History Headscratchers / TalesOfMu

19th Oct '15 6:36:16 AM Deblin
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** It's actually somewhat debatable how much most of the non-humans ARE persecuted; Mack gets the short end of the stick because her subspecies literally eats humans and ONLY humans, so she's regarded as a real threat (fairly, she nearly murders four or five people in the first couple of weeks as a result of being mildly careless). Other non-humans are actually treated more or less appropriately given their status as actual semi-independent political tribes/units that largely haven't blended with other imperial cultures, and it's implied that some human races are regarded with more suspicion and get more red tape than some non-humans for the same reason: *** Gnomes: pretty much treated the same as humans, full stop. *** Ogres: live in a geographically distinct area that's debatably not under imperial control at all, have a kill on sight policy to outsiders. Regarded with suspicion. *** Dwarves: Willingly signed on with the empire. If anything, they legally get preferential treatment over humans in any dispute. *** Demons: Pretty much literally terrorists, wandering around starting shit for the hell of it. Children have a hereditary form of violent insanity. The empire's honestly pushing it on public safety to even give them the leeway they get. *** Human commoners: 100% expendable, to the point a standard school policy has 'acceptable losses' on the order of one in FIVE and that's fine, whereas any non-human student dying results in a major outcry. *** Elves: Essentially the equivalent of what Quebec is to Canada, they have all the rights of humans, and a bunch of weird extra perks like their contributions being majorly over-represented in history texts, being considered desirable spouses for no real apparent reason, etc. *** Dark Elves / Swans: Treated like foreign powers because they are their own distinct, separate kingdoms. The only contact is through high-ranking diplomat exchanges, and thus pretty much every one we see has the equivalent of high-grade diplomatic immunity. Dee literally performs a vivisection on a vulnerable imperial citizen suffering from a mental condition and the human government apparently can't do a single thing about it. When a Swan dies it shuts down the entire campus and everyone publicly grieves for a week while human casualties are ignored. *** Goblins/Kobolds: the only other races to have a negative connotation on par with demon-blooded, but it's shown that they still live largely in segregated tribes and those tribes have something of a history of intermittent warfare with, not just humans, but anyone conveniently close to their territory, so the bias is explained pretty well by politics without resorting to racial politics. *** Lizardfolk: Most people seem, at worst, curious about them (since they keep to themselves), and the only animosity we've seen pointed in their direction is a direct response to the Lizard-person on the main cast being a huge, racist asshole first.
19th Oct '15 6:12:49 AM Deblin
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** A lot of it probably has to do with him being the only character to immediately and with no hesitation call out Amaranthe on every nonsensical thing she says (aka everything she says) and every piece of advice she gives that's obviously morally terrible or disastrous (again, pretty much every piece of advice she gives). Since Amaranthe essentially bullies everyone else in the setting into just letting her dictate their actions (which would be less annoying if her way wasn't almost always unambiguously worse than their initial impulses) this makes him fairly unique in the main cast. *** Special mention is merited of his interrupting one of her 'I'm superior to you because I'm vegan' rants by just looking from her to her sub, who she regularly manipulates into doing things the latter clearly doesn't actually want to do, and commenting that it's a lovely night for dramatic irony. That was almost a crowning moment of awesome in itself, after 300+ chapters of the rest of the main cast actively piling on to Amaranthe's side at every opportunity to shame and badger Mack into not standing up for her own viewpoints.
19th Oct '15 6:12:49 AM Deblin
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** A lot of it probably has to do with him being the only character to immediately and with no hesitation call out Amaranthe on every nonsensical thing she says (aka everything she says) and every piece of advice she gives that's obviously morally terrible or disastrous (again, pretty much every piece of advice she gives). Since Amaranthe essentially bullies everyone else in the setting into just letting her dictate their actions (which would be less annoying if her way wasn't almost always unambiguously worse than their initial impulses) this makes him fairly unique in the main cast. *** Special mention is merited of his interrupting one of her 'I'm superior to you because I'm vegan' rants by just looking from her to her sub, who she regularly manipulates into doing things the latter clearly doesn't actually want to do, and commenting that it's a lovely night for dramatic irony. That was almost a crowning moment of awesome in itself, after 300+ chapters of the rest of the main cast actively piling on to Amaranthe's side at every opportunity to shame and badger Mack into not standing up for her own viewpoints.
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** A lot of it probably has to do with him being the only character to immediately and with no hesitation call out Amaranthe on every nonsensical thing she says (aka everything she says) and every piece of advice she gives that's obviously morally terrible or disastrous (again, pretty much every piece of advice she gives). Since Amaranthe essentially bullies everyone else in the setting into just letting her dictate their actions (which would be less annoying if her way wasn't almost always unambiguously worse than their initial impulses) this makes him fairly unique in the main cast. *** Special mention is merited of his interrupting one of her 'I'm superior to you because I'm vegan' rants by just looking from her to her sub, who she regularly manipulates into doing things the latter clearly doesn't actually want to do, and commenting that it's a lovely night for dramatic irony. That was almost a crowning moment of awesome in itself, after 300+ chapters of the rest of the main cast actively piling on to Amaranthe's side at every opportunity to shame and badger Mack into not standing up for her own viewpoints.
6th Mar '15 1:50:08 AM zeel
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****** This whole argument gets hashed out in universe in [[http://www.talesofmu.com/other/mumoo this OT]] where Mackenaie argues with a character from another world (in which science works).

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** Society tends to work just fine even when people do terrible things to each other. Plus, in this case, slaves are specifically not considered "people" at all. As for petitioning to kill students - that's just Callahan, and she only gets away with it because she made a deal with Embries.
4th Dec '13 10:52:27 PM Willbyr
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****** I can understand that - but, ultimately, "Would like, ''but''" means "''Don't'' like". This is absolutely fair and perfectly fine! However, knowing you don't like something is an excellent reason to instead read something more politically palatable or otherwise more of a pleasure to read. It's a lousy reason to ''obsess'' over something, as one or two people - '''not''' saying ''you'' - have. (Personally, I'm a grumpy pro-market libertarian - if I had a political discussion with Alexandra Erin, we'd probably go hammer and tongs damn quick. However, I don't view TalesOfMU through the lens of her politics, and I don't try to spot insidious political content in it; kinda like TalesOfTheQuestor, what I have actually seen ''in'' it hasn't offended or even bugged me, her Team Blue leanings aside.)
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****** I can understand that - but, ultimately, "Would like, ''but''" means "''Don't'' like". This is absolutely fair and perfectly fine! However, knowing you don't like something is an excellent reason to instead read something more politically palatable or otherwise more of a pleasure to read. It's a lousy reason to ''obsess'' over something, as one or two people - '''not''' saying ''you'' - have. (Personally, I'm a grumpy pro-market libertarian - if I had a political discussion with Alexandra Erin, we'd probably go hammer and tongs damn quick. However, I don't view TalesOfMU Literature/TalesOfMU through the lens of her politics, and I don't try to spot insidious political content in it; kinda like TalesOfTheQuestor, what I have actually seen ''in'' it hasn't offended or even bugged me, her Team Blue leanings aside.)
26th Oct '13 8:26:52 AM SeptimusHeap
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***** That's fine for reviews, papers, sporkings, etc. For everyone else, "Don't like, don't read" is a much saner alternative to hating a work and yet still reading it so as to have something to obsessively complain about. This is why ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontLike is considered ''bad''.
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***** That's fine for reviews, papers, sporkings, etc. For everyone else, "Don't like, don't read" is a much saner alternative to hating a work and yet still reading it so as to have something to obsessively complain about. This is why ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontLike Administrivia/ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontLike is considered ''bad''.
13th Feb '13 1:18:01 PM Underachiever
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** There's nothing whatsoever wrong with death at least in the abstract; a setting in which everything alive ''had'' to live forever would probably turn into a form of hell pretty quickly, especially if said living things were still capable of reproduction and had only so much room to expand into. That said, there are a whole ''bunch'' of tropes on this very site that can be used to explain why gods in fiction generally don't come down to set mortals straight (and why, when they try, it rarely works anyway); this setting is simply no exception to that rule. Of course, neither really has anything to do with the fact that the society presented in the stories ''does'' come across as rather dysfunctional -- enough so that the gods of "good" may simply have their hands full trying to keep the whole thing from imploding on itself ''already''.
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** There's nothing whatsoever wrong with death at least in the abstract; a setting in which everything alive ''had'' to live forever would probably turn into a form of hell pretty quickly, especially if said living things were still capable of reproduction and had only so much room to expand into. That said, there are a whole ''bunch'' of tropes on this very site that can be used to explain why gods in fiction generally don't come down to set mortals straight (and why, when they try, it rarely works anyway); this setting is simply no exception to that rule. Of course, neither really has anything to do with the fact that the society presented in the stories ''does'' come across as rather dysfunctional -- enough so that the gods of "good" may simply already have their hands full trying to keep the whole thing (necessarily somewhat implied by this theory) CrapsackWorld from simply imploding on itself ''already''.altogether.
13th Feb '13 1:14:18 PM Underachiever
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** There's nothing whatsoever wrong with death at least in the abstract; a setting in which everything alive ''had'' to live forever would probably turn into a form of hell pretty quickly, especially if said living things were still capable of reproduction and had only so much room to expand into. That said, there are a whole ''bunch'' of tropes on this very site that can be used to explain why gods in fiction generally don't come down to set mortals straight (and why, when they try, it rarely works anyway); this setting is simply no exception to that rule. Of course, neither really has anything to do with the fact that the society presented in the stories ''does'' come across as rather dysfunctional -- enough so that the gods of "good" may simply have their hands full trying to keep the whole thing from imploding on itself ''already''.
20th Jan '13 4:49:04 AM Maltodextrin
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******* The thing that bothers me about the world-as-a-DM analogy is that the hypothetical DM is petty, dickish, and uncreative. It doesn't come off as the DM putting the kibosh on the character that used a feedback loop thanks to 29 different feats and spells across 16 obscure rulebooks to achieve godhood by level 4. It comes off as a player going, "Hang on, if I put a shower head, which creates infinite water, above a toilet, which removes the water, and stick a water wheel in between, I can generate a perpetual motion machine." and the DM going, "Lol no, your small intestine is now a duck." The Leighton twins are a prime example, did their father never try the experiment with a pair of oranges? And even given their unfortunate mishap, how is the method not practiced globally now, with a little asterix next to the instructions saying "Twins may become two-headed monstrosities."
14th Dec '12 2:57:30 AM IsaacG
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* The No Science thing Just Bugs Me. Apparently nothing is consistent, and the universe will change everything any anything just to screw around with you. The problem that immediatly arises is "how did they get magic to work in the same way enough to produce multiple TV's, animated carriges, and whatnot". Then comes the inherient problems to experimenting not working. If you check if everything goes down, it will go up or sideways. How do comparitivly identical races and species(such as noting limbs all go in a certain space) form, or reproduction work in the same way for the same thing? Hell, observed laws ''do'' work, otherwise creating Nymphs in the method of Barley and Amaranth wouldn't work. We aren't even supposed to 'try not to think about it', since it takes place in an educational setting, where characters and readers are ''supposed'' to think about it. I generally like the series, but completley tossing out the way things work except when it's convenient to the setting seems lazy.
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* The No Science thing Just Bugs Me. Apparently nothing is consistent, and the universe will change everything any anything just to screw around with you. The problem that immediatly arises is "how did they get magic to work in the same way enough to produce multiple TV's, animated carriges, and whatnot". Then comes the inherient problems to experimenting not working. If you check if everything goes down, it will go up or sideways. How do comparitivly identical races and species(such as noting limbs all go in a certain space) form, or reproduction work in the same way for the same thing? Hell, observed laws ''do'' work, otherwise creating Nymphs in the method of Barley and Amaranth wouldn't work. We aren't even supposed to 'try not to think about it', since it takes place in an educational setting, where characters and readers are ''supposed'' to think about it. I generally like the series, but completley completely tossing out the way things work except when it's convenient to the setting seems lazy.

** Part of the emphasis on No Science is to avoid the LikeRealityUnlessNoted trope so common even in fantasy settings (like Lord of the Rings), and to avoid FridgeLogic like "if you can summon food, then why are there still starving people?" The answer being: the physical universe actively works against you, as the rules change if you try to abuse them too easily. In a sense, it's a lampshade hanging on how people in-universe will react to GMs house ruling broken spells or spell combinations. The reason, say, televisions can be mass produced is probably because they're not being used to cripple the economy, utterly annihilate entire countries, or to amass vast personal resources in a manner that, well, matters. In a sense, the universe (or GM) will say "you can't do this any more" if your method of getting rich is basically "learn Summon Chest Full of Gold, cast a million times". But if it is "gather up these materials, assemble them in a certain way, and then spend time and effort to sell them so they can become useful", then the caster will get a free pass, as "watching TV" won't be considered broken.
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** Part of the emphasis on No Science is to avoid the LikeRealityUnlessNoted trope so common even in fantasy settings (like Lord of the Rings), and to avoid FridgeLogic like "if you can summon food, then why are there still starving people?" The answer being: the physical universe actively works against you, as the rules change if you try to abuse them too easily. In a sense, it's a lampshade hanging on how people in-universe will react to GMs [=GMs=] house ruling broken spells or spell combinations. The reason, say, televisions can be mass produced is probably because they're not being used to cripple the economy, utterly annihilate entire countries, or to amass vast personal resources in a manner that, well, matters. In a sense, the universe (or GM) will say "you can't do this any more" if your method of getting rich is basically "learn Summon Chest Full of Gold, cast a million times". But if it is "gather up these materials, assemble them in a certain way, and then spend time and effort to sell them so they can become useful", then the caster will get a free pass, as "watching TV" won't be considered broken.
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