Me and Sigma worked on a really bad song:
So I’ve been streaming my game’s progress on Youtube:
I don’t usually do this, but started to continue to work on a video game RPG project I had previously all but abandoned! I am making an effort to try to finish this one. Having fresh eyes, I started to redesign a lot of stuff that that didn’t quite look right to me, starting with the main character:
It’s coming along. Another thing I’ve done is changed the story and turned down the overall scope of it, so with persistence it’ll get done sometime in my lifetime, ha ha. Luckily I had previously completed the majority of the engine it works on, so now it’s just a matter of making content, and so on. Whee.
- A fighting game that uses the MUGEN engine.
- A completed Inform 7 game.
- Complete that one warlocks versus giant robots novelette.
- Finally getting around to learning Java.
Also, for anyone that hasn’t checked out Inform 7, at least give it a glance. Its an attempt to use more natural language for code, tailored for interactive fiction games (like Zork).
Time travel is one of my little pet topics, and I distinguish past time travel from future or present time travel, since they’re doing different things. It’s kind of funny how so much media has depicted past and future time travel in particular as conforming to the same rule set. Marty McFly’s Delorean essentially uses the very same method to travel to the past as for the future. When it’s quite possible that we could be using drastically different methods to do either kind of time travel assuming past time travel is possible.
Anyway, here’s some shit that I think would almost certainly have to be true if past time travel were possible. All of this stuff may seem *super* obvious, but it’s this kind of shit that media basically ignores constantly.
The past would have to exist simultaneously with the present
With the exception of the multiverse idea for time travel, in order for you to get to the past, it must already exist in some form in the present. This is kind of weird to explain when we’re talking about time travel, but basically, there’s a good chance what we call “the past” is not a thing that exists anymore once several presents “overwrote” it. This kind of idea was lightly explored in the Stephen King story ‘The Langoliers’, though I somehow very much doubt that any sort of residual lingering past is inhabited by time monsters. There are many unknown possibilities for what still may exist or not, but suffice to say that a person cannot travel to a place that does not exist. The past is no exception to this.
time monsters are a drag
Paradoxes would have to be resolved
So, by paradox I mean the way it’s generally understood in the context of time travel, especially in media; that is, an apparent contradiction of physics and the timeline. I have an idea, and I tend to think it’s correct, that paradoxes *cannot* happen. That is to say, there can be no physical contradictions. But to me, this is a lot more far-reaching than what I see depicted in various stories about past time travel.
I don’t think something such as Marty McFly’s hand becoming transparent because of the temporal uncertainty of his existence or any other example of a time traveler being effecting in “realtime” such as that could ever legitimately happen even if past time travel were a thing. And a lot of that is because of how I think paradoxes operate, or better said, how they don’t. There can be no actual contradictions.
An obvious example is trying to stop yourself from time traveling in the past in the first place. The conventional rationale for this is that the result would mean erasing the existence of the version of you who managed to stop the past version of you attempt to travel to the past in order to stop yourself. However, contend that *any* past time travel of any kind within one’s own timeline is a paradox. A contradiction of events. So, either you (a foreign body where the past is concerned) are able to be there at all or not. Either you can alter the past and not personally be affected or not be able to go into the past at all. There are certain ideas that try to remedy this idea, such as a fixed timeline, but things like that have their own problems.
A fixed timeline like in ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’ might seem to work at first glance. At least its mostly internally consistent, but is also a logical paradox. In this one, all events all happen consistently the same way regardless of time traveling interference. And if I’m interpreting it correctly, then there isn’t even a reality in that scenario where there is an “original” timeline before it is overwritten by time travelers; it exists as a singular stand-alone timeline. But it basically relies on a paradox, and things like Harry Potter typically stay away from some of the crazier examples that could break it, like killing a younger version of yourself and what that would do. This type of time travel is also explored in the first ‘Ecco the Dolphin game where him going back in time is the reason that dolphins decided to be sea dwellers. I think Futurama has it as well. Either way, I’m pretty much discounting this version of time travel as being possible. It’s whole nature is one big paradox.
that game was trippy as balls
A dynamic timeline is one where past events change the present, and like I said earlier is a paradox, and therefore I really, really don’t think that it’s legit.
There’s the multiple universe/timeline idea, and I think that one cheats. It allows the time traveler to kind of circumvent any causal contradictions, but there’s several parts about it that make no sense, and not necessarily pertaining to causality. Like, where does the separate reality even necessarily come from? If we’re using Dragon Ball Z’s logic, the separate reality was basically created on the fly, and seemingly for no other reason than being created for the convenience of being able to time travel at all. Creating a whole universe is quite a big feat, and I don’t see anything within the virtue of just attempting time travel which would merit the creation of a whole separate universe.
But hey, maybe we’re talking about traveling to the past of an already established universe, which I have a couple of thoughts about… Like, one thing is that you can definitely not be said to be editing your own timeline at all. So it “cheats” in that sense. But more than that, to travel there you’d have to know the time and place of a universe that’s virtually identical to your own (but still not your own) and for no other purpose other than fucking with somebody else’s timeline to get a general sense of editing your own. But I guess Trunks had a noble enough mission in warning heroes of Goku’s universe of the Androids, or whatever.
One scenario I thought could maybe remedy the whole paradox dilemma might be a scenario in which there was a single timeline, but causality of events somewhat didn’t affect the timeline the time traveler was from, and would promptly be erased by the time traveler. But, in hindsight, that probably doesn’t make any sense.
Physics has to support it
Probably seems obvious enough, but in order for anything to happen, the rules of existence must first have to allow it to happen in any capacity. It may be that past time travel just cannot happen for one reason or another. Perhaps rifts in spacetime just aren’t anywhere near as romantic as they are depicted in scifi stories. Perhaps we cannot possibly for faster than light, and so on. Everything I’ve said before this are examples of what must be true for it to exist, but this point is more encompassing. So much has to be true in order for past time travel to be a thing.
Lastly… The butterfly effect in the context of causality is almost certainly a thing, even if past time travel is impossible.
One idea that’s often neglected in time travel stories is exactly how much the present and future is affected by past alterations. To me, it’s kind of a “well duh.” I think any change can create significant changes the more time goes on. Of course, I don’t think small changes are necessarily immediately apparent at all, but I do think the event chain starts to spread outwardly from the initial change, and it just keeps snowballing exponentially creating bigger and bigger changes. So, if you only traveled a couple of days into the past into the present, there might be no apparent change at all, but obviously with more and bigger changes, there’s no telling just how much you’d be altering everything. And even if there is no past time travel at all, this kind of principle still applies.