Setting:CloudburstCoriolis

From 1d4chan
System
Galactic Position Cloudburst Sector, Hapster Subsector
System Overlord Supreme Marshal Emmitt Roscoe
Worlds in the system Ten, one inhabitable
World Type, Name Fortress World: Coriolis
Tropospheric Composition Coriolis has Nitrogen 78%, Oxygen 21%, Argon .5%, Water .4%, Carbon Dioxide 0.05%; Morole has no atmosphere
Religion Imperial Cult
Government type Military Hierarchy
Planetary Governor Yes
Adept Presence Adeptus Ministorum, Adeptus Astra Telepathica, Adeptus Mechanicus, Adeptus Administratum, Adeptus Arbites, Adeptus Astartes
Climate Coriolis has widely varying climates from pole to equator, from nearly-uninhabitable deserts and equatorial jungles to deep-freeze blizzards
Geography Coriolis is smaller than Terra and has some tectonic activity, having 73.4 million mi² of surface; Morole is tectonically inactive, but has evidence of a biosphere in the past
Gravity Coriolis has .92 Terran Gravity
Day Length 26 Terran Hours
Economy Gelt Thrones and Silver Thrones
Principal Exports Soldiers, Textiles, Paintings
Principal Imports Ammunition, Guns, Vehicles, Starships, Recruits, Convicts, Clothing, Chemicals
Countries and Continents Coriolis has ten constituent military districts, each with its own distinct PDF; no continental distinctions
Military Parts of each significant Imperial Guard detachment in Cloudburst; Coriolis Scharfschutze (High quality Guard and PDF)
Contact with other Systems Constant
Tithe Grade Exactis Prima
Population 7,390,000,000 (human +/- 1,000,000)


Description[edit]

There is no more a crucial world for the defense of Cloudburst Sector than Coriolis. The planet is the premiere Imperial Military staging ground in the Sector, eclipsing Nauphry IV, Septiim Primus, and even Cognomen in potential firepower. The Navy anchorage in orbit hosts three dozen combat ships just in its SDF, and another forty warships of the Navy itself. On its surface, over a billion Guardsmen, PDF, and Stormtroopers train, muster, recruit, and prepare to fight.

Today, Coriolis is the staging grounds of Cloudburst, but in its original use, it was a refugee camp. Seventeen thousand years ago, before Old Night fell, before the collapse of the Terran Federation, before the uprising of the Iron Men and the Psychic Awakening, Coriolis was home to four clans of the Homo Navigo. Banned from Earth for crimes their ancestors had committed against the gene-wrights who had created them, the four clans – True, Gheniso, Adell, and Rosamund – had retreated to Coriolis, a forgotten colony of truly ancient Earth. There they had squatted, building military fortresses for themselves with Dark Age technology, and fueled themselves by bitter paranoia.

When the Iron Men had arisen against their masters, the four clans had managed to fight them off, though it cost them a world in their system to the Core Imploders of the robot army. When the Psychic Awakening began, Coriolis barely survived it, as witch-hunts and Warp Storms wracked the holdings of humanity. The Eldar left the Navigators alone, but when the Fall of the Eldar toppled their ancient empire, the Emperor made his own move.

The Emperor had never forgotten the lost clans of Coriolis. Before the departure of the first Martian fleets from Terra to Centauri, the Emperor made His way by secret channels to the Navigator’s world. The Emperor was not yet drained by the need to fuel the Throne and Astronomican, and so the Navigators could see him in His fullest glory. The clans fell over themselves to enter His service; especially since He made clear to them the Navigators would have a seat at the foot of the throne of Mankind with their indispensable talents. The Navigators and their servants abandoned the world of Coriolis and left it to rot.

Why the Emperor did not add Coriolis to the Imperium, nobody today knows. The Supreme Marshal suspects that the Emperor did not want the people of Terra (or more probably Mars) to know that He had means of stellar travel that He had not disclosed to the Sol System as He conquered it. Alternately, He may well have intended for the world to be re-annexed, but the Rangdan Xenocides and Horus Heresy prevented Him from doing so.

Thousands of years later, the great Explorator Justin MacDonald rediscovered the planet. Its decaying fortresses had partially crumbled away, but several stood still, defiant and empty save for animals. The Officio Munitorum claimed the world for itself, and set about the process of building the Cloudburst Sector’s new staging grounds.

After the fortresses rose once more from their empty foundations, some replaced entirely and some merely repaired, the Imperial Guard moved in. The older fortresses are troves of archaeotech, but it is integrated into the buildings themselves, not merely lying about on the ground. The Mechanicus insists that its expertise is needed to keep some of the structures operational, and the Officio Munitorum is not inclined to argue the point.

There are over four dozen fortresses on the planet, most of them ringed by great walls, with fields of farmland and training ground beyond them. Each serves as the core of a great city. The cities house anywhere from four million to thirty-eight million people, with the smaller hab zones, bases, and farm towns beyond them housing the remainder of the planet’s population. The orbitals above account for several hundred thousand more.

Each fortress is unique, but by design, they do have some features in common. Each fortress has its own thermoplasmic power plant, as well as a variety of alternate power supplies. Fusion plants and solar panels are the most popular backup power sources. Furthermore, the planet’s oceans are broad and cover much of the surface; planetary laws require forts on the water’s edges to contain certain additional features.

All fifty-plus fortresses must be able to support a void shield that covers their entire inner defensive perimeter, from one edge of the fortress to the other. At first, each was able to protect the cities around them as well, but all have grown far too large to do so now. The fortresses also must serve, by law, as a staging area for a minimum of three million Imperial Guard troopers and local PDF if called upon to do so. In addition to housing and shields, each fortress must be able to provide its own defense and a means of evacuation if it comes under attack. Thus, each fortress contains multiple VTOL and airstrip runways, in addition to whatever civil transport services each hub city possesses. From orbit, the world looks like it has an illness that causes metallic blisters. Each fortress and its hub city glows silver and black from space with roofing material and roadways.

The waterside fortresses must also provide berths to store and dock ships, of both the commercial and military variety. This is a sore point for some of the fortress’s cities, since the forts inevitably consume extensive waterfront property, and the secured cordon around each one consumes even more. However, the profit to be made in these beachfront fortresses is enormous, given their population, and thousands of freighters steam over the waters of Coriolis, bound for one city or another and laden with goods.

Outside the fortresses and their hub cities, life is far quieter and more peaceful. Farms and mines toil and produce for the industries of the cities, and tracts of undisturbed, pristine wilderness beckon weary travelers to rest away from the hubbub. Scenic mountains and hunting lodges provide ample getaways for vacationers and noble officer families to spend time apart from the Emperor’s militaries.

Inside the fortresses, however, the contrast with civilian life is sharp and wistful to the millions of soldiers that dwell there. The heart of each fortress is the original Navigator palace, since the exiled Terran Navigators made their new home as much like their old as they could. The palaces became fortresses over time, but their cores remained Old Earth luxury. Naturally, these tend to become the lodgings of the flag officers that run each fortress. The surrounding buildings have become the core of each Officio Munitorum fortress. The ones that have original Dark Age technology in their construction are naturally more prestigious and efficient, but all of them are ultimately capable of housing their ration of men and equipment.

The outer rings of each fortress consist of barracks, garages, workshops, chapels, and defenses. The largest fortress and unofficial capital city, Coriolis Abholen, has over seven times the population of the smallest, and the fortress there is large enough to swallow even the Astia Grand starport city on Septiim Secundus whole, with room left over for the entire Nauphry IV surface fleet.

The fortresses have non-identical layouts for defensive reasons. The Mechanicus certainly could have made each one internally identical (save the ones built on coastlines, obviously) but chose not to. The conqueror of one fortress would glean nothing about the others from its shape.

Buildings fill each defense perimeter. The ones closest to the edges of the void shields (which are only brought online for drills and maintenance) tend to be more heavily built and have their own power backups. Farther away from the edges lie the civilian buildings of each base. Barbershops, grocery stores, family housing, and civilian schools pepper the drab grey bases with splashes of color and commerce.

Of course, the centers of each base are all military, and off-limits to civilians. This is where the Mechanicus keeps their defense silos, their laser batteries, their teleporters, their gigaton-yield self-destruct devices, and their core factories. The Officio Munitorum has a degree of control over the deployment of these assets, in a manner that would be unheard-of anywhere but a Fortress World. Like many worlds in Cloudburst, Coriolis has some underground tunneling, mostly between the fortresses, and the tunnels under each one are packed with weapons, equipment, survival gear, bunkers, and other contingencies.

 Because the fortress cores predate the Cloudburst Sector’s obsession with digging, the old Navigator buildings rarely connect to the tunnels directly, but all have at least one secondary tunnel to the nearest main line.

Coriolis sees hundreds of millions of Guardsmen pass through its barracks, generally to wars elsewhere in the Segmentum. Cloudburst recently dispatched over two million soldiers to the Rampart system, to secure it against the massive tide of Orks that had invaded it after getting lost on the way to Gorkypark. In times of greater stability in Cloudburst, most of Coriolis’ forces are either preparing to move on to Crusades, or preparing to accompany Rogue Traders and other explorers in the Circuit and Exo-zone.

Because of the logistical demands of supplying a population of seven billion civilians and variable millions of Guardsmen, plus the ships in the system, Coriolis must import vast amounts of goods, but also manufactures as much in the way of its own valuable supplies as it can. Mechanicus-operated forges and manufactorae produce tanks, armor, primers, aircraft, simple vehicles, and even some weapons locally, while importing teratons of more complex materiel from Cognomen. However, all of Coriolis’ surplus industrial capacity goes to its own economy, by necessity. The world has its own requirements, after all, and seven billion bellies and wallets to fill. The world grows much, but not all, of its own food. The wildly varying number of soldiers on the planet at any given time ensures that the actual demand for food is not stable, necessitating extensive stockpiling and importing in some years to offset higher demands later. Most of the uniforms worn by the troops mustered on Coriolis come from their homeworlds, but any fresh uniforms troops may need, and the ones for the troops raised on Coriolis itself, are Thimblan. Cognomen may provide the electronics built into some troopers’ helmets, but the great hives of Thimble provide the rest.

Coriolis may be more economically independent of its status as a Fortress World than some others of the same classification may, but that is not always a good thing. Massive, drawn-out Arbites Court battles have arisen from flight path conflicts between civilian and military aircraft. The Mechanicus, local manufacturing concerns, and the Officio Munitorum have held fights in the court of the Overlord to establish precedence for ownership of arms factories. Cognomen has had to dispatch investigators to determine directly whether local companies had stolen Mechanicus designs or simply made some of their own. Food prices skyrocket when large Guard forces arrive on-world or deploy on short notice. Worst of all, from the perspective of local law enforcement, is that when regiments arrive from off-planet, they must mobilize en masse to begin genescans of incoming troops, in case Genestealers have infiltrated them.

The ten districts each contain three to six fortresses and their surrounding cities, and employ identical methods for raising PDF, supplies, and civilian workers. The planetary government is a token effort at best, and the Munitorum knows it. The Administratum leadership of the world amounts to a few tithe-collectors waiting to retire. The Supreme Marshal rules the system, and the incumbent is a retired campaigner from Cassie’s Rangers.

The Guard isn’t the only military force in the system, however. The Imperial Navy controls the star lanes, and they have taken the time and resources to buy a vast orbital anchorage from the Mechanicus for the Coriolis orbit slot. The anchorage is not as sizable as Thunderhead, but can defend itself ably, and thanks to its modular nature, could be upgraded any number of ways. The anchorage is roughly the size of a Gothic cruiser, and serves as a fixed headquarters for the Imperial Navy in the Hapster Subsector, even larger than the one at Hapster itself. Much of the station is hollow, and serves as a massive cold storage lock for the thousands of fighters, shuttles, bombers, dropships, savior pods, interceptors, lighters, boarding craft, and other small ships the fleet may need to add to their complement for a specific mission.

On the ground, Coriolis does more than stage troops; it also trains them. Inside the perimeter of most fortresses, there is at least one large training facility for raw recruits to the world’s PDF and Guard. Each has some functions in common, including firing ranges, assault courses, recruit barracks, gymnasiums, armories with training and live weapons, a large infirmary, some cafeterias and mess halls, and at least one chapel. The larger fortresses usually also include a Schola Progenum, run by specialist Ecclesiarchy and Mechanicus teachers.

The troops raised locally – or born to visiting soldiers and compelled by contract to remain in the military – train in these installations or the scholae, and join the Coriolis Scharfschutze when their training ends. The Scharfschutze are PDF and Guard alike, and also technically the world’s pitiful surface navy. The PDF contingent of the Scharfschutze also controls the world’s considerable defensive air force, while the SDF and Navy handle deep-space operations. The Scharfschutze train to the highest standard, and have little choice in the matter; their pride would allow no other outcome. If they were to be shown up by their visitors in preparedness or standards, that would constitute a grave offense to their martial capability.

Scharfschutze, despite their name, do not specialize specifically in marksmanship. They deploy a wide range of vehicles and weapons in their arsenals, a wider variety than even Septiim Guards. The Scharfschutze field Macharius and Leman Russ tanks in the main, but are perfectly capable of deploying other tanks with minimal retraining. Scharfschutze have only one unique formation: the Coriolis Star, nicknamed the Coriolis Effect by the regimental trainers. The formation consists of ten hotshot-equipped infantry outfitted with scaling equipment, climbing up cliffs or building facades and breaching inward, then turning whatever rock formation or building they have entered in to a sniping roost, protected by claymores and mines the team brought with them in satchels.

The world’s moon, Morole, is a dead rock like Luna. It has only minimal construction, but what construction it does have serves the Imperium’s military like its larger sibling. The Mechanicus and Navy have built an antenna array on two spots on the world’s equator, each directly opposite each other. These antennae make use of the moon’s low gravity and lack of atmosphere to extend over seven hundred meters into the vacuum, and can collect and broadcast signals on any Imperial frequency. The towers are servitor-controlled, and have no permanent staff.

Coriolis culture outside the military fortresses represents a conscious effort on the part of its citizens to avoid entanglement or stereotyping from the association with the military. The world exports raw textiles for Thimble, and has a dedicated art culture. The Imperium collects the world’s tithe from its service as a staging area for the Munitorum, leaving the well-to-do citizens of Coriolis free to labor as they please. The planet’s art schools are justly famous across the Subsector. Paintings and sculptures from Coriolis artists decorate the walls of private manors and hotels from Oglith to Hapster. The oil landscape that sits behind the desk of Lord Admiral Maynard was hand-painted by a professor at a prestigious Coriolis art college.

The Ecclesiarchy carefully oversees this focus on the arts. They often commission promising artists to create devotional artworks of the Emperor and the Loyalist Primarchs for their chapels. After all, a planet that routinely hosts millions of visiting soldiers with their attendant Chaplains has great need for devotional artwork and artifacts for use on long deployments, or the decoration of planetside cathedrals for transitory troops. Ecclesiarchal leaders diligently oversee many of these artistic institutions for any sign of Slaaneshi infiltration or tendency.

They have not succeeded as thoroughly as they hope. While they are correct in thinking that deviant artwork is a thing many Slaanesh worshippers display, the Ecclesiarchy of Coriolis has managed to identify the symptoms as a disease, and miss the infection. Tzeentch’s stranglehold on Chaotic influences in the Cloudburst Sector is not as absolute as he wishes, and Coriolis has felt the caress of the Prince of Pleasures. One of the major art schools of Coriolis, the Spinward Expression College, is a front for the Cult of Unbound Good. Since the entire Cloudburst Sector is now Tzeentch’s playground from the perspective of the other Chaos Gods, the cult has had to be subtle, to the extent that it deeply frustrates the Slaaneshis. Their normal impulse to seek out every possible physical sensation and let it drive them to new heights of ecstasy will get them identified and killed immediately by watchful Ecclesiarchal priests, or worse, the Ordo Hereticus.

As a result, the Cult of Unbound Good operates more like a traditional terrorist organization than a normal cult. Each Cult offshoot is led by a cell commander, who reports infrequently to a Primary, who answers in turn to the Cult’s master, Merrick Unarvu. Unarvu is a Professor Emeritus and Chair of the Expressive Arts at the Spinward Expression College. He is very aware that the only reason his cult has not been uncovered by the Ecclesiarchy is that the Priest assigned to watch over his institution is an easily-distracted layabout. Thus, he keeps the man in booze and flesh, and may even try to subvert him eventually.

The Cult limits its visibility, for now, but has managed to slip a few of its members into the crews of Imperial Navy ships that came to the world for fresh crew or supplies. Ultimately, the Cult seeks to have a preponderance of numbers in place for when Tzeentch runs out of aliens to throw at the Daggers and their allies. When that time comes, the Cult will rise up well behind Imperial lines and seize control of their primary military installation, with their agents-on-remote causing distractions from one end of Cloudburst to the other.

However, the Cult has had no success subverting the military of the world. The fiercely loyal and very public Munitorum District Commanders who run each of the world’s districts would be unable to hide Slaaneshi corruption, with their constant public appearances and heavy workload. As such, the Cult is focusing on lower-standing officers, for now.