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Literature / Factory of the Gods

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Fantasy tech vs. gods

"Remember when I asked you if the Godcore could bind to a mind that wasn’t actually alive? Well, this is why I asked. It’s a cellphone. You can use it to do a lot of things, including talking to people who are anywhere on the world if they have one of their own. At least, on my world. It won’t work here. But it also has a computer, which is a kind of...very complex mechanical adding device. And apparently, if an adding device gets complex enough, it counts as a brain."
Julian
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Factory of the Gods[1] is a series of novels written by Alex Raizman, aka Hydrael. It stars Julian, a down on his luck inventor who is summoned to a fantasy world. He was supposed to pick up a Godcore to gain divine power. Instead, the magic rock got stuck to his phone. He uses his now enchanted phone, which operates on video game logic, to build a factory to aid the people of the wastes in their battle against a whole pantheon of gods and adventurers.


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Factory of the Gods contains examples of:

  • Arbitrary Maximum Range: The turrets in the series operate on their ability to sense people and target them. Their exact range isn't stated, but it's close enough Julian was able to have a full conversation with people on the other side of that range.
  • Bag of Holding: Julian is given an inventory belt that has individual pockets that function as bags of holding, only limited to one type of object, making them function more like inventory slots in a video game.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Given that the entire story is essentially Factorio, but in a fantasy world, the Hive serves this role throughout the series.
  • Car Fu: The climax of book 2 involves Car Fu, but with a train.
  • Cool Train: When Julian unlocks the ability to create trains, they are explicitly stated to be steam powered but look more like modern diesel engines. Julian weaponizes one of them to run over an antagonist.
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  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Many of the items Julian can create, such as Godseyes and Grasping Hands, are color coded to make it clear what their function is. Red Godseyes detect heat, Blue Godseyes detect movement, etc.
  • Cruelty Is the Only Option: Julian knows that the factory is producing massive amounts of pollution, but the short term strength it offers is too good to pass up.
  • Diesel Punk / Steampunk: The series straddles the line between these with steam engines that look like diesel engines, boilers that power steam engines, and large factory segments.
  • A Dungeon Is You: During book 2 it is revealed that Dungeon Cores used to be common on this world until the Great Offscreen War
  • Dungeon Punk: Many of Julian's inventions are explicitly magic powered or have magic as a major component.
  • Deity of Human Origin: Anyone who picks up a Godcore can become this, gaining specific domains and powers.
  • Easy Logistics: Zigzagged.
    • Buildings have no maintenance, conveyer belts operate without any input, and magic items make creating robotic hands simple.
    • However, the need for materials being transported to the main factory so they can be turned into useful goods is an ongoing challenge throughout the series.
  • Fantasy Pantheon: The gods are physically present and can be anyone who picks up a Godcore. Implied to be hundreds, if not more, of them running around.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Averted. Julian's turrets do not have a friend or foe recognition system, and will fire blindly at any moving heat source in their range.
  • Hero-Tracking Failure: The turrets are dumb and will shoot blindly if there is a moving heat source, causing them to be confused and target shields that were left in the sun at one point.
  • Gaia's Vengeance / Green Aesop: By Book 2, the Hive seems to be becoming this, focused on trying to destroy the factory for reasons not yet explained. To hammer that point home, the main antagonist of the second book is a Nature Goddess. The exact impacts of the pollution have only shown in crops being damaged so far.
  • Kill It with Fire: Julian's solution to the problem of hostile ents
  • Kill the God: Julian has to do this multiple time throughout the series, because gods keep coming to kill him.
  • Magic Tool: Julian's smartphone touches a Godcore and becomes this, unlocking new features as he levels up.
  • More Dakka: The turrets become a rare example using arrows instead of bullets.
  • No OSHA Compliance: zigzagged. Julian mentions the risk of industrial accidents, but the factory is entirely open air and there are little-to-no precautions about approaching massive industrial drills.
  • Our Elves Are Different: The Aelifs on Keldora have sonar and can leap like grasshoppers.
  • Our Gods Are Different: Gods are mortal beings who have found and claimed a Godcore. A Godcore grants divine powers relating to its domain, immunity to a particular energy type that instead powers the core, and access to a level-up system that allows them to gain new powers.
  • Our Orcs Are Different: The Urkin on Keldora fill the Orc role, and while they are big, strong, and green, they have horns and are as smart as humans.
  • Physical God: Anyone with a Godcore is this.
  • Powered Armor: Julian crafts this to get him close to on par with the gods and adventurers he's fighting against.
  • RPG-Mechanics Verse: Julian notes a number of times that the world seems to operate on video game logic.
  • Ramming Always Works: Julian's solution to The book 2 antagonist. He had to set her on fire to seal the kill, though.
  • Ridiculously Fast Construction: All construction in this series happens at ludicious speeds, justified in part by being the product of divine power.
  • Schizo Tech: Coal powered steam engines provide electricity to magic devices that build trains, automated turrets, swords, and robotic construction arms.
  • Science Hero: Julian is an engineer and - while his power armor makes him effective in a fight - he gets the most benefit from inventing and building off the factory.
  • Shout-Out: The series is one giant shout out to Factorio, and it's peppered with references to other books and video games, including Skyrim.
  • Smart People Build Robots: Julian's robots are just arms, but given he uses them to grab and trap and throw enemies, this definitely applies.
  • Sudden Game Interface: The phone becomes this for the logic of the world. at the end of Book 2, Julian learns the whole world runs on that, but only certain things can see the interface. He finds out when he accidentally unlocks the ability to see the interface.
  • The Turret Master: Julian. Although he still needs to put ammo in them, they are his primary weapon on defense and offense.
  • Utility Belt: Julian's belt of bags of holding certainly functions as one of these.
  • You Have Researched Breathing: It takes several attempts to design a basic stone wall the Godcore is able to produce.

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