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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    I am creating a ton of rules for time travel in D&D 3.5. I will be making spells (and in fact have a few done already) for traveling through time, but this first post is about the laws of time. To keep time travel straight, I have devised 7 laws of time. I would like for you all to read over them, and tell me if there are any important details I have missed. Thank you in advance. Now, for the laws:

    1: The Law of Primacy
    There is only one timeline. Making changes to the past changes the sole timeline, not creates a new one. When these rules refer to a new timeline, they are referring to the sole timeline after a change is made.

    2: The Law of Locking
    Persons, objects and locations can be "Locked", granting them immunity to being greatly affected by changes in time. "Locked" locations also grant this protection to all persons and objects within them. In addition, all "locked" persons and objects hold a special temporal frame, allowing them detect "waves" before they arrive. (That is to say "wave" detectors have to be locked.) This will be expounded on in the later Laws. Time travelers and time machines are automatically locked.

    3: The Law of Waves
    Changes in the past do not instantly affect the future. Changes are carried forward by a "Wave" which moves forward through time at a rate of 10 days per second (e.g. if I make a change 600 days before you, any wave detecting abilities and devices you have will detect the wave 60 seconds before it arrives). This time is in the special temporal frame of "locked" things. As a Wave moves over a certain point, that point of time changes to match what it would be with the change the wave was carrying.

    [NOTE: Those persons that are locked, or who are in a location that is locked, retain any memories they may have. However they also obtain the memories they would have in the new timeline. Those in a locked location remain there, while those in unlocked area are moved to where they were in that new timeline. If a locked individual is dead or non-existent, they appear where they were in the old timeline (or in the nearest open space, if the spot is taken). All of this is relative to the planet, none of this will land you in deep space.]
    [As to locked objects (Including time machines), they stay with the person that was holding or carrying them, even if that person is unlocked. If no one is carrying or holding it, it appears where it was in the other timeline.]
    [Locked locations, in addition to protecting persons there from changes, also protect themselves, and all objects within. (A locked location will appear in every timeline at the same spot, overwriting what was already there.)]

    4: The Law of Persistence
    Minor changes do not cause large changes. Small things are smoothed over without having major effects. Killing a butterfly means there is one less butterfly, not that the world explodes.

    5: The Law of Nexus
    Almost all people have many different "Nexus" points, important parts of their life story. Changes made at these points can cause large changes to that persons life, as well as to all people connected to that person (whose connections are in turn affected, and so on [the effect is reduced as there are more degrees of separation]).

    [NOTE: Due to laws 3-4, major changes to peoples life can be reversed, by returning the Nexus to the original state, or at least close enough for it to smooth over.]

    6: The Law of Jump.
    Time travel events still occur if they are erased. If things change in a way that would make you not time travel, you are unaffected.

    [NOTE: This law has two very powerful effects. It stops most paradoxes for occurring (e.g. you go back and kill your grandfather, erasing you from time; but since you jumped, you remain); however, it also makes a time traveler very hard to kill. To kill a time traveler, you need to find them before their next jump (on the locked time frame that is).]

    7: The Law of Prediction.
    If a person possesses memories of a future event, and then a wave changes that event, the memory updates to match the new event (if the person is locked, they retain the prior memory as well).

    [NOTE: Effects that predict or look at the future create memories of a future event. These memories act like any other memories of a future event, updating if the future changes.]

    EDIT: So you guys know how people can move in time, here is two spells and two items for it.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Time Jump
    Conjuration (Teleportation)
    Level: Sor/Wiz 8
    Components: V
    Casting Time: 1 minute
    Range: Personal and touch
    Target: You and touched objects or other touched willing creatures
    Duration: Instantaneous
    Saving Throw: None and Will negates (object)
    Spell Resistance: No and Yes (object)

    This spell instantly transports you to a designated destination in time, which may be as distant as 1 year per caster level. Interplanar travel is not possible, and you do not move in space. You can bring along objects as long as their weight doesn't exceed your maximum load. You may also bring one additional willing Medium or smaller creature (carrying gear or objects up to its maximum load) or its equivalent (see below) per three caster levels. A Large creature counts as two Medium creatures, a Huge creature counts as two Large creatures, and so forth. All creatures to be transported must be in contact with one another, and at least one of those creatures must be in contact with you. As with all spells where the range is personal and the target is you, you need not make a saving throw, nor is spell resistance applicable to you. Only objects held or in use (attended) by another person receive saving throws and spell resistance. All creatures transported by this spell are time-locked, if they weren't already.

    Detect Wave
    Divination
    Level: Sor/Wiz 1
    Components: V, Special
    Casting Time: 1 swift action
    Range: Personal
    Target: You
    Duration: Instantaneous
    Saving Throw: None
    Spell Resistance: No

    This spell notifies you if there are any time-waves currently approaching your location in time. If any exist, you are also informed how long it is until they arrive.

    Special: To cast this spell, you must be time-locked.
    --------------------------------------------------
    The Jumper-watch:
    A simple watch, this item has a small dial on this side. By setting this dial and speaking a command word, the wearer can jump through time. They may go as far as 15 years in either direction. This power can be activated once every 24 hours. The watch itself is permanently "locked" as is anyone who ever uses it.
    Strong conjuration CL 15th; Craft Wondrous Item, Time Jump; Price 43,200 gp.

    The Wave-catcher:
    A small panel of bronze, this item appears to do nothing. However, whenever a time wave is created in the past, it emits a loud beep. If looked at after the beep but before the wave arrives, a number displayed on the panel shows how many seconds remain until the wave hits. The panel is permanently "locked".
    Faint divination CL 1st; Craft Wondrous Item, Detect Wave; Price 2,000 gp.
    Last edited by qwertyu63; 2014-09-07 at 08:21 AM.

    My Homebrew-Estote clementes, et numquam desinete discere.-FanAdv

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    I'm a little confused by the law of prediction. If the person's memory is updated and yet they retain the original memory, doesn't that mean that they're gaining extra memories?

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Durazno View Post
    I'm a little confused by the law of prediction. If the person's memory is updated and yet they retain the original memory, doesn't that mean that they're gaining extra memories?
    Derp. The point of that sentence is because I had someone argue that they should get memories of all the time between when they were and the future they knew. I'll go clear up the wording. Or just cut the line entirely, and rely on common sense.
    Last edited by qwertyu63; 2013-09-09 at 09:41 AM.

    My Homebrew-Estote clementes, et numquam desinete discere.-FanAdv

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    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    The gaining memories thing is potentially really dangerous. I could imagine someone designing a weapon that basically constantly jumps back in time a few seconds and makes small changes to a color pattern it emits into the air, causing everyone within sight of the thing to basically have their mind filled with a bazillion copies of the memory.

    Maybe a better way to do it would be that the 'current memories' can be tapped using Locked technology, sort of by gently releasing the lock over regions of the brain and viewing the 'current' memories through sort of a dreamy haze. So they're basically never internalized, but you can get at them to a controllable degree.

    Another interesting thing suggested by the Nexus thing and the Persistence thing is the idea of quantized history. The same way energy levels are quantized in an atom, different segments of possible history are separated by gaps made of histories that are entirely unstable and 'decay down' in that smoothing process. Does that decay release some sort of usable energy/resource? That could be neat.

    However, the structure of these gaps changes as one moves around in the space of possible timelines. This leads to an idea for a villain:

    Perhaps someone could be looking to direct history to a place where the gaps are large (so time is very stable and hard to change) or to a place where the gaps shrink to nothing, so that history becomes infinitely mutable and the butterfly effect reigns. Maybe they in effect want to push history to a point that is bad for time-travelers and wipes them all out, so that they can then later push it back and make a timeline free from their influence (or be the only one).
    Last edited by NichG; 2013-09-10 at 03:14 PM.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by NichG View Post
    The gaining memories thing is potentially really dangerous. I could imagine someone designing a weapon that basically constantly jumps back in time a few seconds and makes small changes to a color pattern it emits into the air, causing everyone within sight of the thing to basically have their mind filled with a bazillion copies of the memory.
    Realize that only locked individuals get those added memories. I also kind of had in my head that having more memories would be a difficult thing to get used to.

    Quote Originally Posted by NichG View Post
    Maybe a better way to do it would be that the 'current memories' can be tapped using Locked technology, sort of by gently releasing the lock over regions of the brain and viewing the 'current' memories through sort of a dreamy haze. So they're basically never internalized, but you can get at them to a controllable degree.
    As cool of an idea as this is, I do prefer a sort of "my skull runneth over" type effect, with more experienced travelers getting used to it over time.

    Quote Originally Posted by NichG View Post
    Another interesting thing suggested by the Nexus thing and the Persistence thing is the idea of quantized history. The same way energy levels are quantized in an atom, different segments of possible history are separated by gaps made of histories that are entirely unstable and 'decay down' in that smoothing process. Does that decay release some sort of usable energy/resource? That could be neat.
    And here we have you thinking this through more then I did. That said, I had a vague idea of a power source that only locked things could use.

    Quote Originally Posted by NichG View Post
    However, the structure of these gaps changes as one moves around in the space of possible timelines. This leads to an idea for a villain:

    Perhaps someone could be looking to direct history to a place where the gaps are large (so time is very stable and hard to change) or to a place where the gaps shrink to nothing, so that history becomes infinitely mutable and the butterfly effect reigns. Maybe they in effect want to push history to a point that is bad for time-travelers and wipes them all out, so that they can then later push it back and make a timeline free from their influence (or be the only one).
    Interesting idea, but I would never use it. I don't really see the mutability of time being mutable in and of itself.

    My Homebrew-Estote clementes, et numquam desinete discere.-FanAdv

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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    The laws make sense, and I may use them if I get the chance.

    For the spells, I think they should be of a higher level (Detect Wave shouldn't be a cantrip. 1st-level characters shouldn't even know about time travel. Time Jump should probably be 9th-level).

    Iirc, WotC published official rules for chronomancy and time travel in Dragon Magazine. I'm not sure in what issue though. There's also an homebrewed chronomancer base class on board, if this is of any help.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Network View Post
    The laws make sense, and I may use them if I get the chance.

    For the spells, I think they should be of a higher level (Detect Wave shouldn't be a cantrip. 1st-level characters shouldn't even know about time travel. Time Jump should probably be 9th-level).

    Iirc, WotC published official rules for chronomancy and time travel in Dragon Magazine. I'm not sure in what issue though. There's also an homebrewed chronomancer base class on board, if this is of any help.
    Detect Wave is such a low level because I want it to be an easy effect. Note that it is near useless until you have someway to lock yourself. Time Jump is intentionally lower then 9th, as I wanted Wish to be able to recreate it.

    The key part of this system is the 6 laws. The spells are just to give some rules context to them. I intend to create content for the 6 laws in d20 Modern, along with whatever other systems I come across.

    My Homebrew-Estote clementes, et numquam desinete discere.-FanAdv

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    If you were to say detect a wave and then jump backwards in time to before the wave just before it hits you, would you go to the past as effected by the wave or the past of the timeline you were just inhabiting (since your place in time is not yet affected from the wave)?
    4/10/2013 is this first day I used blue text. Isn't that soooo cool
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    I just learned about dawn of worlds and its so cool! Anyone who likes group worldbuilding, check it out!
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by ddude987 View Post
    If you were to say detect a wave and then jump backwards in time to before the wave just before it hits you, would you go to the past as effected by the wave or the past of the timeline you were just inhabiting (since your place in time is not yet affected from the wave)?
    If you jumped over the wave, you would now be in the past effected by that wave, as that part of the timeline has already been effected by the wave.

    There is only one timeline in these rules, one timeline that people can change. Maybe I should add that to the laws (The law of Primacy, perhaps?).

    NOTE: When the wave in your example hits the moment you jumped back, that is when you gain the memories of the other history.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by qwertyu63 View Post
    NOTE: When the wave in your example hits the moment you jumped back, that is when you gain the memories of the other history.
    Can you jump over the wave backwards in time without it hitting you? Would this mean you retain the old memories but are in the changed timeline?
    4/10/2013 is this first day I used blue text. Isn't that soooo cool
    Quirble muffins - with credit to Xervous and myself. Now with 50 cent royalties
    I just learned about dawn of worlds and its so cool! Anyone who likes group worldbuilding, check it out!
    Official member of the Rudisplorker guild, the new guy of the bunch. All hail Orcus!

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Time Travel in D&D 3.5: some rules [PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by ddude987 View Post
    Can you jump over the wave backwards in time without it hitting you? Would this mean you retain the old memories but are in the changed timeline?
    No, you will get the memories of the new history. But you would remember BOTH histories since you are locked, due to having time traveled.

    My Homebrew-Estote clementes, et numquam desinete discere.-FanAdv

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