Part 16: Session 8 Part 2*RECORDING BEGINS*
Greetings, humans. I am Emperor Iso the Wise, head of the government in exile of the Iconians. First, I must praise you for giving us the hyperdrive technology. No longer will we be trapped on one backwards planet, but instead travel out amongst the stars. Second, I must condemn you for also giving the hyperdrive technology to our most bitter enemies, the Yor. With space superiority on our side, we might already have destroyed those murderous machines! But no, you just had to hand out fusion power plants to EVERYONE.
I'm afraid that was mainly the actions of one rogue agent. Besides, the Yor seem to be really quite reasonable, stated goals aside.
Oh, they're just biding their time, trust me. That fellow there you've got surrounded by six guards? Just the start. Soon your planet will be crawling with the damn things, and then where will you be? Not on Earth, I'll tell you that much!
Emperor Iso, please calm down.
Emperor Iso, I understand that your species is the third evolved sapience in the galaxy, and the oldest surviving sophont at present day. Assuming your knowledge goes back that far, is there anything about this ancient age you wanted to describe for us?
Well, the first thing you should know is that we were the first evolved sapience in the galaxy, not the third.
The Yor mentioned that there were two species before you, though. We've found evidence of their existence on our moon. The "Arnor" and the "Dread Lords," correct?
That's right. The key word is "evolved." The Precursor species was created by the Mithrilar, those who formed our universe out of the nothingness. I'm not sure if the Dread Lords strain was intended or not, but their different perception of time caused them to go insane and try to destroy us and the Arnor. The Arnor and the Dread Lords destroyed each other (at least, we haven't heard from either one in millions of years), but that left us to our own devices regarding the Yor. You can see how well that's turned out.
You seriously believe the universe was created?
Well, naturally. We still have holo-records where the Arnor describe the machine that pumped them out before they were given the secret of self-propagation. They have no natural lifespan, you see, and they have perfect recall. We were in a hurry when we were leaving Iconia, but it's pretty amazing how small electronic libraries can get. Or did you think that Something can come from Nothing?
And where did the Mithrilar come from?
Sadly, they aren't around to be asked. The Arnor mentioned that they all died or disappeared in some sort of cataclysm, though they avoided being specific about it. Um, why are you-why is he doing that?
Ah, ya made our scientist cry. Best get goin' before ya break him completely (and so's I can thank you in private).
Arright, let's try and get this wrapped up 'afore Happy Hour ends. Morgan!
It was early in June that we finally hit the bottom of the well, so to speak. As I said I would, I pulled funding from every research and production project in order to get out of debt.
To my consternation, I also had to increase taxes in order to get a positive net income. We had yet to eliminate every enemy agent, or else I would have cut espionage spending as well.
And that's exactly what I did once they were all gone.
Here is our balance as of July first. I fully endorse Lal's idea of purchasing economic treaties as soon as possible; even just 10% of the Torian economy would go a great way towards boosting us out of this deficit spending. Minor species can be approached for this as well.
Prav, yer up!
Well, I should first mention that the Paulos had no new technology for us to obtain, although they did have some billions of credits to exchange with us.
The Iconian scout ship was discovered soon into the second quarter. We were able to purchase a very advanced beam weapon from them, but little else.
We later discovered an Altarian colony on Slepur I.
Clearly in our region of interest, as you can see.
Yes, which is why we purchased it from them. We also received the latest drive technology and Xeno Industrial Theory.
While I was out, I visited the other races for a technology exchange. The highlights were getting Kinetic Streams I from the Yor, Amplified Weaponry from the Drengin, and Titanium Armor from the Snathi.
I really don't know why everyone seems so scared of the Yor. Even the Korath Clan is managing to get them to pay out money.
After the economic crisis, I went out once again for more credits. While I was able to get Habitat Improvement from the Torians, I noticed that they had developed much mass driver technology which they chose to withhold from me, along with the industry-boosting Fusion Power Plants. On the other hand, the Paulos were perfectly willing to part with their Missile Defense research. Zakharov, if you would?
Of course. The Kinetic Stream is an alternative to the weaponized Laser, which we have yet to research. It, along with Chaff and the Titanium Armor, is listed in the ship section of your handout. Amplified Weaponry is a purely defensive weapon boost and is listed with the generic modules for ships. The Impulse Drive is twice as fast as an Ion Drive, but it's also a bit bigger at this point, so I have listed both. Xeno Industrial Theory upgrades our Traditional Factories to Xeno Factories, boosting output. We may now also designate a planet as a Manufacturing Capital. Habitat Improvement is the next step past Soil Enhancement; thanks to applying these techniques, Earth can now be considered a Class 12 planet.
We've also completed work on that Special Project I'm sure you're all aware of.
Basic Miniaturization has finished development as well. To make it easier on myself and others, I have changed the hull capacity numbers, rather than the component size. Unfortunately, that marked the end of the semester, so Advanced Diplomacy has yet to start the research cycle.
Most planets this semester were colonized in the first quarter. I have only two things to mention:
First, Semele I has been colonized by the Torians. I have no idea why they are so far out from their homeworld, but they do not belong here. I would demand that we purchase the planet from them immediately, but Senator Lal's begging prohibits us from speaking with them.
Only for a short time. Semele I is first on my list when we can get back in contact.
The second note is that we have colonized the toxic planet of Bullwinkle, which I have named the land of Nod.
Deidre, whadda ya got?
Nothing much. Construction continues as planned, and those traditional factories which haven't upgraded to the new Xeno standard are slated at the end of the queue.
I've been wondering for a while now. Why are all these buildings being called "Xeno" whatnots? They aren't being staffed by aliens. Frankly, I think it's insulting.
It's all about marketing. Aliens are a big thing with the masses these days, and anything stamped "Xeno" is sure to sell.
Well I wouldn't buy it.
Don't care! Yang, you got something to add?
Of course. Since the basic economy starbase is useless without modules, I went ahead and commissioned a second constructor to add a factory. More can yet be added.
In addition, I went ahead and set an influence starbase near our assets in the Agena system. A second constructor is on its way, and it will require a 500 bc additional cost in order to start…influencing our neighbors.
Santiago, how's our defense coming?
Several more Defenders have been built recently. In addition, thanks to the Kinetic Streams technology, I was able to upgrade the design to what you see here. After Basic Miniaturization increased capacity, I upgraded it again to a 3 beam ship with no defenses. We can upgrade our current Defender fleet to the new standard, but it will cost some money to do so.
Right, anyone else? Then I'll go.
Well, we found where the Drengin live, and it happens to be all the way down-right from us, just a bit farther down than the Yor. Great neighbors, right?
We also got word from Cupid that an Altarian Colony Ship is headed our way, presumably fer Mars. Now considerin' how that place is gonna be overrun by us humans immediately after it's colonized, I'd wager it won't take more than a couple weeks ta trade hands on its own. So here's a question fer all of ya: do we wait fer the inevitable, or buy it up first? I'd wager the Altarians won't care much either way.
There is one thing I feel I must add: currently, the thing that impacts our relationship with the other governments the most is our relative military strengths. I wish for us to change this. If we were to provide our research and economy treaties to someone, that would improve our relationship.
And don't forget trade. If someone owes you money, you usually want him alive. I've commissioned a freighter to be built on one of our outlying planets, but our core would produce better revenue. All those empty trade lanes are just wasted profit at the moment.
Right, that's it. See all y'all later.
One starport will be dedicated to building four colony ships.
Any freighters built shall prioritize Altarian planets.
Advanced Diplomacy shall be researched next.
Energy credits and technologies are authorized for any and all foreign technology trades; priority is given to military technologies so purchased. Humanity is prohibited from selling or trading away colonization technologies.
The starting order for all colonial buildings will be: build a factory, a market center, a factory, a market center, one research center, one starport, and one farm (once possible, only up to 13b) in that order, using special tiles when appropriate.