[Message from Gaspar to anybody using timegates the first time,
 in re "Important note about time travels"]

ATTENTION - READ CAREFULLY - THIS CONCERNS YOUR PERSONAL FUTURE.

Travelling using the time gates comes
with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY whatsoever.

— It is not accurate. You may be misplaced in time by
  a second or a couple of years, depending on your luck.
  (More accurate shift vectors just can't be calculated.)

— It is a one-way operation.
  The gate will disintegrate immediately after you have
  arrived. This means you have to find/create another
  gate in order to get back.

— It is possible that once you warp, you will never see
  your home and your friends again. You might be never
  able to return, because all gates you might try for
  returning, might lead to futures/pasts different than
  where you came from.

— Visiting your future is no guarantee of the future becoming
  true for you. Your knowledge of the future may modify the
  thread of time.

— When travelling to the past, you may accidentally
  change the history in a way that radically changes
  the life of your friends whom you left behind. You
  might even make it so that they never will born.

If you want to be sure you won't lose anything,
you have to take everything with you.

You have received a contract. You have to sign it before you can
be a part of any system that could shift you through the time.

Time travel comes with risk. I understand, that when I go
to other time period, I lose *all* contacts to *everything*
I had: personal relations, possessions, etc. I hereby
declare, that if this happens, I will accept it as a matter
of fact, and will not harrass any immortals or superiors to
me, as they will not help.
I understand, that breaking this contract will lead to removal
of my essence, not only from the time I live in, but all signs
of me from all the history, all eras and all alternate realities.
My name: _______________


So enough scaring now. Having been explained all these hazards to,
someone might ask "why would anybody want to use a timegate then?"
The answer is pretty clear to any real adventurer. If you are a real
adventurer, you will know how to avoid some hazards too. Unless you
are, you will not want this.

[Message from Game administration to anybody using timegates,
 in re "Important note about time travels"]

ATTENTION - READ CAREFULLY - THIS CONCERNS YOUR GAME PLAY.

This note instructs how to not spoil the game idea.

Shortly:
  Real life must not be used to transmit information between
  different eras or realities of the game.
Shorter:
  The secrecy of Time is to be kept.
Clearly:
— If you encounter any problems when using time gates, you may
  not create a new character in hope to see your friends again.
  Such characters are judged as duplicates, even if the characters
  are never visible in the same era. Duplicate characters will be
  removed - all of them.
— Players located at different time periods are not allowed
  to share game event related information in real life.
  It might be completely unuseful to do so, as the players
  might never meet each others in the game, and the knowledge
  they share may not apply in each other's past/future.
— You are not allowed to have information about different
  eras of the game at same real life time unless the game
  itself gives you the chance (rumors, archeology, time travels etc).
Conclusion:
  Any suspected abuse of real timespace vs game timespace
  will be punished.

History changes allocate relatively large amounts of
resources in the server. Memory poisoners (those who
create lots of redundant alternative realities with
purpose) will be severely punished.
Be careful, be precise.
Time is not a toy to play with. History modifying
can be exciting, but if you do that much, it might
turn against you. However doing things which affect
the _future_ of our home era is _recommended_.

[Message from Game administration to immortals,
 in re "The deity structure"]

Wizards:
  Wizards relate to time exactly like normal players do.
  However they have god-like powers to shape the reality
  they dwell in. Wizard characters do not normally
  interact with player characters in any way.

Untime wizards:
  The responsibility of untime wizards is to ensure that
  different historical periods connect to each other in
  a logical way. Their job is to manuscript different paths
  of events, so that the game engine will choose from them
  when players affect their reality. This will affect the
  historywriting they will see, as well as the events they
  see. Untime wizards also assign job to normal wizards.
  Their task is to produce the events that the engine
  predicts most probable.

Gods:
  Although even the lowest level wizards do *code*, gods are the
  only immortal beings that live outside the game, not inside.
  Gods' perspective to the game is wider than that of the untime
  wizards. Their task is to manage the software and hardware the
  game is using. They also have the high control to what untime
  wizards are doing. Gods can also become visible in the world,
  if they want to. Giving unearthly services to anyone is however
  not recommended.

Note that these names are not static. Wizards could also appear
as spirits and untime wizards as angels. This is esthetic.

[Message from Game administration to untime wizards,
 in re "Manuscripting"]

When warping, the game checks which time period near the destination
time scale contains most manuscripting and sets that to be the destination.

So suppose the warp target is year 340. The game has manuscripting
for year 300, cumulated for 30 years, and then another group of scripting
for year 350. The game could select year a)between 300..330, b)340 or c)350.

Case a: Recording exists for the time period. It will be used. If there are
active players in this era, the traveller will get company. If there were
active players in this era (the warper is in players' history), the players
will become npcs and act according to the record as far as possible. When
interaction with the traveller (or events caused by him/her) is required,
the history will be threaded and new cumulation begins.

Case b: The game would need to cumulate 10 years of history in an instant.
The amount of history needed to calculate is only a sharp piece of what
was available for 330, but it would still need much data and it would grow.
In the generating it would also need to take care that script for 350 would
not be invalidated. Costful.

Case c: Script for 350 will be used and be cumulated.

Depending on the machine load, choice a, b or c will be selected. During the
idle hours, case b could be possible, but during activity, cases a or b.
The more load, the more detailed history the game will pick as the target.

Warping before the first manuscript is not possible, as
script can only be cumulated forwards, not backwards.


Make your manuscripts as generic (use macroes) as possible.
That way they can cover more events with less work.

Scripting is an art. You should make your reality *look* like everything
matters and affects the next events, but *be* that nothing affects. This
is because if nothing really affects, the game is boring - but if everything
affects, the game history data will grow uncontrollably when people are
splitting the threads of time.

[Message from Webmaster to Webmaster,
 in re "To be documented"]

— Joining threads
   — different event threads rejoining later in time
   — can happen when trails to history (books, etc) have been lost in both versions
   — actually the engine should always *aim* to allow this
     — to save resources
     — therefore natural disasters destroying whole libraries
       and knowledgeful npcs could not be that uncommon ;)
— Dead threads
   — when there are no players active in the thread since its root, the
     thread will be archived and a time wizard be assigned to analyze
     the thread from its root for recyclable material (force unique
     events to appear in another thread).
— How two time periods should be joined
   — if they don't match, should the latter be cancelled completely,
     or should the player be forceteleported to desert and a time wizard
     be assigned to investigate the phenomena to glue the parts together somehow?
— How are the threads actually archived
   — What will be stored for the events
     — Everything observable must be logged so it can be reobserved.
     — Everything static must have start-end -times.
       — Probably links to reasons for stopping existance?
     — For every observed event, there must be a possibility of reality change.
       — If two players are talking there (a recording), and a traveller
         comes to interrupt them, what happens? What if the traveller is
         one of the talking players?
         — If the traveller is not the only witnessee
           for these events, this will split the thread.
         — All events based on the now modified material
           from the recording will be deleted from the future.
           — Calculating them should not be expensive.
     — It should be compressed as much as possible (macro generation),
       still allowing partial copypasting without too much calculation.
— Manuscript document: What kind of macroes should there be?
— Weather:
    Weather and such things should be calculatable for any moment
    of time there is. See http://freshmeat.net/projects/wthrmkr/
    for ideas.
     — Weather can be quite much independent from the world.
     — However chances for immediate cloudbursts, storms and
       other miracles for special occassions should be kept.

[Message from Gaspar to adventurers,
 in re "Exploring the past"]

When traveling to past, you usually want to be able to return forth some day.
It is however quite difficult to return back, if you have made the world
you came from to become something else than what you remember it to be.
Therefore, always when travelling in your past, you should avoid doing
anything that affects the future. This is both easier and difficulter
than it sounds. Eating a cake could induct a revolution ten years later,
but killing a whole cityful of people could still have absolutely no
effect. This is because the universe always seeks for shortcuts between
actions. If a future state depends on a certain event and you modify the
event, the universe makes another event to create the same state.
This can really be both frustrating and life-saving sometimes. However,
this action can not be relied on; thus you should always be careful in
what you do.

[Message from Gaspar to adventurers,
 in re "Exploring the future"]
 
Exploring the future is usually a lot safer than exploring the past. This
is because there is *always* at least the theoretic possibility of being
able to return back.
Most future explorers are usually eager to find signs of their home era
there, to know what will really happen to them. This is a major cause of
disappointments, because the returning has the same effect as the travelling
to the past: Everything you do based on the knowledge of the future, may
change the thread of time so that it won't actually produce the future you
have visited in. For example, if you visited 10 years from your "now" and
saw your home town burned down, you could tell somebody of it when you
return, and even if nobody believed you, they still could become more
careful with fire, causing the town be saved.
However, the universe is pervert. Sometimes, if you do everything to
prevent your future from happening, the world still finds a new way
of producing the unwanted events you've been trying to prevent. That
is much like the slot machines; if you play badly enough for a very
long time, they will be giving you choices you just can not lose from.

[Message from Webmaster to browser,
 in re "Current problems"]

— See the previous message "To be documented"
— What to do, when:
    — You and your friend are planning to take a trip to 50 years to past.
    — You enter the same gate, but you arrive a day earlier than your friend.
    — You will use a day exploring the past
    — Your friend arrives the next day, and for him, no time has elapsed.
    — IRL of course, time goes almost in sync for both.
    — So how to:
      — Make you feel like you just used 24 hours of time
        — How does the game compress your time?
      — Make your friend feel like he arrived immediately
        — What does he waste the time to?
— Cloning
   — With this documented universe architecture, it is entirely possible to
     clone an item by warping to future, taking the item with you and returning,
     and repeating this by each time warping to a minute before the previous time.
     This also means that each cloning process invalidates the previously created
     future, effect being creating lots of alternate universes and using lots of
     computer memory.
     This possibility is not wanted. Something should be done, but what?
      

[Message from Webmaster to browser,
 in re "Note about this file"]

This file contains plans for a MUD-type game that does not exist.
Written by Joel Yliluoma (http://iki.fi/bisqwit/) 2001-06/03

Inspired partially by Chrono Trigger.
As of 2002-03/08, inspired partially also by Tales of Phantasia.

Keywords: time travel, mud, causality, change history,
          time gates, change past, warp, timemachine

Changes:
  2003-04/03 - added "current problems" -section

References:
  http://freshmeat.net/projects/wthrmkr/
    — weather simulator for RPG purposes
  http://chronos.ws/
    — timegates for commercial purposes
  http://bisqwit.iki.fi/jutut/mudi.html
    — Bisqwit's idea collection for MUD/RPG-type games
Source code of this simple message to html converter is available.
The Time Traveler Convention
May 7, 2005, 10:00pm EDT (08 May 2005 02:00:00 UTC)
East Campus Courtyard, MIT
42:21:36.025N, 71:05:16.332W
(42.360007,-071.087870 in decimal degrees)