STM 2.05(A) – 2.06(D-AU): Magic, Science & Watcher “Intervention” in the STM Universe

July 19 2016

In the StrangeTown Monty (STM) Universe, aliens, werewolves and other supernatural Sim species are considered “normal” (a legitimate alternative to being a “regular” Sim) instead of “unbelievable”.

Non-natives of Strangetown or Moonlight Falls may take a while to get used to them, and generally come around to accept (or at least tolerate) them.

How could Waylon Wolff, an open werewolf, be elected the Leader of the Free World in the STM Universe, if “occult Sims” are generally treated as monstrosities and discriminated against?

Unlike the supernatural Sim species, Olive Specter’s magic tends to be too mysterious and inexplicable for most Sims to grasp. In the Main STM, this magic is manifested in the graveyard, while in PVCS vs STM 2015 & 2035, it’s in the mysterious “glass of water”.

The logic behind the soil tests is scientifically sound under “regular, non-magical” circumstances. Yet viewers cannot blame Ivanov and Xu for making some incorrect assumptions in the process – because we would have likely made these same mistakes if we were in their shoes.

The soil tests are a critique of the scientific process. While the scientific process is reliable most of the time, it is sometimes inadequate, especially if we make the wrong assumptions, or if the phenomena involved may not be fully explained by science alone.

Putting Prometheus Hyde into the story was a major calculated risk, due to his dual roles as author and the omniscient character of the “Watcher”. Yet I savored the challenge, because I believe I’m skilled enough to tread this fine line.

The biggest danger of inserting a self-Sim is the risk of coming across as a too-perfect “Gary Stu” (or “Mary Sue”).

That is why I do not let Hyde directly intervene in many matters, so that he would not be a superman or “deus ex machina” to miraculously solve all problems. However, Hyde reserves the right to reveal information in a selective way – as little as he wants, and to whoever he chooses.

Hyde’s lack of intervention also reflects on the way authors create story plots, letting the regular characters solve the issues on their own.

Sometimes the issues may not even be fully solved, the ambiguity of which brings about a touch of realism that is sorely absent in most “happily ever after” fairy tales. STM is not structured like a typical black-and-white fairy tale, but is a psychological drama with a moral continuum of many shades of gray.

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