Mustered Out on Mertactor
Collace Library Data
Affiliation: Independent (Imperial Client State)
Planetary details: Starport Class B, Good Quality Installation. Refined Fuel is available, as is annual maintenance overhaul. A shipyard capable of non-starship construction is present. A Travellers’ Aid Society is present.
World diameter is 6,300 miles (10,000 km).
Atmosphere: Very thin, tainted
Climate: Very cold
77% water (ice)
1.5 billion inhabitants
Representative Democracy – Government by elected representatives
Law Level 3: Military weapons (automatic fire guns, except SMGs) are prohibited
Tech Level D: Above Imperial Average
Trade Classifications: Industrial. High Population, High Tech
Collace is a planet in its star’s habitable zone, approximately 10,000 kilometres in diameter with a surface gravity of 0.91(Normal G). It’s Very Thin and Tainted atmosphere requires a filtered respirator and the average temperature of -9 degrees Celsius requires reliable cold weather gear when venturing outside of the “Hab,” Collace’s pressurised and acclimatized living structures. All of Collace’s copious water is locked in ice except for a few lake bottoms and a summertime strip along the equator when glacial runoff creates a string of meandering rivers and small shallow seas. Collacean days are approximately 20 Standard hours in length.
Collace was the site of a Sindalian Empire mining colony that was cut off by the fall of the empire. The population was in serious decline when it was found by Darrian scouts in -1310. The Darrians provided enough technological advice to let Collace develop a stable, self-sustainable infrastructure that would keep them alive.
Over the past two millennia, Collace has experienced steady growth and its population now stands at approximately 1.5 billion. The world is interesting from a sociological point of view as social status on Collace is almost directly related to where inhabitants live either above or below ground level.
The nobility and most wealthy on Collace live in the upper reaches of large arcologies which puts them above the tainted smog at ground level. Middle classes live either just above or below ground level, benefiting from some natural light, but still forced to protect against the smog.
The ‘under ice’ level belongs to the underclass – the lower in the ground they live, the lower in society they are. The very bottom levels are the preserve of the petty criminal underclass who have dug their own habitations out of the ice with their own hands and pick-axes creating a termites’ nest of poverty and lawlessness.
Despite this, Collace is the wealthiest and most important world in District 268. It has the largest population in the subsector, is a major industrial world renowned for producing low-cost, high-tech goods, and is also the site of a major SuSAG pharmaceutical factory. Moreover, settlers from Collace have colonized Inchin and Avastan, which occupy strategic positions on the J-1 main running between the Glisten and Five Sisters subsectors (though Collace’s government has effectively disowned their governments). Collace is the prime candidate for permanent subsector capital (replacing the temporary one at Mertactor) if and when District 268 is integrated into the Imperium.
Collace has sought to join the Imperium and hosts the largest Imperial scout base in District 268. Indeed, the term “scout base” does not accurately convey the vast scale of the IISS presence, which includes facilities (training sites, supply depots, early warning stations, etc.) on half a dozen other planets and satellites in the system in addition to the main base on Kirkton – Collace’s principal moon. The intimate relationship between the Imperial and local military is demonstrated by the fact that elements of Collace’s armed forces provide ground and close orbit defense for both themselves and the IISS facilities.
The main reason why Collace has not yet joined the Imperium is the opposition of nearby Trexalon (Spinward Marches 1339) – with which it is in a state of “cold war.” Trexalon is dominated by the Trexalon Technical Consortium (TTC), a large interlocking corporate trust which controls the starport and has monopoly on industry in that system. The TTC is vociferously anti-Imperial because it perceives the Imperium as an impediment to its expansionist ambitions in District 268.
The situation between Collace and Trexalon has now reached the point of outright enmity. Both worlds routinely blacken the other’s reputation with propaganda, yet officially claim that relations are cordial and that there is nothing more going on than a perfectly understandable difference in viewpoints.
In practice, there is a war going on in District 268. It is mainly fought in courtrooms and stock markets, by means of legal writs and economic gambits, but the occasional covert operation by black–ops units has occurred.
Both Collace and Trexalon have the same aim; to increase their own influence and reduce that of the opposition. Aid and assistance packages have been offered to surrounding worlds, while business efforts by firms aligned with the opposition are frequently derailed by the use of influence or less legal means.
Collace has the advantage of being friendly to the immensely powerful Imperium, but this also places restrictions on what Collace can get caught doing. Collace must be seen to play at least somewhat fair, or at a minimum to only do what is justified by Trexalon’s actions.
Many of Collace’s long–term plans involve putting Trexalon in a position where her agents must do something that the Imperium will disapprove of, thus clearing the way for more direct action that is now seen as justified.
Trexalon, while somewhat freer to undertake whatever actions seem appropriate, must avoid triggering an Imperial response which it could not survive. Actions must be deniable or taken against third parties. Collace itself is sometimes a viable target and sometimes not, depending on the political situation in the Imperium.
Direct military action is out of the question, and probably pointless anyway. Even if Collace could somehow be taken out of the equation, some other pro–imperial world would emerge to take on the mantle of subsector–capital–in–waiting. The goal for Trexalon is to keep the Imperium out, not to get one over on Collace.
In addition to trying to sway political opinion and interfering in Collace business, Trexalon is rumoured to be backing pirates. If this is true it is a very serious matter, and one that will trigger Imperial intervention if proven. However, at present there are simply some pointed fingers and persistent rumours. The theory is that Trexalon is diverting spare starship parts to a secret raider base or bases somewhere in the subsector, in return for an agreement that the raiders will hit pro–Imperial worlds and shipping bound for Collace.
In addition to opposition to Imperial membership from the TTC, there is also some local opposition in the form of two fringe factions that hold views counter to the main government. While the majority government of Collace (known simply as the People of Collace or POC) sees the planet’s high-tech industrial capacity as a strong incentive for Imperial membership and support, the minority fringe elements consider their planet’s economic strength the very reason to avoid being consumed by what appears to them to be a voracious and uncaring interstellar entity. The POC (and most of the world’s population) consider these fringe groups as nothing more than minor irritants; the Right Of Collace Coalition (RCC) has staged small demonstrations and pickets in the past but has become more militant of late. The smallest and least active of the groups, Collace Now, while a true anti-Imperial party, concern themselves mainly with domestic issues such as habitat regulation, waste management and atmosphere legislation.
The Law Level on Collace is relatively low, but due to the nature of the atmosphere and environment, some tough regulations are in place: ships are restricted to the starport areas only and many of the more powerful weapon systems are capped or forbidden in port environs. Personal armours are unaffected but personal arms are limited to melee weapons outside of the starport areas to minimise risk of damage to Collace’s vast network of sealed habitats; within most port areas, pistols are allowed to be carried openly. Fighting of any sort in any pressurized area carries stiff penalties, generally 1-3 weeks incarceration, 1-3 months if firearms were involved.
Crime levels on Collace vary tremendously according to location. Areas above ground level are well-policed and so are secure. The ‘under ice’ areas has very little in the way of law enforcement – the local government is happy to leave the underclass to their own devices. Offworlders are particularly vulnerable to attack here and so are advised not to visit the ‘under ice’ wherever possible.
Although rated class B, the highport and downport are both undergoing expansion at this time due to the growing amount of trade and travel coming from trailing out of Glisten subsector; construction delays are frequent but not overly long.