Friday, October 9, 2009

Port Dervon - Post Apocolyptic Steampunk

I spent some time in Port Dervon, which is described as "post-apocolyptic Steampunk."

I'm not too sure about the "Steampunk" side of things, as the back story for the sim reads as follows:

In the year 2041, after decades of global warming, Earth is hit by another ice age making most of the planet uninhabitable. The remains of humankind flee to warmer regions around the equator where they find themselves suddenly in the company of, what where believed to be mythical creatures, struggling for survival by uniting forces.

Nonetheless, the area has some Steampunk stylings, as the picture below shows:

And, although most of the architecture runs to the grunge side, there is even a certain clothier well-known in the Steamlands (the side of the building shows the Xcentricity logo):

In an effort to coordinate stories and role-play, the sim owners have a discussion forum, with general background, character biographies, information on the different species (human, mermaid, lycan, and so on).

Can't a girl get a soda pop around here?

Below is another Steampunk trope: the Mad Scientist's lair:

This prison looks a little intimidating. I think I'll try to avoid running afoul of the law:

As an aside, I bristled a bit at the "after decades of global warming" we suddenly have "another ice age." I recognize that there needs to be a back story, but science fiction tends to try to have a coherent story, and this one exposes the problem with climate change "science." In some models, temperatures rise substantially by the end of the century. In others, temperatures rise somewhat slowly. In still others, we reach a tipping point where warming suddenly becomes cooling. I maintain that it's not science if the theory is considered validated regardless of what happens. When the neighborhood weatherman predicts that tomorrow will be hot and dry, a torrential rain makes him look foolish.


Vivito Volare said...

Speaking generally, I think I will always be a fan of the rather sudden and decisive "End of The World as We Know It." There is something both Dramatic and Satisfying about Global Thermonuclear War, City-sized Meteor Strikes, Plague, and Alien Invasion.

The slow, wasting-away End-of-All may be more true to the Historical Record (the fall of Rome, the decimation of Nubia, et al) but it just isn't as fetching for selling a setting, and generally ignores those hardy enough and desperate enough to stick it out.

Humans, after all, are on every continent. Between Cockroaches, Dandelions, and Ourselves, you need something pretty thoroughly fatal and inescapable if you really want to destroy the world. Well, in a literary sense, at least...

Rhianon Jameson said...

Agreed, Mr. Volare. At the same time, from a literary standpoint, destroying everyone - prior to rolling the credits - makes for something of a dull tale. I'm sympathetic to the problem of killing off enough of civilization to make life tough for the survivors, while still remaining plausible enough that the sudden strike did not get every cockroach, er, human.

*makes a mental note to re-read "I Am Legend*