Deep Space

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Overview

Charted and uninhabited space in the Orion Spur is referred to as Deep Space, and it is here where the most wonderful oddities known reside. Contrary to uncharted deadspace, the dangers and obstacles are mostly logged and pose little hazard to civilian vessels exploring known territories. As one begins to enter this Deep Space, or anomalous areas such as the Romanovich Cloud, things get quite strange - from the mysterious, randomly appearing biohazards known as “blobs” to the elegant and delicious space carp, anything is possible. These are a few recurring anomalies seen in Deep Space, and anomalous territories.

Blobs

The level-seven biohazards known as “Blobs” are mysterious and highly dangerous organic growths which appear at random in anomalous areas across Deep Space. Somehow growing sporatically from a tiny core into a ship-splitting, bulging mass, the Blobs are a common threat that trained engineering personnel on NanoTrasen facilities deal with routinely. Though common, they often threaten the stability of facilities they appear upon, forcing their crews to diverge on and cut out the core as soon as possible before irreparable damage occurs. When the core is eliminated, the blob’s entire mass simply falls apart and disintegrates into nothingness, leaving nothing but rubble in its wake. This makes study of them nigh impossible, with only what is apparent available. Without knowing more, NanoTrasen can only hope something to contain a Blob can be created.

Space Carp

The Stellar Cyprinidae Carpio is the scientific name given to the space-faring creature known as the Space Carp. These are carnivorous vacuum-based fish whose origins can not be traced to known space that are closely tied to unknown means of warp travel, permitting migrations over extreme distances and appearances in seemingly random locations. Generally attracted to whatever generates large radio interference or light in the void and dissuaded from large gravity wells, they are most commonly found in Deep Space or areas with excessive bluespace activity. The common Space Carp typically has no definitive lifespan, and feeds primarily on valuable metals and any organic matter when able. Space Carp are known to many as a destructive, invasive species due to their large gatherings in the Romanovich Cloud and billions of credits of damage to property there. The Space Carp itself is quite hostile when encountering any form of organic matter, showing little care for obstacles and frequently smashing windows to get to light and anything else they detect with their bulbous six eyes.

When processed, Space Carp are edible to Humans and the like, but their raw flesh can only be safely eaten by Unathi under most circumstances. These fish have an upper limit to size when encountered, but are believed to grow as long as they are alive. Given that their lifespan is functionally indefinite, the largest Space Carp could be gargantuan - but the biggest ever recorded was a passive, reclusive and solemn entity documented in the Frontier. Referred to as a “space whale,” it wasn’t the only one to reach such a size class at nearly twenty-two meters long. Other common (but larger) sizes of carp include “space sharks” that are equally hostile, just… bigger.

Space Carp possess an inherent biochemical substance known as “Carpotoxin,” that is used in a wide variety of high-end medications such as Rezadone. It’s unknown exactly how the common Space Carp comes to reproduce, but large carp nests have been located in known space where migrations centralize.

Hivebots

SDARs (Self-Replicating Destructive Automated Robotics), better known as Hivebots are a self replicating group of simple robots with a central “hive” intelligence. Appearing from a bluespace rift in the Romanovich Cloud in 2433, they have since settled in the core worlds as a very minor looming hazard. While the specifics of their past are yet unknown, carbon dating draws their creation as some two million years prior to modern time. As a force, they are negligible, attacking nearby vessels indiscriminately with low-powered and primitive weaponry. Most civilian vessels are able to dispatch of Hivebot parties with inbuilt point defense systems, causing them to be little more than a nuisance wherever they are found. They possess mismatching technology - some advanced teleportation technology utilizing bluespace beacons for precise unhindered force projection, yet at the same time making use of the cheapest available materials to piece themselves together. Encountered to this day are manufacturing facilities dotting known space, some derelict and others dispensing rudimentary Hivebots by the thousands daily. Study into Hivebots has proven worthwhile, fielding many discoveries related to bluespace teleportation.

The term “Hivebots” was earned as a result of their hivemind intelligence, with central “beacons” controlling vast swaths of them in unison. The actual capabilities of these beacons are demonstrated by a typical Hivebot - as the numbers of Hivebots grow, the intellectual capacity of these beacons do as well. While requiring extreme numbers to manifest any basic comprehension beyond simplistic pathfinding and targeting, they nonetheless have demonstrated obvious compound intelligence in their hivemind nature. How far this can go exactly is unknown, as no known Hivebot collectives have grown in sizes beyond the tens of thousands.

Diona

Majestic and chaotic, the untamed Diona, or Stellar Dionaea Primo, fly through space with no knowledge of civilization or culture - only the desire to feed and grow. Ranging from a single small, cat-sized nymph to the size of a station, the roaming tendrils fly like blobs of jellyfish searching for radiation or nutrients. There aren't too many documented untamed Diona in space anymore due to over-hunting and the fact that many have been integrated into society to become intelligent, however, some are tagged and studied by researchers aiming to understand Diona's natural instincts better. They swim through space, only reacting when something gets close enough for them to detect the radiation of engines or the biomass of organisms. These "Wild Ones" are not legally allowed to be killed in Sol Alliance and Jargon Federation space unless they pose significant threat - but Frontier laws vary depending on system. Poachers will hunt these "Wild Ones" for 'ambergris', a solid amber-like substance that builds up in the center of larger Diona gestalts that is used as a luxury topping and spice when shaved onto meals.

There are intelligent Diona out there, with strange ideals - some intelligent and fervent. Stories of a cluster becoming organized across multiple systems with this new era of technology, spreading an ideology of an ancient All-Being known as the Divine Eternal. Although intelligent, these diona are not seen as a civilization and instead more as nomads.