The last remnants of the Earth Federation have been swept away by the Holy Terran Empire. But now old enemies are advancing on the Imperial fringe. The Tech Infantry, which was once their bane, has been disbanded. And instead of rallying the Imperial Fleet, the Emperor has scattered it to control the hyperspace network. Can Humanity still stand against the encroaching darkness?
A new Dark Age is approaching. Will you fight to keep the light of civilization burning?
Welcome to Tech infantry 9.1, a "miniseries" taking place after Season 9 and before the still-anticipated Season 10. This will be a bit of an experimental project with a few goals. First and foremost among them is simply to have another enjoyable TI PbEM game. It's also an attempt to test the abilities of a new moderator, and give our old one a chance to be a regular player. Finally, 9.1 should lay some of the groundwork for Season 10, both by creating some new characters to populate the future story, and by testing new character-generation guidelines.
As players, your only task right now is to create a character to play during the miniseries and send it to the moderator for discussion and approval. Right now, the tentative start date for 9.1 is August 29. In order to make sure there's enough time to put everything in place for that start, please have your initial character designs submitted by August 15. That should leave enough time for a few rounds of e-mail to go through any tweaking or backstory development that needs to occur before publishing a prologue act.
As a miniseries, 9.1 is expected to run approximately as long as a single "episode" of a regular season. That means 4 "acts", not counting prologue or possible epilogue, one per week. Since the moderator is new and less confident of his ability to make a rapid turn-around with orders, the schedule each week will be slightly different. Orders will be due Tuesdays at noon Central Time. The new act will then be released Thursday evening. This adjustment will give the moderator a few days to work, and will let the players have the luxury of working over the weekends (or cramming it all in on a weekday night, as per usual). The length limit on orders will be relaxed slightly to 4 or 5 pages.
The year is 2276, 10 years after the end of the Ascension War which confirmed Vin Dane as Holy Terran Emperor, the supreme ruler of all Humanity. Despite the end of this latest Human civil war, all is not well in the galaxy. The Emperor has shown more interest in consolidating his own political and economic position than in defending his subjects. The Imperial Navy is a bare shadow of Earth Fleet's former might, and most of its forces have been engaged in the slow process of breaking up the old jumpgate system and securing for the Emperor a monopoly on interstellar trade. Instead of the Tech Infantry, each noble House of the Empire fields its own retinue of soldiers. These personal armies fight each other far more often than they fight the Empire's enemies.
And the Empire has enemies aplenty on its borders. No longer held in check by Earth Fleet, the Arachnids have attacked multiple systems along the colonial fringe. Besieged settlements desperately pray for reinforcements from their Lords and the Imperial Navy. The Bug War has come again.
The Jurvain Commonality has been no less quick to seize opportunity now that the Federation jackboot is lifted. Even while engaged in their own war against the Bugs, the Jurvain have already proclaimed two new colonies on Imperial worlds, without regard for their Human populations. Jurvain warships, though still few in number, have won impressive skirmishes against Imperial picket lines. The Jurvain seem to have acquired both a thirst for conquest and the advanced military technology to quench it.
Meanwhile, the K'Nes bide their time and keep both ears raised for the sound of opportunity. The Empire's self-defeating blockade is leaky, and K'Nes merchants pour through the gaps to satisfy Human demand for goods and their own lust for coin. But blockade running is not an easily scaled business, and the Llans see crisis on the horizon without new markets for growth. If the Humans cannot be convinced to depose their Emperor, then a formal alliance with the Jurvain may be the only profitable option left.
In the darker corners of the galaxy, stranger things are afoot. Not all of the noble Houses are as loyal to the Emperor as they appear, but their true motives remain carefully concealed. There are some pockets of true dissent, as well, while pirates strike at Imperial convoys before vanishing to parts unknown. In the slums and alleys of bombed-out cities, people talk of a new plague spreading, one that drives its victims to madness and murder before simply vanishing. But the rumors of the peasants are always easily dismissed by the nobility, civilization's true masters. What force from the darkness could ever threaten their new order?
A. Do I have to know what happened in the previous eight seasons to play?
No, they're just background knowledge. You may run into characters or objects from previous seasons, but otherwise, it's a completely new game. What happens in this campaign affects the course of the universe from then on.
B. Great, I'm sold... what do I have to do?
Get approval from the Storyteller (Lorpius Prime), generate a character, write a character history, and think of a way to get into the story! Once you're in, simply turn in orders every week before noon Tuesday CST and enjoy the story when it comes out the next Thursday evening.
C. More Players?
At most, we're looking for six players with their characters having their own dedicated storyline. If you want to play for just a little bit, you can create a "secondary character," or a player character in one of major players' plot. In television terms, this would be a cameo (or walk-on, if they instantly die). If your secondary character is really cool, he might become a recurring character, and take over if one of the main players stop playing. However, I don't want to detract from the "stars" and their ongoing plots. If anyone else wants to join the game, but doesn't want to play (or is too busy to play right now), you can receive the ongoing story through email.
D. If there are no dice involved, who wins?
In a PBeM, when your character conflicts with another (whether it's another player or an NPC), the Storyteller compares your stats with their stats. If your stats higher, you win, and I write the story that way. It's that simple. Feel free to write your story as if you win, but I'll be the final arbiter of decisions in the published results.
Click to read the prequel story - TI Season 9: Born Under a Gray Sky
Click to read the prequel prequel story - Tech Infantry: Prayer for the Technocrats