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#51 Crispy

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 08:27 PM

The Hammers intensely oppose evil and immorality, and those that are allied with those forces

Correction: What they perceive as evil and immorality. Not always the same thing. :) I think the torture chambers in their churches make it clear that they can turn blind eyes sometimes as well...
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#52 Dunedain

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 08:32 PM

Well, while the Hammers do clearly oppose what is objectively evil, their methods at times might be more than is warranted for a given situation. :)

#53 Crispy

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 09:06 PM

Maybe I'm just a wishy-washy pinko lefty, but I would define torture as "objectively evil". Therefore I consider the Hammers to be morally bankrupt.
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#54 Vadrosaul

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 09:21 PM

Maybe I'm just a wishy-washy pinko lefty, but I would define torture as "objectively evil". Therefore I consider the Hammers to be morally bankrupt.

Agreed. That's what I think led a lot of their members down the path of something new, hence the coming of the Mechanists, kind of a theological upgrade for those who felt the Hammerite institution was losing its moral edge and respect.
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#55 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 09:43 PM

Hard to compete with slave labor until you've already made an engine that's more efficient to fuel than fueling humans. :)

Until the empire started to collapse and it was very hard to fuel slaves or any other people. I remember some politician handing out bread to people to be voted into the office.


With several exceptions. The most obvious being that magic is real.
and have mastery of magic through the use of these mysterious glyph symbols.
world has the sort of technology that one would expect in medieval times, there are places where you do see the odd gas light, or even some crude electricity in evidence. But most of the time it's just normal candles, oil lamps, torches, etc. The gas lights one would assume are made to work by someone having stumbled on some place near the city where there were natural gas deposits very near the surface of the ground, detected by the odor, no doubt, and through driving some pipes down a ways were able to access small amounts of it. This would then be fed through pipes to a very limited number of gas lights in the nearby area, and thus they can sometimes be seen in the houses of the very rich, or fancy museums and such.
Probably the best way to generally explain this stuff is to note that very few have access to these sort of things, these

I think the most obvious is the technology. Magic, as is religion, a belief system, and is therefore under the same scrutiny as anything belief-based is customarily, that is, none. Technology and science though, by definition can be expected to be explained in scientific and technological ways. Using Aristotle's physics to say that an air balloon (carrying people) rises because it is mostly air and thus undergoes natural motion upward is perfectly acceptable, as is saying that the sky consists of crystal shells. It is also semi-alright to say the moon has atmosphere, and as the earth's gravity diminishes with square of distance (according to some guy called Newton) it has less and less hold on the atmosphere, which rarifies as one goes up, until starting to un-rarify as one approaches the moon (and direction of gravity reverses), thus balloon travel to the moon is possible. Of course then the question of friction arises, which was well known by Galileo (rather stupidly) and Newton (rather well) as well as all the latter scientists.
I hear people say the keepers use magic by way of glyphs, yet as far as I can remember the glyphs were used only once to seal up a cathedral, and overall magic is not widely used by the keepers. By the way, a good question is where do they get their wealth.
And in my opinoin the tech is not as one would expect with the occasional inclusion of higher tech. The higher tech (as well as any) requires a history of its appearance in the world and an infrastructure. Also most times after a demonstration of its capability, and if its not prohibitive in cost, it spreads and develops very fast. As far as I remember gas which burns was discovered by Dr Hales and published in a common scientific journal, philosophical transactions, and first used to light the outside of a building in 1802 which astonished the public (by Watt's friend at their steam engine factory), while the steam engine (used to sump water from coal mines) was invented by Newcomen in 1712, but because of crappy craftsmanship at the time it couldn't have been a positive pressure one and thus was by a vacuum. it was 50 years before some guy named watt decided to improve upon it. Remember the romans considered it a highest honour and demonstration of civilization to build gigantic building, temples, and stone structures. Can we assume that the empire before did likewise with strong iron things like boilers and apparati that could withstand high pressures? And the steam engine was actually invented a very long time ago? Back to the gas lights, it's rather unlikely or impossible that the situation transpired as above described, as iron foundries are the most obvious source of gas. Because of making coke. And in real life many people experimented with different sources for gas and methods of production to achieve the most illuminating power. The dirtiest gas (with long hydrocarbons, oily, tar, etc) burned the brightest. Also, these days most people visualize gas lights as they are found in the modern context, propane burning in rare-earth mantles, not the fish-tails of before. So perhaps not because of the unavailability of capable technicians and swamps but because of limited production from coal caused by political and economic surcumstances only the rich have afforded to have the brightly illuminating and "cool" gas piped into their houses and gardens.

define torture as "objectively evil".

You mean evil by definition?
Evil by definition is only that what the current ruling moral-enforing agency defines.

#56 Crispy

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 09:53 PM

Well, indeed. My issue with Dunedain's claim is that he's excusing the Hammers' use of torture on the basis that they oppose things that are "objectively evil". If the Hammers include torture in their definition of what is evil, then clearly that claim is false. However, if they do not include torture in their definition of what is evil, then I for one do not agree with their definition of evil. Either way, they are morally bankrupt.
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#57 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 10:10 PM

btw, I read an interesting book, which if the occasion arises I shall transcribe into the computer form for availability in FMs, on the measurement of calorimetetry and illuminating power of city gas. Also I saw the philosophical transactions in the basement of the university library, but didn't bother reading it, as well flipped through Newton's Principia in latin published in 1712, very oddly standing along with the other books published in japan and russia on obscure physics and mathematics topics, which I found odd and interesting.

#58 Dunedain

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Posted 04 March 2007 - 12:04 PM

Well, it would depend on what they were doing in these "torture" chambers, I don't recall of the top of my head if such specifics were mentioned in the Thief games. Perhaps these are used mainly for typical corporal punishment, flogging and such, at times for serious offenses. Does Thief specify that they were literally torturing people? If so, then naturally they would be wrong to do so.

Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat: No, I was referring to evil (and thus right and wrong) as an absolute moral standard that things can be judged by. The Hammers, for instance, are opposed to stealing (unlike our friend Garrett and his allies :) ), which is wrong, and they are opposed to and trying to stop their arch enemy, recently deceased (at least we think), the Trickster, who was trying to cast the world into darkness so he can rule over it with his deranged pagan followers, and killing anyone who got in his way, etc. These are good things to be for. That doesn't mean that they don't do other things wrong, or in a way that is inappropriate. I was speaking in a very general and broad sense when I was referring to the Hammers. They have a strict code of conduct that generally adheres to what is morally right. But that doesn't preclude them being flawed in other ways. I wasn't attempting a thorough analysis of all aspects of their behavior. :)

Another example would be the mass murder of jews by the Nazis. This is something that was absolutely wrong and evil, not just in someone's or group's opinion, or because it was unpopular, it was literally and absolutely wrong. According to the Nazis it was ok to do, but just because they said murder was ok to do, didn't make it right or any less evil. And that's why they were hung for it.

#59 Gildoran

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Posted 04 March 2007 - 12:26 PM

Well, it would depend on what they were doing in these "torture" chambers, I don't recall of the top of my head if such specifics were mentioned in the Thief games. Perhaps these are used mainly for typical corporal punishment, flogging and such, at times for serious offenses. Does Thief specify that they were literally torturing people? If so, then naturally they would be wrong to do so.

I seem to remember pillories, bloody racks and iron maidens, among other things. Without a doubt they were engaged in the worst sorts of torture.

Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat: No, I was referring to evil (and thus right and wrong) as an absolute moral standard that things can be judged by. The Hammers, for instance, are opposed to stealing (unlike our friend Garrett and his allies :) ), which is wrong, and they are opposed to and trying to stop their arch enemy, recently deceased (at least we think), the Trickster, who was trying to cast the world into darkness so he can rule over it with his deranged pagan followers, and killing anyone who got in his way, etc. These are good things to be for. That doesn't mean that they don't do other things wrong, or in a way that is inappropriate. I was speaking in a very general and broad sense when I was referring to the Hammers.

I don't think it's so simple. Would stealing from Nazis be wrong? What if it helps the war effort against them? No doubt in Thief, Pagans viewed the Hammerites much like Nazis. For one thing, the Hammerites would have been perfectly happy to gather up all the Pagans and let them rot in Cragscleft or even torture them to death - if they could find them. When the Trickster went on the rampage, he killed Cityfolk - people who, from his view, committed or were complicit in numerous crimes against nature. (read some of Thief's pre-mission Pagan poetry about houses built of murdered trees and dead rock) In the case of the Trickster's Dark Project, if you've looked at his manifesto, it's clear that the reason he wants to plunge the world into darkness isn't just to rule it; he wants to prevent the wonder and mysteries of the world and peoples' dreams from being snuffed out by the encroachments of civilization and scientific understanding.

What you really have is two diametrically opposed factions who both want to wrest control of the world from each other, because they believe the other side is evil and they can improve it.

They have a strict code of conduct that generally adheres to what is morally right. But that doesn't preclude them being flawed in other ways. I wasn't attempting a thorough analysis of all aspects of their behavior. :)

Again, I haven't seen much to suggest that the Pagans don't have a moral code - it's just that both Hammerites and Pagans felt that stealing from or murdering the other side was legitimate and warranted. Pagans were usually outnumbered (at least in the city), so they were forced to be more stealthy, whereas Hammerites could take things by force.

Another example would be the mass murder of jews by the Nazis. This is something that was absolutely wrong and evil, not just in someone's or group's opinion, or because it was unpopular, it was literally and absolutely wrong. According to the Nazis it was ok to do, but just because they said murder was ok to do, didn't make it right or any less evil. And that's why they were hung for it.

I see far more similarities between Nazis and Hammerites than between Nazis and Pagans. Consider that Nazis thought they were carrying out God's will and Hammerites liked to round up Pagans for incarceration and torture, even working them to death.

Despite this, I don't think one can unequivocally say that Hammerites are evil. Some Hammerites were saintly, others were inhumanly cruel, and the same could likely be said for the Pagans. Certainly neither faction was perfect. But I don't think Thief was a game of good vs. evil; it was more about the balance between nature and civilization and the clash of two radically different ideologies.

#60 bob_arctor

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Posted 04 March 2007 - 12:56 PM

But then in TII there's lots more gas and electricity and stuff isn't there.

And even in the Old Quarter of TG there were electric lights, about hip height, that were blatently modern and didn't fit in at all.

Personally when I do houses or nice buildings in TDM I put in gas or electric lights: the torches look out of place outside of the servants' quarters or kitchens.

#61 Crispy

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Posted 04 March 2007 - 10:37 PM

I seem to remember pillories, bloody racks and iron maidens, among other things. Without a doubt they were engaged in the worst sorts of torture.

Indeed. I definitely remember seeing an iron maiden in the church in Undercover.

I agree with the rest of your analysis too.
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#62 OrbWeaver

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 05:14 AM

There is no such thing as "objectively" or "absolutely" wrong or evil. Morality is a matter of opinion, perspective and context, and anybody who tries to claim that a given act is "objectively wrong" is just trying to state their own opinion as fact, which is arrogant.

We do not live in a "consensus reality"; even if 99.9999% of the human population agrees that something is wrong does not make it objective.

#63 goingsupersonic

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 02:30 PM

The way I saw the Keppers was as an organisation that had tendrils stretching into every organisation and group in the thief world: they permeated and manipulated the Hammers, Pagans, Mages and nobility, and maintained and wqealth through siphoning off money from other organisations.

The Keepers were similar to "The Tribe" in "The Tales of The Otori!, which is a very good trilogy set in a Japanes world

#64 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 09:23 PM

Orb, I decided not to discuss that because it's pointless to those for whom it is self-obvious and for those for whom it isn't.

#65 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 12:01 AM

We can speculate that they never invented and never will (hopefully) dichlorodifluoromethane as that would be an immersion breaker like the turbojet. In their refrigerators they use ammonia, and the fridges are not powered by electricity (they consume a lot, wireless electricity not an option, best to have direct mechanical coupling), they are powered directly by steam engines. Thus they are only at large industrial warehouses, etc, near rail-lines. We can also concede that they do after all have turbines, but not efficient ones, just less noisy, easier to maintain than steam engines for producing electricity or any motive power (stationary, big, energy hungry). They are or were developing internal combustion engines but (it's somewhat a miracle in my opinion they caught on so early in our world) they never succeeded in making them efficient or practical, so large low pressure turbines and steam engines are the only choices, and all are large, stationary, and increase in efficiency proportionally to size, making movable objects smaller than a locomotive not practical and thus not pursued. It's just more romantic without the otto cycle. the household turbines feed on coal dust, atomized hydrocarbons (fossil fuels, sometimes lipids), and city gas (readily available in some parts. the household steam engines run on wood, coal, or anything combustible.

Canals are built around the city and around the country to facillitate efficient disbersement of goods, but because of the recent calamity as described by other people in this thread, most kingdoms and states surrounding the vicinity of the City are in a state comparable to germany before the unification, canals are only built in civilized places and thus there aren't many. I'm referring to the canals which stretch long distances, pass through inhabited places, and move tons of cargo with horses. Like the one that made New York, Buffalo and Chicago prosperous. On other continents in far away lands we can speculate there are. Canals are justifiable because there is sufficient supply and demand, amount of middle class, and economy to warrant them. Because of the availability of canals for cargo, rail lines were never heavily invested in, and are thus almost non-existant. Besides, they are best used for smaller, faster deliveries like people, and people in this world don't have many travelling needs: the poorer people stay put, the rich travel by coach, and states surrounding the kingdom where the City is are not exactly tourist destinations. Because of the canals and lack of travel Steam boats were never heavily developed, although they did exist for about 200 years (remember, this is off the top of my head). The steam engines are still huge and inefficient, and if put on a boat leaves hardly any space (or money) for cargo. Besides they have a 100% chance of exploding at some point because inevitably someone will want to push the extra 5% of power from the boiler. So for local travel, (which is rare) roads and horses are used, and canals for cargo.

#66 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 02:19 AM

The connection is of course weak, but still, a similar sense of oppression and masses of people exists in my opinion between the ruling Builder empire and the Union. Ok, that's all BS, but the pictures are nice.
http://akuma.ru/arti...r...cx&uid=5350
and large spiders are not out of the question, as are any other large insects:
http://akuma.ru/arti...r...cx&uid=5352
Hmm, I'm beginning to feel I might regret posting this evening's posts after brandy.

#67 Ishtvan

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 05:14 AM

Those links are NSFW btw. Good thing I wasn't at work. :)

#68 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 06:45 PM

I was just listening to a song on the radio, 1390, sounds pretty good, then found the lyrics, and it struck me it's potentially very similar to the pagans or whatnot situations in the darkmod universe. http://www.lyricsdow...390-lyrics.html

#69 Maximius

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 09:00 AM

The connection is of course weak, but still, a similar sense of oppression and masses of people exists in my opinion between the ruling Builder empire and the Union. Ok, that's all BS, but the pictures are nice.
http://akuma.ru/arti...r...cx&uid=5350
and large spiders are not out of the question, as are any other large insects:
http://akuma.ru/arti...r...cx&uid=5352
Hmm, I'm beginning to feel I might regret posting this evening's posts after brandy.



Easy with the nudie pic links my man, my fiancee is doing yoga ten feet away, if she saw that stuff she would kill me and be hunting you down at this moment!

#70 demagogue

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 09:12 AM

What's unintentionally hilarious about that is how contrasting the two faces of old and new Russia are.

On the one hand, Soviet-era, all women were dressed as if sex didn't exist, even when they're "out to town" (more like "out to the breadlines"). And today's Russia, Jebus!, even an innocuous historical photo collection has to be plastered with nudes sticking everything they can in our faces. Seeing them side to side like that makes you just want to sigh ... our little Russia is growing up so fast.
Posted Image

#71 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 03:06 PM

not so much now, but especially in late 90's early 00's every single site from political news to metaphysical cults to tv listings for any channel to weather had such images and links. It's inevitable.

Here's something interesting, yandex is like a search engine portal thing for russia. well on http://company.yande...98/10-09_00.xml it says:
Following the financial and political crisis an erotic crisis followed in Russia. One month ago on the page "last 20 search keys" over half were "hard and soft porno", "nude girls", or keyword "...", "####", "-----", during the crisis a moral mind was made happy with the following sight: (snapshot)
Instructions of Central Bank of Russian Federation for export
Mayor's Parade
3DS
sending
yusna
world centre database for employment
price of karbamid
powder dye
dollar exchange rate
employment agency
(foreign legion) and (address)
Red Alert
mts
Bzhezinsky
BUY SEMITRAILERS
how to earn money
osama bin laden
meet a girl
weather
AMIBIOS

#72 Order of the Hammer Bureaucrat

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Posted 18 March 2007 - 09:51 AM

I had a strange dream I was a zombie. I'll write more about it when I don't have important stuff to do.

#73 demagogue

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Posted 18 March 2007 - 10:32 AM

I think Freud is telling you that you spend too much time thinking about video games.
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#74 Ishtvan

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Posted 18 March 2007 - 02:31 PM

I had a dream that I found this awesome gravity-ball that let me walk on walls and stuff. Kind've like Prey on crack. I found out you have to change gravity vector very gradually though in practice, and walk up one of the side walls to get to the ceiling, otherwise you smack into the ceiling if it suddenly becomes the floor, and that hurts.

#75 AtariThief

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Posted 18 March 2007 - 07:10 PM

I had a dream that I found this awesome gravity-ball that let me walk on walls and stuff. Kind've like Prey on crack. I found out you have to change gravity vector very gradually though in practice, and walk up one of the side walls to get to the ceiling, otherwise you smack into the ceiling if it suddenly becomes the floor, and that hurts.


Think about it this way if you jump up off the floor and all 6 sides of the room suddenly become the floor, or where gravity pulls, you could be pulled apart in a very painful way. Too sick??? hmmm...

Edited by AtariThief, 18 March 2007 - 07:10 PM.





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