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How feasible is it to link the setting of all of Jeff's games?


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What I mean by this is let's say when Jeff will retire, he will make the biggest game he will ever make by combining all the characters and settings and the best features of all the games he ever created. How feasible would it be for him to do this and link the world and its lore to each game series together? (Avernum, Avadon, Geneforge, Queen's Wish, heck even Nethergate).  I am actually curious if he ever thought of crossing over his games. 

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Most of the games can't be linked as is because of game engine differences. Avernum and Nethergate use similar maps and engines, but Geneforge and Avadon use the zone map system. Maybe with remakes there will be more common code, but I doubt Jeff would ever want to spend time merging them because of all the differences.

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I don't know if he has ever seriously thought of it.  I seem to recall that there has previously been some speculation in the forums about Avernum and Geneforge being in the same world.  There are some common themes and terms in Jeff's work (shapers in both Avernum and Genefore, GIFTS in multiple series) that can be interpreted as one guy has created all of the games and so he reuses ideas that he likes or as subtle indications of a shared world.  

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It'd require a tremendous amount of kludging. Getting Avernum and Geneforge, for example, into the same setting would basically require establishing that they take place on separate continents without any mutual knowledge of each other (barring the isolated Sholai contacts in Geneforge 1 and 5, maybe), and that each society had developed in very different directions not just culturally and politically, but also in terms of science and technology (which is to say, since these are fantasy stories, in terms of magical development). The civilization of Geneforge obviously has Shaping, and more broadly advanced biological and medical knowledge, while the civilization of Avernum has advanced knowledge of teleportation, demonology, etc, which the people of Geneforge lack. There are common features between most Spiderweb series- GIFTs in both Avernum and Nethergate, demons being conceptually very similar across Avernum, Geneforge, and Avadon, magic-users tending towards being absent-minded and callous, etc- but these are more indications that these are just ideas Jeff Vogel likes and likes writing into his games. Most of Kim Stanley Robinson's novels set in the future feature a giant city on Mercury, sometimes physically visited and sometimes not, that moves around the planet on giant rails to stay in the terminator at all times; but the internal stories and histories of the novels are all incompatible, so it just amounts to being an idea he likes writing.

 

So putting Spiderweb games in the same setting geographically would require, basically, still segregating the two settings to such an extent- basically setting them on opposite sides of a planet with no knowledge of each other, or on different planets entirely- that they would still, functionally, be separate settings. Segregating the settings by chronology instead of geography wouldn't really be practical either without enormous kludging- the geography of the continent we see in Geneforge, and of the one continent we see in Avernum, are totally incompatible, and there are no indications of either series's society in the other; so you'd have to say that one series takes place millions of years before or after the other, with tectonic drift accounting for the geographical differences, and the wear of time wiping out all indications of the prior civilization. Which is, again, basically just saying they're separate settings.

 

Nethergate is actually trivially easy to incorporate with either Avernum or Avadon, as it takes place on Earth, but the ending features magical creatures being seeded across the timeline of some (unspecified) alternate world; it'd be easy to say that this is how the GIFTs got into Avernum, or that the Fomorians got stranded in the world of Avadon and eventually became known as ogres, etc etc. But this is also a trivial and meaningless linkage, because none of the magical creatures in those games have any knowledge of or tradition that they came from another world.

 

So I think that that's really the only plausible way you could merge the settings for a big crossover game- explicitly situating them in alternate universes and having some way of travelling between said universes to get characters from each setting together. But you can do that with any collection of fictional settings, and it's trivial and meaningless in terms of unifying the settings or lore.

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12 minutes ago, Minion said:

The solution is simple: magic portals connecting everything and everyone across time and space.

 

I was actually thinking along the lines of this.

 

I trust that if there is someone who can take the best characters, places and features from all his games and put it in to something coherent then it is definitely Jeff.

 

Another part of me kinda wish Jeff pulls a daggerfall by squishing all his games in one universe and you can go around and quest on it all in one go.

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