Sunday, March 11, 2012
Dungeons and Geometry
Both H.P. Lovecraft's The Dreams in the Witch House and The Call of Cthulu used non-Euclidean geometry as a device to make their horrors seem alien, with access to unfathomable knowledge which humanity is only able to touch upon. It was a common theme in all his stories. Since even in his time, the ideas of alternative formulations of geometry were well developed, it's implicit in his stories that humanity had already gone "too far," in its search for knowledge. The Theory of Relativity was something we were not "meant" to know. The ability to manipulate space itself would almost certainly be a hallmark of powerful magic or divine intervention. I was also thinking about when I was eleven and learning to play D&D while also teaching myself to program in Ye Old BASIC with Lyne Numbers on my ATARI XE computer. I remember carefully keying in a program called "Hunt the Wumpus" and taking pride in how I'd made the Wumpus' lair into a Moebius strip. Dr Who's TARDIS would be impossible without non-Euclidean geometry.
So... my next dungeon will be non-Euclidean.