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When was the exact moment that the Technocratcy began to be written as less "evil"?

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  • When was the exact moment that the Technocratcy began to be written as less "evil"?

    That is, when the good they had done and their more positive traits were focused on. Also when did it become clear that the Traditions were being less than honest in their descriptions of the former?

  • #2
    The Book of Shadows (the first edition's Player's Guide) started its Technocracy section with a vignette about an NWO agent trying to stop a CoX mage and his Hollower partners from distributing dangerous drugs and gunrunning in the local neighborhood. The section then went into some detail as to how one could play a Technocrat as a good guy, despite the organization as a whole being corrupt. (Reviewing the book, the vignette was actually split up over the various parts of the Technocracy section.)
    Last edited by Dataweaver; 12-02-2020, 03:19 PM.


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    • #3
      It depends what you mean. Like, the original Convention books aren't just told from a Tradition perspective; the Technocracy is really obviously bad news.

      That said, I'd say, Book of Chantries (so, book 3 I believe) at least presents some Technocrats as having good intentions.


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      • #4
        They were always the good guys

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        • #5
          I do recall Phil Brucato saying in an interview that he never liked the Technocracy as monolithically evil, and set out from the moment he got control of Mage (which was immediately after the core book was printed) to add more nuanced to them. So the Book of Chantries thing doesn't surprise me.


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          • #6
            Originally posted by Dwight View Post
            They were always the good guys
            I'd say they're the materialist guys and the Traditions are the idealist guys. Both can be good or bad.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Resplendent Fire View Post

              I'd say they're the materialist guys and the Traditions are the idealist guys. Both can be good or bad.
              One group being absolute jack holes to sleepers brought about the creation of the other soooo......

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              • #8
                .....soooo the other became absolute jack holes to sleepers.

                Okay; that's an exaggeration. But then, so is the claim that the first group was absolute jack holes to Sleepers in the first place.

                It is true, though, that the Order of Reason lost its way; and by the time it reformed as the Technocracy, much of its original idealism was gone. And what followed was a gradual descent into arrogant control freakery. Well intentioned control freakery, for the most part; but you know what they say about the path to Hell and good intentions. By the time the Virtual Adepts abandoned them, everyone on both sides of the conflict had blood on their hands, and nobody had a clear claim to the moral high ground.
                Last edited by Dataweaver; 12-07-2020, 10:33 AM.


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                • #9
                  The Order of Reason started with that Proclamation of total eradication of [non-Christian?] wizards and genocide of all magical creatures. That isn't idealism, it's fanatical hatred. If they'd focused only on stomping out the Houses of Hermes (who really were absolute jack holes), and live and let live with other people, it would have been different.

                  I can never see any group that has near-omnicidal genocide as their official policy as anything but absolutely evil. Individuals who joined the group have free will (more or less) and can be decent people, but not the Order itself. When you add authoritarianism, colonialism, racism, forced assimilation, exploitative capitalism, and mass mind control... well none of that is remotely close to good.

                  I don't claim to know what official policies the Traditions have, in comparison. Other than the lack of omnicidal warfare against everyone else on Earth. It's the World of Darkness, so I suspect there are no genuine "good guy" groups, just shades of grey.
                  Last edited by Erinys; 12-03-2020, 01:08 PM. Reason: spelling typo


                  She/Her. I am very literal-minded and write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
                  My point of view may be different from yours but is equally valid.
                  Exalted and cWoD book list. Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dwight View Post

                    One group being absolute jack holes to sleepers brought about the creation of the other soooo......
                    Not really a compelling argument as to what the Technocracy and Traditions are portrayed as in modern books. Previous two replies covered the rest of anything I could possibly bring up.

                    Materialism and idealism are philosophical concepts, though. Couldn't hurt to look them up.

                    Google's first result is very simplified but not exactly wrong:

                    Idealism is a branch of philosophy which says that idea precedes matter. It means, existence of matter is because of an idea of its existence. Materialism says matter precedes the idea. It means, an idea of the existence of a material is a result of its physical existence first.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Erinys View Post
                      The Order of Reason started with that Proclamation of total eradication of [non-Christian?] wizards and genocide of all magical creatures. That isn't idealism, it's fanatical hatred.
                      It's also an exaggeration. Sorcerers Crusade takes place roughly a century after the founding of the Order of Reason, and it shows us what the Order was like at that time. While they were antagonistic toward the fledgeling Traditions, it wasn't fanatical hatred, nor was it attempted genocide.

                      Originally posted by Erinys View Post
                      If they'd focused only on stomping out the Houses of Hermes (who really were absolute jack holes)
                      Actually, they weren't; not overall. Sure, there were bad elements among them, such as the ones that the Craftsmasons took down early on; and that was enough to give them a bad rep. And no, they weren't pillars of virtue, either. But they weren't absolute jack holes.

                      Originally posted by Erinys View Post
                      It's the World of Darkness, so I suspect there are no genuine "good guy" groups, just shades of grey.
                      This, I absolutely agree with. Well, with the exception of the Nephandi. They are absolute jack holes.


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                      • #12
                        I think it'd help to see a citation as to how every single Tradition were complete "jack holes" to sleepers. I'm definitely curious to see how such a disparate collection of magical practices are rooted in making life terrible for the general population, and how this claim isn't actually an overgeneralization.

                        I'm also curious about how the kind of world that the Technocrats have built, with global warming, wealth inequality, massive amounts of waste, the developing world still being exploited to feed the developed world, means they are necessarily good.
                        Last edited by Resplendent Fire; 12-03-2020, 02:04 AM.

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                        • #13
                          I will say this much: for all the bad things that have come with the Technocracy (and there are a lot of them), I still vastly prefer that over the world as it was when they were founded. And a significant amount of credit for the improvements goes to them. I won't go so far as to call them the good guys, because they're also responsible for so much bad stuff; but they're definitely not all bad.

                          Shades of gray.


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                          • #14
                            Are we sure they're telling the truth about the way the world was when magical tradition held sway, though? They have an entire wing dedicated to propaganda.

                            My point wasn't that they're evil, though, but rather that calling them the good guys ignores or even actively sweeps a lot of excesses under the rug.

                            Although a lot of stuff going on today wouldn't make the Technocracy look like humanity's saviors. Just... only those fortunate enough to live in the right place, or have the right parentage, or have the right opportunities. It's hard to argue a justification that the Technocracy's vision is all that great when one knows - for example - that enslaved children are forced to mine cobalt under hazardous conditions so we can have so many of those precious technological gadgets we rely upon so heavily.Making the Technocracy the face of institutions that have for centuries indulged in imperialist expansion and colonialist exploitation doesn't exactly put them in a good light.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Resplendent Fire View Post
                              I think it'd help to see a citation as to how every single Tradition were complete "jack holes" to sleepers. I'm definitely curious to see how such a disparate collection of magical practices are rooted in making life terrible for the general population, and how this claim isn't actually an overgeneralization.

                              I'm also curious about how the kind of world that the Technocrats have built, with global warming, wealth inequality, massive amounts of waste, the developing world still being exploited to feed the developed world, means they are necessarily good.

                              I honestly don't know how the claim is so prevalent. I think it is some kind of strange assumption about the power and influence of the pre-Technocracy magical groups. Whatever the case it's great inspiration for Technocracy propaganda, but not so great for depicting early Traditions motivations.


                              Mage: The Ice-ension: An Epic Game of Reality on the Rink

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