Monday, 28 September 2020

planets

  1. Old Earth. Like living on a Civil War battlefield. Drowned cities and nuclear exclusion zones. Soil pregnant with the ash of a thousand tragedies. Sterotypes about Terrans - they live in castles, they talk to ghosts, they're secretly a thousand years old and drink the blood of the innocent to stay young. Lagos is the new Tokyo and the President lives inside the Moon.
  2. Socrates VII. Home to Yarnell College, the galaxy's most prestigious university, as well as ten thousand lesser institutions of learning. Pompous beyond belief. Disgruntled professors form cults and student riots raze cities. Academics plot for decades to secure a one-in-a-thousand shot at tenure. Prank wars between colleges sometimes turn atomic.
  3. Tantalus the Love Planet. That is its official full name. Founded by polyamorous hippies who are sex-positive to an irritating degree. Fragrant jungles, warm lagoons and scenic valleys, all spoiled by the fact that someone is 100% guaranteed to be fucking in your field of vision. Even sex tourists rarely last more than a day. Kinkshaming punishable by death.
  4. Rattlebucket. Lifeless icy globule orbited by the aftermath of the greatest space battle in history. Layer upon layer of crashed, compressed starship, riddled by ventilation shafts and home to engine mutants who never see the sun. Upper strata are picked clean but salvageable proton torpedoes, military secrets and cryopreserved supersoldiers lie untouched in the depths.
  5. Kanaloa II. Ocean planet. Only a few specks of land. Home to mournful psychic leviathans and superintelligent squid, who probably would have taken over the galaxy by now if inventing fire had been an option for them. Humans in floating cities trade metal to the squid in exchange for seafloor pearls and mysteries. They're definitely not building spaceships with it.
  6. Vizhinjam. Situated on the Achernar Hyperstrait, a vital interstellar trade route. Home to thousands of spaceports, orbital drydocks and huge reeking bazaar cities ruled by obese decadent merchant princes where literally everything is for sale. Famous for its experimental curry chefs, who feud over access to the most exotic spices in the galaxy.
  7. Sunset Beach. Nobody under 70 can land here without a special permit. Retirement villages sprawling across tropical archipelagos, staffed by immigrant labourers who sleep in spartan dormitories well away from the nature trails and pickleball courts. Governed by a council of elders who command a small, elite force of hardbitten octogenarian mercenaries.
  8. Xavier III. Settled by missionaries who wanted to convert the local aliens to the Catholic faith. The aliens died of the common cold. The missionairies remained, establishing an antipope and using the planet's considerable gold reserves to fund a set of gigantic cathedrals in his honor. Now a major tourist attraction and pilgrimage destination.
  9. Bagatelle. No oceans, no continents, just an endless swampy morass of mud and water. No permanent settlements, only caravans of houseboats and airboats with hillbillies twanging banjos on the porch. Space gators, megasquitos, cannibal frogmen, parasite fireflies that burrow into your skin. Mile-deep stagnant sinkholes where the bog krakens lurk.
  10. Josephine IV. Governed by hundreds of warlords, every last one of which firmly believes they are destined to become Emperor of the Galaxy. Wide flat plains designed for cavalry engagements and narrow mountain valleys perfect for ambushes. Clever indigenous species of talking parrot-vulture offers strategic advice, cleans up mess.
  11. Big Pig Dig. Hollowed out and abandoned by a lost race of extraterrestrial miners. Now a flayed skeletal shell of a planet, half the core surgically removed, orbited by moons of slag that draw prospectors like flies. Dripping veins of rare deep-earth minerals guarded by crystal men, lava worms and the security forces of ruthless corporations.
  12. Flamingo Grande. Mafia-run casino planet where everything is a gamble. Ticket machines are slot machines. Waiters play blackjack for the bill. Criminals spin the wheel of punishment to see if they go free or get their kneecaps broken. Every thief dreams of tackling the impregnable vaults sunk a mile beneath the Fortress of Fortune, castle of Carmine the Cosmic Don.
  13. Nouveau-Tchad. Desert planet. Long winding canyons that flood every hundred years, when a race of sapient lungfish emerge to conduct the business of their very slow civilisation. The bedouin tribesmen who roam the desert consider their empty cities to be haunted, but won't balk at digging one up and eating it if they happen to run low on supplies.
  14. Poo World. Quiet agricultural planet, named by the six-year-old daughter of an explorer. Tourist board constantly tearing their hair out trying to attract more people to their sparkling beaches, breathtaking snowfields and charming native wildlife. Name change blocked by locals who have no desire to see their homes overrun.
  15. Malbork VI. Cut off from the galaxy for centuries by a hyperspace collapse, the original colonists regressed to medievalism and established a society of knights, castles, peasants and rigid gender roles. Yarnell College anthropologists bar anyone from making contact with the planet, and are widely thought to have set the whole thing up as an experiment.
  16. Nakamura II. Heavily fortified bunker planet occupied by holdouts from the losing side of the Second Galactic War, who refuse to acknowledge that the war is over and blast anyone who attempts to reason with them out of the sky. Children raised in fanatical loyalty to serve an emperor who's been dead for centuries, using weaponry that's hugely out of date.
  17. Daintree. Trees like mountains with branches as wide as city streets, woven into a canopy that blankets the globe. Jungle pygmies dwell in the sunless depths and come up at night, riding blind jaguars, to kidnap children from the colony towns in the upper reaches. The forest floor is theorised to be a mile-deep carpet of fungus and rot.
  18. Christmas Rose. Everything that grows here is diabolically poisonous, locked in an evolutionary arms race with iron-stomached herbivores that accumulate toxins in their flesh. Don't leave the domed cities without a full-body rubber suit and thirteen different antidotes in your system. The pharmaceutical researchers who live here are definitely not secret assassins.
  19. Bridewell. Tidally locked prison planet. Convicts get their choice of blazing arid wasteland or bitter icefields and permanent night. Daysiders and nightsiders hate each other. Small bands of escapees make a home along the temperate, dusky equator, living in fear of patrolling drones and the robot overseers who'll drag them back to the labor camps.
  20. New Earth. A retrofuturist paradise of flying cars and crystal spires, food pills and nuclear families, friendly robot servants and science priests in white togas. Founded by utopian rationalists who intended to develop the most advanced possible form of civilisation. Lives in fear of memetic corruption by communist worshippers of the Computer Devil.
from here

7 comments:

  1. Space gonzo was something I didn't know I needed until right now.

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  2. "It's like the Jetsons, but with more ultra-violence."

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  3. Poo World and Tantalus are TOPS

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  4. All praise the Communist Computer Devil

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  5. I am always down for more planet tables.

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  6. please take me to Tantalus the Love Planet, it's all I want from life

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