Category Archives: World Building

World Building: Minorities

The Gift and the Burden

There was a time when wizards held a position at the top of the great pyramid of society. The great wizard-kings of old passed their Gift down, father to son, mother to daughter. A man or woman with the Gift on the battlefield was worth a hundred of those without, and many tales are told of them riding fearsomely into battle astride their warhorses. The mages shouted words that were meaningless on the lips of others, but from their mouths would produce great displays of lightning from the heavens or produce a feast for a whole company of men.  Continue reading World Building: Minorities

World Building: Other Planes


m-space began as a simple notation in the formulas of the magician-scientists. It had been discovered long ago that for every action there was an equal and opposite reaction, and that the total energy in a system stayed the same. The only problem with these theories was the presence of magic, which seemed to give a giant middle finger to concepts like conservation of mass and conservation of energy. The small m in the equations that defined the physical rules of the universe was simply to indicate that sometimes, magic happens, and it makes no sense in the context of the universe. The vast majority of the time when solving an equation, m=1. When m is higher or lower, the results are wildly different.  Continue reading World Building: Other Planes

World Building: Warfare

The Wizardless Wars

From Alexander Tinth’s Warfare: In Theory and Practice, Addendum

There is an old saying that must once have been pithy, which goes “Wizard war is redundant”. This is of course a shortening of the full formulation, which is “Wizard war is redundant, for all wars involve wizards” which removes the syntactic ambiguity which might suggest to the incautious reader that wizards imply war – but perhaps this is the intent of the expression after all. While it is true that the vast majority of wars are fought with wizards on one side (or in the case of the Five Dissents, both sides), in the six hundred years of the inaptly named Pax Arcana there have been exactly three wars fought without wizardly intervention. This material is new to the third printing, primarily because of the numerous letters that I received asking me to expound on the footnote in Chapter 4.  Continue reading World Building: Warfare