Reply To: Brainstorming, Anyone?

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Mr.Trip Williams


love the idea!  got the mental juices flowing.

I would imagine one difference would be there would be a lot less % water content around the earth. More tectonic activity means more volcanic activity means more land mass and less ocean. Would have to be careful about that though, because the ocean is our greatest atmosphere and oxygen content provider here on earth. However, perhaps adaptability isn’t a problem with that… like perhaps they can run further on less oxygen than we can here on earth. (the only thing that might effect in your story telling is perhaps changing from higher to lower elevations doesn’t effect them much). Just something to think about. Of course, if that causes an issue with anything, typically things left unsaid are left unconcerned about when reading fantasy.

Some ideas to play with – even on earth, on the bottom of the ocean floor, there are whole ecosystems founded around hydrothermal vents, where the magma is so close to the ocean floor that temperature of the water reaches well above boiling (up to 750 degrees Fahrenheit!!!) and the creatures (animals!) actually survive off of turning the heat into energy, like plants turn sunlight into energy. One idea could be that much of the animal/plant life are producers (“thermavores” lol. just a fun idea for a name…) that live off the high heat of volcanic regions.

It’s hard to imagine the entire planet would be suffering from constant volcanic eruptions. The poles, for instance, but I’ve never done any research on earthquakes near the poles, so I may be completely off on that. But perhaps there are “safe zones” around the planets which become “oases.” Planes would not be a way to travel most likely due to more volatile and changing wind patterns. Our airplanes don’t have to use wind currents, but they predominantly do because the are mostly stable and support flight and speed (same for ocean currents) but I’d imagine if you drastically increase tectonic activity, those air and ocean currents would not be stable. However, with heat being a more constant flare, blimps and such perhaps would be more readily invented? Not sure. Certainly thermo-energy usage.

Another issue you might address with the increased volcanic activity is “ash storms” and the potential lethality of not just the blockage of the sun but the potential poison that comes with it. (If you look at some of the “super volcanoes” we have on earth, it is postulated that if one erupted, it would cover the earth in ash for decades, I think if I remember correctly, and would potentially cataclysmically end life on earth… but it’s been a while since I’ve read up on that, and that may be highly exaggerated… just something else to look into.)

Higher global temperatures. Probably very little to no snow. Ever. A good question you might think about is what is causing the higher tectonic fluctuations? Perhaps the planet has two moons that causes an imbalance or stress on the gravity of the planet that causes the tectonic plates to break, move, and shift more often than our planet does…. (of course, you don’t have to include the rationale in your book, but having two moons might be something that comes naturally from your ideas??)

Society would do one of two things… if there is a large plain, build in the middle away from all mountains and thus away from any potential tectonic activity (however, if your worlds tectonic plates are continually breaking and changing, that may not be a feasible solution)  – – or two, society would seek out the highest mountains to inhabit – as long as it’s not a volcano. Nomadic tribes would likely exist, yes, especially tribes that traveled from one “safe” location to the next; however, I don’t see higher volcanic activity limiting society to nomadic life. Not if the intelligent species of your planet are anything like humanity. Well, not unless it is set in primitive or medieval – like time periods in humanities history. All depends upon how advanced you want to make your culture. And the sky is the limit as to the technology you can create for your world.

Oh wait… you did say medieval like eras… I do see castles atop of mountains and definitely motes, large motes, especially if in the plains. Lots of deep motes to redirect lava flows should they come. (Just throwing out lots of ideas. lol. Keep what you like, throw the rest out without a seconds thought).

Is there a metal/rock/substance in your world that can withstand magma? That would be in intriguing object for technology/weapons/building material/etc.

One technology that would likely be highly advantageous and you could probably get away with advancing further than other subjects would be filtering technology. Being able to filter the air and the water, even the food would be a great need to survive on a planet with heightened volcanic activity. (but then again, another idea could be that on the planet, even your intelligent species could live off of the heat instead… so for instance volcanoes produce a lot of carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide, so perhaps your humans can breath SO2 (Sulfur Dioxide) and perhaps they have an organ that separates the sulfur from the oxygen so they can breath out the sulfur and retain the oxygen… (not sure if that would mean they would have to be sulfur based organisms instead of carbon based organism, but it’s an idea…lol.) And of course, it’s not necessary for the story line itself to go into the science of it all, but. it brings up interesting ideas I think… oh, and if they breath out sulfur, lol, their breath would be black or dark (you know, like when you see your breath when it’s cold and it looks white… well, theirs would be black. =) )

Oh, the worlds inhabitants would be deathly afraid of oceans, I could imagine. If they can’t see the end of the water, they will run from it! Why? Because any tectonic activity within the ocean would produce tsunamis. So if tsunamis occur frequently, no one would want to live near those large bodies of waters. – that also means that unless there is flight, your inhabitants will be likely restricted to one continent, unless the continents are all close enough that you can see them from each others coast lines.

As far as flora go, not sure you need to change it too much, unless you want to. Plant life are extremely versatile, even here on earth. However, deep sea vents can be a good example for you here too. You could also have creatures or plants that are able to withstand incredible heats, such as being able to survive or even live in magma.

I imagine that potentially, especially if air currents aren’t consistent and/or ash-storms are common – that there wouldn’t be too many flying creatures unless they are able to withstand crazy weather patterns and winds and/or  are able to equally defend themselves on the ground.

another idea I had for flora life is perhaps a plant that is the same above ground as it is below ground – perhaps it can absorb heat through its roots/stems/branches instead of through leaves.

I do see water being a potential problem. Perhaps your cultures revolve around fresh water – being one of the greatest resources on your planet – akin to precious gems, gold and silver on ours?  (especially since the high ash-content in the atmosphere would most likely mean it’s exceedingly difficult to get fresh water at all, unless it’s an underground aquifer. Of course, one way around that is perhaps, like a previous suggestion, they are able to ingest sulfur perfectly fine, and their body just filters it out. Lol. would that make their sweat, tears, and…. other liquid byproducts… black? that’s a cool idea.

perhaps they have the ability to see differently from us, like being able to see through high concentrations of dust. Or they maybe have filters over their eyes to protect their eyes from the dust (like some animals have three eyelids or an inner eyelid…)

I could see a lot of culture based around the volatility of the earth. perhaps difficulty trusting or having a higher distrust of outsiders (and vice versa, a higher trust and culture of community for “insiders”). That could be a rationale for rates of war or lack of education or even vast disparity between technology across your world (example, one section of your world may be stuck in the Stone Age while another might be in the medieval age while yet another be as high as the Industrial Age – for example.)

going back to culture, perhaps most cultures are pessimistic or somber in nature. or they emphasize strength and versatility. Lots of ways you could take it. Hope some of my ideas were helpful. =) it was fun brain storming for it.  I might be able to think of more ideas, but it’s been over an hour and is now midnight. =)    Have fun!

Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

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