Planetary Profiles: Vakkea

As with the Alien Anthropology posts, we’ll be continuing to build the background and lore of The Unity Wars‘ setting with the Planetary Profiles series.  They will also be linked to the History and Background page.

Planetary Overview

Vakkea is the fourth planet of ten orbiting the K-type orange dwarf D’zhikk.  A heavy-metal-rich world, Vakkea’s native ecosystem is limited to single-celled organisms up to something resembling giant lichens, which covers large swaths of the planet’s landmass.  Several landlocked seas dot the planet’s surface, though the total water coverage amounts to less than thirty percent of the planetary surface.

Early History

While it was initially discovered by the majority-ekuz Izh’hich Corporation, the news of a new habitable planet with plentiful—and valuable—minerals quickly sparked a bit of a rush from the nearby ekuz worlds within nearly a parsec.  For the first few years, the settlement of Vakkea was a bit of a free-for-all, though a mostly peaceful one.  There was enough territory on the planet’s surface for all comers to have plenty of room.

The problems began to develop due to the minimal nature of the ecosystem.  Vakkea’s native life was incapable of sustaining an ekuz population of any size, and so the ekuz miners and colonists had to bring and grow everything.  Not everyone had planned ahead far enough, and several of the settlements were soon in danger of starvation.

By that time, the largest conglomerate on the planet was a local outgrowth, the Kz’fai Combine.  Enough of the Kz’fai partners had planned ahead that they had built farms rather than rushed to heavy metals mining.  They had enough of a surplus of food to save their neighboring settlements, even the ones halfway around the globe.

There was a catch, however.  The settlements so rescued had little to pay with, and so they were folded into the Combine.  Soon the renamed Kz’fai Administration was the largest entity on the planet, and was becoming a de facto government.  The Administration’s mandate was still primarily commercial, though, and the fees levied against assistance on the harsh world were soon a cause for grumbling, resistance, and even violence.

Planetary Unrest

Over time, the Kz’fai Administration’s retaliatory measures became harsher and harsher.  In some ways, it was inevitable, given that some of the “resistance” took the shape of out-and-out terrorism.  Not all of it went so far, but the Kz’fai Administration began to treat every refusal to pay as the same thing as bombing a mining site or a transportation hub.

The tensions eventually led to an expedition of disaffected ekuz departing Vakkea for nearby Lesser Zh’khen, the smaller of a pair of tidally-locked terrestrial planets on the outer edge of D’zhikk’s habitable zone.  The Administration having reached a critical level of paranoia, coupled with what could only be described as rampant greed and a drive to control all the system’s resources, there has been a continual, low-level war between the Administration and the Lesser Zh’khen schismatics ever since, temporarily halted by the intervention of the Caractacan Brotherhood during a dispute over an asteroid mining base.

Planetary Data

Population: Approximately 2.4 million ekuz, unknown number of minority aliens.

Orbital Distance: 0.54 AU

Orbital Period: 4,794 hours

Radius: 5,432 km

Day Length: 37 hours

Atmosphere: Oxygen-Nitrogen, with a high fraction of CO2.

Atmospheric Pressure: 98.87 kPa

Surface Temperature at Equator: 42 Celsius

Surface Gravity: 0.99 G

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