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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning
Taking notes

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upload_2018-3-21_11-43-59.png

When my advisers first suggested that I should start taking notes for my memoirs I kicked them out of my office.
However after a good night of sleep I started seeing the merit of their idea.

Where does one start?

I studied physical chemistry but switched to the administrative path only a few years after acquiring my doctorate.
My mother had been in control of the most influential female pack since before I was born and with her help I became head administrator of my alma matter.
When the time came to elect a ruler for our entire planet my mother and I had already acquired the allegiance of most female packs on the planet.
The males packs were, as always, disorganized and of no importance.

When the first ship entered a hyperlane I already ruled unopposed.
upload_2018-3-21_12-13-22.png
 
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Good luck to the foxes of Kettu. :)
 

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May Inki lead her people well
 
The Great Unknown

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I still remember how perplexed our scientist were about the hyperlane network.
The network was incredible easy to map and it was discovered that it connected exactly one thousand systems.
Countless other stars existed but they were as good as unreachable in a reasonable timeframe.
The map we started using from that day on only shows systems connected to the network.
I cut all funding to STL probe exploration on that day.
Some astronomers monitor unconnected stars for signs of supernova activity but apart from that we ignore them.
upload_2018-3-25_18-27-3.png

Early in my reign I focused on the expansion of the mining industry on Aro.
Thanks to our robots a lack of a labor force was never a problem.

Signs of ancient xeno powers were discovered just one jump from Aro.
upload_2018-3-25_18-37-27.png
upload_2018-3-25_18-44-36.png
I ordered the construction of even more science ships when I read these reports.

Shortly afterwards we established contact with a space station under the control of ancient and advanced xenos.
They offered sharing their arts and culture with us but at that time I could not spare the funds.
upload_2018-3-25_18-46-19.png

There was however the male problem.
I tried me best to give promising male savants a chance but more often than not they disappointed me.
upload_2018-3-25_18-48-29.png
That was not the main problem however and in time some savant males would became incredible good scientists, governors and admirals.

The main problem was the lack of volunteers for our colonization project.
No matter what I tried we did not get enough males to form a proper male pack.
I guess it will be distant history for the people reading my memoirs but my mother lived through the horrible wars caused by the mixed pack extremists.
No Kettu stays completely sane if he or she spends too much time near members of the other gender.
Even worse Kettu which grow up with members of the other gender turn into bloodthirsty abominations.
Only the invention of remote work allowed the cooperation of males and females outside of mating season.

Most males had not interest in abandoning their pleasant lives full of art, hunt and contemplation.

In the end I gave up and ordered our scientists to focus their research on artificial intelligence.
My plan from that day on was to establish mining colonies in other systems without the help of the males.

I knew that we needed a strong economy to survive.
We had made first contact with another star empire.
upload_2018-3-25_19-15-16.png
upload_2018-3-25_19-16-19.png
 
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Oh great. What lovely neighbours.
 

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Uh oh. Pleasant neighbours to have...
 
The Golden Age of Exploration

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In 2211 we faced our first crisis as a group of mixed pack extremists decided to play pirates.
Our fleet under the command of the male savant Abil, son of Gabb destroyed their fleet and annihilated their base.
Lives were lost on mining stations but thankfully none of our own vessel were lost.
The pirates themselves were beyond rehabilitation.
upload_2018-3-27_10-8-4.png

By 2220 we explored part of our spiral arm and even sent scouts to two other arms.
We also made contact with a powerful empire of weird machines.
Despite our hopes they were not interested in conventional diplomacy and unwilling to aid us against the Savix'Qast.

A powerful and enigmatic space station was also discovered not far from Aro.
I declared the system off limits.
upload_2018-3-27_10-10-32.png

With space amoebas blocking one route and the Savix'Qast blocking another exploration of the spiral arm coreward of Aro was the main focus of our exploration fleet although some ships were also deployed on the far side of the Omin Continuum.

I initiated a survey of habitable planets which as completed in the year 2227.
upload_2018-3-27_10-23-40.png

Our science ships encountered a number of hostile spaceborne lifeforms but by 2225 our fleet was strong enough to deal with them.
I sent Abil, son of Gabb on a mission to remove space amoebas and void clouds from a number of systems and he succeeded.
upload_2018-3-27_10-26-4.png


In the meantime I had ordered the construction of a bastion-class station in the Okul system.
According to their very own words the Savix'Qast wanted to exterminate us and I would not allow that to happen.
upload_2018-3-27_10-28-42.png


A powerful ship was built for us by an automated shipyard.
It was much slower than our corvettes and it was sent to the Okul system to bolster our defense there.
upload_2018-3-27_10-33-17.png


By 2230 our AI experts had improved our technology sufficiently and I ordered to construction of droid crewed colony ships.
upload_2018-3-27_10-34-7.png
 

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stnylan

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Those droids will no doubt come in useful against the bloodthirsty neighbours.
 

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Lyctabon seems like a most decent chokepoint, with Okul serving as a backup.
 
The Dawn of Diplomacy

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For a long time things looked bleak on the Xeno side of things.

Our third contact was another ancient power. Not machines this time but the Xenophopes of the Frubralav Remnant wanted nothing to do with us.

The Bilonc had successfully hacked into the Savix'Qast communicating network and contacted us in the year 2231.
Some of their views were antiquated but I was sure that we could work around that as they were a peaceful people.
I traded communications with them and established contacted with another species.
The Mathin were a warlike species and meaningful diplomacy was rather difficult with them.
upload_2018-3-29_22-3-50.png

With threatening powers on both sides of their empire we signed a pact of non-aggression with the Bilnoc.
upload_2018-3-29_22-7-14.png

The year 2231 was a great year in general as the study of an object from a higher dimension provided us with an incredible amount of useful information.
upload_2018-3-29_22-9-7.png

Our explorers were doing an incredible job.
They study of ancient mining drones discovered in the year 2233 increased our mineral output by as much 25%!
upload_2018-3-29_22-13-55.png


In the year 2233 we established contact with another star empire.
The Heejam were extremely conservative but diplomacy, even if difficult at first, was at least possible with them.
Their territory was pretty far away from ours and I focused our diplomatic efforts on the Bilnoc.

upload_2018-3-29_22-17-30.png

We started to export all of our excess food to the Bilnoc to aid their colonization efforts. Because of that the Archprophetess and I had become good friends by the end of 2233.
upload_2018-3-29_22-26-2.png

While we were busy establishing as many peaceful diplomatic relationships as possible our first droid colony ships had reached their destinations.
Soon we would have all the minerals we needed.
upload_2018-3-29_22-34-11.png
 

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You are not overburdened with pleasant neighbours.
 

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Colonies! Those will come in handy.
 
The 2nd Golden Age of Exploration

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Around 2245 I started thinking about decreasing the funding of our exploration fleet.
I thought that after the administrative center of the First League was discovered other discoveries would pale in comparison.
In the end I decided against it.
upload_2018-3-31_19-41-53.png

By 2250 multiple mining colonies had been established on my orders.
We also signed a defensive pact with the Bilnoc.
upload_2018-3-31_19-35-26.png

To my surprise the exploration fleet still made some useful discoveries.
upload_2018-3-31_19-38-20.png
upload_2018-3-31_19-38-50.png
A short time after we returned that book we were able to sign a pact of non-aggression with the Heejam.

We even found the copies of ancient xeno minds.
I forbade our scientists any attempts at uploading for the time being as our droids were still far from perfect and booting a mind in such flawed machines seemed unnecessarily cruel.
They could wait for a few more years.
upload_2018-3-31_19-43-1.png

One fascinating report after another landed on my desk.
upload_2018-3-31_19-45-49.png

I must admit I was tempted to keep the elixir of life for me and my most trusted advisers but in the end I decided against it. There were other paths to eternal life and I was still young.
upload_2018-3-31_19-47-11.png

One the westside of the galaxy a broken ringworld was discovered.
It was far away but a wormhole which connected to that part of the galaxy was not far from our territory.
I changed my expansion plans accordingly.
upload_2018-3-31_19-51-49.png

In 2275 the Bilnoc wanted to form a Federation with us.
Our economy was not strong enough to support a federation fleet and I decided to decline that offer.
upload_2018-3-31_19-53-59.png

It was a surprise to me when the Omni Continuum contacted us.
Their offer seemed to good to refuse.
upload_2018-3-31_19-57-33.png

By 2280 things looked bright.
The Heejam respected the non-aggression pact and the fleets of the Savix'Qast were no threat to the Bilnoc and us.
The Savix'Qast respected our superior firepower despite their bluster and hostility.
They were a crazy people but not suicidal.
The Mathin refrained from attacking the Bilnoc too.
upload_2018-3-31_19-59-20.png
 

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stnylan

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All seems incredibly positive.
 
The Shadow of Ukna

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I always I took good care of my people and I believe that my mother would have been proud of me in that regard.
A strong economy, powerful fleets and peace were always my main goals.
But I had personal goals too.

My mother still had some good years ahead of her back when we worked together to get myself elected and her advice was always welcome in the years that followed.
She died more than fifty years ago.
I still believe that I would have disappointed her in the end.

She was part of an ancient breed and future generations were of utmost importance to her.
When I was born most females had two or three children before they turned a hundred years old.
I enjoy the mating season like any other healthy female but I always took precautions and because of that none of my trysts resulted in children.
When I was in my sixties and seventies I still thought about children but there was another dream that was bigger.

I wanted to live as long as possible.

That seemed like hubris to some of my advisers but I had studied the limited historical information the curator order provided about previous civilizations.
There were not many details but there was mention of seemingly eternal, now long dead, god-emperors ruling vast empires for millennia.
There were also tales of entire species leaving their organic bodies and with it age, death and decay behind.

I welcomed things that prolonged the life of my entire species and in the year 2288 all of us started to feel to positive effects of the Caretaker inoculations. Our own advancements in genetic engineering extended Kettu lives even further.
I still dreamed of more.
upload_2018-4-1_14-0-50.png

Just a few more years were not an option for me.
I was willing to share the gift of the Tree because I already knew there were far superior ways to prolong life

I dreamed of becoming like one of the ancient god-emperors, immortal with incredible psychic powers.
My people found it difficult to believe in such things however and none of my scientist seemed to be able to discover what gave the Mandasura Protectors, an ancient empire at the edge of the galaxy, their psychic powers.
upload_2018-4-1_14-17-8.png

Cybernetic implants that would prolong my life were already possible but I did not want to invest the required ressources until I was sure psionics were denied to me.
 

stnylan

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Ahh, so the Caretakers were being genuinely friendly. That's nice :)
 

Nikolai

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Those Mandasura sure looks scary.
 
Event Horizon

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Early in the year 2291 one of our exploration ships under the command of Tigg, daughter of Debe discovered a strange signal coming from a black hole.
upload_2018-4-6_16-45-26.png

I ordered Tigg, daughter of Debe to investigate the signal.
upload_2018-4-6_16-52-36.png


upload_2018-4-6_16-53-47.png

Early in the year 2292 we received another signal now mentioning one of our Admirals by name.
Abil, son of Gabb, slayer of amoebas and void clouds volunteered gladly.

A third leader vanished at the exit point in 2293.

Shortly afterwards a strange copy of one of our admirals and an even stranger escape pod with the corpse of a subspecies of our species were discovered.

After the copy of Kreb, son of Jagg was killed his skills improved significantly.
upload_2018-4-6_17-1-55.png

I allowed Anak, son of Gabb to investigate the strange near-Kettu corpse.

Meanwhile strange buildings appeared on one of our mining colonies.
upload_2018-4-6_17-4-27.png
(I ignored the other events on that planet because they do not really work with droid colonies... )

In the meantime I sent Kreb, son of Jagg on a clean up mission.
Ancient pirates and dreadnoughts were removed from resource rich systems.
upload_2018-4-6_17-13-22.png
upload_2018-4-6_17-11-39.png
upload_2018-4-6_17-13-53.png

The enigmatic fortress near Aro was also targeted.
upload_2018-4-6_17-14-55.png

After our victory against the fortress we unraveled its secrets.
upload_2018-4-6_17-17-38.png
(My thanks to the author of the enigmatic fortress bugfix mod. Only required if you reverted to 2.0.1 though)

In the year 2303 Anak, son of Gabb released a retrovirus which started changing our species.
I decided to embrace the change.
upload_2018-4-6_17-19-39.png

Most members of our species changed quickly.
upload_2018-4-6_17-22-2.png
Their personalities changed too. Over night the National Stability Lobby collapsed and was replaced by the militaristic Patriotic Vanguard.
upload_2018-4-6_17-22-39.png

upload_2018-4-6_17-23-42.png

However my immune system, strengthened by the cartaker inoculations and anti-aging treatments, resisted the retrovirus successfully.
I found it difficult to relate to my own people afterwards.
The members of the Patriotic Vanguard still accepted me as the leader of all Kettu .
upload_2018-4-6_17-24-55.png

Regular newscasts which mentioned that the prime directive of all droids was "Obey Inki, daugther of Unka" might have helped tough.
Organic Kettu were a bit outnumbered after all.
upload_2018-4-6_17-29-25.png
Personally I believe droids whispering "Inki, Inki, Inki" while in close proximity of their masters did not hurt either.
 
Last edited:

stnylan

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It's all getting rather interesting

Nice intrepretation of the event chain.