Thursday, May 26, 2016

Bastard Galaxy, a cypher system setting

The Galaxy used to be a barren place, nearly devoid of life. This was because of the great filter, a vast and impersonal entity. The filter would snuff out any planet that developed intelligent life. It wasn't always 100% percent effective though. Sometimes some small remnant of a civilization would survive and escape. Having your entire world shot out from under you is a transformative experience and the survivors would remake themselves into stronger and stranger forms. These forgotten and misbegotten children would call themselves the Bastards and band together against the force that created them. After an inconceivable battle, the Great Filter was destroyed and the galaxy was made safe for intelligent life. At least that’s the story everyone tells.
Nowadays the galaxy is full of intelligent life, and even more unintelligent life. In many ways it resembles a loaf of bread left out on the counter,  all spots and weird colors. As far as anyone can tell, greater galactic culture stretches all the way back to the time of bastards, but no one civilization has lasted all that time. Records get spotty the further back they go, and no two accounts ever seem to agree. Good book-keeping was not the legacy of the Bastards; instead they left their legacy in the void for all to see. Big dumb objects liter the cosmos, incomprehensible monuments to an incomprehensible time. Their legacy walk among us as well; numerous races claim to be descendants of Bastards, some of these claims might even be true. There are tens of thousands of intelligent races and galactic culture throws them together in a big heap. Though faster than light travel exists, it's not fast enough to connect all the corners of the galaxy. These local corners are connected with their local region, and these local regions are connected to other regions. Galactic culture exists everywhere in continuous chunks, though this culture is a weird and tenuous thing. Misunderstandings and wars are common, as are plagues and autonomous weapons from an earlier age.

Now here's where you come in, captain. You and your colleagues have shiny new starships, and it's up to you what opportunities you want to exploit. You could become mercenaries,  selling your services to the highest bidder. You could become pirates, taking what you want from the undeserving. You could become scholars and explorers, joining the galaxy's seedy academic underworld and plumbing depths perhaps better left unplumbed. Or maybe you want to become merchants, plying rare goods across the cosmos, dodging pirates and space monsters.

Dame Alg 8(24)
Dame Alg is a knight of The Order of the Silent Sun.  She stands three meters tall on four legs. Her body is muscular, like a bear, and she has pale blue fur. Her head is an otherwise featureless maw of sharp teeth. Two long whip like Tendrils extend from her shoulders; she uses these for dexterous tasks. Between the tentacles is a ridge of waving hairs. Those are her sensory organs.
Like any member of the Silent Sun she is fastidious about fulfilling the letter of any contract she undertakes, and she is devoted to following her code of conduct, even to her detriment. Her specialty is the construction and destruction of orbital blockades, but she is also an excellent pilot, and more than capable in ship to ship combat. She is gregarious and merciful, only killing when she dictated by her contract, or when she is annoyed. The persona she uses when engaged in combat is flirty, but she will not broach the subject of marriage first. Once the subject is brought up, she will fully explain the terms and conditions of courtship.
Her starship, The Color Null is a heavy fighter about 30 meters long. Its most unusual feature is the Contradiction Engine, which allows the ship to stop existing, or at least that’s how Dame Alg describes it. An easier explanation is that the ship is shunted to a pocket dimension. The Color Null may spend a turn ceasing to exist. While it doesn't exist, it may not be affected in anyway. It can begin existing anywhere it could have conceivably traveled in the time it didn't exist. It may begin existing and attack in the same turn, and the difficulty of such attacks are increased by two steps
Usually, Dame Alg is accompanied by ten Auxiliary wives in fighters. They operate in two wings of five each. Treat each wing as a level 7 creature. Some pilots might have special abilities  

Her code of conduct is as follows
*She will only accept living things as payment and gifts
*she will agree to any marriage proposal she receives, on her terms and her definition of marriage
*Preceding the Marriage there is a courtship period, where the suitor may attempt to woo her with gifts, feats of strength, and poetry. The courtship is then graded, and the suitor is then assigned a wife rank. The lowest rank is meat wife, which are immediately eaten. Auxiliary wives assist her in battle to the best of their abilities. Full wives are free to live their lives independently of Dame Alg, conjugal relations optional but encouraged  
* Any wife may veto any contract Dame Alg makes.
*Dame Alg may divorce a wife who uses their veto power. Divorced wives are free to do as they wish, but strongly advised to fuck off
*Dame Alg will not attack any opponent with an odd number in their ship pool, leaving them for the auxiliary wives.

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