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To The Great Beyond - Space Empires!

Discussion in 'Imperium OffTopicum' started by Daftpanzer, Sep 24, 2015.

  1. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    Due to real-life issues the update is postponed to Sunday 21st May (eek). Late orders or changes may still be accepted; please message me for details.

    -The Galaxy-

    About 50 million years ago, two spiral galaxies began to collide. From their initial wild embrace, many small fragments were flung into deep space, their planets bombarded with asteroids and comets in the process, triggering further evolution... We are one such bundle just a small bundle of stars and nebulae, set adrift on the deep.

    On a clear night, you may look up and see the beautiful galactic merger still happening in slow-motion, many thousands of light years away, with many millions of years left to play out. Astronomers say that in the far future, our stars will be pulled back into that great celestial dance. But who can wait that long? It is a vision that has beckoned your ancestors over generations, inviting them to dream of flying above the sky and into the stars themselves. And so, through the genius of your people, the age of Faster Than Light travel has now dawned.

    Yet, quite why so many other sentient races are now emerging at the same time, in our relatively tiny island in space, is something a mystery - oneof many mysteries that make up our existence...

    Aside from all this, there is deliberately no backstory to our small ‘galaxy’ - player races are assumed to be the first generation of sentient beings that have mastered Faster Than Light (FTL) travel, and history is yours to create. Whether the galaxy becomes united in pursuing the greater mysteries of existence, or delves into genocidal war and imperialism, or both, or somewhere in between, is up to players to decide.

    In this game you will be spending Eco Points (EP) as ‘money’, although it really represents the ability to of your civilization to harness creative and destructive energies - morale and motivation being a factor in this also.

    Players will control a faction made up of units and/or some sources of income, living in a galaxy made up of a hexagonal pieces that represent star systems, nebulas, black holes, or patches of empty space. Each hex can only have one star system (though it may be a binary or triple), and for the sake of sanity, there are only a few ‘interesting’ planets represented in any system. Planets are where most factions will get most of their income.

    To begin with, your faction is one race (or related species, or symbionts, etc :p) expanding from its original homeworld. But, bear in mind that factions could get a lot more complicated later on ;)

    The game has Stats, a Map, a Planet list/doc, and Updates from your friendly moderator, and Stories & Background written by players.

    Stats Overview

    Faction Traits: are essentially modifiers and bonuses that you can choose for your faction. An exhaustive list is listed further down this page...

    Economy (EP): is fuel for everything else, presented as banked EP + most recent income. EP builds colonies, ships, military, funds diplomatic and covert ops, and buys research points. Upkeep for your fleets, military is automatically deducted (just let your friendly GM know if you want to skip on any upkeep). Bonuses are also added in - from trade and technology, from having access to a wider range of resources (a benefit of expansion), and from having happy and motivated citizens.

    Freighters: shown as the amount of freighter ships you have vs the amount that is needed to keep your economy, production, and foreign trade ticking over nicely. Having a small surplus is good, but they do require a little upkeep. Freighters are somewhat abstracted - they can be assumed to be going back-and-forth between your various planets and trade routes throughout a turn, and are only shown on the map where they are doing special tasks; Freighters can be used to transport military forces (or fighter wings) for invasions, but are especially vulnerable to opposing forces. Freighters can also be sent to scrounge some EP from unclaimed planets and asteroid belts.

    Tech Level: your current tech level, followed by accumulated research points in brackets. Superior tech gives an advantage in combat, diplomacy, trade, espionage, and allows your ships to venture further into space (see Movement). Tech adds to your bonus income and also makes it easier to develop your worlds. EP converts to research points, but consistency pays - a sudden massive investment may waste a little EP, while you’ll get some extra research per turn from the average of recent tech spending. Gathering 10x your current tech level in research points will trigger a breakthrough to the next level. Note that you cannot normally go up by more than one Tech Level per turn, though some research points can be carried over.

    Strengths: these are tech fields or industries in which your faction does especially well, compared to others at a similar Tech Level. These may translate straight into trade and EP bonuses, or otherwise factor into combat and events. Every increase in Tech Level is a chance to specialise in a new area, but you can only specialise in a handful of fields at a time (otherwise they lose meaning).

    Upgrade Bill: as your tech level goes up, there’s a cost to upgrade your existing fleet and military. The bigger this bill gets, the more your forces will not get the full benefit of your current tech (don’t count on ships being able to move at full speed, etc).

    Repair Bill: if ships or infrastructure have been damaged, the cost to repair them will be listed here. Damaged units can still be given orders, but it is not guaranteed they will be able to move on the map (at least not full range), or fight effectively.

    Other Rules

    FYI: You don’t need to know all the mechanics and I’m happy for players to be ‘hands off’ and roleplay-ey as they like!

    Movement: all ships can move freely throughout your Zone of Supply during a turn (the coloured borders on the map), which by default extends one map hex outwards from every settlement you control. Outside this zone you run into a movement limit, which is equivalent to your Tech Level x number of map hexes per turn; if your Zone of Supply is broken into islands, you must move between them at this rate. Short-range fighters and ground forces need to be carried around on other ships.

    Note that every turn that ships spend outside of your zone of supply, they risk taking damage from attrition and accidents - a progressively greater risk, the more time is spent away from friendly space.

    Exploration: an unexplored star system has its name in brackets on the main map, and it may have an icon denoting that heavy elements (crystal icon) or organic molecules (tree icon) have been detected by telescopes. To find out more, you must send a fleet to the system. It will take at least a turn to survey the planets in detail (if any exist). You’ll then see a suitability rating in the planets sheet. The rating can be different for each race - the planet is scored on both environment and resources. Planets with a higher rating will be easier to colonise, and your colonies and garrisons will need less upkeep there. The range of highest : lowest ratings is also shown on the map next to the planet name.

    Technically, any ship can explore, but it can be a dangerous business, especially for clunky freighters and the like. But your specialist Explorer Fleets are guaranteed to survey a system in one turn, and are much less likely to take damage from accidents.

    Colonisation / Development: You can attempt to colonise or develop any planets that you know about on the map. Feel free to simply allocate some EP for ‘grow eco’ in general, with either a general plan to develop a few core systems or expand outwards with small outposts - players will not be punished for avoiding details. Note that you can also assign EP for auto-colonising systems that are being explored during the turn, if a good planet is found.

    The cost to increase a planet’s economy by +1/turn is a standard 3EP. The EP output of a planet is noted in big letters next to the planet on the map.

    However, there are several elements of risk:
    * Habitability Rating (see Exploration) brings more risk at lower levels - essential a dice roll that has to be on-or-under the rating to succeed.

    * If the planet’s total EP output is close to the planet’s Habitability Rating plus your Tech Level, then there’s an increasing chance of failure due to overcrowding / resource exhaustion, and you actually risk damaging the planet’s environment (certain Faction Traits may help). Most homeworld planets begin at or near this state. Note that on shared worlds, EP from all factions contributes to overcrowding, not just your own.

    * If the distance to the destination is more than one turn’s travel out from your Zone of Supply (see Movement), there’s an extra chance of failure on top of all that - increasing the further out you go.

    However, you can launch multiple attempts per turn, and each failure to colonise a particular planet will increase the odds for following attempts. The upside is that most failed rolls will return 1 or 2 EP to your bank at the end of the turn, assuming colonists and machinery can be salvaged.

    Migration: if you allow it, and you have the freighters available, then some of your EP value on overcrowded worlds can be sent to colony worlds each turn (representing population), though this does not necessarily add to your overall income. EP output cannot normally be moved away from worlds without overcrowding issues - you’ll need to have a good excuse for this (such as imminent alien invasion) or have the kind of citizens that allow themselves to be evicted at will (collectivists?).

    Terraforming / geo-engineering: this is an expensive option for long-term gain, to be discussed on a case-by-case basis. It could also be a way to squeeze rivals off of a planet. It is likely to cost between 8 and 20 EP, and increase the planet rating by +1 or +2 points for your species (not necessarily for others!). You need only have a fleet in orbit of the target planet to begin, though the process could take several turns. Any existing inhabitants can interfere with your efforts, so a troop presence may be needed.

    Unit Spawning: units cannot be given orders the same turn they are built! In addition, a planet must have EP output equal to the total EP value of all units being built there in a turn, or else the units have to be built at double the normal cost, or built over several turns. This building limit is doubled for your capital/homeworld, or any planet with a Space Station or Habitat in orbit; the latter two items ignore spawning rules themselves, as they are already expensive to build.

    Disbanding / Scrapping units: you’ll get a portion of the original EP back, somewhat randomly, but always at least 1/3 of the original cost and always at least 1EP.

    Combat: at the start of the game, nobody really knows how an interstellar war would work. It will take some experimentation to work things out! But in general: you can expect Combat Fleets to be able to bombard planets to damage the economy and ground defences, for which reason you may wish to build Defence Guns to fire back, while versatile Fighter Wings can disrupt enemy fleets and also assist in ground battles. Explorer / Scout Fleets may lack staying power, but can perform raids and provide early warning for other ships with their powerful sensors.

    Planets can of course be captured and held by sending in your ground military, or settlements may gradually be pounded into dust from orbit. Blockade tactics and attacks on freighters alone may be enough to play havoc with an enemy’s economy.

    Positioning of your fleets will also be important, as the fleet that arrives first to a battle will be able to recharge and ready itself for the enemy, while fleets going a long distance into battle will arrive with less time and energy to spend...

    Diplomacy - the benefits: players are of course free to devise any kind of treaties, mutual protection pacts, and alliances they like, however - in game terms there are three particular things that you can ‘give’ to another player (with or without receiving them in return):

    * Trade - opening to trade with a foreign power allows both sides to benefit from extra EP income, provided there are enough freighters to go around, and that their freighters can arrive at one of your planets or bases within one turn’s travel (maybe more, if the returns are high enough). If the trade is kept one-sided, then the side sending the freighters will tend to benefit more than the other. Trade may also bring exposure to cultural influences, crime, infiltrators and subversive ideas, for which reason you may want to limit it to a few 'treaty ports'.

    * Right of Passage - allow a foreign power to use your zone of supply just like their own. All of their ships (-specify if this includes military-) will be able to move freely and without limit throughout your space during the course of a turn. The foreign power will still pay upkeep for their own forces.

    * Research Access - allow a foreign power to learn your technology and science. If they are behind you in tech level, they need only half the usual amount of research points to advance a level, and can advance up to two tech levels per turn. If they are at the same tech level, they will share some spillover from any progress you make, regardless of who has most research overall.

    Spying, Influencing and Covert Ops: this is a matter of how much EP you are willing to spend, as well as what you want to do - in theory, nothing is off limits, provided you have actually have met and know a little about the other faction. It will also be relative to how much EP a rival is also spending on their spies / diplomats. Where signs of enemy agents have been seen, you’ll receive more info, and perhaps funding requests for counter-ops. We’ll handle all this via PM’s of course ;)

    Galactic Wonders / Special Projects: these are mainly about prestige and cultural value, but they can also bring in EP, military or tech bonuses. If you have an idea for a special project or wonder, we can discuss the cost via PM. Be aware that alongside an EP cost, you may be given targets to achieve, ie raise a planet to a certain EP / turn, reach a certain Tech Level, or something along those lines.

    Beyond the Rules: there are of course many things not mentioned above. Politics, culture, factional infighting, civil unrest, unique techs and ship designs, killer viruses, portals, super weapons, invasive space critters, etc, can all still feature in the game through other ways, and impact on your friendly GM’s decision-making process, even if hard rules don’t exist for then.

    Buildable Items - Units and Stations

    FYI: this is not a final list - I’m open to suggestions.

    Spoiler Buildable Items List :

    Freighter: 2EP ~ 0.25 EP upkeep 1 Cargo
    Freighters are vital to keep your economy running smoothly, keep colonists supplied and get the maximum EP income - see your Freighter stat. Surplus freighters can also gather a trickle of resources from asteroid belts and unclaimed planets. 1EP’s worth of civilians can also be transported per turn. They can also transport ground military forces and fighter wings, but are vulnerable to enemy fire en route. Even if freighters are armed, they will not stand much chance against enemy fleets.

    Troops: 2EP ~ 0.25 EP upkeep
    Standard ground military unit, composed of infantry (robot or organic) with accompanying dropships and artillery. They are used to take and hold planets against enemies, rebels and such like, and help maintain order during riots or in disaster zones. They require transport to other worlds. They can engage defence batteries on the ground and fire back against enemy fighter strikes (but not fleet bombardment). In certain circumstances, they could also be used for ship-to-ship boarding!

    Ground Armour: 4EP ~ 0.5 EP upkeep
    Powerful ground forces comprised of armoured vehicles and/or ‘mechs’, capable of rapid advance across open terrain. Armoured forces are resistant to small arms and casual bombardment, while they can carry a heavy punch themselves, and may even damage ships in low orbit. They have an intimidation factor against enemy ground troops, and can act as a shelter or transport for both friendly troops and civilians. However - they will struggle to flush out a determined enemy that has dug in to rugged terrain, in tunnels or barricaded in cities.

    Fighter Wing: 2EP ~ 0.25 EP upkeep
    Fighter Wings are versatile units that can operate in deep space or just above the surface of planets, attacking enemy ships and ground forces and providing close air support. In numbers and with the element of surprise they could be deadly to enemy fleets, however they can only perform ‘hit and run’ attacks so should not be relied on to destroy the enemy by themselves. They require a transport to travel between systems / map hexes.

    Defence Guns: 4EP ~ 0.5 EP upkeep
    Powerful, armoured defence guns that have the firepower of 1.5 combat fleets. They may be a mixture of orbital platforms and hardened surface bunkers. However they can not escape battle, nor can they be relocated to other worlds without dismantling. They are more vulnerable if enemy troops are able to attack at close range. Defence Guns may take time to build on colony worlds, or they can be rushed for double the normal cost (see Unit Spawning).

    Fleet: 4EP* ~1EP upkeep
    A ‘fleet’ is perhaps made of just a single ship, or perhaps a flotilla of small vessels, or somewhere in-between. All fleets have some basic abilities in combat, repair, scanning, damage control, salvage and so on. But you have three main varieties to choose from - the precise makeup of these fleets is up to players to decide, as you can have anything feasible within your tech level (but you should let your friendly GM know at the time of building):

    * Explorer / Scout / Science Fleets (0.5 Cargo): are loaded with gear to survey new planets, and have superior sensors and scientific gizmos, and while being less likely to suffer accidents while exploring. They can also investigate anomalies or alien wrecks in-situ. In combat mode, they are good at scouting and raiding, and as an experimental weapons platform. However they lack the transport to carry a noticeable amount of troops, fighters or civilians by themselves.

    * Combat Fleets (1 Cargo): are specially designed for battle, and/or to intimidate. They specialise in dealing out and/or taking (or deflecting) damage, with stronger hulls and more room for weapons, power, and targeting apparatus. They can also have 1 cargo space, enough to carry a Fighter Wing or ground unit directly into battle, or even 1EP’s worth of refugees from a planet.

    * Cultural / Diplomatic Fleets (1 Cargo): are designed to impress and influence, being fitted with luxurious living spaces / biospheres, and can serve as meeting places for alien diplomats, a place for traders to forge new deals, and a way to show off your culture. In an emergency, these fleets can carry ground forces, fighters, or 1EP worth of civilians, but will lose their impressiveness while hosting such passengers. Needless to say, their combat abilities are minimal (if any).

    Bigger Ships?: Fleets (in all their varieties) can be built to larger and larger sizes, each requiring double the EP of the last: 8, 16, 32, 64 EP and so on. Each size is noted by bigger icons on the map, and may be considered to have 2.5x the firepower, armour, and toughness as last - plus double the cargo space, not to mention the intimidation / prestige factor. But they also make bigger targets, cost more to repair and upgrade, require double the upkeep, are less maneuverable, and will be more easily spotted.

    Space Station: 8EP ~1 EP upkeep 2 Cargo
    The main function is to extend your zone of supply (free movement) into surrounding map hexes, serving as an outpost where you don’t want a colony or cannot build one. It can be built anywhere within one turn’s move from your existing zone of supply. If a station sits on a trade route or asteroid belt, and/or can act as spillover from an overcrowded planet, then it may start to generate an EP income by itself. Defence Guns can be built and attached to a Space Station, each taking up a cargo slot. Otherwise they have few combat options, being matched by just one Standard Fleet, but they can take quite a beating, more likely to be captured or disabled than destroyed outright. Stations may be able to relocate once built, but this will cost a certain amount of EP.

    Habitat: 16EP ~1EP upkeep 4 Cargo
    Essentially a scaled-up Space Station, but with much more living space, with gardens and farming onboard (according to the tastes of the inhabitants). It can generate more EP than a Space Station, especially in the role of population spillover from a planet. Habitats are more genteel environments than space stations and will be good places to meet with alien diplomats. A station can be upgraded to a habitat by spending 8EP. Habitats will eventually fill up, at which point you'll be prompted to build more.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2017
  2. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    Special Traits / Modifiers

    An in-depth list created for the original ruleset. Each faction begins with two main traits, and more traits may be lost or added as things progress - if you have an idea for something not covered here, feel free to let me know!

    Traits may eventually be copied or spread between factions. Some traits won’t work too well together, but any combination is possible...

    Spoiler Faction Traits List :

    Watchers: it's in their nature to observe carefully and look for patterns, which may be a predatory or defensive instinct (or both). They have greater initiative in combat, as they will not be easily ambushed or taken by surprise. There are also advantages for gathering intelligence about their neighbours, performing covert ops, and reverse-engineering alien technology. With observant minds, there is also a bonus for science. Side effects: citizens that are not easily influenced; general paranoia.

    Warriors: simply love a good fight! They enjoy greater morale in wartime, and will be more aggressive, both in space and on the ground. Warrior tradition gives a subtle all-round boost for combat, especially at close quarters. Upkeep for military units will also be a little lower. Side effects: units may disobey orders to get into a fight; the whole society may suffer boredom and restlessness during peacetime.

    Hunters: likely to have evolved as ambush predators or pack hunters. The hunting instinct gives benefits for stealth, tactics and initiative in combat, particularly on home turf. Many hunting strategies will translate directly into warfare, and also a bonus for covert ops such as assassinations. They will love worlds with native fauna to hunt, where upkeep will cost less. Side effects: obsession with their ‘prey’ may see units deviate from a battle plan; food production may be more complicated.

    Survivalist: likely to have evolved in harsh environments with minimal resources, and may prefer a subterranean lifestyle. They will find it easier to colonise other worlds, and will require less upkeep and repair for units and colonies, all of which will also be more resilient to damage and disaster. They may have slightly greater morale, or at least, a kind of stoicism. However, as they likely never evolved tolerance of living in large crowds, their planets will run into overcrowding problems at an earlier stage, and be slightly more prone to rebellions and splinter factions. They may not be able to take full advantage of worlds that are very rich in resources.

    Brooders: have rapid reproduction, thanks to their biology, and/or cultural priorities. The surplus of manpower makes it somewhat easier to colonise other worlds, and reduces upkeep and repair costs, especially for ground troops. It may be the case that life is cheap, and losses will not be mourned for long, if at all. Planets are more likely to get free EP boosts from population growth, but also more likely to overload from pollution and overcrowding at an earlier stage, and be more prone to social unrest.

    Technologists: simply love gadgets and technology. They enjoy more free tech progress in any field, and can reverse-engineer alien technology with greater ease, along with being more likely to ‘hack' enemy systems. Upgrades will be cheaper, and morale will be buoyed by every tech breakthrough. Side effects: greater dependency on technology; likelihood of devastating lab accidents.

    have superior problem-solving abilities, and build things to last. Both ships and buildings will tend to be slightly more robust, and it will be somewhat easier to colonise other planets and to access their resources. Both repairs and upgrades will also be cheaper. However, there may be some over-engineering, resulting in higher upkeep costs.

    Philosophers: have found ways to quieten the anxiety, egotism and worry that may afflict many sentient beings. They have a way of seeing the universe that gives them a sense of peace, and purpose, that may transcend physical life. As a result they enjoy almost unbreakable morale, fewer social problems, and place less physical demands on the planets on which they live. However, since they tend to have less interest in material goods, this translates into an economic penalty - and they may also have less goods to trade with other factions, though they have greater cultural influence. Philosophers are also more likely to feel empathy with other races and factions, and with other life-forms in general.

    Hoarders: have a strong gathering and stockpiling instinct, preferring to keep far more resources than they need in the moment. As a result, their settlements will be more self-sufficient and resilient to disasters, blockades and the like. It's also likely they love to collect and catalogue all manner of trinkets and specimens, so there is a slight boost to research. They will also have more goods on hand to trade with other factions at all times. If there is a large bank of surplus EP, that will also be a morale boost. However, there may be a slight economic penalty for all this stockpiling, and the upkeep costs for ships and troops away from home will be greater than otherwise, though they will be less susceptible to accidents and attrition.

    Twitchers: have a higher metabolism and faster reactions than others. This gives a bonus for combat, both offensive and defensive, for all kinds of units, but most of all for ground troops and pilots of agile fighters. It also translates into agents that are harder to catch, being able to stay one step ahead of pursuers. Their greater activity also means a noticeable economic boost, but also higher upkeep costs. They may also have an appetite for action and adventure, otherwise becoming bored and restless.

    Culturalists: thrive on exchanging ideas and experiences. As a result they enjoy generally greater morale, much greater cultural influence, and their technology can benefit from absorbing good ideas from any source. Their settlements may also be more attractive to traders and travellers. Morale is more likely to be raised by meeting new species. However, such cultural openness leaves them more open to being influenced in turn, and to infiltration by foreign agents, and makes it harder to prevent intelligence leaks. They may have lower tolerances for wartime restrictions.

    Negotiators: have a keen ability to resolve disputes between factions. They may consider breaking an agreement to be the worst of sins. Thus their diplomats will be considerable more effective than otherwise, and there will also be benefits to trade. Any significant treaty with foreign powers will be a boost for morale. Internally, they will also suffer less from rebellions and unrest - all so long as they meet expectations to act honourably.

    Industrialists: have an affinity for giant machines and mass production, conquering nature by their will, and exploiting resources as fast as possible. They enjoy a significant economic bonus, and are more likely to gain random free development boosts on mineral-rich planets. They will also have more goods to trade with other factions. But they may be wasteful with raw materials, as well as creating more pollution than otherwise, meaning their colonies may peak at an earlier stage, and be more damaging to the biosphere.

    Traders: have evolved a keen sense of the relative Value of Things, meaning they can make considerably more profit from their exchanges with other factions, particularly if they can act as middle-persons. They also enjoy a noticeable economic boost at home. Their bartering skills also have some advantages for conducting diplomacy - and for making discreet deals with rogues and rebels. The downside is the greater potential for mercenary attitudes, with loyalties being bought by the highest bidder.

    Duelists: take things personally; in any field, it's all about personal honour and skill. Their ship crews and soldiers are more likely to become veterans and elites through experience, and their special agents and diplomats will be drawn from the best. They are also more likely to capture, rather than destroy enemy units. Their heroes will be widely celebrated, boosting morale and inspiring others, and mourned if lost. Side effects may include, on occasion: deaths of prominent leaders in honour duels, recklessness in battle, and minor losses of research or income due to infighting.

    Collectivists: live to serve the common good, perhaps to the point of having a ‘hive' mentality. As such they enjoy greatly reduced social problems, being able to endure greater hardships, even to the point of self-sacrifice; their colonies, ships and troops will all require less upkeep, and alien worlds may be slightly easier to colonise. Morale may not even be a factor for them. Incidentally, they are also better able to root out foreign agents. But their culture may be comparatively boring as a result; their population will not be as innovative, and as they have less interest in personal luxuries, trade may not be as profitable. They may also be more vulnerable to attacks on central authority, or whatever forms their ‘brains'.

    Organisers: a self-organising instinct permeates their society. This gives slightly lower upkeep costs for units and infrastructure, lower logistics needs, less pollution and social problems on developed worlds, and a significant advantage in military command and control - especially of large fleets and armies. The downside to all this is an obsessive streak and various quirks that may make their culture somewhat less appealing, and may stifle innovation. And while they can cope well with localised disasters, they may be demoralised by any major upheavals.

    Scavengers: have a talent for recycling and making use of what is. They can gain considerably more EP from salvaging shipwrecks and debris, and also more EP from mining asteroids and barren worlds. Not only are they better able to reverse-engineer foreign technology, they are more likely to capture enemy ships and units in a repairable state. Repair costs less, and units will also give back more of their original EP value when scrapped/disbanded. But while pollution is less of an issue on developed worlds, there is a slight economic penalty from colonies, as there is less focus on original production, and upgrade costs will be very much higher.

    Eccentrics: unpredictable oddballs, always looking to do things differently. This translates to more innovation and random tech breakthroughs, and also more dangerous mishaps. Foreign cultures will have fleeting influence on them, while their own culture may be more intriguing for outsiders. Foreign agents will have a hard time infiltrating their society, but likewise, it will be harder for their own agents to conform to foreign norms. In battle, the eccentrics are harder to predict, but may also struggle to coordinate their own forces on a large scale; individual ship captains may sometimes go off on adventures without warning. Morale will generally be higher than otherwise, though there is greater risk of splinter factions appearing.

    Materialists: live for the pleasures in life. They enjoy higher morale in general, a small bonus to their economy, and more luxury goods to trade. As such their culture may also be more appealing than otherwise. However, they have somewhat lower tolerances for hardship; alien worlds may be more difficult to settle, and morale will be more reliant on supplies and logistics getting through. They may also cause more problems through pollution and resource wastage.

    Gardeners: have an affinity for growing, taming and gathering, tending to work with nature rather than against it. They will find it easier to settle and develop worlds that are otherwise borderline. They will gain more from planets with native fauna or flora, including trade goods, and morale will be higher on those planets. Starvation is unlikely to be a factor wherever plants can grow. Side effects: a low tolerance for pollution and destruction of nature.

    Xenophobes: simply do not want to mix with outsiders, at least not without good reason. Foreign culture will have much less impact. Trade may also be restricted. Xenophobes will find it difficult to share any planets, or even entire star systems, with other factions, particularly those of other races - violence in this case may be uncontrollable. Their troops and ship crews will be all too eager to wage wars of extermination. However, they may also be more prone to forming splinter factions whenever internal differences arise. Note that foreign agents will have an especially hard time penetrating this society.

    Zealots: believe that their way is the best way, or indeed the only way, and aren't shy about saying so. While foreign culture has less impact, they are more active in spreading their own message. They enjoy greater military morale either in defence on their cause, or in aggressively spreading it to the stars beyond, and will make great efforts to convert captured units and conquered populations to join their ranks. Attacks by outsiders will only fuel this zeal. Side effects: dogmatic thinking means that tech progress is a little more difficult, and idealism may cloud the judgement of their leaders.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
  3. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    *this post is reserved for Space Hamsters*
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2017
  4. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2017
  5. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    What The Aliens Look Like:

    Original artwork by Daftpanzer ;)


    Spoiler Faction Stats :

    Tarnakkian Empire: reserved for Golden1Knight???
    Duelist Materialists; Tarnakki race only; prefers forested/mountainous, warm habitat
    Economy: 2 + 12 EP
    Freighters: 3 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (13)
    Strengths: small arms and hand weapons; biochemistry; cybernetics
    * The Tarnakki first had to defeat a rival sentient species on their home planet, comparatively lizard-like beings known as Killuri (now believed extinct, though alleged sightings remain), before fighting wars of unification amongst themselves. The current global Empire has passed from the hands of its legendary founder Zunnar Allakid through several royal houses to the current ruling dynasty, now headed by the young Emperor Varik. A large social divide persists, and some regions of Tarnakk have retained their wild character. Something of a cold war now exists with the mysterious Psilocybe, while first contact has now been made with the Flavian race.

    Psilocybe: Immaculate
    Watcher Hunters; Psilocybe race with a sizeable population of Lagomid followers; favours dense air, cold, mountainous habitat
    Economy: 2 + 15 EP
    Freighters: 4 / 3
    Tech Level: 2 (14)
    Strengths: biotechnology and genetic engineering; organic machines
    * With a unified, if loosely-knit society, this unique aerial race has expanded far across surrounding space, first encountering races at a lower level of technology; the stone-age Lagomids have been recruited as a workforce on planet Lagimae, while attention shifted to the influence atomic-era Rurricans - first contact with the Skitarii race has turned violent in the vicinity of the Rurrican homeworld. Beyond lie the Tarnakki, who may pose an additional threat to Psilocybe ambitions. A more benign first contact has now also been made with the Dscheri.

    Peaceful Union of Democratic Dscheran Isonomic Nations: NPC
    Philosopher Culturalists; Dscheri race only; prefers thick atmosphere, temperate, low gravity habitat
    Economy: 5 + 12 EP
    Freighters: 3 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (10)
    Strengths: megastructures
    * the Statue of Schadeuschklikiaschu, a massive monument to the founding Matriarch of modern Dscheri civilization, stands tall over a planet united and at peace. After decades of interstellar exploration without encountering any intelligent aliens, the Dscheri have now encountered the Psilocybe civilization for the first time. Though some are cautious, most Dscheri look forward to an age of peace and prosperity.

    Qui Existence: NPC
    Hunter Survivalists; Qui race only; prefers forested, warm habitat
    Economy: 2 + 4 EP
    Freighters: 1 / 1
    Tech Level: 2 (8)
    Repair Bill: 4 EP units, 2EP economy
    Strengths: megastructures; agriculture; ecology; hand weapons
    * The Qui exist in a variety of different castes and morphs, though all are essentially the same species. The Qui’Kho are a generalist form, not regarded as the very strongest, nor smartest, but their adaptability led to their traditional dominance. The Qui’Kho Empire arose from multiple world wars and revolutions, with a ‘Queen of all Queens’ at the heart. Peace did not last long however, as a brutal war for survival was forced upon them by the Jaar’ar Federation, with their fleet scattered and their homeworld of Schreikne-Quil now partly occupied by heavily-armed alien forces, with billions of deaths. While tens of thousands have fled the home system, and the Empire is effectively dead at this point, determined popular resistance is still keeping the homeworld from final defeat. The remnants of the old Empire have regrouped along egalitarian lines.

    Jaar'ar Federation: christos200
    Philosopher Collectivists; Jaar’ar race only; prefers temperate, forested, mountainous habitat
    Economy: 3 + 9 EP
    Freighters: 0 / 1!
    Tech Level: 2 (9)
    Repair Bill: 5 EP units, 4EP economy (occupied)
    Strengths: reinforced construction; missile weapons and artillery; ecology
    * A very young civilization that has seen rapid technological progress, and has embraced a philosophy of global peace and unity - albeit under the threat of military force from the Federation against any serious rivals. General Jin’s glorious campaign against rebel factions is still in living memory. The Jaar’ar homeworld, Zhang, retains vast tracts of largely-unspoilt wilderness. Under the leadership of Chancellor Yang Kang - recently restyled ‘Emperor Taizong’, the Federation has boldly launched into a full-scale, grinding war of conquest with the frightening race of aliens known as the Qui - and the full scale of the bodycount and the horror this unleashed is beginning to filter back to Zhang. Meanwhile, first contact has been made with explorers from the Torrhennian Confederacy.

    Torrhennian Confederacy: filli_noctus
    Engineer Scavengers; Kowlint race with few Kul’hari visitors; prefers temperate mountainous habitat
    Economy: 4 + 14 + 4 (Kul’hari) EP
    Freighters: 3 / 3
    Tech Level: 2 (15)
    Repair Bill: 2EP (Perrel)
    Strengths: orbital construction, fleet logistics; geo-engineering
    * Torrhenn is a world that has seen a double tragedy. The first sentient race to emerge on the planet, known as the Vorn, apparently wiped itself out in a bio-chemical apocalypse. Millennia later, the Kowlint race emerged as their successors, borrowing technology from Vorn artefacts at a rate faster than social and political systems could accommodate. The result was a devastating nuclear war - a second apocalypse. However, the majority of Kowlint survived, and united their efforts in peace and rebuilding, while venturing out beyond the planet for the first time. While the environment of Torrhenn has now been largely restored, and Vorn artefacts are still being uncovered, interstellar colonisation has commenced. The starfarers have established trade with the enigmatic Kul'hari race, and have made contact with the Jaar’ar Federation. A large exploration vessel from the Hurrunn Agreement, carrying some Tacci onboard, has now also arrived at Torrhenn, potentially opening Kowlint horizons far to the galactic east.

    Kul'hari Collection: Belgarion95
    Eccentric Hoarders; Kul’hari race with few Kowlint visitors; prefers dense air, high-gravity, mineral-rich habitat
    Economy: 2 + 20 + 2 (Torhennian) EP
    Freighters: 3 / 5!
    Tech Level: 2 (16)
    Strengths: biotechnology and cybernetics; reinforced structures
    * The Kul’hari are biological and technological oddities, being largely silicon-based and crystalline in nature, living in an atmosphere that would not only suffocate, but be toxic to most other complex life in the galaxy. Upon death, they believe themselves able to transfer much of their consciousness into a group-mind called the Collection, and apparently it is this entity to which individualised Kul’hari look for guidance. Relations have been established with the Kowlint race of Torrhenn who, as fate would have it, are largely similar in body plan, although vastly different in their social and biological make-up. Colonial ventures have been successful, though some colonists are starting to drift away from the Collection.

    Hurrunn Agreement: Daftpanzer
    Survivalist Hoarders; Hurrunn race with a sizeable Tac population, a few Skitarii and Kul’Hari visitors; favours low gravity, temperate, dry habitat
    Economy: 0 + 12 + 2 (Tac/Skitarii) EP
    Freighters: 4 / 3
    Tech Level: 2 (8)
    Strengths: robotics and automation; biochemistry
    Repair Bill: 2EP
    * This ancient industrial society has only recently made the leap to the stars - with lifespans up to 700 years long, no one here is in too much of a hurry. Not so much a government, as a loosely-knit and convoluted coalition of self-sufficient technological and industrial institutions, or ‘Kinships’, engaged in friendly (mostly) competition for prestige and to attract new recruits. Centuries-old orbital infrastructure in the home system stands in contrast to modern interstellar ships. A rush of alien contacts in recent decades - Tac, Skitarii, Kul’Hari, Torhennian, and Hlur-Baiheen - has left Hurrunn society somewhat bewildered and struggling to come to terms with this new reality.

    The United Tac: Erez87
    Negotiator Traders; Tac race with a sizeable Hurrunn and small Skitarii population; favours thick air, warm, humid habitat
    Economy: 4 + 14 + 4 (Skitarii / Hurrunn) EP
    Freighters: 4 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (6)
    Strengths: communications tech, agriculture and aeroculture (aeroplankton)
    * First contact has been made, almost simultaneously, with the Skitarii and Hurrunnun, causing a wave of excitement. For now at least, a sense of friendship and innocence prevails, and the Tacci enjoy a largely blissful, simple and harmonious society, one based almost entirely on altruism, that is unfathomable to most other races. However, burgeoning populations mean that the Tacci are overstressing their homeworld nonetheless, not helped by setbacks in their colonial efforts. Meanwhile an official diplomatic presence has been established with the Hurrunun and Skitarii aliens, and trade seems set to blossom in the years ahead, though perhaps at the expense of true independence...

    The Skitarii Mercantile Conglomerate: NPC
    Engineer Traders; Skitarii race with a small Tac and Hurrunn population; favours temperate, flat habitat
    Economy: 1 + 15 + 3 (Tac) + 2 (Hurrunn) EP
    Freighters: 4 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (11)
    Strengths: computing, cybernetics and robotics; genetic engineering
    * Originally engineered as a sterile slave caste for masters that have since died out, the Skitarii inherited a homeworld poisoned by centuries of pollution and nuclear disaster. Industrial consumerism and hunger for resources have continued unabated, while cloning has led to continual degradation of their gene pool. With failing bodies and poisoned skies, their society turns increasingly towards machinery and virtual reality; robotic exo-suits greatly enhance their diminutive physical abilities. News of contact with the Tacci and Hurrunn has been publicly announced, and factions in favour of trade and diplomacy currently hold the reigns of power within the Conglomerate.

    Carvania: Decamper
    Duelist Technologists; Flavian race with a small Drokmohx population; favours warm, mountainous habitat
    Economy: 2 + 14 + 2 (Drok) EP
    Freighters: 3 / 2
    Tech Level: 3 (8)
    Strengths: computing and scientific equipment, power generation
    * Blessed with an especially fertile homeworld, the last natural forests of Niao are defended by environmentalist guerilla groups. Historically, the Flavians have preferred to decide conflicts through the use of personal duels, more than pitched battles. Compared to other races, political unity has occurred slowly, with no great landmark events. Technological progress has however been rapid in recent centuries. Contact with the towering Drokmohx race has been a big influence on the society Carvania; a profitable trade route has been established with those aliens, although there is some tension over the shared colony world of Oriad. As Carvanian explorers venture onwards, Contact has now also been made with the Sehoum Censorate and the Tarnakki Empire.

    The Drok Imperium: Everblack
    Warrior Philosophers; Drokmohx race with a small Flavian population; prefers warm, arid habitat
    Economy: 1 + 14 + 2 (Carvania) EP
    Freighters: 2 / 3 !
    Tech Level: 2 (13)
    Strengths: small arms and hand weapons; biochemistry
    * Drokmohx society is based on the belief that they are able to converse with their deceased ancestors and receive guidance, especially from those great individuals who have earned the status of a Darhrols and have been ritually embalmed to preserve their remains. With a strong warrior tradition, the Drokmohx are perhaps fortunate that their war of global unification occurred well before the nuclear age, though the battles fought remain legendary for their horror and bravery. Much of their homeworld, Tazo, remains a harsh wilderness where fierce monsters roam. Trade with the Carvanians has been profitable, although there is some tension over the shared colony world of Oriad.

    Sehoum Censorate: Shadowbound
    Eccentric Organisers; Sehoum-Baloum symbionts with a sizeable Rozu population; prefers warm, dry habitat
    Economy: 0 + 19 + 3 (SCEDA) EP
    Freighters: 4 / 4
    Tech Level: 2 (16)
    Strengths: computing and scientific equipment; geo-engineering
    * The Sehoum are unique in being sentient symbiotes, reliant upon Baloum hosts for survival. Baloum are intelligent animals that can survive independently, but are not sentient. This pairing has thrived in an unforgiving climate, and has forged civilization in the cooler polar regions. The harsh deserts of Almoth have already been softened by the import of vast amounts of water from icy bodies in the home system. Formerly loosely-bound under the Outer Space Exploration Corporation (OSEC), the nations of Almoth are now more closely united behind the Sehoum Censorate, an organisation created for the new age of interstellar, inter-species contacts. Friendly relations and shared enterprises have been established with SCEDA - a parallel of OSEC among the Rozu race, who have similar desert origins. Contact has now also been made with the Flavian race. Details of these contacts continues being carefully fed to the populace of Almoth.

    Sureya Cosmic Exploration and Defence Administration (SCEDA): Thorvald of Lym
    Survivalist Gardeners; Rozu race with a small Sehoum-Baloum population; prefers warm, flat habitat
    Economy: 5 + 13 + 2 (Censorate) EP
    Freighters: 2 / 3 !
    Tech Level: 2 (16)
    Repair Bill: 1EP (diplomatic fleet)
    Strengths: beam weapons; ecology, agriculture and geo-engineering
    * The situation of the Rozu race is unique; they already have experience of interplanetary war. Incursions from their neighbouring planet, Antalya, propelled the Rozu into the space age, and forged an alliance of all major polities on Sureya. The Gelion expeditions were evicted, and they remain under blockade on Antalya with their orbital infrastructure destroyed, apparently fragmented and apathetic, while the Rozu have since surpassed them in technology and, under the guidance of SCEDA, have now mastered faster-than-light engines. SCEDA has established a trade route with OSEC, a similar entity of Sehoum-Baloum aliens, with whom they have established a shared colony on the mountainous planet Aldeks.

    Flallorean Collective: Lord_Herobrine
    Engineer Traders; Flallore race only; prefers temperate coastal habitat
    Economy: 2 + 15 EP
    Freighters: 2 / 2
    Tech Level: 3 (4)
    Strengths: material science, geo-engineering, deep sea mining and aquaculture
    * United by a great Revolution, the Flallorean Collective first conquered their world with the use of atomic weapons against less-advanced sentient relatives which had involved inland. Space exploration followed relatively quickly. Ancient Flallorean civilization first emerged in shallow coastal regions, and most Flallore still enjoy an amphibious lifestyle where possible, though technology allows them to comfortably roam the skies and deserts. First contact with the Hlur-Baiheen ended in violence, but communications have since been established. Recently, the Flallore have been the first civilization to probe the Galactic Core.

    Stabilizing Directorate of the Hlur-Baiheen: Lord_Iggy
    Brooder Traders; Hlur-Baiheen race with a small Syru population; prefers thick air, warm, forested/mountainous habitat
    Economy: 5 + 13 + 2 (Syru) EP
    Freighters: 2 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (13)
    Repair Bill: 2EP
    Strengths: megastructures, geo-engineering and aeroculture (aeroplankton)
    * Like several other races, the Hlur-Baiheen have suffered the tragedy of overpopulation, resource shortages and even full-scale nuclear war. Though Seeoo’s environment has since been repaired somewhat, populations have also bounced back, and the planet has returned to carrying capacity. The pressing need of the Stabilizing Directorate is to establish colonies to act as a pressure release valve for the angry, excess population of Seeoo. Due to misunderstandings, first contact with the Flallore turned hostile, but the experience helped to ensure a peaceful contact with the the Iqahtu Andu. A confused engagement has now taken place with the Beast’s Crusade among the relics of a native civilization in the vicinity of a world dubbed Hyleen.

    United Confederacy of the Yuma: NPC
    Brooder Collectivists; Yuma race with a few Varyn captives; prefers warm habitat
    Economy: 1 + 15 EP
    Freighters: 3 / 2
    Tech Level: 2 (13)
    Strengths: megastructures, agriculture, genetic engineering
    * Originating as a hive society dominated by their queens, over time the sentient drone caste has emerged as the political powerbrokers, controlling both queens and the intelligent (but non-sentient) workers. From conception, the ‘aristocracy’ benefit from special treatment to boost the development of desired traits, and in recent decades deliberate genetic engineering has accentuated this process. While avoiding all-out nuclear war between hive states, overpopulation and ecological disaster have now forced the Yuma clans to pool their resources and venture to the stars. Thanks to the highly ordered nature of Yuma society, the worker multitudes have been able to endure great hardships towards this goal. First contact has now been made with a well-armed expedition from the Beast’s Crusade, and a colonial war has begun.

    Iqathu Andu: J.K. Stockholme
    Organiser Negotiators; Syru race with a small Hlur-Baiheen population; prefers flat, warm, humid habitat
    Economy: 3 + 20 + 2 (Hlur-Baiheen) EP
    Freighters: 4 / 3
    Tech Level: 2 (9)
    Strengths: megastructures, agriculture and geo-engineering
    * The Syru race, in its various forms, inherited a world surface devastated by a volcanic mass extinction event in recent geological time. The foundation of their civilization has been the huge irrigation works constructed over the centuries, allowing Syru populations to spread from their sheltered home lakes. The current ‘World Union’, Iqathu Andu, has emerged without too much bloodshed. Old polities still remain under the leadership of the Sovereign, who holds all real power. The Syru now venture to other planets just as their ancestors ventured beyond the great lakes of Andos. A colony on planet Mylos has proved profitable, and they have now engaged in trade and scientific exchange with the Hlur-Baiheen aliens.

    The Beast's Crusade: Angst
    Survivalist Zealots; Varyn race with a small population of captured Yuma and Hlur-Baiheen; prefers temperate habitat
    Economy: 1 + 11 EP
    Freighters: 3 / 3
    Tech Level: 3 (6)
    Repair Bill: 1EP
    Strengths: biotechnology; genetic engineering; atomic science; beam weapons
    * The Varyn are perhaps the most extreme example of self-destruction and rebirth, or at least, survival. Prolonged nuclear wars in previous millennia have massively devastated their homeworld, and the heights of former technology remain lost, along with much of their historical record. The Varyn now worship the remains of an ancient bio-mechanical superweapon, ‘The Beast’, to which they attribute godlike powers - but it must be studied, restored and revived. To this end, they have ventured to the stars, seeking resources and answers. They are a hardened people who will not be easily dissuaded. The ‘First Crusade’ has now engaged the Yuma aliens in the galactic east, while the ‘Second Crusade’ has engaged the Hlur-Baiheen and native tribes on planet Hyleen in the west .
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2017
  6. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    All stories and background:

    Spoiler :
    * First Attempts by Psilocybe To Communicate with the Furitive Lagomid
    * The Psilocybe Council - discussing the Rurricans
    * First Contact With The Tarnakki

    Skitarii Mercantile Conglomerate

    United Tac
    * Encountering the Hurrunn

    Dscheri Isonomic Nations

    Confederacy of United Clans of Yuma

    Torrhennian Confederacy / Kowlint
    * Launching the Perrel
    * The Presidential Council Chairman
    * Gowlin Extraordinary Conference on Xenobiology

    OSEC / Sehoum-Baloum
    * The Astronaut
    * A Private Conversation

    Tarnakkian Empire
    * Interspecies Relations (Daftpanzer)

    Qui'Kho Empire

    Stabilizing Directorate of the Hlur-Baiheen
    * The Manifesto of Haineem
    * The Song of Tugga
    * Principles of the Stabilizing Directorate
    * Drowning blood, deafening thunder!
    * The world of Seeoo
    * Dangerous anomaly discovered in Goaeem system
    * Singing into the void
    * Hearing an alien song
    * Notes from the Proceedings of the Stabilizing Directorate

    Iqathos signup background / Syru
    * A Public Information Release

    Drok Imperium / Drokmohx

    Jaar'ar Federation
    * Chamber of Five Hundred
    * The First Chancellor
    * Declaration of War against the Qui'Kho

    SCEDA / Rozu
    * Starship Murdizh prepares to venture beyond solar system
    * Meditations on first contact with OSEC
    * Spacial Logistics

    Flallorean Collective
    * Tales of Hoban - V01 "A New Odyssey"
    * Tales of Hoban - V02 "Greeted with Fire"
    * Alien Autopsy
    * Flallore Response

    Kul'hari Collection

    The Beast's Crusade / Varyn
    * Flag of the Beast's Crusade
    * The Era Sermon
    * The Crystal Seed

    Hurrunn Agreement
    * For new visitors to our world.
    * Eyeball Chauvinism
    * Aerospace Vessels and Tangential Conversations

    Rurrican Civilisation
    * Modem Sounds

    Last edited: Feb 24, 2017
  7. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    This post intentionally left blank.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2017
  8. Immaculate

    Immaculate unerring

    Jan 22, 2003
    I was thinking there would be relatively few peacniks in this game and wanted to make something different. When i realized we were all peaceniks i decided to edit my application to make something a little more aggressive.


    Faction name: Psilocybe
    Primary traits: hunter, watchers
    Flavour traits: engineers, gardeners
    Primary colour: pink/purple
    Secondary colour: green
    Homeworld name: Semilanceata
    Homeworld type: Industrial world
    Home star type: ‘B’ class hypergiant
    Natural Environment: a geologically-superactive world of jungles and ice
    Physical form: floating mushroom cap type bodies radiating hundreds of extended fluoro-luminescent tendrils
    Starting units: exploration ship x2
    Start location: busy (or edge of busy if possible)
    Flag/Symbol: anything to do with musrhooms
    Spoiler Psilocybe flag :

    Seen from a distance, Semilanceata is a world of bright sunlit ice, freezing winds, and abysmal cold- and little else. It is relatively small and as one approaches, the limited gravitational pull is evident. Closing on the planet, one quickly perceives deep ravines crisscrossing its surface like dark scars and from these ravines clouds of steam come forth in thick clouds, turn to ice cystals in the air, and settle over the surface of the world, reinforcing its shining white surface.

    And so an explorer turns to the ravines and exploring them quickly realizes these massive cicatrices extend miles down, canyons that seemingly reach to the bottom of the earth. The air smells of sulfur and there are cinders in the wind. Great waterfalls fall from the canyon walls where the ice above has reached the surface, and warmed by the pulsing geological heart of Semlianceata, returned to its liquid form to fall upon the canyon floors deep below. The waters below are the home to autotrophs who take their energy not from the distant shining sun (though some do to a limited extent) but to the chemical energy in volcanoes, geysers, and springs. These chemotrophs have grown quite complex, taking advantage of the thick volcanic atmosphere and limited gravity to climb the high walls of the canyons in a thick fluorescently colored riot of colorful ‘vegetation’.

    The heterotrophs (‘herbivores’) of this planet have left the canyon surfaces to the ‘vegetation’, having evolved instead to slowly drift through the canyons, making use of geological updrafts and cooling surface downdrafts to make their way. Many of these are intelligent and due to shared ancestors make extensive use of sight and visual cues to communicate, feed, and watch for predators.

    A single predatory species has evolved to feed upon these heterotrophs. They are the complex ‘Psilocybe’, creatures that appear like nothing so much as wide mushroom caps who’s upper surface are covered in diamond-like dust and upon who’s ventral side hang dozens and dozens of long tendrils capable or retracting to shorter ‘arms’ of approximately 4 to 8 feet and extending to distances of hundreds of feet. These tendrils and cap-bodies are composed of color-changing and light-producing chromatophores. Fluorescent and luminescent patterns constantly run rampant across their tendrils as they flex and extend them, touching one another and feeling about. A thick mucus hangs from the underside of the ‘mushroom caps’ but does not extend onto the tendrils.

    The diamond-like dust generously sprinkled upon the surface of the ‘musrhoom caps’ are actually visual organs, relatively primitive compared to mammalian eyes, they are still much more complex than the eyespots of more primitive life. It is their numbers that give them power. There are hundreds of thousands of these sorts of eyespots upon the surface of the ‘mushroom caps’ and indeed more of their photo-neuronal structure is dedicated to sight than to any other organ. Combined, this primitive shining ‘diamond dust’ give the Psilocybe better sight than any creature ever evolved on earth by several magnitudes of order.

    But why develop such complex visual senses? It is primarily for communication and to hunt. The Psilocybe control the fluorescence and luminescence emitted by their tendrils. The number of tendrils, uncountable number of variations in their positions and the patterns of light they create allow the Psilocybe to communicate vast amounts of information nearly instantly.

    They also use these visual information to coordinate their chromotophores and camouflage their presence near prey. This allows them to slowly drift throughout the canyons of their homeworld, using stealth and surprise to ambush prey and feed.

    It is perhaps not surprising that the Psilocybe use light-based communication to ‘speak’ amongst themselves because their internal neuronal system is also photon-based, using a sort of biological fibre-optic to move muscles or sense touch or smell or vision, to think and to feel. It is upon this sort of communal computing that Psilocybe society is based, though the intricacies of this are beyond the scope of this essay.

    Psilocybe light based communication and neuronal structure are no doubt the single over-riding reason for the success of this species as they can join together to form a sort of super-computing system, communicating and processing information at the speed of photonic thought.

    Beyond communicating, Psilocybe tendrils can also be shortened and used to manipulate the environment much like the tentacles of an octopus though without suckers. Lacking skeletons, they are relatively weak though their numbers can compensate somewhat. None-the-less, these have proven more then adequate to hunt their prey, who, universally like them, also lack skeletons.

    The Psilocybe communicate at distances beyond the visual through olfactory cues, having an underdeveloped sense of hearing. The mucus they secrete contains complex pheromones capable of carrying cues far beyond the next bend in the canyon wall.

    Psilocybe mucus is also involved in reproduction. The specie’s genetic information is contained not in DNA but in complex liposaccharides that decorate intracellular organelles like letters on a scroll (two-dimensional ‘DNA’). When the community as a whole feels it is ready to grow they come together and share reproductive mucus. The cells embedded in the mucus fuse, forming a super syncytia with genetic liposaccharides from the entire community all fusing and falling apart and fusing again, repeatedly until dozens or hundreds of genetically whole single-celled pre-morula break from the syncytia and take form in the nutrient rich mucosal ‘womb’.

    Modern Psilocybe have grown great biological cities across the surface of Semilanceata, sprawling green cities on a sea of white ice, having harnessed synthbio photosynthesis and ushered in an era of cheap energy and exponential expansion similar to that of humans with their steam engines.

    Having conquered the food web of their home planet, and with limited internal divisions and nearly unlimited energy, it was only a matter of time before these people turn to the stars beyond.

    The Psilocybe are a ambush hunters, quietly stalking their prey with patience and they apply the same focus to foreign affairs (hunter trait), their over-developed visual cortex making them observers not only literally but psychologically (watcher trait). Their homes and industries are a unique mixture of mechanical and biological and the Psilocybe themselves often wear bio-machinery to explore environments they might not otherwise be comfortable in (high gravity, limited pressures). Their homes and are often green and photosynthetic. Their factories are living and look like nothing so much as giant slugs covered in complex fluorescent light patterns, extruding machinery from slime-covered orifices while Psilocybe flit about, their tendrils stroking the giant synthetic creatures with new orders and parameters. They farm sunlight via specialized synthbio farms, both on planetary surface and in orbital ‘greenhouses’ and this, in combination with more traditional metals and minerals forms the basis for their economy.

    The Psilocybe have not known war or even predation and are perhaps naïve in their approach to interspecies diplomacy and even to the potential for war with others. They have an inherent understanding of the ‘hunt’ and the use of stealth but have not begun to adapt these insights beyond hunting the fauna of their homeplanet.
  9. Lord_Herobrine

    Lord_Herobrine Back in the Saddle

    Aug 21, 2012
    Permission to recycle my species from the last thread?
  10. Daftpanzer

    Daftpanzer canonically ambiguous

    Nov 27, 2002
    Portsmouth, England, UK
    Sweet :D

    Yes, please do!!
  11. Zappericus

    Zappericus Euro scumbag

    Mar 6, 2015

    - "Expand, Produce, Maintain." -

    The Skitarii Mercantile Conglomerate

    Faction name: Skitarii
    Primary traits: Traders, Engineers
    Flavour traits: Collectivists, Economists
    Primary colour: Blood Red
    Secondary colour: Pure White
    Homeworld name: Typhomorpin Alpha
    Homeworld type: Industrial world
    Home star type: F-type white bright giant "Theta Bella Majoris"
    Natural Environment: A former lush jungle paradise, reduced to a far-going stretch of wasteland, dotted with massive quarries, factories and mechanical spires.
    Physical form: Humanoid, sentient, pro-mechanic cyborgs with an innate obsession for material goods.
    Starting units: exploration ship, freighter ship
    Start location: as busy as possibly busy can get. center busy 10/10


    the Skitarii are clones. Synthetic products of ancient, long-lost technologies by an extinct race which once ruled the world before them. Copies of copies, their populace are produced in industrial quantities, and all are genetically defective, their genome damaged by the invasive cloning procedures used to birth each upcoming generation. As a result, they have very limited lifespans, and have a life-cycle that is limited to only a few years.

    However, these defects are as mass-produced as the Skitarii themselves, allowing for the rapid standardization of cyber-augmetic adaptation between such generations.
  12. Nuka-sama

    Nuka-sama See ya! It has been a fun decade!

    Jan 27, 2006
    Faction Name: Carvania
    Species name: Flavian
    Spoiler :

    Primary Traits: Technologists, Duelists
    Secondary Traits: Warriors, Organizers
    Primary Color: Blue, Aquamarine or Darker is fine.
    Secondary Color: Black
    Homeworld name: Niao
    Homeworld Type: Tech world
    Home Star Type: F?
    Natural Environment: An epic, mountainous world with plenty of trees and small bodies of water
    Physical Form: Avian
    Start Location: Mix of Busy and quiet. 4/10 busy
    Start Units: Freighter, Explorer
  13. erez87

    erez87 Lord of Random

    May 16, 2002
    Lod, Israel
    Faction name: The United Tac

    Race name: Tac
    Primary traits: Negotiators Traders
    Flavour traits: Collectivist Organizers
    Primary colour: Pink
    Secondary colour: Purple
    Homeworld name: Tacci
    Homeworld type: Metropolis
    Home star type: Mid-aged G-type
    Natural Environment: The air above very rich Grasslands and Savannah.
    Physical form: Tiny balls of vibrating fur with two protruding very flexible (almost tentacle-like) limbs. Normally a single Tac would float in midair, but in harsher environments plural Tac would form larger forms and move together. Tac communicate with their vibrating fur, but can only do so while landed on the ground. It is hard to understand how they see or hear, but apparently their fur has many different kinds of hairs, some for sight, some for hearing, and some vibrate in such way as to produce sounds (thought they rarely need to use sound among themselves, unless located further away from each other). Tac are born from eggs. A female Tac (which is practically indistinguishable from a male Tac) would lay two eggs in its entire lifespan. It is unknown how sex is done, probably something with their fur.
    Starting units: Diplomat, Freighter
    Start location: BUSY (as busy as possible please!)
    Brief Bio: At first look they may seem like the perfect pet, small cute fur balls that can float in the thick atmosphere of their home planet. At a second look one will find they are particularly friendly and curious of others, they will bring a good and expect a good in return, usually referring to such trade as gifting. Tac do not show any violent tendencies, and after learning their history one will find their society unified as soon as high intelligence evolved. Arguments are usually preferred to be solves in their favorite activity, gifting.

    The Tac home planet is a massive terrestrial planet with a very thick water-based atmosphere. It is warm and wet creating large jungles at the equators, huge swamps further away and giant grasslands and Savannah beyond that. There are no large oceans as countless small water pools fill daily and flow away, their planet is hugely rich. Or perhaps it was before the Tac created massive colonies upon it, making most of it into a huge metropolis. The Tac build high thin buildings that can bend in strong winds, like huge fields of wheat. The Tac society is unified but each Tac is a world of its own, with interests of its own and a personality of its own, but all are friendly. Tac "tribes" or more correctly, families, enjoy forming themselves into larger forms and roam together.

    Their intelligence may surprise others that might think they are pets. They have bellow-average human intelligence but the most intelligent among them easily top any of the most genius of humans, and with their favorite pastime, gifting, knowledge quickly passes among the Tac. There are no poor or hungry as any Tac would quickly gift away his excess food or wealth in return for something else. There is no need to gather resources beyond your ability to use them after all, especially when another might have a much better use for them.

    Curiosity eventually pushed the Tac into scientific discovery, as those more intelligent eventually developing a space program (gathering vast resources by trading knowledge of the skies to others). Tac find it is easier to go in groups outside of their planet, as without the thick atmosphere at home they cannot float, and so whole families of Tac form greater forms as they fly into the stars. When you will meet your first Tac it will not be one, but an entire branch of a Tac family, several dozens of them. And they will probably be happy to see you, make sure you brought SOMETHING to give them.

    And what the hack, yes, their fur is pink and cuddly.

    Flag later.
  14. thomas.berubeg

    thomas.berubeg Wandering the World

    Aug 21, 2006
    Ft. Lauderdale
    Reserving a Negotiator/Watcher Race.
  15. Exhera

    Exhera Unorthodox Unicorn

    Feb 7, 2015
    Somewhere Over The Rainbow

    Peaceful Union of Democratic Dscheri Isonomic Nations / PUDDIN

    Spoiler butterfly :

    A close-up of Schadeuschklikiaschu

    • Info
      [*]Race Name: Dscheri
      [*]Primary Traits: Philosophers, Culturalists
      [*]Flavor Traits: Negotiators, Collectivists
      [*]Primary Color: Purple
      [*]Secondary Color: White
      [*]Homeworld Name: Dschera, a planet twice the size of Earth
      [*]Homeworld Type: Metropolis
      [*]Home Star Type: G
      [*]Natural Environment: Anywhere where it's not freezing
      [*]Starting Units: Diplomat & Fighter
      [*]Start Location: Quiet
      [*]Brief Bio:

    Born out of the equatorial region of Dschera, the Dscheri are sentient beings with enormous wings and an insectoid body. A hard exoskeleton of chitin covers the body and head, but the wings are thinner and weaker than the main body. The Dscheri are philosophers and thinkers, and consume primarily producers. They are not predators.

    Society: Dscheri society is run by the matriarch of the roost the Dscheri lives in. The Matriarch is an all-powerful monarch, and has breeding rights with all males. The Dscheri are not bound by marriage, letting them breed more freely. Dscheri young are first laid in hatcheries, where they are raised by the nurses of the roosts as soft, jelly-like eggs. Family in Dscheri society is non-existent, and all Dscheri live as individuals but serve for the common good.

    Philosophy: The Dscheri believe in peace and kindness, showing love to all, even those that they do not like. They believe that war and death is a terrible thing, except for the ending of one's live of old age. That is seen as a gift, for their old, exoskeleton is finally put to rest. Mourning is not sad, but joyous, in celebration of their life, like the dead would want it to be. Happiness, peace, and love are the primary values of the Dscheri.

    Politics: Modern-day, Dscheri politics are mostly a monarchy, but with some democratic features. The world is divided into equal population regions, with capital roosts. Each region, called a nest, have a matriarch, while each roost has a matriarch. The matriarchs of the nests congregate to elect the Matriarch, who governs all of Dscheri lands.

    History: The evolution of the Dscheri occured in the valley known as Ynicutshcherachuatiachau, but for the lesser beings wishing to pronounce use the name, it is called Ynicut.

    The Dscheri spread from the earth from Ynicut, colonizing the farthest reaches of the planet, from the cold, barren poles, to the tropical equator, the Dscheri have constructed roosts, all made of one material: ugyschuinlkashcukuitdschu. Or ugyschu silk. It is the silk of the Dscheri themselves, and highly durable. The material first is soft and bendable, but after an hour, it hardens into a stone-like material. The silk is used to construct roosts and is like the human's plastic, except cleaner due to its ability to decompose quickly. This material is an essential part of Dscheri life.

    The Dscheri ascended into space because of one Matriarch(capitalized=queen of world, uncapitalized=not), Schadeuschklikiaschu. Or Schadeuschkli. She came to power from her great reign of the Gdatyatyidsk Nest. The Gdatya(for short) Nest was first created when her grandmother arrived there, as it is in a barren wasteland of ice and snow. She inherited the nest and soon made the roost of Gdatya raise to the status of a nest. This was done by the scientific discovery she made, as she attended the most prestigious university, Kchabeyjiklnu, or Kchabe, for many years. The discovery was of a liquid extracted from an animal skin that lived in the icy north. The liquid was what allowed the animal to live in such extreme conditions, and also provided warmth. Schadeuschkli applied this liquid into the roost, and soon, warmth was emitted. The roosts in the poles could now have full on cities, as only a few Dscheri could survive there before, but now, many, many could. The untouched natural resources could be retrieved. When the previous Matriarch passed, Schadeuschkli easily won the election, and now operated the entire planet of Dschera from Gdatya, a frozen roost. She made many scientific advancements during her term, and ultimately brought the Dscheri into space.

    Appearance: The Dscheri are much like butterflies, except are many times bigger. They are most dependent on their sense of sight, as their eyes have evolved the most. Unlike butterflies, they do not have any antennae. Instead, their eyes act as an all-purpose thing. Sight, smell, and even hearing are operated from this organ. It is a major handicap if they were to be damaged, however. Luckily, there are not soft but hard and tough. The wings of the Dscheri are extremely beautiful, with intricate patterns and designs, different on each one. The common colors of the Dscheri are purple and white, called the Aek. They are generally smaller but have a longer wingspan. The Uek are black and white, and are bigger but have a shorter wingspan. Finally, the Tchek are the least common and are blue and white, and are smaller all together. These are the type of Dscheri that reign supreme, but a smaller but equally intelligent race exists, the dwarf Dscheri. They are the size of a pitbull, and are found in very small numbers.

    Symbol: The symbol at the center of the Dscheri emblem is meant to be a Dscheri, with its wings and body. The purple represents the enclosure of the Dscheri, meaning protection.​
  16. Seon

    Seon Not An Evil Liar

    Jan 20, 2009
    Not Lying through my teeth
    Species: Yuma

    Polity: Confederacy of United Clans of Yuma

    Home Planet: The Grand Hive of Yuma

    Appearence: Common Yuma drone is a dark-chitin covered insectoid measuring 7 feet tall. It has 6 limbs, two of which are dedicated 'walking' appendages. The other four 'manipulator' limbs.

    The head is a triangular ovoid in shape, with prominent faceted eyes mounted to the front. In general, the overall impression is similar to that of a praying mantis. There are two short antennae that protrude from the top of the head. The mouth is on the underside of the front point of the triangular head, and is relatively small. It is surrounded to two strong mandibles. The neck is very short but thick and sturdy, and can rotate 60 degrees.

    The Yuma's body is divided into two separate 'sections.' The upper segment is approximately egg-shaped with a slight distension at the upper end just below the junction to the neck and head; this is where the upper limbs join the body. The lower segment is a tapered oval that arcs slightly towards the rear and forms a rounded point. The junction of these two segments is a heavily muscled narrow waist which the Yuma can twist to approximately 100 degrees

    The lower four limbs are attached to the lower body segment. The lowest pair, or the traditional legs, are attached just above the point where the segment begins to bend rearwards. These legs have knee joints and ankle joint, and are terminated with clawed appendages. The ankles allow the Yuma to use the lowest part of the limb as feet, providing stability and agility when standing erect. These legs are also double jointed at the knees. The middle pair of limbs are primarily used as manipulating limbs, but are also seen as propelling limbs when a Yuma is running. These limbs are jointed at elbow and wrist, and end in clawed hands. There are four digits, including an opposable thumb, and these are clawed. The claws are short and horny. These legs are usually held folded against the front of the body.

    he upper limbs are dedicated manipulatory limbs. These are jointed at the elbows and wrists. The elbow is jointed to the rear, similar to human arms. The hands end in four clawed digits, one of which is an opposable thumb. These digits are more flexible and agile than the ones on the middle limbs

    Majority of the drones are not self-aware, and are hatched in massive Clan-operated nurseries, tended to by the Queens who laid them.

    Non-sentient does not necessarily mean unintelligent. Each Yuma drone has brains capable of astonishingly complicated pattern-searching algorithms. They can be 'trained' for combat or any other role in civilized society (with the obvious exceptions of artistic or scientific endeavors).
    .................................................. ..............................

    Physical Description Continued: The "aristocracy" or the "clan members" of the Yuma can almost be considered a separate species entirely. Unlike the majority of the Yuma drones, the aristocracy is fully self-aware and posseessing many unique 'features' dependent upon the genetic template that they were based off of. The Yuma, a race uniquely skilled in the field of biotechnology, normally generates these 'clan members' in specially prepared vats or specially treated eggs. Clan members birthed from such a treatment is a unique individual in its own right, rather than being perfect clones. However, they still retain certain similarities unique to the "template" of the clan that birthed them, such as unique color patterns or additional appendages.

    Rise of Technology: It has been many years since the disparate clans of the Yuma agreed, in the face of ongoing ecological disaster and depletion of natural resources, to put their differences aside and unite for a common cause: salvation of their race. With failing resources and industries, the clans of Yuma devoted everything they have towards the colonization of space, developing infrastructure and requisite technologies for faster than light travel.

    .................................................. .................................................. ........................

    Starting Planet Type Hive World.

    Desired Starting Units: TroopsExploration vessel

    Local Star Names: I'll think of something later

    Typical Architecture: Lots of domes, with iridescent blue coloration in general. "organic" looking technology, although they are most assuredly synthetic. The Yuma just prefer the organic aesthetics.

    Typical Ship Designs: Floating polygons, with octahedral shapes being the most common. Gs are generally provided by acceleration.


    Faction Name: United Confederacy of the Yuma.
    Race Name: Yuma
    Primarty Traits: Collectivists. Brooders.
    Flavor Traits; Xenophobes. Industrialist.
    Primary Color: Green
    Secondary Color: Black
    Homeworld: Grand Hive of the Yuma, wretched hive world that has undergone ecological collapse. Cities rise tall over the waves and barren lands as the domes protect its denizens from battering winds and rain.
    Homeworld Type: Metropolis/Hive World
    Home Star Type: F.
    Natural Environment: Used to Cold and Arid climates, with thick atmospheric pressure.
    Starting Units: Explorer & Troops.
    Start Location: Quiet.
  17. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Jul 28, 2014

    This is so cool!
  18. NinjaCow64

    NinjaCow64 Thought Bubble Thinker Supporter

    Apr 4, 2010
    Subscribed. I'll get my alien race up when I finish my assignment.
  19. Immaculate

    Immaculate unerring

    Jan 22, 2003
    edited application post. I went for something as psychedelic as possible.
  20. Warriorx1

    Warriorx1 Warlord

    Sep 15, 2009
    Color me interested!

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