Obviously what triggers this reflection are the guns and gunpowder. It's the fact that you can apparently use some of those laws of physics that are usually ignored in Medieval or most ancient times fantasy.
They mainly introduced guns to further distinguish themselves from traditional fantasy settings (guns are only one part of the larger effort of course).
Before we start : I am aware we are still centuries away from Modern technology. I know the guns are still primitive and their use very specific.
Now this potentially opens the way for further technological improvement, and maybe the development of industrial societies in a few centuries.
The advent of modern warfare : Automatic riffles, sniper riffles, airplanes, drones, Thousands off nukes, radar, advanced logistics...
And overall, the prevalence of Modern societies over traditional societies.
That basically means that this authentic ''folkloric'' setting isn't endless, and that in a few centuries, even decade, it could completely die, and be replaced by a modern setting.
Obviously, pure traditional societies rely on magic to stay relevant , maybe even more viable in the face of potential technological revolutions. But only if magic and technology cannot coexist. Or else everyone will just adopt a mix of the 2 (see shadow run universe).
For example : arcanum played that pretty well. Magic and technology were both incompatible, and could not thrive in the same place. That allowed for a clear polarization between Modern, technological civilizations and traditional civilizations. The universe would shift periodically between classical fantasy era, and modern technological era.
I haven't followed this project closely enough, and don't feel like reading every comment Obsidian made on the universe (reddit, forums, update, interviews).
How would they intend to handle technological progress? What would limit it?
And if the laws of the universe allows technological progress : What would compete against it?
PS : Personally I don't like modern setting, I find ancient settings more appealing, at least when I'm escaping from reality (gaming, books...). Hence why I'm interested to see how it plays out.
Edited by Cursed_Beaver, 10 April 2013 - 12:19 PM.