There's a bright and shining center to the universe, and it's a long ways out from here. Door's been closed for ages. No trespassing, no solicitation, no visitors without an appointment. The future went on ahead without us and left us behind, with all the dust and the rust and the dinged-up hand-me-downs.
It's a big, old, empty, beautiful universe. Little islands of people trying to get by, and a whole lot of black between.
(Mothership is a fantastic game, people.)
Ship's engines of 30 or below are considered sublight drives.
Engines greater than 30 are considered warp drives.
|Engine Stat||Ship Speed||Per Light Year||Time Dilation||Time Debt|
|10||0.75 C||456.56 days||321.42 days||135.14 days / LY|
|20||0.85 C||420.04 days||226.45 days||193.59 days / LY|
|30||0.95 C||383.51 days||120.53 days||262.98 days / LY|
|40||12 C||30.44 days||N/A||N/A|
|50||24 C||15.22 days||N/A||N/A|
|60||36 C||10.15 days||N/A||N/A|
|70||48 C||7.61 days||N/A||N/A|
|80||60 C||6.09 days||N/A||N/A|
Jump drives are rated according to how many decaLY can be traversed in a single hyperspace jump. The standard shipboard time passage is 3 days / light year. Hyperspace travel is highly irregular on the observer side: roll 1d10 - on a 9-10, multiply the travel time by xd10 (x=Jump rating) and multiply it by travel time to determine any delay.
Life is out there, and it's not even particularly rare. There's carbon/oxygen-based life, methane-based life, ammonia based life, chlorine based life. Most of it is microbial, and of the larger organisms found none have shown any signs of technical prowess beyond simple tool usage. There are a great many dolphins, apes, and elephants among the stars, but man is still alone. The stars are as quiet as they have always been.
Technological civilizations of the deep past are still a matter of debate. No direct evidence has yet been found, but certain paleontological digs (Epsilon Eridani d in particular) have garnered some popularity in the scientific community.
They Might Be Giants
Posthumanity (that is, those humans who digitized themselves long ago and all their offshoots and descendants) is a not-quite-sleeping giant. By population and spread, the digital gods dwarf humanity's interstellar civilization by orders of magnitude, but they play no real part in the lives of folks like you and me. The gulf between is too great to bridge. This has actually worked in humanity's favor.
They prefer habitats to planets, building dyson swarms around red dwarfs set to last trillions of years and filling up Oort clouds with supercomputer processors. They typically ignore humanity entirely, save in those cases where they feel the need to swat away intruders. Communication with them is non-existent, but it seems that for the time being posthumanity is content to let its forgotten brethren go along its own way.
I Owe My Soul to the Company Store
Outside of collective communities (and sometimes even then), it's a gig economy out there. The Company posts a job, freelancers with a ship take it. It's rarely a friendly relationship: the Company provides nothing beyond pay upon completion - any other support is going to come from the assorted unions, collectives, religious organizations and co-operatives out there.
While there are, of course, thousands and thousands of interplanetary and interstellar companies out there, spacers will invariably just call them the Company.
Some Notes on Tech
- Hyperspace communications are invariably fucked every time they are attempted. News travels as fast as the fastest ship.
- Self-improving AI and digital upload tech are quashed hard by posthumanity. They don't want competition. Weak AI will get a pass.
- Timekeeping still runs on the 365.25 day Earth year. Exactly what year it is is not supremely important.
- Cybernetics and biotech are out there, but are usually for cosmetic and health purposes.
Solar GazetteerHuman space is an irregular, blobby sphere stretching outwards from Sol. Thousands of systems have been explored and hundreds permanently settled, but in the scope of the final frontier that doesn't mean much. Even with faster-than-light travel, space refuses to be any less big.
Most populated worlds are within 50 light-years of Earth - beyond that margin colonies become progressively more widely scattered and independently-minded. Out past 250 LY it's mostly nothing but out'sters and posthumans and "here be space dragons".
I'll be putting up a companion post soon detailing a sandbox of 18 nearby solar systems, plus a scattering of other exoplanets to throw down wherever you might wish.
Stuff Outright Stolen From Eclipse PhaseFor more goodies, I recommend the Farcast, Seedware, and H-Rep blogs
|1. A Thousand Words for Fire||Open-source extreme life-achievement challenge.||Farcast 212|
|2. After-Eden||Commune that celebrates preventable medical disfigurements.||Farcast 57|
|3. Ageshift||Medical treatment to induce outward signs of a specific age.||Farcast 259|
|4. Anthropomorphism||Mindhack; subject anthropomorphizes everything.||Seedware 133|
|5. Asshole Geese||Even in the future, they are assholes. Semi-reliable guards.||Seedware 291|
|6. Bonsai||Fun hobby when you have lots of time and no gravity.||Seedware 262|
|7. Boomfruit||Exploding fruit. Harmless, usually entertaining.||Seedware 302|
|8. Bouncerfeet||Flexible feet with opposable toes, can hold objects.||MRG 13|
|9. Break Bread||Nutrient-rich bricks; add water and last a week off of one.||Farcast 96|
|10. Brownies||Out-of-sight domestic cleaner bots.||Seedware 95|
|11. Bruixera||Possibly-legendary den of iniquity.||Farcast 225|
|12. Burning Plague||Engineered virus; causes flammable tumors.||Farcast 201|
|13. Cancer Dreams||Engineered disease; stress-generated cancers.||Farcast 245|
|14. Case||Cheap, poorly-made android models. Off-the-shelf.||MRG 15|
|15. Catal Hayuk||Neolithic historical recreation habitat with permanent population.||Rimward 63|
|16. Catopia||Popular VR MMO. Everyone is a perfectly normal cat.||Seedware 281|
|17. Cheshire||Hairless cat breed with chameleon skin. Freaky as hell.||Seedware 13|
|18. Church of Luminous Saints||Militant post-Christian sect; really likes themselves some WMDs.||X-Risks 74|
|19. Coiled Canines||Friendly like a dog, wriggly as a ferret, long as a snake.||Seedware 110|
|20. Common-Sense Network||Low-pop. anarchist collectives running local direct democracy.||Rimward 175|
|21. Cubehive Corp||Makers of affordable ultra-compact housing and habitats.||H-Rep 147|
|22. Designer Synaesthesia||Popular mindhack among artists and unorthodox scientists.||Seedware 231|
|23. DIY Shipyards||Enthusiastic anarchists build anything to order if you help out.||Rimward 86|
|24. DNA Chaff||Grenade filled with organic dust; throws analysts into a tizzy.||Panopticon 150|
|25. Drooga||Mind-altering vodka-variant; tends to start sizable riots.||Farcast 133|
|26. Dummy Barrier||Insulation between a hacker and||H-Rep 60|
|27. Earthcon||Convention celebrating Earth and its old cultures.||Farcast 337|
|28. Elysian Fields||Habitat dedicated to those dying in peace and dignity.||Sunward 137|
|29. Engineer's Womb||Exowomb implant; safe, quick, comfortable.||Seedware 119|
|30. Eusocial Monkey Butlers||Exactly what it says on the tin. Popular with the rich.||Seedware 81|
|31. Exonaturals||The business of getting alien resources from here to there.||Farcast 215|
|32. Faceless||A faceless sphinx of black stone; popular 'net rumor.||Farcast 145|
|33. Francesca's Cheese & Wine||Hole-in-the-wall vender-fabber; no one knows who Francesca is.||Seedware 208|
|34. Fur Coat||Actually a living organism that you wear.||X-Risks 157|
|35. Gardener Bees||Programmed and modified beehives. Guardwasps available.||Panopticon 154|
|36. Get Your Ass to Mars||Spaceship fleet hosts anarchist olympics.||Rimward 173|
|37. Glowstick Fungus||Grows about a foot and a half, glows green-yellow.||Farcast 308|
|38. Gold Ballast||It's basically worthless for anything else.||Farcast 298|
|39. Grendal's Loop||Hyperspace coordinates that send you back where you started.||Farcast 218|
|40. Gut Macrofauna||Some people just want to be a hive. For art.||Seedware 52|
|41. House of Screaming Bricks||The worst prison in human space. No one owns up to it.||Farcast 29|
|42. Hypothetical Handbook||Popular series of "what-if" guides, from mundane to mad.||Seedware 16|
|43. IP Enforcement||They aren't above sending someone with a gun.||Rimward 65|
|44. Jellybone Suit||Vacuum-sealed goo-suit for extreme environment protection.||Farcast 4|
|45. Jester Virus||Engineered virus; causes uncontrollable laughter.||H-Rep 211|
|46. K-Flask||Add water and some organic primer, get milk. Ferments well, too.||Farcast 67|
|47. Kaiju Therapy||Put on VR, pretend to be a monster, feel better.||Seedware 190|
|48. Language Synthesis||The art of building a functioning language from scratch.||Farcast 159|
|49. Laughing Policeman||Interrogation drug; target induced to openness and cooperation.||Firewall 175|
|50. Liangamish||Giant genitalia-themed temple complex.||Farcast 288|
|51. Lick Me I'm Delicious||Ship fleet out to visit every human-settled world.||Rimward 173|
|52. Lilith Sequence||Genemod; Allows reproduction via parthenogenesis.||Farcast 126|
|53. Livestock||Non-sapient humans modified for food; popular with the rich.||Seedware 142|
|54. Maintenance Rats||Smart rodents modified to actually fix the wiring.||Farcast 235|
|55. Manna Tree||Nutritious high-water fruit, aspirin bark, rot-resistant wood.||Seedware 86|
|56. Meathab||Space station made out of meat. Probably alive.||Rimward 77|
|57. Medicrabs||Cute little robot buddies to stitch you back up.||Seedware 44|
|58. Medusa Locks||Muscular dreadlocks, a replacement for hair.||Seedware 205|
|59. Minervan Fleet||Wandering ex-military fleet looking to find enemies fight them.||X-Risks 78|
|60. Mme. Bleu||Android fixer / crime boss. Bodies found across human space.||Farcast 65|
|61. Mobile Greenhouse||Precisely what it seems. A touch of nature on barren worlds.||H-Rep 34|
|62. Mood Lizard||Therapy animal. Quiet, good at cuddling, skin responds to owner.||Farcast 151|
|63. Moon Worms||Add water and sugar, it generates alcohol.||Seedware 68|
|64. Mortal Diamonds||The remains of war heroes, compressed into diamonds.||Farcast 285|
|65. Nanobrush||Little blue pellets that will clean out your mouth. Minty fresh.||H-Rep 178|
|66. Neptunium Skull||Legendary cursed / radioactive artifact, Holy Grail of thieves.||Farcast 172|
|67. New Day Corp||Developers of neanderthal genome splices.||Panopticon 121|
|68. Nostalgia Cigarettes||Drug; induces feelings of nostalgia.||Seedware 199|
|69. Pearls||Painful side-effect of glitching internal nanomachines.||Seedware 237|
|70. Pod Variants||Typical human-presenting models for androids.||Corebook 142|
|1) Ayah - Caretakers, teachers, nannies.|
|2) Basic - General-purpose androids.|
|3) Pleasure - Sex-change module + pheromonal control.|
|4) Security - Not quite extra muscle, but same principle.|
|5) Vacuum - Built for space work; 0-G and stellar radiation.|
|6) Worker - Sturdy and solid, good for manual labor.|
|71. Programmers Without Borders||Charitable organization of hackers and devs. They'll fix you up.||Farcast 317|
|72. Red Five Advanced Hueristics||Advertising firm dealing with stolen military programming memes.||X-Risks 86|
|73. Relationship Mapper||Software to map out and detail someone's entire social web.||Panopticon 156|
|74. Remnant Garden||Gardens grown around corpses.||Seedware 280|
|75. Rep Day||Holiday for giving gifts to people on your rep network.||Farcast 263|
|76. Robo-Mule||Everyone's favorite six-legged luggage-hauler.||Gatecrashing 162|
|77. Rocket Rhosa||Traveling armorer, weaponsmith, and whiskey-chugging veteran.||Farcast 290|
|78. Rust Hound||Dog breed, originally modified for Mars. Big and red.||X-Risks 160|
|79. Sharkteeth||Removable tooth, grows to a dagger in mineral-rich water.||Farcast 88|
|80. Shiprot||Object lesson in entropy; the wear and tear of a ship in use.||Farcast 306|
|81. Shipslug||Vacuum-adapted; often used for exterior ship repairs.||Farcast 144|
|82. Shut-In||Drug; induces feelings of melancholy, focus, and introspection.||H-Rep 96|
|83. Slitheroid||Robotic-presenting android model with serpentine lower half.||MRG 91|
|84. Soma Fruit||Fruit bred to carry low-intensity social drugs.||Farcast 326|
|85. Spigipede||Kinda like a pig and a worm, popular food among spacers.||Farcast 287|
|86. Survivor's Yeast||Add it to nearly anything organic for edible, unpalatable sludge.||Seedware 267|
|87. Tasping||Mindhack; pleasure/reward centers linked to a specific action.||Seedware 140|
|88. Tentaball||A ball with tentacles. Used as a ranged restraining device.||Seedware 101|
|89. Terracotta Warriors of Mars||Once-popular android design.||Seedware 236|
|90. The Conch||Refugee ship given over to three Company scions. Bad news.||Rimward 137|
|91. The Holy See||The pope, in space. Also a woman. Jesuits in space too.||Rimward 46|
|92. To Be Tuesday||"Game" in which players control the same android for one day.||Farcast 192|
|93. Transbovine||Modified cows; includes superauroch beefslugs.||Farcast 63|
|94. Translucent / Bioluminecent||Common cosmetic biomods.||Seedware 18/19|
|95. Vengeance of Enki||Engineered disease; targets ability to comprehend symbols.||Farcast 140|
|96. Virtue Plague||Engineered disease; subjects become high-empathy pacifists.||Seedware 203|
|97. Void Sisters||Shadowy sisterhood with plans on shaping the future.||Farcast 268|
|98. "Wait, That Was You?"||The typical outcome of being the feature of a viral meme.||Panopticon 147|
|99. Wild Artificials||Robots with animal-level AI, loose and able to reproduce.||Sunward 177|
|100. Winterist||Genemod, sexless, save for short monthly periods of fertility.||Rimward 189|
|Rep Network||Who's Online||Source|
|*-rep||Space Marines||Farcast 211|
|C-rep||Civic / Corporate||Corebook 286|
|K-rep||Kindness Network||Farcast 36|
|P-rep||Video Games||H-Rep 184|