Hello friend!   If you've read the world description and are wondering what on earth you have found here, I have a little quickstart guide for you that will give you the most important infos in a nutshell. I'll link relevant articles for additional info in the text and at the bottom of the article, so you can go and venture further if you find yourself intrigued.   I won't start off with a long lecture of historical events that led to the state the world of the Hummelverse is in - you can check out a list of the significant history further down on this page if that's your thing. Instead, let's talk about the basics and make our way to understanding what on Earth is going on in this Hummelverse from there.  

So about those talking tanks ...

Sky and Arty

Yep, they're a thing. Tanks are the "ruling species" in this setting.

When you think about talking vehicles, you're probably thinking Disney's Cars, or Thomas the Tank Engine. But what you're looking at is more like low-tech Transformers without the transforming and without the alien part.   Tanks, planes, ships, some other vehicles, and even factories are sentient in the Hummelverse. Their sentience is driven by AI cores, basically "computer brains" that were invented by humans - before they went extinct.  

Wait, humans? Extinct? Explain.

The Falkendorf Team cover

You read that right. The humans are gone.

Why? They died. All of them. Or at least all we know about. It's been 100 years since the first apocalypse, and all that's left of the humans by now is their old cities - now crumbling - and some of their culture and technology that lived on inside the machines' minds. The Earth at large has become a feral wilderness, roamed by animals and the AIs that the humans left behind after World War III.   New machines are built by the autonomous factories, of which no one knows how they operate or what their agenda is. Rumor has it that there used to be a way to "talk" to them and command them, but would someone claim to be able to, they'd be called a liar and madman.  

The first apocalypse ...?

Sulfur cover

There were two.

The first apocalypse happened during the Cold War, in 1983. When the humans were still around. A maneuver escalated and nuclear bombs were launched. They blew up vital locations in the US and the Soviet Union. What followed was a mass extinction caused by war, famine, diseases, ... you name it.   The war machines fought on even when their human masters died. After all, that's what they were programmed to do! They fought for about twenty years. In that time, new nations and leaders emerged. Unfortunately, they had learned nothing and caused a second apocalypse by digging up some old nuclear bombs that the humans left behind and using them against each other.   Now, with all that destruction, everyone panicked for real. They looted what they could get, turned against each other, killed their former comrades and leaders. The nations fell apart for good.  

And now it's all a wasteland.


Not at all, actually.

Earth has recovered really well from the atomic wars, in fact being more green now than it was before, probably. The no-man's-land is the home of the free teams - groups of vehicles that travel and fight together or hold small settlements. Then there's also clans, who hold territories and trade with or fight against each other. They own most of the infrastructure, ensuring the production of fuel and parts that the vehicles need to survive.  

But they're ... tanks. How do they do anything except shoot?

high five

I'm glad you ask. The answer is:

I'm serious. Machines in this setting have arms. They kinda look like tow cables with claws at the end. The average tank possesses four of them, and they can be used to lift or manipulate objects. (Or for fist fights.) Apart from that, the machines also have voiceboxes for talking - they can freely choose what their voice sounds like. Radios are used for long-distance or silent communication.   They don't really have eyes in the sense of those cartoon eyes you see on living machine art, or those badass Livastian robot eyes. They use their optical devices like viewports to see, which gives them a sort-of 360° view of their surroundings when they switch between the devices.   Vehicles consume fuel and other supplies like water, electricity, and oil like the ones in our world do.  

Where are you going? You promised history.

Right ... Let's do this.

In the Hummelverse, computers were developed much sooner. This led to the creation of the AI. A quick timeline of the events from the point of divergence (before which everything happened the same as on the real version of Earth), up to the first apocalypse:  
  • 1851: Charles Babbage presents a working prototype of his analytical engine.
  • 1899: Nikola Tesla invents the first computer.
  • 1939: Zuse and Aike develop Tesla's ideas further and invent a much smaller version of Tesla's computers.
  • 1941: During the second World War, artificial intelligence is used for warfare for the first time.
  • 1946: Germany loses the (elongated) war and is divided.
  • 1947: Russia takes interest in the AI technology and an arms race begins.
  • 1983: The Cold War escalates and atomic bombs devastate Europe and America.
  • Recommended Reading

    These articles contain more elaborate explanations on the things mentioned here, among other basic info.

    Cover image: by hydrothrax


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    Forgemaster Dimitris
    Dimitris Havlidis
    27 May, 2019 08:45

    I absolutely loved this - thank you Arty <3

    Join me, become a Sky Pirate in the world of Lyra!

    27 May, 2019 11:48

    Thank you, I'm glad you enjoy the article! :D

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    18 Mar, 2020 02:30

    Wrapping my head around this setting may tank some time, but it's definitely got my attention. :)

    18 Mar, 2020 07:16

    Thank you for following my world! And I saw that pun :'D Enjoy and explore!

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    28 Apr, 2020 17:36

    Arty, You blow me away with how you handled this, you have an imagination that I could only dream of having! Looking for more! :)

    29 Apr, 2020 08:45

    Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    29 Apr, 2020 17:16

    do you know what art program you use to make your drawings? Me just drawing them on paper, taking a picture and putting it on the article doesn't look all that good and shadows get in the way.

    29 Apr, 2020 19:14

    I use Paint Tool SAI2. It's not free but I've been using it for the past 10 years and I love it!

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    29 Apr, 2020 20:01

    Thanks! :)

    14 May, 2020 02:47

    There is literally nothing I like more than sentient vehicles. I am so excited to dive straight in to your world!!!

    14 May, 2020 06:34

    Aw yeah!! Welcome and enjoy your stay in the Hummelverse! :D If you have any questions or just wanna nerd out, feel free to message me on discord: arty#3461

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    22 Oct, 2020 16:41

    The premise is more than bizarre, but the presentation of such a premise is what sells me. I love the use of gifs, the custom art, the fantastic css theme, article layout & styling, and the humor.   There's something really funny surrounding the juxtaposition of a massive weapon of war carefully handling a smol critter.

    22 Oct, 2020 18:25

    You're welcome! :D

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    16 Feb, 2021 19:37

    Wow, I might be leaving a lot of comments of different articles, so please forgive me, but this is such a cool universe you've created! I was curious after seeing another of your articles so I came to check out the rest. It looks awesome so far!

    18 Feb, 2021 21:33

    No need to apologize! I love getting comments and I'm glad you enjoy my stuff! :)

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
    2 Dec, 2021 23:45

    I have trouble expressing how much I love the idea of noodly arms on tanks ^^ especially if sometimes they use them for fist fights

    3 Dec, 2021 12:18

    Seems to be one of the main "selling points" of my setting. I'm okay with this, because I love it too hahah :D

    Check out The Hummelverse, the world of AI tanks!
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