Author Topic: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101  (Read 6168 times)

Chaos

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Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« on: March 08, 2010, 01:40:51 AM »
Including the infamous laser eyed sharks and riffs on Eragon. It's for science, people!

Of course, I just submitted it, so it's not on the front page immediately. However, if you are so motivated, I also have it posted on my blog:

http://ericlake.net/2010/03/08/chaos-theories-2-magic-systems-101/

Hopefully it's entertaining!
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Nessa

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2010, 08:05:25 AM »
http://www.timewastersguide.com/article/1696/Chaos-Theories-2-Magic-Systems-101

you ramble. might be nice to tighten things up a bit next time.

oddly entertaining, tho.
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Chaos

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2010, 03:40:43 PM »
I agree, this one did ramble, but I thought the topic deserved some rambling. Next week (okay, maybe not next week, but soonish!), when I discuss Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, there will be less rambling. I was trying to channel some Rothfuss in it.

The picture you selected for it cracked me up. I think on the page it looks a bit odd since its much wider than all the other images for other articles, though.
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Nessa

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2010, 04:05:05 PM »
crap, the one i chose didn't show up. it was working fine last night. i'll need to fix that.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2010, 04:08:33 PM by Nessa »
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Shivertongue

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2010, 04:21:11 PM »
Very nice. However, now I've got an idea in my head about a world in which magic is only accessible through sharks. If I write this, and it turns out suspiciously similar to Pokemon, I'm gonna blame you, mkay? :P

Also, I just tried to do some quick research on this 'Gödel's Incompleteness Theorums' thing, and my brain broke after the first few sentences. The only things that's kept me from becoming a gibbering wreck was focusing on the awesome umlaut in the dude's name. I don't know if this will work a second time, so the next post might have to involve hand puppets...
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Chaos

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2010, 05:48:34 PM »
Hey, shark pokemon are awesome.

Don't worry about Godel. It really isn't hard to understand at the basics. And yes, there will be some questionable applications of math to things which aren't math. Sue me. I have laser sharks.

You know Nessa, I could always just choose a picture for you, if you want.
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Nessa

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2010, 06:56:51 PM »
You know Nessa, I could always just choose a picture for you, if you want.

That works, too.
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ryos

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2010, 12:12:17 PM »
Mmmmm...coherent bioluminescence. I like the sound of that. I also see no reason why it couldn't be. Deadly coherent bioluminescence is a bit more of a stretch.

Dude, Chaos. The rambling, it rambles. I skipped over about half of this.

Also, thanks. I realized that the book I'm outlining in my head because my brain refuses to let go isn't all that interesting because I haven't put sufficient thought into the cost of the magic system.
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Renoard

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2010, 12:19:43 PM »
Coherent bio-luminescence seems pretty far out there.  Biolum. is not very energetic, and you'd need some sort of emitter that could allow light in, then restrict it's exit to a specific vector at a specific frequency. 
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Peter Ahlstrom

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2010, 08:19:44 PM »
Sundiver by David Brin has an alien that can shoot lasers out of its eyes. It evolved as a way to get depth perception in monocular vision.
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Chaos

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2010, 09:26:08 PM »
Coherent bio-luminescence seems pretty far out there.  Biolum. is not very energetic, and you'd need some sort of emitter that could allow light in, then restrict it's exit to a specific vector at a specific frequency. 

Definitely, that's what the little "PS" at the end was for. It's quite impractical.

Though, in a counterpoint...

Sundiver by David Brin has an alien that can shoot lasers out of its eyes. It evolved as a way to get depth perception in monocular vision.

...I now want to read this book.
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Renoard

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2010, 12:40:44 AM »
Ah, yeah the P.S.  This is the point where I admit that I hadn't read the article when I made that post about biolumin and lasers.  ;D

One thing does occur, low energy laser would be possible if the creature grew ruby crystals and used electroplaques to generate a spark gap to create energetic light.  The laser would be a about a miliwatt and would only fire in pulses.  It would also have a biological limitation in that it requires time to build enough potassium and sodium for generation.  But I believe sharks currently have a form of sachs organ for eletrolocation. . . .
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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2010, 07:43:12 AM »
I don't think a magic system has to be well defined, though personally I like to make well defined magic systems for my books. However, there are many books out there that don't need a perfectly defined magic system. E.g. Lord of the Rings, Narnia, A Song of Fire and Ice, Dark is Rising. These books are still magical, but there is no well defined, or even commonly used magic system. There are obviously boundaries, what magic can and cannot do, but these things are never explained, and only the author knows the true power of any magic system.

Sometimes I find these magic systems interesting, and they imbue the world with something magical in its simplicity. There is a sense of mystery. It is quite good.
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Chaos

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Re: Chaos Theories #2: Magic Systems 101
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2011, 06:13:07 AM »
I don't think a magic system has to be well defined, though personally I like to make well defined magic systems for my books. However, there are many books out there that don't need a perfectly defined magic system. E.g. Lord of the Rings, Narnia, A Song of Fire and Ice, Dark is Rising. These books are still magical, but there is no well defined, or even commonly used magic system. There are obviously boundaries, what magic can and cannot do, but these things are never explained, and only the author knows the true power of any magic system.

Sometimes I find these magic systems interesting, and they imbue the world with something magical in its simplicity. There is a sense of mystery. It is quite good.

I agree, Steve. I wasn't claiming that they are bad. I was merely outlining one way to think about magic systems. As with all things in writing, if the advice helps you, great! If not, disregard it.

Like you said, only the author knows the true power of any magic system. This was a worldbuilding exercise, and it could be a useful way to develop your magics.
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