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Let's imagine Space Crusade story

Kriegspiel's picture

As nothing has been published yet on SC and I don't like playing Anonymous model in the middle of nowhere
(just as unpainted miniatures on a nude gaming table LOL) I started thinking about how SC Universe (or at least the planet of the missions I imagine) would look like


The Space Crusade I depict is happening of a currently terraforming Mars. This mean that in most of the surface you can breath of at least just need additional oxygen (like the alpinist climbing the Everest) rather than a full space suite.
During this colonization, explorer found some ancient civilization the same that built the famous martian canals (well actually they only just modify some rivers natural path).
To have an idea of what happen just watch John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars...

Anyway since their was no "martian alien" expected, the human had very few soldiers. Most of them were colonist families of engineers, technician, medic scientist,... who had to quickly form a militia.
Since space travel from Earth to Mars is still long and expensive, sending troop & tanks from Earth was also not an option.
As the colonist were chosen because of their desire of building family (the goal was to populate Mars with highly instructed people with no genetic disease rather than transferring Earth uneducated population and his genetic problem) most of the woman were already pregnant or breast feeding their children when the ancient demon of Mars revealed. So most of the militia was male. Quite in good health (as you must to survive the space travel and the low oxygen level of Mars) but not selected to be warriors so they decided to create enhanced, boosted human BUT using cybernetic rather than genetic.


The Crusader are cyborg based on human female.
Why not male?
Well some studies (that many people didn't approved) suggested that "boosting" several male in a cyborg would give him the temptation of making a "Coup d'état" while the risk would be less for female since human history has more male dictators & tyran than female ones. Moreover, the experience proved that their was some conflict between normal & boosted soldier: the first refusing to follow the seconds during assault arguing they would do it if they were boosted too.
When boosted female were involved, the male soldier were more likely to follow them thinking unconsciously that even boosted a woman will still require some strong male aside.
Despite it is not a criteria, most of the Crusaders women who are sterile or subject to miscarriage, naturally, because of Mars condition or by operation after giving birth to enought children.
Therefore they have tendency to consider weaker non cyber enhanced human as (the) children they (didn't and will never have) to protect rather than subject to dominate.

Why in bikini ?
The Crusader torso doesn't need any armor since their skin as been replace by an artifical one similar to XXI century Kevlar textile, with some kind of titanium plate underneath, since they have to quickly wear their limb armor, removing shirt and trouser will be a waste of time. Moreover keeping cloth inside the armor just jam it and prevent contact with the control electrods, therefore swinsuit like skimpy uniform was a prefered solution than painting the body in martian camo (yet some crusader paint tatoo eqivalent on they body.
Their skull as well is partially replace as the Crusader transformation include a trepanation in order to had some processor and memory chips in the brain.

Why with armored collar, arms and legs?
Only bone and muscle of the spinal, skull, shoulder and hips were replaced by cyber equivalent for 3 reasons:
- cost: not full cyber replacement cost more than partial one
- technology the human medical technology is very efficient for replacing severed, burn or crush arms and legs so standard civilian procedure & equipment may regenerate in few hours a fully biolological arm while a cyber arm would need specific devices
- ennemy attack mode: most of the smaller creature bites, focus on legs when the stay on ground, when they jump or when larger blows with axes or sword, they focus on the arms or the neck
- suspiciousness of people reluctant to the Crusader project: having protected an adapted to Martian condition "cyber-girls" OK, but having some vixens able to jump other fences, run faster than police cars, destroying a concrete wall with a single punch NO
Therefore the legs and the arms enhancement was to be done on parts that, like any other weapon or vehicule could be locked in armoury when not in duty.
Even some of the brain chips are removable.
- compatibility with existing hardware: as said before the colonist were not supposed to encounter any foes (and didn't actually encounter any during the 1st generation) so all their exoskeletons (like Ribley one in Aliens and the AvP ones) gave them enought strenght to hurl boulders, walk with car engine in arm but didn't possess any armor plate. As this is not a problem for Crusader, leaving them with standard human arms fitting to the machine, body able to enter in any chem suit, rather than giving them arms that have the diameter of a bear leg was a wize choice
- making their own weapon incompatible with civilians
in addition of their body Crusaders will also need chainsaw sword, powerful gun, rocket launcher, vehicules with guns... well all these things that cause so many victims during inter-human war. Nobody wanted the risk of having the standard human stealing one for some terrorist use, so Crusader weapons were designed for big hands, their motorbike for large feet making them very cumbersome to use without a crusader suit. (*)

- the cyber string that control the leg is of course unwearable for a male.

Why calling them Crusaders? maybe because the 1st witness of the native martian understood them as of demonic nature and were from christian culture. Therefore the war against them was simply like a (Space) Crusade.


They are basically like Crusaders devoted for scouting, long range patrol and raiding. As explained before in order to avoid everybody to be able to use their armored motorbike (particularly if he is a possessed colonist), it cannot be driven properly without the Amazone armored gloves. Gloves are of course not functional unless worn on an Amazon cyberskin.
As opposed to Crusader who have tendancy to live like templar warrior nuns, the Amazones are somewhat more rebel and independant, "born to be wild" therefore they are more efficient when deployed in smaller units with larger autonomy.


Not every martian discovery is bound to be evil ones (but player will notice it in their future missions) some artefacts to be discovered will strangely reveal to be carved with germanic/norse runes! Did the Aesirs worshipped by the Viking came from Mars? Was Mars the Walhalla or Asgard? Odin was the god of war in Norse culture just as Mars was in Roman one so why not.
Or maybe the lords of Asgard just had some conflict with the martian one and the weapons were just the one of fallen Asgard fighter?
Whatever their origin, these weapon have not only been proven quite effective against martian native and possessed human but seems also feared by them since even if the owner is killed, his slayer is reluctant to use them even if short of ammunition or when his own weapons are destroyed.
Since these weapon are close combat ones, the colonist had to find a way to quickly move the fighter in melee, over any obstacle of lesser swarm creature. Flying rocket pack with wing like stabilisator appeared to be the most suitable system.

After using the runic weapon a certain amount of time, the owner personnality seems to change.
Not only she seems to lose any fear about death, but also seems to seek it in combat. She also show some knowledge about the precedent owner of the weapon, even if no cyber chip has been transfered from one to another, just like if a part of the owner soul remains in the weapon after her death.
Soul preservation seem to be the main concern since the weapon owner has tendancies to achieve her wounded comrade rather than risking them been captured and possessed by the ennemy. Strangely, maybe because of their angelic appeareance, according to recorded videos the wounded seems not only to accept this euthanasy but also to be willing it and sometimes pleased to received it.
Maybe the weapon produce some kind of radiation that acts like morphin when penetrating the body.
Anyway as everything make the cyborg using the runic weapon like the Valkyrie harvesting warriors soul on dark ages battlefield, this name was given to them


Some possessed colonist have gone completly rampage while wearing exoskeleton
Since human were not willing to kill their own and had little way to stop the exoskeleton, it was decide to train some Crusader with more powerfull armor than the standard one and to equip them with big hammers to make the mecha out of order without damaging (too much) the pilot (something quite difficult with the Crusader standard rocket...)
As the possessed civilian were most of the time only able to swing arms, extra armor was not necessary, but a shield to protect the other civilian was.


For the extreme case (like a possessed civilian driving a bulldozer) the humans must be able to act quickly.
Therefore a powerfull macha was built. This mecha may only be command by somebody with a dedicated cybership in her brain.
This way neither a standard civilian nore a possessed crusader may pilot it (possession alter brain wave making the ship unusable)
As Artemis mecha are not supposed to go on mission (too slow to move large distance them selves, to cumbersome to be quickly transport, too big to explore ruins, caves or bases) they don't need to be able to fight against foes with range weapons, so there is no need for an armored cockpit not even a cockpit at all since the Cyborg are protected enought. This is quite an advantage not to waste time "opening" the door when a cyborg should quicly connect with it. Remote control option could also be activated by a stand human to initiate the connection with the cyborg but this option is rarely used since it could be sensitive to interference.
Of course cyborg legs are vulnerable parts but as human technology is able to make new limbs growing in just several hours, loosing a leg in a battle is no more dramatic than breacking a finger nail for a cyborg that can automatically stop the hemoragy thanks to her cyber valves.

(*) Previously I wrote:

[Note that a standard human cannot wear a Crusader suit because without a cyber spine, your back with not be able to support the collar and arm weight and, without the cyber hips he will not be able to lift his feet from the ground. ]
but actually, according to wikipedia
"Mars is less dense than Earth, having about 15% of Earth's volume and 11% of Earth's mass, resulting in about 38% of Earth's surface gravity"
therefore, a 60kg girl would feel, naked 0.38*60=22kg this means if you consider that on earth her head, shoulder and arms weight a third of 60kg on her spine, this means 20kg, as this represents around 7.6 kg on Mars, she can handle the feeling of 12.4 kg that mean 12.4/0.38=32Kg ! So no need for artifical spine, for somebody coming from Earth. However if born on Mars, she would have needed some training since her birth to prevent some atrophy.
So perhaps Mars may not be the best planet to settle SC except if artifical gravity system exists.
Maybe Venus on which gravity is 0.904 g?


Kriegspiel's picture


Usually same problems are resolve with the same resolution and same environments give birth to the same culture.
In the times Mars rivers were wet and atmosphere breathable, the humanoid probably found also the need for altered version of them.
However intead of cybernetic, they rely on mutation, unnatural cross-breeding that lead to humanoid female with light purple grey skin and horns that needed to be fully effective armor parts with some spikes demonic symbols on them.

Another theory is that they are the corrupted form of the Crusader. Maybe the truth is a mix of two: their body being any woman (either a Crusader or a civilian colonist) and their fire arms the Crusader ones (with some additional paint and carving) while their armor some martian artifact since it quite doubtfull the human locked cybernetic device could be "possesses"

Concerning possession, it's still unclear wether the female get possessed by the martian entity who makes her wearing the armor OR if somebody (or something that could be the armor itself) force the woman to wear the armor and THEN only once worn the armor starts possession the body Inside.


The first mission will give the Crusader valuable information about MABS as they will witness the transformation process of an human prisonner (actually an Amazone, but any female could be victim of it) that is something between the damnation of a Cenobite in Helraiser 2
and the Dark Symetry process for creating a legionary in Mutant Chronicles

Just as in the 1990 movie HARDWARE ( ) the MAB's exoskeleton known as B.U.R.K.A. is able to rebuilt itself.

The MAB is the combination of a human "host" with this cyber parasite which name is an acronym of:
- Battlefield
- Universal
- Robotic
- Kinesic
- Androïde

One a the most difficult think when programming a robot his to teach it to walk everywhere : not only flat hard floor but mud, stairs, sand dune,... by instinct all animal walk on 4 legs. Human babies despite thousand generations still need several month to adapt to bipedal move before it become an instictive movement. To solve this problem mad cyber-wizard choose to use human as spare part to deal with the waliking process: the exoskeleton orders the human to walk and the human nerve system controls the exoskeleton limbs intead of his.

B.U.R.K.A. just need the human skull and spinal to work. of course having the trunk and the head is mandatory to keep it alive a little longer.

Without a human "host" the BURKA can only crawl on the floor.

In order to use the human, MAB's creators have first to brain wash and break will. The reason BURKA is linked to female rather than male is that a part of the connection use a bio-cybernetic placenta. Since the BURKA has a biologic part (*) it must rely on the host digestive system to be fed like an human foetus relies on his pregnant mother.

The secondary effect the fusion with BURKA is similar to pregnancy (breast size increasement, affective relationship via the placenta, end of menstruation,,..) except from the host belly doesn't go bigger as the foetus is replaced by the BURKA exo-skeletton.

To a certain extent, this fusion with a woman could be considered a rape and the B.U.R.K.A. nothing else than a way to change a woman in a submissive automaton.

Moreover in the case of cyborg like Crusaders, Valkyries or Amazons, it's not impossible that the exoskeleton attempt to recycle the cybernetic parts of her to build a copy of itself like in a reproduction process.

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