Sep
21
2019
7

Adventure Seed: Linby Docks Artifact.

Linby Docks Artifact

Widely reported as an embarrassing intelligence failure at the time, the German attack on the “Linby Docks” (two decidedly inland, artificial streams with no maritime or other mundane strategic importance) in World War II was in fact entirely deliberate; and it had nothing to do with the docks.  The Nazis were aiming at the ley lines. Obviously.

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Sep
03
2019
1

Adventure seed: Altvacs.

Altvacs

‘Altvac’ is short for ‘alternate vacation.’  It’s one of the things that you get when the concept of alternate timelines is first finally proven, then commercialized:  people go find a timeline where they exist, only in a different life, and then they and their alternate selves swap timelines for a week or two.  It’s considered rude to not tell anybody that you’re temporarily living your alternate self’s life, but it often happens, which can lead to some very interesting social situations.  At least one media company films the most entertaining ones, for later commercial use.

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Jun
26
2019
2

Adventure Seed: Time Intervention File #1599-SHA-COMM.

This came to me in a dream while I was napping after a combination hot tub / wet sauna / tropical shower at the spa (and damned if I didn’t need all of that, too). I then came back home, wrote it all down, and then hit Publish before I came to my senses. Because, really, this is awful. Too awful not to share.

Time Intervention File #1599-SHA-COMM

Good morning, team.  The text that you are about to read showed up this morning in an authenticated, pre-First Folio 1602 AD copy of The Merry Wives of Windsor.  Before anybody asks: yes, it absolutely is real.  Well, real now.

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Jun
11
2019
--

Adventure Seed: Wanderwar.

Wanderwar

Well. You can bring the orcs, ogres, goblins, hobgoblins, and even the more reasonable sorts of giants firmly into the benevolent grip of civilization.  You can even install their most prominent families firmly into the local aristocratic and other power structures. But the, ah, Vigorous Races will still have their little ways.

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May
18
2019
2

Adventure Seed: Hearthfire Agricultural Genetic Solutions.

Hearthfire Agricultural Genetic Solutions

Background: Hearthfire Agricultural Genetic Solutions is a biotech corporation operating primarily in the United States and Canada, with offices in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Chile.  It specializes in practical, low-level applications of past biological discoveries after the patents run out (or become available). To give one example: Hearthfire would not have been involved in the creation of something like Golden Rice, but the company would be actively trying to make a variant of the finished product that would be available to as many people as possible, and as widely as possible.  

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May
02
2019
--

Adventure Seed: Wars of the Clouds.

Wars of the Clouds

Wherever a storm rages, so does a war.

There are billions upon billions of water-sprites in our atmosphere; sapient, almost entirely unaware of our lives and we of theirs, and busy with their own affairs and conflicts.  Some of their sages are aware that things have been seen in the cloud-world, over the last century; those sages have generally kept silent on the subject, because the things cannot be countered or even affected, so knowledge of the things would do more harm than good.  Besides, there are other things to focus the attention of water-spirits, such as their constant state of war.

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Apr
09
2019
--

Adventure Seed: Eye Beems.

Eye Beems

Consider the species Halictus rubicundus, or the sweat bee.  Called ‘humble’ by the unilluminated, H. rubicundus in fact has quite the arcane civilization going on.  And it’s a peculiarly epic civilization, too: vast lands of decadent cities that contend with virile barbarians, with offerings made to strange gods in secluded places and weird magics practiced in stygian darkness.  Epic wars, too, in the air, with vast armies contesting over resources or pride or even simple glory. The sheer romance of it all! One would be utterly entranced by such things… except that they’re sweat bees, so most humans can’t really see any of this.  The time scale disparity alone makes it difficult for humanity to understand what’s going on; from a sweat bee’s point of view, humans are more or less Ents.  Sometimes extremely cranky Ents.

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Mar
06
2019
5

Adventure Seed: The Human Nose Boop.

The Human Nose Boop

Well, it’s like this.  Most species in the Galaxy have this one spot on their nose — the exact point varies from species to species, of course — where a quick squeeze can temporarily override their neural systems.  It’s not immediately dangerous, and in fact the sensation is remarkably pleasant, but obviously a vulnerability to being knocked in one shot is a problem. Fortunately, it’s a very specific spot on the nose, and you need to do it in a precise way, and it’s effectively impossible to hit that spot if you can’t even see it, and no species even can.  

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Dec
19
2018
6

Adventure Seed: SK-30 Network.

SK-30 Network – Google Docs

SK-30 Network

 

It is a little-known (read: ‘highly classified’) fact that Fermi’s Paradox was in fact solved in the 1970s; the answer to the classic question (“Where the Hell is everybody?”) turns out to be “They’re all dead.” Or, at least, they’re no longer capable of dealing with pre-starflight civilizations for the foreseeable future.  To be fair, they would have, if they weren’t dead: there was apparently a procedure in place to integrate new species into the Galactic scene.

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Sep
11
2018
2

Adventure seed: The Kaminsky Retrieval.

Kaminsky Retrieval – Google Docs

The Kaminsky Retrieval

Well, it’s like this.  There’s a pseudo-saurian race in the next Galactic Sector called the sirothnok.  They kind of dominate their Sector, in fact. The sirothnok are not exactly awful, per se: but they are somewhat touchy, fairly over-proud of their dignity, and have a certain reputation for pushing a quarrel farther than might be wise.  They’re not an existential threat to humanity and our friends, but nobody wants a war with the sirothnok.

Fortunately, they get along well with humans, for the oddest of reasons: twins.  Sirothnok tend to have twin births at about the same rate as humans have singleton ones, and that of course has affected their entire culture.  It turns out that most Galactic species don’t really have twins at all; and while many species do have reliable cloning techniques, the sirothnok typically find clone-twins from other species to be a bit grating.  Human twins don’t provoke that reaction, though. In fact, human twins find it much easier than other humans do to navigate sirothnok society; they can just get the ‘feel’ for the cultures more easily than singletons can. (more…)




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