Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

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Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Thu Apr 05, 2012 7:25 pm

I understand that this was a name proposed by one of the forum posters so before continuing I want to express that this is in no way an attempt to flame or troll another user. I love the name Salvagers for a post apocalyptic setting, and I would fight to keep it around but just not for this race.

So without further ado here is my argument:
For the fanfiction contest I've been doing a lot of studying up, going back through all the developer diaries, reading other folk's work, and even taking notes.

Why:
The most notable issue I have with the term is that it's too close to Reclaimers, a name that gives a sense of organic design. A deep, and intuitive need to revover what was once lost. This term fits an organic framework in my opinion, and therefore, when I hear "Salvager" it doesn't seem to fit right, almost as if it's a term form fitted to an organic culture...not a synthetic one.

To me the label "Salvager" would be a designation given by humanity to encapsulate the complex and misunderstood algorithms and logic that dictates the "Salvagers" motives and reasons into a simplified and almost wholly inaccurate forum of thought. This is believable as the human mind often tries to compartmentalize and simplify particularly esoteric ideas into bit size inaccuracies, but an intelligence such as the "Salvagers" would surely find a reason to give themselves a designation, an acknowldegment of recognizing their own existence.

Yes the "Salvager" term is an extension of the concept that these creatures exist to search out and claim recyclable goods...but that isn't salvaging, or at least salvaging is only one half of the coin.

According to the definition of Salvage, it is simply the act of seeking out an object to recover, save, or retrieve....as this race of automatons does not exist solely to grab up shiny objects and horde them for some justification that would almost definitely have the earmark of an organic mind, this term simply does not do justice to the race.

To me it would be like giving humanity the label "travellers" because some part of our culture dictates that 99% of us are required to commute to some degree on a daily basis.

What are the "Salvagers" if not for a race of toasters that exist to steal shiny pretties?

The Salvagers are a regionally dominant race of apathetic machines that were created for the sole purpose of recovering scattered tech. When their caretakers abandoned them and maintence tapered off, something in the machine's runtime had to kick in somewhere, and at sometime, that said, "we have to survive". This is when the Salvagers became something more than just reclamation droids.

Maybe this wasn't literally the case as the CSU (Central Salvaging Unit) essentially ramped up its own processes of preventative maintanence, but it was a form of self preservation previously unseen before.

When the machines started to assimilate surplus product and process what they found, this was a sign of self awareness, a need to have a purpose.

In short, the Haussman Gene attached to the CSU had given this synthetic machination life and purpose, beyond even the whims of its human creators.

This race no longer salvages to get goodies, it salvages to survive, to have meaning, as surely as you find a reason to get up in the morning.

I mentioned before that the term "Salvage" is not even accurate in this case according to definition. If we were to take the concept just presented and think about it analytically, they aren't salvaging at all at this point.

To salvage is to recover something you want to save, the "Salvagers" are out to reclaim materials and software to repurpose and assimilate.

For example, if you were on a desert beach stranded because your life raft had run a ground, using the materials present in the raft to fashion a shelter would not be salvaging that raft, it would be repurposing it for survival. This is what the "Salvagers" do and this is why I don't believe the term is ideal.

My second and much less wordy argument (sorry!):
As I mentioned before, the terms "Salvager" and "Reclaimers" are very similiar, in fact the Reclaimers are technically more salvager than the Salvagers are as they seek out tech to save, preserve, and keep.

In gameplay this comparison is confusing (to me at least), even after watching hours of videos and reading pages of forum posts my brain still has to put effort into deciphering between the two factions.

From a gamer perspective, it would be as if your buddy played the Space Marines, and you played the Space Elite Soldiers.

What:
Once again I apologize for being long winded on this but I figure if I'm out to oppose another user's (very good) idea, I better have a well thought out reason!

Here's is what I came up with:

As this race is synthetic and operates as a seperate and independant group from a centralized intelligence that governs absolutely, I propose:

The Unified Logic

From a narrative perspective I feel that this term epitomizes two concepts, that these machines are united for one purpose, a purpose dictated by the central intelligence called the "Central Recycling Unit" as this exemplifies its role as a hub of intelligence, and an overseer of operations, and also gives weight to the fact that this unit at one point was created and given purpose by humanity.

The second concept being that this culture is synthetic, they run off of a framework of logic, algorithms, and code. As independent as the race may be, as much of a personality they may seem to exhibit, the race is still an assembly of man-made parts and imperfections. Intuition and true emotion being a concept unattainable for even the more advanced and idependant units of this society.

From a gameplay perspective I feel that this does much to polarize them from the Reclaimers, evoking a distinct feeling that goes beyond the minor differences between the concepts of reclamation and salvaging.

Finally, if there were to be multiple factions, controlled by more than one Central Recycling Unit, The Unified Logic lends itself to personalization in a more dynamic way than the term Salvager. For example I could field the Montreal Unified Logic Center, or the New York City Unified Logic Plant.

What do you think? Feedback is welcome!
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Atzunew » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:01 pm

I just want to say that was a great read. You have some very good points and it was interested to see your insight.

Personally, I actually like the name "Salvagers" since it defines what what the faction is about. I'll try to retort in its defense.

Firstly you say that the name was "an organic framework", defiantly a valid point where your coming from. In the DP universe I see the "Salvagers" coming out to of their plant/center/whatever and processing through rubble and such for usable tech. I believe that the name was derived by organic life ie human survivors, when they see the robots scouring they return with the story of what they do. So I guess the name sounds organic because it was derived by organics as a way to explain what they saw. So personally it fits and makes sense.

Secondly I bring up your name "The Unified Logic". To me it seems wordy but veracious. I defiantly see where you are going with that concept but it comes with a sense of full unity. This would get rid of a lore explanation where "Salvagers" would be able to fight "Salvagers". Think of the situation if two plants/centers/whatevers might meet. Logic would dictate that they combine resources to better fuel their goals, but that should not be the case from a lore perspective where you need to keep all out faction hostilities. (for the sake of the game)

Sorry for the wordiness of this post. You have defiantly have come up with some great points on why we should change the name etc, it just happens I disagree in the overall concept. I hope I don't come off sounding like a jerk in this post, that is not my intent. I simply want to present a counter proposal in the defense of the current name. Thanks for reading my post, I await your reply.

~Atzunew

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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Sabet » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:40 pm

Brilliant arguments and I totally agree - however I personally don't like the name "The Unified Logic".

The way you present your argument - and which I totally agree on - is that they repurpose goods in order to upgrade, repair and create themselves. I can't think of a name immediately, though it needs to be different from salvagers - one of the synonyms of salvage is reclaim, and reclaim = reclaimers.

Logic to me makes them sound too Cybermen-esque. They are robots struggling to better themselves by repurposing found technologies.
And they definitely wouldn't be unified. If one system or particular robot found something to upgrade themselves with, but no where near enough for more than 1, they would be different to others. Definitely not unified.
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:43 pm

Hey thanks for the reply Atzunew! I appreciate the perspective. I would hope that there were some proponents of the name or else, why are we still using it right?!

Like I mentioned earlier in the post, I can definitely see it as a name given to them by organics, as an attempt to understand and compartmentalize the "race" and their purposes.

As it isn't easy for an organic mind to think in black and white, and as Matt has suggested before, impossible for synthetics to think like an organic there is a rift as I see it. The term "Salvagers" may make sense to us because quite frankly, we misunderstand what they do and why. It's appropriate for that. However, as a synthetic would naturally want all lines of logic to be appropriate and concise, the "Salvagers" would most definitely dislike the term themselves, as it's an erroneous packaging of their "lifestyle".

That said, going back to what you mentioned before, I totally agree, I can see this name coming from the point of view of a Human, maybe even a X'lanthos, but NOT from one of their own kind.

Applying this to the fact that they are a playable faction, the name should in all honesty come from the perspective of them. Afterall, you're supposed to BE them on the table, you wouldn't call them "Salvagers" in that case.

I see this as comparable to the 40k canon where the Eldar call humans "monkeigh" which is at best an oversimplification, and at worst a downright insult.

From the game side, if you play an Imperial force, your codexes and books don't say "monkeigh" they say human, or Space Marine or whatever, because that's what YOU are and you wouldn't call yourself a label given to your race by an outside influence.

I hope that makes sense to some extent.

For your second argument, again, I have to totally agree! The Unified Logic is absolutely wordy but veracious. The reasoning behind this ties into the former argument, it's a name given to the machines BY the machines. Following the lines of thought a mathmatically based, logic driven entity would make, I felt it was appropriate as that is exactly what they are, a label they would feel would accurately organize them into the status quo.

Now to defend the term "Unified". This is a concept that implies absolute control from the Haussman Central Recycling Unit. I acknowledge the fact that from a gameplay perspective two players of this faction could face off. This is easily explainable as the term "Unified" only reaches out to the the zone of influence of that particular CRU.

In the last segment of the original post I try to imply that if there were several CRUs then each one would be an independant faction but unified within themselves. They could fight other Unified Logic factions, but according to the current canon, control from WITHIN one of these groups is absolute, there is no concept of turning against a peer from the same Unified Logic center.

i.e. we could still fight against eachother if I fielded the Montreal Unified Logic Center, and you fielded the Manhattan Unified Logic Server.

I hope this clears up my intentions a bit, thanks for posting!
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:49 pm

Thanks for the reply Sabet, I would write a whole long thing to clarifiy what I meant, but...I just did!

The one thing I do want to touch on however is that you said "If one system or particular robot found something to upgrade themselves with, but no where near enough for more than 1, they would be different to others. Definitely not unified...". This is worrisome to me because this means I may have missed something somewhere, if this is true and there has been an established fact put into place that each individual robot is capable of personal betterment, then the term Unified definitely would not work.

As I see it right now, the Central Recycling Unit has absolulte power over it's zone of influence and control. No mech would ever take actions the CRU did not approve and dictate personally.

If this is incorrect than I propose that we put our minds together to think of something better!
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Sabet » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:55 pm

What I meant:

If only a single "shiny bit" was found - capable of only upgrading one machine, then that machine would be different from the others. Not unified. If this happened more and more often, which is quite likely, there wouldn't be unification between the models without not using the "shiny bit". Which from what i've seen would be something the CSU would refuse to do.
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:08 pm

Ah I get you, unified implies in this case that every unit is united towards the same cause, the furthering of their own plant or center.

I understand that the army would be unrealistic if every platform was exactly the same. It's understood that each member has a different role and is equipped to fulfill it as such, but they are all unified together, a band of brothers as it were.

Like we are all unified in helping to make Dark Potential the best it can possibly be :)
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Phaedros » Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:34 am

Just wanted to touch on this, from what I got from the DD's so far, there is more than one Salvager CRU, they're scattered all over the planet in the pre-war developed areas.

Now as the CRU of each area sends out the Salvagers they'll in turn eventually reach military bases and assimilate military tech, and thus learn to defend themselves. ^_^

But there's no unity among the CRUs as there is no way for them to communicate between each other.


My 2 cents.
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 12:52 pm

Thanks for the reply Phaedros, that's what's cool about this race. As "The Unified Logic" lends itself well to different factions within that race. As I mentioned before you could name your faction after the area it's in, for example if the Recycling Plant your faction is based out of is in Montreal then it could be called "The Montreal Unified Logic Center"...

Again, the term "Unified" applies to the faction not the race. As each CRU in the world has a zone of absolute control over its subjects, this would make the CRU the central figure, not the race as a whole.

So each separate society would be absolutely unified within themselves, they would still have the capacity to fight other factions because unity applies to the individual CRU's zone of control. Not the race as a whole or even CRU's as a whole.

Thanks for the post!
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by sonofkitrinos » Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:38 pm

Why not simply rename to the CSU/CRU and giving each unit mechanical designations I.e. CRU-21-K3
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:53 pm

Thanks for the post sonofkitrinos. I'm not sure exactly what you're suggesting but if it's your army you could name it however you want. My argument for naming organisations in such a way as "Montreal Unified Logic Plant" is just simply to show that the name is dynamic and allows for unique customization that is also interesting.

Much like how Tyranid Hive fleets all have different names and players have the freedom to make up their own army's hive fleet.

You could also do what you're suggesting as well but it may be a little confusing to name your army a numerical designation. The human brain - unless trained for it - tends to glaze over long or foreign looking numerical identifiers and designations.

Hope this answers your question!
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by sonofkitrinos » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:22 pm

well essentially the faction would be CRU

come up with a location deisgnation in the mid section (so randomly...MT for montreal) and unit type by the third entry...so scraplings could be known simply as 3's

The above would read

CRU-MT-32.4
Centralized Recycle Unit; Montreal District; Scrapling 2 of 4
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by darzinth7 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:34 pm

sonofkitrinos wrote:well essentially the faction would be CRU

come up with a location deisgnation in the mid section (so randomly...MT for montreal) and unit type by the third entry...so scraplings could be known simply as 3's

The above would read

CRU-MT-32.4
Centralized Recycle Unit; Montreal District; Scrapling 2 of 4
Or perhaps instead CRU-MT-3.2.4?

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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xefa01 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:52 am

Individual unit types could definitely fit a naming convention like that. It may become overly confusing if everything was a series of numerical designations though. Players would probably shorten it down to things like "CRs" and such. Either way this doesn't really do much to disprove the legitimacy of the proposed faction name since "CRU-MT-3.4.5" is more of a unit name.

I just think that's a bit too complicated for an entire army force organization. It's definitely sensible for a machine race to think of itself like that but there should be a balance between absolute reality and user friendliness.
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Re: Proposed name change for the Salvagers and Why

Post by Xeurian » Sat Apr 07, 2012 7:02 am

I personally love your idea. I feel as though in this setting, there are plenty of people doing salvaging of their own for there to be one to include it in their name. I definitely prefer Unified Logic over Salvagers for a factions name, though it may not be the best out there. It definitely strikes me .as something they would refer to them selves if they had a say. Salvagers sounds much more like a term we would see in a X'lanthos or Corporation faction book when referring to that faction, based on their perspective of their activities. Just as I feel the Bandit faction wouldn't go around claiming to be bandits in the 'look we are the bad guys' fashion that we often see in less developed fiction. I doubt the CRU would consider itself no more than a puppet master to a band of salvagers, looking to turn a profit or amass scrap.
Just my 2 cents. I like all the ideas so far but I just hope people don't misinterpret your points.

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