View Full Version : Fantasy Story Technology (with Gnomes)....

03-07-2007, 08:23 PM
..... In your Fantasy Books, (whether they're being published or not), how advanced is your technology? Who is the most advanced race?

And Gnomes.... People mention Gnomes are technologically advanced, hence why they are left out of most Medieval style Fantsay. But I can't recall any mythology sites that mention this. Could someone be kind enough as to post me a Magical Bestiary website on mythology, with Gnome technology?

03-07-2007, 08:33 PM
I guess it depends on which clan of gnomes you're talking about. Some are simple folk who enjoy a good glass of wine and folk songs. A bunch relocated to the Silicon Valley in the '80's, and I hear they're quite savvy about new technology.

Try this one:

03-08-2007, 12:18 AM
One of my fantasies is contemporary, so the most advanced thing in it so far is a mobile phone. The other is set about 60 years in the future, so things are a bit more funky than they are right this very moment.

Everything else is short stories.

03-08-2007, 12:37 AM
I'm using some magic based alchemy/chemistry. It can do some fantastic things like weapons, medicine, healing, and materials science.

Still, much of the other technology is early Renaissance.

03-08-2007, 12:47 AM
How advanced? They use computers for godsake! Look at the Travelocity gnome. :)

03-08-2007, 01:59 AM
The Underpants Gnomes are technologically advanced enough to have built their underground lair, but are economically primitive enough that all business revolves around the three-step plan: 1. Collect Underpants. 2. ??? 3. Profit!

Yeah, I used to watch southpark. XD But my point really is that they can be as advanced as you want them to be. They're an underused enough creature that you've really got pretty much free reign (and even if they weren't, you can still do what you want, so long as you make it believeable).

As for my fantasies, they tend to be urban fantasy, so I've got modern day tech. With maybe some small jumps ahead (as in, stuff that could happen in a few years, or, modern stuff spiffed up with a little magic).

03-08-2007, 02:54 AM
My fantasy world is medieval (at the time of the current story, although I have some vague ideas for stories set both far in the past and in the future). I use "medieval" in the broadest sense of the word, however. Since I am lazy and don't research most of my stuff, it is basically anything pre-gunpowder. However, the political structure is a little more advanced, with one country having more Renaissance-era cities as opposed to medieval era feudal castles (although another country has that).

03-08-2007, 05:37 AM
I've written a number of Gnome stories now and then. I love Gnomes. I dont' recall ever hearing them being any more technologically advanced than any other race.

03-08-2007, 05:51 AM
There seems to be a trend in roleplaying games for gnomes to be tinkers and inventors. So, if the entire race has that tendency, they would quickly become the most technologically advanced as they built off each other's ideas. I have no source for that outside the rpg world though.

03-08-2007, 05:54 AM
There seems to be a trend in roleplaying games for gnomes to be tinkers and inventors. So, if the entire race has that tendency, they would quickly become the most technologically advanced as they built off each other's ideas. I have no source for that outside the rpg world though.

I've seen that reference in RPGs too (World of Warcraft comes to mind) but never outside.

A lot of the time, I see them referenced as being something like Hobbits, really.

03-08-2007, 06:07 AM
I've seen that reference in RPGs too (World of Warcraft comes to mind) but never outside.

A lot of the time, I see them referenced as being something like Hobbits, really.

I think the gnomes in WOTC Forgotten Realms were supposed to be more technologically minded as well - but just because a RPG has gnomes that way doesn't make it so (or make it so in your world). If I remember correctly, Terry Brooks' Magic Kingdom For Sale, Sold series had gnomes in it and they were portrayed as creatures just above common rodents (with similar tendencies).

Write them the way you want...

Take care all -

03-08-2007, 06:11 AM
You could make a case for Terry Pratchett's Wee Free Men being Gnomes, or at least Gnomish...

03-08-2007, 06:21 AM
In Terry Brooks' Shannara series, some of the gnomes were healers while the rest of them generally sided with evil Trolls and warlords. In later books, the Trolls have become more noble characters and there are some 'good' gnomes...but primarily if memory serves, a number of the gnomes are still 'evil'.

03-08-2007, 06:23 AM
Terry Pratchett also has, in his regular Discworld books, both Gnomes and Trolls beautifully protrayed.

I'm quite fond of both Gnomes and Trolls. I had an illustrated "guide" to Gnomes as a species, a gorgeous book when I was younger (I think I have a copy of it again, somewhere) and it spent a fair bit of time talking about Gnomes and talking about Trolls, and it made an impression that never left. I love Gnomes and Trolls alike.

03-08-2007, 06:50 AM
Remember one night working at a Howard Johnsons wantabe where the hostess seated a customer at a table where the tip hadn't been cleared yet. The sixteen year old waitress asked the customer what happened to her tip and he lied. She comes back to the window where Jud and I are cooking and breaks into tears. Jud goes tearing out and demands the dude give the girl her tip. The stupid hostess starts yelling at Jud and I just sixteen at the time go out and just stare at the customer. He coughed up the tip and actually left one! Sometimes being ugly has its advantages.

Er, I'm sorry, I don't follow what that has to do with Gnomes or Trolls...

03-08-2007, 08:51 AM
Er, I'm sorry, I don't follow what that has to do with Gnomes or Trolls...

Maybe he was a gnome or a troll and he was commenting on the fact that when you're ugly, you don't always have to be technically minded in order to get what you want...

Of course, that does seem to be true of most 'troll' characters in the books I've read. I can't recall a 'handsome troll' anywhere.



But as for the topic...why do you think gnomes are 'occasionally' portrayed as technically minded? Is it because the Elves are typically all about forests and nature, dwarves are typically all about mountains, wealth and drinking, and somebody had to embody the gadgets and gizmos and all that was left were gnomes?

03-08-2007, 09:04 AM
I think that the gadget/tinker gnomes largely originated in Dungeons and Dragons, though of course DnD is mostly derivitive of something and they may have pulled the idea from elsehwere.

The "classic" gnome comes from, I believe, Germanic fairy tales. They are little people who dwell underground, live in trees, etc.

Then there's those awesome gnomes in your neighbor's garden....

03-08-2007, 09:26 AM
There's some info at Monstropedia.org about gnomes. There really isn't any info connecting the mythology of gnomes with 'technology' - though it is mentioned that they are supposed to be creatures highly skilled with gems and gem cutting - so I tend to think tech-gnomes is more of a DnD RPG concept.

Good luck with your writing.

03-08-2007, 08:27 PM
Thank you for your help, I would rather use Gnomes, it's strange, because my Fantasy plays on cliche, (here you have intellect politician Trolls, cool Gnomes, wimpy Goblins, and Elves and Dwarves are present, but in a smaller role.)

Even Tolkien did twists on Fantasy creatures, and that's what I like about his works.

03-08-2007, 09:52 PM
Even Tolkien did twists on Fantasy creatures, and that's what I like about his works.

Though the amusing thing is, Tolkien created and twisted so much less than people think. Mostly, he just understood history very, very well and then told people stories around it. I've always admired that about him.

Alan Yee
03-09-2007, 04:02 AM
My urban fantasy is pretty much current time, plus or minus a few years. The technology (which doesn't actually appear quite as much, because of the whole psychic power, human-demon mix, sometimes infused with witch, thing) is whatever technology we currently have.

03-10-2007, 03:32 AM
I love using steampunk style technology. There's just something about clockwork and steam-powered machines that's so cool :D especially since it's fantasy so It can be taken as far as possible (to clockwork airships and stuff)

As for gnomes, mine seem to be less intelligent, more like vermin than anything really :p .

03-10-2007, 04:54 PM
My fantasy is another basically medieval world - except for wherries, which are 19thC cargo boats, because it's my world, and I like wherries.

03-12-2007, 07:59 PM
Well, I think Gnomes make cool gizmos and gadgets creatures. They're short, fat, bearded and cool. I think they're cooler than Elves and Dwarves. Elves are complete perfect snobs, and little wimps. Dwarves are big and boasting, but Gnomes are the coolest!

I've came up with some Gnomes for my writing. They live in a wooden treehouse workshop and invent things using simple clockworks. Their chief invention is helping Human advancement in technology. It is a small, perfectly round, orange ball, that you plug into your ear, your hand, your eye socket, wherever. You utter a command, at it works for you. A Gnome-Orb, (that's what they're called), can give you a map or radar, be used as a walkie-talkie, a toy, a light, an alarm, a disguiser, a teleporter, even a weapon. Once it is used as a weapon, it will dteonate into bright orange smoke, disintergrating anything in its short range. Gnomes did this to stop pollution in woods, and to kill enemies quicker.

Has anyone played the MMORPG RuneScape? There are Gnomes there, and they live in tree houses and things, and they usually wear bright green and red, and ride animals, like birds and turtles. They also are relatives of Dwarves.

03-12-2007, 08:02 PM
All of that is fairly related to Gnomish mythology, JP.

I've always thought it was odd, the train of thought "elves are snobbish and dwarves are boastful," etc. I mean, it's your story. Who cares what other people wrote? Make your Elves raging drunkards, make your Dwarves polite and slightly fussy people. Make your Trolls into Scottish people if you want. :)

03-13-2007, 01:10 AM
My Gnomes are as mentioned. I like mythology, but tweaked, hence my creatures are like this:

Gnomes: Little Gizmo, Karate, Judo, Aikido-Style Army-Types.

Trolls: Intellects and Politicians. Obey the Diplomatic Law.

Goblins: Weak intelligence, which is used by bigger creatures to manipulate them into doing whatever.... They are also bullied a lot for being 'lessers'.

Elves: Small, mischevious and eerie against the green forest.

Dwarves: Big, stubborn and ugly, but very bashful. Can get nasty enough as to kill other races. Are a big threat to others because of their almost Human intelligence.

Dragons: Weaklings.

Wizards: Snobbish, old fashioned stick-in-the-muds who think they're good because of their 'noble blood ancestrey', and their astronomy abilites.

Ogres: Sewer workers, very stupid.

Griffins: Razor sharp beaks, not evil, but will defend their homes, violently if nessacary.

Phoenixes: Singing birds, can detect danger, don't do much.

Unicorns: Like cows, females graze in flocks, each lead by an alpha-male, big, golden, with sabre teeth and a sharp horn. Again, not evil, but will charge mindlessley at enemies to territory.

03-15-2007, 11:40 AM
I'm currently writing my first fantasy book (first book was sci fi, and man was it bad lol). My world is kind of a mix between modern day technology and a medieval world. Swords are used along side primitive guns, winged, steam powered airships exist (dont care how hard it would be to build one lol) and things like magic still exist aswell. I personally think that making a traditional fantasy world would be a little boring, but that might just be the science fiction lover in me talking. As for gnomes, I like to create my own races, so I have never used them.