A New Contributer!

by Dylan
(Illinois, Wisconsin)

I look forward to meeting this new contributer! I look forward also to the contest- it may motivate me to write faster, which is always a good thing.

I've begun reading Dune, and it struck me that Frank Herbert may have wanted to set the story on Mars, but felt he couldn't because of the discoveries of Mariner. Arrakis is a bone-dry world with two moons, where the natives have a water obsession; very reminiscent of Old Mars. He also reached the tropes of the Sword and Planet genre in a roundabout fashion. Shields render guns useless, making knives the dominant weapon, and spice provides a pseudo-magic telepathy.

It might be a stretch, but I think the building blocks of a Sword and Planet Mars story are still visible, if they were ever there at all.

{Note from Zendexor: Swords are highly likely, in fact, as weapons of the future, for the reasons you mention, reasons elaborated also by Charles Harness in "The Paradox Men". Also, swords - though they need to be kept oiled and sharpened - require no ammunition, whereas a gun without ammunition is useless except as a club.

Another advanced past/future weapon is the longbow. The great disadvantage of it is that it requires years if not decades of training. But with future genetic engineering a corps of overmuscled archers could be created...

As you say, Dune could have been Mars - a startling idea. As it is, Dune is a planet of Canopus - somewhat improbable considering Canopus is a supergiant and necessarily short-lived as stars go.}

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