To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

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To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby LordLucan » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:11 am

Commorragh is no mere city. It is an inter-dimensional, transcendant warren of interlinking cities, boulevards and pocket universes; an ever-expanding, sprawling mega-complex of many cities. All of which have been conquered, coerced or otherwise subdued by the relentless, merciless Kabalite system. Our dread abode is but one of these ancient domains of vice, debaunchery and madness that Commorite eldar call home.

Hi folks! LL here.

In discussion with Schaf, we decided to see if we as a forum could collectively, as a forum, create a characterful and interesting sub-realm within the webway. A sub-realm is essentially a city (or indeed, dimension) unto itself, where denizens of the webway gather to perform dark acts away from prying eyes. These were originally the playgrounds of rich, bored Eldar pleasure cult nobles to enact their twisted fantasies, but over time they have developed into much more, and the variety of environments possible is near limitless.

I'm eager to hear of any ideas you lot can bring to the table.

Here are some points which may help you focus and channel your creative juices:

1) Who.what are the main facitons that rule the sub-realm? Would there be Kabal rule in the realm? Or possibly a disputed zone between several powerful factions (such as the sun cults or Haemonculi covens, or any number of other creatures)? Is the sub-realm even possess a true ruler? Who are the movers and shakers; the power-brokers and rivals?

2) Environment. What is the realm like? Does it have its own captured suns? Are there spires and towers like the more urban realms of commorragh, or more esoteric landscapes and architectures, such as great plains of thorns or markets made out of stitched together, living flesh, or other such weird and creepy spectacles? Don't feel too limited by size and scope, because the webway's dimensions are... flexible as it were. One cannot even be certain of distance in some cases.

Also consider whether the sub-realm possesses something that makes it valuable to Commorragh as a whole (perhaps it has a market which is the only place you could obtain a certain artefact in the whole of commorragh or something?)

3) Are there more than just Dark Eldar there? remember, the Kabals are only the elite of the elite of Commorragh; there are other Commorites. Don't forget the more independant gangs and mercenaries that prowl commorragh. Also, are there other xenos there? Pirates and brigands of every race and dark creed all struggling to survive? Remember also there are native parasites in the webway like psychueneuin (warp wasps), and the clawed fiends and various other terrible things.

4) History. How long as the sub-realm existed? When was it conquered by Vect's Kabals? Was it ever fully conquered? Is it still tangentially at war with Vect? Does it have portals which lead into realspace? Have its denizens made any notable raids?

Anyway, hope we get interest with this. If anyone recalls 'to found a world', I don't run these things on too strict a basis. I'd love any input. The initial phases of the world-building exercise will have to be more tightly coordinated than when we have the foundation of the sub-realm set; then folks can chuck in whatever they think would we twisted, interesting or just plain cool.

So, any takers?
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Ghurlag » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:44 am

Another world-building project? I'll dust off my loom, I'm in.

The webway seems fantastically flexible as an environment, which is slightly worrying in one respect (No bounds to our creativity?) but also pretty awesome (No bounds to our creativity!).

The captured sun idea you mentioned seems pretty cool, LL. If there was some way to create a mesh or prison of some form to hold it and make that metaphor even more of a visual reality, I'd be all for that.

Another angle is to take a historical perspective, and make the whole realm the grounds of one huge and twisted manorial estate, previously owned by a Eldar pleasure cultist. I'm picturing a giant, labyrinthine maze of hedges the size and complexity of a city in the estate somewhere, full of... interesting things...

I think one of the things to nail down early on is the geography, as the characters will form around it to a certain degree, and the webway gives us lots of new angles to bring them in from.

As the misty veil of Albion is cast aside, we turn our gaze to the war-torn island of Albany, where the Red King vies with his former master for the control of a realm in dire threat.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Obscura Boy » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:59 am

Oh, I am SO in on this. If you'll have me, that is. And something tells me you will... :twisted:
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Xisor » Sun Jun 26, 2011 3:05 am

Ghurlag wrote:I think one of the things to nail down early on is the geography, as the characters will form around it to a certain degree, and the webway gives us lots of new angles to bring them in from.


Which, to chime in, highlights a major problem with the Webway. Not only is it not a big truck, it's also not a series of tubes.

That is: it's not just the 'geography' that's to be considered, but the topology. The surface could be some sort of inverted donut-like torus (imagine a gridded piece of paper curved into an open-ended cylinder but then bent around to complete the torus, but then have no stretching of the points. So the distance around the 'outside' of the torus [bit of the donut you hold] measures the same as around the inside [the circumference of the 'hole in the middle'], but you can go 'up' and 'down' the outside of the torus, but also through the middle 'side'/hole too).

In my mind the Webway can easily form such topologies. It'd be wasted if it were merely the inside of actual artery-like pipes. What about 'doors in the webway surface' which are on your wall, but open onto your neighbour's roof?

Image

I'd be tempted to propose a connectivity of locales. Make each 'site' a node and don't bother describing the sky until you settle on the nodes of the network. So some bits are heavily connected, other bits you've almost always got to pass through to reach another place (without going out into the wider webway), some shortcuts that are wholly improper and so forth.

Places that are plainly visible, for example, might not be readily accessible. You know of the Inevitable City in Warhammer Fantasy? Why not have the presiding Archon's manse (as per Ghurlag's suggestion of the pleasure palace estate) be something like that? A factor which, no matter where you are, it always seems the exact same distance. Or always slightly closer. Or always highly visible?

It's a pretty messed up place in there.

Alternatively you could have it situated on a rare actual plane with very few, mostly quite linear, webway connections. Within Commoragh, that's probably quite uncommon!

Also: Klein Bottle City!
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Ghurlag » Sun Jun 26, 2011 3:23 am

Xisor wrote:Also: Klein Bottle City!


That would be damn awesome.

Xisor's right, of course, we need to consider the brain-hurting dimensional possibilities of our section of the webway. We should also think about how it connects to the rest of the structure (is is a hub, a crossroads, a quirk in a passage, a cul-de-sac?), because that will affect our possibilities for shape and structure.

Personally, I'm all for one of the last two - there being either a single road in (a literal dark corner), or two, with this manorial centerpiece guarding the passage (whatever its shape). I'm up for persuasion, though.

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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby schaferwhat‽ » Sun Jun 26, 2011 8:13 am

History defines everything.

Commorragh wasn't at first a city, it was was a port that grew, a city through traders, smugglers and those who would hide from proper Eldar society staying and building. After the Fall Commorrragh expanded taking advantage of the interconnectedness of the Webway to engulf other ports and pockets. To an outsider anywhere with "Dark" Eldar in the Webway is Commorragh, to an extent this is true though that doesn't mean some don't delude themselves into nomally declaring areas to still be the realms they were in the past.

What I'm saying is, we do what was once a port/trading hub in the webway. This means we can define the webway portals into the sub-realm, and how they work and dictate the nature of the subrealm (in my head I'm sort of envisaging a Eldar Hive city that encompasses all of reality, the only air/sky available is what was left for Eldar ships to float through when they came to the port). Thus we can be boring and say that mostly the webway manifests tube wise, because we're talking about 4-5 major access points and they're designed for mass transit of quite big things. Then we can discuss where the webway goes, the fall changed everything sections of the webway collapsed became overrun by terrible things, Commorragh has expanded to engulf a decent percentage of webway space yadda yadda yadda it needs discussing.

On captured suns. I want some. If only because we can then play around with Eldar Solar Cults. In my head the old forever masters of the realm still think they rule it and claim independence from Commarragh but aren't so aggressive as to kick up a fuss and bring a world of pain on their heads. Partly they exert influence on the realm via the Solar Cults which they are linked with (this influence is exerted partly through culture, the religious significance of the solar cult but also through power, military means, the fact that there are those who can manipulate the stuff of stars to their own ends within the realm).

The captured sun(s) also allow for the realm to be multi faccetted in that the port/city realm can be made easily divided into day and night. I propose a city atop another city, the floor of Day will be the crystaline levels of dusk, where at some point gravity flips and the Night area is built. My reasoning is that the Eldar were slavers before the fall, they were lazy and thought themselves superior to all other Races. But they might have found the slave trade a bit distasteful and seek to hide it, thus there is the night channel, the webway port underneath the main structure to service the slave trade. Also smugglers, smugglers and pirates would use the night-channel (or other secret doors into the webway secreted within the confides of the Night area) even before the fall, this realm had a seedy underbelly an area more akin to old Commorragh without the airs, graces and pomp of the day. Obviously all the secret smuggle routes now lead direct to the enlarged Commorragh and the night is the way that typical Dark Eldar society seeps in and forms a growing cancer in the pocket we are developing.

Geography wise, I view Day to be akin to Craftworld Eldar architecturally. Upon the crystal floor of dusk, there are great spires upon the top of which are the captured suns. These spires are built for ships to dock with (and to launch fleets of smaller vessels to go and interact with ships, shuttle crafts to dock with a ship and give/take cargo without the ship docking properly rather the ship is just briefly in the realm as they shift from one branch of the webway to another via the crossroadsy nature of the realm. Between these spires are great bridges of wraithbone, 50 storeys high curving and twisting and within which are all manner of housing, shops and the trappings of Eldar society pre-fall, many of which have now fallen into disrepair as there isn't the Empire any more.

From Dusk downwards into True Night, it's a labarynthian hive structure. Where the slaves toil away outside of the site of Eldar nobility such as it once was/now is. Passageways and internal structures can vary in shape, size and even gravity but the danger is the hollows. When smuggle routes were developed often they needed extra space to ship the smuggling through (although some smuggle routes are no bigger than a door, hidden in the roof of a level allowing a single person to sneak in and out) and thus controlled demolitions caused the hollows. Areas of void within the Night within which somewhere is a webway portal of unknown size where things may crop out of, a wrong turn within Night and you could find yourself walking down a seemingly subterranian corridor that ends in a vast cavern within which Razorwing flocks and other more dangerous things fly.

The Night Chanel, the slave route of old will come up from the centre of Night from the very bottom (it is a one way cul-de-sac entrance to the realm, you can't navigate further if you enter the realm from the Night Channel) and is the site of the main hollow that goes all the way into the middle of Night, you could jump from the middle of Night and fall for a day before you hit the wall of unreality beneath which the webway lies, if you're lucky that is and some erroneous altered gravity field doesn't cause you to fall sideways into another part of Night.

True Night, the area furthest from Dusk, at the bottom of the realm whilst created to support the maintanence and structure of the Webway portal I'd probably have overrun by a Haemonculi Coven because it'd be fun to play with one of those (as it would a Solar Cult).

Obviously Day, Night, Dusk, True Night. Should be altered for Eldar sounding words to capture those concepts (presumably a dialect of Eldar is in use in the subrealm) as well as a name for the realm itself. That's my ideas with regards the structuring of this realm though, I think it gives us things to play with, we can have Kabals fighting to dominate Night, we have the ever-kingdom of the lords of Day stubbonly ignoring the path of the Dark Eldar in favour of maintaining an existence they had before the Fall, and you have the peoples and creatures of the Sub-Realm torn between the two contrasting powers, both of which views them disdainfully as a resource.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Obscura Boy » Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:24 pm

Thus we can be boring and say that mostly the webway manifests tube wise


Boring, you say?! :shock: Why would we be satisfied with being 'boring' when the possibilities in the Webway are endless? I think these things are still very much open to discussion.

Which is not to say that I don't like your initial ideas, schafe - in particular, I love the idea of captured suns and associated solar cults, and of the various unknown smugglers' routes criss-crossing the city - but I don't think we should try to define the exact nature of our city/port/interdimensional leisure facility without having considered other possibilities for its topology first.

For instance, I just looked up a few images of this 'Klein bottle' after being confuzzled by Xisor's reference, and I think that's exactly the kind of thing we should be going for! My question is, would this mind-bending, labyrinthine world-structure have been in place before the Eldar colonised the area? If so, presumably the 'ruling classes' would have picked a particularly impressive/inaccessible/easily-defensible location for their stronghold, which in turn would have determined the layout of the rest of the city. Or was the structure of this particular Webway section/pocket determined by the Eldar themselves, who manipulated it with some manner of arcane technology? If so, who exactly was doing the manipulating and why? What did they intend to create?

P.S -

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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby schaferwhat‽ » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:29 pm

see I like simplicity, it tends to be a generally good thing.

Note how function in someway informs my notions on design, the fact that it is a port and thus needing to house and see to void capable craft and huge volumes of travellers suggests that simplicity mightn't be the worst thing in the world.

As the Webway collapses and is altered things have changed as Commorragh has been sorted, led somewhat to the destortions also how it was originally a den of depravity and secret dark acts away from preying eyes which lends itself to being built in a certain way.

I'm happy for something more complex, realistically with webway degregation we could have bends and twists and distortions from a simpler design "the oblivion curve" a pathway that leads eventually to the heart of the eye of terror if the rumours are true, no one who follows the oblivion curve ever comes back. Or we could go crazy but being a cummedgeon I'd want some thought as to why the realm was crafted that way, which again Obscura goes to your line of questioning about why, what and how this realm came about.

On a further notion of Solar Cults, it excites me somewhat to have the Solar Cults and Haemonculi Covens act as perhaps opposites, one being the dark perversion of Eldar genius to twisted ends the other based on the ancient technology of the ancient Eldar Empire. A Solar Cultist could personify (Eldarify?) the progress and abilities of the Eldar prefall, the Haemonculi is the twisted shadow of such a notion, initally by the Eldar's own weakness but amplified by the fall into something quite hideous.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby LordLucan » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:51 pm

I like the oblivion curve notion. Perhaps originally it was a 'fast track' geographical quirk of the webway which took Noble Eldar straight to the Eldar homeworld. Then, when the eye of terror was born, it consumed this portal. Nobody knows how the oblivion curve remains open, yet daemons do not spill out of it. Some suggest it was under the influence of unseen shade daemon patronage, while others suggest Cegorach had a hand in it. Around the mouth of the upper curve, jutting barbs ahve begun to grow from the walls of the webway itself, and prisoners and those that have failed the Dark Eldar are impaled upon them. Many eldar pay to enjoy themselves in the Spire of Uleamix, a Commorite who has built a spire which looks out over the 'fangs of the curve'. From there, Commorrites can watch as the bodies mewling on the barbs are slowly disintergrated by the corrosive energies that lap against the unseen barriers between dimensions.

Schaf: Is you idea for dusk and day a sort of two cities, but are joined by the foundations, one set of structures and buildings pushing up towards the captured stars, while the other city sort of dangles below like stalactites (but both sides seem 'the right way up' as it were)?

I like the divide between Haemonculi 'below' and solar cults above, but perhaps delineate it slightly more? The solar cult's realm is more a sort of twilight, rather than being bright white (as I don't picture commorragh as ever being properly bright. seems wrong to me).

I say we can have a klein bottle-shaped palace within the sub-realm surely? Not neccessarily representing the entire realm, but just a fluke of webway structure?

Also, we need a name of this realm? or shall taht come last of all?
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Xisor » Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:02 pm

On Shape & Schafer

'Massively', we could have it be a tube. E.g. it's on a route that ships take in to Commoragh. So there's traffic going too Commoragh flying one way, ships leaving going the other. The multidimensional imperfections can be much smaller in scale compared to the traffic of starships, that's just the 'top tier' at low resolution.

Perhaps to accommodate the star, we could have the city inhabit the interior of a sub, but have it perforated, in parts.

Ah, to hell with it. Here, look at this:

Hole of Tortured Stars

Right, the dark red is the warp. The light blue is a suggest webway segment. The 'geography' of the segment is as on the interior of the conjoined donuts. The suns are the little orange dots in their own little (gargantuan) but disconnected webway pockets. By virtue of the warp did it, the suns can blaze out of the webway floor (because it's a nearby webway pocket) relative to wherever you're standing within this subrealm. The intensity/distance of the sun can be measured by taking a literal measure of the relative distance as calculated from the 'closest points' of the webway (let's say the radius of the donuts, for ease), plus however far away you are from those points in the webway.

So, as you approach this section (via one of the two endpoints, one can be "to Commoragh" and the other can be "from Commoragh" the suns beneath your feet draw closes or sink deeper 'out from the mysterious depths beneath you' as you look at the closest 'surface' of the webway to wherever you are.

This allows the interior of these tubes to be massive enough to allow the passage of starships, whilst allowing the actual surfaces of the tubes to be pock-marked with a billion little worm-holes, perforations, adjoining other tunnels, short cuts routes and so forth.

Imagine T and F are the the 'to' and 'from ends. If you do a figure of eight through the double-loop (marking the 'top' of each loop as North1 and North2), marking each 'quarter turn' and also 'tapping home' at the T/F ends, you could line it up as so:

T-> East1 -> North1 -> East1/West2 -> South 2 -> East2 -> F -> North2 -> West2/East1 -> South1 -> East1 -> T

That's a complete 'figure of eight' through the double-loop of the webway, having cut to quadrants each torus. Except the bits like "South 2" would actually be more like a ring world which connects on one side to "East 2" and on the other to "West 2", with the suns blazing up from the floor and, high in the sky, you'd have the 'far side of the world', except looking off to the sides you'd be able to see even further (depending on the radius of the torus itself and the radius of the interior).

As I said, you could have shortcuts. So West2/East1 would be a very complicated bit indeed. It'd also have two suns blazing at odd angles and from very odd angles. It's entirely possible you could be looking at eight suns (actually two suns in four places each) if you were 'right in the middle'. Sensible place for the Archon's mansion?

Similarly, you could 'tilt' the figure-of-eight, but keep the T/F positions, such that the 'segments' of the 8 are on either side of the main webway passage, e.g: ->8->, but I'm less enamoured with that.

Also, my dinner's cold. Stop making me falteringly half-remember my Geometry & Topology course!
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Obscura Boy » Sun Jun 26, 2011 8:49 pm

Oooh, Geometry and Topology! Well aren't we Mr. Fancy? :P

Seriously, though, I'm all up for that kickass structure proposed by Xisor. I can see the peculiar topology giving rise to all sorts of tension between different power groups. For example, the 'nexus' of the figure of eight could well be the busiest, most populous and potentially most lucrative region in the structure, purely because all traffic would have to pass through it, whichever way it was going. So, is this where the sub-realm's ruler would make his/her stronghold? Or would it be constantly fought over by different power groups?

Oooh, oooh, and the sub-realm could also be split by a conflict between two separate solar cults, each of which is dedicated to a different sun! :D

Exciting stuff.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Xisor » Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:22 pm

Obscura Boy wrote:Oooh, Geometry and Topology! Well aren't we Mr. Fancy? :P


Shush you, I got a 16.4 in that module. That's 0.1 off of a First Class grade, who's Mr. Fancy now? :P (If it helps muddy the water, it was a Maths module and I was a physicist, a fish out of water and the only non-mathematician in the class; I was proud, damnit! Also it was the first course to have serious, practical applications. That is: I used it to move my ex-girlfriend's cupboard rather easily [Three rotations make a translation, simple!].)

I completely forgot about this aspect, however: the surface of the webway can itself link to other bits. So you could have a 1m*1m 'square' gap through which you can step and you find yourself in a small wraithgate built into a building 'high in the middle' of the realm!

If you know the game 'Portal', it's worth bearing it in mind. Any 'hole' punched in the webway can go either two ways:
1- It can breach into the warp and then suddenly DAEMONS
2- It can connect to somewhere else in the webway

We don't know what the rules are for webway connections. We know 'pocket' dimensions can be created, isolated from the rest (Sahaal's prison). We can suppose that the suns are kept in these dimensions mainly because having a sun connected by a non-vacuum to the rest of the webway seems, to me, a bad idea.


Anyway, bear in mind this transit through the figure eight:
T-> East1 -> North1 -> East1/West2 -> South 2 -> East2 -> F -> North2 -> West2/East1 -> South1 -> East1 -> T

You could also do it 'long hand' by corkscrewing around the surface of the webway too, without making massive progression from T to F and back. If each location's given a second parameter (e.g. if you take a salami-slice/cross-section of the webway, which 'number' of the clockface are you on?)

So you could start at T(0/12) then move to T(1) all the way through to T(11) and back to where you started (T0/12). But similarly you could follow the above path as such (crossing on the 'diagonal corners' of the division):

T(0)-> East1(1) -> North1(2) -> East1/West2(3) -> South 2(4) -> East2(5) -> F(6) etc.

But similarly you could go:
T(0)-> T(2)-> T(3) -> East1(3) -> North1(2) -> East1/West2(3) -> South 2(4) -> East2(4) -> F(3) etc.

Except, of course, there's only barely alluded to problems. The highlight is "East1/West2(3)", what does a cross-section at that point even mean? We're talking about floor surfaces which are coming to the 'cross section' from four tubes to make two loosely opposing planes: (the top and bottom 'x's looking down on the 8.) But you've also got the four 'outcrops' too!

Check google images for 'Double Torus', it's suitably illuminating for getting your head around quite what we're discussing. A hollow double-torus with two big 'open edges' which go to/from Commoragh.

The Surface is Perforated

Taking the flimsy scheme above, whilst you could follow the path:

T(0)-> East1(1) -> North1(2) -> East1/West2(3) -> South 2(4) -> East2(5) -> F(6)

quite easily (beginning to corkscrew as you make the S of a figure-of-eight).

But the webway, really, should allow other things, like this:
Archon Xisor's Ambush Path from Fort Xisor: T(0) <-> East2(7)
Klaivex Lucan's Shopping Jaunt: South2(7) <-> East1(7)

Klaivex Lucan's dojo could be sited in the Obsidian Tesseract of Hierarch Dracon Ghurlag Tacklejack which is built/accessed at South2(7) on the webway interior surface (thus making you a chappie behold more to Sun 2 than Sun 1?). So you're immediate 'neighbourhood' would be South2(7), which borders up/down South2(8) and South2(6), whilst Commorraghward/anti-Comorraghward would be East2(7) and West2(7), with it being easy to work out the other nearby permutations.

Does the 'inner ring' of the torus hold any preference over the 'top/bottom' rings, or the 'outer ring'? (On the diagram presented far above, you'd expect the outer ring to be much wider. I can't quite remember enough G&T [not Gin & Tonic, though I'd quite like some] to note if it's allowable to have the area preserved and still preserve proper dimensions [I'd be keen to not include discrete, distinct 'edges', I like a smooth webway where 'holes' are introduced by folks willing to tamper/alter webway structure, but that the edges are constant.])

The thing is, this structure can be made much more complicated very easily. It can be stretched, to allow the donuts to become twin, long parallel passages with 'rows' of suns along them. You could have three, four, fifteen, a billion 'toruses' all joined together. You could 'ring it up' into three dimensions by having the 'hoops' oriented around four stars in a tetrahedral arrangement.

There really are very many, very easy systems to consider at this elementary (he says!) level. (I say elementary because, as hard mathematical SF goes, this feels pretty pretty tame for what G&T-style ideas could allow. We might, perhaps, introduce a hyperbolic or fractal geometry in which the stars themselves could inhabit.)

The downside to that, however, is going beyond this 'elementary' level takes it further and further away from what I (and possibly you lot) have any idea about!

---

Caveat

I think it'd be a disservice to the nature of the webway to 'cheat' (IMO) and say "it's a tube". There is another possible route, however, and that is to only map the connections/neighbours and to discard the model(s) I've been talking about all together; to simply not explain what's going on. I'm not as happy about that, but it's certainly enigmatic!
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby schaferwhat‽ » Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:47 pm

Lucy wrote:Schaf: Is you idea for dusk and day a sort of two cities, but are joined by the foundations, one set of structures and buildings pushing up towards the captured stars, while the other city sort of dangles below like stalactites (but both sides seem 'the right way up' as it were)?


Pretty much though the stalactites would be riddled with webway portals which mess things up a little more in the underside.

Whilst I like the idea of Xisors proposals, I'd favour more of a pocket dimension approach than part of the continuous webway, or to put it a different way have the webway be an external force rather than the defining thing of the realm.

My twin city idea, would sort of opperate as the anchor of the reality, the centre of a whirlpool that is also a bubble. Upon the edge of the reality there are a number of webway openings, massive vents identifiable because they're the only parts of the dark fabric of the reality bubble that isn't rippling like a pool of oil. The city is a space station, designed to facilitate trade and exploration, service the fleets of the Eldar Empire back in the day, however it doesn't sit in space, it isn't even a void, each of the webway openings either spews forth or sucks in energy, gravity, even reality/matter. You could theoretically travel without a ship to any of the outer webway openings, swimming through void that is thick and viscuous, crawling against gravity eddies, scrambling through sand that is coming into existence from nowhere.

At one time the Eldar could control the flow of energy from and to the webway openings, could make paths and there would be great exodouses of Eldar on pilgramages or what not moving without ships through the great portals. They could help steer ships into dock or even just create a slipstream to hurry them on their way as they sought to use the nexus of webway entrances as a short cut.

That probably isn't so much the case any more, they probably stopped caring about that in the heady days pre-fall when the Eldar stopped caring a bout everything but the point is that there would be some sort of "Webway traffic control" element to the existence of the realm as well.

If bendy reality by webway portals intersecting the structure of the "city/station" isn't enough (and why would it be) how about where as the roof of the reality is defined by the sun(s) from which the city/station descends and that is the highest point in the bubble of reality the Nightside of the city/station actually pierces the fabric of reality and is a direct route into the webway. "The Black Descents" are the basis of the smuggling/piracy/slaving trade pre fall (outside of the webway portals which would possibly be a risk to the integrity of the reality pocket and thus be of concern to the city/station's authorities whilst such things existed and worked pre-fall.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Green River » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:38 am

I NEED THE INTERNET, DAMNIT!!

Stupid poverty...

Seriously though, if I could get to a web-capable computer more often than once per fortnight I would be so in on this, it ticks all of my boxes. Furthermore, I was planning on doing something similar to this as a spin-off from my ongoing 'Irafon' world project. I had a cool idea for what evil and twisted things could happen to 'The Eloharian' (a kind of anti-pleasure cult paramilitary set up as a rearguard to protect the last Exodites and Craftworlds as they left Eldorado the Golden and the other Crone Worlds), as well as the 'Esith' band of pirates that betrayed their Exodite cargo and made off into the stars.*

Still, awesome project. If it lasts into the next academic year (not too far off) I'll be in, sure.


*'Eloharian' translates as 'heavenly reflection', from 'elohar' (reflection) and the combining form '-ian' (godly/holy), intended intended as a metaphor representing the organisation as a perfect opposite, or reflection, of the debauched and corrupt society they fought against. 'Esith' is a contraction of 'esik' (dire) and 'elith' (farewell), referring to the pirate fleet's foundational gesture of abandoning a colony of Exodites to their unsupported fate. I like how some of the often rootless 'wandering bands' of the Eldar can be given a strong identity forged in the Fall in such ways.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Green River » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:22 pm

After having read through this topic in more detail I found the discussion on spatial topography to be absolutely fascinating, and yet in the back of my mind was the little niggle that screamed ‘how would you depict it!’

The thing is, as soon as anybody mentions world building my mind goes through several fairly predictable fascinations, usually including, but not limited to, history, politics, and maps.

This project provides an interesting challenge to actually depicting such a realm spatially. It seems impossible to imagine (much less draw!) anything in more than three spatial dimensions, though we seem to get by fine when we try to depict a ‘fourth’ time dimension (this is what it looked like at this date, this is what it looked like a little later, and so on). What I’m saying is that if we could produce a kind of ‘dynamic’ map, like an animation, then spatial representation wouldn’t be much of a problem.

Since theoretically you could plot the city on a plane of some sort (so that things ‘very close’ to each other would remain close almost however you bent reality) and then ‘animate’ the map in such a way that it bent and folded around in on itself in such a way that one could infer any point of contact between parts of the plane. Indeed, an interesting idea might have the realm in constant flux (like a broken or unstable reality) such that ‘space-time’ (or whatever we’re talking about here) changed its position relative to itself over time (you could imagine warring ‘gangs’ waiting for their ‘plane’ to bend across into rival territory, having them leap across to fight some sort of turf war).

Simplicity is a good thing, as Schafe pointed out, and mad complexity is cool, but if ‘we’ ever want to depict the place I think it’s worth bearing in mind just how complex a simple plane can be made. If you take a piece of paper, and scrunch it up into a ball, you’ve just made an incredibly complex shape and still nobody’s mind is boggled.

I think that it is possible to do justice to the webway and yet retain a sense of practicality; after all the Webway was designed for soft and fleshy beings comfortable in three dimensions; it’s probably a little unrealistic to design a place that would kill them (though making them nauseous is totally cool; ‘you got web-sickness, reality lubber!’) too much.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Jaraknarn » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:07 pm

Im super down for this.

Iv always imagined Commoragh a bit like a 4D Coruscant from star wars. A never ending city, with no definable 'edge. U could set off in one direction and eventually end up back where u started, or set off in another and walk forever without ever getting back to where u started. Its flat but its not. Its spherical but its not. Its Taurical but its not.

A few questions i have, all complete genial, just seeing how everyone feels.

While i agree and am completely ok with there being a defined geometry to the place, are we sure we want to define it? Does it need to be defined precisely for the narratives to work or can we just take some creative lee way and leave it more nebulous?

Are we sure we want to set it as seperate from Commoragh? Its a happening place, the New York of the webway. I feel theres endless potential for story in just a 'district' of the Dark city, that lets us avoid the problems/fun of defining the geometry as its simple ; the city goes on forever but, the district ends here, leave it at your peril.



I have a few ideas for some characters and factions. I love the idea of Kabal and turf/gang wars in Commoragh. I was thinking about 3 Archons/Kabals, one Old powerful but decaying, another youthful and ascendant but inexperienced and one a young upstart, self made from the under city rising on a wave of popularity with the masses, threatening to upset the delicate balance of power in the district. What do u think?
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Green River » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:49 am

Hello there chaps; I trust you’ve all been cracking on with some more awesome worldbuilding. In fact, I reckon we should probably all adopt the title of ‘Slartibartfastists’, or maybe codify the philosophy of Slartibartfastism in order that our endeavours are recognised in the right section of the Black Library (or pages of THGTTU, whichever you prefer).

Anyway, I pre-prepared this post at home on the understanding that my contribution would prove to be useful in the light of Schafe’s ‘solar cult’ ideas. Cough. Put simply, here’s my contribution on the naming of any such star cults should that idea get developed a little more:

Obviously, disregarding any kind of historically unusual name for the cults (they could be named after a bloke for instance), the sourcebooks on the Eldar language, such as their codices and the like, are remarkably generous when it comes to giving us cool words for things like stars and starlight. It’s probably the blatant poeticism, and the fact that Tolkien’s ‘Star of Earendil’ sounds almost impossibly cool, but for whatever reason the GW guys rolled with the idea.

Most prominently, there’s a great little flavour piece in the back of the third edition Eldar codex [G. Thorpe, Codex: Eldar (Nottingham, 1999), p. 48] on the Eldar language supposedly written by someone called ‘Lexicos Aldus Mari’. So, to cut to the chase, we have the following passages:

’For example, rhiantha means, at the fundamental level, ‘starlight’. However, a full translation would read more like ‘the starlight which shines upon the waters of Rhidol during the winter’. Without knowing where Rhidol is, or even if it is a real or mythical place, the full meaning is impossible to ascertain.’

So here we have a fully attested word with the translation of ‘starlight’, rhiantha. Pretty good so far, but the full translation means that the word roots are still a little vague. Pan further down however and we are given the luxury of a full translation of some ‘learned Eldar’s’ name (incidentally, the next codex confirmed that Rhidol, or rather the ‘Dark Gates of Rhidol’, is indeed a real place: [P. Kelly, Eldar (Nottingham, 2006), p. 15.]):

’The learned Eldar who was kind enough to educate me was called Alai-Eltanomorreiasalonethatil – Altai (of the Alaitoc craftworld) – Eltano (his birth name) – mor (the wise) – reia (rising star) – salo (the teacher) – nethatil (family name ending).’

Cool on its own, but you’ll also notice that the chap has an honorific translated as ‘rising star’, reia, so by my reckoning we can be fairly certain that we’ve isolated the common root word for ‘star’ and it’s derivatives, rhia or reia.

We could do a lot with this single article on its own even, constructing such names as ‘the rising star folk’, Reianir (perhaps an informal, slightly derogatory term. Note that the suffix ‘ir’ is used to turn a singular noun into a collective one or into a group one in most cases), ‘the rising star warrior-folk’, Reiannir, what about a philosophy called something like ‘the wisdom of starlight’, Morhiantha. There’s loads of things you could do with this piece alone, but even more than that it seems that the GW blokes have peppered the Eldar sources with words for all sorts of related terms like light and fire (if you decided that the cults were a little more poetic or indulged in archaisms). For instance:

What about a machine for collecting the light or destroying stars, the Maugetareia, ‘harvester (machine) of rising stars’, or perhaps Maugan Rhian, ‘harvester (person) of starlight’?[Thorpe, Eldar, p. 42.]

There’s a vaguer hint of a word for ‘burning’ with the translation of Fuegan to ‘The Burning Lance’, and I’d bet it was ‘-gan’ or something similar.[Ibid., p. 43.]

Of course, well-known is that asur translates as ‘phoenix’, hence Asuryan (phoenix king), Asurya (phoenix lord/s), Asurmen (hand of the phoenix (king)).[Ibid., cf. Kelly, Eldar, p. 5.]

At this point, I should advise that ‘stars’ for the Eldar have some very different connotations than we might attach to the concept ourselves. The rune for ‘The Eldar of the Stars’ (meaning Craftworlders, though also literally) carries the connotations of ‘imprisonment, eternity, rigidity and self-denial’, but which to me sounds perfect for some kind of sun-worshipping eremitic cult of ascetics.[Thorpe, Eldar, p. 44.]

We get a translation for ‘enlightenment’ too in the name of the Saim-Hann; saim (enlightenment/secret knowledge/snake/serpent).[Kelly, Eldar, p. 17.]

More encouragingly, the Craftworld Iyanden is translated as ‘light in the darkness’; cross reference that with Karandras’ translation, ‘the shadow hunter’ and the relationship between -den (‘darkness’) and -dras (‘shadow’) would imply a common root if we weren’t dealing with a constructed language (and hence something toyed up by fallible humans). In any case, I think the relationship between Kar- of Karandras and Kur- of Kurnous (god of the hunt) gives us fairly solid grounds to consider that Iyan- is the part of Iyanden which relates to, or possibly translates as ‘light’ by way of a few logical syllogisms. A hypothesis for the fundamental root word might rest on the occurrence of -an in a lot of the related words I’ve listed (rhiANtha, FuegAN, IyANden, ANaris).

Such as ‘Anaris’, the sword given to Eldanesh by Vaul and which translates as ‘dawnlight’.

Anyway, those are the words I could find (and verify by reference) for words relating to light, fire, stars, &c. For me, my best guess is that the bare bones root for ‘star’ is rhi- or rei-, while the root for ‘light’ might be something like -an. Still, there are the translations as given so at least that’s something to work with.


N.B. Some bloke on the internet thinks that Oriosa is ‘the name for “stars”’ but I don’t know where he/she got that from, plus the same person made a few elementary mistakes when compiling his/her Eldar ‘dictionary’ on TauOnline.[ http://tauonline.org/Article/88/EldarAtoZ/ (Can’t remember what year this was recovered, but around two years ago)] It contains the ri- part as I would predict but otherwise I’m sceptical. Basically, what I’m saying is that a lot of the Eldar word lists you might come across online are replete with mistakes/useless, so trust me instead ;) At least I show my workings/evidence...

P.S. And… if you’re interested in a rambling critique of the TauOnline guy, here’s one:
The TauOnline guy gives the translation of jain as ‘storm’ and zar as ‘silence’, by literally translating Jain Zar (the phoenix lord) as ‘the storm of silence’ just like it says in the codex. However, look literally just a few lines down and you’ll see the weapon ‘…Jainas Mor (lit. Silent Death)…’, which when cross-referenced obviously means that jain is in fact ‘silence’, jainas is ‘silent’, mor is ‘death’ as you would expect from a Romance language (but other sources give connotations/translations as ‘the wise’; probably just a homophone), and zar is ‘storm’.[ http://tauonline.org/Article/88/EldarAtoZ/, cf. Thorpe, Eldar, p. 43]
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Green River » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:58 am

Ah! Foiled! Here is the offending article: http://tauonline.org/?content=browse&ar ... rticle=196
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Jaraknarn » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:12 am

I found a super comprehensive Eldar Dictionary project a while back that iv found really helpful for stuff like this, especially name building. Ill post a link up here as soon as i rediscover it.

I used it to make this name, which i actually think might be quite appropriate for a sun cult.

Chere'Kian

Roughly translates as 'Heavenly Seduction' or 'Seduction of the Heavens'. I cant remember which route word is which, to extrapolate the grammar but i was using the first translation.
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Re: To found a Commorite Sub-realm; a forum project

Postby Green River » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:35 am

Maybe that's what it means in a dialect branch which separated from LamEldannar about thirty-five million years ago, but not as I understand it ;) Still, I'd like to check out your source for this (because any mistake would be essentially the source's fault rather than your own; I personally would love to 'own all the books' but I'm nowhere near, so that is a big hurdle on its own)

P.S. Plus, Eldar names are formed from a very particular formula; common names are contractions of the birth name and family name ending, while ceremonial names are formulated like this: Place of Birth Combining Form + Birth Name + Honorifics + Family Name Ending. [Thorpe, Eldar, p.48.]
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