatomy?

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