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21 days ago
Current "Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow" has all the letters of the English alphabet in it and is objectively cooler than "the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog"
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1 mo ago
Ah, my glass house is shining beautifully today. Would anyone care to join me in my favourite pastime, projectile minerology?
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1 mo ago
You ever feel bad about yourself so you look back on old stuff and realise, yeah, you really ARE as bad as you thought?
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2 mos ago
I tempted fate. Letter came in today saying they couldn't excuse me. Fuuuuck...
2 mos ago
I should be in court today, but I'm off sick. Hopefully I don't get a fine...

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Adamar, Sinnsyk Star Network


Disease was rare amongst the Sinnsyk. Advanced technology combined with an authoritarian government meant that at the first sign of even a hint of sickness, the infected party was quarantined in a state of the art hospital, and wouldn't be released unless the medics were certain that they had been cured. It also helped that they had naturally powerful immune systems that could reduce the most debilitating viruses into a minor flu.

But not everyone had the Sinnsyk's impressive constitution. Enter Adamar. Once upon a time, this proud and impressive planet had played host to one of the vilest empires in the region. The locals, the Adamari, had been their slaves. To ensure their loyalty, the Adamari's overlords infected them with a deadly custom-made virus. This virus would slowly eat away at the Adamari's skin and deform their bone marrow, leaving them in wretched, painful agony. Most Adamari didn't live past fourty. The old empire would administer a medicine that would suppress the virus, and let rebellion slaves rot.

But eventually, the Adamari had enough of their cruel overlords. They rose up in revolution and, outnumbering the oppressors, killed them. The secret to the cure had been destroyed by the overlords in a spiteful bit of scorched earth tactics, so what was left of the antidote was swiftly used up and by the time the Network had reached them, every Adamari once again had the disease and no way of manufacturing a suppressant.

Dr Arban bat Kalju was new to the medical community. Straight out of the academy, he was assigned to Adamar's research team, to research and study the effects of the disease and, hopefully, help manufacture a cure. It was a surprisingly hands-on approach for the Commissioner, which only spoke of the desperation of the crisis. The Adamari were dying faster than they could have kids and many elected not to have kids in the first place so their children wouldn't be subjected to the disease. Even the estimates that gave them the best chances, the Adamari probably only had another 200 years or so. This disease needed to be fixed soon.

Arban's patients were a mother, around 36 years old, and her two sons, one 15, one 9. The woman was badly deformed, and it made Arban nauseous to even look at her. He preferred to keep his eyes on his reports.

"Well, Mrs Mahmar, the lab has sent us the results of your tests. They are... interesting, to say the least," the good Doctor had a habit of referring to the mysterious "lab". In reality, he WAS the Lab. That was the whole point of the research team. "I'm going to show you now a series of images. I will attempt to talk you through them as best as I can"

The woman nodded, that simple act making her groan in agony. The doctor produced the first sheet and handed it to the woman's elder son - he didn't trust her hands. The family stared at the picture for a moment while the doctor spoke. "We dyed the sample with a chemical that makes the pathogen show up in red. That one you're looking at is your own sample."

The sheet was almost utterly red. The cell walls were deformed, twisted and mutilated beyond the point of recognition. If the woman wasn't already aware of the shortness of her lifespan, she would probably have burst into tears. But the pain had hardened her, and she the sheet was no surprise to her. She just grunted and looked up.

"This one -" the doctor produced a second sheet and handed it to them "- is your eldest son"

This one was far more hopeful. The pathogen's cells had were mixed in there, sure, but the boy's cells were clean, orderly, and a proper shape. There was no doubt as to his infection, but he was yet to feel the brunt.

"This isn't anything new to us, doctor," the boy said brusquely. The doctor shook his head in response.

"Here, then. This might change your mind." The doctor handed both the remaining sheets to the family together. He didn't need to look up to predict their faces.

"No way. That's not possible."

"What you are seeing is your youngest's cell sample, as well as my own. I used my own as a control, and trust me, I was as surprised as you are."

The two sheets were almost the same. Both were spotless. Neither of them had even a speck of red of them.

"Does that mean-"

"He's not immune," Arban interrupted, knowing exactly what he was going to ask. "But this is a good sign. The infection has not yet begun to multiply. Call it an act of mercy, but it seems your oh-so-benevolent overlords thought activating the disease in children was too cruel. I've aggregated the results with some of my colleagues, and we've all noticed the same thing. The disease is not active in children from newborns to at least nine years. From then it gets a bit spotty, but the eldest we've had clean so far was thirteen."

The younger brother's face lit up like a christmas tree. The older one was a little less happy - he had missed the cut off, it seemed - but was nonetheless pretty pleased. The mother, well, she looked as she always did, but you could tell she was overjoyed.

"So what does that mean for us?" The older brother had to speak on behalf of the old woman.

"It means that either a child's body produces a natural suppressant for the disease, or that the disease only becomes active during puberty. Either way, that gives us a launching point. We're one step closer to finding out how to suppress, or even cure, this disease"

It was good news, to be sure. But Arban doubted that this little facility would be enough to study the disease with enough to depth to produce such a cure. The way he saw it, they had to either expand this facility and interfere further in the lives of the people here, or seek outside help.

Either way, the Network's non-interventionist policies would have to end.
Sinnsyk Star Network





Brief Description:
A fledgling empire, born from the ashes of those who once held dominion over their sector. They extend a strong but fair hand to all those who would take it


Government: Dictatorship - The Commissioner is the supreme leader of the Star Network. The Commissioner delegates power to individual Commissaries to oversee different provinces, called Commissariats. While all having the same title and rank, the power of individual Commissaries is arbitrary and some Commissariats are several degrees larger than the others. All, however, can be revoked by the Commissioner for any reason, at any time.


History:
Once upon a time, there was a great empire. They built great towers and great ships, and their great men traveled in great spaceships across great distances to form a great empire with their great weapons and great technology. Then one day a great disaster happened and that kinda put the kibosh on that plan.
One of the planets they had graced with their presence was the humble Synnse, a Class O planet with a rare resource - Deritrium. Deritium had its use as starship fuel, and could power a spaceship for months, sometimes years, though it was notoriously slow to harvest and refine. Sinnse had greater than average deposits, making it an ideal colonial nation for any greedy star empire looking for some cheap fuel. Then, of course, the empire collapsed, leaving behind all its useless crap. Unlucky for some, lucky for others. Without the brutes who had once pretended to own the planet maintaining it, most of the equipment stopped running. Slowly, it was reclaimed by nature, their mighty engines silenced, never to be sounded again

That was, until the Sinnsyk came along. During the Empire, the Sinnsyk didnt exist. Too busy swimming about in their oceans and stuff. When they all fucked off, there was suddenly a lot more room to expand on to land, which they promptly did. The early Sinnsyk were mystified by the magic glowing boxes and their metal gears, and the big shooty machines that made hunting so much easier. Convinced there was more to these big metal shelters than met the eye, the Sinnsyk set up base around them and studied them to get them working. You can imagine the Sinnsyk industrialised rather swiftly with all this equipment lying about. The big purple rocks also helped with that. Made everything a hell of a lot simpler when it came to the space race, I'll tell you that. Anyway, some genius managed to get the big box working and noticed it made even more of these big purple rocks, so now they had a limitless supply of big purple rocks to put in things! Well, limitless if you could stand to wait the ungodly amount of time it took to make one of the bloody things.

It took a bit of technical wizardry, but reverse-engineering the various machines was a fruitful venture. Some of them, like the magic shooty pipes, had been taken apart and put together centuries ago, but the big rock-making box proved far more formidable. It took several attempts to find out how the bloody things worked, which meant a lot less big purple rocks lying about. Still, one it was taken apart and put together, the Sinnsyk knew what they needed to do to make more.

From there, it was a matter of getting into space. There were plenty of ships lying about, but they were old and rusty and had long since run out of Deritrium. Even if they did get the engines working, the damn things were just as likely to blow up as they were to fly. For decades, the development of space flight was treated like an orphan child, but work continued, albeit slowly. The Sinnsyk were more focused on the creation of their universal government, and aligning Those Above with Those Below. Took years just working up the courage to face one of the fucking things...
That said, eventually they managed to get the damn things sky-worthy, but it took years of probes, experiments and unmanned flights into the cold, dark grasp of space to get to that point. Again, they had the advantage of having ships already capable of FTL lying about, so they got out and about rather quickly.

First thing they did was colonise the solar system. And if they couldn't colonise the planet itself, they built a big outpost over the planet that they were supposed to colonise. Then they started colonising other solar systems. Then they hit a snag - aliens. The ones they found had not yet industrialised and were still living in small cities and towns in fractured nations. Now, the Sinnsyk could rock up and proclaim themselves rulers. They could, but they didnt. Instead they felt a kinship with these aliens who didnt have the luck of a massive fuck-off empire having the gall to occupy their planet, and they didn't want to just claim the planet as theirs. So they did something different - they negotiated. They had long, civil discussions, drawing up boundaries, co-operative efforts, even trade. And when you're some medieval society who still uses clubs and swords to wage war, making friends with the men from space with the fire-spitting death pipes sounds like a very entertaining prospect. Through this huge technological advantage, the Sinnsyk were able to pick and choose sides that were friendly to their ideals and spur them to world domination. By removing the most radical elements, and ensuring the continued survival of their chosen governments were linked to the Sinnsyk remaining on their side, then letting natural cultural exchange do its work. Cause who's going to argue with the lads who just came from space and gave you the entire planet on a silver platter?

It was here that the policy of arms-length alien co-operation was devised. Adopting the system applied to their home planet for their new comrades, the Network commissioned a Protectorate over the planet until they had the capacity to manufacture weapons, medicine and consumer goods on a large scale. The Protectorate would give the planet the chance to negotiate through the Sinnsyk via the Commissariat, who would take their case to the Commissioner to discuss it further. Initially, the Commissariat was given very few roles, and the planet was left to develop for itself under the watchful eye of Those Above, who secured what remained of the solar system. This would set the precedent for foreign interactions in the future.

The end result is that the Network is now operating with probably a dozen alien races under its belt, each with their own living area dedicated to them, for them, and are represented by Commissariats to the Commisioner of the Network. The Network even allows sufficiently developed cultures the chance to choose their own Commissariat, often their leader



Military:
The role of the army is a multi-faceted one, and it can be argued that its the best industry for a young Sinnsyk to get in to. Alongside Traders and Ambassadors, Soldiers are amongst the few who are allowed to be stationed on foreign planets without a visa. They learn a variety of skills, such as mechanics and information systems, which stands them in good stead if they ever want to re-take their Vocational Aptitude Test, and the pay isn't bad at all. The military can offer a soldier a driver's license and a pilot's license, the latter of which is especially rare, and are given free bed and board.

The army believes that accommodation should be barebones, but comfortable. No rock hard beds or cold showers, Network soldiers have access to a variety of of comforts that make their postings a little more tolerable. There is a vast variety of roles beyond just shooting things, as well. Humanitarian aid falls squarely within the jurisdiction of the military, typically as peacekeepers and sometimes as builders. All in all, its a fairly cosy position.

The Network's equivalent of the police is the Security Forces, although they are trained alongside the Army and have a highly militarised role, serving as much as a territorial army as peacekeepers and lawbringers. One could be forgiven for assuming Security was a branch of the Army, which it technically isn't.

Ground forces work in four man squads, comprised of a Medic, Marksman, Grenadier and a Heavy Gunner, and are equipped with their Pulse Disruptor rifles. The Pulse Disruptor works by, what else, disrupting pulses in a small area of effect. This is pretty much fatal if applied to somewhere like the heart or the brain, and can cause someone to lose a limb if the disruption is not somehow removed before blood circulation is stopped for too long. The four man squad method gives every squad the equipment they'll need to face off against just about every threat, from enemy gunners to tanks, permitting a variety of potential tactics.

Sinnsyk vehicles are built for quality, not quantity. They are tough, reliable, fast and powerful, but incredibly slow tomproduce and require many rare materials to make, meanimg the Sinnsyk have one of the smallest fleets in the galaxy.

The mainstay of the Sinnsyk Fleet is the Warlord, the resident Frigate. The Warlord is fast, maneuverable and well armed with five Class 10 repeater cannons and two EMP torpedo tubes. The scanners are powerful, but have a low range. The Warlord is given regenerative Type-4 shielding and a double thickness iridium hull. Warlords are the "average" Sinnsyk ship, and the most noticeable on the front line

A much faster pair of ships are the Dagger and Sabre. Respectively, they are the Network's fighter and scout class ships. Both have the ability to cloak, have non-regenerative Type-2 shields and are clad in lightweight titanium hull armour for improved agility. The Dagger is equipped with two Class 8 repeater cannons and a high-powered EMP torpedo tube, whilst the Sabre has three Class 5 disruptor cannons and an Ion torpedo tube. However, to make up for its lack of armaments, the Sabre has much more powerful scanners that reach a longer range.

The Gehenna is the Network's Destroyer. Five Class 10 disruptors, 2 EMP microtubes and one EMP high powered tube, double iridium hull and regenerative shielding are all hallmarks of this intimidating vessel, which sees deployment in small fleets behind enemy lines. The Gehenna is favoured for its anti-dogfighter capabilities and its raiding abilities, but is not really seen on the front lines

Next is the Retribution, a cruiser class ship and a hallmark of Sinnsyk engineering. Retribution-Class ships are equipped with a staggering ten Class 10 distributors, two Class 12s and a Class 12 repeater, and three High Power EMP torpedo tubes. Add on some double Iridium hull armour and regenerative Type-5 shields, you've got an assault ship perfect for besieging planets and systems with.

The Nightmare, a battleship in the Sinnsyk records, is the second largest ship in the Sinnsyk fleet. This terrifying titan is well protected with, as standard, a triple iridium hull, regenerative Type-8 shields, ablative armour, and a huge twenty two Class 12 distributors, two Class 18 heavy disruptors and a class 18 repeater disruptor. On top of this, it has four Triple-Fire EMP torpedo tubes, and two High Power EMP torpedo tubes. Odds are good that if you see a Nightmare amongst a Network fleet, it will be the capital ship.

Unless, of course, you catch sight of the Perdition. Perdition-Class ships are an especially terrifying sight to behold. Eight Class 18 Disruptor cannons, eight Class 18 repeaters and eighteen Class 12 distributors, alongside eight Triple-Fire EMP tubes and two High Power EMP tubes. It's the only ship with regenerative Type-9 shielding, and a triple iridium hull makes it especially hard to crack open.



Religion/Culture:
Sinnsyk society is a conservative, though egalitarian affair. By their standards, it is the role of every capable member of society to provide what they can to their family and their society in general. Sinnsyk are arranged into work groups, whom they are expected to live with and work next to their entire lives. Men and women are seen as equals, though women do get a major advantage with paid pregnancy leave. Because of the communist elements of Sinnsyk society, coming from a wealthier family does not necessarily earn you respect nor guarantee an easy life, and bragging about your heritage is a good way to earn scorn, not admiration.

Family units are broken up early, with children sent to mandatory training academies at the age of four. From here, children are educated in a variety of subjects, including maths, language, science and music. This primary education continues until the child reaches the age of 13, where they are made to take an exam that determines their entire future. This test decides what future the child ends up going in to. Those who show a particular knowledge for clerical work may become clerks, bureaucrats or ambassadors. Culturally gifted children may become clergymen, artisans or curators. Economically gifted children will doubtlessly become traders, and physically gifted children may become soldiers, security or craftsmen. There is a job and a role for everyone, from the greatest to the poorest, and this helps avoid undesirable issues like unemployment. It helps that whenever the economy is lacking in something, the state is happy to nudge the test scores a little to suit their needs. After this test, children are sent to vocational colleges, if skilled, or given apprenticeships if unskilled. Only when the child has become an adult are they given the relative freedom of joining the workforce proper in a workgroup, comprised of adults roughly the same age as them.

The state is highly moralistic and expects a minimum amount of decency from its citizens. Public protests are permitted, however they may not disrupt the daily activities of others, and should be reported to the local Security Centre prior to their commencement, so local government can ensure the proper precautions are in place. Whilst homosexuality is legal, gay Sinnsyk may not marry and it is expected of every citizen to have at least one child. Interbreeding with an alien race is expressly forbidden and can see one exiled under threat of permanent imprisonment. Public intoxication is also illegal, and can see one struck with forced labour sentences and a lifelong substance ban, and public displays of affection are highly frowned upon, though not necessarily illegal. Prostitution is legal only in government-approved and regulated areas, to deter violent behaviour or the transmission of disease.

The government also works with charitable organisations and religious temples to provide a decent welfare state for its people. Obviously, with everyone being designated a job, unemployment is incredibly low, but occasionally security forces will find teenage runaways, homeless vagrants or other unfortunate individuals and be required to take them in for care. Domestic abuse of any kind is illegal, and will be punished with hard labour. The state also makes sure that anyone who is a victim of circumstance - such as spouses whose partners were arrested, underage pregnancies or physically disabled Sinnsyk - are given the appropriate treatment.

Most crimes are punished by forced intensive labour sessions, though the severity of the crime can change how long a prison is performing the labour. Petty theft is obviously given a much lighter sentence than assault or murder, and so most thieves can expect to be released fairly quickly. Forced labour camps are only occupied by regular labourers when there are very few prisoners there. Currently, only premeditated serial murders are punishable by execution, though some criminals are given release quotas so large they cannot possibly fulfil them before they die, essentially making it execution by labour.

The state keeps an arms-length relationship with foreign aliens. Sinnsyk are expressly forbidden from permanently moving residence to another faction's planet, or even a planet within the Network that has been designated a different race's planet. Permits to visit other planets do exist, but these do not last long, are expensive to purchase and have a long cooldown period during which another permit may not be attained, thus ensuring that almost all foreign interference with exception to government business is highly limited. An exception exists for traders, who are permitted to leave and enter as they please. Laws regarding relationships with aliens still apply, however. Violating the laws regarding foreign relationships can see one's citizenship revoked, as can the expiry of a permit while abroad. Sinnsyk who violate a host planet's laws while abroad must face the justice of that nation. The same rule applies to foreign aliens staying on a Network planet - diplomatic immunity is a foreign concept to the Sinnsyk.



Demographics (Species):





Characters:


Relations:


Habitation:
Can we just... make monsters?
Sinnsyk Star Network





Brief Description:
A fledgling empire, born from the ashes of those who once held dominion over their sector. They extend a strong but fair hand to all those who would take it


Government: Dictatorship - The Commissioner is the supreme leader of the Star Network. The Commissioner delegates power to individual Commissaries to oversee different provinces, called Commissariats. While all having the same title and rank, the power of individual Commissaries is arbitrary and some Commissariats are several degrees larger than the others. All, however, can be revoked by the Commissioner for any reason, at any time.


History:
Once upon a time, there was a great empire. They built great towers and great ships, and their great men traveled in great spaceships across great distances to form a great empire with their great weapons and great technology. Then one day a great disaster happened and that kinda put the kibosh on that plan.
One of the planets they had graced with their presence was the humble Synnse, a Class O planet with a rare resource - Deritrium. Deritium had its use as starship fuel, and could power a spaceship for months, sometimes years, though it was notoriously slow to harvest and refine. Sinnse had greater than average deposits, making it an ideal colonial nation for any greedy star empire looking for some cheap fuel. Then, of course, the empire collapsed, leaving behind all its useless crap. Unlucky for some, lucky for others. Without the brutes who had once pretended to own the planet maintaining it, most of the equipment stopped running. Slowly, it was reclaimed by nature, their mighty engines silenced, never to be sounded again

That was, until the Sinnsyk came along. During the Empire, the Sinnsyk didnt exist. Too busy swimming about in their oceans and stuff. When they all fucked off, there was suddenly a lot more room to expand on to land, which they promptly did. The early Sinnsyk were mystified by the magic glowing boxes and their metal gears, and the big shooty machines that made hunting so much easier. Convinced there was more to these big metal shelters than met the eye, the Sinnsyk set up base around them and studied them to get them working. You can imagine the Sinnsyk industrialised rather swiftly with all this equipment lying about. The big purple rocks also helped with that. Made everything a hell of a lot simpler when it came to the space race, I'll tell you that. Anyway, some genius managed to get the big box working and noticed it made even more of these big purple rocks, so now they had a limitless supply of big purple rocks to put in things! Well, limitless if you could stand to wait the ungodly amount of time it took to make one of the bloody things.

It took a bit of technical wizardry, but reverse-engineering the various machines was a fruitful venture. Some of them, like the magic shooty pipes, had been taken apart and put together centuries ago, but the big rock-making box proved far more formidable. It took several attempts to find out how the bloody things worked, which meant a lot less big purple rocks lying about. Still, one it was taken apart and put together, the Sinnsyk knew what they needed to do to make more.

From there, it was a matter of getting into space. There were plenty of ships lying about, but they were old and rusty and had long since run out of Deritrium. Even if they did get the engines working, the damn things were just as likely to blow up as they were to fly. For decades, the development of space flight was treated like an orphan child, but work continued, albeit slowly. The Sinnsyk were more focused on the creation of their universal government, and aligning Those Above with Those Below. Took years just working up the courage to face one of the fucking things...
That said, eventually they managed to get the damn things sky-worthy, but it took years of probes, experiments and unmanned flights into the cold, dark grasp of space to get to that point. Again, they had the advantage of having ships already capable of FTL lying about, so they got out and about rather quickly.

First thing they did was colonise the solar system. And if they couldn't colonise the planet itself, they built a big outpost over the planet that they were supposed to colonise. Then they started colonising other solar systems. Then they hit a snag - aliens. The ones they found had not yet industrialised and were still living in small cities and towns in fractured nations. Now, the Sinnsyk could rock up and proclaim themselves rulers. They could, but they didnt. Instead they felt a kinship with these aliens who didnt have the luck of a massive fuck-off empire having the gall to occupy their planet, and they didn't want to just claim the planet as theirs. So they did something different - they negotiated. They had long, civil discussions, drawing up boundaries, co-operative efforts, even trade. And when you're some medieval society who still uses clubs and swords to wage war, making friends with the men from space with the fire-spitting death pipes sounds like a very entertaining prospect. Through this huge technological advantage, the Sinnsyk were able to pick and choose sides that were friendly to their ideals and spur them to world domination. By removing the most radical elements, and ensuring the continued survival of their chosen governments were linked to the Sinnsyk remaining on their side, then letting natural cultural exchange do its work. Cause who's going to argue with the lads who just came from space and gave you the entire planet on a silver platter?

It was here that the policy of arms-length alien co-operation was devised. Adopting the system applied to their home planet for their new comrades, the Network commissioned a Protectorate over the planet until they had the capacity to manufacture weapons, medicine and consumer goods on a large scale. The Protectorate would give the planet the chance to negotiate through the Sinnsyk via the Commissariat, who would take their case to the Commissioner to discuss it further. Initially, the Commissariat was given very few roles, and the planet was left to develop for itself under the watchful eye of Those Above, who secured what remained of the solar system. This would set the precedent for foreign interactions in the future.

The end result is that the Network is now operating with probably a dozen alien races under its belt, each with their own living area dedicated to them, for them, and are represented by Commissariats to the Commisioner of the Network. The Network even allows sufficiently developed cultures the chance to choose their own Commissariat, often their leader



Military:
The role of the army is a multi-faceted one, and it can be argued that its the best industry for a young Sinnsyk to get in to. Alongside Traders and Ambassadors, Soldiers are amongst the few who are allowed to be stationed on foreign planets without a visa. They learn a variety of skills, such as mechanics and information systems, which stands them in good stead if they ever want to re-take their Vocational Aptitude Test, and the pay isn't bad at all. The military can offer a soldier a driver's license and a pilot's license, the latter of which is especially rare, and are given free bed and board.

The army believes that accommodation should be barebones, but comfortable. No rock hard beds or cold showers, Network soldiers have access to a variety of of comforts that make their postings a little more tolerable. There is a vast variety of roles beyond just shooting things, as well. Humanitarian aid falls squarely within the jurisdiction of the military, typically as peacekeepers and sometimes as builders. All in all, its a fairly cosy position.

The Network's equivalent of the police is the Security Forces, although they are trained alongside the Army and have a highly militarised role, serving as much as a territorial army as peacekeepers and lawbringers. One could be forgiven for assuming Security was a branch of the Army, which it technically isn't.

Ground forces work in four man squads, comprised of a Medic, Marksman, Grenadier and a Heavy Gunner, and are equipped with their Pulse Disruptor rifles. The Pulse Disruptor works by, what else, disrupting pulses in a small area of effect. This is pretty much fatal if applied to somewhere like the heart or the brain, and can cause someone to lose a limb if the disruption is not somehow removed before blood circulation is stopped for too long. The four man squad method gives every squad the equipment they'll need to face off against just about every threat, from enemy gunners to tanks, permitting a variety of potential tactics.

Sinnsyk vehicles are built for quality, not quantity. They are tough, reliable, fast and powerful, but incredibly slow tomproduce and require many rare materials to make, meanimg the Sinnsyk have one of the smallest fleets in the galaxy.

The mainstay of the Sinnsyk Fleet is the Warlord, the resident Frigate. The Warlord is fast, maneuverable and well armed with five Class 10 repeater cannons and two EMP torpedo tubes. The scanners are powerful, but have a low range. The Warlord is given regenerative Type-4 shielding and a double thickness iridium hull. Warlords are the "average" Sinnsyk ship, and the most noticeable on the front line

A much faster pair of ships are the Dagger and Sabre. Respectively, they are the Network's fighter and scout class ships. Both have the ability to cloak, have non-regenerative Type-2 shields and are clad in lightweight titanium hull armour for improved agility. The Dagger is equipped with two Class 8 repeater cannons and a high-powered EMP torpedo tube, whilst the Sabre has three Class 5 disruptor cannons and an Ion torpedo tube. However, to make up for its lack of armaments, the Sabre has much more powerful scanners that reach a longer range.

The Gehenna is the Network's Destroyer. Five Class 10 disruptors, 2 EMP microtubes and one EMP high powered tube, double iridium hull and regenerative shielding are all hallmarks of this intimidating vessel, which sees deployment in small fleets behind enemy lines. The Gehenna is favoured for its anti-dogfighter capabilities and its raiding abilities, but is not really seen on the front lines

Next is the Retribution, a cruiser class ship and a hallmark of Sinnsyk engineering. Retribution-Class ships are equipped with a staggering ten Class 10 distributors, two Class 12s and a Class 12 repeater, and three High Power EMP torpedo tubes. Add on some double Iridium hull armour and regenerative Type-5 shields, you've got an assault ship perfect for besieging planets and systems with.

The Nightmare, a battleship in the Sinnsyk records, is the second largest ship in the Sinnsyk fleet. This terrifying titan is well protected with, as standard, a triple iridium hull, regenerative Type-8 shields, ablative armour, and a huge twenty two Class 12 distributors, two Class 18 heavy disruptors and a class 18 repeater disruptor. On top of this, it has four Triple-Fire EMP torpedo tubes, and two High Power EMP torpedo tubes. Odds are good that if you see a Nightmare amongst a Network fleet, it will be the capital ship.

Unless, of course, you catch sight of the Perdition. Perdition-Class ships are an especially terrifying sight to behold. Eight Class 18 Disruptor cannons, eight Class 18 repeaters and eighteen Class 12 distributors, alongside eight Triple-Fire EMP tubes and two High Power EMP tubes. It's the only ship with regenerative Type-9 shielding, and a triple iridium hull makes it especially hard to crack open.



Religion/Culture:
Sinnsyk society is a conservative, though egalitarian affair. By their standards, it is the role of every capable member of society to provide what they can to their family and their society in general. Sinnsyk are arranged into work groups, whom they are expected to live with and work next to their entire lives. Men and women are seen as equals, though women do get a major advantage with paid pregnancy leave. Because of the communist elements of Sinnsyk society, coming from a wealthier family does not necessarily earn you respect nor guarantee an easy life, and bragging about your heritage is a good way to earn scorn, not admiration.

Family units are broken up early, with children sent to mandatory training academies at the age of four. From here, children are educated in a variety of subjects, including maths, language, science and music. This primary education continues until the child reaches the age of 13, where they are made to take an exam that determines their entire future. This test decides what future the child ends up going in to. Those who show a particular knowledge for clerical work may become clerks, bureaucrats or ambassadors. Culturally gifted children may become clergymen, artisans or curators. Economically gifted children will doubtlessly become traders, and physically gifted children may become soldiers, security or craftsmen. There is a job and a role for everyone, from the greatest to the poorest, and this helps avoid undesirable issues like unemployment. It helps that whenever the economy is lacking in something, the state is happy to nudge the test scores a little to suit their needs. After this test, children are sent to vocational colleges, if skilled, or given apprenticeships if unskilled. Only when the child has become an adult are they given the relative freedom of joining the workforce proper in a workgroup, comprised of adults roughly the same age as them.

The state is highly moralistic and expects a minimum amount of decency from its citizens. Public protests are permitted, however they may not disrupt the daily activities of others, and should be reported to the local Security Centre prior to their commencement, so local government can ensure the proper precautions are in place. Whilst homosexuality is legal, gay Sinnsyk may not marry and it is expected of every citizen to have at least one child. Interbreeding with an alien race is expressly forbidden and can see one exiled under threat of permanent imprisonment. Public intoxication is also illegal, and can see one struck with forced labour sentences and a lifelong substance ban, and public displays of affection are highly frowned upon, though not necessarily illegal. Prostitution is legal only in government-approved and regulated areas, to deter violent behaviour or the transmission of disease.

The government also works with charitable organisations and religious temples to provide a decent welfare state for its people. Obviously, with everyone being designated a job, unemployment is incredibly low, but occasionally security forces will find teenage runaways, homeless vagrants or other unfortunate individuals and be required to take them in for care. Domestic abuse of any kind is illegal, and will be punished with hard labour. The state also makes sure that anyone who is a victim of circumstance - such as spouses whose partners were arrested, underage pregnancies or physically disabled Sinnsyk - are given the appropriate treatment.

Most crimes are punished by forced intensive labour sessions, though the severity of the crime can change how long a prison is performing the labour. Petty theft is obviously given a much lighter sentence than assault or murder, and so most thieves can expect to be released fairly quickly. Forced labour camps are only occupied by regular labourers when there are very few prisoners there. Currently, only premeditated serial murders are punishable by execution, though some criminals are given release quotas so large they cannot possibly fulfil them before they die, essentially making it execution by labour.

The state keeps an arms-length relationship with foreign aliens. Sinnsyk are expressly forbidden from permanently moving residence to another faction's planet, or even a planet within the Network that has been designated a different race's planet. Permits to visit other planets do exist, but these do not last long, are expensive to purchase and have a long cooldown period during which another permit may not be attained, thus ensuring that almost all foreign interference with exception to government business is highly limited. An exception exists for traders, who are permitted to leave and enter as they please. Laws regarding relationships with aliens still apply, however. Violating the laws regarding foreign relationships can see one's citizenship revoked, as can the expiry of a permit while abroad. Sinnsyk who violate a host planet's laws while abroad must face the justice of that nation. The same rule applies to foreign aliens staying on a Network planet - diplomatic immunity is a foreign concept to the Sinnsyk.



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Siiga was confused at this turn of events. Not five minutes ago, the girl and her had been mortal enemies. Now? Now she was tending her wounds, making sure she was okay. It was... It was something else. She could tell if they were naive, sweet, idiotic or if she was just that good a kisser, but hey, she wasn't going to knock it back. Anything that meant she wasn't hetting murdered was a goof thing in her eyes.

Still, she wished it didnt hurt as much as it did. Asking a bit much, considering she's just come off the cusp of death, but come on, that was a whole twelve seconds ago! Surely she should be able to recover from that!

Then again, just getting to her feet was a chore. She coughed and wobbled unsteadily, reachong an arm out to Connie for balance. Seems she was more woumded than she thought...
Siiga


They say as you die, your life flashes before your eyes. Well, Siiga didn't get that. There was no flashback, no rays of light, no chorus of angels heralding the arrival of a new soul at the pearly gates. Just the brilliant flash of searing pain and the total loss of the control of all her limbs. She collapsed rather ignobly to the ground, two new holes in a place there really shouldn't be any holes.

Her vision swam. Her body, wracked with pain, refused to do what she told it to. She could feel her limbs shutting down, little by little, as her blood flowed across the floor. Was this the end? All that time spent evading the law, inly to be brought low trying to prove a fucking point. What a waste of life. She never even said goodbye to her bandits...

But all that wouldnt matter now. In a few minutes, she would be dead, all but forgotten in the eyes of the world. No one to care. No one to mourn. No one to even know. No...

No.

No!

NO!

Strength started to return to her limbs. No way was that happening. Fuck that noise right up the arse. Her fingers twitched. She wasnt dying here, not like this. She could feel her arms and the cold floor. She wasn't dead yet.

She was working on adrenaline, and that wouldnt last long. With what little strength she could muster, she dragged herself inch by painful inch away from the fighting. Her heart screamed at her to give up. Her lungs wheezed painfully, sucking in sweet, precious air and bemoaning the effort all the while. But she was not giving up.

Eventually, she managed to prop herself up on the wall. The puncture wound was narrow but deep, and it had came within a kitten's whisker of her heart. Thank fuck it wasn't a little to the right. But that didn't mean she wasnt at risk of blood loss - she needed to work on this fast.

Any other race would have been fucked. But Siiga was a Tyro, and that came with a certain benefit. Holding her longcoat to the side, she conjured a small gout of flame in her fingers. This was gonna hurt like nothing else. She bit down on her collar, steadied her finger... And drove the searing heat into her wound.

It was all she could do to stop herself screaming, biting into her leather collar. The flames licked at her severed capillaries, cauterising them, stopping them letting any more vital blood out. Her muscles closed around her fiery digit, the skin sealed in an ugly blister, and the room smelled faimtly of melting flesh...

But she did it. She was alive. Ragged, defenceless and in agony... But for fuck's sake, she was alive!

A challenger enters the fray


Shit, the knights were here! No time to fuck around, Siiga had to protect this old lady before they did her any harm! Pulling the mask up around her face to protect her from the gas, Siiga drew her sword, a cruel and wicked looking blade, and held it defensively

"If you made it here, that means Stretch and his boys are either dead or ran away," she sighed. "I always gotta do everything myself, don't I?"

RIP in pepperoni, you magnificent bastards. A waste of skin and bone, the lot of you, but good friends and good people. They wouldn't be missed by the world in general, but they would be by Siiga. Her smile was twinged with sadness. No more jokes. No more drinking games. No more robbing rich bastards who pissed themselves when their guards were subdued. It was like an era of her life had passed by without her realising it. She never even said goodbye.

"But we're not dead, not all of us. I'm still here! So have you got the guts to finish the job, or am I gonna have to clean your blood out my coat tonight!?"

The older boy wanted to engage her, but Siiga wouldn't give him the privilege. From what she'd just witnessed, those scraps of paper had some kind of spell on them. Siiga didn't know what those spells were, but they couldn't be good for her and hers. They needed to go. Then, they had to die.

"Not a cat person, huh? Maybe you prefer dogs?" As she spoke, Siiga waved her free hand roughly in his direction. Maybe he would flinch, maybe he wouldn't. But surely everyone would give pause at the sound of a low growl reverberating around the chamber. Behind Dremmick, two snarling wolves stepped into the light, drooling lava as the assessed their target. Siiga didn't even need to tell them what they had to do, but she said it anyway. "KILL!"

The wolves would prove more of a challenge than the lion. For one, there was two of them, and they knew pack tactics. If Dremmick focused on attacking one, the other would surely savage him. Hopefully it would get the younger lad's attention and he would come to help. Siiga sheathed her sword for now. Her only immediate threat was...

In a single bound, Constance would find her path suddenly blocked by the bandit. She grinned behind her mask and reached out, grabbing the poor girl and drawing her in close to her chest. "May I have this dance?" she taunted, one hand wrapping around Connie's waist and the other grabbing her hand, stopping her from using the paper. With a reckless swing and a trained grace, she took the girl through an impromptu waltz. Somehow avoiding stepping on her toes with those heavy boots of hers, Siiga swayed her back and forth like they were the only two in the world.

Eventually, she took the poor girl for a dip. Green eyes met red, and at some point of the dance, Siiga's mask had slipped down, revealing her face. There was a quiet, tense couple of seconds, letting Constance drink in her captor's face.

"You're lips look lonely" came a breathy, husky whisper. "Maybe they'd like to meet mine"

And like that, Siiga went in for the kill. She pressed her lips against Connie's and kissed her with all the passion of a young lover. At the same time, she snaked her hand into hers, trying to wrestle the paper from her.
Caught between the old lady and the newcomer, Siiga's eyes narrowed. In truth, she didn't know what she was after. The orb? The old woman? Something else entirely? She didn't like that there was someone else here, and she especially didn't like the old woman's ghostly hands.

"Look, if you want to fight, that can be arranged. But I'd rather not." Siiga's tone hardened. "There are knights coming. I don't know how many, and I don't know in how many waves. But they WILL be coming here, looking for that artifact. And although I'm happy to put some of the king's chambermaids to the sword, I don't want them hurting a distinguished lady like you."

"So if I were you, lady, I'd hide. Hide that artifact, then hide yourself, before they get here."
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