Author Topic: History of Mankind after COVID19 pandemic (conventional start, 1st January 2021)  (Read 2758 times)

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COVID-19 PANDEMIC TIMELINE

December 2019

First sightings of coughing, restless people loitering around the streets of Wuhan, China.

January 2020

Local police forces receive more and more reports of aggressive patients sick with some kind of pneumonia.
Government announces Wuhan is to be quarantined.
Some people need to be welded into their apartments as their aggressiveness rises and they break into the streets to literally attack everyone on sight.

February 2020

Chinese government approves use of military force to pacify the most aggressive infected.
Novel coronavirus cases spotted in Asia, Europe, Middle East and USA, many patients show aggressive, antisocial behaviours.
16th February, a Chinese soldier bled out after receiving severe bite wounds during violence outbreak in local hospital.
Consipracy theories about 5G and aliens grow in popularity.
China introduces "shoot on sight" protocols when dealing with infected.
24th February, soldiers shot a journalist to death after he tried to leak info about the massacres to the world.
USA: COVID is a hoax.

March 2020

Sightings of large gatherings of aggressive, sick crowds.
Europe enters quarantine.
Small Chinese village bombed with napalm, reasons and attackers remain unknown to the public.
Switzerland evacuates citizens into the nuclear shelters.
Patrols of Swiss army seen sweeping the streets of desolated cities.
Rumours about armies of the world to shoot infected on sight.
USA president receives a report on the pioneer studies of effects caused by novel coronavirus and claims it a hoax.
Report leaks into the public (official news say hackers hijacked president's twitter account), seeding mass panic.
Novel coronavirus, aside from pneumonia- and flu-like symptoms causes insomnia, paranoia, a spike in agression and need for compulsive biting and neverending hunger, symptoms appear roughly after two weeks.
Zombie apocalypse is officially inaugurated as US citizens stockpile guns.
Panic store looting begins, toilet paper shortages.
Armed groups seen in Texas, gunning down the infected they encounter.
USA: COVID is a hoax.
Citizens of Europe stay at home in fear of the zombies.
China claims they dealt with COVID, gets praised by WHO, several cities recover after severe napalm bombardments.
People in US buy even more guns.

April-May 2020

USA: COVID is a hoax.
US citizens seen giving zombies hugs and getting bitten volountairly to prove that coronavirus is a hoax.
Swiss army successfully purges the country from zombies, citizens slowly emerge out of the bunkers.
Ammo shortages across the entire US.
Rumours about microchips in the awaited vaccine and mind-controlling devices in face masks.
Still no toilet paper.

June 2020

European armies decimate zombie populations.
Survivors step out of their shelters.
Coughing is banned under capital penalty carried out immediately by the nearest COVID response team.
Despite way less guns around, Europe holds on much better than US. Maybe because less people in Europe claim that COVID is a hoax than in US.
USA: COVID is a hoax.
Riots break out, mass panic looting ensues.
Zombie hordes rapidly decimate American population in the biggest cities, just like in zombie movies.
Toilet paper becomes an official currency of the post-apocalyptic world.
Strictly organized societies of South Korea or Japan deal with zombies efficiently.
First societies of the post-apocalyptic Europe emerge, expanding, reclaiming, trading and fighting. And killing zombies.

July-August 2020

Europe continues to recover, although more and more news about zombie sightings appear.
USA: COVID is a hoax.
Independent psychologists' team claims to have found the potential to manipulate with the wearer's mind hidden within the structure of a face mask.
Several US cities bombed with napalm in order to stop the zombie threat.
China bombs a few small towns, officials deny any new rise of COVID cases.

September-November 2020

USA goes silent, the last reports claiming up to 40% of the population becoming zombified, the country falls into total anarchy, experts estimate it's a matter of weeks before 99% of the population gets either zombified or killed in brutal fights over the last few toilet paper rolls.
Europe recognizes the second wave way too late and most of the surviving population falls to the zombies, established societies get torn apart as the world ends for the second time.
Switzerland government evacuates its citizens into the bunkers once again, military reinforces chokepoints in the Alps to easily fend off infected.
Supposed alien sightings increasing.

December 2020

COVID vaccine arrives at last.
Most of the zombies starve to death due to lack of prey.
Immune survivors finish off the rest.
During 2020 the population got decimated to roughly half a billion, the Old World and its economy and politics are permanently gone.
18th December, the World Government reveals itself officially at last as the microchip bundled with the vaccine subtly mind-controls the remaining population. Half a bilion human survivors don't oppose.
5G allows very effective and reliable communication across the entire solar system. Human eyes turn into the night skies.
Microchips keep the subtle mind-control activated, allowing the survivors of the COVID-19 pandemic to cooperate. Space-X brings back the topic of Mars conquest.
30th December, Swiss astrophysicists discovers the long-debated 9th planet of the Solar System, orbiting the Sun at the distance far greater than any other known celestial bodies within the Solar System. Name "Nibiru" sticks as a form of legacy of some conspiracy theories from the first two decades of XXI century.

DAWN OF SPACE ERA

January 2021

Scientists across the globe discover an array of new metal and plastic alloys like never before - much lighter yet much sturdier than conventional alloys. Industrial productions skyrocketes.

2020s

New alloys find applications literally everywhere, laying theoretical foundations for next generation of supercomputers and electronics, nanobots capable, at least in theory, of even modifying and enchancing genetics, cybernetics implants, ultra light yet tough vehicles which can be anything ranging from a small car to a huge spaceship, new propulsion technologies and energetic weapons.
Global police forces appear, wielding pioneer laser weapons and stun bats.
Alongside the microchip, first cybernetics implants make it to the market. Dawn of the cyberpunk begins.
Engineering team from Australia designs super sensitive geological sensors capable of detecting valuable mineral deposits of a celestial body directly from the orbit.
26th March 2026 Space-X launches first manned mission to Mars. Space suits and landers made out of the new alloys allow landing on Venus and entering the upper atmosphere of gas giants safely as well.
Nuclear propulsion technology finally arrives in first prototypes.
A spaceship capable of reaching all the celestial bodies within Solar System up to Pluto is designed, hosting its crew for up to a year-long stay in deep space. It's mission: find potential targets for mining and colonisation.


Code: [Select]
Scorpion class Geological Survey Vessel      3,178 tons       50 Crew       257.3 BP       TCS 64    TH 150    EM 0
2360 km/s      Armour 1-19       Shields 0-0       HTK 19      Sensors 0/0/0/1      DCR 1      PPV 0
Maint Life 1.58 Years     MSP 50    AFR 81%    IFR 1.1%    1YR 23    5YR 346    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Nuclear Thermal Engine  EP50.00 (3)    Power 150    Fuel Use 100%    Signature 50    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 250,000 Litres    Range 14.2 billion km (69 days at full power)

Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


The mission turns out to be a huge success, the ship is insanely fast, like no human vessel was before.
4th February 2028 due to hidden fuel tank leakage Scorpion 001 gets stranded drifting through deep space beyond Saturn's orbit. The crew successfully managed to deccelerate enough for them to not fly away from the Solar System at the speed of 2360km/s, burning last reserves in the process. Desperate race with time begins.
A concept of a new ship is born, designed specifically to deliver fuel to help any crew unfortunate enough to get standed out there in the enternal darkness.


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Zephyr class Tanker      6,852 tons       100 Crew       316.1 BP       TCS 137    TH 350    EM 0
2554 km/s      Armour 1-32       Shields 0-0       HTK 46      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
Maint Life 0.41 Years     MSP 28    AFR 376%    IFR 5.2%    1YR 69    5YR 1,033    Max Repair 25 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 3 months    Morale Check Required   

Nuclear Thermal Engine  EP50.00 (7)    Power 350    Fuel Use 100%    Signature 50    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 26.3 billion km (119 days at full power)
Refuelling Capability: 50,000 litres per hour     Complete Refuel 20 hours

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


17th September 2028, Scorpion 001 crew reports severe engine failure, engineers manage to repair it enough so it can still fly without irradiating everybody on board.
2nd October 2028, Scorpion 001 crew reports food running low, tight rationing begins. A small scratch appears on the window in one of the crew rooms, the room gets sealed off immediately and all the air gets vented out of it.
15th October 2028, Zephyr 001 finishes construction and is ready for the rescue mission.
20th October 2028, Zephyr 001 successfully delivers fuel, both ships return to Earth, Scorpion 001 is repaired and overhauled. All crewmembers survived and didn't suffer from any long-term health problems.
After the successful rescue the World Government establishes an honourable organisation called Fuel Rats incorporating all the ships, crews and everyone involved in fuel-related deep space rescue operations.
Scientists begin to think about setting up a mining colony on the Moon.
Forgotten questions and hypothesis about terraforming of Mars resurface again.
Industry on Earth blossoms as the new alloys find wider and wider applications, the entire economy becomes dependent on it.

2030s

Infrastructures for keeping humans alive on the Moon permanently are designed and prototyped.
Construction of an orbital shipyard and spaceport begins.
1st April 2034 first human being successfully enters and exits cryostasis sleep. The test gets redone the next day to dement gossips that it was a joke pulled out by some bored Winterspell Inc scientist.
Improvements to the nuclear engines are being made, new designs appear.
First cargo ship gets designed, it's mission - deliver the necessary installments and facilities to the Moon.


Code: [Select]
Bee class Cargo Ship      21,236 tons       94 Crew       294.4 BP       TCS 425    TH 313    EM 0
735 km/s      Armour 1-68       Shields 0-0       HTK 40      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 8    Max Repair 20 MSP
Cargo 10,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 6   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Nuclear Thermal Engine  EP62.5 (5)    Power 312.5    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 62.5    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 250,000 Litres    Range 18.9 billion km (298 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


World Government announces contest for civilian corporations for the improved design.
Private sector begins to catch up to the governmental efforts of conquering the space.
First implants slowing down ageing appear.
Medicine blossoms thanks to synthetic organ farms and blood cells replicators.
First ship to transfer civilian passengers and security forces appear, experimental use of cryogenic chambers to cut the costs on life support and allow easier colonisation of Mars in the future.


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Arden class Colony Ship      18,557 tons       101 Crew       430.6 BP       TCS 371    TH 313    EM 0
842 km/s      Armour 1-62       Shields 0-0       HTK 49      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 14    Max Repair 100 MSP
Troop Capacity 6,100 tons     Cryogenic Berths 10,000   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Nuclear Thermal Engine  EP62.5 (5)    Power 312.5    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 62.5    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 250,000 Litres    Range 21.7 billion km (298 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


SOLAR SYSTEM CONQUEST

15th November 2039, first colonists land on the Moon. It's a small step for the man, but one giant step for the mankind.
Mining operations begin, colony infrastructure expands.
Fleet of Bees is used to transfer smelted alloys from Moon to the Earth. Private corporations help keep the colony resupplied.

2040s

Millions of carefully selected colonists arrive on the Moon.
21th July, 2045, a small outpost is established on Mars. Dreams come true for many. Extensive research of the terraforming processes begins.
Cargo fleets can't keep up with sending minerals from Mars and Moons and keeping both colonies well-sustained. A group of African Engineers propose a seemingly insane solution - use the latest breakthroughs in the nuclear pulse technology to send the packets of alloys through a carefully-designed devices called Mass Drivers placed on orbit. The usage assumes calculating the speed vector needed for the alloys to arrive at desired destination, propelling them and having similar devices surrounding the target body, responsible for catching the packets and deccelerating them. Over the fear of accidential "asteroid strikes" which could happen due to Mass Driver failures sent alloys are divided into the packets small and fast enough to completely burn in the target body's atmosphere should the capturing process fail.
Mass Drivers get updated with experimental laser cannons just to have another layer of security should the capture fail.
2nd August 2047, first packet of alloys is sent from the Moon, Earth's array of Mass Drives successfully intercepts the package. Civilian space shipping lines raise concerns over Mass Drivers ruining their buisnesses.

First experminetal complexes for sucking out and pumping in gases on a planetary scale are developed in North America, seeding foundation for terraforming technology.
A dozen milions colonists inhabit the Red Planet.
21th December 2049, terraformation of Mars officially begins. First goal: remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, leaving only small traces of it for the future plant life to blossom.
Two new cargo ships appear:


Code: [Select]
Pelican class Cargo Ship      69,904 tons       150 Crew       626.2 BP       TCS 1,398    TH 800    EM 0
572 km/s      Armour 1-151       Shields 0-0       HTK 51      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 5    Max Repair 50 MSP
Cargo 50,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 9   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP160.0 (5)    Power 800    Fuel Use 8.84%    Signature 160    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 400,000 Litres    Range 11.6 billion km (235 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Gremlin class Cargo Ship      22,075 tons       162 Crew       526.1 BP       TCS 441    TH 800    EM 0
1812 km/s      Armour 1-70       Shields 0-0       HTK 57      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 14    Max Repair 40 MSP
Cargo 5,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 15   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months   

Commercial Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP160.0 (5)    Power 800    Fuel Use 8.84%    Signature 160    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 500,000 Litres    Range 46.1 billion km (294 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


2050s

A team of psychologists, psychiatrists, neurologists and programmers lays foundation for the development of psionic technology beyond the limited capabilities of COVID-19 vaccine microchip.
Bionic body parts grow in popularity after engineers successfully plant artificial skin on them, making them indistinguishable from the natural parts even with the help of all six senses.
People still wait for the premiere of Cyberpunk 2077, scheduled for 10th December 2077.
Sucking out carbon dioxide out of Mars's atmosphere proceeds as expected, minor improvements to the technology involved are made, speeding up the process a bit.
Earth's population crosses first billion.
With the design of latest laser beams small celestial body mining directly from space is now a possibility.
Asteroid mining becomes a profitable possibility at last, a new fleet of spaceships is being prepared for the task. Several civilian space corporations come up with their own ideas and designs.


Code: [Select]
Albatross class Mining Platform      70,911 tons       425 Crew       1,462.9 BP       TCS 1,418    TH 625    EM 0
440 km/s      Armour 1-152       Shields 0-0       HTK 101      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 12    Max Repair 120 MSP
Cargo 25,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months   
Orbital Miner: 5 modules producing 70 tons per mineral per annum

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (5)    Power 625    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 700,000 Litres    Range 15.9 billion km (417 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


20th November 2055, large, fully automated and controlled by AI mining and smelting facility is established on the surface of Mercury.
A loose proposal of a terraforming space station being placed on the Venu's orbit is written. Due to the sheer complications associated with the project and the terraforming technology still being experimental, the World Government cancels the project, focusing on properly terraforming Mars before heading for something as difficult as terraforming Venus.
A better colony ships are being constructed to help accelerate the growth of Martian population. Project Zion assumes bringing in at least ten milion additional colonists within short span of time.


Code: [Select]
Zion class Colony Ship      55,821 tons       312 Crew       1,890.6 BP       TCS 1,116    TH 750    EM 0
671 km/s      Armour 1-130       Shields 0-0       HTK 106      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 21    Max Repair 100 MSP
Troop Capacity 10,000 tons     Cryogenic Berths 100,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (6)    Power 750    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 28.8 billion km (496 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Future goals for the Project Zion include reaching out to distant celestial bodies like Titan or Europa and establishing permanent populations there as well.
As colonisation of gas giants' moons is brought up, a young scientist comes up with an idea of a fuel harvesting space station which would get placed on a gas gaint's orbit and have all the neccessary facilities for shiponing components directly from a gas giant's atmosphere and synthesising fuel out of them which would then get distributed across the inhabited worlds using an upgraded version of Zephyr class ships.
In order to place the behemoth of a space station large enough to fulfill the necessary criteria for such an undertaking out there on gas giant's orbit, the young genius proposes usage of a special ships that'd be almost pure engine and fuel mass, capable of accelerating and deccelerating installations linked to them with a tractor beam.
The government firstly rejects the project as being way too expensive for the time being and intends to freeze it until the industry grows large enough, but eventually accepts it being persuaded by the argument that such station could serve as a deep space refuelling point, easing the task of Fuel Rats and Zion Project alike, and most importantly allowing spaceships to reach Nibiru and uncover the mysteries of this planet.

The work on the Project Aether responsible for shiponing gas giants begins. Soon the project of the harvesting space station is drawn:


Code: [Select]
Aether class Fuel Harvester Station      147,436 tons       140 Crew       3,169.6 BP       TCS 2,949    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      Armour 1-248       Shields 0-0       HTK 82      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 13    Max Repair 2400 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months   
Fuel Harvester: 13 modules producing 520,000 litres per annum
Refuelling Hub - Capable of refuelling multiple ships simultaneously

Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range N/A

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


To organise the logistics of fuel transport to the inhabited worlds a new transport vessel is proposed, meant to replace the Zephyr class who served in the Fuel Rats till then:


Code: [Select]
Hamster class Tanker      10,727 tons       90 Crew       301.6 BP       TCS 215    TH 625    EM 0
2913 km/s      Armour 1-43       Shields 0-0       HTK 35      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 17    Max Repair 31.25 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (5)    Power 625    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,500,000 Litres    Range 225.1 billion km (894 days at full power)
Refuelling Capability: 50,000 litres per hour     Complete Refuel 30 hours

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


This new spaceship maintains a decent speed while being able to transfer quite a lot of fuel given it barely consumes any through its voyages to the gas giants and back.
The hardest part is figuring out how to transfer the 150k tons monstrosity into the gas giant's orbit. After a long debate a tug ship gets prototyped and accepted, proven powerful enough to accelerate and deccelerate both itself and the Aether space station. At some point plans to build the station directly in the target's orbit appeared, but they were quickly rejected as it'd take way too much effort and time while removing the possibility to transfer the station around as needed in the future.


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Hammerhead class Tug      10,206 tons       142 Crew       964.9 BP       TCS 204    TH 1,250    EM 0
6124 km/s      Armour 1-41       Shields 0-0       HTK 95      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
Maint Life 2.30 Years     MSP 859    AFR 833%    IFR 11.6%    1YR 221    5YR 3,314    Max Repair 100 MSP
Tractor Beam     
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months    Morale Check Required   

Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP62.50 (20)    Power 1250.0    Fuel Use 247.05%    Signature 62.5    Explosion 12%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 14.3 billion km (26 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Assembling the harvesting fleet is expected to take several years, despite exponentially growing industry.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:10:15 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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2060s

A group of carefully selected soldiers acquires psionic implants to help with keeping the Moon and Mars population under better control. Scandal surfaces when one of the troops commits rape by mind-controlling his victim rather than doing it the old fashioned way. Concerns about public security rise. Selection criteria for psi program get tightened.
Psychologists and psychiatrists propose civilian usage of psionics to help treat their patients. Such deep access to one's mind could start a revolution in these fields, they say.
20th April, 2066, fuel harvesting fleet finally gets assembled and is ready to begin its journey. Saturn gets selected as a destination due to the easy access to the fuel components it provides compared to the rest of gas giants.
11th August, 2066 due to miscalculations in flight route escorting Hammerheads run out of fuel just a few dozen milion kilometers from their destination. the toughest Fuel Rats rescue operation begins.
25th December 2066, Fuel Rats join the stranded fleet and spend the Christmas together as everyone celebrates yet another successful operation with no casualties.
15th January 2067, Project Aether is proven to be a success as the first ton of fuel gets produced at the space station.
Mars terraforming continues, temperatures rise gradually and the atmospheric pressure increases as Nitrogen, Oxygen and greenhouse gasses get pumped into the Martian air.
Finally the ice sheets melt, creating first oceans on the surface and the colonists living there witness the first rain.
The whole Martian production gets focused on building more terraforming installations to speed up the process. At this rate sceintists estimate it'll take only ten years or so till the planet's temperature, atmosphere and hydrosphere will reach Earth's levels.
Asteroid mining starts to take off seriously as more and more mining ships are being built.
Infantry units spotted wielding new models of laser rifles.
In the late 2060s human eyes turn beyond the Solar System, this time more seriously than ever. More accurate models of Alcubierre Drive geometry are being published as first Ion engines make it to the space industry. Warp drives would need even more power to work, though. Antimatter reactors get proposed as a good energy source, however humanity still can't produce enough of them. In the meantime scientists get closer than ever to recreate the fusion reaction happening in the stars.
SETI program receives additional fundings and advancements are made in the field of sending and tracking signals across deep space.
encouraged by the success of Project Aether and with Mars terraformation making huge leaps, American engineering team begins to raise funds for Project Terraria. It assumes placing a giant network of space stations just above the atmosphere of Venus and begin the terraformation process from space as setting up a colony on the surface is still way too taxing on human economy and industry.
Prototype energy shields are being created in order to better protect the mining ships operating within asteroid belt.
A mission to Nibiru is launched, however even with the help of refuelling hub on Saturn's orbit the journey proves to be too long for the Scorpion class survey ships. A need for modern geosurvey vessel rises and is quickly met.


Code: [Select]
Bob class Geological Survey Vessel      8,489 tons       83 Crew       397.3 BP       TCS 170    TH 625    EM 0
3681 km/s      Armour 1-37       Shields 0-0       HTK 34      Sensors 0/0/0/1      DCR 1      PPV 0
Maint Life 3.34 Years     MSP 1,229    AFR 576%    IFR 8.0%    1YR 167    5YR 2,508    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months    Morale Check Required   

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (5)    Power 625    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 189.6 billion km (596 days at full power)

Geological Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


The ship's first task will involve scanning the asteroids floating beyond gas giants' orbits as at this point they're much easier to reach and exploit than Nibiru.

2070s

Project Terraria team designs and starts building the space station for terraforming Venus:


Code: [Select]
Terraria class Terraforming Station      154,709 tons       610 Crew       3,566.7 BP       TCS 3,094    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      Armour 1-256       Shields 0-0       HTK 89      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 14    Max Repair 500 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Terraformer: 6 modules producing 0.0036 atm per annum


This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


More are constructed and put into Venusian orbit as years pass by.
Aether station proves to be ineffective in delivering large quantities of fuel in the long run, so a fleet of new fuel harvester ships gets quickly assembled to help speed the process up.


Code: [Select]
Vulture class Fuel Harvester      34,465 tons       190 Crew       687.6 BP       TCS 689    TH 625    EM 0
906 km/s      Armour 1-94       Shields 0-0       HTK 87      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 12    Max Repair 31.25 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Fuel Harvester: 10 modules producing 400,000 litres per annum

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (5)    Power 625    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 46.7 billion km (596 days at full power)
Refuelling Capability: 50,000 litres per hour     Complete Refuel 20 hours

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Engineers work on putting a giant installation above Mars to generate magnetic field for the planet.
Even after decades have passed toilet paper is still an official currency as the industry never recovered.
Obviously cash is a thing long gone, a relic of the past only the oldest people remember, but it's not like there's a lot of toilet paper left to support cash anyways.
Paparazzis reveal photos of the richest people in the Solar System wiping their asses with toilet paper as urban legends of the secret bunkers from 2020 containing tons of toilet paper still remaining buried beneath the ground circulate among the population.
1th May 2075, the terraformation of Mars is completed and this day marks the official swicthoff of terraforming infrastructure. The planet now has magnetic field, atmosphere matching Earth's by 97,68%, average surface temperature of 14,6 C and over half the planet is covered in liquid water. The radiation has been successfully cleansed and lush flora and fauna thrive on the surface, in the air and below the ground. Citizens begin to spread across the surface, freed from the airtight cities at last.
10th December 2077, Cyberpunk 2077 finally gets released. This is considered the most important historical event of the century. Devs promise to add support for the matrix users "soon".
Arasaka Inc sues CDPR for "hurting their PR", however loses as CDPR proves that the corporation's income increased by 3,5% after game release.
citizens of Night City raise concerns over insane traffic jams like never before and crowded streets, tourist sector sees an increase of 5678% in revenue.
A copy of the game is broadcasted into outer space by a bored SETI technician, fear of alien invasion drops significantly.

2080s

Terraforming of Venus is expected to take over 800 years at the current rate, more Terraria stations are being deployed constantly, the goal for the next decades is to have their numbers multiplied by 10.
The ever-hungry industry and the inevitably depleting resources grind Terraria assembling process to a halt.
More and more mining ships are being constructed. Debate over on which asteroids focus first and how many ships send there rises. Improvement of the space mining technology gets a higher priority.
Better laser cannons are getting deployed, engineers propose to ruse those weapons to help with mining. Military-grade lasers seem to promise good results for civilian usage as well.
20th October 2083, after a failed mission to reach Nibiru, Scorpion 001, the first spaceship ever built out of improved alloys discovered in 2020s (even though no longer in use, all current materials are based on their recipes), finally gets decomissioned. Generations of astronauts served on its board, flying across the entire Solar System (well, excluding Nibiru, obviously...), and despite several fuel shortages and failing equipment in deep space everyone who flew this ship safely returned home to tell the tale. It was kept maintained despite Bob class replacing it and not much tasks left for it to accomplish simply out of sentiment, but eventually the time has come to put it out of service officially. It can be visited in the Mankind's Museum of Space Exploration and Colonisation.
21th October 2083, mission to Nibiru is finally launched.
25th February 2084, the crew of Bob 001 lands on Nibiru and begins geosurvey. It quickly turns out that the mysterious large planet's mountainous terrain is filled with all kinds of minerals, making it an excellent spot for setting up mining colony. At this distance the sun doesn't provide much light anymore and the planet remains spooky and a bit dark even during the day. Its atmosphere is composed of only Hydrogen and Helium, appaerently only two gases that didn't freeze in the almost absolute 0 surface temperatures.
Its two moons are named using two names for babylonian god of moon, Enzu and Zuen.
The abundance of minerals and the strange shapes of some peaks and valleys make the conspiracy theories grow in popularity. Some tinfoil hat wearers claim to have "evidence" that Nibiru was once inhabited by aliens who made contact with the ancient Earth.
Plans to set up an outpost on the surface postponed for now as with the current technology the ships to reach the planet and go back would either be too slow or carry too little cargo to make it worthwile, the government agrees it's better to focus on the asteroids and gas giant's moons first.
6th March 2085, first colonists land on Europa. Terraformation process begins, scientists estimate it shouldn't be too difficult except for pumping out all the excessive water that'll flood the entire surface once the ice melts. Titan is expected to be the next one to be colonized.
A scientist from Asia suggests using railguns to bombard large asteroids and cut them into smaller, suitable for mining ships pieces and comes up with an early prototype of such railgun. It is way too large and impractical, laser technology appears more viable.
Desperate demand for asteroid mining boosts the private sector, economy enters golden age. Of course still only the richest can afford to wipe their asses with toilet paper.
At this point most of the transfer of goods and people is done by private space corporations. A pioneer program launches which allows any (rich enough...) citizen to apply for a piloting license and be able to buy a spaceship and roam freely across the Solar System. Strict psychological evaluation is the key requirement for being able to sign up for a course. Psychologists employed praise psionic technology.
Ships being built on Mars get praised for high quality. Lower gravity makes it a better place than Earth for such tasks.
As Earth's population growth slows down a bit, planet-wide program is launched to encurage women to get more children. Radical feminists protest across the globe. Human farms are firstly discussed not in terms of science fiction, but science and engineering. Data on the first sketchs leaks into the public, causing massive outrage.
After decades of struggling, Militech Inc is the first corporation to officially acknowledge combat spaceship as one of the human genders. As the CEO behind the change was born in the Moon outpost, skeptics joke that "he fell off the Moon". Some point out that currently no combat spaceships exist out there in space. Another problem is that in case such ships will be needed and built, reffering to them as "her" will get complicated. No one in Militech Inc management was able to tell how to call them when asked by the press. And don't even think about various classes of combat spaceships.
A weird genius who came to Europa with the first wave of colonists to escape from "too crowded" Moon claims to be on the brink of figuring out ways to bend space provided enough energy is supplied. Skeptics say that even the most powerful quantum computer he could reasonably acquire won't be able to compete with the entire teams working on FTL propulsion theory in governmental labs. Others point out that while he alone obviously won't be able to came out with Alcubierre Drive project ready for construction, his insights may prove to be important for the progress and call for some respect towards the scientist. After all, we all want to go interstellar, they say.
Scientists successfully recreate fusion reaction, revolution in power production begins.

2090s

Europa terraforming goes smoothly, main challenge is to evaporate the excess water as the ice starts to melt and protect the population already living on the surface from drowning.
Most of the population has to be temporairly evacuated to the orbit, private corporations handle this, mining operations grind to a halt.
on Earth an improved version of the Terraria space station is designed, experts say that around 300 of these should be put on Venus orbit to finish terraforming by the end of the next century.


Code: [Select]
Terraria 1.4 class Terraforming Station      506,120 tons       2,010 Crew       10,979.3 BP       TCS 10,122    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 294      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 13    Max Repair 500 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Terraformer: 20 modules producing 0.015 atm per annum


This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


The most powerful ship ever is prototyped to transform the new stations:


Code: [Select]
Niagara class Tug      6,397 tons       152 Crew       1,558.2 BP       TCS 128    TH 492    EM 0
10991 km/s      Armour 1-30       Shields 0-0       HTK 38      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 0
Maint Life 5.00 Years     MSP 1,561    AFR 65%    IFR 0.9%    1YR 104    5YR 1,559    Max Repair 246.09375 MSP
Tractor Beam     
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 48 months    Morale Check Required   

Ion Drive  EP281.25 (5)    Power 1406.2    Fuel Use 180.0%    Signature 98.4375    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 15.6 billion km (16 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


As Terraria project officially receives the 1.4 update, assembling the new stations grinds to a halt due to lack of minerals. As asteroid mining isn't efficient enough, Martian engineers draw first sketches of plan to send people to Nibiru to begin mining operations whoch would easily supply the rest of the Solar System.
Another manned mission to Nibiru is laucnhed consisting of scientists (mainly geologists) and engineers to probe the rocks in detail to provide more info about the mineral composition of the planet. It is supposed to last one year.
Due to miscalculation in Fuel needed, ships that transported the research team need help from Fuel Rats. This raises questions on putting colonists on the surface reliably, but as Terraria 1.4 update is deemed more important amidst the resource crisis the government refuses to launch a new generation of colony ships, instead handles all the logistics to the private sector.
A young miner discovers a strange monolith in a cave, geologists claim it's an unusual rock formation, but nothing originating from some form of intelligence. The Nibiru survey provides more good news as new ore deposits are discovered every day. Geologists baffled as to how is it possible that this amount of minerals exists underground. Mining experts point out that the hard rocks and steep mountains are going to be a difficult environment for extracting the minerals, though.
After first three months of the mission several members of the ground task group report feeling stressed or depressed. Psychologists claim it's due to the depressing, dark surface of Nibiru and very long distance from the sun causing insufficient light expousure for the personnel.
A director from the Mars wants to film some scenes of her latest horror movie, "Gray Tentacles", on the surface of Nibiru. The moody scenery is very inspiring to her, says the director.
Once terraformed, the planet is expected to host over 34 bilions of people. The biggest challenge for the terraforming team would be not to make this planet habitable, but actually make it nice to live. Due to the potential it holds, Nibiru is considered to be transformed into a bustling world, not just a big-ass mining outpost for exploiting all the riches and moving on. For this, people need to actually want to live there compared to the two main worlds inhabited by humanity so far.
The scientist who moved to Europa claims to have found the equations for bending space using strong gravity forces and large amounts of energy. He requests to use facilities on Earth to perform experiments. Other scientists claim his equations "bullsmeg", but the newly founded lab on Cydonia agrees to grant him the ability to do whatever he wants for one year.
26th January 2097, the "Grandson of Alcubierre" as people started reffering him successfully warps space for half a milisecond.  Protons which were launched through the warp seemed to have slightly shorted destination arrival time than the control group launched in a neighbouring accelerator. The results of performed experiments are considered a major breakthrough in reaching the stars.
Depression, anxiety, paranoia and suicidal thoughts are common among Nibiru field research team members as they finally come back home. Psychologists baffled. Tinfoil hat wearers suggest psionic interference, but while psychiatrists agree that exposure to psionic waves could technically be an explanation for this phenomena, it was mostly due to the dark and depressing aura of the planet and it isn't that surprising that after spending one year out there those people would develop mental health issues. People on Earth and Mars protest about colonizing Nibiru, demaning automated mining complexes to be set there instead.
Government refuses to resign from the program. Instead psychological evaluation gets thightened, surpassing even the one for obtaining private space piloting license in its strictness and potential candidates are required to complete a special, though course on the usage of psionic powers to offset the depression and anxiety creeping out from the planet.

2100s

"Gray Tentacles" is deemed to be the horror of the century.
Some people from the Nibiru mission personnel upon watching the movie suffer a mental breakdown. They claim to dream about a vision of a distant past, of an ancient civilization, of a world destroyed, of the contact long made and lost, of the true fabric of the universe. Psionic scans done during their sleep confirmed this. Consipracy theories grow in popularity like never before. Massive outrage as the government continues preparation for colonizing and terraforming Nibiru.
A terrorist organization rises, demaning immediate stop into research of FTL propulsion systems and Alcubierre Drive. The latest gen of power armor and plasma rifles allows military forces to quickly neutralize them, nevertheless the population panics as more terrorist attacks occur.
In order to stop the threat ASAP and infiltrate their structures, the government makes basic psi training mandatory for every soldier and police officer. The difficulty and content of the training varies depending of mental capabilities of the personnel.
the program proves to be a success as the leaders of the organisation are quickly captured and it's only a matter of time till the rest of the terrorists are hunted down.
Ethics and biologists claim the increase of psionic powers among the population could speed up the human evolution. While everyone still needs a special psi implant to develop and use the power of mind as the powers don't occur naturally among humans, the children of psi-capable security and military personnel are proven to have stronger will and resistance to mental suffering as well as higher charisma than their peers born in families where none of parents have psionic implant installed.
24th November 2103, despite ongoing protests first group of colonists arrive on Nibiru. Toughest of the toughest, those people are tasked with conquering the planet and making it actually enjoyable to live on. Providing more sunlight is going to be the biggest challenge for terraformers.
2nd March 2104, terraforming installations are officially switched off on Europa and the grand logistic operation to dissasemble them, transfer and assemble again on Nibiru begins. While low gravity doesn't make Europa the best place to be, its citizens can now enjoy blue sky, chilly but fine weather and large oceans covering most of the surface.
The creator of "Gray Tentacles" announces beginning working on the sequel before the terraforming complexes "ruin Nibiru for filmmakers." Other artists of all kind seem to be obsessed with Nibiru as well, despite it being known for over 80 years by now.
3rd December 2109, amidst the rapidly progressing research into FTL propulsion, a team of engineers from Cydonia suggests that with all the knowledge gathered on the subject so far and the recalculations of energy usage depending on the contraction, effective speed and warp field geometry they should be able to create a prototype of an engine that will be able to achieve the velocity of up to 10c. Most of mainstream media quickly forget about Nibiru-related mysteries and protests to follow on the topic. Many people are confused as to whether they should continue protesting against Nibiru colonization or celebrate the dawn of Interstellar Era coming soon. Some speculate the government knew about this for quite some time and refused to share the knowledge with the public to then use the topic to derive the attention from the protests.

2110s

While FTL propulsion technology development is progressing rapidly, promising outstanding results, engineers on the Moon prepare ultra-fast probes that should be able to accelerate up to 0.3c. Teams behind them plan on sending them to the nearest stars, which should take no more than 20 years with the time to accelerate to max speed included. Once within close proximity to the star, the probe is not meant to deccelerate, but rather launch another probe that'll survey the system.
Feminists outraged as the government forces birth control on Nibiru due to shortage of life support systems for the growing population. Meanwhile feminist on Earth protest as the government tries to come up with campaigns to encourage women to give more births as the population growth stagnates after crossing the third bilion. When asked about this, the leader of feminst movement on Mars doesn't seem to notice any contradiction here.
To be fair, not only feminists, everyone living on Nibiru protests against forced birth control, which seems strange given how previously nobody wanted to live there, so why have children on the surface of this gray world.
Sociologists point out that matrix addiction is number one cause for people not wanting to start families. Why bother with such a great responsibility if you can experience the same in the simulation, however unlike in real life you can always opt out or reset the simulation should things not go your way.
the Overseer of Earth proposes to ban realistic feelings modules from the matrix so that having a virtual family won't be able to fully reconstruct the feelings of having a real one. Or broader, the virtual life won't be able to fully recreate the feelings of real life and cheat all the senses and human preception in a way which is currently possible.
Another wave of protests hits the Earth as many people don't see the reason to live outside the simulation when the simulation is as good as real life, but without having to actually struggle to get all the joys of it.
As the ban comes into effect, many people flee from Earth to the colonies. While this reinforces Mars on its rise to the Core World status, it further disturbs already disturbed Earth population growth.
Oddly enough, the exponentially growing popularity of the matrix doesn't affect productivity as the users still plug themselves out in the morning and go to work in real life to earn for matrix's subscription.
crime rates on Earth increase as illegal trade of realistic feelings modules thrives. The government threatens illegal buyers with a permanent ban from the matrix. Many lonely and miserable people still claim it's worth the risk as real life has nothing to offer them.
Due to the era of world peace lasting for a century now, the armies are too thin to maintain the growing unrest rate (mostly on Earth and Nibiru). The government sees the opportunity to kill two bats with one stone and declares mandatory military service for the most hardcore matrix users.
A new class of transport ships is desgined to help rapidly deploy pacifying forces when needed:


Code: [Select]
Guard class Troop Transport      52,797 tons       370 Crew       1,899.4 BP       TCS 1,056    TH 4,800    EM 0
4545 km/s      Armour 1-125       Shields 0-0       HTK 134      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 22    Max Repair 120 MSP
Troop Capacity 20,000 tons     
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months   

Commercial Magneto-plasma Drive  EP480.0 (10)    Power 4800    Fuel Use 5.77%    Signature 480    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 59 billion km (150 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Resource shortages continue as setting up mining operations on Nibiru goes slow due to the distance from Core Worlds and the protests. The government pumps even more funding into FTL research in hopes of extracting minerals from oustide Solar System ASAP.
Number of people reporting headaches and strange feelings of fear and anxiety continues to rise on Nibiru.
"They are here" - claims Nibiru miner one day after returning from work. Theoretically this shouldn't mean anything, but practically a cult started forming around him. Soldiers guarding Nibiru cities suggest illegal psionic influence. Obviously no one knows who is here as the cult leader didn't even bother with explaining his deity. His followers agree that "they are here" even though no one explained them who.
A psi-resistant espionage squad infiltrates cult, finding evidence of mind-control on the followers, which confirms all theories about the founding and the way the cult works. What is odd is that the leader also seems to be slightly mind-controlled, but that might be the result of the microchip the government's been putting in their citizens' heads for a century by now. Even with numerous upgrades it received for all those years it still doesn't influence human brain for all the protests to cease. It does a job decent enough as it made all the wars to cease one hundred years ago.
In order to justify the mandatory military service and to find occupancy for all the new recruits, first class of combat-capable spaceships begins its assembly in Martian docks.


Code: [Select]
Gladiator class Assault Ship      22,457 tons       647 Crew       6,692.3 BP       TCS 449    TH 1,680    EM 2,520
10687 km/s      Armour 8-70       Shields 84-280       HTK 118      Sensors 22/10/0/0      DCR 18      PPV 70
Maint Life 0.65 Years     MSP 1,490    AFR 504%    IFR 7.0%    1YR 2,298    5YR 34,476    Max Repair 1400 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (3)    Power 4800    Fuel Use 226.27%    Signature 560.00    Explosion 20%
Fuel Capacity 3,000,000 Litres    Range 10.6 billion km (11 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (3)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.3 per second)

18.750cm C4 Ultraviolet Laser (5)    Range 48,000km     TS: 10,687 km/s     Power 9-4     RM 40,000 km    ROF 15       
Particle Beam-6 (5)    Range 48,000km     TS: 10,687 km/s     Power 15-4    ROF 20       
CIWS-200 (5x8)    Range 1000 km     TS: 20,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R48-TS20000 (50%) (2)     Max Range: 48,000 km   TS: 20,000 km/s     79 58 38 17 0 0 0 0 0 0
Gas-Cooled Fast Reactor R56 (1)     Total Power Output 55.9    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS60-R100 (50%) (2)     GPS 10500     Range 60m km    Resolution 100
EM Sensor EM2-10 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 10     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  25m km
Thermal Sensor TH2-22 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 22     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  37.1m km

ECM 10

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


As human wars aren't a thing anymore, alien invasion is still a science fiction (or a conspiracy theory that rapidly gains popularity as military ships became a thing) and SETI program yelds nothing, these ships are meant to serve as an addition to mining fleet. While they don't have cargo space of their own, their powerful lasers will allow to quickly strip mine any asteroid and particle beam weapons will allow to rapidly locate pockets of minerals with great precision, reducing the amount of rocks needed to be cut down. Yield would be later filtered and collected by dedicated mining teams and private shipping lines.
The appearance of first "combat spaceships" raises concerns among exactly 12569 humans who have "combat spaceship" stated as their official gender. A special declaration is prepared, stating that despite their design Gladiators aren't "combat spaceships" because there's no war they could take part in. This solution seems to please the group of interest, though they still complain they're being discriminated as many people refer to Gladiators as "combat spaceships" in everyday conversations.
An idea of using these ships for entertainment gets proposed. Basically they would serve in simulated space battles, fighting only to the point of depleting shields to prevent any danger for the crew.
The government approves this new sport as a way to relieve stress from its citizens by providing them with "brutal" entertainment, hoping this will weaken the protests. First official sparring will get scheduled as soon as first batch of Gladiators leaves Mars' atmosphere.
December 2119, a hundred years passes since the beginning of a zombie apocalypse that changed the world forever.

2120s

Government releases a special upgrade to microchips to celebrate a hundred years of cyberpunk era.
Infantry units arriving on Nibiru pacify the rioting inhabitants. Productivity still remains low due to lack of life support systems as transport to Nibiru still takes way too long.
A fleet of Gremlins is directed to help with cargo transfer as they're faster than civilian freighters, however they can't take up much cargo with them.
Out of 10 probes sent to the nearest stars in previous decade two suffered critical system failure in interstellar space and one travels off-course due to small computation error. The remaining 7 continue their voyage to the stars.
A bunch of unusual rock formations discovered on Nibiru. Geologists suggest heavy meteor bombardment in distant past.
resources on Earth about to run out.
21th January 2125, Mars officially received the status of a Core World.
Construction of Dyson Sphere gets proposed, but current technology still doesn't allow building megastructures easily. The shortage of resources and fusion reactors providing decent amount of power become the final nail to the coffin for the Dyson Sphere Project.
Comet 2017 MB7 draws attention of space mining engineers. Building spacecraft capable of covering the insane distance separating it from the rest of the Solar System, while theoretically possible, in practice is deemed unprofitable. The comet could be mined as a sidetask once Alcubierre Drive will become a thing, though.
It comes as a mild annoyance to some scientists that it's the last celestial body that remained unscanned.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:15:56 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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DAWN OF INTERSTELLAR ERA

2130s

Out of 7 remaining probes, only 4 managed to successfully completed their interstellar mission.
5th November 2135, a probe reaches Proxima Centauri and transfers the data and images of Proxima b and Proxima c as well as two comets that happened to pass by.





Proxima b contains liquid water as predicted, but the atmosphere is unbreathable, containing only Nitrogen and 0.1 atm of CO2. It orbits the sun too close, causing it to be tidally locked. This severely limits the amount of people who could live on the surface. Xenobiologists speculate that the planet once might host life as the temperatures in the habitable belt between the eternal night and enternal day zones are satisfying. The atmosphere composition also suggests that once it might have contained oxygen and only traces of CO2 (and be pretty much earthlike) before some sort of ecological cataclysm happened. It is technically possible for some microorganisms to live there or subterranean or aquatic life forms to exist.



2nd April 2136, a probe surveys Alpha Centauri System. The two stars that make up for the binary system orbit a number of terrestial planets, many of which have been confirmed in the past decades, confirming over century-old hypothesis of Alpha Centauri planetary system.





Alpha Centauri-A II and Alpha Centauri-B IV catch special attention of scientists as scans made by the exploration probe reveal they have a Nitrogen-Oxygen based atmospheres.
The probe didn't detect any life signs, let alone intelligent life signs, but it is very likely that life exists on these planets, somewhere in the icy mountains of Alpha Centauri-B IV or cold sands of Alpha Centauri-A II deserts.















Numerous planets in the system also happen to contain water in one form or another. Alpha Centauri looks very promising for colonisation, mining and new discoveries.
14th May 2137, a probe reaches WISE 2359-7335. There's nothing there but a breathtaking view of a lonely sun floating in eternal darkness.



2nd December 2137, a probe scans YZ Ceti system that happens to contain two planets.





YZ Ceti-A II contains frozen water and a temperature of -80 Co makes it a good candidate for terraforming, even though the gravity is rather low.
The recent discoveries of the space beyond Solar System spark enthusiasm across human race as everyone awaits the day those stars will be reached and conquered in the name of Humans.
23th November 2139, it finally happens, the greatest invention of Humanity, the Ultimate Breakthrough that breaches the sky so that it is no longer the limit is here.
Researches from Cydonia present their prototype warp drive, which doesn't require more energy than the latest fusion reactors can provide.
The first starship is desgined and engineers at Martian Navy docks can't sleep from excitement and amount of work they have to put in order to make the first FTL flight reality.


Code: [Select]
Event Horizon class Gravitational Survey Vessel      10,640 tons       157 Crew       596.3 BP       TCS 213    TH 625    EM 0
2937 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 1-43       Shields 0-0       HTK 54      Sensors 0/0/1/0      DCR 15      PPV 0
Maint Life 10.62 Years     MSP 925    AFR 60%    IFR 0.8%    1YR 15    5YR 225    Max Repair 100 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months    Morale Check Required

JC11K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 11000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Commercial Improved Nuclear Pulse Engine  EP125.0 (5)    Power 625    Fuel Use 11.18%    Signature 125    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 151.3 billion km (596 days at full power)

Gravitational Survey Sensors (1)   1 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:16:51 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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2140s

1st February 2141, Even Horizon leaves Martian docks. The Great Moment of Truth has come. The test of Alcubierre Drive will consist of four jumps: first the ship will jump to Earth just to see if everything works properly, then it's supposed to arrive at Nibiru to test the drive at longer ranges, eventually it's going to cover almost 250 bilion kilometers to arrive at comet 2017 MB7 to test both even longer jump distance and see how well the navigation system performs when a very small body without strong gravitational well is targeted.
1st February 2141, 7:31:24, Event Horizon powers up Alcubierre Drive and disappears in warp bubble on Mars orbit.
1st February 2141, 7:32:02, Event Horizons pops out on Earth's high orbit. Everyone celebrates as the first superluminal flight of human race was no longer a dream, but history.
The ship managed to reach effective speed of 5c during acceleration peak. A couple minutes later signal emitted during jump travelling at light speed reached Earth as well.
1st February 2141, 8:01:12, Event Horizon makes a jump towards Nibiru. Everyone holds breath once again.
1st February 2141, 9:35:14, Event Horizon makes it to Nibiru's orbit, achieving its top effective speed of 10c. For everyone but Nibiru's inhabitants it's status remains unknown until 11:02:35, when the ship goes back to Earth.
1st February 2141, 10:45:14, Event Horizon sets off for 2017 MB7 comet.
2nd February 2141, 9:25:59, ship reaches its destination. The target was missed by a large margin of 40 milion kilometers, but it's deemed an outstanding result given the distance and size of the target compared to the typical targets the ship will be tasked to reach.
3nd February 2141, 9:01:01, Event Horizon's crew docks on Martian spaceport to tell the tale.
A new era in the History of Mankind begins as on 25th April 2141 Event Horizon begins its mission to boldly go where no man has ever gone before. The first squadron of Gladiators fights its first competition battle to celebrate the event and so with the flashes of laser beams illuminating the eternal night Event Horizon disappears within warp bubble, plotting course to Proxima Centauri.
5th October 2141, Event Horizon reaches Proxima Centauri, which is not known back in the Solar System until 16th June 2142 when the ship returns from its cruise.
Initial scans confirm the observations made by the probe. Proxima b appears to be a dead world, however scientists who landed on the surface managed to bring back samples of what appears to be some sort of microorganisms still living their microlife in the depths of planet's oceans. Different strains of bacteria and mircroorganisms are detected underground as well. No signs of any sort of intelligent life ever being present on the planet detected, but the discovery of alien life existing so close to the Sun changes perspective on life and universe for the generations to come. Space is indeed full of life, even if only so simple.
As years go by, a new starship gets designed. Further optimisations of warp bubble geometry allowed for bigger starships to appear, making it possible to send a proper exploratory vessel, capable of gathering, storing and analyzing all kinds of data, ranging from signals to biological samples.


Code: [Select]
Prophet class Science Vessel      25,905 tons       334 Crew       2,377.4 BP       TCS 518    TH 1,440    EM 4,200
2779 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 1-77       Shields 140-280       HTK 99      Sensors 0/0/4/4      DCR 3      PPV 0
Maint Life 5.60 Years     MSP 22,172    AFR 1790%    IFR 24.9%    1YR 1,192    5YR 17,876    Max Repair 150 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   SCI   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months    Morale Check Required   

JC26K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 26000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Commercial Magneto-plasma Drive  EP480.0 (3)    Power 1440    Fuel Use 5.77%    Signature 480    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,500,000 Litres    Range 180.5 billion km (751 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (5)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.5 per second)

CIWS-200-1 (5x8)    Range 1000 km     TS: 20,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Active Search Sensor AS60-R100 (50%) (2)     GPS 10500     Range 60m km    Resolution 100
Improved Geological Sensors (2)   4 Survey Points Per Hour
Improved Gravitational Sensors (2)   4 Survey Points Per Hour

ECM 10

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


6th July 2146, Prophet leaves Earth to explore the rich planetary system of Alpha Centauri.
Meanwhile on Earth preparations for interstellar colonization begin with full speed and force. Engineers and scientists from all over the Solar System come up with various hypothetical designs of interstellar ships capable of bringing colonists and all the infrastructure they might need to establish themselves and gain economical independence around alien sun to the nearest stars in reasonable amount of time.
Finally, two of the designs win the competition and contracts for developing the ships themselves as well as Alcubierre Drives capable of leading them through the interstellar space are signed with space exploration corporations:


Code: [Select]
Avalanche class Freighter      97,011 tons       422 Crew       2,070.2 BP       TCS 1,940    TH 5,000    EM 0
2577 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-188       Shields 0-0       HTK 110      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 13    Max Repair 125 MSP
Cargo 50,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

JC98K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 97500 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (10)    Power 5000    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 67.1 billion km (301 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Manhattan class Colony Ship      59,071 tons       347 Crew       2,115.9 BP       TCS 1,181    TH 1,500    EM 0
1269 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-135       Shields 0-0       HTK 83      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 22    Max Repair 125 MSP
Troop Capacity 10,000 tons     Cryogenic Berths 100,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

JC60K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 60000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (3)    Power 1500    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 110.1 billion km (1003 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


7th September 2148, Prophet discovers traces of life and strange-looking structures on Alpha Centauri-A II. Fear and ave fill hearts of crewmembers.
The planet's size would suggest it should contain denser atmosphere than it does, reasons for it losing part of its air currently unknown. The only life that's present on the cold deserts than span across its surface to no end appears to be some form of dry grass that grows sparsely around rare rocks laying between dunes and microorganisms. There's no water on the planet in any form to be found. The grass in question appears to be able to survive for hundreds, possibly even thousands of years without water supply, xenobiologists claim, but it is more than obvious that it needs to rehydrate eventually or else it's going to perish sooner or later. That grass, the last multicellular life representation on the entire planet, is dying.
Number of experiments conducted on the samples gathered show that once rehydrated, it blossoms into tall, green-yellow plants that appear to produce and store more nutrients than one would expect when exposed to CO2.
Initial simulations run by the ship's AI lab assistant show the planet most probably had only traces of liquid water in the past and that grass was the dominant plant species of this now almost dead world. The climate was warmer at some point in the past and the land resembled something similar to Earth's steppes with high probability of more complex forests growing around equator or on the shores of what little water aquens existed.
After a few more months of research skeletal structures of animal life that once thrived there have been found. The most prominent difference was how taller they appeared compared to earth's fauna due to planet's lower gravity.
One was particularly interesting - as further research have shown, the species to which it belonged were approximately two meters tall, bipedal creatures with a strong tail used for support and five pairs of small hands with muscle mass approximately the same as both human arms, meaning the hands of the creatures allowed for similar strength, but greater dexterity and manipulation speed than human hands. Their bodies were also coated in chitin armor capable of deflecting light at various degrees. Question of possible sentience of these species remains unanswered.
As if discoveries of alien life once present on the planet weren't enough, even after many months of research geologists couldn't came up with a different explanation for the strange planet structures to exist other than intelligent life involvement.
Another expedition to those structures will be needed to conduct an in-depth research, but the one thing about them that struck is that inside those ruins more skeletons of the bipedal creatures were discovered than anywhere else on the planet. Hypothesis about intelligent civilization and its cities were raised, as well about some sort of cataclysm that made the water evaporate and escape planet's gravity together with significant part of atmosphe making the oxygen levels too low to be breathable.
It all became even more interesting and mysterious when Prophet's crew stepped on the surface of Alpha Centuari-B IV.
The size and atmosphere composition of those two planets are very similar, however Alpha Centauri-B IV's mountainous terrain is prone to tectonic activity and liquid water covers almost 70% of its surface.
Most of the land is covered in pockets of dense grass that xenobiologists confirm to be genetically related to the one found on previous planet, though the evolutionary path of this one must have splitted in the distant past.
Similar conclusion gets drawn for many other flora and fauna species found on this world.
More radical crewmembers speculate unfinished terraforming process attempted by the civilization once thriving around Alpha Centauri-A, further extensive research needed to confirm or reject this hypothesis.
After finishing their tasks in Alpha Centauri system, Prophet heads back home for a short break and maintenance check only to quickly set off for another mission among the stars.
Despite promising conditions, terraforming and colonization of the two intriguing worlds in Alpha Centauri system gets postponed in order not to change the world before more research can be conducted.
The first sketches of Interstellar Conquest involve setting up a mining outpost on dwarf planet Alpha Centauri-B V as it could still be terraformed rather easily and proves to be the richest world so far discovered, giving a real opportunity to solve mineral crisis and accelerate shipbuilding to assemble even more colony and mining fleets.

2150s

Interstellar exploration continues, manned missions to YZ Ceti and WISE 2359-7335 are launched.
Food crisis on Nibiru requires immediate freezing of some inhabitants to prevent starvation. Nibiru loses half of the already small workforce.
As the never-ending struggles in hostile world of Nibiru continue, government plans to use Terraria space stations to terraform the planet from orbit, similarily to the way it is constantly getting done in case of Venus. This raises questions of transporting over half a million tons behemoths across the vast space separating nibiru from the Core Worlds.
A new spaceship gets designed as an aswer to this problem:


Code: [Select]
Ark class Tug      50,257 tons       395 Crew       2,536.3 BP       TCS 1,005    TH 7,500    EM 0
7461 km/s      Armour 1-121       Shields 0-0       HTK 152      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 31    Max Repair 125 MSP
Tractor Beam     
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months   

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (15)    Power 7500    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 10,000,000 Litres    Range 647.1 billion km (1003 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Better safe than sorry - the new official doctrine is established as proof of sentient extraterrestial life existing gets delivered with the data from Alpha Centauri mission.
The first fruit of this new doctrine is a swarm of cheap space fighters being built on Earth and Mars which in the future are meant to serve as an escort carried by FTL-capable fleet during missions to other stars. Just in case someone helped with the ecological cataclysm of Alpha Centauri-A II and is still out there somewhere. Many citizens question their safety as proof of the possibility for intelligent aliens to exist out there sparks both hope and fear.


Code: [Select]
Valor class Fighter      467 tons       28 Crew       155.5 BP       TCS 9    TH 80    EM 0
8568 km/s      Armour 1-5       Shields 0-0       HTK 5      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 0      PPV 3
Maint Life 5.15 Years     MSP 40    AFR 17%    IFR 0.2%    1YR 3    5YR 38    Max Repair 35 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   
Intended Deployment Time: 1 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP40.00 (2)    Power 80    Fuel Use 1073.31%    Signature 40    Explosion 20%
Fuel Capacity 15,000 Litres    Range 0.54 billion km (17 hours at full power)

R45/C4 Meson Cannon (1)    Range 45,000km     TS: 8,568 km/s     Power 3-4     RM 45,000 km    ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R48-TS10000 (50%) (1)     Max Range: 48,000 km   TS: 10,000 km/s     79 58 38 17 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R5 (1)     Total Power Output 5.2    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS6-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 28     Range 6.7m km    MCR 600.8k km    Resolution 1

This design is classed as a Fighter for production, combat and planetary interaction
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:18:56 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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22th December 2154, first two Terraria stations successfully make it to Nibiru's orbit. Terraforming still expected to take over 130 years though, more stations are planned to be placed in the future.
Prophet's crew confirms that Ross 128 is another lonely sun out there, without even a single comet or asteroid around it.



Scientists on Europa work on small warp drives that could be easily fitted on every type of ship - they wouldn't be able to go faster than light, but they could become a standard way of handling interplanetary transit.
Such drive would allow the ship to accelerate and decelerate in a matter of seconds and reach high speeds which would speed up intra-system flights and also make them far less complex and easier to handle.
The only drawbacks are that this would require constant fuel burning during entire flight as well as put a cap on maximum speed a ship can travel. It would still be faster than the average speed modern spaceships reach, convinces project leader.
Another wave of protests hits Nibiru as people rage against their friends and families kept frozen after resolving food crisis, many want to leave making the worker shortage problem come full circle. The government promises to terraform the planet "soon".
More missions to Alpha Centauri suggest even greater mining potential, the only way to reasonably resolve the ongoing crisis is to reach for the stars. First fleet of Avalanche and Manchattan class vessles is assembled, tasked with brining first colonists to the dwarf planet of Alpha Centauri-B V.
Despite it being designated to be nothing but a backwater mining colony, almost everyone wants to go because the thrill of living in another solar system is stronger than any hardships one might find there compared to comfortable life on a Core World.
Exploration of nearby stars continues.
NN 3815 system:





EZ Aquarii system:











Two planets orbiting EZ Aquarii-B look promising, however after extensive research no life signs are detected, nor any solid proof of life existing on these planets at some point despite the conditions being promising.
EZ Aquarii is a ternary system and many astrophysicists speculate it might be unstable due to it being a three-body system.
It is theoretized that maybe life existed on the planets in question at some point, but due to all kinds of mess that could happen in a potentially unstable three-body system maybe the planets fell off their current orbits and were placed in a way that made the conditions hostile for life, wiping it together with all evidence of it ever existing. Or maybe those planets were hostile before and only recently anchored themselves around EZ Aquarii-B which created more friendly conditions on the surface and life is yet to emerge on these worlds.
It is decided that there will never be any permanent population stationed on any planet due to the potential instability and need for planetary-scale evacuation in case of emergency. AI-driven mining outpost remain a possibility.
WISE 1150+6302 system:



Yet another lonely star. This one has a single comet passing by as a companion.
HIP 47650 system:









Planets HIP 47650-A II and III spark instant excitement in scientists all over the worlds. III appears to be full of life. The climate is very harsh given the average surface temperatures of -126Co, but life has found many ways to adapt to these conditions. All kinds of moss and grass thrive on the snow and ice sheets, with herbivores migrating over long distances to find packets of them and keep starvation at bay and lots of different predators making ambushes along the migration routes. Under thick layer of ice liquid oceans bustiling with submarine life are found.
Everyone cherish the discoveries made by the scientists and can't wait till colonisation and terraforming of this cold yet beautiful and breathtaking world will become. Given the extraordinarily good atmosphere composition even now it is possible to breathe in it for a while without risking any health problems and some of the astronauts who touched the frozen ground purposefully temporairly cut off their life support system, letting bits of planet's atmosphere to their combinezones and enjoying the idea of breathing with alien air. Hypothesis that universe is and always was "full of life" gains more and more supporters every day.
HIP 47650-A II, however, is nothing but a planet of blazing sands and rocks with little to no surface water and no oxygen in the atmosphere. Around what little lakes, seas and rivers exist though, scientits found unusual structures resembling strange monoliths. It is speculated that the planet was once even hotter, with all the water being either vapourized or non-existstent at all. If that's the case, then those monoliths might be alien terraforming installations. This hypothesis currently lacks any solid proof. It is not known whether the installations are active in case it turns out true either.
13th March 2157, on its way back home for well-deserved holidays, the crew of Prophet detects strange gravitational anomaly close to WISE 2359-7335 star as it quickly leaves warp bubble using the star as an orientation point to better adjust their way back home. Curiosity wins and a brief investigation is carried out.
The anomaly appears to be a wormhole, an object which existence was only theoretized up to this point. Since no wormhole has ever been observed before, question whether it is of natural origin or it got created by an interstellar alien civilization gets asked quickly. Another problem is its potential stability or lack of it as well as whether travel through it is possible in both or only one direction. Back on Earth a special task force is quickly formed to try to figure out where the questioned wormhole might lead without risking travelling through it.
Consipracy theories continue to be on the rise in spite of recent space discoveries. The good old topic of flying saucers is being brought up as many notice how the advancements in warp bubble geometry optimisations and Alcubierre Drive effective speed make the latest starship designs appear more flattened and rounded:



2nd July 2157, XAT (eXtraterrestial Archeology Team) is officially formed on Mars and begins extensive training which will be required for its member to crack the secrets of ruins from Alpha Centauri-A II and monoliths from HIP 47650-A II down. On the same day another elite unit oficially begins its history, this time it's an union of advanced construction brigades tasked with supporting quicker infrastructure or life support systems installations on extrememly hostile worlds such as Nibiru.
As the government can't handle the ongoing stagnation on Planet X, everyone who wants to leave the colony is presented with such an opportunity. Meanwhile the newly formed construction unit will use the abundant minerals on the planet to assemble automatic mining outpost sending all the juicy resources back to Earth and Mars via lots of mass drivers. Colonists are expected to repopulate Nibiru once terraformation process will be complete. More Terraria 1.4 stations make it to planet's orbit to help speed the process up.
Many are relieved and thankful for the government, but many also call it out on such a big operation, lasting so many decades, eventually failing. The government calls it a "temporary tactical retreat", rather than failure and hopes to finish the terraforming within next 50 years.
Oddly enough, some people wish to stay on this hellish, infamous world that's so gray and cold that hydrogen and helium are the only gases left in the atmosphere because they're the only ones that didn't freeze in these temperatures. Psychological evaluation shows slightly higher average psionic potential among the ones who wished to stay.
Many of the Nibiru colonists either returning to Core Worlds or preparing for interstellar journey to new home in Alpha Centauri system report feelings of anxiety and discomfort. Some wake up screaming from nightmares involving "Gray Tentacles", even those who claim to have never watched or heard about the classical horror movie taking place solely on Nibiru.
Psychologists and psychiatrists baffled as therapy with calm psionic waves, normally very effective, not only has no positive effect on them, but also in rare cases has worsened patients' mental condition. So far psi scientists sent to perform research on Nibiru failed at discovering anything unusual that could explain these phenomena.
Matrix developers desperately try to find bugs in their software as one of the users, former Nibiru colonist, reports gray tentacles consuming him from every direction every time he connects, no amount of resseting the simulation has helped. With him being a former psi forces member, devs suggest faulty psionic implant interfering with the simulation.
The incident causes slight decline in matrix usage, government hopes this could help crippling birth rates, even if only so slightly.
16th December 2157, first permanent inhabitants arrive on the surface of Alpha Centauri-B V, quickly followed by Terraria 1.4. Due to the small size of this dwarf planet terraforming is expected to take only a few years and mining of the resources will be much easier.
Alpha Centauri-B IV and Proxima b are chosen to be the next destinations for interstellar expansion.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:21:14 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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After deserved holiday break, the crew of Prophet is eager to go superluminal once again and travels to NN 3815 system to continue their mission where they left. It doesn't take more than two weeks for them to spot a wormhole in that system, too. Another investigation team warps in to the system. Due to the proximity of the NN 3815 and WISE 2359-7335 systems it is speculated that maybe those are the two ends of a single wormhole.
To test this hypothesis, an unmanned probe is launched through it from the NN 3815 system on 1st March 2158. The experiment confirms the hypothesis as team stationed in WISE receives the probe. Travel through the wormhole was almost instant, as well as travel of any signals exchanged between teams on both ends, marking this day as the first day of FTL communication between two systems. WISE team launching the probe back confirms travel in both ways is possible. Testing on "wormhole capacity" continue to determine how much mass can be sent through it before the passage gets "clogged", making the bodies within it smash into each other or do whatever else they might do under such conditions. After sending dozens of probes at once it is determined that it's safe for a starship to traverse it and so the Prophet jumps to WISE and back, all within nanoseconds plus time needed to deccelerate and turn around once in WISE system. Questions about origin of the anomaly remain open.
24th May 2158, Prophet crew detects two other wormholes in NN 3815 systems. Hypothesis about alien sentience intervention gains more support. Many scientists simply claim that maybe the universe is full of stable wormholes just like so far it appeared life out there was more common than initially expected and humanity was simply unlucky to not have a wormhole in their home system and telescopes powerful enough to discover any around neighbouring stars.
26th May 2158, after finishing survey of NN 3815, Prophet jumps through one of two unexplored wormholes and finds itself in the NN 3009 system:













NN 3009-A II catches interest of astrophysicists as this tidally locked planet contains liquid water and moderate to hot surface temperatures but no atmosphere at all. No life signs detected.
Scientists concerned as unprecedented discovery is made in WISE 1150+6302 system: this lonely star contains four stable wormholes in total. More speculations about alien civilization are made. Fear rises in civilian populations as remnants of sentient life forms-made structures were already present on two exoplanets so far. Many accuse government of hiding evidence of already established contact with alien civilization.
Extensive cargo, infrastructure and colonists transport to Alpha Cenauri system burns more fuel than initially expected. Engineers from Europa design a new, giant space station designed to significantly boost fuel shiponing from gas giants.


Code: [Select]
Astera class Fuel Harvester Station      618,517 tons       2,010 Crew       9,732.3 BP       TCS 12,370    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 1133      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 9    Max Repair 2400 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 24 months   
Fuel Harvester: 200 modules producing 16,000,000 litres per annum
Refuelling Hub - Capable of refuelling multiple ships simultaneously

Fuel Capacity 11,000,000 Litres    Range N/A

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


Terraformers stationed on Nibiru's orbit report strange patterns formed from mountain ranges on the surface. "They are twisting and whirling in unsettling way", says one of the Terraria workers.
As interstellar travel became reality, many citizens protest about colonizing Nibiru ever, more radical individuals claims its best to leave the planet alone and even automated mining platforms are too much.

2160s

Colonization of two Centauri systems progresses rapidly. With the recent advancements in terraforming field it doesn't take more than half the decade to terraform Alpha Centauri-B V, Alpha Centauri-B IV and Proxima b. Colonists from Solar System arrive by millions into their new homes across the stars.
The government allows beginning of Alpha Centauri-A II terraformation process as researchers deem the extinct alien race to be less technologically advanced than humanity. Some pity those unknown beings as their terraformation efforts on the now-human-inhabited Alpha Centauri-B IV show they were close to escape whatever destroyed their homeworld and find peace around the partner star of their main sun. Unless it was another civilization that wiped them out, that is. A relatively small group of human colonists arrive on the surface of Alpha Centauri-A II and repurposes the discovered system of bunkers for human usage, taking cover from the life-unfriendly conditions in the same way those poor aliens did at some point in time when their homeworld environment was falling apart.
A random scientitsts names this long-dead species "Conroe".
Interstellar exploration continues, bringing more data from other stars.
WISE 2343-7418 system:



The lonely star got firstly explored from up close after travelling through the wormhole from NN 3815 system. Two more stable wormholes were detected. No wormholes observed before and suddenly such an amount of them around a pocket of neighbouring stars - more scientists lean towards "Alien Intervention" hypothesis.
Gliese 526 system:



Three dwarf planets are found orbiting the local sun.



WISE 0254+0223 system:



Nothing but a lonely star again. Lovers of AR-15 disappointed they won't get to live in a system that has "223" in its name.
Wolf 489 system:



It is a lonely wolf indeed.
NN 3076 system:







Existence of methane-breathing life of some sort on NN 3076-A III is theorised, but further research indicated nothing, not even the simplest single-cellular microorganisms.
WISE 0148-7202 system, the second end of one of the four wormholes found around WISE 1150+6302:



Three comets orbiting within the sun's proximity and nothing more to be found out there. Except yet another stable wormhole leading god knows where. Scientists wonder whether these wormholes are creation of one civilisation or more. So far "One Hypothesis" seems to be winning among scientific environments as all the stars in which wormholes have been discovered so far are too close together. On the other hand there seem to be two clusters forming out of these wormholes, with very slim border between them, but it can be noticed, as if two civilisations happened to expand their wormhole networks very close to each other, but among different systems.
A second wormhole from the now-famous WISE 1150+6302 star leads to Zeta Tucanae star:



No one even gets that surprised anymore as two other wormholes have their ends placed within the star's proximity.
Mining operations across Alpha Centauri system explode thanks to private sector, even on hellish worlds of Alpha Centauri-B I and II which have Venus-like atmospheres.
Mineral crisis finally gets resolved as resources flow back to Earth and Mars, accelerating economy across all sectors.
15th July 2161, the last batch of minerals is extrated from below Earth's surface and the last mining complex gets shut down. Nobody is worried though, as long as those interstellar freighters will continue crusing between Sol and Alpha Centauri, around which every planet, even dwarf one, seem to contain more minerals than Earth itself. And it looks like they will since Project Astera drowns Core Worlds in the finest fuel originating from Saturn's gasses.
1st August 2161, XAT launches mission to HIP 47650-A II to investigate the terraforming monoliths left by unknown alien race, named temporarily "Aracaju". A new special forces transport vessel developed and deployed by XAT leaders themselves got used:


Code: [Select]
Guardian class Troop Transport      91,777 tons       459 Crew       2,664.3 BP       TCS 1,836    TH 5,000    EM 0
2724 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-181       Shields 0-0       HTK 208      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 18    Max Repair 125 MSP
Troop Capacity 50,000 tons     
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months   

JC92K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 92000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (10)    Power 5000    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 70.9 billion km (301 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


It is a direct upgrade of the old, pre-FTL Guard design. While slower than its predecessor in terms of conventional flight, it allows much bigger transport capacity. And can go FTL, too.
The technology found in them proves to be of great value. Terraformers recalculate time needed to change Venu's atmosphere to Earth-like to 150 years from previous 600 after implementing uncovered breakthroughs.
The composition of HIP 47650-A II's atmosphere can't be used to determine the biology of Aracaju, xenobiologists say, since the lack of life signs on the planet suggest the conditions on the planet doesn't allow for Aracaju and their homeworld's biosphere to live there. Questions about aliens returning to "claim the colony" are raised, but it's rather unlikely given the poor condition of most terraformers. An automated deep space tracking station with the latest comms technology gets quickly assembled on the highest mountain of the planet, though. Just in case.
Engineers work on restoring the monoliths to their former glory in hopes of finishing the process of terraforming. Meanwhile enthusiasts of cold weather, snow and winter look forward to inhabiting HIP 47650-A III, but the planet still requires some terraforming, namely in improving the amount of oxygen to make breathing comfortable and warming the planet from its around -120Co temperature range to something survivable. Ecologists point out this might destabilise local ecosystems. As alien life seems precious, it is decided what little terraforming is required, will proceed slower than usual to carefully observe if it has any negative impact on the flora and fauna.
As colonization plans for HIP 47650 system begin to form, the question on transforming Terraria 1.4 terraforming stations gets asked. At first engineers agree on doing it the same way it was done in Alpha and Proxima Centauri systems, with giant cargo fleets transporting station's components separately and assembling the stations on the spot, but it is pointed out how most of the logistics fleet is busy with supporting rapidly expanding populations and economy of Alpha Centauri system and how much fuel got wasted for a cargo transfer operation on this scale.
Young engineer from Europa accepts the challenge and comes up with the biggest Alcubierre Drive ever designed. Starship carrying it, according to her idea, is supposed to create a warp bubble of a gigantic size, size that'll be so huge it'll provide enough space for a space station and its tug responsible for its conventional acceleration, effectively guiding it through the interstellar space.


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Guidance class Jump Tender      85,827 tons       411 Crew       2,897.4 BP       TCS 1,717    TH 2,500    EM 0
1456 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-173       Shields 0-0       HTK 93      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 21    Max Repair 1777.1 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months   

JC621K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 621000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (5)    Power 2500    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 75.8 billion km (602 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Engineers across the colonized space amazed by the properties of this huge drive's design.
Terraformers of Alpha Centauri-B IV are especially proud of their work. Only the low gravity ruins the "second Earth" vibes, as every other planetary parameter got recreated as if terraforming was a matter of copy-paste. The planet's mountain ranges covered with Earth-like forests spark interstellar tourism.
Alpha Centauri-B IV terraformation process revealed that the alien species discovered on the planet can adapt to Earth-like environment rather well, which suggests the homeworld of the now-exitnt Conroe once looked very similar to Earth in terms of climate and atmosphere composition. Pockets of alien life co-existing with species from Earth take the breath away from tourists and inhabitants of this beautiful world alike.
Post office enters its renaissance as lack of FTL communication means the only way to reliably communicate with other systems is to have special starships flying back and forth between stars, receiving signals from the system they leave, storing them on the onboard server for the journey and then transmitting them upon arriving at the destination. Scientists suggest it'll become obsolete once again when the way to create wormholes will be discovered, which will allow FTL communication as well.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:28:49 AM by Stormtrooper »
 

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Extensive research into wormhole creation and other dimension begins in order to establish FTL communication, allow creation of wormholes which wouldn't require FTL drive to go superluminal and determine whether building hyperdrives would be a possibility. It is theoretized that usage of hyperspace to travel between stars would be much faster, albeit more difficult, than using warp drives. For now it is still a science fiction and nobody really knows how much "science" is in it, but discovered wormholes give hope -technically travelling through hyperspace would mean creating, entering, expanding and then exiting and eventually closing a wormhole "on the fly", with the effective speed being equal to the effective speed at which the "tunnel" would be expanded. Similar to building the rails in front of the train or something along these lines.
21th August 2162, 12:51:43 Earth-time, team of scientists stationed in WISE 1150+6302 on a wormhole research mission picks up strange signals from the void not further than few milion kilometers away.
21th August 2162, 12:53:12, it is determined that the source of signal is moving at approximately 1922 km/s
21th August 2162, 13:45:44, research team successfully receives signal from several probes launched from their starship at the unknown target. Scans and pictures taken leave no doubt - what they're looking for is a group of space vessels of unknown origin.



Since WISE 1150+6302 doesn't have a planetary system, the ships must have come from another star, that's for sure. The fleet doesn't appear to have Alcubierre Drives equipped because geometry of their ships is far from optimal while the size of it is too big to justify lack of optimal warp bubble shape due to their warp technology being still in experimental phase.
This theory matches the presence of four wormholes around the star. Whether they carry some other FTL drive, such as theorised hyperdrive, for example, remains unknown.
21th August 2162, 13:51:01, communication attempts begin.
21th August 2162, 14:15:02, vessels transmit a few signals, probably a response, however onboard computers and scientists themselves can't figure out what it means.
21th August 2162, 14:26:15, alien fleet disappears in a yet unexplored wormhole.
The Prophet-class starship that established contact with the unknown intelligence powers up its warp drive and speeds across interstellar space back to the Earth as quickly as it can. Upon delivering news, government calls for emergency meeting.
We don't know how they look like. We don't know what they want. We don't know from where they came from. We don't know their language, culture, attitude, nature, biology, science, what their fleets are capable of, we don't know nothing - that's all there is to the content of the meeting.
It is agreed that great caution is required and there's no time to waste since they've been observed only 32,9 light years away from Earth.
A special starship gets quickly designed back on Earth, specifically designed to search for and communicate with the discovered alien sentience. Its crew is going to be composed of the best linguistics, sociologists and diplomats from the entire human race, accompanied by psi-capable space marine squad as well.


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Diplomat class Diplomatic Ship      9,566 tons       153 Crew       1,042 BP       TCS 191    TH 500    EM 0
2613 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 1-40       Shields 0-0       HTK 42      Sensors 0/10/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
Maint Life 3.64 Years     MSP 6,068    AFR 732%    IFR 10.2%    1YR 708    5YR 10,616    Max Repair 300 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 1   BRG   DIP   
Intended Deployment Time: 36 months    Morale Check Required   

JC11K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 11000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (1)    Power 500    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 250,000 Litres    Range 85 billion km (376 days at full power)

CIWS-200-1 (5x8)    Range 1000 km     TS: 20,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Active Search Sensor AS5-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 21     Range 5.8m km    MCR 520.3k km    Resolution 1
Active Search Sensor AS60-R100 (50%) (1)     GPS 10500     Range 60m km    Resolution 100
EM Sensor EM2-10 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 10     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  25m km

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


22th January 2163, two Diplomats and a Prophet enter the wormhole in which the alien fleet has disappeared. It leads into Zeta(2) Reticuli system:





Initially no life signs detected, however Zeta(2) Reticuli-A III looks interesting with its surface water, albeit frozen, and nitrogen-based atmosphere with traces of oxygen. Could sentient life evolve there? Unlikely, but who knows - say scientists - in the recent almost 150 years humanity's discovered existence of planet X in the Solar System, warp drives, existence of stable wormholes, alien life, sentient alien life, psionics, cybernetics, power armor, laser, plasma and particle beam based cannons and personal weapons, advanced terraforming methods capable of modelling atmosphere and establishing magentic field within dozen years... Compared to that list, existence of life on this planet doesn't look too far-fetched. Alternatively it could be the middle of terraforming process.
1st February 2163, 14:59:02, SETI team stationed on Earth picks up a signal from deep space, possibly from Zeta(2) Reticuli. Initial analysis also estimates the probability of it coming from the same civilization as the one encountered in WISE 1150+6302 as 89,45%. Translation attempts still fail.
Fleet sent to Zeta(2) Reticuli continues its mission, Prophet crew still can't detect any life signs around system's celestial bodies while Diplomats position themselves right at the end of the wormhole from which they appeared, hoping mysterious aliens will travel through it once again at some point.
5th February 2163, 02:02:34, three alien ships pop out from the wormhole, right in front of Diplomats' crewmembers' eyes. They're so close it's possible to observe their ships with naked eyes. Each one of them is marked with the same symbol:



"Diplomats"
as everyone started to casually refer to the Diplomats' crew, stare at it with silence, baffled. While the triangles are just a generic symbol, Ouroboros definitely isn't. Presence of the symbol humanity itself has created at some point on their hulls remains yet another unsolved mystery.
Aliens transfer yet another set of signals that can't be translated. Two of them fly away towards planets in the system while the third one remains motionless. One of the pictures taken by Diplomats managed to catch one of their crewmates.



"They appear to be all-mechanical" - says the photographer. While pronouncing "mechanical", she sneezed, making it sound like "mechiiiiiiii!"
And so "Mechi" sticks as an official name by which the alien sentience will be referred.
To check this hypothesis, psionic squad immediately engages those alive-maybe-not-so-alive beings. After three hours of not a single brain wave received, the commander gives up.
Sure, they might not be psi-capable, but it's impossible for them to not transmit any brain activity whatsoever. It looks like the aliens are really just robots. Creations of a civilisation yet to be encountered, long extinct or a product of cybernetic ascension, that remains unknown.
Another wormhole is discovered on the other site of the star, indicating this might be just a transit system, just like WISE 1150+6302. One of the two Diplomats positions itself near it, and indeed detects spaceships passing by, warping in or out of the system via wormhole. According to the current orders, the Representative Fleet has to stay within one system for now and so it does.
Meanwhile fleet of Guidance-class starships positions itself in strategic locations to allow easy transit between Solar and HIP 47650 systems. Terraria stations begin its slow cruise to the system in order to prepare it for the arrival of colonists.
"If you want peace, be prepared for war" - says Martian Navy Admiral as a brand-new anti-missile ships get designed. Just in case.


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Phalanx class Missile Destroyer      17,346 tons       370 Crew       4,155.9 BP       TCS 347    TH 630    EM 1,680
5188 km/s    JR 3-250      Armour 9-59       Shields 56-280       HTK 104      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 0      PPV 67.78
Maint Life 0.60 Years     MSP 8,800    AFR 3469%    IFR 48.2%    1YR 14,680    5YR 220,198    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

J17400(3-250) Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 17400 tons    Distance 250k km     Squadron Size 3

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (1)    Power 1800    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 61.5 billion km (137 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

Quad Gauss Cannon R500-100 Turret (1x20)    Range 50,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
Gauss Cannon R500-100 (4x5)    Range 50,000km     TS: 6,250 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R51-TS25000 (50%) (5)     Max Range: 51,200 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     80 61 41 22 2 0 0 0 0 0

Active Search Sensor AS23-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 280     Range 23.1m km    MCR 2.1m km    Resolution 1

ECM 20

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


More terraforming stations appear on Nibiru's orbit. The government doesn't give up and still wants to colonize and exploit the planet's richies. Another wave of protests hits as more Terraria stations approach the planet.
Engineer from Proxima b comes up with a project of putting giant lens on Nibiru's orbit. These lens would accumulate and reflect sunlight and the effect it'd cause would make the sun visible from the surface during the day appear as big as on Earth. Everybody seems to agree that this could help make Nibiru a "really nice planet to live on" upon completion of the terraforming, bringing the never-ending struggle and paranoia to an end.
For now though, benefiting from accelerating AI development, more automated mining and smelting compounds are being assembled on the surface with plans to start accumulating resources quickly to kickstart planet's economy on a grand scale once life support systems will no longer be needed.
Martian shypards and spaceports, on the surface and orbit alike, are going through rapid development and expansion as new Gladiators, Valors and Phalanxes are being assembled to no end, making for a first real combat-capable fleet and spicing up the space battles done for sport. Phalanx ships are perfect for this role as their Gauss anti-missile cannons barely scratch the shields with each shot, but are able to accelerate a lot of small projectiles, making fights last longer, but with way more shots fired.
An unusual brain activity patterns discovered among those who were willing to stay on Nibiru by psionic team from Europa. While the differences are rather minimal, they're definitely there. The graphs and plots displaying brain activities of Nibiru colonists "twist and whirl in an unsettling way", claim data and psi scientists analyzing them.
Information about contact with extraterrestrial intelligence eventually leak to the public. The fact that current research and communication attempts are centered around Zeta Recituli, a system with long history of ufo consipracy theories enthusiasts' fascination, doesn't help.
It's a coincidence, government officials say and release pictures of alien vessels, which certainly don't look like flying saucers. Tinfoil hat wearers still claim it to either be a lie or an "acceptable error, flying saucers or not, these are aliens in Zeta Recituli, no matter what."
Search for life signs in the system doesn't yeld any results.
11th June 2163, a breakthrough in communication attempts is made. Signals that initially were believed to be a hum of ship's systems working turned out to be the chatter of Mechis. This huge amount of data should greatly help with deciphering their language. So far one phrase that stood out, repeated multiple times, got identified. Translated to human-readable alphabet it reads "Khanate of Baile Scread" and appears to be their species name they call themselves with.
Mechi ships pass by, yet the one from which the photo of Mechi comes from still floats near the wormhole, still visible with naked eyes by Diplomats. Which gives hope that they're interested in communicating as well rather than opening fire. A name of its captain gets identified: "Khaidugiin Juchi".
Encouraged, Diplomats begin sending lots of data about themselves and human race, careful not to let any classified info slip through. Maybe aliens will decipher human messages first.
A strategic and tactical map of the so far explored stars gets designed. Many captains praise it for being simplistic, yet clear and containing all the data they need during interstellar flights.





Terraforming of Alpha Centauri-A II progresses. As water and oxygen are being pumped into the atmosphere, pockets of almost dead grass come back to life and blossom, similar to what was happening on Alpha Centauri-B IV back when it was terraformed.
Government looks for a system to colonize that lies closer to the Mechi-visited worlds to allow for easier communications with the mechanical beings. Uncovering whether they're pure robots assembled by something somewhere or species of a civilization that achieved cybernetic ascension is deemed to be a priority.
Commander of psi squad that attempted mind-to-mind communication around that famous wormhole near WISE 1150+6302 points out something obvious, yet omitted by everybody else so far: if this was a case of cybernetic ascension, most probably the robots would contain alien brains inside them, which would make them as vulnerable to psionic as everyone else. Even with the finest anti-psi tech, there was no way humanity couldn't at least receive the scans of their brain activities.
Scientists, obviously having better understanding of the topic than a soldier, quickly disprove this thesis. Sure, the waves must have been emitted, but there was nothing stopping them from having special implants and software in their mechanical body that'd capture and distort them in some way, effectively hiding them from the scans.
Not to mention their souls were most probably digitalized, having a biological brain inside a robotic body, while great achievement of its own, can't be placed in the "ascension" range.
And so the question remains unanswered and deciphering alien language is the only option to progress further.
Exploration continues. Next two systems are being explored:
Epsilon Eridani system:













The system appears to be interesting for numerous reasons.
Traces of microorganisms in the upper layers of Epsilon Eridani-A II's atmosphere are found. Numerous planets contain frozen water on the surface. Large asteroid belt roughly 250-300 bilions of kilometers from the sun, thus difficult to mine, but potentially rich. If terraformed, Epsilon Eridani-A IV could serve a similar role as Alpha Centauri-B V, if it is a mineral-rich world.
But most interesting is Epsilon's Eridani's own "planet X", the 10th large celestial body from the sun. There are some differences, but too many things match.
While with much lower gravity and atmosphere pressure than Nibiru, the planet has almost the same distance from the sun and surface temperature, similarly hydrogen-helium based atmosphere and while not as mountainous, some ranges and summits are definitely present. Scientists wonder if the "second Nibiru" will have similar psychological effects on humans as the original one.
Preemptive protests in Solar and Alpha Centauri systems immediately explode upon hearing about the discovery, just in case "the government will be stupid enough to colonize that one, too."
Luyten 726-8 system:













Luyten 726-8-B II could in theory conatin either life or traces of it, given the nitrogen-based atmosphere with traces of CO2 and Argon as well as presence of ice sheets.
Ultimately in Zeta(2) Recituli no life signs are detected despite numerous search missions. Three wormholes exist in total, one that led to it from WISE 1150+6302, two unexplored.
Numerous missions to explore Mechi wormholes and try to push the communication attempts further are launched.
Last unexplored wormhole from WISE 1150+6302 leads to GJ 1277 system:









If any life exists there, it'd be located on GJ 1277-A VI planet and be methane-based.
One of the two still unexplored wormholes in Zeta(2) Reticuli system leads close to HIP 79762 star that doesn't host a planetary system:



It contains four another wormholes in total.
"It's like hydra", one of the members of exploration missions into Mechi territory says. "For each explored wormhole we discover a few unexplored. So far no other means of FTL travel by Mechi were detected, only these stable wormholes, though with each one we discover the chances of it being a natural phenomenon are slimmer and slimmer. It's a powerful, interstellar civilization we're talking about here."
Another wormhole leads to Zeta(1) Reticuli system:







The system doesn't look very promising in terms of finding Mechi-inhabited worlds as it consists of only a large asteroid belt and one hellish Venus-like planet. Numerous Mechi fleets are detected, though.
Government tries to figure out where to set up a colony that'd supply exploration and representative fleets allowing them to not come back to Solar System each time, significantly cutting the breaks between exploration of Mechi worlds and contact attempts as well as move the best SETI teams there.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:33:07 AM by Stormtrooper »
 

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Due to placement of wormholes Ross 128 seems to be the current border of Mechi-known space, however since the star doesn't contain any planets, EZ Aquarii is looked at next. Planets there contain resources needed to refuel and resupply starships. However, as this ternary system was deemed by astrophysicists unstable, large permanent populations are not an option. Establishing a refuelling and resupplying stations ideally would require keeping all the personnel in space, with a fleet of Arks and Guidances for assistance with FTL travel ready to pull out everyone and everything from the system immediately in case of emergency.
In the meantime Martian docks boil from the amount of work their engineers and technicians have. Government wants peace with Mechi, hence it prepares for war.
Through the 2160s a mighty fleet gets assembled, composed of Gladiators (scientists try to improve laser and particle beam technology to allow creation of a next-gen assault ships) as well as brand new designs of Valor carriers and missile cruisers:


Code: [Select]
Chimera class Carrier      52,298 tons       838 Crew       9,244.5 BP       TCS 1,046    TH 1,890    EM 1,680
5162 km/s      Armour 1-124       Shields 56-280       HTK 238      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 31.76
Maint Life 0.55 Years     MSP 40,110    AFR 21880%    IFR 303.9%    1YR 73,449    5YR 1,101,738    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Hangar Deck Capacity 23,375 tons     
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   CIC   PFC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Flight Crew Berths 500    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (3)    Power 5400    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 5,000,000 Litres    Range 51 billion km (114 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

Quad 15.0cm C4 Ultraviolet Laser Turret (1x4)    Range 192,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 24-16     RM 40,000 km    ROF 10       
CIWS-250 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 25,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R192-TS25000 (50%) (1)     Max Range: 192,000 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     95 90 84 79 74 69 64 58 53 48
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R23 (1)     Total Power Output 22.6    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS5-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 21     Range 5.8m km    MCR 520.3k km    Resolution 1

Strike Group
50x Valor Fighter   Speed: 8568 km/s    Size: 9.34

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Tomahawk class Missile Cruiser      45,391 tons       1,131 Crew       11,728 BP       TCS 908    TH 1,890    EM 1,680
5948 km/s    JR 3-250      Armour 9-113       Shields 56-280       HTK 208      Sensors 28/16/0/0      DCR 6      PPV 80
Maint Life 0.51 Years     MSP 6,968    AFR 2747%    IFR 38.2%    1YR 13,598    5YR 203,977    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Magazine 2,528   
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

J49200(3-250) Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 49200 tons    Distance 250k km     Squadron Size 3

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (3)    Power 5400    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 4,000,000 Litres    Range 47 billion km (91 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

CIWS-250 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 25,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Size 12 Missile Launcher (5)     Missile Size: 12    Rate of Fire 30
Size 1 Missile Launcher (20)     Missile Size: 1    Rate of Fire 10
Missile Fire Control FC31-R20 (50%) (1)     Range 31.4m km    Resolution 20
Missile Fire Control FC52-R20 (50%) (1)     Range 52.3m km    Resolution 20
Borodino Anti-Ship Missile (150)    Speed: 32,000 km/s    End: 16.9m     Range: 32.4m km    WH: 25    Size: 12    TH: 170/102/51
Chesma AMM (728)    Speed: 35,200 km/s    End: 24.6m     Range: 52m km    WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 234/140/70

Active Search Sensor AS60-R100 (50%) (20)     GPS 10500     Range 60m km    Resolution 100
Thermal Sensor TH2-28 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 28     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  41.8m km
EM Sensor EM2-16 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 16     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  31.6m km

ECCM-1 (1)         ECM 20

Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Work on Chimera design is not finished, though, as engineers wish to put an Alcubierre Drive on it which would allow not only for Chimeras' own transit, but also to carry non-FTL ships in the assembled combat fleet such as Gladiators, for example, with them, similar to the way Guidance starships were created to assist Arks in interstellar space station transport.
A contest for anti-missile ship is announced, which quickly turns into quality vs quantity battle. "Why not both?" says government as more resources reach Core Worlds, though. Two designs are picked up, each being the best from its worlds: Phalanx, representing Quality, and Vanguard, representing Quantity:


Code: [Select]
Phalanx class Missile Destroyer      16,855 tons       375 Crew       4,134.7 BP       TCS 337    TH 630    EM 1,680
5339 km/s    JR 3-250      Armour 9-58       Shields 56-280       HTK 104      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 2      PPV 67.78
Maint Life 0.95 Years     MSP 4,706    AFR 1136%    IFR 15.8%    1YR 4,954    5YR 74,314    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

J17400(3-250) Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 17400 tons    Distance 250k km     Squadron Size 3

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (1)    Power 1800    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 63.3 billion km (137 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

Quad Gauss Cannon R500-100 Turret (1x20)    Range 50,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
Gauss Cannon R500-100 (4x5)    Range 50,000km     TS: 6,250 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R51-TS25000 (50%) (5)     Max Range: 51,200 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     80 61 41 22 2 0 0 0 0 0

Active Search Sensor AS23-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 280     Range 23.1m km    MCR 2.1m km    Resolution 1

ECM 20

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Vanguard class Missile Destroyer      24,378 tons       634 Crew       7,483.5 BP       TCS 488    TH 1,260    EM 840
7383 km/s      Armour 5-74       Shields 28-280       HTK 114      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 168
Maint Life 1.06 Years     MSP 4,959    AFR 951%    IFR 13.2%    1YR 4,417    5YR 66,259    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (2)    Power 3600    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 3,000,000 Litres    Range 65.6 billion km (102 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.1 per second)

Single Gauss Cannon R500-100 Turret (20x5)    Range 50,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R51-TS25000 (50%) (20)     Max Range: 51,200 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     80 61 41 22 2 0 0 0 0 0

Active Search Sensor AS23-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 280     Range 23.1m km    MCR 2.1m km    Resolution 1

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


The group of 15426 humans with the gender of "combat spaceship" protest against "gender-based discrimination and identity theft", but as more news regarding Mechi leaks to the public, no one gives a smeg as humanity has bigger concerns than political correctness paranoia. In order to silence them once and for all, government approves releasing a special matrix module just for them. This causes more unrest, though, as other groups of people start to protest against "matrix-based discrimination", demanding their own unique modules, too.
12th July 2165, 14:59:01, a breakthrough in communication efforts with Mechi is made. Two Diplomats operating in Zeta(1) Reticuli detect a large fleet floating above one of the asteroids, possibly some sort of deep space mining squadron, and manages to roughly translate their messages.

"You know nothing. Nibiru before. Coming from outer space. Leave. Reticuli unstable".

Although obviously Mechi didn't use the word "Nibiru", there was no doubt which planet they were referring to when they transmitted the parameters of the planet itself and the star it's orbiting.
"Outer space" isn't a very precise term, let alone lack of any mention about who or what is coming, however many linguistics and xenoarcheologists point out that given the questionable quality of translation and current understanding of Mechi language, "outer space", could as well mean "other space", "upper space", or plain "hyperspace".
Given the Mechi's knowledge of wormholes, "coming from hyperspace" sounds very worrying and mysterious. The next goals of the representative-exploration mission are as follows: get the knowledge about other dimensions and wormholes out of them as well as more info about Nibiru. But first make sure they really meant "coming from hyperspace".
From there, though, the communication doesn't progress well.

"Won't speak no master. You know nothing. Curious but stupid. Nibiru doomed. Outer space not tinker. Reticuli unstable. Leave."

The next messages contain nothing but "Leave."
However, mission goes on, humanity refuses to leave without knowledge they need to prepare for whatever is "coming from outer space".
14th September 2165, 02:02:03, one of the two Diplomats stationed in Zeta(1) Reticuli emits distress signal to the other one as the "mining fleet" floating near the asteroid suddenly fires laser beams at it. Communications end within seconds. The other Diplomat tries to power up FTL drive, but is quickly intercepted by another fleet.
14th September 2165, 11:48:12, Prophet heading from GJ 1277 gets shot down before it could raise its shields not too long after using wormhole to travel to the WISE 1150+6302 from where it was supposed to use Alcubierre Drive to go back to Earth directly. Last received messages suggest the crew immediately knew what was going on in Zeta(1) Recituli due to intercepting Diplomats' distress signals that travelled through the Mechi wormholes instantly and attempted to flee.
Signals of what happened around Mechi space get picked up accidentially by a Prophet heading to explore Tau Ceti. The crew immediately turned back to the Earth and reported about its findings.
A ship designed to search for potential survivors floating in life pods is supposed to be built quickly, but it's obvious for everyone possible life pods would expire before they can be reached, not to mention the dangers of travelling through hostile territory, so it was more of a PR move from the government. Nervertheless, Lifebringers from now on are supposed to accomplish rescuing missions or accompany war fleets in case someone finds themselves out there, floating in space with limited air, food and water supply.


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Lifebringer class Hospital Ship      20,357 tons       490 Crew       6,833.2 BP       TCS 407    TH 1,890    EM 1,680
13263 km/s      Armour 4-66       Shields 56-280       HTK 86      Sensors 28/16/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 42
Maint Life 0.60 Years     MSP 3,048    AFR 663%    IFR 9.2%    1YR 5,057    5YR 75,858    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Cryogenic Berths 1,000   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (3)    Power 5400    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 2,000,000 Litres    Range 52.4 billion km (45 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

Single Gauss Cannon R500-100 Turret (5x5)    Range 50,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 0-0     RM 50,000 km    ROF 5       
CIWS-250 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 25,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R51-TS25000 (50%) (5)     Max Range: 51,200 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     80 61 41 22 2 0 0 0 0 0

Active Search Sensor AS23-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 280     Range 23.1m km    MCR 2.1m km    Resolution 1
EM Sensor EM2-16 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 16     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  31.6m km
Thermal Sensor TH2-28 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 28     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  41.8m km

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


There was no time to cater an Alcubierre Drive to it, also speed and own anti-missile defences were deemed crucial for the character of its operations, hence it'll always get escorted to its destination with FTL- and combat-capable squadron. Launching it all alone would be suicide anyways. Possibility of adding FTL drive at some point, after further design optimisations, are considered.
The government did not try to hide anything. Instead, war propaganda machine has been turned on. More and more Gladiators, Phalanxes, Vanguards and Tomahawks were leaving Martian docks.
Many factories in Core Worlds were switched to production of missiles for Tomahawks.
Firs goal of the incoming war is to assault Mechi territory, establishing space superiority and creating safe spots for scientists to study wormholes and continue research into hyperspace. Secondary goals include further understanding of alien culture and language as well as capturing some of the surviving crewmembers of their combat fleets.
Meanwhile Prophet crew that first intercepted distress signals and went back to Core Worlds managed to reach Tau Ceti:















Life existence on the surface of Tau Ceti-A V is theoretised, but all the attention is received by Tau Ceti-A IV. It is by far the closest planet to Earth discovered.
A bit lower gravity and atmospheric pressure as well as higher temperatures making most of its surface covered by hot deserts and badlands, but otherwise it has everything. Nitrogen-oxygen based atmosphere, liquid water, other parameters are close enough. Prophet crew gets thrilled as it flies towards the planet.
21th December 2165, 13:24:36, Prophet's radars detect 19 extremely fast-moving objects. They fly directly at the starship, originating from the planet or its orbit.
21th December 2165, 13:24:37, defense systems are powered up and shields are being raised, Gauss Cannons safely disarm all 19 missiles. Prophet powers up Alcubierre Drive in emergency mode.
21th December 2165, 13:38:47, after shooting down most of the incoming missiles and tanking the rest with its shields Prophet enganges Alcubierre Drive and disappears within warp bubble, speeding straight towards the Earth to deliver the news.
Back on Earth everyone is proud of the engineers and scientists behind Prophet's defensive systems and congratulates its valiant crew.
Data analysis team on Earth manages to figure out the rough design of whatever opened fire at Prophet.



Barrels on the sides of the spacecraft could very much be missile launchers, space combat experts say. Ship's design indicates a probability of some medicore or even more advanced and powerful Alcubierre Drives being used. Provided it is FTL-capable at all. While vastly different than Mechi ships, there's too little information to exclude their presence in the system as the Tau Ceti exploration group moved immediately towards Tau Ceti-A IV after only brief system-wide scans, without paying much attention to detect wormholes or any other signs of alien sentience within the system.
Detection of unknown hostile forces in Tau Ceti changes the war plans. Some ships will be stationed in EZ Aquarii system to defend against Mechis while the main fleet will engage forces in Tau Ceti to determine the nature of the enemy and answer the pending questions whether they're Mechi or is it another, unrelated (or another, but related) sentience.
No communication attempts were made by Tau Ceti aliens, they just fired their missiles. The crew was too focused on escaping too quickly to gather much data, so for now all the questions regarding this discovery will remain unanswered. The current strategic situation, with all the systems explored by humans personally, looks as follows:



« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:35:29 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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Meanwhile wormholes detected in WISE 2359-7335, NN 3815, NN 3009 and WISE 2343-7418 cause mass panic to ensue. Could they also belong to Mechi? Could they reach inhabited systems from another direction, taking human fleets into crossfire or assaulting Core Worlds while the main force will be operating in Tau Ceti or Zeta(1) Reticuli? What if they were creation of another alien civilization? Also hostile? Or what if that was the danger that was "coming from outerhyperspace"?
After signing contract with the government itself, powerful space exploitation company establishes fully automated mining operation on Proxima Centauri c, as the planet's gravity's too high for humans to live there for longer periods of time to further boost the economy. War is always resource-hungry.
Despite lack of any evidence whatsoever, upon receiving those few messages from Mechi before they opened fire, XAT moves to Nibiru to conduct the largest scientific and exploration mission on the planet's surface so far, hoping to find more clues as to what happened there (if something happened) and find any links with the mysterious messages.
Child whose both parents are psi-capable is discovered to be a prodigy. "It's another sign of evolution moving towards psionic" scientists comment.
5th January 2166, first successful operation of transplanting a dying patient's brain into a robot. Doctors estimate this will extend patient's lifespan up to a twenty years. "This is by no means a cybernetic ascension, it's still the same biological brain, consider it the pinnacle of cybernetic implantology" say doctors to debunk the consipracy theories that rise around this medical achievement, especially with the recent events involving Mechi. "My new body lacks enough movement precsision" claims the patient himself.
Pacifists protest against sending the fleet to attack Mechi and aliens in Tau Ceti. Government claims we're not knowing what we're dealing with and it's better to be safe, it's only a matter of time before they reach Core Worlds and harm humanity.
In the meantime government officially approves usage of psionic as a new form of punishment besides imprisonment. Some claim that all the war propaganda served to distract the public and silently pass controversial laws like this and they're partially right. Partially, because war propaganda would be broadcasted anyways.
Some people point out that psionic usage will allow the criminals to feel exactly what their victims felt during the crime, recreating particular scenes and feelings in their heads, and thus might be the best form of punishment invented so far if done right.
After numerous tweaks and fixes, Chimera enters production in its final form:


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Chimera class Carrier      57,203 tons       1,126 Crew       11,375.6 BP       TCS 1,144    TH 1,890    EM 1,680
4720 km/s    JR 5-250      Armour 5-132       Shields 56-280       HTK 269      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 13      PPV 31.76
Maint Life 0.54 Years     MSP 5,615    AFR 2014%    IFR 28.0%    1YR 10,303    5YR 154,548    Max Repair 1640.5 MSP
Hangar Deck Capacity 23,375 tons     
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   CIC   PFC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Flight Crew Berths 500    Morale Check Required   

J60000(5-250) Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 60000 tons    Distance 250k km     Squadron Size 5

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (3)    Power 5400    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 5,000,000 Litres    Range 46.6 billion km (114 days at full power)
Beta S28 / R280 Shields (2)     Recharge Time 280 seconds (0.2 per second)

Quad 15.0cm C4 Ultraviolet Laser Turret (1x4)    Range 192,000km     TS: 25000 km/s     Power 24-16     RM 40,000 km    ROF 10       
CIWS-250 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 25,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R192-TS25000 (50%) (1)     Max Range: 192,000 km   TS: 25,000 km/s     95 90 84 79 74 69 64 58 53 48
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R23 (1)     Total Power Output 22.6    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS5-R1 (50%) (1)     GPS 21     Range 5.8m km    MCR 520.3k km    Resolution 1

Strike Group
50x Valor Fighter   Speed: 8568 km/s    Size: 9.34

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Government prepares to set up the largest deep space mining operation conducted so far. New starships, fitted exactly for this purpose, begin assembly. Their crew is selected to be the toughest out of the toughest to cope with staying for years to come in deep space, far away from home, maybe even so far away that the local sun barely reaches them, stranded somewhere in interstellar space, mining asteroids at the system's edge, just like it'll be the case in Epsilon Eridani system.


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Arrow class Geological Survey Vessel      42,180 tons       815 Crew       4,081.9 BP       TCS 844    TH 4,800    EM 0
5689 km/s      Armour 1-107       Shields 0-0       HTK 237      Sensors 0/0/0/10      DCR 100      PPV 0
Maint Life 11.91 Years     MSP 26,048    AFR 142%    IFR 2.0%    1YR 339    5YR 5,078    Max Repair 400 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 120 months    Morale Check Required   

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (3)    Power 4800    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 5,000,000 Litres    Range 1,609.1 billion km (3273 days at full power)

Improved Geological Sensors (5)   10 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Due to the rapidly increasing weight of this ship, engineers decide it'll be better for it to use Guidance system for FTL flights rather than have an Alcubierre Drive on its own.


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Hyena class Mining Platform      190,228 tons       1,374 Crew       5,026.3 BP       TCS 3,805    TH 4,800    EM 0
1261 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-294       Shields 0-0       HTK 225      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 16    Max Repair 400 MSP
Cargo 25,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 9   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Orbital Miner: 20 modules producing 720 tons per mineral per annum

JC200K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 200000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (3)    Power 4800    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 13,000,000 Litres    Range 927.3 billion km (8511 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


To sustain the ever-hungry and ever-growing war fleet, Epsilon Eridani is deemed to be the next system to colonize due to its resource abundance rather than any good canditates among celestial bodies. Especially Epsilon Eridani-A II and II are very interesting for heavy industries, though hellish atmosphere will provide a challenge to exploit them. For now, the best thing to do is to use autonomous, AI-driven complexes.
Terraforming engineers suggest human population could be placed on one of the Epsilon Eridani-A VIII's airless moons. They'd only require to pupm up atmosphere with enough greenhouse gasses and water vapour, nothing challenging. Similarly humans could colonize Luyten 726-8-B V fourth moon, due it has poor gravity but is almost as big as Earth and the system is also worth exploiting for resources.
AI-driven mining and smelting starts on two dwarf planets orbiting EZ Aquarii-B, unaffected by three body problem.
Terraforming finishes on HIP 47650-A III ice planet and first few million colonists arrive at their new home. Warming the planet up caused ice sheets around equator to melt, creating a large ocean dividing north and south, but xenobiologists are happy given that most of the environment and ecosystems remained intact and planet's biosphere is surviving warmer temperatures rather well. The only possible issue might come up in the future as higher temperature means more flora and more flora means more herbivores that previously had to migrate for long distances in search for food. Hunters around the stars can't hide their excitement.
Terraria staff working on HIP 47650-A III quickly moves to HIP 47650-A II to finish the long-abandoned job and turn this desert into a habitable world.
A fleet of Hyenas moves to 2017 MB7 comet to test its long-cruise capabilities and psychological endurance of the crew.
Preemptive exploration of wormhole network first discovered in WISE 2359-7335 continues. Exploration fleet traverses one of the unexplored wormholes in WISE 2343-7418 and finds itself in NN 3704 system:







Very simplistic life forms detected on NN 3704-A III, being the first documented case of methane-based extraterrestrial life. More research will be conducted in the future.
Main assault fleet prepares for the first real space battle in the history of humanity. It's mission: neutralise the target posing threat for exploration and colonisation of Tau Ceti system.
A new line of ships is formed to keep the combat-capable fleet well-stocked:


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Stalwart class Replenishment Ship      24,118 tons       270 Crew       1,434.4 BP       TCS 482    TH 1,600    EM 0
3317 km/s      Armour 1-74       Shields 0-0       HTK 79      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 80,037    Max Repair 400 MSP
Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (1)    Power 1600    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 150,000 Litres    Range 84.4 billion km (294 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Apart from supply ships, war efforts also call for improved Fuel Rats' vessels:


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Kingfisher class Tanker      63,578 tons       350 Crew       2,184.9 BP       TCS 1,272    TH 6,400    EM 0
5033 km/s      Armour 1-141       Shields 0-0       HTK 91      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 21    Max Repair 400 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 3 months   

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (4)    Power 6400    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 30,000,000 Litres    Range 6,406 billion km (14731 days at full power)
Refuelling Capability: 60,000 litres per hour     Complete Refuel 500 hours

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Engineers work day and night to design a proper FTL drives for both designs, allowing them to operate independently and deliver their precious cargo quickly in an emergency situation.
12th May 2166, Assault Fleet composed of class Phalanx, Vanguard, Gladiator and Tomahawk spaceships warps into Tau Ceti System and heads towards deserts of Tau Ceti-A IV.
12th May 2166, 01:25:11, sensors detect hostile spaceship floating on planet's orbit which immediately launches missile volleys to no end. Amount of fired missiles, compared to the anti-missile capabilities of Assault Fleet was later described as "laughable" by those who took part in the first real space battle.
12th May 2166, 1:35:14, Tomahawks fire a bunch of Chesma missiles to probe enemy anti-missile defense systems.
12th May 2166, 1:35:50, the lonely ship not only did not have any means of defence, but it was too weak even for Chesma missiles, although engineers designing them claimed "these are not meant to actually cause damage, they're meant to detect and overwhelm enemy defesnes." From the distance of millions of kilometers the explosion was barely noticeable with naked eyes.
Due to enemy combat ability being vastly inferior to the expectations and imaginations sparked by the shock Prophet's crew operating in the system suffered from, many missiles flew past the wrecked ship and before their self-destruction triggered impacted the surface of the planet the lonely ship was trying to defend. Terraformers predict this will cause significant terraforming handicap, which is unfortunate because of how little work this planet needed to make it nearly perfect for humans to live on. The explosions weren't that many though, so it is expected that the majority of radiation will die off before the government will send terraformers, though, especially given Taui Ceti needs to be properly explored before any colonization attempts could be made.
16th May 2166, 23:58:02, exploration group travelling back home from NN 3704 via WISE 2343-7418 system detects two unknown veseels with their naked eyes as soon as they emerge in WISE 2343-7418 from the wormhole which led them to NN 3704 in the first place, eventually proving the theory about artificial origin of the second group of discovered wormholes.



The hulls of the ships are marked with strange symbols in several places. Different design, different symbol and on top of that the symbol appearing multiple times on one ship excludes the probability of these sentient beings being part of Mechi "species". But maybe they're the ones who created the robots, again, assuming Mechi are robots and not a civilisation which ascended via cybernetics? Or even if not creators, they're in some sort of pact with them?



Given the lack of initial hostility chances of them being affiliated with Mechi in any way are estimated at "very low", as they do not open fire. However, they also do not respond. Representation fleet is sent to WISE 2343-7418 immediately, however aliens still refuse to send any messages, making everyone staring at their ships floating silently baffled and nervous. Not even a single "leave" Mechi were spamming shortly before opening fire. In response, Diplomats resign from sending messages and instead redirect all computing power and sensors to try to capture even the weakest signals that might be communication between the three ships.
17th May 2166, 11:52:34, two of the three ships are observed to suddenly disappear in space, as if aliens guessed Diplomats intentions and made sure they couldn't be heard by simply leaving the system. It is worth noting they didn't use any of the wormholes present, indicating they have also different, more "free-roam" FTL travel method, contrary to Mechi, who've never shown any other FTL capabilities beyond pre-stabilised wormholes yet. This raises concerns over Core Worlds security and the large investments in Proxima and Alpha Centauri systems as well as supply routes and safety of further interstellar expansion.
Biologists working on Terraria stations orbiting Venus manage to recreate photosynthesis process in lab conditions for the first time.
A group of medical researches on Mars finally synthesises artificial blood, which has even slightly better properties than natural one.
Latest estimations ran after more Terrarias reached Nibiru's orbit assume finishing terraforming in the next 25 years, government promises. Most of the population remains sceptical given the government is almost a hundred years too late according to the initial Nibiru colonisation plans back in the day when first inhabitants landed on the planet. Meanwhile Venus terraforming still has a long way to go and nobody complains, because it's been known since the beginning the project is gonna span across multiple generations and centuries.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 05:39:04 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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Efforts to track down mysterious aliens first seen in WISE 2343-7418 are made and exploration of the wormhole network continues. Last unexplored wormhole from WISE 2343-7418 leads to WISE 1519+7009, which doesn't have a planetary system:



Industry on Earth and Mars blossoms and enters a steep curve of exponential growth, which boosts the economy. All the production and growth is meant to be used in other solar systems to accelerate most important planets' growth towards Core World status as well as to set up more mining colonies which will boost the economy even more.
Advancements in energetic weapons find applications in civilian sector as well, allowing for better asteroid mining techniques as well as more advanced mining and smelting on grand scale in general. With the help of powerful laser beams and cooling devices it is possible to reach minerals deeper than ever before.
Next candidates for colonisation are chosen:
Epsilon Eridani-A VIII's 8th Moon - it is large enough and contains resources that'd greatly help to rapidly develop mining and smelting infrastructure across the entire system, which'll allow for easy spread of human population there. Terraforming should be easy enough, although it won't be the most comfortable world to live on, because the almost absolute zero temperatures will require a lot of greenhouse gasses to be pumped into the atmosphere, making the pressure barely tolerable by average people.
A couple of Astera stations are brought to the orbit of Epsilon Eridani-A VIII. The gas giant's been chosen to become the main fuel source for ships to be able to refill their tanks in the system, cutting on the travel back to Sol once human presence is established.
Corporations help expand the infrastructure in HIP 47650 system. Population grows on HIP 47650-A III and HIP 47650-A II's terraforming is well underway, progressing according to the plan.
Alpha Centauri-A II is expected to be the first extraterrestial planet to gain the Core World status in the future. Additional colonists arrive to the Alpha Centauri system to further boost the economy and expansion in it.
Terraformers arrive on orbit of NN 3009-A V's third moon as it is almost as big as Earth and contains lots of resources. Terraforming is expected to take some time, though. Similarily to the situation in Epsilon Eridani, Astera stations are put to harvest fuel from NN 3009-A V and living conditions on the moon won't be great due to taking atmospheric pressure to the extreme as heating it up requires a lot of greenhouse gasses.
Corporation responsible for Proxima Centauri c autonomous exploitation grows in power, boosting the economy of Proxima Centauri b.
Another exploration mission travels to Luyten-Palomar 914-54 and HN Librae stars. They both lack a planetary system:





Next target for the mission is HH Andromedae since some exoplanets were spotted in it via telescope placed on the outer edges of the Solar System:





















HH Andromedae-A II appears to contain simple oxygen-based lifeforms thriving beneath ice sheets spannning across almost the entire surface, similar to the life that was once theoretized to exist beneath Europa's ice. The planet could be rather easily terraformed and colonized.
14th December 2169, XAT's mission to Tau Ceti-A IV explores ruins of a mysterious complex among planet's deserts.
Part of the planet is still irradiated and intoxicated after brief combat with the hostile alien vessel and no life can exist on it. However, in the other regions life thrives, among the blazing sands, in the skies, underground, in the seas and lakes that happen to exist between patches of scorched lands, closer to the poles.
Many of the species discovered on the planet are actually similar to their Earth counterparts, which isn't that surprising given the conditions on the planet are so similar it's unbelievable.
Salvaging of the wreck didn't reveal any traces of biological matter to exist onboard. It appears that the ship was fully automated and AI-driven. Similarily, the only biological matter that was found in the ruins came from lifeforms already discovered elsewhere on the planet, no indication of another species that could represent the civilization once existing there itself. As XAT teams moved forward around the complex, they found a couple of relatively intact machines:



It is theoretized that these machines were the robots running the complex and its defenses in orbit as well. Researches continue to uncover the mysteries of the complex, however the language used is so different from either any human language or Mechi speech that even the best linguistics struggle to understand anything from it. The structures are dated to be a few dozen millions years old at least, existing long before humanity was a thing.
Parts of the complex are completely sealed off and so far nobody could find a way to open them, either by figuring out how to unlock the doors or by brute force. As far as the latter option comes, energetic weapons didn't leave a scracth and usage of missiles was forbidden in order to not risk destruction of the planet's ecosystems as well as the content behind the sealed door.
Scientists working on Tau Ceti-A IV report their mood worsening over time. Psi team arriving to investigate the problem found some psionic interference, but couldn't discover the source of it as well as effectively counter it. Answers to the mystery probably lie in the closed parts. Attempts of cracking it open will be continued.
Analysis of the materials used to build the complex showed some similarities to the mineral composition of Nibiru mountains. Further questions are raised. Could this be that the civilization that built this complex long before humanity existed also inhabited Nibiru, however it was at times so ancient that even such sturdy structures and alloys deteriorated enough for the current mining technology to be able to extract resources from them? If that was true, this would explain why mining on Nibiru is actually quite hard and requires lots of power and effort. For now, "Precursor Hypothesis", a hypothesis of sentient life so ancient that it thrived on Nibiru at some point, then established an outpost serving whatever purpose on Tau Ceti-A IV and later either left these two planets to their own devices or went extinct lacks a solid proof that'd confirm it, though. Nevertheless it gains some support among scientific communities because of the messages left by Mechi about "Nibiru before, humanity next". Government wants to send some terraforming stations as soon as possible to apply neccessary tweaks to the planet so it could better support human life and give its colonization a priority to help exploration missions and gather more data on the structures found and civilization who's built them.
As colonies grow exponentially, so do their needs. A new, huge freighter fleet consisting of next-gen starships is assembled to quickly deliver all kind of cargo to the edges of explored systems and beyond:


Code: [Select]
Beholder class Freighter      186,645 tons       1,014 Crew       5,377.6 BP       TCS 3,733    TH 16,000    EM 0
4286 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-290       Shields 0-0       HTK 190      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 18    Max Repair 400 MSP
Cargo 75,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

JC200K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 200000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (10)    Power 16000    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 72.7 billion km (196 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


2170s

1st May 2170, 11:45:41, staff of Terraria stations orbiting NN 3009-A V's third moon detect a strange gravitational anomaly appearing within the system while observing space with a telescope during their lunch break.
5th June 2175, research team arrives on site and begins its task. The anomaly in question looks like a black hole. It has massive gravity well, too strong for any small probe to approach it without imminent destruction, diameter of 40 milion kilometers and is pitch black inside. Many of the scientists participating in the mission dread what they see, the vastness of blackness they see is too much for them to handle. They stay so close to it that they see the spacetime bend over the "blackhole" and a big portion of the sky they'll see for the duration of the mission is nothing but pure darkness.
It'd be classified as a black hole and everyone would move on with their lives, except there's one tiny issue with it. Black holes don't appear out of nowhere in the vacuum like this thing did. On top of that the gravity force, while strong, is far weaker than what would be expected from a black hole of this size. As a consequence of low gravity for a black hole it doesn't even seem to suck matter in that much. Another possibility is that this is yet another wormhole created by the mysterious aliens spotted around these parts of space since NN 3009 is linked with a couple other stars via wormhole network and some of those wormholes still remain unexplored.
However, it's different than any other wormhole discovered so far.
Scientific mission in NN 3009 grinds to a halt unless detailed simulations show that modern starships are capable of entering the anomaly with relatively low risk of getting crushed by gravity.
And so the brave captain of one of the exploratory starships and his crew volunteers to go beyond what humanity ever imagined to reach.
12th July 2175, 17:32:51, valiant Prophet crew enters the "blackwormhole".
12th July 2175, 17:45:51, the ship makes it through with only minor scratches and scretches of the hull. Some non-essential damaged rooms and corridors were sealed off and had the air sucked out in case the hull fails to avoid violent destruction. The captain sends first message: "It's so dark and empty here I feel primeval fear while looking at this nothingness. However, there are bright dots starting to appear behind us, either stars or galaxies, can't really tell. We must be far, far from home right now."
12th July 2175, 22:52:47, captain claims that after running hundreds of simulations and staring at stellar maps they were able to finally identify where they are. It appears that the anomaly is indeed a wormhole and it landed them at the edge of Bootes Void.
Bootes Void explains the blackness seen from the NN 3009 side of the wormhole. It is speculated that it is far larger than any of the wormholes encountered so far because maybe linking points at larger distance requires larger wormhole diameter, which would be compatible with some early conclusions of some physicists researching wormholes since the day the first one's been discovered.
All the light years travelled by all humans combined so far mean nothing compared to the 700 milions of light years separating Bootes Void and Earth. However, the placement of the wormhole is impractical in reaching "far edges of the universe" as there's nothing on the other side and the closest celestial bodies are too far for the current Alcubierre Drives to reach them within reasonable time.
Only one question remains.
How the hell did it appear there? Could this be that the mysterious aliens first spotted near WISE 2343-7418 pulled off such an enormous feat compared to their other "wormhole achievements" documented so far? Just like that, out of the blue? If they posses such advanced technology, then why do they still create so many small wormholes to link nearby stars, even the ones without a planetary system, rather than making a larger one, skipping useless, empty systems, for example? And why does it lead into the void, so far away from any celestial body?
Despite all these questions, it is expected that "Void Wormhole" could help speed up research into wormholes and other dimensions in general, providing humanity with instant communication across the stars, without the need for "post office starships", and much faster ways to travel across the stars as well.
Terraforming in Epsilon Eridani grands to a halt as the targeted moon proves to be too difficult to heat up and despite pumping more greenhouse gasses in, temperature stabilised at around -138C. As this is the first case of greenhouse gasses not being enough, alternatives are being researched. It is initially theorised that in order for human population to live there comfortably, an array of some sort of "planetary heaters" will be needed. While still better than the life support systems needed to keep the population there alive and well without terraforming support, it looks like it won't eliminate the problem of life support infrastructure dependence for the future population. Apart from the inconvenience of sucking out part of workforce to build and then maintain those heaters the moon will still be nice to live on, with liquid water and everything, gowernment promises. But the proposed infrastructure will take out half of the predicted workforce regardless.
Problems in Epsilon Eridani pose concerns about terraforming happening in NN 3009 system and, obviously, the infamous Nibiru terraforming project. Government promises to "find a solution".
Many people live in fear after reports from Tau Ceti-A IV mission leaks into the public, especially those who stayed on Nibiru.
A few biologists suggests the possibility of adapting human bodies to the "frozen hell" of worlds that couldn't be warmed up enough by putting them into "half-cryostasis" that'd leave them awake but having their metabolism slowed down enough to not die, just like during cryogenic sleep interstellar colonists endure on a regular basis. This is a long shot, many experts comment, but at the same time many claim that thermal cybernetic implants and increase in people having brains transplanted into robotic bodies could indeed help mitigate the problem of extremely low temperatures.
Mars crosses 2 bilions inhabitants and Earth 5,5 bilions, which adds up to Earth population in pre-COVID 19 times. Despite some radical feminists protesting here and there from time to time, many social programs encouraging women to have more children helped, even if only so little.
A celebrity from Alpha Centauri-B IV asks whether toilet paper exists in outer space. Captain of the first mission to the Bootes Void "can't bring himself to break her heart by telling the truth that they couldn't find either toilet paper rolls or at least some traces of them even while exploring the biggest smeghole visited by humans so far." After over 150 years everyone got used to the fact that some things will never be the same and toilet paper was long gone, lost in the turbulent past of human race forever.
An astrophysicist from Proxima b working on the "Void Wormhole" project is the first one to notice the wormhole connecting NN 3009 with Bootes Void is expanding at an annual rate of roughly one million kilometres in diameter. Societies on every so far colonised celestial body shocked and terrified. "It's as if the wormhole was jealous of black holes and wanted to 'be just like them because that's cool'", physicists try to explain. While the numbers sound scary, scientists try to calm people down by telling them that at the current expansion rate it'll take hundreds of years for the wormhole to reach and "suck in" the closest celestial body.
13th February 2177, 13:15:41, humans traverse Void Wormhole for the second time.
13th February 2177, 13:36:03, contact with the Second Void Wormhole Mission is lost. It looks as if the starship just vanished, ceased to exist, evaporated. A rescue operation is quickly assembled, however the arriving rescue operation group is unable to find the disappeared ship, the crew or any traces of them at all or at least come up with a hypothesis what's happened. No messages of the missing crew trying to call for help, escape or comment on something extraordinary are captured.
Given the mystery of the wormhole and alien presence spotted operating within the systems linked via wormholes to NN 3009, a state of public emergency is declared. Whether those aliens have anything to do with what happened or not, better safe than sorry, says the government as three brand new designs of assault ships make it to the assembly phase:


Code: [Select]
Blade class Assault Ship      15,675 tons       465 Crew       5,179.6 BP       TCS 313    TH 1,260    EM 6,240
11483 km/s    JR 3-250      Armour 10-55       Shields 208-520       HTK 67      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 20
Maint Life 0.63 Years     MSP 1,832    AFR 393%    IFR 5.5%    1YR 2,904    5YR 43,562    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

J17400(3-250) Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 17400 tons    Distance 250k km     Squadron Size 3

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (2)    Power 3600    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 34 billion km (34 days at full power)
Theta S208 / R520 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 520 seconds (0.4 per second)

R120/C4 Meson Cannon (5)    Range 120,000km     TS: 11,483 km/s     Power 6-4     RM 120,000 km    ROF 10       
CIWS-320 (2x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R120-TS32000 (50%) (1)     Max Range: 120,000 km   TS: 32,000 km/s     92 83 75 67 58 50 42 33 25 17
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R23 (1)     Total Power Output 22.6    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS3-R1 (50%) (4)     GPS 5     Range 3.5m km    MCR 314.7k km    Resolution 1

ECCM-1 (1)         ECM 30

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Pike class Assault Ship      16,370 tons       512 Crew       6,528 BP       TCS 327    TH 1,260    EM 6,240
10996 km/s      Armour 10-57       Shields 208-520       HTK 84      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 72
Maint Life 0.64 Years     MSP 2,046    AFR 429%    IFR 6.0%    1YR 3,204    5YR 48,054    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (2)    Power 3600    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 32.6 billion km (34 days at full power)
Theta S208 / R520 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 520 seconds (0.4 per second)

Particle Lance-18 (2)    Range 320,000km     TS: 10,996 km/s     Power 55-4    ROF 70       
Particle Beam-9 (4)    Range 320,000km     TS: 10,996 km/s     Power 22-4    ROF 30       
CIWS-320 (1x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R450-TS16000 (50%) (2)     Max Range: 450,000 km   TS: 16,000 km/s     98 96 93 91 89 87 84 82 80 78
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R23 (1)     Total Power Output 22.6    Exp 5%
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R5 (1)     Total Power Output 5.2    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS3-R1 (50%) (4)     GPS 5     Range 3.5m km    MCR 314.7k km    Resolution 1

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Code: [Select]
Striker class Assault Ship      15,279 tons       441 Crew       5,620.9 BP       TCS 306    TH 1,260    EM 6,240
11781 km/s      Armour 10-54       Shields 208-520       HTK 74      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 5      PPV 50
Maint Life 0.68 Years     MSP 1,949    AFR 373%    IFR 5.2%    1YR 2,868    5YR 43,024    Max Repair 1575 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 6 months    Morale Check Required   

Internal Fusion Drive  EP1800.00 (2)    Power 3600    Fuel Use 33.75%    Signature 630.00    Explosion 15%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 34.9 billion km (34 days at full power)
Theta S208 / R520 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 520 seconds (0.4 per second)

31.250cm C4 Soft X-ray Laser (5)    Range 450,000km     TS: 11,781 km/s     Power 26-4     RM 60,000 km    ROF 35       
CIWS-320 (2x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Beam Fire Control R450-TS16000 (50%) (1)     Max Range: 450,000 km   TS: 16,000 km/s     98 96 93 91 89 87 84 82 80 78
Tokamak Fusion Reactor R23 (1)     Total Power Output 22.6    Exp 5%

Active Search Sensor AS3-R1 (50%) (4)     GPS 5     Range 3.5m km    MCR 314.7k km    Resolution 1

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


The adapted strategy against the unknown threat dictates squadrons composed of these three types of combat spaceships will patrol around Void Wormhole, strengthened with direct support of Missile Destroyers and long-range missile support from Tomahawks stationed at a distance, tasked with rapid assault of any hostile entities that might try to come through it. Research missions to Bootes Void are suspended till further notice.
An independent reporter makes a claim about flying saucers sightings around Cydonia. Government refuses to comment, claiming he probaly saw another bunch of warships leaving the famous shipyard located at Cydonia indeed.
The recently updated logistical, strategic and tactical situation of mankind among explored stars presents itself as follows:



 
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Another exploration mission is launched, this time to TZ Arietis system:







None of the planets look like a good place to live, despite first two holding potential for successful terraforming if desired, but initial estimations of geologists point out to mineral richness of some of the bodies there. TZ Arietis-A II's atmosphere has lower pressure, but otherwise the percentage amount of each gas makes it similar to Nibiru's atmosphere. At least before terraformers started to suck out hydrogen and helium and pump oxygen and greenhouse gasses instead.
Colonists arrive at Epsilon Eridani's-A VIII's eight moon by milions after the initial testing of planetary-scale heating systems (traditional life support facilities could have been used, but the new project could significantly reduce costs if successful, which it certainly was) thanks to the new fleet of colonization starships:


Code: [Select]
Gaia class Colony Ship      174,342 tons       1,010 Crew       7,981 BP       TCS 3,487    TH 8,000    EM 0
2294 km/s      Armour 1-278       Shields 0-0       HTK 169      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 28    Max Repair 400 MSP
Cryogenic Berths 500,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (5)    Power 8000    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 77.9 billion km (392 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Lacking an FTL drive to maintain capacity within still acceptable top speeds and fuel usage it relies on Guidance Systems to traverse interstellar space which leaves a lot to be desired for frontier expansion, but the primary focus was colonist capacity as Mission Gaia assumed rapid deployment of people from Core Worlds to most promising exoplanets helping them join the group of most important inhabited worlds as with the latest advancements in laser and particle beam technology mixed with private corporations fighting for profit boosted mining industries making relatively low populations on so far colonised exoplanets the bottleneck of further expansion growth. Long-terms plans involve making other systems be able to produce supplies and fleets for rapid expansion to the nearest stars around them just like currently Solar System is supposed to do.
The main focus of the initial part of the mission is Alpha Centauri-A II. Experts estimate that due to abundance of resources and extremely good conditions this planet is most probably going to be, together with Alpha Centauri-B IV, become the first exoplanet among Core Worlds. Gaia-class starships manage to deliver millions of much required workers to the colony, making its industry explode. Human economy blossoms.
By the end of the decade Earth is inhabited by nearly 6 bilion people and another 2,5 live on Mars and  0,5 on Europa. Earth's population is close to reaching pre-COVID-19 times in terms of inhabitants (of course not in terms of toilet paper accessibility) and together with Mars it has already surpassed these numbers. Humanity thrives both among the stars and in their home system.
Next step in Mission Gaia involves putting more colonists on the surface of HIP 47650-A II and III as the former finally finished terraforming and the system was neglected for quite some time due to other priorities of space programs and lack of enough colonization ships which Gaia's eventually resolved.


FIRST BOOTES WAR


1st August 2178, 16:22:35, an undetected threat blows up a Guidance starship which took a short break close to WISE 2359-7335 after escorting Gaia fleet to HIP 47650 and returning back to Earth to help more Gaia fleets in need of achieving superluminal velocities. The sole star became a popular spot among interstellar navigators cruising between Sol and HIP 47650 to quickly recalculate the coordinates and conventional speed vector to increase efficiency of the warp bubble. It was proven that making this break actually cuts up travel times roughly by two weeks compared to flying between two systems in question directly without stopping mid-way.
1st August 2178, 16:25:12, minutes after the incident terraformers of NN 3009-V's third moon receive the distress signal since NN 3009 and WISE 2359-7335 were linked by wormhole network, allowing for instant communication across many light years. The fastest "post office vessels" make a quick journey through the two wormholes separating systems and power up Alcubierre Drives instantly upon arriving at WISE 2359-7335, leaving the system as quickly as possible to deliver the news to Earth Main Naval Headquarters.
5th December 2178, 18:49:02, news about what happened reach Solar System. Main combat fleet is put into an emergency mode and quickly prepared for the journey.
26th February 2179, 06:06:05, fleet assembled from Phalanx and Vanguard for anti-missile defences, Tomahawks for own missile volleys and Gladiators for laser firefights warps near WISE 2359-7335 and moves towards estimated coordinates of the wreckage. The fleet also escorts a Lifebringer in case some Guidance crewmembers survived the assault and launched lifepods.
26th February 2179, 19:10:50, radars show fife ships floating near remnants of Guidance: one is very big, four others look smaller and more agile. Upon spotting human fleet, they turn tails and attempt to fly away. Brief scans indicate they're the same alien beings spotted within local wormhole network before.
Although the main task of the mission was to "find out what happened and search for potential survivors", fleet admiral decides the only course of action which could grant some knowledge is to pursue the attackers and try to capture some of them alive and interrogate, especially given how those species refused to send any messages during all past communication attempts Tomahawks arm their launchers. Meanwhile Lifebringer prepares to pick up 91 remaining survivors of the incident and heads towards Solar System, escorted by a few Phalanxes.
26th February 2179, 19:11:30, Tomahawks launch the first volley, quickly followed by next ones. Swooshing sound of dozens of missiles leaving barrels time after time again within seconds is heard by the crew of each firing ships.



26th February 2179, 19:16:37, according to onboard radars, first missiles reach their targets. An unknown signal is disturbing their support guidance systems, but nevertheless they manage to close in accurately. Dozens of enemy gauss cannons launch rubble at the missiles, intercepting many of them, but the swarm is too big. The biggest ship quickly gets teared apart. Remaining smaller ones escape at a velocity of roughly 11000 km/s, faster than their pursuers, but there's nothing that can be done - accelerating further would burn too much fuel for too small speed increase, leaving assault fleet with not enough fuel to go back to Core Worlds.



26th Februar 2179, 20:45:44, after many more volleys fired, only one ship manages to finally escape the range of Tomahawk's fire controls and tracking systems.
26th February 2179, 23:45:45, the sole survivor from enemy squadron disappears in the wormhole leading to NN 3815.
Before coming back home, the victorious naval forces briefly take a look at the wrecks, but a proper salvaging team will be needed to get anything useful out of them. Initial investigation reveals they were armed only with gauss and laser cannons, though.
A team of carefully selected scientists and engineers boards starships designed specifically with space wreckage exploration and salvaging:


Code: [Select]
Scavenger class Salvager      52,248 tons       407 Crew       3,045.3 BP       TCS 1,045    TH 3,200    EM 0
3062 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 10-124       Shields 0-0       HTK 68      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 36    Max Repair 400 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Salvager: 2 module(s) capable of salvaging 1500 tons per day

JC60K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 60000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP1600.00 (2)    Power 3200    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 1600    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 259.8 billion km (982 days at full power)

CIWS-320 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Meanwhile across human-controlled space public paranoia and unrest grow. According to the 91 survivors, invaders appeared out of nowhere, they couldn't detect them without military-grade radar arrays and out of the blue laser beams more powerful than any of those engineered by humans tore through the unarmored hull, causing instant explosion of ship's fusion reactor, killing most of the crew before anyone realised what happened.
More questions than answers appear as Scavengers successfully complete their mission. Unfortunately Invaders' weapon systems were too damaged to be of any use for engineers, however what's odd is that these ships haven't launched any sort of life pods or escape shuttles upon destruction. A tiny fraction of the bodies were not directly impacted by the explosion, making them float in the vacuum mostly intact which gave an insight as to how the aliens looked like:



Why they didn't try to save themselves remains currently unknown, making them that much scarier and more mysterious. As if their terrifying looks weren't enough to freeze the blood of every human being.
However, the most attention is paid to the biggest of destroyed ships. Most of the wreckage is pure space trash, however tiny bits of intact structures make scientists decipher its role. Apparently that one vessel had something to do with hyperspace and wormhole technologies. Analysis of its chain of explosions upon contact with missiles suggests massive power storage and output and certain scraps from devices floating around oddly resemble theoretical machines proposed by physicists that could be used to establish a wormhole or conduct experiments into the existence and properties of multi-dimensional planes. Detection of exotic matter particles surrounding debris cements the conclusions. As a result, research into wormholes and hyperspace receives even more funding and grants.
Meanwhile, the (in)famous Void Wormhole has expanded to over 80 milion kilometers in diameter and seems to be growing faster than before. Debate over abandoning or establishing a permanent strong military presence in NN 3009 system gets more and more heated with every day that passes in these uncertain days.

2180s

Preparations for the "First Bootes War" as the conflict with unknown invaders' forces arises accelerate in the Solar System. Martian shipyards and spaceports spit out more and more of Strikers, Blades and Pikes in fear of alien invasion. Although there's still no proof for the Invaders to arrive from the Bootes Void, given the recent research into wormholes and the direction route of the last "Guidance killer" it seems likely. And even if that exploratory starship disappearing on the edge of Bootes Void without a trace war caused by yet another threat, the commonly used name of the conflict stuck.
14th May 2180, 16:54:23, Prophet returning to Earth for refuelling and standard maintenance checkout is fired upon by an enemy fleet in NN 3815. Its shields hold off for long enough to give it a survival chance, however eventually laser beams overload it and puncture right through the starship's hull. 94 members of the personnel die from the impacts as beams tear through some crew quarters and blow up one of ship's engines. Warp drive also suffers a failure, however it is not critical and thanks to the monstrous efforts of engineering team quickly slapping duct tape onto it the crew successfully manages to establish a warp bubble, instantly leaving Invaders behind. Despite severe damage, ship is able to continue the journey safely, albeit slowly, and reach repair docks on its own.
Upon returning, survivors report roughly 30-40 ships detected in total. Imminent action is taken. Assault Fleet, with Gladiators replaced with the newest "StrikerBladePike" suqadron heads out towards WISE 2359-7335 from which it'll take wormhole into NN 3815 and face the enemy.
29th July 2180, 12:20:39, main assault forces warp near WISE 2359-7335 traverse the wormhole and enter NN 3815 system.
29th July 2180, 14:41:33, rough coordinates of Prophet assault are reached, no hostile presence detected.
Admiral knows he can't let the enemy escape like that and without any clues as to where they went decides to head to NN 3009, wondering whether "Bootes Invaders" really came from Bootes Void.
31th July 2180, 7:11:55, human forces attempt to cross the wormhole into NN 3009. However, due to accelerating a bit too much before entering the wormhole, gravitational forces within the space tunnel throw them around, making their appearance on the other side more violent than ususal, sending small groups of ships dozens of thousands of kilometers apart from each other before every vessel manages to deccelerate and reorient itself. However, this small accident proves to be a godsend as radars instantly detect 28 hostile contacts stationed right next to the wormhole:



As a result, the arriving forces ended up surrounding the enemy from many directions, allowing to take Invaders into laser and particle beam crossfire almost immediately. First shots pierce one of their vessels' armor and disintegrate it into a wreckage.



Enemy engages its engines and tries to get away, quickly leaving the initial killzone. Tomahawks launch missiles after it, however there are too many ships, all armed with lasers and gauss cannons exclusively, preventing any missile to penetrate their defenses. Tomahawks cease fire, waiting for better opportunity and the rest of the fleet quickly regroups and starts pursuing the enemy, engaging their subluminal warp drives for a brief moments to catch up to the enemy quicker.
31th July 2180, 7:26:47, brutal laser firefight begins. Invaders are capable of efficiently jamming fire controls of Strikers and Pikers, making them struggle to hit enemy vessels while they face strong laser retaliation as the ships simply turn around while maintaining the course and open fire.
Thanks to the latest achievements in shielding technology, barely any beams manage to dent the armor of pursuing squadron, but it is obvious who has fire superiority here.
Pikes are a bit too slow and can't spare any more fuel for further acceleration, so they stay behind as Strikers and Blades burn a bit more fuel to increase their speed and close in a bit more. More lasers fired by humans begin to connect to their targets.
31th July 2180, 7:31:02, taking advantage of Invaders focusing on pursuers Tomahawks launch their missiles once again in hopes of getting at least some through their defenses.
31th July 2180, 7:42:15, first missiles reach their destination. Vast majority is successfully intercepted, however some do get through, scoring precious hits.
Enemy redirects more firepower into anti-missile operations, allowing pursuit forces to close in just enough to finally get a reliable hit rate. At this range human lasers still remain rather ineffective, though. Tomahawks cease fire once again as they're too slow to catch up to the enemy, allowing it to leave range of targeting systems.
With full firepower concentrated on them again, Pikes and Blades start to suffer more and more hull hits as their shields can't keep up anymore. Strikers' lasers manage to shoot down first of the most intimidating enemy vessels, though.
As firefight gets more intense, humanity begins to take first casualties. One of the Blades gets torn into pieces before even reaching effective range of its meson cannons.
Fleet admiral calls for concentration fire. This doesn't come without a risk, because it requires pursuing vessels to group closer together, disrupting evasive manoeuvres and leaving all alien fleet but one ship not targeted, but it's deemed to be the only way to get a fighting chance.
The tactics proves to be somewhat effective. More Blades get shot down before coming within meson range and one Striker blows up as well after suffering critical fusion reactor hit, but the flight path gets scattered with more and more alien ships as well as their firepower dwindles and the distance closes, allowing humanity to take more accurate shots.



A few ships, human and alien alike, receive shots directly into fuel tanks. This causes them to rapidly leak fuel into space. As a desperate measure, damaged ships from human assault group begin to rapidly brake before fuel supply running totally dry, not wanting to stay drifting at over 11000 km/s through space forever, rendering any future rescue operation impossible.
However the case for fuel-leaking Invader vessels is different - seemingly having the course plotted, they continue cruising at maximum speed, not willing to decelerate. Their dodging capabilities get severely limited as a result, though, making them easy prey for Strikers.
31th July 2180, 8:12:03, Blades finally close in enough to open fire with meson cannons. Invaders suddenly change tactics: those of their crews who already know their fate after receiving enough damage begin to slow down to almost standstill. Humans lack engine power to adapt and as a result often end up speeding past them, ending up flying way too close to them for a split second. This is enough for those "kamikazes" to unload one final devastating volley before being mopped up by particle beams fired from Pikes who manage to reach their positions.



While they manage to score more casualties across human crews, as the mesons start to go right through the armor and damage internal structures and components of their ships directly, they lose more and more of them. Humanity starts to emerge victorious from its first serious space battle:



















31th July 2180, 8:25:31, and so after a fierce firefight humanity emerges victorius and the last enemy ships flashes in a big bang, overheated by laser beams and punctured by meson beams. Again, no life pods or evacuation shuttles were launched by the enemy. Given the extreme hostility of the apparently battle-hardened civilisation it could be that they are all meant to either win or die, but not let their enemies capture and interrogate them. Across milions of kilometres lie numerous remnants of Invaders' fleet as well as four Blades and one Striker together with life pods of those who managed to escape these ships alive before being blown into space dust. Another 8 ships suffered damage preventing them from returning home on their own, making them stuck in the system with Void Wormhole until help arrives.







Largest space rescue operation in all history of humanity so far begins. Lifebringers for rescuing stranded survivors and Fuel Rats for delivering large amounts of fuel needed to replenish pierced, leaking tanks are just the beginning as stranded ships need spare parts and tools to fix themselves enough to not fall apart during journey back home. Stalwart resupplying ships are used for the first time to bring the necessary goods used for patching fuel tanks so that Fuel Rats could transfer fuel to the immobilised vessels. Scavengers follow up, tasked with recovering whatever alien tech and data they might find among debris.

Assault fleet remains hanging around the battlefieldspace in case more Invaders would show up to avenge their fallen comrades. However, the operation proceeds calmly and peaceful, no more enemy contacts flash up on the radars. Everyone eventually gets rescued and returns home. Backin Eartg's and Mars' orbit, 21 guns are fired in memory of the fallen soldiers and lost ships.
Despite the battle government refuses to pull of Terraria stations accompanied by Astera stations shiponing fuel from the atmosphere of NN 3009-A V, claiming this system to be of high strategic importance regardless of the attackers coming from Bootes Void or not. Instead workers get resupplied with special evacuation shuttles equipped with powerful sensors and ultra fast-charging Alcubierre Drives. Shuttles themselves are slow, but their primary and only objectives are to detect threat early enough to give space stations' workers time to evacuate and then immediately fire up warp drive and disappear from the system.
 
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7th October 2181, a team of physicists on Alpha Centauri A-II makes a breakthrough and finally cracks so-called "womhole stabilisation equations" which describe proper application of gravity as well as energy requirements to pierce the fabric of space in a way that'd link two chosen points together, making wormhole establishment a dream come true. First experiments conducted confirm their findings, a small wormhole linking two opposite points of Cydonia particle accelerator is briefly created. Many years of studying those anomalies were needed, but hints recovered from Invader tech as well as a live example of a "megawormhole" accelerated the research and eventually led to a huge success.
Although scientists still claim that their understanding of higher dimensions and how to reliably access them is still very limited, wormholes are definitely a strong evidence for this becoming a possibility sometime in the future. Meanwhile establishing own wormhole network around important systems would help establish FTL communications without the need for "post office ships" and greatly improve interstellar traffic. First platform for constructing wormholes is built on Earth:


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Chronos class Wormhole Creation Platform      57,131 tons       160 Crew       1,696.1 BP       TCS 1,143    TH 1,000    EM 0
875 km/s      Armour 1-132       Shields 0-0       HTK 29      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 18    Max Repair 1200 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Wormhole Deployment Module: 150 days

Commercial Internal Fusion Drive  EP500.0 (2)    Power 1000    Fuel Use 5.53%    Signature 500    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 56.9 billion km (752 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


It begins its work by establishing small wormhole network around Solar System, linking Earth, Mars, Europa, Nibiru and gas giants together. Intra-system travel speeds up dramatically, tons of tons of fuel get saved as a result - there's no need for great acceleration if entire journey is about reaching orbit and flying for not too long before jumping to the destination's proximity within nanoseconds.
For the years to come Chronos platform successfully links Proxima Centauri, Alpha Centauri A, Alpha Centauri B and Epsilon Eridani together. Due to concerns regarding Invaders and Mechi, further wormhole network expansion is brought to a stop, especially in case of Mechi. Invaders' FTL travel methods are not known, but for Mechi it is very likely they can't cross the distance between stars in any other way but to traverse wormholes. Such conclusions are drawn since it's been so many years after they destroyed two Diplomats and one Prophet and so far not a single spaceship of theirs appeared beyond their wormhole network. Even autonomous heavy industry facilities in EZ Aquarii system haven't spotted any of their ships. Or maybe they simply had different motives behind opening fire and didn't intend to launch a full-scale assault. All in all, concerns over Mechi need to wait as First Bootes War absorbs all the military efforts and attention of humanity, making iincursions into Mechi-controlled stars impossible.
As exploration of further stars consumes more fuel and time needed to go for a mission and back, a concept of starports transferred to the edges of explored space via Guidance system is brought up. These space stations would help explorers to refuel, make necessary repairs and maintenance of their starships as well as get some rest and entertainment without the need to travel for a long time way back home, allowing much longer missions to be launched.


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Atlas class Starport      482,090 tons       2,840 Crew       14,942.4 BP       TCS 9,642    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 499      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 50,019    Max Repair 2400 MSP
Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 30   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months   
Recreational Facilities
Maintenance Modules: 30 module(s) capable of supporting ships of 120,000 tons
Refuelling Hub - Capable of refuelling multiple ships simultaneously

Fuel Capacity 100,000,000 Litres    Range N/A

CIWS-320 (20x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


Station's design is considered to be an early prototype and as discussions between logistic personnel and engineers heat up it is very likely to change before entering production to maximise its usefulness for the explorers.
As a result o further development of climate change understanding and terraforming technologies, government orders terraformation of Epsilon Eridani-A II. The world has hellish, toxic atmosphere with a pressure of over 32 atm, but astronomers and geographers estimate that the atmosphere, if removed and replaced with one similar to Earth's, will allow the planet to cool down into acceptable temperature range and the give liquid surface water a chance to appear. Project Terraria receives additional fundings as government wants to rapidly terraform the planet within 30 years, possibly even quicker by amassing a huge cluster of Terrarias around the orbit. Experience and infrastructure gained thorough the duration of the mission shall prove to be invaluable in further stages of terraforming of Venus.
Investigation into Invaders' origins, plans and motives continues. During salvaging the battlefieldspace it was revealed that barely any devices and data survived, almost as if Invaders were destroying them as a last measure when death became inevitable for them.  As if they didn't want anyone else to know. Which wasn't very surprising and unusual, to be honest.
While scraps of their guns could accelerate further development of laser-based weaponry and improvement of armor specifically against beams, more valuable and interesting are undestoryed and undeleted remnants of ship's databases storing information of all kiinds, Linguistics and computer scientists face extremely difficult challenge since their language and software protocols turn out to be more alien than anything imaginable. Initial hypothesis revolves around them having large portions of data and protocols stored directly in cybernetics implants inside their bodies, which implants emit an EMP strong enough to fry all of them in case host's vital signs stop. Thanks to this recovering anything from them is impossible. After several autopsies xenobiologists note their huge brains, approximately two times bigger than those found among humans. It could be a matter of natural evolution, but given the overall size and rather low strength of their bodies, genetic engineering could come into play. Why they didn't improve physical strength and durability of their bodies while they were tinkering with their genetic code as well remains unknown and this argument is often brought up by supporters of the natural evolution explanation.
Amidst growing paranoia Invaders, despite failing to take over human race so far, manage to establish great influence over pop culture. "Bootes" is the first half action, half documentary movie to get released, depicting what is already known about Invaders as well as the First Bootes War events so far. It is quickly followed by a sequel, "Bootes 2: Fear of the Dark" which focuses solely on the battle in NN 3009 fought in 31th July 2180. Recordings made by the combatants themselves were used in production. Many more movies, games and books quickly follow the trend.
18th June 2185, an intial project of a Dyson Sphere is assembled around the Sol. Scientists hope enormous boost to energy harvesting from the sun could help with "Nibiru global warming". Similar solutions could be used in Epsilon Eridani to help with the coldness of Epsilon Eridani-A VIII's 8th moon if Dyson Sphere would be established there. And so the Sun begins to shine brighter than ever, in memory of the victories over Invaders, in memory of the fallen soldiers, in memory of the exponential growth of human civilization that keeps pushing forward regardless of the dangers that lurk out there. Experts in politics all agree putting a Dyson Sphere in these uncertain times is an important PR success for the government.
Void Wormhole continues to grow. It has expanded to over 140 millions of kilometres so far. Picture took by an exploration probe sent slightly beyond NN 3009 to take a look at it from afar is scary:



Many people somehow find comfort in watching alien invasion movies from previous century and are glad when it finally happened, it was when humanity was already a space-faring race which intercepted and destroyed hostile starships light years away from Earth. Had this invasion happened one hundred years ago (or whatever kind of event would halt technology and science advancement for at least few decades), humanity would be no more.
Continuous attempts to breach sealed parts of complex found on Tau Ceti-A IV still yeld nothing. Tests with the latest weaponry equipped on Blades, Strikers and Pikes still couldn't even mark a scratch on the doors or walls. Symbols covering them still couldn't be translated. XAT members report increasing frustration. Especially now, during war with an advanced enemy, every bit of high-tech stuff is even more priceless than usual. Especially if that bit expresses some awesome armor properties.
Pacifists movements are on the rise in Core Worlds. Some citizens, being light years away from danger, neglect the threat and call for peace talk. Nobody seems to be able to explain to them that peace talks are kinda hard when somebody you don't know the language of doesn't even say a word and opens fire on sight. Due to the state of emergency, government tightens mind control via psionic and good old microchips. It's called unethical by some, but remains effective at suppressing pacifistic voices, making more room for war propaganda.
Government starts to think about launching an exploration mission to Bootes Void, this time with heavy military escorts, to finally gather solid proof about Invaders coming from there or not. And maybe find out what happened with that long-lost Prophet vessel.
As transplanting brain into robotic body grows more and more popular and the designs get better, government plans forming an army out of these people. Well, at least some of them. Their indifference to vacuum of space and great tolerance to most conditions on most alien worlds could help in numerous combat scenarios.
Latest matrix module called simply "Invaders" that allows every matrix user to experience simulation of a space combat with hostile aliens gains interest of government, as not only will it make a fine addition for military training programs, gathering and processing all the data from its users could significantly improve strategy and tactics used against the enemy.
As more people port their brains into robots, intimacy among humans becomes rarer, making room for loneliness to set it. While their bodies are robotic, their brains are not and they still feel as every other human being. To counter this, engineers release a free upgrade for every user that involves more detailed artificial skin and touch sensors. While there's still room for improvement, current tech is already good enough for the time being. If this path of technological advancement will continue, at some point a big fraction of human race could become "robots with a brain" and nobody from the outside would be even able to tell the difference.
Robotic bodies seem to gain as much supporters as haters. Many people tend to the goodbad old "return to nature" approach, "healthy lifestyle, balance, and whatever else was there".
"Don't like the comfort of Core Worlds? Starships to colonies nicely terraformed, but barely touched by human feet await, some even with preserved alien ecosystems, like Hip 47650-A III" - sceptics say about this new rise of the movement. "They shouldn't be terraformed, let alone exploited" - say naturalists in response. - "Not to mention those starships fly there to quickly change the 'barely touched by human feet' status."
Naturalists and pacifists maybe wouldn't be that much of a problem on their own, however when combined together during war they form, ironically, a volatile mixture. Those movements often fuse together, allowing for appearances of various organisations or even cults, some more radical than the others, that Invaders "came here to punish filthy humans for corrupting the beauty of universe and nature" and they won't stop until they purge what threatens "universal purity".
Government tightens mind control again, however those organisations formed and expanded partially due to more or less legal access to psionic implants, meaning they aren't that easy to suppress. And so conflicts and societal tensions rise while humanity should stand united even more than usual to fend off extraterrestrial invasion. Future for Humanity looks a bit uncertain - on the one hand it stands powerful and so far is on the winning side and is expanding exponentially across the stars, gathering more resources, conquering more worlds and assembling more combat spaceships as time goes by, but on the other hand some problems never ceased to exist, even under direct World Government leadership and mind-controlling technologies.
 
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In spite of war new complexes capable of mass-producing military starships are being assembled on Alpha Centauri-A II and HIP 47650-A III. Human economy continues to accelerate, however due to the dangers lurking out there government decides to focus on establishment of human presence in already colonised systems - Proxima Centauri, Alpha Centauri, HIP 47650 and Epsilon Eridani as well as AI-driven mining operations in EZ Aquarii ternary system. Alpha Centauri-A II and HIP 47650 receive millions of additional workers to make them capable of building and maintaining their own fleets ASAP, allowing humanity to defend itself on more than one front should Mechi attack or Invaders appear from a different place.
Despite overflow of resources, government is well-aware the prosperity won't last forever unless humanity expands further. However, Project Atlas gets cancelled because it is deemed that leaving space stations unprotected in outer space during times of war is too risky, both for the station personnel and exploration missions. Instead, scientists manage to do their best and create the state-of-tech-and-art starship capable of conducting scientific and exploration tasks around worlds yet to be seen by human eyes:


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Orion class Science Vessel      20,410 tons       380 Crew       3,753 BP       TCS 408    TH 2,000    EM 1,200
4899 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 1-66       Shields 40-300       HTK 100      Sensors 28/16/15/15      DCR 20      PPV 0
Maint Life 4.20 Years     MSP 4,298    AFR 167%    IFR 2.3%    1YR 390    5YR 5,854    Max Repair 500 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   SCI   
Intended Deployment Time: 120 months    Morale Check Required   

JC22K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 22500 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Commercial Magnetic Fusion Drive  EP2000.00 (1)    Power 2000    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 2000    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 665.1 billion km (1571 days at full power)
Theta S40 / R300 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 300 seconds (0.1 per second)

CIWS-320 (5x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 32,000 km/s     ROF 5       
Thermal Sensor TH2-28 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 28     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  41.8m km
EM Sensor EM2-16 (50%) (1)     Sensitivity 16     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  31.6m km
Advanced Geological Sensors (5)   15 Survey Points Per Hour
Advanced Gravitational Sensors (5)   15 Survey Points Per Hour

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Its warp drive is capable of reaching effective speed of mind-boggling 500c with warp bubble acceleration of 0,02c/s2 per every 100km/s of conventional speed within warp bubble. It's the fastest man-made vessel so far, at least in terms of FTL propulsion systems and is capable of crossing hundreds of light years before refuelling which is more than enough in terms of finding suitable colonisation candidates. New class of starships is expected to soon replace good old Prophets and survey more stars very rapidly. Interplanetary team responsible for the design gets praised and awarded by the government.
In order to calm down rioting citizens, as a gesture of good will under heavy military escort evacuation of all human presence and infrastructure from NN 3009 begins, leaving Void Wormhole to its own devices. So far Invaders for whatever reason omitted terraforming and gas giant harvesting space stations placed there, maybe because they were too far from the wormhole to be detected, but there's no point in risking a tragedy any longer. To speed the evacuation up a new spaceship appears, relying on Guidance System for interstellar travel:


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Destiny class Tug      88,068 tons       820 Crew       5,707.3 BP       TCS 1,761    TH 20,000    EM 0
11354 km/s      Armour 1-176       Shields 0-0       HTK 165      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 40    Max Repair 500 MSP
Tractor Beam     
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   

Commercial Magnetic Fusion Drive  EP2000.00 (10)    Power 20000    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 2000    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 5,000,000 Litres    Range 770.7 billion km (785 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Luckily this time, the operation ends successfully and every last evidence of human presence in NN 3009 is safely returned into human-controlled space.
While it is still unknown whether Invaders use other interstellar travel methods and it is very likely they do, at least with some of their ships, a replacement plan for intercepting Invaders directly after leaving Void Wormhole is born: instead of camping at the edge of wormhole, a swarm of fast and agile interceptors will be placed at the exit of wormhole that links NN 3009 and NN 3815 systems, tasked with blasting any hostile contact daring to cross it to hell.
New interceptors are needed  to be small, yet big enough to operate independently, without requiring  a carrier. Size is a matter not only because of travel and manoeuvring speeds, but also because it'll take long before shipyards built on HIP 47650-A II and Alpha Centauri-A II could be tasked with assembling bigger fleets. It is proposed that they'll use plasma-based guns, something so far utilised only in ground forces and aircraft due to limited range and accuracy. Extensive research into refitting plasma artillery for space combat begins. Once it is achieved, the new "wormhole guarding fleets" will be able to cause devastating damage among enemy forces emerging from the wormhole and the nature of this combat will make accuracy and range limitations irrelevant.
Project Atlas resurfaces again, this time meant to provide necessary support for new interceptors so that they could stay on their guard post with minimal rotation and be always ready for engangement. A huge infrastructure consists of several modules providing fuel, spare parts, ammunition and a place to rest for stationed soldiers:


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Atlas class Starport      526,442 tons       5,080 Crew       24,287 BP       TCS 10,529    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 914      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 20,028    Max Repair 200 MSP
Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 25   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months   
Maintenance Modules: 100 module(s) capable of supporting ships of 400,000 tons


This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


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Arcadia class Space Station      104,550 tons       1,010 Crew       2,830.9 BP       TCS 2,091    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 106      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 16    Max Repair 2000 MSP
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months   
Recreational Facilities


This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


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Seraphim class Space Station      514,100 tons       3,210 Crew       20,972.6 BP       TCS 10,282    TH 0    EM 0
1 km/s      No Armour       Shields 0-0     HTK 418      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 25    Max Repair 2400 MSP
Magazine 80,000   
Lieutenant Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 60 months   
Ordnance Transfer Hub - Capable of transferring ordnance to multiple ships simultaneously


This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes
This design is classed as a Space Station for construction purposes


Refuelling will be provided by Astera harvesting stations.
A swarm of Terrarias appears over Epsilon Eridani-A II's surface. At this rate terraforming of this hellish world will only take a few more years, experts say.
30th March 2186 19:55:59, small Invader force unexpectedly assaults Gaia fleet heading towards HIP 47650. One ship is blown up and the other severely damaged before the rest engage their warp drives in emergency mode. As a result, a total of 580000 people will never wake up from their cold sleep. Hundreds of valuable crewmembers are lost, too. Public opinion shocked after the tragedy.
Strikers from main assault fleet begin pursuit of the enemy and manage to track it down via Invaders' own wormhole network and cut it into pieces near WISE 1519+7009, but the damage is done. Conflicts among societies emerge with full force, riots and acts of violence expand rapidly. Pacifist organisations gain support, claiming military force is useless anyways if they can't manage to save 580000 colonists and demand peace talks, completely ignoring Invaders' refusal of any communication.
Many radicalised members of various sects claim this is beginning of the Judgement Day and that the target's been chosen not by an accident - [Insert deity given cult worships] couldn't give a clearer sign that man was never meant to travel across the stars and now the whole species will be punished for their lust for power and ignorance.
24th April 2186, military force uses lethal force to suppress rebels on HIP 47650-A II attempting to sabotage shipyard preparations and space-refitted plasma weaponry tests. Photos of civilians with laser and plasma burns or corpses mutilated beyond recognition by powerful kinetic rifles spread across inhabited worlds like wildfire.
In response government sends elite psi squads to randomly harass protesters and disturb them with images of the ones killed by military to weaken their will. Under such force rebels begin to break down and descend into madness. A new reign of terror begins, firstly in HIP 47650-A II, but similar methods are used on other planets as well
First Orion starships begin to leave Solar System and "boldly go where no man has gone before" as government doesn't waste time and continues its policy. Political experts consider it a good PR move in spite of recent outbursts of violence as space discoveries and prospects of new worlds to inhabit always seem to cheer up public opinion. Not counting "space eco-friendly human-unfriendly" radical organisations, of course.
And so despite Invasion and escalation of violence among human societies a new chapter of space exploration begins. First explored star is Gliese 105:











Nothing extraordinary (except the ultimate beauty of multiple stars systems) is found and poor mineral accessibility doesn't make this system a good candidate for colonisation. Exploration continues in Giclas 9-38:













Gliese 33 system:







Gliese 33-A IV catches attention. This planet not only contains remannats of oxygen-nitrogen based atmosphere, but also traces of chlorine in the air. No life signs detected, be it currently inhabiting the planet or long extinct. Could this be that presence of chlorine prevented life from evolving there? Or did the chlorine mean a long-forgotten sentient lifeforms fighting a long-forgotten chemical war that resulted in removing any traces of life from the planet? Hard to tell, but even with the numerous evidence for alien life thriving out there, second hypothesis is less "science" and more "fiction".
Three out of the explored stars, WISE 0410+1502, L 145-141 as well as another lonely wolf Wolf 629, float alone in the darkness of space, not orbited by any planets:







Sigma Draconis system:





Only one boiling and barren planet orbits the star very close to it, as if Sigma Draconis was afraid of losing its only companion.
Gliese 504 system:





 
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So far the exploration missions didn't find any planet really worth colonising or anything particularly interesting in that matter except for breathtaking views. Nevertheless the government doesn't stop and plans further expeditions.
In the meantime after studying anti-missile defences of Invaders in detail, a prototype spiritual successor to Tomahawk is designed and built on Earth:


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Javelin class Missile Cruiser      34,880 tons       855 Crew       6,763 BP       TCS 698    TH 5,000    EM 6,240
7167 km/s      Armour 10-95       Shields 208-520       HTK 147      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 6      PPV 150
Maint Life 0.59 Years     MSP 4,727    AFR 1622%    IFR 22.5%    1YR 8,062    5YR 120,930    Max Repair 1250 MSP
Magazine 3,562   
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   ENG   CIC   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Magnetic Fusion Drive  EP2500.00 (2)    Power 5000    Fuel Use 75.89%    Signature 2500    Explosion 20%
Fuel Capacity 5,000,000 Litres    Range 34 billion km (54 days at full power)
Theta S208 / R520 Shields (1)     Recharge Time 520 seconds (0.4 per second)

Size 12 Missile Launcher (10)     Missile Size: 12    Rate of Fire 20
Size 1 Missile Launcher (75.00% Reduction) (40)     Missile Size: 1    Rate of Fire 20
Missile Fire Control FC28-R1 (2)     Range 28.7m km    Resolution 1
Ekaterina II Anti-Ship Missile (200)    Speed: 45,000 km/s    End: 10.5m     Range: 28.2m km    WH: 49    Size: 12    TH: 270/162/81
Evstafi AMM (1000)    Speed: 45,000 km/s    End: 11m     Range: 29.7m km    WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 600/360/180

ECCM-2 (2)         ECM 30

Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes


Even a few of them could stand a chance at penetrating Invaders' defences, even if only so little, and around a dozen should almost guarantee each volley being extremely damaging. Also Tomahawks, despite being slowly replaced, receive an improved version of their decoy missile to make their volleys deadlier for enemy as well, hopefully making them more useful than they were during the battle of NN 3009:


Code: [Select]
Dvienadsat Apostolov AMM (728)    Speed: 32,000 km/s    End: 27m     Range: 51.8m km    WH: 1    Size: 1    TH: 522/313/156


While shipyards and factories prepare to handle the increasing demand for new generation of missile cruisers, military commanders, scientists and spaceflight experts experts try to come up with a plan of safely exploring Bootes Void to check from where exactly do Invader fleets appear and why the created wormhole must be so large and on top of that still expanding. At the end of a series of heated debates it is finally established that Invaders' wormhole network should be explored and secured first, at least in a radius of a few stars from NN 3009 system, to at least gain control over one side of the dreaded Void Wormhole before attempting to cross it.
Only the most experienced and skilled people are picked for this dangerous endeavour.
At first two unexplored wormholes near WISE 1519+7009 get checked out. One leads to GI 85 system:









GI 85-A II is the second planet discovered on which traces of methane-based lifeforms are found. It is a barren, deserted world on which only spares plant-like organisms grow, utilising methane to warm their bodies up, making them survive extreme temperatures. They don't seem to be very active, though, conserving energy as much as possible. Xenobiologists discover their body temperature stays just barely above zero to prevent water freezing despite 99,785% of their calorie intake spent purely on heating.
The second wormhole from WISE 1519+7009 links NN 3891 system:





Traces of life in forms of unicellular and very small and simple multicellular organisms are found on NN 3891-A II, concentrating mostly inside water basins and around them, but marine and shore life aside, most of the surface is covered with a strange, sticky biomass resembling some kind of a moss. The planet has way too thin atmosphere with way too little oxygen, but if not for this, could be inhabited right away without any terraforming invloved. Once the Bootes War is over (or at least strong control over these parts of the network is gained) this could be a nice spot for colonisation.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the network, another Orion Exploration Group traverses wormhole in NN 3704 system, arriving in GJ 1279:







GJ 1279-A II causes scientists and explorers to drop their jaws. The world is beautiful and majestic. It's almost like a tropical version of Earth since tropical rainforests span across majority of the surface and the planet is so hot than there's no snow or ice to be found even around poles. Higher gravity, larger diameter and denser atmosphere due to all the oxygen produced by the jungles and lots of water vapour floating around as a result of humid climate only add to the magnificent scenery. It's expected to take dozens of years to fully discover and classify all the species living in this world. However, no traces of sentient beings ever existing there are found. Large animals with heavy muscles walk around which brings associations with dinosaurs, even though they look differently. Overall GJ 1279-A II gives vibes of a primal world, the same that probably Earth had back in the day when dinosaurs walked it. It is agreed upon with great dose of sadness and melancholia that this paradise, the most beautiful and amazing world discovered so far, can't be conquered unless Invaders are pushed back.
Existence of this breathtaking planet within the network, yet untouched, poses question as to why Invaders don't seem to try to colonise any of the planets they must have already discovered in Milky Way so far. It is proposed that maybe this paradise planet isn't that much of a paradise for them, however they should still be trying to establish their presence more, be it either via terraforming or artificial life support structures, rather than leave all celestial bodies devoid from their presence. Maybe they didn't need to colonise Milky Way having a strong enough economy on the worlds they came from or were some sort of nomadic race?
11th June 2186, 8:20:09, Orion-class starship returning from GI 85 safely flies through all the wormholes up to WISE 2359-7335 where the network begins and prepares for one last interstellar flight back to Mars when Invader squadron suddenly pops out on its radar and opens fire. Fortunately the crew managed to power up Alcubierre Drive in time and no one got even hurt thanks to the shields, however they got overcharged too much in the process, causing an overheat in several other systems as well and the ship will need to be repaired as a result. The fact nobody died is considered a miracle once damage was assessed in safe conditions. Despite best efforts, Invaders manage to successfully flee the scene before Martian Navy has a chance to arrive.
25th June 2186, 10:41:05, Another exploration starship is attacked and this time destroyed due to overwhelming enemy presence on the edges of GI 85 system. As soon as the news reach Earth, government ceases all the activity within Invaders' network even before new wave of protests has a chance to begin for good. It is possible that squadron attacking exploration mission two weeks earlier also came from that system. Fleet commanders are tasked with preparation and execution of GI 85 system assault plan. It is possible that GI 85 will bring some insights into Invader's colonisation plans and logistics - while they weren't detected on any celestial body orbiting this particular star, it was very likely that they could've come from another star, coupled with GI 85 with yet undetected wormhole and they were already established there. Or another big-ass Void Wormhole got created there.
Exploration of wormholes shall be continued with great caution should the discovered fleet be neutralised, though it is very possible that it'll be postponed even further for the safety of everyone involved.
Biologists and bioenginners working on cryogenic tech request funding for a research project which would allow adaptation of humans into extremely cold temperatures. Studies of genetic material harvested from native flora and fauna of frozen HIP 47650-A II as well as the recent discoveries on methane-based life detected in GI 85-A II inspire them into trying to use similar mechanisms and patterns to keep humans alive even in the most hostile temperatures. They want to search for the volunteers which would get bits from those samples inserted into their own DNA and study the results. In case of success, this would allow those genetically-modified humans to populate Epsilon Eridani-VIII'th 8'th moon and Nibiru as it is now very obvious than greenhouse gasses aren't enough to make both these worlds reach reasonable temperature ranges, creating constant need for heating installation to remain operational on a planetary scale. Removing the need for them could free a significant workforce which could then be used in more important jobs, necessary to ensure human survival against Invaders. Government approves the project, however certain groups in society remain skeptical or outright hostile to the idea of not only conditioning exoplanets to fit humans, but also conditioning humans to fit exoplanets "severely damaging ways nature intended it to be".
7th November 2187, terraforming of Tau Ceti-A IV is completed, bringing enough water and biosphere into the planet to make its deserts habitable by humans without additional support. As first batches of colonists reach their new home, researches working on the alien complex there make a first significant breakthrough: locks guarding entrance to the sealed-off part appear to be composed mainly of devices capable of intercepting, scanning and analysing brain waves, somewhat similar to the concept under which psionic implants operate. The catch is, even the most elite psi units failed at their attempts to communicate with the devices. Soon it is proven than in order to crack them open it isn't that important for the psi-capable peoples' minds to be very powerful, but rather to be many of them. So that they could create a hive mind of some sort, more or less.
As a result of this discovery, only psi-capable people are allowed to settle in the new world. Another consequence of this breakthrough is that government opens up psi training programs to the broader population, hoping to gather more citizens on the planet and finally unlock secrets of the ancients. "Next step of human evolution is happening right in front of our eyes" - comment many. Currently it is unknown how big that "hive mind" is supposed to be.
Struve 2398 is chosen as a destination for the next space exploration mission:











What at first appears as an ordinary dead planetary system, hides a shocking discovery: exploration group detects Mechi ships conducting asteroid mining operations. There isn't anything resembling military forces present within the star's or any celestial body's proximity, but the crew tries to stay beyond enemy's radar detection range as much as possible just in case. On top of that a total of 4 wormholes are detected near the star. It only confirms that a tip of another Mechi wormhole network's branch has just been discovered. After scanning the system, Orion's crew risks it and enters one of the wormholes to briefly check out yet another Mechi-explored star. It leads them close to Luhman 16:







It is another binary system, just like Struve 2398. Two gas giants orbit one of the local suns and no Mechi (or any other for that matter) presence has been detected. Another wormholes are expected to be found during next expedition. Currently there's no way to tell where those two Mechi branches discovered so far connect, but the presence of the second one proves they must be well-established over a large number of systems. Military advisors begin to suggest launching a preemptive strike into Mechi space to halt or at least slow down their expansion once the wormhole leading to NN 3009 will be blocked by the future plasma interceptors. Fighting on two fronts sounds horrible, but letting Mechi grow unchecked and prepare for whatever they're preparing could be even worse.
Presence of Mechi in yet another part of the Milky Way complicates the already very complicated situation of the human race even further. The only alien sentience discovered so far was hostile and humans had to fight on two fronts to ensure continuation of their existence and expansion. Current strategic and tactical situation of the expanding human civilisation looks as follows:



 
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29th November 2187, 18:54:20, main human navy warps into GI 85 system, ready to engage Invader forces concentrated there.



Right after emerging from the wormhole it is greeted by large laser cannonade, fired from so close that the enemy ships can be seen by naked eye. Shields tank most of the damage, but one Pike assault ship has its engines destroyed. Fortunately safety systems worked and chain reaction explosion has been prevented.
Invaders seem to want to pull their "hit and run" tactics once again. Assault Fleet uses it to their advantage, blasting their engines in the opposite direction to quickly gain precious distance. More fire incoming, but this time far less accurate.



29th November 2187, 18:59:11, Tomahawks launch large missile volleys, mixing proper, hard-hitting ones with decoy missiles for overwhelming enemy defences.



Initial volley hits harder than expected, enemy stands no chance as more missiles fly their way.







Invaders' "hit and run" quickly becomes "flee and run" till one last final volley marks the fate of last of their ships. As during previous encounters, no lifepods of any sort were launched. Only debris remains.





29th November 2187, 19:07:01, two enemy ships emerge from the same wormhole human fleet did several minutes ago, attempting to attack from behind. However, upon realising the battle is already lost, they attempt to flee. It takes only split of a second till laser, particle beam and meson fire tear them apart ruthlessly.





After the battle a new class of wreck salvaging ships appears, this time meant to not only recover any technology they could possibly find, but also to bring wrecks themselves for scientists to examine:


Code: [Select]
Fate class Salvager      61,764 tons       305 Crew       1,661.9 BP       TCS 1,235    TH 4,000    EM 0
3238 km/s    JR 2-25(C)      Armour 1-139       Shields 0-0       HTK 51      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 16    Max Repair 500 MSP
Cargo 25,000    Cargo Shuttle Multiplier 10   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months   
Salvager: 1 module(s) capable of salvaging 750 tons per day

JC68K Alcubierre Drive     Max Ship Size 67500 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 2

Commercial Magnetic Fusion Drive  EP2000.00 (2)    Power 4000    Fuel Use 1.33%    Signature 2000    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 1,000,000 Litres    Range 219.8 billion km (785 days at full power)

This design is classed as a Commercial Vessel for maintenance purposes


Another victory for the humanity doesn't stop radical elements among human societies to protests against the ongoing Bootes War. They claim it's only a matter of time.
After making sure everything's allright, humanity pulls their forces away from GI 85. The lonely Pike left there manages to finish off several Invaders' scouts single-handed before fixing engines and returning to Mars. Its crew receives award for outstanding bravery and performance.
After the battle humanity decides its safe enough to continue exploring Invaders' network and sends Orion starships with some escort. A wormhole found in GJ 1279 system leads into EG 350 star:



No additional wormholes are detected in the system, meaning its one of the ends of Invaders' wormhole system. Meanwhile, another exploration group finds itself in Gliese 483 system after jumping through one of the two unexplored wormholes in the dreaded NN 3009 system, origin of the Invasion:





On Gliese 483-A IV complex methane-breathing lifeforms are found, such as worm-like creatures speeding through self-diggen tunnels in the soil, warming themselves up using friction between their body and the soil or twelve-legged large creatures somehwat resembling giant spiders because they build sturdy webs between the leaves and thanks to their huge size. However, those webs aren't for catching prey as they're herbivore, feeding off the trunks of alien trees and the web is used solely for helping them maintain proper temperature. It is the first time scientists observe such lush biosphere based around methane as a breathable gas. No signs of sentience detected, though. Nevertheless, samples gathered from the planet will help speed up research into adapting humans to survive on very cold worlds without heating infrastructure.
The second unexplored wormhole from NN 3009 links it with NN 3753:



It's a white dwarf. A lonely remnants of once lonely star floating around. Around it four additional wormholes are found, one of which leads to another planetless star, NN 3082:



Wormholes leading from GI 85 are chosen as a next target for the exploration to hopefully determine from where did Invaders appear here (assuming it was not NN 3009 Void Wormhole and they have a connection somewhere else). One of them leads to LHS 2849 binary system:















LHS 2849-A II and III both have nitrogen-oxygen based atmosphere. While LHS 2849-A III contains only traces of it and no life signs are detected, the other planet is teeming with life. It's a frozen oceanic world, with no single patch of proper landmass and marine life of all kinds inhabits waters below the layer of ice. There are also lots of microorganisms floating in the planet's dense, oxygen-rich atmosphere. Reefs blooming on the ocean's bed are nothing like the ones found on Earth - the ones here are resemble more some sort of underwater jungles. Scientists shocked when a huge-sized, bipedal species are found inhabiting those underwater ecosystems. Extensive research shown no sentience, however they're very intelligent. Simulations estimate chances of them evolving into a sentient race at 30-50%.
One additional wormhole is detected in LHS 2849, connecting the system with HIP 13218 star:



Another wormhole from GI 85 connects HIP 65530 system:







Government decides to perform "depth first search" in hopes to discover how many systems does the network link together. An exploration group leaves HIP 65530 and emerges near HIP 3497 after travelling through one of the wormholes detected in HIP 65530:



HIP 3497 contains two wormholes, one of which allows travel to HIP 66781 system:







HIP 66781-A III is another planet with life found on its surface. Dark green bushes and moss cover steep, rocky mountains covering most of the planet's surface. Simple animal life manages to survive and thrive there, too, even though environment is rather harsh.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2021, 11:27:44 AM by Stormtrooper »
 
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