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 Post subject: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2016 1:32 pm 
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ZCaslar wrote:
[...] having more insight into the biological perspective of the Elorii would help inform their behavior. Ditto culture; the Elorii are uniquely "privileged" to have no comforting illusions about their creation because they've met their creators.

I think this is incredibly important. There's no myth of being "the chosen people" because they were created to be slaves. There's no confusion about who created them because they saw the process in a very naked light. There's no peripheral cultures like the Undir or the Naori to the humans -there's just the Elorii and they don't come in separately originating tribes. There's no ready co-opting of their basic identity as they are literally the Children of Belisarda and in way alien to every human they have a universal link that spans any cultural difference as there are no sub-races of Elorii in the way humans think of them.

ZCaslar said the above in a discussion of Elorii in the ARG 2.0 discussion, but since I'm replying on story and not rules, I'm putting my reply over here.

The Elorii did not personally witness their creation. They were by definition not cognizant until they had already been created. Arcanis has taught me to question stories and history reported as fact to ask who the actual witnesses are and who would know the actual truth. I have no reason as a player to doubt that the official party-line story is correct that the Ssanu master mage Ss'tkoreth created the Elorii, but I want to point out that we don't know that it's true and just know that we've been told that it's true by the Ssethregorans and by the Elorii (who in turn were so told by the Ssanu).

Consider the following alternative. Perhaps the Orb of Ancar was actually a magical relic that allowed mind control of Elorii, a race that already existed somewhere else (e.g., deep underground or on the other side of the world or on another world). Ss'koreth studied the Orb of Ancar and figured out how to use the Orb. The year in which supposedly the Elemental Lords were "taming" Belisarda was really a year in which Ss'koreth mind-controlled the Elorii and forced them to breed. The children were immediately taken from their parents and told that Ss'koreth created them. After a year, the Ssanu killed all the adults and raised the children as their first generation of Elorii slaves. Now, I do not believe that story, but can you prove it's not true? (Elorii might have information or even memories to disprove it, but can you as a player disprove it?) The Ssanu could have concocted the creation story both to make themselves seem awesome and to help keep their slaves obedient to their "creators".

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Sestius Ovidius val'Mehan Comma and Khamat - psion patrician diplomatic legate and his Myrantian tutor
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 Post subject: Re: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 2:05 am 
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:P

Those are fair points. And I also don't doubt that there remain plenty of eddies and whorls of weirdness to explore in elorii history and society. One of the many tropes of Arcanis is that no one gets to wear a definitive "white hat" - not humanty or the Vals. Not the Ssethrics. Not the dwarves. Not the elorii. So it's always edifying to me whenever we get to peek beyond the standard party line and look around. We don't get many peeks behind he party line when it comes to the elorii.

That said it's an awefully large conspiracy if the elorii creation departs significantly from what we think of as canon. First elorii tend to remember past lives...so unless the Orb of Ancar (or something similar) could wipe 10 million souls' memory it's a pointless exercise. Rival factions in the serpentine empire would need to be on the lie. The elemental lords and Belisarda would also need to be in on the lie. And continue to support it even after the snakes were cast out of "Belestor."

I'm willing to believe in the elorii creation story barring shocking revelations.

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. . . and Sir Szymon val'Holryn, Order of the Phoenix
Formerly Sir Jaeger val'Holryn. Weilder of the Holy Avenger: Thonanos. Gave his soul to help free King Noen


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 Post subject: Re: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 4:29 am 

Joined: Thu Dec 19, 2013 8:03 pm
Posts: 184
I'm impressed that the actual point of my comment was entirely ignored in addressing it.

I can't tell if I'm more surprised or insulted.

Also, fyi? There were "batches" of Elorii. So yes, there were "by definition" Elorii aware of the creation process of their race. IIRC that's from the Blessed Lands book.

Perhaps I was too strident in suggesting that the Elorii have logical grounds for having a different perspective on their collective identity than other sapients. Maybe that shouldn't be a factor; make their identity be humans with pointy bits instead of elemental constructs made from gar cadavers -nobody will be insulted that humans might not be the peak of creation that way.

So we have an incorrect assertion and a conspiracy theory with absolutely zero corroborating evidence. What was the point here again?

Edit: before anyone decides to put me in my place be sure you noticed that I was challenged to prove untrue a proposition for which itself there is no evidence. That's what we started with, a demand with the logic of "prove your Mum didn't cheat on your Dad with his genetically identical sibling."

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 Post subject: Re: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 1:19 pm 
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::sigh:: ... :cry: ... alrighty then. Let's address this...

ZCaslar wrote:
...snip... the actual point of my comment was entirely ignored ...snip.

This is a separate thread, and as such it represents a separate idea. If Dante had had a direct comment on your previous post (that he elorii have a historical & biological reason to have a different society from typical of humanity) then he wouldn't have necessarily bothered to create a new thread. Regardless of what anyone thinks is the core of their post, the Arcanis community should be free take inspiration and chase tangents.

Zac then wrote:
I can't tell if I'm more surprised or insulted.

Just my opinion, but in email & forums, I don't think sarcastic statements scan well in general. Mostly I think they come off as rude. The above statement probably doesn't serve you or your arguments well except as a challenge or an escalation.

Zac wrote:
There were "batches" of Elorii. So yes, there were "by definition" Elorii aware of the creation process of their race. IIRC that's from the Blessed Lands book.

I vaguely remember something like this but think it might have been Ssethregore. Anyone care enough to go chasing a quote? It should also be noted that 10 million elorii is a lot bigger than the population of Oregon so logistically batches makes sense. That said it's not clear to me that any elorii ever saw a batch being created. We are speaking about events as far back in the campaign (or further) as the great pyramids are in real life. Even with eloran longevity and racial memories there is room for error to creep in.

Zac wrote:
Perhaps I was too strident ... snip...

Yes.

Zac wrote:
What was the point here again?

Humility in the face of our PCs limited perspective & Keeping an open mind that the official party line is not always the whole truth. Useful principles even if the eloran creation stories we have are substantially correct.

Zac wrote:
Edit: before anyone decides to put me in my place be sure you noticed that I was challenged ... snip

I don't think you were challenged. I don't think people should be put in their place. I do think the forums are more enjoyable when everyone is civil.

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. . . and Sir Szymon val'Holryn, Order of the Phoenix
Formerly Sir Jaeger val'Holryn. Weilder of the Holy Avenger: Thonanos. Gave his soul to help free King Noen


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 Post subject: Re: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 7:44 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 19, 2013 8:03 pm
Posts: 184
Oil on troubled waters. Is it olive, or petroleum? Let's find out.

I can't definitively prove that any Elorii were at all aware of the nature of their creation despite being present in enormous numbers. Yes, this is true. In a campaign who's even public events of great consequence are rarely clearly understood I doubt it's possible to ever really know. That said I made logical inferences from existing data, however speculative, and they were undermined without actually being addressed on the basis of what...? That something else could have happened?

It might be hard to believe, but I am being restrained.

Also, how is humility any part of this? Is it arrogant to claim that the immortal inhuman constructs should have a significantly different perspective on their existence than the standard sapient ape tribalism?

Consider this from a different angle: that this isn't fantasy fiction but instead it's science fantasy. The Elorii are aliens. They have 5 distinct "subraces" that have specific and recurring metaphysical, physical and mental characteristics. They apparently reproduce as mammals do, but don't exchange DNA during conception. They have unique metaphysical traditions as they hold sacred a being who they claim is, relative to your culture's knowledge, as powerful as any of your patrons and is effectively present among you and of whom you've never heard of or noticed but who's worshippers demonstrate boons unique to it as well as a thaumaturgical tradition (Elder) almost as unique except in your most distant lore is attributed to an apparently completely separate non-mammalian race from what would be the other side of the galaxy. They also have a presence in your societies that amounts to "we walked into the room one day and started working as military-industrial contractors* but we don't actually do formal trade."

Oh, And death and rebirth for them works completely different and may have a surprisingly mechanical (albeit magically so) component with no parallels in your own civilization.

They don't get sick, they don't get old, and by their own sincerely held admission didn't evolve because (exercising restraint) they were created by beings who they met, lived among, committed horrific war crimes for, and eventually rebelled against.

Let me re-emphasize that last paragraph in reminding everyone that the period of Elorii service to the Ssetherics last ~800 years to a people who biologically measure generations in a single decade.

Even given the destruction and desecration of their history by humans it's logical to guess that some record, living or otherwise, has gone the distance on the major enough points of their existence to give them this information.

And every claim I make here stands up to research. It's virtually all common knowledge; 90% of this is from the original Codex Arcanis.

Forget Elves think Aliens, and how is it arrogant to -using existent and not at all speculative data (however wrong as it might end up being it's not player guesswork)- to argue that they would have some profound cultural differences? Especially given how little we still know about them?

So yeah. Being called out to "slow my roll" on the basis of something else totally unaccounted for that might have happened while ignoring the underpinning of that roll inspires no tender consideration in me.

I have a tendency to the paranoid and that might be what's driving my reactions, but in the originating thread I'm the only one who made any kind of call for increased Elorii lore.

I'm the only one who made an extrapolation from the existing lore as to what might be different that's not present right now and that not doing so might plausibly invoke a negative reaction from new players who aren't so "reasonable" about accepting why they should buy something that chooses to be so vague about one of it's factions!

If that's illogical, I'm waiting to hear it. If it wasn't for the Elorii I'd be about half as invested as I am in the setting; I don't think my experience is likely to be particularly unique^.

(And we both know about Airia. Aira Windniw is the Osalikene hero of the newest regular player in Portland and however kind and appreciated her player is she's also so completely disengaged from Arcanis' active politics that it hurts to watch. What interests her? Elorii lore. My :roll: is infinite at how perfectly her perspective is ignored -except that she's also Seremasi. Welcome to the campaign, Airia! Don't forget to notice the jibes and hectoring about how "deserved" what happened was because the Seremasi created a foreign quarter!)

I'm the only one being reminded of the need for humility in my speculations while my otherwise respected detractor defends the right of someone else to speculate from their position of even less demonstrable knowledge.

I'm probably over reacting, but I'm over reacting to a thread created to undermine my musings without addressing their content.

I might be in the wrong, but one thing I damn sure am not is incorrect.

...while also needing to expand my definition of civil. Mea culpa.


*spend a second on that. Putting aside the necessary mental convenience of an "Age of Adventure" this would be like having an entirely separate alien presence of whom 90% carry guns for a living. Seriously. We've seen maybe a dozen Elorii who are traders or healers -so they'd run a few small stores and work in clinics- but otherwise it's plate carriers, Ray-Ban shades, firearms and "Operator Tacticool" for nine out of ten other aliens walking around in public -including every one of them you know. It's mind boggling.

^And let's not forget how the Seremasi-Altherian protectorate was one of the biggest singly player driven events in Arcanis history and who's fate was to be discarded because... really we don't know why, do we?

Why does this matter? Because it's "one of the biggest singly player driven events in Arcanis history!" This was one of the most ignored, least included major factions in the setting banding together to suddenly shove one of the levers of history in a way with zero parallels and done entirely fairly ...which was promptly discarded and now routinely features as a vector of attack on the identity and actions of the Elorii.

Whether I trust PCI's deeper reasons, however unknowable, it is undeniable that from an outside perspective that looks shockingly dismissive. And I promise you nobody you're trying to sell a book to is interested in hearing, "our Elves don't matter and really shouldn't matter."

They're likely to ask "so why are they playable?" And I suspect there is no answer that reconciles those two issues. And if there is one, having to preface it with "well after a decade we finally got around to it -but it'll involve telling the story from the perspective of a group of humans" hardly bolsters the case.

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Vaize the Flamesong; disciple of Anaphylaxia, servant of Belisarda.
D'serrat Val'Mordane; Knight Errant and Veteran of the Fifth and Sixth Crusades of Light.
Denevir the Gladiator; aka the Red Widow, the Dread Gorehorn, the Sicarite Seven Slayer!


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 Post subject: Re: Origin of Elorii & Interpreting History
PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 11:11 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 19, 2013 8:03 pm
Posts: 184
I just realized I missed the point.

Well, I got it now. So yeah. We're not talking about my ideas, we're talking about my conduct.

GG. I'll try to forget this thread for my own good.

_________________
Vaize the Flamesong; disciple of Anaphylaxia, servant of Belisarda.
D'serrat Val'Mordane; Knight Errant and Veteran of the Fifth and Sixth Crusades of Light.
Denevir the Gladiator; aka the Red Widow, the Dread Gorehorn, the Sicarite Seven Slayer!


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