Empires are the various temporal powers in the galaxy - powerful governments that control several sectors, command vast fleets and powerful economies. An individual empire may be a Federation, democracy, dictatorship, theocracy, or similar form of authority - the specifics are up to how your team wants to play. Regardless of what form it may take, every Empire is large and complex, and requires a team of ministers to govern their military, science and economies, all working under the guiding hand of a leader such as an Emperor, Prime Minister or Monarch.
Empires provide an opportunity for groups of players to work as a team, each controlling a vital arm of the state. Players can choose one of 5 roles within the Empire, each with responsibility for a certain part of their government. Players may have to negotiate for resources, trade with other players in other Factions, make and break alliances and manage their own ministry well so that their Empire gains advantage and a route to victory.
The Great Galactic Powers
Seven major powers hold sway over the known galaxy. Each one dominates several sectors of space and controls hundreds of inhabited star systems. As the tenuous peace is shattered by the beginnings of galactic rebellion, these great powers see opportunity as well as risk. As well as being a great opportunity for roleplaying, each Empire has its own specialised abilities to reflect its unique culture.
The Lorr style themselves as the guardians of freedom and liberty in the known galaxy. Within the bounds of the Protectorate, individual worlds are entitled to rule themselves as they see fit, as long as they are willing to pay a tithe of resources to the Lorr government. In return, the Protectorate handles matters of collective defence, diplomacy and the business of large Empires. As such, the Protectorate is home to anarchists, utopianists, xenophiles, extremists, authoritarians and luddite enclaves alike - a melting pot of values and conflicting ideals. The Protectorate is an empire of extremes - staggering wealth and crippling poverty; cutting-edge research and technophobia; xeno-cultural enthusiasts and militant isolationists - all under a single federated banner, held by the mysterious, aloof and enigmatic Lorr.
Who knows what their real goals and purpose are?
A staunchly technocratic society, the Adherants are almost cult-like in their devotion to materialism and science. They are at the forefront of developing cybernetic technology, to bring about the perfect fusion of living creature and machine.
Their devotion to mechanical perfection has forged a hierarchical social order dominated by those most willing to shed their empathy for the cold calculations of steel and silicon. Their endless drive to research and improve their physical forms creates a powerful hunger for resources and territory.
A far-flung colony of an ancient, now ruined alien empire, the Inheritors came to power on a world with scarce metals but profound biodiversity. They are the masters of powerful biotechnology and their living starships are now the equal of anything built by machine or engineer.
Their society is outwardly harmonious and utopian, but this façade hides the many failures (and malign successes) of their genetic editing and bioengineering, concealing countless horrors. The Inheritors' knowledge may hold the gift of eternal life and incredible power, but only for those willing to accept it into themselves and be forever changed.
A powerful religious movement spread across a dozen worlds, crystallised into a theocratic Empire, the Illuminates rely on the divine dictates of their visionary prophets. Received wisdom from beyond has guided these backwater worlds to great power and influence, but some question whether their prophets are divinely inspired or merely savvy and intelligent worldly leaders.
Regardless of the truth behind their message, the priesthood of the Illuminates lead and inspire their people to spread their message to the stars and bring unity and enlightenment to the oppressed masses throughout the galaxy.
The galaxy is a hostile and dangerous place, and any society requires order and structure to survive its many terrors. The Dolkut Authority rules its people with an iron fist, because the alternative is chaos, plague, insurgency and annihilation. Their agents are many, and people are kept in order by powerful networks of spies and secret police. Austerity and order allow resources to be used efficiently, and everyone is expected to do their part to keep society whole and strong. Ever on the watch for threats both inside and out, the factories and refineries of the Authority churn out weapons and armaments to keep themselves and their charges safe.
Freedom is the gateway to anarchy. Openness invites the enemy into your home. Deviance and excess rots society from within. Vigilance is Survival.
A warlike Empire of lizard-like aliens and their conquered thralls, the Dominion represent a potent threat to the order of the galaxy. Although relentlessly aggressive, they are reasonably good natured about it. Cradian philosophy holds that while the strong and skilled deserve the mantle of leadership, prowess and ability must be regularly tested against worthy opponents. If an opponent has proven worthy, then they deserve respect. If they are unworthy and willing to bend the knee, then the strong have a duty to protect them. In this way, the complex power balance of the Dominion is preserved - with the Cradian warlords ruling over other species, but allowing them to rise to prominence should they distinguish themselves.
Warfare and conflict are necessary to allow opportunities to prove oneself, but once the battles are over, it is rare for the Dominion to hold grudges. They see struggle as just a part of existence, with long-term animosity being a route to self-destruction.
What is now the Garvian Conglomerate began as a small management consultancy on the homeworld of the Garvians. After about a century of expansion, hostile takeovers and clever diversification, it was one of the largest businesses on that world. After another century, it owned the entire planet - a corporate empire, governed by a board of Directors, poised to expand into galactic affairs.
The Garvian Conglomerate has grown continuously since its foundation, and is now a massive trading powerhouse, coordinating the transportation of goods and luxuries between a thousand worlds. Its corporate fleets protect shipping lanes from privateers, its banking services finance entire star systems, and its mining stations harvest the wealth of entire worlds.
Ownership and status within the company is critical in Conglomerate space. Shareholders are the elite individuals, with a single share providing dividends to keep a single person in luxury, while the lowest rung of employees are subject to brutal conditions and hard labour, all in the name of profit.
Empires in Play
Empires work by extracting resources from the Sectors under their control, which they use to build mighty fleets, powerful Stations, or research new technologies. However, they must also pay for upkeep to keep their people fed and happy, their fleets powered and their stations running. Each Sector produces a different balance of the 5 resources, so Empires will often have to deal with each other and trade, or develop their infrastructure to get what they need.
Each person within an Empire Team has a role responsible for one part of the Empire's government - Leadership, Economics, Military, Technology and Diplomacy. Empires have the most varied range of powers and abilities at their disposal, so negotiating and prioritising is an important part of leading an Empire to victory. Empire Teams have access to the following assets;
- Agents - highly skilled personnel that can be deployed to improve other actions, gather information or use special powers.
- Resources - large consignments of materials that can be traded or spent to build, research or improve aspects of your Empire.
- Special Projects - experimental technology, which consumes resources to use each time it is deployed, but has unique abilities.
- Fleets - mighty warfleets that can be used to defend, attack or conquer sectors.
- Stations - gigantic facilities that can be constructed in a sector to improve its resource output or grant unique powers.
Empires achieve victory by conquering and holding territory, and improving the sectors they control by constructing Stations and improving Infrastructure. A large Empire requires large amounts of resources, and its leaders risk having to mothball their fleets and stations or have their people starve if they cannot come up with the resources to keep them going. To expand their control of the galaxy, an Empire Team must use all the varied powers and resources to expand their influence and frustrate the ambitions of their neighbours, while ensuring that the Rebels and Pirates do not get out of hand in their territory.
Empire Player Slots
At From Within 1 there will be 7 Empire Teams, each composed of 5 players, for a total of 35 slots.
Empire Teams will have a lot to do to make their Empire function and grow, and will benefit from cultivating alliances with other powers, negotiating and trading. Each team member is assigned to one of the following roles;
- Imperator - Leads the Empire and coordinates the team, resolves internal disputes, makes Decisions and supports others.
- Chancellor - Distributes resources, constructs Stations & manages the Empire's economy.
- Commander - Controls the Empire’s Fleets and manages military strategy.
- Magister - Coordinates Research and Special Projects, and communes with the Ascended Powers.
- Consul - Negotiates with other physical Factions, and coordinates the Empire’s Agents.
The majority of player slots will be Empire-based. If you ask to be grouped with other players in an Empire, we will do our best to keep you together as a team. You can ask to be part of a specific Empire, but priority will be given to complete teams if possible.