And quite a resource, too. I was reminded of a few wikis out there. I am not such a huge fan nowadays, but it tickles me quite a lot and makes me consider posting something... at least a scroll, if nothing else. :)
One for Firefly, on of the better universes of last few years. Go to Comment
This terraforming process must have taken something to make it happen, even if it is just handwavium. What happened to the ships and devices that corralled the comets and altered atmospheres? Is it still out there, churning out marginally habitable single biome worlds, was it used up and there is none left?
In canon, it seems handwavium. They came, they morphed, they moved on. They are probably elsewhere spending a decade or twelve on the next world. The Rim worlds are "new" in the last century or so, so the process seems to be continuing. However, it is implied that they might of stopped since The War or encountering The Reavers.
The whole Terraforming thing is glossed over, falling into the category of "assumed by the characters, so nobody has to have an Asmovian monolog explaining what to the characters are obvious."
Otherwise, this is a nice list of planets, the multiple intros from the varying perspectives was a bit long winded though.
The multiple intros are a feature of the series. Each one shows the universe from a different character's point of view. Since our primary source of information are three ex-rebels, we get a skewed view of thing - per Joss W himself. Go to Comment
Long ago, on the Earth-that-was, there were a few people who saw the future of the planet as it truly was: doomed. They endeavored through doubt and denial, sending automated terraforming machinery to prospective planets. Years later, in the hopes that their actions had been fruitful, hundreds of multi-generational ships traveled to these planets in the hope of continued life.
Terraforming was only the first stage. The most dense cluster of planets received the largest support in terms of cargo and personnel. These planets became the central planets and formed themselves into an Alliance. Outlying settlements did not receive the same level of support with the result of these border planets being fairly dangerous and forbidding environments.
Hundreds of years passed as humanity struggled to create their niche in the new worlds. Once this was established, many started to look at their neighbors in the hopes of forming permanent alliances. The central planets stood to gain the most in terms of trade and manufacturing. In many ways, the proposed alliance was only a formalization of the pact between several large families with almost unlimited control and influence.
Feeling the proposal would serve these families at the expense of the outlying planets, the Border planets chose to refuse to join the Alliance. The resolve continued, despite increasing economic and medical embargos, designed to cripple the settlements. Facing vastly larger numbers, superior technology and a unified front, the Border planets resisted what they saw as self-serving propaganda. In the end, after several negotiations led to deaths, the Border planets, calling themselves Browncoats, declared they would never become part of the Alliance. Tensions and violence escalated. War was declared.
Despite easy predictions of defeat, the Browncoats held themselves against the Alliance far longer than any had dared to hope. But, it was in 251, in the Battle of Serenity Valley, that the war was ended. Almost a quarter of a million people died in the valley after four months of continued fire. After a particularly crushing defeat, the Browncoats offered surrender. They had lost. Go to Comment
A Technological paradise, comprised of tall buildings of steel and glass with holographic billboards illustrating the latest in consumer news. Ariel is known for its wonderful medical facilities. The technology is the very latest, featuring fancifications as holographic scanners among other glorified equipment. As with most of the Core worlds, Ariel is a restricted landing site. Only those with legitimate business are allowed to land. St. Lucy's Hospital is here.
The crew of Serenity arrives on this planet for a heist on an advanced medical facility. Featured in Firefly Go to Comment
The heavily industrialized planet here is the manufacturing hub of the system. Its cities are surrounded by factories that produce everything from computer parts to ceramic dishware. Some of the factories are owned by the Blue Sun Corporation., though there are rumors that some of the factories are not factories at all. Security is tight in all their holdings, so no one has ever been to verify this. Or, they never got back out to tell.
Pollution is a problem on Beaumonde and the cities are covered in a perpetual haze. Technology keeps this at bay as best it can, but the problem grows worse each year, causing problems with the agricultural population. A popular bar, in the less prosperous part of town, is the Maidenhead, owned formerly by the brothers Fanti and Mingo.
Outside the cities, the atmosphere improves dramatically. Ranchers and farmers manage to make a decent supplying the cities and ships going off-world.
New Dunsmuir is the capital city of the planet. This is the only city that has no factories. It's located on an ocean and is a popular tourist attraction. Here is where the wealthy reside. New Dunsmuir is a beautiful city with avenues of trees and carefully maintained flower gardens.
The crew was headed for Beaumonde in the episode "Our Mrs. Reynolds". The Serenity crew arrives here in the movie. Go to Comment
Bellerophon has both a large ocean and an empty area of desert climate, complete with canyons, rock and sand. Isis Canyon is pointed out as the most deserted spot on the world. And those spots can be pretty isolated, if you want to do some business out there.
Bellerophon Estates, large self-contained estates that hover above the planets ocean, are described as having "gracious living, ocean views and state-of-the-art security." These are the private estates of the Borders and some of the Cores wealthiest folk. Everything required is shipped in, so there is no need for trade, shops or tourists. Each estate is a self-contained world, about the size of a town and float over Bellerophon's oceans.
The owners value their privacy so the skies around each estate are regularly patrolled by private and Alliance security. Visiting is by invitation only, so be prepared to have a very good reason for being there. Durran Haymer, a collector of priceless Earth That Was artifacts, lives in Bellerophon Estates.
After the colonization of Londinum and Sihnon, Bernadette was the first place to be terraformed and settled. The only remaining ship that brought the founding folk, stands in the capital city of New Paris. The ark is a monstrous ship, at least five times the size of an Alliance cruiser. The ark is named the Prometheus.
Bernadette is a traditional launching point for those leaving to settle on other worlds. Settlers arrive here from the Core, the last point of civilization before launching into the Rim. Many businesses cater to these folk, selling the necessities that no one wanted to drag here aforehand.
The dark side of Bernadett is the slave trade. It's an underground organization and its all too realy. Settlers disappear and are hauled off to work on terraforming stations or mines. Most times, the settler is assumed to have died in the black.
Oddly enough, or perhaps not so odd, Bernadette is also home to a number of religious sects. Buddhists, Christians, Islamic and Hindus all rub shoulders with each other, along with a number of fringe cults.
Landing is restricted, but will usually allow visitations to the ark, or people claiming to be settlers. In both cases, business is expected to be concluded in two days. Go to Comment
A small planet with extensive farming lands, often used for smuggling rendevous. Permanent cloud cover and dense ice rings are indicative of the atmosphere. It is often used for recycling and garbage warehousing by the central planets. And what was chaff to the Central planets is often enough gold to those on the Rim and soon entrepreneurial prospectors began profitable dealings in secondhand goods. Almost anything can be found here, used parts, moderately obsolete materials, even old Fireflies.
Mals war buddy, Monty, was caught by the Alliance here. Go to Comment
Around Boros itself, you will find the Alliance shipyards, where there is always a few of the latest designs being constructed. A ship can take anywhere between 3-6 years to construct. They are extremely heavily guarded to prevent terrorist attacks and technological espionage.
Boros itself has extensive prairies with ranches and farms. The majority of the industry is scrap metal. Parts that didn't meet the rigorous standards of the Alliance, castoffs, damaged parts and plain old junk.
It makes it even more advantageous that there are few restrictions in landing on Boros.
Ares: Boros' moon is the home to Iskellkian, the primary builder of the Alliance's cruisers and ships. As a result, the place is crawling with all manner of governmental agents, bureaucrats and military people. The area is restricted to Alliance and Iskellkian personnel. Go to Comment
Georgia is a Gas giant that is unusual in that it has only two moons, for such a large body.
Ezra: A planet orbiting the gas giant, Georgia, it's a planet going through considerable changes. Ezra started out as a planet largely filled with farmers and ranchers. Toward the end of the Unification war, the planet's representative died unexpectantly, throwing the planet into a virtual civil war as various factions vied in the power struggles. Confusing the situation further, hordes of refugees and former soldiers from both sides flooded the small central towns. Jobs grew scarce, unemployment rose and the economy was destroyed. Crime rose and criminal organizations rose to power when the local law officials failed to keep it in check.
One crimelord in particular, Adelei Niska, moved his skyplex into Ezra's orbit and assumed control. Using bribes, extortion and threats, he maintains his powerbase, somewhat covered by legitimate business organizations. As of yet, the Alliance hasn't been able to conclude what to do with the situation, as they'd need someone to deal with Niska; thus far, no one has been willing to take on the task.
Farming and ranching is still common professions, and Niska has given more jobs to people than not. Nevertheless, despite the largely stable economy, the law of the land is the strongest survive. If you can't defend what you have, you lose it. That applies to people as well as property, since slavers make many of their business contracts here. As such, Ezra is a place for almost unlimited opportunity, whether they enjoy the particular opportunities is up to the individuals.
Regina: A moon orbiting the gas giant along with Ezra. It is a mining moon, where everyone is suffering from Bowdens malady, a degenerative disease.
Ironically (for a setting as rich in the flavor of the American Old West and American Civil War as the Firefly 'verse), it's more likely, given the accents prevalent in the area, that the Georgia system owes its name to a region of eastern Europe on Earth-that-was, rather than the more obvious stateside source. Go to Comment
Greenleaf is a world with a large tropical belt, with massive jungles and forests. (The rest of the world is pretty rocky, full of lava plains yet to be converted to soil proper.) These are harvested with a multitude of species of plants with medicinal properties. As a result, many pharmaceutical companies have set up laboratories on Greenleaf. Also, as a result, there is a fringe population that takes some of the plants to grow privately for the black market. This is a dangerous occupation since the drug companies began inserting traceable genetic markers to stop the illegal trade. This has been only nominally successful due to the fact that there are untold places for cartels to hide within the jungles. To compensate, the Alliance has clamped down on landing restrictions, though if you have the necessary knowledge of the jungles one can always slip through. Go to Comment
Hera is largely agricultural world, the breadbasket for the entire region. Lying midway between the Core and the outer planets on a major shipping lane, Hera was of great strategic importance during the war, making it an important staging ground for both sides.
Hera has important significance to thse who know the Unification War. Serenity Valley is located here, where the Independent Faction experienced a crushing defeat at hands and ships of the Alliance. Taking Hera was the key to winning the war and Serenity Valley became the turning point.
The war devastated Serenity Valley. Seven years past, and the valley is still blackened and charred by the fire storm that swept through it. The only landmark is a graveyard on the hills next to the valley. Over half a million men and women, Alliance and Independents alike, are buried here, each with an identical small headstone. Some have names, most don't. Often, you will find the headstones decorated with flowers, personal mementos and the like. Many families never saw their children return, and many have picked an unnamed grave and honor it, hoping someone else is doing the same for their son or daughter.
Serenity graveyard is one of the most hallowed and sacred places of ground in all the Verse.Go to Comment
An enormous gas giant with several inhabitable planets.
Higgin's Moon: A small moon won in a card game to a man named Higgins. It was considered a dubious winning, since the moon had no useful resources or agricultural promise. Still, Higgin's established himself and was justified a few years later when it was discovered that the abundant clay was rich in minerals. If chemically treated and fired, it created a ceramic that was ten times stronger than steal and a fraction of the weight. With this, they established their primary industry: mud.
Canton is the main company town, with over two thousand workers, largely slaves or indentured, known as "Mudders." Higgins descendent, the currant Magistrate rules through intimidation and fear, almost uniformly hated by the population. Crimes are dealt with three possible punishments; long-term hard-labot, imprisonment, or death by quartering.
The Mudders maintain hope even in the face or a monumentally dismal life: they sing songs of a hero who has twice defied the magistrate: Jayne Cobb. The Hero of Canton, it is believed, will one day come back to free them. Until then, they have one unlikely ally: the magistrate's son, Fess. Fess is currently working quietly to reverse or eliminate some of his father's regulations and procedures.
Triumph: It is a moon orbiting around the gas giant, Heinlein. A primitive and poor border moon, apparently self-governed with rather unusual customs and traditions. The people that came here have done so with the intent to have nothing to do with the modern life found in the Central Planets, or even the Border worlds. The settlers lives as did the Amish of Earth-That-Was, with few excepts such as the occasional commstat equipment.
Thugs and bandits find the settlements easy pickings, since the majority of the people are pacifists. If the problem grows to be too heavy a burden, the people will occasionally contract with mercenaries to cull back the bandits and thugs. Elder Bomman is the leader of the settlers.
Jayne became a folk hero to the mudders in the town of Canton due to his role in a botched heist about four years before the time of the Firefly series. The crew visits Higgins' Moon in the episode "Jaynestown." Featured in Firefly Go to Comment
The planet is one with broad open spaces and lots of cattle. Along the huge rivers which seem to common on the planet, there are some good sized cities. They are an odd mix of modern and frontier brick. The culture here is very capitalistic, with a seriously Asian flair.
Jiangyin is a border planet located 3 weeks away from Persephone, and also nearby Greenleaf. Alliance law is known to be upheld here. The crew of Serenity sells a cargo load of cattle here in the episode "Safe". Go to Comment
Lila is a border planet probably near Reaver territory. From space it appears to have a lilac color, which presumably it was named for. This appearance comes from a combination of minerals in the soil (which taint the plants) and the dust in the air.
The windstorms here are something fierce blowing across the rolling hills, as there seems to be no mountains on this planet. Locals live in wind sheltered valleys or in places built into a mound.
The Serenity crew land on Lilac to rob a bank holding an Alliance payroll. Lilac is at times roughly ten hours from Beaumonde as stated by Mal. Go to Comment
The characters are given the task of transporting a flask of highly volatile liquid a long distance. The flask cannot be shaken too much or it will explode. The adventure involves stormy sea-voyages, bumpy cart rides through densely populated towns and horseback combat. In short there are many opportunities for it to break and explode.