The Fringe Worlds
“Do fine by your neighbors and reward kindness with kindness. Do not tolerate those who would pose a danger to you or others and remove them from your group as soon as possible (without resorting to violence when not necessary of course.) Do not trust those that you do not know until they have proven themselves. Do not be afraid to pack up and leave if things get to grim. You can always try again.
But, above all, do not think that your personal beliefs matter much in the Fringe. In here, only those who work together, thrive together, no matter where they came from and what they believe in.”
Colonists Survival Guide, Author unknown, unofficial circulation.
Colonization of unknown planets typically takes place in several stages and is strictly controlled by the faction that initiates the colonization initiative. Faction based colonies typically follow the standardized “Richards Process”, established before the GHA/UEN split and modified since then, but still adhering to similar principles. The process is as follows:
- Subspace probes are sent to an uncharted system with planets that are believed to be suitable for colonization or exploitation for resources. Probing moves through several phases, starting from general geological and atmospheric surveys to detailed geographic surveys of possible “first in” colony sites.
- First in colony process begins. First colonies are usually kept small and built from prefabricated structures delivered by colony ships. Viability of further expansion is determined on-site.
- Expansion begins. Prefabricated factories are assembled on the colony by specialized crews which in turn prepare structures that provide power, food, water and other needs for future colonization. If it has not been established already, a basic sub space comm satellite is put into orbit of the colony.
- Primary Colonization begins. Typically at this point a sub-space communication satellite is expanded to a subspace comm station that can moor and transport material from bigger freighter. The Colony is now officially marked and the system is claimed for its governing faction.
Apart from the official colonization attempts, wild colonization also often takes place, typically ran by private interests or just groups of independent colonists wishing the relative freedom from either of the major factions. These colonies are typically way more dangerous and typically lack even basic subspace colonization.
Mining colonies follow a similar process in both official and unofficial facets, but the fourth step typically never takes place and miners/technicians of a mining colony are rotated out depending on their contract (typically 3-6 month rotations are utilized)
Pirates and Outlaws are also known to maintain wild colonies and rudimentary space stations. Pirate activity is also the highest in the Fringe, especially in systems that are not officially colonized by either of the major factions. Slave raids are not uncommon and sometimes whole colonies can disappear during particularly violent pirate attacks.
Notes on Fringe characters:
Fringe born or settled characters are typical way more apt at survival and improvisation when it comes to maintaining technology. Specialized professions are typically preferred for initial colonist waves and practicality is favored over anything else in most unofficial colonies. Criminal backgrounds are relatively common among inhabitants of unofficial colonies.