Into the Black
Into the Black
Humanity has moved out into the stars, starting to spread itself out through the galaxy. Warp Gates have been constructed and near-light travel has allowed these to be placed over time across other systems aside from our own. Terraforming technology is still in its infancy, with only a handful of moons having been successfully terraformed. Most colonisation has been done by massive bio-domes and ecostructures being landed on planets by autonomous colonisation ships, before being unpacked and put into standby by armies of drones. When a colony ship arrives, the first to land simply activate the environmental controls, program in the construction and the robots build a habitat. Doesn’t always work out as planned, some worlds were inhabited by non-humanoid life, others just weren’t suitable.
As civilisation moved out into space, a few truths made themselves painfully evident. Guns on ships were bad. Explosive decompression is no man’s friend. This lead to most ships flat out banning high calibre projectile rounds, and firearms declined in popularity in favour of the ‘safer’ option of hand to hand weapons. Medieval weapons saw a return to popularity as, strangely, did black powder weapons, bows and crossbows. As humanity is prone to do, they spread out and as they encountered new life, they bred with and integrated what they could, killed what they couldn’t assimilate. This has lead to mixed attitudes between humans and a number of non-humanoid species, with some being friendly and others being downright hostile. It has also led to a number of subraces having formed within humanity.
With any successful interplanetary civilisation comes an interplanetary government. What started out originally as a coalition of newly settled planets, banding together to prevent the emerging groups of space pirates from pillaging their bio domes, grew to incorporate profitable trade lanes and the armed forces required to maintain these logistics chains. Over time, councils were formed councils then spawning sub committees and inevitably an “elected” government. This has resulted in a civilisation whose span greatly exceeds the reach of its law enforcement. The solution, obviously, was to hire or train bands of heavily armed strike teams. Their job being to respond to distress calls outside of the range of the military, and investigate issues that were too costly to send a fleet to deal with. Should they come across anything they can’t handle themselves, then they call in the reinforcements.
In reflection to the strike teams, were also created exploration forces. Teams of adventurous individuals sent to uninhabited bio domes to ensure that they have landed correctly and are now safe for colonisation before the arrival of the massive colony ships. Should it be proven to be unsafe, they are either to make it safe, or redirect the colony ship to the next biodome before it enters orbit. These have often been met by colonies of people who either were not recorded (and therefore a second ship was dispatched) or were simply not authorised to take control of the dome. Some welcome the explorers as friends, others shoot them on sight knowing that they only bring more of their kind.
And then there are the Salvagers, rogue individuals claiming biodomes for themselves, either settling their own people in there or plundering them for anything valuable that they can sell on the burgeoning black market. Often unscrupulous, or living by their own personal code of honour, these small bands of individuals fly routinely into the face of danger for the thrill and profit such enterprises provide.
Players will form a party from one of these 3 factions, now there’s nothing to really stop a strike team from going rogue and becoming Salvagers, and Salvagers could walk the straight and narrow to become hired on as a mercenary strike team or as explorers. I’m leaving the direction of the campaign open to whatever you decide to do with your ship. The adventure, largely, will be yours, I’m just here to make sure you’ve got challenges to overcome, a story to follow and some bad guys to box around.