The Colony Ship: Initium Novum

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Zen, Jun 11, 2014.

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  1. The Colony Ship: initium Novum

    This roleplay will be run by @Zen, @Kino, @Eternalfire61, and @UltimaCircuit

    Initium Novum - a colony ship that contains 10 million people and androids is traveling through space to find a new home. The ship has been traveling for 105 years and its journey is almost over. However, unrest is brewing in the ship as one of the Council Members, Xavier Reeth steps down from his position and requests an android to take his place.

    For generations, the Council has been made up of only humans and this choice has riled up the citizens. Will the people get behind this new android Council member, or will rebellion ensue in the colony ship?

    Background Information (open)
    The main setting of this roleplay will be on a colony ship with a small fleet of escort ships. The colony ship itself contains many other ships that are designated to certain tasks. Harvester ships shall leave the ship momentarily to take minerals and water from nearby asteroids and other sources. The main power core has priority over everything for the Mana that comes in from the harvester ships. Repair ships shall leave the ship when there has been damaged inflicted to the outer hull. Internal damage to the ship will be attended to by members of the Maintenance Branch. Military ships and various other ships are also docked within the Initium Novum.

    Levels of Initium Novum (open)
    (Each level has their own type of mess hall, health care, and living space depending on their according description.)

    Initium Novum: Level 1

    The lowest level of the Initium Novum. This level is the slum of the colony ship and the poorest of the poor live on this level. Those who reside upon Level 1 are looked down upon by all levels and usually do most of the manual labor needed for the Initium Novum. People from Level 4 usually refer to the Level Ones as people who are worthless or those who just take up space. This level is also notorious for it’s whores, underground clubs, jails, and gambling of vouchers.

    Initium Novum: Level 2

    The second to last level of the Initium Novum. This level is what most would refer to as the lower middle class. Most of the people that live on this level consider themselves lucky to not be from Level 1. The living conditions of Level 2 are slightly better than that of Level 1 and most of the people who reside on this level are part of the Maintenance Branch since the Maintenance Branch HQ is on this level. Those of levels 3 and 4 still consider the people of Level 2 to be in the same boat as the Level 1s and treat them like trash.

    Entertainment Hub

    The Entertainment Hub of the Initium Novum is not part of any level and is towards the front of the colony ship. This area is as tall as all of the levels combined and is meant for people of all levels to enjoy. This area is filled with many forms of entertainment, like theatrical plays, movies, and even virtual reality theme parks that change based on seasons.
    Initium Novum: Level 3

    The third level of the Initium Novum. This level is what most refer to as the upper middle class. This level is in the middle of all levels and is typically neutral about all relations in between the levels. Some of this level view the lower levels badly and the others don’t. The environment for this level is very average and there is nothing that significant for this area.

    Initium Novum: Level 4

    The level before the fifth level in the Initium Novum. This level is where the richest of the rich live. People of the lower levels usually hate those on Level 4 due to their snobbiness and their lack of understanding of the lower levels. This level has what any typical rich area would have - a private golf course, grand water fountains, and large homes. Some politicians who work in level 5 can live in level 4.

    Initium Novum: Level 5

    The uppermost level of the Initium Novum. This level is regarded highly by people from all levels, especially because those of the Council reside here. Only people with the highest reputation are even allowed to take a step in this level. Those who try to take a step on this level without given access are condemned to jail in Level 1 for a month. They shall also be stripped of all vouchers on their person and will have to re-earn them through manual labor. Political meetings and new programs for AI/Androids are on this level.

    Vouchers (open)
    Vouchers are the currency used in the Initium Novum. Necessity Vouchers are vouchers that can be exchanged for food, artificial crystals, and other items an individual would typically need. Entertainment Vouchers are vouchers that are given out to individuals once every week. These vouchers can be used in the entertainment hub to pay for games, movies, and other activities. Depending on the type of labor one does, they will receive a number of vouchers from the two types.

    Mana (open)
    The power source for all Magitech items. Mana is a scarce resource that comes in two different types. Internal Mana is the mana that is retained by a living being. Their mana can be used to power Magitech devices based on their condition and physicality. If internal mana is used for too long or if the individual goes over their limit their stamina will be lowered greatly. External Mana is the mana that is extracted from deep within rocky structures. It is a visible light blue energy and can only be used after it has been extracted and placed into artificial crystals.

    AI (open)
    AI or Androids are mechanical beings that have been created by the human race in order to aid with tasks. As Mana, there are two types of AI. Normal AI, or what most refer to as VI (Virtual Intelligence)I are Androids that have been created to do specific tasks. These AI are mostly seen with the Maintenance Branch or voucher shops. Sentient AI are a new kind of AI that have the ability to think and make decisions on their own. These AI are usually owned by those on Level 4 and are rarely seen on the lower levels.

    Magic System (open)

    Using 10 point system. Spells cost a certain amount of points to use, at least for humans. Humans can use whatever spell, and the more points spent, the more powerful a spell is.

    Androids use modules as they do not have their own biological mana pool. These modules work on the 10 point system as well, but their spells have already been chosen for them via the modules. Modules hold spells of a specific type and the modules need to be changed out if they want to use a different type of spell. Ex. If a android has a Fire module in, they cannot use Arcane or Water spells. To change to this type of module, androids need to switch them out. Removing a module is similar to surgery and cannot be pulled out at a moment's notice.

    To beat a spell, the opponent needs to cast a spell that is of a higher point value. Ex. A barrier is raised with 5 points. To break this barrier, a spell with 6 points needs to be used. One can use a crystal to raise their mana pool, and the points only go away when you cast the spell. A crystal can also be used to cast a spell, but is then used up.
    #1 Zen, Jun 11, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2014
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  2. Sounds fab guys! :)

    I'd totally be up for joining this.

    I really enjoy when a bit of magic and tech get together.

    I'd totally want to play some kind of sentient AI in the entertainment hub
    #2 Obskeree, Jun 14, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2014
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  3. Sounds amazing, everyone!
  4. After asking questions about the plot and the direction it might take with Zen, there is definitely and interest for me in this RP!
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  5. *takes a peek* *breathes deeply*

    Hello @Zen, @Kino, I'll be as frank and constructive as I can be, although I do understand that there is still work to be done on this RP. *nodnods*

    Let's get the negatives out of the way first, it still looks underdeveloped... That's my biggest concern, though I think that can be revisited eventually, when more work has been done on the Initium Novum.

    Now, it might just be me, but the way it seems to me is that right now, the Novum is the concept of social castes in a sci-fi dystopian wrapped up in a pretty ship package. Now that in and of itself isn't a bad thing, but the worldbuilder in me demands to know one thing: What makes the Novum different? What makes it unique as a setting? Is it the political intrigue? Is it the whole question of what makes something human, or is a sufficiently intelligent robot on the same level as a human? We've had a taste of the 'basic' social dynamic, but I'd like to see more depth there, just so the player can wholly understand what it means to be a resident of the levels of the Novum.

    Last point. This may just be me being nitpicky but... interstellar space is very much devoid of asteroids of any sort. I'm just wondering how much Mana it takes to run the ship, and if, travelling through interstellar space, whether or not there will be enough material density to harvest that from. Suggestion: perhaps the Novum jumps from star system to star system instead of having a single set trajectory?

    Alright. On to the good things!

    I absolutely love the idea of magitech. Magic + technology is the bomb. I remember calling it Thaumpunk once. I'm still in love with the idea, but have yet to implement it in one of my worlds. However, I'd like to see the magic system explained more. You talk about Water, Fire, and Arcane as though they were different disciplines of magic, or at least, elemental affinities. What do those entail? Also, how does magitech factor into the daily life of the Novum? Are the privileged more likely to have access to it? What do the people of level 1 think about it?

    Two: Ark ships. Oh my lord, I love the concept. My sci-fi tastes recently have been pretty much: "Ark ships, ark ships, dyson spheres, ark ships... ARK SHIPS!" So yeah, that part definitely piqued my interest.

    But yeah, guys, as it stands, you seem to have a solid foundation to build on, but I can't say it's really entirely caught my interest. I mean, I'll keep an eye on it, but I need more meat on these bones, Zen! *shakes* *presses watch thread button*
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  6. Interested although a bit more background would be cool. Would like to know what the ideal character placement is and the plot; a lot seems to be consumed by this magic idea while the plot given seems unrelated. Also not so sure about the magic; how is the points system going to be implemented?
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  7. The GM's are in ongoing discussions over the details of this RP. Rest assured that we will have all of the details ironed out in time for sign ups, and will provide a link to the sign ups thread here when it is done.

    If you feel from the information given in this thread that it has potential or that you might like the basic idea of the RP, then keep an eye out. We're taking all the steps needed to address the concerns being raised here, and we're confident that the RP will turn out beautifully in the end.

    With that said, the last thing we want to do is rush this out the door before it's ready. We're taking our time with this, and it will be done when it's done. If anyone has any other concerns not already stated here, feel free to voice them. I won't be answering any questions directly in this thread because nothing is final yet, but if you would like to discuss something, you can send me a PM. Just remember, even though your questions will not be answered here, we are listening and we will address everything in time.

    Thanks for taking the time to show interest, even if it's not perfect. It's knowing that people want to see this succeed that drives us to make it right.
    #7 Kino, Jun 16, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2014
  8. Yes! Give us your input so we can make this roleplay awesome. The GMs are definitely listening and we're giving this roleplay our all.
  9. That just about sold me. Good GM's mean good roleplays XD I'll lurk about for updates.
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  10. This looks neat, so I'll at least keep an eye out on it. I really can't think of anything notably constructive to say that someone else hasn't already said, but if an idea hits me, I'll bring it up.
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  11. I would totally be up for this

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  12. This has really sparked my interest, Im excited for the sign-ups to begin when this is more fleshed out. Cant wait to see the concept finished. I think the ten point system needs to be explained more. How much mana does the average mana pool a human/AI have? is their a limit to how strong a spell can be? Whats stopping say an andriod from using all of lets say its 30 mana pool in one spell and wiping out any barrier a human could erect. What are the Ill effects of an empty mana pool to an android?

    Like I said a little more explanation would be god send. All in all I will definitely be signing up for this space traveling adventure!
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  13. Interested.
  14. Thanks again for all the interest everyone. Discussions are still ongoing amongst the GMs and we've made a lot of progress. We've noticed that the magic system is one of the most mentioned concerns in this thread, and without giving any major details, I can say that we have worked out all the details behind the system and it will be explained in it's entirety in the sign ups.

    What I can say is that, humans and AI/androids will have key differences in how they can use mana in order to balance their strengths and weaknesses. We are still planning to use the point system, with a standard maximum of 10 points for each person's mana pool as stated in the original post. There will be ways to use more than 10 points on a single spell, but how it is done will be explained in the sign ups. Penalties for draining your mana pool, aka dropping to 0 points will exist, and will be a bit different for humans and AI. There will also be ways to replenish your mana pool without the need for rest, though rest will be the primary way to do it.

    I realize that without the specific details, the minor explanation I just gave might raise more questions than they answer. However, I hope that it at least shows that we are indeed working on these things, and it is getting done. Keep in mind however that until the sign up thread is posted, all of these things are subject to change if we feel something needs to be reworked from the ground up. At the moment though, things are progressing well. We are very excited to get this started, but again, we won't rush it out the door until we're sure it's good to go. We are committed to making this as great as it can be. It will be big. It will be grand. And as for a little minor plot info, it will be episodic, meaning it will have chapters that each focus on a different portion of the plot, all of which will help to move the overall objective of the RP forward.

    Hope this little teaser is enough to hold some of you over while we continue working. Stay tuned for more.
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  15. That was an absolutely magnificent and simple explanation. I feel quite assured you know what your doing and I can't wait for full explanation and sign ups. Keep us posted oh magnificent GM.
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  16. I am definitely interested in this.

    I share some of Malk's sentiments that, as it stands, it feels like it needs to be fleshed out a bit further. He has much more concise opinions than I do, as I can't really pinpoint what exactly is lacking, just that I know something is in fact lacking.

    Personally I would like a little more clarification on the magic system, differences between humans and AI in terms of magic use (further than what Kino has already explained), and more depth of plot.

    On a ship this size (basically, 10 million people is like a large US state), I'd imagine there must be more stories to tell than just "Council Member Wants Unconventional Replacement." While I can certainly see how that type of situation would be pretty significant in this world, the bottom line in my eyes is that political drama on its own isn't going to sell the roleplay, and it doesn't stay interesting for long enough unless we find ways to spice it up. If you consider the large variety of different characters you will get in the RP, realistically very few of them are likely to fit into the political plot about Xavier Reeth. We'll need other plot candies to chew on in the meanwhile.

    In order to keep humans and AI sufficiently different, why not have it so that AI have certain limitations that humans would not have? For example, give AI a much deeper mana pool, but prevent them from using any but the weakest spells. This would make sense since AI don't have the same stamina restrictions as humans do, balanced by the fact that perhaps magic is a learned talent that androids cannot excel at in the same way humans can. So like, restrict AI to only be able to use magic of point values 3 or lower, but give them mana pools of like 20 or 30. Or perhaps with different modules/components that can be swapped in and out that change these values, perhaps shrinking a mana pool to 15 but allowing an android to use up to point level 5?

    Not saying you have to do it that way, just a suggestion and example as to how androids and humans could be made more different.

    Nonetheless I am fascinated by the idea and would love to participate! I believe all the GMs should now have my Skype so feel free to hit me up anytime for other discussion ^^

    EDIT: Jesus you guys sleep late. Within 10 minutes of posting three of the four GMs had already rated my post >_>
    #16 fatalrendezvous, Jun 18, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
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  17. It's funny you should mention that fatal. As I said, the magic system has been almost fully discussed and ironed out. However, I can see that my brief and spoiler-free explanation was not enough.

    To go further and address your specific concerns about the magic system, we have agreed that humans and AI will use mana differently. To be exact, and with a bit of a spoiler for the sake of sating your and others concerns, humans will be able to perform spells from any school of magic. The schools of magic are being split into several different "elemental" types that go a little beyond the traditional earth, fire, wind, and water, as well as an "arcane" school which essentially is comprised of any magic that would not fit into any of the elemental types, such as illusions or magical barriers. However, since AI have no natural mana pool and thus no natural means of manipulating magic like humans do, they will able to install a module in their bodies that is designed to give them the ability to manipulate mana in an almost identical way that a human can, with the limitation that the module can only support one single school of magic. So an AI would need to pick from fire, arcane, light, ect. and would only be able to cast spells that use that school. As of now, the 10 point max is the same for both humans and AI, however this will be further discussed by the GM's before it is finalised. AI naturally have greater physical abilities than humans as you would expect, which is why their magical abilities are being limited. Though they will have access to only one school of magic at a time (and they can change the module type they have, though not on-the-fly) they will be given the full range of that school's uses, meaning there will be no limit on how many points they can use for a single spell, provided they have the mana.

    There is still far more to be said on the magic system, but like I said, all will be revealed in the sign ups. We don't want to release everything in fragmented bits of information here, as it would end up being a mess, and we don't want to say to much for fear that things might change before the launch of the game and people would go in expecting something different from the final product.

    As for the plot, the proposed bit of plot with Xavier Reeth would only comprise chapter 1 of the RP, and it has already gone through a few changes since our discussions on the matter began, and still being finalized. The overall plot for the RP will be to fulfill the objective of the Initium Novum, which is to find a new planet to call home. With each chapter, while other things are happening, the ship will get ever closer to reaching that goal. However, the fate of the ship will be ultimately in the hands of the players. If something happens naturally during the RP that would jeopardize the ship, the consequences will be very real for everyone on board. The possibility that the ship could fail it's mission is very real. We will not force events to happen for the sake of success for the mission. That will be up to the players. And even if the ship does finally find a new habitable planet, that doesn't mean that the story will suddenly come to an end.

    More on the overall plot with be revealed in the sign ups. Again, we don't want to say anything about it that might come to change between now and then. Rest assured though, that the plot is our number one priority. Everything that is being done is done with the plot in mind. While the thing with Xavier Reeth will be part of chapter 1, it is only a small piece of the plot pie, and will likely not even be the only thing going on in chapter 1. As the RP develops, so too will the plot.
    #17 Kino, Jun 18, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
  18. And just to give you all an idea of the size of the ship. Yes, it has around 10 million people on board with enough room to fit everyone in relative comfort. It wouldn't be much of a spoiler to say that the ship is so massive that it had to be built in space because there is no structure that can be built on a planet that could support it's size and weight.

    It's so massive in fact that it wasn't even built in orbit around the home world because it would have affected planetary tidal forces, potentially resulting in massive global flooding and other "natural" disasters. This ship is huge. Mega huge. Unbelievably huge. It has teleportation stations at either end of the ship because traveling from one end to the other any other way would simply take too long.

    It is nearly 100% self sustaining (more on that "nearly" part later) and provides virtually all the comforts of a full city, complete with it's own entertainment industry and all the other bells and whistles.

    For a better look at what the ships looks like, here's a link to the full size image.

    And before anyone says anything, yes, the image is of a ship from EVE online.
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  19. As long as everything is clarified in the sign ups, I'll read it and probably join. Although I'm finishing up with school ATM so I could be a bit.
  20. Whats the estimated time the sign up will be posted. Are we talking days or weeks? (I wouldn't ask if I wasnt so excited I've been pacing around my laptop all day waiting for an update on the roleplay.)
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