by Max Barry

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by The Parliamentary Cyberdemocracy of Kharaz-A-Kharak. . 12 reads.

Neo-Midgard - Overview

In the beginning years of the 22nd century, Earth had found itself facing a series of problems of planetary scale: severe climate change lead to massive migrations, overwhelming the infrastructure of entire nations in their attempt to house entire populations; new technologies that were meant to end want were kept restrict to financial or political elites and used to spy on the people of entire nations, giving rise to tyranical regimes concerned only in keep their supporters in power; and the exhaustion of natural resources lead to scarcity in necessary materials to certain sectors of infrastructure, leading to riots and, in many cases, the total undermining of social order.

To combat this, a coalition of left-wing movements, political parties, collectives, worker's unions and scientists created the Revolutionary Alliance, a transnational movement whose purpose is to not only find a solution to the unstable natural situation, fighting against oppressive regimes, and encounter a solution for the resource exhaustion. The movement, surprising many, had achieved reasonable success, developing new terraforming technologies leading to the amenization of climatic upheavals, the substitution of materials ending in part the resource crisis, and even reaching power in many countries, be by democratic vote or by revolutionary coup d'etat.

Unfortunately, even with this efforts, the many capitalist authoritarian regimes undermined any and all efforts, be it to keep their profits, be it so to destroy any attempt of questioning of their regimes and ideologies, leading to a deeper crisis. This lead to the point that, on the Christmas Eve of 2112, the UN General Secretary dclared Earth unsuitable for continuous sustainable human existence, and declared that all nations must evacuate the planet.

The capitalist authoritaran regimes, having a great upper hand in the space colonization, had sent its elites, scientists and financiers to the brand new colonies of Mars, the Asteroid belt, and the Jovian and Saturnine moons, occupying much of the available space. The countries and collectives of the Revolutionary Alliance, much behind in this endeavour, saw their survival as peoples and as a movement in an ending point, until a miracle happenned: the development of the first FTL system by the hands and mind of a 23-year old Anarchist physicist called Avasarela Kerathi, the Avasarela Engine.

Avasarela, in exchange for the designs and blueprints of the A.E., desired only to be taken on the Exodus - the Revolutionary Alliance effort of leaving the solar system of Sol. In a show of effort and coordination never saw since the times of WW2, the countries and collectives of the Revolutionary Alliance moved and poured resources to develop the Arks - immense ships that would house 250.000 people each, containing a full copy of the Library of the Congress and the necessary materials and equipment to build a full-fledged, autonomous colony.

Unfortunately, thanks for the lack of abundant materials, not many Arks could be built, leading to the most dramatic event in human history: the choice in who must go, and who must stay. In certain locations, the decision was made by direct democratic vote, on others, an A.I. system would decide this by lottery. In other locations, certain indiduals were simply forced to be put on the ships, thanks to their boundless compassion and the necessity of their skills for the new endeavour to come. While many efforts were done to guarantee that families, friends and lovers would not be separated, in the end, not everybody could be taken. For the ones left behind, there was only the choice of survival in a now hostile and scarcity-ridden world, or suicide, and many had made the latter choice.

The final travel from the orbit of Earth to the borders of the Sol system took eight months, and once in the appropriate jump point, the A.E. ofg all ships were activated, pointing them towards Proxima Centauri, the nearest solar system from Earth.

But something went wrong.

In the final days of conclusion of the Arks, the authoritarian regimes, now inhabiting their new homes spread throughout the solar system, had made a final act of spite: a launch of a powerful computer virus to scramble the calculation systems of the Arks. Thanks to the efforts of the I.T. collectives and hacker community, the attack had been not only halted, but also reverted, leading to a complete subversion of the life-support systems of the colonies of the ideological enemies of the Revolutionary Alliance, making them scramble and waste resources and time that was very well used by the R.A. to finish construction and launch the Arks.

Unfortunately, the virus was meant not only to halt the escape of the R.A. partisans, but also to change the coordinates to where the ships would be sent in case of failure of the first attack. In this, the enemies of the R.A. were successful.

The interesting thing was that, in place of sending the Arks everywhere, they were sent all to the same place: an uncharted solar system 3000 light-years away from Earth.

The new system showed promisse, for the sun of this system was immense: the star alone was of the size of the Sol system, meaning that the Goldilocks zone - the area surrounding a star that allow planets to support life - was vast, having hundreds of planets ready for colonization.

But two things surprised the newcoming humans:

- one was that some of the planets held intelligent life, with their idiosincrasies, cultures and traditions

- the other was that the planets of the system has ruins containing an ancient alphabet that the native cultures utilized to boost their military, industrial and economic power, that the natives affirm had not being built by them, but by an ancient starfaring civilization called "Precursors", who had disapeared dozens of thousands of years ago. This ancient alphabet - called Runes by the humans - had proprieties of bending and breaking the laws of physics, allowing feats of engineering and science only dreamt by the most feverish science-fiction writters.

You, as a player, are one of the Arks that now comes to settle this new frontier, while wiping the tears of the ones who you had to leave behind, you now carry on your breast the new promisse of a new humanity and a better future, free from the mistakes of the past, while at the same time, must deal with the politicking and (in many cases) infighting of the miriad alien species that inhabit the worlds of this place.

In a final vote, the humans decided to give their new home a name, and Avasarela Kerathi, the savior of the Revolutionary Alliance, gave the proposal of what the system should be called, taking inspiration of the ancient Nordic mythology for the name of the realm in Ygdrasil where humans lived apart from gods and giants.

This system would be called