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Discovered OA a few days ago, amazed and happy!
So, as I promised, a more complete explanation - Pantellia really is weirdly like a microcosm of Orion's Arm in a lot of ways, and I am amazed that you guys came up with ideas so similar to mine so long before I did. I am particularly amazed at the existence of Bullseye (which is similar to Pantellia in its general structure) and Hobo Sapiens (which is like the spider-people of Pantellia, who live beneath the hurricane).

Btw here's another Reddit link I forgot:

One of my earliest ideas had the Ancients as human beings from Earth who had colonized this planet long ago but went mostly extinct there due to a catastrophe, and over time evolved into the Demaren; I eventually scrapped that in favor of a completely non-Earth-related world because I thought the trope of humans being responsible for everything interesting was overused in sci fi. Now I wonder if I should add something like that back in. However, I know that the pseudo-cephalopod Ancients definitely were the ones responsible for most of Pantellian history, and they existed about a million years ago. If Terragens have had any effect then it would have been very recently, and Demaren are a very old species so... unlikely they would have been responsible for the existence of the entire species.

My explanation is, the Mabelen (draconic word for the fungus-internet uploads / virtuals who are ultimately derived from Ancients) deities, who are effectively SI:1+ entities and considered gods, and who for thousands of years now since their partial reawakening have been using their spore-based biotech to modify the evolution of all other bionts on the planet, have been experimenting for a long time with every single body shape and combination of genetics they can come up with, and found the vaguely humanoid shape of the Demaren to be a rather effective form (derived from a brachiating species with which they spliced other genes), so they used it, but other beings have other forms.

The fact is, the fungus-bioborg-gods have been provolving nearly every species that already had some sentience for thousands of years, which is why there are so many sapient species and so many variants of each one. Pantellia is almost an envome of sorts, in that a single species, the Mabelen, the genetically modified fungal generation of the Ancients, exists in numerous reengineered forms across the planet in a set of sapient networks which themselves are linked into even higher-toposophic networks and which pretty much have had free reign since they recovered from the Great War to manipulate life on the planet as they see fit, primarily in an arms race against one another - each sapient "provolve" species has a particular "god" as its patron and designer (some of which themselves are ascended members of provolved species who joined the Fungus-Network) and each such god wants to gain power above all the other ones, using their race to achieve that.

There is a massive preponderance of distinct sapient species all of which are endemic to Pantellia, because the Mabelen manipulated evolution so much and purposefully created them in order to maximize diversity - one of the Mabelen in particular in fact, the most powerful - Mab, a "mother goddess" of sorts, after whom they are named. Her true form (in one of the many fungal virchspaces, in which she lives) is a terrifying Lovecraftian entity merging every biological pattern imaginable, but she usually manifests to lower entities (through spore-transmitted wireless telepathy) in forms which seem familiar but still divine - like a woman made of flowers or a dragon composed of rainbow flames.

Note, I have had these ideas for years - I only discovered OA a few days ago. I am amazed at the similarities.

I'm not sure how to merge Pantellia in with the rest of OA though. I think they should be recently discovered, suggesting that this system is on the outer edge of the Terragen Sphere; and through the Mabelen's interventions nobody has yet been able to successfully colonize them (reports say that all ships and probes are eaten entirely by spores and corrosive bionano entities before they even reach the ground). The various Mabelen have the same sort of relations that the Archai do but on a planetary scale - always vying for power and having wildly different views of reality - but they would be united in the idea that no non-Pantellians have the right to dictate anything to them. I am considering that the Ancients may possibly have been on the verge of space travel when they (or rather, all of them that weren't uploaded) were wiped out, and so perhaps the various sapient races are going to reverse engineer whatever technology they've left behind...

I think that if they do join Terragen society the various Pantellian races will probably gravitate primarily towards the Zoeific Biopolity, though the dragons would be more inclined towards the Solar Dominion due to their monotheistic belief in the Worldflame (aka the sun of Pantellia, Lurix - one of the many weird synchronicities is that much like the people on Bullseye, the dragons of Pantellia hold the eye of the Everstorm to be a sacred place and go on pilgrimages to view the sun there). I think they would reject the God-Emperor however, partly because he resembles a demar (the Demaren have been enslaved by the dragons for centuries in some areas and there is immense racism) and partly because they are HEAVILY monotheistic and resist any concept of messiahs or divine avatars - saints, perhaps, but no more.

As for the other races... the Kgelthri, the "frogfolk" or amphibious folk native to the swamplands of the tropical-equatorial band of eternal rainfall; the Delemnaya or naiads/merfolk (offshoots of Demaren who were spliced with amphibious genetics early in their history before complete provolution by the Mabelen); the Ursa or bearfolk; the Aneictha-Se or spiderfolk; and of course the phoenixes (parthenogenic offshoots of the dragons) - I have no idea what places they would choose in society because I haven't developed them enough yet. They all have interesting stories though that I am working on, and the world's history is also in (slow) development - eventually I'll get around to serious geology, geography, and biology as well. Too much to do. I think even now though there is room for a basic article on Pantellia - I even know some statistics about it and its star and moon - I just have to get it all together. I probably should make a post about all this in the appropriate subforum...

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RE: Discovered OA a few days ago, amazed and happy! - by syzithryx - 08-11-2017, 11:51 AM

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