Chain of Messages YKTTW Discussion

Chain of Messages
A message is sent through multiple relays.
(permanent link) added: 2011-03-26 02:48:36 sponsor: Blizzaga edited by: pokedude10 (last reply: 2011-10-26 16:41:16)

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Current Name: Chain Of Messages

This trope is 90% complete. However, the description needs to be lengthened, and then it's ready for launch. Do not change the name, a crowner was already held.

Up for Grabs, Needs A Longer Description.

A way of communicating over vast distances by relaying the message from one place to the next until it reaches its final destination.

See also Jungle Drums.



[[folder:Film - Animated]]
  • In Mulan, the Chinese know that the Huns are approaching because of the chain of signal fires lit along the great wall. The fire is lit at the site where the Huns are, and the fire-lighters adjacent to it see the fire and light theirs, and so on.
  • Disney's 101 Dalmatians has the dogs would bark news from one dog to the next, relaying a message across the entire countryside.

  • In Return of the King, Gondor was too far away from Rohan to send a messenger. So a relay of signal fires, or beacons, were lit to signal their distress.
  • Discworld:
    • Used in Pyramids. Here the problem wasn't distance, but time. The heroes needed some inscriptions translated, but the only person who understood them were really ancient mummies - too old to understand modern language. Since the group was composed of all the undead pharaohs of Djelibeybi, the heroes solved the problem by putting them in a line, so that each could communicate with his direct descendants/ancestors.
    • The Semaphore towers are a minor plot point in Monstrous Regiment and a major one in Going Postal

[[folder:Live Action TV]] [[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
  • In the first Gabriel Knight game, there are drummers situated outside almost every place you can visit in the French Quarter, which use their instruments to relay messages to the members of the voodoo cult. This being an adventure game, it is of course used for a puzzle later on.

[[folder:Real Life]]
  • Before the electrical telegraph, the optical telegraph or semaphore line worked this way--operators would watch for messages, and then relay them to the next tower.
  • This was how telegraphs worked as well, as power concerns meant that a message could only travel so far before it was rendered impossible to receive clearly. The beginning of a message would usually contain addressing information indicating who it was meant for, so operators would know whether or not they should pass it on.
  • Several Early African tribes used signal drums that could be heard from nearby villages.
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