|Primary: Carlo Omicron||G5 V Magnitude 5.2|
|Carlo Omicron Beta
|M3D Companion (aka CO2)
Avg Surface Temp:
220.78 std days
Cities with pop >1K:
| 25,000+ (human)
1 (Port Rupert, pop. 1200)
|Tech profile (1200):|
|4 (2 steam railroads; few alcohol combustion trucks)
3 (sailing craft)
4 (3 operable blimps)
4 (crude mortars)
|Novelty:||8 (surviving luxury items from off-planet)|
Most of the human population has always lived within 1,000 km of the capital Port Rupert, on the shore of the Fuaca Sea.
Kamloops was settled by ethnic Solomani from Carillian Assembly during the early 900s as an economic colony. The Kamloops Company was set up as a colonial cooperative effort, mostly centered around a mining cooperative and rockguana product exports: fresh meat, leather items, and blu-wool skins.
Rockguanas were a genera of local lizard-like animals, who were hunted and the carcases rendered for products. One species of mountain- dwelling Rockguana had developed the fine scales into small furry feathers for warmth in a mottled blue pattern to match the rocks of the environment. These blu-wools were particularly sought after, and hunted nearly to extinction. When easy hunting ended, blu-wool skin prices rose to close most of the market. Around 940, a few families began running a blu-wool preserve.
The colony was designed to be mostly self sufficient, so it included various light manufactories and enough farmland for most local food production. It also included a filter factory that built the personal and building air-conditioning filters to keep the suspended particulate that earned the tainted atmosphere rating from harming the population.
Kamloops was never a successful place. After an initial flurry of profit from blu-wool and 'guana leather clothing fad in the Carillian Assembly and the Principality of Caledon, the Kamloops Company declared bankruptcy in 948.
Some divisions of the company survived independently. Enough farmland was kept in production by squatters to feed the population. Many settlers stayed on planet because they could not amass enough funds to pay the fare elsewhere. Those industries that survived formed vertical market blocs, which formed cooperatives that began to support themselves. Industries and settlers alike settled back into a lifestyle supportable locally, since the majority of offworld support dried up.
Planetary government fell into the hands of a council of industrial leaders, who divided along lines mostly by industry and bickered enough to earn Kamloops a "balkanized" government rating. Trade with Collins World (in food and metals) provided enough cash for needed capital purchases from off-planet. Visitors were few and far between.
While nominally still a colony of the Carrillian Assembly, Kamloops was de facto non-aligned - the Assembly was not willing to send as much as a Scoutship to defend the planet. There was not enough value in Kamloops to balance the threat to Marlheim or Duncinae by garrisoning it - nor were either of these states interested in arousing Carrillian anger by seizing it.
Kamloops did not notice any effects of Hard Times until the ships from Collin's World stopped picking up products.
On Kamloops, most of the available high-tech sustained the personal filter industry, run as a government monopoly. The filters were built in a computer-managed TL8 facility from local materials. The factory hung on by a wing and a prayer and the support of a handful of trained technicians from off-planet until the Virus came.
The Virus arrived in 1134 on the A2 Far Trader Lehia. The Virus had taken over the Lehia three weeks earlier. Her crew were still alive, eating emergency rations and were upset that the controls did not function, but the ship still travelled. The Virus made contact with the TL8 Starport traffic control computer (in unmanned operation, but connected to alert the government to contacts) and beamed a version of itself down to the traffic control computer. Lehia then made to leave the system (as there was nothing else to infect). However, before she could jump, her crew (in an effort to regain control) physically detached nearly every control linkage aboard ship. They died from asphyxiation before they could rebuild the controls from spare parts. The Lehia fell into an eccentric cometary orbit.
(If you believe in finding needles in a haystack, she could be found if anyone knew where to look. Her hull, engines, and basic electronics are intact. Most control linkages are in pieces floating about her decks.)
The Virus-copy was frustrated and perplexed by the lack of connectivity or high tech equipment. Other than the central records computer it reached from the starport, it found evidence of only a few other systems it could reach. It did manage to get itself sent by tape to the automated factory that made filters for the planetary population, run by a TL8 computer system.
It wrecked the filter factory, forcing the machinery to run well above its designed capacity, burning out the equipment. Kamloops did not stock spares for all of the damaged machinery, so the factory was out of commission. So were the people, thought the Virus - they just didn't know it.
Kamloops has been limping along since it was visited by the Virus. Without filters, the population began to die off after their respiratory systems gave out from accumulation of the atmospheric particulate. The average lifespan is now 25 to 30 terran years. Adulthood has been forced to start early. Before the age of 15, most children have been trained in the clan trade and are prepared to assume the role of an adult (prepared to replace their parents, who are soon to die). Since this has been happening for 5 short generations, this does not seem strange to the local population. Population is back up to 25,000 (up from a low of 12,000).
The industrial cooperatives broke down into clans based on business and industrial establishments. For example, the Zeiben clan is made of the families of the original owners and workers who worked the Zeiben blu-wool ranch. The clan structure allows a business to collect, pool, and pass on their knowledge and experience since individuals live such short lives. The clans operate similarly to an Israeli kibbutz: all clan members are trained in either a "housekeeping" skill or one of the clan craft skills. All of an individual's efforts benefit the clan, which in turn supports all its members. Parents cannot guarantee that they will live long enough to fully care for their children up to adulthood - but the clan does.
"Housekeeping" skills include all the skills needed to operate a clan hold, such as farming/gardening, cooking, tailoring, laundry, childcare, small-scale electronics and power systems, animal handling, militia expertise, carpentry.
Clan craft skills are grouped around the clan industry. For instance, a clan of herders would have expertise in herding, animal husbandry, butchering, tanning, and leatherworking. A metal industry clan would be expert in mining, smelting, metalurgy, smithing, and metalwork and so on.
Clans that are too small in size, skill set, or skill quality do not survive.
Clans are typically ruled by a council of elders. Repleacements are selected by the council from the body of the clan. Eventually, the council members will train their children in rulership skills and devlop into an oligarchy.
The nuclear family is de-emphasized in this culture. While children still have some attachment to their parents, one receives more identity and welfare from the clan. Skill training starts early - at about age eight standard, with chores starting before that. Education is limited before being specialized toward clan skills. "Adulthood" comes when the child can perform an adult's full day's work (varies by clan, but usually between age 12 & 15). Marriages are usually arranged between age 13 to 16 and are usually between clan members, though some cross-clan marriages are used to seal alliances for business deals. Marriages are mostly for life. Divorces can be granted by the clan leader, but seldom are.
Childbirth is dangerous for the mother (3-5% die in childbirth) and infant death is a problem. Loopies know about germ theory, cleanliness, and anatomy, but lack sophisticated equipment and cannot do anything about the taint. Advanced medical knowledge is in fairly short supply, as it is difficult for a healer to have enough (successful) experience to pass along.
The last of the off-planet tech has either worn out or ground to a halt due to a lack of servicing. However, since the population is small, TL 5 electronics, machinery, power generation, and medicine is supported at the shop level. For instance, most major settlements have wind- or water- powered generators producing electricity for light. Clans use radio for long distance communication.
Economy: Trade between clans is by barter exchange for goods and services. Some people live in small market towns, where they can buy goods and services they do not generate themselves from neighbors. Clans in the surrounding area usually have a family/factor/embassy/store in town.
Items for present trade:
Vistors: Kamloops has been visited once since the attack of the Virus. In 1165, Port Rupert was raided by human Reavers, who killed nearly 100 of the population, destroyed several houses, and took a small amount of stored food and hides. (The food was later jettisoned due to accumulation of particulate). The Reavers did not stay long enough for ben Zoa's descendants to arrive.
On the planet when the Virus struck was Hitachi ben Zoa, a brilliant computer scientist from Carill who had been disgraced with his hand in the till in 1123 and was relegated to this backwater rock as their governmental computer support expert. The highest tech level on the planet was in his home workshop but it wasn't connected to anything or registered as a government or cooperative asset. The Virus never knew of its existence. He was investigating the filter factory's computer after it had malfunctioned. What The Virus had not considered was that copied on computer tape and limited to lo-tech unconnected hardware, it was vulnerable.
Ben Zoa spent the next 10 years (until his respiratory system gave out) studying the Virus (literally) bit by bit, rather like a Virus Genome project. Slowly, he uncovered all its operating secrets - the vectors it could use, its heuristics, etc. Of course, there was no way to communicate this information off-planet (and few people who could understand the problem on-planet).
He eradicated the Virus from the few computers in the planetary government computer net (since there were only a few), but not until after it had wiped clean the banking system, causing a major recession. (He fixed the computers more because he had little else to do and it was part of his research into the Virus than for any other reason.) Ben Zoa replaced input local devices with card readers and paper tape readers to stop the Virus from coming back (no entry points). He analyzed the Virus's software, and wrote up the analysis in a waist high pile of plastic notebooks. With knowledge of the Virus's innermost workings, he built Virus traps for radar and radio links to keep it out. They were quite effective - until the machines wore out.
Ben Zoa's analysis is kept by his descendants, with instructions to give these to anyone from the stars. Ben Zoa figured that with a few years of his death someone would come by. He had trouble believing that the Virus could cause a galactic calamity. His descendants will offer a "Virus killer" to anyone claiming to be from off-planet as long as they promise to share it with anyone who needs it (and does not shoot at them when they come to visit). They will arrive five days after the group sets down (if they arrive within 50 miles of the old starport or airport).
The analysis, six months to a year after it is put in the hands of computer
scientists, will help create effective software traps against Virus software
intrusion (better against close relatives, then less effective as you further
from V1A; see below). It will also allow for the creation of counter-virii -
programs that will insert themselves in the Virus's operating code and cause it
to to any of the following:
Game effects: Tools made with this information will be (damn, this will sound like DnD) +12 vs Virus 1A. Such tools will be less effective against relatives (look at the Virus chart in SM; for each arrow you move to from 1A to the Virus type you are against, subtract 2. F'rinstance, tools made from the analysis would be +10 vs V 1 (1 arrow) and only +6 vs V 4 Puppeteers (3 arrows).
(Holy expletive! Ted just defanged the Virus in one shot!
|Note:||The local population would not think to ask someone to fix the factory. In fact, most clan leaders will oppose fixing it as a supply of filters would decrease their power by increasing the ability of an individual or single family to survive unsupported by a clan. But within 20 years of the factory being replaced, the culture will have changed and the factory builders will have become heros.|
;From Mitch "Ted7"Schwartz -- Sun Sep 4 22:32:28 1994