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Melcavuk

Age of Sigmar - Technological Level

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One for the masses mostly out of curiosity, some of you may or may not have seen my Ironweld work of late and alot of the phrases that get bandied about can be "too techy" or "too advanced" which is understandable but led me to wonder, what is your personal concept of the technological level of Age of Sigmar, with background information on Cog Forts, along with the pressure suits and the flying cities of the Kharadron overlords what would your technological peak be for the Age of Sigmar before you felt it had left the scope of the setting.

We know from background we have:

Cog Forts
Kharadron Pressure Suits
Man Portable Harpoon Cannons
Steam Tanks etc

But have yet to see the scope of the new factions to be added to the setting, all of which is not accounting for the weird sciences of Skaven.

So how Tech is too Tech for Sigmar I guess is the root question?

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it's all over the place really isn't it!

KO and, to a weird chaotic extent, Skaven I place at around Victorian level, with certain key advances missing and others existing mainly thanks to magic.

Due to being stuck with the old Empire models you have Freeguild a few hundred years behind them, so 16-17th century Europe.

Then at the other end of the scale you have others who are at basically Bronze/Iron Age levels of development.

But then they had peace and prosperity in the age of myth for millennia and never developed much.

I think you just have to throw your hands up and say magic does weird ****** to civilisations and retards their development as much as it helps in odd ways (which is a bit hand wavey but you could make a case for).

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From a modelling perspective purely, as long as it doesn't look space opera or doesn't have computers or terminator robots, I think it should look fine in AoS...

This excludes most space and robotic models from 40k. But I have considered building some Sector Mechanicus terrain for my Skavens, as it wouldn't look out of place at all with some minor conversions. That new drill would be perfect fit for my Skryre army! Many Skaven players use Adeptus Mechanicus for conversions (in AoS or to port Skavens to 40k). 40k Orks would not seem out of place in AoS either.

 

Edited by Num
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Like myself, there are other skaven players going "more-more weapons, experiments! Doom for the filthy no-furs". I mean we once made an atomic bomb and blew the moon up so there's that. There's never enough unreliable, volatile tech for the children of the horned rat. 

If the tech fits the story, I suppose the narrative should be fine. My litmus test would have to be flight capability for the mortal realms. While weapons are one measure of tech presence in a faction or world for that matter, I believe flight is the current bar to clear. KO seems to be ahead in that race. As for what is appropriate for Age of Sigmar, I would phrase it like this: Any tech that would otherwise belittle a magic/fantasy version of the device or tool, hurts the "flavor" of the world. For example, if the KO starting sporting a air cruiser that makes riding a dragon into battle a joke, then its probably too much tech. Mind you this is just for the narrative; for the purposes of the game I understand the need to keep the game balanced and what not. But you have to keep in mind that most of the factions, don't NEED any tech due to magic and I would argue keeps the fantasy flavor intact. 

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For me it boils down to rivets, seams, and propulsion. KO, as duradin probably are the top of the tech limit.  And to me their aether bubbles are really just an IP protected form of sails or hot air balloons. Yes they have pressure suits but all of the gear that powers it is visible on the outside. In 40k it isn't visible. Space Marine armor just moves.

Humans aren't gonna out-tech the duradin. And Sigmar will just magic it instead of tech it. I think your walker conversion is ace. It still has wood components, has good amounts of plates and rivets (a "unrefined" tech, its not all smooth and pressure sealed).  I haven't looked at your blog in a while but I think some of your infantry bases for conversions rubbed people the wrong way because they don't have those exterior fittings/joinings on the armor/helemts or the guns look way to clean.

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I think one line for me would be semiconductor electronics.  Nope. 

I'd be OK with the use of electricity in some particular societies (KO, skaven, freeguild) up through a 1930s level of tech (lighting, heating, and motors mainly), and maybe even the tiniest steps into vacuum tube transistors for a particularly gifted/mad Aetheric Navigator or Warplock Engineer, but no silicon.

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At the end of the Silver Shard, they're talking about steam powered bionic limbs. So yes, there's tech there for certain.

 

The overal feel for me is magical steampunk. So we can accept powered suits of armour, magically animated golems, ratling guns, and flying airships

 

You've got dinosaurs which are the memories of ancient toad wizards, souless sea dwelling aelves who conjure the sea with them, a moon which wanders the realms corrupting flesh and bringing scuttling creatures out to the surface.

 

You have the heroes of the worlds that were and that will be forged by a god to battle the darkness

 

and you have men and women, durardian aelven and human all trying to form cities against the wilderness

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My rule of thumb: if I look at it and go, "oh, that's bloody awesome!" then it's all good.

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For me personally the line, as somebody else already mentioned, is electric/computer level, wild electrics are fine (Tesla coils, mad scientist whatnots), but complicated electronics are a no.

Steampunk, magictech, clockworkpunk all have their place. I could even see diesel punk/atom punk levels have their place (especially if it is skaven and the nuclear is wrapstone).

The important line I think is does this feel like fantasy with magic and a bit of tech (AoS) or like Science Fiction with tech and a little magic (40k). Now 40k blurs the lines quite heavily, so I cannot see why AoS cannot blur it from the other direction. After all it is an interesting ascetic and lots of us like one element or another of it.

 

For example, I have been trying to find a suitable way of doing Kroot in AoS (short of actually witting my own rules) as I fell they would fit right in flovur and astectic wise. 

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We already got steampunk and Magic Tech. 

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AoS-Greywater-Fastness.jpg

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While destruction wouldn't get any love quite like what's being discussed here, I wouldn't mind order to get more steampunk, chaos to get more daemon possessed metal stuff and for death to get living siege constructs made of bone and magic, kinda like the old tomb kings constructs but less stone egyptian artwork and more arcane weapon sort of design. If freeguild gets there battletome it will probably include some allegiance ability/terrain if not a full on unit for the cog fort. 

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As far as I'm aware, the three most technologically advanced races (Seraphon, Overlords, Clan Skyre) all rely heavily on magical substances to power things. In that sense, technology in the realns is more like a form of 'applied magic'.

Overlords for example, whilst seeming very steampunk like are ultimately relying on the the magically active aethergold, which has the key property of being lighter than air (thus allowing them to fly).

Seraphon seem to rely heavily on the slann's presence to power their ships (though this is more conjecture than fact) and Skyre rely heavily on the unstable but highly potent (and reality bending which likely plays a part in keeping their rickety stuff moving) warpstone in order to make their stuff actually work.

I think in that context you can actually follow a principle whereby the results and the means don't match.

Arguments that something needs more power than can be proved by steam for example can be handwavdd away by saying that the engine doesn't use coal but fire realmstone or the skeleton is laced with Chamon realmstone which makes the metal less brittle and thus possible to bend and walk without breaking.

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11 hours ago, Melcavuk said:

One for the masses mostly out of curiosity, some of you may or may not have seen my Ironweld work of late and alot of the phrases that get bandied about can be "too techy" or "too advanced" which is understandable but led me to wonder, what is your personal concept of the technological level of Age of Sigmar, with background information on Cog Forts, along with the pressure suits and the flying cities of the Kharadron overlords what would your technological peak be for the Age of Sigmar before you felt it had left the scope of the setting.

We know from background we have:

Cog Forts
Kharadron Pressure Suits
Man Portable Harpoon Cannons
Steam Tanks etc

But have yet to see the scope of the new factions to be added to the setting, all of which is not accounting for the weird sciences of Skaven.

So how Tech is too Tech for Sigmar I guess is the root question?

My mind has Sigmar grasping for Steampunk.  

Not to start a war, but GW seems to be getting heavily inspired by Privateer Press/Iron Kingdoms IMO.

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The old Empire was 16th century fantasy, and it had this sucker running around. From what I've read the freeguild and ironweld of AOS are a bit more advanced than their old world ancestors. To echo some others, the tech shouldn't be too streamlined and should ideally be somewhat quirky. 

image.png.d73e7cca3079a79ac6b22ae48b7bb24a.png

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Seems like most factions have advanced considerably. Although there are exceptions. I hope we see more tech heavy factions to get more of a feel for the overall level of it in the setting too. Also one of the coolest things though is how it feels like KO are a natural extension of the dwarves from fantasy and like their society just evolved over time in logical ways. 

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2 hours ago, Shearl said:

The old Empire was 16th century fantasy, and it had this sucker running around. From what I've read the freeguild and ironweld of AOS are a bit more advanced than their old world ancestors. To echo some others, the tech shouldn't be too streamlined and should ideally be somewhat quirky. 

image.png.d73e7cca3079a79ac6b22ae48b7bb24a.png

I would love to see some Calvary on mechanical horses.

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I mean back in the Malign Portents era, there what a short story in the Community site that featured a librarian who had mechanical leg attachments that extended like a pair of telescopes, allowing him to reach books on a really high shelf.

And this was in the Realm of Death - not traditionally a really high tech level area.  I think AoS is pretty obviously steampunk - at least in the main human regions.

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You can also find references to the "Cogmen" - a whole race of mechanical people who live in Chamon.

People who cling to the concept that the Mortal Realms are aesthetically just a clone of the Old World, are just fooling themselves.

Edited by mikethefish
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2 hours ago, mikethefish said:

You can also find references to the "Cogmen" - a whole race of mechanical people who live in Chamon.

People who cling to the concept that the Mortal Realms are aesthetically just a clone of the Old World, are just fooling themselves.

Don’t forget the reference to Gholem’s too another race of Grungi. 

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I think Iron Kingdoms (the combined world of Warmachine and Hordes) is the level warhammer aos hovers around (maybe minus the Convergence and the Retribution). Which is kind of funny since IK was basically the "hey if you dont like warhammer play us" game.

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I like to think that a combination of :

1) Gods

2) Religious belief (slightly different to gods as this is mortal aspects)

3) Skaven style infighting and competition and back stabbing (does not require actual skaven)

4) Guilds and compartmentalized/protected knowledge

5) Magic

All conspire together to create a situation where technological advance gets hindered. That is to say within most factions there's clear displays of how technology gets held back. For Skaven its their backstabbing nature - a fantastic new machine might well have its inventor killed and the machine destroyed just so another can rise one step up the ladder of power (or maintain theirs).

In the Old World Dwarven Guilds kept many technologies from being fully used by the Dwarves let alone shared with the lesser and other races. Even within a race there can be stark variation

Magic in itself also twists things; why make a complex machine when the mage down the road can do it for a few coppers. Hybrid magic machines are also rife and might well cause a reduction in pure mechanical sciences because, again, the magic works why work on an alternative. 

Gods also have a huge effect as to religions. Design a machine that looks chaos like and you might find yourself on the chopping block and your machine declared a monstrosity and destroyed. 

 

So I think these, plus more, conspire to cause enough chaos even before you add inter-race relations and war into the mix. They all twist and turn and cause things to not continually advance. A poor eduction system would also help reduce knowledge spreading out. Furthermore major disasters and wars, whilst often causing advances in technology, can also cause big set backs. Chaos invading a Machine focused city might well tear most of the machines to bits and kill those who operated them. At best a machine or cannon might be warped by chaos, but the underlaying technologies might well be destroyed. 

Finally lets not forget that many scientific discoveries were often the result of chance or long periods of study. Sometimes only a handful of people discover something that causes a vast break through. Sometimes its something new; sometimes its taking a new thing in a new direction. Lets not forget China had gunpowder for many generations before the western nations, but it was the west that developed gun and cannon technologies far further. 

 

 

 

 

As for the technology level I think it varies. AoS is a wonder like that - though it reminds me of Rise of Legends - a lesser known Rise of Nations sequel that had steam punk, magic and alien robotics all against each other - fantastic game they really hsould remaster/bring it out on gog!

I'd say that overall there's a high level of steam punk in most factions; backed up with a lot of magic in others to compensate. Though I think they are just shy of going fully steam punk. There's enough outlandish magic thrown in that its more magic than punk and only a couple of factions really push the envelope on the steam aspect. Many are more subtle. That said I would say that the average technology level appears higher than the Old World. But its hard to say as we've really not devled much into the world itself; we've seen bits that vary from primitive tribes to advanced high races; but not much from the average person. 

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I think as long as it appears to be steam-based or fantasy magic-based tech it should be fine and fit into the setting. Warhammer has always had black powder weapons, crazy magic and warpstone weapons, and steampunk-esq machines and prosthesis. KO are definitely super steampunk-y and advanced, I feel like they (and some skaven skryre stuff) should be the limit to how advanced AoS tech can be. Once tech in AoS starts looking modern or like 40k then I'll have some issues.

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I agree that Kharadron should be the pennicle of technological advancement though Ironweld should be a very close second.  They are faithful to Grungni after all and he quite enjoys the experimentation his follows pursue.  I always thought it was funny that the Empire could maintain hundred year old steam engines and make a steam powered automations but couldn’t grasp rifling that the dwarves had mastered centuries before they taught humans how to manufacture arquebuses.

Also I think it comes down to it the faction is actually from Chamon or are Azyrites the moves there.

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