Forward Garden is the closest Jezoflorid planet to human space. The Jezoflorid capital is on the other side of the galaxy, virtually inaccessible. Thus, forward garden serves as the most convenient location to do business with Mother Corp. The whole planet is covered in a tangled grid of vegetation to the depth of 2 kilometers. In its forested depths, there are locations of great natural beauty and splendor, making it a premier resort for galactic aristos. The planet also hosts massive farms and processing facilities that grow luxury food items for galactic consumption, as well as farms where Jezoflorids are grown and trained. Jezoflorid servants are a major export, as they are renowned for their loyalty and dedication. The planet has a criminal underworld, literally, as the deep reaches of the tangle are free of any sort of legal oversight. There is a thriving drug trade, as well as an effective network of assassins who call this planet home. At the bottom of the forest there is an "acid ocean" a double misnomer, as it is actually composed of powerful enzymes, and it is a more like a network of swamps and lakes than an ocean.
Forward Garden can be roughly divided into upper, middle, and lower reaches. The Upper Reaches are light and airy. The plants here are wide and delicate, to catch as much precious sunlight as possible. Flowers and fruits of every conceivable shade give the air a sweet, swirling scent. Insects in the billions dance on wind currents.
The Middle Reaches are defined by twilight. The vegetation is denser here, forming chaotic knots and tangles. The smell is sweet but with hints of rot. The air is still and resounds with the calls of unseen creatures.
The Lower Reaches begin at the midnight zone and end at the acid ocean. The darkness is pierced with bioluminescent life of all kinds, including algae blooms that can light the ever present fog with emerald or aqua luminesces. The water here boils and smokes with caustic fury, dissolving the detritus that falls from above. The air stinks of decay and chemicals. The surface of the planet is doted with ancient concrete structures festooned with moss and vines. Crude stone and wood paths mark the tracks of the few brave explorers of this distant and hostile realm
Law: There is little "official" law. The official settlements have Jezoflorid militias to respond to most crimes. They spend most of their time chasing pickpockets and catching sloppy criminals. It's an open secret that Mother Corp employs assassins to eliminate threats to their power base. Beyond the borders of "civilization", the biosphere itself protects the planet. Any threat or disturbance is met by hostile fauna. It should be noted that this does not eliminate all "illegal" behavior, but instead keeps the criminal underworld in check. The best way to think about it is as a tax on criminals. The tax is every year a certain number of them are eaten by hornets.
Ecology. The tangle is one massive floral superorganism that covers the entire planet. There is a plethora of symbiotic flora that live on it. The fauna are mostly invertebrates, and mostly flying ones. A staggering variety are pollinators . Many more are parasites and parasitoids. Almost all are subject to the subtle influences of Mother Corp.
Police Hornet (lv. 5) Man sized and aggressive. Can shoot a bolus of acid further than you would expect.
Tax Collectors (lv. 2) Tiny bloodsuckers that travel in swarms. When killed, release tiny amounts of attack pheromone. Kill enough of them and you become a target.
Night apes (lv. 4) Pink, rubbery and incredibly stealthy. They carry off their prey in the middle of the night.
Tangle Dragon (lv. 4) A flying mollusk. It floats by means of hydrogen filled balloons. This also lets it breathe fire.
Feral ferry spider (lv 6) A barge sized spider, related to the domesticated variety. Will grab victims and throw them into its passenger compartment, then make off for parts unknown.
Cystpillar (Lv. 2) These caterpillars make large cysts in animal hosts. After several painful weeks, a butterfly will emerge.
Many of the floral species here are related to the Jezoflorids, and are motile.
Spongeway. A massive tunnel filled growth. Pockets of sweet smelling nectar lure in animals. Most are tagged with pollen. Some are eaten.
Moss wave (lv. 4) A rolling carpet of plant life, migrates from spot to spot, chasing the sun. Will drown you if it can.
Grass star (lv. 2) A crawling plant. Some species have a parasitic stage, where the adults implant flowers into their hosts.
Grass Drake (lv 4) A serpentine plant with leaf wings. A slow, graceful glider. Is a popular steed.
Catapult trees (lv 5) Fling cannonball sized seed pods long distances. You're unlikely to be hit by a lone pod, but groves will fire together in volleys
Travel: Every official township has a spiderport, where large domesticated arachnids are kept. Silk lines connect destinations, and the spiders effortlessly carry goods and passengers between them. Some of the more remote tourist destinations lack a spider route, and instead are connected by "roads" built through the tangle. These pathways are rarely flat, and can consist of only a set of handholds and a safety rope. Somehow, the Jezoflorids can control the planet's fauna and keep the more dangerous animals away from these roads. There exist "under" roads, unsanctioned paths that lead to unofficial settlements and hidden locations. These illegitimate routes do not enjoy the protection of Mother Corp
Drugs. As a premier vip destination, Froward Garden has a thriving drug culture. Drugs are nominally illegal, though this is mostly a gambit to drive up the prices.
Evolo: Temporarily gives the user biokinesis. They trip out as they become aware of their metabolic functions on a deep level. It is possible to irreparably alter yourself if you choose to do so. Long term users become increasingly mutated.
Master plan: An upper that gives the user an obsessive eye for detail. Any plan that is made while on under the influence will have a higher chance of succeeding. Long term use causes megalomania, delusions, and eccentric fashion choices.
Revelation!: Causes the imbiber to experience contact with some sort of divine entity. Hated by most religions, embraced by a few. Long term users began to receive mandates and holy teachings, becoming prophets. Most people experience a deity they are familiar with culturally, some do not. Junkies tell each other that some people see long forgotten gods that they could never have known about, or that two people have seen the same unknown god. These are probably just rumors.
Weapons. The local Fauna will eventually check out any major disturbances. Explosives, supersonic projectiles and loud engines will draw their ire, making quite weapons a must for anyone planning on fighting. Automatic crossbows and dart throwers are popular, as are chain and whip weapons, as they can also be used as climbing aids
Moss Thrower. A blunderbuss shaped weapon with a back mounted fuel tank. Shots wads of nutrients laced with a quick growing moss. Targets hit are tangled in vegetation and rendered immobile. The planetary militia also uses these weapons to do spot repairs on the tangle's superstructure.
Forrest curse. A liquid pheromone that marks a target for consumption by the local fauna. Typically used in grenades, but can also be sprayed in close range, which risks the attacker accidently hitting themselves
Sapling whip. A motile plant, related to the Jezoflorids but not sapient. When it strikes a target, it comes alive and wraps itself around it, inflecting continuous damage.
Wasp bomb. Unleashes a swarm of angry wasps. They see Jezoflorids as flora, and ignore them.
Wasp gun. Same principle, but shots a single deadly wasp a long distance. Air powered.
Fungal darts. Laced with dangerous spores. Deadly to organics, and will also damage the superstructure, making it highly destructive.
Blister stick. A wood that produces noxious oils that cause painful lesions. Used by the local militia for crowd control.
Assassin's guilds. There are three related but rival guilds that have their bases here. The Guild of Creeping death, which specializes in assassination through faunal agents, the Guild of verdant Death, who's members kill with flora and the guild of moldering death, who use fungus. All three are mystery cults, with inanition rites available to any who seek them out, though they are notoriously deadly to non-Jezoflorids. These guilds exist to not to kill, but to strike fear into the enemies of Mother Corp. The killings are really a byproduct of that mission. To that end, they are very theatrical, and will often warn their victims beforehand. Every kill is a production, designed to leave a strong impression. (Some analysts believe they are capable of subtly, though it is hard to tell on a planet with as many accidental deaths as Forward Garden.)
Soft Rain (lv. 5) First comes a small horde of caterpillars, to let the target know they're coming. Then comes the large horde. Most targets are eaten, some have been found crushed or suffocated.
True loyalty (lv. 6) Uses fungus to subvert the target's allies. Tries to arrange ironic deaths, but a plant's conception of irony is a bit loose.
Path in the woods (lv. 7) A master martial artist who uses living whips. Sends a whip to discreetly kill a target, then makes a show of beating up underlings. Heavily fictionalized accounts of their exploits are popular in local culture.
Industry. Mechanical manufacturing attracts unwanted attention from the local Fauna, limiting the scope of traditional industry. The Jezoflorids compensate with bio technology, growing most of what they need in specialized farms. These are some of the more common facilities that can be found on the planet
Drug lab Apiary. Here, aliens in thick suits tend irregularly shaped hives. The many bee species kept here have one thing in common; narcotic honey. These places are sometimes raided by police hornets.
Soil Farm. These farms are where Jezoflorids turn organic matter into soil for their consumption.
The compost. A hidden soil farm, staffed by heavily indoctrinate Mother Corp employees. Those Jezoflorids Mother Corp deems defective are dosed with a parasitic fungus. They are compelled to travel on secret paths to the compost, where they through themselves onto a giant pile of their dead kin. The compost is a one of the more productive soil farms, and if its dark nature was revealed, wide spread revolts against Mother Corp would spring up.
Notable locations. These are major tourist destinations, Mother Corp holdings or other sites of note. All have spider ports unless stated otherwise.
Falling petals. A vertical settlement lined with tiny blossoms that periodically shed in great clouds, giving it its name. This resort town is known for its gambling games, where players can place bets on all sorts of strange diversions. Bets are placed using the house currency, tokens known as bulbs and petals. (there 24 petals in a bulb). Bulbs can be used to buy a random Jezoflorid bulb from a bubble shaped displacer. Some of the possible cultivars are sold nowhere else, making them quite valuable to a collector.
Stump: Players take turns sticking their hands into holes on a stump. They receive payout based on how painful the sting was. 1 in 20 chance of a fatal sting, if you live through it you get the jackpot.
Garden: Players take turns issuing orders to insect servitors, trying to grow the best garden. Fast growing plants are used, so the games only take about a day.
Alms: Beggars are given signs with point values and are released into a gallery. Each player has a different color fruit to throw at the targets.
There are vending machines throughout this settlement that take bulbs and dispense seed packets. Roll 2d6
2.Brain baby. This cultivar can read surface level thoughts of any being within 50 feet..
3.syzygy. This one is two bulbs fused together. When it grows, it will have two minds. The upshot is it can learn two specialties as a juvenile. Requires periodic relationship consoling to remain whole
4.Big Sib. A plant of unusual size.
5.Dank. Its leaves have a potent psychoactive effect. Sometimes can be found smoking itself.
6.Tasty boy. Even as a juvenile, it grows sterile but juicy fruits.
7.Forward garden regular. The basic local cultivar
8.wise one. Even as a juvenile it grows bitter fruits that have nootropic properties
9.Eye flower. Has working eyespots on its flowers, giving it exceptional eyesight.
10.Liquid color. Has chromatophores in its flowers, allowing to change its color.
11.Pallid devourer. Lacks pigment, but can digest almost anything
12.Push boy. Can move things with its mind. If you want it to be good at it, it needs to be trained, taking up its specialty slot
The Celestial Orphanage. In the gloom of the under forest a spear of bright light stabs down onto a majestic giant tree. Mirrors at the tree top level create this dramatic vista whenever the sun shines. The old tree is full of polished tunnels and massive cathedral caverns lined with thousands of icons and idols. This temple complex hosts idols and avatars of gods that have been displaced by wars and disasters. This place sees brisk business from pilgrims. The library here is one of kind, as it’s the only place to view the unexpunged blog of the being that would be come to known as the atomic messiah. The complex is overseen by a high priest known as Elder Careful Care (lv 6), a venerable and large Jezoflorid. They are soft-spoken but subtly menacing. They keep the disparate priesthoods in check through quite blackmail and intimidation.
Flesh 7 Village. An unofficial settlement, the Flesh 7 here are reserved and secretive. They favor arachnid bioforms, and are continuously exploring the tangle. A guide from this village is invaluable for anyone that wants to plumb the dark reaches of the planet. Their leader is Klarg (lv 4), an impetuous young warrior who was the daughter of the previous leader. She wants to find a way to get her people off planet, but something is keeping them there. She will only divulge their secret mission to find an ancient crashed spaceship to those she trusts. There is no spiderport here.
Garden of commerce. An open air market where the stalls are built into flowers. Guide hives dot the walk ways. If you tell the hive what you're looking for, a bee will guide you to it.
The Spawn Flower. A massive bromeliad-like flower full of water. Home to race of frog-like aliens who have been living here for generations. They stage pirate raids all over the tangle. The bottom of the lake is full of ill gotten gains. They have some secret method of placating the police hornets. There is no spiderport here.
Honey Springs. An exceptionally productive apiary. Rivers of honey flow out of the hives and into intricate channels. A must visit for any sapient with a sweet tooth. This place is a haven for candymen cultists. As long as they don't plot against Forward Garden, Mother Corp leaves them alone.
Data Hive. Here, the bees function as one vast super computer. It is from here that Mother Corp manages the running of the planet. Here is the best place to find Elder Long Term Plans (lv 6), the planetary governor. While not rude to outsiders, they are enigmatic and reserved. They give off the impression that they don't need outside help for anything.
Leviathan Pond. Another bromeliad lake. A resort village is built on the flowers that float on its surface. Sapients dreaming here have vast, incomprehensible dreams that are said to come from the creature that lives in the lake. Some find these dreams inspiring, some just want to see something fucked up. No one is ever exactly the same after a leviathan dream, but it's hard to tell what changes about them.
Wave Grove. This settlement is inside a massive crack in a rotting support tree. Inside is a fungal microcosm of waving stalks and shifting rugose matts. The air is cool and still and fragrant with strange rot. A host of shady gurus run trip huts in the depths, using drugs to convert curious aristos to their strange creeds.
The soup pits. Deep in the forest, massive vines carry water and nutrients between the titanic trees. This town is built into an intersection of these vines, thatched huts hanging on the undersides supported by thick ropes. The air is full of steam and smoke from hundreds of cook fires heating the famous cauldrons. Each cauldron hosts a different soup or stew, some of which have been in continuous use for hundreds of years. These are soups with personality, with histories as complex as some nations. The Militia regiment here is known as the Chef's Guard. They are exceptionally well armed and exist to protect the soup pits from foreign contamination, as well destroy any illegal soups. They have their work cut out for them, as candy cultists are always trying to horn in with their own sweet stews. At any given time, there is at least one candy speakeasy in operation. Elder Virtuous Flavor is the head chief and ecologist, a position that has more power than the local mayor. He is responsible for directing the evolution of the stews, and as such is his very interested in any culinary innovations.
Noted soup pits:
- Iridescence. Has a bright, oily sheen. It has an ever-shifting kaleidoscope of flavor
- Heartache. Emits a thick, clinging fog. Tastes of forgotten nostalgia
- Hunter. Filled with assorted creepy crawlies and slimy things, all still alive. Not favored by many humans, but popular with those that eat live prey.
- Victor and Vanquished. A half a day's hike from the center of town there is a fighting pit. The Arena is a catwalk above Vanquished. Losers are thrown in. The winners get a substantial purse, in exchange for a portion of biomass to be added to Victor. Vanquished is a murky, rowdy stew, while Victor is clear and refined. Of the two, Victor is the more expensive, served in the VIP booth, while the hoi pollio guzzle mugs of vanquished in the stands.
- Dragon's Bowl. Full of cooked "noodlings" a starchy and savory motile plant creature thought to be a close relative of the Jezoflorid. Every day huge baskets of them are caught and sorted, with only the most perfect specimens added to the soup. They bud off of the "eel dragon", an enormous serpent that lairs somewhere below the pits. Every year it ascends and is given Dragon's Bowl as tribute. It is said the without this sacrifice it would destroy the town. A small kaiju cult has arisen. Currently they are try to feed one of their number to the dragon. So far, they have been unsuccessful.
The Flitter Circuit. The name is a bit of misnomer. This small city contains lodgings, stables, guest accommodations and smaller race tracks as well as the famous Flitter Circuit, a race track for flying insets and grass drakes. A treacherous text of dexterity, the Flitter circuit winds through the tangle, following a path of tight turns and frequent obstacles. The racers in the circuit are employed by Mother Corp and live at the Circuit full time. They are mostly retired galactic prix racers, with a couple eccentric oddballs thrown in to make it more entertaining. The Circuit has a reputation as an elephant graveyard of racers. The most famous racer here is Blag Soner (lv 4), a Pertanguan who was a second place finisher in the Galactic Prix. He is still a competent racer, but otherwise he is the very image of a washed up superstar. When he's not racing he is drunk, and even more scandalous for a Pertanguan, he is frequently stationary.
Flutter meadows. This tranquil area right below the canopy is formed by a horizontal weave of branches, upon which a thick layer of soil has formed. It is famed for its wild flowers, as well as its beautiful flying insects, who have intricate and colorful patterns on their wings. This is a peaceful resort town, home to an order of shape changing escorts known as the Mercury Flowers. Their origins are obscure, but they are currently in the employ of Mother Corp. Their power to assume any shape has given them a sinister reputation, but they've never been linked to any shady business. Their leader is Red Templar (lv 6), who isn't an individual but a persona. It is only channeled by a flower when a customer needs to be reprimanded.
The Stump. The lowest settlement in the tangle, built into a decaying tree right above the acid ocean. This is where most of the heavy industry of Forward Garden takes places. Scavenger Teams recover metal and other precious scrap that has fallen from above, and catalytic forges use the caustic water to produce needed goods. The Spider's Dinner is a tavern and guildhall for the adventures who venture out into the acid ocean. It is run by Gunver Hublr (lv. 3), an acid scared human male.
Fruiting Station. An organic space station in geosynchronous orbit with the planet below, which it is connected to by a space elevator made of super strong vines. This is the only official entrance to the planet, and it has the heaviest militia presence. There is a small community of foreigners here, doing the sort of shady business you would expect in a major spaceport. This is the safest place to be a criminal on forward garden, and most major crime lords have at least a safe house here. The station master is Adult Diligence (lv. 3), a mid level Mother Corp functionary who is quick to accept a bribe. What most don't know is he is still loyal to Mother Corp, and he gives his ill-gotten gains back to the company.