Friday, June 7, 2013

The Strange Stars

With nearly 40 posts in the Strange Stars setting, the sagacious Robert over at Rogues & Reavers suggested it might be time for an overview post to make it easier for people to see how these far-ranging elements sort of fit together. I’m not sure the best way of doing that (one might want to start with the inspirations here), but I’ll sort of summarize what’s been presented so far:

The Strange Stars is the sphere of the human phyle in the far future, a time millennia after the first human expansion and the rise (and fall) of builders of the hyperspace nodes, the Archaic Oikumene. In the current era, the Strange Stars are fragmented into smaller cultures and civilizations.

The former cradle of the Archaic Oikumene is a depopulated area without a central authority known as the Zuran Expanse. The Expanse is home to dangers like the inhuman ssraad (in three colors), and ruined worlds that entice treasure-seekers like Tenebrae and the Library of Atoz-Theln. It’s also home to unusual cultures like the invertebrate zhmun of Aygo and the self-improvement cult of Aurogov.

Art by Peter Elson
Spinward from the Expanse is the Alliance, a union of species allied for protection and trade. Members of the Alliance include the green-skinned psionicists of Smaragdoz, the privacy obsessed neshekk of Kuznuh, the avian-humanoid splice hyehoon of Omu, the human-alien blended cyborg Blesh, the gnomes of Dzrrn, and the angel-like deva of Altair.

Bordering the Alliance is the expansionistic and theocratic Instrumentality of Aom.

On the other side of the Expanse is the Vokun Empire. Besides the decadent vokun, the empire contains several client species. The cybernetic crustacean-like Engineers build much of Vokun technology. The yellow-skinned ibglibdishpan are their biologic computers. The kuath are bioarmored child-soldiers.

There are a number of other interesting cultures and worlds: the oneirochemist Phantasists, the ancient mind excavators of Deshret, and the warrior-poet moravecs of Eridanus, among others. The major galactic powers are at least openingly cordial (whatever may go on behind the scenes) and trade takes place between the two “civilized” portions of the galaxy that must pass through hyperspace nodes in the “wilder” areas (not just the Expanse, but the Rim and Coreward Reach, as well). New cultures, lost since the Great Collapse are discovered from time to time, and their are number of ruined worlds with treasures to loot.

9 comments:

Aos said...

Wow. The number and variety of worlds/cultures is really impressive. I think this kind of thorough setting construction is key to space opera.

Trey said...

Thanks. I hopefully it's interesting for others to read, but at least it helped me get a handle on stuff and take a "big picture" view. I need to get a little more focused in certain areas.

Robert Parker said...

Awesome, dude. I hope you keep this post on the side of your blog for easy access and update it regularly. This is a tremendous resource for navigating the Strange Stars.

Brutorz Bill said...

Very cool! Ditto what Robert said!

Trey said...

Thanks guys. I will add a link on the side bar.

JimShelley said...

I could see a stellar map coming in handy too.

Trey said...

I think it would.

Jack Headland said...

A stellar map would be...stellar. Really loving the Strange Stars so far.

Trey said...

Thanks, Jack! A map will be coming at some point. :)