Let me preface this discussion with a little terminology. I feel the need to have a tech level scale for the purposes of this discussion and the one used in the GURPS system is fairly good if not on a strict 1 to 10 scale. For reference, we are currently at the transition period between TL7 and TL8, Bronze Age is TL1, Iron Age is TL2, Mideval is TL3, Renaissance is TL 4, Industrial Revolution is TL 5, WW1 & WW2 are TL6, and TL 10 is the basic space opera tech level. Anyway that should give a feel for the basic tech level scale. The problem that GURPS ran into with some of the later books, like Steampunk, is that some settings have divergent tech levels, which are represented by adding additional numbers to the TL from which it diverged. For example, Steampunk is a general book that gives information on how to run games set in the worlds imagined in Victorian Literature. Thus the basic TL is 5, but things like Nemo's Nautilus and would be TL 5+1, meaning that it is as well developed as a TL 6 item but it uses a different technological basis than the default assumption, and things like H.G. Well's Time Machine would be on the order of TL 5+10, representing a very divergent time line indeed.
Ok now that that is out of the way, let's get this thing going.
What is the average level of technology over creation? I've given up waiting on White Wolf to answer the question with a book on mundane items. They don't generally print those, which was fine with the WoD line as you could look up any modern toy online. It was a bit worse with their historical settings, but you can generally get info about the kind of equipment they had at those times either online or from another RPG. I recommend GURPS Low Tech or ...And a Ten Foot Pole. Anyway, Exalted is a whole different ball game, as it is a totally new world, with a Tech level something like 1+9-7, because the essence manipulation abilities of the Exalted caused science and technology to totally diverge from our experience just after the stone age, reach amazing hights, then get blasted back to the iron age by the ursupation, fair folk invasion, and the great contagion. All this means that it is very difficult to know exactly what would be for sale in Nexus market and even more difficult to know exactly how to price things. Take printing for example. It would seem like even if moveable type didn't make it, printing would still be around in the Realm, Lookshy, Nexus, and a few other places. Does this mean that Nexus has book publishers who sell novels, technical books, and other such things? Does the Realm print copies of the Immaculate Texts?
I stuck this page up here because I'm curious as to what kinds of technology and mundane items people think should be freely avalible and would like to make a wiki project out of it if there are enough people who think I'm not insane.
Creation is huge. There should be room for cave-painting aboriginals and FFVII in there. No erason to have to posit some artifical average. - willows
This is what comes from posting somthing late at night. :(
It looks like this topic has been pretty much taken care of, at Thus_Spake_Zargrabowski/RealmTechnologicalLevels, although we could devote this site to figuring out ramifications. Honestly, I guess all I'm really looking for is some kind of consensus of what kind of stuff would show up in the Nexus market on an average day as well as some interesting non-artifact items as I rather doubt that WW will release a book of mundane items.
http://www.lensmen.net/wiki/exalted.pl?Thus_Spake_Zargrabowski/RealmTechnologicalLevels I recommend checking this out.
New to the Wiki, so be pleasant when I screw up the end tag. That or spot me an e-mail and help me fix the dang thing.
Tech level, as I use it, is hard to quantify in the Creation. You've got barbarians to the North who are rolling around with antlers and rocks hafted onto sticks, and you've got their leadership raiding barrows for First Age goodies. You've got cities that have raided and stolen as much as they can from the Realm, and while you're not about to see skycutters in every city, airships aren't that uncommon either.
In short, it comes down to what you think is appropriate. Yes, they'll be pottery, herbals, and the usual assortment of standard 'fantasy' goodies. Plows, agricultural goods, tools of all kinds--but mixed in you'll find weird pieces of glassine sundries. For the most part, you'll find what amounts to what we associate with a medieval tech base, but then you'll get the odd bit of Thaumaturgical frippery. Charms, alchemical goodies, plowshares that have been formed of a glassine substance at a hefty cost. The more funky and special, the more expensive. I use the usual Japanese RPG standard for my games--yes, you've got potions next to flintlocks at a ridiculous price. Moveable type? Perhaps in cities that have presses, but most folks aren't about to pay the prices that would be associated with moving books across large expanses of territory--the Guild just isn't in the business of carting books if folks won't pay for it. If they will pay for it, it had better be a damn useful book or scroll.
Libraries are nice for large cities, but they'll be filled with scrolls, tablets, as well as books. You've got a sliding scale of tech base, the further you get from the Realm. Or other sources of tech--such as caches found in tombs, or cities that have been uncovered. New cities are going to be limited--unless they are founded near a source of goodies--like a lost city. Tech, I assume, radiates from these points. Otherwise, you can assume an Iron Age standard, or less if folks don't have the resources to tap those veins, or have the wood to burn to turn forges. That can get thrown all to heck if you've got barbarians who have found a Thaumaturge who can turn out glassy bits of fun that are harder than iron, and require some sacrifice of Essence, to turn out approximates of First Age materials. Jakk Bey