What's happening to the canon

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What's happening to the canon

Postby cxl » Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:05 am

(or: How I learned to stop worrying and/or die in a sandwich press)

Okay, for those of you who have been paying attention to the IRC in the past month or so, you may have heard of big changes either happening or soon to happen to the RP's canon. Some of you have questioned this, some of you have remained oblivious to the world around you, and I'm almost certain one of you huffed paint and ran into the street wearing only a bright yellow hat and furry slippers.

But regardless of this community's general insanity, I'm going to address the key points regarding the upcoming canon changes, the reasoning behind them, and some of the basic procedures that'll be involved. Hopefully, after reading this post, you'll have some kind of idea of the what, why, how, etc. and thus perhaps be less prone to asking stupid questions or huffing paint.

So let's get stuck in.

First, the addition of Kantai Collection to the RP canon:

Firefluff wrote:Today, we are introducing another roleplay canon in addition to Touhou: Kantai Collection. Yes, these characters are now playable in the outside world!

Full thread is here.

Yes, this is a thing. Yes, it's going to continue to be a thing. No, we're not going to make it not be a thing. There are, however, reasons for this. Primarily, it's because it's fun, and it makes more characters available. More characters = more RP = good. It's also comically easy to merge into the existing canon. Finally, in a semi-meta way, it addresses the terribad power disparity between the Hanseatic League and the Qingcheng Empire, without throwing things into complete disarray.

One thing I will address, however:
nyttyn wrote:If people focus on Kancolle, the other aspects of the community go neglected. If Kancolle isn't focused on, obviously, it gets neglected. Just spreads the playerbase and our collective attentions too thin imo.

The problem with this is that it assumes there is some kind of "focus" in the EoP RP. There isn't. The entire setting is considered as a whole, and there is no main or central aspect to it. Yes, Gensoukyou is a part of the RP's canon. Yes, ship-people are a part of the RP's canon. There's also at least three confirmed extraterrestrial civilisations, and an incredibly complex and politically inclined afterlife.

People's attentions /will/ drift back and forth over time. This isn't an administrative edict, or a rule, or a hunch, it's a fact - something that's been observed to be true over a very long time. Nobody remains equally dedicated to the same thing forever - BUT, just as attention can wander away, it can come back again. The whole point of expanding the setting is to allow for more room for different kinds of things, so that people can do different things without having to outright leave because all this place can offer is shooting danmaku at youkai.

Less is not more. More is more. More variation in RP = less people getting bored = a healthier community.

The second thing that needs some explaining, is the planned opening up of Gensoukyou to the outside world.

In Touhou canon, having Gensoukyou as a completely sealed location works well for ZUN's purposes - it lets the games exist in a relatively self-contained setting where all the rules can be clearly established and nobody has to deal with the Million and One Questions that worldbuilding inevitably raises.

But this is not Touhou canon, this is EoP canon. Gensoukyou's population is 90% Japanese (including the youkai), but things similar to Youkai have existed in virtually every culture throughout Earth's history. (And no, the modern world doesn't count. The only culture in today's world is in the yogurt). These beings aren't going to just keel over and die, and they aren't all going to simply fade away (in many places in the world, there are far more belief in these kinds of things than there is in Japan, so the case could easily be made that they'd survive in other places for even longer).

As a result, these other youkai-like-beings formed their own organisations, alliances, and mechanisms to safeguard their existence in a world that doesn't really cater to them like it used to. No part of EoP's setting exists in a void, and so these various powers have interacted with each other to varying degrees over the years, and have generally maintained an existence that is not entirely, but mostly, hidden from human knowledge.

And now we get to Gensoukyou. Due to developments in RP, the barrier has been significantly weakened in places, and holes have been forming far more regularly. Considering the complexity of repairing it, Yukari negotiated with Tiandao, the Emperor of the Qingcheng Court, to have the youkai of the outside world assist in restoring the barrier. The mechanism of this will also allow for comparatively easy transit back and forth. In addition, by having the border-crossing be managed by the Qingcheng Empire, Gensoukyou effectively gets the protection of a worldwide superpower (as, despite how much many characters might like to boast to the contrary, Gensoukyou would get fucked over in 55 new and interesting ways in the event of a conflict).

Outside of RP, opening up Gensoukyou ("opening" is a bit of a misnomer. We're building a door, not knocking down the wall) is also valuable in a meta context, as it will end the segregation that currently exists between "touhou" and "non touhou" RP; WITHOUT completely shattering that delineation. It'd still be up to the individual RPers, and having the far side of the door watched by a bunch of powerful people will prevent idiots from forcing their way either in or out without good reason.

In conclusion, I will point out that the canon of EoP is an ever changing thing. Sometimes, change is small and brought about by the actions of relatively ordinary people, and sometimes it's sweeping and dramatic because of the actions of powerful organisations and/or their leaders. The way to deal with it remains the same either way: RP. The world turns, with or without you, so you might as well have your fun before the whole shithouse goes up in flames.

So until next time I have to make a long, rambling forum post: Good luck, have fun, and >:C
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