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Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:59 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
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TurtleShroom World Factbook Parts Sixteen Through Nineteen

XVI. Questions of Economics.

What is the local economy based on? Agriculture, raw resources, basic manufacturing, tourism, and gambling.

How is commerce engaged in? With money (usually), through trade, through barter, and in the truck system's company store.

If levied, how are taxes collected? What are such revenues used for? How does taxation affect the people? TurtleShroomian law states that no income tax may ever exceed ten percent, and that all taxes must be flat.

What do people expect from their government in return for the taxes paid? Tithe to the Church, secure the borders, fund the military, protect from invasion, fund the cops, fund the fire department, fund the courts, have elections, "and stay the fasting heck out of my way".


What is the local currency like? How is it subdivided? What is it based on (metal, labour, fiat)?
The national currency exists alongside thousands of private currencies and Scrips. The national currency is the Skillet. De jure, it is fiat and pegged to the Americalandese Dollar ($ USD) . De facto, its existence is based entirely on the amount of iron that TurtleShroom can import. One Skillet equals $0.25 USD. Skillets may be divided into one hundred Pones (pronounced like PWN, "own" with a P), but this is rare outside of the stock market.

Private currency (officially called "Scrips") is fiat, backed by gold, backed by silver, backed by oil, backed by sapphires, or whatever else its creators want. It comes in coins, paper, tokens, or whatever else. Most Scrips are used only in closed, truck system economies at the company store, but some currencies are used in general commerce. Stores and institutions decide whether or not a private currency is legal tender.

Most credit unions, train stations, all airports, and some businesses have machines or attendants that can convert Skillets into any Scrip used outside a company store, or any foreign currency into Skillets.

Is currency issued by a central authority or by some decentralised means? The Skillet is issued by the state. Private currencies are instituted by their owners. TurtleShroom is not constitutionally permitted to have a central bank. Its equivalent of the FDIC (deposit insurance) is a privately-run group that banks elect to enter (and they do, if they want any customers). Most financial institutions are credit unions, because TurtleShroomers do not trust banks.

How does it compare to other neighbouring currencies? TurtleShroom is the only country in its Region to offer

How has the value of the currency changed or fluctuated recently? The pegging of the Skillet to one quarter of an USD ($) only began in the 1990s AD and was completed in the late 2000s AD.

How are coins and notes produced? How common are forgeries? Skillets are made of iron and are actually shaped like frying pans. They are the size of a human's palm and come in multiple colors to indicate their denomination. They double as cookware if need-be. All places of business are required to recognize and accept the Skillet.

How is wealth distributed? Through private charity and the Church. The state's main redistribution system is its allocation to the Church for the purposes of welfare, though the state maintains an optional Social Security-esque system called the Great Pension, which also funds all orphanages, stipends for widows, and direct subsidies to chairity.

Is there a public banking system? No, all banks are privatized and no central bank exists, nor is it allowed to.

Is there a large gap between the wealth of the rich and poor? What expectations do each group have from the other? Yes. Income inequality is seen as a sign of a healthy economy. The rich are expected, and all but demanded by the Church and society, to share their money with the poor and less fortunate. Charity is a cornerstone of TS' elite, rich class, and failure to engage in it invites society's wrath. Humility is the number one virtue in TurtleShroom; the arrogant will be looked down on.

What constitutes "poverty" in this society? The defined poverty line. Poverty also includes homelessness, an inability to get food without help (in the cities), and those living on welfare or Church assistance. A poor person is expected to never splurge or indulge on anything, rather, only spending their money on their needs (food, water, housing, clothing, etc.) and on getting a job or investing for the future.

XVII. Questions of Death and Burial.

What is their understanding of death and dying? Death is inevitable.

What does this society do with their corpses?
Burial. The Orthodox Church and Catholic Church both discourage cremation, while the Baptists are neutral, but traditionally use burial.

The Tengris leave their loved ones in the wilderness to rot (a "Sky Burial"), per their religious traditions. In modern times, for sanitation purposes, Tengris now have cemetaries of their own, with open-top concrete boxes for the bodies to decay in. Shamans in hazmat suits will ultimately remove the putrid body, bless the bones (if a turtle or human), and later dispose of them in accordance with their religion.

The Yues have their own customs and rites, and the Taipings use Chinese burial customs and their own rites.

All corpses are analyzed by coroners for autopsies and determination of the cause of death. Unless they opt-out, a human or turtle corpse will have its organs harvested for organ donation. One's face and facial features (eyes, nose, lips, etc.) cannot be donated whatsoever, and one's brain can only be donated to science, otherwise, it stays in the corpse.

Do they cremate their dead? Voluntary cremation exists in TurtleShroom, but most refuse to take it. Mass cremation is compulsary for all executed criminals, and their bodies are collectively burnt to ashes. The ashes are then exposed of in the easiest, cleanest, and cheapest manner possible.

Is the family responsible for the body? Yes, but the Church or other religious authority overseeing the burial will usually cover the costs of funerals and burials. Atheists, Theists, and Agnostics usually get insurance to pay for the same.

What part do the priests play? In all religions, clergymen and their respective Church (etc.) are heavilly invested in burial and funeral rites. For Baptists, the pastor simply oversees the funeral and gives a sermon and celebration of the deceased's lie. For Catholics, Orthodoxes, Yues, and Taipings, death rites are far more elaborate, ritualistic, and complicated.

Are there cemeteries at all? Yes.

Or, does everyone have a crypt in back with all the relatives in it? A few families have opted for this.

Do people visit the dead? If so, how often and why? Some do, and usually on holidays, birthdays, and days where special memories occured with them.


What do people in this culture think about suicide?
Suicide is an abomination that is aggressively prevented by the state. All TurtleShroomers will try to stop a fellow creature from killing themselves in any way they can. Most Christian and Taiping churches and instiutions maintain suicide hotlines to stop it. Those caught attempting suicide are often involuntary committed to a mental institution for aggressive treatment and therapy to help them overcome whatever trauma or misery made them want to die. If they still want to die, they are held until they no longer want to kill themselves, even if it is indefinite, and they are prevented from trying to kill themselves while checked into the asylum.

Is it the greatest sin one can commit? Or is it a sin at all?
Suicide is considered the single most selfish, hateful thing a person can do. It is considered the height of arrogance and hubris- two of the absolute greatest vices in TS -and a suicide receives a shocked, horrified, and disgusted reaction. Parents who lose offspring to suicide are often unconsolable.

The general consensus is that humans that commit suicide go to Hell, or are at least reprimanded in Paradise with significant deduction of heavenly rewards. The destruction of one's life by one's own hand is inconceivable and shocking. Suicide is said to be the greatest, most selfish abomination a TurtleShroomer can commit.

Is it the great and last comfort of a tormented soul? No, it is the exact opposite.

Is it worse than murder? It is seen as less evil than murder, but far more selfish. All in all, they are roughly equals.

XVIII. Questions of Government.

What is the form of government? How is it structured?
TurtleShroom is a constitutional, theodemocratic monarchy with a radical lazziez-faire economy. It has extensive, free and fair elections, with high voter turnout and political participation.

However, since late 2015 AD, TurtleShroom has been under control of an absolute military junta, which overthrew the government because of its gross incompetence and inability to crush a massive, violent Marxist uprising.

What are some of the most fundamental policies of the government?
A guarentee of freedom of thought, a guarentee of freedom of religion, and an absolute right to criticize the government and its policies without fear of reprisal are seen as the cornerstone of the state. Radical lazziez-faire economics are paramount, and few regulations beyond some child labor restrictions, liability suits for injury and death (etc.), and suits in the courts exist.

The TS Constitution states that TurtleShroom shall advance the Kingdom of God throughout Nationstates, without infringing on non-Christians that have yet to become believers. TurtleShroom is explicitly defined as a Christian nation.

What is the political status of minority communities? No private sector protection against discrimination exists, but most companies that discriminate go out of business because no one shops there if they don't recant and repent. Of all minorities in TS, only chimeras (humans with animal features and body parts), such as nekomimis (catgirls) are actively and harshly treated differently. All sentient horse minorities are expelled.

How is government chosen?
Each of the three Kings of TurtleShroom choose their Majestic Twelve- a pool of potential suitors -who live in the Chancellary Palace with them. Upon the death of a King, the Majestic Twelve are picked by lot, using two six-sided dice. Kings serve for life unless Recalled or dethroned by Impeachment.

Before its dissolution due to a military invasion, the Congress of TurtleShroom was directly elected from five hundred districts, and its speaker (the Judgemaster) was appointed by the Crown.

In the courts, all judicial positions except the Judgemaster (who is also chief justice of the Supreme General Court) and divorce courts are directly elected by the population of TurtleShroom.

The military runs itself, but cannot go on an offensive war without the consent of the people through a vote (unless attacked or invaded, in which it can do as it wishes).

The powerful Executive Cabinetmen (this is the royal Cabinet) are directly elected nationwide. Local and regional police chieves, sheriffs, etc. are also elected directly.

What is the country’s general foreign policy?
Foreign policy wise, TurtleShroom is built around defensive doctrine and Mutually Assured Destruction to protect itself.

TurtleShroom will prefer to resort to dirty tricks (espionage, black ops, coups d'etat, rebel funding, arms dealing, etc.) over warfare or boots on the ground when they seek to use force. TurtleShroom prefers to trade with other nations, and makes extensive use of diplomatic and covert tools in order to stave off a need for war.

TurtleShroom's brief bout with interventionism ended in spectacular failure, so TurtleShroom is very hesitant to directly intervene with its military unlesss the nation in danger is a formal ally, a neighbor, or has an ideology extremely similar to TS.

Who decides whether someone has broken a law? How? A Grand Jury determines if any case is to go to trial. The actual trial is overseen by an impartial judge (all judges are elected and subject to Recall), without a jury.

What kinds of punishments are meted out? By whom? Why? Courts determine the punishment based on the law.

How are new laws created or old ones changed?
Congress originally wrote and passed all laws, subject to veto by the Crown. A bill was passed by Congress and sent to the Crown, where a majority of the three Kings had to approve it. If not, the bill died and could not be overriden.

With the dissolution of the Congress after an invasion and collapse of government, the Executive Cabinet and the Crown took over the lawmaking process. After the coup d'etat in 2015 AD, all governmental power was given to the Junta. The Executive Cabinet, or those that survived the collapse, were rendered as advisors and when they died, no elections could be held to replace them, making the crisis worse and strengthening the Junta.

Is there some form of clemency or pardon? What is involved? The Crown may grant pardons at its leisure. Traditionally, seven pardons were given each year on Easter Sunday.

Who has the right to give orders, and why? Police, the military, the Crown, and the state have power over their subordinates, as in any country.

What titles do various officials have? Thousands of varied, unique titles exist all over the country.

How are the rules different for officials as opposed to the common person? No, this is considered an abomination. Government officials are actually held to a higher standard than the common TurtleShroomer.

How do government officials dress?
All government officials (including the Crown) are expected to wear any and all vestments, garments, etc. of their office at all times in public, without exception, even when not on the clock. If there are no ceremonial items to be worn, all government officials outside things like military, security, and fire operations wear suits, or for females, skirts and blazer jackets or pantsuits.

Many government officials wear robes.

Is the law written down? Who interprets it? The law is written down, fully written without exception, and when need be, interpreted by the courts. The citizenry can interject themselves into this by petitioning to overturn a Supreme General Court decision or punish the judges by Recalling them, if need be.

Once accused, what recourse does someone have? The accused has the fundamental right to a fair trial, to legal representation or counsel (most TurtleShroomers represent themselves with supplementary counseling in all but the worst cases)

Is torture allowed? What kinds? Is capital punishment allowed? Torture may not be performed on any TurtleShroomian citizen under any cirucmstances. Foreigners may be tortured by the military or espionage services as need-be.

How are criminals executed? By lethal injection, hanging, the electric chair, decapitation by guilliotine, burning at the stake (victim is first anesthesized), or stoning. (Stoning has never been used.)

Who cannot rise to positions of leadership? Chimeras, convicted felons, and non-citizens.

Is bribery allowed? Under what circumstances? Never. Political corruption (graft, pay-to-play, bribes, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.) is punishable by death or life in prison.

What makes someone a bad ruler in this society? What can be done about it?
A bad ruler is one that is unjust, corrupt, accepting of brides, oppressive, or otherwise partial. The citizenry has the right and duty to Recall any bad ruler. A Recalled ruler must stand in a Recall Election, in which the populace votes whether or not to retain him. If retained, business is usual carries on. If Recalled, depending on the reason he was Recalled, he is either forcibly removed from office, forbidden from voting or running for anything again, or even put to death (in cases of corruption and bribes).

What are the most common or dangerous forms of criminal? Thieves, corrupt officials, and, most of all, crime syndicates, rumrunners, drug traffickers, cartels, and the mob. Sexual crimes also exist in lower numbers. By far, the largest crime group is those who violate the Prohibition on alcohol.

City Watch & Sheriffs

Is there a civilian police force, or is law enforcement the province of the military? Civilian, but the Border Patrol is militaristic.

Is the police force a nationalised one, or are there multiple regional forces? Nationwide, it is divided into regional districts with elected heads. The head of the national police (the Constable On Patrol) force is also elected. The head of the Inquisition (essentially TS' vice squad that pursues sex crimes and the like) is appointed by the Constable On Patrol.

How militant or vigilante are they? Are they usually or ever armed? All policemen are armed. There are also lynch mobs from time to time.

What is the extent of their authority? Can they shoot you? Can they use magic? Can they torture or otherwise force a confession? Can they use telepathy?
They can shoot, injure, or kill, they can make arrests, they can use tasers, and they can use force. Civilian police cannot torture under any circumstances and forcing a false confession is a capital crime. Civilian police can be sued for wrongful death and some types of mistakes. Civilian police can be arrested, investigated internally, or otherwise punished. As stated before, witchcraft and sorcery are illegal. (Warrants are ceremonial and issued by the executive branch.)

Are there individuals or groups who are above the law? Never, but lynch mobs do exist.

Is there a secret police? No, and not just in the matter of denial, there is no actual secret police.
(However, two secret organizations/societies independent of the government, the Star Chamber and the Sentinels, do exist and operate exactly like a secret police. They exist without the permission, and often the knowledge, of the government.)

What is the role of police informants, if any? Undercover operatives exist in all law enforcement and are used extensively. Entrapment does not exist unless they literally force someone to commit a crime. Informants in seedier parts of the country, in cartels and mafia groups, and other such undesirable things are everywhere.

XIX. Questions of Warfare.

Does the country have an armed force? What types? What size? TurtleShroom has a large military, consisting of one hundred thousand active soldiers and one million reserves, in addition to the Border Patrol.

How do the armed forces compare with others in the region or world?
TurtleShroom's military is considered a giant, overfunded, well-armed militia, and was often the butt of jokes before the aliens invaded. Even now, they are not feared by any other nation that is equal to TurtleShroom in size. However, they are renowned by other nations for their loyalty, discipline, efficiency, trickery, and use of attrition.

They also have finally gotten much prestige: the military beat back a future tech, full-scale alien invasion into such a stalemate that when TS surrendered, they got highly favorable terms. They used attrition, guerilla warfare, and centuries old Mongol-style tactics to wear them out.

Who declares war? The military or the Crown. All offensive and non-urgent/alliance-bound intervention wars must be voted on by the population, unless TurtleShroom is attacked or invaded.

Who has the power to declare conditions of peace? The military or the Crown.

How are treaties negotiated? By the Crown and Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The legislature ratifies it.

What happens to prisoners taken in battle? They are treated in the way their homeland treats POWs. The worse the homeland treats them, the worse TurtleShroom treats them. However, all POWs are fully hydrated and given enough (basic) food to survive. In most cases, POWs usually spend their time in solitary confinement. They are placed in dimly lit, five foot by five foot cells with nothing but a toilet, sink, and bed.

What weapons are favoured by the various armed forces?
The standard issue weapons for a TS foot soldier are an automated AK-74 (with a switch for semi-automatic if need be), a double-barreled shotgun, at least one pistol, and grenades. The famous Artillery Mushrooms (an elite corps) use far heavier machine guns and are recognized by the belts of ammo worn on their stems. In addition to their huge, heavy guns, they also carry pistols and grenades for close combat. Some soldiers are also issued bayonets.

What form of warfare does this society use?
TurtleShroom's war doctrines are outlined in a book nicknamed the "D-5-C", officially titled "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap", and can be broken down as follows:
  • The most important doctrine of TurtleShoom is defensive, guerilla warfare. TurtleShroomian soldiers will not rush to their enemy. They will wait for their enemy to come to them. Then, they will use the terrain and irregular methods whenever possible. They will scatter and ambush the enemy whenever possible, using guns, grenades and bombs, traps, and even tasers and machines that shoot frying pans. Much of TurtleShroom's fighting style is parallel to and much like the Viet Kong's doctrine and strategies.
  • In addition, TurtleShroom inherited some other tactics from its human Mongoloid invaders, who enslaved the non-humans in the thirteenth century an died off in the 1550s AD, leaving Mongol-assimilated, Mongol-style Khanates set up by the non-humans. These doctrines focus entirely on fast mobility and use of weaponry while actually on the move. In wide-open spaces, like steppes or deserts, TurtleShroomian soldiers will attack using high-speed ATVs, tankettes, assault/combat vehicles and Jeeps, and other such vehicles and actually shoot from it standing up, similar to how the Mongols rode horses and shot crossbows at the same time. The best human and mushroom infantrymen can drive a vehicle standing up, and shoot at the same time.
  • TurtleShroom practiced Mongol-style plundering and looting (with some exceptions, see below) until the end of their participation in the Russian Civil War. The ruling Fascist Servants officially abolished it in 1933 AD, but it was legalized once more in 2012 AD. Plunder is divided equally among the soldiers and their commander(s). They are allowed to keep what they plunder, but will traditionally donate ten percent of it to the church. Plundering in times of war is not considered stealing, but rather, a part of war.
  • TurtleShroom also makes large-scale hiring of PMCs and mercenaries, and subjects them to the same standards as TurtleShroomian soldiers. (See below.)
  • With the recent Tsao infusion, TurtleShroom is beginning to experiment and maintain tank warfare, as well as proper mechanized infantry.

How do battles in the airs or waters or underworlds differ from surface warfare? TurtleShroom is landlocked and does not maintain actual naval warfare. TurtleShroom does not maintain an Air Force. Instead, it heavilly invests in rail-based and mobile anti-aircraft batteries, known especially for their extreme rate of rapid fire, effective surface-to-air/AA missiles, and supplementary use of cannonballs. In the exclave of Dire Dire Docks, gargantuan artillery cannons created by the Tsao are affixed into the terrain. AA batteries also rapid-shoot "pies" (actually a form of sticky, industrial gel baked alongside pie ingrediants in a pie tin) that will clog and destroy plane engines if sucked in. They are also designed to stick to cockpit windshields.

Who are the Elite warriors? What distinguishes them?
The Artillery Mushrooms are considered the elite of the military and TS' answer to the Navy SEALS. Artillery Mushrooms use far heavier machine guns and are recognized by the sash-like belts of ammo worn across their stems. In addition to their huge, heavy guns, they also carry pistols, machetes, and grenades for close combat. Some soldiers are also issued bayonets. Artillery Mushrooms are used for dangerous missions and for supplementation to actual heavy artillery, as well as for defensive positions.

There also exist snipers with the uncanny ability to shoot pies with the accuracy of bullets (which, along with metal pans, are also shot). Yes, pies. No one expects to be hit with a pie flying at such a speed in the middle of a battle. This a technique of distraction which allows for the bullet snipers and other soldiers to attack the enemy. TurtleShroom considers its snipers, of pie, pan, and bullet variety, to be elite. Sniper training takes a long time and extensive practice in order to do it well. Newly inducted bullet sniper can pick off an enemy by several hundred yards. The absolute best bullet snipers can pick off enemies from at least one thousand five hundred yards. The longest confirmed bullet sniper kill is two thousand, one hundred nine yards.
Pies and pans do not have nearly that long a range due to their size and shape. The best snipers cannot exceed six hundred yards, and the average is three hundred yards.

How does someone get command of troops?
By skill, merit, and dedication. TurtleShroom does not have a commissioned officer system. Rather, all soldiers start at the bottom and rise through the ranks based on the opinions and observations of superior commanders, and of the boards that handle promotions. Accordingly, TurtleShroomers in the military will rise and ultimately become officers if they can demonstrate the competence and ability to command and obey commands. Battlefield on-site promotions also exist in special cases.

Humans, turtles, and mushrooms can rise equally in the military, but many senior positions are occupied by elderly turtles that are too stubborn to retire. Female turtles control most of the highest positions in the top brass, simply due to their sheer age and longevity, and their refusal to step down. However, the highest and most senior generals in the TS Army at this time are the male Dukem Brothers, who each hold the position of Four Star General. After the military coup d'etat in TurtleShroom, a male One-Star General tutle seized power. Despite these turtles in command, most higher turtle officers are female.

Where do the loyalties of military units lie?
To the Church, to the Constiution, to the country, and to each other.

Allow this to be explained by one of my favorite quotes:
TurtleShroom wrote:Here's another explanation of TurtleShroom and its relation to Russia. I consider this one of the best summaries.

This Week In Geopolitics wrote:It isn’t prosperity that binds Russia together, but a shared idealized vision of and loyalty toward Mother Russia. And in this sense, there is a deep chasm between both Europe and the United States. [The Americans use] prosperity as a justification for loyalty. Russian loyalty derives from the power of the state and the inherent definition of being Russian. This support for the Russian nation remains powerful, despite the existence of diverse ethnic groups throughout the country.

The power of the Church and the state, and the inherent definition of what it is to be a TurtleShroomer, are what make the military so loyal.

Are there professional soldiers? Do they make up the bulk of the military?
In all cases except an invasion, all soldiers are professional volunteers. TurtleShroom only uses conscription in the case of invasion or attack, in which TurtleShroom must defend herself on the home front. That is, conscripts are deployed for defensive wars within the borders of TurtleShroom. In addition, the civilian police and Border Patrol are militarized and called to fight before a general conscription is enacted. Conscription has only been used once in TurtleShroomian history, in 2012 AD, during the Future Tech alien invasion by The Ctan.

A lay Militia has chapters throughout the country and will also be mobilized before general conscription begins. The lay Militia is also used for petty restoration of order (but not riots), and for deputization and hue-and-cry.

What ethical or moral codes do warriors adhere to?
The basic rules are no rape, no plundering of food or medicine unless starving or dying, no attacking hospitals, and no attacking churches. Civilian casualties are to be minimized. If a hospital or church contains a valuable target or entity that must be killed, they are to siege the building and send special-ops teams in the manually infiltrate and extract the target, avoiding any civilian casualties if possible. Any PMC or other entity employed by TurtleShroom for battle is subjected to the same rules.

The punishment for rape, deliberately attacking a hospital or church (instead of a precision siege and extraction), or theft of food when not starving is punishable by summary death by firing squad at the orders of the commander.

How are battle injuries treated?
Either through improvision or battle medics. All soldiers are expected to know CPR for humans and rescisitation for turtles. (Mushrooms, having no organs aside from that on their face, and unable to feel pain, cannot be recesitated if killed, because it means their body has been mangled and riddled with holes and tears to the point that they die.)

How long do wars typically last? Anywhere from weeks to years. Usually, wars do not exceed two and one half years.

Has this society ever attacked another? What was the nature of that war? What would make this society go to war? TurtleShroom has intervened in wars, in favor of the attacker and the defender, but has never launched an offensive attack on its own accord. To do so would be against its traditions and capabilities. Pre-emptive, offensive strikes can only be used to deter invasion or direct, imminent attack.

Has there ever been a civil war or a revolution? No, but there have been two military coups d'etat in TurtleShroom. The first was in 2012 AD after the future tech alien invasion. The second was in late 2015 AD due to the gross incompetence of the govenrment and its inability to suppress a massive, violent, Marxist uprising.

What do soldiers do when there's no war? They train, stand by, help man the WMDs, or are sent home and counted as reserves. They can sometimes be called to engage in construction projects that have a military purpose. It is said that some commanders will use troops to perform personal labor for the commander, but the military doesn't really talk about that.

Are there any current tensions / wars / embargoes etc with any other nations?
Several nations in TS are under embargo, including exports to Urmanian. Connopolis is under a full embargo both ways, and its citizens cannot enter the country. (Connopolis forced prostitution on the World Assembly several years ago, during TurtleShroom's brief tenure in the WA.)

TurtleShroomers of all stripes, both expert pundits and the common citizen, fear that their nation is on the brink of civil war. Foreign observers feel the same way.

Who are the country’s enemies? Whos winning the war? TurtleShroom's enemy, right now, is itself. There are a small portion of the population- nonetheless a few million -that are waging a violent, Marxist uprising in the cities. This triggered a coup d'etat by a zealous general with the stones to actually start massacreing the violent rioters.

What defences are available to cities?
Many cities have permanent military garrisons, towers, and bases. Citizens are encouraged to carry guns, tasers, or other means of defense as a means of deterrent. Anti-missile defenses are in place in every major city, including the capital.

The city of Litlin is a walled city with large slums and shanties around the wall, with large, fortified gates that can be shut in emergencies. Watchtowers exist. This is due to a history of violence, tension, and zombie problems (per NS canon) in the city. The gates are only shut in emergencies and free travel in and out of the walls is permitted and encouraged.


That was totally worth the three days and many hours it took to write. Not sarcasm.

I HATE character limits in forum posts.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:57 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Party Twelve Through Fifteen

XII. Questions of Sex.

How does your society define incest? Rape? How do people react to these? [blockquote]
  • Rape is defined as sex without consent. TS law states that rape must involve penetration for concious victims, otherwise it is molestation, sexual abuse, or sexual assault. If the victim is sedated or rendered unconcious, rape is the charge.
  • "Forcible rape" is exactly what one would think it is, and interestingly, male humans cannot be victims of it under current law (see above). The rapist is normally sedated and then castrated.
  • "Date rape" is using drugs, alcohol, sedatives, etc. to drug someone and take advantage of them, and both human genders can be suspected to it. The rapist is normally sedated and then castrated.
  • "Grand sexual assault" is when a female coerces, blackmails, etc. a man into getting her penetrated, etc., and is punishable by up to life in prison. The assaulter is usually sterilized and/or given a hysterectomy.

Incest is defined as a relation between mother and child, father and child, between siblings, between grandparents and descendants, between great-grandparents and descendants, between great-grandparents and descendants, between direct ancestor and direct descendant, between aunt and nephew or niece, between uncle and nephew or niece, and between first cousins or double-first cousins. Incest is always punishable by death.[/blockquote]

What secret vice is believed to be widely practiced? According to foreigners, homosexual sodomy and prostitution. According to TurtleShroomers, masturbation and fornication.

What secret vice actually is practiced? Masturbation and "disciplinary " sadomasochism (the latter is illegal).

What sexual habits are widely believed common among foreigners? Orgies and homosexuality.

How do people react to homosexuality? Is it frowned on? Encouraged?
All forms of sodomy are illegal for all orientations. All public displays of homosexual affection and some displays of heterosexual affection are illegal. Homosexuality is seen as an abomination. Religiously, official Church doctrine teaches that being attracted to the same sex is not a sin, but acting on that attraction is. A homosexual can in fact be a Christian, by repenting from his lifestyle and past sexual misdeeds, and remaining celibate. If he slips up, sincere confession and repentence is needed. Jesus' love, the Church says, does not exclude homosexuals from His forgiveness.

Are premarital sexual relations allowed? Extramarital? Never. Adultery and fornication are illegal.

How is adultery defined? What (if any) is the punishment? Who decides? Adultery is any form of sex out of wedlock. The punishment is reparations to the injured, the option of divorce and alimony, and jailtime not exceeding ten years.

Is prostitution legal? How are prostitutes viewed? Is this accurate? No. Nekomimi are stereotyped as prostitutes, due to their destitution and presence in the corruption of the former TurtleShroomian territory of Gerry (now ceded to the C'Tan). This is not a very accurate assumption, because Nekomimi whores outside of Gerry were as rare as any other. Prostitution is almost unheard of in TurtleShroom and is undesired.

What is the greatest sexual taboo? All sexual transgressions are taboo, but few top homosexuality, incest, and beastiality.

What does this society mean by the word "virgin" and how important is it? Virginity is paramount. Those who freely and willingly surrender their virginity are seen as filthy sluts. Those who are raped are treated with love and mercy, and never held responsible for it.

Is sex confined to marriage? Or, is it supposed to be? Yes, and fornication is illegal.

What constitutes aberrant sexual behavior? See above.

Are there any cultural or religious strictures, norms or taboos that specifically address sexual conduct? See above.

Are there secular laws that control or restrict sexual behaviour? Yes. See above.

At what age is it considered normal to engage in sex? Are there taboos against sex with children? All sex can only legally be performed in marriage, and both participants must be pubescent (sexual maturity), regardless of species. See above for marriage law and age. Sex with prepubescent children is punishable by death, assuming the lynch mobs don't get the pedo first.

Should sex be a one-to-one experience? Or are groups allowed? Orgies are completely illegal. Sex is one-on-one alone. No exceptions.

XIII. Questions of Education.

Describe the education of the society’s people: formal schooling, apprenticeship, etc. All education is performed by wholly private enterprises, whose tuition is subsidized by the state through Vouchers.

Is education compulsory / offered to everyone? What is the cost of education? All TurtleShroomers must receive at least one day per week of formal education. From kindergarten to age ten years of old (for humans) or sexual maturity (for turtles), all TurtleShroomers receive five-day school weeks. Once the child reaches ten (for humans) or sexual maturity (for turtles), parents can have their children enter child labor for four days and school for one, or they can opt to continue a full five-day school week. For cost and the like, see above.

Between which ages does education happen? For humans, six to eighteen.

How are year groups and academic years arranged? Kindergarten through twelfth grade.

How are curricula arranged? What courses are typically offered? All individual schoolhouses, school holding companies, district boards, etc. set their own curricula independently of state meddling. However, it is required that they teach arithmatic, English and reading courses, and TurtleShroomian history. All schoolhouses must ensure that all pupils are fully literate and able to perform competent math.

What degrees or diplomas are offered by schools? With the exception of Jonesboro State Agricultural University, the Old Reliable School of Nuclear Physics and Technology, all military acadamies, and a few minor schools, all tertiary education is privatized and subsidized by the state through vouchers.

What do schools / colleges / universities look like? It varies widely. Most dedicated schoolhouses built in TurtleShroom were built between 1933 and 1969 AD, and they can hold anywhere from fifty to five thousand students. ("Dedicated schoolhouse" refers to a large schoolhouse built solely for educational purposes, as opposed to one-room schoolhouses or buildings converted into educational facilities.)

What are the classrooms like? What is a typical class size?
Each schoolhouse has its own standards and appearence.

One-room schoolhouses are usually one open hall serving as a classroom, with a chalkboard or whiteboard in the front, rows of benches with counters serving as shared desks. The room is divided into a centeral isle, with the shared desk-benches to the left and right. Two full, unisex restrooms (one for turtles and one for humans, see above) with indoor plumbing is usually on the side of the building with a door from the classroom, or an independent structure on the same land as the schoolhouse. In the absolute poorest neighborhoods, schoolhouses will have an outhouse (or port-o-potty) and a fountain or well pump for hand washing (the fountain always has a built-in filter to keep the water clean). All one-room schoolhouses are electrified and have air conditioning.

Larger schoolhouses are more like the modern idea. They will have dozens of bathrooms and dozens, or even hundreds of classrooms. Each classroom has one or more chalkboards or whiteboards, and each classroom has individual, one-seater desks. Fancier schools (and the ones most coveted by parents) will even have a computer in the classrooms or in a computer lab. These schoolhouses will also be overseen by schoolmasters, principals, CEOs, or other administrative positions. Contrast this with one-room schoolhouses, where the teacher is also in charge of administration.

By law, in all schoolhouses (and even many colleges), corporal punishment is employed, in private before two witnesses. In large school systems, an administrator will take the unruly child to the office with two witnesses, shut the door, and administer the paddling. In one-room schoolhouses, the teacher will take the child out back behind the schoolhouse with two witnesses, and administer the paddling. Human children with special-needs/special-ed cannot be paddled or given corporal punishment unless they physically attack another student.

Who is in charge of education in the country, and in each individual school? There is no national standard in TS. All schoolhouses, or in cases of companies and charter districts, the business, sets the curricula and administers everything under them. As such, every schoolhouse is different in its structure, purpose, and so on.

Does this society have its own language? Its own writing system? No. English is the main language and the Latin alphabet is used.

How common is literacy? How is literacy viewed? Literacy is seen as a given and an essential skill. Only the oldest TurtleShroomers are illiterate in modern times, literacy is nearly unanimous.

What form and value are books? Books are seen as special and very important in TurtleShroom. All TurtleShroomers are encouraged to read and collect books. Libraries exist in every town, and in remote areas, inside a church. All schools use textbooks, either written and issued by the schoolhouse itself, or purchased from textbook companies.

Who teaches others? How do they teach? Dedicated teachers are employeed in all schoolhouses, regardless of size or remoteness.

Who decides who learns to read or write? The state, and it states that everyone must be fully literate to graduate from compulsary schooling.

Who teaches professions, like carpenter or scribe? Either colleges, trade schools, or individual apprentices or masters.

Are foreigners ever brought in to teach new skills? Who does that? Yes. The military makes extensive use of Tsao asylum seekers and former military top brass to teach the troops and expand their capabilities.

XIV. Questions of Technology and Architecture.

Are philosophy and science unified, or do they exist as separate and independent disciplines? Separate.

What devices and technologies are available for people? Video games, computers, radio, and television, telephones, crude cell phones, and the like all exist. Video games are rather cheap, and computers are a luxury normally found in libraries. Radioes are ubitiquous. Television is mostly available to the rich, but is slowly trickling down. Payphones and landline telephones are ubitiquous. Cell phones are seen as unneccesary except for the most mobile of creatures and the state. They are expensive, but last for decades.

Are such devices taken for granted? If not, how many are appreciated? No. Excluding telephones and radio, all of the above are considered the utmost of opulent luxury and owning any of those are considered to be prestigious and greatly blessed with prosperity.

How is knowledge distributed? Is it kept unknown to the common people, or is available for all? Knowledge is widely distributed and it is encouraged to seek it. "Knowledge is power!"


What major architectural styles are present? What do they look like?
Outside of cities, for homes, the most important styles are antebellum architecture, ranch housing, and, unfortunately, slums and shotgun shacks. Farmhouses, dating back decades or centuries, are usually uniquely built in terms of floorplans from constant expansion and remodeling. Within cities, almost every housing complex, ironically, is a "commieblock".

  • Following new legislation in TurtleShroom, the nation's government buildings are remarkable for being ugly concrete boxes.
For non-residential, urban buildings, fascist architecture and socialist realism architecture are almost always the choice. This is not because TS endorses Marxism or has fascists in charge, but rather, because the architecture was what TurtleShroom adopted during the twentieth century from the resources it had. During the Fascist era of the country, gifts of technology and art and architecture were given to the country for its massive urban and rural planning schemes.

TurtleShroomian urban architecture is known worldwide for its boring ugliness and symmetry. All the buildings are rectangular or cube-shaped, with hard corners, and they are all symmetrical.

What are palaces and castles like? See below.

What materials are used in typical construction? Do any materials have to be imported? Wood, brick, concrete, and stone (especially marble) are the most common.

How are buildings constructed? Are there machines or is work done by hand? Construction is heavilly mechanized.

What are some famous landmarks in the region? Why are they famous? Are they famous internationally?
The Chancellary Palace, often called the "Pauper's Palace" by foreigners, is one of the oldest and largest buildings in TurtleShroom's history. Standing five stories tall, the building is symmetrical, with simple, rectangular glass windows evenly spaced across it. Two giant marble doors are in the center of the building. Inside the building is an open-spaced, ornate lobby, and the rest of the building is narrow, winding halls and corridors, leading to hundreds and hundreds of rooms. (In terms of sheer amount of hallways and rooms, think the Pentagon's floor plan.) The building was inspired by the Russian Winter Palace and the Palace of Versailles, and was intended to be a more humble, less ornate version of the same. The Chancellary Palace is the official residence of the heads of state and their staff, court, and family, as well as each head of state's twelve-creature successor pool. At any time, a hundred creatures or more live permanently in the building, and many thousands work in it. Though regionally famous, the Chancellary Palace has no international prestige.

XV. Questions of Transportation and Communications.

How do people get from place to place? Does this vary at all in different places? TurtleShroomers walk to their destination, or take the train or the bus.

Do people make long journeys? If so, what are they like? When someone takes a long journey, they will take the train or bus to their destination. Both means of transport travel to every part of the country.

Is there a public transport system? Who uses it? How much does it cost? All transportation systems are privatized, but nonetheless subsidized by the state. Only the rich own their own cars.

What are the roads like? How do they vary from place to place? All public roads outside of the cities and towns, around eighty to ninety percent of them, are dirt roads. There are private roads used by companies that are paved and maintained by them. Dirt roads are also privatized, but they are so cheap to maintain that the owners do not normally charge tolls. There are also the paved Postal Routes, which are five-lane "super highways" (at least to TurtleShroomers) that are the core arteries of freight. The Postal Routes were built in the Fascist era and are the only true highways in TurtleShroom.

Do individuals or families own and use their own vehicles? No, they take the bus or train. Only the rich own their private vehicles, and due to the state of the roads (see above), they only use them in cities.

How safe and clean is the typical transport system? Very safe, because no one is really on the road aside from the busses.

What major fuels are used? Gasoline and diesel.

Apart from face to face, how do people communicate with each other? Telephone.

Is there a postal service? How fast is it? How much does it cost to use? What restrictions are there on packet delivery? Does the post operate internationally? How likely is it that an article sent in the post will reach its intended destination?

What technical or mechanical means of communications exist? See "what devices and technologies are available", above.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:56 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Party Ten and Eleven

X. Questions of Marriage.

How is a marriage defined? How is a marriage contracted?
Constitution of TurtleShroom wrote:AMENDMENT THE SECOND: (1796 AD)
Marriage in TurtleShroom is to solely consist of the union of a male and a female, of whom existed in that gender at birth. Congress shall have the authority to define the sex of a man, turtle, or other gendered being by binding resolutions passed by two thirds of all sworn members, assented by unanimous royal approval.

No benefits, fiscal or otherwise, bestowed upon the definition of marriage herein shall be extended towards any other form of relationship considered an alternative to marriage, nor shall such unions be recognized or their contracts honored, nor shall humans be allowed to marry any other species.

All existing unions outside of this designation are to be annulled and deemed completely void upon Ratification of this Amendment. This amendment does not apply to creatures that reproduce asexually.

What is the term of a marriage contract? Anything the couple so wishes may be included in the pre-nuptuals and the marriage contract. However, divorce is strictly governed by law.

What gifts are considered appropriate or inappropriate for a wedding? A good gift is gotten by getting whatever the couple asks for on the registry. An inappropriate gift is sex-based in nature (that's for after the wedding and reception), lewd, or joking about divorce or abuse.

How are marriages celebrated?
TurtleShroomian marriage is very similar to most Western marriages, but it borrows a few Russian customs. For the purposes of this answer, the matter will concern human marriages.

Borrowing from Russian custom (with some changes), all weddings between Christians begin with a short morning church service, in which the clergyman present blesses the wedding rings on the church's altar. The wedding rings are then placed on the ringbearer's pillow and taken outside. Before the bride and groom and audience enter, their betrothal rings are taken by the clergyman at the church's front door and the couple is blessed. The priest hands the both the bride and groom a candle- these Candles of Happiness represent the marriage -and then lights his own, third candle, which he uses to light the other two. The third candle symbolizes the Church (and therefore the Body of Christ and God Himself) sparking love in each other's hearts. These candles are then handed off to the Best Man and Maid of Honor, who will hold them for the rest of the ceremony.

After the church service concludes, the actual wedding begins. Like most western marriages, TurtleShroom employees bridesmaids and groomsmen, the Best Man and Maid of Honor (these serve as witnesses, another Russian borrowed custom), and the ringbearer and flower girls. Brides wear long white dresses (sometimes with veils) and the bridegroom wears his finest suit (or ceremonial vestments and articles, if any). The father walks the bride down the aisle and "gives her away". All present rise when the bride enters and sit when she reaches the altar. The father usually cries. Another borrowed Russian tradition is that the bride and groom stand on a piece of new carpet, silk, or fabric, representing their new life together.

The ringbearer will then go down the aisle and lay the ring's pillow on the altar. The clergyman picks up each ring, one by one, and says a blessing in prayer for each. He then puts his arms around the bride and groom and says a prayer to bless their union. The couple outstretch their respective right hands and the ring is placed in their palm, where they will hold it.

The clergyman will then recite his speech, "dearly beloved, we are gathered here today", and so on, down to "if anyone so objects to this union, speak now or forever hold your peace". If no objections occur the vows will begin. TurtleShroomian vows are identical to traditional Western and USA ones and carry no holdovers from the Russians. After the vows and before the "I do" and the exchanging of rings, the bride and groom each publicly professes that they are marrying of their own free will, and that they have not promised themselves to another (I copied this last line due to laziness).

The rings are exchanged and blessed by the clergyman as the bride and groom place the ring on the other's right hand. The traditional Western "do you, X, take Y as your lawfully wedded husband/wife" and the "I do" recital follows. The clergyman now pronounces the couple husband and wife: "you may kiss the bride". The crowd cheers and the clergyman dismisses the service, after which everyone goes to the reception. The marriage has been finalized and consecrated.

Borrowing both from the Russian and Southeastern USA tradition, all wedding exceptions are expected to have a massive buffet and banquet consisting of copious amounts of food and drinks, deserts, and a towering cake. Long toasts, speeches, dancing, and celebrations ensue for the rest of the day and long into the night. The newlywed couple always gets the first dance, and within is the only time they can intimately slow dance without "saving room for Jesus to Toasts follow the Russian custom, first to the newlyweds and then to the parents, and all toasts are always performed hard enough to slosh the liquid into other cups, per tradition and prevention of poisoning. Similar to Russian custom and due to the importance of marriage, the next week or so is a similar theme of celebrations, laughter, and family. The guests will continue to drink, eat, and celebrate throughout this time, and it is during this time that wedding photographs are taken. Games, activities, and other things for adults and children alike will be participated in.

Finally, after a week of celebrations, the most important part of the marriage ceremony is performed: the consummation. A marriage is not completely finalized until the husband and wife have had sexual intercourse together. The guests and family all go their separate ways and the bride and groom are taken to a place and bedroom of their choosing. The husband will pick up his wife and carry her over the threshold of the entrance to the building, and again over the entrance to the bedroom.
Here, in this bed, they will make passionate love for what is supposed to be the first time in their lives, each losing their virginity. This usually continues for the rest of the night and releases a lifetime of waiting into one night.
After the consummation of the union, the newlyweds will return home and plan their honeymoon, in which they will vacation to a location of their choosing for a few weeks.

Centuries ago, TurtleShroom engaged in the Russian tradition of "crowning" the bride and groom, but that was ultimately dissolved because the Baptist majority considered it too different from their own religious rituals.

A Taiping wedding is conducted differently, and according to their religious customs. All Taiping brides wear red instead of white.

What is considered too great a difference in age for a couple? A human over twenty five marrying one under sixteen is considered taboo.

Do relationships allow multiple partners? No, and adultery is illegal.

In what ways is a marriage considered broken? See below.

How can a marriage be terminated? Divorce is strictly regulated in TurtleShroom and can only be achieved because of "marital unfaithfulness". In addition to adultery, "marital unfaithfulness" also includes domestic abuse, abuse of any children begotten from the union, drunkenness, homosexuality, pornographic viewing, desertion, violence, and fraud. Annulments can also be invoked in special situations to declare the union having never existed. There is no such thing as no-fault divorce; anyone who goes and sees other people during a marriage that has not been lawfully dissolved commits the crime adultery, regardless of whether or not they think their union has been dissolved between them.

XI. Questions of Health.

What is the average life expectancy? How does this differ between different regions, races or ethnicities?
  • Life expectancy for men: Male humans have a traditional minimum of ninety four.
  • Life expectancy for women: Female humans have a traditional minimum of ninety seven.

The life expectancy for turtles and mushrooms is around one hundred.

What access do people have to clean drinking water (at home or in public)? >99%

What access do people have to proper sanitation (at home or in public)? That depends on the definition. If outhouses are included, >99% . If outhouses are excluded, 85%.

Do houses or public buildings have plumbing? Cold and warm water? All public buildings have internal plumbing. All buildings have some sort of access to water, be it rain collection, a well, or indoor plumbing.

Describe any public or private bathing or latrine facilities.
All bathrooms are segregated by sex, and there are separate bathrooms for humans and turtles. There are also segregated restrooms for chimeras in some cities. Human toilets are exactly what one would think they are. Turtle toilets are ground-level squat toilets (entirely identical to Muslim squat toilets) They also double as bidets to clean themselves off.

For more on toilets in TurtleShroom, please click here.

How is healthcare delivered in this society; what are its foundations? Healthcare is administered by Church-run and secular hospitals, quick-care clinics, trauma centers, and other private practices. All mental health is administered by the State Hospital System, which maintains the asylums and treatment centers.

Are there hospitals or sanitaria where many forms of health care are concentrated; or are practitioners more diffuse within the community? All mental health facilities are concentrated in the large, stately asylums. Hospitals exist in major cities and smaller clinics exist in minor ones. Almost all TurtleShroomers live within thirty miles of a quick-care clinic. Barbers can perform minor surgeries on the skin (removing skin cancer, moles, etc.).

Do people have access to any form of medical aid for emergencies or for less urgent problems? Yes. Emergencies are rushed to the nearest hospital ER or clinical ER. Less urgent problems are scheduled by appointment or a walk-in visit to a Quick Care.

What kinds of ailments or injuries are treatable in the locality using available supplies and expertise?
Most modern treatments exist in TurtleShroom, and most medicines and antibioltics work in the country, with the exception of several vaccinations (including diptheria and bubonic plague). Essentially, think the modern treatments in the USA, but with dated equipment. Most hospital equipment that is not directly involved in urgent treatment is, on average, forty or so years old. (So, for example, chemotherapy machines and machines for open-heart surgery, so on and so forth, are constantly updated and upgraded, but blood pressure cuffs, scales, scapels, and other such instruments are only maintained and cleaned.) Surgical and lifesaving treatments are also constantly updated, though usually ten or so years behind the current Western pace.

The average full hospital can accomplish everything a hospital is expected to accomplish, including surgery, trauma center care, emergency rooms, and advanced treatments. The average Quick Care administers antibiotics, aspirin, presciptions, and low-level medicine injections to help heal a minor disease. The average clinic may have a small emergency room.

TurtleShroom traditionally locates all tuberculosis cases in specail tuberculosis buildings on a hospital campus. Likewise, the Black Death Prevention Unit maintains its own facilities solely for epidemics, like the bubonic plague. Despite the name, they are essentially TurtleShroom's Center for Disease Control. They dress like plague doctors, but the robes are antiseptic, the beaks double as gas masks, and they are basically stylized, modern hazmat suits.

Sentien turtles, by contrast, attend vetrinarians. All vetrinarians, in addition to treating livestock and pets, are expected to fully understand herpetology and the anatomical workings of the sentient turtle. Most treatments done on humans have a vetrinary counterpart for turtles.

What does typical healthcare cost? It varies widely, but no TurtleShroomer, having entered the ER or trauma center, can be charged if he cannot afford it. Taxpayers instead reimburse the cost. Hospitals are usually merciful about their charges, and do not send debt collectors, instead waiting for interest-free reimbursement. The average monthly payment to a hospital is eighty Skillets ($20 USD).

How do this society's doctors try to treat wounds and sickness? They do what is expected of a modern doctor.

Which medical assumtions of this society are wrong? Foreigners believe that TurtleShroom's mental health practices (asylums, isolation, involuntary commitment, and even lobotomization and psychosurgery in some cases) are obsolete. However, in terms of actual treatments, none of the treatments performed in a mental asylum are psuedoscience (so no shock therapy or torment, etc.). Lobotomies, for example, are used as a permanent sedative, not a cure for a mental disease.

Do people seek care on an as-needed or emergency basis; or is health care seen as a preventative endeavour. As-needed and emergency, with preventive matters for cancer and a physical. Most TurtleShroomers live about thirty miles or more from a doctor, and thus only go when they need to. TurtleShroomers go to doctors the moment the know they are sick. However, most TurtleShroomers will go to their medical professional once a year to be screened for cancer and heart problems, as well as taking a physical. Aside from cancer screenings and physicals, TurtleShroomers only see their medical providers when they actually get sick.

How often do people see their doctor, dentist or other healthcare provider? As-needed, but at least once year (see above).

Is a distinction made between physical and nonphysical ailments? No. Mental illnesses are treated like physical ones: they are real, they are damaging, and they must be treated for curing, and if not doable, quarentined.

What happens to those suffering from extreme mental illness? Spiritual illness? Other? Extreme mental illness that is not schizophrenia are committed to the SHS asylum and are treated on a case-by-case basis. Schizophreniacs are lobotomized. Pedophiles are executed if found guilty in a court of law. (Merely having an attraction to prepubescent children counts as pedophilia._

How do people react to physical deformity (both congenital and acquired)? Great pity and religious compassion. Charities exist for these kinds of people and the Church will often dedicate resources to make their lives easier.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:55 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Eight and Nine

VIII. Questions of Labor.

Describe any kind of division of labour, such as into physical versus mental versus spiritual. Agricultural jobs, religious jobs, blue collar jobs, white collar jobs, and service jobs are all defined in the typical sense, as one would expect them to be. Child labor is lawful for all humans over the age of ten, and all turtles over the age of five (turtles grow and mature faster than humans).

Is there any especial prestige attached to some category of labour or a particular job? Clergymen, soldiers, farmers, policemen, doctors, nurses, medical workers, firemen, and teachers are all considered prestigious.

What jobs are considered mucky or are particularly depreciated? Excluding writing and composing or playing music, the secular arts as a whole (artists, painters, singers, etc.) are seen as "not real jobs". Lawyers, tax collectors, and bureaucratic government jobs are also considered to be lowly and lesser jobs. Politicians are seen as a neccesary evil, and a lifelong career politician or bureaucrat is seen as "never holding a real job". Lawyers, though, are begrudgingly seen as "real job".

What professions or activities are considered masculine?
  • For humans: police work, fire services, military, clergy jobs, construction, groundskeeping, repairing, maintenance, computer and IT, American football, ranching, most government jobs, high-ranking government jobs, teaching, cooking (especially with meat), the Crown, food service industries, selling vacuums, selling mattresses, door-to-door salesmen, security work, gambling pit bosses, and more.
  • For turtles: homemaking, housekeeping, secretary labor, and the arts.

What professions or activities are viewed as feminine?
  • For humans: nursing, medicine, teaching, cooking (especially baking), housekeeping, homemaking, childcare, babysitting, OBGYN medicine, wearing women's clothes, tea parties, makeup, gossping, gambling positions (like dealers) and more.
  • For turtles: gambling pit bosses, management and white-collar jobs, low-level government jobs, wrestling, athletics, censorship, security work, hosting, philantropism, and more.

What are usual working hours? Are there days of rest or holidays?
The average TurtleShroomer workday is ten to twelve hours long. Aside from Fridays letting out early, eight-hour days are rare, but they do exist. Fridays usually close after a six to eight hour workday. Minor TurtleShroomers performing child labor have five hour workdays and are normally off Monday, Saturday, and Sunday. TurtleShroomers performing child labor normally receive at least eight hours of schooling on Mondays, and are required to be educated at least once a week.

How does this differ between different jobs? All companies have different benefits, days, and systems for working.

What jobs have few workers and why? There are few athletes, a lower level of lawyers, few tax collectors, and no lawful mixologists/alcholic bartenders, prostitutes or sex workers.

What are typical wages for various jobs? Jobs range from salary to hourly pay, to no pay at all (in the truck system). Truck system employees are instead paid privatized currency (called Scrip) that is to be spent in the company store on-site, where they are also provided food, housing, water, and amneties.

How does work affect lifestyle and health? The dignity of work- no matter what kind -is seen as one of the greatest virtues, behind only humility in terms of secular value. Most TurtleShroomers are employeed in some sort of agricultural position, and as such, work is great for their health and longevity.

What sorts of jobs are preferred by which people? Are some jobs denied to certain groups?

What are the ethical oaths or codes that govern various jobs? Is there a difference in ethics between manual and mental or spiritual work? All clergymen, all medical positions, and all governmental positions are bound by ethical and moral codes, as well as the law. In addition, all private companies dealing with police or security, fire services, emergency services, and water are bound by ethical and moral codes, and the law.

IX. Questions of Art.

What are the favorite art forms? Music and writing. Some dancing, in limited situations. The old saying goes that "Baptists can't dance".

What are the least-favorite? Painting and ballet, and anything remotely classed as "dirty dancing".

How respected are artists? Singers, artists, sculptors, and others that are not players of instruments or writers are generally seen as "not having a real job".

Do artists require official or unofficial protection or patronage? No, but graffiti artists must have explicit permission from the property owner to paint a pural.

What kinds of trouble are artists in particular likely to find themselves in? Pornography is illegal and not considered art, so anyone making that will find themselves in prison. In fact, any artist making anything remotely nude, lewd, or morally inappropriate will find their work censored before it is published. However, political messages and dissent are protected from censorship.

How might a very successful artist live? Successful artists can amke six digit salaries. As TS has very lax tax law, this means they keep a whole lot of their money.

What forms of theatre does your society have? Plays, musicals, and religious performances (like Passion Plays) all exist.

How naturalistic or stylized is your society's art? TurtleShroom's lay art (performed by the every day creature) is rather cartoony as a whole, while professional, formal artists tend to coalesce strongly around Realism. Interestingly, while it never emphasizes Marxist themse, TurtleShroom's formal art scene is heavilly inspired (in terms of appearence and style of people) by Socialist Realism.

What shapes are most common in your society's arts, like embroidery or architecture? In architecture: cubes, squares, rectangles, and rectangular prisms.

Which artforms get the most and least respect? Architecture, music, singing, calligraphy, and writing receive the most respect (even though singing is not considered a "real job"). Painting, ballet, and anime are respected the least (although anime itself is appreciated as an art form).

What form does censorship take?
Censorship is employeed by the state on the basis of morality, never political content. Expression of dissent and political criticism through the arts is one of the biggest reasons the arts are employeed in the first place.

All artists wishing to sell, display, or distribute their work must first submit the work to the Holiness Board of Censors for screening. They will send back their changes and clear the work. A work is only outright banned if it cannot be "cleaned" by the Board.

Lewd, explicit, sexual, obscene, homosexual, pornographic, or promiscuous works may not be distributed or sold in TurtleShroom, and any such media caught in the country is destroyed. Paintings and books are shredded and recycled, while pornography, magazines, and other media are burnt. (There are exemptions to lewdness and nudity laws: medical books, ancient works like Greek myths, depictions of the Sistine Chapel, and religious books are not censored.)

Dirty dancing (such as twerking) is illegal, but dancing itself is not.

Who may not be an artist? There are no restrictions on who can and cannot make art. It's seen as a basic fact of life.

What qualities equal "beauty" in this society? Humility, modesty, and tact.

What makes a man or woman especially beautiful? TurtleShroomer female humans are notorious for being flat-chested and only have enough "curves" for an observer to easily tell their gender. As such, large breasts and "curves in all the right places" are considered especially unique and beautiful across all races. The Asian human population also values fairer, unblemished skin and jet-black hair. Very tight clothes (adhering to approriate lengths and no cleavage) are also considered to be extremely attractive.

How do people react to tattoos? Piercings? Facial hair? Cosmetics?
  • Tattoos are frowned upon, but not forbidden. Some TurtleShroomer humans get tattoos of religious themes and symbols. Excess and extensive tattoos are likely to get you fired from a job or terminate your hiring process. The general rule is that the tatoo must be able to be covered (so no forehead tatoos) in a formal setting. This means that tattoos on the leg, torso, neck, and arm are seen as permissible.
  • Piercings are lawful for humans of both genders. Culturally, male humans who pierce their ears, once and in both earlobes, are tolerated, though dismissed as tacky. Almost all male humans that pierce their ears are teenagers. Females may receive multiple piercings all over their ears (including their earlobe and upper-ear, etc.). One current female style is an earlobe piercing and three piercings in the upper ear. Piercings are worn by all females above the age of thirteen. Although there are no reuglations on piercing age limits, it is considered taboo for a human to have their ears pierced before they are thirteen.
  • Mustaches are seen as a symbol of authority. Beards are seen as a symbol of maturity, manliness, spiritualism, and devotion (especially to Orthodox Christians, Yues, and Taipings). Despite this, most TurtleShroomers (outside the Orthodox Christians and Taipings) are clean shaven. Long hair is part of the religious rites of the Taipings, as are mustaches, but beards are not. (Turtles and mushrooms do not have hair.)


Do people enjoy looking at art? Does this vary among communities? Yes.

Do people enjoy doing art? Does this vary? Yes.

Is there any calligraphy? Who does it?
Cursive is taught in all TurtleShroomian schools that want to be taken seriously. In addition, illuminated manuscripts, illuminated lettering, and other such ancient art forms are still treasured and taught in both religious and secular settings. Notably, the Alliance Pact between La Cosa Fedora and TS was created using such techniques. Other such treaties were made with the same.

Does your culture have a distinct (or not so) musical style? What is it like? TurtleShroom is particularly known for its musician's tendancy to play any song of any genre on the organ, and have it actually sound good. Barbershop quartet reinterpretations of songs are also a consistent theme.

How do people listen to music (in a theater, at home, on the street, mechanical)? All of the above, including cassettes, vinyl records, CDs, and the radio, as well as concert halls, buskers, Walkman devices, portable tape devices, and MP3s on community library computers.

Does music influence people's behaviour? Music is seen as good for the soul, and is a major part of worship in TurtleShroom. Music is, to many more musically-inclined TurtleShroomers, an expression of life itself ("music is life", in terms of secular meaning) and something they could not imagine life without.

Does this culture have a typical dance form? What is it like?
The tradition goes that Baptists and whites can't dance. Many older TurtleShroomers still shun all dancing, but among Orthodox congregations and younger TurtleShroomers, dancing is seen as an acceptable form of entertainment and expression.

The Hopak/Cossack Dance (the distinctive Slavic/Russian/Ukranian squat-kicking dance) and its accompanying acrobatics are very popular among male teenaged humans (and increasingly, female humans as well), and essentially takes the place of breakdancing and urban dancing in TurtleShroomian culture. The Cossack Dance, at least in TS, is often performed outside on a flattened cardboard box (as is common with urban dancing and breakdancing). Other Slavic dances have taken off in TurtleShroom since the early 1970s AD.

Other, less extravagent dancing includes the Gangnam Style, the Cabbage Patch (also done by turtles), the Worm (also done by mushrooms), and more formal, step-based dancing.

Extremely close, slow dancing is unheard of outside of married couples ("leave room for Jesus to dance between you"). Dirty dancing, such as Twerking and hip gyrating, is illegal. Any dance that involes standing straight up and gyrating one's hips is seen as dirty and can be illegal in certain circumstances. However, the Cossack Dance and other folk dances inherited from Russian and Southeastern USA traditions are almost always exempted.

Moving on from the Hopak/Cossack Dance, TurtleShroom also borrows public squaredancing, line dancing, honkey-tonk, and hodown events from the Southeastern USA.

It is seen as disrespectful to dance in a church service under any circumstances.

Who goes to see such entertainments? Everyone that can afford it may go. For hodowns and other Southeastern USA dances, admission is free and community-oriented. Cossack Dancing is often a small group spectacle in big cities, and dance-offs can be engaged in by passersby. Most TurtleShroomers in either dancing group will welcome anyone wishing to join in with them.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:54 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Seven

VII. Questions of Faith.

Is the culture religious or nonreligious? Highly religious. Religion affects all aspects of life.

What are the major religious groups in the region?
The dominant faith by far is Christianity, which itself is dominated mostly by Southern Baptists and Protestants, followed by Old Believer Russian Orthodox and Catholic Christians. An Asian heresy of "Christianity" exists, based on the Taiping doctrines of Hong Xiquian. The pagan Yue Shrine and the ancient Tengri religion that predates TurtleShroom itself respectively have a large and tiny following. TurtleShroom allows all religions that do not engage in sorcery, except for Satanism, Pastafarianism, and Scientology, to operate freely and unrestricted, with tax exemption.

What are some of their core doctrines, dogmas, beliefs and practices? All mainstream Christians agree fully on the Nicene Creed and all mainstream Christians are Trinitarian.

What is the overall cosmology and eschatology in religious terms? Mainstream Christians hold that Jesus will one day return throughout the multi-verse and Rapture His followers all across NationStates, either all at once or universe by universe. Taiping "Christians" believe that Christ has already returned in the form of Jesus' brother, Hong Xiquian.

Is religion a cause of dissatisfaction, dissention or hostility in the region? No.

Are religious traditions and any scriptures oral or written in nature or a combination? Written.

Is there a set canon of what consitutes officially sanctioned scripture? All mainstream Christians use the standard Bible, with no additions or subtractions.

How are scriptural / traditional exegesis accomplished and by what hermeneutics? TurtleShroomers of all religions believe strongly in free thought and a personal relation and interpretation of their holy texts in the souls of each man or minds of each creature. The Church, however, does have a heavy hand on what beliefs are considered orthodox, mainstream, or in line with the Bible, and what is heresy and what is not. This said, neither heresy nor blasphemy are illegal.

What is the role of myth within the religion? The Taiping "Christians", the Tengriists, and the Yues all have a structured mythos, doctrines, and stories alongside their written scriptures, most of which are also written down.

Is there a formal creed or set of credal statements that define the faith? All mainstream Christians are bound by the Nicene Creed. The Taipings are not. The Yues have their own set of bylaws, approved and derived from the foreign head of that religion.

What are typical symbols used in the religion and their meanings? Christians use crosses, the ichthys ("Christian fish"), and the Chihroh (the "PX" symbol). The Yues use flowers and Eastern mysticism. The Taipings use various Chinese symbols and stylized crosses.

What ritual objects are used in the religion (relics, talismans, medals, charms, etc)? Taipings use tea, fire, robes, and chalices. All Christians use bread (leavened or unleavened) and grape juice to observe Communion. Catholics and Orthodox use their own traditional instruments.

What religious officials are there? Is there a formal clergy? How are they organised?
The Baptists are totally decentralized. All hiearchies are voluntary and individual churches may enter and exit them at their leisure. The only enforced clergy in the Baptist denomination is that of the pastor(s), the deaconate, and (in some cases) the eldership. Baptist churches also allow the laity to vote. Catholic churches are under the national cardinal, and in turn, are in communion with a Pope (currently the Borgian See of il borgia vaticano). The Orthodox Church uses autocephaly and answers to the Old Believer Patriarch of TurtleShroom. Taipings are structured like the Catholic Church, under the Taiping See. Yues are structured somewhat like the Catholic Church, under the High Priesthood of Yoitsu.

Are there monks, saints, faqirs, nuns, prophets, apostles, disciples, preachers, friars, shamans, martyrs, mystics, seers, vates, sages, ascetics, religious heroes, saviours, redeemers, etc? Monks, nuns, and declared saints exist in the Catholic and Orthodox churches. Preachers/clergymen exist in all religions in TS. Shamans exist in Tengriism. Mystics exist in all Christian religions in TS. Ascetics exist in all TurtleShroomian religions. Disciples and apostles existed millinea ago for all Christian denominations, and a few centuries ago for the Taipings. Religious heroes, saviors, and redeemers exist in all Christian religions, the Yues, and in the Taipings.

What do people believe happens to them after death? How, if at all, can they influence this? Taipings and Christians alike believe in an afterlife for believers and Hell for unbelievers. Tengriists believe that the faithful, when left in an open sky burial, are ultimately taken into heaven to be one with Tengrii (the sky/"Wild Blue Yonder"). {OOC: I do not know the nature of the Yue afterlife, or if they have one, as I did not create the religion.}

What happens to those who disagree with the majority on questions of religion? Nothing, unless they are sorcerers, Scientologists, Pastafarians, or Satanic.

Are there any particular places considered special or holy? What are they like? TurtleShroom itself is a major pilgrimage site due to the overall devotion of the Christian populace. Churches and centers of worship are considered holy ground by all religions in TurtleShroom.

Is there a set religious calendar? What are the most popular rituals or festivals? TurtleShroom uses the Gregorian Calendar and syncs its holidays with it. Official religious holidays recognized by the state include Easter, Good Friday, and Christmas.
Unofficial, unrecognized religious holidays include Pentacost, Purim (for Messianic Jews), Hannukuh (for Messianic Jews), and various holy days for the Yues and Taipings.

Are there liturgical, meditative, and contemplative aspects to the religion?
Contemplation and ones' relationship with God or their god(s) is the core of all TurtleShroomian religions. Free thought and a personal, self-interpreted, communal relationship to the faith are paramount in one's spiritual journey. All religions observe a form of meditatation. The Yues focus on "balance", the Tengriis pray to the sky, and Christians do as all Christians do, and likewise with the Taipings.

What is the basic structure of the religion (unitary, dualistic, etc)? Mainstream Christianity is Trinitarian. Taiping "Christianity" is nontrinitarian. The Yues do not have such a concept and the Tengriis believe in the worldly presence of spirits, both in the sky and in nature.

What is the basic theology of the religion (i.e., monotheistic, polytheistic, henotheistc etc)? The Taipings and all Christians are monotheistic. The Tengris are polytheistic. The Yues do not have any deities (think like the Buddhists), but instead believe in cosmic forces, spiritualism, and the "balance" of good and evil, technology and primitivity, and so on and so forth.

What do people have to offer to their Deity or deities? The state appropriates ten percent of its budget to Baptist Christian churches, intended to be shared with other Christians and for welfare. Both Taipings and Christians are commanded to forfeit either ten percent of their income, or ten percent of the firstfruits of their harvest.

What do people want from their Deity or deities? How do they try and get it? All religions in TurtleShroom pray and request that God or their god(s) or forces grant what they want, as long as it lines up with God's Will or the will of the god(s) or forces. All TurtleShroomers seek some form of personal relationship with that which they worship, and want to feel loved by said deity or entity.

Are there differing denominations or sects of the religion? The Yues, Tengris, and Taipings are monolithic without denomination or sect. Christians are divided into hundreds of denominations, that all agree on fundamental aspects of their religion.

How do their religious practices differ from their neighbours?
TurtleShroom is the only Christian nation in its Region. The Yues in TurtleShroom are subordinate to the foreign High Priestes of Yoitsu in what was once Comrade Commissar (now the Yue Empire/Commissariat and Commonwealth/Commissariat of Aashinia).

TurtleShroomer Yues are much happier and less somber, and they engage in parades, clown cars, social clubs, and they wear fezzes. However, their actual methods of worship and their theological beliefs are identical to their foreign higher-ups.

Are issues such as orthodoxy, heterodoxy, heresy and apostasy keys in the religious life? Aspostasy is seen as a sad fact of life and is neither illegal nor punished in TurtleShroom, although it is made obvious what will happen to their immortal soul for that "horrid mistake". Heresy exists throughout TurtleShroom (especially the Taipings), but it is neither illegal nor punished outside of internal church discipline.

What gender, ethnic, national or racial issues exist within the religion? Females cannot become clergy in all Christian religions. Females dominate the Yue clergy and male clergy are always subordinate to females. The Taiping clergy allows female clergy, but it is male-dominated.

Is ecumenism engaged in, or are other traditions treated as adversaries or enemies? All Christian denominations are at ecumenical peace with one-another. They maintain peaceful and tolerant relations of the pagans and Taipings, but do not cooperate with them, because they see their religion as false. The Taipings try to reach out to Christians, but are denied.

What is the most commonly broken religious rule? A lack of mercy and "love your neighbor as yourself".

What is the least-violated religious rule? Violations of sexual purity (fornication, adultery, sodomy, etc.), by far.

How are such infractions punished? Is it possible to expel a community member? All religious institutions may enforce church discipline and membership requirements as they see fit. All Christian churches, as well as the Taipings and Yues, excommunicate. The Tengriis also ostracize.

How can an outsider join the religious community? The Tengriists will not accept humans, but will welcome any turtle or mushroom who wishes to join and follow the tenants of the faith. The Christians, Yues, and Taipings will accept anyone who wishes to join and follow the tenants, beliefs, and doctrines of their faith.

Does the religion send out missionaries? What role(s) do they play? The Yues, Taipings, and Christians are all heavilly invested in mission work. In addition to cleanup, construction, and service to the poor, all religious missionaries zealously spread the faith.

Are the differing groups a result of schismatism or mutual and cooperative separation? No religion in TurtleShroom was created by a schism. They entered TurtleShroom having already split centuries before, or entered TurtleShroom as one united faith without denominations, or never had a concept of denominations to begin with.

Are there monastic groups? What do they do and how are they organized? How do you join one? Monastic groups exist (mainly in Yue, Catholic, and Orthodox religions). Each one maintains its own bylaws and traditions.

Are there cult groups within the religious community? Myriads of cults exist in TurtleShroom. Unlike religions, cults are taxed.

How are those who follow different faiths treated? As long as they are not practicing sorcery or witchraft, are Scientologists, are Pastafarians, or are Satanists, they are free to practice their cult or doctrine in any way they wish, subject only to criminal law. Cults and sects of this nature are unregulated.

What relationship do religious and political leaders have? The Church is a political powerhouse and its endorsement or condemnations can make or break a politician or political manuever. The Church is one of the factors holding TurtleShroom's government accountable.

What superstitions are common? What kinds of supernatural events or beings do people fear?
In addition to traditions like walking under ladders and crossing paths with feral black cats (and black Nangnangs), TurtleShroom is also heavilly invested with Christian mysticism like that of Imperial Russia. Wandering spiritual figures and healers, and Holy Fools (in the Russian sense) exist to this day. Even non-Christians largely subscribed to these superstitions as cultural nroms, unless they are overtly Christian. The Taipings have their own, Chinese-based superstitions in addition to the above, and the Yues, likewise, have their own doctrines and beliefs on this. Tengris are closer to nature and the sky and are heavily invested in modern meteorology to interpret the will of the sky god.

What kinds of supernatural or other-natural beings exist in this religion?
The concepts of angels, ghosts, and demons exist in all TurtleShroomian religions in some way, either as spirits or following the Christian norms. Many supernatural creatures have actually been sighted and documented, including aliens, demon-like beings, and sorcerers. Atheists and Agnostics will variously wave these off or try to explain them, but even they believe in them due to the hard evidence.

Every October, when supernatural activity is at its peak, the Church, other religions, and the state convene to appoint monster hunting death squads to roam and remove any supernatural threats, especially vampires.

How are dreams and visions encompassed by the religion? All religions in TurtleShroom believe that visions exist and that dreams can be divinely given, but it is universally agreed that God (or their gods) rarely speak in dreams in modern times. Christians hold an additional standard, in that any vision or dream must line up completely with the teachings of the Bible.

How is religious action expressed? Art, prayer, music, chanting, choral works, theatrical works, plays, writing, and other methods of art and expression are all employeed by various religions in various ways. All Chrsitians and Taipings observe a form of the Lord's Supper/Communion/Eucharist, as they are commanded. Baptists and most Protestants have no strict, recited liturgy or book of common prayer, while the Catholics and Orthodox do.


How is magic integrated into society? Sorcery and witchcraft are illegal in TurtleShroom. The punishment is a maximum eighty years in prison. Sorcery is never a capital crime. Most creatures charged with practicing witchcraft are acquited due to lack of evidence and lack of beyond a reasonable doubt.

Who can work magic? Is anyone disallowed from working magic? N/A: it is illegal.

How are works of magic accomplished? N/A: it is illegal.

What kind of preparation or study is required before undertaking a magical work? N/A: it is illegal.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:53 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Five

V. Questions of Customs and Social Life.

What colors are associated with power? With virtue? With death?
  • Power: purple, brown, red, and green.
  • Virtue: white. For the Asian population, red and white.
  • Death: black, though the Asian population often mixes white and black.

If two men get into a fight, how is this supposed to be resolved?
Male humans are expected to be courteous to one-another and to settle their disputes "like men": in court, through debate, or through arguments. Fighting is a resort only when one's honor is affronted in such an insulting manner that lashing out would be seen as just. Picking a fight without extenuating cause is seen as immature. Male children, however, are more prone to attacking each other.

If two women get into a fight, how should that be resolved?
Screaming matches and arguing. Some female humans slap their opponent or get into a "cat fight".

How do people demonstrate grief?
Mourning is traditionally observed while wearing black, but funerals are normally seen as times of grief, but also of happiness, in which the deceased's life is celebrated. For humans, this is almost universally coupled with the Christian idea of an afterlife. To them, death is a temporary departure, not a permanent state.

Sentient turtles and mushrooms, by contrast, do not believe they have souls and, therefore, their deceased simply cease to exist. For them, funerals are far more somber.

Who inherits property? Titles? Position? Inheritance is normally divided equally, with the firstborn (regardless of gender) or firstborn son often getting an extra portion of inheritance.

What are the most popular games? How important are they?
Video games, board games, and outdoor games all hold dear to the hearts of TurtleShroomers. In addition, children of all species enjoy classical games like hide-and-seek, tag or freeze tag, and spending time outside. The poor and rural in TurtleShroom do not usually have access to library computers. Rural TurtleShroomers have to travel far into town to get video games or use library computers. Therefore, those who can will get a personal computer for their home, which is considered a symbol of extreme prestige and prosperity.

When and how does someone go from child to adult?
In terms of marriage and sexual intercourse, a child may marry after they are twelve, but only if they have reached puberty. Marriage between pubsecent minors must receive the personal consent of the potential bride and groom, the consent of all living parents, and the consent of a local court of law. Teenage female humans are considered women. Teenage humans are considered sexually mature and are expected to understand monogamy, marriage, and the nature of sexual intercourse and sexual love. No one over twenty five may marry anyone under sixteen.

Before the law, all humans are legal adults at eighteen, unless they are Emancipated of Minor Status or are married before then.

For sentient turtles, who reach sexual maturity in as little as five years, adulthood and the age of majority are determined by the social and personal maturity of the turtle. Most turtles do not reproduce for decades.

How much free time do people usually get?
TurtleShroomer law allows businesses to set their own working hours and days off. Some businesses are more leniant than others.

Most TurtleShroomers work Monday through Friday or Monday through Saturday. All TurtleShroomer businesses that do not work in vital fields like medicine, police, or fire services (and so on) are expected to give their employees Sunday off. The average TurtleShroomer workday is ten to twelve hours long. Aside from Fridays letting out early, eight-hour days are rare, but they do exist. Fridays usually close after a six to eight hour workday.

Minor TurtleShroomers performing child labor have five hour workdays and are normally off Monday, Saturday, and Sunday. TurtleShroomers performing child labor normally receive at least eight hours of schooling on Mondays, and are required to be educated at least once a week.

Rural TurtleShroomers are time-flexible and usually revolve their days off around their harvesting times. Full-time TurtleShroomian schoolchildren have observed a Summer Break for centuries, so that the children of farmers can return home and help their superiors harvest the crops and perform farm work.

What do they spend this time doing?
TurtleShroomers that get off on Saturdays usually spend it with leisure activities, like outdoor games, video games, and travelling into town for a night out. This is also performed by those who let out on Friday. Culturally, TurtleShroomian Christians are expected to attend church on Sunday morning, while unbelieving TurtleShroomers are expected not to work. The Sabbath is a day of rest.

Is society segregated in any way?
Chimeras (humans with animal parts and features), especially nekomimi (catgirls) are heavilly segregated in the major cities of TurtleShroom, and have separate neighborhood ghettoes, facilities, water fountains, and so on. A human that mates with a chimera is punished by death or life imprisonment under beastiality laws (the same goes for a chimera), but two chimeras mating is not illegal.

Chimeras are required by law to wear veils and garments to cover their non-human ears and tail (etc.). They are universally pressured by society to have those ears and tails (etc.) removed.

What social classes or divisions exist in this society? See above.

If so, can people move from one class to another? Are there any benefits to being of one class over another?
TurtleShroom prides itself in social upward mobility and the Church places an emphasis on giving to the poor. However, chimeras, by their nature, are stuck in the segregated class unless they can get their ears and tails removed and pass as a pureborn human.

Is there any discrimination against minority groups (racial, ethnic, religious) in this society? See above.

How independent or codependent are individuals?
TurtleShroomer humans and sentient turtles are codependant on their family and their church congregation (if they are Christian). Mushrooms, which have no concept of family, have a strict hiearchy of social order with clearly defined roles on what mushrooms are superior to others, mainly based on seniority and competence. Mushrooms are also individualistic in nature despite their stratification.

What are the typical roles of women and men? What are the expectations of children? See "how are boy and girl children treated differently", above.

Does the government play a large part in people’s lives?
The government is traditionally seen as the enemy and as a neccesary evil that should stay out of the lives of the populace. Voting, political activism, and political awarenes is seen as sacrosanct, and the state is heavilly invested in social workers and subsidizing Church-based welfare, but by and large, the government attempts to butt out of its citizens' business unless they are committing a crime or have to settle a dispute in court.

Does religion play a large part in people’s lives?
Absolutely. Whatever a TurtleShroomer's religion, it is considered a central aspect of their lives. Atheists and Agnostics claim they don't need it, but socially, they seem to have a void because of the lack of companionship and familial nature of a church congregation.

The Church has a heavy and extensive hand in culturally influencing all aspects of society, including the state and the private sector. Without question, the Christian Church is the most powerful institution in TurtleShroom.

Describe how daily food is obtained. Directly through farming, from purchasing directly from a farmer, at a grocer, at a fast food facility or restaurant, or at a farmers' market.

What type of foods are most popular? Meat for humans, vegetables for sentient turtles. Mushrooms decompose trash and any leftovers the other two species leave out.

What are typical dishes and specialties of the region? TurtleShroom carries over a lot of Russian foods (especially borscht and plant-based cuisine, and Russian food mostly dominates on Thanksgiving and Christmas), while the Southeastern USA's cultural aspects provide most of the meats and side dishes. Corn, potatoes, and rice are the critical staples that replace the paucity of what in the country. Corn is used for cornbread, cornmeal, and other filling staples.

What type of food is the locality or region famous for?
TurtleShroom's take on Russian foods, TurtleShroom's take on Southeastern USA foods, and TurtleShroom's cornbread and sweetened iced tea are renowned and beloved by locals and tourists alike. TurtleShroom's claim to culinary fame is its abundance of cheap food and its innovative use of ingrediants. TurtleShroomers will grill or fry most anything, and gravy is served at most meals when possible.

What cutlery, if any, do people use for cooking and eating? Forks, spoons, knives, sporks, and also chopsticks (for the Asian population) are used at most meals.

How is the table arranged?
  • To the left of the plate: all forks and the napkin. The outermost fork is the one used first, going inward as the courses follow. Forks are placed on top of the napkin.
  • To the right of the plate: all spoons, sporks, knives, and chopsticks. The knives are first (from left to right), with the cutting edge facing the plate, followed by all spoons, followed by any sporks, and then by all chopsticks. If a surrated (steak) knife is present, it always precedes any other knife.
  • To the top-right: all drinks are placed in the top-right corner, close to the plate. Side dishes on their own plates or bowls are to up and to the left of the same, or to the left of the same.
  • To the top-left: if the meal is large enough, side dishes continue to be placed to the left and then around and to the left of the forks.

How do people sit when eating? Is there any arrangement by age or dignity of diners? Most TurtleShroomian tables are rectangular. The head of the household takes one of the heads of the table, and all other seats are taken by the family at their leisure. State dinners and the most formal meals are arranged either by order of procession of offices, by seniority, or by age.

How many and when are the main mealtimes? Three square meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner (often called "supper").

Are there restaurants, popinas, street vendors or other places where food may be bought in public? Yes, and these are abundant in all settlements, from little hamlets to giant cities. Every town has at least one restaurant and at least one fast-food restaurant.

Is there a significant risk of food poisoning? How many cases lead to death? Is there understood to be a link between food and poisoning or illness? No. Food poisoning is rare. Any food poisoning illness or death is the responsibility of the restaurant and they will be made to compensate the victim. Otherwise, few regulations exist aside from the most basic of sanitatary rules.

Clothing and Fashion
As turtles do not usually wear clothing aside from formal ribbons draped and layered on their shell, and mushrooms wear nothing but a sash as needed, this section consists solely of mankind's fashion.

What kind of clothes do people wear? How does this vary by season, ethnicity, age, profession, etc?
TurtleShroomers in the desert wear either robes or baggy shirts and short pants. TurtleShroomers in the rainforest wear either shirts or short pants.

All TurtleShroomer male humans wear suits at almost all white-collar and service jobs outside of culinary and medical fields. Traditionally, TurtleShroomers wear suspenders under their suit jacket/blazer, and over their dress shirt, which can be long sleeved or short sleeved.

TurtleShroomian clergymen are expected to wear the vestments of their office at all times. For pastors, this means they always wear suits, long pants, or robes. Catholic Cardinals and other positions, as well as Orthodox and other religions, all wear their vestments. No human TurtleShroomian clergyman should ever be caught dead wearing short pants, unless they are in a bathing suit.

Likewise, all government officials either wear a suit (sometimes accompanied with a sash) or the robes or vestments of their office. The Kings of TurtleShroom are expected to always be wearing their crowns and, in fact, cannot dispense the duties of their office without the crowns present on them, unless in an emergency or in times of war.

How do the genders dress: what differences are there between mens and womens clothing and accessories?
Females may wear pants, skirts, pantsuits, dresses, robes, and more. Males may not wear skirts, pants, pantsuits, or dresses unless they are comedians, actors, or in entertainment. Crossdressing for males is illegal.
In the non-agricultural workplace, all human males are expected to wear pants that reach from their waist to their ankles, with shoes. Outside of farming, wearing short pants in the workplace is considered unprofessional and a violation of all social norms.

Females are expected to keep their garments no shorter than just over the top of their kneecaps. Booty shorts, short shorts, and the like are taboo.

Many TurtleShroomer male humans, especially adults and schoolchildren, will wear hats when out in public. Straw boater hats are the most common type of hat.

How is clothing made, in small shops or larger factories?
Clothing is usually made at large, industrial textile mills under the truck system (company store).

How important is fashion to people? How does this vary by individual? TurtleShroomer clothing is expected to match in terms of color, but that's it.

What kinds of jewelry do people wear? And when?
Female TurtleShroomer humans wear necklaces, bracelets, collar pieces, choker necklaces, broaches, earrings, and the like. Religious themes are common. Male TurtleShroomers wear necklaces and bracelets.

All TurtleShroomian humans and turtles wear rings, especially after marriage. For turtles, a "ring" is far bigger than a human ring and is basically a bracelet. The concept of an "engagement ring" for betrothals exist, but little emphasis is put on it. Engagement rings are usually simple iron, steel, or silver bands, while wedding rings are gold and can be more extravagant. Sapphires are as common as diamonds on wedding bands.


Does the culture have outlets for dramatic arts (theater, puppetry, cinematography)? Yes: movies/cinema, theaters, choirs, barbershop quartets, and classical music all have a place in the country. Most movies are imported.

What other major forms of entertainment are there? Video games, board games, books, computers, listening to the radio, and outdoor activities.

Is the populace literate and numerate? Yes, and almost universally so. The younger generations are fully literate. Mass literacy operations began in the early 1920s AD.

Do people read for pleasure? If so, what do they read? Yes. In addition to the Bible and other religious content, TurtleShroomers love storybooks, nonfiction books, history books, magazines, financial reports, and humorous books.

Is there a public library system? Who uses it?
Libraries are privatized but often subsidized by the local municipality, or they are Church-run. All libraries have computers set up, and they are the primary means by which TurtleShroomers use computers. Every town and many churches all have libraries. Libraries are seen as centers of the community, and teenagers and children of all species congregate there to play on the computer or convene for quiet discussion.

Who are some of the more famous characters from literature? The Bible and the characters in it, by far, are the most popular characters, both from the New and Old Testaments. Most TurtleShroomers have read the entire Bible by the time they reach maturity.

How has this changed over time? No, the Bible has always been the hottest piece of literature.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:53 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Four

IV. Questions of Family.

How many spouses may a man or woman have? One.

Who decides on a marriage? The individuals getting married. Enforcing arranged marriages are illegal, but most TurtleShroomers listen to their parents' reccomendations in their spouse.

Can a marriage end in divorce? How? Divorce exists for "marital unfaithfulness", which includes but is not limited to adultery, pornography viewing, drunkenness, abuse, bigamy, sodomy, and more. No-fault divorce is illegal.

Who usually takes custody of children if a marriage ends for some reason? For humans, the faithful spouse almost always takes the children. (No-fault divorces are illegal.)

How are families named? Humans take the surname of their father (and female humans take their husband's surname). Turtles take the surname of their mother (and male turtles take their wife's surname).

What happens to orphans? Orphans are turned over to the Church or to secular orphanages, both funded by the state, for safekeeping and upbringing.

How are boys and girls children treated differently?
TurtleShroomian humans have a few cultural expectations of their offspring.

Interestingly, many things that are seen as "feminine" or "girly" are actually tolerated when male children perform it, so long as they do not play with it in an overtly feminine way. For example, male child asking for a princess doll is likely going to get it for his birthday, Christmas, or other such places, while he is unlikely to get a baby doll. The cultural expectation comes with how he plays with it. It's considered horrendous to push a male child into playing with a doll in the way a girl would, or to encourage the same. Parents are not going to let their sons have tea parties and makeup dates with dolls, but they won't have a problem with them playing in a dollhouse or dressing them up.

As another example, a male with a passion for cooking, who is always in the kitchen, is seen as persuing a respectable job and his interests are usually encouraged. The same goes for a male nurse: As an agrarian society, human gender roles often fall in the farm: females would haul hay, males would help the elders cook, and so on, as the farm's needs dictated. The position of chef is not seen as a feminine one, as TurtleShroom's deep connection to agriculture makes it a greatly respected job.

From birth, male humans are taught that their duty is to work and provide for their wife and for their family. They are taught that a fully able-bodied man who does not work by choice is no man and brings shame upon his family.

Female human offspring have a few standards of their own. From birth, they are raised to understand that their first job is to their family and to providing for their family and their husband. However, females are also taught that they may seek employment and ambition as any man may, so long as they do not lose focus of their sole "place", which is caring for the family. Female employment is not a taboo or controversial, although when humans hold high-ranking positions, they are mainly dominated by males.

In the turtle world, female sentient turtles are dominant, both biologically and culturally. However, due to the influence of humanity, many governmental and non-governmental posts expected to be held by female turtles are instead held by the weaker males.

What, if anything, is considered a good marriage gift?
Whatever the couple asks for on the registry.

What inanimate or sexless things are considered male or female?
Sentient mushrooms are asexual, but are universally addressed as "he". On formal manners of address and letter, mushrooms, having no gender, use the abbreviation "Mx." as opposed to "Mister".

Does this society connect the ideas of marriage with love?
Sex is seen as the ultimate expression of love and is to be done solely within marriage. A person in love who refuses to marry their soulmate (assuming the love is mutual) is questioned on whether they truly love them, or just have an infatuation or crush.

How big are families, typically?
The average human family ranges from three to twelve offspring. The average clutch of turtle eggs is five to twelve, and as such, sentient turtles usually only mate for procreating once.

What constitutes a household? How many people live in one household? How many generations?
For humans, the nuclear family consists of parent and ofspring, but many TurtleShroomers have multiple generations on the same compound (groups of neighboring houses built on ancestral land, in which all immediate neighbors are related). TurtleShroomers are culturally expected to provide for their elders, and many of them will have their elders move in with the current generations in order to care for them full time.

Sentient mushrooms reproduce asexually through spores and thus do not live in traditional family units.

Are girls or boys preferred and why?
Although both genders are welcomed and celebrated, most human families will keep trying until they get a son, in order to pass down their family name.

Like all turtles, the sentient turtles' offspring's gender is determined by the temperature in which the eggs are placed. As such, turtles that opt not to care for their eggs at home send their eggs to a hospital incubator that attempts to produce a balanced amount of males and females.

How common is domestic violence? Is it understood to be a problem, or a normal aspect of family life?
Domestic violence, especially against females and children, is seen as a Satanic and an abomination. The punishment for domestic abuse is death or life in prison, assuming the lynch mob doesn't get there first, or the abused victim doesn't kill their abuser.

If it is seen as problematic, what is being done about it? N/A, the current system is effective.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:52 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Three

III. Questions of Race and Ethnicity.

What are the chief races in the region?
Among humans (homo sapiens), they are divided into TurtleShroomer White (a type of Slav with Anglo-Saxxon mix) and Asian (consisting mainly of the Japanese and Tsao ethnicities). Asians make up one-third of the human population. The non-human turtles and mushrooms are a rainbow of colors and various species, most of which can produce infertile hybrid offspring with other species. Turtles have to mate within their own species in order to have grandchildren. A minor subspecies of human called the Haiz (Homo sapiens haiz) also exists in a decent number in the country.

TurtleShroomer Whites are a distinct group because of unique mutations endemic to the TurtleShroomian region. TurtleShroomer Whites, in addition to having builds and features considered typically Slavic, also boast extraordinary height for both genders, distinctive, striking crimson-colored eyes, and poor eyesight.

What are the chief ethnic groups of each race in the region? How are they distributed in place?
Asians congregate in the cities and slum areas around them, as well as in the far eastern part of the country. In the rainforests and swamplands, they are distributed fairly normally on the eastern border, with significant populations in Jonesboro and other major cities. In the deserts, they are mostly concentrated around the City of Litlin and on the far-nothern borders. TurtleShroomer Whites make up the majority in most of TurtleShroom, although it's hard to go anywhere in the country without seeing at least one Asian.

How do they differ by language, appearance or ancestry? Asian TurtleShroomers obviously look different both from whites and TurtleShroomer Whites: slanted eyes, black hair, tanned skin, and so on. They are also noticably shorter than TurtleShroomer Whites (see above for descriptions on what makes them unique).

What jobs do the chief ethnicities primarily occupy? Are any groups denied work because of racial or ethnic heritage?
The Asians largely make up manual jobs, such as longshoremen in the TS controlled areas at Dire Dire Docks (TS itself is landlocked and DDD is far from the borders), or maintance, construction, and groundskeeping jobs. However, all races (and even species) in TurtleShroom are primarly agrarian. Agriculture, by far, remains the largest job field.

TurtleShroomer businesses are allowed to discriminate at will unless they deal in food, water, medicine, fire, security, or other core essentials. They rarely, if ever, discriminate by race, though, due to the fact that non-humans are the norm and thus the differences between men do not seem so marked.

What are typical attitudes of the native (or majority) ethnos to immigrants and other ethnicities?
The Asians, mainly fleeing from authorative nations that indoctrinate their submission, found the indoctrinated humility and harmony of TurtleShroom to be mutually compatible. They assimilated quickly and easily.

How has any variety of ethnicity in the region changed the society’s culture?
The large Asian presence has undoubtedly had an effect on TurtleShroom. Spicier foods are becoming more popular, education has become more efficient and far more brutally rigorous, and support for corporal punishment has evolved from judicial paddling for minor crimes to outright caning.

Asiastic ideals like Ohankism and Shutai (also known as "Juche"), adapted to fit the religious and cultural norms of TurtleShroom, have tremendously altered the national political landscape and have injected diverse, foreign ideals and aspirations into the country, as well as new religions, two of which (Yue Shrine and Taiping Christendom) have taken the irreligious and non-practicing creatures in TurtleShroom by storm. Backsliding, non-committed "Christians", as well as Agnostics and the apathetic, have flocked to these in droves.

The Tsao influx of Asians has lead to dramatic military upgrades, overhauls,a nd reworkings of longstanding doctrine and technology. The military is one of the few things in TS that is willing to change. After Comrade Commissar fell, the Tsao military and lower echelons of government, plus the Tsao peasantry, fled to TurtleShroom and were incorporated into the military, leading to a massive technological revolution. (Think of it as the TS equivalent to Operation Paperclip.)
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:51 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part Two

II. Questions of Time.

How far back does this society’s written history go?
That depends. Consistent, detailed records of history date back to the 1200s AD, written by the Mongoloid humans who invaded and enslaved the native non-humans. After the last Mongoloid humans died off in the mid-1500s AD, the newly freed non-humans continued documenting history in the same Mongolian script, having been assimilated by three hundred years of Mongoloid culture.

Before the first humans arrived in the thirteenth century, the loose, famalial turtle tribes and the highly structured mushroom tribes both maintained records of oral history.

Mushlish was (and is, for the holdouts) the ancient, shared language of the sentient mushroom tribes, and had no alphabet until the Mongoloids invaded. Its written form was pictoral and difficult to translate, even by modern speakers of Mushlish. To replace the pictograms, Mongol scholars created a written alphabet based off of their own for Mushlish. Mushlish was a tone-based language that mostly involved different pitches and speeds of the sounds "aww" and "ahh", arranged differently to communicate different themes. The Mongoloids attempted to force the Mongolian language on them, but they relented and enacted a policy of bilingualism after the mushrooms became to upptity. However, the mushrooms enthusiastically embraced the new Mushlish alphabet, which allowed literacy in Mushlish to finally go beyond the scribes that took years to master the pictograms.

Meanwhile, the sentient turtles communicated mainly through the normal sounds of a non-sentient turtle, such as hisses, grunts, scoffs, and nonverbal communication. Unlike the mushrooms, they did not have a true, formal language until the Mongoloids forced Mongolian on them.

How far back do its people believe it goes?
Evidence of sentient turtle and sentient mushroom civilizations date back at least three to five thousand years. Humanity's presence dates back to the thirteenth century. It is unknown where the sentient turtles and mushrooms came from, and how they came to be.

How was this society founded? Who founded it and under what circumstances?
The modern state of TurtleShroom was founded in 1796 AD, by a monk named Jones Found. Jones Found united the turtle and mushroom Khanates (themselves only independent from Mongoloid slavery since the mid-sixteenth century) with the Russian and English Missionaries that settled in the northwest part of central TurtleShroom.

What were the chief powers in the time when this society was founded?
When Jones Found arrived at the end of the eighteenth century, the human Missionary colony (a colonial holding of the Russian Crown used to exile Protestant heretics, though under their control in name only) was surrounded on all sides by the Pawleed and Myrtled Khanates (also referred to as Hordes).

The Pawleed Horde occupied the swamplands and the southern fringes of the rainforest, while the Myrtled Horde occupied the deserts and upper rainforest. The Missionaries controlled the area that would become Jonesboro, the nation's capital, as well as various outposts in the Khanates.

If it originated far away from here, how did it get here?
The first humans in TurtleShroom were the Mongoloids, arriving in the early 1200s AD by land, from the east. They enslaved the native non-human populations and assimilated them into Mongolian culture. The turtles in the north were the first to be subjugated, and then a subordinate clan broke from the Mongoloid state and formed their own Khanate by subjugating the mushrooms to the south, where they converted to the endemic mushroom religion that worshipped the gunpowder-based artillery (crude cannons similar to Chinese weaponized fireworks) used by foreign, Cyzarri (anthromorphic lizard) raiders.
In the 1550s AD, a combination of disease and outnumbering allowed both non-human groups to rise up and slaughter the remaining Mongoloids. The two species then formed their own respective Khanates structured according to their ancient hegemonies (centralized mushrooms, and decentralized, clan-based turtles), borrowing heavilly from the Mongoloids.

In 1605 AD, the second wave of humans arrived. These were primarily Protestant Russians (later joined by a significant amount of Englishmen) who were deported by Tsar False Dmitry I (also known by the moniker, "Weird Guy") in order to protect them from vengeful Orthodox mobs. The Catholics and Protestants retained as soldiers by said Tsar were seen as occupying forces of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and a conspiracy to weaken and ultimately unite the Russian Orthodox Church with the Catholic Church, as well as forcing Russia into a Personal Union with Poland.

These humans landed off the coast of what would become known as the Asian Coalition. They travelled deep into modern TurtleShroom, through the deserts until they reached the jungles, where they gathered food and water to sustain themselves. These Missionaries zealously spread the Gospel throughout the Khanates and won conversions on a truly massive scale. Ultimately, these Protestants adopted the Baptist denomination, taken from the English minority that joined the Russians when their ship docked in England for supplies. Orthodox Russians would later come to TurtleShroom as well, especially after Tsar Peter forcibly reorganized (and wrecked) the Russian Orthodox Church.

What is the worst disaster they believe they've faced?
TurtleShroom considers its worst disaster to be the Necrontyr Invasion that succeeded the Dark Harvest. The Dark Harvest was a scheme cooked up by a minority in power to butcher the nation's one million sentient pony refugees and convert them into horsemeat to be used as food. The nation of Urmanian (which ultimately collapsed a few years later) tricked the Future Tech aliens of the C'Tan into invading TurtleShroom, on the false pretense that TurtleShroom engaged in slavery (TurtleShroom was in fact slave-free since the 1550s AD.

This lead to the invasion, which TurtleShroom fought using attrition, guerilla warfare, and Mongoloid tactics to force the C'Tan into a stalemate, after which TurtleShroom entered into a highly favorable, conditional surrender. The C'Tan invaded from the west, through the jungles, attempting to capture Jonesboro, which is TurtleShroom's capital.

What in their past makes them feel ashamed?
Much of the population is ashamed of the Dark Harvest because of the invasion it caused and the stain it left on its nation. Some of those ashamed are ashamed because they wanted to kill a sentient being (the ponies).

What in their past makes them proud?
The fact that they successfully atrophied the C'Tani Future Tech alien invasion into a favorable surrender was, and is by far, the greatest pride of the nation and is deemed the very definition of its spirit. It is likened to the movie "Independece Day". TurtleShroomers are also fiercely proud of their religious freedom, elections, and heritage.

What are they afraid of happening again?
The greatest fear in TurtleShroom is that sentient ponies will return to the country in droves. In fact, most of the collective fears in the TS conciousness and the nation's defense doctrines reovlve around ensuring the Dark Harvest would never repeat itself.

What are they hoping will happen? Do they think it likely?
Right now, TurtleShroom is in a "perfect storm" in which the judiciary (average age exceeding the upper eighties to nineties) started all succumbing to old age, clogging the court system and breaking down the equally aged government. To add to that, TurtleShroomers are also dealing with a massive urban uprising lead by Marxist radicals, who use truck system (company store) employees angry with their life as pawns to bring down the lazziez-faire capitalist economy of the nation.

How strongly are people attached or connected to their heritage?
TurtleShroom possesses the culture, religion, and values of the Southeastern USA- specifically through an influx of Confederate asylum seekers and people fleeing after the Union victory, as well as CSA investment in TS during the early twentieth century -and the political and religious stratification of Tsarist Russia.

TurtleShroomers, though zealous in their urge for elections, elect people who promise the status quo. They expect their government to be efficient and out of their way, but they will flip if the government tries to make changes.
Like the Russians of old, TurtleShroomers crave strongmen. TurtleShroomers are conditioned to be followers and servants, sacrificial to themselves for the betterment of others. Humility is drilled into them from cradle to grave, so any TurtleShroomer with enough willpower to break that mentality will immediately find himself in command of the country.


This is begrudgedly acknowledged by political scholars and the informed electorate as a whole, but no one sees anything wrong with it, and balk at other, more leftist nations wanting to "democratize" a nation that already has free and fair elections, simply because its population constantly votes in the strongmen that promise the status quo.

TurtleShroomers do not consider themselves to be tied Russians, nor do they seem themselves as Slavic- although genetically, the white humans are -and have little cultural ties to Russia outside of their food and holidays. This said, though, they possess extensive political similarities (see above) that often cozies TurtleShroom to Russian nations more than it does to USA-esque nations.

Some TurtleShroomers become Gopniks and try to mirror a squatted Slavic lifestyle (though normally done completely sober due to Prohibition), and others want to be "more Russian" in political and cultural senses of the word because of the rapid shift of TurtleShroom's other cultural ancestor, the CSA (now controlled by the USA, of course).

What do they assume the future will hold?
Terror. As listed two questions above, TurtleShroom is on the brink of civil war and dealing with Marxist rioters, and its governmental ranks are literally dying off to age. All TurtleShroomian forecasters and scholars feel that a civil war is iminent.

How has this society changed? Do its current members realize this?
The breakdown of the TurtleShroomian government due to its employees dying off, coupled with the total destruction of the legislature and a setup of the provisional government post-Dark Harvest had lead to a dramatic upheavel of the TurtleShroomian state. The past four years, from the beginning of the Dark Harvest to the present riots and military coup d'etat meant to quash them, have been the first time in TurtleShroom's history that the nation's stability and harmony was interrupted. Every flaw in TurtleShroomian society and government finally came back to haunt them at once.

Who in the past is the greatest hero? The worst villain?
TurtleShroomers, looking for a scapegoat, still lay blame on sentient ponies for being in the country in the first place. Ironically, the million horses present were Christian asylum seekers. They came to TS from pony nations that hated their love for a human religion and persecuted them. They chose TurtleShroom because of her international reputation for protecting and loving Christians.

Do people think the present better or worse than the past? Until 2012 AD, everyone said it was better. After the Dark Harvest, increasing numbers say that things are far worse.

Do people believe the future will be better or worse than the present or past? Far worse. See above.
Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:50 pm
Forum: Factbooks and National Information
Topic: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet
Replies: 40
Views: 1722

TurtleShroom World Factbook Part One

I. Questions of Place.

Describe the geography of where your society calls home.
TurtleShroom is divided into four major biomes: the desert in the north, the rainforest/jungles in the middle of the nation, and the swamplands in the south. Grasslands dot the transitionary areas between jungle and swamp, and make up much of the far southeast of the country.

Describe the climate your society deals with. How severe are their seasons?
TurtleShroom is a tropical nation. It can get very cold during desert nights, but otherwise, the temperature rarely drops below eighty degrees. Humidity is atrocious. Although TS uses the Gregorian calandar and marks the seasons accordingly, there are really only two seasons in TS: the Wet Season and the Dry Season.

What kinds of natural disasters has this society gotten used to?
Flash flooding is a particular nuisance, and extremely rarely, an isolated tornado shows up.

What importance (spiritual or cultural) do people ascribe to the geography? N/A

How do people feel about local landscapes being altered or used for a purpose other than what is traditional?
TurtleShroomers do not like the rainforest to be logged unless new trees are placed in its place. The rainforest is a huge moneymaker for the country and holds significant benefits and a deep meaning to the non-human population.

What are the most commonly-grown foods? Rice, vegetables, fruits, tea, corn, and more.

What are the most commonly-eaten meats? Beef, chicken, crawfish, and pork.

What foods are considered exotic or expensive?
Yak (expensive), wheat (exotic but a cheap import, mainly found in fast food), whale (exotic and expensive), fish of all kinds (TS is landlocked)

What forms of alcohol are common? Rare? TurtleShroom enforces a Prohibition on alcohol. However, the most common forms of alcohol are moonshine-whiskey and vodka.

Is there usually enough food and water for the population? Yes. Starvation is unheard of in the country.

What is this place's most abundant resource? Oil and uranium.

What is its most valuable resource?
Gold, sapphires, oil, and uranium (in terms of export sales, the latter two are as cheap as dirt domestically, TS does not usually export its gold)

What resource is it most lacking? Iron and wheat

How do people travel from one place to another? Train, bus, on foot (in that order), the rich use cars and flights are used to leave the country

Are the borders secure? In what way? Yes. TurtleShroom's borders are constantly patrolled.

How many people live here? One billion five hundred million (approximate), half of the population is non-human.

Where in this place do they congregate? The densest part of the country is in the cities, but they are a very small minority. TurtleShroom is an agrarian state with a rural makeup. Most hamlets and towns hold less than five thousand souls and much of the land remains as scattered farmlands.

What part of this place do they avoid? Why? TurtleShroomers stay away from the northeast of the country. This land borders the area ceded to the C'Tan and is known to harbor rebels leftover from the Dark Harvest, with a thirst for vengeance against both TurtleShroom and the C'Tan. The C'Tan/TurtleShroomian border is sealed off by a giant wall.

What are the most common domesticated animals here? And what are they domesticated for? Mules, donkeys, and Nangnangs

What are the most common wild animals? How are wild animals treated? Nangnangs, parrots, mosquitoes, and small (non-sentient) reptiles, as well as various rodents, incests, mammals, and so on.

Which animals are likely to be pets? Which ones won't be? Cats. Pet dogs are essentially unheard of.

What are the most common domesticated plants here? And what are they used for? Rice, lettuce, potatoes, cotton, spinach, and spices, tea, and coffee are abundant. Coffee and the especially spicy spices are almost universally exportedm and is rarely, if ever, consumed within the country.

What are the most common wild plants here? What are they used for? Being part jungle and part swamp, TurtleShroom is home to an abundance of diverse flora of all kinds, ranging from trees to grasses to bushes and shrubs, to vines, and much more.


Return to: Extensive World-Building Question Sheet


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