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Rabiddog
2013-01-18, 01:37 AM
Hello all, I recently posted a thread in the RP section that sadly didn't get much love. I was advised to thicken up the fluff and material for the universe I'm trying to build and post it up here for comments/questions and interest checking.

Well so I went back rolled up my sleeves and got cracking on creating some fluff and content for my universe.

I named the universe "Shadow Chronicles" be cause it is a thriller/rpg/horror sci-fi setting set in an indeterminate far future where a past golden age and dark age have both past. The universe is a cold and dangerous place these days with numerous factions, nations and races all competing either overtly or covertly to secure power for themselves.

The player will take on the roll of an independant "contractor" (read mercenary) in this universe finding themselves taking on dangerous jobs for money and simple survival!

The goal of the RP will be to keep the "system" simple so that it doesn't get bogged down by "dice rolls" and the like but does keep a balanced and fair atmosphere going. I am aiming at making this a team based RP where the players will be reliant upon one another to get the job done and survive. As such I'm aiming less for "character classes" and more for skill sets that each player can choose from (for example they might be a damn good shooter but also a great doctor), this was developed a little bit IRL as part of a dice rolling RPG with friends; one of whom chose a doctor/expert shooter and gave him the nickname "Doctor Killshot".

I am working on a good list of races, and equipment right now but I'm keeping some of it close to chest to be revealed as it becomes available (also so I don't waste days of work on a system before making sure people will even want to play it).

Right now here's what I have so far.
The Timeline (https://docs.google.com/document/d/10QgpyppsrQMNko2nXAoN5hBguNfuO9ezOLXXS5AUqL8/edit)

Major Factions (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tc9hHHvqwQPdP0cC4b2glRqihwQWUGMMxvpYhTktS1Q/edit)

Minor Factions (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1iwIfPG8_roXpZNA4ue6NheDe_pGHZON2pZcFy4i31PA/edit)

Ships (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hJhAh2KtRD6VOb3v5aKrd21llcUL8a23tokzRF0RCLQ/edit)

Technology (https://docs.google.com/document/d/11iLq42wv-Au8lcSolRuR1e8-vvfJmVRpXfbSYQ8rbSs/edit)

Here are some of the other things I am working on to expand please keep in mind though with weapons/armor and some equipment I don't want to list it until players come across it to keep from waisting my time but also to keep spoilers from happening on certain things as well as confusion over what they can buy at this point:

Weapons (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KvXaLNq6cSuZXZCStrMFNJPCrXBtkuTtmH7ba1f7-40/edit)

Equipment (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1QpjZO5vkekZcwPnVAYjOk0CUb5aLOWhIyxRse3Zlqmc/edit)

Armor (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ZVmF8QgF6FN7vDsW8QUk2JNIWPh_OQcG_gJLsGcsZuw/edit)


Character Creation (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1EXbNvRBBhsmNGzCZiolz3Q23eJR0wWFfu6tOjOqHufE/edit)

The character creation is still WIP I'm thinking of how many points to have each player start with, as well as adding in traits for stealth/bribery/infiltration/stealing that sort of thing.

Any ideas for character traits would be appreciated :)

I'm looking for opinions and advice right now. What would you guys want to see/know more about in order to get you interested in this RP universe? Any help would be really and sincerely appreciated guys!

Rabiddog
2013-01-18, 05:07 PM
29 views and not a single comment for advice/suggestions or anything? :(

Amaril
2013-01-18, 05:35 PM
The first thread I put up was my ongoing development of a fantasy setting. Despite getting a pretty significant number of views, hardly anybody ever commented on it, and it's dead now.

I know that feel bro :smallfrown:

Grinner
2013-01-18, 05:57 PM
I've spent some time reading over your setting bible, and it's apparent to me that you've spent a great deal of time and love on this. I've got to be honest with you, though, so don't take anything I write personally.

First, why should anyone care? What makes your setting unique? What makes it worth playing in? The twist with the Shen-tal was nice, but it's not enough. Frankly, it reads a bit like a timeline of the Halo series.

Secondly, how did no one notice the century long war. I don't know what kind of mind-control drugs the human governments fed their citizens, but someone should have noticed the constant military action. When you get that many soldiers together, some loudmouth is going to start talking. And they were involved in ground combat? How did they not recognize that their opponents were human?

Lastly, you're providing a great deal of mundane details, and this is going to turn away any casual reader who happens across your post. Be reasonable. Twenty-nine views isn't a whole lot, and you're posting in probably the second-most unfrequented subforum here.

I recommend that you do some soul-searching. Figure out what about your setting is about and advertise accordingly.

Rabiddog
2013-01-18, 10:56 PM
First, why should anyone care? What makes your setting unique? What makes it worth playing in? The twist with the Shen-tal was nice, but it's not enough. Frankly, it reads a bit like a timeline of the Halo series.

Why should anyone care about ANY fictional universe set up for games and RP?

What makes my setting unique is the background and the story I want to engage the characters in when the game starts.

That's like asking "What makes this show unique" or "What makes this book unique?" without actually watching the show or reading the book.

As to the part about it reading like something out of Halo I have to say that I don't know where on earth you get that idea as about the only things they have in common are:
Aliens
Space ships
Humans
Wars
FTL travel
Projectile weapons being preferred over energy weapons

Beyond that not really a single thing in common there beyond Humans coming together and even then the motivations were totally different AND it doesn't last. Add to that the "One world government" in human history is the one that screwed over the galaxy rather than some "forerunner" race or anything like that.



Secondly, how did no one notice the century long war. I don't know what kind of mind-control drugs the human governments fed their citizens, but someone should have noticed the constant military action. When you get that many soldiers together, some loudmouth is going to start talking. And they were involved in ground combat? How did they not recognize that their opponents were human?

Well as to the century long war. Humans KNEW they were at war it's just that they were not about to really approach the other nations with whom they'd had hostile relations for a rather long time by that point and admit "So yeah we're at war with aliens do you want to take advantage of our weakness?"

Also space is big you can have entire planetary populations engaged in combat and unless you TELL the other worlds what's going on they won't necessarily notice anything and given that the Shen-tal and Human governments at this point were collosal d-bags about things (afterall the human nations were fighting wars over the promise of tech and loot and the Shen-tal were manipulating whole races into blood baths against each other). And it's not like the human governments stopped fighting over altruistic reasons either its just that by that point they had what they wanted and were tired of playing ball.

Heck what did the human governments do when they DID ally with one another? They immediately started using the same tactics as the Shen-tal.

As to how humans never noticed they were fighting other humans, well given that the Shen-tal were playing all sides against each other just have human armies invade alien worlds and alien armies invade human worlds. Space combat would be fairly easy to contain because the Shen-tal had their hand in pitting fleets against each other as well.

It's also a fairly simple matter of "Oh crap the humans on world A just engaged another human force on world A!" commence purging of the world and blame it on the alien menace. But this would be rather hard to pull off given that the Shen-tal were managing the war effort and pretty much guiding forces against one another.


Lastly, you're providing a great deal of mundane details, and this is going to turn away any casual reader who happens across your post. Be reasonable. Twenty-nine views isn't a whole lot, and you're posting in probably the second-most unfrequented subforum here.


Well that "mundane" information was provided because of the fact that when I posted minimal information the only person to comment said there wasn't enough. So it really can't go both ways either there's not enough information or there's too much because as of right now there's still not "that" much information about my universe compared to the lore of most gaming systems.

To the twenty-nine views part I guess I'm used to a different forum where after 29 views it's unusual not to get at least one comment so you're right I might be wanting a bit much on that from this site. I'll try to remember that next time and I appreciate that bit of advice.

About where I posted it though I was trying to put it in a forum label that seemed to match, should I post it somewhere else on here? (not sarcasm or anything genuine question). Because i dont want to break any sort of rules or anything tbh.

Grinner
2013-01-19, 12:38 AM
Why should anyone care about ANY fictional universe set up for games and RP?

What makes my setting unique is the background and the story I want to engage the characters in when the game starts.

That's like asking "What makes this show unique" or "What makes this book unique?" without actually watching the show or reading the book.

As to the part about it reading like something out of Halo I have to say that I don't know where on earth you get that idea as about the only things they have in common are:
Aliens
Space ships
Humans
Wars
FTL travel
Projectile weapons being preferred over energy weapons

Beyond that not really a single thing in common there beyond Humans coming together and even then the motivations were totally different AND it doesn't last. Add to that the "One world government" in human history is the one that screwed over the galaxy rather than some "forerunner" race or anything like that.

To the average reader, it's just another military sci-fi setting. There's nothing special. No driving themes. Why should I choose this over Star Wars, Paranoia, Eclipse Phase, Traveller, or any of a dozen other settings? That's what I need to know.

Also, have you read the Halo novels? They begin with humans being factional, though to lesser degree displayed here, and then the aliens show up. War ensues. Then more war ensues. Then, even more war ensues.


Well as to the century long war. Humans KNEW they were at war it's just that they were not about to really approach the other nations with whom they'd had hostile relations for a rather long time by that point and admit "So yeah we're at war with aliens do you want to take advantage of our weakness?"

Also space is big you can have entire planetary populations engaged in combat and unless you TELL the other worlds what's going on they won't necessarily notice anything and given that the Shen-tal and Human governments at this point were collosal d-bags about things (afterall the human nations were fighting wars over the promise of tech and loot and the Shen-tal were manipulating whole races into blood baths against each other). And it's not like the human governments stopped fighting over altruistic reasons either its just that by that point they had what they wanted and were tired of playing ball.

Heck what did the human governments do when they DID ally with one another? They immediately started using the same tactics as the Shen-tal.

As to how humans never noticed they were fighting other humans, well given that the Shen-tal were playing all sides against each other just have human armies invade alien worlds and alien armies invade human worlds. Space combat would be fairly easy to contain because the Shen-tal had their hand in pitting fleets against each other as well.

It's also a fairly simple matter of "Oh crap the humans on world A just engaged another human force on world A!" commence purging of the world and blame it on the alien menace. But this would be rather hard to pull off given that the Shen-tal were managing the war effort and pretty much guiding forces against one another.

So...the spies and sympathizers, though knowing about the war for the better part of a century, never bothered to inform the other nations? The nations were hostile, right? Wouldn't they want to know what their enemies were up to?

You need to iron out these niggling details so no one can point out these sort of things.


Well that "mundane" information was provided because of the fact that when I posted minimal information the only person to comment said there wasn't enough. So it really can't go both ways either there's not enough information or there's too much because as of right now there's still not "that" much information about my universe compared to the lore of most gaming systems.

To the twenty-nine views part I guess I'm used to a different forum where after 29 views it's unusual not to get at least one comment so you're right I might be wanting a bit much on that from this site. I'll try to remember that next time and I appreciate that bit of advice.

About where I posted it though I was trying to put it in a forum label that seemed to match, should I post it somewhere else on here? (not sarcasm or anything genuine question). Because i dont want to break any sort of rules or anything tbh.

You are posting in the correct area, and the whole "second most unfrequented subforum" was an exaggeration. This area just doesn't get as much traffic as others.

Anyway, we're having a misunderstanding. Yes, you need these mundane details. No, they should not be the first thing I read. Like I mentioned earlier, any passing reader won't want to stick around long. The highlights of the setting need to be showcased. What makes this setting fun and interesting? I shouldn't need to go through eleven pages of timeline and another ten pages of faction descriptions to figure that out.

Vonwalt
2013-01-19, 12:44 AM
Well, no, this is the right place to put it. I've looked at it a few times, and I haven't commented because I have little to no opinion. It looks fine, I guess? It seems like you spent a lot of time on history, (A lot of people on here do) which I don't care about. If you wrote a book about it, I'd read it, but for an RPG, I would have been happy with just the current situation in the world. How humans came to space is not as important as what they're doing now.

Edit! Apparently, people have said that, but with a great many more words. Groovy.

Anyways, as far as character creation goes, Let me talk skills that might be good.
Stealth
Athletics/Acrobatics
Knowledge/Science
An Awareness skill
Some kind of melee combat maybe
A third "Drive" skill for really big spaceships
And a question I had: Does everyone start with the same stuff for this specific campaign you're making? If not, how do you determine equipment for PCs?

That's all I got for now.

Rabiddog
2013-01-19, 01:56 AM
To the average reader, it's just another military sci-fi setting. There's nothing special. No driving themes. Why should I choose this over Star Wars, Paranoia, Eclipse Phase, Traveller, or any of a dozen other settings? That's what I need to know.

Ok good point, so how could I get that across to you that the intent of this universe is to be a thriller/horror/action setting and not just a "Military Sci-fi" setting?

I'm definately not aiming for a Halo feel where it's like a play-by-post FPS game. I'm aiming for an action thriller/horror feeling to the game. I think I could convey that if I knew a bit more what folks looked for in "sales pitch" so to speak. Which is definately why I appreciate opinions like this because you seem like the type that would be helpful in that regard.



Also, have you read the Halo novels? They begin with humans being factional, though to lesser degree displayed here, and then the aliens show up. War ensues. Then more war ensues. Then, even more war ensues.


Honestly no I've not read much to do with Halo at all; in total I've played
Halo: Combat Evolved
And am kind of most of the way done Halo4 other than that I have no idea about the backstory of the universe beyond

UNSC Forms up
UNSC Has rebellions
UNSC is fighting rebels when Covvies show up and slag everything
Masterchief destroys the Covenant
??? Profit?

But if thats how you define things as being "halo" that covers a LOT of different games, books, movies and other material that existed well before Halo lol



So...the spies and sympathizers, though knowing about the war for the better part of a century, never bothered to inform the other nations? The nations were hostile, right? Wouldn't they want to know what their enemies were up to?


That's a good point but the way I was thinking on it was that since space IS so big and human native FTL is so slow (and at the time there was no FTL comms) than conventional spies/counter spies wouldn't really apply during those days.



You need to iron out these niggling details so no one can point out these sort of things.


Yep that's why it's a WIP so I can get helpful opinions :)


You are posting in the correct area, and the whole "second most



Anyway, we're having a misunderstanding. Yes, you need these mundane details. No, they should not be the first thing I read. Like I mentioned earlier, any passing reader won't want to stick around long. The highlights of the setting need to be showcased. What makes this setting fun and interesting? I shouldn't need to go through eleven pages of timeline and another ten pages of faction descriptions to figure that out.

Well to be honest I was kind of using all that stuff as supplemental material while I try and peice together a good "sales pitch" to players so to speak.

I mean I don't want to use generic buzzwords like
"ACTION THRILLER!!!" or "Espionage meets horror!" or "An action/adventure set in the depths of a cold unforgiving universe!"

Vonwalt
2013-01-19, 02:18 AM
As to making it more horrifying, where does the horror come from here?
When I think horror, I think sneaking through cramped corridors on abandoned spaceships, facing off against vastly more powerful entities. I assume various aliens could fill that role rather well. Also, not being able to use weapons, and having to improvise (Dead Space, Alien) Although if you also want thriller, I feel that's less important. Maybe show us a few of the threats that exist, that'll be horrifying people?

Rabiddog
2013-01-19, 02:31 AM
As to making it more horrifying, where does the horror come from here?
When I think horror, I think sneaking through cramped corridors on abandoned spaceships, facing off against vastly more powerful entities. I assume various aliens could fill that role rather well. Also, not being able to use weapons, and having to improvise (Dead Space, Alien) Although if you also want thriller, I feel that's less important. Maybe show us a few of the threats that exist, that'll be horrifying people?

Well TBH the intent is that some "missions" will be horror, others more thriller but all revolving around the same central story that I have in my head. I'll have to think on which horror type entities I can bring up without spoiling the parts from the thriller aspects of it hmmm.

Rabiddog
2013-01-19, 09:20 AM
How is this for an intro?

The year is 141 of the Reformation Era; the galaxy has just started down the path of recovery after the brutal Downfall war which exterminated virtually all major civilizations in the known galaxy.
There is an uneasy peace among the major factions of the known galaxy as they strive to regain the glory of the lost civilizations of the past. Despite the official peace between the four major powers of the galaxy crime, slavery, warfare and espionage are common among the non-aligned systems and the outer territories of the known galaxy. Of course all sides watch each other with a suspicious eye, each suspecting the other in some plot and gambit.

You are a "contractor" an independant operator which the ancients would have called a mercenary. You and those like you get paid to clean up other people's problems whether those problems be business rivalries, corporate espionage or government contracts to handle jobs certain governments can't do on their own without drawing unwanted attention.

The universe is a chaotic and dangerous place once you leave the core territories of the great powers in this new galaxy. And its because of that danger and that chaos that business is so good for a contractor these days.

Grinner
2013-01-19, 05:01 PM
It's alright.

Rabiddog
2013-01-19, 06:33 PM
Does it all sell what the story/game is going to be about? Any suggestions on how I could expand on it to really "grab" your interest? :)

I'm not trying to get ya'll to do all the work of course I'm just trying to feel out my audiance so to speak. Doing the RL version of this game with friends as a campaign was much easier because I knew how to sell it to them lol (and because when they saw me whipping out warhammer 40k models and home made vehicle models they thought it was cool - visual aids ftw as it were-.

Grinner
2013-01-19, 07:35 PM
It basically says "Murder-hobos...in Space!!!", but that's really all these games ever amount to, right?

Rabiddog
2013-01-19, 08:44 PM
It basically says "Murder-hobos...in Space!!!", but that's really all these games ever amount to, right?

LOL wow really murder hobos???

And no I'm aiming at a game that requires teamwork and brains not just walk in and murder everyone (well for most jobs) so I definately don't want the "Murder hobos" feeling.

Tovec
2013-01-21, 04:24 PM
How is this for an intro?

The year is 141 of the Reformation Era; the galaxy has just started down the path of recovery after the brutal Downfall war which exterminated virtually all major civilizations in the known galaxy.
There is an uneasy peace among the major factions of the known galaxy as they strive to regain the glory of the lost civilizations of the past. Despite the official peace between the four major powers of the galaxy crime, slavery, warfare and espionage are common among the non-aligned systems and the outer territories of the known galaxy. Of course all sides watch each other with a suspicious eye, each suspecting the other in some plot and gambit.

You are a "contractor" an independant operator which the ancients would have called a mercenary. You and those like you get paid to clean up other people's problems whether those problems be business rivalries, corporate espionage or government contracts to handle jobs certain governments can't do on their own without drawing unwanted attention.

The universe is a chaotic and dangerous place once you leave the core territories of the great powers in this new galaxy. And its because of that danger and that chaos that business is so good for a contractor these days.

I just want to say first, I haven't read that big bunch of stuff in the first post - only what I have seen here after. And from what I've seen perhaps I shouldn't start with that first post's stuff anyhow.

Now, back to the purpose of my reply. What is the typical player? I'm assuming they are the mercenary, sorry the "contractor" player. Does a contractor care about galactic history? It is good to set up history if it matters, if it displays prominently in the game, but if not then it is just something behind the scenes that no one is going to see - but you.

I know that in my games the year is largely unimportant. Yes, it matters when there was a civilization that existed hundreds of years ago and that is impacting the game today, but if not then it is Bilbo says "And so life in the shire goes on, very much as it has this past age." In that case, the exact years doesn't really matter.
Especially when we don't know why the current age is called what it is. Or what the "downfall war" was.

We, and I include prospective players, care about things that matter to us. As others have suggested we need to know what is special or different for us. In a larger sense, when describing a setting, we need to know the special rules or important themes.

You wouldn't start describing Star Wars (the original, "episode 4") as "a thousand years ago the sith had vanished, but recently they showed back up and killed all the jedi. Even more recently freedom fighters have been fighting against the empire..."
No, you would do an opening crawl like was actually done. Or you would describe the long arm of imperial dominance crushing the freedom loving good guys.

For your setting/game, we need to know who are the protagonists, and what are they fighting against - even if it is basic or changes.

Also, from what I'm picking up, are the Shen-tal humans but not the good guy humans? If so, why describe them as human at all - at least to start. Why not describe them as entirely foreign and alien and nondescript. Then, let the players realize they are humans through a series of circumstances, what they do with that information is up to them.

Beyond that, from what you said, you are trying to make this a horror/thriller/action kind of game. That isn't really my cup of tea but I'm sure it could work. Are you drawing inspiration from any sources and if so would you care to share? That might help us get a better idea of where you are coming from or what details you want to pick out.

Back on themes; you say thriller/horror but to me that means (as someone else said) cramped tight places. Then you contrast this with the vastness of space. That can work in the "in space no one can hear you scream" kind of way but if so then you REALLY need to play up the vastness of space. And if that is a driving theme then you need to take it to the nines. It can't just be the wizard did it kind of explanation for plot holes. If it is valid and always present then people will expect the explanation before you ever have to provide it. If it isn't a quick jump across the galaxy then that is important to highlight. Maybe food, fuel and other resources are important. Maybe [b]intelligence[b] is more important that getting someone wacked. Those details alone could explain why they are called contractors, a purview that is a little wider than what mercenaries (or bounty hunters) would typically do.

Sadly, if these kinds of things are true then it does change the paradigm a little. It would no longer focus on the military (though they would certainly have a strong presence) and is more about the intelligence, or similar aspects.

I would link this almost to Firefly wherein they were constantly running on fumes. And although the failed rebellion/separation was key in history the alliance plays a very minor role outside of enforcement. Firefly stays away from those Alliance dominated areas, and suffers through those encounters when absolutely necessary.

Based on this little description alone I would have no idea what the contracts DO. You say they get paid to clean up other people's mess. How do they do that? What tools do they possess that others lack? What kind of people. Why can't the military do that job?

Typically when you have a large and active military, especially in Scifi, the PCs will either be part of the organization or operate on the fringes outside direct influence. In PnP RPGs I would guess that this would largely depend on the party in question. I don't see, from "intro", what place the PCs have or why they are special or needed exactly.

Those are just some thoughts off the top of my head. Hopefully I'll have some time soon to sort through the info in the first post but I think I gave you somethings to think about or work on in the mean time.

Tovec
2013-01-27, 09:12 PM
Okay, actually started to read those linked files. Aside from some minor formatting, and I think a couple missing words, it looks fine. I only finished Major Factions and I have some comments and questions.

Are you set on the term: LSDF? Why not League Defense Fleet/Force instead of "Self-Defense". I don't see the rationale there.
Remember that "reminds me of halo" thing? Instances like LSDF (vs. UNSC) is possibly why.

Another note, is the AL your primary group? I get the feeling the players are supposed to know or interact with all these nations, but which is the primary one?

I think you need better names for the two branches of the LSDF. One deals with space and one with worlds, isn't much to go on. I'm not saying they have to be overly frilly, but something more fancy and less descriptive would probably help.

What (in practice) is the difference between MWG fleets and LSDF planetary command? Both seem to be in charge of protecting the of the member colonies. A change in how the two branches work might be that the space command is run by the "central authority" (a concept only partially covered from what I can see) and the planetary command being fully guaranteed under the command of the member colonies themselves. Kind of like the UN having a peacekeeping force while each county has their own army. I did like the part about the space command being made of the best parts from everywhere - that could explain how a UN type idea could really work.

Altair Federation - while explaining where the "federation" part of the name comes from is great, I think the history of how it "used to be but isn't anymore" is probably lost on the casual player. I would include aspects that highlight the "little more than a slave state" status quo it has become.

Dominated by companies, but we know little about them? Why isn't there revolt? What keeps citizens down? How about member worlds for that matter?
Why do the companies rule, how do they rule? I can recall a few instances where companies would be in charge, and in those cases the government typically needed help from the companies and so they were able to creep in and take over areas that were normally government run. This could be how you do it - with the companies able to afford to run the economy, the military, civil/public sectors as well as pretty much writing their own laws.

In this case you really need to define the difference between the haves and have-nots. How do the haves ever define their position, what makes them the haves. What makes the haves better or more worthy to be the haves? Can the have-nots break into that echelon?

The federal fleet - you say they have thousands of ships, but this doesn't mean much when we don't know the size, scope or scale of anything in the galaxy/universe that you are talking about. You say the AL have fifteen hundred (I assume you meant systems) and if the federation is roughly the same size that would mean there is little more than 1 ship per world on average. That doesn't seem like a lot.

I would suggest that if that is the case, that the federation ships are less ships and more flying stardocks. They are (star wars) imperial star destroyers compared to the (star trek) NCC series ships. They are massive compared to other ships and are used as their own mini-worlds or at least as trading hubs. They are meant to intimidate and dominate and to keep member worlds in line. They can lay waste to their enemy, but they cannot be easily moved or maneuvered. (Providing an option for smaller [read: PC] ships to escape them at times.)

When you talk of the Federal Planetary Force you talk about armies in terms of ground troops. This seems odd after reading all that came before it.

UEM: Right off the bat, why are they the UE of Mankind? The AL and AF are both Human. What differentiates human from mankind? What are they unified after? (Unified usually stemming from a time when they were un-unified or disassociated - in this case they were newly formed and formatteded, instead of reformed/reunited.) Would they have no other name for the empire beyond "empire" otherwise? You say "Cygnusian" that seems like a decent name for the empire, Cygnusian Empire. Not having a name but solely a title seems odd, from a historical perspective. It would be equally odd if it were simply called "alliance". Similarly, from the description, why isn't it called the 'alliance' or 'federation' as opposed to the 'empire'?

You say the UEM has become the galactic juggernaut, but what makes them so appealing over the corporate run AF or the "freer" AL? Especially when there is still a noble class and such strict regulations which must absolutely be followed? How are these regulations enforced?

Again, with the Unified Army, what role does this billion man army serve in a game with spaceships? If the UEM is so much larger and more powerful and with more people and ships, why haven't they dominated the AF and AL?

I don't know what this means: "The UID answers solely to the Chairperson of the council and is guaranteed by Imperial charter to receive an operational budget large enough to carry out their duties."
Why is it necessary they have a guaranteed operational budget? What happens if their 'duty' requires a HUGE increase in funds?

CR: Nothing much to say, seems good and managable. Consider coming up with a term for people who are Cassandra .. Cassandrian? IDK its your setting.

Republican, Federation, League (Leaguers, I'm guessing) and Imperials. You have a wide array of government styles, even though they all seem to be very "alliance-y" to me. You seem to have a decent grasp on the highest tiers of the civilizations, but this doesn't really seem to fit with the wish of "horror" you are looking for. I can't see it being overly necessary to know that the empire has four branches of the military, when fighting for your life on some forgotten rock or abandoned space station.

Also, if space is so big, then what motivations do these civilizations have for interacting with one another. You are talking about thousands of worlds in each group, that is a LOT. Especially since the year isn't too far advanced from our own - I haven't read the history file yet so maybe it is, in which case disregard.