Chapter 2: Getting to Know You
I set out with the goal that I would really explore the Ayanyaixing system — which has inexplicably been renamed the James system by a chap named jamesbrown1997 (Really original James) — before leaving, but would depart before my next entry in my diary. I have clearly failed that goal because I’m still here, in James (that was on purpose). You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men. Regardless, I’m still running around discovering alien ruins and outposts.
So far I have spent the most time on Kikagorio Ieha and Uknatasmat Yuwal respectively. On Kikagorio Ieha alone, I must have spent more than 10 hours exploring. There were a large number of “drop pods” that I found which allowed me to expand my exosuit inventory very quickly. “Drop pods” are metal pyramid shaped installations, randomly littered about planet surfaces. They house exosuit upgrades that expand the number of inventory spaces available. Each upgrade will cost you 10,000 units more than the last one, so you can imagine how it quickly gets rather expensive when you’re unlocking your 40th inventory slot.
I’ve overhauled my exosuit in terms of technology and expanded it out to, at the time of writing this, 44 inventory slots. After finding out that putting related technology items next to each other results in their stats getting additional boosts I have reconfigured the placement of environmental protection twice. Protection systems are powered by oxides (Zinc, Titanium, etc.). While Iron is an oxide, and very common, it’s not one that can be used to charge those systems unless crafted into a shielding matrix, which can then be applied to a Thermal Layer or Coolant Network. These systems must be recharged at variable rates determinant of the quality of the technology that was built. Sigma systems are the most basic, followed by Theta, and then Tau. Each step up requires more exotic elements and materials in order to manufacture.
The discovery, and building of more advanced environment protection has been vital to the exploration of James as 3 out of the 4 planets feature harsh environments, ranging from cold, sweltering heat, to toxic. The latter is the environment I am in now, on the appropriately named Breitbart Prime I. So far I’ve found a fair share of aggressive (one even described as “cruel”) animals, and the landscape is pretty barren, hence the name. The only notable features are the usual caves, rocky hills and mountains, and mineral deposits. Outposts, shelters, and ruins appear pretty spaced out so far on Breitbart Prime I so progress has been slow, or fast depending on your perspective, as I have to cover significant ground at times to get from point to point. Because the environment is so toxic, I am constantly mining for Iron so that I am able to replenish my survival systems. I imagine it will take me at least a full day of exploration to really see what this planet has to offer. It’s not all for nought though as I found a really strange looking but gentle creature just last night.
It wasn’t until I sat down to write this though that I realized just how little I have explored this system. I felt like I had checked out every planet, sans one, but after looking at the discoveries I have for some of them, I feel like there is still much to do in James. The ruins thus far are some of the most compelling landmarks on planets. These are the windows into the background and story of the galaxy. I have learned a lot about the Gek during my time in the James system, maybe more than I would like to know. The First Spawn are a radical faction within the Gek that are bent on taking over and subjugating all. Through Gek relics, I learned that they attempted to wipe out the Korvax, a race with which I have had zero contact. According to the history that I have uncovered, they were a peaceful race of synthetic life forms more interested in conservation and preservation of their planet and others. The Gek, namely the First Spawn, had other ideas as ruins detailed the destruction and annihilation of the Korvax in order to rape the synthetics’ home world of all its resources. What I thought were pretty cute merchant creatures, have morphed into genocidal monsters.
Time will tell if the Gek I have met are representative of the First Spawn, or if the First Spawn still exist, but I’m quite wary of them for the foreseeable future. I hope to depart from James later tonight or possibly by the end of the upcoming week. Until next time…see you, space cowboy.