M. Jared Swenson Productions

This blog chronicles my projects, developments, and all things related to tabletop gaming. I will try to avoid rants and reviews. Mostly games I'm developing, and progresses from my campaigns.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Star*Drive Saturday: Orlamu Theocracy

We are counting down the stellar nations. This is 7 of 13. Last week it was the diverse nation of Orion League, now it is the:

If you have a undeniable need for traveling the stars and uncovering science's greatest mysteries, then you might be an Orlamu.
  • Population: 782 Billion Sentients
  • Founding Year: 2211
  • GW2 Alliance: FreeSpace Alliance
  • Capital World: Prophetholme
  • Dominant Faith: Orlamism
  • Notable Locations: Kurg (Inside Orlamu boundaries. Homeworld to the Weren), The Lighthouse (Traveling fortress ship in the Verge. Also headquarters to Galactic Concord presence in the Verge.)
Orlamus happily attribute the origin of their society to a scientific advancement. Their origin is tied directly with the creation of the stardrive. On 2159 the first test took place in orbit of Mars. They activated the engine and soon the test satellite disappeared in a spectacular wave of light. This was the first recorded starfall. The destination was only the other side of the Sol system, so research vessels waited there. They expected it to reappear after minutes, but the wait turned to hours, then days. This panicked the scientists. Then exactly 121 hours after starfall, the ship came out at its destination, and was immediately surrounded by military and science vessels. The experience during the starfall was a unique one for the charismatic scientist, Jeff Sendir, the only one aboard during the test. Unprepared for a long departure in an unexplored dimension, Sendir struggled to survive. The satellite's sensors drew no readings from drivespace, reporting it was surrounded by a featureless void the whole time. But Sendir's report said otherwise, like unto a dream, he felt a presence with something greater, like a massive expansive intelligence. Vast unfathomable ideals floated through him. Many wrote this off as an anomaly as no other test pilots reported a similar experience in later tests. Sendir stayed active in the scientific community for another decade, working diligently to advance stardrive technology.

At age 45 he took many of his colleagues with him in establishing an independent academy for the study of drivespace and dark matter energies. The Orlamu Foundation, devoted to unlocking the mysteries of drivespace, always had religious overtones. Even while his scientific pursuits attempted to deepen the knowledge of drivespace, Sendir continued to develop religious views, and they spread throughout the scientific community. The foundation claimed several systems of its own, and in 2211 became the Orlamu Theocracy. Shortly after, the new theocracy discovered the Weren on the planet Kurg. Despite the Weren's own never ending civil war, they were peacefully integrated into the theocracy over the following years.

Despite it being a religious organization, drivespace research and stardrive development remained the nation's principal focus. It remains a scientific body first, and a religious organization second. This propelled the Orlamu economy to a great deal of success. Orlamu stardrives run in almost a third of the galaxy's ships, and are counted among the most reliable and efficient. Intellectual freedom are accepted as a matter of course by the Orlamus. Even as most follow the Orlamist faith, most hold the theocratic government as a necessary evil, not a divinely inspired power, as bureaucracy of any government exists in full. Weren have flourished under Orlamu guidance. Their violent tendencies have made integration difficult, but talented Weren are growing more common. The people of the theocracy maintain a belief in scientific revelation. Along with their allegiances to the most advance disciplines of science, the Orlamus gaze with wonder at the marvels of the universe - the beautiful balance of energy and matter, and the existence of life itself. And in these marvels, they see witness of a conscious divine will. Orlamus obsess with drivespace, they hold a great deal of reverence for all things drivespace touches, and perform most of their meditations traveling through drivespace, or as they call it, the Divine Unconscious.
Left to right: Weren, Orion, Orlamu, and Fraal
Paraphrased from: David Eckleberry, and Richard Baker. Star*Drive Campaign Setting. Wizards of the Coast, Inc. P.O. Box 707 Renton, WA. 98057-0707: Wizards of the Coast / TSR, 1998.

Rogue Space Character Ideas
The Orlamus attempt to reaching a better understanding of the universe and their place in it has met with great success. Pioneers in many realms of science, Orlamus pride themselves on their use of scientific methods and instruments to discover truth. A player may choose to be an Orlamu for his/her race (human only) during character creation. They gain a +1 bonus to star navigation and physical science tests.

Character Background: Pilot
High Attributes: Acquiring and Scientific
Archetype: Technician
You live for drivspace. To you, entering the Divine Unconscious is always an enlightening experience. You may even politely request your crewmates show some degree of reverence during a starfall. Being ship's navigator allows you to hone your talents, even able to do most of the necessary course calculations in your head without the need for computer assistance. Mapping routes and piloting the ships make you a valuable asset to any ship's crew.

Character Background: Any
High Attributes: Empathy and Scientific
Archetype: Mindwalker (Special) or Rogue
Born in drivespace. The theocracy holds a special admiration for your kind. Anyone blessed with their first moments of life while in drivespace means they have been touched by the Divine Unconscious in a special way. For many it unlocks powers and special talents. Because a higher than usual amount of human psionic talents come out of the Theocracy, a majority of those are Starborne. You may have been granted special schooling and opportunities, and often pampered. Once you get to the harsh realities of the Verge, you may yet use your gifts for something greater.

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