This isn't another RDNA-verse, but something that might interest you anyway! The DeviantArt link can be found here
. It's a quick take on the classic Legend of Galactic Heroes
, which also serves as a map adaptation of this scenario-profile from 2013
-inspired work, though written before the current Die Neue These
anime was even conceived, still holds up pretty well. But while this meant minimal editing and polishing, the map itself also provided a bit of a challenge in trying to map out the setting (even with the extensive lore) into a wider galaxy map. In addition, the flags used, which combine both the original OVAs and DNT, come from Reddit (Imperial flag
, Alliance flag
). Still, it's a pleasure to both work on this and to revisit another sci-fi favorite.
Also, just to be on the safe side, this is a work of fiction. This is not meant to be a political or ideological screed. All rights belong to their respective owners.
With all that said, hope you enjoy this trip into the future...with foppery and whim.
Legend of Galactic Heroes: A Profile of the Future
“In every time, in every place, the deeds of men remain the same…”
In the Year of Our Lord 2039, in a galaxy much like our own, whole cities and entire nations were wiped out in what came to be called the Thirteen Day War. No one knows who fired first, but the generations-long aftermath of the nuclear dark ages that followed would have far-reaching consequences. By AD 2129, the United Earth Government was established in Brisbane, Australia, bringing together the shattered remnants of civilization. For the first time in history, all mankind was unified as one species. This was further solidified as people sallied forth into the Solar System and beyond. The oneness of men, however, could only go so far before human nature and history once more rear their heads . In due time, the burgeoning space colonists grew restless with United Earth. Tensions and calls for independence soon escalated to outright conflict on an interplanetary scale. The ensuing "Earth-Sirius War" reduced Sol's significance altogether as power moved to Sirius and the other colonies. Centuries of further bloodshed and upheavals followed before the colonial states forged the Galactic Federation in AD 2801, ushering in a golden age for mankind.
All that is in itself history now. Know that it’s the year 488 of the Imperial Calendar. Alternatively, 797 if one follows the Universal Calendar. Those still abiding by the Gregorian one and its secular offshoots would recognize it as 3597, for all such technicalities matter these days. Over more than a thousand years, the human race has expanded to settle a sizable portion of the galaxy, thanks in part to advances in terraforming and FTL engines opening up the stars themselves. Yet the cosmos remains at war as two dominant powers vie for supremacy and humanity’s future: the Galaktische Kaiserreich
and the democratic Free Planets Alliance.
The Galaktische Kaiserreich
, commonly known as the Galactic Empire, the Reich
or simply “The Empire” is an absolute monarchy that rose from the ashes of an increasingly decadent and crumbling Galactic Federation. As the aforementioned golden age succumed to turmoil and social malaise over time, an ambitious man by the name of Rudolf von Goldenbaum rose to power. Promising a return to order and vitality for the species, this eventually led to him proclaiming himself Kaiser in a manner not too dissimilar to a certain megalomaniac from old Europe. Perhaps influenced by der Fuhrer
, however, he sought to base his new realm on various Germanic influences, with Prussia given precedence. While most people were initially supportive of his crusade, it wasn’t long before he enforced a grandiose “Master Race” and eugenics program that made the Holocaust seem almost trivial in its scale. But though such ghosts of Nazism faded away since the death of the ruling Dynasty’s founder, his legacy remains very evident to this day.
The vast majority are at least of partial Germanic ancestry, including those of Scandinavian or Nordic descent, and overwhelmingly "white" by old Earth standards. The predominant culture, meanwhile, could be best described as Prussian with elements of other European, mainly German customs from the 18th-19th Centuries AD. A repurposed version of Norse mythology has long replaced Christianity as the main religion, though piety is not particularly emphasized outside from the constant references to Odin, Valhalla and Valkyries; coincidentally, the Imperial capital world is also named Odin, situated in the Valhalla Starzone. Feudalism has once more become the order of the day, further strengthening a decadent aristocracy run by conniving, self-absorbed nobles, although a handful of houses still uphold ideals of Noblesse Oblige
and alongside commoners, long for reform. Coupled with the caste system established by Kaiser Rudolf, this has served to keep the status quo nigh constant for well over four centuries, even at the cost of encouraging incompetence and entitlement over actual talent. Still, this is a state where honor, order and tradition remain highly regarded, at least in theory.
The story behind the Free Planets Alliance, also known as the FPA or simply the “Alliance” is noteworthy as well. Its origins could be traced to around the 150s IC. Arle Heinessen, a brilliant activist and political figure was said to have escaped the frontier labor camp he was on with thousands of others. Finding an isolated spot off-world away from Imperial eyes, he and his growing number of supporters built what came to be called the "Exile Fleet" with which to leave the Reich
altogether in search for a new home. It would be years of hardship and near-failures, though before those bold pioneers and their descendants found a habitable world that would be named in his memory. Free from Imperial bondage, they forged a republic that would expand exponentially.
Unlike the Imperials, the Alliance retains the Universal Calendar system of the old Galactic Federation, of which it holds direct legitimacy from. The FPA's populace is a melting pot of different ethnicities old and new; though many are descended from the original pioneers, following contact (and conflict) with the Empire in 640 UC, a mass influx of Imperial exiles and other “undesirables” led to a population boom like no other. In terms of culture and politics, their society is very reminiscent of the United States and European Union from the era leading up to the Thirteen Day War. Meanwhile, in light of its principles and the nature of FTL travel, federal autonomy prevails over many Alliance worlds. Beneath the surface, however, though democracy is non-negotiable for Alliance citizens, all is not well. The ideals and dedication behind the government's founding in time gave way to corruption and a rotting, opportunistic bureaucracy. Combined with the strains of war and growing uncertainty, it could seem barely functioning. and increasingly less so with each passing year. Nonetheless, the people would rather have all those flaws than lose their freedom, equality and fraternity.
Most if not all planets in the known, “settled” universe are under either power’s control. The nominally Imperial world of Fezzan, however, serves as a kind of neutral buffer thanks to its significant autonomy, though its opportunistic merchants and corporations may have other plans. Technology, meanwhile, hasn’t advanced all that much since the days of the Galactic Federation or even United Earth. Energy weapons have long since become commonplace, though haven’t replaced old-fashioned solid ordinance and even melee weapons; following advances in EMP-based countermeasures and a botched attempt at creating fully automated armies at some point in the past, AI never really caught on outside of computers. Neither have languages significantly changed in all that time. The German and English used in the Reich
and FPA respectively (or at least their formal versions) would still be recognizable to someone from 1,500 years in the past, if somewhat “mangled.”
Thus, for well over a century, these two interstellar powers, each with their own ideals and visions of a just society, have struggled over mankind’s future. While the use of nuclear weapons remains taboo, many lives continue to perish in a seemingly endless cycle of violence on and off-world. Across stars and around orbital spaces, whole fleets of starships wage battle over ranges, scales and even casualties dwarfing anything their common ancestors on Earth could have ever imagined. But changes, if supposedly small ones are coming.
A talented nobleman by the name of Reinhard von Lohengramm has risen up the ranks by his own hand to become one of the youngest admirals in the Reich
’s history; he and his comrades however have much larger plans for the Empire at the expense of the still-ruling Goldenbaums. Meanwhile, Yang Wen-li, a reluctant historian-turned military officer and his network of allies in the Alliance military grow increasingly influential to their growing concern. Already these two individuals are (directly or otherwise) shaping the course not just the war but possibly human civilization itself. Perhaps, as some are suggesting, a new Götterdämmerung
may very be upon the universe in these Wagnerian times.
All the while, rumors abound from a certain backwater planet in the original Solar System. Humanity’s homeworld had long slid into obscurity after the collapse of United Earth. No one’s really certain, but those who remained after tht foe bloody fall either lefr greener pastures or splintered in an orgy of constant fighting. That was, until a strange faith known as the Terraist Church emerged and united many of the survivors. Combining various religious beliefs, warped memories of Earth’s former glory and the repurposed symbolism of the “Pale Blue Dot,” this cult has managed to establish branches in both the Empire and Alliance. While the specifics elude both sides, it’s evident that these would-be fanatics have their own designs for the human race, along with a vested interest in what those who may seize the universe.
Elsewhere though, in a nondescript estate in Odin, such conspiracies and events fall by the wayside as an albino Imperial officer pays his respects to an unmarked monument; it is the only time in a year that this otherwise boisterous embodiment of the Reich
's principles does so. Hidden underneath are a pair of long-broken glasses, a rusting Iron Cross and a rotted flower, all encased in special glass. Their symbolism is lost to time...but not to this man. He had after all seen history unfold on Earth.
He was there...
For those curious, the German text and translation (taken from the original OVAs) are as follows:
Zu Jeder Zeit
An Jedem Ort
Bleibt Das Tun
Der Menschen Das Gleiche
(In every time, in every place, the deeds of men remain the same)