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Wizards v. Muggles Megathread

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Xiph0, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. froper98

    froper98 Squib

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    this is something to think about, would wards stop a nucleur blast. if Hogwarts was hit with a nucleur missile would it survive???
     
  2. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast Prestige DLP Supporter

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    It's been discussed before, though I'm not sure if it has in this thread.

    There are, I believe, two possible direct answers to the question, plus one indirect answer.

    The two direct answers depend on how you characterise magic.

    Direct answer 1

    If you characterise magic as part of a unitary system of rules governing the universe (i.e. magic is a part of the same natural world as the rules of physics, it's just unknown how they fit together), then magic would be some form of energy. Since wizards definitely have a way to contest the nuclear blast (i.e. shield charms), the question basically comes down to whether or not wizards have access to significant enough amounts of energy to make a powerful enough shield charm to counteract a nuclear explosion.

    The answer to this is surely "yes", since we have seen wizards convert their "magical energy" into large amounts of matter without any sign of difficulty or effort, which takes significantly more energy than the largest nuclear bombs.

    Direct answer 2

    This is my preferred answer as it is more canonical and avoids certain absurdities.

    If you characterise magic as an essentially supernatural force, entirely separate from the "regular" workings of nature, then the question of energy doesn't come into it. Energy is part of physical law, not magical law. What magic is and isn't capable of is determined by magical law. According to JKR, magic is generally able to overcome "mundane nature" - it takes magic to contest magic.

    The question basically comes down to whether there is anything about a nuclear explosion that is magically significant. On the face of it, heat, kinetic force and radiation aren't really things that would trouble wizards: we have seen wizards master the first two with casual ease. There's no reason to think radiation would be any different.

    The one problem for wizards would presumably be the size of the explosion. This is not a matter of the amount of energy in the explosion but rather the fact that it occupies a large amount of space. As Snape says in OotP, time and space matter in magic - that is, they are important factors in magical law. Though we have seen rare items of large scale magic, generally speaking wizards' magic is largely contained to their immediate surroundings. It seems doubtful that a wizard would be able to magic away an entire nuclear blast simply because they can't cast a spell on a city-sized area at once. But this of course does not mean that wizards cannot create pockets of safety within the blast radius as far as the reach of their magic does extend (or as far as there are pre-existing spells in place).

    Indirect answer


    The indirect answer is to reject the scenario. There's simply no way that Muggles could target a magically concealed area in the first place, unless they had the help of a wizard. But as is common ground in these discussions, the question of "Muggles vs wizards" is considered as a hypothetical war that is essentially a contest of technology vs magic. Once you get into the nitty-gritty of how an actual war would go down, you run into two problems: a) the magical government already monitors and controls the Muggle one, so no war would even get off the ground and b) even if it did, as soon as you put some wizards on the Muggle side, it's no longer Muggles vs Wizards, it's wizards vs wizards.
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2017
  3. arkkitehti

    arkkitehti Groundskeeper

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    The biggest advantage of weapons against magic is speed and range. A wizard cannot protect himself against something he doesn't see coming, no matter if it's a spell or bullet. And bullets have far superior range to spells (at least from what we see in canon).

    So even though wizards _can_ protect themselves from anything, there are practical limitations. Canonically (or by "word of god", whatever) we know that you can detect people hiding under invisibility cloaks with a simple spell, but that doesn't make invisibility cloaks useless.

    I guess my point is that muggle technology is not useless against magic, even if there are magical counters against everything.
     
  4. Aekiel

    Aekiel Angle of Mispeling Prestige DLP Supporter

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    I give you the shield hat.
     
  5. vlad

    vlad Seventh Year Prestige

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    Accio, books about defending oneself from bullets to bombs.

    I have no problem imagining a gun or a missile could take out a wizard. But wizards don't lose the war just because they take 0.1% casualties.

    If wizards ever consider muggles as an enemy, by default, then it's curtains for muggles. For reasons that have been gone over at length.
     
  6. Mal'sSerenity

    Mal'sSerenity First Year

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    Wizard Snipers

    Am I the only one thinking that if wizards ever got a hold of and learned to use muggle technology and weaponry, that they would make terrifying snipers. Just imagine it. Snipers that can perfectly conceal the muzzle flash and the sound of the gunshot. The muggles would have no way of telling which direction they are being sniped at. Even if they take proper cover before they are all killed, the wizard sniper could just apparate to a position where they can resume shooting. The wizards could disillusion themselves and set detection spells in their surroundings to alert them if the muggles manage to locate their position and either ambush them or apparate to safety then resume what they were doing. A single half-competent wizard could easily take out an entire muggle squad or platoon without any real danger to themselves, and by turning the muggles own weapons against them nonetheless while the muggles cannot do the same.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  7. TheWiseTomato

    TheWiseTomato Tactical Tomato DLP Supporter

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    I heard a funny joke today.

    What do you call a wizard with a gun?

    A squib.
     
  8. Mal'sSerenity

    Mal'sSerenity First Year

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    Well in my defense I was just trying to point out that wizards could potentially use muggle weapons better than muggles themselves while muggles can't really use any magical devices since they seem to require some magic on the part of the user, though I could be getting cannon and fanon mixed. I've been reading a lot of fanfiction lately and it has been a while since I last read the actual books. Heck wizards could probably make up a magical equivalent to a sniper rifle or missile that works much better than a non magical one. I do wonder what kind of magical technology wizards could invent if they put their minds to it beyond what we have seen in cannon.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  9. vlad

    vlad Seventh Year Prestige

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    Sure but...

    If the wizard can become invisible, teleport, maintain perfect silence, then the only question remaining is:

    Why does he need a sniper rifle?

    He could just as easily take out a squad of muggles by summoning them or banishing them into a brick wall, levitating them to a great height then dropping them, transfiguring them into anything, stunning them and leaving them to dehydrate, use a switching spell with an object that's location would kill them, cast the imperious curse and then have them turn their guns on their comrades, or use the killing curse.

    And that's not getting into fanon style extremely specific dark spells that people loved to write about in 2010. The ol' lung decompressor hex or the bone marrow rotting curse, etc. etc.

    There is no mundane weapon in existence that trumps magic in HP-verse. That's not to say that, in the right circumstances, the mundane couldn't kill a given wizard. But once recognized it would be immediately countered, and retaliation would be twice as hard.
     
  10. Mal'sSerenity

    Mal'sSerenity First Year

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    Okay fine, you have a point. I concede defeat about wizard snipers. On the other hand, what do you think about possible advances in magical technology given what we have seen from canon?
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  11. TheWiseTomato

    TheWiseTomato Tactical Tomato DLP Supporter

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    Well, yeah. Floating city states at war with each other while the Muggles pray their shadows never darken their skies is always rad.
     
  12. Mal'sSerenity

    Mal'sSerenity First Year

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    Or better yet, floating fortresses with massive cannons that shoot twenty mile long swaths of fiendfyre at their hapless muggle enemies, while dragon riders swoop down with scepters that fire overpowered blasting curses capable of blowing up large buildings at machine gun rates. I don't whether something like that can be done with HP magic but it is still cool to think about.

    On a more realistic note, wizards could just imperio muggle government and military leaders into nuking each other while hiding out in magically concealed areas that muggles couldn't target. Or they could just include " don't target such and such places that we want to keep" in their imperious induced instructions. As for whatever environmental disasters would come from having a large chunk of the world nuked, surely there are some enchantments that can be used to deal with them. And if not, wizards could find a way to create some before making the muggles nuke each other.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  13. ScottPress

    ScottPress The Horny Sovereign Prestige

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    Who needs nukes tho?

    Seriously, if you have magic, you can create a big rock and drop it from a sufficiently high elevation. Environment-friendly nuke. None of the fallout, all of the boom power.
     
  14. vlad

    vlad Seventh Year Prestige

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    Step 1: Buy soem rocks
    Step 2: Wingardium Leviosa
    Step 3: Rocks fall, everyone dies
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017
  15. Caledfwlch

    Caledfwlch Sixth Year DLP Supporter

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    We know that the British Ministry of Magic has a line of communication with its muggle counterpart, and that they discuss matters like the Triwizard tournament and the breakout of Azkaban.

    I've always wondered if (and I realize this is never mentioned in the books) the Prime Minister is granted protections or a small guard by the MoM in order to prevent magical influence that could destabilize the government or lead to a large amount of destruction.
     
  16. Aekiel

    Aekiel Angle of Mispeling Prestige DLP Supporter

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    He did have Kingsley Shacklebolt stationed in Downing Street for a while, but in peacetime I'd assume not.
     
  17. TheWiseTomato

    TheWiseTomato Tactical Tomato DLP Supporter

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    A determined Muggleborn could likely take over a country if that were the case.
     
  18. Aekiel

    Aekiel Angle of Mispeling Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Nah, they probably keep tabs on things, but if a wizard were willing to use the Imperius Curse on the Prime Minister they could probably do a great deal of damage before it was noticed. Even wizards have trouble spotting that one.
     
  19. Mal'sSerenity

    Mal'sSerenity First Year

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    If the wizard community as a whole were to decide to take out the muggles, the muggle leaders wouldn't have a wizard protection detail any more.

    ---------- Post automerged at 05:54 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:49 PM ----------

    Yeah, that would be a better option.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017
  20. Rupabose9

    Rupabose9 Muggle

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    It seems to me that the Ministry of Magic hold their Muggle counterpart to be entirely inferior and inept, and Fudge regularly condescends to the Muggle PM. However, the Muggle PM--in real life, and I assume in the HP world as well--is obviously a lot more competent. I think, given an actual background into how magic and the magical system of government works, the Muggles would be able to destroy the wizarding "world." I think that's actually a large part of why perhaps an earlier Minister of Magic chose not to give out dossiers or something explaining magic to the Muggle PM.

    Also, "Minister of Magic" makes it sound like the Magical world's government is a department under the Muggle government--like you have the Minister of Education or something. And perhaps the Minister of Magic is required to report to the Muggle PM b/c he is under the Muggle PM?

    I don't know but it always struck me as a little odd.

    Also, it seems that Kingsley is only there b/c of the Voldemort threat and the current heightened risk of imperious. Although, given that the royal family has been the same since before the Statute of Secrecy (1682 or some such?), I would imagine that the position of Court Wizard or something of the sort exists. In fact, I really like the idea I've heard in some fanfics that the Royal Family are a family of squibs or witches and wizards trained outside of the normal system. It would make sense for knowledge of the wizarding world to at least be part of the Royal Family's history since the Hanovers came to England before the Statute of Secrecy.

    But also, about the bullets v. Protego thing--In the HP cannon, it seemed that a lot of wizards had trouble with simple defensive spells, especially in doing them quickly and efficiently. If most wizards are like the DA students before Harry, or some of the weaker Death Eaters--after all, when do they need Protego in daily life?--then it would be quite difficult to use Protego to endure an onslaught of gunfire.
    Additionally, bullets move quite quickly. How would the wizard even know a bullet was coming quickly enough to shield against it? If the Muggles found out about the Magical world, and decided to destroy it, they would do so quite successfully. Especially given the complete lack of knowledge of most wizards about the Muggles and the contempt they hold the Muggles in. Most wizards wouldn't even believe the technology of warfare the Muggles have achieved until quite a few had been killed by it. It would be a rout. At least, in my opinion.