Sunday, July 17, 2011

Entry: 00-026: Playable Classes: Carapen Xenosociator and Unclassified Clandestine Investigator

Playable Classes: Carapen Xenosociator and Unclassified Clandestine Investigator
by Wedge, Co-Creator

This is the third post in a regular update series which will reveal all 10 playable Iconic Character Templates (or classes) that will be available in Chronicles of the Void. Each one includes a bit of CotV fiction to set the stage for the origins of the class, a Game Play Overview section to get an idea of how each might be played, and finally a short blurb about our Iconic CotV Character which the class is based off of.

Today we explore a couple of CotV's hybrid classes, generalists with broad skill sets who have the ability to fill several different roles on a team. I present you with the Carapen Xenosociator and the Unclassified Clandestine Investigator.

5) Carapen Xenosociator

The Carapen are an alien race recently discovered by humanity on the planet Eucro. The Carapen have taken complete ecological control over Eucro and have emerged as the dominant life form on this oxygen rich class A planet. The human explorers who made first contact found that Carapen organized into colonies. All Carapen colonies construct elaborate hives that resemble fortresses which are composed of vast labyrinths of tunnels and chambers. Carapen colonies can be further broken down into castes that all perform specialized roles. Their societies are organized eusocially around a reproductive caste supported by an array of highly specialized sterile castes that compose a single colony. What the human explorers found most notable about the Carapen however was a vast organically constructed data storage network referred to as The Spool.

The Spool is a massive data storage complex located in a secure chamber deep within each colony's hive. The Spool is composed of a multitude of tightly wound coils of a thin silk-like threads which are excreted from all Carapen. Carapen regularly create a thread of this silky substance which they tie into tiny knots and loops using specialized appendages, and then add their newest thread to the greater Spool. The knots, loops and coils of each thread form a code, a written language, that the Carapen use to report any new information they have learned in their daily activities. Much of these threads are ordinary information about crop yields, hunting success, or intruders dispatched, but all is categorized and stored in the greater Spool for processing. This is where the Librarians step in. The Librarians are a caste of Carapen whose job is to maintain the Spool, which includes repairing broken threads as well as replicating data from the master Spool to other smaller backup Spools located in various secure locations inside the colony's territory. More interestingly however is the Librarian's task of reading and interpreting all the information stored in the Spool. Without a central intelligence or hierarchy of command inside the Carapen colony, all individuals act on caste instinct, and the librarian's instinct is to read and execute the instructions stored in the Spool. If less Soldiers are adding threads to the Spool than usual, then the Librarians interpret a negative feedback loop which prompts them to tend the undeveloped larvae and nurse them under the conditions which make more Soldiers. This process of growing new caste members factors into the other remarkable thing about Carapen which is their extensive genetic engineering power.

The Spool contains all data regarding the creation and subsequent success of all genetic modifications to a colony's caste members. This incredible library of genetic data makes them masters of their own genome and able to perform amazing acts of creation without the use of any tools or laboratories. If Librarians notice a drop in Soldier thread reports, and read threads about a new airborne enemy which uses sharp claws to pry open Carapen segments to destroy their soft innards, they might conclude the need to hatch more soldiers. Furthermore they may add genetic modifications to these new soldiers allowing them to fly and/or possibly create fused thoraxes which have no segments for the enemy can gain purchase on. All of the knowledge on how to create this type of offspring though is not held by any individual, but rather is encoded in the vast array of coiled threads that compose the Spool, open for any Librarian to interpret, experiment with, and catalog the results.

The newest Carapen creation is a caste known as the Xenosociators. Created in response to first contact with Humanity, they were created largely in the image of Man, with an individualistic streak uncommon to other Carapen castes. The Xenosociators can communicate in the basic human language and have the capacity to both learn about human society and also teach humans about the Carapen. As a planet bound race, the Carapen designed the Xenosociators to assimilate the advanced concepts of space travel including advanced physics and mathematics. To this end Xenosociators gather everything, regarding no information is insignificant. They are empowered to learn and adapt to their surroundings in a way unique to most other Carapen castes. Having been granted conscious control over their own genome's expression, a Xenosociator can enter a cocoon state at will, reorganize their body to match the challenges they encounter, and emerge as a newly modified creature.

You are a Carapen Xenosociator.

Game Play Overview: Biologically morph your body to grow weapons, armor, and new abilities making you the most adaptable character in the game. Fill virtually any role in a party stepping into a new role if your team has lost a member, or just to try something different.

Iconic Character: Numi (Carapen Xenosociator) - Exceptionally curious and inquisitive Numi follows the Marshal's of Ash as half warrior half chronicler part of a sterile Xenosociator caste of the eusocial Carapens "he" explores the stars studying the societies and technologies of other races to ensure the progress of his own.

6) Unclassified Clandestine Investigator

You are the only known member of an unclassified alien race.

You've never found another individual that could be identified as your race, nor have you found any being that can give proof that they have seen any of your ancestors. You don't even know your people's name. Isolated both physically and emotionally from all beings that surround you - you are alone in the Universe.

Enigmatic and unknowable your moral compass is unpredictable having no set of common values to ground yourself with and little in common with the beings that surround you. Instead you choose to build your foundation on mathematics, causality, and logic.

Yet your weakness is also your greatest strength giving you one of a kind talents that make you both attractive and powerful. Absolute cultural detachment from all other races in the Universe makes you take nothing for granted and enhances your faculty for deductive reasoning. You've cultivated a keen eye for observation and a photographic memory allowing you to store and analyze what most would see as trivial information. In an age where there is an almost crippling reliance on full integration with the Neuro Labyrinth cyber network to access information you are able to make insightful deductions from the seemingly insignificant details that surround you in everyday life.

As a result you've employed yourself in various capacities as a private detective and a spy. You have a knack for figuring people out, understanding their motivations, and solving cryptic riddles. Perhaps it is your detachment from the greater Universal society has gives you a kind of supreme objectivity, which allows you to dispassionately analyze facts in a sophisticated way. Perhaps your desperation gives your work a passion and focus unparalleled by average people. Perhaps your unknown past holds the explanation for these gifts. Regardless, you have an instinctive ability learn new skills in a fraction of the time of other beings, and have developed a broad area of expertise.

However your formidable investigative skills have thus far failed to yield a solution to your most nagging question of all: where do you come from and what has happened to your people? The irony of being able to readily solve other people's problems while being befuddled by your own is not lost on you.

Game Play Overview: Part spy, detective, and assassin the Unclassifed Clandestine Investigator is a hybrid class combining long ranged combat options, close combat expertise, and advanced problem solving capabilities. A balanced class with a solution to any problem you encounter. Play a character that is truly unique in the Universe, inventing their own moral code, values, and traditions.

Iconic Character: Daxim (Male / Alien) - Roaming Private Detective whose keen perception and insight find solutions to his client's problems he is often cryptic and stands apart from the other Marshals while searching the Universe for his lost people.