Mithril

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Dan L P
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Re: Mithril

#101 Post by Dan L P » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:58 am

rdelorme10 wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:47 am
I support the KISS principle: all the elements of Stainless steel were known in the ancient world and it would not be unreasonable to assume that alchemist and mages could produce small quantities; with nickel being a limiting factor and chromium being a real cost multiplier as it was expensive to purify. Thus making Mithril is expensive and rare; but not requiring advanced technology.
As I see it you are not making mithril it is an element like iron, copper, gold, titanium, and silver. Its not an alloy like stainless steel or bronze. Which makes it far superior given its strength, toughness, weight and lack of technology needed to refine and create items.

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Re: Mithril

#102 Post by Derfman » Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:29 pm

The problem with making mithril an 'element' is that there is no place to put it (assuming you care about chemistry, some don't. I for one, ignore it on this point).

One work around I can think of is to have Mithril BE platinum, and just say that on worlds with magic, platinum behave differently, thus explaining why the properties of platinum on Middle Earth or on Kethira differ from the properties on Terra.

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Re: Mithril

#103 Post by Targan » Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:36 pm

Derfman wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:29 pm
One work around I can think of is to have Mithril BE platinum, and just say that on worlds with magic, platinum behave differently, thus explaining why the properties of platinum on Middle Earth or on Kethira differ from the properties on Terra.
That's... an idea that I'm going to give some serious consideration to.
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Re: Mithril

#104 Post by Derfman » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:27 pm

Thinking more along that line of thought, Iridium is another option for 'Mithril'.

Certainly explains its rarity.

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Re: Mithril

#105 Post by Krazma » Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:08 am

The meteor in the Jmorvi chantry at Gwaeryn includes Iridium, but they've been studying it for a while and still don't understand all it's properties.

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Re: Mithril

#106 Post by Dan L P » Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:43 am

Derfman wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:29 pm
The problem with making mithril an 'element' is that there is no place to put it (assuming you care about chemistry, some don't. I for one, ignore it on this point).

One work around I can think of is to have Mithril BE platinum, and just say that on worlds with magic, platinum behave differently, thus explaining why the properties of platinum on Middle Earth or on Kethira differ from the properties on Terra.
Harn does not have a periodic table as far as I know and earth didn't develop one until the 1800s

In 1809 at least 47 elements were discovered, and scientists began to see patterns in the characteristics.

In 1863 English chemist John Newlands divided the then discovered 56 elements into 11 groups, based on characteristics.

In 1869 Russian chemist Dimitri Mendeleev started the development of the periodic table, arranging chemical elements by atomic mass. He predicted the discovery of other elements, and left spaces open in his periodic table for them

The periodic table can be used to derive relationships between the properties of the elements, and predict the properties of new elements yet to be discovered or synthesized. The periodic table provides a useful framework for analyzing chemical behaviour, and is widely used in chemistry and other sciences.

Now if you are going to place Tolkien Mithril on a
periodic table it's characteristics are more closely related to titanium then platinum (Mythral) or Iridium.
As far as saying that platinum behave differently, you could say the same about titanium.

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Re: Mithril

#107 Post by rdelorme10 » Wed Jun 21, 2017 11:26 am

I would not use our "history" of discovery for metallurgy. It ignores a lot of archeological and written evidence in favor of elite scientist of the enlightenment. Historian state that there were 10 - 12 element known before 1700; but archeology has discovered artifacts made of relatively pure material for 17 elements and written evidence that another 20 were deliberately used to make allows. Thus the educated elite probably should have spoken to those uneducated tradesman who may not have spoken Greek and Latin but had practical knowledge.

Several misconceptions on this list: Native-Platinum was know in the middle ages as there are manuscripts describing the metal in alchemist text of the period. Greco-Roman, Ancient Egypt (alloyed with gold so there is some question of origins), Ancient China and Pre-Columbian Peru all produced a few artifacts of Platinum; with Peru producing the most. These cultures did not know how to refine the metal as platinum is found in its native form. Most native platinum has small amounts of other platinum group metals, commonly Osmium and Iridium, which harden the soft metal. Most native platinum has small amounts of other platinum group metals, commonly Osmium and Iridium, which harden the soft metal. Thus early scholars thought there were two forms of Platinum for several decades.

Historical notes:
1) Adamantine is the ancient Greek word for diamonds: the gates of Olympus were made of Adamantine. It was D&D that converted this term to a metal. I am surprised that Zeus did not strike down the heretics with one of his lighting bolts.
2) In ancient times it was used to make Bismuth-Bronze, Medicines, Cosmetics and in the manufacture of glass. Bismuth is one of the first metals discovered as it can be found in its native form and has been used for millennium. It just not found in Northern Europe.
3) Cobalt was used in glasswork at least 4000 years; imparting a rich blue to glass, glazes and ceramics. Egyptian sculpture and Persian jewelry from the third millennium BC contain cobalt in colored glass.
4) Nickel appears in bronze alloys around 3500 BC and in the oldest iron objects. In China there is clear evidence that nickel was known Cupro-Nickels (Paktong) were used extensively for over 3700 years. Chinese manuscripts dating from 1700BC clearly describe nickel. Homeric Greeks also created Cupronickels (Alba Orchalc or white golden copper) although the practice extended into the early Roman Empire, Cupronickel objects are rare. In India the Greco-Bactrians minted cupro-nickel coins comprising 20% nickel. The oldest coins bear the bust of Euthydemus II and date from 170-180 BCE.
5) Writings from Alexandria indicate that the Ptolemaic alchemist knew that Molybdenum was a unique metal and used it in both its pure and mineral form: it is believed the metal was used for crucibles in the brass casting industry . Fourteenth century Japanese sword makers deliberately created Molybdenum steel alloys.
6) The use of manganese is very ancient. Manganese dioxide, are abundant in nature, and owing to their color, these compounds have been used as since the dawn of man, showing up in cave paintings around 28,000 BCE. Greek writing discuss the different mineral containing Manganese and manganese appears in many ancient bronze weapons and armors. In the past historians have attributed impurities as the occurrence is less than 2%; however Manganese is added to bronzes today as hardening agents and coincidentally at 0.5 to 2%. Given the Greek written records on has to accept that the metal was known and deliberately used in the correct proportions.

Some meteorites (rare) alloys of iron, nickel and chromium, thus are very close to stainless steel, thus the discovery could be "accidental". Mail made of modern stainless steels would match Tolkien's description of Mythril; remember historic mail was made of low grade steel or wrought iron. They would have to be very heavy and were riveted together. Consider that a suit of stainless steel could be welded together, if made with thinner rings it could be half the weight and still be 3-4 time stronger than period armor. Add in some magical reinforcement and you have armor than was "impenetrable", silvery in color and rust proof. Sounds like mithril to me..

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Re: Mithril

#108 Post by Dan L P » Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:41 am

If you think stainless steel is a better choice then mithril, then maybe you could find bars of stainless steel at earthmaster sites. Surely they would of had the technology to create stainless steel.

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Re: Mithril

#109 Post by macgorgor » Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:36 am

Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:41 am
If you think stainless steel is a better choice then mithril, then maybe you could find bars of stainless steel at earthmaster sites. Surely they would of had the technology to create stainless steel.
Stainless steel, titanium, magical mythral, it doesn't matter: same as very few of us, even repair technicians, carry bars of select rare earths or noble metals around despite their ubiquity in modern tech, I doubt earthmasters would bother stocking themselves with metal bars.
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Re: Mithril

#110 Post by Dan L P » Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:54 am

macgorgor wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:36 am
Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:41 am
If you think stainless steel is a better choice then mithril, then maybe you could find bars of stainless steel at earthmaster sites. Surely they would of had the technology to create stainless steel.
Stainless steel, titanium, magical mythral, it doesn't matter: same as very few of us, even repair technicians, carry bars of select rare earths or noble metals around despite their ubiquity in modern tech, I doubt earthmasters would bother stocking themselves with metal bars.
So you think when earthmasters want to make something they start from scratch. Like baking a cake, they gather plants for flour, sugar and other items for baking the cake. Of course they would have supplies on hand.
Last edited by Dan L P on Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mithril

#111 Post by Krazma » Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:07 am

Earthmaster technology is primarily psionic in nature, regardless of what the materials involved are. Pseudostone, for instance, isn't something you mine. Earthmaster "crystals" are notably different than mundane crystals. The presumption that the Earthmasters actually used any of these materials is not actually supported by the existing canon, so you could take it in any direction you like and not be "wrong."

However, with one exception, all the EM sites (on Hârn, at least) have been repeatedly looted over the centuries. If there were stacks of gold, titanium, etc laying around when the Earthmasters departed, the odds of them still being there are limited. You are as likely to find something left behind by a former trespasser as anything left by the Earthmasters. The difference is that you can probably identify the purpose of what the trespasser left behind.

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Re: Mithril

#112 Post by Dan L P » Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:26 am

Krazma wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:07 am
However, with one exception, all the EM sites (on Hârn, at least) have been repeatedly looted over the centuries. If there were stacks of gold, titanium, etc laying around when the Earthmasters departed, the odds of them still being there are limited. You are as likely to find something left behind by a former trespasser as anything left by the Earthmasters. The difference is that you can probably identify the purpose of what the trespasser left behind.
So all those secret doors I see on all of the earthmaster sites maps have all been open and looted?

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Re: Mithril

#113 Post by Leitchy » Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:12 pm

Those pesky adventurers! Harder to keep them out of a treasure trove hidden behind a secret door than mice out of a granary with no doors!

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:
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Re: Mithril

#114 Post by Peter the skald » Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:27 pm

The implication from the floor plans is that there are psionically hidden chambers....the blurbs always mention looting...often failing to find these.

I have always taken the view that folk over the aeons have accessed these chambers; with the purpose left for gm maguffin. The folk that do so are likely to be interested in the psionic/magical properties of things they find. So they might bypass a stainless steel sword....

But for me the real treasure of the sites is working out what they are jolly well used for...
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Re: Mithril

#115 Post by macgorgor » Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:28 am

Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:54 am
So you think when earthmasters want to make something they start from scratch. Like baking a cake, they gather plants for flour, sugar and other items for baking the cake. Of course they would have supplies on hand.
Er, no, that would be unlogical, please use real arguments. What I'm pointing out is that you're using the PERSONAL POSSESSIONS table to populate EM sites with loot, with the present-day incidence of gold crowns/gold ounces in human realms being the factor deciding whether mythral bars are found, quite the circumvoluted process. If you're set on using, instead of proverbial GM discretion, treasure tables to generate loot for your EM locations, raw materials such as noble metals would I think fall under the Trade Goods category.
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Re: Mithril

#116 Post by macgorgor » Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:39 am

Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:26 am
So all those secret doors I see on all of the earthmaster sites maps have all been open and looted?
Well yes, for the most part this is a credible assertion; as I and others on this thread have written, the stuff found lying around in EM sites is most likely to be from previous expedition, and is most likely to be thrash.

But EM artefacts have the habit of phasing in and out of reality (as a power saving mechanism, or as a safety feature, or both, or perhaps for entirely different reasons). So when visiting a chamber already looted a hundred times, there still might be some EM artefact lying around that perhaps just popped into existence minutes ago.

And it isn't a huge stretch then to imagine that some abilities (talents, spells, ethereal nature, etc.) could sometimes entice EM artefacts to manifest; some EM artefacts, particularly those involved with maintenance or repair, might have the same effect.
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Re: Mithril

#117 Post by Dan L P » Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:02 pm

macgorgor wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:39 am
Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:26 am
So all those secret doors I see on all of the earthmaster sites maps have all been open and looted?
Well yes, for the most part this is a credible assertion; as I and others on this thread have written, the stuff found lying around in EM sites is most likely to be from previous expedition, and is most likely to be thrash.

But EM artefacts have the habit of phasing in and out of reality (as a power saving mechanism, or as a safety feature, or both, or perhaps for entirely different reasons). So when visiting a chamber already looted a hundred times, there still might be some EM artefact lying around that perhaps just popped into existence minutes ago.

And it isn't a huge stretch then to imagine that some abilities (talents, spells, ethereal nature, etc.) could sometimes entice EM artefacts to manifest; some EM artefacts, particularly those involved with maintenance or repair, might have the same effect.
Only in your p-Harn has all the earthmaster sites been looted. In my p-Harn world PC walk by secret doors all the time without finding then and all this stuff you're spouting off about Earthmaster Artifacts is your house rules and not canon, so not relevant to what we're talking about.

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Re: Mithril

#118 Post by Dan L P » Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:05 pm

macgorgor wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:28 am
Dan L P wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:54 am
So you think when earthmasters want to make something they start from scratch. Like baking a cake, they gather plants for flour, sugar and other items for baking the cake. Of course they would have supplies on hand.
Er, no, that would be unlogical, please use real arguments. What I'm pointing out is that you're using the PERSONAL POSSESSIONS table to populate EM sites with loot, with the present-day incidence of gold crowns/gold ounces in human realms being the factor deciding whether mythral bars are found, quite the circumvoluted process. If you're set on using, instead of proverbial GM discretion, treasure tables to generate loot for your EM locations, raw materials such as noble metals would I think fall under the Trade Goods category.
There is no random generation table for Earthmasters treasure that would have survived the ravages of time or how they live or what they thought was valuable.
Also there is no table for rolling up Trade Goods under Personal Possessions. So I had to make my own house rules for what they might have left behind.
If you think about it not that much silver, gold, or gems are generated on the Personal Possession tables.

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Re: Mithril

#119 Post by Peter the skald » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:08 pm

As this is a question about the probability of mithril being found in an earthmaster site as no real specific appropriate table exists.....

What percentage chance do we think there is of Mithril being at a site? If we were to fanon a table...

My vote is 1% for player fun. In reality would be .00.1%. About the same for Xerox machine from the 1980's. Or anything from the multiverse.

Do the item generation tables have an 'other' column? Imho it would be legitimate use of this to put mithril in this category. And Xerox machines
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Re: Mithril

#120 Post by Targan » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:29 pm

I await the inevitable return of the Earthmasters when the last of the famed universal Godstone site hidden mithral vaults runs dry.
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Re: Mithril

#121 Post by MDMann » Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:16 pm

Xerox from the 80's are damn tanks. If anything could survive the zombie apocalypse it's those things. It's what we'll build the barricades from. Actually, the current ones are pretty hefty too. It's just the kind of thing that could survive from the earthmasters, overengineered office equipment. Which may be made from mithril.
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Re: Mithril

#122 Post by Peter the skald » Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:35 pm

Something black mirrorish about an indestructible dimension hopping copying machine..... Or maybe Even Stranger Things....
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Re: Mithril

#123 Post by macgorgor » Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:59 pm

Dan L P wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:02 pm
Only in your p-Harn has all the earthmaster sites been looted. In my p-Harn world PC walk by secret doors all the time without finding then and all this stuff you're spouting off about Earthmaster Artifacts is your house rules and not canon, so not relevant to what we're talking about.
Spouting? Since you're the one exposing us house rules intended to sprinkle EM sites with mythral bars, I assumed the mention of other house rules (that I'm not the only one to use) intended to explain the possibility of still finding EM artefacts lying around after 15 000 YEARS OF LOOTING was at least remotely pertinent. Sorry if you've been offended by that.
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Re: Mithril

#124 Post by macgorgor » Sat Jun 24, 2017 2:32 am

Dan L P wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:05 pm
There is no random generation table for Earthmasters treasure that would have survived the ravages of time or how they live or what they thought was valuable.
Also there is no table for rolling up Trade Goods under Personal Possessions. So I had to make my own house rules for what they might have left behind.
If you think about it not that much silver, gold, or gems are generated on the Personal Possession tables.
Technically, the DATE OF ORIGIN table generates EM-period treasure on a 99-00 on 1d100; you might reasonably up this percentage in actual EM sites, or in inviolate chambers make it an automatic occurrence.
Also, if you look closely, trade goods are generated as personal possessions for the Hunter/Woodsman/Tribesman and Merchant/Trader individual categories, though again, how this relates to Earthmaster society remains anyone's guess.
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Re: Mithril

#125 Post by Dan L P » Sat Jun 24, 2017 5:11 am

macgorgor wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:59 pm
Dan L P wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:02 pm
Only in your p-Harn has all the earthmaster sites been looted. In my p-Harn world PC walk by secret doors all the time without finding then...
...to explain the possibility of still finding EM artefacts lying around after 15 000 YEARS OF LOOTING...
Modern—6th to 8th century TR (1d3+5) human, dwarves, elves
Middle—1st to 5th century TR (1d5) human, dwarves, elves
Ancient—1st to 12th century BT (1d12) human, dwarves, elves
Codominium—13th to 70th century BT (3d20+10) dwarves, elves
Pre-Khuzan—71st to 100th century BT (1d30+70) elves
Lost Years—101st to 150th century BT (1d50+100)
Earthmaster—151st to 200th century BT (1d100+150)

As I understand the treasure age table the Elves have only been around for 10,000 years, so who has been looting the sites for 15,000 years?
Last edited by Dan L P on Sat Jun 24, 2017 6:10 am, edited 4 times in total.

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