|Atmosphere||Corrosive and Invasive|
|Planet Tag 1||Cultural Power|
|Planet Tag 2||Mandate Base|
The Méiguī Mandate - “Nipping rogue AI in the bud since 2346”
Formerly given the designation Planet AO by explorers.
The planet of Rosebud was subject to unintended terraforming as a result of population growth and industrialization in the last 500 years. Average temperatures on the planet were once much lower, but mining accidents and factory emissions created a thick atmospheric blanket that insulated heat from the local star. Most of Rosebud's flora and fauna died off with only a handful of hardy fungi and mosses serving as reminders of what was lost.
Extinct species are kept in zoos and enclosed nature parks. Genomic sequencing may provide means to reintroduce the lost plants and creatures if locals can wrangle the atmosphere back to its former state.
The Méiguī Mandate
Kuafu system colonists founded the Méiguī Mandate 625 years ago as a response to advancements in the field of artificial intelligence. A mirror of an ancient pre-beacon institution, the mandate espoused a doctrine of strict regulation and control of automation and machine learning. To these researchers and philosophers, the first True AI created by humans 623 years ago posed an imminent threat to sovereignty to humanity and all sapient creatures.
A near religious fervor surrounded the Mandate as it spread its influence across the sector. In time, it developed into a significant power as it brokered alliances and confederations with similar endeavors. Various governments and institutions in Beacon Space adopted the regulatory protocols and hard-blocks to limit the growth and power of artificial intelligences based on Mandate advocacy.
The Mandate was also a cultural hegemon. Through the Mandate, Rosebud was made famous sector-wide for its elaborate plays, prolific movie industry, and leagues of tastemakers. Often the speed of fashion and customs surpassed the ability for it to spread; by the time one picked up the newest trends in the sector core it was already passé back in Rosebud. Part of the Mandate’s mission was incorporated into the media that the planet exported. Stories about the dangers of AI and the tenants of the Mandate were fully immersed and interwoven into the messaging.
Critics of the Meigui Mandate often cited the institutional humanocentrism of the mandate’s advocacy. Even if the mandate was nominally incluse, the needs and perspectives of other sapients tended to be an afterthought. Both in the physical infrastructure in Mandate space and the types of stories in Rosebud’s media, a bias towards humans persisted.
The devastation of interstellar travel during the Glitch was felt especially harshly on the Kuafu system. Rosebud relied significantly on open trade policies and the industrial capacity of other worlds. Local demand drove investments and infrastructure expanded rapidly to support the population. In a few decades, the industrial capacity of the world finally met the demand of the populous world but secondary effects would spell doom. Unchecked resource extraction and industrial emissions affected the local environment. Atmospheric degradation and planetary warming eliminated much of the zoological diversity and plunged the world into a dark age.
Economic and social recovery over the ensuing centuries was slow but steady. Having learned from their mistakes, Mandate officials regulated the industrial pollution and controlled the recovery efforts to rebuild into a resilient powerhouse.
The Tahora Whai Explorers were initially cautious with their interactions with the planet Rosebud, however, the developed society appeared to lack any combat vessels to contest the Whai’s surveillance of the Kuafu system. Their only presence found beyond the toxic atmosphere were the shuttles to the numerous moons and a web of transmission satellites.
It was on one of these moons, Polyantha, that the Whai visited and asked to meet with local magnates. The explorer’s fleets, bristling with guns, were an obvious threat to the locals as their arms industry had stopped producing offensive weapons after the Glitch. The Whai assured the officials that they were not the vanguard of an invasion but sought to offer protection from the dangers of space and to share technologies for the benefit of all.
Intrigued, the Méiguī Mandate officials remained apprehensive. After all, these foreigners were acting most odd, and had with them a potentially unrestricted computer intelligence, uncertified by Mandate technicians. Time was dedicated for both sides to get to know each other and assuage any concerns. A disused mining facility on Floribunda was selected as a neutral site for this cultural exchange. Several months of discussion and interaction on Floribunda revealed overlapping interests and would bring about understanding:
Ever paranoid regarding the security and restrictions imposed on computer intelligences, data engineers from the Meigui Mandate found the Whai’s use of shipborne VIs to facilitate the Vak technology to fall within the ancient codes, if on the more liberal side. Assured that the practices of the fleet was fairly universal among the Whai, the Mandate opened the attitude to the cyborgs. The Méiguī Mandate planned to establish a partnership with the Whai to evangelize the Mandate’s old regulations in order to protect the sector from the tyranny of the machine.
Kinship between the two powers was also reached through the medium of song. The Whai, ever the storytellers and balladeers, were overwhelmed and impressed by the vast range of music being produced on Rosebud. A diversity of styles and themes, thought beyond the scope of such an isolated and insular world, shocked the Whai. But so too were the locals in awe; at quiet moments at the end of the day or whenever the whaler’s worked as a crew, they would break out in song with not one offbeat note or out of key tune. The Vak enabled song intrigued and fascinated them. Mandate officials brought popular artists and producers to meet with and learn from the Whai. It was conceived that a new medium for cultural expression and connection could be found with the Vak. Artists relished the opportunity to tell their stories and connect more deeply with audiences.
The Whai also shared the story of their world, the tragedy of the Discordant’s last acts, and also the hope they had for planetary revival. Connection to the wider sector through the Shipping Unions and the marvels proven by the TTGI could likewise provide a path to revitalization for Rosebud.
The Floribunda Summit, also known as the Rosebud Hongi, was a resounding success for all parties. Following a planet-wide referendum, the Megui Mandate formally welcomed the Tahora Whai to the world and joined the Kikorangi o te Tahora Whai. Introduction of Whai cybernetics and the Vak on Rosebud remains an ongoing process and is heavily limited by the throughput of the specialized craftspersons. Local artists and media personalities were some of the first to join the Erinaa and have embraced the experience. The universality of media broadcast and social connections that produce a type of sensory overload on the planet is believed to have eased adoption of the Vak and resulted in fewer rejections and failures to the shock of the Erinaa. However a handful of pop stars and celebrities, humbled by the experiences of the Erinaa, have withdrawn from public life.
A pale rocky moon with a permanent station. It is often used as a tourist destination for locals that are able to escape the surface. Large recreation centers, shopping malls, and sports complexes dedicated to low-gravity games are commonplace.
Sung House is a labyrinthine moon mansion built by Wen Sung, an eccentric and wealthy producer from Rosebud. The construction of the estate took on many stages, each building upon the last to create a complex web of rooms, hallways, and secret passageways. In their later years, Wen Sung grew more and more unstable until former friends and outside investors took the reins of the project. The Sung House has been refitted to serve as a unique all-inclusive resort destination. Spas, racket courts, a five-star restaurant, topiary garden, private shuttle services, and a museum of holo-vid memorabilia, the house has something for everyone to enjoy. Sung still lives in the house and can sometimes be seen shuffling from room to room regaling guests about celebrity anecdotes, insights into the entertainment business, and odd murmurings about demonic entities.
The large icy moon. While orbiting higher than Polyantha, Floribunda appears roughly similar in size to its sister moon on the planet’s surface. A limited mining venture was established on Floribunda, but the mission was plagued by setbacks and disasters. Local idioms often evoke this moon when describing doomed projects or fool’s errands.
A sandy-brown rock that resembles a raw hazelnut. It orbits at the outer limits of the planet’s gravitational pull.
SWN World Tags
The world is a considerable cultural power in the sector, producing music, art, philosophy, or some similar intangible that their neighbors find irresistibly attractive. Other worlds might have a profound degree of cultural cachet as the inheritor of some venerable artistic tradition.
- Murderously eccentric artist
- Crazed fan
- Failed artist with an obsessive grudge
- Critic with a crusade to enact
- Struggling young artist
- Pupil of the artistic tradition
- Scholar of the art
- Offworlder hating the source of corrupting alien ways
- The art is slowly lethal to its masters
- The art is mentally or physically addictive
- The art is a fragment of ancient technical or military science
- The instrument of a legendary master
- The only copy of a dead master’s opus
- Proof of intellectual property ownership
- Recording or performance studio
- Public festival choked with tourists
- Monument to a dead master of the art
The Terran Mandate retained its control over this world for much longer than usual, and the world may still consider itself a true inheritor of Mandate legitimacy. Most of these worlds have or had superior technology, but they may still labor under the burden of ancient restrictive tech or monitoring systems designed to prevent them from rebelling.
- Deranged Mandate monitoring AI
- Aspiring sector ruler
- Demagogue preaching local superiority over “traitorous rebel worlds”
- Idealistic do-gooder local
- Missionary for advanced Mandate tech
- Outsider seeking lost data from Mandate records
- The monitoring system forces the locals to behave in aggressive ways toward “rebel” worlds
- The monitoring system severely hinders offworld use of their tech
- The original colonists are all dead and have been replaced by outsiders who don’t understand all the details
- Ultra-advanced pretech
- Mandate military gear
- Databank containing precious tech schematics
- Faded Mandate offices still in use
- Vault containing ancient pretech
- Carefully-maintained monument to Mandate glory
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