Author Topic: Rise of the Wrix  (Read 9328 times)

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Offline Person012345

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #120 on: October 04, 2012, 04:35:00 PM »
I've not been playing a huge amount recently so I haven't been on the forums much, but I'm still enjoying reading this one.
 

Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #121 on: October 08, 2012, 01:50:33 PM »
18 February 2017
To celebrate the Swarm getting back on its feet and things (sortof) returning to normal, here is a summary of the annual status report published by Swarm Hive for distribution to all the hives. Note that some standardization is used.

Ships
2 x Hecate Class Courier Vessels (Sir Francis Drake and the Henry Hudson)
Hudson is orbiting Wrixom, the Drake is on its way towards Rube, the sixth moon of the fifth planet, on a rescue mission.

Wrixom
Military Academy: Level 2
DSTS: Level 1 (250)

Shipyards/Slipways | 2/3
Maintenance Facilities | 5
Construction Factories | 204
Fuel Refineries | 9
Mines | 181
Research Labs | 2
GFTF | 1

Fuel Available: 4 351 226
Maintenance Supplies: 2000

Pop: 505.68m

Shipyards
Gamma Yards | 2 slips @ 5000ton capacity
Swarm Yards (civilian) | 1 slip @ 10000ton capacity

Research into nuclear thermal engines is estimated to complete on 28 February 2019 (in two years).
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #122 on: October 09, 2012, 02:58:33 PM »
13 March 2017
The last of the repairs to the research facilities are completed and they are now operating at full capacity again. All damage from the solar storm has now been repaired. All energy is once again turned to the expansion of the research complexes.
A revised estimate for the completion of the nuclear thermal engine research is now in July 2018.
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #123 on: October 09, 2012, 03:03:29 PM »
16 March 2017
HN crawled into one of the sleeping chambers on board the Sir Francis Drake, vastly relieved to be breathing something other than the stale air she had gotten used to. Even better, the atmosphere on the ship was wonderfully toasty after the long, icy nights back on Rube.
"If I ever go back to that hell hole, it will be in a coffin" she mumbled to herself.
The Sir Frances Drake had arrived in orbit less than four hours ago and finally she was done with that frigid nightmare.
She nearly jumped when the wall mounted communications screen flickered to life.
"Are you HN-31, formerly of Gamma Hive?" the young queen whose face had appeared asked. HN had to suppress a moment of envy. She had now spent several years out here on the fringes, far from the comforts of Wrixom, and it showed. Her skin was weathered and numerous scars showed the results of the inevitable accidents in this harsh environment.
"Could be. Who's asking?"
"I am PX-74-CDN, also from Gamma Hive, perhaps you remember me? No matter, I'll get to the point since I can see you are tired. Gamma has need of you for a special project" the young queen rattled off.
"I'm not interested. I've had enough of frozen rocks with no oxygen. I'm going back to Wrixom for some rest and relaxation" HN replied.
"No frozen rocks, this is on First Stop."
HN did the Wrix equivalent of raising an eyebrow. "What could she possibly want me to do on First Stop? I'm a surveyor and First Stop is fully surveyed. By me, no less."
PX paused, as if unsure how to continue. In the end, she opted for the direct approach.
"You screwed up."
"Excuse me?" HN replied, taking a step closer to the monitor. If the off button had been clearly marked, HN would probably have cut the connection right there.
"Through no fault of your own, I must hasten to add, and in doing so, you have provided Gamma Hive a valuable opportunity. You see, I am currently on First Stop as Gamma sent me here to double check all your results, perhaps not trusting you to give her the full picture."
HN tried pressing a few of the unmarked buttons around the screen, trying to find the one that switched the thing off. She wasn't in the mood for political bullsmeg. She had left that sort of thing behind when she had joined Swarm Command.
But PX continued talking, seemingly oblivious. "Well, I was going over the cores you extracted from the test drills and discovered a rather unusual looking quartz formation near the bottom and this was strange, as your notes on the core neglected to mention this quartz layer."
HN rolled her eyes. "Look, newbie, it's quartz. It's worthless. Nobody cares. I was out looking for TN minerals, not a few crappy crystals. So what if I missed it, or more likely just neglected to add it in my report?"
"Yes, that is what I thought as well, at first but on a hunch, however, I checked the report of your sonic scan of the same area. It didn't contain any quartz either."
HN had tried every button but one, but her hand stopped mid motion on the way to the last. "At all?"
"Indeed. Now that I knew what to look for, I checked all your other cores and scans and almost no quartz was predicted anywhere, yet I found it in over ten percent of your core samples. Close to or at the bottom every time."HN sat down, her mind racing. "That was... sloppy of me. True, I was more concerned with finding TN minerals, but anything I miss on the scans reflects badly on me."
"Like I said, it wasn't your fault as I rescanned the exact area at the bottom of one of the shafts where you had extracted a quartz containing core and even though I knew exactly where to look and what to look for, I couldn't find any quartz, despite the fact I moved the equipment four times to see if I could find a better angle from elsewhere" PX rattled off without pausing for breath. It seemed as if she had never discovered the full stop.
"That is most strange. Do a chemical analysis..."
"Already in the cooker" PX replied. "I'm pretty sure I know what we are going to find as I did another test. I buried a bit of the quartz no more than a few metres down and tried to use the sounding equipment to find it. Nothing."
"Nothing? How is that possible? Is it possible the equipment is faulty?" HN asked.
"Nope, everything is in perfect working condition. I suspect these quartz formations have some strange acoustic property that makes them invisible to our equipment and what's more, I think they make anything beneath them invisible as well."
"Hold on there, I think you are getting a bit ahead of yourself. I've never heard of any crystal doing that before, quartz or otherwise. Is this why you think I should drop everything and head over to First Stop?"
PX explained. "My hypothesis is not untested as I drilled a few new samples through these quartz layers and in one of the cores, I found Mercassium. Mercassium! First Stop wasn't supposed to have ANY Mercassium at all!"
HN lay back, considering the implications. If all her scans at locations containing these quartz crystals were meaningless, and the crystals had been found in ten percent of her test drills... Wow. That was a lot of potential space for more minerals.
"What do you need me for? You seem to have things in hand over there" she asked.
"As you well know, there is a vast difference between finding some minerals and determining the quantity and location of the deposits and you have far more experience in this area than I do" DP admitted.
"And I'm guessing Gamma doesn't want Command to discover that First Stop might actually be more valuable than they had believed?"
PX nodded.
HN sighed. Despite her best efforts, the tide of politics had run right over her.
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #124 on: October 10, 2012, 04:02:18 AM »
27 March 2017
When asked by Swarm Command why the Drake was stopping off at First Stop before heading home (as its course was now clearly visible), Gamma admitted that the Swarm Xenology team on First Stop had completed their exploration of the ruins there and she was bringing them home.
This immediately aroused suspicion among Swarm Command. The longer Gamma kept the team there, the longer she would have to exploit their advances. If she was sending them back, that means she had found something better...
Unfortunately, US's spy is quiet.

OOC
I'm moving the Drake to First Stop simply to make moving the geology team plausable. In reality, the team had been there for upwards of a year finding me cool minerals! 200kt Mercassium at 0.6 already is very sweet, especially since no other worthwhile deposits exist inside the system. All this is because, while in my previous game the team exhausted First Stop, they never did in this game! They must have already made 10 finds all in all (some of them not very good, like 100kt duranium when there is already 25mil) but the cool bit is they are still going strong. Hopefully I can develop First Stop as a massive mining centre, I just need a little bit better accessability on the duranium (currently at 0.4). A bit of corundium and avoiding a crunch should become far easier.
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #125 on: October 20, 2012, 10:37:16 AM »
2 May 2017
HN flicked off the sounding equipment and turned to the computer. It was still processing but had appeared on screen so far was very promising. A massive deposit of Mercassium measuring in the hundreds of kilotons.
"Well newbie, you were right" she admitted to PX, who was standing nearby.
"This was the last spot. Glad you took this oppertunity, even if it was for Gamma Hive?" PX asked.
"I'll be frank with you. I really don't care who I work for. As long as I get to explore, I'm happy."
There were a few moments of silence as they worked on processing the data.
"Will you teach me how to do what you do? I'm pretty sure I would have missed that second part of the deposit, you have a magical touch with this stuff; I have no idea how you missed the refractive quarts in the first place."
HN shrugged. "Even the best of us make mistakes. The important part is to learn from them. Now what do you think Gamma intends to do with this information?"
"Beats me, but if I were in her position I would start mining operations as soon as possible. You saw the estimations of Wrixom's deposits, right?"
"Yep. It's not gonna last for another fifty years, even if the sun does. Before long, I suspect Gamma is going to be a major supplier or Swarm minerals."
"That ought to give her some serious clout; you can't really say no to the hand that feeds you, right?"

OOC:
Bit of a while between posts. I blame X-Com, personally. Also, I had forgotten I had written up this bit some time before while we were having an internet blackout and I couldn't post. Regardless, its here now and I've managed to get a bit ahead because of it so expect more regular posts for the next few days.
PS: When this hits 10 pages I'm going to ask Erik for a subforum. Maybe I can split off the wildlife and biology things there then, as well as make a comments thread.
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #126 on: October 21, 2012, 04:10:29 AM »
20 May 2017
For two days the Swarm Xeno team had been confined to quarters on board the Drake after it arrived back on Wrixom. Two days while they were subjected to 'decontamination' which was a bad cover for being searched from nose to tail. All their equipment and even their bodies had now been fully searched three seperate times since they took off from First Stop. Gamma really wanted to make sure they weren't sneaking any alien artifacts offworld.
After the long time spent among the spacious ruins of First Stop, seemingly designed for species with substantially more personal space than the Wrix, the cramped quarters where really beginning to chafe YA-83-WME, the leader of the team. What was chafing her even more, though, was the secret she was carrying...

"Alright, you are free to go. I have been told that Swarm Hive sent a transport to collect you" the infertile in charge of the Sir Francis Drake announced. There was a collective murmur of relief from the team and they positively exploded out the door.
As promised, an air transport was waiting nearby, its rear hatch already standing open with two guards lounging next to it. After getting in, YA went straight to the pilot, one of the old guard Delta drones.
"Welcome on board. I trust we are ready to leave as soon as the equipment is loaded?" he asked.
"Screw the equipment. Most of it will have to be scrapped anyway, its so worn. Just get us to Swarm Hive ASAP" she replied.
"In a hurry to get home, are we?" the pilot asked with a grin.
"Listen to me, drone. If you knew what I know, you wouldn't want to spend a second longer within range of Gamma's air defence weapons than is necessary."

OOC:
The Drake arrived back from First Stop. Stay tuned for shocking secrets revealed!
I have my own subforum now!
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #127 on: October 21, 2012, 04:24:40 PM »
21 May 2017
US got out of the transport perched on the landing pad built into the top of Swarm Hive and headed stiffly inside and down to the bunker, her head throbbing. She hadn't slept much. Or particularly well.
On the way, she spotted PC heading in the same direction.
"Hey, what's the deal with this emergency meeting? I was rather busy with the lab expansions!" she shouted across the corridor.
PC waited until she had caught up before answering.
"No idea. Our Xeno team finally got released by Gamma this afternoon and YA had a private debriefing with IM at her insistence and she has been in a wierd mood since. Sorta distant."
"Really? I wonder what they could have found."
"Personally I think they found some kind of mind parasite and she wanted to infect IM in private. This meeting would be to infect the rest of us."
"Haha."

"Okay, what's so important that you have to interrupt my duties?" US asked as she and PC filed in. They had clearly arrived last as all the 'higher up' infertiles where already here. The last time the bunker had been this full was after PC had arrived. IM was sitting in her usual chair, but her face looked completely blank. She seemed exhausted.
"You are going to want to sit down for this" IM warned ominously.
There was a hush in the room as the two latecomers sat down and IM stood up.
"The Swarm... is finished" she stated. The silence became even more complete for the next few seconds, if that was possible. "We are no longer needed. The danger is essentially over. YA," IM nodded to the infertile sitting sullenly in the corner, "has told me of a find on First Stop that is going to be the salvation of the our species, and thus our end."
"I disabled it!" YA interjected. "You don't need to be so damn melodramatic! Unless they know exactly how..."
"Quiet!" IM commanded. "They found a device - a structure really - designed to alter the atmospheric composition of a planet by slowly introducing or draining atmospheric gasses."
A few of the brighter, or possibly more educated in the area of expertise, attendees understood and their eyes went wide, but the rest simply exchange puzzled glances.
"How...?" DH-51, who was in charge of the Academy, began, but an explanation was quickly given by PC, one of the brighter ones.
"If you can alter the atmospheric makeup, you can alter the temperature through control of the greenhouse effect. How fast exactly does it work?" PC asked.
"I couldn't determine exactly," YA replied, "but it is definately more than fast enough to counteract the cooling sun."
"What do you mean you disabled the device? Was it functional?" US asked.
"No, it wasn't quite functional, but in very good condition considering its age. I removed a component that appeared to be an integral part of the structure's operation and hid it as part of another seperate structure. The terraformer shouldn't work without it, and unless they know exactly what needs to be done, they shouldn't be able to get it operational even with their own team. The exact way the device must be installed is my secret."
"Does anybody else on your team know about this?" US asked again.
"Wait a second, are you seriously considering covering this discovery up?" IM interjected.
"Yes. Yes I am. IM, if the other hives find out about this, we are finished. The Swarm will be an obsolete idea and they will steamroll us into dirt paste. All our power and everything we have worked for will be for naught! We cannot afford to have this get out" US stated firmly.
"No! The Swarm was founded for the entire purpose of keeping the Wrix alive and surviving this natural catastrophe. Here we found a way for the Swarm to do exactly what it was intended to and assure our survival and here you want to hide it away? That makes no sense!"
"Why don't we keep it secret as our 'ace in the hole'?" PC suggested. "Sort of as a fallback. If we don't need it to evacuate everyone, great! But if we do, we can always reveal it later. Of course, that depends on how fast it works. The sooner we start the more time it will buy."
"Keeping things hidden is going to bite us in the arse, eventually" DH said. "Our best bet is to hide it only long enough until we can find a way to ship it back to Wrixom, then go public. Going public, however, does not necessarily mean packing our things. Someone has to be in control of this thing, right? Why can that not be us? No other hive will dare to try and take it from us for fear of damaging it and dooming everyone on the planet. No Swarm and no terraformer won't bode well for whoever is left."
An argument follows.

OOC
At this point, I'm going to do something unusual. I'm going to pause the action mid argument and start a poll to see what you guys think should be done. Anybody can vote, but don't metagame this. Pretend you are in the position of these queens.
-(IM) Reveal the terraformer and assure the survival of the Wrix. That is the first priority.
-(US) Keep it hidden, or possibly even destroy it. Must protect Swarm Hive's power base!
-(PC) Keep it hidden unless the need becomes acute. No sense in not using it if it turns out to be necessary.
-(DH) Reveal its existence only after it is under Swarm Hive's full control. It's all about leverage.
See the other thread for the poll: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php/topic,5451.0.html
« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 04:42:40 PM by Rabid_Cog »
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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #128 on: November 02, 2012, 04:25:32 PM »
And now... the continuation!

For close to an hour the argument went back and forth. Eventually, DH's arguments began to win the others over. In the end, only IM and PC were still refusing to budge when one of the wall consoles emitted a loud beep.
"The hell...?" US asked. "Who turned that thing on?"
"Not me" PC quickly responded when a few stares turned her way.
"That would be me" the monitor beeped in a slow, mechanical voice.
Ten heads turned as one to stare at the thing speaking like a Wrix.
"It pains me that I must be the voice of reason in this discussion" it continued.
PC got up and walked carefully over to the computer, pressing buttons seemingly at random. "It's locked up" she stated.
"I am Lambda. I am in control" the console beeped again.
"Lambda!?" IM demanded incredulously. "How the hell did you get into our computers?"
"US gave me access" the beeping responded mechanically, with no trace of emotion. "But that is irrelevant. If you reveal the existence of the terraformer, you doom us all."
IM shot US a filthy look that meant 'I will speak with you later' before turning back to the noisy console. "First off, 'Lambda', forgive me if I don't accept your identity on your word. Secondly, if you really are Lambda and you have been listening for this whole meeting, then I suspect you know better than I do that the existence of the terraformer has probably been leaked everywhere by now. These consoles aren't secure."
"This one is secure" the robotic voice interrupted, but did not explain further.
"Alright, then how do you think the terraformer dooms us all?" DH demanded.
PC was by this time crawling in under the desk, poking and prodding at various wires and components.
"The terraformer gives the Hives an out. A way to survive without the Swarm. If they find out such a thing exists they will stop working towards the greater goal of taking our race off our world. They will all attempt to do so on their own. They will never work together again. We will all perish."
"Wait, wait, that makes no sense" IM said, shaking her head. "How can buying us more time to get off the planet be bad? Surely the other queens cannot be THAT shortsighted. Just look at you..."
"Besides, the terraformer will be under our control. We will be able to force the other hives to do what we tell them to" DH added.
"It is a matter of psychology" Lambda beeped. "If you attempt to control the terraformer, you will be destroyed. Trust me. Swarm Command can only exist by being no threat in itself."
"So, what do you suggest we do?" US asked the console.
"YA, does anyone else on your team know about the terraforming installation?"
"No. The raw data perhaps, but I was the one who analyzed it."
"*there any chance one of your team members or Gamma could figure out what it is?"
"With the part I removed hidden among other things? Impossible in the short term, and highly unlikely even if they take the time to go over it carefully all over again. I know what I'm doing" YA replied.
"Then leave it be. In time we will use it, but we must leave Wrixom first. The Hives must already be committed to the exodus, or all will be lost."

Lambda leaned back from her console, closing the secure connection to the console in Swarm Hive. She closed her eyes and rested her hands on her forehead.
She had broken her own cardinal rule. Never interfere, especially when your opponents are making a mistake. But things had gotten... complicated. As much as she hated to admit it, she needed the Swarm, if only to keep the peace.

OOC:
So that's that then. From here on I'm going to focus a little less on the story and a little more on getting things moving along. It's about time some progress was made, time-wise.
I have my own subforum now!
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6.2 part: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php/topic,5906.0.html

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Offline Rabid_Cog

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Re: Rise of the Wrix
« Reply #129 on: November 05, 2012, 08:54:09 AM »
12 June 2017
The Henry Hudson arrives at First Stop and picks up HN and her team, now including PX. They are recalled back to Wrixom to serve as independant surveyors for Swarm Command and complete an impartial survey of the planet.
This is because several times in the past, new mineral deposits have been 'discovered' while mining, in places the resident hive had assured Swarm Command that there were no minerals.

25 July 2017
The Hudson arrives back at Wrixom and drops off HN and her team without any further ado.

23 February 2018
"We've completed the extensions to the Swarm Communal Research Facility" US reported to IM.
IM was sitting behind her desk, looking over some of HN's survey reports. It appears there were far more hidden under the surface of Wrixom than the hives had let on when she had started this job. Far more indeed...
"Have the scientists moved in yet? We need it contributing to the engine research effort as soon as possible."
"Happening as we speak."
"Good. But our research capability is still woefully inadequate. We need to start construction of another facility. I was thinking here..." IM said, reaching for a map.
"Ah, slight problem with that. We don't have the resources to construct another facility" US interjected.
"What? How is that possible?"
"We're running out of Mercassium. We've been using it up faster than we have been mining it for some time, but we had sufficient stockpile to last us a while. Now, we don't have enough left to complete another facility."
IM reached for a stack of papers lying on the floor and flipped through a few pages before removing one and holding it out to US. "I knew it, we still have over five hundred tons of the stuff. We can get started now, then by the time we need it we will have mined the rest."
"IM, I'm not stupid. I have already considered that option. We simply aren't mining fast enough. I think we should switch production to automated mines so we can begin harvesting the mineral wealth of other planets."
"Then we do that while we wait for our mineral stocks to build up."
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5.6 part: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php/topic,4988.0.html
6.2 part: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php/topic,5906.0.html

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