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SpaceHero Pikru

Page history last edited by Michael 11 years, 6 months ago

back to the Atlas


Thousands of systems make up the Outworld Colonies; circling an ordinary yellow star is the colony planet Pikru.


The diameter is 9600 kilometers, the surface gravity 0.7 G. The atmosphere is quite breathable by ordinary humans, the average daytime temperature is 22 degrees Centigrade. About 40% of the surface is covered in water; the two largest seas aren't connected, and the sea life varies quite a bit between them.


Small icecaps sit atop the poles, enlarging and shrinking with the seasons. No large mountain ranges are found on the planet; broad plains lead gradually to marshy areas around the seas.


Native life -- grasses, insects, primitive trees -- competes well with imported biology.


About 200 million ara-humans live on Pikru; some are descended from the original colonists of 2000 years ago, others are more recently arrived. Eight cities are present; one of them, First Landing, is near the north polar zone, and supports the only spaceport.


Two noble houses control Pikru; one has its capital at First Landing, and the other is based in a city on an equatorial peninsula. The heads of these houses rarely visit Pikru; delegates, usually junior members of the houses, act as governors. Some small wars and squabbles have occured in the last 200 years, between the houses, usually without any damage to the civilian populations. The noble houses themselves are of the same off-world ara-human stock as the population, but share almost none of the locals' culture.


Pikru does not produce enough agricultural surplus to trade for much in the way of technology; local industry is unable to construct devices any more advanced than those of Terra, for example.


The planetary culture has had centuries to deviate from its off-world roots. The original colonists were rather hulking in appearance. Married couples will go to great lengths to raise only one child at a time -- most siblings are at least 16 years apart in age. Curiousity is greatly valued; in fact, travellers find the locals to be rather annoying in that regard. Despite fairly clear scientific evidence, the colonists insist that they are not ara-human, but in fact an entirely alien race from a different level of reality. They speak an 'artificial' language, very easy to learn.


The planet's most famous feature is the Shipwreck. Embedded in the bottom of one of the local seas is an enormous alien spaceship, originally about 18 kilometers long. The tapered, armored hull is slanted at about a 45 degree angle, and about 12 kilometers of the vessel protrudes above the water; the very aft end of the vessel is 8,400 meters above the water. The ship struck the planet about 55,000 years ago; only the armored hull survived the impact and the subsequent passage of time. A compacted mass of metal and organics fills the nose of the ship, deep below the water and the seabed. The locals have been obsessing about the origin of the ship since the first colonists arrived. A series of navigational beacons run along the edges of the wreck, to prevent aircraft from colliding with it.

The solar system contains a few nav beacons, a couple of automated scanner stations, and no defenses. Three artificial satellites orbit Pikru, combining weather observation with communications relay functions.


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