Altertech is a form of "theme technology" native
to many cosms, that allows natives to violate the normal restrictions
of their Tech axiom, as long as they do so in accordance with
of the alternate technology. All Altertech systems need to be either
supported by another axiom (Magic or Spirit, usually Magic) or
a World Law.
An obvious example is the Weird Science of the Nile.
Another would be the Etheric Science or Steam Science of a Steampunk
venture further afield, "cyberpunk" tech and Akashan
biotech might even be examples of Altertechs.
Example: An extreme Altertech
is the Stonetech of the Flintstones. The Flinstones cosm is approximately
Tech 7. Yet, due to their Stonetech,
they can emulate many tools of Tech axioms up to 21, including
pistols, vacuum cleaners, automobiles, jet aeroplanes, cranes,
and so forth.
The "theme" of Stonetech is that everything must be
made of "natural" materials (wood, stone, leather, rubber
and so forth) and it must be powered by either domesticated animals
or people. For example, people run to start their cars, use baby
elephants as vacuum cleaners, and use their thumbs to fire their
slingshot pistols. Despite this, the tools work as well as their
is powered by a World Law.
Altertech provides gamemasters a framework around which they can
implement variant technologies, like Weird Science and Tharkold’s
Adventurous gamemasters may even try and work up the original technological
Occult, as described in the Torg Worldbook.
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by Jasyn Jones.