Hopebringer Jem's Author Note and Review Thread

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Moonlight Sonata

Author Notes: To start off, as warned in the first chapter, this is the novelization of a forum-based role-playing game I was in. For the moderator's sake- I will mention that they gave permission for the project from the get-go. Now that being said, some of it is in their original formatting. So, I do apologize for that but they had it best. XD

I will post up world notes for the story as it progresses but here is the basic introduction.


For those of you who missed the post I made on the RPG discussions thread, here's the background information again. For those who have read it already, skip ahead, I've clarified some stuff towards the end.

The game is set in the distant future; the exhaustion of the Earth’s remaining natural resources and the ravages of WWIII have made the planet mostly uninhabitable. In order to survive, humanity had to look to the stars for their new home. Now, the remaining human population lives in huge, self-contained environments hanging in orbit around the Earth, and in various settlements on some of the nearby planets. While most population centers are focused in the Colonies, other locations, such as the trade city of Lunaris (built on the sun-lit side of the Moon) and the mining colony of Avatrax on Mars have grown exponentially since the massive Departure, and now support small residential sections as well.

While the move to the stars was supported by a renewed sense hope for a peaceful future, it didn’t take long for war to rear its face once more. With resources now that much more vital and hard to come by, conflict quickly broke out over water reserves, plantation colonies, and the like. A bold move was made by several of the colonies to combat these rogue insurgencies: pooling their collective resources and manpower, they united themselves under the banner of the Neo Humanity Federation, and established a parliamentary government to oversee order within their member colonies. The NHF Defense Force was subsequently formed to provide military protection to its citizenry and their interests. Through the use of swift preemptive (some would say cruel) assaults on rogue colonial factions, the NHF quickly established an iron-clad hold over all other human colonies; its ideals, however, were those of equality and peace, and soon after the conflict was quelled the NHF offered probationary membership to any colonies interested. In a matter of years, over ninety percent of human space colonies were under the jurisdiction of the NHF, and the protection of its growing Defense Force.

The ease with which the NHF reestablished control among the colonies can be partly attributed to the determination of its constituents, but most of the credit lies with the flagship battle unit of the NHF Defense Force, the Armoroid Unit. Developed from preliminary space exploration prototype frames, the first Mechanoid Units were clumsy and ill-equipped to battle the standard space fighter craft employed at the time. It was the innovation of the AI synchronization system, a method of pilot-machine interaction wherein the Armoroid Unit receives its primary instructions from a human pilot, while all subsystem and “unconscious” processes are simultaneously managed by a preprogrammed Artificial Intelligence Core, that allowed the second generation Mechanoids to outstrip their rivals and rise up as the premier units for zero-G combat.

Soon after the assimilation of the majority of space colonies, the NHF Defense Force was renamed with the somewhat flashy title of Aegis ARM (Assault-Response Mechanoids). Its duties were expanded past mere military operations to include policing the interiors of the constituent colonies, and defending the trade and resource lines throughout the new republic.

That was years ago. Over time, relative peace and prosperity, as well as the retirement of the old guard, has resulted in an Aegis ARM force that is much less given to the ideals of its progenitors. Now there is talk of conflict within the ranks, of corruption and overuse of authority. Many hear the rumors that certain faction of Aegis ARM are planning a forceful coup de tat to wrest control of the NHF from Parliament, and tremble at the thought of a new war.

The growing number of faction-less vagrants amidst the less-inhabited regions of NHF Space has only added to the tension. These self-styled Space Pirates, some very individualistic while others composed of vast, organized pirate “families”, have begun raiding the supply lines and trade routes with increasing fervor and audacity. Their goals are unknown, though many of the more infamous pirates can be traced back to the surviving members of the Rogue Colonies during the rise of the NHF. Aegis ARM has declared a policy of Zero Tolerance for anyone engaged in or contributing to any kind of pirate activity, and ARM patrols have been seen with increasing frequency along the trade routes.

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--new stuff---

A huge part of this world are the various trade agreements between each of the colonies, as well as the mining facilities on the various moons and planets. The following planets have a city/mining colony established somewhere on their surface:

Mars - a section of the planet's equator has been tapped for its rich resources of intense grade iron ore. With the potential for nearly five times the carbon content of earth ore, the raw iron found beneath the Martian soil is refined to produce the powerful alloys used to construct the colonies, and some of the components of armoroid battle frames.

Venus - a new element, Xerium, discovered in the atmosphere of Venus has been found to possess unusual potential in the fields of biomechanics and bioengineering, bonding with and modifying subject DNA in rather unpredictable ways. Consequently, Xerium studies are closely monitored, and civilian use of the material is strictly disallowed. This has not stopped a few remote locations from offering Xerium treatment for unorthodox body enhancement and treatment operations. Very little information exists outside of the studies done by Aegis, but most people who undergo Xerium treatments report prolonged, and often fatal, side effects, as well as disastrous operation outcomes. Buyer beware.

Jupiter - gases from the Jovian atmosphere are routinely used to power colony fusion reactors, as well as refined into the more concentrated energy cells used by most Armoroids. Jupiter's moons serve as the base of operations for the Jovian Atmosphere Recovery stations, which provide the supply to the rest of the colonies. Opulent and notorious for their flamboyant use of cash, the ranking members of the Recovery represent some of the richest civilians in the galaxy.

Earth - just recently recovering from massive pollution and the aftermath of years of warfare, the Earth surface is mostly inhospitable; 70% of all surface dwelling species were wiped out, and the human population has dwindled to a mere 5 million. Most of these people consist of scientists from Aegis, studying the effects of the destruction and the ongoing restoration of the planet, but a much higher percentage are composed of thieves and mercenaries, who use the planet's ruined countenance to shield them from the ever-vigilant eyes of Aegis ARM.

Moon - Lunaris is the main center of trade in this new order, and boasts some of the most decadent resort facilities outside of Jupiter Orbit. If you want something, Lunaris is a good place to start looking for it...but keep in mind, though you may find what you're looking for, the price might be a tad higher than you expect. The moon also has one of the largest Aegis ARM battle stations on the dark-side of the planetoid; well out of view of the various dignitatires and tourists that visit Lunaris.


Now we get to the best part. The Armoroids are the new wave of warfare, and no respectable fighting force would be without its own complement of mechanized fighting units. While their shape is most routinely humanoid, some manufacturing companies have begun including models designed with more animal-like body structures, and some that could even be considered hybrids of the two.

The standard Armoroid stands a little over 20 meters tall, and weighs between 5 - 9 tons, depending on weapon load. The internal frame is designed like a human skeleton, with the armor plating added on top of it to protect the various internal components, and the pilot. Cockpit location ranges from model to model, but the most common location is the chest. Early Armoroid models utilized a standard seated cockpit model, but some of the more recent units have begun incorporating a spherical, panoramic cockpit with motion sensing equipment, dubbed a Shadow Emulator. The SE allows the pilot to control the armoroid through a combination of body movement and switches on the hand manipulators. Not all armoroirds are capable of supporting a Shadow Emulator system, and hardly any of the animal armoroid do. They are mostly limited to close combat/melee machines, which benefit greatly from the intuitive battle control systems.

Armoroid power plants are commonly compact fusion reactors, with a functioning time of five to six hours before refueling is required. Additional fuel tanks can be installed for distant combat scenarios.

A standard production-line Armoroid will have at its disposal a laser rifle, close range spread missiles, and a plasma sword for melee combat. Most production level armoroids are designed with modular components, making customization a simple affair. Aegis ARM closely monitors Armoroid construction however, so any enterprising individuals seeking to own their own Armoroid may have to resort to less legal methods to acquire their machine.

The colonies are rife with underground Armoroid weapon-design firms, who manage to routinely avoid capture by Aegis ARM; it's rumored that the most successful of these groups have connections with the upper echelons of the Aegis command structure, and pay a high sum to continue their operations unhindered.

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Though the full-time members of these groups can be somewhat accurately estimated especially when taking into certain demographics certain groups that are targeted as members, their full numbers can only be guessed with a give or take a few thousand once you include part-time members into their ranks, who then may be part of more than one insurgent faction or not a formal member to any.

It should also be noted that these groups are not entirely isolated from one another (though some may oppose one another, a few have even been known to openly fight or even expose one another the NHF). There have been known in some instances to have shared information, resources, and fighters as well as commence joint operations with one another. Though their biggest enemy tends to be the NHF and it branches, this has not stopped them from targeted their provisional governments and particular organizations as well; especially those that once sided with or aided them then turned around and handed them over to the NHF.

Amnesty Interstellar: Formerly Amnesty International then Amnesty Interplanetary but still serving the same purpose ever since its creation. Though subtly ambivalent towards the NHF their attitudes towards them have become more overt in recent years with the passing of the “Old Guard” and the often strongarm tactics and rights violating methods of the current guard. (Note: Don't know why I really put them here other than I couldn't get their organization out of my head.)

Human Liberation Front, HLF or HaLF (the media dubbed and calls them the latter): The predominant and most widely known of all anti-NHF organizations that boasts members from all parts of life, from all corners of the human sphere, with activists ranging from armed and violent to civil disobedient, and with members old enough to remember pre-NHF rule. Widely known to be on amongst the top of the NHF’s hit list (though their activities sometimes go unopposed) they are also considered to be the most powerful of anti-NHF factions due to their numbers and resources, often using both to aid other organizations. Debate often ranges as to where, or who, they get much of their resources from as well as to why the NHF supposedly has a rather difficult time policing—if not stopping them.

Private Militaries & Mercenaries: Rarely used by the NHF, though not unheard of, they are often hired by corporations and organizations (or are extensions of certian organizations) since their dealings often/may run counter to or are illegal to NHF policies. The “hired help” tends to allow organizations to carry out their goals while not facing consequences from the NHF--disavowing in knowledge or connections. At least in theory it works, not alway in implementation.

Jovian Organization of Victorious Citizens/Jovian Citizens, JOVC/JC: A business owned faction nearly destroyed due to their uncoordinated command structure and planning. They are mainly run by a collection of businessmen/women who are considered nothing more than arm-chair-generals who often run counter to their own hired military commanders that has created the majority of discord within their faction. Today their faction is nearly wiped out—due in no small part to the number of NHF and opponent corporate moles and double agents that infested their ranks. What left of their numbers have currently been attempting to break away from their corporate ties in order to become independent and less controlled.

Armed Rebellion (or Rebels, interchangeable) of Martian States, ARMS: Formerly composed of a collection of independent cells consisting mainly of soldiers from defeated, disbanded and destroyed Martian militaries & militias as well as ousted and exiled scientist and bureaucrats that refused to work of the NHF controlled Martian government. As these members finally coalesced into one group, though still maintaining some form of independent cell structure, and allowed new members they became the backbone of the entire faction. Naming themselves ARMS (sometimes Mars' ARMS or Martian ARMS as well) mainly to mock the NHF’s Aegis ARM. They are considered top dog among Martian insurgent factions, respected and even feared by the other factions—reportedly going as to wipe or take over a few for whatever reasons—and have been reported to lend support and aid to other insurgents at times. They have been known to have no qualms about attacking Aegis ARM soldiers within civilian populations; there have been scattered reports about members of ARMS posing as bartenders and cooks to gather information with a few slowly poisoning Aegis ARM servicemen in the process. Much of the NHF’s anti-insurgency resources are often directed solely at putting an end to the ARMS.

Citizens for a Free Earthsphere, CFE: Operating within Earth, the colonies and a few areas on Luna, they are seen somewhat as an underfunded an paranoid entity, its been said that they have potential but for the most part are largely ignored. Their movements are often cautious and are prone to be xenophobic, or just paranoid, of new members and anyone outside of the Earthsphere. No doubt this is due to their operating at the seat NHF authority which leaves them always on their guard.

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I can't say that all the tech work is mine. I'll see about getting the character descriptions up on here for you. >XD I'm glad you're enjoying the story, the group I was with had a great time playing that game. There will be some more descriptions worked in somehow and there should be a few battles coming up.

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