Tuesday, 7 April 2015

#Override: The World of Honos

Greetings friends and welcome to another feature post for First Law: Override!

Today I'd like to introduce you to the different regions and locations featured on Honos and how when put together they allow for almost any existing wargame board to be used to play Override.

The Badlands
Designation: Region
Location: Central Equatorial Band

The Badlands is a landmass strip that covers the equatorial band of Honos.

As a region the Badlands is still in the process of being teraformed and over time it is hoped that the current dustbowl will be replaced with a vibrant green paradise.

Most of the Badlands is dead land where nothing grows and is therefore cheap and largely undesirable to the Accord; however the Honos Mining Corporation (HMC) have shown the occasional interest in mining sites. Due to it's lack of financial interest, it is generally considered the property of the Reavers who protect what they view as their home severely and violently.

Within the Badlands are countless shanty towns comprised of settlers unable to live further north however it is the Eastern and Western points of the Badlands which attract the most attention due to the Block and Freeport cities.

Those who live in the southern Badlands live a life of constant fear. They occupy space near the 'soon to be terraformed' Dead Zone making it both valuable but also dangerous.

The Block
Designation: City
Region: East Badlands

The Block is located within the Badlands but due to it's size in both height and diameter you would be forgiven in not realising this.

Originally comprised of seven mega towers used to house the poor and destitute, these were quickly expanded on via custom buildings and a complex series of walkways and supports that turned the separate mega structure into a single massive hive-network.

The lower levels of the Block are attacked with continued corrosion from polluted precipitation and noxious fumes making them inhospitable to all but the Kratel who's unique biology allow them to tolerate the hazardous environment in ways not possible to Humans or the Hydan.

The higher you travel in the Block the cleaner the environments become as does the amount of natural light increase. Because of this the top three hundred levels are exclusively reserved for the wealthiest of Honos' inhabitants while the lower levels are squabbled over by the rest of the population.

The Block is a focal point for both democracy and aggression between the Accord and the Reavers due to it's neutrality. Because of it's original undesirability, the Block was declared as a haven for all and therefore the property of none. As such it is the central operations base for both the Red Claw and the Wraiths who both use it's neutrality to instigate and follow through with operations deemed illegal within their own respective cities.

Designation: City
Region: West Badlands

On the opposite side of the Badlands strip lies Freeport.

Originally designated as Honos' First Free City it's founders, the Raiders have turned it into a den of vice where anyone's desires for either pleasure or pain can be fulfilled.

Freeport despite it's humble beginnings boasts some of the greatest entertainment sites, attracting the wealthy from across the Outer Fringe to spend their hard earned cash on anything from Pleasure Palaces to the Freeport Arena where contestants daily battle it out to the (apparent) death.

Despite it's claims as a free city, registered members of the Accord are not welcome to walk freely within it's walls and are restricted to tourist ghettos making them unfortunately easy targets for attacks from less sympathetic members of the Reavers.

The Midlands
Designation: Region
Location: Mid-Northern Landmass

Located above the Badlands lies the smallest region on Honos called the Midlands.

Largely unpopulated it is stricken with savage storms at night and vibrant blue skies by day.

The land is comprised of steep mountainous ranges separated by flat plateaus of which plans are already in place by the Accord to begin construction of new housing for the ever increasing population faced in the Accord capital of New Brasilia.

Nova Casa
Designation: Region
Location: Northern Hospitable Landmass

Nova Casa, the first location on Honos to complete it's terraformation and as such the first claimed by the Accord as their base of operations.

Meaning New Home, Nova Casa is a lush jungle with the freshest of air and cleanest naturally occurring water. To the average Human it is the closest this side of Earth to paradise.

New Brasilia
Designation: City
Region: Central Nova Casa

New Brasilia is the political home of the Accord on Honos and populated almost exclusively by the United Earth Force (UEF) and it's citizens.

It's gleaming city spires stand in stark contrast to the shanty towns of the Badlands or the rapidly decaying Block.

Those citizens of New Brasilia are given the luxury of a new life often held separate from the rest of Honos. It is within the city's armed walls it's citizens experience the luxuries of advanced healthcare and a top class scholarly program.

It was shortly after the city was established that their Homeless problem was eliminated by the creation of a living tax meaning only those who's income and savings allowed them to pay were provided with security passes allowing access past the automated sentry guns that lined the city walls. Those who could not afford the tax were instead sent to the area now known as the Block. This heavy handed approach towards the disenfranchised has been a constant point of conflict between the UEF and Raiders.

Frozen North
Designation: Region
Location: Northern Inhospitable Landmass

North of Nova Casa is a region known colloquially as The Frozen North. It's day time summer temperature peaks at -5 degrees Celsius, while it's night time winter drops to -120 degrees.

Because of it's extreme temperatures the Frozen North is largely uninhabited except for a handful of HMC sites who hold residence due to valuable minerals located beneath the ice and the lack of other living organisms within reasonable distance allowing for the corporation to test some of their more unorthodox experiments and equipment without risk to civilian populations.

Even before the terraformation of Honos began the Frozen North existed and as time has passed it's temperature has risen by a solid 5 degrees. It is hoped that in time this can be increased further allowing for general colonisation and greater resource collection by HMC and it's competitors.

As the temperature of the Frozen North behind to rise however, there are fears that the region may become unstable if not hazardous due to a steady increase in seismic activity that HMC have tracked which correlates directly with the increase in temperature of the region. The actual cause of this activity is yet to be made known and some speculate it may be fabricated by HMC themselves to discourage others from exploiting the vast riches of mineral wealth located within the region.

The Dead Zone
Designation: Region
Location: Southern Inhospitable Landmass

Located at the southern most point of Honos lies the Dead Zone. This region is most similar to what the entire of Honos once appeared prior to terraformation. It's surface is covered in sharp rocks and alien structures that resemble mummified trees or perhaps the remains of gigantic creatures.

The Dead Zone's background radiation is constantly high meaning those without anti-rad suits are unable to spend more than a few hours in the region without becoming unwell however it's real threat lies deep below the surface.

When Humanity first arrived on Honos, it was commonly believed to be uninhabited. Scans revealed no signs of life, oxygen or water. The planet was; as far as Humanity was concerned, a dead world and ripe for terraformation.

The reality however was that Honos was inhabited by a race of subterranean, animal like, six limbed creatures.

The current theory is that these creatures are able to survive for an extraordinarily long amount of time due to their abilities to put their bodies into a deep hibernation acting almost like an organic form of stasis, allowing them to awaken when a new food becomes available, use that time to breed before going back into hibernation.

There are others who while agreeing with this theory take it a step further. That these were created by one of the races in the Outer Fringe as a weapon, and acting like a plague of locusts they stripped Honos of all it's resources before going dormant; not so they could await their next meal but so they could wait for their next convenient transportation off world.

The Kratel in particular have a name for these creatures; Pha'Nur or Eternal Hunger. They claim their homeworld of Krata Prime was once a lush jungle a kin to Nova Casa but it was the Pha'Nur which turned their world into the wasteland it currently is where the only way to survive is to be the strongest and toughest.

Regardless of origins, the Pha'Nur are a threat that many on Hobos believe must not be ignored, but due to the current lack of value within the Dead Zone the organisations north of the equatorial belt have little vested interest in the region beyond being the first to claim it once it's own terraformation is complete.


An so ends a brief overview of the different regions of Honos.

As you can see, almost all terrain is accounted for, and with hope you have seen some hints that have been dropped regarding some new game modes that are currently being planned for the future.

I hope to be back tomorrow with not only a new post but a brand new build (0.1.5) of First Law:Override!

Until then; stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

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