The year is 2199, and life on Earth is a desperate struggle with economic chaos and social decay. Incorporated city- states dominate the sociopolitical landscape, and natural resources are virtually exhausted. Civilization has barely survived a fifty-year dark age known simply as the Blight. For nearly three decades, an engineered virus ravaged the world’s agricultural crops while social panic reigned and billions died of starvation. The resulting chaos has only recently been stabilized, due primarily to the efforts of the Global Ecology Organization. This institution was created by the United Nations in reaction to the Blight and is all that remains of Earth’s world governments. Powerful and global, yet challenged on every front, the GEO struggles to protect human rights and ecological integrity in the face of Incorporate excess and socioeconomic desperation. It is the last, best hope throughout the solar system and the newly resettled colony world beyond.
In 2065, long before the Blight, astronomers discovered an anomalous object beyond the orbit of Pluto. During the following decades, a series of probes revealed the anomaly to be a rift in space. It was the first example of the no longer hypothetical astronomical construct known as a wormhole. Further exploration demonstrated that this phenomenon was a traversable passage to another region of space. Humanity looked to the stars with collective awe when it was dis- covered that an Earth-like planet waited beyond the worm- hole. A planet covered by blue oceans and teeming with life. A pristine world, unexplored and unravaged. A waterworld that would eventually become known as Poseidon.
As part of a long-term plan to ease the heavy burden on the Earth’s vanishing and contaminated resources, the UN member nations began an intensive colony effort, seeding Poseidon with genetically altered human colonists. The Athena Project did much to aid the Earth’s failing economies and bolster social morale. Unfortunately, the Blight struck after the colony ship was launched but before
the planned resupply ships could be built. Desperate for resources to fight the Blight, the UN was forced to abandon the project and the colonists.This was the first in a long series of harsh decisions the organization would be forced to make in the years that followed.
In spite of the terminated resupply mission and the lack of contact with Earth, the colonists on Poseidon survived. As their technology wore out or failed, they learned to rely on their pioneer ingenuity and genetically engineered bodies. Spreading out across the planet’s surface into small villages and family groups, the colonists adopted a life much like the ancient Polynesians, populating the planet’s countless island archipelagos.
One of the many discoveries the colonists made was that they weren’t the only sapient life-forms on Poseidon. Frustratingly alien in their actions and motivations, this aboriginal species was a compelling enigma for the colonists. Encounters were rare and often dangerous; superstitions grew as evidence of the sapients’ strange empathic abilities was discovered.The origin and motivations of these creatures remains a mystery as dark as the planet’s deepest waters.
On Earth, the GEO slowly salvaged the future of the human race, and again looked to the stars. In 2164, a small science vessel was sent through the wormhole in hopes of initiating a second colonial effort. No one had anticipated the survival of the original colonists, so those on Earth were stunned to discover that the colony hadn’t just survived, but had grown from the original 5,000 colonists to over 80,000 strong.
The recontact mission was met with mixed reactions from the original settlers. Some were excited and relieved, others were bitter and retreated into uninhabited regions, but the majority were calmly indifferent. Poseidon had become their world, and they’d become its natives. Contact was welcome but essentially irrelevant.The colonists’ descendants had made their peace with the planet; they had no intention of giving up the lives they’d built.
Traffic between Earth and Poseidon was minimal at first, and consisted mainly of scientific missions,Incorporate research, and development teams. At first, these had little impact on the natives or the planet.Yet as Poseidon began to give up its secrets, that quickly changed.The nature of the wormhole and its connection to Poseidon became the source of endless debate.The intelligence of the aboriginals became a compel- ling question, as all efforts at contact or capture failed.The planet’s biological diversity and ecological intricacy defied understanding; the commonality of DNA between the two worlds remained inexplicable. Most incredibly, Incorporate geologists found a substance in the planet’s exposed crust that motivated a colonial frenzy that would not only change the colony forever, but threaten to plunge humanity into a war of survival with an ancient alien legacy.
Longevity Matrix Ore, or Long John, was first discovered during an Incorporate mineral survey. Initially a closely guarded secret, word soon leaked about the fantastic potential of the substance. Long John could be processed to yield biochemical tools of such precision that nothing in the realm of genetics remained beyond the reach of gene engineers. Humanity had stumbled upon the key to immortality!
On Earth, a world still foul with the stench of the dead, the human race exploded into a gold rush the likes of which history had never known. Incorporate greed and human desperation sent millions rushing to Poseidon to stake their claims and feed a market driven by humanity’s primal fear of death.
Now in 2199, Poseidon is a planet of company boom towns, corporate mining facilities, native settlements, and orbiting factories. Life is hard, fast, and amphibious. Frontier law prevails as GEO marshals attempt to protect natives’ rights and enforce environmental regulations. Seafloor installations are guarded by squadrons of fighter subs, and corporate takeovers often involve marine assault teams.The natives have grown to hate the Incorporate and fear for their new world as environmental insurgents incite war in defense of the planet.Thousands of newcomer colonists arrive every month, hoping for a better life, but often falling victim to profiteers and criminals who prey on their desperation.The aboriginals remain a mystery, yet are blamed for increasingly frequent acts of sabotage and violence. And—lost in the background—scientists preach caution, claiming there is something strange, something wrong below the water’s surface...