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Force-field door
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TOPIC: Force-field door
#6182
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Here's one reason why the force field door in SF Beta doesn't COMPLETELY thrill me. Sure, it's pretty amazing.

It's also pretty lo-tech, though. I used some old transparencies I had to put something together. One of these gets darker red in the middle, the other fades to clear in the middle.

I think the Beta door would be cooler if it came with a new frame, for obvious reasons. It'd also be neat if it came with multiple options -- different colors or varieties of force field, for example.

L
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#6183
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
You Know, That is Exactly what Excites me about this new Door, the very Idea of it Implies Options Galore... (Try Cutting a Panal out of a Plastic Strawberry Basket and you have an Instant Gate, (Well Paint it up of Course... You Can also Take that Plastic Mesh you can get at Fabric stores and use that)... Or Make some Kewl Designs in a Paint Program, print 'em up and Paste to some Plastic Card... All Kinds of Stuff! The Only thing I wish they had done with Beta, is design the "Port-hole" Wall Section to also Take the Sci-Fi Doors, thus Force Fields etc...
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#6184
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Force field is A-1 BORING for me MLV.

Not boring because of the ease of making it myself like in L's case.
It is because I do not play or want to play in any setting that uses or has any need for force fields.

What a waste of space in the box and a kow-tow to the Star Wars folks.
At least that is my own opinion.

Now, the easy corrective measure in the Beta Set would be to supply a normal door along with the force field door panel.
That would make the door frame useful to all.
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#6185
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Force field is A-1 BORING for me MLV.

Not boring because of the ease of making it myself like in L's case.
It is because I do not play or want to play in any setting that uses or has any need for force fields.

What a waste of space in the box and a kow-tow to the Star Wars folks.
At least that is my own opinion.

Now, the easy corrective measure in the Beta Set would be to supply a normal door along with the force field door panel.
That would make the door frame useful to all.



Rabid Fox,

Hey you could always use it as a "Magic" Portal...<Grin>... And keep it for use in your Fantasy Campaigns...

Incidently a lot of People do play Star Wars with DF Sci-Fi, (And apparently So does the DF staff), So I hardly see it as Cow-towing...

AND

There are other Games that could make use of it, from Star Trek to 40K to Gamma World, and many others as well, It seems I remember Space Hulk having some Force Fields too...

Now all that having been said, You are right it would not hurt DF to throw an extra Door Panal in to the set for added functionality as an "Extra" Door... But even so you can always Print a Door. If you need some free Door Art, go to Http://RPGNow.com , they have lots O' freebies...
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#6186
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
&#65279;You mis-spell on purpose for comic effect, yes?
If no, why then?
You do it a lot and always seem to be trying for a laugh from it MLV.
Your "cow-tow" is an example of this.

Magic portal idea has relevance, but I have never done anything like that in the few Fantasy
games I play.
I might be able to bring that into the few Warhammer Quest games we play, but we will have to
see.

Yes, the DF staff plays WOTC's Star Wars CMG, but do they have to make it the star
theme of DF SF MM?
There are many other SF games out there beyond the ones you mentioned that can play in
interiors, but do not have force fields.
The game I love, that has officially died from neglect and a lack of knowledge of how to market
such a game, is FASA's BattleTroops.
It is a great game that was infantry-focused at 25mm scale set in the BT universe.
It came out well-playtested under Sam Lewis, the 2nd BT developer in 1989, but then was lost to
neglect during the period I call , The Era of the Warrior Developers, when there was a new
temporary BT developer every other month back in 1990-91 until they finally settle on a
"permanent" developer late in 1991.
Moreover, Stephen Crane at Ral Partha (before the Zocchi brothers and FASA bought them out)
was a fool, who when confronted about the lack of figures for the game, claimed that the figures
from the BattleTech/MechWarrior series and the two BattleTroops box sets were
sufficient to play the game well.
That made it obvious he had never cracked the rulebooks.
Furthermore, it showed that he was not interested in making a whole vault of money for Ral
Partha.
In his defense and in fairness, I must say that no 25mm SF game had come out by that time that
could have made such a great impact or fortune as BattleTroops could have.
GW's Rogue Trader come out during the same year as BattleTroops, but did not hit the
big-time until it went into second edition as Warhammer 40,000 in the mid-1990s.

Meanwhile, the folks at FASA were so busy with staying in business and getting ready for
FASA's 10th anniversary, that they did not pay attention to BattleTroops' plight either.
Then, they did two things that killed the game for most.
First, they hired the first of the two Nystul brothers to BT developer, not Bryan, the other one,
Mike. Both Nystul brothers could not "see" out of their mech cockpit even to make FASA a
pretty penny which every well-designed infantry-focused game has done for its company.
Over the years I have been told an umpteen number of times by many GW 40K players that
they would have rather played BattleTroops than 40K if FASA and Ral Partha had not
killed it from neglect.
Second, Nystul let ClanTroops, the only BattleTroops supplement, to be released
without playtesting and it appeared even without editing by Donna Ippolito and her crew.
That showed folks how little FASA cared for the game and they starting dropping off like flies.

Over the years a core group of us that all met in military service have kept playing
BattleTroops.
We have recruited a few folks to play where we were stationed at the time, but not a lot.
Our recruitment since has been slow and careful because we do not want to recruit "sunshine"
players.
We all hate/hated "house rules", but over time we had to create a book (yes, literally another
book) beyond the BattleTroops & ClanTroops rules.
Additionally, we have had to revise some of the unedited rules in ClanTroops (e.g. how can
an unmodified 2D6 = 14?).
We primarily use situations we have ran into in our games that we have found in our service
actions that have also been brought up in other games when we add to our "FM BT-BTr".
BattleTroops' "child" Shadowrun: DMZ and its "grandchild" Vor, the Maelstrom
have been definite sources of additional rules.
GZG's StarGrunt, GDW's T-TNE Striker II, and even WE's Star Wars Miniatures
Battles
among other games have provided textings to fit our varied experiences.
Even GW's 40K has had limited effect; VERY limited to avoid legal issues with them.
GW jumps at the slightest evidence gamers, manufacturers and others are infringing on their
copyrights.

Anyway, we message each other when an additional uncovered situation comes up, playtest out
the originator's idea ourselves, add any modifiers or changes any one of us come up with and
think necessary and then get back together again as well as we can being stationed all of over the
globe and in a variety of situations now.
Takes about six-to-nine weeks usually for all that to occur most times even with the current
deployment situation.
We then try out the mods of the original and report back.
This second part or reviewing takes about the same amount of time as the first.
Only twice have we had to actually vote on a decision in the last thirteen years.
This is because actual combat experience (we all have CIBs) is usually a great leveler of personal
ideas.

Well, can you tell by this point what is my primary game system for MM?
My secondary is Vor, the Maelstrom which I am playing with my elder son and few others.
I have been playing it since it came out.
Ral Partha, Iron Wind Metals actually, still produces the figures; they even came out with some
more not too long ago.
My wife accuses me of using Vor as a recruiting filter for BattleTroops and she is
probably right.

Anyway, y'all can see where I am coming from when I speak of DF SF MM.
I am still waiting for the Gamma Set, which I hope will be out in time for Gen-Con Indy, which
will have "furnishings" which are required for SF interior combat.
Even vehicle rep-bays, which are large spaces, are cluttered places.
If DF does SF furnishings in their fantasy-style packaging, they are not going to get close to
touching the furnishing needs of SF gaming and there are going to be many disappointed SF
gamers.
That cannot be a good thing for SF MM and its future.
The furnishing sets need to be chuck-filled boxes to even start to meet the needs of the SF gamer.
There will have to be more than one box as well in the long run.
Any serious SF gamer will agree or more likely, preach on more heavily.
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#6187
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
What a waste of space in the box and a kow-tow to the Star Wars folks.

I'm just curious, why do you think it's just a nod to SW? I love the classic trilogy, but I can't stand the new ones. And unless I'm forgetting something, the original SW trilogy doesn't have any force field doors at all.

It strikes me as a typical SF element, not specific to SW at all.

Still, I do wish Beta were slightly different. Looking back at the Fantasy sets, I think the SF sets really need a 3-square wall -- preferably one that is basic, and one unique (a la the mermaid fountain or demon arch, something with a viewscreen on it or engines or maintenance hatches or consoles etc.) That would make it easier to use the big floors (since the starter set doesn't give us much in the way of regular walls) and also, for future reference, possible to make bigger rooms (with more variety) more easily...

But now we're seriously OT....

L
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#6188
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
What a waste of space in the box and a kow-tow to the Star Wars folks.

I'm just curious, why do you think it's just a nod to SW? I love the classic trilogy, but I can't stand the new ones. And unless I'm forgetting something, the original SW trilogy doesn't have any force field doors at all.

It strikes me as a typical SF element, not specific to SW at all.

Still, I do wish Beta were slightly different. Looking back at the Fantasy sets, I think the SF sets really need a 3-square wall -- preferably one that is basic, and one unique (a la the mermaid fountain or demon arch, something with a viewscreen on it or engines or maintenance hatches or consoles etc.) That would make it easier to use the big floors (since the starter set doesn't give us much in the way of regular walls) and also, for future reference, possible to make bigger rooms (with more variety) more easily...

But now we're seriously OT....

L


Tractor beams are a type of force field just used in a directional focus and fashion.
I remember Obi-Wan having to sabotage the Death Star's tractor beam.

Do not get me started about repulsor technology (landspeeders) and force fields.

I also remember some blue force field that a stormtrooper was dealing with being shown in some promo photo I saw once as well.

Additionally, how did you think they kept the atmosphere in those flight decks on the two Death Stars except by means of a force field?
Otherwise, the flight decks would have had to be evacuted every time a fighter or shuttle came on board because the atmosphere would have had to be pumped out to create a vacuum.

Finally, what about the shielding on fighting craft, especially the Death Stars.
The whole commando mission on the moon of Endor (or was it a planet outright) was about a force field projector that had to be sabotaged!

Maybe L, you need to go back and watch the movies again.
<grin & chuckle>

Give me some more time, which I do not have right this instant, and I can probably come up with some more non-Force generated force fields from Episodes 4-6.
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#6189
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Heh heh, silly me, I guess I should have known what I was getting into...

I suppose if I had one of those "technical guides" to the hardware of the SWU, I could find support (or counterevidence) for your points.

But I think George Lucas -- the man who thought a parsec was a unit of time, the man who ultimately chose to explain the Force with reference to microscopic symbiotic organisms, the man who had lasers that make sound and explosions take place in space -- did not think things through this much. I really don't think the original trilogy includes force fields in any significant way, since the technology simply isn't meant to be explained. It's like trying to explain how Superman can change direction while he's flying -- sure, we can hypothesize force fields to explain the tractor beam or the landspeeder. But what about lightsabers? How do you get a beam of light to stop at a given point?

I'm sure you could answer these questions. But I don't think Lucas could, especially not in 1977. And for that, I think the answers aren't really a part of the movie, and therefore, neither are force fields. If some book out there uses them to explain the technology, it's been retroactively attached, and we could just as easily find some other way to explain it. It's more fantasy than sci-fi, as I'm sure you've heard before.

Nope, the force fields I'm thinking of bring me right back to this DF door -- visible fields that make someone say "We've got to shut off this field or we can't get through!" The doors in SW are all pretty much metal -- detention block, Mos Eisley, Death Star control room, etc. Doors are metal. In Episode 1, there are those red fields that keep Qui-Gonn and Darth Maul away from each other -- those are closer to the DF door, and the sort of thing I have in mind as typically absent from the classic trilogy.

And, to finally come round to the original point, the sort of thing to which I took you to be objecting. You don't like that door, hence you wouldn't like that scene in Phantom Menace. But there is nothing like this door in the original trilogy. If you expand the concept of force fields to include any sort of repulsor technology, or shielding, etc., then I'm not sure at all why you find this typically SW. Is there a popular SF setting that doesn't involve anything like this whatsoever? I suppose there probably is, but even so, why single out SW as something that uses force fields then? Because it has things that float and "energy shields"?

Hm.

L[/i]
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#6190
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Heh heh, silly me, I guess I should have known what I was getting into...

I think that was unnecessary L.
If you honestly do not want to discuss a matter, why then jump into the discussion?

I do not understand how you are differentiating between a force field and an energy shield? They are identical from the physics I have learned.

I once heard an explanation from a Ph.D. photonicist about how light sabres were possible, but that was in '84 or '85. I do not remember much from that lecture except he said you should be able to tune the length of the blade to its wielder.

Is there a popular SF setting that doesn't involve anything like this whatsoever? I suppose there probably is, but even so, why single out SW as something that uses force fields then? Because it has things that float and "energy shields"?

The BattleTech universe would be the popular setting that does not use force fields.

Why am I taking aim at Star Wars CMG and DF?
There seems to be a bit of an obsession present at DF.
Take a look at the promo pics in the gallery.
Take a look at the article from GQM that Genghis Ska referenced and I supplied the link to.
Take a look at the sneak peek pic that DF provided.
All are Star Wars.
There are no others!
Is this not just a bit overly focused?

What about all of the other SF games out there?
Are there not active games that are not litigation-happy like GW that would not mind mutual support activities with DF?
I would be shocked if there was not.

BTW, a parsec is both a unit of distance and time.
The term "parsec" is the abbreviation for a "paralax second" which is again both distance and time.
Your are probably thinking of 3.258ly or 3.262ly, depending on the astronomer, which still in itself a measure of distance and time.

I'm sure you could answer these questions. But I don't think Lucas could, especially not in 1977. And for that, I think the answers aren't really a part of the movie, and therefore, neither are force fields. . ..

Why are you sure I caould answer these questions?
I really do not know everything.
The more I learn, the more I understand how much I do not know and how much more I have to learn.

I am really confused here.
How is it if the movie does not outright explain something, aka hand you the answer, how are the force fields shown in the movie not part of the movie?
Am I reading you wrong here?
It feels like I just pulled into a Split-S and then can not pull out of it.

Some of those tech manuals are interesting from what I have been told, but I have just stayed with the manuals that explain more about the SW universe if I read anything about SW.
As I referenced earlier, I have attended some college lectures on the practicality of the technology of the first three SW movies and science.
Is that a real issue here though?

I like Babylon 5 much better than SW.
It even received awards from NASA and ESA for its realism and accuracy.
BTW, yes, there are explosions in space fed by the materials contained in the source material.
Furthermore, remember sound is just vibrations.
All explosions generate vibrations or force waves which when entering the proper medium will generate sound as we hear it.

So what is your point with your response.
All I am saying is that it appears that DF is trying to cater to WOTC's and thereby their master Hasbro's interests.
I most certainly hope that this is not an attempt on Jeff & Stefan's part to get Hasbro to "pick up" the bills through a buy out.
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#6191
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  

I think that was unnecessary L.
If you honestly do not want to discuss a matter, why then jump into the discussion?


No, I do. I was just making a lighthearted remark about the length and involvement of your replies, and the intensity of the way you express yourself.

You sometimes are a little humorless, RF. I wrote my doctoral dissertation on Plato and Socrates -- whimsy is reconcilable with sobriety, with inquiry, and in fact may be an important part of the most important questions. I like these conversations -- but that doesn't mean I won't occasionally make jokes, exhibit some irony, and so forth. It's fun!

The BattleTech universe would be the popular setting that does not use force fields.

Fine, I knew there was at least one. But that doesn't explain why force fields are somehow emblematic of SW (and hence why a force field door would be catering to the SW crowd)

Why am I taking aim at Star Wars CMG and DF?
There seems to be a bit of an obsession present at DF.
Take a look at the promo pics in the gallery.
Take a look at the article from GQM that Genghis Ska referenced and I supplied the link to.


Yes, okay. But your first point was that the door is a nod to the SW crowd. You may be right to think that DF is aiming too strongly for them, but the door doesn't strike me as the best example of that. This is now officially a new topic. My question was just about the door.

I think some non-SW pics would be in order, but I certainly understand why DF is handling things as they are. GW is, as you say, litigation-happy, and WOTC is another of the biggest gaming companies around. SWM is a logical target. If Wizkids had a 25-30mm sci-fi game to work with, I'm sure DF would be happy to target them as well....

BTW, a parsec is both a unit of distance and time.
The term "parsec" is the abbreviation for a "paralax second" which is again both distance and time.
Your are probably thinking of 3.258ly or 3.262ly, depending on the astronomer, which still in itself a measure of distance and time.


It is, of course, a measurement of how far something can travel in a particular amount of time, so it involves a reference to time. But just as "mph" is a measure of speed, not distance, so is a parsec a measure of distance, not time. It is, like you say, a unit of astronomical length based on the distance from Earth at which stellar parallax is one second of arc -- equal to 3.258 light-years, 3.086 × 1013 kilometers, or 1.918 × 1013 miles.

It involves reference to time, but it does not measure time, it is not a unit of time, and it could make no sense at all to say you did something fast because it only took X amount of parsecs. (any more than something could be far away because it is 10 miles an hour away)

I am really confused here.
How is it if the movie does not outright explain something, aka hand you the answer, how are the force fields shown in the movie not part of the movie?


First of all, look back at my post -- I said there were no force field doors. Many of your examples don't provide evidence against that.

Much of this is beside the point anyway -- see the last two questions near the end of my message -- but I enjoy these debates so I will try to make myself more clear (though we are now involved in a tangent)

I say there are no force fields in SW because they aren't shown. I didn't see a force field at the hangar bay. Or under the landspeeder. I didn't see it in the tractor beam. Of course I realize these are not visible phenomena -- but the fact remains, there could be alternative explanations for that technology. It could involve the force. It could involve magic. It could involve anything. Does it involve "force" in some sense? Almost certainly, sure. But since we don't use the term "force field" quite so broadly, that wouldn't necessarily prove the point.

Besides, this is all really not the point. My point was that Lucas wasn't trying to come up with workable technology, he was trying to come up with something that "looked cool" and reminded him of old movie serials. To that end, there may be things that MUST be force fields in order to make sense in these movies, but they weren't put there by the author.

This conversation strikes me as rather like a conversation about how Gertrude and King Hamlet met and when the young Danish prince was conceived. Did it happen? It must have. Could an explanation be supplied? Certainly. Did Shakespeare intend for this to have anything to do with the play? Not at all. It can be supplied -- in fact, just as with the force fields, it may be the case that it MUST be there -- but the author didn't think it significant, and it plays no role. That's why I brought up
Lucas' knowledge. He knows, or at least knew, nothing about force fields. Nothing about physics. So to say he wrote something that involves force fields at points X, Y, and Z -- it's like saying Shakespeare must have known about obstetrics since so many characters in his plays must have been born. After the fact, we can realize it must be true. But that doesn't mean the author put it there -- it means common sense stipulates that we assume its presence, despite not having been created by the creator of that fictional universe.

Why does any of that matter? If we combine Lucas' ignorance of physics with the fact that he didn't write the physics into the movie, that means Lucas might just have happilly assented to some other explanation retroactively. Maybe, just as midichlorians work the Force, they also keep the hangar bay shut before the shuttles arrive.

Some of those tech manuals are interesting from what I have been told, but I have just stayed with the manuals that explain more about the SW universe if I read anything about SW.
As I referenced earlier, I have attended some college lectures on the practicality of the technology of the first three SW movies and science.
Is that a real issue here though?


I avoid that like the plague. To me, it's like reading about the physics of Wizard of Oz. It's a great story, mythic proportions, a blast to watch, but it isn't meant to be a science lesson. It's a fantasy. If you are teaching a physics class, it might make a great example, grab your students' attention, but beyond that, SW can be enjoyed on many levels without worrying how the doors open.

I like Babylon 5 much better than SW.
It even received awards from NASA and ESA for its realism and accuracy.


Well, again, that was never part of what SW wanted. LOTR also didn't win any awards from NASA. Neither film has any overlap with what NASA does.

BTW, yes, there are explosions in space fed by the materials contained in the source material.
Furthermore, remember sound is just vibrations.


No, sound is vibrations under the right circumstances, just as color is what it is under the right circumstances. The vibrations must travel and strike something.

All explosions generate vibrations or force waves which when entering the proper medium will generate sound as we hear it.

Ah, now you're adding something -- "proper medium." That doesn't include the vacuum of space. There simply wouldn't be noise -- the noise of the ships in transit, the noise of their lasers, the noise of the explosions, if they existed in some form, would not be what they are depicted as.

So what is your point with your response.
All I am saying is that it appears that DF is trying to cater to WOTC's and thereby their master Hasbro's interests.


Well, no, you said the door was an example of this. I don't see how it is. According to you, if there are magnets in Middle Earth, there are force fields in LOTR.

My point was threefold:

1. The force fields I had in mind -- and I was, I admitted, arbitrarily restricting the domain of reference -- were just those tinted energy barriers that serve as a door. No door in SW is such a barrier. Therefore, the Beta door would not help SW gamers playing a classic trilogy scenario in any way.

2. As a perfectly valid response, you pointed me to other, less high-profile force fields in the trilogy. I agree with you, to some extent, that they are there if we want to push the point (hence "to some extent" -- I don't see the value of pushing the point) But I pointed out that these fields, being so general and basic to physics -- are a part of many SF settings, and I asked if there were one out there that did not involve such things.


3. Finally, my point was just a return to your original objection -- how is this door emblematic of SW? Even if there ARE force fields in SW, even if there ARE SF games with no such fields -- this door is still something that looks like absolutely nothing in Episodes 4-6. Consequently, to call it a nod to the wish lists of SW gamers perplexes me.

One final analogy: would a props master for a production of Death of a Salesman need to provide toilet paper? Surely the characters go to the bathroom. Can you possibly deny that they do? They must, they are human beings whose makeup is much like ours and the action of the play takes more than one day. That means they must. However, toilet paper is in no way emblematic of the play, because Miller didn't really pay attention to that, and it's not really there -- though of course, retroactively, we could conclude that it MUST be, but it isn't the point of the play, it has no role, and talking about it is not central to a discussion of the play. You can talk about it if you like, but you aren't discussing the play anymore.

Just like force fields in SW. They may be there -- they may HAVE to be there -- but Lucas wasn't thinking about them, that isn't the point of the movie, it has no role in the movie, and any involved discussion of the movie could completely avoid the topic and still be considered exhaustive.

So if someone held up a roll of toilet paper, would you say "Oh, another Death of a Salesman reference."

You can skip a lot of this in your reply, it's really only those last three points that I was making, and the second two remain unaddressed.
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#6192
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
TO: Rabid Fox and 'L'
FROM: The Mad Yank
RE: Diving to the bottom of the well

Hey guys!

First, as a Vietnam Vet and former BT gamer, I gotta agree with a lot of the stuff RF says about gaming, combat, and reality in a game universe.
Second, I ABSOLUTELY must agree with L about FUN! This is a less-than-perfect world; you laugh or you cry. Personally, after a tour in-country and 7 years as a federal cop, I'm gonna laugh whenever I can.
Third, about the SW tech stuff, the thing to cue off of is the same as the original ST philosophy; Jack Webb never picked up a S&W .38 and started explaining how a chemical reaction forced the bullet out of the cartridge and through the rifled barrel to put it precisely on-target, downrange. Sky King never defined Bernoulli's Principle before going full-throttle on the Songbird to take off. You assume the things you see working around you are functioning in a normal manner for that universe; it's part of the "willing suspension of disbelief" necessary to ANY fiction.
So why should Georgie Boy define tractor beams, lightsabers, 'blasters' or any other technology envisioned in his playground?
C'mon, guys, lighten up; "It's only a movie."
RF, I'm not sure of the exact chronology or corporate history you quoted for FASA, but I have to agree about the politics that killed FASA in toto; Jordan and the crew really dropped the ball there, although there were, I think, funding problems coming down the pike major-league. IIRC, they were about two weeks away from bankruptcy, but don't quote me on that; not only would it be wrong from the standpoint of certainty, but if I claim that as factual, it could be termed libelous, and I can't afford a lawyer! It's only a rumor I think I read on another forum, somewhere.
Anyway, I didn't want to rip either of you to pieces, and if I have, I apologize. All I wanted was to encourage both of you to go back to viewing the whole thing as a GAME, meant to be relaxing.
Oh, and, as for the SW focus for DF SF MM, keep in mind that, when the only game in town is bingo, you make and market 'new, improved' Bingo cards, or you don't sell game stuff in that town. Star Wars, for better or for worse, is THE hottest-selling SF movie franchise of ALL TIME (which REALLY pisses off this Trekker!), and there is NO better way for Stefan, Jeff, et al, to sell DF SF, and make money to make OTHER STUFF that they want to make and sell.
I agree that B5 and the NEW BSG are both more scientifically accurate (hey, wow, Vipers doing thruster turn-overs for braking maneuvers!) than ST, SW, or the Original BSG. But again, suspend your disbelief for a little while and fantasize!
BTW, ever read the Honor Harrington series? Now THERE is great military SF!
jkratzer
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Jim Kratzer, a/k/a The Mad Yank
Proud Vietnam Veteran, LOUD VFW Lifer
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#6193
Force-field door 9 Years, 1 Month ago  
Yank, you're right on the money. I'm putting an article together right now on the generation of truths (assertions) in fiction. The basic question is: what assertions are we justified in eliciting from a given work of fiction? We know that, for example, it is fictionally true that Hamlet kills his uncle Claudius (sorry for the lack of a spoiler warning!) But what about this: is it true that planet Neptune exists in Hamlet?

If the truths generated by a text are placed there by the author (who decides everything that happens in this fiction), then it can't. Neptune wasn't discovered until 1846, several hundred years after Hamlet was written.

But we can take your tactic -- that, for example, we must assume that the world is sufficiently like ours, unless the author specifically states otherwise. In that case, Neptune DOES exist in the world of Hamlet. It just hasn't been discovered.

But this upsets some interpreters, who don't like the cluttering-up it involves -- suddenly, there's all sorts of things that are true in this fictional universe, though the characters (and their author!) remain unaware of them.

It's bad enough when dealing with regular fiction -- in science-fiction, or anything involving something like "parallel" or "alternate" universes, things get extremely heady. Where is Earth in relation to Tatooine? It's "far, far away," presumably, but what IS true?

For some -- myself included -- the point is to notice just how STRANGE these questions are. Does Neptune exist in Hamlet? Well, maybe. But more importantly, it doesn't matter. It is an odd question, and neither "yes" nor "no" seems like the appropriate answer.

Same thing applies to SW tech, as far as I'm concerned. Lucas clearly had no idea, didn't care, and didn't even so much as hint at explanations (as opposed to in, say, Trek). That means the question itself -- "Are there force fields?" or "How do lightsabers work?" -- is so odd it really doesn't merit an answer, "yes" or "no."

For that reason, saying these things ARE in SW, just strikes me as not quite right. Not wrong in the same way saying "Luke Skywalker was a woman" is wrong, but not right in the way saying "Yoda was green" is right. It's like saying that in Hamlet, Neptune is the outermost gaseous planet in the solar system. We can't say that is NOT true in Hamlet, but it doesn't quite seem right to say that it IS true in Hamlet, either.

L
Law
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"In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play."

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