## How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing everything that has happened?

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Our study of human history has numerous problems. 99% of history isn’t recorded. Writing has been around only for 5 thousand years, and much of what we know comes from archaeological evidence. Information is being shared more today because of the internet, but there is so much we still don’t know in the modern age. Adding to this, there is much interpretation built into any historical analysis and historians struggle with the concept of objectivity.

In this world, human beings share a universal consciousness. When a person dies, they are subsumed into this consciousness, which is known as “God”. Thoughts, emotions, ideas, etc, are all subsumed into this consciousness and become part of a whole. In this way, it can be viewed as a perfect recording of all historical events, being completely unbiased in regards to facts.

Oracles are human beings who have trained to tap into this consciousness in order to gain a true picture of the past. This skill must be learnt, and is accessible to anyone. They are regarded as the historians of this world, passing on what they see for future records. They are used to discover and record big moments from history so we can gain a clear understanding of past events and why they happened, such as the rise and fall of empires, ancient cultures, etc.

However, there is a problem with this when you break it down. If this god is the seat of all earth history, it stands to reason that a person tapping into it can find things out about anyone. A detective investigating a murder could solve a case without having to do the leg work. A rival king could tap into this consciousness to find information on his enemies and their empires or armies, or business rivals could use it to spy on competitors.

I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear version of historical events that doesn’t depend on interpretation, but leaves the lives of people out. How can I make this happen?

• There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

• Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

• Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

• Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

• What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

Our study of human history has numerous problems. 99% of history isn’t recorded. Writing has been around only for 5 thousand years, and much of what we know comes from archaeological evidence. Information is being shared more today because of the internet, but there is so much we still don’t know in the modern age. Adding to this, there is much interpretation built into any historical analysis and historians struggle with the concept of objectivity.

In this world, human beings share a universal consciousness. When a person dies, they are subsumed into this consciousness, which is known as “God”. Thoughts, emotions, ideas, etc, are all subsumed into this consciousness and become part of a whole. In this way, it can be viewed as a perfect recording of all historical events, being completely unbiased in regards to facts.

Oracles are human beings who have trained to tap into this consciousness in order to gain a true picture of the past. This skill must be learnt, and is accessible to anyone. They are regarded as the historians of this world, passing on what they see for future records. They are used to discover and record big moments from history so we can gain a clear understanding of past events and why they happened, such as the rise and fall of empires, ancient cultures, etc.

However, there is a problem with this when you break it down. If this god is the seat of all earth history, it stands to reason that a person tapping into it can find things out about anyone. A detective investigating a murder could solve a case without having to do the leg work. A rival king could tap into this consciousness to find information on his enemies and their empires or armies, or business rivals could use it to spy on competitors.

I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear version of historical events that doesn’t depend on interpretation, but leaves the lives of people out. How can I make this happen?

• There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

• Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

• Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

• Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

• What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

22

22

3

Our study of human history has numerous problems. 99% of history isn’t recorded. Writing has been around only for 5 thousand years, and much of what we know comes from archaeological evidence. Information is being shared more today because of the internet, but there is so much we still don’t know in the modern age. Adding to this, there is much interpretation built into any historical analysis and historians struggle with the concept of objectivity.

In this world, human beings share a universal consciousness. When a person dies, they are subsumed into this consciousness, which is known as “God”. Thoughts, emotions, ideas, etc, are all subsumed into this consciousness and become part of a whole. In this way, it can be viewed as a perfect recording of all historical events, being completely unbiased in regards to facts.

Oracles are human beings who have trained to tap into this consciousness in order to gain a true picture of the past. This skill must be learnt, and is accessible to anyone. They are regarded as the historians of this world, passing on what they see for future records. They are used to discover and record big moments from history so we can gain a clear understanding of past events and why they happened, such as the rise and fall of empires, ancient cultures, etc.

However, there is a problem with this when you break it down. If this god is the seat of all earth history, it stands to reason that a person tapping into it can find things out about anyone. A detective investigating a murder could solve a case without having to do the leg work. A rival king could tap into this consciousness to find information on his enemies and their empires or armies, or business rivals could use it to spy on competitors.

I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear version of historical events that doesn’t depend on interpretation, but leaves the lives of people out. How can I make this happen?

Our study of human history has numerous problems. 99% of history isn’t recorded. Writing has been around only for 5 thousand years, and much of what we know comes from archaeological evidence. Information is being shared more today because of the internet, but there is so much we still don’t know in the modern age. Adding to this, there is much interpretation built into any historical analysis and historians struggle with the concept of objectivity.

In this world, human beings share a universal consciousness. When a person dies, they are subsumed into this consciousness, which is known as “God”. Thoughts, emotions, ideas, etc, are all subsumed into this consciousness and become part of a whole. In this way, it can be viewed as a perfect recording of all historical events, being completely unbiased in regards to facts.

Oracles are human beings who have trained to tap into this consciousness in order to gain a true picture of the past. This skill must be learnt, and is accessible to anyone. They are regarded as the historians of this world, passing on what they see for future records. They are used to discover and record big moments from history so we can gain a clear understanding of past events and why they happened, such as the rise and fall of empires, ancient cultures, etc.

However, there is a problem with this when you break it down. If this god is the seat of all earth history, it stands to reason that a person tapping into it can find things out about anyone. A detective investigating a murder could solve a case without having to do the leg work. A rival king could tap into this consciousness to find information on his enemies and their empires or armies, or business rivals could use it to spy on competitors.

I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear version of historical events that doesn’t depend on interpretation, but leaves the lives of people out. How can I make this happen?

magic ancient-history telepathy consciousness

edited Feb 25 at 15:56

JYelton

714620

714620

asked Feb 23 at 12:27

Incognito

7,558767107

7,558767107

• There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

• Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

• Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

• Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

• What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

• There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

• Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

• Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

• Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

• What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

18

There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

There’s a quirk in your mechanics, that being that a businessman would only know about his rival’s activities if an immediate witness has since died. So “businessmen” who go around killing witnesses will have much larger presences to the oracles, keeping witnesses alive as long as possible is a better way to silence them.

– Separatrix
Feb 23 at 12:56

4

Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

Your “one, linear version…that dont depend on interpretation” depends entirely upon the interpretation of the oracle.

– Michael Richardson
Feb 23 at 15:39

7

Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

Since when are humans unbiased with regard to facts? Or anything?

– nasch
Feb 23 at 18:45

5

Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

Consider that your oracle is essentially trying to choose which one of several billion channels of TV reruns to watch.

– jamesqf
Feb 23 at 19:21

5

What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

What happens to the universal record, if someone dies who is delusional, or with a biased view of an event, or who has a very strong belief or a genuine misunderstanding about something

– Stilez
Feb 24 at 9:08

## 18 Answers18

active

oldest

votes

If the collective mind contains memories of people, well… It contains what people remember, not the factual truth. This poses multiple problems:

• Conflicting memories, which may either be mutually destroyed upon merger, or lead to great levels of confusion;

• Poor attention. You have found the memories of the sole witness of whatever, but they didn’t see the murder because they were playing some My Little Pony game on their cell phone.

• Fragmented memories. It is quite common for people who have undergone post traumatic stress or child abuse to have a kind of dissociation called fragmentation. This screws up the way the person collects, maintains and recalls memories. I think murder victims would have poor memories of their last moments.

• False memories, planted on purpose to confuse the oversoul, either by one’s own self and volition or forcefully.

• The oversoul will have waaaaay too many stoned memories. Seeing history through the eyes of a junkie may be interesting, but not very useful for fact finding.

• Storage. The oversoul has more capacity than you. It may be that in order to get some info from it, you have to forget an equal amount of info just to make space.

• Emotional content. If you experience someone else’s memories, you may feel what they felt. You will need psychological help if you go through a rape victim’s memory.

Assassin’s Creed has a similar concept, and its lore added two additional problems for people going through the memories of others:

• Poor search indexing. You can’t just go to that single precious moment which is all that you want. You have to spend 20-odd hours playing previous memories until you reach what you want.

• Bleeding effectTM: spend too much time visiting memories and you start hallucinating pieces of those memories even when unplugged from their source.

• Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result!

– Matthieu M.
Feb 24 at 20:40

• A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again.

– Chronocidal
Feb 25 at 14:01

• @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there.

– Keith Morrison
Feb 25 at 22:49

Read the histories of the oracles and you’ll see they have certain quirks. Consider Cassandra, her curse was that her predictions were always accurate but that nobody would ever believe her. Other oracles were known for giving riddles or predictions that couldn’t be interpreted until it was too late.

Your Oracles can see clearly into the past, but not so clearly into the present. That means that while they know exactly what happened, they’re not very good at communicating it to others. In the simplest case they’re talking to someone who was asking questions last week. In the worst case no two consecutive words are from the same conversation.

Riddles, confusion, and disconnection in time. The oracles know everything, they just can’t tell you about it.

The next step is to find a balance.

An oracle at the pinnacle of their profession will be able to speak to a single person about an event with no other witnesses, say the victim of a murder, but they’re also going to be the worst case of being unable to communicate with the present. A new oracle is still going to be relatively well grounded in time, but only be able to find out about events with loud voices in the past, great wars and civilisations with tens of thousands of witnesses. Their speech may only be light riddles, but the fine detail can never be seen.

• You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution

– pojo-guy
Feb 23 at 15:41

• Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles?

– EvoGamer
Feb 23 at 15:48

• @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that.

– Shufflepants
Feb 25 at 16:14

It’s very simple for two reasons.

• Reason 1: It is a collective memory of DEAD people. You can’t remember the juicy details about your hot neighbour or the bank account numbers of a rich celebrity if they didn’t die. You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew. “depending on who died” means that if you kill a captured officer you can be more certain about the information he’ll provide.

• Reason 2: It’s a COLLECTIVE memory. You ask information about some moment and place in history, everyone who feels they know something about it will respond. Steering through this mess is difficult for the user. This also means you get more clear info about things that more people know about. A murder on an important leader on national TV will be much clearer than a random death in a back alley, the back alley death might be so small that it’s simply drowned out and will be mixed with similar deaths in the region and time period, making the information tainted and hard to understand.

• Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case

– Miroslav Saracevic
Feb 23 at 19:54

• @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out

– Demigan
Feb 23 at 21:00

• sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information.

– Miroslav Saracevic
Feb 25 at 9:24

First, all of human history is…BIG. So what you’d want is specialists in particular areas of history.

Here’s some fixes:

• Time. You’ve got history, but immediate history is more difficult and confused to access. If you get anything at all, it’s fractured. As time goes by, it gains clarity. 100 years ago is clearer than 1 year ago as the timelines of all the dead folk have had time to become part of the whole in an integrated and accessible way. For a god-like consciousness, several decades or a century isn’t a big deal, and really, it might be a safety feature for just the kind of thing you are talking about.
• Too Many Voices. The biggest problem here is organization and indexing. How can everyone possibly bring up the information needed? How can you hear one voice when there are millions? What this might mean is that bringing up info is difficult.
• Lies, delusions and misremberances. Even if you can get the dead dude you’re looking for, there’s no guarantee that his perceptions are accurate. You call it a “perfect recording” but if humans are involved, dead or alive, there is really no such thing if you also have “Thoughts, emotions, ideas.” Take a moment to research eyewitness testimony. Memory is a funny thing, and it’s NOT perfect. I know your idea is perfect accuracy. But more than one thing can be true at a time. Consider the story of Logain from Dragon Age–some remember him as a hero who saved his troops from an overwhelming enemy and their country from a King who was beginning to collude with an old enemy, others consider him a traitor who left his king on the field. BOTH of those things could be and are true. It really depends on who you listen to.

You’re talking about ONE linear, TRUE version of history, but I contend that there really is no such thing. Every event ever has depended on interpretation, on the perception of those involved.

I really do believe that it would be FAR, FAR more interesting and accurate if it was more confusing and harder to access. And what’s true…that’s not one thing. It never has been.

• There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place.

– Keith Morrison
Feb 25 at 22:56

• @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed.

– Erin Thursby
Feb 26 at 2:08

/I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history./

Signal strength increases with number of participants.

Imagine flying along at 10,000 feet. You cannot see a man lighting his cigarette. But you can see 5000 concert goers lifting their lighters for a torch song.

So too events. Participant number increases signal strength. If you want to see what OJ Simpson did on a given night, you have only the memories of the three individuals present as a source; too weak. If you want to see SuperBowl 44, you have the memories of thousands of attendees and millions who watched on TV. The more participants there are, the stronger your signal. You can set a number of participants necessary to make any perceptible signal for the oracles, and near that minimum number signal is still very weak.

• I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world.

– Erin Thursby
Feb 23 at 23:56

• But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film.

– Abigail
Feb 25 at 19:37

• @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective

– IT Alex
Feb 25 at 20:06

“This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, “

RL Example: In WW2, During Battle of Britain both sides were convinced that RAF was on verge of collapse. This belief shaped strategical decisions – RAF even started saving aircrafts, in order to still have some reserve, which made Germans think that not much is left. The only problem… recent studies show that both sides incorrectly estimated other side production rate and in the darkest hour Allies were decisively winning aerial war of attrition.

This information may be hard to get from a collective consciousness, but a dispassionate quartermaster (or accountant) may be a bit more useful. 😉

You don’t want to make it a game breaking? Except already raised issues like false memories (including hallucinations), emotions… Why the process should be immediate? I mean if a soul needs a few decades to truly merge, then it does not matter for ancient history but makes it mostly useless from military perspective.

There may be even some interesting mechanism that for example sinner, individualist or very stron personalities would simply need a much more time to merge.

EDIT: Events equivalent to… evolving on savanna? Almost getting extinct 70k years ago? Leaving Africa? Ice age cycles? Slaughtering all megafauna on the way? Having sex with other hominids like Neanderthals and Denisovans? Domesticating plants and animals? Going in huge migrations throughout continents? (recent DNA test show that Europeans are mixture of local population + Middle Eastern + Siberian)

It can be quite interesting as history would start at dawn of mankind and not at invention of writing.

I think there’s actually an even simpler answer: context.

Even if the oracle can see exactly what the dead person saw, thought and felt, that doesn’t mean that they understand it perfectly.

The most obvious example of this is language: I won’t gain any insight into the causes of the Second World War from watching Hitler’s speeches unless I can speak German – and that’s a language which millions of people still speak today. What if I’m observing someone who spoke North Picene?

Context is important for everything people do. Without that context, you can see what happened but rarely why, and so what comes out clearly are the big, objective moments but not the details of people’s lives.

All you need to do is ensure your Oracle isn’t a kind of cultural Babel fish – people will do the rest for you.

How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing
everything that has happened?

# No-one has the big picture.

At least – not for long.

Each death would represent only a small incremental increase in the God’s information resource. This resembles a Clandestine cell system, such as used in spy networks. Orders would get passed down through ever shifting cut-outs, it would all consist of disjointed and sometimes contradictory information.

• It would take a great deal of analysis by the Oracles to find underlying paterns of government or military strategy – and even then false trails, double and tripple bluffs would muddy the waters.

• Leadership. Just as at the bottom of the hierarchy, the leaders would be surrounded by mutual anonymity – masks, mystery and would use secret passwords, handshakes and the signs and trappings of ritual to identify themselves and their position and role.

• Every time a leader or trusted adviser died, a randomisation strategy would need to be implemented, a replacement leader by lottery, a change of course in strategies – a random shifting of resources to again muddy the waters and make themselves and their plans safely obscured.

• Attempted infiltration of enemy cells, and climbing in their hierarchies would be something you’d constantly need to contend with and be attempting on your enemy.

Suitable citizens would be segregated depending on ability.

Intensive training would be given in:

• Oraclular studies, strategy and the history and practice of clandestine networks and disinformation systems, insurgency and counter insurgency – these would become the future leaders, academic advisors and teachers, the most trusted. They would be afforded luxury and a harem to share – but no personal attachments which could be used as leverage against them.

• Mathematics of codes and cyphers.

• The enemy’s culture and language.

• Intelligence gathering techinques.

• Subversive-insurgency to infiltrate and disrupt enemy networks.

• Assasination. They would be threatened with hell-fire and promised rewards in heaven or rewards for their families on Earth to commit Lone-Wolf attacks on known enemy targets.

All in all, it’s a recipe for scandal, intrigue and a pretty unpleasant and insecure workplace IMHO.

# Background noise.

I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history.
Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of
Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world
on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way,
there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont
depend on interpretation, but leave the lives of people out. How can I
make this happen?

The data is there, but oracles have trouble exactly locating it. Because the Memory is so large that it’s impossible to quickly zoom in any one point. And you cannot stay connected for very long, or your brain will seize.

So you can only zero on large events, something that left a large impression on the Memory. Once there, you can concentrate on smaller details; but you can’t “remember” who killed Joe Q. Average, because the event didn’t make a large enough impression. Even if it did, you’d be sore pressed in zeroing onto the memories of the actual murderer; and if he was the only one to know that he was indeed the murderer, connecting with any other memory will not help you.

You could make it take a really, really long time to find more obscure things. Everything that ever happened is a lot of data to sift through, so that should be reasonable enough. Like the internet, perhaps all of the major events could be well-indexed and easy to find. But the more specific and obscure things that an Oracle might want to know may be much harder to find. If the web page you’re looking wasn’t indexed by Google, it’d take a much longer time to find it, wouldn’t you say? So as a limitation, just make it take an inconveniently long time to find things that are not the big moves and shakes of history. (This has also been brought up in this answer and this answer.)

Actually, this idea comes up in the manga ib: Instant Bullet by Akasaka Aka, and I think it presents the concept of the search duration limitation rather well (read right-to-left):

Concentration of memories determines clarity, accessibility, and importance.
Time spent in accessed memories moves slower.

If you look at WW2, there are your oracles who could study it all their lives and have meaningful things to discern and discuss with fellow oracles. The pool of memories would be that immense. Your detective would have to search for vaguer trails acting in solitude, or with a team. He does not have historians from across the world curious about this cataclysmic event in human history. WW2 would. We could reach your mentioned objectivity after a process of historical research using this unique avenue. However, it would take time and many capable minds, not one of which could be an island.

Your other valve for how potent the power is would be its cost. Similar to other magic systems, as this system may be considered, the cost is a great place to balance its strength and usefulness. When you are roaming through memories, how long does it take to get there? Can your brain maneuver through the collective conciousness with enough detachment to do so efficiently, or does your reaction to everything you see along the way slow you? Perhaps processing the information left by the dead is a draining, costly thing.

Even your modern spy would take too long searching memories if their brain must process each thing in a substantial way. Then there is that issue of finding something which is so fresh to the world. It has not a large enough trail to be easily accessed or navigated, further exponentially reducing your efficiently at gleaming useful information. The longer you dig, the vaguer the trail, and the more you have to process to keep going further. One man can only process so much information in a certain frame of time.

# Location

A simple and interesting way to limit it is to do so by location. ‘God’ is spread out over the world. The memories it contains are tied to the area where they occurred. For an Oracle to read them, the Oracle must be fairly close by.

Want to have an Oracle solve a murder? She has to go to the crime scene.

Need to do a study of ancient Greece? You won’t be doing it from a hotel in Paramus.

Pick out the details of your enemy’s plans in the war? Than you allied Oracle will have to get into an enemy base, or even better, their headquarters. And even that won’t help if everyone who was present and has those memories is still alive.

Oracles can only communicate clearly with specific people.

Let’s imagine an Oracle A. If Oracle A has a specific trait 1, then A might be “spiritually closer” (or some other handwavium) to people who have this specific trait 1. Likewise, if they have a specific trait 2, then they’ll communicate best with people who have 2 (and 1).

This way, given enough traits or rare enough ones, you’ll cut down the number of people Oracle A can communicate with massively. So for a small event such as a murder where only a few people were involved, it’s unlikely to the point of impossibility that A will be able to recover information; however, for a massive event, A will have many witnesses they can draw from.

And who knows? Maybe you just have to find an Oracle B to get more information.

A side effect of this is that ancient history will be weaker, as less people were alive then. This could be either positive or negative.

Even though we witness events, we don’t always know what exactly is happening. The simplest example of this is close up magic.
So even though an Oracle may see something, they may miss what is actually happening.

Secondly, memories are a perspective. A person’s memory is what they think they have seen.

Lastly, people don’t remember things as they happened even though they may have witnessed them and understood them thoroughly at the moment they occurred.

Maybe these flaws can make prevent the oracles from seeing everything and limit their powers in some sense

Have you read the Dune series by Frank Herbert? Especially Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune and God-Emperor of Dune touches on the subject of genetic memory, which bears a resemblance to your concept. The biggest difference is that Dune’s genetic memory is limited to a single family line, and an individual would only know their parents until the time of conception.

The books establish three major obstacles for using such memory:

1. Gaining access is a dangerous procedure. Untrained people simply die in the process. It might also require certain genetics; the books touch on selective breeding to create what they call the Kwisatz Haderach, which is the first male who can do it.
2. There is a real danger of getting lost in the memories. Since an individual would have all memories of any ancestor until the conception of the next generation, it is easy to fall into a dream of reliving past lives, and lose the ability to differentiate between memory and reality.
3. Any especially dominant character from the past can take control of the individual. Think dissociative identity disorder.

For your world, it sounds like only danger 2 and 3 would be applicable. But still, maybe your oracles was simply trained to only see the big picture and not delve too deep, in an effort to shield them from the worst of the dangers.

Also, if the full memory of all beings ever is accessible, how would you find any specific memory? It would be the equivalent to finding a specific strand of hay in a haystack. The oracles could be trained to only skim memories to get a sense of the big picture, and not delve too deep into any individual. This technique could also help against the aforementioned dangers.

## Information is only accessible through a link

Imagine that the internet existed without google and the only way to find content is navigating through hyperlinks. To clarify: its also like a library where you can only borrow a book if you provide either ISBN, title, author, etc.

So, oracle needs a link to the information and such link can be names, objects or places associated to the memory.

If you don’t mind the potential for plot ideas there could also be specialized sorcerers that can set up obstructions like guardian entities, illusory perceptions or neuro-hazardous psychic traps at specific paths. Think of how government agencies can intercept searches for specific keywords or track visitors of certains websites.

• Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1

– Agrajag
Feb 25 at 16:28

When you contact the Oversoul, you initially don’t get much of use. The Oversoul, while constructed out of human souls, is considering problems that humans cannot grasp.

Humans are constructed out of single cell, but the concerns of single cells are not really the concerns of the Human. If you imagine a cell being intelligent, it might be concerned about viruses, killer-T cells, internal decay, and the local biochemical environment. The Human is bothered that the light is taking too long to change.

The connection between these two is thin.

So contacting the Oversoul as a whole doesn’t really do much for an Oracle, as the Oracle is roughly equivalent to a single cell in the Oversoul. The trick to making Oracular contact useful is a careful context rotation and projection to isolate a single soul.

Ie, you have to project the connection with the Oversoul down to a human level so you can interact with it and get human-level information on it.

The souls that make up the Oversoul still behave differently than independent human souls; they are part of a greater whole, and their purpose (like the cells of a multicellular organism, compared to single celled organism) and motivations remain very difficult to fathom. Still, at the single-soul level, you can get something.

Now, finding a particular soul is ridiculously hard and impractical.

You reach out, and you find a soul. You spend time getting that soul into focus, and viewing it separate from the oversoul. You start exchanging information, and understanding the language of that soul. Only then can you work out, piece by piece, what era, place and name that soul had in life.

If that soul has information you need, you can start communicating it. If not, you get to try again.

Finding one soul out of the trillions dead is impossible. But, finding any soul that died in WW2 is going to happen multiple times per year.

Assuming a trillion souls and 3 hours to connect to a new one and identify it sufficiently, 1000 Oracles working 10 hour days can get through a million souls/year, or 0.0001% of the Oversoul.

Over a century, 10k Oracles can contact 0.1% of all souls in the Oversoul. With 1 in 1000 souls contacted, you can have a really good sketch of history built up.

It gets even better if the Oracles can record how to contact a soul to make it more likely to repeat it. Then Oracle-indexes can be built up over time, and can be used to probe more deeply into historical events after they have been discovered.

This doesn’t help with immediate history. Finding one specific dead person? It would literally take 10,000 Oracles a century to have a 1 in a 1000 chance of contacting that person.

This also leads to wonderful plot points. Some events are going to be extremely hard to find, and individual historical figures more-so. The Oracle-index of, say, Alexander the Great is going to be worth a lot. The Oracle-index of a major religious figure is going to be world-shaking.

If there are 10 major religious figures and 0.1% of the dead has been indexed, then the odds any of them are indexed is 1%. For most of them, close disciples are going to be accessible.

This also leads to another thing. If you are interacting with the souls in the Oversoul, do they change? And if they change, can you damage, destroy or harm them?

It would be common that people would claim to have the index of a major religious figure. And insane souls might even believe they are the major religious figure. So I would presume that major religions would claim that their founder’s soul “transcended” and is not an individual soul in the Oversoul, and anyone claiming they have contacted them is a heretic, and souls that claim to be the figure are damaged by the adversary and must be purged.

## Your oracles can only access the past in real-time: If an event took ten years to unfold, it will take ten years’ of oracle time to access.

Your situation is very similar (though more metaphysical) to the dilemma faced by real-life archivists and historians. There is a tremendous amount of material available that documents the past several decades, but virtually all of it came without an index. In the small institutional archive where I work we have, conservatively, a few thousand hours’ worth of VHS tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, floppy disks, etc. (Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of slides and negatives.) A single videotape, for example, generally can’t be digitized or viewed with sound faster than real-time. If we’re lucky, there’s a label on the tape with the exact date and subject matter, but often it will just say something like “1989 backup” or “Joe”. Lacking infinite resources, this means that the vast majority of this material is destined to go un-reviewed.

For your world, perhaps the oracles can only “see” events unfold in the same amount of time that they actually took, or perhaps the bottleneck is in the transcription stage. Either way, your oracles’ time is precious, and not likely to be spent tracking down where Joe Blow left his keys. Instead, the powers that be are going to spend this finite resource on answering the really big questions—those “big moments in history” that you mention. This will be easier, anyway, because the Oracles will have some idea of where to start looking and how to triangulate their search.

Some subordinate implications and possibilities of this approach:

• One of the chief skills that oracles can hone is “reading” visions quickly to find clues about whether they’re in the right time/place and using those clues from multiple spots in the timeline to zero in on the most relevant events to view.

• You’ve said that anyone can access the universal consciousness, but for most people it will mostly be so much noise.
• Only the trained oracles (or very gifted amateurs) can cut through all the stuff that happened in the Bronze Age Aegean to find the true events behind the legend of King Minos and the Minotaur.
• The faster and more accurately an oracle can perform this triangulation feat, the more successful they are.
• Questions about human events can be answered pretty quickly/easily, but getting answers to geological or evolutionary-type questions could easily take more than a human lifespan.

• Oracling is a job, like any other, so if you want your oracles to spend more than the hours-per-day on a project you’re going to have to give them an incentive to do so.
• Conversely, you might need a way to slow down events that happen faster than human comprehension.
• Multiple oracles can be “stacked” on a question in order to speed up the process and/or provide multiple vantage points for viewing the historical moment (perhaps to achieve that slow-mo effect).

• You could leave open the possibility that oracles might be privately contracted. Your typical local PD isn’t going to be able to afford the services of an oracle for every crime, but the occasional very high-profile case might warrant one’s services. And an oracle might be called in to investigate that missing set of keys if $137 million is riding on it. • If you don’t want it to be used this way, you could pass laws against it or make skilled oracles so rare (and their time therefore so precious) that only governments can afford it. But in either case you’re still going to have a question of rogue oracles looking to profit from their skill. • Oracles are likely to have hobby projects, and will have “seen” lots of irrelevant material while searching out their targets. This opens the possibility for various character quirks for your oracles. • Some oracles might be like the stereotypical academic, with a passion for a particular topic or era, while others prefer to “leave it in the office”. • Perhaps PTSD is an issue for oracles who must view, in real-time, things like wartime atrocities or extinction events. • You might need a code of ethics, e.g. for oracles who accidentally view private information when searching for a public event, or to discourage oracles from taking the “scenic route” to a target event. ## protected by L.Dutch♦Feb 25 at 17:20 Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count). Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead? ## 18 Answers18 active oldest votes ## 18 Answers18 active oldest votes active oldest votes active oldest votes If the collective mind contains memories of people, well… It contains what people remember, not the factual truth. This poses multiple problems: • Conflicting memories, which may either be mutually destroyed upon merger, or lead to great levels of confusion; • Poor attention. You have found the memories of the sole witness of whatever, but they didn’t see the murder because they were playing some My Little Pony game on their cell phone. • Fragmented memories. It is quite common for people who have undergone post traumatic stress or child abuse to have a kind of dissociation called fragmentation. This screws up the way the person collects, maintains and recalls memories. I think murder victims would have poor memories of their last moments. • False memories, planted on purpose to confuse the oversoul, either by one’s own self and volition or forcefully. • The oversoul will have waaaaay too many stoned memories. Seeing history through the eyes of a junkie may be interesting, but not very useful for fact finding. • Storage. The oversoul has more capacity than you. It may be that in order to get some info from it, you have to forget an equal amount of info just to make space. • Emotional content. If you experience someone else’s memories, you may feel what they felt. You will need psychological help if you go through a rape victim’s memory. Assassin’s Creed has a similar concept, and its lore added two additional problems for people going through the memories of others: • Poor search indexing. You can’t just go to that single precious moment which is all that you want. You have to spend 20-odd hours playing previous memories until you reach what you want. • Bleeding effectTM: spend too much time visiting memories and you start hallucinating pieces of those memories even when unplugged from their source. • Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 • A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 • @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 If the collective mind contains memories of people, well… It contains what people remember, not the factual truth. This poses multiple problems: • Conflicting memories, which may either be mutually destroyed upon merger, or lead to great levels of confusion; • Poor attention. You have found the memories of the sole witness of whatever, but they didn’t see the murder because they were playing some My Little Pony game on their cell phone. • Fragmented memories. It is quite common for people who have undergone post traumatic stress or child abuse to have a kind of dissociation called fragmentation. This screws up the way the person collects, maintains and recalls memories. I think murder victims would have poor memories of their last moments. • False memories, planted on purpose to confuse the oversoul, either by one’s own self and volition or forcefully. • The oversoul will have waaaaay too many stoned memories. Seeing history through the eyes of a junkie may be interesting, but not very useful for fact finding. • Storage. The oversoul has more capacity than you. It may be that in order to get some info from it, you have to forget an equal amount of info just to make space. • Emotional content. If you experience someone else’s memories, you may feel what they felt. You will need psychological help if you go through a rape victim’s memory. Assassin’s Creed has a similar concept, and its lore added two additional problems for people going through the memories of others: • Poor search indexing. You can’t just go to that single precious moment which is all that you want. You have to spend 20-odd hours playing previous memories until you reach what you want. • Bleeding effectTM: spend too much time visiting memories and you start hallucinating pieces of those memories even when unplugged from their source. • Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 • A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 • @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 45 45 If the collective mind contains memories of people, well… It contains what people remember, not the factual truth. This poses multiple problems: • Conflicting memories, which may either be mutually destroyed upon merger, or lead to great levels of confusion; • Poor attention. You have found the memories of the sole witness of whatever, but they didn’t see the murder because they were playing some My Little Pony game on their cell phone. • Fragmented memories. It is quite common for people who have undergone post traumatic stress or child abuse to have a kind of dissociation called fragmentation. This screws up the way the person collects, maintains and recalls memories. I think murder victims would have poor memories of their last moments. • False memories, planted on purpose to confuse the oversoul, either by one’s own self and volition or forcefully. • The oversoul will have waaaaay too many stoned memories. Seeing history through the eyes of a junkie may be interesting, but not very useful for fact finding. • Storage. The oversoul has more capacity than you. It may be that in order to get some info from it, you have to forget an equal amount of info just to make space. • Emotional content. If you experience someone else’s memories, you may feel what they felt. You will need psychological help if you go through a rape victim’s memory. Assassin’s Creed has a similar concept, and its lore added two additional problems for people going through the memories of others: • Poor search indexing. You can’t just go to that single precious moment which is all that you want. You have to spend 20-odd hours playing previous memories until you reach what you want. • Bleeding effectTM: spend too much time visiting memories and you start hallucinating pieces of those memories even when unplugged from their source. If the collective mind contains memories of people, well… It contains what people remember, not the factual truth. This poses multiple problems: • Conflicting memories, which may either be mutually destroyed upon merger, or lead to great levels of confusion; • Poor attention. You have found the memories of the sole witness of whatever, but they didn’t see the murder because they were playing some My Little Pony game on their cell phone. • Fragmented memories. It is quite common for people who have undergone post traumatic stress or child abuse to have a kind of dissociation called fragmentation. This screws up the way the person collects, maintains and recalls memories. I think murder victims would have poor memories of their last moments. • False memories, planted on purpose to confuse the oversoul, either by one’s own self and volition or forcefully. • The oversoul will have waaaaay too many stoned memories. Seeing history through the eyes of a junkie may be interesting, but not very useful for fact finding. • Storage. The oversoul has more capacity than you. It may be that in order to get some info from it, you have to forget an equal amount of info just to make space. • Emotional content. If you experience someone else’s memories, you may feel what they felt. You will need psychological help if you go through a rape victim’s memory. Assassin’s Creed has a similar concept, and its lore added two additional problems for people going through the memories of others: • Poor search indexing. You can’t just go to that single precious moment which is all that you want. You have to spend 20-odd hours playing previous memories until you reach what you want. • Bleeding effectTM: spend too much time visiting memories and you start hallucinating pieces of those memories even when unplugged from their source. edited Feb 23 at 19:57 answered Feb 23 at 13:06 Renan 50k13117252 50k13117252 • Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 • A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 • @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 • Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 • A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 • @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 7 Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 Indexing was my first thought. Just look at the Internet: the amount of information is nigh unlimited! Plug your question into Google and… start reading unrelated result after unrelated result. Keep at it, it may be in the next result! – Matthieu M. Feb 24 at 20:40 3 A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 A related concept: The more “memories” there are of an event, the easier it is to access. A secret murder at 7pm last night is buried beneath other people’s mundane memories of eating dinner or travelling home at that time. Watching the Moon Landing is easy – for the broadcast. Viewing Armstrong or Aldrin’s memories of being on the Moon is “hard” again. – Chronocidal Feb 25 at 14:01 1 @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 @Renan, you overlooked one other possibility of false memories: ones not done deliberately but happen all the time. The classic example from 2001 is that many people recall that, on 9/11, they saw the first aircraft hit the WTC live on television, when that’s impossible: footage of it only came later. It’s a false memory that wasn’t deliberate, but nonetheless there. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:49 Read the histories of the oracles and you’ll see they have certain quirks. Consider Cassandra, her curse was that her predictions were always accurate but that nobody would ever believe her. Other oracles were known for giving riddles or predictions that couldn’t be interpreted until it was too late. Your Oracles can see clearly into the past, but not so clearly into the present. That means that while they know exactly what happened, they’re not very good at communicating it to others. In the simplest case they’re talking to someone who was asking questions last week. In the worst case no two consecutive words are from the same conversation. Riddles, confusion, and disconnection in time. The oracles know everything, they just can’t tell you about it. The next step is to find a balance. An oracle at the pinnacle of their profession will be able to speak to a single person about an event with no other witnesses, say the victim of a murder, but they’re also going to be the worst case of being unable to communicate with the present. A new oracle is still going to be relatively well grounded in time, but only be able to find out about events with loud voices in the past, great wars and civilisations with tens of thousands of witnesses. Their speech may only be light riddles, but the fine detail can never be seen. • You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 • Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 • @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 Read the histories of the oracles and you’ll see they have certain quirks. Consider Cassandra, her curse was that her predictions were always accurate but that nobody would ever believe her. Other oracles were known for giving riddles or predictions that couldn’t be interpreted until it was too late. Your Oracles can see clearly into the past, but not so clearly into the present. That means that while they know exactly what happened, they’re not very good at communicating it to others. In the simplest case they’re talking to someone who was asking questions last week. In the worst case no two consecutive words are from the same conversation. Riddles, confusion, and disconnection in time. The oracles know everything, they just can’t tell you about it. The next step is to find a balance. An oracle at the pinnacle of their profession will be able to speak to a single person about an event with no other witnesses, say the victim of a murder, but they’re also going to be the worst case of being unable to communicate with the present. A new oracle is still going to be relatively well grounded in time, but only be able to find out about events with loud voices in the past, great wars and civilisations with tens of thousands of witnesses. Their speech may only be light riddles, but the fine detail can never be seen. • You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 • Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 • @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 20 20 Read the histories of the oracles and you’ll see they have certain quirks. Consider Cassandra, her curse was that her predictions were always accurate but that nobody would ever believe her. Other oracles were known for giving riddles or predictions that couldn’t be interpreted until it was too late. Your Oracles can see clearly into the past, but not so clearly into the present. That means that while they know exactly what happened, they’re not very good at communicating it to others. In the simplest case they’re talking to someone who was asking questions last week. In the worst case no two consecutive words are from the same conversation. Riddles, confusion, and disconnection in time. The oracles know everything, they just can’t tell you about it. The next step is to find a balance. An oracle at the pinnacle of their profession will be able to speak to a single person about an event with no other witnesses, say the victim of a murder, but they’re also going to be the worst case of being unable to communicate with the present. A new oracle is still going to be relatively well grounded in time, but only be able to find out about events with loud voices in the past, great wars and civilisations with tens of thousands of witnesses. Their speech may only be light riddles, but the fine detail can never be seen. Read the histories of the oracles and you’ll see they have certain quirks. Consider Cassandra, her curse was that her predictions were always accurate but that nobody would ever believe her. Other oracles were known for giving riddles or predictions that couldn’t be interpreted until it was too late. Your Oracles can see clearly into the past, but not so clearly into the present. That means that while they know exactly what happened, they’re not very good at communicating it to others. In the simplest case they’re talking to someone who was asking questions last week. In the worst case no two consecutive words are from the same conversation. Riddles, confusion, and disconnection in time. The oracles know everything, they just can’t tell you about it. The next step is to find a balance. An oracle at the pinnacle of their profession will be able to speak to a single person about an event with no other witnesses, say the victim of a murder, but they’re also going to be the worst case of being unable to communicate with the present. A new oracle is still going to be relatively well grounded in time, but only be able to find out about events with loud voices in the past, great wars and civilisations with tens of thousands of witnesses. Their speech may only be light riddles, but the fine detail can never be seen. edited Feb 23 at 12:52 answered Feb 23 at 12:44 Separatrix 84.4k31196327 84.4k31196327 • You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 • Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 • @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 • You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 • Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 • @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 1 You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 You missed the Gordian knot oracle, and the Alexandrian solution – pojo-guy Feb 23 at 15:41 Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 Could you get a series of progressively less-experienced oracles to attempt to communicate with each other, slowly unravelling the riddles? – EvoGamer Feb 23 at 15:48 2 @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 @EvoGamer That sounds like a game of telephone. Good luck getting anything remotely useful out of that. – Shufflepants Feb 25 at 16:14 It’s very simple for two reasons. • Reason 1: It is a collective memory of DEAD people. You can’t remember the juicy details about your hot neighbour or the bank account numbers of a rich celebrity if they didn’t die. You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew. “depending on who died” means that if you kill a captured officer you can be more certain about the information he’ll provide. • Reason 2: It’s a COLLECTIVE memory. You ask information about some moment and place in history, everyone who feels they know something about it will respond. Steering through this mess is difficult for the user. This also means you get more clear info about things that more people know about. A murder on an important leader on national TV will be much clearer than a random death in a back alley, the back alley death might be so small that it’s simply drowned out and will be mixed with similar deaths in the region and time period, making the information tainted and hard to understand. • Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 • @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 • sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 It’s very simple for two reasons. • Reason 1: It is a collective memory of DEAD people. You can’t remember the juicy details about your hot neighbour or the bank account numbers of a rich celebrity if they didn’t die. You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew. “depending on who died” means that if you kill a captured officer you can be more certain about the information he’ll provide. • Reason 2: It’s a COLLECTIVE memory. You ask information about some moment and place in history, everyone who feels they know something about it will respond. Steering through this mess is difficult for the user. This also means you get more clear info about things that more people know about. A murder on an important leader on national TV will be much clearer than a random death in a back alley, the back alley death might be so small that it’s simply drowned out and will be mixed with similar deaths in the region and time period, making the information tainted and hard to understand. • Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 • @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 • sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 18 18 It’s very simple for two reasons. • Reason 1: It is a collective memory of DEAD people. You can’t remember the juicy details about your hot neighbour or the bank account numbers of a rich celebrity if they didn’t die. You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew. “depending on who died” means that if you kill a captured officer you can be more certain about the information he’ll provide. • Reason 2: It’s a COLLECTIVE memory. You ask information about some moment and place in history, everyone who feels they know something about it will respond. Steering through this mess is difficult for the user. This also means you get more clear info about things that more people know about. A murder on an important leader on national TV will be much clearer than a random death in a back alley, the back alley death might be so small that it’s simply drowned out and will be mixed with similar deaths in the region and time period, making the information tainted and hard to understand. It’s very simple for two reasons. • Reason 1: It is a collective memory of DEAD people. You can’t remember the juicy details about your hot neighbour or the bank account numbers of a rich celebrity if they didn’t die. You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew. “depending on who died” means that if you kill a captured officer you can be more certain about the information he’ll provide. • Reason 2: It’s a COLLECTIVE memory. You ask information about some moment and place in history, everyone who feels they know something about it will respond. Steering through this mess is difficult for the user. This also means you get more clear info about things that more people know about. A murder on an important leader on national TV will be much clearer than a random death in a back alley, the back alley death might be so small that it’s simply drowned out and will be mixed with similar deaths in the region and time period, making the information tainted and hard to understand. edited Feb 25 at 9:32 answered Feb 23 at 14:19 Demigan 10.1k11048 10.1k11048 • Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 • @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 • sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 • Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 • @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 • sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 2 Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 Your reason 1 is ignoring that if you ever capture high ranking enemy, instead of interrogation and possible misleading information feed, you could just kill him and tap into his memory to get fresh information about enemy. Would be best interrogation method in that case – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 23 at 19:54 1 @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 @Miroslavsaracevic how exactly is it ignoring that option? Reason 1 is about dead people. If you follow your interrogation technique then he joins the dead people, which is covered with the phrase “You could get some information on the enemy troops after people have died, but you can’t be sure how accurate that information is depending on who died and what they knew.”, which takes up literally half of reason 1. If you cant capture or kill a high ranking person, reason 1 remains in effect as well. I dont understand why you point this out when again literally half reason 1 points this option out – Demigan Feb 23 at 21:00 1 sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 sorry, I misunderstood it as if it was referred to natural death of general people. I was pointing out that you could cause death of specific person to be relatively sure about his level of information. – Miroslav Saracevic Feb 25 at 9:24 First, all of human history is…BIG. So what you’d want is specialists in particular areas of history. Here’s some fixes: • Time. You’ve got history, but immediate history is more difficult and confused to access. If you get anything at all, it’s fractured. As time goes by, it gains clarity. 100 years ago is clearer than 1 year ago as the timelines of all the dead folk have had time to become part of the whole in an integrated and accessible way. For a god-like consciousness, several decades or a century isn’t a big deal, and really, it might be a safety feature for just the kind of thing you are talking about. • Too Many Voices. The biggest problem here is organization and indexing. How can everyone possibly bring up the information needed? How can you hear one voice when there are millions? What this might mean is that bringing up info is difficult. • Lies, delusions and misremberances. Even if you can get the dead dude you’re looking for, there’s no guarantee that his perceptions are accurate. You call it a “perfect recording” but if humans are involved, dead or alive, there is really no such thing if you also have “Thoughts, emotions, ideas.” Take a moment to research eyewitness testimony. Memory is a funny thing, and it’s NOT perfect. I know your idea is perfect accuracy. But more than one thing can be true at a time. Consider the story of Logain from Dragon Age–some remember him as a hero who saved his troops from an overwhelming enemy and their country from a King who was beginning to collude with an old enemy, others consider him a traitor who left his king on the field. BOTH of those things could be and are true. It really depends on who you listen to. You’re talking about ONE linear, TRUE version of history, but I contend that there really is no such thing. Every event ever has depended on interpretation, on the perception of those involved. I really do believe that it would be FAR, FAR more interesting and accurate if it was more confusing and harder to access. And what’s true…that’s not one thing. It never has been. • There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 • @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 First, all of human history is…BIG. So what you’d want is specialists in particular areas of history. Here’s some fixes: • Time. You’ve got history, but immediate history is more difficult and confused to access. If you get anything at all, it’s fractured. As time goes by, it gains clarity. 100 years ago is clearer than 1 year ago as the timelines of all the dead folk have had time to become part of the whole in an integrated and accessible way. For a god-like consciousness, several decades or a century isn’t a big deal, and really, it might be a safety feature for just the kind of thing you are talking about. • Too Many Voices. The biggest problem here is organization and indexing. How can everyone possibly bring up the information needed? How can you hear one voice when there are millions? What this might mean is that bringing up info is difficult. • Lies, delusions and misremberances. Even if you can get the dead dude you’re looking for, there’s no guarantee that his perceptions are accurate. You call it a “perfect recording” but if humans are involved, dead or alive, there is really no such thing if you also have “Thoughts, emotions, ideas.” Take a moment to research eyewitness testimony. Memory is a funny thing, and it’s NOT perfect. I know your idea is perfect accuracy. But more than one thing can be true at a time. Consider the story of Logain from Dragon Age–some remember him as a hero who saved his troops from an overwhelming enemy and their country from a King who was beginning to collude with an old enemy, others consider him a traitor who left his king on the field. BOTH of those things could be and are true. It really depends on who you listen to. You’re talking about ONE linear, TRUE version of history, but I contend that there really is no such thing. Every event ever has depended on interpretation, on the perception of those involved. I really do believe that it would be FAR, FAR more interesting and accurate if it was more confusing and harder to access. And what’s true…that’s not one thing. It never has been. • There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 • @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 15 15 First, all of human history is…BIG. So what you’d want is specialists in particular areas of history. Here’s some fixes: • Time. You’ve got history, but immediate history is more difficult and confused to access. If you get anything at all, it’s fractured. As time goes by, it gains clarity. 100 years ago is clearer than 1 year ago as the timelines of all the dead folk have had time to become part of the whole in an integrated and accessible way. For a god-like consciousness, several decades or a century isn’t a big deal, and really, it might be a safety feature for just the kind of thing you are talking about. • Too Many Voices. The biggest problem here is organization and indexing. How can everyone possibly bring up the information needed? How can you hear one voice when there are millions? What this might mean is that bringing up info is difficult. • Lies, delusions and misremberances. Even if you can get the dead dude you’re looking for, there’s no guarantee that his perceptions are accurate. You call it a “perfect recording” but if humans are involved, dead or alive, there is really no such thing if you also have “Thoughts, emotions, ideas.” Take a moment to research eyewitness testimony. Memory is a funny thing, and it’s NOT perfect. I know your idea is perfect accuracy. But more than one thing can be true at a time. Consider the story of Logain from Dragon Age–some remember him as a hero who saved his troops from an overwhelming enemy and their country from a King who was beginning to collude with an old enemy, others consider him a traitor who left his king on the field. BOTH of those things could be and are true. It really depends on who you listen to. You’re talking about ONE linear, TRUE version of history, but I contend that there really is no such thing. Every event ever has depended on interpretation, on the perception of those involved. I really do believe that it would be FAR, FAR more interesting and accurate if it was more confusing and harder to access. And what’s true…that’s not one thing. It never has been. First, all of human history is…BIG. So what you’d want is specialists in particular areas of history. Here’s some fixes: • Time. You’ve got history, but immediate history is more difficult and confused to access. If you get anything at all, it’s fractured. As time goes by, it gains clarity. 100 years ago is clearer than 1 year ago as the timelines of all the dead folk have had time to become part of the whole in an integrated and accessible way. For a god-like consciousness, several decades or a century isn’t a big deal, and really, it might be a safety feature for just the kind of thing you are talking about. • Too Many Voices. The biggest problem here is organization and indexing. How can everyone possibly bring up the information needed? How can you hear one voice when there are millions? What this might mean is that bringing up info is difficult. • Lies, delusions and misremberances. Even if you can get the dead dude you’re looking for, there’s no guarantee that his perceptions are accurate. You call it a “perfect recording” but if humans are involved, dead or alive, there is really no such thing if you also have “Thoughts, emotions, ideas.” Take a moment to research eyewitness testimony. Memory is a funny thing, and it’s NOT perfect. I know your idea is perfect accuracy. But more than one thing can be true at a time. Consider the story of Logain from Dragon Age–some remember him as a hero who saved his troops from an overwhelming enemy and their country from a King who was beginning to collude with an old enemy, others consider him a traitor who left his king on the field. BOTH of those things could be and are true. It really depends on who you listen to. You’re talking about ONE linear, TRUE version of history, but I contend that there really is no such thing. Every event ever has depended on interpretation, on the perception of those involved. I really do believe that it would be FAR, FAR more interesting and accurate if it was more confusing and harder to access. And what’s true…that’s not one thing. It never has been. answered Feb 23 at 14:50 Erin Thursby 26.6k344123 26.6k344123 • There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 • @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 • There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 • @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 There’s also the problem that the memory is “uploaded” when they die. That can be a very long time from when the event of interest happened, and in that time the possibility of false memories, or even not remembering at all, greatly increase. Contrary to popular belief, humans do not record everything that happened around them; short term memory is “dumped” all the time. Everyone who commutes by car has experienced the situation where, if it’s been a normal, boring drive, they can’t remember a single thing about the drive as soon as they get home, even though it just took place. – Keith Morrison Feb 25 at 22:56 @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 @KeithMorrison Agree. If human memory is the source, it’s already inherently flawed. – Erin Thursby Feb 26 at 2:08 /I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history./ Signal strength increases with number of participants. Imagine flying along at 10,000 feet. You cannot see a man lighting his cigarette. But you can see 5000 concert goers lifting their lighters for a torch song. So too events. Participant number increases signal strength. If you want to see what OJ Simpson did on a given night, you have only the memories of the three individuals present as a source; too weak. If you want to see SuperBowl 44, you have the memories of thousands of attendees and millions who watched on TV. The more participants there are, the stronger your signal. You can set a number of participants necessary to make any perceptible signal for the oracles, and near that minimum number signal is still very weak. • I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 • But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 • @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 /I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history./ Signal strength increases with number of participants. Imagine flying along at 10,000 feet. You cannot see a man lighting his cigarette. But you can see 5000 concert goers lifting their lighters for a torch song. So too events. Participant number increases signal strength. If you want to see what OJ Simpson did on a given night, you have only the memories of the three individuals present as a source; too weak. If you want to see SuperBowl 44, you have the memories of thousands of attendees and millions who watched on TV. The more participants there are, the stronger your signal. You can set a number of participants necessary to make any perceptible signal for the oracles, and near that minimum number signal is still very weak. • I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 • But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 • @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 12 12 /I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history./ Signal strength increases with number of participants. Imagine flying along at 10,000 feet. You cannot see a man lighting his cigarette. But you can see 5000 concert goers lifting their lighters for a torch song. So too events. Participant number increases signal strength. If you want to see what OJ Simpson did on a given night, you have only the memories of the three individuals present as a source; too weak. If you want to see SuperBowl 44, you have the memories of thousands of attendees and millions who watched on TV. The more participants there are, the stronger your signal. You can set a number of participants necessary to make any perceptible signal for the oracles, and near that minimum number signal is still very weak. /I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history./ Signal strength increases with number of participants. Imagine flying along at 10,000 feet. You cannot see a man lighting his cigarette. But you can see 5000 concert goers lifting their lighters for a torch song. So too events. Participant number increases signal strength. If you want to see what OJ Simpson did on a given night, you have only the memories of the three individuals present as a source; too weak. If you want to see SuperBowl 44, you have the memories of thousands of attendees and millions who watched on TV. The more participants there are, the stronger your signal. You can set a number of participants necessary to make any perceptible signal for the oracles, and near that minimum number signal is still very weak. answered Feb 23 at 18:03 Willk 113k27212476 113k27212476 • I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 • But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 • @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 • I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 • But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 • @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 2 I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 I like this. It leaves a mark in the collective consciousness of the world. – Erin Thursby Feb 23 at 23:56 But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 But big events does not imply many witnesses; nor does many witnesses imply big events. In the grand scheme of things, SuperBowl 44 (or any other SuperBowl) will be irrelevant. But suppose the Apollo moonlandings will turn out be significant events. Only 12 people have experienced them, all others have seen parts of it, and only via TV and film. – Abigail Feb 25 at 19:37 1 @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 @Abigail You would still have the “Location” of that cluster of memories much easier to find and piece together. Having many perspectives would make the event more like a virtual reality experience where a single/low amount of people would treat more like watching TV from the oracles perspective – IT Alex Feb 25 at 20:06 “This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, “ RL Example: In WW2, During Battle of Britain both sides were convinced that RAF was on verge of collapse. This belief shaped strategical decisions – RAF even started saving aircrafts, in order to still have some reserve, which made Germans think that not much is left. The only problem… recent studies show that both sides incorrectly estimated other side production rate and in the darkest hour Allies were decisively winning aerial war of attrition. This information may be hard to get from a collective consciousness, but a dispassionate quartermaster (or accountant) may be a bit more useful. 😉 You don’t want to make it a game breaking? Except already raised issues like false memories (including hallucinations), emotions… Why the process should be immediate? I mean if a soul needs a few decades to truly merge, then it does not matter for ancient history but makes it mostly useless from military perspective. There may be even some interesting mechanism that for example sinner, individualist or very stron personalities would simply need a much more time to merge. EDIT: Events equivalent to… evolving on savanna? Almost getting extinct 70k years ago? Leaving Africa? Ice age cycles? Slaughtering all megafauna on the way? Having sex with other hominids like Neanderthals and Denisovans? Domesticating plants and animals? Going in huge migrations throughout continents? (recent DNA test show that Europeans are mixture of local population + Middle Eastern + Siberian) It can be quite interesting as history would start at dawn of mankind and not at invention of writing. “This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, “ RL Example: In WW2, During Battle of Britain both sides were convinced that RAF was on verge of collapse. This belief shaped strategical decisions – RAF even started saving aircrafts, in order to still have some reserve, which made Germans think that not much is left. The only problem… recent studies show that both sides incorrectly estimated other side production rate and in the darkest hour Allies were decisively winning aerial war of attrition. This information may be hard to get from a collective consciousness, but a dispassionate quartermaster (or accountant) may be a bit more useful. 😉 You don’t want to make it a game breaking? Except already raised issues like false memories (including hallucinations), emotions… Why the process should be immediate? I mean if a soul needs a few decades to truly merge, then it does not matter for ancient history but makes it mostly useless from military perspective. There may be even some interesting mechanism that for example sinner, individualist or very stron personalities would simply need a much more time to merge. EDIT: Events equivalent to… evolving on savanna? Almost getting extinct 70k years ago? Leaving Africa? Ice age cycles? Slaughtering all megafauna on the way? Having sex with other hominids like Neanderthals and Denisovans? Domesticating plants and animals? Going in huge migrations throughout continents? (recent DNA test show that Europeans are mixture of local population + Middle Eastern + Siberian) It can be quite interesting as history would start at dawn of mankind and not at invention of writing. 8 8 “This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, “ RL Example: In WW2, During Battle of Britain both sides were convinced that RAF was on verge of collapse. This belief shaped strategical decisions – RAF even started saving aircrafts, in order to still have some reserve, which made Germans think that not much is left. The only problem… recent studies show that both sides incorrectly estimated other side production rate and in the darkest hour Allies were decisively winning aerial war of attrition. This information may be hard to get from a collective consciousness, but a dispassionate quartermaster (or accountant) may be a bit more useful. 😉 You don’t want to make it a game breaking? Except already raised issues like false memories (including hallucinations), emotions… Why the process should be immediate? I mean if a soul needs a few decades to truly merge, then it does not matter for ancient history but makes it mostly useless from military perspective. There may be even some interesting mechanism that for example sinner, individualist or very stron personalities would simply need a much more time to merge. EDIT: Events equivalent to… evolving on savanna? Almost getting extinct 70k years ago? Leaving Africa? Ice age cycles? Slaughtering all megafauna on the way? Having sex with other hominids like Neanderthals and Denisovans? Domesticating plants and animals? Going in huge migrations throughout continents? (recent DNA test show that Europeans are mixture of local population + Middle Eastern + Siberian) It can be quite interesting as history would start at dawn of mankind and not at invention of writing. “This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, “ RL Example: In WW2, During Battle of Britain both sides were convinced that RAF was on verge of collapse. This belief shaped strategical decisions – RAF even started saving aircrafts, in order to still have some reserve, which made Germans think that not much is left. The only problem… recent studies show that both sides incorrectly estimated other side production rate and in the darkest hour Allies were decisively winning aerial war of attrition. This information may be hard to get from a collective consciousness, but a dispassionate quartermaster (or accountant) may be a bit more useful. 😉 You don’t want to make it a game breaking? Except already raised issues like false memories (including hallucinations), emotions… Why the process should be immediate? I mean if a soul needs a few decades to truly merge, then it does not matter for ancient history but makes it mostly useless from military perspective. There may be even some interesting mechanism that for example sinner, individualist or very stron personalities would simply need a much more time to merge. EDIT: Events equivalent to… evolving on savanna? Almost getting extinct 70k years ago? Leaving Africa? Ice age cycles? Slaughtering all megafauna on the way? Having sex with other hominids like Neanderthals and Denisovans? Domesticating plants and animals? Going in huge migrations throughout continents? (recent DNA test show that Europeans are mixture of local population + Middle Eastern + Siberian) It can be quite interesting as history would start at dawn of mankind and not at invention of writing. edited Feb 23 at 13:54 answered Feb 23 at 13:40 Shadow1024 4,888933 4,888933 I think there’s actually an even simpler answer: context. Even if the oracle can see exactly what the dead person saw, thought and felt, that doesn’t mean that they understand it perfectly. The most obvious example of this is language: I won’t gain any insight into the causes of the Second World War from watching Hitler’s speeches unless I can speak German – and that’s a language which millions of people still speak today. What if I’m observing someone who spoke North Picene? Context is important for everything people do. Without that context, you can see what happened but rarely why, and so what comes out clearly are the big, objective moments but not the details of people’s lives. All you need to do is ensure your Oracle isn’t a kind of cultural Babel fish – people will do the rest for you. I think there’s actually an even simpler answer: context. Even if the oracle can see exactly what the dead person saw, thought and felt, that doesn’t mean that they understand it perfectly. The most obvious example of this is language: I won’t gain any insight into the causes of the Second World War from watching Hitler’s speeches unless I can speak German – and that’s a language which millions of people still speak today. What if I’m observing someone who spoke North Picene? Context is important for everything people do. Without that context, you can see what happened but rarely why, and so what comes out clearly are the big, objective moments but not the details of people’s lives. All you need to do is ensure your Oracle isn’t a kind of cultural Babel fish – people will do the rest for you. 4 4 I think there’s actually an even simpler answer: context. Even if the oracle can see exactly what the dead person saw, thought and felt, that doesn’t mean that they understand it perfectly. The most obvious example of this is language: I won’t gain any insight into the causes of the Second World War from watching Hitler’s speeches unless I can speak German – and that’s a language which millions of people still speak today. What if I’m observing someone who spoke North Picene? Context is important for everything people do. Without that context, you can see what happened but rarely why, and so what comes out clearly are the big, objective moments but not the details of people’s lives. All you need to do is ensure your Oracle isn’t a kind of cultural Babel fish – people will do the rest for you. I think there’s actually an even simpler answer: context. Even if the oracle can see exactly what the dead person saw, thought and felt, that doesn’t mean that they understand it perfectly. The most obvious example of this is language: I won’t gain any insight into the causes of the Second World War from watching Hitler’s speeches unless I can speak German – and that’s a language which millions of people still speak today. What if I’m observing someone who spoke North Picene? Context is important for everything people do. Without that context, you can see what happened but rarely why, and so what comes out clearly are the big, objective moments but not the details of people’s lives. All you need to do is ensure your Oracle isn’t a kind of cultural Babel fish – people will do the rest for you. answered Feb 25 at 10:57 walrus 2,61511034 2,61511034 How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing everything that has happened? # No-one has the big picture. At least – not for long. Each death would represent only a small incremental increase in the God’s information resource. This resembles a Clandestine cell system, such as used in spy networks. Orders would get passed down through ever shifting cut-outs, it would all consist of disjointed and sometimes contradictory information. • It would take a great deal of analysis by the Oracles to find underlying paterns of government or military strategy – and even then false trails, double and tripple bluffs would muddy the waters. • Leadership. Just as at the bottom of the hierarchy, the leaders would be surrounded by mutual anonymity – masks, mystery and would use secret passwords, handshakes and the signs and trappings of ritual to identify themselves and their position and role. • Every time a leader or trusted adviser died, a randomisation strategy would need to be implemented, a replacement leader by lottery, a change of course in strategies – a random shifting of resources to again muddy the waters and make themselves and their plans safely obscured. • Attempted infiltration of enemy cells, and climbing in their hierarchies would be something you’d constantly need to contend with and be attempting on your enemy. Suitable citizens would be segregated depending on ability. Intensive training would be given in: • Oraclular studies, strategy and the history and practice of clandestine networks and disinformation systems, insurgency and counter insurgency – these would become the future leaders, academic advisors and teachers, the most trusted. They would be afforded luxury and a harem to share – but no personal attachments which could be used as leverage against them. • Mathematics of codes and cyphers. • The enemy’s culture and language. • Intelligence gathering techinques. • Subversive-insurgency to infiltrate and disrupt enemy networks. • Assasination. They would be threatened with hell-fire and promised rewards in heaven or rewards for their families on Earth to commit Lone-Wolf attacks on known enemy targets. All in all, it’s a recipe for scandal, intrigue and a pretty unpleasant and insecure workplace IMHO. How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing everything that has happened? # No-one has the big picture. At least – not for long. Each death would represent only a small incremental increase in the God’s information resource. This resembles a Clandestine cell system, such as used in spy networks. Orders would get passed down through ever shifting cut-outs, it would all consist of disjointed and sometimes contradictory information. • It would take a great deal of analysis by the Oracles to find underlying paterns of government or military strategy – and even then false trails, double and tripple bluffs would muddy the waters. • Leadership. Just as at the bottom of the hierarchy, the leaders would be surrounded by mutual anonymity – masks, mystery and would use secret passwords, handshakes and the signs and trappings of ritual to identify themselves and their position and role. • Every time a leader or trusted adviser died, a randomisation strategy would need to be implemented, a replacement leader by lottery, a change of course in strategies – a random shifting of resources to again muddy the waters and make themselves and their plans safely obscured. • Attempted infiltration of enemy cells, and climbing in their hierarchies would be something you’d constantly need to contend with and be attempting on your enemy. Suitable citizens would be segregated depending on ability. Intensive training would be given in: • Oraclular studies, strategy and the history and practice of clandestine networks and disinformation systems, insurgency and counter insurgency – these would become the future leaders, academic advisors and teachers, the most trusted. They would be afforded luxury and a harem to share – but no personal attachments which could be used as leverage against them. • Mathematics of codes and cyphers. • The enemy’s culture and language. • Intelligence gathering techinques. • Subversive-insurgency to infiltrate and disrupt enemy networks. • Assasination. They would be threatened with hell-fire and promised rewards in heaven or rewards for their families on Earth to commit Lone-Wolf attacks on known enemy targets. All in all, it’s a recipe for scandal, intrigue and a pretty unpleasant and insecure workplace IMHO. 3 3 How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing everything that has happened? # No-one has the big picture. At least – not for long. Each death would represent only a small incremental increase in the God’s information resource. This resembles a Clandestine cell system, such as used in spy networks. Orders would get passed down through ever shifting cut-outs, it would all consist of disjointed and sometimes contradictory information. • It would take a great deal of analysis by the Oracles to find underlying paterns of government or military strategy – and even then false trails, double and tripple bluffs would muddy the waters. • Leadership. Just as at the bottom of the hierarchy, the leaders would be surrounded by mutual anonymity – masks, mystery and would use secret passwords, handshakes and the signs and trappings of ritual to identify themselves and their position and role. • Every time a leader or trusted adviser died, a randomisation strategy would need to be implemented, a replacement leader by lottery, a change of course in strategies – a random shifting of resources to again muddy the waters and make themselves and their plans safely obscured. • Attempted infiltration of enemy cells, and climbing in their hierarchies would be something you’d constantly need to contend with and be attempting on your enemy. Suitable citizens would be segregated depending on ability. Intensive training would be given in: • Oraclular studies, strategy and the history and practice of clandestine networks and disinformation systems, insurgency and counter insurgency – these would become the future leaders, academic advisors and teachers, the most trusted. They would be afforded luxury and a harem to share – but no personal attachments which could be used as leverage against them. • Mathematics of codes and cyphers. • The enemy’s culture and language. • Intelligence gathering techinques. • Subversive-insurgency to infiltrate and disrupt enemy networks. • Assasination. They would be threatened with hell-fire and promised rewards in heaven or rewards for their families on Earth to commit Lone-Wolf attacks on known enemy targets. All in all, it’s a recipe for scandal, intrigue and a pretty unpleasant and insecure workplace IMHO. How can I prevent an oracle who can see into the past from knowing everything that has happened? # No-one has the big picture. At least – not for long. Each death would represent only a small incremental increase in the God’s information resource. This resembles a Clandestine cell system, such as used in spy networks. Orders would get passed down through ever shifting cut-outs, it would all consist of disjointed and sometimes contradictory information. • It would take a great deal of analysis by the Oracles to find underlying paterns of government or military strategy – and even then false trails, double and tripple bluffs would muddy the waters. • Leadership. Just as at the bottom of the hierarchy, the leaders would be surrounded by mutual anonymity – masks, mystery and would use secret passwords, handshakes and the signs and trappings of ritual to identify themselves and their position and role. • Every time a leader or trusted adviser died, a randomisation strategy would need to be implemented, a replacement leader by lottery, a change of course in strategies – a random shifting of resources to again muddy the waters and make themselves and their plans safely obscured. • Attempted infiltration of enemy cells, and climbing in their hierarchies would be something you’d constantly need to contend with and be attempting on your enemy. Suitable citizens would be segregated depending on ability. Intensive training would be given in: • Oraclular studies, strategy and the history and practice of clandestine networks and disinformation systems, insurgency and counter insurgency – these would become the future leaders, academic advisors and teachers, the most trusted. They would be afforded luxury and a harem to share – but no personal attachments which could be used as leverage against them. • Mathematics of codes and cyphers. • The enemy’s culture and language. • Intelligence gathering techinques. • Subversive-insurgency to infiltrate and disrupt enemy networks. • Assasination. They would be threatened with hell-fire and promised rewards in heaven or rewards for their families on Earth to commit Lone-Wolf attacks on known enemy targets. All in all, it’s a recipe for scandal, intrigue and a pretty unpleasant and insecure workplace IMHO. edited Feb 23 at 16:00 answered Feb 23 at 14:29 Agrajag 5,7561041 5,7561041 # Background noise. I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, but leave the lives of people out. How can I make this happen? The data is there, but oracles have trouble exactly locating it. Because the Memory is so large that it’s impossible to quickly zoom in any one point. And you cannot stay connected for very long, or your brain will seize. So you can only zero on large events, something that left a large impression on the Memory. Once there, you can concentrate on smaller details; but you can’t “remember” who killed Joe Q. Average, because the event didn’t make a large enough impression. Even if it did, you’d be sore pressed in zeroing onto the memories of the actual murderer; and if he was the only one to know that he was indeed the murderer, connecting with any other memory will not help you. # Background noise. I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, but leave the lives of people out. How can I make this happen? The data is there, but oracles have trouble exactly locating it. Because the Memory is so large that it’s impossible to quickly zoom in any one point. And you cannot stay connected for very long, or your brain will seize. So you can only zero on large events, something that left a large impression on the Memory. Once there, you can concentrate on smaller details; but you can’t “remember” who killed Joe Q. Average, because the event didn’t make a large enough impression. Even if it did, you’d be sore pressed in zeroing onto the memories of the actual murderer; and if he was the only one to know that he was indeed the murderer, connecting with any other memory will not help you. 3 3 # Background noise. I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, but leave the lives of people out. How can I make this happen? The data is there, but oracles have trouble exactly locating it. Because the Memory is so large that it’s impossible to quickly zoom in any one point. And you cannot stay connected for very long, or your brain will seize. So you can only zero on large events, something that left a large impression on the Memory. Once there, you can concentrate on smaller details; but you can’t “remember” who killed Joe Q. Average, because the event didn’t make a large enough impression. Even if it did, you’d be sore pressed in zeroing onto the memories of the actual murderer; and if he was the only one to know that he was indeed the murderer, connecting with any other memory will not help you. # Background noise. I need to limit this system to the big moves and shakes of history. Events equivalent to WW2, rise and fall of Rome, cultures of Mesopotamia, etc. The big and important moments that shaped the world on the grand scheme, rather than the lives of individuals. This way, there can be one, linear, version of historical events that dont depend on interpretation, but leave the lives of people out. How can I make this happen? The data is there, but oracles have trouble exactly locating it. Because the Memory is so large that it’s impossible to quickly zoom in any one point. And you cannot stay connected for very long, or your brain will seize. So you can only zero on large events, something that left a large impression on the Memory. Once there, you can concentrate on smaller details; but you can’t “remember” who killed Joe Q. Average, because the event didn’t make a large enough impression. Even if it did, you’d be sore pressed in zeroing onto the memories of the actual murderer; and if he was the only one to know that he was indeed the murderer, connecting with any other memory will not help you. answered Feb 23 at 18:18 LSerni 28.9k25293 28.9k25293 You could make it take a really, really long time to find more obscure things. Everything that ever happened is a lot of data to sift through, so that should be reasonable enough. Like the internet, perhaps all of the major events could be well-indexed and easy to find. But the more specific and obscure things that an Oracle might want to know may be much harder to find. If the web page you’re looking wasn’t indexed by Google, it’d take a much longer time to find it, wouldn’t you say? So as a limitation, just make it take an inconveniently long time to find things that are not the big moves and shakes of history. (This has also been brought up in this answer and this answer.) Actually, this idea comes up in the manga ib: Instant Bullet by Akasaka Aka, and I think it presents the concept of the search duration limitation rather well (read right-to-left): You could make it take a really, really long time to find more obscure things. Everything that ever happened is a lot of data to sift through, so that should be reasonable enough. Like the internet, perhaps all of the major events could be well-indexed and easy to find. But the more specific and obscure things that an Oracle might want to know may be much harder to find. If the web page you’re looking wasn’t indexed by Google, it’d take a much longer time to find it, wouldn’t you say? So as a limitation, just make it take an inconveniently long time to find things that are not the big moves and shakes of history. (This has also been brought up in this answer and this answer.) Actually, this idea comes up in the manga ib: Instant Bullet by Akasaka Aka, and I think it presents the concept of the search duration limitation rather well (read right-to-left): 3 3 You could make it take a really, really long time to find more obscure things. Everything that ever happened is a lot of data to sift through, so that should be reasonable enough. Like the internet, perhaps all of the major events could be well-indexed and easy to find. But the more specific and obscure things that an Oracle might want to know may be much harder to find. If the web page you’re looking wasn’t indexed by Google, it’d take a much longer time to find it, wouldn’t you say? So as a limitation, just make it take an inconveniently long time to find things that are not the big moves and shakes of history. (This has also been brought up in this answer and this answer.) Actually, this idea comes up in the manga ib: Instant Bullet by Akasaka Aka, and I think it presents the concept of the search duration limitation rather well (read right-to-left): You could make it take a really, really long time to find more obscure things. Everything that ever happened is a lot of data to sift through, so that should be reasonable enough. Like the internet, perhaps all of the major events could be well-indexed and easy to find. But the more specific and obscure things that an Oracle might want to know may be much harder to find. If the web page you’re looking wasn’t indexed by Google, it’d take a much longer time to find it, wouldn’t you say? So as a limitation, just make it take an inconveniently long time to find things that are not the big moves and shakes of history. (This has also been brought up in this answer and this answer.) Actually, this idea comes up in the manga ib: Instant Bullet by Akasaka Aka, and I think it presents the concept of the search duration limitation rather well (read right-to-left): edited Feb 25 at 1:53 answered Feb 25 at 1:48 ununseti 1215 1215 Concentration of memories determines clarity, accessibility, and importance. Time spent in accessed memories moves slower. If you look at WW2, there are your oracles who could study it all their lives and have meaningful things to discern and discuss with fellow oracles. The pool of memories would be that immense. Your detective would have to search for vaguer trails acting in solitude, or with a team. He does not have historians from across the world curious about this cataclysmic event in human history. WW2 would. We could reach your mentioned objectivity after a process of historical research using this unique avenue. However, it would take time and many capable minds, not one of which could be an island. Your other valve for how potent the power is would be its cost. Similar to other magic systems, as this system may be considered, the cost is a great place to balance its strength and usefulness. When you are roaming through memories, how long does it take to get there? Can your brain maneuver through the collective conciousness with enough detachment to do so efficiently, or does your reaction to everything you see along the way slow you? Perhaps processing the information left by the dead is a draining, costly thing. Even your modern spy would take too long searching memories if their brain must process each thing in a substantial way. Then there is that issue of finding something which is so fresh to the world. It has not a large enough trail to be easily accessed or navigated, further exponentially reducing your efficiently at gleaming useful information. The longer you dig, the vaguer the trail, and the more you have to process to keep going further. One man can only process so much information in a certain frame of time. Concentration of memories determines clarity, accessibility, and importance. Time spent in accessed memories moves slower. If you look at WW2, there are your oracles who could study it all their lives and have meaningful things to discern and discuss with fellow oracles. The pool of memories would be that immense. Your detective would have to search for vaguer trails acting in solitude, or with a team. He does not have historians from across the world curious about this cataclysmic event in human history. WW2 would. We could reach your mentioned objectivity after a process of historical research using this unique avenue. However, it would take time and many capable minds, not one of which could be an island. Your other valve for how potent the power is would be its cost. Similar to other magic systems, as this system may be considered, the cost is a great place to balance its strength and usefulness. When you are roaming through memories, how long does it take to get there? Can your brain maneuver through the collective conciousness with enough detachment to do so efficiently, or does your reaction to everything you see along the way slow you? Perhaps processing the information left by the dead is a draining, costly thing. Even your modern spy would take too long searching memories if their brain must process each thing in a substantial way. Then there is that issue of finding something which is so fresh to the world. It has not a large enough trail to be easily accessed or navigated, further exponentially reducing your efficiently at gleaming useful information. The longer you dig, the vaguer the trail, and the more you have to process to keep going further. One man can only process so much information in a certain frame of time. 2 2 Concentration of memories determines clarity, accessibility, and importance. Time spent in accessed memories moves slower. If you look at WW2, there are your oracles who could study it all their lives and have meaningful things to discern and discuss with fellow oracles. The pool of memories would be that immense. Your detective would have to search for vaguer trails acting in solitude, or with a team. He does not have historians from across the world curious about this cataclysmic event in human history. WW2 would. We could reach your mentioned objectivity after a process of historical research using this unique avenue. However, it would take time and many capable minds, not one of which could be an island. Your other valve for how potent the power is would be its cost. Similar to other magic systems, as this system may be considered, the cost is a great place to balance its strength and usefulness. When you are roaming through memories, how long does it take to get there? Can your brain maneuver through the collective conciousness with enough detachment to do so efficiently, or does your reaction to everything you see along the way slow you? Perhaps processing the information left by the dead is a draining, costly thing. Even your modern spy would take too long searching memories if their brain must process each thing in a substantial way. Then there is that issue of finding something which is so fresh to the world. It has not a large enough trail to be easily accessed or navigated, further exponentially reducing your efficiently at gleaming useful information. The longer you dig, the vaguer the trail, and the more you have to process to keep going further. One man can only process so much information in a certain frame of time. Concentration of memories determines clarity, accessibility, and importance. Time spent in accessed memories moves slower. If you look at WW2, there are your oracles who could study it all their lives and have meaningful things to discern and discuss with fellow oracles. The pool of memories would be that immense. Your detective would have to search for vaguer trails acting in solitude, or with a team. He does not have historians from across the world curious about this cataclysmic event in human history. WW2 would. We could reach your mentioned objectivity after a process of historical research using this unique avenue. However, it would take time and many capable minds, not one of which could be an island. Your other valve for how potent the power is would be its cost. Similar to other magic systems, as this system may be considered, the cost is a great place to balance its strength and usefulness. When you are roaming through memories, how long does it take to get there? Can your brain maneuver through the collective conciousness with enough detachment to do so efficiently, or does your reaction to everything you see along the way slow you? Perhaps processing the information left by the dead is a draining, costly thing. Even your modern spy would take too long searching memories if their brain must process each thing in a substantial way. Then there is that issue of finding something which is so fresh to the world. It has not a large enough trail to be easily accessed or navigated, further exponentially reducing your efficiently at gleaming useful information. The longer you dig, the vaguer the trail, and the more you have to process to keep going further. One man can only process so much information in a certain frame of time. answered Feb 23 at 16:13 DVNO 373 373 # Location A simple and interesting way to limit it is to do so by location. ‘God’ is spread out over the world. The memories it contains are tied to the area where they occurred. For an Oracle to read them, the Oracle must be fairly close by. Want to have an Oracle solve a murder? She has to go to the crime scene. Need to do a study of ancient Greece? You won’t be doing it from a hotel in Paramus. Pick out the details of your enemy’s plans in the war? Than you allied Oracle will have to get into an enemy base, or even better, their headquarters. And even that won’t help if everyone who was present and has those memories is still alive. # Location A simple and interesting way to limit it is to do so by location. ‘God’ is spread out over the world. The memories it contains are tied to the area where they occurred. For an Oracle to read them, the Oracle must be fairly close by. Want to have an Oracle solve a murder? She has to go to the crime scene. Need to do a study of ancient Greece? You won’t be doing it from a hotel in Paramus. Pick out the details of your enemy’s plans in the war? Than you allied Oracle will have to get into an enemy base, or even better, their headquarters. And even that won’t help if everyone who was present and has those memories is still alive. 2 2 # Location A simple and interesting way to limit it is to do so by location. ‘God’ is spread out over the world. The memories it contains are tied to the area where they occurred. For an Oracle to read them, the Oracle must be fairly close by. Want to have an Oracle solve a murder? She has to go to the crime scene. Need to do a study of ancient Greece? You won’t be doing it from a hotel in Paramus. Pick out the details of your enemy’s plans in the war? Than you allied Oracle will have to get into an enemy base, or even better, their headquarters. And even that won’t help if everyone who was present and has those memories is still alive. # Location A simple and interesting way to limit it is to do so by location. ‘God’ is spread out over the world. The memories it contains are tied to the area where they occurred. For an Oracle to read them, the Oracle must be fairly close by. Want to have an Oracle solve a murder? She has to go to the crime scene. Need to do a study of ancient Greece? You won’t be doing it from a hotel in Paramus. Pick out the details of your enemy’s plans in the war? Than you allied Oracle will have to get into an enemy base, or even better, their headquarters. And even that won’t help if everyone who was present and has those memories is still alive. answered Feb 23 at 18:01 Xavon_Wrentaile 4,3321228 4,3321228 Oracles can only communicate clearly with specific people. Let’s imagine an Oracle A. If Oracle A has a specific trait 1, then A might be “spiritually closer” (or some other handwavium) to people who have this specific trait 1. Likewise, if they have a specific trait 2, then they’ll communicate best with people who have 2 (and 1). This way, given enough traits or rare enough ones, you’ll cut down the number of people Oracle A can communicate with massively. So for a small event such as a murder where only a few people were involved, it’s unlikely to the point of impossibility that A will be able to recover information; however, for a massive event, A will have many witnesses they can draw from. And who knows? Maybe you just have to find an Oracle B to get more information. A side effect of this is that ancient history will be weaker, as less people were alive then. This could be either positive or negative. Oracles can only communicate clearly with specific people. Let’s imagine an Oracle A. If Oracle A has a specific trait 1, then A might be “spiritually closer” (or some other handwavium) to people who have this specific trait 1. Likewise, if they have a specific trait 2, then they’ll communicate best with people who have 2 (and 1). This way, given enough traits or rare enough ones, you’ll cut down the number of people Oracle A can communicate with massively. So for a small event such as a murder where only a few people were involved, it’s unlikely to the point of impossibility that A will be able to recover information; however, for a massive event, A will have many witnesses they can draw from. And who knows? Maybe you just have to find an Oracle B to get more information. A side effect of this is that ancient history will be weaker, as less people were alive then. This could be either positive or negative. 2 2 Oracles can only communicate clearly with specific people. Let’s imagine an Oracle A. If Oracle A has a specific trait 1, then A might be “spiritually closer” (or some other handwavium) to people who have this specific trait 1. Likewise, if they have a specific trait 2, then they’ll communicate best with people who have 2 (and 1). This way, given enough traits or rare enough ones, you’ll cut down the number of people Oracle A can communicate with massively. So for a small event such as a murder where only a few people were involved, it’s unlikely to the point of impossibility that A will be able to recover information; however, for a massive event, A will have many witnesses they can draw from. And who knows? Maybe you just have to find an Oracle B to get more information. A side effect of this is that ancient history will be weaker, as less people were alive then. This could be either positive or negative. Oracles can only communicate clearly with specific people. Let’s imagine an Oracle A. If Oracle A has a specific trait 1, then A might be “spiritually closer” (or some other handwavium) to people who have this specific trait 1. Likewise, if they have a specific trait 2, then they’ll communicate best with people who have 2 (and 1). This way, given enough traits or rare enough ones, you’ll cut down the number of people Oracle A can communicate with massively. So for a small event such as a murder where only a few people were involved, it’s unlikely to the point of impossibility that A will be able to recover information; however, for a massive event, A will have many witnesses they can draw from. And who knows? Maybe you just have to find an Oracle B to get more information. A side effect of this is that ancient history will be weaker, as less people were alive then. This could be either positive or negative. answered Feb 23 at 22:44 Paralyzoid 812 812 Even though we witness events, we don’t always know what exactly is happening. The simplest example of this is close up magic. So even though an Oracle may see something, they may miss what is actually happening. Secondly, memories are a perspective. A person’s memory is what they think they have seen. Lastly, people don’t remember things as they happened even though they may have witnessed them and understood them thoroughly at the moment they occurred. Maybe these flaws can make prevent the oracles from seeing everything and limit their powers in some sense Even though we witness events, we don’t always know what exactly is happening. The simplest example of this is close up magic. So even though an Oracle may see something, they may miss what is actually happening. Secondly, memories are a perspective. A person’s memory is what they think they have seen. Lastly, people don’t remember things as they happened even though they may have witnessed them and understood them thoroughly at the moment they occurred. Maybe these flaws can make prevent the oracles from seeing everything and limit their powers in some sense 2 2 Even though we witness events, we don’t always know what exactly is happening. The simplest example of this is close up magic. So even though an Oracle may see something, they may miss what is actually happening. Secondly, memories are a perspective. A person’s memory is what they think they have seen. Lastly, people don’t remember things as they happened even though they may have witnessed them and understood them thoroughly at the moment they occurred. Maybe these flaws can make prevent the oracles from seeing everything and limit their powers in some sense Even though we witness events, we don’t always know what exactly is happening. The simplest example of this is close up magic. So even though an Oracle may see something, they may miss what is actually happening. Secondly, memories are a perspective. A person’s memory is what they think they have seen. Lastly, people don’t remember things as they happened even though they may have witnessed them and understood them thoroughly at the moment they occurred. Maybe these flaws can make prevent the oracles from seeing everything and limit their powers in some sense answered Feb 24 at 11:32 Tanmay 211 211 Have you read the Dune series by Frank Herbert? Especially Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune and God-Emperor of Dune touches on the subject of genetic memory, which bears a resemblance to your concept. The biggest difference is that Dune’s genetic memory is limited to a single family line, and an individual would only know their parents until the time of conception. The books establish three major obstacles for using such memory: 1. Gaining access is a dangerous procedure. Untrained people simply die in the process. It might also require certain genetics; the books touch on selective breeding to create what they call the Kwisatz Haderach, which is the first male who can do it. 2. There is a real danger of getting lost in the memories. Since an individual would have all memories of any ancestor until the conception of the next generation, it is easy to fall into a dream of reliving past lives, and lose the ability to differentiate between memory and reality. 3. Any especially dominant character from the past can take control of the individual. Think dissociative identity disorder. For your world, it sounds like only danger 2 and 3 would be applicable. But still, maybe your oracles was simply trained to only see the big picture and not delve too deep, in an effort to shield them from the worst of the dangers. Also, if the full memory of all beings ever is accessible, how would you find any specific memory? It would be the equivalent to finding a specific strand of hay in a haystack. The oracles could be trained to only skim memories to get a sense of the big picture, and not delve too deep into any individual. This technique could also help against the aforementioned dangers. Have you read the Dune series by Frank Herbert? Especially Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune and God-Emperor of Dune touches on the subject of genetic memory, which bears a resemblance to your concept. The biggest difference is that Dune’s genetic memory is limited to a single family line, and an individual would only know their parents until the time of conception. The books establish three major obstacles for using such memory: 1. Gaining access is a dangerous procedure. Untrained people simply die in the process. It might also require certain genetics; the books touch on selective breeding to create what they call the Kwisatz Haderach, which is the first male who can do it. 2. There is a real danger of getting lost in the memories. Since an individual would have all memories of any ancestor until the conception of the next generation, it is easy to fall into a dream of reliving past lives, and lose the ability to differentiate between memory and reality. 3. Any especially dominant character from the past can take control of the individual. Think dissociative identity disorder. For your world, it sounds like only danger 2 and 3 would be applicable. But still, maybe your oracles was simply trained to only see the big picture and not delve too deep, in an effort to shield them from the worst of the dangers. Also, if the full memory of all beings ever is accessible, how would you find any specific memory? It would be the equivalent to finding a specific strand of hay in a haystack. The oracles could be trained to only skim memories to get a sense of the big picture, and not delve too deep into any individual. This technique could also help against the aforementioned dangers. 2 2 Have you read the Dune series by Frank Herbert? Especially Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune and God-Emperor of Dune touches on the subject of genetic memory, which bears a resemblance to your concept. The biggest difference is that Dune’s genetic memory is limited to a single family line, and an individual would only know their parents until the time of conception. The books establish three major obstacles for using such memory: 1. Gaining access is a dangerous procedure. Untrained people simply die in the process. It might also require certain genetics; the books touch on selective breeding to create what they call the Kwisatz Haderach, which is the first male who can do it. 2. There is a real danger of getting lost in the memories. Since an individual would have all memories of any ancestor until the conception of the next generation, it is easy to fall into a dream of reliving past lives, and lose the ability to differentiate between memory and reality. 3. Any especially dominant character from the past can take control of the individual. Think dissociative identity disorder. For your world, it sounds like only danger 2 and 3 would be applicable. But still, maybe your oracles was simply trained to only see the big picture and not delve too deep, in an effort to shield them from the worst of the dangers. Also, if the full memory of all beings ever is accessible, how would you find any specific memory? It would be the equivalent to finding a specific strand of hay in a haystack. The oracles could be trained to only skim memories to get a sense of the big picture, and not delve too deep into any individual. This technique could also help against the aforementioned dangers. Have you read the Dune series by Frank Herbert? Especially Dune, Dune Messiah, Children of Dune and God-Emperor of Dune touches on the subject of genetic memory, which bears a resemblance to your concept. The biggest difference is that Dune’s genetic memory is limited to a single family line, and an individual would only know their parents until the time of conception. The books establish three major obstacles for using such memory: 1. Gaining access is a dangerous procedure. Untrained people simply die in the process. It might also require certain genetics; the books touch on selective breeding to create what they call the Kwisatz Haderach, which is the first male who can do it. 2. There is a real danger of getting lost in the memories. Since an individual would have all memories of any ancestor until the conception of the next generation, it is easy to fall into a dream of reliving past lives, and lose the ability to differentiate between memory and reality. 3. Any especially dominant character from the past can take control of the individual. Think dissociative identity disorder. For your world, it sounds like only danger 2 and 3 would be applicable. But still, maybe your oracles was simply trained to only see the big picture and not delve too deep, in an effort to shield them from the worst of the dangers. Also, if the full memory of all beings ever is accessible, how would you find any specific memory? It would be the equivalent to finding a specific strand of hay in a haystack. The oracles could be trained to only skim memories to get a sense of the big picture, and not delve too deep into any individual. This technique could also help against the aforementioned dangers. answered Feb 25 at 15:00 Fizker 1211 1211 ## Information is only accessible through a link Imagine that the internet existed without google and the only way to find content is navigating through hyperlinks. To clarify: its also like a library where you can only borrow a book if you provide either ISBN, title, author, etc. So, oracle needs a link to the information and such link can be names, objects or places associated to the memory. If you don’t mind the potential for plot ideas there could also be specialized sorcerers that can set up obstructions like guardian entities, illusory perceptions or neuro-hazardous psychic traps at specific paths. Think of how government agencies can intercept searches for specific keywords or track visitors of certains websites. • Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 ## Information is only accessible through a link Imagine that the internet existed without google and the only way to find content is navigating through hyperlinks. To clarify: its also like a library where you can only borrow a book if you provide either ISBN, title, author, etc. So, oracle needs a link to the information and such link can be names, objects or places associated to the memory. If you don’t mind the potential for plot ideas there could also be specialized sorcerers that can set up obstructions like guardian entities, illusory perceptions or neuro-hazardous psychic traps at specific paths. Think of how government agencies can intercept searches for specific keywords or track visitors of certains websites. • Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 1 1 ## Information is only accessible through a link Imagine that the internet existed without google and the only way to find content is navigating through hyperlinks. To clarify: its also like a library where you can only borrow a book if you provide either ISBN, title, author, etc. So, oracle needs a link to the information and such link can be names, objects or places associated to the memory. If you don’t mind the potential for plot ideas there could also be specialized sorcerers that can set up obstructions like guardian entities, illusory perceptions or neuro-hazardous psychic traps at specific paths. Think of how government agencies can intercept searches for specific keywords or track visitors of certains websites. ## Information is only accessible through a link Imagine that the internet existed without google and the only way to find content is navigating through hyperlinks. To clarify: its also like a library where you can only borrow a book if you provide either ISBN, title, author, etc. So, oracle needs a link to the information and such link can be names, objects or places associated to the memory. If you don’t mind the potential for plot ideas there could also be specialized sorcerers that can set up obstructions like guardian entities, illusory perceptions or neuro-hazardous psychic traps at specific paths. Think of how government agencies can intercept searches for specific keywords or track visitors of certains websites. answered Feb 25 at 16:15 Rupert Hide 111 111 • Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 • Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 Welcome to the site Andres Tremols, please take the tour and read up in our help centre about how we work: How to Answer . Not bad for a first post, especially considering we don’t exactly know how the oracles work, but I get what you’re saying. +1 – Agrajag Feb 25 at 16:28 When you contact the Oversoul, you initially don’t get much of use. The Oversoul, while constructed out of human souls, is considering problems that humans cannot grasp. Humans are constructed out of single cell, but the concerns of single cells are not really the concerns of the Human. If you imagine a cell being intelligent, it might be concerned about viruses, killer-T cells, internal decay, and the local biochemical environment. The Human is bothered that the light is taking too long to change. The connection between these two is thin. So contacting the Oversoul as a whole doesn’t really do much for an Oracle, as the Oracle is roughly equivalent to a single cell in the Oversoul. The trick to making Oracular contact useful is a careful context rotation and projection to isolate a single soul. Ie, you have to project the connection with the Oversoul down to a human level so you can interact with it and get human-level information on it. The souls that make up the Oversoul still behave differently than independent human souls; they are part of a greater whole, and their purpose (like the cells of a multicellular organism, compared to single celled organism) and motivations remain very difficult to fathom. Still, at the single-soul level, you can get something. Now, finding a particular soul is ridiculously hard and impractical. You reach out, and you find a soul. You spend time getting that soul into focus, and viewing it separate from the oversoul. You start exchanging information, and understanding the language of that soul. Only then can you work out, piece by piece, what era, place and name that soul had in life. If that soul has information you need, you can start communicating it. If not, you get to try again. Finding one soul out of the trillions dead is impossible. But, finding any soul that died in WW2 is going to happen multiple times per year. Assuming a trillion souls and 3 hours to connect to a new one and identify it sufficiently, 1000 Oracles working 10 hour days can get through a million souls/year, or 0.0001% of the Oversoul. Over a century, 10k Oracles can contact 0.1% of all souls in the Oversoul. With 1 in 1000 souls contacted, you can have a really good sketch of history built up. It gets even better if the Oracles can record how to contact a soul to make it more likely to repeat it. Then Oracle-indexes can be built up over time, and can be used to probe more deeply into historical events after they have been discovered. This doesn’t help with immediate history. Finding one specific dead person? It would literally take 10,000 Oracles a century to have a 1 in a 1000 chance of contacting that person. This also leads to wonderful plot points. Some events are going to be extremely hard to find, and individual historical figures more-so. The Oracle-index of, say, Alexander the Great is going to be worth a lot. The Oracle-index of a major religious figure is going to be world-shaking. If there are 10 major religious figures and 0.1% of the dead has been indexed, then the odds any of them are indexed is 1%. For most of them, close disciples are going to be accessible. This also leads to another thing. If you are interacting with the souls in the Oversoul, do they change? And if they change, can you damage, destroy or harm them? It would be common that people would claim to have the index of a major religious figure. And insane souls might even believe they are the major religious figure. So I would presume that major religions would claim that their founder’s soul “transcended” and is not an individual soul in the Oversoul, and anyone claiming they have contacted them is a heretic, and souls that claim to be the figure are damaged by the adversary and must be purged. When you contact the Oversoul, you initially don’t get much of use. The Oversoul, while constructed out of human souls, is considering problems that humans cannot grasp. Humans are constructed out of single cell, but the concerns of single cells are not really the concerns of the Human. If you imagine a cell being intelligent, it might be concerned about viruses, killer-T cells, internal decay, and the local biochemical environment. The Human is bothered that the light is taking too long to change. The connection between these two is thin. So contacting the Oversoul as a whole doesn’t really do much for an Oracle, as the Oracle is roughly equivalent to a single cell in the Oversoul. The trick to making Oracular contact useful is a careful context rotation and projection to isolate a single soul. Ie, you have to project the connection with the Oversoul down to a human level so you can interact with it and get human-level information on it. The souls that make up the Oversoul still behave differently than independent human souls; they are part of a greater whole, and their purpose (like the cells of a multicellular organism, compared to single celled organism) and motivations remain very difficult to fathom. Still, at the single-soul level, you can get something. Now, finding a particular soul is ridiculously hard and impractical. You reach out, and you find a soul. You spend time getting that soul into focus, and viewing it separate from the oversoul. You start exchanging information, and understanding the language of that soul. Only then can you work out, piece by piece, what era, place and name that soul had in life. If that soul has information you need, you can start communicating it. If not, you get to try again. Finding one soul out of the trillions dead is impossible. But, finding any soul that died in WW2 is going to happen multiple times per year. Assuming a trillion souls and 3 hours to connect to a new one and identify it sufficiently, 1000 Oracles working 10 hour days can get through a million souls/year, or 0.0001% of the Oversoul. Over a century, 10k Oracles can contact 0.1% of all souls in the Oversoul. With 1 in 1000 souls contacted, you can have a really good sketch of history built up. It gets even better if the Oracles can record how to contact a soul to make it more likely to repeat it. Then Oracle-indexes can be built up over time, and can be used to probe more deeply into historical events after they have been discovered. This doesn’t help with immediate history. Finding one specific dead person? It would literally take 10,000 Oracles a century to have a 1 in a 1000 chance of contacting that person. This also leads to wonderful plot points. Some events are going to be extremely hard to find, and individual historical figures more-so. The Oracle-index of, say, Alexander the Great is going to be worth a lot. The Oracle-index of a major religious figure is going to be world-shaking. If there are 10 major religious figures and 0.1% of the dead has been indexed, then the odds any of them are indexed is 1%. For most of them, close disciples are going to be accessible. This also leads to another thing. If you are interacting with the souls in the Oversoul, do they change? And if they change, can you damage, destroy or harm them? It would be common that people would claim to have the index of a major religious figure. And insane souls might even believe they are the major religious figure. So I would presume that major religions would claim that their founder’s soul “transcended” and is not an individual soul in the Oversoul, and anyone claiming they have contacted them is a heretic, and souls that claim to be the figure are damaged by the adversary and must be purged. 1 1 When you contact the Oversoul, you initially don’t get much of use. The Oversoul, while constructed out of human souls, is considering problems that humans cannot grasp. Humans are constructed out of single cell, but the concerns of single cells are not really the concerns of the Human. If you imagine a cell being intelligent, it might be concerned about viruses, killer-T cells, internal decay, and the local biochemical environment. The Human is bothered that the light is taking too long to change. The connection between these two is thin. So contacting the Oversoul as a whole doesn’t really do much for an Oracle, as the Oracle is roughly equivalent to a single cell in the Oversoul. The trick to making Oracular contact useful is a careful context rotation and projection to isolate a single soul. Ie, you have to project the connection with the Oversoul down to a human level so you can interact with it and get human-level information on it. The souls that make up the Oversoul still behave differently than independent human souls; they are part of a greater whole, and their purpose (like the cells of a multicellular organism, compared to single celled organism) and motivations remain very difficult to fathom. Still, at the single-soul level, you can get something. Now, finding a particular soul is ridiculously hard and impractical. You reach out, and you find a soul. You spend time getting that soul into focus, and viewing it separate from the oversoul. You start exchanging information, and understanding the language of that soul. Only then can you work out, piece by piece, what era, place and name that soul had in life. If that soul has information you need, you can start communicating it. If not, you get to try again. Finding one soul out of the trillions dead is impossible. But, finding any soul that died in WW2 is going to happen multiple times per year. Assuming a trillion souls and 3 hours to connect to a new one and identify it sufficiently, 1000 Oracles working 10 hour days can get through a million souls/year, or 0.0001% of the Oversoul. Over a century, 10k Oracles can contact 0.1% of all souls in the Oversoul. With 1 in 1000 souls contacted, you can have a really good sketch of history built up. It gets even better if the Oracles can record how to contact a soul to make it more likely to repeat it. Then Oracle-indexes can be built up over time, and can be used to probe more deeply into historical events after they have been discovered. This doesn’t help with immediate history. Finding one specific dead person? It would literally take 10,000 Oracles a century to have a 1 in a 1000 chance of contacting that person. This also leads to wonderful plot points. Some events are going to be extremely hard to find, and individual historical figures more-so. The Oracle-index of, say, Alexander the Great is going to be worth a lot. The Oracle-index of a major religious figure is going to be world-shaking. If there are 10 major religious figures and 0.1% of the dead has been indexed, then the odds any of them are indexed is 1%. For most of them, close disciples are going to be accessible. This also leads to another thing. If you are interacting with the souls in the Oversoul, do they change? And if they change, can you damage, destroy or harm them? It would be common that people would claim to have the index of a major religious figure. And insane souls might even believe they are the major religious figure. So I would presume that major religions would claim that their founder’s soul “transcended” and is not an individual soul in the Oversoul, and anyone claiming they have contacted them is a heretic, and souls that claim to be the figure are damaged by the adversary and must be purged. When you contact the Oversoul, you initially don’t get much of use. The Oversoul, while constructed out of human souls, is considering problems that humans cannot grasp. Humans are constructed out of single cell, but the concerns of single cells are not really the concerns of the Human. If you imagine a cell being intelligent, it might be concerned about viruses, killer-T cells, internal decay, and the local biochemical environment. The Human is bothered that the light is taking too long to change. The connection between these two is thin. So contacting the Oversoul as a whole doesn’t really do much for an Oracle, as the Oracle is roughly equivalent to a single cell in the Oversoul. The trick to making Oracular contact useful is a careful context rotation and projection to isolate a single soul. Ie, you have to project the connection with the Oversoul down to a human level so you can interact with it and get human-level information on it. The souls that make up the Oversoul still behave differently than independent human souls; they are part of a greater whole, and their purpose (like the cells of a multicellular organism, compared to single celled organism) and motivations remain very difficult to fathom. Still, at the single-soul level, you can get something. Now, finding a particular soul is ridiculously hard and impractical. You reach out, and you find a soul. You spend time getting that soul into focus, and viewing it separate from the oversoul. You start exchanging information, and understanding the language of that soul. Only then can you work out, piece by piece, what era, place and name that soul had in life. If that soul has information you need, you can start communicating it. If not, you get to try again. Finding one soul out of the trillions dead is impossible. But, finding any soul that died in WW2 is going to happen multiple times per year. Assuming a trillion souls and 3 hours to connect to a new one and identify it sufficiently, 1000 Oracles working 10 hour days can get through a million souls/year, or 0.0001% of the Oversoul. Over a century, 10k Oracles can contact 0.1% of all souls in the Oversoul. With 1 in 1000 souls contacted, you can have a really good sketch of history built up. It gets even better if the Oracles can record how to contact a soul to make it more likely to repeat it. Then Oracle-indexes can be built up over time, and can be used to probe more deeply into historical events after they have been discovered. This doesn’t help with immediate history. Finding one specific dead person? It would literally take 10,000 Oracles a century to have a 1 in a 1000 chance of contacting that person. This also leads to wonderful plot points. Some events are going to be extremely hard to find, and individual historical figures more-so. The Oracle-index of, say, Alexander the Great is going to be worth a lot. The Oracle-index of a major religious figure is going to be world-shaking. If there are 10 major religious figures and 0.1% of the dead has been indexed, then the odds any of them are indexed is 1%. For most of them, close disciples are going to be accessible. This also leads to another thing. If you are interacting with the souls in the Oversoul, do they change? And if they change, can you damage, destroy or harm them? It would be common that people would claim to have the index of a major religious figure. And insane souls might even believe they are the major religious figure. So I would presume that major religions would claim that their founder’s soul “transcended” and is not an individual soul in the Oversoul, and anyone claiming they have contacted them is a heretic, and souls that claim to be the figure are damaged by the adversary and must be purged. edited Feb 25 at 20:37 answered Feb 25 at 17:17 Yakk 9,02411238 9,02411238 ## Your oracles can only access the past in real-time: If an event took ten years to unfold, it will take ten years’ of oracle time to access. Your situation is very similar (though more metaphysical) to the dilemma faced by real-life archivists and historians. There is a tremendous amount of material available that documents the past several decades, but virtually all of it came without an index. In the small institutional archive where I work we have, conservatively, a few thousand hours’ worth of VHS tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, floppy disks, etc. (Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of slides and negatives.) A single videotape, for example, generally can’t be digitized or viewed with sound faster than real-time. If we’re lucky, there’s a label on the tape with the exact date and subject matter, but often it will just say something like “1989 backup” or “Joe”. Lacking infinite resources, this means that the vast majority of this material is destined to go un-reviewed. For your world, perhaps the oracles can only “see” events unfold in the same amount of time that they actually took, or perhaps the bottleneck is in the transcription stage. Either way, your oracles’ time is precious, and not likely to be spent tracking down where Joe Blow left his keys. Instead, the powers that be are going to spend this finite resource on answering the really big questions—those “big moments in history” that you mention. This will be easier, anyway, because the Oracles will have some idea of where to start looking and how to triangulate their search. Some subordinate implications and possibilities of this approach: • One of the chief skills that oracles can hone is “reading” visions quickly to find clues about whether they’re in the right time/place and using those clues from multiple spots in the timeline to zero in on the most relevant events to view. • You’ve said that anyone can access the universal consciousness, but for most people it will mostly be so much noise. • Only the trained oracles (or very gifted amateurs) can cut through all the stuff that happened in the Bronze Age Aegean to find the true events behind the legend of King Minos and the Minotaur. • The faster and more accurately an oracle can perform this triangulation feat, the more successful they are. • Questions about human events can be answered pretty quickly/easily, but getting answers to geological or evolutionary-type questions could easily take more than a human lifespan. • Oracling is a job, like any other, so if you want your oracles to spend more than the hours-per-day on a project you’re going to have to give them an incentive to do so. • Conversely, you might need a way to slow down events that happen faster than human comprehension. • Multiple oracles can be “stacked” on a question in order to speed up the process and/or provide multiple vantage points for viewing the historical moment (perhaps to achieve that slow-mo effect). • You could leave open the possibility that oracles might be privately contracted. Your typical local PD isn’t going to be able to afford the services of an oracle for every crime, but the occasional very high-profile case might warrant one’s services. And an oracle might be called in to investigate that missing set of keys if$137 million is riding on it.

• If you don’t want it to be used this way, you could pass laws against it or make skilled oracles so rare (and their time therefore so precious) that only governments can afford it. But in either case you’re still going to have a question of rogue oracles looking to profit from their skill.
• Oracles are likely to have hobby projects, and will have “seen” lots of irrelevant material while searching out their targets. This opens the possibility for various character quirks for your oracles.

• Some oracles might be like the stereotypical academic, with a passion for a particular topic or era, while others prefer to “leave it in the office”.
• Perhaps PTSD is an issue for oracles who must view, in real-time, things like wartime atrocities or extinction events.
• You might need a code of ethics, e.g. for oracles who accidentally view private information when searching for a public event, or to discourage oracles from taking the “scenic route” to a target event.

## Your oracles can only access the past in real-time: If an event took ten years to unfold, it will take ten years’ of oracle time to access.

Your situation is very similar (though more metaphysical) to the dilemma faced by real-life archivists and historians. There is a tremendous amount of material available that documents the past several decades, but virtually all of it came without an index. In the small institutional archive where I work we have, conservatively, a few thousand hours’ worth of VHS tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, floppy disks, etc. (Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of slides and negatives.) A single videotape, for example, generally can’t be digitized or viewed with sound faster than real-time. If we’re lucky, there’s a label on the tape with the exact date and subject matter, but often it will just say something like “1989 backup” or “Joe”. Lacking infinite resources, this means that the vast majority of this material is destined to go un-reviewed.

For your world, perhaps the oracles can only “see” events unfold in the same amount of time that they actually took, or perhaps the bottleneck is in the transcription stage. Either way, your oracles’ time is precious, and not likely to be spent tracking down where Joe Blow left his keys. Instead, the powers that be are going to spend this finite resource on answering the really big questions—those “big moments in history” that you mention. This will be easier, anyway, because the Oracles will have some idea of where to start looking and how to triangulate their search.

Some subordinate implications and possibilities of this approach:

• One of the chief skills that oracles can hone is “reading” visions quickly to find clues about whether they’re in the right time/place and using those clues from multiple spots in the timeline to zero in on the most relevant events to view.

• You’ve said that anyone can access the universal consciousness, but for most people it will mostly be so much noise.
• Only the trained oracles (or very gifted amateurs) can cut through all the stuff that happened in the Bronze Age Aegean to find the true events behind the legend of King Minos and the Minotaur.
• The faster and more accurately an oracle can perform this triangulation feat, the more successful they are.
• Questions about human events can be answered pretty quickly/easily, but getting answers to geological or evolutionary-type questions could easily take more than a human lifespan.

• Oracling is a job, like any other, so if you want your oracles to spend more than the hours-per-day on a project you’re going to have to give them an incentive to do so.
• Conversely, you might need a way to slow down events that happen faster than human comprehension.
• Multiple oracles can be “stacked” on a question in order to speed up the process and/or provide multiple vantage points for viewing the historical moment (perhaps to achieve that slow-mo effect).

• You could leave open the possibility that oracles might be privately contracted. Your typical local PD isn’t going to be able to afford the services of an oracle for every crime, but the occasional very high-profile case might warrant one’s services. And an oracle might be called in to investigate that missing set of keys if $137 million is riding on it. • If you don’t want it to be used this way, you could pass laws against it or make skilled oracles so rare (and their time therefore so precious) that only governments can afford it. But in either case you’re still going to have a question of rogue oracles looking to profit from their skill. • Oracles are likely to have hobby projects, and will have “seen” lots of irrelevant material while searching out their targets. This opens the possibility for various character quirks for your oracles. • Some oracles might be like the stereotypical academic, with a passion for a particular topic or era, while others prefer to “leave it in the office”. • Perhaps PTSD is an issue for oracles who must view, in real-time, things like wartime atrocities or extinction events. • You might need a code of ethics, e.g. for oracles who accidentally view private information when searching for a public event, or to discourage oracles from taking the “scenic route” to a target event. 0 0 ## Your oracles can only access the past in real-time: If an event took ten years to unfold, it will take ten years’ of oracle time to access. Your situation is very similar (though more metaphysical) to the dilemma faced by real-life archivists and historians. There is a tremendous amount of material available that documents the past several decades, but virtually all of it came without an index. In the small institutional archive where I work we have, conservatively, a few thousand hours’ worth of VHS tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, floppy disks, etc. (Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of slides and negatives.) A single videotape, for example, generally can’t be digitized or viewed with sound faster than real-time. If we’re lucky, there’s a label on the tape with the exact date and subject matter, but often it will just say something like “1989 backup” or “Joe”. Lacking infinite resources, this means that the vast majority of this material is destined to go un-reviewed. For your world, perhaps the oracles can only “see” events unfold in the same amount of time that they actually took, or perhaps the bottleneck is in the transcription stage. Either way, your oracles’ time is precious, and not likely to be spent tracking down where Joe Blow left his keys. Instead, the powers that be are going to spend this finite resource on answering the really big questions—those “big moments in history” that you mention. This will be easier, anyway, because the Oracles will have some idea of where to start looking and how to triangulate their search. Some subordinate implications and possibilities of this approach: • One of the chief skills that oracles can hone is “reading” visions quickly to find clues about whether they’re in the right time/place and using those clues from multiple spots in the timeline to zero in on the most relevant events to view. • You’ve said that anyone can access the universal consciousness, but for most people it will mostly be so much noise. • Only the trained oracles (or very gifted amateurs) can cut through all the stuff that happened in the Bronze Age Aegean to find the true events behind the legend of King Minos and the Minotaur. • The faster and more accurately an oracle can perform this triangulation feat, the more successful they are. • Questions about human events can be answered pretty quickly/easily, but getting answers to geological or evolutionary-type questions could easily take more than a human lifespan. • Oracling is a job, like any other, so if you want your oracles to spend more than the hours-per-day on a project you’re going to have to give them an incentive to do so. • Conversely, you might need a way to slow down events that happen faster than human comprehension. • Multiple oracles can be “stacked” on a question in order to speed up the process and/or provide multiple vantage points for viewing the historical moment (perhaps to achieve that slow-mo effect). • You could leave open the possibility that oracles might be privately contracted. Your typical local PD isn’t going to be able to afford the services of an oracle for every crime, but the occasional very high-profile case might warrant one’s services. And an oracle might be called in to investigate that missing set of keys if$137 million is riding on it.

• If you don’t want it to be used this way, you could pass laws against it or make skilled oracles so rare (and their time therefore so precious) that only governments can afford it. But in either case you’re still going to have a question of rogue oracles looking to profit from their skill.
• Oracles are likely to have hobby projects, and will have “seen” lots of irrelevant material while searching out their targets. This opens the possibility for various character quirks for your oracles.

• Some oracles might be like the stereotypical academic, with a passion for a particular topic or era, while others prefer to “leave it in the office”.
• Perhaps PTSD is an issue for oracles who must view, in real-time, things like wartime atrocities or extinction events.
• You might need a code of ethics, e.g. for oracles who accidentally view private information when searching for a public event, or to discourage oracles from taking the “scenic route” to a target event.

## Your oracles can only access the past in real-time: If an event took ten years to unfold, it will take ten years’ of oracle time to access.

Your situation is very similar (though more metaphysical) to the dilemma faced by real-life archivists and historians. There is a tremendous amount of material available that documents the past several decades, but virtually all of it came without an index. In the small institutional archive where I work we have, conservatively, a few thousand hours’ worth of VHS tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, floppy disks, etc. (Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of slides and negatives.) A single videotape, for example, generally can’t be digitized or viewed with sound faster than real-time. If we’re lucky, there’s a label on the tape with the exact date and subject matter, but often it will just say something like “1989 backup” or “Joe”. Lacking infinite resources, this means that the vast majority of this material is destined to go un-reviewed.

For your world, perhaps the oracles can only “see” events unfold in the same amount of time that they actually took, or perhaps the bottleneck is in the transcription stage. Either way, your oracles’ time is precious, and not likely to be spent tracking down where Joe Blow left his keys. Instead, the powers that be are going to spend this finite resource on answering the really big questions—those “big moments in history” that you mention. This will be easier, anyway, because the Oracles will have some idea of where to start looking and how to triangulate their search.

Some subordinate implications and possibilities of this approach:

• One of the chief skills that oracles can hone is “reading” visions quickly to find clues about whether they’re in the right time/place and using those clues from multiple spots in the timeline to zero in on the most relevant events to view.

• You’ve said that anyone can access the universal consciousness, but for most people it will mostly be so much noise.
• Only the trained oracles (or very gifted amateurs) can cut through all the stuff that happened in the Bronze Age Aegean to find the true events behind the legend of King Minos and the Minotaur.
• The faster and more accurately an oracle can perform this triangulation feat, the more successful they are.
• Questions about human events can be answered pretty quickly/easily, but getting answers to geological or evolutionary-type questions could easily take more than a human lifespan.

• Oracling is a job, like any other, so if you want your oracles to spend more than the hours-per-day on a project you’re going to have to give them an incentive to do so.
• Conversely, you might need a way to slow down events that happen faster than human comprehension.
• Multiple oracles can be “stacked” on a question in order to speed up the process and/or provide multiple vantage points for viewing the historical moment (perhaps to achieve that slow-mo effect).

• You could leave open the possibility that oracles might be privately contracted. Your typical local PD isn’t going to be able to afford the services of an oracle for every crime, but the occasional very high-profile case might warrant one’s services. And an oracle might be called in to investigate that missing set of keys if $137 million is riding on it. • If you don’t want it to be used this way, you could pass laws against it or make skilled oracles so rare (and their time therefore so precious) that only governments can afford it. But in either case you’re still going to have a question of rogue oracles looking to profit from their skill. • Oracles are likely to have hobby projects, and will have “seen” lots of irrelevant material while searching out their targets. This opens the possibility for various character quirks for your oracles. • Some oracles might be like the stereotypical academic, with a passion for a particular topic or era, while others prefer to “leave it in the office”. • Perhaps PTSD is an issue for oracles who must view, in real-time, things like wartime atrocities or extinction events. • You might need a code of ethics, e.g. for oracles who accidentally view private information when searching for a public event, or to discourage oracles from taking the “scenic route” to a target event. answered Feb 25 at 21:35 1006a 33115 33115 ## protected by L.Dutch♦Feb 25 at 17:20 Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count). Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead? ## What stops a race of giants from wiping out humanity? Clash Royale CLAN TAG#URR8PPP Starting from 435 A.D., a race of sea-faring giants has made land-fall in Eurasia and is raising hell. Due to socio-political pressures in their island homelands in Polynesia and Australia (constant warfare over limited land, internal displacement, overpopulation, etc.), these giants have emigrated west en masse, immediately coming into conflict with the human populations. In a first wave of migration between 435 A.D. and 460 A.D., around 50,000 giants trickle into Indonesia and South East Asia in bands numbering 100 – 1000 in size. In a far larger second wave, 500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the Korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.. They are organized into kin group bands of mostly young men (~60%) ranging anywhere from 3,000 – 7,500 strong, with the very largest being 30,000 strong. These giants are physically superior to H. sapiens in every way, being • ~9ft tall on average • having a bone strength 6 times that of a human being • double muscled making them disproportionately stronger than humans, and in all 7 times stronger than a human adult • 50% faster than a human, being able to run 25 – 35 mph on average • acute senses of hearing, smell, and taste, being 3 – 5 times that of the average human • cranial shock absorption in the form of tissue lining the interior of the skull, preventing falls from causing concussions or brain damage This comes along with a host of giant-specific mutations that negate the negative effects of gigantism. These giants also come from a warrior culture in which marshal prowess is the acme of human virtue, and thus have highly refined skills of archery, slinging, wrestling, boxing, melee combat, etc. drilled into them from an early age. Worst of all for humanity, the reproductive potential of these giants is several times higher than that of man, meaning a greater capacity to replace numbers and occupy conquered territory. Luckily for man, these giants have no large domestic animals (dogs, cats, horse, oxen etc.), and are late adopters of iron technology, making their iron implements more rudimentary than the invaded population. However, their arms are by no means primitive, and can be largely modeled after ancient Polynesian weapons. And unluckily for man, the migrations/invasions occur around the first millennium, meaning no guns or cannons shall be aiding mankind. On top of this, giants have great prejudice against people below 7 ft tall, perceiving them to be unfit, and thus are inclined to enslave and massacre any human populations they conquer. Ideally these giants would replace some human populations and stalemate others, but given the physical superiority of these beings, it is entirely likely that they may entirely outcompete mankind, doing to us what we did to Neanderthals. Question Is there anything that would or could prevent humanity from being totally destroyed by giants? • You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 • How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 • “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 • @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 • @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 Starting from 435 A.D., a race of sea-faring giants has made land-fall in Eurasia and is raising hell. Due to socio-political pressures in their island homelands in Polynesia and Australia (constant warfare over limited land, internal displacement, overpopulation, etc.), these giants have emigrated west en masse, immediately coming into conflict with the human populations. In a first wave of migration between 435 A.D. and 460 A.D., around 50,000 giants trickle into Indonesia and South East Asia in bands numbering 100 – 1000 in size. In a far larger second wave, 500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the Korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.. They are organized into kin group bands of mostly young men (~60%) ranging anywhere from 3,000 – 7,500 strong, with the very largest being 30,000 strong. These giants are physically superior to H. sapiens in every way, being • ~9ft tall on average • having a bone strength 6 times that of a human being • double muscled making them disproportionately stronger than humans, and in all 7 times stronger than a human adult • 50% faster than a human, being able to run 25 – 35 mph on average • acute senses of hearing, smell, and taste, being 3 – 5 times that of the average human • cranial shock absorption in the form of tissue lining the interior of the skull, preventing falls from causing concussions or brain damage This comes along with a host of giant-specific mutations that negate the negative effects of gigantism. These giants also come from a warrior culture in which marshal prowess is the acme of human virtue, and thus have highly refined skills of archery, slinging, wrestling, boxing, melee combat, etc. drilled into them from an early age. Worst of all for humanity, the reproductive potential of these giants is several times higher than that of man, meaning a greater capacity to replace numbers and occupy conquered territory. Luckily for man, these giants have no large domestic animals (dogs, cats, horse, oxen etc.), and are late adopters of iron technology, making their iron implements more rudimentary than the invaded population. However, their arms are by no means primitive, and can be largely modeled after ancient Polynesian weapons. And unluckily for man, the migrations/invasions occur around the first millennium, meaning no guns or cannons shall be aiding mankind. On top of this, giants have great prejudice against people below 7 ft tall, perceiving them to be unfit, and thus are inclined to enslave and massacre any human populations they conquer. Ideally these giants would replace some human populations and stalemate others, but given the physical superiority of these beings, it is entirely likely that they may entirely outcompete mankind, doing to us what we did to Neanderthals. Question Is there anything that would or could prevent humanity from being totally destroyed by giants? • You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 • How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 • “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 • @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 • @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 11 11 2 Starting from 435 A.D., a race of sea-faring giants has made land-fall in Eurasia and is raising hell. Due to socio-political pressures in their island homelands in Polynesia and Australia (constant warfare over limited land, internal displacement, overpopulation, etc.), these giants have emigrated west en masse, immediately coming into conflict with the human populations. In a first wave of migration between 435 A.D. and 460 A.D., around 50,000 giants trickle into Indonesia and South East Asia in bands numbering 100 – 1000 in size. In a far larger second wave, 500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the Korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.. They are organized into kin group bands of mostly young men (~60%) ranging anywhere from 3,000 – 7,500 strong, with the very largest being 30,000 strong. These giants are physically superior to H. sapiens in every way, being • ~9ft tall on average • having a bone strength 6 times that of a human being • double muscled making them disproportionately stronger than humans, and in all 7 times stronger than a human adult • 50% faster than a human, being able to run 25 – 35 mph on average • acute senses of hearing, smell, and taste, being 3 – 5 times that of the average human • cranial shock absorption in the form of tissue lining the interior of the skull, preventing falls from causing concussions or brain damage This comes along with a host of giant-specific mutations that negate the negative effects of gigantism. These giants also come from a warrior culture in which marshal prowess is the acme of human virtue, and thus have highly refined skills of archery, slinging, wrestling, boxing, melee combat, etc. drilled into them from an early age. Worst of all for humanity, the reproductive potential of these giants is several times higher than that of man, meaning a greater capacity to replace numbers and occupy conquered territory. Luckily for man, these giants have no large domestic animals (dogs, cats, horse, oxen etc.), and are late adopters of iron technology, making their iron implements more rudimentary than the invaded population. However, their arms are by no means primitive, and can be largely modeled after ancient Polynesian weapons. And unluckily for man, the migrations/invasions occur around the first millennium, meaning no guns or cannons shall be aiding mankind. On top of this, giants have great prejudice against people below 7 ft tall, perceiving them to be unfit, and thus are inclined to enslave and massacre any human populations they conquer. Ideally these giants would replace some human populations and stalemate others, but given the physical superiority of these beings, it is entirely likely that they may entirely outcompete mankind, doing to us what we did to Neanderthals. Question Is there anything that would or could prevent humanity from being totally destroyed by giants? Starting from 435 A.D., a race of sea-faring giants has made land-fall in Eurasia and is raising hell. Due to socio-political pressures in their island homelands in Polynesia and Australia (constant warfare over limited land, internal displacement, overpopulation, etc.), these giants have emigrated west en masse, immediately coming into conflict with the human populations. In a first wave of migration between 435 A.D. and 460 A.D., around 50,000 giants trickle into Indonesia and South East Asia in bands numbering 100 – 1000 in size. In a far larger second wave, 500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the Korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.. They are organized into kin group bands of mostly young men (~60%) ranging anywhere from 3,000 – 7,500 strong, with the very largest being 30,000 strong. These giants are physically superior to H. sapiens in every way, being • ~9ft tall on average • having a bone strength 6 times that of a human being • double muscled making them disproportionately stronger than humans, and in all 7 times stronger than a human adult • 50% faster than a human, being able to run 25 – 35 mph on average • acute senses of hearing, smell, and taste, being 3 – 5 times that of the average human • cranial shock absorption in the form of tissue lining the interior of the skull, preventing falls from causing concussions or brain damage This comes along with a host of giant-specific mutations that negate the negative effects of gigantism. These giants also come from a warrior culture in which marshal prowess is the acme of human virtue, and thus have highly refined skills of archery, slinging, wrestling, boxing, melee combat, etc. drilled into them from an early age. Worst of all for humanity, the reproductive potential of these giants is several times higher than that of man, meaning a greater capacity to replace numbers and occupy conquered territory. Luckily for man, these giants have no large domestic animals (dogs, cats, horse, oxen etc.), and are late adopters of iron technology, making their iron implements more rudimentary than the invaded population. However, their arms are by no means primitive, and can be largely modeled after ancient Polynesian weapons. And unluckily for man, the migrations/invasions occur around the first millennium, meaning no guns or cannons shall be aiding mankind. On top of this, giants have great prejudice against people below 7 ft tall, perceiving them to be unfit, and thus are inclined to enslave and massacre any human populations they conquer. Ideally these giants would replace some human populations and stalemate others, but given the physical superiority of these beings, it is entirely likely that they may entirely outcompete mankind, doing to us what we did to Neanderthals. Question Is there anything that would or could prevent humanity from being totally destroyed by giants? warfare science military humanoid ancient-history edited Feb 4 at 7:06 Laurel 1,524615 1,524615 asked Feb 2 at 11:42 Fluss der Flüsse 21329 21329 • You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 • How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 • “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 • @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 • @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 • You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 • How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 • “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 • @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 • @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 2 You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 You say nothing about their brain capabilities. How do they compare with humans? – L.Dutch Feb 2 at 12:04 2 How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 How many are those giants? Where exactly do they make landfall? What kind of ships do they have? When exactly do they attempt to invade? How are they organized, what is their knowledge of logistics, strategy and tactis? (Hint: a 100,000 thousand string army attempting to invade Ceylon in the 1st century CE is one thing, 10,000 men attempting to invade China in the 8th century CE is quite another.) Please edit the question to answer this questions; as it stands now the question is unanswereable. – AlexP Feb 2 at 12:44 10 “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 “500,000 giants land across the Indian subcontinent and East Asia as far north as the korean peninsula per year from the earth 500’s to the late 900’s A.D.: seriously? That’s 150 million people. Where are they supposed to be coming from? What were they supposed to eat? Do you have any idea what was the total population of Earth in the 6th century? – AlexP Feb 2 at 13:15 4 @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 @FlussderFlüsse 200 millions actually en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population_estimates – Sulthan Feb 2 at 19:30 2 @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 @AlexP – “Any answer will do”, +1. We need to build this creature first: “specific mutation that negate the negative effects of gigantism” – is that possible? 6 times bone density + they’re faster…. Tentative answer atm is that they’d need a resting heart rate of upwards 200bpm, and have life spans of about 20y, rough guess. Because they’re larger and faster, they won’t live as long as us. We might have hunted Neanderthals to death, but looking in the mirror, they might have just been breed back into the population. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:30 ## 16 Answers16 active oldest votes First and foremost, disease would be the best weapon to employ against an enemy that outclasses you in all physical respects. Giants like to fight and are great at breeding? Good, they’ll be in physical contact with each other more than enough for one good bug to tear through them. There are plenty of examples in history of why this is so effective and attractive an option, the most prominent being American history during colonial and expeditionary times. Tangent to this idea is the prospect of chemical warfare. The Persians were capable of this centuries before the earliest date you gave and it can be employed with relative ease. The only trick is delivering enough of the harmful substances. Two good methods stand out, though. The giants are large and need to breathe very high volumes of air to keep their muscles energized. With this in mind, all one would need to do, is put a slow-release source of harmful gas upwind of their camps, where they train and spar almost constantly. Their bodies would be poisoned over time and their biggest and strongest would be crippled, dead, or going mad before any of them even knew something MIGHT be going wrong. With the primitive culture and world views of the time, they might even jump to conclusions of supernatural or divine nature and not even consider they’ve been under attack. Actually, even enough wood or grease smoke would be a hazard for creatures that large with such high respiratory demands. I can imagine an army tricking the enemy giants into occupying a building or narrow pass and either smoking them out to force them into an unfavorable position, or simply suffocating them. The second chemical weapon that springs to mind is acids. Unless there are magical cures for severe dermal erosion, the loss of enough skin would be almost a death sentence for any warrior, no matter how jacked you are or how deft your sword arm. Disease and rot WILL get through that most crucial of barriers to the circulatory and lymphatic system, especially in those early times of poorly understood biology and primitive medical sciences. Social destabilization is another method to work around the enemy’s physical superiority. A disorganized enemy isn’t much harder to defeat than a pack of wild, even if very formidable, animals. Humans have been making and using recreational substances for a very long time. With our smaller bodies, a small amount of a substance could be enough to ‘enjoy’, but would have almost no effect on something significantly larger. Get the giants hopelessly addicted to something with little supply and the overwhelming demand will destroy their social order pretty quickly. Governments have been using this tactic to cause disorder in enemy communities for ages, dating back many centuries. Starve them out. These huge bands of giants 100-1000 in number would have disproportionately large energy demands that would require very high volumes of food consumption ESPECIALLY if they’re constantly sparring and training due to their culture. Humans, on the other hand, prefer and value leisure so we can get by on some very sparse food supplies. We’re endurance specialists, after all. Scorched earth policies can be taken to ensure that even if giants encroach on human territory, they won’t have the momentum to keep pushing the advance. Their troops will be taking barren land and fighting humans who are retreating into greener pastures and ready supplies while we whittle down their flagging forces with guerrilla tactics and disease/poison traps. Use other animals. Humans have been using other critters in creative ways since the dawn of civilization, namely honey bees. Honey bee venom contains a substance called melittin that causes red blood cells to burst. This causes dangerous dips in blood pressure in humans. Much like heat dispersal requirements, oxygen requirements for mammals increase faster than volume does, so something that interrupts our ability to breathe and process oxygen would have an even more catastrophic effect on larger mammals and it would be harder to recover from. The amount of venom required to achieve lethality or be capable of incapacitating the victim wouldn’t even need to be much higher than our own. Far less than what a single honey bee is capable of injecting, anyway. Giants might be big, but they’d have just as much, if not more, difficulty dealing with an angry swarm of bees that showed up from the sky while everyone was sleeping. • + for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland. – Willk Feb 2 at 14:59 • Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario. – Willk Feb 2 at 15:29 • 1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense. – JGreenwell Feb 2 at 16:50 • +1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague. – ltmauve Feb 2 at 18:56 • One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water. – user3757614 Feb 3 at 6:41 They have several disadvantages. 1. Attrition. Larger animals take longer to breed, it takes time and calories to grow. That means humans can replace their population faster. The number of babies is immaterial, most offspring die of disease or famine anyway. It took us several thousand more years to actually produce our actual reproductive potential, you need medicine and industrial farming first, your giants may have a higher potential but they won’t be able to exploit it if anything they will be even less able to exploit it. What matters is maturation rate, especially with their higher caloric demand. And there is no way around them taking longer to reach breeding age. Over time humans will dominate more and more (consider they already start at a distinct advantage). Your giants also need to be eating a huge amount to keep up those abilities, nothing in biology is free, everything has a cost, stronger muscles means more they need more calories. Stronger bones require more minerals and slower growth. Your giants have completely wiped out any efficiency advantage size might give them, so humans have an even larger numbers advantage. 1 unit of crops are producing drastically more humans than giants. This gets even worse when you realize all the human spears are right at crotch height for the giants. 2. No livestock. This is a big one. Being big and strong does do much good when a horse bigger, stronger, and easier to replace. Humans have cavalry. Worse without livestock they food is less portable, humans can sustain fighting for much longer just because they will have better supply lines. One major weakness the Aztec had was corn has a comparatively short shelf life, they could not sustain war year round. Even better humans can use livestock for labor freeing up even more of their numbers for combat or more likely to build defenses, walled cities were common for a reason. Sure their sense of smell might be good but it will never be as good as a dog’s, so the humans have that advantage. Plus war dogs can bolster the humans’ armies even further. 1. They are a warrior band culture, which means they suck at fighting actual wars. Tribal warfare is small scale, brief, and often for show. But the war your giants are walking into is a game of logistics, who can produce the most food, who has the best craftsmen, who is the best organized, who can sustain soldiers for longer. Your giants make for good raiders and poor soldiers. They are not fighting tribal bands of humans, in 400AD they are fighting empires. Humans have incendiary devices, ballista and stone walls. Humans can sustain war for years without stopping. War bands mean small numbers, tribal bands can’t collect in large armies for long, they start to starve, humans, on the other hand, can field armies of hundreds of thousands. 2. Smell, A better sense of smell may actually work against them, humans will be able to use rotting livestock as both psychological and biological warfare. 3. Size is not always an advantage. Wait until they get to forests or jungles where size becomes a hindrance. Humans can also better utilize water, humans boats will have shorter drafts meaning they can travel shallower waters, meaning humans forces will be more maneuverable on the large scale. One of the biggest advantages Vikings had was they could show up anywhere at any time, they could sail even the shallowest of waters. Snow will be even worse, giants will be big and heavy and even strong snow will not support their weight. Not to mention armies of giants will have trouble feeding themselves in cold climates. 4. Inflexibility, double muscles animals are very inflexible, those muscles get in the way of each other. Giants may be faster on the straightaway but humans will be able to run circles around them up close. Giant will get surrounded easily, and will not be flexible which means they will worse even worse at climbing and traveling through forests and jungles. 5. endurance. Double-muscled animals have far less muscular fat, meaning they have drastically reduced endurance. So even in an individual battle humans will be able to fight longer than giants, they can simply wear them out. • I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue – Fluss der Flüsse Feb 2 at 16:50 • + for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could) – Fluss der Flüsse Feb 2 at 16:57 • Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers. – John Feb 2 at 17:08 • Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle. – John Feb 2 at 17:18 • Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened. – Mazura Feb 3 at 18:57 ## Not enough females. They can’t replace attrition losses. The humans have figured this out and are going for the balls, which are, incidentally, at a very convenient height. Once sufficient males are gelded, the remainder are too busy trying to keep their numbers up to worry about conquest. The gelded males tend to lose interest in further conflict in the immediate aftermath, while shortens their life expectancy severely. Those that survive are driven from their clans by the mocking from their peers (the perils of a jock based society) and end up as mercenaries or pets of human overlords. • I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP? – Willk Feb 2 at 15:02 • @Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer – nzaman Feb 2 at 15:24 • @nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women – Fluss der Flüsse Feb 2 at 17:17 • @nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street. – Willk Feb 2 at 18:39 • @Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂 – nzaman Feb 2 at 19:03 Bigger giants! It was not food pressure or warfare that drove these giants north. Like the Goths being driven before the Huns, your giants are chased out of their ancestral home by larger giants! These 20 foot tall giants originate to the south, in Antarctica. In the first wave, 8 megagiants trickle into New Zealand. In the far larger second wave 5 million of these monsters move in to Oceania, displacing the entirety of the minigiants north into South Asia and China. The Antarctic giants are physically superior to the minigiants in every single way. • 20 feet tall average • Four armed (some of them) and four breasts (most of them). • 50% higher vertical leap than mini giants. • Flexible bones and thick layers of fat, allowing enormous damage resistance. • Born knowing the art of savate. This is all true just for the females. The males look like ordinary sized dudes but everyone is cool with that. Plus they are culturally superior – these giants have a bonobo like culture, held together by bonds of grooming, consensual sex, back rubs, and long extemporized songs about the beauty of nature and how awesome other individuals in their culture are. The one exception to their gentleness is in regards to minigiants, whom they rip to shreds on sight and then eat the shreds raw. Sometimes they challenge them to feats of strength first, and when the minigiants lose (always) they are then ripped to shreds and eaten raw, or with a little pepper. These Antarctic giants (ok, giantesses, with regular dudes along) keep coming, relentlessly extirpating the minigiants everywhere except for their mountain sausage party hideways where they pout and grouse and continue their manly wrestling warrior cultural ways. Fortunately for regular humans, the big sexy giants dig what we do! Regular sized humans are considered entertaining and attractive, especially if they can sing. Megagiants quickly assimilate into the human population. Megagiantism is a recessive trait and by the year 1000, the only trace of this wave of polar saviors is the occasional birth of a girl who grows up to be remarkably tall and has 4 arms. • Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum. – Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine Feb 3 at 8:02 • You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again. – Willk Feb 3 at 15:17 • It’s giants all the way down. – dmm Feb 8 at 19:00 First think about the message of your story; what you choose should depend on what you want to say to your audience. I can think of 6 categories. For historical realism and story depth, I’d suggest picking several causes, from more than one category. An inherent human strength: this says, “humans are magically wonderful” • mental (tech, smarts, wisdom, risk-taking, adaptability) • physical (speed, agility, stamina) • emotional/social (cooperation, leadership) An inherent giant weakness: this says, “at least you don’t suck” • mental (stupidity, ADHD, OCD, stubbornness, laziness, migraines, insanity) • physical (food/oxygen/heat/etc needs, poor longevity, poor vision, can’t jump, kryptonite, moonlight makes them were-ducks, etc) • emotional/social (low stress tolerance, poor communication, cultural problems, leaders’ mistakes) A greater power appears: this says, “everyone is powerless” • disaster (I vote meteor strike) • disease (no… please, don’t) • another race or creature(s) Humans gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “you have magical potential” • they nuke ’em Giants gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “nope, it’s just you that sucks” • they become disillusioned with war • they become more interested in some other venture • they develop kindness A choice: this says, “it’s up to you” • in a situation of matched wit, one human makes a wise decision or sacrifice • Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures? – Llewellyn Feb 2 at 19:45 • It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol – BoomChuck Feb 4 at 15:19 So these giants arrive in Eurasia in droves, driven by hunger. They land in coastal settlements taking everyone by surprise. But as they move inland news of their arrival quickly spreads and armies are readied to meet them. Sheer numbers will get them quite far, but likely at heavy losses. This will be for several reasons. Horses A lack of horses provide a massive disadvantage. Organising groups of giants without mounted messengers is going to be a lot slower than organising humans who do have mounted messengers. Horses also allow humans to move stuff around a lot easier. Food armies, weapons, armour, siege engines, etc. Horses use in actual fighting will also be a factor. Mounted archers can close any advantage giants have with range quickly and decent heavy cavalry will make short work of combatants with iron age weapons. Tactics Judging by where these giants have come from, it’s doubtful they have had much experience of siege warfare or warfare in large open areas. These giants need to eat a lot, so pin them down anywhere and they will quickly starve. Plus, because they are so big, they are more likely to be susceptible to siege weaponry. Their size is going to make it difficult to occupy existing defensive strongholds and it takes a lot of time to build suitable stone defenses. Wooden structures aren’t going to be much use against trebuchets and ballista. On open ground they are going to meet a tactic they probably have never seen, a shield wall. A well formed shield wall of sufficient depth can stand a charge from heavy cavalry, so these 9 foot giants aren’t going to be much of a problem, especially if they don’t attack/defend in a line with suitable shields. As humans withdraw from invading giants they take all livestock with them and scorch the earth behind them leaving no food for these giants who must need a lot to eat. Weaponry Steel is going to be a major advantage for humans. From spears, arrows and swords to armour and embossed shields, the humans will have the advantage in the weaponry department. Infighting If they are leaving their homelands because of internal strife, they will not all be from the same faction and will be as likely to fight each other as they will be to fight humans. Cannibalism (maybe) If these giants have been struggling for food for a while, cannibalism may be acceptable to them. So any time they eat one of their own, there is one less to fight. On the flip side, this makes it much more likely that humans will be a viable food source for them. Outcome These giants won’t last long anywhere humans can get a decent sized army together, but on difficult terrain, they are likely to have an advantage. This is where I foresee them settling, but food needs will make it difficult to sustain large numbers in these areas. It won’t take long though for an ambitious Warlord/King/Emperor to decide to train and arm these giants so they can fight their enemies in exchange for food. Give it 50 or so years and these giants will have overcome many of the disadvantages listed above. Disease This really did for the Native Americans; the Europeans had brought a bunch of the plagues and diseases from the old world with them. They were fairly resistant, due to repeated exposure. Whereas the peoples of the New World had never been exposed to the diseases at all, so they did not cope well at all. Infighting The giants value martial prowess. They aren’t likely to back down from a fight with other giants. If one group of giants starts messing with another, the likely result is a war – instead of one group deciding ‘screw this’, in which case they might pick up and move. Thus, after the initial displacement, the giants may be willing to sit on their new lands, or expand only slowly. Giant culture may well avoid large numbers of giants getting displaced into human lands by conflict with each other. They could view this manner of retreat as a coward’s way out: sure, it’s easy. Too easy, and it means you run when you should stand and fight. Likewise, they might be more inclined to look to expand their territory into other giants’ territory, rather than human territory. Why attack puny little scrawny things, that are so easy to kill you can’t even really call it a fight, when you could be fighting a fight worth having against some giants who are worth respecting? Food constraints These giants will need quite a bit more food than humans. There will be plenty of places with marginal food production that can support human populations without much trouble, that would support a much smaller giant population. When they’ve landed: I would like to add another potential advantage which wasn’t much considered so far: fortifications and machinery. I would suspect that given their warrior nature, strength and size, the giants are not that used to large fortifications in war. They would need to invest a lot more resources and be better architects to make them work for their size, after all. Either way, human fortifications will make it difficult for the giants, simply because they are not built for their size. Imagine a human attacking a dwarven stronghold – you can’t even stand up straight! Even if the giants have access to siege machinery, the humans can fire back, and the constraints on siege machinery are not really due to the size of their builders, but technical considerations, so both would be on even footing. Having steel available will very likely help in that regard, though, as does experience, so I would give humans a clear edge here. Combine this with a scorched Earth policy, moving as many resources as possible into the castles and fortresses, and you may end up having a decent chance. Castles walls were quite sturdy, even if the giants are strong and tall, that doesn’t help taking them down – they still need engines, or they have to storm the castle, exposing them to shot or more brute things like burning oil or scalding water ( more skin to burn ). These defenses were, by the way, already established generally speaking, so would need expanding more than building in most places. Since the humans have steel, consider also machines like the Roman scorpio or ballistae, which were powerful. They could crush human spine at a distance, I doubt a giant would fare well being hit by one of those! Very importantly, though: I would immediately go on the counter offensive where it matters most: the giant’s supply lines. Given they are supposedly on a similar, perhaps lower tech level, the Ships they use cannot really be that much better than human ships. But they must carry Giants, and a much larger amount of supplies. Build warships and attack them at sea. This will dry out their ( pretty impressive, perhaps unrealistic ) numbers of reinforcements, and make the whole invasion more manageable. Which reminds me of another (East) Roman / Byzantine invention: Greek Fire. Giant ships burn just as well, but I would suspect given their size, they cannot build as many as easily: wood will quickly get sparse. While giants would perhaps have an advantage boarding ships ( maybe not, with their size, they may be outmanouvered ), this does not count for much in naval warfare if you can attack the Ship itself. • Welcome to Worldbuilding, bytepusher! If you have a moment, please take the tour and visit the help center to learn more about the site. You may also find Worldbuilding Meta and The Sandbox useful. Here is a meta post on the culture and style of Worldbuilding.SE, just to help you understand our scope and methods, and how we do things here. Have fun! – Gryphon Feb 3 at 18:59 I think this can be as simple as guerilla warfare, Vietnamese style. Humans dig networks of tunnels and hideouts. Too small for the giants to enter. Humans try to lead the giants into dense forests or jungle where the humans can take advantage of being small. Inside the dense vegetation the humans can leverage their knowledge of iron by using machetes to cut away only the low vegetation. This will cause the giants not to have a good overview of the battle grounds. Booby traps will also be efficient in this scenario. • Google “Tucker’s kobolds”. – EvilSnack Feb 3 at 21:58 • @EvilSnack, I’ve done that just now, but I’m not sure what you are trying to say here? How does that relate to my answer? – Tim Feb 3 at 23:12 • Tucker’s kobolds are the result of a game referee who took the very weakest humanoid monster in D&D, a monster that most starting characters can one-hit, and by means of tactics, discipline, and organization turned them into a force capable of taking on high-level characters. – EvilSnack Feb 4 at 3:35 Perhaps you should read “The Mad Moon” by Stanley G. Weinbaum where the protagonist gets in trouble with six inch tall ratlike intelligent beings called slinkers by human and spends much of the story desperately trying to escape from them. http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0604211h.html1 Another factor that would help the humans in south Asia and Southeastern Asia in their fight against the invading giants would be the many giants in their armies even bigger than the invading giants. Giants? Yes, war elephants much bigger than the humanoid giants. There would be tens of thousands of war elephants at any one time in Asia during that time period and several times as many tame elephants used for civilian purposes. War elephants were sometimes armored. War elephants sometimes had long blades attached to their tusks and were taught to use them in battle. War elephants sometimes held huge swords, or long iron chains, or other weapons, in their tusks and used them on enemies. Wild and domestic elephants sometimes throw rocks or tree trunks. Elephants have carried giant crossbows, machine guns and small cannon on their backs, and could carry small trebuchets on their backs. Circus elephants have been trained to do many unusual things, so if someone invents some sort of repeating crossbow or repeating trebuchet I can imagine elephants trained to turn a crack to constantly load and fire the weapon while humans aim it at giants. Even cow and young elephants too small to fight the giants hand to trunk would be strong enough to power various long range weapons to shoot the giants with, if the humans are smart enough to invent them. ## Starvation The main reason why evolution doesn’t favor much larger primates than us or gorillas is the core issue that lifestyle two individuals who each need 2000 calories/day can get more food than a single individual who needs 4000 calories per day, no matter if it’s gathering, hunting, herding or farming. These giants are physically superior to H. sapiens in every way except the most important physical thing that counts which is calorie efficiency. There’s a good reason why we’re evolved to not grow extra muscle unless absolutely neccessary (exercise) and a large calorie surplus is available; it would be a trivial genetic change for humans to be much stronger, but there’s evolutionary pressure away from this. For hominids being much stronger is generally an evolutionary drawback, not an advantage, because of the calorie cost of building and maintaining that muscle. A 9ft tall, 7 times as strong, 50% as fast individual has more mass and a faster metabolism than humans do, they need five or ten times the food as humans do. They might be able to defeat a human population five or ten times their number, but if they exterminate them, then they can’t farm as well as that population (a giant would be better at farming/herding than a single human, but worse 5 humans), especially without livestock, so they can’t live off of the conquered land. At 435 AD, there’s barely any food surplus already above what’s needed to sustain the current human population, so they can’t live off of tribute from conquered populations, not in numbers as large as this. Perhaps 1 giant could be fed from tribute for every 100 human farmers? But can they sustainably stay in power if humans have a 100-to-1 numerical advantage? Let’s suppose they land in Korea and exterminate the local human population. What next? The number of giants needed to do that can’t possibly survive in Korea, their lifestyle can’t sustain a population density nowhere close to that (for that matter, Polynesia and Australia can’t possibly supply enough food to grow 500,000 or 50,000 new giants a year, not at this technology level). Which is the key point – given your description of the giants, they would always have the inferior armies, because if a giant is as good in combat as 10 men, then the same amount of farmland that’s needed for that giant to make food for himself (taking into account that such a giant would be much worse in food production than 10 men, the “physically superior” combat aspects don’t help him that much) would supply 20 or more men. And what do they do when they reach the steppes of Central Asia? Without livestock, it’s a food desert for them; they can only make expeditions through it with stored supplies unlike nomadic humans who can live there in large numbers and raid their supplies. The same argument as with Neanderthals would apply. They were stronger, smarter and more technologically advanced than us, but homo sapiens were more calorie efficient. So in the long run, we outcompeted and assimilated them, not vice versa. The same would make sense for the giants. If they don’t intermarry so their offspring inherit immunities, then disease will decimate them and the survivors will be mopped up fairly easily. Whole villages and even Islands in the Pacific were depopulated after European contact due to disease. Others when disease on another Island disrupted essential trade supplies. espionage and spies Sneak a human in at night and kill war chief A son with war chief B’s axe. Now they kill each other. Any rumors or information they can plant suggesting giant group 1 will attach group 2 with fabricated evidence as needed. Kill a small group of them with overwhelming numbers from group 1 and leave the weapons/armor for group 2 to find. (or plant it on them) Then everyone else will think group 2 killed group 1 and not you. A 3rd party attack them for killing group 1. Its all about kill giants that will be missed, and trigger revenge attacks. After a crushing defeat against the first fleet of giants, humans collectively retreat and give up control to the giants. The humans still exist, they are far larger in number after all and they just live as an oppressed people. A giant may eat all of one villages livestock, a group of giants may drive out the humans in a specific area to control the land, but humans as a race would still be around and plentiful, just suffering a lot. I imagine this would go similarly to any colonization ever, except perhaps because of the giants overwhelming strength the humans may give up any resistance even faster. If there are small scale fights, massacres, last stands ect this still works fine since you are talking about such large numbers. Just because a colonizer can commit mass genocide on the native peoples does not mean they will. “But the giants are a warrior race and it will be unnatural for the worldbuilding if they just decide not to fight the humans” – Well, I think by making the giants so much stronger than humans you have created a convenient out for this one. Just by establishing that the giants view humans as inferior (in terms of combat) a social idea that humans are not worthy opponents and there is no “honour” or whatever in defeating a human it makes sense that they would not constantly want to fight humans. Why should they? For an analogy, the Mongols were pretty famous for being combat-oriented. But they did not go around taking up arms and duelling every goat they came across because why would they? obviously goats are not a big enough issue for the Mongols to bother about. Basically, humans don’t have to be able to win fights to survive utter destruction. An unpeaceful and oppressed co-habitation is entirely plausible. Well it is my understanding that for a giant race that is hell bent on killing humanity(I am assuming they are not be killing humans for sale of keep fit excercise routine , and also not because they are jeleous of our good genes and beautiful looks as against there ugly deformed ones ! No Sir… It is obvious it’s because we as a food source as meet food are absolutely delicious… Do you see they might kill a good number of us every day but it won’t be to finish us justtocook us and eat us.. the rest you can understand dears. • Hi Tallat, welcome to Worldbuilding.SE. I’d recommend taking the tour and reading through the help center. As for your answer, I am not sure what your point really is. Here, we tend to like factual answers. Would you mind editing your answer to make clear what your point really is? – bilbo_pingouin Feb 4 at 7:37 Cold Humans could be forced into colder areas. These giants come from Australia so they are used to warm weather thus their immune system is weak against cold, not to mention how much heat moving their body is producing. They also have weak, light armor which doesn’t protect them from cold. They would also leave areas that are cold in the winter and warm in the summer alone as there is no point in colonizing a land which is not habitable half of the time. This land could be used to allow giants to interact with humans through trading in summertime or it could be a war zone which humans have to protect so they can grow food for the winter. ## Your Answer StackExchange.ifUsing(“editor”, function () { return StackExchange.using(“mathjaxEditing”, function () { StackExchange.MarkdownEditor.creationCallbacks.add(function (editor, postfix) { StackExchange.mathjaxEditing.prepareWmdForMathJax(editor, postfix, [[“$”, “\$”], [“\$$“,”\$$”]]);
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## 16 Answers16

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## 16 Answers16

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First and foremost, disease would be the best weapon to employ against an enemy that outclasses you in all physical respects. Giants like to fight and are great at breeding? Good, they’ll be in physical contact with each other more than enough for one good bug to tear through them. There are plenty of examples in history of why this is so effective and attractive an option, the most prominent being American history during colonial and expeditionary times.

Tangent to this idea is the prospect of chemical warfare. The Persians were capable of this centuries before the earliest date you gave and it can be employed with relative ease. The only trick is delivering enough of the harmful substances. Two good methods stand out, though. The giants are large and need to breathe very high volumes of air to keep their muscles energized. With this in mind, all one would need to do, is put a slow-release source of harmful gas upwind of their camps, where they train and spar almost constantly. Their bodies would be poisoned over time and their biggest and strongest would be crippled, dead, or going mad before any of them even knew something MIGHT be going wrong. With the primitive culture and world views of the time, they might even jump to conclusions of supernatural or divine nature and not even consider they’ve been under attack. Actually, even enough wood or grease smoke would be a hazard for creatures that large with such high respiratory demands. I can imagine an army tricking the enemy giants into occupying a building or narrow pass and either smoking them out to force them into an unfavorable position, or simply suffocating them. The second chemical weapon that springs to mind is acids. Unless there are magical cures for severe dermal erosion, the loss of enough skin would be almost a death sentence for any warrior, no matter how jacked you are or how deft your sword arm. Disease and rot WILL get through that most crucial of barriers to the circulatory and lymphatic system, especially in those early times of poorly understood biology and primitive medical sciences.

Social destabilization is another method to work around the enemy’s physical superiority. A disorganized enemy isn’t much harder to defeat than a pack of wild, even if very formidable, animals. Humans have been making and using recreational substances for a very long time. With our smaller bodies, a small amount of a substance could be enough to ‘enjoy’, but would have almost no effect on something significantly larger. Get the giants hopelessly addicted to something with little supply and the overwhelming demand will destroy their social order pretty quickly. Governments have been using this tactic to cause disorder in enemy communities for ages, dating back many centuries.

Starve them out. These huge bands of giants 100-1000 in number would have disproportionately large energy demands that would require very high volumes of food consumption ESPECIALLY if they’re constantly sparring and training due to their culture. Humans, on the other hand, prefer and value leisure so we can get by on some very sparse food supplies. We’re endurance specialists, after all. Scorched earth policies can be taken to ensure that even if giants encroach on human territory, they won’t have the momentum to keep pushing the advance. Their troops will be taking barren land and fighting humans who are retreating into greener pastures and ready supplies while we whittle down their flagging forces with guerrilla tactics and disease/poison traps.

Use other animals. Humans have been using other critters in creative ways since the dawn of civilization, namely honey bees. Honey bee venom contains a substance called melittin that causes red blood cells to burst. This causes dangerous dips in blood pressure in humans. Much like heat dispersal requirements, oxygen requirements for mammals increase faster than volume does, so something that interrupts our ability to breathe and process oxygen would have an even more catastrophic effect on larger mammals and it would be harder to recover from. The amount of venom required to achieve lethality or be capable of incapacitating the victim wouldn’t even need to be much higher than our own. Far less than what a single honey bee is capable of injecting, anyway. Giants might be big, but they’d have just as much, if not more, difficulty dealing with an angry swarm of bees that showed up from the sky while everyone was sleeping.

• + for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

• Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

• 1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

• +1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

• One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

First and foremost, disease would be the best weapon to employ against an enemy that outclasses you in all physical respects. Giants like to fight and are great at breeding? Good, they’ll be in physical contact with each other more than enough for one good bug to tear through them. There are plenty of examples in history of why this is so effective and attractive an option, the most prominent being American history during colonial and expeditionary times.

Tangent to this idea is the prospect of chemical warfare. The Persians were capable of this centuries before the earliest date you gave and it can be employed with relative ease. The only trick is delivering enough of the harmful substances. Two good methods stand out, though. The giants are large and need to breathe very high volumes of air to keep their muscles energized. With this in mind, all one would need to do, is put a slow-release source of harmful gas upwind of their camps, where they train and spar almost constantly. Their bodies would be poisoned over time and their biggest and strongest would be crippled, dead, or going mad before any of them even knew something MIGHT be going wrong. With the primitive culture and world views of the time, they might even jump to conclusions of supernatural or divine nature and not even consider they’ve been under attack. Actually, even enough wood or grease smoke would be a hazard for creatures that large with such high respiratory demands. I can imagine an army tricking the enemy giants into occupying a building or narrow pass and either smoking them out to force them into an unfavorable position, or simply suffocating them. The second chemical weapon that springs to mind is acids. Unless there are magical cures for severe dermal erosion, the loss of enough skin would be almost a death sentence for any warrior, no matter how jacked you are or how deft your sword arm. Disease and rot WILL get through that most crucial of barriers to the circulatory and lymphatic system, especially in those early times of poorly understood biology and primitive medical sciences.

Social destabilization is another method to work around the enemy’s physical superiority. A disorganized enemy isn’t much harder to defeat than a pack of wild, even if very formidable, animals. Humans have been making and using recreational substances for a very long time. With our smaller bodies, a small amount of a substance could be enough to ‘enjoy’, but would have almost no effect on something significantly larger. Get the giants hopelessly addicted to something with little supply and the overwhelming demand will destroy their social order pretty quickly. Governments have been using this tactic to cause disorder in enemy communities for ages, dating back many centuries.

Starve them out. These huge bands of giants 100-1000 in number would have disproportionately large energy demands that would require very high volumes of food consumption ESPECIALLY if they’re constantly sparring and training due to their culture. Humans, on the other hand, prefer and value leisure so we can get by on some very sparse food supplies. We’re endurance specialists, after all. Scorched earth policies can be taken to ensure that even if giants encroach on human territory, they won’t have the momentum to keep pushing the advance. Their troops will be taking barren land and fighting humans who are retreating into greener pastures and ready supplies while we whittle down their flagging forces with guerrilla tactics and disease/poison traps.

Use other animals. Humans have been using other critters in creative ways since the dawn of civilization, namely honey bees. Honey bee venom contains a substance called melittin that causes red blood cells to burst. This causes dangerous dips in blood pressure in humans. Much like heat dispersal requirements, oxygen requirements for mammals increase faster than volume does, so something that interrupts our ability to breathe and process oxygen would have an even more catastrophic effect on larger mammals and it would be harder to recover from. The amount of venom required to achieve lethality or be capable of incapacitating the victim wouldn’t even need to be much higher than our own. Far less than what a single honey bee is capable of injecting, anyway. Giants might be big, but they’d have just as much, if not more, difficulty dealing with an angry swarm of bees that showed up from the sky while everyone was sleeping.

• + for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

• Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

• 1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

• +1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

• One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

30

30

First and foremost, disease would be the best weapon to employ against an enemy that outclasses you in all physical respects. Giants like to fight and are great at breeding? Good, they’ll be in physical contact with each other more than enough for one good bug to tear through them. There are plenty of examples in history of why this is so effective and attractive an option, the most prominent being American history during colonial and expeditionary times.

Tangent to this idea is the prospect of chemical warfare. The Persians were capable of this centuries before the earliest date you gave and it can be employed with relative ease. The only trick is delivering enough of the harmful substances. Two good methods stand out, though. The giants are large and need to breathe very high volumes of air to keep their muscles energized. With this in mind, all one would need to do, is put a slow-release source of harmful gas upwind of their camps, where they train and spar almost constantly. Their bodies would be poisoned over time and their biggest and strongest would be crippled, dead, or going mad before any of them even knew something MIGHT be going wrong. With the primitive culture and world views of the time, they might even jump to conclusions of supernatural or divine nature and not even consider they’ve been under attack. Actually, even enough wood or grease smoke would be a hazard for creatures that large with such high respiratory demands. I can imagine an army tricking the enemy giants into occupying a building or narrow pass and either smoking them out to force them into an unfavorable position, or simply suffocating them. The second chemical weapon that springs to mind is acids. Unless there are magical cures for severe dermal erosion, the loss of enough skin would be almost a death sentence for any warrior, no matter how jacked you are or how deft your sword arm. Disease and rot WILL get through that most crucial of barriers to the circulatory and lymphatic system, especially in those early times of poorly understood biology and primitive medical sciences.

Social destabilization is another method to work around the enemy’s physical superiority. A disorganized enemy isn’t much harder to defeat than a pack of wild, even if very formidable, animals. Humans have been making and using recreational substances for a very long time. With our smaller bodies, a small amount of a substance could be enough to ‘enjoy’, but would have almost no effect on something significantly larger. Get the giants hopelessly addicted to something with little supply and the overwhelming demand will destroy their social order pretty quickly. Governments have been using this tactic to cause disorder in enemy communities for ages, dating back many centuries.

Starve them out. These huge bands of giants 100-1000 in number would have disproportionately large energy demands that would require very high volumes of food consumption ESPECIALLY if they’re constantly sparring and training due to their culture. Humans, on the other hand, prefer and value leisure so we can get by on some very sparse food supplies. We’re endurance specialists, after all. Scorched earth policies can be taken to ensure that even if giants encroach on human territory, they won’t have the momentum to keep pushing the advance. Their troops will be taking barren land and fighting humans who are retreating into greener pastures and ready supplies while we whittle down their flagging forces with guerrilla tactics and disease/poison traps.

Use other animals. Humans have been using other critters in creative ways since the dawn of civilization, namely honey bees. Honey bee venom contains a substance called melittin that causes red blood cells to burst. This causes dangerous dips in blood pressure in humans. Much like heat dispersal requirements, oxygen requirements for mammals increase faster than volume does, so something that interrupts our ability to breathe and process oxygen would have an even more catastrophic effect on larger mammals and it would be harder to recover from. The amount of venom required to achieve lethality or be capable of incapacitating the victim wouldn’t even need to be much higher than our own. Far less than what a single honey bee is capable of injecting, anyway. Giants might be big, but they’d have just as much, if not more, difficulty dealing with an angry swarm of bees that showed up from the sky while everyone was sleeping.

First and foremost, disease would be the best weapon to employ against an enemy that outclasses you in all physical respects. Giants like to fight and are great at breeding? Good, they’ll be in physical contact with each other more than enough for one good bug to tear through them. There are plenty of examples in history of why this is so effective and attractive an option, the most prominent being American history during colonial and expeditionary times.

Tangent to this idea is the prospect of chemical warfare. The Persians were capable of this centuries before the earliest date you gave and it can be employed with relative ease. The only trick is delivering enough of the harmful substances. Two good methods stand out, though. The giants are large and need to breathe very high volumes of air to keep their muscles energized. With this in mind, all one would need to do, is put a slow-release source of harmful gas upwind of their camps, where they train and spar almost constantly. Their bodies would be poisoned over time and their biggest and strongest would be crippled, dead, or going mad before any of them even knew something MIGHT be going wrong. With the primitive culture and world views of the time, they might even jump to conclusions of supernatural or divine nature and not even consider they’ve been under attack. Actually, even enough wood or grease smoke would be a hazard for creatures that large with such high respiratory demands. I can imagine an army tricking the enemy giants into occupying a building or narrow pass and either smoking them out to force them into an unfavorable position, or simply suffocating them. The second chemical weapon that springs to mind is acids. Unless there are magical cures for severe dermal erosion, the loss of enough skin would be almost a death sentence for any warrior, no matter how jacked you are or how deft your sword arm. Disease and rot WILL get through that most crucial of barriers to the circulatory and lymphatic system, especially in those early times of poorly understood biology and primitive medical sciences.

Social destabilization is another method to work around the enemy’s physical superiority. A disorganized enemy isn’t much harder to defeat than a pack of wild, even if very formidable, animals. Humans have been making and using recreational substances for a very long time. With our smaller bodies, a small amount of a substance could be enough to ‘enjoy’, but would have almost no effect on something significantly larger. Get the giants hopelessly addicted to something with little supply and the overwhelming demand will destroy their social order pretty quickly. Governments have been using this tactic to cause disorder in enemy communities for ages, dating back many centuries.

Starve them out. These huge bands of giants 100-1000 in number would have disproportionately large energy demands that would require very high volumes of food consumption ESPECIALLY if they’re constantly sparring and training due to their culture. Humans, on the other hand, prefer and value leisure so we can get by on some very sparse food supplies. We’re endurance specialists, after all. Scorched earth policies can be taken to ensure that even if giants encroach on human territory, they won’t have the momentum to keep pushing the advance. Their troops will be taking barren land and fighting humans who are retreating into greener pastures and ready supplies while we whittle down their flagging forces with guerrilla tactics and disease/poison traps.

Use other animals. Humans have been using other critters in creative ways since the dawn of civilization, namely honey bees. Honey bee venom contains a substance called melittin that causes red blood cells to burst. This causes dangerous dips in blood pressure in humans. Much like heat dispersal requirements, oxygen requirements for mammals increase faster than volume does, so something that interrupts our ability to breathe and process oxygen would have an even more catastrophic effect on larger mammals and it would be harder to recover from. The amount of venom required to achieve lethality or be capable of incapacitating the victim wouldn’t even need to be much higher than our own. Far less than what a single honey bee is capable of injecting, anyway. Giants might be big, but they’d have just as much, if not more, difficulty dealing with an angry swarm of bees that showed up from the sky while everyone was sleeping.

answered Feb 2 at 14:34

DoctorJerk

38816

38816

• + for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

• Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

• 1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

• +1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

• One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

• + for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

• Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

• 1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

• +1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

• One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

6

+ for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

+ for starve. Because they will starve. Big bodies require a lot of food. High reproductive potential means needs a lot of food. Where will they get it? How does an invading band of 30,000 feed itself? Maybe they were whalers in their homelands. Whales are scarce inland.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 14:59

8

Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

Also, where the heck did these giants all come from? The precontact population of New Zealand was estimated at 100,000-200,000 total. How did Oceania sustain so many giants – who I am not sure even have agriculture. This is more a colony ship scenario than a human(oid) migration scenario.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:29

1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

1346 siege of caffa was one of the earliest known (at least recorded) instances of biological warfare – so the timeline does make sense.

– JGreenwell
Feb 2 at 16:50

7

+1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

+1 for disease, Do you know why there was no “Americapox” that was brought back to Europe? Because plagues are most often caused by diseases jumping from animals to humans. These giants don’t have livestock, so they would never have experienced a plague.

– ltmauve
Feb 2 at 18:56

1

One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

One of the underrated ways that disease kills is by knocking out all the able-bodied people in a community at the same time. Even a normally non-lethal disease can have a horrific death toll if nobody is well enough to fetch water.

– user3757614
Feb 3 at 6:41

They have several disadvantages.

1. Attrition. Larger animals take longer to breed, it takes time and calories to grow. That means humans can replace their population faster. The number of babies is immaterial, most offspring die of disease or famine anyway. It took us several thousand more years to actually produce our actual reproductive potential, you need medicine and industrial farming first, your giants may have a higher potential but they won’t be able to exploit it if anything they will be even less able to exploit it. What matters is maturation rate, especially with their higher caloric demand. And there is no way around them taking longer to reach breeding age. Over time humans will dominate more and more (consider they already start at a distinct advantage). Your giants also need to be eating a huge amount to keep up those abilities, nothing in biology is free, everything has a cost, stronger muscles means more they need more calories. Stronger bones require more minerals and slower growth. Your giants have completely wiped out any efficiency advantage size might give them, so humans have an even larger numbers advantage. 1 unit of crops are producing drastically more humans than giants. This gets even worse when you realize all the human spears are right at crotch height for the giants.

2. No livestock. This is a big one. Being big and strong does do much good when a horse bigger, stronger, and easier to replace. Humans have cavalry. Worse without livestock they food is less portable, humans can sustain fighting for much longer just because they will have better supply lines. One major weakness the Aztec had was corn has a comparatively short shelf life, they could not sustain war year round. Even better humans can use livestock for labor freeing up even more of their numbers for combat or more likely to build defenses, walled cities were common for a reason.

Sure their sense of smell might be good but it will never be as good as a dog’s, so the humans have that advantage. Plus war dogs can bolster the humans’ armies even further.

1. They are a warrior band culture, which means they suck at fighting actual wars. Tribal warfare is small scale, brief, and often for show. But the war your giants are walking into is a game of logistics, who can produce the most food, who has the best craftsmen, who is the best organized, who can sustain soldiers for longer. Your giants make for good raiders and poor soldiers. They are not fighting tribal bands of humans, in 400AD they are fighting empires. Humans have incendiary devices, ballista and stone walls. Humans can sustain war for years without stopping. War bands mean small numbers, tribal bands can’t collect in large armies for long, they start to starve, humans, on the other hand, can field armies of hundreds of thousands.

2. Smell, A better sense of smell may actually work against them, humans will be able to use rotting livestock as both psychological and biological warfare.

3. Size is not always an advantage. Wait until they get to forests or jungles where size becomes a hindrance. Humans can also better utilize water, humans boats will have shorter drafts meaning they can travel shallower waters, meaning humans forces will be more maneuverable on the large scale. One of the biggest advantages Vikings had was they could show up anywhere at any time, they could sail even the shallowest of waters. Snow will be even worse, giants will be big and heavy and even strong snow will not support their weight. Not to mention armies of giants will have trouble feeding themselves in cold climates.

4. Inflexibility, double muscles animals are very inflexible, those muscles get in the way of each other. Giants may be faster on the straightaway but humans will be able to run circles around them up close. Giant will get surrounded easily, and will not be flexible which means they will worse even worse at climbing and traveling through forests and jungles.

5. endurance. Double-muscled animals have far less muscular fat, meaning they have drastically reduced endurance. So even in an individual battle humans will be able to fight longer than giants, they can simply wear them out.

• I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

• + for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

• Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

• Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

• Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

They have several disadvantages.

1. Attrition. Larger animals take longer to breed, it takes time and calories to grow. That means humans can replace their population faster. The number of babies is immaterial, most offspring die of disease or famine anyway. It took us several thousand more years to actually produce our actual reproductive potential, you need medicine and industrial farming first, your giants may have a higher potential but they won’t be able to exploit it if anything they will be even less able to exploit it. What matters is maturation rate, especially with their higher caloric demand. And there is no way around them taking longer to reach breeding age. Over time humans will dominate more and more (consider they already start at a distinct advantage). Your giants also need to be eating a huge amount to keep up those abilities, nothing in biology is free, everything has a cost, stronger muscles means more they need more calories. Stronger bones require more minerals and slower growth. Your giants have completely wiped out any efficiency advantage size might give them, so humans have an even larger numbers advantage. 1 unit of crops are producing drastically more humans than giants. This gets even worse when you realize all the human spears are right at crotch height for the giants.

2. No livestock. This is a big one. Being big and strong does do much good when a horse bigger, stronger, and easier to replace. Humans have cavalry. Worse without livestock they food is less portable, humans can sustain fighting for much longer just because they will have better supply lines. One major weakness the Aztec had was corn has a comparatively short shelf life, they could not sustain war year round. Even better humans can use livestock for labor freeing up even more of their numbers for combat or more likely to build defenses, walled cities were common for a reason.

Sure their sense of smell might be good but it will never be as good as a dog’s, so the humans have that advantage. Plus war dogs can bolster the humans’ armies even further.

1. They are a warrior band culture, which means they suck at fighting actual wars. Tribal warfare is small scale, brief, and often for show. But the war your giants are walking into is a game of logistics, who can produce the most food, who has the best craftsmen, who is the best organized, who can sustain soldiers for longer. Your giants make for good raiders and poor soldiers. They are not fighting tribal bands of humans, in 400AD they are fighting empires. Humans have incendiary devices, ballista and stone walls. Humans can sustain war for years without stopping. War bands mean small numbers, tribal bands can’t collect in large armies for long, they start to starve, humans, on the other hand, can field armies of hundreds of thousands.

2. Smell, A better sense of smell may actually work against them, humans will be able to use rotting livestock as both psychological and biological warfare.

3. Size is not always an advantage. Wait until they get to forests or jungles where size becomes a hindrance. Humans can also better utilize water, humans boats will have shorter drafts meaning they can travel shallower waters, meaning humans forces will be more maneuverable on the large scale. One of the biggest advantages Vikings had was they could show up anywhere at any time, they could sail even the shallowest of waters. Snow will be even worse, giants will be big and heavy and even strong snow will not support their weight. Not to mention armies of giants will have trouble feeding themselves in cold climates.

4. Inflexibility, double muscles animals are very inflexible, those muscles get in the way of each other. Giants may be faster on the straightaway but humans will be able to run circles around them up close. Giant will get surrounded easily, and will not be flexible which means they will worse even worse at climbing and traveling through forests and jungles.

5. endurance. Double-muscled animals have far less muscular fat, meaning they have drastically reduced endurance. So even in an individual battle humans will be able to fight longer than giants, they can simply wear them out.

• I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

• + for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

• Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

• Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

• Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

15

15

They have several disadvantages.

1. Attrition. Larger animals take longer to breed, it takes time and calories to grow. That means humans can replace their population faster. The number of babies is immaterial, most offspring die of disease or famine anyway. It took us several thousand more years to actually produce our actual reproductive potential, you need medicine and industrial farming first, your giants may have a higher potential but they won’t be able to exploit it if anything they will be even less able to exploit it. What matters is maturation rate, especially with their higher caloric demand. And there is no way around them taking longer to reach breeding age. Over time humans will dominate more and more (consider they already start at a distinct advantage). Your giants also need to be eating a huge amount to keep up those abilities, nothing in biology is free, everything has a cost, stronger muscles means more they need more calories. Stronger bones require more minerals and slower growth. Your giants have completely wiped out any efficiency advantage size might give them, so humans have an even larger numbers advantage. 1 unit of crops are producing drastically more humans than giants. This gets even worse when you realize all the human spears are right at crotch height for the giants.

2. No livestock. This is a big one. Being big and strong does do much good when a horse bigger, stronger, and easier to replace. Humans have cavalry. Worse without livestock they food is less portable, humans can sustain fighting for much longer just because they will have better supply lines. One major weakness the Aztec had was corn has a comparatively short shelf life, they could not sustain war year round. Even better humans can use livestock for labor freeing up even more of their numbers for combat or more likely to build defenses, walled cities were common for a reason.

Sure their sense of smell might be good but it will never be as good as a dog’s, so the humans have that advantage. Plus war dogs can bolster the humans’ armies even further.

1. They are a warrior band culture, which means they suck at fighting actual wars. Tribal warfare is small scale, brief, and often for show. But the war your giants are walking into is a game of logistics, who can produce the most food, who has the best craftsmen, who is the best organized, who can sustain soldiers for longer. Your giants make for good raiders and poor soldiers. They are not fighting tribal bands of humans, in 400AD they are fighting empires. Humans have incendiary devices, ballista and stone walls. Humans can sustain war for years without stopping. War bands mean small numbers, tribal bands can’t collect in large armies for long, they start to starve, humans, on the other hand, can field armies of hundreds of thousands.

2. Smell, A better sense of smell may actually work against them, humans will be able to use rotting livestock as both psychological and biological warfare.

3. Size is not always an advantage. Wait until they get to forests or jungles where size becomes a hindrance. Humans can also better utilize water, humans boats will have shorter drafts meaning they can travel shallower waters, meaning humans forces will be more maneuverable on the large scale. One of the biggest advantages Vikings had was they could show up anywhere at any time, they could sail even the shallowest of waters. Snow will be even worse, giants will be big and heavy and even strong snow will not support their weight. Not to mention armies of giants will have trouble feeding themselves in cold climates.

4. Inflexibility, double muscles animals are very inflexible, those muscles get in the way of each other. Giants may be faster on the straightaway but humans will be able to run circles around them up close. Giant will get surrounded easily, and will not be flexible which means they will worse even worse at climbing and traveling through forests and jungles.

5. endurance. Double-muscled animals have far less muscular fat, meaning they have drastically reduced endurance. So even in an individual battle humans will be able to fight longer than giants, they can simply wear them out.

They have several disadvantages.

1. Attrition. Larger animals take longer to breed, it takes time and calories to grow. That means humans can replace their population faster. The number of babies is immaterial, most offspring die of disease or famine anyway. It took us several thousand more years to actually produce our actual reproductive potential, you need medicine and industrial farming first, your giants may have a higher potential but they won’t be able to exploit it if anything they will be even less able to exploit it. What matters is maturation rate, especially with their higher caloric demand. And there is no way around them taking longer to reach breeding age. Over time humans will dominate more and more (consider they already start at a distinct advantage). Your giants also need to be eating a huge amount to keep up those abilities, nothing in biology is free, everything has a cost, stronger muscles means more they need more calories. Stronger bones require more minerals and slower growth. Your giants have completely wiped out any efficiency advantage size might give them, so humans have an even larger numbers advantage. 1 unit of crops are producing drastically more humans than giants. This gets even worse when you realize all the human spears are right at crotch height for the giants.

2. No livestock. This is a big one. Being big and strong does do much good when a horse bigger, stronger, and easier to replace. Humans have cavalry. Worse without livestock they food is less portable, humans can sustain fighting for much longer just because they will have better supply lines. One major weakness the Aztec had was corn has a comparatively short shelf life, they could not sustain war year round. Even better humans can use livestock for labor freeing up even more of their numbers for combat or more likely to build defenses, walled cities were common for a reason.

Sure their sense of smell might be good but it will never be as good as a dog’s, so the humans have that advantage. Plus war dogs can bolster the humans’ armies even further.

1. They are a warrior band culture, which means they suck at fighting actual wars. Tribal warfare is small scale, brief, and often for show. But the war your giants are walking into is a game of logistics, who can produce the most food, who has the best craftsmen, who is the best organized, who can sustain soldiers for longer. Your giants make for good raiders and poor soldiers. They are not fighting tribal bands of humans, in 400AD they are fighting empires. Humans have incendiary devices, ballista and stone walls. Humans can sustain war for years without stopping. War bands mean small numbers, tribal bands can’t collect in large armies for long, they start to starve, humans, on the other hand, can field armies of hundreds of thousands.

2. Smell, A better sense of smell may actually work against them, humans will be able to use rotting livestock as both psychological and biological warfare.

3. Size is not always an advantage. Wait until they get to forests or jungles where size becomes a hindrance. Humans can also better utilize water, humans boats will have shorter drafts meaning they can travel shallower waters, meaning humans forces will be more maneuverable on the large scale. One of the biggest advantages Vikings had was they could show up anywhere at any time, they could sail even the shallowest of waters. Snow will be even worse, giants will be big and heavy and even strong snow will not support their weight. Not to mention armies of giants will have trouble feeding themselves in cold climates.

4. Inflexibility, double muscles animals are very inflexible, those muscles get in the way of each other. Giants may be faster on the straightaway but humans will be able to run circles around them up close. Giant will get surrounded easily, and will not be flexible which means they will worse even worse at climbing and traveling through forests and jungles.

5. endurance. Double-muscled animals have far less muscular fat, meaning they have drastically reduced endurance. So even in an individual battle humans will be able to fight longer than giants, they can simply wear them out.

edited Feb 4 at 1:09

Gryphon

3,87722962

3,87722962

answered Feb 2 at 16:41

John

34k1045120

34k1045120

• I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

• + for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

• Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

• Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

• Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

• I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

• + for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

• Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

• Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

• Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

2

I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

I mentioned higher reproductive capacity in the order of several times that of man, and cow & hippos reach breeding age much sooner than man, so size in this regard isn’t an issue

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:50

2

+ for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

+ for mentioning attriction, didn’t think of that. (i would upvote if i could)

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 16:57

7

Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

Cows and hippos don’t have large brains they need to sustain, the brain is the most expensive organ in hte human body by a large margin, 1/3rd of all the calories we eat go just to sustaining the brain. unless your giants are drastically dumber than humans (dumber than chimps) you can’t really do anything to improve their growth rates. Also reproductive capacity is not the same thing as how fast they can replace their numbers.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:08

3

Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

Plus your animals are double muscled meaning they they will grow even slower just like double muscled cattle.

– John
Feb 2 at 17:18

1

Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

Don’t forget about 6 times the bone density, and they’re faster. The caloric requirements here are off the chart, +1. The solution is attrition but that’s not what I would have emboldened.

– Mazura
Feb 3 at 18:57

## Not enough females.

They can’t replace attrition losses. The humans have figured this out and are going for the balls, which are, incidentally, at a very convenient height.

Once sufficient males are gelded, the remainder are too busy trying to keep their numbers up to worry about conquest. The gelded males tend to lose interest in further conflict in the immediate aftermath, while shortens their life expectancy severely. Those that survive are driven from their clans by the mocking from their peers (the perils of a jock based society) and end up as mercenaries or pets of human overlords.

• I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

• @Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

• @nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

• @nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

• @Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

## Not enough females.

They can’t replace attrition losses. The humans have figured this out and are going for the balls, which are, incidentally, at a very convenient height.

Once sufficient males are gelded, the remainder are too busy trying to keep their numbers up to worry about conquest. The gelded males tend to lose interest in further conflict in the immediate aftermath, while shortens their life expectancy severely. Those that survive are driven from their clans by the mocking from their peers (the perils of a jock based society) and end up as mercenaries or pets of human overlords.

• I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

• @Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

• @nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

• @nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

• @Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

7

7

## Not enough females.

They can’t replace attrition losses. The humans have figured this out and are going for the balls, which are, incidentally, at a very convenient height.

Once sufficient males are gelded, the remainder are too busy trying to keep their numbers up to worry about conquest. The gelded males tend to lose interest in further conflict in the immediate aftermath, while shortens their life expectancy severely. Those that survive are driven from their clans by the mocking from their peers (the perils of a jock based society) and end up as mercenaries or pets of human overlords.

## Not enough females.

They can’t replace attrition losses. The humans have figured this out and are going for the balls, which are, incidentally, at a very convenient height.

Once sufficient males are gelded, the remainder are too busy trying to keep their numbers up to worry about conquest. The gelded males tend to lose interest in further conflict in the immediate aftermath, while shortens their life expectancy severely. Those that survive are driven from their clans by the mocking from their peers (the perils of a jock based society) and end up as mercenaries or pets of human overlords.

answered Feb 2 at 14:51

nzaman

9,71411547

9,71411547

• I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

• @Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

• @nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

• @nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

• @Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

• I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

• @Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

• @nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

• @nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

• @Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

2

I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

I suspect the giants will start wearing enormous spiked codpieces. Or maybe that was already implied in the OP?

– Willk
Feb 2 at 15:02

2

@Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

@Willk: Running while wearing spiked codpieces? The chafing would be killer

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 15:24

7

@nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

@nzaman the main flaw in this answer is that fewer reproductive males doesn’t decrease population, as polygamy nulifies the issue of higher male mortality/sterilization. It would make more sense to kill/main the women, as a single male can mate with several women and produce just as may offerspring as several men and several women

– Fluss der Flüsse
Feb 2 at 17:17

5

@nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

@nzaman – since your trenchant observations were posted I have done some experiments. It is possible to wear such a garment and run at a pretty good clip with legs widely akimbo. It is more of an alternate leg hop than a run but it is quick enough, and I conclude it looks pretty scary given the reaction of other people who live on my street.

– Willk
Feb 2 at 18:39

4

@Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

@Willk: I would love to see the video of that 🙂

– nzaman
Feb 2 at 19:03

Bigger giants!

It was not food pressure or warfare that drove these giants north. Like the Goths being driven before the Huns, your giants are chased out of their ancestral home by larger giants!

These 20 foot tall giants originate to the south, in Antarctica. In the first wave, 8 megagiants trickle into New Zealand. In the far larger second wave 5 million of these monsters move in to Oceania, displacing the entirety of the minigiants north into South Asia and China.

The Antarctic giants are physically superior to the minigiants in every single way.

• 20 feet tall average
• Four armed (some of them) and four breasts (most of them).
• 50% higher vertical leap than mini giants.
• Flexible bones and thick layers of fat, allowing enormous damage resistance.
• Born knowing the art of savate.

This is all true just for the females. The males look like ordinary sized dudes but everyone is cool with that.

Plus they are culturally superior – these giants have a bonobo like culture, held together by bonds of grooming, consensual sex, back rubs, and long extemporized songs about the beauty of nature and how awesome other individuals in their culture are. The one exception to their gentleness is in regards to minigiants, whom they rip to shreds on sight and then eat the shreds raw. Sometimes they challenge them to feats of strength first, and when the minigiants lose (always) they are then ripped to shreds and eaten raw, or with a little pepper.

These Antarctic giants (ok, giantesses, with regular dudes along) keep coming, relentlessly extirpating the minigiants everywhere except for their mountain sausage party hideways where they pout and grouse and continue their manly wrestling warrior cultural ways.

Fortunately for regular humans, the big sexy giants dig what we do! Regular sized humans are considered entertaining and attractive, especially if they can sing. Megagiants quickly assimilate into the human population. Megagiantism is a recessive trait and by the year 1000, the only trace of this wave of polar saviors is the occasional birth of a girl who grows up to be remarkably tall and has 4 arms.

• Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

• You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

• It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

Bigger giants!

It was not food pressure or warfare that drove these giants north. Like the Goths being driven before the Huns, your giants are chased out of their ancestral home by larger giants!

These 20 foot tall giants originate to the south, in Antarctica. In the first wave, 8 megagiants trickle into New Zealand. In the far larger second wave 5 million of these monsters move in to Oceania, displacing the entirety of the minigiants north into South Asia and China.

The Antarctic giants are physically superior to the minigiants in every single way.

• 20 feet tall average
• Four armed (some of them) and four breasts (most of them).
• 50% higher vertical leap than mini giants.
• Flexible bones and thick layers of fat, allowing enormous damage resistance.
• Born knowing the art of savate.

This is all true just for the females. The males look like ordinary sized dudes but everyone is cool with that.

Plus they are culturally superior – these giants have a bonobo like culture, held together by bonds of grooming, consensual sex, back rubs, and long extemporized songs about the beauty of nature and how awesome other individuals in their culture are. The one exception to their gentleness is in regards to minigiants, whom they rip to shreds on sight and then eat the shreds raw. Sometimes they challenge them to feats of strength first, and when the minigiants lose (always) they are then ripped to shreds and eaten raw, or with a little pepper.

These Antarctic giants (ok, giantesses, with regular dudes along) keep coming, relentlessly extirpating the minigiants everywhere except for their mountain sausage party hideways where they pout and grouse and continue their manly wrestling warrior cultural ways.

Fortunately for regular humans, the big sexy giants dig what we do! Regular sized humans are considered entertaining and attractive, especially if they can sing. Megagiants quickly assimilate into the human population. Megagiantism is a recessive trait and by the year 1000, the only trace of this wave of polar saviors is the occasional birth of a girl who grows up to be remarkably tall and has 4 arms.

• Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

• You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

• It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

7

7

Bigger giants!

It was not food pressure or warfare that drove these giants north. Like the Goths being driven before the Huns, your giants are chased out of their ancestral home by larger giants!

These 20 foot tall giants originate to the south, in Antarctica. In the first wave, 8 megagiants trickle into New Zealand. In the far larger second wave 5 million of these monsters move in to Oceania, displacing the entirety of the minigiants north into South Asia and China.

The Antarctic giants are physically superior to the minigiants in every single way.

• 20 feet tall average
• Four armed (some of them) and four breasts (most of them).
• 50% higher vertical leap than mini giants.
• Flexible bones and thick layers of fat, allowing enormous damage resistance.
• Born knowing the art of savate.

This is all true just for the females. The males look like ordinary sized dudes but everyone is cool with that.

Plus they are culturally superior – these giants have a bonobo like culture, held together by bonds of grooming, consensual sex, back rubs, and long extemporized songs about the beauty of nature and how awesome other individuals in their culture are. The one exception to their gentleness is in regards to minigiants, whom they rip to shreds on sight and then eat the shreds raw. Sometimes they challenge them to feats of strength first, and when the minigiants lose (always) they are then ripped to shreds and eaten raw, or with a little pepper.

These Antarctic giants (ok, giantesses, with regular dudes along) keep coming, relentlessly extirpating the minigiants everywhere except for their mountain sausage party hideways where they pout and grouse and continue their manly wrestling warrior cultural ways.

Fortunately for regular humans, the big sexy giants dig what we do! Regular sized humans are considered entertaining and attractive, especially if they can sing. Megagiants quickly assimilate into the human population. Megagiantism is a recessive trait and by the year 1000, the only trace of this wave of polar saviors is the occasional birth of a girl who grows up to be remarkably tall and has 4 arms.

Bigger giants!

It was not food pressure or warfare that drove these giants north. Like the Goths being driven before the Huns, your giants are chased out of their ancestral home by larger giants!

These 20 foot tall giants originate to the south, in Antarctica. In the first wave, 8 megagiants trickle into New Zealand. In the far larger second wave 5 million of these monsters move in to Oceania, displacing the entirety of the minigiants north into South Asia and China.

The Antarctic giants are physically superior to the minigiants in every single way.

• 20 feet tall average
• Four armed (some of them) and four breasts (most of them).
• 50% higher vertical leap than mini giants.
• Flexible bones and thick layers of fat, allowing enormous damage resistance.
• Born knowing the art of savate.

This is all true just for the females. The males look like ordinary sized dudes but everyone is cool with that.

Plus they are culturally superior – these giants have a bonobo like culture, held together by bonds of grooming, consensual sex, back rubs, and long extemporized songs about the beauty of nature and how awesome other individuals in their culture are. The one exception to their gentleness is in regards to minigiants, whom they rip to shreds on sight and then eat the shreds raw. Sometimes they challenge them to feats of strength first, and when the minigiants lose (always) they are then ripped to shreds and eaten raw, or with a little pepper.

These Antarctic giants (ok, giantesses, with regular dudes along) keep coming, relentlessly extirpating the minigiants everywhere except for their mountain sausage party hideways where they pout and grouse and continue their manly wrestling warrior cultural ways.

Fortunately for regular humans, the big sexy giants dig what we do! Regular sized humans are considered entertaining and attractive, especially if they can sing. Megagiants quickly assimilate into the human population. Megagiantism is a recessive trait and by the year 1000, the only trace of this wave of polar saviors is the occasional birth of a girl who grows up to be remarkably tall and has 4 arms.

answered Feb 2 at 18:28

Willk

109k26204455

109k26204455

• Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

• You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

• It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

• Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

• You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

• It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

4

Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

Little giants have big giants // Coming up to fight ’em // Big giants have bigger giants // And so on ad infinitum.

– Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine
Feb 3 at 8:02

1

You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

You one hep cat, @PeterLeFanuLumsdaine. Let me get my bongo drums out and you try it again.

– Willk
Feb 3 at 15:17

It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

It’s giants all the way down.

– dmm
Feb 8 at 19:00

First think about the message of your story; what you choose should depend on what you want to say to your audience. I can think of 6 categories. For historical realism and story depth, I’d suggest picking several causes, from more than one category.

An inherent human strength: this says, “humans are magically wonderful”

• mental (tech, smarts, wisdom, risk-taking, adaptability)
• physical (speed, agility, stamina)
• emotional/social (cooperation, leadership)

An inherent giant weakness: this says, “at least you don’t suck”

• mental (stupidity, ADHD, OCD, stubbornness, laziness, migraines, insanity)
• physical (food/oxygen/heat/etc needs, poor longevity, poor vision, can’t jump, kryptonite, moonlight makes them were-ducks, etc)
• emotional/social (low stress tolerance, poor communication, cultural problems, leaders’ mistakes)

A greater power appears: this says, “everyone is powerless”

• disaster (I vote meteor strike)
• disease (no… please, don’t)
• another race or creature(s)

Humans gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “you have magical potential”

• they nuke ’em

Giants gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “nope, it’s just you that sucks”

• they become disillusioned with war
• they become more interested in some other venture
• they develop kindness

A choice: this says, “it’s up to you”

• in a situation of matched wit, one human makes a wise decision or sacrifice

• Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

• It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

First think about the message of your story; what you choose should depend on what you want to say to your audience. I can think of 6 categories. For historical realism and story depth, I’d suggest picking several causes, from more than one category.

An inherent human strength: this says, “humans are magically wonderful”

• mental (tech, smarts, wisdom, risk-taking, adaptability)
• physical (speed, agility, stamina)
• emotional/social (cooperation, leadership)

An inherent giant weakness: this says, “at least you don’t suck”

• mental (stupidity, ADHD, OCD, stubbornness, laziness, migraines, insanity)
• physical (food/oxygen/heat/etc needs, poor longevity, poor vision, can’t jump, kryptonite, moonlight makes them were-ducks, etc)
• emotional/social (low stress tolerance, poor communication, cultural problems, leaders’ mistakes)

A greater power appears: this says, “everyone is powerless”

• disaster (I vote meteor strike)
• disease (no… please, don’t)
• another race or creature(s)

Humans gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “you have magical potential”

• they nuke ’em

Giants gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “nope, it’s just you that sucks”

• they become disillusioned with war
• they become more interested in some other venture
• they develop kindness

A choice: this says, “it’s up to you”

• in a situation of matched wit, one human makes a wise decision or sacrifice

• Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

• It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

5

5

First think about the message of your story; what you choose should depend on what you want to say to your audience. I can think of 6 categories. For historical realism and story depth, I’d suggest picking several causes, from more than one category.

An inherent human strength: this says, “humans are magically wonderful”

• mental (tech, smarts, wisdom, risk-taking, adaptability)
• physical (speed, agility, stamina)
• emotional/social (cooperation, leadership)

An inherent giant weakness: this says, “at least you don’t suck”

• mental (stupidity, ADHD, OCD, stubbornness, laziness, migraines, insanity)
• physical (food/oxygen/heat/etc needs, poor longevity, poor vision, can’t jump, kryptonite, moonlight makes them were-ducks, etc)
• emotional/social (low stress tolerance, poor communication, cultural problems, leaders’ mistakes)

A greater power appears: this says, “everyone is powerless”

• disaster (I vote meteor strike)
• disease (no… please, don’t)
• another race or creature(s)

Humans gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “you have magical potential”

• they nuke ’em

Giants gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “nope, it’s just you that sucks”

• they become disillusioned with war
• they become more interested in some other venture
• they develop kindness

A choice: this says, “it’s up to you”

• in a situation of matched wit, one human makes a wise decision or sacrifice

First think about the message of your story; what you choose should depend on what you want to say to your audience. I can think of 6 categories. For historical realism and story depth, I’d suggest picking several causes, from more than one category.

An inherent human strength: this says, “humans are magically wonderful”

• mental (tech, smarts, wisdom, risk-taking, adaptability)
• physical (speed, agility, stamina)
• emotional/social (cooperation, leadership)

An inherent giant weakness: this says, “at least you don’t suck”

• mental (stupidity, ADHD, OCD, stubbornness, laziness, migraines, insanity)
• physical (food/oxygen/heat/etc needs, poor longevity, poor vision, can’t jump, kryptonite, moonlight makes them were-ducks, etc)
• emotional/social (low stress tolerance, poor communication, cultural problems, leaders’ mistakes)

A greater power appears: this says, “everyone is powerless”

• disaster (I vote meteor strike)
• disease (no… please, don’t)
• another race or creature(s)

Humans gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “you have magical potential”

• they nuke ’em

Giants gain a strength or overcome a weakness: this says, “nope, it’s just you that sucks”

• they become disillusioned with war
• they become more interested in some other venture
• they develop kindness

A choice: this says, “it’s up to you”

• in a situation of matched wit, one human makes a wise decision or sacrifice

answered Feb 2 at 17:28

BoomChuck

1,6461410

1,6461410

• Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

• It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

• Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

• It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

1

Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

Great suggestions, but what makes disease a worse “solution” than a meteor strike or stronger creatures?

– Llewellyn
Feb 2 at 19:45

It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

It’s just a trope that’s old as the hills and done to death imho. Dangerously close to remaking War of the Worlds lol

– BoomChuck
Feb 4 at 15:19

So these giants arrive in Eurasia in droves, driven by hunger. They land in coastal settlements taking everyone by surprise. But as they move inland news of their arrival quickly spreads and armies are readied to meet them.

Sheer numbers will get them quite far, but likely at heavy losses. This will be for several reasons.

Horses

A lack of horses provide a massive disadvantage. Organising groups of giants without mounted messengers is going to be a lot slower than organising humans who do have mounted messengers.

Horses also allow humans to move stuff around a lot easier. Food armies, weapons, armour, siege engines, etc.

Horses use in actual fighting will also be a factor. Mounted archers can close any advantage giants have with range quickly and decent heavy cavalry will make short work of combatants with iron age weapons.

Tactics

Judging by where these giants have come from, it’s doubtful they have had much experience of siege warfare or warfare in large open areas.

These giants need to eat a lot, so pin them down anywhere and they will quickly starve. Plus, because they are so big, they are more likely to be susceptible to siege weaponry. Their size is going to make it difficult to occupy existing defensive strongholds and it takes a lot of time to build suitable stone defenses. Wooden structures aren’t going to be much use against trebuchets and ballista.

On open ground they are going to meet a tactic they probably have never seen, a shield wall. A well formed shield wall of sufficient depth can stand a charge from heavy cavalry, so these 9 foot giants aren’t going to be much of a problem, especially if they don’t attack/defend in a line with suitable shields.

As humans withdraw from invading giants they take all livestock with them and scorch the earth behind them leaving no food for these giants who must need a lot to eat.

Weaponry

Steel is going to be a major advantage for humans. From spears, arrows and swords to armour and embossed shields, the humans will have the advantage in the weaponry department.

Infighting

If they are leaving their homelands because of internal strife, they will not all be from the same faction and will be as likely to fight each other as they will be to fight humans.

Cannibalism (maybe)

If these giants have been struggling for food for a while, cannibalism may be acceptable to them. So any time they eat one of their own, there is one less to fight.

On the flip side, this makes it much more likely that humans will be a viable food source for them.

Outcome

These giants won’t last long anywhere humans can get a decent sized army together, but on difficult terrain, they are likely to have an advantage. This is where I foresee them settling, but food needs will make it difficult to sustain large numbers in these areas.

It won’t take long though for an ambitious Warlord/King/Emperor to decide to train and arm these giants so they can fight their enemies in exchange for food. Give it 50 or so years and these giants will have overcome many of the disadvantages listed above.

So these giants arrive in Eurasia in droves, driven by hunger. They land in coastal settlements taking everyone by surprise. But as they move inland news of their arrival quickly spreads and armies are readied to meet them.

Sheer numbers will get them quite far, but likely at heavy losses. This will be for several reasons.

Horses

A lack of horses provide a massive disadvantage. Organising groups of giants without mounted messengers is going to be a lot slower than organising humans who do have mounted messengers.

Horses also allow humans to move stuff around a lot easier. Food armies, weapons, armour, siege engines, etc.

Horses use in actual fighting will also be a factor. Mounted archers can close any advantage giants have with range quickly and decent heavy cavalry will make short work of combatants with iron age weapons.

Tactics

Judging by where these giants have come from, it’s doubtful they have had much experience of siege warfare or warfare in large open areas.

These giants need to eat a lot, so pin them down anywhere and they will quickly starve. Plus, because they are so big, they are more likely to be susceptible to siege weaponry. Their size is going to make it difficult to occupy existing defensive strongholds and it takes a lot of time to build suitable stone defenses. Wooden structures aren’t going to be much use against trebuchets and ballista.

On open ground they are going to meet a tactic they probably have never seen, a shield wall. A well formed shield wall of sufficient depth can stand a charge from heavy cavalry, so these 9 foot giants aren’t going to be much of a problem, especially if they don’t attack/defend in a line with suitable shields.

As humans withdraw from invading giants they take all livestock with them and scorch the earth behind them leaving no food for these giants who must need a lot to eat.

Weaponry

Steel is going to be a major advantage for humans. From spears, arrows and swords to armour and embossed shields, the humans will have the advantage in the weaponry department.

Infighting

If they are leaving their homelands because of internal strife, they will not all be from the same faction and will be as likely to fight each other as they will be to fight humans.

Cannibalism (maybe)

If these giants have been struggling for food for a while, cannibalism may be acceptable to them. So any time they eat one of their own, there is one less to fight.

On the flip side, this makes it much more likely that humans will be a viable food source for them.

Outcome

These giants won’t last long anywhere humans can get a decent sized army together, but on difficult terrain, they are likely to have an advantage. This is where I foresee them settling, but food needs will make it difficult to sustain large numbers in these areas.

It won’t take long though for an ambitious Warlord/King/Emperor to decide to train and arm these giants so they can fight their enemies in exchange for food. Give it 50 or so years and these giants will have overcome many of the disadvantages listed above.

5

5

So these giants arrive in Eurasia in droves, driven by hunger. They land in coastal settlements taking everyone by surprise. But as they move inland news of their arrival quickly spreads and armies are readied to meet them.

Sheer numbers will get them quite far, but likely at heavy losses. This will be for several reasons.

Horses

A lack of horses provide a massive disadvantage. Organising groups of giants without mounted messengers is going to be a lot slower than organising humans who do have mounted messengers.

Horses also allow humans to move stuff around a lot easier. Food armies, weapons, armour, siege engines, etc.

Horses use in actual fighting will also be a factor. Mounted archers can close any advantage giants have with range quickly and decent heavy cavalry will make short work of combatants with iron age weapons.

Tactics

Judging by where these giants have come from, it’s doubtful they have had much experience of siege warfare or warfare in large open areas.

These giants need to eat a lot, so pin them down anywhere and they will quickly starve. Plus, because they are so big, they are more likely to be susceptible to siege weaponry. Their size is going to make it difficult to occupy existing defensive strongholds and it takes a lot of time to build suitable stone defenses. Wooden structures aren’t going to be much use against trebuchets and ballista.

On open ground they are going to meet a tactic they probably have never seen, a shield wall. A well formed shield wall of sufficient depth can stand a charge from heavy cavalry, so these 9 foot giants aren’t going to be much of a problem, especially if they don’t attack/defend in a line with suitable shields.

As humans withdraw from invading giants they take all livestock with them and scorch the earth behind them leaving no food for these giants who must need a lot to eat.

Weaponry

Steel is going to be a major advantage for humans. From spears, arrows and swords to armour and embossed shields, the humans will have the advantage in the weaponry department.

Infighting

If they are leaving their homelands because of internal strife, they will not all be from the same faction and will be as likely to fight each other as they will be to fight humans.

Cannibalism (maybe)

If these giants have been struggling for food for a while, cannibalism may be acceptable to them. So any time they eat one of their own, there is one less to fight.

On the flip side, this makes it much more likely that humans will be a viable food source for them.

Outcome

These giants won’t last long anywhere humans can get a decent sized army together, but on difficult terrain, they are likely to have an advantage. This is where I foresee them settling, but food needs will make it difficult to sustain large numbers in these areas.

It won’t take long though for an ambitious Warlord/King/Emperor to decide to train and arm these giants so they can fight their enemies in exchange for food. Give it 50 or so years and these giants will have overcome many of the disadvantages listed above.