Author Topic: A First Person (T-Rated) Shooter for a FS3  (Read 15268 times)

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Offline Nico

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Quote
Originally posted by mikhael:
The subject of a 'queen' is a hard one, as it is almost inexorably linked to the 'hive' concept.

Lets look at behaviour: do we ever see Shivans retreat? They throw ship after ship after ship at the GTVA. Sometimes they're badly outnumbered, but they don't run (that I can remember!). They are willing to die for their cause, whatever it is.

The queen-and-hive and the hive-mind concept works well with that. Neal Stephenson wrote that 'for ants, there are only two numebers: some and none'. In social or biological structure in which individual welfare is less developed than societal/biological welfare, 'some or none' is a valid model. Shivans can kill themselves wantonly, because individually they are 'none' and they need to die in larger numbers to become 'some'.

In a more individualised, less specialised society, one in which biological reproduction isn't centralised in a queen, any pair of individuals can produce offspring and thus continue the species. The problem with this is that individualised/unspeciaised species reproduce more slowly, due to the fact that there are no dedicated biological factories (queens). Slower reproduction means more incentive to live to reproduce. Shivans who were more individual would be more apt to retreat.

The final problem that comes into play is that collective biologies have is that there is not evolutionary pressure toward individual sentience. As has been pointed out in the Shivan Sociology thread, ants and bees and other collective biologies exhibit traits, practices and abilities found in individuals of generalised species (like humans). This is a case of the hive adapting to circumstances, not the individuals. Again, 'some or none' comes into play.

I'd like to think that somehow the Shivan's bucked the trend of hive biology. I think they started out as a hive biology but changed over time to adapt to a larger, more dangerous universe. Imagine that they are a hive species, but that the hives are smaller, maybe a few dozen or so. They aren't a hive mind, but more like a family unit. In such a system, the 'some or none' concept breaks down completely and real numbers, and therefor individual survival, becomes of benefit to the species. Small hives can specialise but the species as a whole becomes generalised, and thus more robust.

A step further, a mini-hive structure allows for a development of cooperation between hives. Eventually this cooperation becomes reliance and could lead to a hive-of-hives (nation) model. In this way, we can have biological 'queens' of hives, but avoid the it for the species. We can avoid the 'hive-mind' idea as well.

All of this dovetails nicely with my belief in a low-gravity, arboreal, insect-like development for Shivans.  



The only pb is that a species like ants are not evolved enough (yet), to make technology like ships.
Electronics, stuff like that, you can't make it up by instinct, you have to search for it, and you need to have knowledge of yourself has an indivicual to do so.
I really don't think shivans lack that. I'm pretty sure there's another reason why they won't give up. Just don't know what.

SCREW CANON!

 

Offline Nico

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Quote
Originally posted by mikhael:
The subject of a 'queen' is a hard one, as it is almost inexorably linked to the 'hive' concept.

Lets look at behaviour: do we ever see Shivans retreat? They throw ship after ship after ship at the GTVA. Sometimes they're badly outnumbered, but they don't run (that I can remember!). They are willing to die for their cause, whatever it is.

The queen-and-hive and the hive-mind concept works well with that. Neal Stephenson wrote that 'for ants, there are only two numebers: some and none'. In social or biological structure in which individual welfare is less developed than societal/biological welfare, 'some or none' is a valid model. Shivans can kill themselves wantonly, because individually they are 'none' and they need to die in larger numbers to become 'some'.

In a more individualised, less specialised society, one in which biological reproduction isn't centralised in a queen, any pair of individuals can produce offspring and thus continue the species. The problem with this is that individualised/unspeciaised species reproduce more slowly, due to the fact that there are no dedicated biological factories (queens). Slower reproduction means more incentive to live to reproduce. Shivans who were more individual would be more apt to retreat.

The final problem that comes into play is that collective biologies have is that there is not evolutionary pressure toward individual sentience. As has been pointed out in the Shivan Sociology thread, ants and bees and other collective biologies exhibit traits, practices and abilities found in individuals of generalised species (like humans). This is a case of the hive adapting to circumstances, not the individuals. Again, 'some or none' comes into play.

I'd like to think that somehow the Shivan's bucked the trend of hive biology. I think they started out as a hive biology but changed over time to adapt to a larger, more dangerous universe. Imagine that they are a hive species, but that the hives are smaller, maybe a few dozen or so. They aren't a hive mind, but more like a family unit. In such a system, the 'some or none' concept breaks down completely and real numbers, and therefor individual survival, becomes of benefit to the species. Small hives can specialise but the species as a whole becomes generalised, and thus more robust.

A step further, a mini-hive structure allows for a development of cooperation between hives. Eventually this cooperation becomes reliance and could lead to a hive-of-hives (nation) model. In this way, we can have biological 'queens' of hives, but avoid the it for the species. We can avoid the 'hive-mind' idea as well.

All of this dovetails nicely with my belief in a low-gravity, arboreal, insect-like development for Shivans.  



The only pb is that a species like ants are not evolved enough (yet), to make technology like ships.
Electronics, stuff like that, you can't make it up by instinct, you have to search for it, and you need to have knowledge of yourself has an individual to do so.
I really don't think shivans lack that. I'm pretty sure there's another reason why they won't give up. Just don't know what.

SCREW CANON!

 

Offline mikhael

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Quote
Originally posted by venom2506:
The only pb is that a species like ants are not evolved enough (yet), to make technology like ships.
Electronics, stuff like that, you can't make it up by instinct, you have to search for it, and you need to have knowledge of yourself has an individual to do so.
I really don't think shivans lack that. I'm pretty sure there's another reason why they won't give up. Just don't know what.

I think you misunderstood me. They DO have individuality and they are NOT subsumed into a hive mind. They do NOT do things on instinct. As a species, they have evolved past that into individuals that are parts of small groups.

They are sentient and they do learn skills, etc. Its just that some hives have individuals that are better suited for some things than others. Some hives produce physically superior shivans which become warriors. Some produce smaller shivans that have more delicate grasping limbs.



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Offline Nico

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hehe, it's my turn to misunderstand you it seems  
Anyway, I don't buy the Hive theory. Why?
Easy: I don't like it  
I can't explain, to me, it's just not that  
SCREW CANON!

 

Offline mikhael

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Quote
Originally posted by venom2506:
hehe, it's my turn to misunderstand you it seems  
Anyway, I don't buy the Hive theory. Why?
Easy: I don't like it  
I can't explain, to me, it's just not that  

I don't like it either. That's why I suggest the hybrid-hive theory above.  


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Offline Zeronet

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But Shivans do retreat, they warp out when you wack everything else in the area. Also has everyone totally forgotton the Iceni?!! If Shivans cant handle 1g then how the hell did they invade a NTF vessel take Bosch and then slaughter the crew. As for non-carbon based lifeforms, one would be wise to assume we do not know every single element, we could just be at the tip of the iceberg.
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Starwing

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We DO know that all elements beyond a certain number (dunno what exactly) are HIGHLY unstable, and could only be produced in laboratories. A lifeform made of those elements would be a big bad A-bomb. Not the perfect conditions for a long life.  

 

Offline Dark_4ce

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Quote
Originally posted by Zeronet:
But Shivans do retreat, they warp out when you wack everything else in the area. Also has everyone totally forgotton the Iceni?!! If Shivans cant handle 1g then how the hell did they invade a NTF vessel take Bosch and then slaughter the crew.

They could have disabled the main subsystems that might control the artificial gravity, and that way managed to get in. BUT, I believe they didn't have to...

On the Hive-mind theory, I don't like it either. But the idea that they actually "evolved" out of it is quite interesting. Or that there is a hive-mind hybrid. Much like the Zerg in Starcraft. Weren't there like four hive-minds and then the ûber-mind that controlled them all?

But then that would mean there were a queen at least in some point of their evolution or lives. Unless, when they began to advance technologically, they practically got rid of her, and her kind.

BUT, we cannot forget that the techroom does state that the Shivans could have been, either made or "redesigned" by a third-party. That would answer atleast the gravity question. Because they could have been a ZG entity to begin with, with a hive-mind. But the third-party added that third leg for more stability, and made them stronger for atleast a 1G enviroment, AND that they genetically advanced them above the Hive-mind. Maybe in an attemp to allow them to to start to redisng themselves. Like what scientists are trying to do with AI that are designed to rewire themselves. But what they didn't expect was that the Shivans, became TOO advanced. Then ate the third-party.      
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Offline Nico

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Lol, I don't like the "shivans have been created by another species" theory either (I know, i'm boring   ).
Why? That kills all their "frightening" side. They sound inferior... An unknown species that wages war and is unstoppable, one you can't understand, that is frightening. Now a subspaceies made by another race, ok, that's just a weapon, they're still scary looking, but really, they just become evolve toys. They can rebel, so waht? they're just a "product". It doesn't take anything off to their "deadlyness", but it's all in the mood, and somehow, it really kills the feeling. So no "inferior being" stuff for me, thanx  
SCREW CANON!

 

Offline mikhael

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From Dark_4ce:
On the Hive-mind theory, I don't like it either. But the idea that they actually "evolved" out of it is quite interesting. Or that there is a hive-mind hybrid. Much like the Zerg in Starcraft. Weren't there like four hive-minds and then the ûber-mind that controlled them all?

I specifically draw a distinction between hive-mind and hive-society, for exactly this reason. I do not believe that the Shivans were ever a 'hive-mind', as there would be no reason for such a conciousness to split itself. I distinctly postulate a hive society in which the societal needs outweigh all individual needs, and in fact subsume them. I believe that Shivans started out as many large hives (much like bees or ants) and slowly evolved into many smaller micro-hives. At all times, however, there was an individual mind to each Shivan.

 
Quote
From Zeronet:
... Also has everyone totally forgotton the Iceni?!! If Shivans cant handle 1g then how the hell did they invade a NTF vessel take Bosch and then slaughter the crew. As for non-carbon based lifeforms, one would be wise to assume we do not know every single element, we could just be at the tip of the iceberg.

To your first point, no one has forgotten the Iceni. I suggest you an alternate solution that fits just as well.   has stated that the Shivans in the hall fight are definately, Shivans and not power suits or space suits or robots. When have they ever said that Shivans CANNOT wear power suits or space suits or have robots? What if they, like Terran marines, went into the Iceni with full battle kit, consisting of hoplite smart-plate armor with servo assisted joints? Something they could take off when not actively going into battle. Before anyone argues "Why weren't the Shivan's in the hall fight wearing such combat suits then?", I have an answer. The Shivans in the hall fight weren't soldiers. They were the equivalent of comms techs or even if they were soldiers, they were second echelon infantry, rather thant the sorts you send to the front line in a boarding action. They wouldn't have heavy armor handy.

Too your second point, you are correct that we might be at the tip of the veritible iceberg with Mendelyev periodic table of elements. However, there is a slight hitch. From what we know of subatomic particles, and indeed, the quanta that they built from, there are a finite number of stable, valid configurations. That means there are a finite number of types of stable subatomic particles. This in turn means, that ther are a finite number of stable elements. So no, there is no chance life arising from chemical compounds based much further up the chart into realms we do not know. I sincerely doubt (given certain other limits imposed by energistic interactions) that any such compound could form above the iron barrier, and more likely, not even past the realm of silicon.


 
Quote
Back to Dark_4ce:
BUT, we cannot forget that the techroom does state that the Shivans could have been, either made or "redesigned" by a third-party.

I don't think they were redesigned or made by anyone. They evolved naturally on a low gravity, arboreal planet. While they initially started as a hive-society, like ants, they eventually evolved into a society of sentient individuals organized into small family-hives. These hives prosper by cooperation, not by conquest. They are dangerous because they understand that the individual is helpless alone and therefore are willing to sacrifice themselves for the good of their hive and their hive is willing to sacrifice itself for the good of the society. They don't retreat, so much as leave when they are done with a task.


------------------
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Offline Su-tehp

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Quote
Originally posted by Dark_4ce:
But what they didn't expect was that the Shivans, became TOO advanced. Then ate the third-party.      

**BURP!**  

Excuse me.  
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Offline Ace

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I really don't think shivans lack that. I'm pretty sure there's another reason why they won't give up. Just don't know what.

Because the alternative of their not fighting is by far worse. What do the Shivans want? Neutralization of sub-space travel and holding sub-space nodes. Somehow this connects to a "horrible alternative."

How Venom handles it in OTT is an excellent way without changing much of the FS universe. Aldo's handling in Reciprocity with the Nightmares is another way as well.

As for the semi-hive mind, that could be a feasible idea.

We do know though from even FS1 that Shivans do have cockpits in their fighters, and that the GTA and GTVA can retrofit them for allied use. This may not seem directly connected to the discussion, but it does show that they do not use robotic drones for fighters, so that "Shivan sacrifice" for whatever cause is something of massive importance.



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Offline Dark_4ce

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Quote
Originally posted by mikhael:
I specifically draw a distinction between hive-mind and hive-society, for exactly this reason. I do not believe that the Shivans were ever a 'hive-mind', as there would be no reason for such a conciousness to split itself. I distinctly postulate a hive society in which the societal needs outweigh all individual needs, and in fact subsume them. I believe that Shivans started out as many large hives (much like bees or ants) and slowly evolved into many smaller micro-hives. At all times, however, there was an individual mind to each Shivan.



Aaaah... Now I get it. Yeah, that sounds reasonable. But I like my theory better!


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Offline Zeronet

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I doubt the Shivans would have a need for a battlesuit, because Shivan bodies were among the dead and the GTI kept them in pens and stuidied them, probably with normal gravity. I bet Shivans can handle G's in excess of 1.
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Offline Dark_4ce

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Quote
Originally posted by Zeronet:
I doubt the Shivans would have a need for a battlesuit, because Shivan bodies were among the dead and the GTI kept them in pens and stuidied them, probably with normal gravity. I bet Shivans can handle G's in excess of 1.

Yeah it was all ready cleared up that they infact didn't have any powersuits. The boys at   said that the pictures of the Shivans are infact true Shivans, and not inside a powersuit.

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Offline mikhael

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Quote
Originally posted by Dark_4ce:
Yeah it was all ready cleared up that they infact didn't have any powersuits. The boys at     said that the pictures of the Shivans are infact true Shivans, and not inside a powersuit.


I believe   was talking about the hall fight on the captured Shivan ship, not the events aboard the Iceni. We don't know anything about what happened aboard the Iceni except they got in, got Bosch and got out. I don't see any reason why they could not have had powersuits or other gear.

In the case of them being able to handle in excess of 1G, I should point out that the average human can withstand 10G--he just can't function very well. Sure, they might be able to drag themselves about at 1G, they might be able to do so at 2G, but not any of the superhuman capabilities they display in the Hall fight scene. They're LowG creatures.

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[This message has been edited by mikhael (edited 01-13-2002).]
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Offline Nico

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of course not, otherwise they would not be able to control a dragon when it makes a U-turn  
SCREW CANON!

 

Offline Rampage

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Quote
Originally posted by Ace:
I really don't think shivans lack that. I'm pretty sure there's another reason why they won't give up. Just don't know what.

Maybe the Shivans sinned against their "deity" and their "deity" requires sacrificing entire races to atone for their [the Shivans] sin.

If you read the Descent series by Peter Telep, you'll know what I'm talking about.

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Offline mikhael

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Quote
Originally posted by Rampage:
Maybe the Shivans sinned against their "deity" and their "deity" requires sacrificing entire races to atone for their [the Shivans] sin.

If you read the Descent series by Peter Telep, you'll know what I'm talking about.


That's a poor sort of sacrifice, isn't it? You cannot sacrifice something you don't value, something that is meaningless to you.

I don't think that Shivans kill without reason. In fact, I think an individual Shivan--Let's call him Carl for the sake of reference  --is just like you or me. Carl goes through his life playing the Shivan equivalent of video games, shopping for groceries, looking for a suitable micro-hive with whom to share his genetics, and going to work for McShivans, flipping burgers (or whatever they eat). He's not a killer. He's not some sort of monster. In fact, when Carl sits down on his couch after work and flips to the Shivan News Network on his media unit, he shakes his head and wishes the killing would stop. Carl's hive-cousin, Mike, however, is a warrior in the Shivan Navy. He serves on one of those Sathanas that scare the bejeebus out GTVA sorts. He pushes the war and he kills Terrans because he has to. Its his job.

Whatever reason Shivans fight and kill, its at least as rational as any Terran reason for fighting. I could put forward a few, but I'm afraid they would all be based in my own pure speculation.

Lots of people put forth the idea that the Shivans are running scared from something else, something coming behind them that is so ugly, that they are willing to fight through us to get away from it. I don't buy it. If you had serious war taking place, would you divert some of your Navy from the front and send it off to some distanct front in order to clear the way for your retreat? I don't think so. I think the Shivans would have dropped out of subspace, asked for help and gone back to the battle. This idea of them running scared also doesn't fit at all with the Ancients' monologues in FS2.



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Offline Dark_4ce

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The Shivans aren't running scared. But, I don't see them as socially organized to the point that they're playing videogames and fliping shivan equivelant of burgers. I think they're whole society goes around expansion and conquest.
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