Nomads

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Background

The Nomads consist of three enormous ships whose inhabitants, discontented with a society controlled by huge macroeconomic blocks and by A.I., have separated themselves from it and roam through space, trading from system to system. Tunguska is dedicated to the traffic and storage of information. Corregidor offers skilled labour at a good price, while Bakunin trades in all that is exotic and illegal in whatever area, from fashion to nano-engineering.


Nomads are those who, for a variety of reasons, have shunned planetary society, both philosophically and physically, by taking up residence in one of the enormous space vessels that roam the Sphere. Each Nomad citizen has his or her own motives for choosing a form of exile in a specific Nomad mothership. Profit, idealism, cynicism… Most Nomads don’t really need a specific reason; they are just weird like that. As a group, Nomads are rebellious and antagonistic towards the powers that be, the governments and lobbies of the Sphere. More than anything else, they reject the influence of the AI ALEPH, which they consider the ultimate expression of submission to The Establishment. As such, theirs is a truly alternative lifestyle. To the rest of the Human Sphere, Nomads are a bunch of outcasts, oddballs, and anarchists.

Their image as outsiders is reinforced by the relentless propaganda campaign of the mass media, paid for and incentivized by their powerful adversaries to discredit their political discourse. The gigantic Nomad ships traverse trade routes endlessly, attaching themselves to Circulars in order to make inter-system jumps. Confined to their motherships, Nomads visit all the star systems of the Human Sphere, offering their services to all interested parties, but limiting the extent of their non-commercial interactions.

Nomads are an affordable alternative to conventional corporations in a variety of fields, and particularly renowned for their distinctive confidentiality. In addition, some of their most sought-after services have little reputable competition: safe traffic of currencies and data, specialized labor with experience in Zero-G and EVA (ExtraVehicular Activity) jobs, or a number of activities and products that would be illegal on most planets. The core of the Nomad Nation is formed by three enormous flagships: Tunguska, Corregidor, and Bakunin.

Each of these has its own idiosyncratic style and culture, and each endeavor to fulfill a different role using its own specialties and quirks. In addition to these three behemoths, numerous smaller craft considers themselves part of the Nomad Nation, and travel from the motherships to all points of the Sphere peddling the merchandise and services Nomads are known for, from aboveboard transport of goods to shady outsource work for mysterious parties. Nomads build transient space structures, known as work orbitals, for specific gigs, but some of these outlive their original purpose and become proper permanent orbitals. Some of these are big enough to accommodate sizeable numbers, even if mostly comprised of a floating population—no pun intended—of Nomad passers-by.

TUNGUSKA (THE MONEY)

Tunguska is the home of secrets, a strongbox adrift in space, a cupboard for all skeletons, a truly dark place… in every sense of the word.

BAKUNIN (THE SOUL)

A place where anything can be found: any specialty, any skill, any ideology, any conceivable perversion. Bakunin tolerates almost anything, as long as it remains within its appointed module.

CORREGIDOR (THE HAND)

The ship’s prison past that is always at the forefront of the minds of its citizens, a point of pride for the toughest bastards in the galaxy.

THE NOMAD MILITARY FORCE

Compared to the other great powers, the Nomad Nation has a much lower population that precludes an extensive army. However, their status as wandering vagrants of the depths of space forces them to maintain a vigilant military force capable of defending their vessels and interests. It is a joint effort: Tunguska contributes financing, Bakunin state-of-the-art technology, and Corregidor seasoned professionals. The Nomad Military Force is a compact force with an extreme level of preparation and excellent equipment, particularly with regard to its special operations units, reviled and admired by the militaries of every other nation in the Sphere.[1]



Corregidor

Foreign analysts are usually surprised by the lack of close order discipline and military ceremony shown by Corregidor forces, although they also indicate that Corregidor troops usually display martial skills superior to that of other powers’ regular troops. Each soldier is an expert in the essential principles of their military specialty, which they execute with rigorous self-discipline and surprising efficiency. Therefore, it’s not strange to hear those same analysts say that Corregidor has the toughest, most reliable, aggressive and tireless troops in the Sphere. This is because they are the outcasts. They are the guys of mud-rain-cold-and-void. The ones where “no-matter-the-shit-that-rains-on-us-we’ll-stand-fast”. The ones without glamour and hyper-sophisticated resources, but without whom wars are not won, be it working for their country or for those who can pay them.


Bakunin

The Jurisdictional Command of Bakunin it is based around self-defense, covert incursion into enemy territory, and limited clandestine activities, applying some of the revolutionary, and often illegal, Praxis developments. 

The backbone of Bakunin’s army is the Moderator Corps, an independent police force with paramilitary training and which has some sections with operative profiles extending beyond the sphere of law and order. The Corps has been involved in so many counterterrorist and paramilitary operations that its inclusion as a special forces combat unit is more than justified. 

Infiltration missions are the responsibility of the Special Operations Command, which has a section for surveillance and information gathering (Of which Zeros are its finest exponents). 

The fist of the Bakunin command is formed by the Observance, with its cyber-warfare experts, its strict discipline and its obsession for the fight against ALEPH. On the other hand, the armored force of Bakunin’s military section is the direct responsibility of Praxis’s technomants, with their innovative technological recipes, who practice their particular magic on everything that falls into their hands, optimizing what anybody else would have considered obsolete.


Bakunin, the mothership of excess, of extremes, of continuous revolution, everyone is welcome here, as long as they have an open mind and show respect for others. Here difference is celebrated, here outcasts sit at the center of things. What people in the rest of the Human Sphere call sin, here they call virtue. What other nations deem illegal, is not only tolerated here, but business is done with it.

Bakunin, the everlasting feast, the lecherous mothership, the altar of the senses and pleasures where, every day, the moral restraints of staid society are sacrificed. Radical science, ungodly technology, transgressive solutions, these are the product for the big international market, which doesn’t ask questions because it prefers not to know and to keep on purchasing. Quality entertainment to be exported, sensaseries, holoproductions, Mayazines, and extreme entertainment for local consumers: Aristeia! Underground, combats with chimeras and biomodified creatures, illegal races for the network Arachne. Innovative clothing for the Sphere’s fashion industry, and biosynthetic bodies modified and customized to suit the tastes of the consumers who visit the mothership. VaudeVille, the palace of sex, amorality, and debauchery; and the Observance, the chapter house of the rigid and strict cult of Saint Mary of the Knife, Our Lady of Mercy. All rolled up into a single heterogeneous package, all of it in a single mothership.

This is Bakunin, the balance of extremes, but also an ever-changing environment. Here everything changes, very few things are forever. In the past, the Observance used to be a secretive and mysterious congregation that skulked in the shadows of Praxis and worked together with the most ominous agencies of the Nomad Nation. Now it remains just as secretive and mysterious, but the Observants have decided to come to the fore after thwarting a major infiltration attempt by ALEPH on Bakunin. They have stepped in to fill the power vacuum left by the traitors and sellouts, who they executed, and have become a true powerhouse in the mothership. Now, the congregants of the Observance have stepped forward, wielding their profound hatred for ALEPH, to prevent that which came so close to fruition, the AI taking control of Bakunin’s fate, from ever happening again. Thanks to them, Bakunin now knows exactly who the real enemy is, who is truly seeking to destroy the mothership, and it has realized that the Observance will always be there to defend it.

Things have changed, but the party is still raging, and the revolution is still alive and kicking, just with some fiercer protectors. Welcome, stranger, you’ll be safe here.

- A feature article by Saniqa Marwa for GlobeTrekker. [2]


Tunguska

Tunguska is a strongbox full of data, money, and secrets that sails through space. Ruled by Mafias, directed by banks and controlled by hackers, the military force of this mothership combines the implacability, resources and technology needed to keep it safe. The best hackers and crackers of the Human Sphere are found in Tunguska.

Tunguska is a fiscal paradise founded by mafia groups, bank entities, and hackers, where money is the law and greed a virtue. Managed as a corporation, directed as a bank, and administrated by a den of hackers, Tunguska is a place in which crime has won and taken power. And a relentless society formed solely by predators needs a security force even more relentless to keep the peace in order for business to work and money to keep flowing. This mothership is the true engine of the Nomad Nation and their undisputed leader, a ship that bases its existence on privacy and secrets, needed in order to keep both finances and freedom within the Human Sphere. The image of Tunguska is one of grim individuals with shades and cold smiles, professionals that know the price of everything and are ready to charge it to anyone—but never in a personal way, because in this ship, everything is strictly business.


Vipera Pursuit Force


What would a small nation surrounded by enemies do to protect its most valuable assets, those that can provide the edge it needs to defeat its adversaries? Indeed anything. And that’s precisely why the Vipera Pursuit Force exists: to do whatever it takes to protect or retrieve that asset, that vital advantage.

The main competitive advantage of the Nomad Nation is its Black Labs, where they develop cutting-edge technology that, like the wunderwaffen, the wonder-weapons, can turn the tide of any conflict, be it military or commercial. While the Black Labs based in Bakunin are comparatively easy to protect, since they are located inside the mothership itself and thus make enemy raids very difficult (though not impossible), there are more such facilities outside the mothership, far more than the average person might suspect.

Laboratories are hidden in orbitals large and small, always on the route of the Bakunin mothership, spread virtually all over the Human Sphere, but also concealed aboard light, medium, and heavy ships and freighters.

Evidently, this poses a clear security problem. Having Black Labs scattered throughout the Sphere makes it difficult to provide an adequate level of protection for all of them. To solve this problem and to keep all these facilities safe, or at least to be able to retrieve whatever was stolen in a successful hit, Dragnet created the Vipera Pursuit Force. This force comprises a mix of troops hailing from both Tunguska, the ones who pay the bills, and Bakunin, the ones who do the heavy lifting.

They are veterans from all kinds of special units of the Nomad Military Force (NMF), the Moderator Corps, Dragnet, and the Black Hand. The skill and reputation of these agents is so impressive that the NMF has requested their services as support to the main force. Hence, there are always a few Vipera teams ready to respond to any emergency situation at the request of the High Command. [1]

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