ONI Dream Within a Dream — Part II: Star Atlas Roadmap Scan #11
Nightmarish fevers and locked feelings. Memories of Yago’s journey of atonement. Raw emotions flooding in the depths.
“This is a very curious galaxy, children. I have seen liquid light born from mysterious springs inside a dead world. I have smelled the scent of Mni and seen past come back to life. I used those tired hands and helped build the highway that unified the Galaxy and yet, even after a very stimulating life so far, my knowledge is smaller than one spec of the dust in our salvage yard before the enormity of the universe. Remember this, children: What we don’t know that we don’t know is billions of times bigger than what we know that we don’t know.” Clonk, father of Wenn, Yago, and Xannah.
The world around Yago started to change. The sand and metal of the salvage yard turned into a richly decorated black stone room, full of paintings and pictures depicting the mighty faction heroes and legends. As Yago stood still, tears streaming down his face, the familiar voice of the “Hero” started speaking up again.
“Stop it already, Yago. You are better than that, it was nothing compared to what comes next, and you know it.” the Mierese dream companion said.
Yago slowly started to walk through the room, touching the painting that showcased Bekalu coming out of the Busan Last Stand and walking towards the newly formed Council of Peace to sign the treaty that ended the galaxy-sundering convergence war.
He then put a half-smile on and said: “I would rather live a hundred times through what is to come next than remember even once what you showed me.” The Mierese said, his face turning devoid of emotion.
“Scary,” the reflection of Yago replied, and with sarcasm written all over his face, he added: “still, this is not my own doing, but of yourself. I watched as you saw Wenn talking about the past, feeling so superior and detached… and look at you now. You are still the same children as back then. A child full of regret and guilt that needed atonement.”
Two individuals joined the room, one of them was the headmaster of the orphanage, Mister Enantel Artonis, and the second was agent M0, Yago’s teacher and the leader of ATMTA special ops.
Yago still couldn’t discern what they were talking about. Even at a young age, he was already skillful in hiding his presence and infiltrating, and he knew that his younger self would be at the other end of the door now, trying to see and listen to what the two were discussing.
“Oh, there we go,” the Hero said when the audio of the conversation finally started: “You finally remembered that there is a hollow place in the wall right behind the canvas that links this room with the private quarters of the headmaster, very smart, Yago.”
Ignoring the other entity’s presence, Yago watched the dialogue unfold. His master’s blunt, as always, came to get another batch of kids for his… program, and the headmaster was negotiating his conditions.
“Disgusting,” Yago and the Hero said at the same time.
Most of the conversation was muffled, but there came the distinctive part where a name was put on the table:
Enantel Artonis started talking about the children of the orphanage as if they were animals of a particularly good genetic stock: “You see, mister M0, we have many talented children with us here, but there is one young man which I think would suit your… requirements well, if we may put it that way, his designation is Wenn, and he is a natural-born leader. I almost regret informing you of his existence since he is an excellent prospect for our own organization. Nevertheless, I’m painfully aware of the terms of our cooperation, and I think you should take him with you.
Agent M0 didn’t speak at first, his face was hidden from Yago due to the angle of the room, but after a few moments of profound silence, he rose from his chair and said: “Let’s get this over with… show me the child.”
As the pair left the room to head to the yard that led into the children’s wing of the Council of Peace outer space orphanage, a small Mierese blocked their way.
Yago watched his young self, trembling in fear, opening his arms to block the corridor.
Enantel started talking: “You are that child… Yago, right? You are Wenn’s friend, aren’t you, Yago? Please be a dear and go fetch him for me — please?”
Yago stood his ground and said: “Wenn is dumb, I’m not his friend, and you should take me with you, sir!“ The young Yago spoke with haste to the towering Sogmian that was agent M0.
“Huh… so you were the one listening? I figured you had placed someone to record our conversation, Enantel.” M0 spoke calmly, with a smile starting to form on his face. “But I’m afraid you are not ready to come with me: Look at you, your whole body is shaking and I can smell the fear you’re emanating into the very air that I breathe… Move aside, young one.”
For a split second, the boy seemed to have laid down his arms, and the Sogmian started to walk toward a child that barely reached his waist. Yago could instantaneously feel the same surge of emotions that he felt at that moment so many years ago, coming over him like a dark mist.
“YOU WILL NOT TAKE ANYONE ELSE FROM MY FAMILY. NO ONE WILL,” Yago suddenly shouted and started punching with every ounce of strength he had in his trembling body. Among the tears and anger, he could see the Sogmian laughing at his barrage as he finally said:
“Yago, is it? I can’t deny I love this raw emotion, Yago,” the Sogmian smiled. “Unfortunately for you, I will grant your wish. Take solace in the fact that you protected your family, Yago, because you will need this to survive the destiny that you sealed today.”
Yago and the Hero watched the Sogmian then apply a single directed blow to Yago’s younger self, putting him to sleep and carrying him back to his Busan Thrill of Life ship. That was the proudest moment of his life, Yago figured, and he never forgot the words of M0 on that day. His only regret was that he wasn’t able to say goodbye to Wenn then, and many years would pass until they could be reunited again.
“Now comes my favorite part,” the Hero said, “you finally become aware of my amazing self, and your life turns epic! He added cheerfully: “Was it painful? Yes? Agonizing? For sure? Made you desire death? Often, but it was all worth it, wasn’t it?”
Yago didn’t answer… The scene in front of him started morphing again, and now Yago could see glimpses of his “training.”
The hellish sessions of martial arts, where he would often get systematically beaten by soldiers twice his size on a daily basis until he managed to beat them himself, starvation and sleep deprival which agent M0 said were the ultimate path into having your mind control your body, high-gravity training and high G-force exposure, which often made Yago faint and vomit, hundreds of surgeries for body enhancement, which basically reconstructed his whole body to the point where his reflexes, muscle tissue, and body circulation could be perceived as supernatural and finally, as the cherry on the cake, the drug experimentation.
“Hey, don’t look like that,” the Hero said to Yago while the scenes appeared before them. “I’m sure this was the most challenging thing you did, but you got me. It was totally worth it. You were never alone anymore!” the Hero added in a cheerful tone.
From the many hardships that Yago suffered, the thing that they would inject into him was by far the worst. After every shot of the drug, his eyes felt like they were burning and melting in his sockets, and it was impossible for him to be near any source of light, so he would be locked, in the darkness, for two or three days at a time.
The second symptom directly affected his brain. Yago felt as if his head was splitting first in two and then multiple slices. He could feel the movements inside his skull as if the internal organs moved, destroying the connections that were keeping everything together and creating new ones as if something inside him was testing new ways of “enhancing” his internal organization. Yago was at the loss of a word to describe that feeling which often ended in him having seizures.
Yet, he wouldn’t die. After wondering why he was still alive, he figured that the fear of Wenn being submitted to something like this after his death was actually what wouldn’t let him go. This was his atonement for his cowardice, his redemption.
“Finally, you had the confirmation of that, right, Yago? I appeared and disclosed to you your great destiny! You are a hero, and I’m here to guide and protect you into saving not only yourself but Wenn and everyone else in the galaxy. It was bad, but unfortunately, necessary.”
Yago half-smiled. A scene before them started forming again, showing the day when the Hero appeared to him in his darkest hour after a few of those drug-inducing sessions. Alone, convulsing, and fearing for his life, he appeared and comforted Yago, and just as Wenn did, he told him about their epic future among the stars.
“Indeed, you saved me and kept me and others safe since then. You have my thanks for that,” Yago said to his reflection.
“Don’t worry, Yago, we are one. I will always keep you safe.” The reflection smiled back.
They both laughed, and Yago said: “You did get something wrong, Hero. All of that torture was nothing compared to that one day… Even the scars of those physical pains have been removed now, they are in the past, but it doesn’t matter what I try to do, the scars of that day don’t seem to fade away.”
The Hero nodded silently and replied: ‘Maybe you will discover a way to atone one day, Yago. This is a vast galaxy. The answer is out there somewhere.” He added, “Now come. It’s time to go back. You know how Wenn is totally defenseless without you, and those punaabs might be cooking him right now as far as we-” The Hero interrupted his sentence midway, and Yago immediately knew something was very wrong.
Someone, or something, was there with them.
A loud, sharp, inhuman cry started resonating inside Yago’s brain. Although no words were spoken, a flood of feelings invaded Yago’s mind, as if someone was trying to make a stormy ocean fit inside a small pond.
He also felt the Hero being overwhelmed by the sudden flood. Anguish, loneliness, hunger, confusion, curiosity, pain, pain, pain, fear, rage. It was almost like the rawest emotions were being introduced, one after another, into Yago’s head. It was destroying his capacity of thinking and his awareness of himself, and he felt his brain trying to shut itself down for protection.
As his consciousness started fading again, he saw a tiny worm-like creature slowly moving his body towards a glowing rock in a crater that shined a myriad of purplish and pink tones. The worm ate the rock and burrowed itself under the ice, and Yago could feel something that somehow felt familiar to him.
The flood of feelings was getting stronger, and Yago’s brain was shutting down. Suddenly a yellow light pierced through the darkness, and everything was over.
Yago’s eyes opened. He was still confused, but he could swear he was now surrounded by a few punaabs, Wenn, and a floating sphere.
After the initial shock of everyone present in the room, Yago dry throat said:
“Well, I believe I have perpetual bragging rights now, huh?”
Project: Showroom Alpha
Concept Art: DONE /// Art: BUILDING /// UX/UI: DONE /// Game Design: DONE /// Blockchain: BUILDING /// Game Play: BUILDING
Updates: Final polishing. /// Blockchain wallet and authorization integration ongoing. /// Interface wallet and authorization integration ongoing.
Upcoming activities: Wallet and authorization integration finalized. /// Final Polishing.
Project: Galactic Marketplace
Blockchain: BUILDING /// UX/UI: BUILDING /// FRONT END: BUILDING
Updates: Marketplace is officially fully audited and ready for production. /// Support front-end team throughout final implementation of the new marketplace, added new designs for the home page to add links for showroom and scream. /// 95% code complete, live on devnet and started testing.
Upcoming activities: Support to front-end team, ongoing design reviews. /// QA process, Sharing the link with the internal team as well as with moderators to start training people and get early feedback.
Project: SCREAM v1.0
Game Design: BUILDING /// Blockchain: BUILDING /// UX DESIGN: PROTOTYPING UI: PROTOTYPING /// Economy Design: R&D /// WEB: PROTOTYPING
Updates: Shifting to Build phase. Continuing to define explicit requirements for core gameplay mechanics and game systems design, focusing on combat mechanics. /// Shifting to build phase. Continuing to build cargo program, movement program, and star systems program. /// Continuing wireframes and interaction flows, focusing on crafting flow and refining inventory management. /// Continuing building SCREAM screens. /// Risk evaluation of gameplay mechanics. /// Changed Status from Prototyping to Building.
Upcoming activities: Continue to define explicit requirements for core gameplay mechanics and incorporate feedback from SCREAM stakeholders. Validate gameplay loops playability with WebGL Proof of Concept. Assess the feasibility of game mechanics with blockchain program proof of concepts. Validate economic viability from the internal Game Economics team. Guide UX/UI design based on game mechanics. /// Build, peer review, and test programs on testnet, then audit. /// Review wireframes with Project Stakeholders. Continue to iterate until wireframes are approved. Hand over wireframes to the UI team. /// Continue to build out UI screens and elements. /// Determine game balancing tactics/ contingency + scenario planning. /// Build towards playtesting and validate gameplay loops that require higher fidelity game.
Product Design: DONE /// UX design: DONE /// Front End: BUILDING /// Blockchain: BUILDING ///
Updates: Primary functionality close to feature complete. /// Assisting ongoing audits and front end (web3) team. ATLAS staking program was submitted for audit.
Upcoming activities: Finish high-fidelity designs. /// Testing. Link ATLAS staking program to the marketplace to apply incentive structure.
Project: System Polishing
The System Polishing team has been restructured, for now, to support other product projects in order to increase the overall development speed. Hence this week there will be no system polishing update.
ABOUT STAR ATLAS
Star Atlas is a next-gen gaming metaverse emerging from the confluence of state-of-the-art blockchain, real-time graphics, multiplayer video games, and decentralized financial technologies.
Using Unreal Engine 5’s Nanite, real-time graphics technology allows for cinematic quality video game visuals. In addition, blockchain technology using the Solana protocol establishes a largely serverless and secured gameplay experience. Non-fungible tokens obtained and traded within Star Atlas create an economy that replicates tangible world assets and ownership. To learn more, visit StarAtlas.com, join a faction at Play.StarAtlas.com and send your spaceships on a deep space mission by enrolling them in a Faction Fleet.
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The updates in this report are provided for informational purposes only about the Star Atlas game and metaverse, for which ATMTA, Inc. is the lead developer. Except for statements of historical fact, the statements included herein are forward-looking statements that are based on the beliefs of ATMTA, Inc.’s management as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to ATMTA, Inc.’s management. Although ATMTA, Inc.’s management believes these forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, there can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. ATMTA, Inc. undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or management’s estimates or opinions should change except as required under applicable law. These forward-looking statements are, by their nature, subject to significant risks and uncertainties and include, without limitation, statements about ATMTA, Inc.’s business prospects, future developments, industry and market trends and conditions, strategies, objectives, and goals. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and undue reliance should not be placed on them. No financial, tax, or legal advice is given or implied.