Worldbuilding: Guns, Swords, and Realism

This is a post I’ve been meaning to make for a while, but I’ll admit it frequently slipped my mind. I noticed someone mentioning it on Goodreads today, which reminded me I’d never covered the topic in any depth.

First, let me say, I’m not a historian by any means. Back when I was writing Cornerstone, I had a few hard choices to make about just how much technology would be available to my characters, especially when it came to weapons.

After consulting with others, and doing my own research, I decided guns would be a very small part of the available arsenal to my characters. I based the mechanics off of very early, primitive types of firearms based around the principle of a flintlock style of weapon. Not only were they often inaccurate and slow to load, wet weather also reduced their effectiveness, and in both Cornerstone and Second Stone snow and rain were quite frequent.

One of the things that I tried to build into the world was the sense of each land having distinctions. Thalmas produced more weapons, but they didn’t share them any more than they had to. This helped keep guns rare.

I won’t claim that any of the following resources are, or are not, historically accurate, but they can make for interesting further reading if you are curious.

http://www.medievality.com/gunpowder.html
http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/technique/gun-timeline/

I hope this helps shed light on any confusion about what type of weapons Emariya and company did or did not have, why and when.