The Scourge - Overview of Phases

Will Flanagan

Community Manager
Frontier
147200


* * EMERGENCY TRANSMISSION * *

Greetings Commanders,

The Interstellar Association for Agriculture has declared a state of emergency following severe crop failures across multiple worlds. To prevent food shortages and economic strife for billions of civilians, independent pilots are being asked to bring grain, pesticides and synthetic reagents to two key locations.

This marks the beginning of our third Interstellar Initiative: The Scourge.

Throughout the course of the event, we'll be periodically updating this thread with details and updates as they develop.


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PHASE 1 (10 October)
Two coordinated trade initiatives have been launched, spearheading efforts to mitigate the impact of low crop yields in key systems.

The initiatives have been organised by Crimson State Limited in the Diso system and Orerve Universal Limited in the Orerve system. The significant loss of crops in these agricultural centres is a primary cause for the low availability of staple foodstuffs.

The initiatives received praise from Dr Genevieve Kane of the Interstellar Association for Agriculture:

“This campaign is a step in the right direction, and with the help of the galactic community should stop the situation from becoming a full-scale crisis.”

“The IAA is currently investigating the reasons for such poor harvests, and it seems that a new form of blight may be responsible for the rapid degeneration of crops. Scientific teams are analysing samples of diseased tissue, and we expect to know more soon.”

Traders are asked to deliver pesticides, synthetic reagents and grain to Shifnalport in the Diso system and Watson Station in the Orerve system.

The initiative is scheduled to run from the 10th to the 16th of October 3305. If the final targets are met earlier than planned, the campaign will end immediately.
  • As detailed above, independent commanders will be required to bring grain, pesticides and synthetic reagents to a region of space on the brink of economic strife, This will come in the form of a trading Community Goal.
  • Community Goal Details:
    • Start Date - 10 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
    • End Date -16 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
    • Pesticides, synthetic reagents and grain to be delivered to Watson Station in the Orerve system, and Shifnalport in the Diso system.

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PHASE 2 (16 October)
Initiative to Eradicate Rockforth Fertiliser

The Rockforth Corporation’s EX7 fertiliser has been linked to the blight affecting crops in a number of systems, prompting an initiative to remove the product from the market.
Dr Genevieve Kane of the Interstellar Association for Agriculture delivered an urgent message:

“Comparative analysis has confirmed that the blight is caused by the EX7 fertiliser. The original poor harvests have been attributed to natural factors, and it is now thought that the situation could have been contained had the fertiliser not exacerbated the problem.”

“Initial food shortages were offset by a recent trade appeal in the Diso and Orerve systems, but the blight’s symptoms have since been reported in hundreds of systems. While we investigate the reasons for this rapid spread, preventing further fertiliser distribution is vital.”

Rockforth fertiliser can now be collected at negligible cost from the following markets:

  • Sharon Lee Free Market, Orrere
  • Lave Station, Lave
  • Warinus, Lave
  • Shifnalport, Diso
  • Davies High, Reorte
  • Watson Station, Orerve
  • Roentgen Hub, LFT 37
  • Macedo Station, Lei Zi
  • Phillips Gateway, Ensoreus
  • Baird Gateway, Arque
  • La Soeur du Dan Ham, Riedquat
The Teveri Progressive Party has arranged for the safe disposal of the fertiliser and has offered to compensate pilots for their efforts. The fertiliser should be delivered to Wiley Port in the Teveri system.

To expedite this initiative, Lakon Spaceways has agreed to lower the cost of the Type-6 Transporter, Type-7 Transporter and Type-9 Heavy. Cargo rack prices have also been reduced in all starports.

The initiative is scheduled to run from the 16th to the 22nd of October 3305. If the final target is met earlier than planned, the campaign will end immediately.
Summary:
  • Independent commanders will be required to bring Rockforth Fertiliser to Wiley Port in the Teveri system.
    • Start Date - 16 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
    • End Date - 22 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
  • Rockforth Fertiliser is now available to collect from markets at negligible cost from the stations listed below:
    • Sharon Lee Free Market, Orrere
    • Lave Station, Lave
    • Warinus, Lave
    • Shifnalport, Diso
    • Davies High, Reorte
    • Watson Station, Orerve
    • Roentgen Hub, LFT 37
    • Macedo Station, Lei Zi
    • Phillips Gateway, Ensoreus
    • Baird Gateway, Arque
    • La Soeur du Dan Ham, Riedquat
  • For the duration of the Community Goal, Lakon Spaceways has agreed to lower the cost of the following ships:
    • Type-6 Transporter
    • Type-7 Transporter
    • Type-9 Heavy
  • Cargo Rack prices have also been reduced in all starports.
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PHASE 3 (22 October)
Militant Group Responsible for Blight

An extremist group from the Kappa Fornacis system is responsible for the contaminated fertiliser that has caused widespread crop failures.

Gino Borstein made this statement on behalf of the tri-superpower taskforce investigating the blight’s origin:

“Our investigation has confirmed that an activist group known as Scythe of Panem managed to infiltrate Rockforth Corporation manufacturing plants in the Riedquat system. Members of the group contaminated the EX7 fertiliser with a synthetic agent designed to putrefy plant matter.”
Recent efforts by the galactic community have almost eradicated the EX7 fertiliser. But Borstein warned that the activists have turned hostile upon discovery.

“The group’s manifesto discusses revenge for the Federation’s 3301 campaign to wipe out the recreational drug known as Onion Head. This involved an orbital bombardment of Onion Head crops on Panem using biocides with a similar genomic structure to the blight. It’s likely that the activists used these biocides as the foundation of their synthetic agent.”

“Shortly after we located Scythe of Panem cells in the Quator system, their more militant members responded with unprovoked violence. Local citizens are now at risk of being caught in the crossfire.”

An effort to neutralise the activists is being led by the Bruthanvan Co faction, which has requested tactical support from the galactic community.

Independent pilots who destroy Scythe of Panem ships in the Quator system will be generously rewarded by Bruthanvan Co. This campaign will run from the 22nd to the 28th of October 3305.
Summary:
  • Those behind the contamination of the Rockforth Fertiliser have been discovered! A faction, Bruthanvan Co, have requested tactical support in destroying the group responsible for this treachery, the Scythe of Panem. Destroying Scythe of Panem ships and handing in the Combat Bonds at the Quator Station in the Quator system can help the faction achieve this.
    • Start Date - 22 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
    • End Date - 28 October @ 15:00 (UTC)
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
NEW DEVELOPMENT (24 October)
Anti-Blight Treatment Discovered

The galactic community has been asked to support an initiative that could counteract the blight that is devastating crops in hundreds of systems.

With the blight pathogen present across inhabited space, the Interstellar Association for Agriculture has decided to press ahead with controlled distribution of a promising new agronomic treatment.

The IAA’s Dr Genevieve Kane provided further information:

“Ever since the blight was identified, our scientists have been working alongside Rockforth Corporation research teams to develop an effective counteragent. We appreciate the full cooperation granted by Rockforth Corporation representatives in this endeavour.”
“Following essential contributions by both the Vandermeer Corporation and Neomedical Industries, we have developed an agronomic treatment that should reverse the disease’s effects.”

“The priority is to transport the treatment to the Diso and Orerve systems, which were among the first to be ravaged by the blight. If these primary agricultural centres can be made viable again, we can then proceed to revitalise crop production elsewhere.”
Agronomic treatment can now be collected from the following markets:

Conway City, Ltt 4961
George Lucas, Leesti
Thomson Orbital, Lansbury
Cousin Ring, Tjindjin
Margulis Station, CD-44 10336
Nourse City, Esumindii

Independent traders have been asked to deliver the agronomic treatment to Shifnalport in the Diso system and Watson Station in the Orerve system.

The initiative is scheduled to run from the 24th to the 30th of October 3305. If the final targets are met earlier than planned, the campaign will end immediately.

Summary:
  • A treatement for the Blight has been identified, but independent commanders are now being called upon to help deliver it to key agricultural centres: Shifnalport in the Diso system and Watson Station in the Orerve system.
    • Deliver Agronomic Treatement to either Shifnalport (Diso) or Watson Station (Orerve). This treatment can be collected from:
      • Conway City, Ltt 4961
      • George Lucas, Leesti
      • Thomson Orbital, Lansbury
      • Cousin Ring, Tjindjin
      • Margulis Station, CD-44 10336
      • Nourse City, Esumindii
    • Start Date - 24 October @ 08:00 (UTC)
    • End Date - 30 October @ 07:30 (UTC)
  • For the duration of this Community Goal, if you dock at any of the above stations, you'll receive The Scourge decal (below):
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CONCLUSION (30 October)

With the end of the most recent Community Goal, this marks the conclusion to The Scourge. First off, we would like to thank all of the dedicated Commanders who took part to combat the rise of the Rockforth pathogen. Although The Scourge is over, it will have everlasting effects on our galaxy.

Despite the efforts of the galactic community, the blight pathogen (unwittingly distributed by the Rockforth Corporation) proved far too resilient to quarantine and eradicate completely. Food stocks across the galaxy are now at risk of carrying the dormant pathogen, which if introduced to healthy crops or food reserves, has the potential to activate and erupt into Blight.

Blight is a new Background Simulation state and has a huge economic impact on the faction affected in that star system. It can be counteracted by delivering Agronomic Treatment - produced in High-Tech economies - to affected systems. If left untreated, it can quickly wipe out food reserves and with no further food stocks available, the pathogen dies out and the faction will instead experience a full-blown Famine state.

We hope that when this happens, you will be prepared to help our galaxy and its people from experiencing such a great devastation...

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I have one suggestion for the future Initiatives, if I may.

Could you please separate in-game/in-character speech ("The Interstellar Association for Agriculture has declared a state of emergency...") from out-of-game meta talk ("Throughout the course of the event, we'll be periodically updating this thread...")?

Ideally, everything written here should have played out naturally via in-game announcements, including the Initiative announcement itself. As if an independent governing body (e. g. Pilots' Federation) sees the unfolding events and says: "This stuff is too important to let it run its course, we take the initiative under our sponsorship and supervision and declare it an Interstellar Initiative, with code name The Scourge". Obviously, that announcement should be its own separate in-game news piece.
 
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But.. what if we.. don't?
Well, then we might get to see evidence that these Initiatives have the option for players to influence the outcome in a meaningful way, as was implied by the announcement hype-trailer. But in reality, Tier 1 will be incredibly low and efforts to shutdown upcoming phases will be rollbacked. In the event it still fails, it'll be put down to a bug and made to succeed anyway (Looking at you, Aegis)
 
I've been hauling that Rockforth thing for the past 2 or 3 weeks. My Cutter who used to be one of the finest luxurious ships in the quadrant now has a foul stench everywhere, i can hardly breath when I walk inside her with my space legs ;)!

I'll clean her up, if that's even possible, and will help with the hauling. o7
 
Well, then we might get to see evidence that these Initiatives have the option for players to influence the outcome in a meaningful way, as was implied by the announcement hype-trailer. But in reality, Tier 1 will be incredibly low and efforts to shutdown upcoming phases will be rollbacked. In the event it still fails, it'll be put down to a bug and made to succeed anyway (Looking at you, Aegis)
That's certainly part of where I'm coming from here.

They remove CG's and replaced them with this as a way for us to effect change in the story.. but I'm missing how we change the story with our actions here. Would love it for someone to show me how.
 
Ah, finally the IIs continue. Nice to see that this was introduced well, and that the later phases and potential rewards in the end aren't spoiled in advance. Looks like a decent start.
 
That's certainly part of where I'm coming from here.

They remove CG's and replaced them with this as a way for us to effect change in the story.. but I'm missing how we change the story with our actions here. Would love it for someone to show me how.
Sadly, there doesn't seem to be a way anymore. This CG will probably include some token War state, perhaps involving Rockforth, or maybe just random pirates. That'll be all the "choice" we get - except as was seen last time, the "choice" will probably be heavily biased towards one side and will be between two bad options. Or perhaps, seeing as we have two destinations for this phase, one side will be slightly better prepared for the blight. It doesn't really matter.

Options for opposing a CG:
UA Bombing: Only worked if the CG lasted a full month. Also removed from the game since Frontier apparently stopped bothering to update the list of disabled stations.
Lockdown: Nigh-impossible to trigger since the last BGS update. Only viable if you have advance knowledge of the location. I helped attempt this during the first Initiative to hopefully force an alternative route, but all our progress was reset shortly before the phase began. We also don't get advance knowledge anymore.
Blockading the system: Rather difficult due to the low success Tier, and the fact that every ship comes fitted with the ability to turn invisible and intangible as standard.
Player apathy: Tier 1 is very very low. Last Initiative had one of the tiers being so low that the text was in danger of clipping through the UI.
 
When can we get an agricultural station in or even close to the Pleiades ? The closest one now is 240 lys away. ( reference system : Celaeno ) It takes 8-9 jumps there and 10-12 jumps back. To say this is not convenient is an understatement. Not only for the over all economic impact but for the BGS and those mission types that involve items that you can only get at an agricultural stations , the demand is very high but the supply is so far away that not many people are willing to travel that distance.
 
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