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lordabdul

Curvature of Glorantha

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On 6/11/2019 at 3:13 PM, lordabdul said:

Glorantha is supposed to be a flat world, so in theory it doesn't have any curvature, but this week-end I was wondering what that means for visibility distances and horizons and all that.

Glorantha is flat but does have a horizon—in-world "scientific" explanation here, with diagrams:

[TL/DR - light, being a manifestation of Aether and thus properly belonging in the Sky World does not travel in straight lines. The elements always seek their own proper level in the bubble that is Glorantha, thus light tends to curve upward slightly as it flits along at a great pace. This is why you see the top of a mast as a ship approaches, then the sails, then the body.]

 

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7 minutes ago, MOB said:

Glorantha is flat but does have a horizon—in-world "scientific" explanation here, with diagrams:

[TL/DR - light, being a manifestation of Aether and thus properly belonging in the Sky World does not travel in straight lines. The elements always seek their own proper level in the bubble that is Glorantha, thus light tends to curve upward slightly as it flits along at a great pace. This is why you see the top of a mast as a ship approaches, then the sails, then the body.]

This does create slight time difference for the perception of the dawn and dusk depending on how much surface you have between yourself and the resepective gate, though - the sun has to rise quite a bit for your vision rays not to collide with the ocean surface. Same for other objects, like e.g. Mastakos/Uleria.

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There's a very nice description in Dorastor: LoD about how on the peak of Thunder Mountain, not only are you high up but the air is also unnaturally clear, meaning you can see an incredible distance due to the lack of horizon.

Edited by Akhôrahil

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I personally always run it as the flatness of Glorantha is a magical, not a physical and universal, thing. There is a horizon, in normal practice what you see is totally reasonable. Once you get outside the 'middle world' it changes, but not always in reliable or consistent ways. You can see a long way from the top of magical mountains, but that could be interpreted as the mountains being magical. 

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Well, basic geometry makes horizons inevitable even on a flat world. If you stand in a valley and look at a mountain, the angle of your position makes it so that the mountain in front of you will hide even taller mountains behind it.

The sea is a bit iffier though.

The bulge idea is neat, and I don't mind it.

It can also fit mythically, since the Waters that "invaded" the Cube might've bulged as they met it the middle, or even shaved off the sides more so than the middle. Who knows. Then Magasta's Pool creates a dimple in the middle, like the interesting pics here show. Works for me.

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I just carry on as if the flat Glorantha is just a myth and the world is actually a sphere. Makes things much easier for me.

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20 minutes ago, jeffjerwin said:

The Curvature of Glorantha is why Gata is female.

and Yelm is crooked, and Orlanth goes in spirals.

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On 6/11/2019 at 11:39 PM, MOB said:

Glorantha is flat but does have a horizon—in-world "scientific" explanation here, with diagrams

Cool, thanks... so yeah that's what I mentioned in one of my posts, that you can also hand-wave why a flat world looks like a curved world if you say it's the light that's curved. In which case, I think you can take my drawings, invert the curvature of the ground, and that's the curvature of the light? (I didn't lay down the math but it probably boils down to that) I'm pretty sure the God Learners or somebody similar came up with a universal constant like, say, the YSF (Yelm Strabismus Factor) which represents this curvature :D   

Edited by lordabdul
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I prefer the idea that things disappear in a haze in the distance. When you make the world flat, stand for the consequences (otherwise, what's the point?).

Edited by Akhôrahil
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46 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

I prefer the idea that things disappear in a haze in the distance. When you make the world flat, stand for the consequences (otherwise, what's the point?).

As an exercise in naval gazing... ducks

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9 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

... ducks

*BLAM!*

"You're despicable!"

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11 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

I prefer the idea that things disappear in a haze in the distance. When you make the world flat, stand for the consequences (otherwise, what's the point?).

I very much agree. 

For example, I dig how in this illustration of the Holy Country,  a very hazy Kiero Fin is visible in the extreme distance:

screen-shot-2018-07-11-at-7.37.16-pm.png

Edited by JonL
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16 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

I prefer the idea that things disappear in a haze in the distance. When you make the world flat, stand for the consequences (otherwise, what's the point?).

Given that Glorantha looks "Earth-like", but clearly isn't, I think it is even more MGF to give a flat world a horizon analogous to our own, and come up with mythic = scientific explanations as to why that is so. Other questions to answer for a flat world that do not have prosaic terrestrial answers: why Glorantha has "gravity", how does Glorantha have an atmosphere, why is the sky blue, etc etc. But your YGMV.

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1 hour ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

That illustration always makes me scratch my head about the scale. I assume it's more of a representation rather than a fixed scale, right?

Yes, I think there's a bit of foreshortening between Nochet and the Skyreach Mountains. And the appearance of the Red Moon between the Skyreach and Kero Fin is strange (putting it above Ralios rather than Peloria).

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21 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

Yes, I think there's a bit of foreshortening between Nochet and the Skyreach Mountains. And the appearance of the Red Moon between the Skyreach and Kero Fin is strange (putting it above Ralios rather than Peloria).

I think it's more than that. The cities and other landmarks just seem too large compared to the terrain inbetween. If we're to take this at face value, then a significant portion of the actual physical terrain of Esrolia would be densely built urban construction, which just seems unfeasible. Either Nochet is TITANIC, or the Shadow Plateau is kinda small - in extent, not elevation.

As I said, I see it more as a stylized representation, but my impression of the scale of Esrolia might be incorrect.

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6 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I think it's more than that. The cities and other landmarks just seem too large compared to the terrain inbetween. If we're to take this at face value, then a significant portion of the actual physical terrain of Esrolia would be densely built urban construction, which just seems unfeasible. Either Nochet is TITANIC, or the Shadow Plateau is kinda small - in extent, not elevation.

As I said, I see it more as a stylized representation, but my impression of the scale of Esrolia might be incorrect.

No, you're spot on -- the scale of the illustrated geography is completely fake.

Not to mention the ill-use of perspective ...

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1 hour ago, Julian Lord said:

No, you're spot on -- the scale of the illustrated geography is completely fake.

Maybe the artist was using Farsee, which foreshortens distances. 4 points of the spell will make everything look 1/16 as far apart as they really are. And it probably makes the rays of vision travel more straight, meaning that you can see Kero Fin which would be largely beyond the "horizon" without the magic.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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28 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

Maybe the artist was using Farsee, which foreshortens distances. 4 points of the spell will make everything look 1/16 as far apart as they really are. And it probably makes the rays of vision travel more straight, meaning that you can see Kero Fin which would be largely beyond the horizon without the magic.

Pretty much what I thought, too. All those visible objects must have received some focus to appear that enlarged against the background.

About the visibility of Kero Fin, I don't think that is much of  stretch. What we see in the picture is probably just the upper half. This is similar to seeing the Alps from Munich, which have only 2.5 km height advantage at most, whereas Kero Fin has a 29 km height advantage to this perspective (we can barely see the top of the Shadow Plateau, which is about 1km above sea level).

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1 hour ago, Julian Lord said:

Not to mention the ill-use of perspective ...

IMHO, the laws of Gatametry are not the same as our geometry. Landscapes are magical entities, not just distances and areas. When you look down on the world from on high, the parts that stand out and dominate your perception are the powerful, significant ones, not necessarily the merely physically large areas between them. This is especially true if you are using magic to enhance your vision.

Another way to put it - My glorantha really does vary!

Also it occurs to me that geometry is a thing in Glorantha, but it's only used to measure the distances between inns and taverns.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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On 6/18/2019 at 6:08 AM, JonL said:

I very much agree. 

For example, I dig how in this illustration of the Holy Country,  a very hazy Kiero Fin is visible in the extreme distance:

screen-shot-2018-07-11-at-7.37.16-pm.png

that's what happens when umath is interfering with Light from the sun, it gets weakened and you see the air instead. Perfectly obvious scientific explanation when you think about it.

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On 6/18/2019 at 10:21 AM, Julian Lord said:
On 6/18/2019 at 3:27 AM, Sir_Godspeed said:

I think it's more than that. The cities and other landmarks just seem too large compared to the terrain inbetween. If we're to take this at face value, then a significant portion of the actual physical terrain of Esrolia would be densely built urban construction, which just seems unfeasible. Either Nochet is TITANIC, or the Shadow Plateau is kinda small - in extent, not elevation.

As I said, I see it more as a stylized representation, but my impression of the scale of Esrolia might be incorrect.

No, you're spot on -- the scale of the illustrated geography is completely fake.

Not to mention the ill-use of perspective ...

Everyone's a critic. I just thought "What a lovely picture".

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It IS a lovely picture, and I never intended for my point to come across as saying anything else - but I remember coming across it early on in my introduction to the fandom and being really confused at the scale being used. It's perhaps best compared to the Battle of Pelennor Fields in the LotR movies, where the pelennor fields are severely shrunk for dramatic effect, whereas in "canon" those fields would been rolling hills, villages, farms, fields of wheat, copses of trees, etc.

Both this image and the LotR movie Pelennor are essentially "over-dramatizised" versions meant as inspiration, as I interpret it. Which is a perfectly valid reason - they just shouldn't be used as "photographic" reference material.

Edited by Sir_Godspeed
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