Quantum Frontiers [Trinity Continuum: Æon]

Open Development, Trinity Continuum: Æon

Aeon swirlThanks for all your comments about Sudamérica in our last couple of previews! I know the Æon team appreciates your thoughts.

Having explored one of Earth’s many continents, let’s turn our eyes skyward. There are dozens of  worlds and outposts in the depths of space. While Sudamérica is territory we’ve travelled before in previous editions (albeit somewhat different than our presentation), let’s have a look at something entirely new: a nova colony.

Or to be more specific, a nova-era colony with no novas, which should be useful even for those of you who prefer your Æon quantum-free. While this will also be split into two parts, this is a bit of a shorter preview.

Marfisa

The most recently discovered “lost colony” from the Aberrant War era, Marfisa has been isolated for nearly a century due to a catastrophic accident that occurred during the colonists’ Aberrant-provided warp to the distant planet. The circumstances of the warp disaster stranded the survivors for sixty years without access to advanced technology. The unexpected recovery of a quantum­-tech supercomputer and automated manufactory led to an ideological split in the colony’s population, forming the basis for a 19 year cold war between the Preserver and Pandoran factions. While an Æon Trinity recon team has learned much about Marfisa and its society, a true first contact mission is still in the planning stages.

Planetary Data: Marfisa
Founded: 2042 (Independent colonization)
Discovery: 2040 (Aberrant discovery)
Rediscovered: 2123 (Upeo/ISRA Survery)
Distance from Earth: 13,750 light years
Star: Angelica – G1
Diameter: 12,111 km
Gravity: 1.01 Earth
Atmosphere: Oxygen & Nitrogen (breathable)
Air Pressure: .99 Earth
Percentage Ocean: 85%
Rotation Period: 36 hours
Native Life: Plants, insect­-like and fish-­like animals
Human Population: 5,000,000

A Lost Colony At War With Itself

In January of 2123, the members of an Upeo/ISRA exploration team, searching for worlds suitable for human colonization, were startled to discover that one of the planets on their list of candidates was already home to a human colony. Following standard protocols, they called in an Æon Trinity recon squad to learn as much as possible about the colony before making contact.

Extensive clairsentient scanning from a stationary orbit behind Marfisa’s single moon, Virago, revealed two large human settlements surrounded by a web of smaller towns. The larger city, Endeavor, was located in the center of the colony’s agricultural operations, with satellite communities focused on farming and fishing. The slightly smaller city, Endurance, was in a mountainous region and populated by miners and industrial workers. During this routine scanning, the clears were startled to observe a number of small military engagements between the two regions. It rapidly became clear that the people of Marfisa were at war with one another.

The recon squad needed more information, but secrecy was a paramount concern, as interfering with the colony, or even letting the colonists know they had been rediscovered, might make the situation worse. A small group of clairsentient, telepathic and biokinetic infiltrators was teleported to the planet to gather more intel about the colony and its reasons for civil war. A little over two months later, a picture of Marfisa’s history began to take shape.

Shortly before the Aberrant War, two charismatic and powerful “Novas” made an offer to take any baseline human who wanted an escape from the rapidly degenerating situation on Earth to a safe, distant world to start over. The Aberrant calling herself “Tunnel Rat” would create a warp gate connecting Earth to the new colony planet, while her partner “Babbage” would supply the colonists with quantum technology that would make their lives easy. Nearly four million people from all over the world took them up on their offer and traveled to the departure point in New Zealand, where they would take a twelve­-hour journey through the warp.

Unfortunately, Tunnel Rat was heavily Corrupted, and maintaining such a large warp tunnel for such a long time caused her powers to go out of control, killing her and catastrophically altering the environment inside the tunnel. Most of the colonists, as well as their livestock and seedlings, arrived on Marfisa intact, but much of their technology was shredded and scrambled by the chaotic warp energy. Although some of the equipment was salvageable and Marfisa had plentiful natural resources, it would be decades before the colonists were able to return to even a mid-­1980s level of technology and industry.

The colonists initially focused on survival, founding their first settlement, Endeavor, on a simple agenda of farming and families. People who had been enemies on Earth due to politics, race, or religion found themselves forced to let go of old hatreds in order to survive and prosper. In place of the old prejudices, a new one formed: the Aberrants Tunnel Rat and Babbage were seen as nearly satanic figures whose superhuman abilities had stranded the colonists and left them for dead.

As the colony prospered and grew, a second large settlement, Endurance, was founded in order to help meet the Marfisans’ growing need for better tools and machines. Unlike the pastoral region that Endeavor was located in, life in and around Endurance was harsh and unpleasant; the mining work was brutally hard and living in a polluted industrial zone often led to illnesses and early deaths. Despite the hardships, the people of Endurance were proud of the work they did to help modernize the colony, contributing equipment for farming, materials for construction, and even radios and primitive computers.

Sounds pretty good so far, but you know it can’t be that easy, or else contact would already have been made by that recon team. What do you think of Marfisa so far? What do you think happened afterwards? Let us know in the comments!

  21 comments for “Quantum Frontiers [Trinity Continuum: Æon]

  1. Karpomatic
    April 21, 2016 at 5:06 pm

    Sweet! I think it will be a really good start to many campaigns. There had to be some drawback to the monsoon settlement. Do those settlers want to be independent of Endeavor? And I’d that in turn causing trade agreement issues? Hmm…

    I haven’t played Aeon is so long… These tidbits are just enough to keep us wanting more.

  2. Karpomatic
    April 21, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    Opps, I meant mountain settlement and not monsoon.

  3. Sprucestripedgoose
    April 22, 2016 at 12:28 am

    What happened to Babbage? Is it a mystery?

  4. Topher Gerkey
    April 22, 2016 at 2:58 am

    You’ll learn more about Babbage’s impact on Marfisa in the second part of the preview, but Babbage himself never entered the warp tunnel, so you can decide what happened to him in the Aberrant War.

  5. wyrdhamster
    April 22, 2016 at 3:47 am

    I’m totally new to Aeon universe – What is “Aberrant-provided warp”? What is Aberrant?

    • Josh Heath
      April 22, 2016 at 9:20 am
    • Ian A. A. Watson
      April 22, 2016 at 11:41 am

      There are a few different contexts for the term, but in this case, an “Aberrant” is the Aeon-era term for a creature that used to be human but has mutated into something else. A hundred years ago they were hailed as humanity’s saviours, but quickly descended into insanity, leading to the devastating Aberrant War. The War only ended about 60 years ago with the Chinese Ultimatum: leave Earth or we’ll blow it up. Orbital platforms armed with fusion warheads backed their words up with force. The Aberrants left.

  6. shuragil
    April 22, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    I’m amazed that these two Aberrants/Novas managed to get four MILLION people assembled. At the same time, at the same place, to enter the warp tunnel.

    Yes, Novas can do amazing things, but given the turmoil of the pending Aberrant War this must have been an extraordinary feat (closed borders, travel regulations and all). I mean, even the Eden colony (in the Stellar Frontier order book) only has about 100,000 people.

    • Topher Gerkey
      April 22, 2016 at 1:01 pm

      Eden has a much larger population in the new edition, actually, although not as large as Marfisa’s. Like Ian’s been saying, you can’t really take anything from the original books for granted except at the big picture level.

      • shuragil
        April 22, 2016 at 1:23 pm

        Not complaining, just wondering. Even without the Eden comparison this seems a very large number for me. The logistics for this must have been… monumentally. At least my small insect brain is overwhelmed currently. 🙂

    • The Cowardly Scion
      April 23, 2016 at 12:32 pm

      Its possible they did it in multiple trips and it was the final trip that did Tunnel Rat in. That would be a bit more logistically feasible. Housing and feeding an extra four million people all at once in the same place and time is a feat that is really hard to pull off short of Chinese New Years.

  7. Shadowcloak
    April 22, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    What is it a quantum-tech supercomputer, a “simple” quantum computer or some type of nova/aberrant enhanced tech? If it is the latter there will be rules to build such devices?

  8. Michael Stein
    April 22, 2016 at 10:31 pm

    On one hand you have me thinking of a classic Star Trek TNG style story were a small miss understanding on the part of the contact team precipitates a conflict only for the leader’s kids to get caught up in the shenanigans and, after some misadventures on the team’s part, are reunited by their parents ushering in a hopeful truce.

    On the other hand I see a political thriller of trying to prevent one of the more unscrupulous Orders from casting the first stone to incite conflict at gain a puppet state ally in the victor.

    Anything that doesn’t involve pronouncing Exterminatus from high orbit.

    • Topher Gerkey
      April 23, 2016 at 12:30 am

      John’s instructions to me were pretty much along the lines of “I want this one to feel like a classic Star Trek ethical dilemma,” so I am thrilled that someone out there got that vibe. ^_^

  9. Baboonking
    April 24, 2016 at 7:55 am

    I’m curious if any of the colonies will include anything like natural born stalwarts/novas or mesmerists/psiads. As I recall, low level versions of these can be born naturally without Divis Mal or Doyen tampering. Would be a bit interesting to see Aeon era characters arrive at a colony where these types of characters are accepted members of society. I could see them as special forces type soldiers on this colony, for example.

  10. Irrefutably Thor
    April 25, 2016 at 11:36 pm

    I don’t know why, but it reminds me a little of “The Ensigns of Command”, from STTNG.

    • Ian A. A. Watson
      April 26, 2016 at 8:12 pm

      Could also easily be adapted!

      Nova-era colony suffused with Quantum radiation to which the colonists have adapted, but would be deadly to any outsider. The Leviathan to which your Aeon team has been assigned has been tasked to move the colonists before the planet’s surface is bombarded by the Qin.

      Only one member of the team — perhaps a specially-trained biokinetic, or a member of the crew with a formatted bioVARG, or even a lone secret quantakinetic — is able to brave the ambient radiation, and needs to convince the colonists of their need to leave the system immediately.

  11. Ajay Pollarine
    April 27, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    There are no words…This is so cool. I mean…I have no correct words…Blarh!!!!!

    LOUD NOISES!!!!

    I’m excited.

  12. henry no
    April 28, 2016 at 5:25 pm

    Would someone please post the estimated start date for the Kickstarter of Trinity Continuum and related games?

    • richt
      April 28, 2016 at 6:34 pm

      There is no announced Kickstarter date for the Trinity Continuum as yet.

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